John DeBary worked for years in the New York City bar business. He is a wine and spirits writer and also launched the non-alcoholic aperitif Proteau about a year before the release of his book, "Drink What You Want: The Subjective Guide to Making Objectively Delicious Cocktails" (Clarkson Potter). The title resonates with me because I have always given the same advice, regardless of the recommended pairings.
DeBary offers recipes for both alcoholic and nonalcoholic cocktails, some with clever names and absolutely no pretension. The writing is straightforward and informative. If you know nothing about how to make a drink, you can learn it all here. And if you already fancy yourself a home bartender, you'll pick up tips and new ideas.