December Book Club News


*New Titles, Menus, Recipes, and Giveaways

*Novel Noshes

*GalleyMatch Book Clubs Preview

*Book Blends & Recipes

December's novel-inspired menus will take you on a culinary literary tour of Sardinia, and acquaint you with uniquely Ohioan eats (yes, Buckeyes).

Shop for holiday gifts that will have your favorite cooks smiling in our Book, TV, and Song Blends shop! Blends chefs share a trove of seasonal recipes from butternut squash soup to Romesco gnocchi to dill dip and more— seasoned with Blends.

You'll also find book-inspired menus for book club favorites from the authors of Remarkably Bright Creatures, Fly Girl, and Foster.

What are you reading and cooking? Please let us know!

Happy Holidays, and enjoy your cooking and reading!

Judy Gelman
Book-inspired menus and giveaways featured on social media
Book Club Daily Feature Titles
Authors' book-inspired menus and giveaways
begin on the dates below for one week
Bianca Pitzorno
(Harper Perennial)
Historical Fiction
An Italian writer makes her American debut with a dramedy of manners, family, romance, and fashion set in Sardinia at the end of the 19th century.
Melissa Payne 
(Lake Union)
An emotional and suspenseful novel about the weight of secrets and the healing power of friends and family.
Novel Noshes: Ask the Author
Authors Share Book-Inspired Fare
Thanks to the authors Shelby Van Pelt, Ann Hood, and Claire Keegan who responded to our requests for book club menus.
Shelby Van Pelt's novel Remarkably Bright Creatures tells the story of Tova, a widow, and her unlikely connection with a giant Pacific octopus, Marcellus.

From Shelby Van Pelt: "I suggest honoring Marcellus and his sneaky, snacky ways by serving small seafood 'treasures.' Crab Rangoon, smoked salmon on crackers, bacon-wrapped scallops, shrimp cocktail. Anything but herring, really. We all know how tiresome Marcellus finds herring!

Non-seafood and/or veggie-friendly options might include Caprese kabobs —spear a cherry tomato, fresh mozzarella, and a basil leaf on a toothpick— stuffed dates—bacon-wrapped optional— and flavorful nuts or marinated olives. Basically, rich and decadent morsels are the sort of treat that would make escaping your tank worthwhile.

Of course, if all of that sounds like too much work, you can’t go wrong with a pot of tea and a pack of store-bought cookies warmed in the oven, as Tova’s friend Mary Ann always does when she hosts the Knit-Wits. I have never in my life turned down a Chips Ahoy!"
In her memoir Fly Girl Ann Hood chronicles her adventurous years as a TWA flight attendant. 

From Ann Hood: "The menu would have to be similar to the ones from when I was a TWA flight attendant back in the late 70s-mid 80s. I actually wrote about recreating the first class dinner for Food52: “Recreating a TWA First-Class Meal, 20 Years Later”

Ann's menu includes wine, cocktails, warmed nuts, jumbo shrimp cocktail, hot fudge sundaes, chateaubriand, chauteau potatoes, and white asparagus.
Pictured: TWA Bocce Ball cocktail
Claire Keegan's novella Foster is narrated by a young girl in rural Ireland sent to live with foster parents, the Kinsellas, on a farm during her mother’s pregnancy.

From Claire Keegan: "The narrator in Foster helps Mrs. Kinsella with the cooking and housework — and no Irish farmhouse would be without its own soda bread recipe. Here’s one from Richard Corrigan whose recipes are wonderfully hearty. If you don’t want any sweetness in your bread, you can make it without the honey and treacle. I don’t have a sweet tooth, but it’s delicious either way. Try it with smoked salmon, capers, lemon, and a pot of tea. When I’m on the road, the edible thing I most miss is wheaten soda bread and how its baking and coming out of the oven makes life feel that little bit sweeter  — even without its being sweetened — and even on a bad day. Do hope your book club members enjoy!"

Have a question for an author about a recipe, book club food pairing, or food reference? Contact us. Also see Novel Noshes menu ideas from authors and book club, and Featured Author Recipes:
GalleyMatch Book Clubs Suggest
Click images for meeting highlights for these titles previewed through GalleyMatch.
Katherine Center
*Brunch & Books Club, Bowling Green, Kentucky
*Literary Fires Everywhere, Cortland Manor, New York
Leesa-Cross Smith
*Famished for Fiction, Plano, Texas
*Cork and Olive, Valrico, Florida
Laurie Lico Albanese
*Bookish Ladies. Coto de Caza, California
*Get Woke Book Club, New Prague, Minnesota
*Ranch Readers, Littleton, Colorado
Holiday Shopping: Gifts for Book, Television, and Music Lovers
Book, TV, and Song Blends are spices, herbs, and blends inspired by literary, television, and music favorites. Blends are perfect gifts for literature, television, and music fans, guaranteed to make them smile and spice up their cooking.

Choose an assortment packaged in a spice gift box, or individual Blends for stocking stuffers! Visit our Blends Shop.

Find Blends at these book stores:
Skylark Bookshop, Columbia
The Novel Neighbor, St Louis
South Carolina 
Main Street Reads, Summerville
 Reads by the River, Waterford
#BlendsBash2022 is on! Bloggers are cooking up new Book, TV, and Song Blends recipes well seasoned —and seasonal: dill dip, deviled eggs, shepherd's pie, romesco gnocchi, turkey soup, butternuts squash soup. sheet pan chicken and veggies, roast beef po' boys, chili, cocoa, and more!

You'll find the latest Blends Bash recipes here, and on social media through December.