I went to Bookstock yesterday, for the very first time.
I've tried to get there each year, but something always seems to come up to keep me from it. But not this year! This year I perused through thousands of used books, piled 'em up in my arms 'til I couldn't hold any more, and wished all the while that I lived closer so I could meander over each day for the week that this fest is being held, just to see what new goodies arrive as it all progresses.
Here's how Bookstock describes itself:
Bookstock, Used Book & Media Sale, is a community service project through which donations of books and media continue to provide enjoyment and knowledge. Proceeds from the sale support education and literacy projects in the Detroit metropolitan area and beyond.
The entire process of collecting and sorting gently used books and media, organizing and staffing the sale is 100% volunteer driven. This approach to recycling used books and media in order to raise money for education and literacy is what makes Bookstock a win-win endeavor for the community. All leftover books from Bookstock are donated to non-profits and charities in our community.
Now, one might think that I'm a bit limited to have bought 7 cookbooks, most of them about Jewish cuisine! But not only are these books I didn't already have, some of them are also theoretically work-related. I write about food, and I often write about Jewish food; I'm also writing regularly now for the Washtenaw Jewish News about holidays ... and food! So to collect a few of the basics among the pantheon of Jewish cookbooks - The 92nd Street Y's International Kosher Cookbook, The World of Jewish Entertaining, and Joan Nathan's The Jewish Holiday Kitchen ... well, how could I resist???
There's also Love and Knishes by Sara Kasdan, which is very cute and chatty, with lots of traditional recipes and generous sprinklings of Yiddish, which I wish I could speak - you can't say anything in other languages as expressively as you can in Yiddish! My favorite part, though, is the chapter on Yom Kippur Cookery, which totals 4 sentences: "Ah ha! You looked. Shame on you! You should be fasting." Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is the one day on the Jewish calendar on which no food or water are permitted ... :)
But I also indulged in other interests beyond Jewish food, and bought a cookbook devoted solely to my beloved shortbread, one by Paul Prudhomme and his family, and one devoted to menus inspired by artists such as Brueghel, Rousseau, Mattisse and Monet. Regular readers have followed along as I've written numerous posts about shortbread, both sweet and savory; about New Orleans and its food; and about art exhibits. I may be obsessive and single-minded in buying cookbooks almost exclusively, but I'm a happy single-minded obsessive!
And I also have to share with you my moment of amusement. I once wrote a post about finding copies of In the Kitchen with Rosie: Oprah's Favorite Recipes in every single thrift shop I meander through. So to find one at Bookstock (and then, in looking at the picture, finding another copy tucked into the pile to the right-hand side of the one I photographed) made me chuckle ....