However fast the pace of life, carve out a small window of time to stop and immerse yourself in a good read. We share some of our favourites to enjoy over the coming months…

Brewed, A guide to the beer of New Zealand
Jules Van Costello $39.99

Gone are the days of swilling back a generic jug of beer – these days craft beer is appreciated just as much as a fine wine. In every corner of New Zealand, craft beer has evolved from the domain of hobbyists to serious business; walk into any reputable pub and you’ll be met with an impressive array of options, with many locally brewed.  This ‘designer’ collection is all the rage, from small rural towns to city slickers  and has led to a unique beer culture.

In this revised issue of Brewed, Wellington-based Jules Van Costello takes a look at 45 new breweries. Meet the quirky characters behind the brews, from loveable rogues to budding mad scientists. More than 160 commercially operating New Zealand breweries are profiled, and there are tasting notes for more than 450 beers – somebody clearly had a tough job!

Beautifully Real Food
Sam Murphy $35

If it didn’t say so on the front cover, you probably wouldn’t even realise that this book of foodie goodness is focused around meat-free recipes. Page after page of mouthwatering images and recipes leave you unaware that meat is even missing from the menu. It’s a refreshing and vibrant motivation to create new plates of nourishment for yourself and your family. South Island born Sam Murphy shares her food journey, and the discovery of learning to love and appreciate ingredients. She also manages to eliminate any fears that a vegan diet can be restrictive or boring; seasonal recipes bursting with flavour adorn every page. And there’s a generous chunk dedicated to sweets and treats. What’s not to love?

Apartment Living New Zealand
Catherine Foster $50

Whether you live in a sprawling farm cottage or you’ve embraced the tiny house movement, this gem of a book is sure to inspire you to make some changes to your surroundings – whatever they are. While the focus is very much on apartment living, it’s packed with inspiring design innovations and clever design solutions.
The diversity of apartment living in New Zealand will most likely amaze you; encompassing everything from modern, classic, converted and contemporary.
With New Zealanders embracing apartment living due to the housing squeeze, this book reveals that it’s an exciting lifestyle option. Well, I’m convinced anyway.

5 Ingredients Quick & Easy Food
Jamie Oliver $65

In these days of instant online gratification, a cookbook has to be something special to make it to the bookshelf. After decades of cooking, creating, and writing, Jamie Oliver still manages to keep it fresh.
Meeting the demands of today’s busy lifestyles, speed and efficiency are key in the 130-plus recipes within these pages. It’s gloriously straightforward too; as the name suggest, each recipe has just five ingredients. Meal times just got a whole lot easier. Now you can create delicious meals – fast, with minimal prep and no complicated ingredients or processes. The simple layout includes a visual column of five ingredients down the side of each page, cooking time, and nutritional information. This may be the easiest cooking you’ve ever done.

Chelsea Winter $50

Chelsea Winter has become a household name around New Zealand, with an impressive and engaged following of online fans. Her recipes are often replicated and shared, and are appreciated not only for their deliciousness, but for the fact they are achieveable. Chelsea has carved out a hugely successful career, continuing to inspire and motivate Kiwis of all ages to enjoy her straightforward home-style recipes. Her fifth cookbook Eat, is another soaring success; packed with powerful personality and with all the charm of Chelsea herself. That’s quite an achievement.