You either cook because you love it or because you have to: either way, cookbooks are extremely useful, and your local library is an excellent source of these, from staid classics to the downright weird.

In the young adult area, Sam Stern, a sort of YA Jamie Oliver ably helped by his mum, has a bunch of cookbooks with (he assures us) recipes that teenagers will like. His latest is Sam Stern’s Eat Vegatarian, which covers all possible meals including a fab baking section and a drinks section (I prefer my drinks vegetarian myself for sure).

On the subject of baking and as far as downright weird goes, you can’t go wrong with A Zombie Ate My Cupcake – see Kerry’s post about this gem on the WCL news blog here (which inspired this post, ta). If you’re wanting to impress people with your skills this book looks like a one stop shop, from “Sweenie Todd’s Surprise” (what? meat pies?) through Day of the Dead skulls to zombie hands: learn how to make fiddly ghoulish decorations. Totally worth it.

The next time you’re in the library, wander past the recipe books (641.5) and surprise your cookery victims.