Book Reviews, Crafting, Recipes ~ Anything and Everything in between.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Booking Through Thursday ~March 31

Well here we are the last day of March.  I cannot believe the first quarter of the year is finished.  I can't really decide if March is going out like a lion or a lamb in my neck of the woods.  We had snow this morning (not a storm by any means) and it is cold.  So maybe out like a quite lion or a very loud annoying lamb. 

Should you wish to participate please visit Booking Through Thursday.

It's easy to play along, just answer the following question:

What’s the oddest thing you’ve ever read? (You know, something NOT a book, magazine, short story, poem or article.)

I have to say that I've had to think about this one for a while.  I read anything I can get my hands on, I'm not really sure my answer is odd but here we go. 

Popsicle sticks, lots of fun you get to eat the popsicle and then there is a quote or riddle on the stick.

Enjoy the last day of March, hopefully April will bring more spring like weather.

Signing off till next time.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Musing Monday ~ Mar 28

Musing Mondays is hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading.

This week’s Musing asks…

Do you read books while you…
…eat? … bathe?… watch movies or TV?… listen to music?… While you’re on the computer?

I cannot read while on the computer, while listening to music or while watching movies or TV, because of lack of concentration, when I'm reading I like to pay attention to my book and my book only.  Most of my reading is done in bed just before sleep, if the book is really good (page turner) I will read at any time I can get.  While cooking and eating.  I don't usually read a book at the supper table, that is the time for family, but I will read at work while I'm eating my lunch.
Signing off till next time.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Meet Me on Monday ~ 3/28/11


1. Crunchy or soft tacos?
Definitely soft, the crunchy ones fall apart and all the stuffing falls out.
2. Do you scrapbook?
I don't scrapbook.
3. Do you take any daily medications?
Yes unfortunately.
4. What is your favorite sound?
The sound of the ocean and the call of a loon.
5. Where were you born?
I was born in Ajax, Ontario, Canada
Enjoy your week.
Signing off till next time.Photobucket

Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Hunger Games

The Hunger Games (The Hunger Games, #1)The Hunger Games
by Suzanne Collins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Finished March 25, 2011

From the Publisher

In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlaying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one girl and one boy between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV. Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she is forced to represent her district in the Games. But Katniss has also resolved to outwit the creators of the games. To do that she will have to be the last person standing at the end of the deadly ordeal, and that will take every ounce of strength and cunning she has.

Loved this book. It's being added to my favourites and to be reread list.

Signing off till next time.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Still Alice

Still Alice

Still Alice by Lisa Genova
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Borrowed from the Library
Finished: March 15, 2011

From the Publisher

Alice Howland, happily married with three grown children and a house on the Cape, is a celebrated Harvard professor at the height of her career when she notices a forgetfulness creeping into her life. As confusion starts to cloud her thinking and her memory begins to fail her, she receives a devastating diagnosis: early onset Alzheimer''s disease. Fiercely independent, Alice struggles to maintain her lifestyle and live in the moment, even as her sense of self is being stripped away. In turns heartbreaking, inspiring and terrifying, Still Alice captures in remarkable detail what''s it''s like to literally lose your mind...

Reminiscent of A Beautiful Mind, Ordinary People and The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, Still Alice packs a powerful emotional punch and marks the arrival of a strong new voice in fiction.

My Thoughts

Wonderful story.

Alice just cannot find the word she is looking for during her lecture, it's just on the tip of her tongue but she cannot grasp it. Items are being forgotten. Alice is getting lost in her own neighbourhood, she knows there is something wrong and doctors are her only hope to figure out exactly what is happening to her.

Alice is given the answer she is looking for ~ Alzheimer's Disease.

Still Alice takes us through Alice's mental decline that her disease is inevitably to cause and what this means to her future and how it will effect the members of her family.

I'm a little late reading this novel. I remember when it first debuted, the last thing I wanted to do was read a book about a woman with Alzheimer's Disease and unfortunately for me I missed out for a few years. Just recently Lisa Genova's book Left Neglected was published, I read this book and loved it and felt I should give Still Alice a try. I'm so glad I finally gave this book a chance.
Signing off till next time.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

E-Reader Giveaway

Monica at Bibliophilic Book Blog is giving away an e-reader of your choice to enter this giveaway please enter here.

Good luck.

400 Miles Fitness Challenge 2011 3/6 - 3/12

This fitness challenge is hosted by Ellie at Books, Fitness & Other Stuff hop on over there for more information, just follow the link picture above.

My fitness:
Tuesday March 8, 2011 WATP DVD = 2 miles
Wednesday March 9, 2011 WATP DVD = 1 mile
Thursday March 10, 2011 WATP DVD = 1.5 miles

This week: 4.5 miles
Total to date: 20/400

Walk strong. Signing off till next time.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

2011 ~ Book Reviews

I'm trying to keep my Blog as organized as I can.  I've only been blogging for a few months and when I started I figured there would be lots to learn along the way. 

I see how I've been organizing my Books Reviews could be a problem down the road so I thought I'd change things a little.

This is where I'll be keeping track of my books read, listed and reviewed, for 2001 anyways.  I've set a personal goal to read at least 40 books this year.

  1. Room  by Emma Donoghue
  2. A Dangerous Fortune by Ken Follett
  3. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
  4. Out from Boneville by Jeff Smith
  5. The Great Cow Race by Jeff Smith
  6. Eyes of the Storm by Jeff Smith
  7. Dragonslayer by Jeff Smith
  8. Rock Jaw by Jeff Smith
  9. Old Man's Cave by Jeff Smith
  10. Ghost Circles by Jeff Smith
  11. Treasure Hunters by Jeff Smith
  12. Crown of Horns by Jeff Smith
  13. Rose by Jeff Smith
  14. The Winter Sea by Susanna Kearsly  Did Not Finish
  15. The Passage by Justin Cronin            Got to page 8, not a book for me.
  16. Left Neglected by Lisa Genova
  17. The Pilot's Wife by Anita Shreve
  18. Still Alice by Lisa Genova
  19. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins 
  20. Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult
  21. To Find and to Keep by Serena Yates
  22. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins    
  23. Mockingjay  by Suzanne Collins     
  24. The Midwife of Venice by Roberta Rich
  25. Song of the Silk Road by Mingmei, Yip
  26. Robopocolypse by Daniel H. Wilson
  27. The Other Life by Ellen Meister
  28. The Gravesavers by Sheree Fitch
  29. Trade Winds by Christina Courtenay
  30. The Forever Queen by Helen Hollick  ***Didn't finish ***
  31. The Deception of Lyme by Carrie Bebris
  32. The 36 Hour Day by Nancy Mace
  33. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon   *** re-read***
  34. Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo
  35. Songs of Love and Death by George R. R. Martin
  36. Making Rounds with Oscar by David Dosa
  37. The Alzheimer's Answer Book by Charles Atkins
  38. Beyond the Highland Mist by Karen Marie Moning  ***Re-Read***
  39. To Tame a Highland Warrior by Karen Marie Moning ***Re-Read ***
  40. 311 Pelican Court by Debbie Macomber
  41. The Walking Dead ~ Days Gone Bye by Robert Kirkman
  42. The Walking Dead ~ Miles Behind Us
  43. The Walking Dead ~ Safety Behind Bars
  44. The Walking Dead ~ The Hearts Desire

 Signing off till next time.

The Pilot's Wife

The Pilot's WifeThe Pilot's Wife by Anita Shreve
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Finished: March 10, 2011
Edition: Trade Paper Back
ISBN: 0-316-78990-9

Back of Book
A pilot's wife is taught to be prepared for the late-night knock at the door.  But when Kathryn Lyons receives word that a plane flown by her husband, Jack, has exploded near the coast of Ireland, she confronts the unfathomable - one startling revelation at a time.  Soon drawn into a maelstrom of publicity fueled by rumors that Jack led a secret life, Kathryn sets out to learn who her husband really was, whatever that knowledge might cost.  Her search propels this taut, impassioned novel as it movingly explores the question,  How well can we ever really know another person?

About the Author
Anita Shreve has taught at Amherst college and is the recipient of the PEN/L. L. Winship Award and the New England Book Award for fiction.  She lives in western Massachusetts with her husband and family.

Why I Read This Book
I purchased this book back in 1998 because it was featured on Oprah. It got lost in the shuffle and ended up on my "to be read shelf", well actually one of many.

I promised myself that I would raid my book shelves at least once a month and slowly start to read the books that have been neglected for years.

The Pilot's Wife has graced my shelves for 13 years and I'm most pleased that I finally read it and have found myself a new favourite author.

My Thoughts
Reading this book was a pleasant surprise and not at all what I was expecting. There were many twists and turns, gripping my attention with every turning of the page.

The only downside to this book is that it ended when it did.

Happy Reading, Signing off till next time.

Library Thursday ~ March 10

Library Thursday Blog Hop is hosted by Lazy Girl Reads.  Should you wish to participate please follow the picture link above.

I'm not usually one to visit the library.  New books are published and I'm to impatient to wait on the hold list for the book.  I'd spend hours at the local book store and mega dollars, leaving with stacks of books.  Pick one or two books to read, never finishing the stack before there were more books to purchase.  Probably like many of you, my house is full of "to be read" books.  The books took over and my husband (who does like to read) asked kindly if I could make some changes.  First I purchased a Kobo (reading device)  purchased books will now take up space in my computer, not the floor space of multiple rooms and I swore I would start to use the library and only purchase when it was absolutely necessary.  LOL to that comment.
So that being said, I have many books on hold at the library, and in some cases I'm the 100 th or so person in line.

I'm pleased to say that I received an e-mail today announcing that a book has been placed on the hold shelf for me and I will be stopping by later to pick it up.

The closest library for me is in the local mall.

The book waiting to be picked up is.......

Still Alice by Lisa Genova

Happy Reading everyone.  Signing off till next time.


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

WWW Wednesdays ~ March 9

Hosted by MizB at  Should Be Reading.

To play along, just answer the following 3 questions.

What are you currently reading?

The Pilot's Wife

What did you recently finish reading?

LEFT neglected

What do you think you’ll read next?


Signing off till next time.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

LEFT Neglected

Book:    LEFT neglected
Author:  Lisa Genova
Edition:  E-book
Finished:  March 5, 2011


Please visit the Still Alice Website to learn more about this author.


Sarah Nickerson is like any other career-driven supermom in Welmont, the affluent Boston suburb where she leads a hectic but charmed life with her husband Bob, faithful nanny, and three children-Lucy, Charlie, and nine-month-old Linus.

Between recruiting the best and brightest minds as the vice president of human resources at Berkley Consulting; shuttling the kids to soccer, day care, and piano lessons; convincing her son's teacher that he may not, in fact, have ADD; and making it home in time for dinner, it's a wonder this over-scheduled, over-achieving Harvard graduate has time to breathe.

A self-confessed balloon about to burst, Sarah miraculously manages every minute of her life like an air traffic controller. Until one fateful day, while driving to work and trying to make a phone call, she looks away from the road for one second too long. In the blink of an eye, all the rapidly moving parts of her jam-packed life come to a screeching halt.

A traumatic brain injury completely erases the left side of her world, and for once, Sarah relinquishes control to those around her, including her formerly absent mother. Without the ability to even floss her own teeth, she struggles to find answers about her past and her uncertain future.

Now, as she wills herself to regain her independence and heal, Sarah must learn that her real destiny-her new, true life-may in fact lie far from the world of conference calls and spreadsheets. And that a happiness and peace greater than all the success in the world is close within reach, if only she slows down long enough to notice.


If you are a cell phone user please do not use it while driving.

I purchased this book with the gift card my husband gave me for Christmas.  I did not read Lisa's first novel, Still Alice, but I am definitely interested now.  Also anxious for her third novel Love Anthony expected in 2013.

Left Neglected was an exceptionally, fast paced novel that grabbed my attention right away.

Sarah is a career woman who doesn't have enough time for her three young children, sometimes only getting enough time to read a book before they are put to bed.  Her husband doesn't have much time for family either.  The title definitely describes how little time these parents have for their children as well as describing the condition Sarah is left with after her accident.  An accident that would not have happened if Sarah wasn't  pressed for time because of her career.

Having read this book I clearly have an idea of what it would be like to live with Left Neglected.

The only complaint I have about this book is that the author didn't explain what happened to Sarah's mother.  After all the detail given about Left Neglected, the condition, I felt the author left me hanging here.  Not enough for me to feel that the book deserved less than a 5 rating though.

Would I recommend this book to a friend?  Most definitely and already have.

I rate this book a 5 / 5
Happy Reading
Signing off till next time.

Monday, March 7, 2011

400 Miles in 2011 Fitness Challenge 2/20 - 3/5

This fitness challenge is hosted by Ellie at Books, Fitness & Other Stuff hop on over there for more information, just follow the link picture above.

Ok, the past two weeks weren't great for me, the first week was a four day work week and I don't know about anyone else but I find short weeks soooo long.  Why does it work that way?  I got an eye infection and the hubby had the tennis elbow. 

The second week I was suffering with sinus headaches and the last thing I wanted to do was exercise.  Oh well as long as we get back on the wagon.  Hopefully next week will be better. :)

My fitness
Sunday February 20, 2011 WATP DVD = 4 miles

Monday February 21, 2011 WATP DVD = 1 mile

This week:  miles

Total to date: 10.5/400

Walk strong.  Signing off till next time.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Friday Finds ~ March 4

This is my first time participating in Friday Finds.  Should you wish to see more Friday Finds please visit Should Be Reading.

The following books have been added to my TBR list.

The Salt Road by Jane Johnson author of The Tenth Gift.
      Found while browsing Chapters online.

From the author of The Tenth Gift comes another story of exotic, foreign lands, entwining story lines spanning generations, and the quests to overcome love lost.

"My dear Isabelle, in the attic you will find a box with your name on it."

Isabelle''s estranged archaeologist father dies, leaving her a puzzle. In a box she finds some papers and a mysterious African amulet - but their connection to her remains unclear until she embarks on a trip to Morocco to discover how the amulet came into her father''s possession. When the amulet is damaged and Isabelle almost killed in an accident, she fears her curiosity has got the better of her. But Taib, her rescuer, knows the dunes and their peoples, and offers to help uncover the amulet''s extraordinary history, involving Tin Hinan - She of the Tents - who made a legendary crossing of the desert, and her beautiful descendant Mariata.

Across years and over hot, shifting sands, tracking the Salt Road, the stories of Isabelle and Taib, Mariata and her lover, become entangled with that of the lost amulet. It is a tale of souls wounded by history and of love blossoming on barren ground
Dreams of Joy by Lisa See.  Dreams of Joy is the continuation of Shanghai Girls.  Publish Date: May 31, 2011
Found on At Home With Books while blog hopping.
In her beloved New York Times bestsellers Snow Flower and the Secret Fan, Peony in Love, and, most recently, Shanghai Girls, Lisa See has brilliantly illuminated the potent bonds of mother love, romantic love, and love of country. Now, in her most powerful novel yet, she returns to these timeless themes, continuing the story of sisters Pearl and May from Shanghai Girls, and Pearl's strong-willed nineteen-year-old daughter, Joy.

Reeling from newly uncovered family secrets, and anger at her mother and aunt for keeping them from her, Joy runs away to Shanghai in early 1957 to find her birth father-the artist Z.G. Li, with whom both May and Pearl were once in love. Dazzled by him, and blinded by idealism and defiance, Joy throws herself into the New Society of Red China, heedless of the dangers in the communist regime.

Devastated by Joy's flight and terrified for her safety, Pearl is determined to save her daughter, no matter the personal cost. From the crowded city to remote villages, Pearl confronts old demons and almost insurmountable challenges as she follows Joy, hoping for reconciliation. Yet even as Joy's and Pearl's separate journeys converge, one of the most tragic episodes in China's history threatens their very lives.

Acclaimed for her richly drawn characters and vivid storytelling, Lisa See once again renders a family challenged by tragedy and time, yet ultimately united by the resilience of love

Sharaf by Raj Kumar
   Found while exploring Good Reads, have entered to win this book.
The first volume of a gripping trilogy set in Saudi Arabia, this is a story of love, loyalty, intrigue, suspicion, and intolerance

Major-General Farhan Al-Balawi is a loyal soldier in the Saudi Arabian army who dotes on his beloved daughter, Maryam, his pride in her learning and independent spirit sharpened by the death of his elder son and his estrangement from the younger who has opted to pursue a hedonistic western lifestyle in the U. S. Despite the love she shares with her family, the pride she takes in her Arabian heritage, and her loyalty to Islam, Maryam yearns to travel and to continue her education in a European university. When Farhan announces that Maryam is to marry the son of a man who once saved his life, as the fulfillment of a promise made before she was born, Maryam endeavors to stifle her bitter disappointment and honor her father's wishes. Then she meets Joe, an American dentist—and a Jew. As Joe and Maryam pursue an increasingly intimate clandestine relationship they dare to dream of freedom and of a life together. But Joe is gradually drawing the attention of the Muttawa, the feared religious police, and when Maryam realizes that she is pregnant, it is then that her trials really begin.

The Other Life by Ellen Meister
   Found on At Home With Books while blog hopping.

If you could return to the road not taken would you? Happily married and pregnant Quinn Braverman has an ominous secret. Every time she makes a major life decision she knows an alternate reality exists in which she made the opposite choice-not only that she knows how to cross over. But even in her darkest moments-like her mother's suicide-Quinn hasn't been tempted to slip through...until she receives devastating news about the baby she's carrying. The grief lures her to peek across the portal and before she knows it she's in the midst of the other life: the life in which she married another man and is childless. The life in which her mother is still very much alive. Quinn is forced to make a heartbreaking choice. Will she stay with the family she loves and her severely disabled child? Or will an easier life-and the primal need to be with her mother-win out?If you could return to the road not taken would you? Happily married and pregnant Quinn Braverman has an ominous secret. Every time she makes a major life decision she knows an alternate reality exists in which she made the opposite choice-not only that she knows how to cross over. But even in her darkest moments-like her mother's suicide-Quinn hasn't been tempted to slip through...until she receives devastating news about the baby she's carrying. The grief lures her to peek across the portal and before she knows it she's in the midst of the other life: the life in which she married another man and is childless. The life in which her mother is still very much alive. Quinn is forced to make a heartbreaking choice. Will she stay with the family she loves and her severely disabled child? Or will an easier life-and the primal need to be with her mother-win out?

Signing off till next time.

Book Blogger Hop: 3/4-3/7

Book Blogger Hop

It's Friday again and time for the Book Blogger Hop.  Should you wish to partipate please hop on over to Crazy for Books.

The Question for this weekend.

"Who's your all-time favorite book villain?"

My Answer:

I would have to say that my all-time favorite book villain is Severus Snape from The Harry Potter series.

Signing off till next time