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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, April 26, 2002

Greek cooking wiz set for book-signing

Vefa Alexiadou, widely known as the "Julia Child of Greece," is in Hawai'i visiting friends after attending the International Association of Cooking Professionals' conference in San Diego last week. She will briefly sign books at 2 p.m. Sunday at Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral, Chirgotis Hall, 930 Lunalilo St.

In Greece, Alexiadou is an industry: She has a TV show, a franchised kitchen shop enterprise and her own publishing company. Her groundbreaking effort to gather and standardize recipes from her homeland's rural cooks was shaped in part by time she spent in the United States, where, studying nutrition, she learned to appreciate Greece's healthful diet and lifestyle.

Kent Keith to appear on 'Today' show

More good news for Honolulu's Kent Keith: Not only has his book, "The Paradoxical Commandments" been the subject of stories in print media around the country and abroad, but he'll be interviewed on NBC's "Today" show Monday morning. PenguinPutnam, which bought the U.S rights to the book, will publish a new edition then and foreign rights have been sold in 20 countries and counting. It's the first stop on a six-week book tour that will take him away from his job as vice president for development and communications at the YMCA of Honolulu.

The book, based on a set of principles that Keith first drafted when he was 19, was originally brought out by Maui's InnerOcean Publishing. It's called the "Paradoxical Commandments" because it contains truths that seem contradictory at first, such as: "People are illogical, unreasonable and self-centered. Love them anyway."

Check it out: Kaua'i teacher is author, too

Laura Check's story is the kind that uplifts hopeful writers: On New Year's Day 2000, the Kaua'i preschool teacher resolved to write a children's crafts book. She gave herself a deadline of March 2001, researched to be sure no one had done a similar book, picked likely publishers and sent off a sample. One week later, to her shock, the phone rang and it was publisher Jack Williamson offering to bring out "Little Hands Paper Plate Crafts, Creative Art Fun for 3 to 7 Year Olds" (Williamson Publishing, paper, $12.95).

That book was recommended by the Parents Choice Awards Committee, made up of parents, teachers, artists and others who judge quality in children's products. Now Check's second book, "The Kids Guide to Making Scrapbooks and Photo Albums" (Williamson Publishing, paper, $12.95), released in December, has been similarly honored and Check is at work on a third manuscript. Check, 43, her husband, Tom, and their three children have lived in Ha'ena since 1978.

— Wanda A. Adams, assistant features editor