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In his classic A Geography of Oysters, Rowan Jacobsen forever changed the way America talks about its best bivalve. Now he does the same for our favorite fruit, showing us that there is indeed life beyond Red Delicious-and even Honeycrisp. While supermarkets limit their offerings to a few waxy options, apple trees with lives spanning human generations are producing charact In his classic A Geography of Oysters, Rowan Jacobsen forever changed the way America talks about its best bivalve. Now he does the same for our favorite fruit, showing us that there is indeed life beyond Red Delicious-and even Honeycrisp. While supermarkets limit their offerings to a few waxy options, apple trees with lives spanning human generations are producing characterful varieties-and now they are in the midst of a rediscovery. From heirlooms to new designer breeds, a delicious diversity of apples is out there for the eating. Apples have strong personalities, ranging from crabby to wholesome. The Black Oxford apple is actually purple, and looks like a plum. The Knobbed Russet looks like the love child of a toad and a potato. (But don't be fooled by its looks.) The D'Arcy Spice leaves a hint of allspice on the tongue. Cut Hidden Rose open and its inner secret is revealed. With more than 150 art-quality color photographs, Apples of Uncommon Character shows us the fruit in all its glory. Jacobsen collected specimens both common and rare from all over North America, selecting 120 to feature, including the best varieties for eating, baking, and hard-cider making. Each is accompanied by a photograph, history, lore, and a list of characteristics. The book also includes 20 recipes, savory and sweet, resources for buying and growing, and a guide to the best apple festivals. It's a must-have for every foodie.


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In his classic A Geography of Oysters, Rowan Jacobsen forever changed the way America talks about its best bivalve. Now he does the same for our favorite fruit, showing us that there is indeed life beyond Red Delicious-and even Honeycrisp. While supermarkets limit their offerings to a few waxy options, apple trees with lives spanning human generations are producing charact In his classic A Geography of Oysters, Rowan Jacobsen forever changed the way America talks about its best bivalve. Now he does the same for our favorite fruit, showing us that there is indeed life beyond Red Delicious-and even Honeycrisp. While supermarkets limit their offerings to a few waxy options, apple trees with lives spanning human generations are producing characterful varieties-and now they are in the midst of a rediscovery. From heirlooms to new designer breeds, a delicious diversity of apples is out there for the eating. Apples have strong personalities, ranging from crabby to wholesome. The Black Oxford apple is actually purple, and looks like a plum. The Knobbed Russet looks like the love child of a toad and a potato. (But don't be fooled by its looks.) The D'Arcy Spice leaves a hint of allspice on the tongue. Cut Hidden Rose open and its inner secret is revealed. With more than 150 art-quality color photographs, Apples of Uncommon Character shows us the fruit in all its glory. Jacobsen collected specimens both common and rare from all over North America, selecting 120 to feature, including the best varieties for eating, baking, and hard-cider making. Each is accompanied by a photograph, history, lore, and a list of characteristics. The book also includes 20 recipes, savory and sweet, resources for buying and growing, and a guide to the best apple festivals. It's a must-have for every foodie.

30 review for Apples of Uncommon Character: Heirlooms, Modern Classics, and Little-Known Wonders

  1. 4 out of 5

    Orsolya

    I am utterly obsessed and fascinated with apples. You will find me in orchards apple-picking, buying pounds and pounds of the fruit to single-handedly consume, and a smile will be fixed on my face by the various varieties available in stores during the four seasons. This isn’t just for the flavor but also for the genetic wonder (they aren’t as simple as you think!) and artistic beauty they encompass. James Beard Award-Winning author Rowan Jacobsen shares my passion beyond the standard Red Delici I am utterly obsessed and fascinated with apples. You will find me in orchards apple-picking, buying pounds and pounds of the fruit to single-handedly consume, and a smile will be fixed on my face by the various varieties available in stores during the four seasons. This isn’t just for the flavor but also for the genetic wonder (they aren’t as simple as you think!) and artistic beauty they encompass. James Beard Award-Winning author Rowan Jacobsen shares my passion beyond the standard Red Delicious and opens readers eyes (and palettes) to lesser-known apples in, “Apples of Uncommon Character: 123 Heirlooms, Modern Classics, and Little-Known Wonders”. Jacobsen’s “Apples of Uncommon Character” is a graphic-lover’s dream featuring glossy pages and high-resolution photos bound in a hard-cover coffee table book. Jacobsen aims to introduce rare apples (and some popular varieties) by dividing “Apples of Uncommon Character” based on the best usage for the respective apples (i.e. sauces, baking, in-hand eating). The text is a self-analysis and isn’t conclusive of all rare apples; and is rather more of a lay man’s introduction. The pages of “Apples of Uncommon Character” each feature am apple with an overview of stats such as origin, parent apples, season, flavor profile, etc; plus a bio of the apple’s discovery/life story. Jacobsen infuses this text with occasional personal stories and self-accredited terminology so readers aren’t bogged down by scientific or apple-expert jargon. If pure academia is sought, then “Apples of Uncommon Character” is not the place to look. The facts and background Jacobsen brings forth are truly compelling and presented in memorable ways. Readers will never view apples the same again and not only become better shoppers but be enticed to try new apples. It is recommended to take ample breaks while reading to truly have the material sink in. Otherwise, some of the text can and does binds together and becomes tedious. Missing from “Apples of Uncommon Character” are links or information on how /where to specifically find/order the featured apples on each page at the end of the description. This would have been both useful and a special treat (no pun intended). “Apples of Uncommon Character” is a tease for apple-lovers! One of the quietly-announced perks of “Apples of Uncommon Character” is Jacobsen’s inclusion of ‘fun facts’ of which apples are used for commercial products (such as Newton Pippin for Martinelli Sparkling Cider and York Imperial for Musselman’s Apple Sauce). The final two chapters of “Apples of Uncommon Character” truly grasp apple passion and zaniness by showcasing cider apples which will turn readers into ambitious cider makers and oddball apples which are nothing short of magical conversation-starters. Jacobsen wraps up his text with some apple recipes from sweet to savory. Rather than simply offer recipes, Jacobsen suggests apple varieties to use, flavor complements, cooking/baking techniques, etc; making for a more complex foodie experience. “Apples of Uncommon Character” is supplemented with a few links and ‘sources’ to apple sellers and cideries but not to the extent one would hope. Jacobsen also provides a glossary with definitions of terms used in the text. “Apples of Uncommon Character” is both a visual and informative piece for apple-lovers who will gain some insight into lesser-known apples while devouring a graphic feast. “Apples of Uncommon Character” will add to any coffee table’s stack and is suggested for all apple lovers.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Pamela Conley

    I loved this book. I horded it like a box of expensive chocolates reading it a few pages at a time. The pictures are beautiful and the descriptions of each apple read like poetry. This is a must read if you are an apple geek and if you aren't an apple geek read this book and you will become one. You will never look at an apple the same way again.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Mark

    Apples of Uncommon Character: 123 Heirlooms, Modern Classics, and Little-Known Wonders, by Rowan Jacobsen, 2014. This was a fun book to read! It tells some of the history of the apple, and of specific apple varieties, combined with gorgeous photographs of apples and orchards, and descriptions of varieties of this wonderful fruit. I mean, did you know, all you McIntosh apple-eaters, that every Mac you’ve eaten comes from a seedling that Canadian farmer John McIntosh decided to save rather that ro Apples of Uncommon Character: 123 Heirlooms, Modern Classics, and Little-Known Wonders, by Rowan Jacobsen, 2014. This was a fun book to read! It tells some of the history of the apple, and of specific apple varieties, combined with gorgeous photographs of apples and orchards, and descriptions of varieties of this wonderful fruit. I mean, did you know, all you McIntosh apple-eaters, that every Mac you’ve eaten comes from a seedling that Canadian farmer John McIntosh decided to save rather that root out, as he cleared a brushy area of his Ontario farm – in 1811! There are countless wonderful stories like that in this book. The fact that the apple genome is very rich and diversified, and that a seed that sprouts into a tree (a seedling) will produce a different apple than the tree the seed came from, means there is an incredible diversity of apples. The stories of the people who sought out and found some of the oldest American varieties – in some cases, finding the last tree of its kind and through grafting, saved it – are actually inspiring. This was a very good read.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Dean

    If you, like myself, have an interest in Pomology, then this is the book for you. A complete book on Apples in America and how they should be used in cooking. I would recommend this equally to a would-be orchard owner like myself as well as a cook who has an interest in using apples to their utmost in the kitchen. (Also me) At the core of this book is some solid history of this, but what I found a-peeling was the narrative where something that could be boring to most is instead engaging. The rati If you, like myself, have an interest in Pomology, then this is the book for you. A complete book on Apples in America and how they should be used in cooking. I would recommend this equally to a would-be orchard owner like myself as well as a cook who has an interest in using apples to their utmost in the kitchen. (Also me) At the core of this book is some solid history of this, but what I found a-peeling was the narrative where something that could be boring to most is instead engaging. The ratings of apples were well done and very good for those of us who are seeing new varieties of apple in the produce section of our supermarkets.

  5. 4 out of 5

    EmmyT

    100 Stars is Not Enough, Wonderful I'm overwhelmed at how much I loved this book. It contains fun readable history, science that's not too technical, hilarious opinions. I loved the facts about seeds, grafting, even Flower of Kent (the Isaac Newton apple). Understanding commercialization. I used to work in a Flavor Development Lab; the taste and texture descriptions are outstanding. Finally, it was so uplifting to read about treasures lost making a comeback due to artisan growers and other 'apple 100 Stars is Not Enough, Wonderful I'm overwhelmed at how much I loved this book. It contains fun readable history, science that's not too technical, hilarious opinions. I loved the facts about seeds, grafting, even Flower of Kent (the Isaac Newton apple). Understanding commercialization. I used to work in a Flavor Development Lab; the taste and texture descriptions are outstanding. Finally, it was so uplifting to read about treasures lost making a comeback due to artisan growers and other 'apple stalkers'.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Helen Dunn

    Most people who know me know that I LOVE apples. If you are like me, you should run to your nearest bookseller and pick up this book. I can't say that I have read every page yet but I've read a large chunk and I use it continually as a reference. I plan to seek out the many, many apples I have never heard of or tried that are listed here. The included photos are lovely, the descriptions vivid and completely on the nose as far as taste and character.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Phil

    Loved this book. Must get more apples! Must grow more apples someday. Learn to make cider? Yes! Let's add that to the list of things I could try when retired someday. Don't miss this book which was so funny in places, I laughed out loud.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Rose-Ellen

    In Rowan Jacobsen’s book, the reader is informed of each apple’s Origin, Appearance, Flavor, Texture, Season, Use, and Regions grown. As you turn page after page of gorgeous photos (styled by Clare Barboza) and rapturous prose, you start selecting favorites and wondering which orchards might offer these gems. Here’s a sampling from just a few of his apples. The descriptions are from his book: Pitmaston Pineapple - Appearance: "A smoothly conical, little golf ball of an apple. Its russet skin makes In Rowan Jacobsen’s book, the reader is informed of each apple’s Origin, Appearance, Flavor, Texture, Season, Use, and Regions grown. As you turn page after page of gorgeous photos (styled by Clare Barboza) and rapturous prose, you start selecting favorites and wondering which orchards might offer these gems. Here’s a sampling from just a few of his apples. The descriptions are from his book: Pitmaston Pineapple - Appearance: "A smoothly conical, little golf ball of an apple. Its russet skin makes dry-leaf noises when you rub it…" Roxbury Russet - Appearance: "The classic russet, green skin turning the color of oiled pine in the sun, covered in a sandpapery russet…" Flavor: "Yummy and strange…" Teaser: Read about the apple tree that ate Roger Williams, founder of Rhode Island. Tolman Sweet - Flavor: "Sweet and aromatic. Not a trace of acidity. The deliciously strange flavor has elements of Calvados, chanterelle ice cream, and a pear that fantasizes about being a pumpkin." Cox’s Orange Pippin - Use: "Cox would make a fine pie or sauce, but this would be like using the Mona Lisa as kindling." Winesap - Use: "Amazing in pies and crisps. Makes a mischievous cider with funky, herbaceous, almost saline qualities. Good dessert fruit once winter has taken the starch out of it." And, as a lifelong New Yorker, I couldn’t help but note that several goodies had their origins in my state: Golden Russet - Appearance: " …There are few sights prettier than rows of Golden Russets in the orchard, resembling an apricot sunrise… " Use: "This apple does everything better than most apples do anything." Macoun - Appearance: "The richest burgundy. A grove of ripe Macouns, covered in purple bloom, looks royal and luxurious…" Use: "Eat it standing under the tree. Swoon." Northern Spy - Flavor: "One of the great combinations of syrupy sweet and screamingly tart…" Use: "An apple that can do it all… A big, fresh Northern Spy will keep a sour-loving kid occupied for an hour.: Esopus Spitzenberg - Use: "This apple can do anything. Eat it fresh, make it into a pie, ferment it into an unforgettable cider." However, not everything in this book is Peaches and Cream. But even apples with negative reviews have interesting descriptions: Northwest Greening - Origin: Wisconsin, 1872 Texture: "Very coarse cells and dry, cardboard flesh make this apple unappealing fresh." He adds: "I suspect that this huge apple was often dried, since the cottony flesh is already halfway there. Worth a taste if only to remind yourself that preindustrial homesteaders endured crappy apples, too." Ben Davis - Origin: Kentucky, ~1800 Use: "Excellent for selling to people who have never tried one before. A passable baseball stand-in. good still-life model." Teaser: Read the story about the college agricultural professor who could identify any apple by taste alone, and how his students tried to stump him. Red Delicious - Origin: Iowa, 1881 Flavor: "Remarkably bland… the skin has a bitter arugula flavor." Use: "Makes a good logo." Sheepnose - Origin: Connecticut, late 1700s Flavor: "Jolly Rancher meets watermelon rind." Texture: "The very definition of mealy." Use: "Some people like them straight off the tree. Some people are weird." In the back part of the book are recipes featuring apples, and a Glossary. This includes Apple References of the past and present, and explains some apple terms. For instance, the little specks on an apple are actually pores, called lenticels. If you enjoy sampling new apples, this will put you on a quest.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Mike

    Like a bowl of fruit, this is a nice book to have flopped open on the kitchen table. You can absentmindedly flip through the gorgeous pictures, with each apple variety described with an encyclopedic entry near the photo, with headings describing the origin, appearance, flavor, texture, season, use, and region. Arranged so consistently, and with the apples grouped according to use ("Bakers and Saucers", "Keepers", etc), it's natural to want to compare them, flipping back and forth. They are all a Like a bowl of fruit, this is a nice book to have flopped open on the kitchen table. You can absentmindedly flip through the gorgeous pictures, with each apple variety described with an encyclopedic entry near the photo, with headings describing the origin, appearance, flavor, texture, season, use, and region. Arranged so consistently, and with the apples grouped according to use ("Bakers and Saucers", "Keepers", etc), it's natural to want to compare them, flipping back and forth. They are all apples, after all, with apple flavor, with apple texture, but each are described with a hyper-nuanced palette usually reserved for the sommelier: "A big blast of banana and licorice, some say coriander, balanced by a fine skein of acidity. Not terribly complicated, but awfully yummy" or "...a knockout combination of peachy tannins and chanterelle fruitiness". It would be a bit cloying if it weren't for the fact that there's some good wit hidden among these descriptions: "Don't eat fresh unless sucking on tea bags is your idea of fun" or "Excellent for selling to people who have never tried one before. A passable baseball stand-in." It's opinionated, but all in good fun, especially since it's the popular varieties that get picked on. Then there's the prose descriptions, (most are less than a page), which typically describe the heirloom's provenance: a little history, horticulture and economics, or if not, more detail about the taste, placed in context with other varieties. Here the sommelier-talk gives way to story telling. Then you realize, there's some good writing in this book, a light fluid prose that belies the intensive research. A two page spread on the Newtown Pippin, the Forrest Gump of apples, describes a story arc that carries it from the American revolution to the modern hip slow-foodies of NYC. Then there's the expose on how a terrible apple like the Red Delicious came to take over America. You start looking for the good articles, flipping from back to front and back again. Pardon the pun, but it's a bit like bobbing for apples: there's plenty of good ones. Obviously, this is a book for the aspiring apple geek, and that could be me, but unfortunately I fear that growing up in south Louisiana, I might as well be reading the Dungeons and Dragons Monster Manual, for most of these apples I'll never encounter, much less be able to grow. But I can dream, absentmindedly at my kitchen table, as I carve up a Fuji, the most exotic apple I could find, and read the review that reads like a back-handed compliment: "a gourmet jelly bean".

  10. 4 out of 5

    Phil

    This is a good book to read if you are interested in heirloom apples. The introduction provides a brief history of apple culture and how it spread in the U.S. The book itself is broken into six separate sections: summer apples (ones that ripen early), dessert apples (good to eat out of hand), bakers and saucers, keepers, cider fruit, and oddballs (don't fit in the other categories). It ends with a diverse collection of recipes. Each of the 142 entries provides the common name of the apple, any al This is a good book to read if you are interested in heirloom apples. The introduction provides a brief history of apple culture and how it spread in the U.S. The book itself is broken into six separate sections: summer apples (ones that ripen early), dessert apples (good to eat out of hand), bakers and saucers, keepers, cider fruit, and oddballs (don't fit in the other categories). It ends with a diverse collection of recipes. Each of the 142 entries provides the common name of the apple, any aliases, the origin, appearance, flavor, texture, season that it is available, use, and region where it can be found. There is usually some background on the apple itself as well. The anecdotes that Rowan Jacobsen uses can be entertaining, and every once in a while he will slip in a cultural reference. One point against him here is that his biases can show through (particularly against Red Delicious). After reading this book, I am inspired to find out what varieties are being grown locally. Jacobsen tends to focus on the varieties that are available in the north eastern U.S., though he does present apples found throughout the U.S., western Europe, and a few other areas.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    A truly delightful look at 123 varieties of apples, their strengths, their weaknesses, and their uses. This is a not boring recitation of information about apples. The author injects some humor and interest into all the descriptions. He also includes history and fun facts. For example, did you know that the character of Rambo by David Morrell was named after the Summer Rambo apple? That the apple that led Isaac Newton to ponder gravity was a Flower of Kent? Other fun comments about various varieti A truly delightful look at 123 varieties of apples, their strengths, their weaknesses, and their uses. This is a not boring recitation of information about apples. The author injects some humor and interest into all the descriptions. He also includes history and fun facts. For example, did you know that the character of Rambo by David Morrell was named after the Summer Rambo apple? That the apple that led Isaac Newton to ponder gravity was a Flower of Kent? Other fun comments about various varieties: Of the Blue Pearmain: "This is the apple Elrond would have tended in his backyard in Rivendell, and it would have been off-limits to any dwarf or hobbit." Of the Knobbed Russet (a very ugly apple): "Uses: Terrify your children." Of the Dabinett: "Use: Don't eat fresh, unless sucking on tea bags is your idea of fun." Of the Red Delicious: "Texture: Both good and bad examples have that horrible leathery skin that likes to slide between your teeth and lacerate your gums....Use: Makes a great logo." Definitely recommended for foodies and lovers of apples.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Mark Buchignani

    Rowan Jacobsen, author of numerous food volumes and self-described apple stalker, wonderfully describes a swath of varieties that have achieved notoriety in the last three hundred years, focusing on origins, offering first-tree vignettes when possible, and discussing trends in buying and breeding. Red! No, more red! No, deeper red! His entertaining, energetic prose is as sweet and tart as the Northern Spy and will serve to awaken the apple lover in anyone who reads the book, whether from cover t Rowan Jacobsen, author of numerous food volumes and self-described apple stalker, wonderfully describes a swath of varieties that have achieved notoriety in the last three hundred years, focusing on origins, offering first-tree vignettes when possible, and discussing trends in buying and breeding. Red! No, more red! No, deeper red! His entertaining, energetic prose is as sweet and tart as the Northern Spy and will serve to awaken the apple lover in anyone who reads the book, whether from cover to cover or by idly leafing. He breaks the crop into five categories: dessert apples (pick ‘em and eat ‘em); bakers and saucers (best when cooked); keepers (improve with age, months of storage); cider fruit (age-old alcohol, now enjoying a revival); and oddballs (hey, dad, this one looks funny!); and he adds a handful of recipes (of course) – something for every cultivar of apple fan. Fun and interesting for the budding pomologist or for anyone who just loves to eat.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I'm what I believe the author referred to as an "apple geek." Growing up, I didn't like apples...well, I didn't like GROCERY STORE apples. I liked the ones from the old tree at my grandparents' just fine. Then, as an adult, I discovered the wonderful world of heirloom apples and the new and exciting apples coming from the breeding programs at the universities. I love russet apples in particular, but also the great variety of colors, textures, and flavors of apples from the dedicated small orchar I'm what I believe the author referred to as an "apple geek." Growing up, I didn't like apples...well, I didn't like GROCERY STORE apples. I liked the ones from the old tree at my grandparents' just fine. Then, as an adult, I discovered the wonderful world of heirloom apples and the new and exciting apples coming from the breeding programs at the universities. I love russet apples in particular, but also the great variety of colors, textures, and flavors of apples from the dedicated small orchardists who grow the more unusual apples. For a while, we lived in the country and even had a few apple trees of our own (Esopus Spitzenburg and Golden Russet!). Reading the descriptions in this book, although my palate is not as refined as the author's, I could clearly recall eating some of the apples described. Beautifully illustrated, great stories about the apples' origins.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Pam

    A gorgeous book with wonderful photographs of "uncommon" apple varieties which is more of a book for apple addicted people then serious cooks or gardeners. Each apple featured has a write up on its history, flavor, and best applications for eating. The end of the book includes just a few recipes. What the book doesn't have for cooks is the common varieties found at the grocery and many farm stands, as a result it can't be considered a comprehensive guide to cooking with apples. Information for g A gorgeous book with wonderful photographs of "uncommon" apple varieties which is more of a book for apple addicted people then serious cooks or gardeners. Each apple featured has a write up on its history, flavor, and best applications for eating. The end of the book includes just a few recipes. What the book doesn't have for cooks is the common varieties found at the grocery and many farm stands, as a result it can't be considered a comprehensive guide to cooking with apples. Information for gardeners is almost completely lacking, no information on height, disease resistance, pollination partners, sources for purchase. I think it is a real shame that a little more work would have yielded a great encyclopedia of apples.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Trish

    This book has very good photographs and descriptions of many apple cultivars. About the only thing I didn't care for was the author's attitude about the Granny Smith apple, which happens to be a favorite. Other than that, this is an excellent book for apple enthusiasts. It includes apples you find in the grocery store (Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Gala, Fuji, etc.), as well as a great number of apples you would find in orchards across the country. It has a great description of Black Twig, a This book has very good photographs and descriptions of many apple cultivars. About the only thing I didn't care for was the author's attitude about the Granny Smith apple, which happens to be a favorite. Other than that, this is an excellent book for apple enthusiasts. It includes apples you find in the grocery store (Red Delicious, Golden Delicious, Gala, Fuji, etc.), as well as a great number of apples you would find in orchards across the country. It has a great description of Black Twig, a particular apple that has attracted my interest. This book even includes a description of Redfield, a little known red-fleshed apple.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Jon

    The author knows so much about apples that it amazed me. He got me wanting to track down some of these uncommon varieties so I can taste them for myself. There are 123 apple described and he used some creative wording to describe them such as "a bizzare fiddlehead finish." Hats off to the great photographs supplied by Clare Barboza who incorporated some interesting antiques and unlike almost all other photographers did not avoid shooting blemished fruit. That was a sort of warts and all approach. The author knows so much about apples that it amazed me. He got me wanting to track down some of these uncommon varieties so I can taste them for myself. There are 123 apple described and he used some creative wording to describe them such as "a bizzare fiddlehead finish." Hats off to the great photographs supplied by Clare Barboza who incorporated some interesting antiques and unlike almost all other photographers did not avoid shooting blemished fruit. That was a sort of warts and all approach. I enjoyed the book.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Jeanne

    What a wonderful book. I love apples and always lament that there are so few varieties available in the grocery store. This book covers the history of the apple, which I'd never known before! It has beautiful portraits of the 123 featured apples, their history and even recipes. The descriptions of each apple are sometimes over the top, but if I had to uniquely describe 123 apples, I'd probably go for over the top as well.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Monica Fastenau

    Read the full review here: http://newberyandbeyond.com/photograp... If you’ve ever refused to eat an apple because you thought it might be bland, one-note, or overly sweet, you need to explore the world of apples Jacobsen presents in Apples of Uncommon Character. This book features a collection of uncommon, often antique apples that I now want to eat immediately. Read the full review here: http://newberyandbeyond.com/photograp... If you’ve ever refused to eat an apple because you thought it might be bland, one-note, or overly sweet, you need to explore the world of apples Jacobsen presents in Apples of Uncommon Character. This book features a collection of uncommon, often antique apples that I now want to eat immediately.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Kathryn

    Filled will beautiful pictures of so many varieties of apples. The end of the book has 20 recipes, some I plan to try. Living in Wenatchee WA, the apple capital of the world, it was fun to learn where some of the many apples we grow here where they originated from. I loved this book and would definitely give it as a gift and/or I may ask for it for Christmas!

  20. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    A modern-day reference for heirloom apple varieties with gorgeous pictures and great write-ups. The book is well-researched and written, but also funny and fascinating. This will have you on the hunt for lesser known apple varieties and feasting on them. I have loads of apple books, but this one is one of my favourites.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Alex

    If you've ever wanted to learn more about apple varieties, but were worried a book about apples might be boring - look no further! This book is delightful. The author's passionate love (and passionate hatred) for different varieties is very amusing. I'd have to disagree with his disdain for the Honey Crisp, but what do I know. I don't know much about apples, I just know what I like.

  22. 4 out of 5

    John Brian Anderson

    Who knew? Learned so much about apples... history, cooking, eating, geography... The Hard Cider reemergence! Have about half a dozen prospects to add to the 4 apple varieties I have now, Northern Spy, Coxes Pippin, golden russet, Harrison... Wish I had more land. Got wind of this book from the Harvard Museum of Natural History's Glass Flower exhibit.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Fredrika

    this was lovely. More of a reference compilation, makes me want to hunt these bizarre apples down! The recipes at the back sound really good. Will be copying those down before returning it to the library.

  24. 4 out of 5

    wildct2003

    Fun reading about apples. Includes a historical introduction about apples in North America (U.S.) and describes in detail (flavor, parentage, visual characteristics, history, etc.) many different apple varieties.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Eric

    FANTASTIC. Beautiful book, with reviews of apples that read like record reviews (my wife's brilliant comment, there). Totally worth looking at if you like apples at all. REALLY cool book. Really into this.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    This is a delight. Delicious (and hilarious) descriptions of both uncommon and common varieties of apples. Rowan Jacobsen really has a way with words. And the recipes at the back are mouth-wateringly good.

  27. 4 out of 5

    Johanna Rupprecht

    This book is fascinating and surprisingly entertaining. I learned lots about the history and diversity of apples. Gorgeous photos, too. It's probably intended more as a coffee table book for browsing, but I read it right through.

  28. 4 out of 5

    Kylie Briggs

    If you need me I'll be looking for apple orchards to buy.... An excellent coffee table book Major complaint: reading was noticeably slowed down by having to constantly stop to google whether or not a particular breed would grow where I live.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Bunny McFoo

    I never in my life would have expected a book about apples to be one of the most engaging things I read all year, but well, there you go. Excellent, highly recommended, made me want to start an apple orchard or possibly move to New England and do nothing but bake pies all day long.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review, which I will gladly provide when I've had the time to finish reading it and formulate my thoughts. Stay tuned!

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