August: Read, Drink, Listen


So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson is a fascinating and, at times, horrifying look at the ways people can be publicly shamed on social media, leading to overnight fame or infamy. Ronson has spent the past few years studying public shaming and interviewing a wide range of both shamers and shamed. His findings are engrossing and thought-provoking and readers of this book will have a hard time engaging in social media with careless abandon. Available at Excelsior Bay Books. —Raela Schoenherr

Raela Schoenherr is a fiction acquisitions editor at a Minnesota publishing company and enjoys reading whenever and however possible. She also loves to chat books and writing on Twitter at @raelaschoenherr.


I’m going to let everyone in on the secret to wine education: Drink wine. It’s that easy. There are two rules for drinking wine. No. 1: Drink what you like—it’s your mouth! Someone can tell you how special, elite or expensive a bottle is, but if you don’t like it, you don’t like it. No. 2: Try new things. Even if you say, “I don’t like Chardonnay,” I bet you haven’t tried all the Chardonnays. Chances are you’ll find one you like. One of my favorite sayings is, “Travel the world of wine and your corkscrew is your passport.” Here are some wines to test: Try El Jamon Tempranillo from Spain ($10), Korta Katarina Rosé from Croatia (around $15) or Chapoutier Blanc (around $15). —John Farrell III

John Farrell III is the vice president of sales and merchandising for Haskell’s. His family business has been locally owned and operated since 1934.


Crossover is king, and the “Chicken Fried” Zac Brown Band is clearly aiming for radio domination across all frequencies with their fourth album, Jekyll + Hyde. It’s working—the boys have already nailed a No. 1 on both country and mainstream rock charts (the latter with Soundgarden’s Chris Cornell in tow), and it wouldn’t be shocking to see the Mumford-esque “Tomorrow Never Comes” crack the pop realm. The record is a summer-soaked listen, but you have to wonder if the band would’ve been better off choosing either Jekyll or Hyde instead of stitching together a Frankenstein’s monster of genres. Available at Barnes and Noble. —Alex Skjong

Alex Skjong has written for a number of publications in the Twin Cities, Chicago and Atlanta. He is a music lover first and an unreasonably tall human being second.