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197 × 120 × 15 mm
136 pages
54 illustrations, 36 in colour
01 Sep 2011

Apple A Global History Erika Janik

Gravenstein, Coe’s Golden Drop, Cox’s Orange Pippin: the names sound like something from Tolkien or the ingredients of a magic potion. But as befits their magical appellations, apples have transfixed and beguiled humans for thousands of years.

Erika Janik explores the importance of a fruit, born in the mountains of Kazakhstan, which has became a favourite almost everywhere. Apples have played their part in starting the Trojan War, the discovery of gravity and the settling of America, and you can even use them to predict the future. Apples also make for good drinking, and Janik relates the history of cider in Europe and America. From the Garden of Eden and the wicked queen’s apple in the story of Snow White to Johnny Appleseed and the Apple computer, apples have been a universal source of sustenance, health and legend from ancient times to the present. Food and history lovers will devour this surprising history of one of the world’s most loved and prolific fruits.

‘a fascinating story of the apples trip from its beginning millions of years ago in what is now Kazakhstan to worldwide importance’ — OregonLive.com

‘In smoothly written prose, Janik relates the voyage of the apple from mountainside to ubiquity. First carried by travelers across the Silk Road, the apple was a treasure brought to all corners of the world by conquerors and invaders. The history of human desire is told through the shining apple.’ — In Mamas Kitchen.com

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Erika Janik is a freelance writer and a producer at Wisconsin Public Radio. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, including Midwest Living, Wisconsin Trails and Wisconsin Magazine of History and Mental Floss. She’s also the author of A Short History of Wisconsin (2010), Odd Wisconsin (2007) and Madison: A History of a Model City (2010).


1. From Almaty to America
2. Food of Legend
3. Cider
4. Wholesome Apple
5. Global Apple

Picking the Perfect Apple
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Websites and Associations
Photo Acknowledgements