Consistent in quality and enthusiasm, Hughes again delivers a cornucopia of varietal amusements for foodophiles whose...


The 14th installment of a series known for dynamic, immersive food writing.

Longtime editor Hughes was challenged with the task of scouring books and magazines for “thoughtful, meaty” material while being a humble sentinel at her dying brother’s bedside. The entertaining essays she’s collected range in theme from home cooking, extreme palates and industrialized product developments to Cronuts and pickled baloney. A section on contemporary food trends examines the dust-up over big flavors and $4 toast being elevated to the “artisanal plane.” Particularly savory and eye-opening pieces include an entomophagist’s ingestion of insects as a source of both concentrated nutrition and inspiration; investigative journalist Barry Estabrook’s list of five foods plagued by historically questionable sanitization histories and overfarming; and a short report on Monsanto’s unsettlingly futuristic vegetable crossbreeding. Updates on prison commissary provisions and the sensationalized “last meal” as an “irresistible blend of food, death, and crime that drives a commercial and voyeuristic cottage industry” are also especially riveting. Among the more charmingly insightful gastronomical nuggets are John Birdsall’s perky analysis of American cuisine’s ostensive “gay sensibility,” food columnist J. Kenji López-Alt’s mouthwatering anatomy of a chocolate chip cookie and an exotic tour of street food in Asia from former Men’s Health food editor Matt Goulding. Humor and compassion, which Hughes admits sustained her throughout the book’s editing process, appear in satisfying doses in essays by self-taught baker Irvin Lin’s hilariously tongue-in-cheek recipe for boiling water, memories of homemade ketchup by David Leite and beloved New England novelist Ann Hood’s rediscovery of tomato pie. For Hughes, this particular edition of thoughtful food pondering “offered its own path of healing and comfort.”

Consistent in quality and enthusiasm, Hughes again delivers a cornucopia of varietal amusements for foodophiles whose palates crave invigorating interpretations and perspectives.

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 2014

ISBN: 978-0738217918

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Da Capo

Review Posted Online: Sept. 28, 2014

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2014

Did you like this book?

No Comments Yet

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

Did you like this book?



Noted jazz and pop record producer Thiele offers a chatty autobiography. Aided by record-business colleague Golden, Thiele traces his career from his start as a ``pubescent, novice jazz record producer'' in the 1940s through the '50s, when he headed Coral, Dot, and Roulette Records, and the '60s, when he worked for ABC and ran the famous Impulse! jazz label. At Coral, Thiele championed the work of ``hillbilly'' singer Buddy Holly, although the only sessions he produced with Holly were marred by saccharine strings. The producer specialized in more mainstream popsters like the irrepressibly perky Teresa Brewer (who later became his fourth wife) and the bubble-machine muzak-meister Lawrence Welk. At Dot, Thiele was instrumental in recording Jack Kerouac's famous beat- generation ramblings to jazz accompaniment (recordings that Dot's president found ``pornographic''), while also overseeing a steady stream of pop hits. He then moved to the Mafia-controlled Roulette label, where he observed the ``silk-suited, pinky-ringed'' entourage who frequented the label's offices. Incredibly, however, Thiele remembers the famously hard-nosed Morris Levy, who ran the label and was eventually convicted of extortion, as ``one of the kindest, most warm-hearted, and classiest music men I have ever known.'' At ABC/Impulse!, Thiele oversaw the classic recordings of John Coltrane, although he is the first to admit that Coltrane essentially produced his own sessions. Like many producers of the day, Thiele participated in the ownership of publishing rights to some of the songs he recorded; he makes no apology for this practice, which he calls ``entirely appropriate and without any ethical conflicts.'' A pleasant, if not exactly riveting, memoir that will be of most interest to those with a thirst for cocktail-hour stories of the record biz. (25 halftones, not seen)

Pub Date: May 1, 1995

ISBN: 0-19-508629-4

Page Count: 224

Publisher: Oxford Univ.

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: March 1, 1995

Did you like this book?