I just discovered Scribd, the world’s largest online library with a collection of more than 100,000 e-books in all sorts of genres, including new releases and best-sellers. Unlike an e-book reader, which you purchase separately before having to continually buy individual e-books, Scribd has a monthly subscription service that allows you to read unlimited e-books in its cyber vault when you’re logged in. For those who like to absorb written information quickly and in copious quantities, Scribd provides unbeatable value.
What I like most about Scribd is the nearly 1,000 titles in its Cookbooks & Food category, a cornucopia of culinary content that’s bound to inspire anyone with an interest in gastronomy — especially those who want to become more hands-on in the kitchen. While there are epicurean adventures like Bill Buford’s Heat and Anthony Bourdain’s newest novel, Medium Raw, to shed light into different realms of the restaurant and food-production worlds, Scribd is even more loaded with books providing tutelage, tactics, and recipes covering cuisines from every corner of the globe.
It’s hard to hate on brick-and-mortar ‘braries and their free books, but Scribd has a clear advantage over them when it comes to scoring fresh material. It also keeps you from worrying about wait-lists because someone else snagged the last copy of the book you wanted, which is the worst.
The fact that you’re not limited in the amount of books you can access is especially sweet for wannabe chefs since they’re free to pick and choose their own culinary curriculum. Voracious page-flippers can jump from text to text to pick up expert techniques from famous chefs like Mario Batali, Emeril Lagasse, and David Chang, specific styles of cooking (everything from carnivorous creations made on charcoal grills to dumplings, donuts, and guides on developing your own vegan, vegetarian, and raw food feasts), or anything else they crave.
If you’re looking for an exciting holiday surprise for your favorite food lovers (or yourself), Scribd is offering customizable gift subscriptions, each accompanied by a literature-themed e-card that’s delivered directly to your recipient’s inbox. To personalize your present, you can choose from eight classic book covers or a quotation from a famous author, such as Jane Austen, Mark Twain, or Charles Dickens, to adorn your e-card. Prices start at $10 for one month, and you can also score three months for $25, six months for $50, and a year for $100.
For more information, check out scribd.com, and I hope you have a festive and full-bellied holiday season!
Erik Mathes is a chef, wordsmith, and Chief Feaster @ Feasts of Fury, where he inspires readers to seek out, soak up and savor extraordinary eating experiences with his raging recipes and by showcasing other passionate epicureans’ stories. Join Erik and his loyal Feasters at http://feastsoffury.com and on Twitter @feastsoffury in addition to The Daily Meal.