The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert

When an author is famous enough, they earn the right for the first editions of their books to be a little more opulent and Elizabeth Gilbert’s The Signature of All Things (TSOAT) is gorgeous. Since the book is set in the 18th and 19th centuries, the look of it is old fashioned, with unevenly cut, heavy ivory pages and a dust jacket printed to look like aged parchment. There are lovely colored illustrations of orchids on the end papers and the hardbound cover is a soothing green-tinged ivory with an olive colored spine, the author’s initials stamped in gold on the front. The feathery edges of the pages are soft and the book is very sensual, befitting some of the subject matter. My copy is even signed!

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Food of the Gods by Terence McKenna

I grew up in a windy town on California’s Central Coast that often smelled of broccoli. Later the town became famous for strawberries, and even later for Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wine grapes, all fragrant and lovely. But when I was young the dark, slightly sulpherous stench of raw broccoli hitched ¬†on the Pacific breeze from the west like a hobo soul escaped from a corner of hell reserved for flatulent failed farmers. Continue reading “Food of the Gods by Terence McKenna”

The One Block Feast, Margo True & Sunset Magazine

I’m looking forward to getting into some history and biography from my library, but since summer is winding down and I’ve been in the garden more than usual this year, I’m choosing The One Block Feast for my next book. I learn from the introduction that Sunset Magazine’s campus is a “Lab of Western Living.” It is about 5 acres and on it the staff gardens, raises chickens and bees, erects garden structures, makes wine and cheese and beer–it sounds idyllic. The Sunset Magazine building is even designed by icon of the ranch-style, architect Cliff May, who designed the Mission-like Robert Mondavi Winery. Continue reading “The One Block Feast, Margo True & Sunset Magazine”