Entertainment Book Clubs Reader’s Lounge: August 2016

Hamilton: The Revolution
by Lin-Manuel Miranda (Hardcover, 2016)

Even if you’ve never heard a song from it, you’ve probably heard mention of the runaway Broadway hit, Hamilton: The Revolution. This beautiful bound version contains the entire libretto alongside the commentary of both the musical’s originator (Miranda) and culture critic Jeremy McCarter. How did a poor kid from the Caribbean become one of the most pivotal men in the new nation? How did an inventive fusion of hip-hop and history become such a smash hit? And what is the process behind writing a Broadway show? All of those questions are addressed in the side notes of this volume. It’s the sort of success that artists only dream of – and the funny footnotes, and gorgeous full-color photos, make this book a necessity for musical lovers.

Art of the 20th Century
by Karl Ruhrberg (Hardcover, 2012)

Art has changed drastically in the last one hundred years – and in ways that artists themselves would never have pictured. Ruhrberg’s Art of the 20th Century covers everything from the art itself, to how and why the definition of the word “art” has changed. From surrealism to Warhol, to Dada and pop culture, this book is as comprehensive as could be wished. More importantly, it’s a readable, fascinating, and beautiful book, and would be great to have on a beach house table.

Vegetarian Recipes for Ramen, Pho, Bibimbap, Dumplings, & Other One-Dish Meals
by Lukas Volger (Hardcover, 2016)

Bowl is the culmination of Lukas Volger’s quest to make beautiful, simple, one-bowl dishes in Vegetarian form. Starting from the bottom up (broths and foundations), and incorporating handmade noodles, with a section on sauces and garnishes as well, Bowl is an eclectic collection of dishes that will make your mouth water. From his southwestern burrito bowls and ratatouille polenta to edamame dumplings with mint, the recipes are simple yet eclectic, and usually more affordable than their meaty counterparts. It’s the perfect summer cookbook, and a great gift for anyone headed back to college.

The Quilt Block Cookbook
by Amy Gibson (Hardcover, 2016)

Can you understand a recipe, but stop helpless at the idea of quilting? Then The Quilt Block Cookbook might be the book for you. Using cooking language and recipe layouts to explain basic quilting blocks and techniques, Amy Gibson has written a book that is perfect for both beginning quilters and those looking for a refresher on the basics. The photography is gorgeous, and the fifty sample block “recipes” will have you heading straight for the fabric store. Gibson has successfully taught hundreds of people to quilt, and this book is certain to broaden her audience.

The Lake House
by Kate Morton (Hardcover, 2016)

New York Times Bestselling novelist Kate Morton returns with another suspenseful mystery and family drama. Morton’s trademark skipping between present and past gives you a story set both in the early 2000’s and around World War 1. The cast of characters is varied and layered, all slowly revealing their secrets as the plot unfolds. It’s a mystery, so I don’t want to say too much, but the writing is lyrical and mesmerizing, drawing you into the intricate story and immersing you in other times and places. Perfect for mystery readers and historical fiction lovers, this is a great book to squeeze in before vacation ends.

Memories of Ash (Sunbolt #2)
by Intisar Khanani (Paperback, 2016)

I gave Khanani’s novella Sunbolt five stars, and the sequel is, improbably, even better. Though Memories of Ash is technically a young adult fantasy novel, it is both relevant and readable, with a strong heroine and an exciting plot. Hitomi thought she found a peaceful place to stay and train her growing powers at the end of Sunbolt, but her world is shaken when the mage harboring her is taken in by the mage council. Hitomi risks her powers, her safety, and much more, to save a woman she hardly knows. Self-sacrifice, the importance of life, and racial prejudices are just some of the themes explored by this beautiful, thoughtful novel.

insert_march2015_rebekahRebekah Hendrian is the manager of The Book Nook & Java Shop in Montague. Go to www.thebooknookjavashop.com or call 231-894-5333 to check out scheduled events or stop by for some coffee and conversation — with the ambience every book lover seeks.

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