Tag Archives: elibrarynj

Delicious Digital Memoirs for you to Download

16 Mar

Hoboken Library Patrons have a banquet of eBook choices to sample thanks to eLibraryNJ, Cloud Library, and Hoopla. Here are three foodie memoirs with recipes I devoured recently. Let us know in the comments what some of your favorite books from the eBook services are.

Voracious: A Hungry Reader Cooks Her Way Through Great Books by Cara Nicoletti

Voracious is based on Cara Nicoletti’s popular blog Yummy Books. Both feature recipes that corresponded with a variety of books that she loved (or occasionally hated). The memoir is broken into three sections: Childhood, Adolescent and College Years, and Adulthood.  Some entries focus more on her connection to the food and others to the books. She goes from breakfast sausage and Little House in the Big Woods to Wine-Braised Leg of Lamb with Wild Mushrooms in honor of The Secret History. She even has a fava bean dish for Silence of the Lambs. I think it would be interesting to see someday if she were to write a follow up about what her books/recipes would be for the period of Middle Age and Senior Years. Nicoletti currently works as a butcher, following in the footsteps of her grandfather who owned a butcher shop. This informs her picks for dishes which often have a head-to-tail sensibility that embraces the use of lard and other bits we often shy away from today. Her background as a former pastry chef is also seen in scrumptious sounding desserts. Two dishes I’d be most interested in baking myself are her Goat Cheese Pumpkin Pie and Blackberry Hazelnut Coffee Cake. Hoboken and other BCCLS patrons can borrow this book from Cloud Library! BCCLS will be incorporating their eBCCLS service into Cloud Library in upcoming months so now is the ideal time to check it out, if you haven’t before.

Molly on the Range: Recipes and Stories from An Unlikely Life on a Farm by Molly Yeh

Molly on the Range’s title is slightly misleading in that it does not just cover Yeh’s life on sugar beet farm on the North Dakota/Minnesota border, but also her time studying classical music at Julliard and her childhood in a Chicago suburb. This, however, added rather than subtracted from my enjoyment of the book since it was interesting to see her maturing and the contrast of her rural versus city life. Many of the recipes reflect Molly’s Jewish and Chinese heritage as well as including vegan and gluten free recipes reflecting the dietary preferences of her husband and in-laws. Molly on the Range is available to Hoboken and other BCCLS patrons from Hoopla. Although Hoopla does not have as large a selection of bestsellers as the other two services, it has the great feature of never having to wait for holds and it has a substantial selection of digital audiobooks. I recommend reading it on a device with a larger screen if possible since you will want to enjoy the lovely photographs and fun drawings accompanying the recipes. Yeh also authors the award-winning blog My Name is Yeh.

Smoke and Pickles: Recipes and Stories from a New Southern Kitchen by Edward Lee

Since I practically have an addiction to kimchi and am also a fan of southern cuisine I was excited to check out Edward Lee’s memoir/cookbook. Edward was raised by Korean immigrants in Brooklyn, but found a home in Louisville, Kentucky, where he took over the culinary destination 610 Magnolia. Edward’s a multiple James Beard Award nominee so as you might imagine his recipes are culinary masterpieces. Though one suggestion he has for aging meat in a second fridge may seem daunting to many home chefs, he frequently gives alternatives to some of the trickier techniques. His multicultural dishes include things like Chicken-Fried Pork Steak with Ramen Crust, Collards and Kimchi, Braised Beef Kalbi with Grits, and Miso-Smothered Chicken. Besides the fascinating dishes, I found his keen wit and insight about his life’s journey highly enjoyable. Smoke and Pickles is available on Hoopla and eLibraryNJ. eLibraryNJ is a great choice for Kindle users since unlike the other two services, users can check out books in Kindle format, as well EPUB which is compatible with most tablets.

Need help with checking out these eBooks? Stop by the Reference Desk, or come to our OpenTech Times on Mondays from 1 PM to 3 PM!

-Written by Aimee Harris, Head of Reference

Running with Audiobooks from eLibraryNJ

17 Jul

For a long time I was resistant to audiobooks (I explain why in this post I wrote last year) but have found that audiobooks are the best way to keep me entertained when running.

Listening to music during runs doesn’t work because I never find the “right” song to listen to and spend more time fiddling with iTunes than paying attention to the road. (Some paths at the park where I run are littered with acorns left by rogue squirrels, and stepping on one is a good way to roll your ankle.) Running with my own thoughts doesn’t work either because usually I find reasons to end my run early/quit.

Lately I’ve been borrowing audiobooks from eLibraryNJ and listening to them through the Overdrive app (available on iOS and Android) on my iPhone. eBCCLS also works through the Overdrive app, and is very similar to eLibraryNJ. I use eLibraryNJ because there are more copies of certain titles available for cardholders that were purchased by the Hoboken Public Library. Both eLibraryNJ and eBCCLS can be accessed through the library’s website.

As I like nonfiction and memoirs, I selected titles from those genres. Following are titles I’ve read (or listened to?) so far.

I Feel Bad About My Neck, by Nora Ephron


Nora Ephron was a classic comedy writer and I chose to listen to this book because of the title, borrowed from the opening essay about the lengths mature women go through to look youthful. While Ephron’s sense of humor is smart and subtle, I couldn’t much relate to this book as I am not its intended audience. But Nora was a wise, brilliant woman, which I can appreciate. My favorite essay humorously accounted Ephron’s efforts to hone her cooking style by following various celebrity chefs, such as Martha Stewart and Nigella Lawson, before developing her own technique.

Lies that Chelsea Handler Told Me, by Chelsea Handler


I found Chelsea Handler’s book outrageous. Some of the complex and even sophisticated pranks Handler pulled are stunning. This book definitely made me laugh out loud. (My apologies to anyone at the running track who was startled by my inappropriate laughter.) Each of Handler’s victims, or her friends and family, has a chapter in which to tell their story of Chelsea’s lies. My favorite story was told from the perspective of Handler’s dog, Chunk, who just wants to spend time alone with his mom and not her crazy friends. I think this book will entertain those who aren’t familiar with Handler’s comedy. It’s that funny.

Life, by Keith Richards


This audiobook was a serious investment of time as it is over 23 hours long. Keith Richards, the legendary Rolling Stones guitarist, has led a fascinating life. He talks candidly about drugs and his struggles with addiction. Richards discusses his stormy relationship with Anita Pallenberg, who had previously dated his bandmate Brian Jones. Rolling Stones diehards will appreciate the parts about Richards’s complex relationship with Mick Jagger. This is not a boring book. Johnny Depp narrates several parts of the audiobook, and Joe Hurley, who has the most entertaining British accent, narrates the rest. Richards himself can be heard toward the end of the book.

Detroit: An American Autopsy, by Charlie LeDuff


Charlie LeDuff, a journalist raised in Detroit who returned to the city as an adult, outlines the factors contributing to Detroit’s downfall in this book, which is darker than the others I list here. Eric Martin narrated the audiobook and his voice reminds me of a noir film character. The most poignant tales are from Detroit’s firefighters, who battle fires in a city that is referred to as “the arson capital of the world” with subpar gear, with whom LeDuff built a relationship. Those familiar with LeDuff’s work will know that he covered New York City firefighters and first responders in the days after 9/11 for the New York Times, and it’s clear that he has great respect for them.

For my next audiobook download, I may try fiction or something that is more upbeat. Do you have any good audiobook recommendations?

-Written by Kerry Weinstein, Reference Librarian

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