Livres du Moment: What I’m Reading

14 April 2015

April 7 wasn’t merely a Tuesday, it was the much-anticipated publication date for spring book releases and an exciting milestone for many authors’ writing careers. So in the spirit of new book season, I thought I would take stock of the newer-to-me books in my collection and compile a few of my favorites. May you devour these as I have! —- Fika: the Art of the Swedish Coffee Break If there is any tradition that authors Anna Brones and Johanna Kindvall have carried with them throughout their travels- Brones, (a Swedish American) from Portland to Gothenburg to Paris, Kindvall (Swedish) from Stockholm to Brooklyn – it’s their abiding love of Fika, a word that literally means “to drink coffee” but that symbolizes an entire set of cultural values. It’s also the focus of their new book “Fika, the Art of the Swedish Coffee Break”.  As a concept that goes far beyond a love for coffee, Fika is about slowing down – alone or with friends, family or coworkers – to take a break each day; a committed moment to relax. With over forty illustrated recipes, the book provides the launchpad for integrating the practice of Fika into your own life. Translation: coffee […]…

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God Save the Readers!

8 February 2010

My father has always been a tech-geek, fanatical about researching the latest technology, staying on top of the best trends in electronics and gadgets and I’ve always made fun of him for it. He was a Blackberry user before it became trendy and ubiquitous. But my father has also always been a big reader. I grew up in a house full of books which was not only mentally stimulating but fundamental to my current love for reading. When I visited home in September my dad was raving about the Kindle, his new favorite toy. I was quite disappointed in his latest obsession because in purchasing and downloading books at $9.99 he is thereby contributing to the extinction of a perfectly adequate 500-year-old technology. He talked of practicality, ease of use, portability and, the word that defines our culture the most today, convenience. With the launch of the Ipad and the litany of feminine hygiene jokes that it fostered, the demise of traditional publishing and reading is likely to get pushed into overdrive. Imperiled authors will receive little to no royalties for e-versions of their work and the culture of reading will change forever. Reading a kindle or an ipad in the […]…

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Are the French more cultured? A voir…

25 August 2009

My Dad always told me to keep reading, no matter what or else I would my vocabulary would dwindle before my very eyes. He did specify that reading trashy celebrity magazines didn’t count and he’s right. That’s obvious. But the same could be said for most Metro newspapers around the globe. Not particularly well written, often filled with errors and typos and a certain légèreté that weakens its credibility. The French are also guilty of reading the Metro, 20 Minutes among other free daily publications but overall, they are seen reading much more thought provoking material. I am always amazed by how many readers I see on any given metro trip. Some read mainstream fiction/thrillers (the French love Patricia Cornell and Mary Higgins Clark), some are into the mega popular Twilight and Harry Potter series, and others stick to traditional French literature and philosophy. There is no shortage of people reading the newspaper but compared to the average trip on Septa’s commuter rail (Philadelphia’s public transportation), where the only reading that is done is on a blackberry, the French look like bookworms! Is there fact behind my hypothesis that the French may be…. more cultured? According to an Associated Press-Ipsos […]…

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