Articles by Siobhan
Growing up in Northern Ontario, I always thought the image of Easter you see on TV was a bit off... I mean, how could you possibly have an Easter egg hunt outdoors when the ground is still blanketed in snow — or worse, slush? (Wearing poufy pastel dresses, no less.)
And then I moved to Vancouver... and now I get it (except for the pastel dresses; I think I may be a bit old for that now). While some (most?) of the country is still bracing for snow, it's feeling quite Spring-like and Easter-y here in Vancouver. The cherry blossoms are out and it's bright and sunny outside. There are daffodils poking up all over the place. Sorry, rest-of-Canada, but it's true.
But there's hope yet. In the spirit of Easter, here are a few books to usher in Springtime, no matter how cold, wet or snowy it may be outside. Just curl up with a book that's full of Springtime goodness, and use your imagination... Chocolate eggs also help.
Chicken and Egg is one of my personal favourites from Chronicle's Spring list. In it, food writer Janice Cole shares her adventures of deciding to take on raising chickens in her backyard. This book is not only lovely to look at (thanks to the crack design team at Chronicle), it's also topical, as allowing "urban poultry" seems to be an issue that's been raised in several Canadian cities in the past couple of years, and also downright delicious... Did I mention that the book also includes 125 recipes for delicious chicken and egg dishes?
Another gorgeous book with a Springtime feel is Nests: Fifty Nests and the Birds that Built Them. This book featuresamazing photography drawn from the collections of the California Academy of Sciences, the Museum of Vertebrate Zoology at UC Berkeley, and the Western Foundation of Vertebrate Zoology. Close-up photos of nests are accompanied by short portraits of the birds that constructed them. The variety and detail is fascinating. Here are a few spreads from the book... (Click on the images below to see them larger.)
And for something that's just plain fun(ny), check out One Chick to Another. Full of quips and funny one-liners paired with cute photos of, you guessed it, chicks.
Spring is all about reawakening from our winter slumber, shaking off our grey-sky blues and reigniting our passions. So I was quite pleased to see that Moleskine has created a whole line of videos to showcase their new Passions Journals. Moleskine has added several new topics to their popular set of Passions Journals this season: Style, Travel, Gardening, Dog, Cat, and Baby.
Here are some videos that I hope will get you all fired up about your passion, whatever it may be.
You can also sample and download some of the interior pages from the Moleskine Passions Journals on Moleskine MSK.
If you missed Iyanla Vanzant's appearance on the Oprah Show earlier this week — her first time back there in 11 years — there are a few clips to watch on Oprah.com.
You can also read an excerpt from her book, Peace From Broken Pieces: How to Get Through What You're Going Through, in which Iyanla writes candidly about her Oprah Show experiences, when she was a regular on the show, and the struggles she was going through at the time in her personal life.
Maybe my head's still spinning from eating too many Valentine's chocolates, or my vision is getting blurry from all the sugar in the technicolour anatomical heart cake that our designer Mark brought in, but I'm seeing a lot of mash-ups in the dessert world recently...
Another sweet mash-up...
Project Wedding posted a great recipe for these sneaky treats.
And of course the new trend...
Gibbs Smith just published a new cute book on Cupcake Cakes.
I wonder what other desserts could (or should) be combined? Mmmm, the possibilities are endless...
Are you feeling jaded about Valentine's Day? Maybe you're thinking about love in the wrong way...
In her new book, The Case for Falling in Love: Why We Can't Master the Madness of Love - and Why That's the Best Part, Mari Ruti proposes a new way of looking at love. A call to liberation for those frustrated by today's self-help shelf, this book also showcases all the ways in which life's sorrows, hardships, and disenchantments can render us deliciously alive -- and maybe that's what the real purpose of love is.
You can read a Q&A with Mari Ruti on MarieClaire.com., where she talks about the Mars/Venus concept, self-help books, Gossip Girl, online dating and more.
I'm not expecting anyone to turn around say, Now I'll be completely different, but I think we can be self-aware enough to understand that what you're doing now is not what you absolutely have to do. You can start doing things differently over time. Love has been about the Mars/Venus model for so long and I'm hoping that this book will make people thoughtful and that there is an audience that is ready for this.
Consider this your official warning: Valentine's Day is one week from today. Now you have no excuse to forget! Here are some great V-day gift ideas, instead of the usual last-minute box of chocolates...
Journals and Postcards
(P.S. Also check out our kids blog for lovely books to share with your little ones.)
It's February. Have you started on your new year's resolutions yet? Or have you already abandoned them? In my opinion, January 1st is no time to start on resolutions... I mean, it's right after all the excitement and chaos of the holidays — and right after that new year's eve party... In January, what you really need it time to relax (if you can) or (more likely) just get back into swing of your regular routines. It's no time to be hopping on treadmills or making big changes.
But now it's February. And we have no excuses left. Time to get on those new year's resolutions.
Here are a few books that might inspire you and get 2011 off to a good start... even if you're already month late.
For the 4 million people captivated by the international publishing phenomenon The Secret, building a Lifeboard is the next step toward turning their dreams into reality. It's simple in concept, profound in results: Lifeboards allow people to visualize their desires by collaging images of their goals-a better career, a new home, finding a soul mate-and thereby bring positive change into their lives. This treasure trove of a box contains a hangable board, a book explaining how to tap the powers of the Law of Attraction, a guided journal, and more-everything necessary to plot a fulfilled future.
Dr. Mao's Eight-Week Program: Simple Steps That Add Years to Your Life
by Dr. Maoshing Ni
Now fans of Secrets of Longevity can incorporate Dr. Mao's sage health advice into their lives in 8 short weeks. The trick is adopting small habit-forming actions that stick—walking for 20 minutes a day, drinking a detox tea, stretching before bed—all of which add up to make a big difference in the long run. Dr. Mao expertly condenses the wisdom gleaned from his family's thirty-eight generations of practicing Chinese medicine into actions that are easy to follow and satisfying to do. Anyone looking to improve and extend their lives will appreciate this interactive workbook's insightful quizzes, satisfying checklists, and delicious recipes-all designed to unlock the secrets to a longer, healthier, and happier life.
A Course in Weight Loss:21 Spiritual Lessons for Surrendering Your Weight Forever
by Marianne Williamson
As the title promises, Marianne Williamson looks at weight loss from a spiritual perspective, bringing you 21 lessons that can be done separately or in conjunction with any other serious spiritual path. These 21 lessons are completely separate from anything related to diet or exercise--they will "retrain your consciousness "in the area of weight in order to break the cycle of overeating, dieting, and shame that rules so many lives. Finally, Marianne has brought you what you've been waiting for: help to heal your addiction once and for all.
Excuses Begone!: How to Change Lifelong, Self-Defeating Thinking Habits
by Dr. Wayne W. Dyer
Within the pages of this transformational book, Dr. Wayne W. Dyer reveals how to change the self-defeating thinking patterns that have prevented you from living at the highest levels of success, happiness, and health. Even though you may know what to think, actually changing those thinking habits that have been with you since childhood might be somewhat challenging.
You'll ultimately realize that there are no excuses worth defending, ever, even if they've always been part of your life-and the joy of releasing them will resonate throughout your very being. When you eliminate the need to explain your shortcomings or failures, you'll awaken to the life of your dreams. Excuses . . . Begone!
The guiding premise of No More Regrets! 30 Ways for 30 Days is that we all have regrets in life, but none of us want to have more of them. The "30 Ways" to a life with no more regrets presented in this book are based the author's research about what regrets are and why we have them.
Finally -- after siome delays trying to catch up after our move -- I'm able to announce the winner of our "Cook Bake, Blog!" contest ... drumroll please ...
Congratulations, Suzie Ridle from Nova Scotia!
Suzie, aka Susie the Foodie, will win $500 (CDN retail) worth of cookbooks of her choice, published by Chronicle Books, Quirk Books or Gibbs Smith.
Check out Suzie's test-kitchen reports from trying out recipes from The Geometry of Pasta here and here (her delicious results are pictured below) -- and also watch this video of Suzie's brave husband concocting a brew of Mad Scientist Mix-Up from Little Monsters Cookbook!
ALSO ... congrats to the fabulous Cadboro Bay Book Company in Victoria, BC, who is the winner of our bookstore cookbook display contest!
The move in to the new building is going well. This week we're settling back into emailing, reviewing sales numbers, shipping books and all that good stuff. But I thought I'd share a few photos from last week, when we were all about unpacking, figuring out where to put everything and building bookshelves (you can never have enough bookshelves)...
Of course, between all the work, we did take some time to enjoy leftover holiday snacks, like our sales manager Sandy's amazing candied salmon (that went fast!)... as well as some Goldfish crackers for our publicist Crystal's daughter who came in to help.
The office is looking much more organized this week! The warehouse is also looking great... we can't get over how BIG it is! More photos to come as we settle into our new home on Viking Way.
Raincoast Books will be moving to a larger warehouse and new head office at 2440 Viking Way in Richmond, BC. The new location is five kilometers from the current warehouse and will hold 40% more books.
The current facility will close at the end of business on Tuesday, December 21, 2010 and the new facility will begin shipping books on Tuesday, January 4, 2011.
Electronic customer service resources—including EDI, our B2B site, and our client publisher extranet—will be on stream Friday, December 24.
Shipments that are scheduled to arrive in Vancouver after Friday, December 17, 2010 should be sent to 2440 Viking Way, Richmond, BC, V6V 1N2.
Raincoast's new contact info:
2440 Viking Way
Richmond, BC V6V 1N2
Customer Service & Book Orders
Monday to Friday: 7:00 am to 4:30 pm (Pacific)
Toll-Free Phone: 1-800-663-5714
Toll-Free Fax: 1-800-565-3770
Local Phone: 604-448-7100
Local Fax: 604-270-7161