The following cookbooks, in stores this month, are usable and look good, too.

"A16: Food and Wine" by Nate Appleman and Shelley Lindgren with Kate Leahy (Ten Speed Press, $35). Great recipes from an Italian restaurant in San Francisco with fabulous photos. This book is a standout.

"The River Cottage Family Cookbook" by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall and Fizz Carr (Ten Speed Press, $32.50). From the British chef and television personality. It hits its target audience well.

"Olives and Oranges" by Sara Jenkins and Mindy Fox (Houghton Mifflin, $35). Interesting flavor combos, but recipes can be hit-or-miss. From a New York chef.

"Jamie at Home: Cook Your Way to the Good Life" by Jamie Oliver (Hyperion, $37.50). Family-focused recipes with emphasis on the garden. These are practical yet imaginative recipes.

"Two Dudes, One Pan" by Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo (Clarkson Potter, $24.95). A happy mishmash of recipes.

"A Platter of Figs and Other Recipes" by David Tanis (Artisan, $35). A first book from a chef at Chez Panisse, with simple menus and narrative.

LOS ANGELES TIMES