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Summertime and the reading is easy



Thanks for the link, @Ghost-of-Mr-Tallis! It makes for a fascinating read!

I can’t help thinking that Parker’s arguments had something to do with his sense of power and authority and a perceived threat to both, dressed as a ‘critique’.


These two books landed on the mat today:


Has anyone read either/both? The reviews for both seem very good. I know it’s mighty juvenile of me, but I can’t get over Mr Lynch’s first name :grimacing:

By the way, having finished the ‘Godforsaken Grapes’ book - I can highly recommend it. It was a rollicking good read, and especially fun if you’re into obscure grapes/old traditional grapes that fell out of favour. I’m finally going to put an order through Alpine Wines as a direct result of reading this book! :+1:


I’ve read the HJ book and thoroughly enjoyed it. I just love the way he writes and many of the pieces sent me back to wine styles I had neglected, not least Chablis.


That’s nice to know! I shall begin it this evening, I think. I do like his style a lot - especially the no-nonsense non-elitist approach. I very much like his occasional editorials in Decanter, so looking forward to diving into this book! :slight_smile:


I owe a great deal to HJ. His accessible, yet inspiring writing was really what launched my interest in wines.


These just arrived during the week… some light reading for the holidays.


Aw, I love Wink Lorch! Have never got around to reading her books but I’m sure you’ll enjoy them. Let me know how you get on?! :smiley:

I’m in the market for some decent commercial fiction, if anyone’s read anything recently. There’s so much out there at the moment and not all of it is that well-written, so I’m looking for a standout writing voice and a good page-turner of a story…


Oh, I’m totally immersed in this book! Just finished the 1960’s section. ‘Accessible’ is the word! As well as funny, drol, observant, articulate…

Loved this observation about attending mass in Bordeaux: “Two big improvements on Communion at home: instead of a disc of blotting paper, the ‘bread’ is a finger of buttery pastry- and the wine is St Emilion”… :smile:


@Inbar - Here is the Parker “godforsaken grapes” rant


Thanks, @SteveSlatcher! :+1:


This may interest some of my fellow introverts :grinning:

Easy reading, punctuated with some good points and a lot of experiences, with which I can definitely identify!

She refers several times to this, which I read a while back and is in a similar vein.

I found both very worthwhile, even if I did find myself cringing several times, as the memories came flooding back.


I bought the Quiet book by Susan Cain for my daughter, a few years back, when she was going through a difficult time at secondary. She got a lot of comfort from it, as did I!

Great book if you’re an introvert and need some validation in this noisy world. :+1:


Kermit Lynch is an amazing person. A true trailblazer. His shop in Berkeley is worth a trip. It happens to be not too far from Chez Panisse, so you can pop in and say hi to Alice Waters.


Ahhh! This is 13 years too late for me. My ex husband lived and studied in Berkeley, so I know the city very well, and have visited several times (wasn’t into wine back then… what a shame!). Strangely, it always reminded me of Brighton.

No excuse to go there now… :frowning:


I really enjoyed the Kermit Lynch book. It’s pretty old - or at least the edition I read, not sure if it’s been updated - so his exciting new discoveries are now mostly unaffordable legends! But the writing is good, and his enthusiasm and character really come across. A fun and thirst-inspiring read


Thanks, @RieslingBassist! :+1:

The edition I have is the 25th anniversary edition (released June 2019, I think) - which I hope means a bit of an updated info, or at least an updated preface.

Having said that, I’m sort of in it for the info and the sense of place and time - rather than for the wines per se, so I’m hoping that even if much of the info is out of date, the enthusiasm for the subject (as you mention) will be evident.

If it’s half as informative and fun to read as the Hugh Johnson one, then I’ll be well pleased! :grinning:


Just taken delivery of a second-hand copy (looks new) of HJ’s Story of Wine, fairly old now I guess but I haven’t read it and am looking forward to it.
Ridiculous price of £4.49 including postage - why bother with new?


Ah! Anthony Powell’s Dance books. Very good IMHO. Incidentally, Powell also wrote articles on wine: these have been collected in one volume and I am sure the Anthony Powell Society would sell you a copy.


Now you got me interested!

My other half had just started book 8 in the series, and is just loving it. He’s loved the whole thing so far. And funnily enough, he’ll occasionally quote something from the book to do with wine which one of the characters says or a wine they drink - so clearly Powell had an interest/knowledge.

I shall seek… :face_with_monocle:


I’ve just read a fantastic book called When the English Fall by David Williams. A beautiful lyrical book written in a very close and intimate first person from the perspective of an Amish farmer, set before and after a major solar storm and looking at its impact on the Amish community and the wider ‘English’ community. It’s not about religion, though obviously that plays a central role (and the author is a Presbyterian pastor), but rather about people and a sense of duty. It’s very much a slow burn of a book with relatively little action and quite a lot of contemplation and yet it’s utterly riveting.

A really lovely book that I highly recommend. I wasn’t sure I’d like it but in the event I totally loved it!