Kristen's Picks

Phoenix Books’ events and marketing manager, Kristen has worked and traveled in Ireland, Italy, Maine, and Philadelphia, and has since returned home to Vermont. Kristen is a fan of nonfiction with an anthropological bent and of fiction authors who walk the line between fantasy and reality (e.g. Alice Hoffman and Neil Gaiman). She will forever be devoted to Terry Pratchett (and Granny Weatherwax). Since she completed an apprenticeship with herbalist Rosemary Gladstar, Kristen has informally adopted Phoenix's selection of books on herbalism.

Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The Tea Party in the Woods Cover Image
By Akiko Miyakoshi, Akiko Miyakoshi (Illustrator)
$16.95
ISBN: 9781771381079
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Kids Can Press - August 1st, 2015

This beautifully illustrated story of Kikko's adventures in the woods is genuinely heartwarming.  A great pick for those who love fairy tales and celebrations.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The End of Absence: Reclaiming What We've Lost in a World of Constant Connection Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9781591847922
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Current - August 4th, 2015

"In this eloquent and thought-provoking book, Harris argues that our greatest loss has been that of absence itself—of silence, wonder, and solitude."

Are you concerned about striking a balance between technology and a meaningful life? Do you have the niggling feeling that being connected 24/7 isn't all it's cracked up to be?  Do you miss daydreaming, and even solitude?  Insightful and funny, The End of Absence is essential reading for all of us who want to use technology as a tool, but find ourselves becoming disturbingly addicted to the gratification of "likes" and "followers".  I've read some great books about social media lately (Writing on the Wall, Rewire, etc), but this is really the one I've been looking for.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
A Curious Tale of the In-Between Cover Image
$19.71
ISBN: 9781619636002
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Bloomsbury U.S.A. Children's Books - September 1st, 2015

I just loved this book.  Like Neil Gaiman's The Graveyard Book, the setting is contemporary and realistic aside from the fact that many of the characters are ghosts.  The fantastic elements are put to good use, and DeStefano creates a wonderful sense of place.  A Curious Tale of the In-Between is, in the end, about the relationships between the characters, and about Pram's own growth as a character.  This makes it a satisfying story both for readers who prefer realistic fiction and for those who are already fantasy fans.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Station Eleven Cover Image
$16.00
ISBN: 9780804172448
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - June 2nd, 2015

A literary post-apocalyptic page-turner that makes the mundane feel unlikely and magical, Station Eleven is a story that leaks out into your daily life, coloring the way you see airplanes, smartphones, light switches.  Without glorifying modern civilization, it left me, as Jessie Burton (author of The Miniaturist) put it, "wistful for a world where I still live."

Read this book if you've enjoyed The Hunger Games or The Road;  if you love Shakespeare or The Night Circus; if you've ever daydreamed about a world without technology or if you can't imagine not being able to log on.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The Apple Cookbook, 3rd Edition: 125 Freshly Picked Recipes Cover Image
$17.34
ISBN: 9781612125183
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - May 19th, 2015

Featuring recipes like "Beef & Apple Deep-Dish Pie," "Curried Ham & Apples," "Grated-Apple Fritters," and "New York Apple-Bourbon Cake," this book demonstrates what a delicious complement apples can be to pretty much any dish, from sweet to savory.  The photographs are scrumptious, and the format easy to follow.  THE APPLE COOKBOOK is a keeper for any apple lover, and just might convert those not yet charmed by this fall fruit.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The Woodland Homestead: How to Make Your Land More Productive and Live More Self-Sufficiently in the Woods Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781612123493
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - June 30th, 2015

Yes!  Finally, a homesteading book for those of us who live in the midst of Vermont's woodlands.  Whether your property is only partially wooded or you find yourself among an abundance of trees, this book will show you that you don't have to clear your land to live more productively and self-sufficiently.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Cabin Lessons: A Nail-By-Nail Tale: Building Our Dream Cottage from 2x4s, Blisters, and Love Cover Image
$17.34
ISBN: 9781612125671
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - April 21st, 2015

Cabin Lessons - the story of the author's adventures and misadventures in building a cabin on the north shore of Lake Superior - is a great choice for cabin owners, carpenters and carpentry enthusiasts, and anyone who would love to build their own tiny home.  Carlsen's voice is engaging, and this book is a really fun read that also offers practical knowledge.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Homegrown Berries: Successfully Grow Your Own Strawberries, Raspberries, Blueberries, Blackberries, and More Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781604693171
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Timber Press (OR) - December 30th, 2014

This book is scrumptious!  We might not be able to grow mangos or oranges in Vermont, but we can grow abundant strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, elderberries and more.  These incredibly nourishing foods taste better than candy, and this book is a beautifully laid out guide to growing them.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Designing and Planting a Woodland Garden: Plants and Combinations That Thrive in the Shade Cover Image
$40.54
ISBN: 9781604693850
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Timber Press (OR) - December 21st, 2014

So many of us in Vermont live, to some degree or another, in the woods, and all that shade can present some challenges for gardeners.  This book is a valuable resource, full of gorgeous shade-loving plants to brighten up your woodland garden.
 


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Into the Nest: Intimate Views of the Courting, Parenting, and Family Lives of Familiar Birds Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781612122298
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - April 21st, 2015

It's easy to overlook species that we see (and hear) every day like chickadees, crows, and mourning doves.  This book will remind you how extraordinary these winged creatures really are, and will give you a close-up look into their daily lives.  Gorgeous photography compliments the fascinating text of this book.  A great choice for nature lovers, and a wonderful book to enjoy with the whole family.


Pages