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Best Cook in the World: Tales from My Momma's Table
Best Cook in the World: Tales from My Momma's Table | Rick Bragg
From the beloved, best-selling author of All Over but the Shoutin', a delectable, rollicking food memoir, cookbook, and loving tribute to a region, a vanishing history, a family, and, especially, to his mother. Including seventy-four mouthwatering Bragg family recipes for classic southern dishes passed down through generations. Margaret Bragg does not own a single cookbook. She measures in "dabs" and "smidgens" and "tads" and "you know, hon, just some." She cannot be pinned down on how long to bake corn bread ("about 15 to 20 minutes, depending on the mysteries of your oven"). Her notion of farm-to-table is a flatbed truck. But she can tell you the secrets to perfect mashed potatoes, corn pudding, redeye gravy, pinto beans and hambone, stewed cabbage, short ribs, chicken and dressing, biscuits and butter rolls. Many of her recipes, recorded here for the first time, pre-date the Civil War, handed down skillet by skillet, from one generation of Braggs to the next. In The Best Cook in the World, Rick Bragg finally preserves his heritage by telling the stories that framed his mother's cooking and education, from childhood into old age. Because good food always has a good story, and a recipe, writes Bragg, is a story like anything else.
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ValerieAndBooks
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Pickpick

Loved Rick Bragg‘s *The Best Cook in the World* , just as I did his earlier volumes about his family. In this one, his momma‘s home-cooking recipes go hand-in-hand with family stories. Many are more for historical merit — poke-weed salad (poisonous if careless in prep) or possum or turtle soup, anyone? I was glad there‘s a recipe for pecan pie that doesn‘t use Karo. Will try it someday & see if it‘s as good as my Southern grandma‘s was 💖.

Kappadeemom Turtle soup is actually good! I‘ve had it in New Orleans :) 1mo
SaraFair His stories bring back so many memories. 1mo
ValerieAndBooks @Kappadeemom I‘ll take your word for it 😊. The at home recipe seems like a lot of work, not to mention having to catch the turtle in the first place! 1mo
ValerieAndBooks @SaraFair I know what you mean— very evocative of a time and place similar to my what my grandparents had until they migrated to CA. 1mo
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Blueberry
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So funny especially in Rick Braggs slow Southern speaking-style. It's very calming. ☺

@NataliePatalie

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ValerieAndBooks
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My dear mom sent us a check for our anniversary and we spent it at Barnes and Noble tonight 😊📚📚! The top two are my picks (Atkinson was 50% off) and hubby got the bottom three. I plan to start with the tagged book — have enjoyed Bragg‘s other books. #bookhaul

Suet624 Ahem...Vermont... coming for a visit? 1mo
Suet624 And I‘m Irish. Curious what I dont know. (edited) 1mo
ValerieAndBooks @Suet624 Hopefully in the near future 😊 ! We only passed through VT a couple years ago when we went to Montreal, and want to see more! Hubby is also dreaming of where we might go post-retirement (many years in the future), possibly as a second home somewhere. Hence, the other books as well.

I'll have to ask him what the most interesting thing he learned from the Irish history book and then pass it along to you 🙂 -- he's still reading it.
1mo
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LWagoner
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Pickpick

This was such a wonderful read! What could be better than a memoir recounting one‘s family history thru food and recipes?! Laugh out loud moments made this so enjoyable and sweet. You‘ll see fatback in a whole new light.

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Blueberry
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Listening to this on audio in my car. The author's voice has a comforting slow southern accent. 🧡

Crazeedi This sounds like a sweet book 2mo
cathysaid Have you read/listened to All Over but the Shoutin'? If not, I highly recommend. 2mo
ValerieAndBooks I agree with @cathysaid ‘s rec! He has other family memoirs as well but I especially loved 2mo
Blueberry @cathysaid @ValerieAndBooks Thanks, I will check it out. 2mo
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webhau1
Pickpick

I listened to this as an audiobook. The author is the narrator and is great. This was the first book I read by this author and I will read more. He is honoring his family( especially his Mom as it should be)and cooking and recipes are a part of the story. It is a longer book on audio so you for sure will need to take breaks from it, but awesome to listen to while making or eating dinner.

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britt_brooke
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Thanks for the tag @MicheleinPhilly - here are my #top6reads for the first half of 2019. Fun idea @Cinfhen !

Want to join in @OrangeMooseReads @krayoncolorz @CallMeIshmael @Booksnchill ?

Cinfhen I read all 3 in the bottom row this year!! Loved The Trauma Cleaner ( made my list too) and I did like McGlue. Interesting that you also mixed fiction & nonfiction!! And by the way SourPuss was by far the worst book I read this year!!!! 😉😂 4mo
Leftcoastzen Nice list! 4mo
MicheleinPhilly I haven‘t read any of these yet! 😮 4mo
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britt_brooke @Cinfhen Sour Puss is definitely my worst, too. 🤣 4mo
Cinfhen Boo @MicheleinPhilly Poet X was a #KindleDailyDeal a few weeks ago 😜 4mo
Cinfhen Ha!!! We‘re the only 2 people who read & reviewed on Litsy 4mo
britt_brooke @Cinfhen That‘s is too funny! 4mo
britt_brooke @MicheleinPhilly Better start stacking! 😉😉 4mo
Kalalalatja Poet X is on my list, too 👌 and The Trauma Cleaner is great! 4mo
Christine I‘ve been meaning to listen to that Rick Bragg! (And Poet X and Trauma Cleaner were 😍) 4mo
britt_brooke @Christine Loved the Bragg book so much. His voice is so soothing. I was lucky enough to meet him and hear him speak in Nashville last fall. 💚 4mo
MarriedtoMrT Trauma Cleaner! 🙌🏼 4mo
britt_brooke @MarriedtoMrT Such an incredible story! It will stay in my favorites for the year and then some. Sandra is amazing. 4mo
Megabooks I need to read McGlue!! 4mo
britt_brooke @Megabooks It‘s so good!! 4mo
britt_brooke @Callemarie Here are mine! 🍻 4mo
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goodbyefrancie
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Listening to Rick Bragg talk about his mama touches my heart.

#Overdrive

webhau1 It is very good. Sweet and also funny. 3mo
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Hoopiefoot
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Was doing some #audiomowing until I saw this little friend hiding in the yard.

slategreyskies That‘s really cool! 💚!! 5mo
wanderinglynn Aw! Turtles are awesome! 💚🐢 5mo
Tamra Snapping turtle? They are wayyyyyy faster at whipping around than I ever imagined! 😲 5mo
Hoopiefoot @Tamra They are! This one was a painted turtle. 5mo
JazzFeathers 😍😍😍 5mo
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britt_brooke
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Pickpick

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ This collection of family tales and recipes is so fondly and vividly written that I felt like I was back at my Memaw‘s, sitting on the counter sneaking bits of sugar cookie dough. Being from the south myself, these stories felt familiar, as did many of the recipes. The very mention of red eye gravy had me fiercely missing my grandpa. Bragg is a truly gifted storyteller; thoughtful and damned funny, too. This memoir is a big ol‘ hug.👇🏻

britt_brooke Hearing him speak at the Southern Festival of Books last year, then meeting him afterward, was such a treat. Even though I have this lovely signed hardcover, I couldn‘t resist listening to this on audio. (edited) 7mo
Suet624 He does have a cozy way of writing. 7mo
britt_brooke @Suet624 That‘s the perfect way to put it. 💚 7mo
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Jobe
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Pickpick

Love how he wound his family history around food. You are going to want some gravy and biscuits, while reading. Includes down home cooking and recipes. Love memoirs

britt_brooke I had the pleasure of meeting him at the Southern Festival of Books last year, but I still haven‘t read this. Need to soon! 8mo
goodbyefrancie Love his books and his voice. He narrated one of my favorite books, The Poet of Tolstoy Park, and it made the book twice as good. 8mo
Jensol77 I‘ve been waiting for another book by him 8mo
TNbookworm I love Rick Bragg❤ 8mo
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jillrhudy
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Squeeeeeeee!!! Me and Rick Bragg! #author #authorsigning #southern

tjwill So exciting! 12mo
LeahBergen Love it! 😍😍 12mo
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Booksnchill
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Well Rick Bragg anyone???💖👍🤣 #SouthernFestivalOfBooks author signing

tjwill Fun! 12mo
LeahBergen Love him! ❤️ 12mo
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Leftcoastzen Nice ! 12mo
Kaye Wow ! How cool. I‘d love to meet him. I‘d pull a chair up next to him and ask if I can listen to him talk to everyone. Such a beautiful voice. @joscho (edited) 12mo
JoScho @Kaye yeah I know he is one of your faves ❤️ 12mo
Booksnchill @Kaye you should book a trip to the Southern Festival - he‘s here about every year- great voice! (edited) 12mo
Kaye I‘ve never been to any book festivals. Do they have this one at the same place and time every year ? 12mo
Booksnchill @Kaye yes, Usually second or 3rd weekend in October in Nashville at Library and War Memorial Plaza put on by the TN Humanities Council- can see all the info from this year if you google Southern Festival of Books 2018. The festival is free to attend 12mo
Kaye Thank you. I‘ll check it out. Southerners seem to be the best storytellers, in my opinion. 12mo
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Litpixie
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Pickpick

Such a beautiful book. Bragg gives his family's history through food. Each chapter contains recipes with this mother's comments interspersed through the directions. I found I had to share this book and would read various passages to whoever was close.

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Litpixie
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A supermarket tomato is food the way a frozen burrito is food: of last resort.

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Litpixie
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A rainy Friday. Baking Madelines later and reading this book. What a perfect Friday.

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LisaJo
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Rick Bragg signed two of his books for me. One is for my friend. Every year I try to get her a signed cookbook. This year it‘s Rick Bragg. To be honest, the book is not entirely a cookbook, more tales about his mom with some recipes included. I‘m counting it. I told him my friend Shari was the one that cooked and so he signed it to the cook. #RickBraggIsAwesome #MississippiBookFestival

Friend not on Litsy. This is not going to spoil it for her.

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LisaJo
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Went to the Rick Bragg panel. I‘ve heard him speak often. However, I needed a repeat because he is just the best person to listen to. His stories are amazing. As are his books. #MSBookFestival #LiteraryLawnParty

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Aloisi_tribe
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I checked this out from the library, read half the first page and, when I got to the underlined sentence, closed the book and immediately ordered my own copy of this book along with all of Rick Bragg‘s other books. I forgot how wonderful his writing is! @Kaye

goodbyefrancie He is also a good narrator! He read the audio of The Poet of Tolstoy Park by Sonny Brewer, and it is wonderful. One of my most recommended books. 1y
tammysue Love it, you know it‘s probably true if he says it!! 😂😂 1y
Kaye I agree he‘s great 1y
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LisaJo
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Yep, you are seeing double. Both of these arrived in the mail today. #Lovebookmail Rick Bragg is going to be at the Mississippi Book Festival in August. And my goal is to get these signed. One is for me, because I so enjoy the way he writes. The other one is for my friend, because she is a cook. #ChristmasGift

Kaye Really wonderful book. 1y
ReadZenRites Nice! 1y
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Kaye
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Pickpick

An excellent book which incorporates Bragg‘s ability to spin a good Southern yarn with the history,so to speak ,of the cooks in their family , as far back as he could trace them, and how those old recipes got passed down to his mom. A lot of the book is a memoir of his ancestors and funny stories about them but the entire book centers around food. Acquiring it , cooking it and eating it. Makes you hungry for a big plate of meat, potatoes and gravy

knittedgnome Sounds wonderful! I really love making family recipes. For father's day I made my hubby and his dad their family beer salami takes forever but they love it. Just something special thinking about all the people that made the same thing. 1y
emilyhaldi Sounds good!! 🤤 1y
Dragon Stacking! Now I‘ve gotta grab a snack😀🐉 1y
Kaye @knittedgnome @emilyhaldi @Dragon If you guys are like me and like good old fashioned cooking, this will certainly make you hungry. There‘s a lot more memoir to it than recipes, but still plenty of recipes sprinkled throughout. 1y
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Kaye
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#julyinbooks18
I don‘t anticipate more than one book at a time. It throws me off balance. I concentrate on one, complete it, then pick a new one.This was gifted to me from Tammy @whatshesreadingnow ,and even autographed. 😮 I‘m around page 80 now and very good. It‘s got recipes of a sort, like if I‘d tell you how to make meat loaf. I don‘t use exact amounts. Throw it all in a pan, cook it, and WA-LA !This is mostly yakking, which I‘m good at too.

Kaye @bookisglee Sorry I didn‘t have room up top to tag you. 1y
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Schlinkles
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You know you have a great job when a night at work means a night listening to Rick Bragg.

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Kaye
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Current read. ❤️

knittedgnome I love stories like this! There is something special about recipes passed along. 1y
Kaye Yes, I love Rick Bragg. He is a top notch storyteller. These go way back to his long dead relatives. Very good so far ! 1y
tammysue Glad your enjoying 😊 1y
Kaye It‘s very good. Gonna read some more tonight 💖 1y
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kristina_with_a_k
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Dripping with Southern deliciousness #comfortfood #feedingmanyonlittle #thesouthernway #downhome

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jillrhudy
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Pickpick

Fabulous and SO FUNNY. Part cookbook and part southern memoir with a heavy flavor of tall tale. This image is copyright from Southern Living‘s article at

https://www.southernliving.com/travel/rick-bragg-my-mamas-cookbook

Even the recipes are funny. I have no idea why there seems to be a dollop of mayonnaise in everything. I don‘t cook with lard or Crisco, so... #south #food #recipes #alabama #memoir

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jillrhudy
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This book is a scream. I love it so much I may have to buy a copy. And then I might have to buy the audio. #alabama #south #humor #food #recipes

Aimeesue 3 AM is a bad time to take a hog for a drive? Does the Empress know that? 😂😂😂 1y
jillrhudy 😂 I never really thought about it, until I read this story. 1y
jillrhudy They have to round up the hog because the rent is late—time to move! 1y
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jillrhudy
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My current read is so great that I truly resent having to work for a living.

2. My mom!
And librarians, which is why I am one
3. Now, darn it!
4. Cassandra in “I Capture the Castle” Scarlett & Scout & Idgey, all those great tough Southern gals
Marian Halcolmbe of “The Woman in White”—but also Count Fosco & Frederick Fairlie
Anne of Green Gables and Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm, young nerdy book fiends,
Miss Elizabeth Bennet
#manicmonday @JoScho

JoScho 📚😊❤️ 1y
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kyraleseberg
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Pickpick

A perfect mix of food memoir, cookbook, tall tales, family history, Southern culture, and a love story to the South itself. If you‘ve read any previous autobiographical books by Bragg, you‘ll know that he loves and respects his momma Margaret and is also a proud son of the South. This book further preserves his family history as well as the vanishing history of generations of Southern culture / cooking.

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jillrhudy
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Page ☝️ paragraph ☝️ love love love love him. Can you hear his voice? This man, I swear. He could write the claws off a chicken hawk. He could write the water moccasins onto dry land. He is FEEE-nominal.

Aimeesue “She cooked for people she‘d just as soon have poisoned.” ❤️❤️❤️ 1y
jillrhudy @Aimeesue whatta gal! 1y
LeahBergen I love him (and his momma). ❤️ 1y
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jillrhudy
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IT‘S CATALOGED! And in my hot lil‘ southern-fried hands!

TNbookworm I love Rick Bragg! 1y
LisaJo Rick Bragg is the best!!! 1y
jillrhudy Have you heard him talk? (Swoon) 1y
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Litpixie
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I love book mail, and for the first time, over the weekend, I won two books from Goodreads.

RaimeyGallant Congrats! And a belated welcome to Litsy! #LitsyWelcomeWagon Some of us put together Litsy tips to help new Littens navigate the site. It's the link in my bio on my page in case you need it. Or if you prefer how-to videos, @chelleo put some together at the link in her bio. @LitsyWelcomeWagon 1y
Eggs Welcome to Litsy 👋🏻 1y
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kyraleseberg
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😂😂😂

underground_bks My bookstore is about to host Rick Bragg next Sunday! So excited! 1y
kyraleseberg @underground_bks That's very exciting- I've heard he's a wonderful speaker! 1y
underground_bks @kyraleseberg oh he is! We met him when he spoke in our town last year. He‘s hilarious, warm, sincere, and self-deprecating. Really wonderful storyteller! 1y
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Jen2
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Rick Bragg is the best audio narrator!!!!

jillrhudy If you think that, you get a follow! 1y
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kyraleseberg
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I'm a big fan of Rick Bragg's writing and I'm loving this cookbook/memoir.
Check out that third ingredient 😂

Linsy 😆 1y
30 likes1 comment
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jdenslow
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This is really just the tip of the iceberg, but I've made #readingresolutions to finish what's on the screen before I buy anything else! #photochallenge #somanybooks #solittletime @Jess7

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jdenslow
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Working my way through #readharder2018. This might be the year I finish the list!

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jdenslow
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When you pick up a book and it's telling you the truth from page one. #memoir #foodwriting #rickbragg

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HillsAndHamletsBookshop

Excited to have Bragg to our Carrollton store @underground_bks next month for the release of this new book. I always enjoy Bragg‘s voice, and am eager to dig into my ARC of this new one.

kyraleseberg I'm definitely looking forward to this book! I hope I can make the trip to hear him speak! 2y
HillsAndHamletsBookshop Where are you? He‘s doing a pretty thorough national book tour. 2y
kyraleseberg Just outside of Augusta. I have family near Carrollton so that'd be perfect to visit them and check out your bookstore! (edited) 2y
HillsAndHamletsBookshop Oh, yeah, I guess the closest is Athens so far. I bet they‘ll announce a lot more dates by pub date. 2y
underground_bks @kyraleseberg We‘d love to see you at Underground! 😊 2y
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LauraBeth
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Ari Shapiro posted this pic of recent books he‘s received from publishers. I looked at this and was all, “Wait a minute - Rick Bragg has a new book coming out? And it‘s a cook book with his mama‘s recipes?” I‘m here for that. Will be scrutinizing the other titles later but that‘s what jumped at me first. 😀

ValerieAndBooks Oh wow, I have to have that cookbook too, at least for the stories in it! Loved his family memoirs. 2y
LeahBergen I‘ll be needing that cookbook, too. @ValerieAndBooks 2y
LauraBeth @ValerieAndBooks and @LeahBergen I just saw a sign in the library that said he‘s coming next month to promote it. And there will be food there from the book. 💃💃 2y
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Suet624 I want to be Ari Shapiro. 2y
LeahBergen Oh, you better go! And get a photo with him! 😄😄 2y
LauraBeth I know, right? 😀 @Suet624 2y
LauraBeth @LeahBergen I hope that the scheduling works out so I can go! 2y
TNbookworm First, I want to be Ari Shapiro. Second, I love Rick Bragg❤ Third, please go to your library event so I can live vicariously through you and get to"meet" him☺ 2y
LauraBeth @tnbookworm I‘m usually out of town that weekend in April but we‘ll see if I can stick around - because I LOVE Rick Bragg too ❤️ (edited) 2y
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