THE GOOD CIGAR

A CELEBRATION OF THE ART OF CIGAR SMOKING

Here's a guidebook for the new generation of affluent stogie enthusiasts. A vile habit to many, a delight to a happy few, cigars are increasingly alight. Misogynist or, lately, simply antisocial, smokers placidly ignore the fulmination of the cigar police for the inexplicable pleasure of wreathing themselves and any innocent bystanders in a stinky haze. Writer Jeffers (Gentleman Gerald, 1995, etc.) and artist Gordon offer acolyte puffers a cigar manual a notch or two above the usual. Along with a history of the habit and a description of the cultivation and manufacture of the thing, the authors provide a guide to all the arcana and etiquette, personages and purveyors, terminology, doggerel, and epigrams of cigar smoking. (One apt epigram they omit: ``Tobacco is the opiate of the gentleman, the religion of the rich,'' said Cabrera Infante in his matchless Holy Smoke). Particular homage is paid to the great promoter Zino Davidoff—which seems altogether appropriate; parts of the text are reminiscent of Davidoff's The Connoisseur's Book of the Cigar. It's all easy and good-natured. There are no complaints about the insane inflation of cigar prices spurred by the new Baby Boomer demand. No stand is taken against the barbaric habit of leaving the band on a cigar as it is smoked. (But even Davidoff, alas, equivocated on this important point.) The authors may be forgiven for stretching a simile here and there. ``The first time you smoke a cigar,'' they say, ``it is like the first time you have sex.'' They neglect to point out that one of those firsts is more likely to induce nausea than the other. For cigar zealots, old and new, here's another accoutrement to place beside the humidor and the clipper. (illustrations and cigar ratings, not seen)

Pub Date: Oct. 10, 1996

ISBN: 1-55821-516-6

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Lyons Press

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1, 1996

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NUTCRACKER

This is not the Nutcracker sweet, as passed on by Tchaikovsky and Marius Petipa. No, this is the original Hoffmann tale of 1816, in which the froth of Christmas revelry occasionally parts to let the dark underside of childhood fantasies and fears peek through. The boundaries between dream and reality fade, just as Godfather Drosselmeier, the Nutcracker's creator, is seen as alternately sinister and jolly. And Italian artist Roberto Innocenti gives an errily realistic air to Marie's dreams, in richly detailed illustrations touched by a mysterious light. A beautiful version of this classic tale, which will captivate adults and children alike. (Nutcracker; $35.00; Oct. 28, 1996; 136 pp.; 0-15-100227-4)

Pub Date: Oct. 28, 1996

ISBN: 0-15-100227-4

Page Count: 136

Publisher: Harcourt

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 15, 1996

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IN MY PLACE

From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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