From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
Some book clubs feed the body as well as the mind. Anyone who's hosted such a gathering knows how difficult it can be to serve food appropriate to the reading if one has as a goal a sort of bond linking the book at hand with the dining table. Gardner offers a month-by-month reading list complete with recipes appropriate to each title. For Gone with the Wind0 , Eggs O'Hara fills the bill. After reading Up from Slavery0 , a soul food meal of macaroni and cheese and candied yams satisfies. Eleanor Roosevelt's autobiography provokes World War II sugarless brownies. The Hound of the Baskervilles 0 suggests old-fashioned English fish and chips. Gardner wisely forgoes the obvious meat in her chapter on books about horses, offering instead Kentucky burgoo and mint juleps. Gardner's recipes are all simply and easily prepared, not intimidating to anyone with even modest kitchen skills. She also provides questions to provoke discussion. Her selection of readings ranges from classics to works of contemporary nonfiction, such as Schlosser's Fast Food Nation0 (2001). --Mark Knoblauch Copyright 2005 Booklist
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Gardner, founder and publisher of the Literary Gathering, a newsletter that celebrates the happy marriage of book clubs and cooking, has taken the work out of this union, here providing book ideas and more in a neat seasonal format. Each month has a theme and four book ideas, which range from classics like To Kill a Mockingbird (for "Not So Lazy Summer Reads" in August) to newer titles like Nickel & Dimed (for "Muckraking Madness" in November). For each book, there is a brief synopsis, ten to 15 discussion questions, and several recipes that reflect the theme, from appetizers, soups, and salads to entr?es, drinks, and desserts; most seem relatively easy to prepare. There are also four bonus chapters on classical literature, beach reading, gardening, and horses. Title and recipe indexes are also provided for ease of use. A crowd-pleasing guide that will be popular with book groups and cooks alike; recommended for public libraries.-Susan Hurst, Miami Univ. of Ohio Libs., Oxford (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.