There’s something comfortable and familiar about chain bookstores, like Borders and Barnes & Noble: The vanilla latte always tastes the same, the photography books are always near the fashion books, and there are always comfy chairs. I’ve probably spent thousands of dollars at chain bookstores and I spent many a weekend during my high school years at their poetry nights.
But the bookstore most dear to my heart is a tiny little place called Bloodroot, half vegetarian restaurant and half feminist bookstore. My brother-in-law took me to Bloodroot when I was a teenager and it became a part of my identity. I came of age in the late ’90s and early aughties, when Britney Spears slithered around onstage and suburban kids wore Playboy bunny T-shirts to school, which, don’t get me wrong, is all enjoyable, yet nauseating after a while.
Luckily, the bookstore at Bloodroot proved to be a godsend for the feminists and freaks and gay kids who were trapped in the suburbs until graduation. We could have something we didn’t have anywhere else: a community. Keep reading »
For those of us who won’t be spending our holidays somewhere warm and wonderful, the next best thing to jetting to St. Barts, Miami, or Cabo is getting lost in a book that takes you there. Herewith, ten tomes that offer tropical settings and enough sun-drenched drama to make Jay-Z’s yacht look boring. The only thing you’ll miss is a tan. Keep reading »
Have you ever wanted to eat at a well-known restaurant but couldn’t get there in time for dinner because you live on the opposite side of the country? Yeah? Well, then you know how excited we are that Jenny Katzinger, owner of the Flying Apron Bakery in Seattle, is sharing her recipes in Flying Apron’s Gluten-Free & Vegan Baking Book. The cookbook not only includes recipes for delectable baked goods like scones, cookies, and cakes, but it also has step-by-step instructions for entrées and soups anyone — even the pickiest eaters — can enjoy. And even though all the recipes are 100 percent gluten-free, they’re easy to follow. We can’t wait to try the Dark Chocolate Cake. [$14.93, Amazon]
WIN THIS! We’re giving away Flying Apron’s Gluten-Free & Vegan Baking Book to two readers, but you have to work if you want it! The best commenters for the next two weeks—from today, Friday, Dec. 18 through Thursday, Dec. 31—will be awarded with the book. So, be as clever, smart, and original as you can. Click HERE to read the official rules. And remember to check Gift For Gab on Jan. 1 to see if you’re the winner. Keep reading »
On my way to meet Patti Stanger, third-generation matchmaker and crazy-successful businesswoman, I imagined that she might know of a tattooed, emo millionaire who is just perfect for me. That, of course, didn’t happen. But she did greet me with, “I love The Frisky! I get Google alerts!” Overall, Patti was immaculate, tiny, and well-spoken. Like a Jewish mother, she offered up the sushi on her plate, saying, “Try one. Don’t worry; there are no calories in them!” One thing was exceptionally clear from our chat—home girl is crazy busy these days. She not only stars in but also executive-produces her Bravo show, “The Millionaire Matchmaker,” which begins its third season on January 19. She is still running her now decade-old matchmaking service, Millionaire’s Club, and recently wrote a bestselling book, Become Your Own Matchmaker: 8 Easy Steps for Attracting Your Perfect Mate, out in paperback on December 29. Plus, she has a radio show on XM Pink 24 called “PS I Love You,” every Thursday at 7 p.m. (EST), and has launched her own online dating site, PsXoXo.com.
After the jump, hear what Patti has to say about attracting the right dudes and letting go of the wrong ones. Oh, and the secret to dating in your 20s! Keep reading »
If all of the film adaptations of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice have left your brain numb, this one may really kill you … in a good way. Natalie Portman has signed on to produce and star in the movie version of the bestselling book Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, written by Seth Grahame-Smith and, uh, Jane Austen. This expanded version of the Austen classic adds a twist on the well-known love story when the outbreak of a deadly virus begins to turn townsfolk into killers. Elizabeth Bennet struggles to balance her blossoming love for Mr. Darcy with her obligation to kick some zombie butt. And who better to bring the right combination of elegance, wit, and edginess to the role of Elizabeth Bennet than Portman? She certainly has the chops to convince us to embrace this version of Elizabeth—a woman who at long last will have a proper outlet for her sense of purpose. Sure, zombies may seem like a peculiar addition to the original text, but there is something about the outbreak of the undead in 19th-century England that somehow makes the story more accessible. The idea that love can blossom in spite of treacherous, external forces is really a modern concept. Besides, who hasn’t had to slay a couple of zombies to land Mr. Right? [Variety] Keep reading »
After the success of her first memoir, Julie & Julia: 365 Days, 524 Recipes, 1 Tiny Apartment Kitchen, which later became a film starring Meryl Streep and Amy Adams, I couldn’t help but imagine author Julie Powell living happily ever after with her perfect pot roasts and marriage. If you chuckled at her squeamishness while trying to boil a lobster, then you never would have envisioned her with a wide-brimmed hat holding a meat cleaver or watching the slaughter of a pig. And you certainly wouldn’t have expected to find her crawling across the floor of her lover’s bedroom with bites and bruises all over her body. In her new memoir, Cleaving: A Story of Marriage, Meat, and Obsession, Julie reveals a darker, more raw side of herself as she hacks, rips, pulls, and prods her way to becoming a butcher. When her own life and marriage are fraught with uncertainty, she finds comfort in the authority of the knife. What is revealed on the page is a bloody trail of introspection—she cuts deeper than ever before to reveal flesh, heart, and bones as she struggles to get to the marrow of her desires. It’s a tasty and satisfying recipe for a delicious tale.
After the jump, Julie Powell talks with The Frisky. Keep reading »
Here’s some amazing news: R. Kelly — the guy who has written hits like “You Remind Me of Something,” given us cinematic gems like the “Trapped in the Closet” saga, battled against child-pornography charges, and admitted that he couldn’t “read really” — is penning a memoir. The book will be released in early 2011 from Tavis Smiley’s publishing house, Smiley Books, and will address the death of Kelly’s mother and his six-year legal battle. Here’s what he had to say in a press release: “I’m tired of being misunderstood. I will show you the tears, fears, and sweat. I will open my heart and reveal the good in my life as well as all the drama.” Keep reading »
Everyone knows who Brangelina is — the dynamic and altogether gorgeous Hollywood couple comprised of Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt. But what’s behind the couple … and is there a proverbial Oz — a man behind the curtain that is Brangelina? Ian Halperin examines this in his book Brangelina: The Untold Story of Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, and PopEater is exclusively running an excerpt from the book that takes a look at the man credited with creating the supercouple’s image and reputation. Read more … Keep reading »
I feel like Jonathan Safran Foer is stalking me. OK, maybe not the actual guy—he’s got a beautiful, ridiculously talented wife, some kiddos, and a new best-selling book called Eating Animals, which Natalie Portman says made her go vegan, so no, he’s not actually stalking me. But I feel like he is, in the same way that I feel like Michael Pollan (who penned The Omnivore’s Dilemma) is, in the same way I feel like Robert Kenner (who made the film “Food Inc.”) is, in the same way that I feel like Barbara Kingsolver (who wrote Animal, Vegetable, Miracle) is. They’ve all created what I hear are persuasive, fascinating, and sometimes terrifying books and films about food that will inevitably change the way I think about every little thing I put in my mouth forevermore. But honestly, I just don’t want to hear it. Keep reading »