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Ingrid E. Newkirk, THE PETA CELEBRITY COOKBOOK: Delicious Recipes from Your Fa. Lantern Books, $20 (144pp) ISBN 978-1-59056-027-3

Fun to look at and to read, easy to execute, relatively yummy and morally irresistible, this collection of vegan recipes from a wide array of notables adds up to a powerful argument against the Atkins low-carbohydrate diet, which encourages the heavy consumption of meat and animal products. In his brief introduction, James Cromwell, who played the laconic but lovable Farmer Hoggett in the 1995 hit movie Babe, describes how his time on the set surrounded by smart, friendly little pigs made it impossible for him to eat pork and indeed any meat ever again. Recipes are provided by a range of famous names, from Alicia Silverstone (who shares her recipe for "Steamy, Creamy Artichoke Dip") to Sir Paul McCartney ("All You Need Is Avocado Soup," etc.) to that surprisingly vegan cult TV figure William Shatner (and why wasn't his bean dip called "Bean Me Up Scotty!"?). Other celebs include Fiona Apple, Bob Barker, Jackie Chan and Bea Arthur. Some assertions here about the harmful effects of animal fat on the body have been challenged by recent research supporting Atkins's long-held contention that adding fat to our diet may actually help us slim down and get healthy. Still, there's little arguing with the compelling vision of living and eating in a way that doesn't harm other creatures. Even non-veggies will enjoy the wit and four-color photos lavished throughout this book, which should see healthy sales. (Dec.)