November is always a great time to think about food! There are some feasting holidays, and with the coming winter it's a great time to gather with friends, families, and communities to share some glad tidings and delicious food. To that end, our additions this month are both very much food related, though in very different ways.
First up is Michael W. Twitty's Koshersoul: The Faith and Food Journey of an African American Jew. Part memoir, part cook book, Twitty brings readers on an exploration of identity, history, and food, weaving each together in a way that is moving, challenging, and ultimately rewarding. And the recipes are incredibly good, each with interesting stories around them and advice from a master chef. From the publisher:
"In Koshersoul, Michael W. Twitty considers the marriage of two of the most distinctive culinary cultures in the world today: the foods and traditions of the African Atlantic and the global Jewish diaspora. To Twitty, the creation of African-Jewish cooking is a conversation of migrations and a dialogue of diasporas offering a rich background for inventive recipes and the people who create them."
"The question that most intrigues him is not just who makes the food, but how the food makes the people. Jews of Color are not outliers, Twitty contends, but significant and meaningful cultural creators in both Black and Jewish civilizations. Koshersoul also explores how food has shaped the journeys of numerous cooks, including Twitty’s own passage to and within Judaism. As intimate, thought-provoking, and profound as The Cooking Gene, this remarkable book teases the senses as it offers sustenance for the soul."
Next is Arsenic and Adobo by Mia P. Manansala, a food-themed murder mystery that files Lila Macapagal balancing trying to save her Tita Rosie's restaurant, deal with her own relationship and family dramas, and solving a murder where she might also be a suspect. This book challenges cozy mystery tropes while staying true and showing a real love of the form, and is perfect for those looking for modern mysteries from perspectives not often seen before in the field. From the publisher:
"The first book in a new culinary cozy series full of sharp humor and delectable dishes—one that might just be killer…." "When Lila Macapagal moves back home to recover from a horrible breakup, her life seems to be following all the typical rom-com tropes. She’s tasked with saving her Tita Rosie’s failing restaurant, and she has to deal with a group of matchmaking aunties who shower her with love and judgment. But when a notoriously nasty food critic (who happens to be her ex-boyfriend) drops dead moments after a confrontation with Lila, her life quickly swerves from a Nora Ephron romp to an Agatha Christie case." "With the cops treating her like she’s the one and only suspect, and the shady landlord looking to finally kick the Macapagal family out and resell the storefront, Lila’s left with no choice but to conduct her own investigation. Armed with the nosy auntie network, her barista best bud, and her trusted Dachshund, Longanisa, Lila takes on this tasty, twisted case and soon finds her own neck on the chopping block..."
We are also thrilled to add some books from recent donations by patrons like you. From graphic novels to romance to suspense and more, these books are sure to satisfy book lovers of all kinds!