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Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Food Rules: An Eater's Manual by Michael Pollan & Maira Kalman {book tour}

Author: Michael Pollan
Illustrator: Maira Kalman
hard cover: 207 pages

"foodie" elements: yes (duh)

a few random excerpts rules:   45.) Eat All the Junk Food You Want as Long as You Cook it Yourself.

55.) Stop Eating Before You're Full.

  70.) "Breakfast Like a King, Lunch Like a Prince, Dine Like a Pauper." 

summary/synopsis (from Michael Pollan's website):    Michael Pollan’s Food Rules began with his hunch that the wisdom of our grandparents might have more helpful things to say about how to eat well than the recommendations of science or industry or government. The result was a slim volume of food wisdom that has forever changed how we think about food. Now in a new edition illustrated by artist Maira Kalman, and expanded with a new introduction and nineteen additional food rules, this hardcover volume marks an advance in the national dialogue that Food Rules inspired.

The impetus for this new edition came from readers. Many chimed in with personal policies they had found useful in navigating the supermarket, or rules they recalled hearing from their mothers and grandmothers. Several of the new rules – Place a bouquet of flowers on the table and everything will taste twice as good; If you’re not hungry enough to eat an apple, you’re probably not hungry; When you eat real food, you don’t need rules – underscore the central teaching of the original Food Rules, which is that eating doesn’t have to be so complicated, and food is as much about pleasure and communion as it is about nutrition and health. Maira Kalman illustrates that simple truth with her paintings, bringing color, life and wit to Pollan’s philosophy.

A collaboration between our foremost food authority and one of our most celebrated artists, as well as between an author and his readers, Food Rules has prompted a national discussion that is helping to change the way Americans approach their eating. A beautiful book to cherish and share, Food Rules guides us with humor, joy, and common sense toward a happier, healthier relationship to food.

my thoughts/review:  Simply put: I love this book.  I loved the original one when it came out, too.  It was simple, small, paperback, easy-to-read print.  I kept a copy with me wherever I went.  Whipping it out and showing people how great it was.  I mean really.  This book is full of common sense...which I believe it what makes it so great.  I think anybody can connect with it.  This version is still pretty small and portable, but it has a hard cover and is extremely colorful.  While I love the original version, perhaps this one would make for better gifting.  Pollan shares his thoughts and the thoughts of those who believed in the original "manual" simply and humbly.  Kalman draws us in with warm scenes, humorous scenes, and thought-provoking scenes.  I don't know what to say other than I think everybody should own a copy of this book (either version).  Our government should use it to revamp the food pyramid and FDA standards.  Or we, as a nation should.

about the author:  Michael Pollan is the author of five books: Second Nature, A Place of My Own, The Botany of Desire, which received the Borders Original Voices Award for the best nonfiction work of 2001 and was recognized as a best book of the year by the American Booksellers Association and Amazon, and the national bestsellers, The Omnivore’s Dilemma, and In Defense of Food.

A longtime contributing writer to The New York Times Magazine, Pollan is also the Knight Professor of Journalism at UC Berkeley. His writing on food and agriculture has won numerous awards, including the Reuters/World Conservation Union Global Award in Environmental Journalism, the James Beard Award, and the Genesis Award from the American Humane Association.

about the illustrator:  Maira Kalman is an illustrator, author, and designer. She is the author of The Principles of Uncertainty and she illustrated the bestselling edition of Strunk and White’s The Elements of Style. Ms. Kalman’s twelve children’s books include Max Makes a Million, Stay Up Late, Swami on Rye, and What Pete Ate. She also has designed fabric for Isaac Mizrahi, accessories for Kate Spade, sets for the Mark Morris Dance Company, and, with her late husband Tibor Kalman under the M&Co. label, clocks, umbrellas, and other accessories for the Museum of Modern Art. Ms. Kalman’s work is shown at the Julie Saul Gallery in Manhattan.

*I received a free copy of this book to review from the publisher.  All thoughts and opinions stated in this post are 100% mine.

follow the tour:
tlc-tour-host foodiesreadingchallenge

Would you like to comment?

  1. My uncle would agree with most food rules (although he decidedly did not dine like a pauper). But even when my aunt was gone visiting - he set the table with flowers, linen and silver for dinner - and appreciated all.

  2. Can't believe I've never heard of this- but after your glowing review and reading his credentials I'm buying it for sure. I've heard #55 and #70...but how does one make their own junk food?? Since you mentioned that you think the FDA should even use his book as a guide, I was wondering if you saw this:

    thought you might like it.

  3. I completely agree, I love Michel Pollan and I've read all his books. This is one of my favorites because it's so useful. I have the original and I haven't seen this version yet, so now I'll go have a look. I think you're right that this would make a great gift.
    I really liked In Defense of Food, too.

  4. @ALBLA... Yes, I remember reading that...I'm a big Mark Bittman fan, as well.

    In regards to making your own junk food... think french fries, fried chicken, cupcakes, chips, pies, ice cream. It's very easy to buy ready made versions of these, but how often would you eat them if you only ate them when you made them yourself!? =)

  5. It is always a tricky thing to put out a new edition of an old favorite - I'm so glad to see that this one was even better than the original!

    Thanks for being on the tour.