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Vanderbilt Libraries host inaugural Edible Books Festival

by Apr. 4, 2018, 8:49 AM

The entry "Of Mousse and Men" won Most Appetizing at the first Edible Books Festival hosted by Vanderbilt Libraries April 2. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
The entry “Of Mousse and Men” won Most Appetizing at the first Edible Books Festival hosted by Vanderbilt Libraries April 2. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)

The delightful worlds of food and books came together on the Vanderbilt campus April 2 for the Vanderbilt Libraries‘ first Edible Books Festival.

Faculty, students and staff—several working in teams— submitted 46 entries that were made from anything that can be eaten, including cake, bread, crackers, gelatin, fruit, vegetables, candy and more—as long as it could be displayed for a few hours without melting or spoiling.

Participants let their imaginations run free to create edible works of art inspired by a favorite book or author. The entries were then displayed at the Vanderbilt Central Library Community Room.

Edible Books Festival judges (l-r) Kent Olive, Sallie Swor and Alice Randall. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
Edible Books Festival judges (l-r) Kent Oliver, Sallie Swor and Alice Randall. (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)

Judging the entries were Alice Randall, Vanderbilt writer-in-residence and co-author of Soul Food Love; Kent Oliver, director of the Nashville Public Library; and Sallie Swor, a Nashville food blogger and the author of You’re Grown – Now You Can Throw a Party. They noted that theirs was a difficult job given the excellence of so many entries.

Funniest/Punniest category winner "Farewell to Arms." (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
Funniest/Punniest category winner “Farewell to Arms.” (Steve Green/Vanderbilt)
  • Most Creative: Give a Mouse a Cookie
  • Best Depiction of a Classic: Lard of the Flies (Lord of the Flies)
  • Best Depiction of a Children’s Book: Hobbiton
  • Best Nashville or Southern Theme: Moonpie Sonata
  • Best Team Entry: Alligator 
  • Funniest/Punniest: Farewell to Arms
  • Most Appetizing: Of Mousse and Men (Of Mice and Men)
  • Judges’ Choice: Hornbook
  • People’s Choice: The Smallest One Was Madeleine

Following the judges’ remarks, everyone was invited to “eat the books.”

University Librarian Valerie Hotchkiss, who spearheaded the festive event and has been involved in previous ones, said she’s looking forward to hosting an even bigger edible book festival next year.

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