Book Reviews November 2016
WINE IN TIME
In her new book, The 24-Hour Wine Expert, Jancis Robinson makes it possible to learn the really important details about wine in a single day. In this pithy, approachable, comprehensive guide, Robinson shares her expertise with authority and wit, tackling questions such as how to select the right bottle at retail, what wine labels signify, how to understand the properties of color and aroma and how to match food and wine. Her proposition is irresistible: In just 24 hours, anyone can become a wine expert, so pour a glass and get reading!
In 2009, Amy Stewart and Briony Morrow-Cribbs captured the hearts of plant-lovers and gardening enthusiasts in their book Wicked Plants: The Weed That Killed Lincoln’s Mother & Other Botanical Atrocities. Now coloring fans can enjoy bringing the 40 most menacing atrocities from Wicked Plants to life. Etchings are paired with details from the original bestseller and each wonderfully creepy spread offers a fascinating portrait of the evildoers of the plant world, from the vine that ate the South (kudzu) to the weed that killed Lincoln’s mother (whitesnakeroot).
ELEGY OF AN OLYMPIAN
Olympic gold medalist Anthony Ervin bares all in the compelling memoir of Zen, motorcycles, rock-n-roll and competitive swimming. When he retired from swimming at age 22, Ervin had multiple world records, NCAA titles, world championships and an Olympic gold. His retirement allowed him to cultivate a new identity, but not without pushing through some darker challenges. In Chasing Water, coauthored by Ervin and Constantine Markides, Ervin shares his story of talent, turbulence and transformation as he trained for the 2016 Olympics.
QUILT IN COLOR
In The Quilt Design Coloring Workbook, quilt expert and designer Thomas Knauer draws on principles from modern art to inspire and challenge quilters to experiment with color and design to create their next masterpiece. More than 90 innovative design prompts and full-page coloring templates highlight the practices that threw the traditional art world into upheaval 100 years ago. Guided exercises are accompanied by mini art-history lessons that explore paintings by modern masters for inspiration. Knauer’s own modern quilts together with classics from the Museum of Modern Art are sure to stretch the creativity of quilters, artists, design enthusiasts and even those who just love to color.
YOUR INNER ARTIST
In his new book Draw Like This!, Austin artist and teacher Christopher Locke squashes the myth that learning to draw is an impossible feat. With his series of fun, easy-to-follow exercises and silly asides, Locke has created a motivational guide for building both drawing ability and confidence. Exercises include grid drawing (breaking a picture into smaller squares in order to simplify it), blind contour (drawing without looking at the paper to train the eyes and hand to work as a team) and drawing white on black (sketching to accentuate highlights rather than just shadows). This is a how-to manual that will amuse people of any age and help uncover the inner artist in all of us.
Crochet One-Skein Wonders for Babies celebrates the small treasures of children: tiny socks that are saved for a lifetime; cozy hats and adorable outfits that are passed down from sibling to sibling; and precious stuffed toys that provide so many snuggles –– all of the items that are even more cherished when crocheted by a loved one. With 101 patterns for clothing as well as blankets, toys and accessories, this book offers crafters guidance to create pieces with just one skein of yarn. Editors Judith Durant and Edie Eckman filled the book with photography, helpful charts and ideas for timeless heirlooms.
SAUSAGE MADE SIMPLE
Learn the secrets of making homemade sausage in your home kitchen with Sausage Making, Tonia Richard’s easy-to-follow guide. This ancient art has made a huge comeback in recent years, and while there is a science behind it, Richard takes away all the guesswork, making it a fun, safe and exciting project for you to try at home. Everything you need to get started is included –– from details about the right tools and equipment to an explanation of how healthy sausages can be when you use the right ingredients. The recipes are influenced by sausages from all over the world and a range of flavors, from classics like pork and beef to vegetarian, vegan and even fish and game.