Monday, January 30, 2017

The American Plate by Libby H O'Connell

3.5 stars


I wanted to love this.

And there were certainly parts I enjoyed.

But overall.... it's not Alton Brown.  And that felt unfortunate.

Okay, so it's not her fault she's not Alton Brown.

Really, there were issues of formatting and editing (Wonder Broad is the typo that stands out the most in my memory), and honestly, issues of attitude.

Because I'm sorry, saying things like "Needless to say, it took only a few generations of European settlers to damage the salmon population in the Columbia watershed" is smug and snotty and not a good objective historical perspective.  You may be able to give historic facts to back up that there was damage, but that can be presented without the attitude.

The Civil War section was very interesting.  The Jell-O section made me gag (because, ew... I can't stand jello).  The Elvis Jell-O recipe footnote was one of the funniest moments in the entire book (and it's a tragedy that it was buried in a footnote).

Overall, it's not a bad book, I'm just cranky.  And it just wasn't all that I wanted it to be.

If you have an interest in the history of food, try it.  And make sure you check the footnotes.  You'd hate to miss the Elvis one. :)

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