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 Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardener: How to Grow Food in Harmony with Nature Cover Image
$16.95
ISBN: 9781612120553
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - December 31st, 2013

The Wildlife-Friendly Vegetable Gardener is, itself, a
friendly book.  Packed with practical
advice from author Tammi Hartung’s own experience, this book has a lot to offer
even experienced DIYers.  Thanks to
Hartung’s readable, vivid style, as well as loads of vibrant, folksy
illustrations, it will appeal to even armchair gardeners, and will certainly
make a great read during the late winter months anticipating the arrival of the
growing season.  A must for anyone who
wants to enjoy productive gardens but still have a respectful relationship with
those flora and fauna so often referred to as “weeds” and “pests.”


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Soup Night: Recipes for Creating Community Around a Pot of Soup Cover Image
$23.14
ISBN: 9781612120997
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - October 22nd, 2013

Soup is delicious, easy, inexpensive and nourishing. It's a fun food to make, and an even better food to share - and Soup Night invites you to do both of those. The recipes, arranged by season, are easy to follow and include delicious renditions of classics (Butternut and Acorn Squash Soup, Winter Sausage Soup) as well as unusual delights (Edamame Corn Chowder, Havana Banana-Black Bean Soup). Interspersed are profiles of soup nights - fun, soup-based neighborhood get-togethers - across the country, and the book concludes with advice on how to start your own soup night. Whether you're looking for inspiration on the culinary or the community front, this book is just right.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Homemade Liqueurs and Infused Spirits: Innovative Flavor Combinations, Plus Homemade Versions of Kahlua, Cointreau, & Other Popular Liqueurs Cover Image
$21.98
ISBN: 9781612120980
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - November 19th, 2013

Homemade Liqueurs and Infused Spirits is a delight from cover to cover, from an entertaining introduction to the basics through the sections on making spirited bevvies with fruits, vegetables, herbs & spices, flowers, coffee, tea, chocolate, and more. Andrew Schloss' recipes are mouthwatering, delectably creative, and easy to follow. The photography highlights the brilliant colors that many of these recipes achieve in photos that juxtapose the original ingredients with the finished product. This book will have you concocting your own in no time! Get this book as a gift, or get it for yourself and use these recipes to make great gifts.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The Wild Medicine Solution: Healing with Aromatic, Bitter, and Tonic Plants Cover Image
$18.95
ISBN: 9781620550847
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Healing Arts Press - March 22nd, 2013

If you have to deal with the stress and stressors of modern life, please read this. Accessible to non-science geeks and very appealing to those who like some soul served up with their science, this book is also a good one for skeptics who want scientific proof before they’ll buy into the validity of using herbs.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Lighthouse Island Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780062232502
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: William Morrow & Company - October 8th, 2013

Lighthouse Island is a dystopian novel and a pageturner - and is
set in a frankly disturbing world of an endless city - but the
experience of reading this book is oddly soothing, with its beautiful,
almost hypnotizing language. The protagonist's desire for a wild world
outside of the endless concrete and arbitrary rules of civilization is
easy to identify with, and this book is ultimately hopeful.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Will in Scarlet Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780375868955
Availability: Special Order
Published: Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers - October 8th, 2013

Will in Scarlett is a delightful new take on the Robin Hood legend,
featuring the 13-year-old Will Scarlett, a nobleman's son who starts out
on a quest to revenge the wrongs done his family and ends up learning
that there are things more important than vengeance.  This book is a fun
pageturner with winning, well-developed characters.  It's a great pick
for reluctant readers as well as for any fan of Robin Hood or fairy
tales in general.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Compact Houses: 50 Creative Floor Plans for Well-Designed Small Homes Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781612121024
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - October 8th, 2013

Compact Houses is packed full of designs for
creative-yet-comfortable, efficient-yet-indulgent houses of 1400 square
feet or less.  My favorite thing about this book, though, is the section
on creative ideas for making the best of space in any small home, like
drawers or shelves built in under a staircase.  This book is a great
resource for folks who might not be ready for a micro home, but still
want to simplify their lives and lighten their carbon footprint.


Compact Cabins: Simple Living in 1000 Square Feet or Less; 62 Plans for Camps, Cottages, Lake Houses, and Other Getaways Cover Image
$19.95
ISBN: 9781603424622
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - February 27th, 2010

Want to go even smaller? Compact Cabins has great designs for 1000 square feet or less.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
The Fresh Honey Cookbook Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9781612120515
Availability: Special Order
Published: Storey Publishing - September 10th, 2013

A wonderful cookbook in its own right, The Fresh Honey Cookbook
is made even better by being centered around an indulgent but also
wholesome ingredient. The 84 recipes from beekeeper Laurey Masterton
are all inspired by bees - either using honey itself or ingredients
(like lemon, garlic, and red wine) that would not exist without bees as
their pollinators. Recipes are organized seasonally and then by month,
and each month highlights a particular varietal of honey, like chestnut,
eucalyptus, and raspberry. Interspersed with the recipes are
fascinating features on the lives of bees themselves. This book will
inspire readers to try different types of honey and to use it in recipes
to delicious effect. Perhaps more importantly, it also gives one a new
appreciation of how bees live and how integral they are to our lives.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Shadows Cover Image
Email or call for price.
ISBN: 9780399165795
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Nancy Paulsen Books - September 26th, 2013

Shadows is a fast-paced novel that turns the traditional
wicked-stepmother fairy tale on its head - starting with the fact that
Maggie, the protagonist, lives in a country where magic has been not
only outlawed but genetically removed from the population. McKinley's
world-building is spot-on, from the Newworld-specific slang to its
(often disturbing) parallels to the U.S.  This satisfyingly fantastic
storey is consistently grounded in down-to-earth details and character
quirks.


Reviewed by: 
Kristen
Herbal Antivirals: Natural Remedies for Emerging Resistant and Epidemic Viral Infections Cover Image
$24.95
ISBN: 9781612121604
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Storey Publishing - September 24th, 2013

Herbal Antivirals is a practical, accessible, urgently valuable guide to using herbs as remedies for viral infections.  Buhner has done his research - this book is thoroughly annotated - and his writing is fluent and entertaining.  I've been eager for Buhner to write a book on herbal antivirals ever since reading the newest edition of Herbal Antibiotics.  I'm absolutely thrilled with the result.


Pages