Three Books to Add to Your January Reading List

The Real Greek Yogurt Book by Ilias Fountoulis. Photo: Bibliagora

After the holiday season starts to wind down, the winter is a great time to cuddle up with a good book and catch up on that to-be-read list. In case your list is growing thin, add the following books and enjoy.

The Real Greek Yogurt Book (English Edition) by food journalist Ilias Fountoulis is a charming volume in which he shares his love for genuine Greek yogurt. He takes the reader along on a journey from yogurt’s “creation” right up until its present day incarnations.

Fountoulis’ professional experience in gastronomy gives him unique insight into yogurt as he reveals everything there is to know about one of the world’s favorite health foods which also happens to be a food that has been successfully produced and exported by Greece for decades.

Fountoulis grew up in Athens with roots in Ikaria and partly from Arcadia. He studied Horticulture at Aberdeen University in Scotland and holds a Master’s degree in Global Livestock production. For the past decade, Fountoulis has worked as a food journalist with an interest in local Greek produce.

He has written for many gastronomy publications (Olive, Cook Book, I Cook Greek, Real Food) and has made several TV appearances on Greek cooking shows and more recently as a talented standup comedian.

His book includes Greek yogurt’s history, varieties, particular characteristics, nutritional value, and health benefits as well as fast, easy recipes to help incorporate genuine Greek yogurt into our daily cooking routine. The Real Greek Yogurt Book (English Edition) by Ilias Fountoulis is available online at: and at My Meraki Shop in Cold Spring, NY.

The Perpetual Immigrant and the Limits of Athenian Democracy by Demetra Kasimis. Photo: Amazon

Part of the Classics after Antiquity series published by the Cambridge University Press, The Perpetual Immigrant and the Limits of Athenian Democracy by Demetra Kasimis is her first book and offers insights into ancient Athens. According to the book’s description, “In the fifth and fourth centuries BCE, immigrants called ‘metics’ (metoikoi) settled in Athens without a path to citizenship. Galvanized by these political realities, classical thinkers cast a critical eye on the nativism defining democracy’s membership rules and explored the city’s anxieties over intermingling and passing. Yet readers continue to treat immigration and citizenship as separate phenomena of little interest to theorists writing at the time.”

In the book, published in 2018, Kasimis examines the long-overlooked centrality of immigration to the original practices of democracy and political theory in Athens. Kasimis is an assistant professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Chicago. Her research and teaching focus on democratic theory with emphasis on the thought and politics of classical Greece and its contemporary receptions. She is particularly interested in questions of membership, exclusion, and immigration, all of which she explores in her book.

The cover of The Holy Madness of Modern Greeks: An Introduction to the Ways of the Greeks by Theodore Pagiavlas featured Alexander the Great and the ancient philosopher Diogenes. Photo: Amazon

The Holy Madness of Modern Greeks: An Introduction to the Ways of the Greeks by Theodore Pagiavlas explores Greece’s landscape, history, music, poetry and other cultural facets in order to better understand the mentality and behavior of modern day Greeks.

Using humorous images and anecdotes which many will appreciate or identify with, Pagiavlas offers his answers to some of the unanswered questions about Greek people for anyone interested in this fascinating and multifaceted group. The book also provides a critical look at what influences contemporary Greeks and the culture.

According to his online biography, Pagiavlas studied journalism, cinema and political science in Athens, Geneva, and Paris. He has worked as a journalist and continues to write short stories and stories for children. Also a craftsman and contemporary ceramicist, Pagiavlas lives in Chania, Crete.

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