The Art of Simple Food

The success of the food revolution started by Alice Waters can be measured in the fact that, more than three decades later, its tenets feel downright remedial. Eat locally and sustainably! Shop at farmer's markets! Plant a garden! Waters has become the Shakespeare of modern food writers, her truth so assimilated into gospel that it's easy to forget the voice others imitate. Here, she's brilliantly back to basics: discussing essential cooking supplies (buy a mortar and pestle), defining terms in a glossary , and distilling her principles into artful, often everyday recipes. Many of these are as simple as plunking down a plate of fresh veggies with some aioli or vinaigrette. Others, like a classic boiled dinner, would require days of uninterrupted devotion to prepare. None would do without access to the freshest and most pristine ingredients -- still not a given for many. But Waters has done more than anyone else to ensure that access for the largest number of eaters, regardless of age, income, or geographic location; she's earned the right to proselytize and be heard. --

July 29: On this day in 1878 Don Marquis was born.

Crime fiction legends Dennis Lehane and Michael Connelly discuss the new book that unites their beloved sleuths Patrick Kenzie and Harry Bosch.

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Books, CDs, DVDs to know about now
Paradise and Elsewhere

Canadian short story marvel Kathy Page emerges as the Alice Munro of the supernatural from these heartfelt tales of shapeshifting swimmers, mild-mannered cannibals, and personality-shifting viruses transmitted through kisses.

Pastoral

When a persuasive pastor arrives in a sleepy farm town, his sage influence has otherworldly results (talking sheep, a mayor who walks on water). But can he pull off the miracle of finding kindly local Liz Denny the love of her life?  Small wonder looms large in this charmer from Andre Alexis.

The Hundred-Year House

When a poetry scholar goes digging through the decrepit estate of his wife's family to uncover a bygone arts colony's strange mysteries, he awakens a tenacious monster: his mother-in-law. A wickedly funny take on aging aristocracies from author Rebecca Makkai (The Borrower).