After reading the first couple of pages of “Totally Q” by George Hensler I could help but think, “what exactly is the point of this book.” I didn’t get it at all. But, as I continued to read I soon realized the book really didn’t have a point and that is what ultimately makes it a fun read.
Now before all the friends of George, and a lot of them because he’s a genuinely nice guy, start to tear up the internet with comments about the review, let me explain a little. The book has no point and that’s a lot like barbecue in my book. Does a “barbecue” have a point other than helping to get people together, to share friendship and fellowship?
Sure there’s food but really isn’t all about spending time together, about sharing experiences and just enjoying the company of each other. And that’s what makes Totally Q such a fun read. Totally Q is like a “barbecue” on paper. Just reading about the fun times, experiences, stories and words of wisdom from George is a great way to really understand, as he says, “the crazy world of barbecue.”
The book is filled with a variety of information that only a true barbecue enthusiast would find interesting enough to write about, or to even think about including in a book that only another barbecue enthusiast would find interesting enough to read about. Some of the
“stuff” in this book is way beyond what a person would normally think about. And it’s great that he did.
George was brave enough to try to tackle the mysterious history of barbecue. Anyone who as spent any time reading about barbecue has heard just about every theory there is about how the name came about. George does a good job of putting them all down with back-up materials so you can make your own decisions on when, where and how the name came about. “The Unofficial Timeline of Barbecue,” takes us on an outdoor cooking journey from 1,500,000 years ago unto 2013 in 16 pages. Did you know that a 1580 engraving depicts several American Indians using a grill like device to cook and smoke fish. Really! It’s right there on page 15.
The book is full of barbecue history. Whether it’s the over-all history of barbecue, the history of barbecue in politics or the history of barbecue forums this book will help people understand who and what barbecue enthusiasts are all about. George Hensler has done a great job of documenting everything from the best music with barbecue themes to some the colorful competition barbecue team names. There are lots and lots of serious barbecue books on the market, and certainly there is a serious side to barbecue but in between those serious moments a lot of fun can be found. The same is true with George’s book.