Note about my Reviews

Dear Authors: The reviews in this blog are only personal opinions. I have absolutely no background in literature, writing or reviewing. I am a Librarian (actually a Library Technician for those who care OR know the difference) with a love for a good story. The opinions in the reviews are ONLY my OPINIONS. I am not commenting on the writers ability since well -- I am not a writer and never will be. If you are the author of any of the books reviewed here, my opinion is just that and not a judgment against you!

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Cook. Nourish. Glow.: 120 Recipes That Will Help You Lose Weight, Look Younger, and Feel Healthier by Amelia Freer

Cook. Nourish. Glow.: 120 Recipes That Will Help You Lose Weight, Look Younger, and Feel Healthier
by Amelia Freer
Appetite (Random House)
ISBN: 978-0-14-753019-6
Buy from Indigo

Description: The eagerly anticipated companion to the #1 international bestseller Eat. Nourish. Glow., filled with fabulous recipes for making a whole-foods based lifestyle easy and delicious.

In her international bestseller Eat. Nourish. Glow., celebrity nutritionist Amelia Freer introduced her whole-foods philosophy and provided ten easy steps to help you look younger, lose weight, and feel great. In Cook. Nourish. Glow. she builds on the handful of recipes in her previous book, offering 100 wholesome dishes and meals illustrated with beautiful photos and step-by-step visuals.

Amelia’s simple but delicious recipes and tips make living a healthy lifestyle effortless. From preparing and using wholesome pantry staples to whipping together on the go meals and snacks; cooking gut-friendly foods to baking a few “naughty” treats, Amelia equips you with the skills and knowledge you need to cook with confidence and improve your health with every bite.
The Good Stuff

  • Excellent practical advice about eating healthier and getting away from pre packaged meals.
  • Lots of variety of recipes
  • Inspirational and honest
  • Fabulous pictures of the recipes
  • Recipes are easy to read
  • Loved the idea of preserving fresh herbs by putting them in an oil or freezing them in oil.  So very practical for this part of Canada (really hard to grow stuff here unless you have the space and money to build yourself a green house)
  • Lots of uses for Coconut much to my husbands dismay

The Not So Good Stuff

  • Recipes include a lot of ingredients not readily available and not affordable for most families in Calgary
  • Hard to make a lot of the changes when you have small children
  • A lot of prep work and ingredients for those who have an extremely busy lifestyle
  • Not really important but this book gets overlooked as the cover isn't appealing to most - trust me I work in a bookstore, no one looks at this one
  • The index sucks - seriously badly done 
  • Although recipes easy to read, they are not set up well in terms of prep work.  

Favorite Recipes

  • Spicy Carrot Salad
  • Homemade Coconut Butter
  • Chocolate Cupcakes with Whipped Almond Butter and Chia Seed Jam
  • Avacado Souffle
  • Fragrant Broth

3 Dewey's

I received this from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review

Very Brief Review: Doctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak

Doctor ZhivagoDoctor Zhivago by Boris Pasternak
My rating: 1 of 5 stars

One of the most painfully boring books I ever had to read. Yes I know its a classic and I am probably not intelligent enough to understand it, but I won't lie. I was bored, often confused on who they were talking about and I didn't really like any of the characters. I didn't understand the fascination with Laura, and quite frankly thought Tonya was far more intriguing. Even watched the movie and this is one case in which I enjoyed the movie more than the book. That being said, I didn't love the movie either. I actually wanted to create a Staff UnPick sticker for this one. Positive note though as we read this for book club, we had a fabulous Russian dinner and I learned to appreciate good vodka. I made a fabulous Stalin's Georgian Lamb Stew. The recipe came from a book by Jason Matthews called Palace of Treason.

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City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong

City of the Lost
by Kelley Armstrong
Random House Canada (Penguin Random House)
ISBN: 978-0-345-81561-3
Buy from Indigo - or Chapters Shawnessy ; )

DescriptionCasey Duncan once killed a man and got away with it. Since then she’s become a talented police detective, tethered only to her job, her best friend, Diana, and the occasional evening with her sexy, no-strings-attached ex-con lover, Kurt. But then Diana's abusive ex finds her again, despite all Casey has done to help her disappear. And Casey’s own dark past begins to catch up with her. The two women need to run—and Diana’s heard of a place where they won’t be found, a town especially for people like them…

The Good Stuff

  • Once again Kelley  has shown us that she is one of the most gifted storytellers of our generation
  • Sucks you in from the very first sentence and keeps you hooked to the very last word
  • Strong female lead and intriguing, flawed yet human secondary characters
  • Fabulous use of dark humour
  • Mystery kept me guessing till the very end
  • There is a TARDIS joke - yes I know I am a dork, but it made me smile
  • Canadian setting - again this is something us Canadians gets excited about as we are always over shadowed by the U.S.
  • Enjoyed the scene with Brent and the dialogue about the Habs and the Leafs - sort of like a conversation between me and my habs loving husband (I am so ashamed lol)
  • Fabulous dialogue
  • Armstrong really makes you feel part of the landscape, I swear I could hear the wolves howling and see the fox.  
  • Dark and creepy 

The Not so Good Stuff

  • I stayed up way too late reading
  • Didn't completely buy the ending of the mystery, but it still works 
  • Have a sudden urge to go to the Yukon

Favorite Quotes/Passages

"The core concept is simple: give no one any cause to come after you. We're even supposed to overpay our taxes, as painful as that might be."

"Some older cops bristle at the term "police brutality."  Intimidation, they call it. Or, as others would say "speaking the only language assholes understand."

"They took away your toys because you wanted to be a vet.  They made you stitch up your own goddamned leg. You do realize that's not normal, don't you?"

5 Dewey's

I received this from Penguin Random House in exchange for an honest review

Brief Review: The Lake House by Kate Morton

The Lake HouseThe Lake House by Kate Morton
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This one was truly delightful, even though the ending was a wee bit too coincidental fr my taste. But not going to lie, it didn't bother me too much because it was so sweet (yes I am a bit of a sucker for happy endings ) Loved how author weaved the past and the present together. The mystery of what happened had me guessing a lot and I didn't figure it out till just a little before author revealed it. Characters were damaged, yet likeable with realistic development. I found myself sad at the end, because I had felt a connection to everyone and now they were all going away. To me that is a sign of a good story when you feel you are part of the world and the characters feel like someone you know. It was especially good as it was my first book after making it through Doctor Zhivago. As I listened to this one, would also like to add, the narrator was brilliant and I just loved her accent and the way she said Edevane

Favorite Quotes

Although she’d kept the fact hidden beneath a veneer of stubborn indifference, it had bothered Alice for a long time that she fell so far short of her mother’s expectations. She’d looked in the mirror and despaired of her too-tall body, her unobliging mouse-brown hair, her preference for the company of made-up people over real ones.

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Brief Review: Undivided by Neal Shusterman

UnDivided (Unwind, #4)UnDivided by Neal Shusterman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Fabulous conclusion to an intriguing series. I had during the first book about the reasons for unwinding but the author slowly brings you into why. Incredible world building, intriguing characters who develop into flesh and blood people that you can imagine are real. This one was a bit of a nail biter with plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes. Highly recommend this series to teen readers as the story will feel like something they are going through. The discussions you could have about this series are unending, especially moral issues. Positively brilliant.

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Brief Review: Unsouled by Neal Shusterman

UnSouled (Unwind, #3)UnSouled by Neal Shusterman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Really enjoying this series and all of the fascinating discussions you could have about so many topics. Excellent character development and have appreciated the development of the back story on how this world came to be. Will definitely appeal to teen readers, especially the male reader. Still have a hard time understanding on how a parent could choose to have their child unwound no matter how much of little shits they are. Guess that makes me a decent parent. Some fabulous uses of dark humour and again love the moral discussions you could have about this series.

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