First let’s agree that brunch at Busboys and Poets is a delight.

That established, Brunch is Hell: How to Save the World by Throwing a Dinner Party (Little, Brown, and Co. $25.00), the newest book from hilarious hosts of The Dinner Party Download Brendan Francis Newman and Rico Gagliano, is certain to put “I will host more dinner parties” at the top of your 2018 New Year’s Resolution list. Why?

Because this book upholds the dinner party as Brendan and Rico put it “as the sanctuary of friendship” and do we need to explain why friendship and civility matter in our society these days? With ample scoops of both charm and snark, Brendan and Rico serve up research, recipes and steps needed to plan and enjoy your own successful dinner party. And they even give you the play lists and cheesy jokes to make it easy and fun even for the most reluctant host (the hippie joke is my favorite).

For fans of David Sedaris or Sarah Vowell, Brunch is Hell will be your new go to gift book to amuse your reading pals with the added benefit of possibly securing you more classy, snail mailed dinner party invitations! And if your hosts follow the Who to Invite advice provided in Brunch is Hell, your fellow dinner party guests probably won’t share all of your opinions on politics or your ideas for the best vacation spot or your dietary preferences – which is GOOD!

With that in mind, a caution to vegans, Brendan’s Stuffed Fried Olives on page 92 contain veal (eww Brendan! Veal = yuck), so feel free to skip the olives and go straight to page 94 for Rico’s Peperonata. (A note from the reviewer:  that was me practicing the art of the potentially controversial guest comment that sparks a quality dinner party conversation as encouraged by the authors. Remember as emphasized in the book, an added benefit of a true dinner party is that you are in the comfort of a private home with other adults you are interested in – you may voice opinions with gusto, demonstrate your new dance moves freely and laugh full throttle!)

The format of the book makes it a quick read and easy to reference. Simple lists, funny celebrity quotes and a “YES, anyone can pull off a dinner party” confidence throughout will inspire readers to send the invites, plan the menu and clean the bathroom – it’s dinner party time!

And hey, if you’re waiting in line for brunch at Busboys the morning after your dinner party let’s talk about the book some more as I’d love to hear all the stories from your amazing dinner party!


This review was provided courtesy of Shirlington Busboys and Poets Bookseller Kenlynn Nelson. Be sure to catch Brendan and Rico at our upcoming event “Brunch is Hell with Busboys and Poets Books” on December 6 at 14th and V.

CrownMural WALL

A Reflective Minute: The Crown Act Mural Unveiling in Anacostia

Busboys and Poets is built, in part, on the premise of being a place where, “arts, politics and culture intentionally collide.” So there is no better place for Candice Taylor’s Crown Act Mural to be displayed than on the side of a wall of Busboys and Poets in Anacostia. The 2019 Crown Act was created … Continued

MIABMORE

Busboys and Poets – Baltimore

You may have noticed the new mural being installed on the windows of the new Busboys and Poets location Charles Village – 3224 St Paul Street Baltimore, MD This mural is titled: The Busboy and the Poet by Mia Duvall The name Busboys and Poets refers to American poet Langston Hughes, who worked as a … Continued

Screen Shot 2021 03 15 at 6.02.09 PM

Everest Base Camp #20

FINAL POSTING FOR EVEREST BASE CAMP TRAVEL LOG. Thank you for staying with me and for your beautiful comments. Hope to see at least some of you soon. Why I am here. It is 7:15 am. Our flight out of Lukla is at 8. I savor a yak cheese omelette and my last Himalayan coffee. … Continued

AndyShallal PeaceandStruggle

The Nepal Chronicles #1

March 2, 2021… For the next couple of weeks I will be blogging on Facebook about a trip that I have been planning the day I turned 65, which was about a year ago. I am heading to Everest Base Camp and hoping to celebrate my 66th there. I got the all clear from my … Continued

covid 19 banner2 920x460

Community Resources for COVID-19

Here are some resources that you may be able to take advantage of: Find COVID-19 vaccine locations near you Back To School After Lockdown – Tips From An NHS Psychologist One Fair Wage – Emergency Funding for Tipped Employees/Service WorkersRWCF- Restaurant Workers COVID-19 Crisis Relief Fund USBG- COVID-19 Relief Grants for Bartenders Restaurant Opportunities Centers- United … Continued

angela signing

Watch Angela Davis in conversation with Amy Goodman

Last night a cappella group Sweet Honey in the Rock opened for a conversation with activist and scholar Angela Davis with Democracy Now!’s Amy Goodman at Busboys – 450K.  The private events room at 450K is named after Angela Davis and she signed a photo of herself on the mural created by our founder/CEO Andy … Continued

Travel Tile Photo Collage

Happy Birthday, Langston Hughes!

“Let America be America again.Let it be the dream it used to be.Let it be the pioneer on the plainSeeking a home where he himself is free. (America never was America to me.) Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed—Let it be that great strong land of loveWhere never kings connive nor tyrants schemeThat … Continued