Read, Drink, Listen: May 2018

Annie Spence

Dear Fahrenheit 451: Love and Heartbreak in the Stacks is a delightful book of love letters and breakup notes to books. It’s written by librarian Annie Spence and serves as a humorous, highly entertaining ode to books and readers. Spence shares witty insights into the life of a public librarian throughout her letters, while providing engaging commentary on categories of books as well as specific or least favorites. Book lovers will absolutely enjoy this unique format of book talk. And anyone who picks up this quick read will find themselves with a nice long list of books to read next.  —Raela Schoenherr

Doorly’s rum

I have selected a wonderful rum as we transition to patio season. This is the perfect sipping rum, and in my opinion, it’s best enjoyed with just a couple of ice cubes. Barbados is known for great rum made from high-quality sugar cane instead of bulk-produced from molasses. Doorly’s has been around since 1908 and makes several bottlings. Their 12-year rum is aged in small American white oak casks, which gives the rum a rich, deep color and a nice hint of spice and vanilla. This is a full-bodied rum, perfect for sipping. (Check out Doorly’s five-year and eight-year bottlings, too.) $22.99. —Kevin Castellano

Fela Kuti

Fela Kuti was the voice of a turbulent nation, a controversial figure whose music was the sound of resistance and hope. The Fela Kuti Box Set #4, curated by Erykah Badu, is the fourth volume in a line that also featured compilations assembled by Questlove, Brian Eno and Ginger Baker. Kuti coined the term Afrobeat, a genre combining jazz, funk and West African influences. Listening to Kuti does require patience; most of his songs hover around the 15-minute mark. Each song might seem like an endless jam, but the nuances within the music are carefully crafted. Syncopated rhythms feature conga, shakers, handclaps and voices all intertwined. This is music you must truly feel.  —Sean Schultz