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Culture

The National Herald Readers’ Top 7 Books of the Year

December 25, 2017

Many fascinating books came to our attention this year. From poetry to cookbooks, memoirs to fiction, there was something for everyone to read. The National Herald takes a look back at some of our readers’ favorite books of 2017.

For foodies, cookbooks offering healthy Greek recipes drew a great deal of interest from our readers. My Greek Family Table by Greek-Australian Maria Benardis offered moving stories as well as wonderful recipes to enjoy.

Wild Mediterranean by Stella Metsovas offers recipes and a plan for healthy eating that draws on age-old wisdom, supported by scientific research, to help the average person reap the benefits of the Mediterranean diet. The “Paleo-meets-Mediterranean” recipes included are delicious and healthy.

Tired of Feeling Tired? A Nutrition Solution for Treating Hypothyroid Symptoms by Tina Christoudias Spyrou is a compilation of the latest nutrition research dealing with hypothyroidism. Christoudias Spyrou, a Harvard-trained clinical dietitian and nutritionist, shares her own story and how eating whole foods changed her life.

Something Beautiful Happened by Yvette Manessis Corporon is a work of non-fiction that tells the remarkable story of the author’s own family, history, and the present day search for the Jewish family her grandmother helped save during World War II. Out of unspeakable tragedy, the horrors of the war and Occupation, the book highlights the power of faith, hope, and kindness, as well as the need for understanding and having the courage to stand up for what is right. Yvette Manessis Corporon is a three-time Emmy Award–winning writer, author, and producer. Her debut novel, When The Cypress Whispers (Harper, 2014), has been translated into fourteen languages and was an international bestseller. She has received the Silurian Award for Excellence in Journalism and the New York City Council and Comptroller’s Award for Greek Heritage and Culture.

For poetry fans, Austerity Measures: The New Greek Poetry, edited by Karen Van Dyck, is required reading. The collection offers diverse voices responding to the toll the economic crisis has taken on the Greek people, and the abundant inspiration it is providing for artists and poets in particular.

A Greek Folk Journey: Travel, Culture and Gastronomy by Terina Armenakis is a wonderful resource for those who love traveling to Greece and discovering the unique festivals, foods, and fun throughout the country and throughout the year. The book is organized by the months of the year and begins in January with various festivals that kick off the year in the homeland including the many celebrations of the Twelve Days of Christmas. Introductions to each section and for each event offer valuable information for those interested in attending. It is possible to attend a festival in every part of Greece at almost any time of the year with this book as your guide.

An Odyssey: A Father, a Son, and an Epic by award-winning memoirist, critic, and translator Daniel Mendelsohn is a memoir that recounts how Mendelsohn’s 81-year-old father enrolled in the undergraduate Odyssey seminar his son teaches at Bard College, leading to a father-son adventure as profoundly emotional as it was intellectual. Arguing over Homer’s classic in the classroom and then recreating Odysseus’ voyages in an unforgettable Mediterranean journey, the scientist father attempts to appreciate the path of his writer/classicist son, while the son gradually uncovers long-buried secrets that explain his difficult parent.

The books are all available online and in bookstores.

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