Twain's Feast Reading and Book-Signing Tonight

Sorry for the late notice on this, but if you've ever wondered how the diet of 19th-century America -- or, specifically, of famed author Mark Twain -- differed from contemporary cuisine, then visit Pudd'nhead Books in Webster Groves (37 South Old Orchard Avenue; 314-918-1069) at 7 p.m. this evening, July 12. Author Andrew Beahrs will read from and sign copies of Twain's Feast: Searching for America Lost Foods in the Footsteps of Samuel Clemens.

For more info on Twain's Feast, read this article by Sarah DiGregorio from our sister paper, the Village Voice. Here is an excerpt of her review:
It makes for a rollicking story. But also a sad one, as the American table lost much of what was regionally distinctive about it over the course of Twain's lifetime. Railroads suddenly linked the country end-to-end, and the invention of ice cars meant that, for the first time, food could be shipped long distances. In the beginning of Twain's life, ingredients were, by necessity, local and seasonal, and he relished a good roast prairie hen. By the end, those birds were being shipped from the Midwest to feed voracious appetites on both coasts, and their popularity was pretty much the death of them.