A great beginning for the perfect Northeast getaway.




A debut guidebook that’s full of American history, intriguing architecture, and beautiful locales.

When Mason retired in 2015, he and his wife took a celebratory trip to tour historic homes and gardens in New England’s Berkshires and New York state’s Hudson Valley. Disappointed that he couldn’t find a comprehensive guidebook to prepare for his trip, he later decided to write his own. The end result is this richly detailed work, which highlights 71 homes and gardens in eight northeastern regions: Rhode Island; Boston; Massachusetts’ North Shore; Maine; western New Hampshire and Vermont (along Interstate 89); Connecticut; the Berkshires; and the “Hudson Valley and Vicinities.” Well-organized chapters begin with a brief overview of each region; for example, Mason writes that it’s possible to drive between any two sites in his Rhode Island section in under an hour. In addition to compelling historical facts about houses and gardens, the chapters include simple maps and pertinent site details, such as addresses, telephone numbers, websites, hours of operation, and entry fees. Chapter conclusions contain some helpful details; for instance, those with limited mobility will appreciate knowing that getting from Hyde Park, New York’s Vanderbilt mansion to its gardens requires a walk of about 150 yards. Although the black-and-white photos are a bit bland, Mason’s anecdotes are colorful. For example, he reveals that the previous owner of Newport, Rhode Island’s Rosecliff house, Theresa “Tessie” Oelrichs, spent huge sums of money entertaining socialites during the Gilded Age, but after she died in 1926, her son used the ballroom for roller-skating and ping-pong. The expansive, easy-to-browse handbook includes several opulent architectural examples, such as Hammond Castle in Gloucester, Massachusetts; author Edith Wharton’s home, aka “The Mount,” in Lenox, Massachusetts; and the Rockefeller estate in Sleepy Hollow, New York. Mason’s evocative prose often brings the houses to life, as in his description of the Connecticut home of the deeply religious Henry and Lucy Bowen: “With its peaked windows, chimneys and its exaggerated vertical lines, the house is consistent with Gothic Revival architecture which seems to ascend upward to the heavens.”

A great beginning for the perfect Northeast getaway.

Pub Date: July 18, 2017

ISBN: 978-1-5320-2540-2

Page Count: 254

Publisher: iUniverse

Review Posted Online: Nov. 30, 2017

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Jan. 1, 2018

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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

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With this detailed, versatile cookbook, readers can finally make Momofuku Milk Bar’s inventive, decadent desserts at home, or see what they’ve been missing.

In this successor to the Momofuku cookbook, Momofuku Milk Bar’s pastry chef hands over the keys to the restaurant group’s snack-food–based treats, which have had people lining up outside the door of the Manhattan bakery since it opened. The James Beard Award–nominated Tosi spares no detail, providing origin stories for her popular cookies, pies and ice-cream flavors. The recipes are meticulously outlined, with added tips on how to experiment with their format. After “understanding how we laid out this cookbook…you will be one of us,” writes the author. Still, it’s a bit more sophisticated than the typical Betty Crocker fare. In addition to a healthy stock of pretzels, cornflakes and, of course, milk powder, some recipes require readers to have feuilletine and citric acid handy, to perfect the art of quenelling. Acolytes should invest in a scale, thanks to Tosi’s preference of grams (“freedom measurements,” as the friendlier cups and spoons are called, are provided, but heavily frowned upon)—though it’s hard to be too pretentious when one of your main ingredients is Fruity Pebbles. A refreshing, youthful cookbook that will have readers happily indulging in a rising pastry-chef star’s widely appealing treats.    


Pub Date: Oct. 25, 2011

ISBN: 978-0-307-72049-8

Page Count: 256

Publisher: Clarkson Potter

Review Posted Online: Jan. 13, 2012

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 15, 2011

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