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Book of the Month is a monthly book subscription service. Each month their panel of Judges selects a limited number of exceptional books to offer to their members. They announce their New Selections on the first of the month, and members have six days to decide which book (or books) they would like to receive. They ship books to all of their members at the same time, so members can read and participate in their discussion forum as a group.
Disclosure: This complimentary box was received for review purposes. All opinions are my own, and no compensation was received.
Book of the Month ships via USPS on the 6th day of each month.
Book of the Month sent me all of the books this month, but I thought we’d talk about Sourdough by Robin Sloan.
~❃ Sourdough by Robin Sloan – Judge Dana Schwartz: I knew right away that Sourdough was going to be a good book. It’s set in the current day (I love this) and seems (so far anyway) like it could actually happen. It’s been a quick read and I am looking forward to finishing it up!
From Book of the Month
The Life-Changing Magic of Carbs
Baking has always seemed a form of magic to me. You combine ingredients that you’ve had sitting in the pantry all along—nothing in my hat, nothing up my sleeve—and by stirring them in the right ratio and plopping in the oven, you’ve turned inedible, tasteless powders into bread.
This is the realization that San Francisco engineer Lois Clarry has in Sourdough, when she inherits a mysteriously potent sourdough starter from two brothers she orders delivery from every night. Lois, who works at a company that creates industrial robotic arms, quickly discovers how satisfying it is to create something using her own arms, fulfilling some human need she hadn’t even realized had gone unfulfilled. And then she discovers something else: This starter, which needs music to bubble happily and creates loaves of bread with strange faces baked into them, isn’t like other starters. But Sourdough is less of a mystery to be solved than a joyful unfurling of its strange and inviting world, one almost like ours, but a bit more zany. Like baking bread, the process of reading it is where the true pleasure lies, not the end result. And like baking bread, its quirky details (a secret, experimental farmers’ market; a club for only women named Lois; an eccentric culinary librarian who collects stacks and stacks of old menus; a sourdough starter that’s a little bit Little Shop of Horrors) work together to create a work that’s greater than the sum of their parts.
For days after I finished the book, I found myself looking up from my laptop and towards my sad, New York City kitchen (an oven that only works half the time; no counter space) and wondering what might happen if I could bake bread. Maybe it wouldn’t change my life—unlike Lois, I don’t see myself having the wherewithal to construct a bread oven in my backyard, or wake up early enough to consider baking as a sustainable career—but after reading Sourdough, I’m convinced my life would become just a little more magical.
Did you get Book of the Month this month? If so, what book(s) did you select? What genre is typically your favorite?