Oct 012014
 

334176

The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell
Paperback: 408 pages
Publisher: Ballantine Books; Reissue edition (September 8, 1997)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0449912558
ISBN-13: 978-0449912553

In 2019, humanity finally finds proof of extraterrestrial life when a listening post in Puerto Rico picks up exquisite singing from a planet which will come to be known as Rakhat. While United Nations diplomats endlessly debate a possible first contact mission, the Society of Jesus quietly organizes an eight-person scientific expedition of its own. What the Jesuits find is a world so beyond comprehension that it will lead them to question the meaning of being “human.” Words like “provocative” and “compelling” will come to mind as you read this shocking novel about first contact with a race that creates music akin to both poetry and prayer.

 

Thoughts
There are probably a lot of book lovers out there that haven’t or won’t read this because of the “religious” aspect of the book. Please, don’t let that keep you from a truly awesome book.

This book is way out of my comfort zone. Not because of the religious aspect, but because it has science fiction/fantasy/alien/space travel, none of which I like.

At least I didn’t, until Trish’s read-a- long. I almost didn’t join because I truly didn’t think I’d get past the first 20 pages. To be honest, it was a struggle for me to keep reading at first. But then, and I’m not even sure at what point in the book it was, but I was reading along and was surprised to find out how engrossed I was in the book. Time had past without me even being aware of how long. I was very much in like with the book. So I kept reading. And kept reading. And then I found myself very much in love with the book.

I know!! It surprised me too!

In Trish’s reveiw she said  “That stupid blinking cursor. Taunting me for having ALL of the things to say but not really knowing how to say any of them.” That’s how I feel. I’m not sure how to put into words all my thoughts and feelings about the book so it sounds as good as it is. So I’ll make it short and hope you decide to read it for yourself.

The book has some awesome, amazing characters. It also has some awesome, amazing stuff going on that is so different from what I’m used to reading. This book showed me that I can, and do in this case, like science fiction/fantasy/alien/space travel if it’s written superbly, which this was.

Do I want to read book two in the series, Children of God? Very much! Will I? I can’t say for sure because I get sidetracked a lot when it comes to what I plan on reading. Finding new to me books has a way of throwing me off course.

There is so much I could say about this book, but honestly I don’t think I’d do it justice. So…my advice to you (especially if you’re not sure you’ll like it) is to borrow a copy from your library. That way you save money and you’re library always appreciates you borrowing books. If by some strange reason your library doesn’t have it, buy a new or like new used copy online. It shouldn’t cost very much.

My final thought goes to Trish. Thank you for getting me out of my comfort zone. It felt good!!

 

sparrow readalong

Host by Trish @ Love, Laughter, And A Touch Of Insanity

The Details:
Begin: September 1st
Halfway: September 15th (through ch 19, pg 201 of my copy)
Finish: September 30th

Sep 302014
 
20530957

 Aunty Lee’s Deadly Specials by Ovidia Yu

Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Original edition (September 30, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062338323
ISBN-13: 978-0062338327
Rosie “Aunty” Lee, the feisty widow, amateur sleuth, and proprietor of Singapore’s best-loved home cooking restaurant, is back in another delectable, witty mystery involving scandal and murder among the city’s elite.Few know more about what goes on in Singapore than Aunty Lee. When a scandal over illegal organ donation involving prominent citizens makes news, she already has a list of suspects. There’s no time to snoop, though—Aunty Lee’s Delights is catering a brunch for local socialites Henry and Mabel Sung at their opulent house.Rumor has it that the Sung’s fortune is in trouble, and Aunty Lee wonders if the gossip is true. But soon after arriving at the Sung’s house, her curiosity turns to suspicion. Why is a storage house she discovers locked? What is the couple arguing about behind closed doors? Where is the guest of honor who never showed up?

Then, Mabel Sung and her son Leonard are found dead. The authorities blame it on Aunty Lee’s special stewed chicken with buah keluak, a local black nut that can be poisonous if cooked improperly. Aunty Lee has never carelessly prepared a dish. She’s certain the deaths are murder—and that they’re somehow linked to the organ donor scandal.

To save her business and her reputation, she’s got to prove it—and unmask a dangerous killer whose next victim may just be Aunty Lee.

Thoughts
Oh how I loved this book! I loved Aunty Lee and her nothing barred attitude! Nothing is going to stop her from finding out who’s going around murdering people, even if nobody wants her help.

The book is full of a mix of diverse characters, and together they make this book a joy to read. The writing has a good flow that makes it easy to read, and I was surprised by how quickly I was at the end of this fun book.

This is book two in the Aunty Lee series, and now I want to read book one. This is now one of my favorite cozy series, and I hope if you’re reading this review, you’ll pick up a copy of this book and the first book, Aunty Lee’s Delights

 

Find it on Goodreads,  AmazonIndieBound and Barnes & Noble.
Here’s the link to Yu’s Facebook and Twitter.

Tour Stops:
Tuesday, September 30th: No More Grumpy Bookseller
Wednesday, October 1st: I’d Rather Be At The Beach
Monday, October 6th: Kahakai Kitchen
Tuesday, October 7th: Bibliophilia, Please
Wednesday, October 8th: Book Dilettante
Thursday, October 9th: guiltless reading
Monday, October 13th: Olduvai’s Reads
Tuesday, October 14th: A Bookish Way of Life
Thursday, October 16th: Tutu’s Two Cents
Wednesday, October 22nd: My Bookshelf
Friday, October 24th: Jorie Loves a Story

 

Ovidia-Yu-100x152

Ovidia Yu is one of Singapore’s best-known and most acclaimed writers. She has had more than thirty plays produced and is also the author of a number of mysteries. She received a Fulbright Fellowship to the University of Iowa’s International Writers Program and has been a writing fellow at the National University of Singapore.

Connect with her through Facebook or follow her on Twitter.

tlc_logo

Sep 302014
 

wondrous2

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Kathy (BermudaOnion), where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love. Feel free to get creative!

 

From The Dew Breaker by Edwidge Danticat

1: genuflect

gen·u·flect – verb – \ˈjen-yə-ˌflekt\
: to kneel on one knee and then rise again as an act of respect

: to obey someone with power in a way that is seen as weak

“It was the time when birds were supposed to begin chirping their all night songs to greet the holy birth, when other animals were to genuflect and trees bow in reverence.”

 

2. saguaro 

sa·gua·ro – noun  –  \sə-ˈwär-ə, -ˈgwär-, -ō\
: a tall columnar usually sparsely-branched cactus (Carnegiea gigantea) of dry areas of the southwestern United States and Mexico that bears white flowers and a scaly reddish edible fruit and that may attain a height of up to 50 feet (16 meters) —called also giant cactus

“There were many paths to his aunt’s house, and seeing the long saguaro had convinced him that he was on one of them.

Sep 282014
 

mmb-300x282

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

 

 

Every Wednesday for Books That Caught Our Eye, Serena, Leslie and I will each share 2 books that grabbed our attention from today’s Mailbox Monday post. We hope you’ll join us by posting a comment letting us know the books that caught your eye.

 

 

16073138100 Places In France Every Woman Should Go by Marcia DeSanetis

Series: 100 Places
Paperback: 420 pages
Publisher: Travelers’ Tales (November 4, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1609520823
ISBN-13: 978-1609520823

Told in a series of stylish, original essays, 100 Places in France Every Woman Should Go is for the serious Francophile, for the woman dreaming of a trip to Paris, and for those who love crisp stories well-told. Like all great travel writing, this volume goes beyond the guidebook and offers insight not only about where to go but why to go there. Combining advice, memoir and meditations on the glories of traveling through France, this book is the must-have in your carry-on when flying to Paris.

Award-winning writer Marcia DeSanctis draws on years of travels and living in France to lead you through vineyards, architectural treasures, fabled gardens and contemplative hikes from Biarritz to Deauville, Antibes to the French Alps. These 100 entries capture art, history, food, fresh air and style and along the way, she tells the stories of fascinating women who changed the country’s destiny. Ride a white horse in the Camargue, find Paris’s hidden museums, try thalassotherapy in St. Malo, and buy raspberries at Nice’s Cour Saleya market. From sexy to literary, spiritual to simply gorgeous, 100 Places in France Every Woman Should Go is an indispensable companion for the smart and curious traveler to France.

 

This Dark Road To Mercy by Wiley Cash 18359823

Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Reprint edition (September 23, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062088262
ISBN-13: 978-0062088260

The critically acclaimed author of the New York Times bestseller A Land More Kind Than Home—hailed as “a powerfully moving debut that reads as if Cormac McCarthy decided to rewrite Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird” (Richmond Times Dispatch)—returns with a resonant novel of love and atonement, blood and vengeance, set in western North Carolina, involving two young sisters, a wayward father, and an enemy determined to see him pay for his sins.

After their mother’s unexpected death, twelve-year-old Easter and her six-year-old sister Ruby are adjusting to life in foster care when their errant father, Wade, suddenly appears. Since Wade signed away his legal rights, the only way he can get his daughters back is to steal them away in the night.

Brady Weller, the girls’ court-appointed guardian, begins looking for Wade, and he quickly turns up unsettling information linking Wade to a recent armored car heist, one with a whopping $14.5 million missing. But Brady Weller isn’t the only one hunting the desperate father. Robert Pruitt, a shady and mercurial man nursing a years-old vendetta, is also determined to find Wade and claim his due.

Narrated by a trio of alternating voices, This Dark Road to Mercy is a story about the indelible power of family and the primal desire to outrun a past that refuses to let go.

 

22535533Moriarty by Anthony Horowitz

Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Harper (December 9, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062377183
ISBN-13: 978-0062377180

The game is once again afoot in this thrilling mystery from the bestselling author of The House of Silk, sanctioned by the Conan Doyle estate, which explores what really happened when Sherlock Holmes and his arch nemesis Professor Moriarty tumbled to their doom at the Reichenbach Falls.

Internationally bestselling author Anthony Horowitz’s nail-biting new novel plunges us back into the dark and complex world of detective Sherlock Holmes and Moriarty–dubbed the Napoleon of crime” by Holmes–in the aftermath of their fateful struggle at the Reichenbach Falls.

Days after the encounter at the Swiss waterfall, Pinkerton detective agent Frederick Chase arrives in Europe from New York. Moriarty’s death has left an immediate, poisonous vacuum in the criminal underworld, and there is no shortage of candidates to take his place–including one particularly fiendish criminal mastermind.

Chase and Scotland Yard Inspector Athelney Jones, a devoted student of Holmes’s methods of investigation and deduction originally introduced by Conan Doyle in “The Sign of Four,” must forge a path through the darkest corners of England’s capital–from the elegant squares of Mayfair to the shadowy wharfs and alleyways of the London Docks–in pursuit of this sinister figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, who is determined to stake his claim as Moriarty’s successor.

A riveting, deeply atmospheric tale of murder and menace from the only writer to earn the seal of approval from Conan Doyle’s estate, Moriarty breathes life into Holmes’s dark and fascinating world.

 

Aunty Lee’s Deady Specials by Ovidia Yu20530957

Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks; Original edition (September 30, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062338323
ISBN-13: 978-0062338327

Rosie “Aunty” Lee, the feisty widow, amateur sleuth, and proprietor of Singapore’s best-loved home cooking restaurant, is back in another delectable, witty mystery involving scandal and murder among the city’s elite.

Few know more about what goes on in Singapore than Aunty Lee. When a scandal over illegal organ donation involving prominent citizens makes news, she already has a list of suspects. There’s no time to snoop, though—Aunty Lee’s Delights is catering a brunch for local socialites Henry and Mabel Sung at their opulent house.

Rumor has it that the Sung’s fortune is in trouble, and Aunty Lee wonders if the gossip is true. But soon after arriving at the Sung’s house, her curiosity turns to suspicion. Why is a storage house she discovers locked? What is the couple arguing about behind closed doors? Where is the guest of honor who never showed up?

Then, Mabel Sung and her son Leonard are found dead. The authorities blame it on Aunty Lee’s special stewed chicken with buah keluak, a local black nut that can be poisonous if cooked improperly. Aunty Lee has never carelessly prepared a dish. She’s certain the deaths are murder—and that they’re somehow linked to the organ donor scandal.

To save her business and her reputation, she’s got to prove it—and unmask a dangerous killer whose next victim may just be Aunty Lee.

Sep 272014
 

The Man Who Changed the Way We Eat by Thomas McNamee

Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Free Press (May 8, 2012)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1439191506
ISBN-13: 978-1439191507

In the 1950s, America was a land of overdone roast beef and canned green beans—a gastronomic wasteland. Most restaurants relied on frozen, second-rate ingredients and served bogus “Continental” cuisine. Authentic French, Italian, and Chinese foods were virtually unknown. There was no such thing as food criticism at the time, and no such thing as a restaurant critic. Cooking at home wasn’t thought of as a source of pleasure. Guests didn’t chat around the kitchen. Professional equipment and cookware were used only in restaurants. One man changed all that.

From the bestselling author of Alice Waters and Chez Panisse comes the first biography of the passionate gastronome and troubled genius who became the most powerful force in the history of American food—the founding father of the American food revolution. From his first day in 1957 as the food editor of the New York Times, Craig Claiborne was going to take his readers where they had never been before. Claiborne extolled the pleasures of exotic cuisines from all around the world, and with his inspiration, restaurants of every ethnicity blossomed. So many things we take for granted now were introduced to us by Craig Claiborne—crème fraîche, arugula, balsamic vinegar, the Cuisinart, chef’s knives, even the salad spinner.

He would give Julia Child her first major book review. He brought Paul Bocuse, the Troisgros brothers, Paul Prudhomme, and Jacques Pépin to national acclaim. His $4,000 dinner for two in Paris was a front-page story in the Times and scandalized the world. And while he defended the true French nouvelle cuisine against bastardization, he also reveled in a well-made stew or a good hot dog. He made home cooks into stars—Marcella Hazan, Madhur Jaffrey, Diana Kennedy, and many others. And Craig Claiborne made dinner an event—whether dining out, delighting your friends, or simply cooking for your family. His own dinner parties were legendary.

Craig Claiborne was the perfect Mississippi gentleman, but his inner life was one of conflict and self-doubt. Constrained by his position to mask his sexuality, he was imprisoned in solitude, never able to find a stable and lasting love. Through Thomas McNamee’s painstaking research and eloquent storytelling, The Man Who Changed the Way We Eat unfolds a history that is largely unknown and also tells the full, deep story of a great man who until now has never been truly known at all.

Being a food lover, I was really excited to have the chance to read this book. What I found inside the covers was way more than what I expected. The author takes you through the changes we’ve made over the years concerning not only the way we think about food, but the type of foods we eat. It also gives an in depth account of Craig Claiborne’s life.

To be honest, this was the best non fiction I’ve read in a very long time. The authors words seemed to pull me along from one page to the next page, and the next, and when I finally looked up to see what time it was, it was way past the time I had intended to read.

The book is not only full of statistics, it is full of heart. It’s very well written and is perfect for anyone who loves food or how we came to consume so much processed food instead of the healthy, made from scratch meals our grandmothers and great grandmothers made.

This book reads more like a fiction, and not the non fiction it is. I highly recommend this book!

Meet The Author:

I was born in 1947 in Memphis, Tennessee, and grew up there and in New York City. I studied writing at Yale under the tutelage of Robert Penn Warren.

I am the author of The Grizzly Bear (Knopf, 1984), Nature First: Keeping Our Wild Places and Wild Creatures Wild (Roberts Rinehart, 1987), A Story of Deep Delight (Viking, 1990), The Return of the Wolf to Yellowstone (Henry Holt, 1997)and Alice Waters and Chez Panisse: The Romantic, Impractical, Often Eccentric, Ultimately Brilliant Making of a Food Revolution (The Penguin Press, 2007). My latest book, THE MAN WHO CHANGED THE WAY WE EAT: CRAIG CLAIBORNE AND THE AMERICAN FOOD RENAISSANCE, was published in May 2012.

My essays, poems, and natural history writing have been published in Audubon, The New Yorker, Life, Natural History, High Country News, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Saveur, and a number of literary journals. I wrote the documentary film Alexander Calder, which was broadcast on the PBS ‘American Masters’ series in June 1998 and received both a George W. Peabody Award and an Emmy. Many of my book reviews have appeared The New York Times Book Review.

After twenty-three years in New York City and five in rural Montana, I have lived in San Francisco since 1998–albeit with frequent returns to New York and as much of every summer as possible in Montana.

 

wkendcooking

Weekend Cooking is hosted by Beth @ Beth Fish Reads and is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend.

Sep 252014
 

Life on Hold

Life on Hold by Beverly Stowe McClure

A paper found. A secret revealed. A girl’s life changed forever. Myra Gibson’s life is a lie. For sixteen years her parents have kept their secret, but the adoption paper she discovers while cleaning the guesthouse tells the truth. As the past and present collide, Myra finally stands up for herself and begins a journey she may regret.

Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Kobo * The Book Depository

 

Praise for Life on Hold
All I can say is wow! Beverly Stowe McClure knocked this one out of the ballpark. The story of Myra and her search for the truth touched upon one of the fundamental needs of all children (and teens): the need for a father in their lives. Darby Karchut, author of the Griffin Series and other books for tweens, teens, and adults.

McClure exhibits rare talent in this story which follows a young girl on her journey to discovery as she struggles to be true to herself in this compelling coming-of-age novel.
Children’s Literary Classics Book Reviews (Silver Medal Winner 2012)

Teen readers can easily relate to Myra’s pain and rebellion. Part coming of age, part teen romance, “Life on Hold” is full of surprises. Peggy Tibbetts, author, editor, and associate producer.

 

Excerpt
As we drove to my house, I gazed out the car window. The moon, hazy around the edges, hung in the sky. Stars smiled down. The evening with Jeremy had been fun, like before his trouble, before KW, before I defied my mother. I tried to hold the happiness of the past hours in my mind, but a sour lump clogged my throat. Shivering, I rubbed my arms. I was as bad as Rachel, thinking only of myself, unconcerned about my mother’s feelings, ignoring the fact she’d worry if she got home before I did.
“You want me to turn off the air conditioner?”

Jeremy’s voice startled me. My thoughts had wandered. Lately, the past kept intruding in my life, making it difficult to concentrate on the present. I looked at Jeremy, who was looking at me, a thin wrinkle between his eyes. “What?” “You’ve got goose bumps.”

I stared at my arms. Tiny bumps dotted them, yet sweat dampened my palms. “I’m okay,” I said, as okay as I could be, considering I’d hung up on my mother, considering I was with Jeremy.

On the plus side, I was enjoying myself, except for the unwelcome phantom face haunting me every time I blinked ¾ KW. He would not go away. I wanted Dad to be my dad. He wasn’t, at least not my birth-dad. Since he wasn’t really my dad should I keep calling him Dad? Father? Or was Neil better? What about Stepfather? Why was it so hard to make decisions?

add to goodreads

Book Trailer

 

BeverlyAuthor Beverly Stowe McClure
Most of the time, you’ll find Beverly in front of her computer, writing the stories little voices whisper in her ear. When she’s not writing, she takes long walks and snaps pictures of clouds, wild flowers, birds and deer. She also enjoys visiting with her family and teaching a women’s Sunday school class at her church. To relax she plays the piano. Thank you, Mom, for making encouraging me to practice. Her cats do not appreciate good music and run when she tickles the ivories. She is affectionately known as the “Bug Lady” because she rescues butterflies, moths, walking sticks, and praying mantis from her cats.

Beverly has several articles published in leading children’s magazines. Two of her stories have appeared in CHICKEN SOUP FOR THE SOUL Anthologies. She also has nine books for children and teens published, with four more under contract.

Website * Blog * Twitter * Facebook

 

 

 

BookBlast Giveaway
$50 Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash
Ends 10/13/14

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Amazon.com Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by the author. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED BY LAW.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Sep 242014
 

1852

The Call of the Wild by Jack London

Age Range: 12 and up
Grade Level: 7 and up
Mass Market Paperback: 192 pages
Publisher: Scholastic Paperbacks (January 1, 2001)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0439227143
ISBN-13: 978-0439227148

Buck, a sturdy crossbreed canine (half St. Bernard, half Shepard), is a dog born to luxury and raised in a sheltered Californian home. But then he is kidnapped and sold to be a sled dog in the harsh and frozen Yukon Territory. Passed from master to master, Buck embarks on an extraordinary journey, proving his unbreakable spirit.

First published in 1903, “The Call of the Wild” is regarded as Jack London’s masterpiece. Based on London’s experiences as a gold prospector in the Canadian wilderness and his ideas about nature and the struggle for existence, “The Call of the Wild” is a tale about unbreakable spirit and the fight for survival in the frozen Alaskan Klondike.

 

Thoughts
I read this book as part of the Banned Book Week, hosted by Sheila @ Book Journey. I had planned on reading a different book, but I messed up and ended up only having a little over a day to read a book and write a review, so after searching for a shorter banned book, I decided on this one. I’m so glad I did!!

I love anything to do with Alaska and/or sled dogs, and even knowing I’d probably love the book, it was far better than I expected. The book starts out giving info on Buck’s life and how he ends up and Alaska. From there, it quickly gets sad and then gets sadder. There are many things that happened in the book that made me cringe, but the author drew the story from his time as a gold prospector, and it’s an important part of the story.

I enjoyed reading about Buck, and fell in love with this dog that endured so much and never lost the wonderful spirit that he was born with.

London doesn’t use a lot of unnecessary words or descriptions, and that added to the loveability of the book for me. I could see everything so clearly in my mind and was sad when it ended.

I don’t remember having to read this in school, but I wish it had been one of the assigned reading choices, and think it should be in every school.

I loved this book so much that after I finished it, I got the audio version for my iPod, and plan on listening to it while I walk on my treadmill.

I’ve had this book on my tbr list forever and regret not getting to it sooner. I would recommend this book to everyone who hasn’t read it, and for those who did years ago, re-read it! It’s a 5 star!!

 

Why was the book banned?
The Call of the Wild, Jack London, 1903
Generally hailed as Jack London’s best work, The Call of the Wild is commonly challenged for its dark tone and bloody violence. Because it is seen as a man-and-his-dog story, it is sometimes read by adolescents and subsequently challenged for age-inappropriateness. Not only have objections been raised here, but the book was also banned in Italy, Yugoslavia and burned in bonfires in Nazi Germany in the late 1920s and early 30s because it was considered “too radical.”

 

To see a list of other banned books and why they were put on the list, go here

Sep 212014
 

mmb-300x282

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

 

 

Every Wednesday for Books That Caught Our Eye, Serena, Leslie and I will each share 2 books that grabbed our attention from today’s Mailbox Monday post. We hope you’ll join us by posting a comment letting us know the books that caught your eye.

 

19105692Bend Your Brain: 151 Puzzles, Tips, and Tricks to Blow (and Grow) Your Mind by Lindsay Gaskins
Want to get your frontal cortex breaking a sweat? Make your blood pump to your cerebellum? Stretch your occipital lobe to its limits?

Then you need to bend your brain! This first book from the team behind Marbles: The Brain Store, a chain devoted to building better brains, offers puzzles and brain teasers to help enhance memory, build problem-solving skills, and reduce stress.

Since Marbles started helping people play their way to a healthier brain, they’ve sold, solved, and been stumped by more than their fair share of puzzles. Along the way, they’ve learned which puzzles tie people in knots (not in a good way) and which ones make the neurons downright giddy. With the help of their in-house team of BrainCoaches and access to cutting-edge neuroscience, they’ve designed these puzzles to keep your mind flexible and fit.

Arranged in five key brain categories—visual perception, word skills, critical thinking, coordination, and memory—Bend Your Brain offers a variety of puzzles ranging from mind-warming (easy) to mind-blowing (hard!):

• Connecting the dots? More like working your spatial-orientation skills.
• Identifying famous smiles? Flexing your visual memory.
• Taking a closer look at your keyboard? Coding, storing, and retrieving.
• Word-doku? Summoning cognitive abilities like appraisal, inference, impulse control, and evaluation.
• Word scrambles? Tapping your brain’s association areas.

Your brain is your most important muscle, so let the brain-building begin!

 

81W9VgLawvLOften Overlooked Vol. 1 by Cary Polkovitz
Series: Often Overlooked.
Paperback: 104 pages
Publisher: Neverland Publishing Company, LLC; 2 edition (July 24, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0988829045
ISBN-13: 978-0988829046

Have you ever noticed something misplaced by the side of the road and wondered, “How did that get there?” Well, there might be more to it than you had initially thought.

In Often Overlooked, Cary Polkovitz, writer, painter and self-proclaimed general gadabout, lets us in on what very well may be the true story behind these things that are, well, often overlooked.

 

61a2BbKZ5aLOften Overlooked Vol. 2 by Cary Polkovitz
Series: Often Overlooked.
Paperback: 96 pages
Publisher: Neverland Publishing Company, LLC (December 2, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0988829096
ISBN-13: 978-0988829091

Ostranenie is the artistic technique of presenting to audiences common things in an unfamiliar or strange way, in order to enhance perception of the familiar. Author Cary Polkovitz continues to fine tune his affinity for viewing everyday objects in magical and unusual ways and once again displays his remarkable talent for opening our imaginations to what could be in Often Overlooked. – Volume 2. Readers of the author’s first collection have raved that these stories “tease the imagination” and have called it “think differently fiction.” Cary Polkovitz says of Often Overlooked, “I took photos of mundane items and tried to imbue them with a little bit of wonder. Looking at the world from a slightly skewed angle makes it a more magical place. As someone who loves to tell stories, I love to share them with others.” This small project has resulted in the publication of Often Overlooked to die-hard fans wanting more of Polkovitz’s stories, as well as over 20,000 views per week on its companion Facebook page.

 

21423525Us by David Nicholls
Hardcover: 416 pages
Publisher: Harper (October 28, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062365584
ISBN-13: 978-0062365583

Longlisted for the Man Booker Prize

David Nicholls brings the wit and intelligence that graced his enormously popular New York Times bestseller, One Day, to a compellingly human, deftly funny new novel about what holds marriages and families together—and what happens, and what we learn about ourselves, when everything threatens to fall apart.

Douglas Petersen may be mild-mannered, but behind his reserve lies a sense of humor that, against all odds, seduces beautiful Connie into a second date . . . and eventually into marriage. Now, almost three decades after their relationship first blossomed in London, they live more or less happily in the suburbs with their moody seventeen year-old son, Albie. Then Connie tells him she thinks she wants a divorce.

The timing couldn’t be worse. Hoping to encourage her son’s artistic interests, Connie has planned a month-long tour of European capitals, a chance to experience the world’s greatest works of art as a family, and she can’t bring herself to cancel. And maybe going ahead with the original plan is for the best anyway? Douglas is privately convinced that this landmark trip will rekindle the romance in the marriage, and might even help him to bond with Albie.

Narrated from Douglas’s endearingly honest, slyly witty, and at times achingly optimistic point of view, Us is the story of a man trying to rescue his relationship with the woman he loves, and learning how to get closer to a son who’s always felt like a stranger. Us is a moving meditation on the demands of marriage and parenthood, the regrets of abandoning youth for middle age, and the intricate relationship between the heart and the head. And in David Nicholls’s gifted hands, Douglas’s odyssey brings Europe—from the streets of Amsterdam to the famed museums of Paris, from the cafés of Venice to the beaches of Barcelona—to vivid life just as he experiences a powerful awakening of his own. Will this summer be his last as a husband, or the moment when he turns his marriage, and maybe even his whole life, around?

 

18296143The Broken by Shelley Coriell was a win from Nise’ @ Under The Boardwalk
He took her life, but left her alive.

Three years ago, reporter Kate Johnson was the first victim—and only survivor—of the Broadcast Butcher. Scarred both physically and psychologically by the brutal serial killer, Kate lives life on the run, knowing that one day, he will find her and finish what he started.

In the pursuit of justice, you sometimes have to step outside the law.

Agent Hayden Reed spends his life chasing monsters. The only way to stay sane is to detach, but the second the Broadcast Butcher case crosses his desk, Hayden knows this is the case that might just cost him his soul. To catch this vicious murderer before he strikes again, Hayden must find Kate and earn her trust. For it’s her darkest secrets that hold the key to stopping this madman once and for all . . .

Sep 182014
 
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 The Story Hour by Thrity Umrigar
Hardcover: 336 pages
Publisher: Harper (August 19, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 006225930X
ISBN-13: 978-0062259301

 

From the critically beloved, bestselling author of The World We Found and The Space Between Us, whom the New York Times Book Review calls a “perceptive and . . . piercing writer,” comes a profound, heartbreakingly honest novel about friendship, family, secrets, forgiveness, and second chances

An experienced psychologist, Maggie carefully maintains emotional distance from her patients. But when she meets a young Indian woman who tried to kill herself, her professional detachment disintegrates. Cut off from her family in India, Lakshmi is desperately lonely and trapped in a loveless marriage to a domineering man who limits her world to their small restaurant and grocery store.

Moved by her plight, Maggie treats Lakshmi in her home office for free, quickly realizing that the despondent woman doesn’t need a shrink; she needs a friend. Determined to empower Lakshmi as a woman who feels valued in her own right, Maggie abandons protocol, and soon doctor and patient have become close friends.

But while their relationship is deeply affectionate, it is also warped by conflicting expectations. When Maggie and Lakshmi open up and share long-buried secrets, the revelations will jeopardize their close bond, shake their faith in each other, and force them to confront painful choices.

Thoughts
I love books that highlight relationships between women. and this book does it with two great characters. Each woman is very different from the other, but the bond that grows between them is wonderful gift to them both.

I loved both Maggie and Lakshmi. While I did think they were both a bit broken, I did feel that Maggie was the more broken of the two and therefore she was the one I felt more sympathy toward. Lakshmi reminded me a lot of my sister who was also a Psychologist, because she too cared so much for her patients. Both women were well developed and I enjoyed following along with their friendship as it became stronger and stronger.

The author gives so much emotion to the story…friendship, love, pain, betrayal, forgiveness and much more. I enjoyed the book a lot and want to read more from this author.

Would I recommend this book? That would be a definite yes!!
 
 

f02674f365c00ad8986cd5.L._V175125534_SX200_Thrity Umrigar is the best-selling author of the novels Bombay Time, The Space Between Us, If Today Be Sweet and The Weight of Heaven. She is also the author of the memoir, First Darling of the Morning. Her books have been translated into many languages and published in numerous countries.The Space Between Us was a finalist for the PEN/Beyond Margins award, while her memoir was a finalist for the Society of Midland Authors award. Thrity was recently awarded the Cleveland Arts Prize for midcareer artists.Thrity was born in Bombay, India and came to the U.S. when she was 21. As a Parsi child attending a Catholic school in a predominantly Hindu country, sh had the kind of schizophrenic and cosmopolitan childhood that has served her well in her life as a writer. Accused by teachers and parents alike of being a daydreaming, absent-minded child, she grew up lost in the fictional worlds created by Steinbeck, Hemingway, Woolf and Faulkner. She would emerge long enough from these books to create her own fictional and poetic worlds. Encouraged by her practical-minded parents to get an undergraduate degree in business, Thrity survived business school by creating a drama club and writing, directing and acting in plays. Her first short stories, essays and poems were published in national magazines and newspapers in India at age fifteen.

After earning a M.A. in journalism Thrity worked for several years working as an award-winning reporter, columnist and magazine writer in America. She also earned a Ph.D. in English. In 1999, Thrity won a one-year Nieman Fellowship to Harvard, which is given to mid-career journalists.

While at Harvard, Thrity wrote Bombay Time. The publication and success of the novel allowed her to make a career change and in 2002 she accepted a teaching position at Case Western Reserve University, where she teaches creative writing, journalism and literature. She also does occasional freelance pieces for national publications and has written for the Washington Post’s and the Boston Globe’s book pages.

Here is the link to The Story Hour on Goodreads.
Some purchase links: AmazonIndieBound, and Barnes & Noble.
Here’s the link to Umrigar’s website and Facebook page.
Here is the tour schedule
tlc_logo
Sep 162014
 

20306815

Ballroom by Alice Simpson

Hardcover: 304 pages
Publisher: Harper (September 23, 2014)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062323032
ISBN-13: 978-0062323033

Told in interconnecting stories, Ballroom is a beautifully crafted debut novel—reminiscent of the works of Elizabeth Strout and Jennifer Haigh—about a group of strangers united by a desire to escape their complicated lives, if only for a few hours each week, in a faded New York City dance hall

Time has eroded the glamour of the Ballroom, but at the end of the 1990s, a small crowd of loyal patrons still makes its way past the floor-to-ceiling columns which frame the once grand hall each Sunday evening. Sweeping across the worn parquet floor under a peeling indigo ceiling, these men and women succumb to the magic of the music, looking for love and connection, eager to erase the drab reality of their complicated lives.

Nearly forty and still single, Sarah Dreyfus is desperate for love and sure she’ll find it with debonair Gabriel Katz, a dazzling peacock who dances to distract himself from his crumbling marriage. Tired of the bachelor life, Joseph believes that his yearning for a wife and family will be fulfilled—if only he can get Sarah to notice him. Besotted with beautiful young Maria Rodriguez, elderly dance instructor Harry Korn knows they can find happiness together. Maria, one of the Ballroom’s stars, has a dream of her own, a passion her broken-hearted father refuses to accept or understand.

As the rhythms of the Ballroom ebb and flow through these characters’ hearts, their fates come together in touching, unexpected ways.

 

Thoughts
The characters in this book are varied in age, from the young to the not so young. Each of them are connected because they each spend Sunday evening dancing at the ballroom. Each have their own desires and problems, and they want to find someone that will fulfill a void in their lives.

I thought the stories in this book were interesting, but some were a little to “descriptive” for my taste if you know what I mean. I was interested in the characters and wanted to see how the story ended for each of them, but I never really felt a bond with them like I wanted to feel. The writing is good so that kept me wanting to keep reading.

Each chapter is titled by one of the characters names, the first one being Harry Korn. Is that a great name or what? Also, at the beginning of each chapter is a ballroom or dance quote. Chapter 1 like I said is Harry Korn (just wanted to say his name again) and the quote is:

The dancing-master should be in the highest sense of the term a gentleman; he should be thoroughly schooled in the laws of etiquette; he should be a man of good moral character; he should be a physiologist; he should be a reformer.

Thomas E. Hill, Evils of the Ball, 1883

 

While I enjoyed this book, I wanted the book to make me “feel” more than I did. Still, I would recommend this to anyone who finds the blurb interesting, and would read more from this author.

Here is the link for Ballroom on Goodreads, Amazon, IndieBound, and Barnes & Noble.

Alice-SimpsonAlice Simpson can be reached through her website or Facebook.
 
Here’s the tour schedule
 
 
 
 
tlc_logo

Sep 162014
 

sparrow-Readalong

We’re at the halfway point in Trish’s The Sparrow Readalong and I can’t believe how much I like this book. Why did I want to join this readalong then, because I think all book lovers should try something out of their comfort zone once in a while.

1. How is The Sparrow matching up with your expectations going into the book? Are you surprised by anything?
I was expecting it to be a lot more Sci-Fi-y than it is.  The author did a great job of not overdoing it, which I think makes it a great choice for not only sci-fi lovers but for everyone.

2. Do you feel the switching back and forth between past and present to be effective?
Yes! I think it’s keeping me more on the edge of my seat, and more alert to what’s going on in both the past and the present.

3. Which characters do you want to hug and squeeze? Any you’d like to strangle?
I like all the characters. They each have their own personalities, and whether that’s good or bad, they make the book what it is and so I like them all. I might change my mind by the time I’m finished with the book though since I’m still in the “I can’t believe I like this book so much” phase.

4. Any other thoughts? #copoutquestion
Just that I’m so glad Trish choose to do a readalong of this book. I’ve never read anything quite like it and would have never picked it up on my own. Then I would have missed out on a terrific book. I can’t wait to read the rest of it, and hope the ending is as good as I think it will be.

Sep 142014
 

mmb-300x282

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

 

Every Wednesday for Books That Caught Our Eye, Serena, Leslie and I will each share 2 books that grabbed our attention from today’s Mailbox Monday post. We hope you’ll join us by posting a comment letting us know the books that caught your eye.

 

downloadWhiny Whiny Rhino by McBoop

Can Tiny Tiny Rhino have a fun day?
Or will all of his whining get in the way?

If you’ve ever been worried to try something new,
then Whiny Whiny Rhino is the book for you!

From creative team McBoop, comes the story of the whiny rhino with the big head and the even bigger imagination.

 

Sep 092014
 

20483038

Someone Else’s Love Story by Joshilyn Jackson

Hardcover: 320 pages
Publisher: William Morrow; First Edition edition (November 19, 2013)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0062105655
ISBN-13: 978-0062105653

At twenty-one, Shandi Pierce is juggling finishing college, raising her delightful three-year-old genius son Natty, and keeping the peace between her eternally warring, long-divorced Catholic mother and Jewish father. She’s got enough complications without getting caught in the middle of a stick-up in a gas station mini-mart and falling in love with a great wall of a man named William Ashe, who willingly steps between the armed robber and her son.

Shandi doesn’t know that her blond god Thor has his own complications. When he looked down the barrel of that gun he believed it was destiny: It’s been one year to the day since a tragic act of physics shattered his universe. But William doesn’t define destiny the way other people do. A brilliant geneticist who believes in science and numbers, destiny to him is about choice.

Now, he and Shandi are about to meet their so-called destinies head on, in a funny, charming, and poignant novel about science and miracles, secrets and truths, faith and forgiveness,; about a virgin birth, a sacrifice, and a resurrection; about falling in love, and learning that things aren’t always what they seem—or what we hope they will be. It’s a novel about discovering what we want and ultimately finding what we need.

 

Thoughts
This is a hard review for me to write since even though I mostly liked the book, there were a few parts I didn’t like.

The characters were well developed and each had their own personalities, but on the whole they seemed like an odd mix. There was a lot of humor throughout and that took a bit of the edge off of the heavy parts of the book, and I loved that.

It felt at times that there was to much going on, and it also seemed like the book was drawn out a bit too much. I would have probably liked it more if it had been shorter.

I liked the ending and thought it fit the book.

Although I didn’t love this book as much as I though I would, I’m still glad I read it because the author does have a great writing style that made me want to keep reading.

I have a few other Jackson books that I haven’t read yet, and I liked this enough to want to read them.

I  would recommend this book to other book lovers, and I would give it a 4 star since there was more I liked than didn’t like.

Find the book on Goodreads, AmazonIndieBound, and Barnes & Noble.
Links for Joshilyn Jackson: WebsiteFacebook pageTwitter.
Here’s the tour schedule
tlc_logo
Sep 092014
 

get-fit-tuesday-20141-300x104

How I did last week:
Endurance: I walked every day
Balance:  series of standing balance exercises 3 times
Flexibility: I stretched everday
Upper Body Strength:  3 times
Lower Body Strength: 3 times
Deep Breathing: everyday

Goals:
Endurance: I walked every day
Balance: standing balance exercises 4 times
Flexibility: everyday
Upper Body Strength:  3 times
Lower Body Strength: 3 times
Deep Breathing: everyday
Eat meatless at least twice this week: 2 times
Drink at least 80 oz. of water a day: only 4 days

SparkPeople Challenges:
September 2014 Monthly Fitness Challenge (800 workout minuets):
Fitness Minutes Goal ~ 800
Fitness Minutes left to go ~ 510
Total Minutes Achieved ~ 290

These are my new SparkPeople Challenges:
(these just started Sunday)
Without One Weekly Challenge
I’ve had a habit for years (got it from my mom) I eat popcorn every night while I watch tv.
So my challenge is: No popcorn for a week!
9/7: no popcorn
9/8: no popcorn

On Track Bi-Monthly Exercise and Food Options Challenge
9/7
Food Option: no bread
Exercise Option: strength exercise for 10 minutes

9/8
Food Option: no rice/pasta
Exercise Option: strength exercise for 10 minutes

 

I’m linking to Readers’ Workout

Sep 072014
 

mmb-300x282

Mailbox Monday is the gathering place for readers to share the books that came in their mailbox during the last week.

Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

 

Every Wednesday for Books That Caught Our Eye, Serena, Leslie and I will each share 2 books that grabbed our attention from today’s Mailbox Monday post. We hope you’ll join us by posting a comment letting us know the books that caught your eye.

My mailbox was a bit busier than it’s been in quite a while. Here’s what I got:

21819472Swann’s Lake Of Despair by Charles Salzberg (review)
When rare photos, a scandalous diary, and a beautiful woman all go missing at once, the stage is set for three challenging cases for Henry Swann. It begins with an offer to partner up with his slovenly, unreliable frenemy, Goldblatt. The disbarred lawyer-turned-“facilitator” would provide the leads and muscle, while Swann would do all the fancy footwork. A lost diary by a free-loving Jazz Age flapper is worth enough to someone that Swann takes a beat down on an abandoned boardwalk. Pilfered photos of Marilyn Monroe propel him deep into the past of an alcoholic shutterbug, his wife; and he’s hired to search for a lonely writer’s runaway girlfriend. The cases converge and collide in a finale that lifts the curtain on crucial, deadly facts of life for everyone including Swann himself.

 

21882294Fail by Rick Skwiot (tour)
Exiled to the city’s tough North Side, disgraced St. Louis Police Lieutenant Carlo Gabriel wants nothing more than to return to the headquarters hierarchy. To get his wish, all he has to do is track down the missing husband of the mayor’s press secretary. Instead he unearths a morass of corruption, educational malpractice, and greed that threatens to consign thousands of at-risk youths to the mean streets of America’s erstwhile murder capital. Worse, it’s the kind of information that could get a cop killed. Fighting for his life and his honor, Gabriel ultimately must make a choice that could affect not only his own future, but also that of the city and its top leaders.

 

20306815Ballroom by Alice Simpson  (for tour)
Told in interconnecting stories, Ballroom is a beautifully crafted debut novel—reminiscent of the works of Elizabeth Strout and Jennifer Haigh—about a group of strangers united by a desire to escape their complicated lives, if only for a few hours each week, in a faded New York City dance hall

Time has eroded the glamour of the Ballroom, but at the end of the 1990s, a small crowd of loyal patrons still makes its way past the floor-to-ceiling columns which frame the once grand hall each Sunday evening. Sweeping across the worn parquet floor under a peeling indigo ceiling, these men and women succumb to the magic of the music, looking for love and connection, eager to erase the drab reality of their complicated lives.

Nearly forty and still single, Sarah Dreyfus is desperate for love and sure she’ll find it with debonair Gabriel Katz, a dazzling peacock who dances to distract himself from his crumbling marriage. Tired of the bachelor life, Joseph believes that his yearning for a wife and family will be fulfilled—if only he can get Sarah to notice him. Besotted with beautiful young Maria Rodriguez, elderly dance instructor Harry Korn knows they can find happiness together. Maria, one of the Ballroom’s stars, has a dream of her own, a passion her broken-hearted father refuses to accept or understand.

 

18509633Good Chinese Wife: A Love Affair with China Gone Wrong by Susan Blumberg-Kason (sent to me by Trish @ Love, Laughter, And A Touch Of Insanity ~ Thanks so much Trish!)

A stunning memoir of an intercultural marriage gone wrong.

When Susan, a shy Midwesterner in love with Chinese culture, started graduate school in Hong Kong, she quickly fell for Cai, the Chinese man of her dreams. As they exchanged vows, Susan thought she’d stumbled into an exotic fairy tale, until she realized Cai–and his culture–where not what she thought.

In her riveting memoir, Susan recounts her struggle to be the perfect traditional “Chinese” wife to her increasingly controlling and abusive husband. With keen insight and heart-wrenching candor, she confronts the hopes and hazards of intercultural marriage, including dismissing her own values and needs to save her relationship and protect her newborn son, Jake. But when Cai threatens to take Jake back to China for good, Susan must find the courage to stand up for herself, her son, and her future.

Moving between rural China and the bustling cities of Hong Kong and San Francisco, Good Chinese Wife is an eye-opening look at marriage and family in contemporary China and America and an inspiring testament to the resilience of a mother’s love–across any border.

 

Sep 062014
 

7834717

The I Hate To Cook Book by Peg Braken

Hardcover: 224 pages
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing; 50 Anv edition (July 26, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0446545929
ISBN-13: 978-0446545921

“There are two kinds of people in this world: the ones who don’t cook out of and have NEVER cooked out of THE I HATE TO COOK BOOK, and the other kind…The I HATE TO COOK people consist mainly of those who find other things more interesting and less fattening, and so they do it as seldom as possible. Today there is an Annual Culinary Olympics, with hundreds of cooks from many countries ardently competing. But we who hate to cook have had our own Olympics for years, seeing who can get out of the kitchen the fastest and stay out the longest.”
– Peg Bracken

Philosopher’s Chowder. Skinny Meatloaf. Fat Man’s Shrimp. Immediate Fudge Cake. These are just a few of the beloved recipes from Peg Bracken’s classic I HATE TO COOK BOOK. Written in a time when women were expected to have full, delicious meals on the table for their families every night, Peg Bracken offered women who didn’t revel in this obligation an alternative: quick, simple meals that took minimal effort but would still satisfy.

50 years later, times have certainly changed – but the appeal of THE I HATE TO COOK BOOK hasn’t.

This book is for everyone, men and women alike, who wants to get from cooking hour to cocktail hour in as little time as possible.

Thoughts
I used to love to cook and bake. Now I only do it to keep us from starving and going broke from eating out.

This book is full of recipes that were popular in the 60’s. The book has many recipes that are quick, easy and have just a few ingredients, which are my favorite kinds of recipes. Many of the recipes use a “cream of” soup, but it would be easy to use healthier choices like “low fat” and “low sodium”, if you’re eating healthy. To make this cookbook even better, there is humor spread throughout it.

You might have to figure out other ways to make some of them too, since the appliances we use in the kitchen have changed some. Overall though, I think these recipes could be adapted so that they are easy and tasty.

I plan on making more recipes from the book, but so far I’ve only made one:

Florida Dip (page 119)
1 large rip avocado
3 oz. cream cheese
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
dash of Tabasco, salt & pepper
2 oz. can of diced anchovies
Mash the avocado until it’s lumpless.
Blend in everything else.

 

100_3945100_3961100_3948

Ok, I know you don’t “cook” this recipe, but since I live in Florida. and it’s called Florida Dip, I wanted to try it since I’ve never had it.

First of all, I used more than a dash of Tabasco. I used more like 1 tablespoon. I didn’t use anchovies because they are, well, just plain nasty. And I hear from the hubs who likes them once in a while with pizza (yuck!) that they are really really salty, even though I rince them a few times. Anyway, I can’t stand to look at them much less touch them ( always use a fork), so I definitely don’t want them in my mouth.

This was quick and easy to make, and while we all liked it ok, I think I’ll make it a few more times, using different amounts of the ingredients, until I get it just right. I want to love it, not just like it, and it’s not quite there yet.

 

I’m linking to:

Cook-it-up-ChallengeHosted @ Love, Laughter, And A Touch Of Insanity. Pull those cookbooks off the shelves or check out new cookbooks from the library. You make the rules!

 

wkendcookingiconHosted @ Beth Fish Reads. Share anything book related whether it’s a Book, cookbook, movie, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, quotations, photographs.

 

 

Sep 032014
 

wondrous2

Wondrous Words Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Kathy (BermudaOnion), where you can share new words that you’ve encountered or spotlight words you love. Feel free to get creative!

I found one word while reading The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell

Proselytize:  “The Jesuit scientists went to learn, not to proselytize,”

verb
1: to induce someone to convert to one’s faith
2: to recruit someone to join one’s party, institution, or cause

First Known Use: 1679

Sep 022014
 

get-fit-tuesday-20141

Monday (for the third week since we found the PK4 pain reliever spray) the hubs, son and I went back to the Farm/Flea Market to see if he was there again, and he was. We bought two 2 oz. bottles and a 4 oz. bottle. I’m keeping one of the 2 oz. bottles in my purse so I’ll have it if I’m in town and my leg starts to hurt. The other 2 oz. I put in my exercise room for when I want to get on the treadmill, recumbent bike or elliptical. The 4 oz. is for whoever needs it. My husband has shoulder pain and I sprayed some on him yesterday before he went to bed and he didn’t hurt all night!

How I did last week:
Endurance: I walked every day and did my recumbent bike once
Balance: I did chi-gong once and a series of standing balance exercises 4 times
Flexibility: I stretched everday
Upper Body Strength: weights 3 times
Lower Body Strength: squats 3 times
Deep Breathing: everyday

This week:
I’ve already posted my goals for the SparkPeople Monthly Fitness Challenge. I’m going for 800 minutes in September, but hope to do more, especially since I have the spray for my knee. It feels great to be able to walk without pain!!

I also want to eat meatless at least twice this week, and get at least 80 oz. of water a day.

 

I’m linking to Readers’ Workout

Sep 012014
 

sparrow readalong

Host by Trish @ Love, Laughter, And A Touch Of Insanity

The Details:
Begin: September 1st
Halfway: September 15th (through ch 19, pg 201 of my copy)
Finish: September 30th

Today starts The Sparrow Readalong and I’m so excited to read this “out of my comfort genre” book! I’ve heard so many people rave about this book, say they’ve re-read it, and even re-re-read it, so I’m eager to find out for myself just how amazing it is.

Here’s the blurb
In 2019, humanity finally finds proof of extraterrestrial life when a listening post in Puerto Rico picks up exquisite singing from a planet which will come to be known as Rakhat. While United Nations diplomats endlessly debate a possible first contact mission, the Society of Jesus quietly organizes an eight-person scientific expedition of its own. What the Jesuits find is a world so beyond comprehension that it will lead them to question the meaning of being “human.” Words like “provocative” and “compelling” will come to mind as you read this shocking novel about first contact with a race that creates music akin to both poetry and prayer.