Ready, Set, Grill! At The Payson Public Library

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Now that we've got that last chilly weather cell out of our systems (it happens every year and we still act surprised), it's about time to start having visions of sun tea and lounge chairs on the porch for the next 150 days of atmospheric evening bliss.

The Payson Public Library has a sturdy collection of books that will come in handy for shaping up the back yard, building a new deck and grilling up enough grub to feed you, your kids, your neighbors, and your neighbors' kids! That's a whole lot of food; and where there's food, fun is sure to follow!

Here they are: seven grilling guides (one for every day of the week and in no particular order) that I love for the few words it takes to introduce each one:

  • Let the Flames Begin, Chris Schlesinger & John Willoughby -- Cooking your food can be as much fun as eating it. The surest route to that backyard nirvana is to use the real thing -- live fire. W.W. Norton & Company, Publisher
  • Barbecue Nation, Fred Thompson -- Cris-crossing this country from Richmond, Va. to Eureka, Calif. Thompson has collected 350 recipes that are going to turn you into a master (or mistress) of the grill. Try Skip Skipworth's Santa Maria Barbecue and Sharon Benton's Simply Wonderful Grilled Shrimp Wrapped in Basil and Prosciutto. The Taunton Press, Publisher
  • The Big Book of Outdoor Cooking and Entertaining, Cheryl and Bill Jamison -- With this gigantic, colossal, humongous and comprehensive guide, you'll be the life of your own party. Bursting with more than 850 recipes and hundreds of tips and how-tos for grilling, barbecuing, smoking, rotisserie roasting, planking, big-pot frying, and boiling, it's not just the last word on outdoor cooking. It's the biggest. William Morrow, Publisher
  • Sandra Lee Semi-Homemade Grilling, Sandra Lee -- Featuring 70 percent ready-made ingredients and 30 percent fresh foods, Sandra's easy, innovative dishes will inspire you to fire up the grill year-round. Meredith Books, Publisher
  • The Quick Grill Artist, Norman Kolpas --Cooking is believing when dishes like Cuban Steaks with Garlic-Citrus Marinade and Moroccan Swordfish Kabobs can find their way to the table in 45 minutes or less. Clarkson Potter, Publisher
  • Bobby Flay's Boy Gets Grill, Bobby Flay with Julia Moskin -- The question isn't "Can I grill this?" but "Is there any reason not to grill this?" Usually the answer is "Go ahead and try it!" In this book, Bobby gets more and more out of the grill on a rooftop in Queens overlooking the Manhattan skyline, encouraging everyone to think big, have fun, and get their hands dirty. Scribner, Publisher
  • The Italian Grill, Micol Negrin -- Zucchini Ribbons with Dill and Slivered Almonds -- page 114. Cook's Note: "Watery vegetables like zucchini prefer intense heat. The goal is to ensure they don't steam on the grill and become even more water-logged." With the clear, reliable recipes that Negrin is known for, The Italian Grill captures the warmth of Italian entertaining at its casual best. Cooking outdoors will never be the same. Clarkson Potter, Publisher

And now, from the desk of Emily Arnold, Teen Book Reviewer

Prince Caspian by C.S. Lewis

Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy Pevensie, the heroes of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, are back once again in a story that is as thrilling, or perhaps more so, than their first adventure.

In Prince Caspian, the four children are suddenly pulled by magic back into Narnia to help save the lands yet again.

This time, they have been summoned by the rightful heir to the Narnian throne -- Prince Caspian. But Caspian's uncle, the evil King Miraz, refuses to give up the throne.

Caspian has rallied the help of all the "Old Narnians" -- talking beasts and magical beings that were the rightful natives of Narnia until King Miraz of Telmar took over.

Despite the fact that he is a Telmarine himself, Caspian loves the Old Narnia and longs for it to be restored, but he is fighting a losing battle against Miraz.

Desperate for aid, he blows Susan's magic horn from the days when she and her siblings had ruled at Cair Paravel. The magic works, and the four children are transported back to Narnia. But they arrive on a strange, wooded island that they have never seen before, occupied by a large ruin of some great building.

As night falls, they realize that the island was once where the great castle of Cair Paravel stood, and where they had once reigned as great kings and queens.

Why is it now a ruin? Has it been hundreds of years since they had left Narnia? And will they get to Caspian in time to save Narnia? You'll have to read the book to find out!

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