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Cooked

A Natural History of Transformation

In Cooked, Michael Pollan explores the previously uncharted territory of his own kitchen. Here, he discovers the enduring power of the four classical elements—fire, water, air, and earth— to transform the stuff of nature into delicious things to eat and drink. Apprenticing himself to a succession of culinary masters, Pollan learns how to grill with fire, cook with liquid, bake bread, and ferment everything from cheese to beer. In the course of his journey, he discovers that the cook occupies a special place in the world, standing squarely between nature and culture. Both realms are transformed by cooking, and so, in the process, is the cook.

 
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Food Rules: Illustrated Edition

An Eater's Manual

Michael Pollan’s Food Rules began with his hunch that the wisdom of our grandparents might have more helpful things to say about how to eat well than the recommendations of science or industry or government. The result was a slim volume of food wisdom that has forever changed how we think about food. Now in a new edition illustrated by artist Maira Kalman, and expanded with a new introduction and nineteen additional food rules, this hardcover volume marks an advance in the national dialogue that Food Rules inspired.

 
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Food Rules

An Eater's Manual

Eating doesn’t have to be so complicated. In this age of ever-more elaborate diets and conflicting health advice, Food Rules brings a welcome simplicity to our daily decisions about food. Written with the clarity, concision and wit that has become bestselling author Michael Pollan’s trademark, this indispensable handbook lays out a set of straightforward, memorable rules for eating wisely, one per page accompanied by a concise explanation.

 
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In Defense of Food

An Eater's Manifesto

Food. There’s plenty of it around, and we all love to eat it. So why should anyone need to defend it? Because most of what we’re consuming today is not food, and how we’re consuming it — in the car, in front of the TV, and increasingly alone — is not really eating. Instead of food, we’re consuming “edible foodlike substances” — no longer the products of nature but of food science. The result is what Michael Pollan calls the American paradox: The more we worry about nutrition, the less healthy we seem to become.

 
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The Omnivore’s Dilemma

A Natural History of Four Meals

What should we have for dinner? The question has confronted us since man discovered fire, but according to Michael Pollan, how we answer it today, at the dawn of the twenty-first century, may well determine our very survival as a species. The omnivore’s dilemma has returned with a vengeance, as the cornucopia of the modern American supermarket and fast-food outlet confronts us with a bewildering and treacherous food landscape. What’s at stake in our eating choices is not only our own and our children’s health, but the health of the environment that sustains life on earth.

 
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The Omnivore’s Dilemma: Young Readers Edition

The Secrets Behind What You Eat

“What’s for dinner?” seemed like a simple question—until Michael Pollan delved behind the scenes. From fast food and big organic to small farms and old-fashioned hunting and gathering, this young readers’ adaptation of Pollan’s famous food-chain exploration encourages kids to consider the personal and global health implications of their food choices. In a smart, compelling format with updated facts, plenty of photos, graphs, and visuals, The Omnivore’s Dilemma serves up a bold message to the generation that needs it most: It’s time to take charge of our national eating habits—and it starts with you.

 
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The Botany of Desire

A Plant's-Eye View of the World

In The Botany of Desire, Michael Pollan ingeniously demonstrates how people and domesticated plants have formed reciprocal relationships similar to that of honeybees and flowers. He masterfully links four fundamental human desires—sweetness, beauty, intoxication, and control—with the plants that satisfy them: the apple, the tulip, marijuana, and the potato. In telling the stories of four familiar species, Pollan illustrates how the plants have evolved to satisfy humankind’s most basic yearnings. And just as we’ve benefited from these plants, we have also done well by them. So who is really domesticating whom?

 
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A Place of My Own

The Architecture of Daydreams

“A room of one’s own: is there anybody who hasn’t at one time or another wished for such a place, hasn’t turned those soft words over until they’d assumed a habitable shape?” In A Place of My Own, Michael Pollan turns his sharp insight to the craft of building, as he recounts the process of designing and constructing a small one-room structure on his rural Connecticut property—a place in which he hoped to read, write and daydream, built with his two own unhandy hands.

 
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Second Nature

A Gardener's Education

Chosen by the American Horticultural Society as one of the seventy-five greatest books ever written about gardening, Second Nature has become a manifesto for rethinking our relationship with nature. With chapters ranging from a reconsideration of the Great American Lawn and a dispatch from one man’s war with a woodchuck to reflections on the sexual politics of roses, Pollan captures the rhythms of our everyday engagement with the outdoors in all its glory and exasperation