unexpected, and full of charm, the follow-up to Jessica Kerwin Jenkins’ Encyclopedia
of the Exquisite presents a miscellany of engaging stories, detailing the
intriguing customs, traditions, and guilty pleasures pursued throughout the
All the Time in the World takes its cue from an
iconic component of medieval life, the book of hours, which prescribed certain
readings and contemplations for certain parts of the day throughout the year.
Divided into more than seventy-five entries, All the Time in the World is
brimming with witty bons mots, interesting etymologies, and arresting anecdotes
encompassing an array of cultures and eras. Subjects covered include the
daylong ceremony of laying a royal Elizabethan tablecloth; the radicalization
of sartorial chic in 1890s Paris; Nostradamus’ belief in the aphrodisiac power
of jam; the sensuous practice of sniffing incense in fifteenth-century Japan;
the American fascination with flaming desserts; the short-lived artistic
discipline of “lumia,” or visual music; the evolution of coffee from a
religious ritual to a forbidden delight in the Middle East; Henriette d’Angeville’s
fearless and wine-fueled ascent of Mont Blanc; the elaborate treasure hunts
concocted by London’s Bright Young Things; and the musical revolution known as
bebop. An antidote to the contemporary cult of “getting things done,” All
the Time in the World revives forgotten treasures of the past while
inspiring a passion for good living in the present.
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