Julia Child is already so familiar to many cooks and would-be cooks that it’s hard to imagine why anyone would want to spend time wading through a 500-page biography of her. But with Dearie (Knopf, $29.95)— Child’s term for most everyone—Bob Spitz has succeeded in producing an entertaining and intimate portrait that captures the charm, quirkiness, and innate culinary talent that made Child (and her wine-drinking) so popular in her heyday and even today. You don’t have to be a devotee of the old The French Chef television series or have a dog-eared copy of Mastering the Art of French Cooking in your kitchen to enjoy this thorough, and highly readable, account of the woman who revolutionized the way Americans think about home cooking.

Dearie: The Remarkable Life of Julia Child Cover Image
ISBN: 9780307473417
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Vintage - April 23rd, 2013

Potomac author Vaddey Ratner survived the nightmare of the Khmer Rouge as a child growing up in Cambodia, and now she has turned that experience into In the Shadow of the Banyan (Simon & Schuster, $25), a graceful and memorable debut novel. In other hands the story might have been purely grim, but somehow Ratner manages to convey the injustice and horror of the Communist dictatorship’s atrocities while also celebrating a deeper humanity that, in its own way, triumphs in the end.

In the Shadow of the Banyan: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781451657708
Availability: Hard to Find
Published: Simon & Schuster - August 7th, 2012

In the Shadow of the Banyan: A Novel Cover Image
ISBN: 9781451657715
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Simon & Schuster - June 4th, 2013

Oppen Porter, the twenty eight- year-old narrator of Antoine Wilson’s second novel, is a self-described “slow absorber” who is holed up in a hospital room sure that he is about to die. Now he is talking into a tape recorder, explaining to his about to- be-born son why he left home after his father’s death and headed to Panorama City (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, $24), an extraordinarily ordinary patch of suburbia in southern California, to become “a man of the world.” Oppen’s experiences there and the characters he encounters, from his odd and uncompromising aunt to a street philosopher and ex-con named Paul, frame this story of innocence, life’s vicissitudes, and self discovery. Part picaresque and part bildungsroman, Panorama City is charming, touching, and funny all in one.

Panorama City Cover Image
ISBN: 9780547875125
Availability: Out of Print in This Format
Published: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt - September 25th, 2012

Panorama City Cover Image
ISBN: 9780544106277
Availability: Not On Our Shelves—Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Mariner Books - September 10th, 2013