Surprises in the Mailbox

Today in my mailbox there was something I expected – an envelope containing the notebooks I’d ordered from Field Notes, in their new autumn colors, and a book: Dandelion: the Extraordinary Life of a Misfit.

I don’t remember if I agreed to review the book, or asked for it in some other fashion, but it’s signed by the author, one Sheelagh Mawe, and it looks delightful, and having just finished reading The Lost Symbol, by Dan Brown, it’s nice to look forward to something a bit less intense.

And yet, it’s also a total surprise, because while the title and author are striking a familiar chord with me, I’ve no idea where the book came from, other than, you know, FROM the author.

It’s the kind of book meant to be read by the light of a single soft sconce, while sipping tea, and after a day of barking dogs and giant vacuums, it’s just the kind of book I need.

Coming Attractions: Drinking with George by George Wendt

Drinking with George: A Barstool Professional’s Guide to Beer
George Wendt
Get it at Amazon >>

One of my favorite parts about my work with online magazine All Things Girl is that I often get to review books before they come out, so that I can interview the authors.

Recently, George Wendt, whom most people probably recognize as “Norm” from “Cheers,” wrote a book that was half memoir, half ode to beer. I was given a galley so I could prep for an interview, and spent all night last Tuesday reading it. The interview was Wednesday evening, and both the book and the man were delightful: funny, smart, and totally engaging.

Let’s face it: beer is as important to American culture as novocain is to a Plano dentist, but it’s not something we generally read about. In the case of Drinking with George, however, skipping the book would be a literary sin, not because it’s high art, but because it’s the real story of a real guy’s love of the brew.

The fact that the book is filled with interesting beer factoids doesn’t hurt, either.

Look for Mr. Wendt as the All Things Girl Man of the Moment in October, and look for my review of his book in the ATG blog sometime after the first of the month.