Crawler Pie

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CrawlerPie

Ginger and honey margarita pie with a saltine crust, inspired by Annihilation, by Jeff VanderMeer

I was irrationally afraid of everything short of my own shadow as a kid. This still holds true in some ways; I prefer subtlety to gore and sensationalism doesn’t play with me. But somewhere along the way I peeked out from between my fingers and realized that I could learn the narrative patterns of grotesque stories. I realized that by arming myself with knowledge things became less scary (like allowing my eyes to adjust to the dark) and I found that familiar problems seem intriguing in the light of the uncanny.

So I consider myself pretty adept at predicting where a story is headed. With that in mind, I want to tell you that Jeff VanderMeer’s Annihilation is utterly unpredictable and kept me awake at night. Unable to put it down at first, and unable to sleep once I did, it sent ice down my spine on more than one occasion.

Caddy Compson’s Black Bottom Pie

Recipes

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Chocolate ganache under a layer of mint julep chess and fresh whipped cream, inspired by The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner.

For me (and probably for many others as well) Faulkner is an extremely difficult writer to grapple with. He’s thoughtful, dramatic, and his prose is gloriously tangled. He’s also verbose as hell. Man’s got paragraphs for days; they just go on for pages and pages at a time. Reading Faulkner, to me, feels like swimming at the height of summer, when the water is thick and salty and warm; you dive in and when you finally resurface you feel like you haven’t had a clear, clean breath in years. It’s heavy stuff, which is also what makes it extremely rewarding to read.