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Showing posts from March, 2014

Book Review: If Only by A.J. Pine

If Only by A.J. Pine
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I received an advanced ebook copy for an honest review from Netgalley.

Jordan Brooks is headed to Scotland for a year to study abroad.  Her best friend Sam has convinced her that she needs to have a fling since it's been two years since her last serious relationship.  As luck would have it, she quickly meets the perfect Mr. Right Now in Griffin on the train from London to Aberdeen.  Griff takes the seat next to her on the train and the flirting is instant.  Jordan and Griff hit it off right away and in any other story they would have been the stars of our story.

However, shortly into the trip A.J. heads to the loo and gets stuck in the compartment with Noah, who is also a student heading to Aberdeen.  Jordan also hits it off with Noah, he's the perfect match for her English major self (he carries around a worn and self annotated copy of The Great Gatsby).  Plus they share a quick kiss that knocks her for a loop. Could he be her Mr. Rig…

Book Review - Slices of Life by Leah Eskin

Slices of Life: A Food Writer Cooks through Many a Conundrum by Leah Eskin
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I'm a sucker for cookbooks.  I have an ever growing collection and nearly no space for them.  Slices of Life is a collection of columns that Leah wrote for the Chicago Tribune. Some were really interesting, some were okay, and some I barely glanced at, I did however read every recipe and bookmarked at least 10*.

Last night was one of those days when The Jojo and I had just enough time to whip up a quick dinner before running out of the house.  Pasta is always a great option for that, and since I had just finished reading this book, I remembered one of those bookmarked recipes. You have to be careful when reading an unedited copy of a cookbook or book with a recipe or two in it, because there could be errors but Leah's Emergency Pasta seemed perfect to whip up and adjust to our tastes.  The recipe calls for olive oil, red pepper flakes, salt and garlic to be sauteed while the past…

Peanuts Movie!

Honestly I didn't have any post for today, but then I saw the teaser trailer for the Peanuts movie that is due out next year.  I love the comic strip and could re-read some of them numerous times and still chuckle. I love the holiday themed movies and watch them whenever they are on TV. So I'm really excited about the movie and this teaser is just wonderful!

Writing Exercise #6

I haven't been to a Writers' Group meeting in some time and haven't been keeping up with the writing prompts.  Schools been getting in the way of my writing!

Prompt: Write about what is secret

When I read this prompt, I had a few story ideas, but every time I sat down to write them, I couldn't write anything worth sharing.  To take my mind off the prompt, I started to go through my creative writing folders from college.  I found a writing exercise that I enjoyed doing, and thought with some editing would be perfect for this prompt.  The writing exercise was to take a work of Edgar Allen Poe and edit it to tell the story in our own way.  I did a little bit more editing and here's my story about what is secret

Berenice by Edgar Allan Poe Edited by Amelia Rodriguez
“Can you state your name for the record?” “My baptismal name is Edward; that of my family I will not mention. Yet there are no towers in the land more time-honored than my gloomy, gray, hereditary halls. The reco…

Tea and a Book: My Bloved World by Sonia Sotomayor

My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was a hit! We liked that it was about her life leading up to her appointment on the Supreme Court and not just a brief biography and then a detailed about her time on the bench.  We enjoyed being able to see similarities between our diverse backgrounds and her family, it really connects that no matter what the nationality/ethnicity families are similar.

When the evening book club read this book, I heard a lot of comments like, "Wow, I can't believe how much she overcame" or "to think she grew up in the projects."  I was expecting a story somewhat similar to From Homeless to Harvard, but that's not really Sonia's story. As I read I realized, that if my family hadn't settled in the suburbs, portions of my life would have mirrored her life. In our discussion we talked about how it doesn't matter the where a person lives, they can accomplish great things with the right support fro…

Mini Reviews - Wild and 1914

1914 by Jean Echenoz
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

For a little book this took me a while to get into it (about half way). It was an interesting writing style, no quotations but sections that were dialogue. Also it had a sort of bluntness that I wasn't used to reading.

The story, itself, was great. A quick tale about boys from the same town that went off to war not thinking it was any big deal. They all quickly learned just how big a deal it was. There was also Blanche who was waiting back at home for Charlie and Anthime.

I can't talk too much about the story without giving away something important so I'm just going to say it is worth reading. It's a quick and realistic look back 100 years to the French experience in WW1.

Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail by Cheryl Strayed
My rating: 4 of 5 

I had tried to listen to this book back in March, but could barely get through the first CD. Cheryl just didn't give me much to care about, why would I want to keep…

February Summary of Reading Challenges

Here's Where I Stand on the I Love the Library Challenge

Books Checked Out and Read:
Twelve Years a Slave by Solomon NorthupThe Light Between Oceans by M.L. StedmanBoy21 by Matthew QuickCordina's Royal Family: Gabriella & Alexander by Nora RobertsCane by Jean ToomerCordina's Royal Family: Bennett & Camilla by Nora RobertsMy Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor (BCD) Books Checked Out and Currently Reading Wild by Cheryl Strayed (BCD) Books Checked Out and Not Read - Yet Humans of New York by Brandon StantonThe "I Hate to Exercise" Book for People with Diabetes by Charlotte HAyes, MMSC, MS, RD, CDE Books Checked Out but Didn't Read Sorta Like a Rockstar by Matthew QuickYoga XXL by Ingrid KollakI Love Coffee! by Susan Zimmer Books Checked Out for School Assignments Once Upon a Time by John BarthHouse Calls with William Carlos Williams by Robert ColesMade in America by Lisa Malin SteinmanSomething Urgent I Have to Say to You by Herbert A. LeibowitzThe Poetry of W…

Mini Reviews: Two Hits and a Miss

Waking Up Pregnant by Mira Lyn Kelly
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is the follow up to Waking Up Married. This story follows Connor's friend Jeff after the two part the night Connor meets Megan.  Jeff stays at the bar and meets bartender Darcy who can't wait for her last night in Vegas to be over. She's ready for a fresh start! She spends the evening with Jeff exploring Las Vegas and against her initial ideas they end up back at Jeff's hotel room.  When Jeff leaves to go into the bathroom Darcy bolts and Jeff can't tell her about their little problem.  Jeff's not surprised when Darcy shows up 3 months later pregnant.

Like the couple in the previous book, Jeff is willing to manipulate the situation to suit his needs. That's the only thing I didn't like about the book. Yes, he does it with everyone's best interest in mind, but ugh. Also Darcy is just a little bit too much with her independence kick, so maybe she needs Jeff's interference.

Both book…