Over the weekend a reader ran up to my table at dinner and said I had to feature today’s book. She was obsessed and of course, I had to share it!!! The Personal Librarian is a must read.
A remarkable novel about J. P. Morgan’s personal librarian, Belle da Costa Greene, the Black American woman who was forced to hide her true identity and pass as white in order to leave a lasting legacy that enriched our nation, from New York Times bestselling authors Marie Benedict and Victoria Christopher Murray.
In her twenties, Belle da Costa Greene is hired by J. P. Morgan to curate a collection of rare manuscripts, books, and artwork for his newly built Pierpont Morgan Library. Belle becomes a fixture in New York City society and one of the most powerful people in the art and book world, known for her impeccable taste and shrewd negotiating for critical works as she helps create a world-class collection.
But Belle has a secret, one she must protect at all costs. She was born not Belle da Costa Greene but Belle Marion Greener. She is the daughter of Richard Greener, the first Black graduate of Harvard and a well-known advocate for equality. Belle’s complexion isn’t dark because of her alleged Portuguese heritage that lets her pass as white—her complexion is dark because she is African American.
The Personal Librarian tells the story of an extraordinary woman, famous for her intellect, style, and wit, and shares the lengths she must go to—for the protection of her family and her legacy—to preserve her carefully crafted white identity in the racist world in which she lives. – Amazon.com
For more information or to purchase this book, click HERE!!
This week’s cool book was recommended to me by another blogger, The Joy of Small Things by Hannah Jane Parkinson! We could all use a little pick-me-up once in a while. This book will surely put a smile on your face….Here is what others are saying:
‘This book is a not-so-small joy in itself.’
‘Parkinson has the gift of making you look with new eyes at everyday things. The perfect daily diversion.’
‘Always funny and frank and full of insight, I absolutely love Parkinson’s writing.’
‘I loved this book . . . Parkinson’s writing transports you to unexpected places of joy and comfort . . . these pages contain happiness.’
‘The twenty-first century feels a lot more bearable in Parkinson’s company.’
Drawn from the successful Guardian column, these everyday exultations and inspirations will get you through dismal days.
Hannah Jane Parkinson is a specialist in savoring the small pleasures of life. She revels in her fluffy dressing gown (‘like bathing in marshmallow’), finds calm in solo cinema trips, is charmed by the personalities of fonts (‘you’ll never see Comic Sans on a funeral notice’), celebrates pockets and gleefully abandons a book she isn’t enjoying. Parkinson’s everyday exaltations – selected from her immensely successful Guardian column – will utterly delight.
‘A compendium of delights.’
‘Delightful . . . a love letter to those little moments of bliss that get us through the daily grind.’
RED – Amazon.com
To purchase this book or for more information, click HERE.
I am so excited about this week’s book club choice. It is THE DELMONICO WAY: Sublime Entertaining & Legendary Recipes from the Restaurant that Made New York! By Max Tucci. I love reading about old New York and especially from such an iconic location. My dear friend Max is allowing the walls of Delmonicos to talk by sharing the incredible story of the incredible restaurant his family built. The book is available for pre-order HERE. I cannot wait to get mine.
Located in the heart of Wall Street, Delmonico’s from 1827 to the 1980s shaped New York City’s restaurant scene. Under the original ownership of The Delmonico Brothers, Pietro and Giovanni, Delmonico’s introduced the first farm-to-table concept, à la carte dining—complete with white tablecloths and menus—but most notably created the phenomenon called the “power
lunch.” Despite Delmonico’s triumphs, the impact of World War I and the era of Prohibition caused the family to cease operations, shuttering the restaurant in 1923. In 1926 a new era for Delmonico’s arose. Oscar Tucci, a Tuscan immigrant, took over ownership and re-established Delmonico’s first as a Speakeasy and then he continued the Delmonico brothers’ tradition, transforming it into a beacon of fine dining. Oscar developed a strict code of hospitality, etiquette, and operations coupled with legendary libations and superb fare known as the Delmonico way. After six decades of operations, The Tucci
Family closed Delmonico’s in the late 1980s, however, the Delmonico way still lives on today because of Max Tucci.
DELMONICO WAY: SUBLIME ENTERTAINING & LEGENDARY RECIPES FROM THE RESTAURANT THAT MADE NEW YORK! by Max Tucci, Oscar’s grandson, opens the double doors of his family’s Delmonico’s, welcoming us to a world when dining out was a glamorous affair. Max along with his celebrity chef friends offers timeless recipes and Max, shares his tips for recreating the magic of the Delmonico way at home.
Royalty, celebrities, socialites, U.S. presidents, foreign dignitaries, and business tycoons all frequented Delmonico’s. Elizabeth Taylor, President John F. Kennedy, and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy, Rock Hudson, Marilyn Monroe, Lena Horne, Gypsy Rose Lee, Eva Gabor, and Zsa Zsa Gabor, King Umberto II of Italy, The Duke and Duchess of Windsor, President Richard Nixon, Chubby Checker, Christine Jorgensen, and Joan Crawford were among some of the most notable names that Tucci welcomed to his tables which were famously adorned with Ginori, Baccarat, Lalique, and Christofle.
Each chapter is organized around a style of dining that Delmonico’s pioneered or perfected under Tucci’s proprietorship, including how to host an impressive power lunch (featuring Oscar’s creation, the signature wedge salad); a glamorous cocktail soirée before a night on the town, complete with oysters Rockefeller and shrimp cocktail; and the perfect romantic dinner for two with a show-stopping seafood tower and ribeye Bordelaise. THE DELMONICO WAY includes over 70 recipes, including two from the restaurant’s most famous alumni, Sirio Maccioni’s Pasta Primavera and Tony May’s trademarked Uovo
Raviolo. In addition to the fine fare, “The Bar” chapter features sophisticated cocktails that include the classic Delmonico, legendary Negroni with a “Delmonico way” twist, and the festive Spencer cocktail created by artist Ashley Longshore’s grandmother.
Renowned designer Roberto de Vicq de Cumptich expertly layers vintage era photographs, ephemera, menus, and countless other gems featured in THE DELMONICO WAY that remind us that entertaining with style, elegance, sophistication, and intention remains just as relevant today as it did during the height of the era.
Some Delmonico’s trivia to have in your back pocket:
• Between the 1950s to the 1970s Delmonico’s had a NO PAPARAZZI rule inside the restaurant, allowing
patrons to have a truly private dining experience.
• Delmonico’s, during Tucci’s’ proprietorship, was neither a steakhouse nor did it identify as a steakhouse.
Countless dishes on the menu were inspired by India, Italy, France, the Czech Republic, and other
• Gypsy Rose Lee danced on the table at Delmonico’s.
• Carol Channing, Barbra Streisand, and Bette Midler all sang about Delmonico’s in Hello Dolly!
• The only customer ever turned away from Delmonico’s was Fidel Castro. Castro was in New York City in
1960 as part of the Cuban delegation to the United Nations. Oscar would not allow Fidel in because of his politics; Mario (Oscar’s son) would not allow Castro in because of his attire.
• Iconic restaurateurs Sirio Maccioni (Le Cirque) Tony May (The Rainbow Room, San Domenico and SD26), and Harry Poulakakos (Harry’s) started their careers at Oscar’s Delmonico.
About The Author: Max Tucci is an award-winning producer and host of Max & Friends. He is a writer and a TVand radio personality. Max is known for being a food and entertaining enthusiast. He is a philanthropist and a historian of the Delmonico legacy. Max owns the largest collection of Delmonico’s memorabilia. He resides between New York, Florida, Colorado, and Florence, Italy
This week’s book choice is The Last Mrs. Parrish. This national best seller is also a Reece Witherspoon pick. You are going to LOVE it and not be able to put it down. TRUST ME!!! Here is the story:
Amber Patterson is fed up. She’s tired of being a nobody: a plain, invisible woman who blends into the background. She deserves more – a life of money and power like the one blond-haired, blue-eyed goddess Daphne Parrish takes for granted.
To everyone in the exclusive town of Bishops Harbor, Connecticut, Daphne – a socialite and philanthropist – and her real-estate mogul husband, Jackson, are a couple straight out of a fairy tale.
Amber’s envy could eat her alive…if she didn’t have a plan. Amber uses Daphne’s compassion and caring to insinuate herself into the family’s life – the first step in a meticulous scheme to undermine her. Before long Amber is Daphne’s closest confidante, traveling to Europe with the Parrishes and their lovely young daughters and growing closer to Jackson. But a skeleton from her past may undermine everything that Amber has worked toward, and if it is discovered, her well-laid plan may fall to pieces.
With shocking turns and dark secrets that will keep you guessing until the very end, The Last Mrs. Parrish is a fresh, juicy, and utterly addictive thriller from a diabolically imaginative talent.
For more information or to purchase this book, click HERE!
This week’s Book Club choice is so juicy!!! I just ordered it and am dying to read it!! A “surprising look” into Jackie’s world. I cannot wait..can YOU?????
What was it like to meet and talk to people who knew Jackie Kennedy Onassis well? Each of these eight people gave me a surprising look into what it was like to live and work in Jackie’s world.
1 Nancy Tuckerman was Jackie’s friend from boarding school and also her lifelong assistant.
2 Jackie was wary of Nan Talese, one of the most important people in publishing. Jackie was also envious of Nan.
3 Distantly related to her by marriage, Louis Auchincloss gave Jackie a hard time when she wanted to slip out of the spotlight.
4 Sarah Giles was an editor at Vanity Fair. She worked with Jackie in her apartment at 1040 Fifth Avenue on a book that got them both into trouble.
5 Ruth Ansel knew Jackie via man about town and major photographer Peter Beard. When Jackie had a rare chance to acquire an authorized biography of Audrey Hepburn, Jackie confessed to Ruth why she couldn’t do it.
6 Rosamond Bernier gave sold-out lectures at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She was married to The New York Times’s art critic. Their wedding was at Philip Johnson’s famous glass house in Connecticut. Nevertheless, Philip Johnson later proved treacherous both to Rosamond Bernier and to Jackie.
7 Francis Mason advised Jackie when she wanted to switch jobs. The story of how she ignored his advice and managed to remain friends with him is testimony to a high-spirited talent that the two of them shared.
8 Edith Welch and her husband went to India with Jackie. Jackie didn’t always behave well on these trips, nor did Edith’s husband.
For more information or to purchase this book, click HERE.
I saw this book in a little book store over the weekend and the title stopped me in my tracks, One Italian Summer by Rebecca Serle.
When Katy’s mother dies, she is left reeling. Carol wasn’t just Katy’s mom, but her best friend and first phone call. She had all the answers and now, when Katy needs her the most, she is gone. To make matters worse, their planned mother-daughter trip of a lifetime looms: to Positano, the magical town where Carol spent the summer right before she met Katy’s father. Katy has been waiting years for Carol to take her, and now she is faced with embarking on the adventure alone.
But as soon as she steps foot on the Amalfi Coast, Katy begins to feel her mother’s spirit. Buoyed by the stunning waters, beautiful cliffsides, delightful residents, and, of course, delectable food, Katy feels herself coming back to life.
And then Carol appears—in the flesh, healthy, sun-tanned, and thirty years old. Katy doesn’t understand what is happening, or how—all she can focus on is that she has somehow, impossibly, gotten her mother back. Over the course of one Italian summer, Katy gets to know Carol, not as her mother, but as the young woman before her. She is not exactly who Katy imagined she might be, however, and soon Katy must reconcile the mother who knew everything with the young woman who does not yet have a clue. – Amazon
For more information or to order this book, click HERE.