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February 28, 2001

Regarding Charles Perry's article "Old Food, New Books" (Feb. 21), I would like to add to his list of recommended books Clifford Wright's "A Mediterranean Feast" (William Morrow and Co., $35). Wright's groundbreaking book, which won the 2000 James Beard Awards Cookbook of the Year and the 2000 James Beard Award for writing on food, breaks new ground as it looks at the evolution of the cuisines of the Mediterranean from a historical perspective that includes analyses of the effects of the Arab expansion, the rise of city states and the rise of capitalism, the impact of droughts and plagues on farming, and the discovery of the Americas. It is a must for anyone interested in the serious study of culinary history.

MARTHA ROSE SHULMAN Los Angeles

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