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The true history of chocolate book The true history of chocolate
The story begins some 3,000 years ago in the jungles of Mexico and Central America with the chocolate tree, Theobroma Cacao, and the complex processes necessary to transform its bitter seeds into what is now known as chocolate. This was centuries before chocolate was consumed in generally unsweetened liquid form and used as currency by the Maya, and the Aztecs after them. The Spanish conquest of Central America introduced chocolate to Europe, where it first became the drink of kings and aristocrats and then was popularized in coffeehouses. Industrialization in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries made chocolate a food for the masses, and now, in our own time, it has become once again a luxury item.

Suggested by Jane

Coe, Sophie D. (Sophie Dobzhansky), 1933-1994.
641.3374 COE

Gran cocina latina : the food of Latin America book Gran cocina latina : the food of Latin America
The co-owner of two Latin restaurants in Hoboken, New Jersey, presents 500 recipes from the Latin world ranging from Mexico to Argentina and all the Spanish-speaking countries of the Caribbean including adobos, sofritos, empanadas, tamales, ceviches, moles and flan.

Suggested by Jane

Presilla, Maricel E.
641.5972 PRESILL

My bookstore : writers celebrate their favorite places to browse, read, and shop book My bookstore : writers celebrate their favorite places to browse, read, and shop
In this enthusiastic, heartfelt, and sometimes humorous ode to bookstores and booksellers, 84 well-known writers pay tribute to the bricks-and-mortar stores they love and often call their second home. Writers include: Isabel Allende, Wendell Berry, Rick Bragg, Dave Eggers, Louise Erdrich, Fannie Flagg, Ian Frazier, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., John Grisham, Pete Hamill, Ann Hood, Stephanie Kallos, Laurie R. King, Kate Niles, Ann Packer, Chuck Palahniuk, Ann Patchett, Francine Prose, Tom Robbins, Lisa See, Brian Selznick, Lee Smith, Nancy Thayer, Terry Tempest Williams and more.

Suggested by Jane


381.45 MY BOOK

The dancing master book The dancing master
Finding himself the man of the family, and with no other options, London dancing master Alec Valcourt moves his mother and sister to remote Devonshire, hoping to start over. But Alec is stunned to learn the village is controlled by a wealthy widow who has prohibited all dancing, for reasons buried deep in her past. Alec finds an unlikely ally in Miss Julia Midwinter, the widow's daughter. While initially wary of Julia's reckless flirtation, he comes to realize her bold exterior disguises a vulnerable soul--and a hidden sorrow of her own. Julia Midwinter is instantly intrigued by the handsome dancing master--a man of whom her mother would never approve. She cannot fathom why he would leave London--or why he evades questions about his past. Together, can Alec and Julia bring new life to this quiet village--and to one woman's hardened heart?

Suggested by Amy

Klassen, Julie, 1964-
FIC KLASSEN

My Russian grandmother and her American vacuum cleaner : a memoir book My Russian grandmother and her American vacuum cleaner : a memoir
From the author of the acclaimed novel A Pigeon and a Boy comes a charming tale of family ties, over-the-top housekeeping, and the sport of storytelling in Nahalal, the village of Meir Shalev's birth. Here we meet Shalev's amazing Grandma Tonia, who arrived in Palestine by boat from Russia in 1923 and lived in a constant state of battle with what she viewed as the family's biggest enemy in their new land: dirt. Grandma Tonia was never seen without a cleaning rag over her shoulder. She received visitors outdoors. She allowed only the most privileged guests to enter her spotless house. Hilarious and touching, Grandma Tonia and her regulations come richly to life in a narrative that circles around the arrival into the family's dusty agricultural midst of the big, shiny American sweeper sent as a gift by Great-uncle Yeshayahu (he who had shockingly emigrated to the sinful capitalist heaven of Los Angeles!). America, to little Meir and to his forebears, was a land of hedonism and enchanting progress; of tempting luxuries, dangerous music, and degenerate gum-chewing; and of women with painted fingernails. The fate of Tonia's "svieeperrr"--hidden away for decades in a spotless closed-off bathroom after its initial use--is a family mystery that Shalev determines to solve. The result, in this cheerful translation by Evan Fallenberg, is pure delight, as Shalev brings to life the obsessive but loving Tonia, the pioneers who gave his childhood its spirit of wonder, and the grit and humor of people building ever-new lives.

Suggested by Amy

Shalev, Meir.
BIO SHALEV SHALEV

The house of memories : a novel book The house of memories : a novel
Months after a tragic accident, Ella O'Hanlon flees to London in an attempt to escape her grief, leaving behind the two people she blames for her loss: Aidan, the love of her life, and Jess, her spoiled half-sister. Taken in by her beloved uncle Lucas, Ella discovers that his extraordinary house holds many wonderful memories for her; and his group of transitory boarders provides a refreshing and welcome emotional tonic. But as Ella settles into a comfortable new role as unofficial cook and housemother, Jess secretly comes to London to pursue her own dreams, precipitating an unexpected family reunion and an exploration of the heart-one famished for love, for healing, and for forgiveness.

Suggested by Amy

McInerney, Monica.
FIC MCINERN

The dirty life : on farming, food, and love book The dirty life : on farming, food, and love
Kristin Kimball was living life as an adventure. But she was beginning to feel a sense of longing for a family and for home. When she interviewed a dynamic young farmer, her world changed. Kristin knew nothing about growing vegetables, let alone raising pigs and cattle and driving horses. But on an impulse, smitten, if not yet in love, she shed her city self and moved to five hundred acres near Lake Champlain to start a new farm with him.

Suggested by Amy

Kimball, Kristin.
631.584 KIMBALL

No one to trust : a novel book No one to trust : a novel
Waking up one morning to discover her husband missing and three men in her home intent on finding him, Summer Abernathy learns that her husband was not the man he claimed to be before she is led into a world of organized crime in search of answers.

Suggested by Amy

Eason, Lynette.
FIC EASON

Tropic of the sea book Tropic of the sea
Yosuke's family has a strange tradition - once every sixty years they receive an egg from a mermaid. When the egg matures his family dutifully returns it to the sea, where the whole process is then repeated. In exchange for this favor, the mer-people bless his coastal town with bountiful catches of fish and calm seas. But as a commercial development encroach on the sleepy seaside village and Yosuke's father is lured away from tradition towards modern properity, and turns the egg into a tourist trap, what will happen to the promise their family made to the mermaids generations ago? Created by the late anime giant Satoshi Kon, Tropic of the Sea is a subtle, engaging work that blends realism with mythology and creates a fresh take on modern-day development and environmentalism.

Suggested by Becky

Kon, Satoshi, 1963-2010, author, illustrator.
FIC KON

Starling book Starling
For Amy Sturgess, life in the big city comes with trouble. Her marketing career is being derailed by a conniving coworker stealing her accounts. Her family crises range from her down-and-out brother running afoul of the law to her mother's growing affections for the house cats. And Amy's love life just flatlined thanks to an unexpected reunion with the one that got away--who's now engaged. When Xanax and therapy fail to relieve her stress, Amy does what any young woman in her position would do: She uses her superstrength, speed, flight, and ability to generate 750 volts from her hands to fight crime as the mysterious masked vigilante Starling. But while Starling is hailed as a superhero, will Amy remain a super-zero?

Suggested by Becky

Stossel, Sage, 1971-
FIC STOSSEL

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