Friday, December 27, 2013

Book Review: Paleo Cookbook for Dummies

Paleo Cookbook for Dummies
Paleo Cookbook for Dummies by Dr. Kellyann Petrucci

The fast and easy way to enjoy a Paleo diet. The Paleo movement is one of the hottest diet and healthy-eating approaches, as people discover an appealing and sustainable alternative to the restrictive diets that lead to burnout and failed weight loss efforts. This modern-day take on an ancient diet--which excludes dairy, processed foods, and refined sugar--has helped thousands of people lose weight and keep it off. Now, "The Paleo Cookbook For Dummies" offers more than 100 simple and tasty Paleo recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks, desserts, and even beverages.Includes an overview of the Paleo Diet, grocery shopping and pantry stocking tips, and kid-friendly Paleo recipes. Offers Paleo recipes for every meal of the day. All recipes are contributed by powerhouse Paleo chefs. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

This sounded interesting, both as a healthy way of eating and a possible weight-loss diet. Unfortunately, we must be really picky eaters as I couldn't find a single recipe in this book that my family would enjoy. Very disappointing.

Like most For Dummies guides, this book is laid out well. Part 1 explains the Paleo lifestyle, how to stock your kitchen, and how to start the diet. The rest of the book is full of recipes, broken down into soups, salads, snacks, main dishes, sides, and desserts. There's even a section for slow cookers and kid-friendly dishes! Too bad I couldn't find anything for my picky family.

While this wasn't the right book for us, I'm sure that others would benefit from the recipes and lifestyle suggestions!

Review copy received via Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Happy Christmas!

Happy Christmas to all!

And if you don't celebrate Christmas - 
Happy Wednesday!

Waffles, the unhappy reindeer. 
She was not amused....
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Hope Santa is good to you!
And remember - tomorrow, everything is ON SALE!!!

Saturday, December 21, 2013

My Book Haul (36)

My Book Haul (36)

In need of a new way to showcase titles, I decided that My Book Haul seems like a good fit. I like giving books a little special attention as sometimes it can be awhile before I'm able to review them. Sad to say, but some get put on the shelf and gather a little dust before I'm able to give them the love they deserve. I've included links to Goodreads if you want more information on the book.

For Review:

While this doesn't sound like my usual read, I was pulled in by the sample chapter and quickly agreed to review it! Looking forward to seeing if it lives up to the first chapter!

The Ascendant by Drew Chapman
The Ascendant by Drew Chapman

In this taut and cunning novel, Drew Chapman takes readers into a scenario that is eerily plausible and utterly terrifying - an unconventional war capable of bringing a superpower to its knees. The Ascendant is a brilliant new twist on the art of the white-knuckle thriller. (Goodreads)

What did you receive this week?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Book Review: Same Kind of Different As Me

Same Kind of Different as Me by Ron Hall & Denver Moore

Meet Denver, a man raised under plantation-style slavery in Louisiana in the 1960s; a man who escaped, hopping a train to wander, homeless, for eighteen years on the streets of Dallas, Texas. No longer a slave, Denver's life was still hopeless - until God moved. First came a godly woman who prayed, listened, and obeyed. And then came her husband, Ron, an international arts dealer at home in a world of Armani-suited millionaires. And then they all came together.

But slavery takes many forms. Deborah discovers that she has cancer. In the face of possible death, she charges her husband to rescue Denver. Who will be saved, and who will be lost? What is the future for these unlikely three? What is God doing?

Same Kind of Different As Me is the emotional story of their story: a telling of pain and laughter, doubt and tears, dug out between the bondages of this earth and the free possibility of heaven. No reader will ever forget it. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

This book is a perfect example of why I shouldn't judge a book by its cover! After seeing the cover and reading the synopsis, I decided that I'd skip reading this one despite it being the monthly pick for my bookclub. Because after all, I don't normally read non-fiction or religious books (jeez, I sound so pretentious and snooty!). Then I felt guilty. So I climbed down off my high horse, downloaded a sample on my nook and, by the end of the sample, I was hooked and immediately downloaded the rest! Lesson learned!

Some of the members of my bookclub didn't finish this one as they got bored and didn't care for Denver, but I found myself sucked in by the excellent writing and actually enjoyed Denver's "unique" voice. 

Denver and Ron take turns narrating their story, and it's easy to tell who is speaking because Denver has a strong accent and uses slang quite a bit. Their stories were more interesting than I expected, and I really grew to care about them. Actually got tears in my eyes during Deborah's battle with cancer!

Faith is a strong component in their lives, but I appreciated that there was no preaching involved and that it was just presented as a matter-of-fact part of their lives. I think part of the reason I don't enjoy books with a religious bent is because I don't enjoy being preached to, so I think that the religious aspects of this story were well handled. 

Sincerely hope that I remember to never judge a book by its cover/synopsis again and to at least read a few paragraphs first, as I wound up really liking this story! I found Denver the more interesting man, as his life has been totally different than mine. Ron was a little irritating at times, but he grew on me as well. Well worth the read if you enjoy non-fiction. Or even if you don't and just want an interesting, well-written story!

Saturday, December 14, 2013

My Book Haul (35)

My Book Haul (35)

In need of a new way to showcase titles, I decided that My Book Haul seems like a good fit. I like giving books a little special attention as sometimes it can be awhile before I'm able to review them. Sad to say, but some get put on the shelf and gather a little dust before I'm able to give them the love they deserve. I've included links to Goodreads if you want more information on the book.

For Review:

I really enjoyed the first book in this series, so was happy to receive book two of The Testing for review!

Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau
Independent Study by Joelle Charbonneau

In the series debut The Testing, sixteen-year-old Cia Vale was chosen by the United Commonwealth government as one of the best and brightest graduates of all the colonies . . . a promising leader in the effort to revitalize postwar civilization. In Independent Study, Cia is a freshman at the University in Tosu City with her hometown sweetheart, Tomas - and though the government has tried to erase her memory of the brutal horrors of The Testing, Cia remembers. Her attempts to expose the ugly truth behind the government’s murderous programs put her - and her loved ones - in a world of danger. But the future of the Commonwealth depends on her. (Goodreads)

What did you receive this week?

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday

Throwback Thursday is hosted by Melissa at My words and pages. Rather than spotlighting an upcoming title that we're looking forward to reading, we spotlight those wonderful books we already have, patiently waiting their turn in the TBR piles.

My spotlight for the week:

Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane
Unholy Magic by Stacia Kane


For Chess Putnam, finding herself near-fatally poisoned by a con psychic and then stopping a murderous ghost is just another day on the job. As an agent of the Church of Real Truth, Chess must expose those looking to profit from the world’s unpleasant little poltergeist problem - humans filing false claims of hauntings - all while staving off any undead who really are looking for a kill. But Chess has been extra busy these days, coping with a new “celebrity” assignment while trying on her own time to help some desperate prostitutes.

Someone’s taking out the hookers of Downside in the most gruesome way, and Chess is sure the rumors that it’s the work of a ghost are way off base. But proving herself right means walking in the path of a maniac, not to mention standing between the two men in her life just as they - along with their ruthless employers - are moving closer to a catastrophic showdown. Someone is dealing in murder, sex, and the supernatural, and once again Chess finds herself right in the crossfire. (Goodreads)

I can't believe I still haven't read Stacia Kane, as I've heard nothing but great things about her books! Looking forward to this one, as it sounds awesome!

Monday, December 9, 2013

My Secret Santa Goodies!

Broke & Bookish Secret Santa
So excited to receive my Secret Santa goodies from the Broke & Bookish swap! I wasn't expecting to get anything so soon and, to tell the truth, I haven't even mailed mine out yet (in my defense, I'm still waiting for an online order to arrive). So what a great surprise!

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My Secret Santa was Tanya from Ramblings of a Reading Addict and boy did she do a fantastic job! Look at what she packed my gifts in - book boxes! Is that awesome or what? Love it!

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The smaller box held a treasure trove of goodies! Twizzlers, chocolate Santas, Milky Way minis, a chocolate Kiss, and a bag of coal. But it's okay, because the coal was made of chocolate! I'm seriously in love with this girl, as she sent me so many of my favorites!

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The bigger box held even more goodies, including bookmarks and Ghiradelli peppermint bark! I collect bookmarks, and some of them were even signed! Tanya really hit it out of the ballpark with her selections. Wonder if I can hire her to be my personal shopper? *L*

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She also included some silly socks, which I love. Another home run!

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And now for the major goodies in the box- books! While I had included my wishlist when I joined the swap, I also said I'd love to discover some of my Santa's favorite titles. While the Rowland book was on my list, the other two are new to me and I can't wait to read them!
Twice Tempted by Jeaniene Frost
First Grave on the Right by Darynda Jones

I simply cannot get over how wonderful this gift is! So many of my favorite items, and some new books to read! There's not a single thing in this box that I don't absolutely love! If my Secret Santa enjoys my gift half as much as I'm enjoying Tanya's, then I'll consider it a win. 

Thank you so much Tanya! You rock!

Monday, December 2, 2013

November 2013 Wrap Up

November 2013 Wrap Up

Getting back into my reading and blogging groove, and a monthly wrap up post seems to keep me on track!

Books read

In order to meet my Goodreads goal of 100 books, I need to read 8.33 books per month. According to Goodreads, I've read 6 books this month:

  1. Hunted by Kevin Hearne
  2. Machine of Death anthology
  3. Princess in the Opal Mask by Jenny Lundquist
  4. Taken by Erin Bowman
  5. Man Made Boy by Jon Skovron
  6. Rude Bitches Make Me Tired by Celia Rivenbark
  7. Death Warmed Over by Kevin J. Anderson
  8. Unnatural Acts by Kevin J. Anderson
  9. Naughty & Nice by Kevin J. Anderson

Blog Goals

Managed to cross a few more things off of my perpetual To-Do list.

Went through all of my drafts and either deleted the ones I knew I'd never get to or updated the publish date to give myself a new deadline. Hopefully now that they're no longer buried, I'll finally catch up on my writing!

To Be Reviewed

I took part in a review-a-thon this month and didn't do too well, only managing to write two reviews. But I did manage to set up all the review posts, so was determined to finish my list by the end of the month year. Here's my remaining review-a-thon list, with the finished reviews crossed off. Notice that none of them are crossed off? Boo on me.
  1. Hunted
  2. She's the Boss
  3. TaleSpins
  4. Spider
  5. The Curiosity
  6. Through the Zombie Glass
  7. Same Kind of Different As Me
  8. Pawn
  9. Machine of Death
  10. Taken
  11. Indelible
  12. Once We Were
  13. Carniepunk


Still struggling with writing my reviews, but pleased that I seem to have rediscovered my love of reading! Now I just have to rediscover my love of reviewing, as I do enjoy talking about the books I've read.