Thursday, June 25, 2015

Book Review: Romantic Outlaws

Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary ShelleyRomantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Her Daughter Mary Shelley tells the story of these two intriguing women. Mary Wollstonecraft was a feminist and she wrote The Vindication of the Rights of Women. Her daughter, Mary Shelley was the author of Frankenstein. 

Even though they were mother and daughter, Wollstonecraft died one week after Shelley's birth. However, their lives were such a reflection from their dreams and choices to the sadness that filled their lives. 

This story shared their story in such a touching, amazing way that I had to keep reading to see how these two women shared so much, including the affect they were to have on history through their lives and writings. 

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review. Thank you so much NetGalley and Charlotte Gordon. 

Book Review: The Ugly Stepsister

The Ugly StepsisterKat, while cleaning books out of the attic, trips, hits her head and an old version of Cinderella falls apart. When she awakens she is in an entire new world. She is told that she must make the story end happily-ever-after before she will be allowed to return home. She is also told that she is one of Cinderella's ugly stepsisters. Now she has to figure how to meet the prince and arrange for the palace to have a ball so that the prince and Ella can meet.

This is quite a task for someone that trips and stammers at a sideways glance from an attractive young man. What is she to do?

The Ugly Stepsister is a fun version of the Cinderella story. It makes the reader cheer for Kat with each small victory and feel for her awkwardness. Even though this is based on a fairy tale, it is its own story and a very quick read.

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Cookbook Review: Trisha's Table

Trisha's Table: My Feel-Good Favorites for a Balanced LifeTrisha Yearwood is a country-western star and she has a cooking show. Now she has decided to share some of her Southern comfort food with others. In this book she shows how to follow her philosophy of making good choices 80 % of the time and splurging 20%.

This book is filled with her view of some wonderful recipes. Included is a Houdini Chicken Salad, Edamame Parmesan, Slow Cooker Georgia Pulled-Pork Barbecue, along with some tasty sweets like chocolate chip cookie dough balls.

For the down-home cook that enjoys eating well and cooking food that their family will enjoy, this is the book.

I was given this book by Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: A Pinch of Nutmeg

A Pinch of NutmegJakob became a kitchen boy to a duke. His grandmother, who also worked in this kitchen, would tell him about far-away places filled with wonderful spices. When she died Jakob believed that the dream that he had to become a chef would also die. This is the story of what happened next to help bring the magical worlds his grandmother told him become real.

A Pinch of Nutmeg is such a rich book. The words bring the journey of Jakob to life and made me want his journey to never end. I believe that this book is a good choice for anyone that enjoys books that send you to far-away, exotic places.

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Children's book review: A Pink Boat Adventure by Kathleen Ivan

This book was disturbing to me. When two friends, Kathlean and Crustina, set off on a sailboat trip a rather unusually event takes place that transforms one of the friends into bread and the other friend is left alone.

As I read children's books, I think if it is a book that I would like to read to my granddaughter. In this case I would not. It traumatized me and I am afraid it would do the same to her. Usually when an unexpected twist comes in a book the reader expects it to right itself if the end and this story did not come to that conclusion.

Because of these things I would not recommend this book.

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Book Review: Almost Perfect

Diane Daniels Manning — Educator & Author (Showdogs, Westminster Kennel Club, Poodle Club of America)Almost Perfect, by Diane Daniels Manning, is a touching, heart-breaking and then mending book. The two main human characters are obviously flawed. Bess is a grumpy lady whose award-winning kennel is being destroyed before she has won her most sought-after goal....winning at Westminster Dog Show. She becomes depressed and feels worthless.

Benny is an autistic boy that wants to please his mother but can only focus on food. He lacks motivation to do anything else.

Through a series of events the dogs that Bess raised are able to help Ben. The process is touching as each are able to break through to the other through these wonderful Umpawaug poodles.

Such a wonderful book that the reader cannot help but come away a changed person. Do not let the soft cuddly dog on the cover fool you, this book will reach you in ways that are totally unexpected.

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Book Review: Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys

Rob Elliott did it again with Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Boys. This is a fun book that children can look at, read the riddles and then doodle to their heart's content. It would be great to take with you whenever there may need to be time to be filled, such as going to a doctor, or on a trip. This will keep children occupied for quite a while, while giving everyone chuckles along the way.

Rob Elliott has written other fun books and Jonny Hawkins has had cartoons published in many publications.

I was given this book by Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest review....Which is go out and buy this for a child in your life!!!

Book Review: Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls.

Cover ArtWhat a fun book. When I received this book, Laugh-Out-Loud Pocket Doodles for Girls, I was in love at once. I can see my granddaughter enjoying this book in the near future.

Each page has a riddle, with the answer, and then at the bottom is a doodle idea. This would make a wonderful book for a family that is traveling in the car to help keep the child busy, and enjoying their time.

The author is Rob Elliott who has written several out Laugh out loud books, joke and knock-knock books. He works with Jonny Hawkins who is a cartoonist who has been published in over 600 publications.

Enjoy this book, but try to look at it first, or you may not get it back from the child to look at later.

I was given this book by Baker Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Book Review: Get Your Bake On

Brian Emmett, the author of Get Your Bake On, is a winner of the American Baking Competition. With this book, the reader gets so much more than recipes. Emmett gives tips to help each baker become successful, then he gives the background of each recipe that he places in this book. Many of the recipes were used on the television competition.

I found this book fun to read through and the recipes were straight-forward and they do not call for ingredients that are not usually kept in most kitchens. With this book as my guide, I have actually worked up the courage to create my own pie crust (I admit, I have always used store-bought crusts). Thank you Mr. Emmett for this wonderful resource that I know that I will use for years to come.

I was given this book by NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: Traditional Knitting

Oh my goodness. This book, Traditional Knitting by Michael Pearson, speaks to me on so many levels. The history lover of this book is in love as Pearson looks into the history of so many different patterns. My love of all things from Britain is satisfied as he travels to source of the patterns and talks with people about the tools and patterns that have been passed down through he generations. Finally, as I am a knitter who is always looking for ideas and patterns, this book was a fountain of useful information.

This book is highly recommended for any knitter or those that are interested in traditions passed through the generations.

I was given this book by NetGalley and the author in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: Circus Mirandus

Circus Mirandus, by Cassie Beasley, is a wonderful, imaginative book for the fourth through sixth grade child. It captures the imagination from the first page as the reader discovers that Micah Tuttle lives with his ill Grandpa Ephraim and his disagreeable Aunt Gertrudis. Gertrudis does not seem to understand the connection between Grandpa and Micah, so Micah has to find minutes here and there to spend with his friend. Having heard tales about Circus Mirandus from Grandpa, Micah through they were fun tales until he finds out that they are more than imagination.

This debut book would be a great read for all children in this age range and I look forward to reading more of Beasley's work.

I was given this book by Dial Books, the author and NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Book Review: How to Enjoy Reading the Bible

How to Enjoy Reading Your Bible, by Keith Ferrin, re-opened my eyes to the different ways to open the heart, mind and soul to reading the Bible. He uses various analogies and hints as to how to face what can be a daunting task. He uses examples such as interrupting a movie to discuss each scene, receiving a letter which is filled with blessings and so much more. Some of these analogies I have heard before but I had filed them away and forgot about them. This is a wonderful learning tool and refreshing book. It can be used individually or as a group as there are discussion questions at the end of each chapter.

Keith Ferrin performs one-man presentations of entire books of the Bible.

I was given this book by the publisher, Bethany House, the author and NetGalley in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Cookbook review: Lighten up, y'all

Lighten Up, Y'all by Oh, my. Lighten up, y'all: Classic Southern Recipes made Healthy and Wholesome is filled with comfort foods that maintain their taste and vision in spite of being redone in a healthy manner.

Virginia Willis has written other cookbooks, plus she is a blogger of Down-Home Comfort where she shares cooking with Food Network and the Cooking Channel. She has also made many guest appearances, been a director and a producer of different cooking shows. She is able to draw on all of the experience in this book to help the reader to enjoy the foods they have always enjoyed while maintaining a healthy diet.

This cookbook includes favorites such as Sinless Seven-Layer Dip, Barbeque Meatballs, Sassy Slaw, plus many recipes with starch, seafood, shellfish, poultry, pork, beef, lamb and, of course deserts.

I feel like I was very privileged to be given this wonderful cookbook to review by the author, Crown Publishing, Ten Speed Press and Blogging for Books in exchange for my honest review.