The Reading List

Personal

Is book debt a thing? Reading debt? I am a sucker for buying books, and each time I decide to buy or start a new book life slams me with all sorts of schedule-packing trials. Now that I finished college, and no longer have to read to fulfill a quota (i.e. “read this play for discussion,” “read this long-form article for class,” “read chapters 9 and 10,” etc.) I can get back into reading leisurely. After about a year of not reading it, I picked up Dan Barber’s book, The Third Plate, and finished it today. The book takes a look at the food industry, specifically the organic, farm-to-table industry, and applies it to his personal experiences at Blue Hill at Stone Barns. It was absolutely fascinating for someone like me who has always been interested in food, sustainability, and farming. I would definitely recommend it to someone looking to expand their knowledge on sustainable farming, while also reading something interesting and full of Chef Barber’s personal anecdotes.

Next up, I’m cracking open Aziz Ansari’s Modern Romance. Aziz has been somewhat controversial lately, but his work for Netflix’s Master of None and his stand up routines prove that he can craft intelligent content. I was apprehensive of going forward and reading his book, but I had been interested in the subject and heard great reviews about it since before any public allegations against him. I can’t yet form an opinion about it, but after reading the introduction I can tell that it is full of his voice (I hear him saying the opening line in his Parks and Rec Tom Haverford voice). I hope to finish the book this summer and move on to other great reads that I’ve hoarded over the past few years.

After Modern Romance I’d like to tackle Samin Nosrat’s Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. I know, I know, most would categorize this as a cook book, but after receiving it for Valentine’s Day I read the short intro about how to use the book. According to Nosrat the book should be treated like any other book and should be read cover to cover. After flipping through the pages I noticed watercolor-esque illustrations, fold-out charts, and practical recipes using her techniques and methods. After her appearance on the short Netflix series Cooked, I’ve been interested in cracking open her book and understanding some new (“new,” I guess) cooking techniques.

Now that I’m out of school, I miss the required reading I had to do for certain classes. My Magazine Writing class emphasized that good writers read often, so we all had to read articles assigned in addition to finding our own online or in print. I still have the book we used (The Best American Magazine Writing 2016) and I intend on finishing it in hopes that my writing improves.