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A Book for (almost) Everyone

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By DEBBIE LANE  |  Moonshine Ink

FOR ASPIRING CHEFS: Thug Kitchen Party Grub, for Social Mother-F*ckers

If you need a cookbook with an attitude, this is it. And it’s vegan; that’s right no meat, no fish, no eggs, no dairy, just lots of healthy beans, lentils, veggies, tofu, and tempeh. What, you say? Can’t be good. But these recipes are full of seasonings that don’t let your taste buds down. How about butternut squash queso-ish dip, which is full of real food, not some questionable cheese product. Italian-style pasta salad with homemade Italian dressing, not some corn-syrup-laced bottled dressing. Make the effort people! Be classier than deviled eggs with deviled chickpea bites, which are styling. Meatball subs are made with (you guessed it) beans, lentils, and seasonings with a quick blender-made marinara sauce. No bland food here. This cookbook can be rated “R” for language as the F-bomb is liberally sprinkled throughout, both in recipe descriptions and in the notes, so be forewarned. And if you think vegan cooking could be challenging, there are many asides to help the cook with unfamiliar methods or ingredients. The notes in the back chapter cover basic items like, “Oh f**k, I have to bake.” And my personal favorite, “WTF is that?!” for items like nooch. They won’t leave you hanging. For your next party try these great recipes when entertaining your peeps.

FOR KIDDOS: The Wonder Garden: Wander through 5 habitats to discover 80 amazing animals

Open this book to the wonder of five different natural habitats and some of the creatures that live there. Each of these habitats encompass an ecosystem of plants and animals that have adapted to survive in that specific environment. But what makes this book truly spectacular are the illustrations — the brilliant colors spotlighting the flowers and the minute detail used in depicting the animals. Begin in the Amazon Rain Forest, where five different animals are represented in glorious detail, along with some of the luscious flowers, trees, and vines. Continue to tropical birds, frogs, butterflies, and a green anaconda winding through the branches. Next is The Great Barrier Reef where fish, corals, and other aquatic animals are vividly depicted, like the yellow-banded pipefish and the spotted sea star. The Chihuahuan Desert presents the harsh conditions that make it such a difficult place to survive, and the animals that must be tough enough to live in that grueling environment - the fearsome tarantula as well as other resilient animals that find ways to survive. The Black Forest in Germany is one of the world’s most ancient woodlands, and is home to deer and lynx as well as being a haven for birds. The Himalayan Mountains, in all its snowy beauty, is the last habitat presented. The mountain system links more than 100 peaks higher than 24,000 feet above sea level. What animals live in the foothills and on higher ground? You and your child could spend hours just poring over the pictures and absorbing information on each habitat.

FOR DEADHEADS: Grateful Dead: The Illustrated Trip

For those fascinated by the Grateful Dead, this book is a comprehensive history of all things Dead and begins before the band members even came together. Arranged around a timeline format, the book begins with a note in 1950 about the Korean War and the 1953 opening of the City Lights Bookstore in San Francisco then moves on to Bill Haley, Alan Ginsberg, Chuck Berry, and Jack Kerouac. What a time was coming. Part social commentary of the times, this history weaves how the Grateful Dead came to be and how they evolved. What was happening as they formed and how every band member brought something unique to the group. It’s a photographic time capsule of the Dead. The timeline lists all their concerts, and interspersed are photos relating to that time. What a fascinating look back through changing times, what was happening culturally and politically, and how music was changing while musicians were trying to change the world. Packed with photographs of the time, the Dead both young and old, this engrossing history is captivating.

Have you always dreamed of owning a bookstore? Well, you’re in luck; the last remaining bookstore in Truckee/North Tahoe, The Bookshelf, is for sale. Current owner, Debbie Lane suggests a group of friends buy the store and run it as a co-op. All three books featured here can be found at The Bookshelf in Truckee.

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February 14, 2019