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review 2017-09-17 23:37
Holiday Cookies
Holiday Cookies: Showstopping Recipes to Sweeten the Season - Elisabet der Nederlanden

This has some amazing pictures for each recipe. While flipping through the book I really wanted... Pie!?!? and cookies... but I have really been wanting a chocolate cream pie. Never got the pie, but did make some cookies using one of these recipes. Some of the best cookies I have ever eaten.

 

In this you will find almost every holiday cookie recipe you can think of. The directions are easy to follow, and from the ones I tested the ingredient measurements are spot on, as are the cook times and temps.

 

In the back there is a template for a gingerbread house. I really feel it will come in handy when Christmas comes around. Hopefully this years attempt will turn out and I won't end up at the store buying a prepaid kit and trying to pass it off as homemade. Also, this very much reminded me of something I would expect Martha Stewart to publish, that is a compliment because I consider that woman the queen of making the season festive and yummy.

 

ELISABET DER NEDERLANDEN is a passionate professional baker and a graduate of the California Culinary Academy. She has worked as a food stylist and professional recipe developer/tester for commercial, advertising, and packaging projects. In addition, she has managed recipe testing and food styling for more than 30 cookbooks.

 

Amazon US

 

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review 2017-09-07 03:32
City of Miracles
City of Miracles - Robert Jackson Bennett

This is the final book to what has been a great trilogy. The world building is some of the best I have ever read, but the characters are what make this series truly amazing. Each book takes us a few years further into the future than the previous, and stars a different protagonist.

 

In this the author took me by surprise from the very beginning of this book and really hit my emotions. I expected it from the book blurb, but I was hoping it was some sort of wonky slide of hand where the author makes you believe something was going to happen, but then something changes. 

 

This one is as good as the previous books, but in a different way. It is an amazing closing to what will always be one of my favorite fantasy series ever read. 

 

Robert Jackson Bennett is a two-time award winner of the Shirley Jackson Award for Best Novel, an Edgar Award winner for Best Paperback Original, and is also the 2010 recipient of the Sydney J Bounds Award for Best Newcomer, and a Philip K Dick Award Citation of Excellence. His sixth novel, City of Blades, is in stores now.

He lives in Austin with his wife and son. He can be found on Twitter at @robertjbennett.

 

Amazon US

 

I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books.

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review 2017-06-26 22:43
Yellow Owl Workshop'so Make it Yours by Christine Schmidt
Yellow Owl Workshop's Make It Yours: Pat... Yellow Owl Workshop's Make It Yours: Patterns and Inspiration to Stamp, Stencil, and Customize Your Stuff - Christine Schmidt

While I like the designs and crafts focused on in this book. I feel some entries are just the same as others with different fabric or different print. Same basic idea used over and over. Some sections are very simple, like using stamps... and a lot of these selections use stamps. 

 

The directions are easy to follow. The picures are colorful and attractive. It is a pretty hefty book at about 192 pages and the pages themselves are made of a sturdy paper with a pink color making it easy on the eyes (I have found recently that bright white with black lettering really strains my eyes).

 

For someone who is a beginner at wanting to learn how to create hand stamped pattern printed fabric this may be useful, but I feel there are better selections out there. All in all I see this as possibly being useful to someone, but never would I pay the stamped on the back price of US $22.00/$29.00 CAN. The Kindle version as of now is listed at $15.99, too much. 

 

I wouldn't say I dislike this, but I have a difficult time seeing how to justly the purchase price for the content. 

 

about the author:

 

CHRISTINE SCHMIDT is an artist and the founder of Yellow Owl Workshop, a San Francisco–based paper goods company known for its sophisticated yet playful aesthetic. She is also the author of the bestselling Print Workshop and Yellow Owl’s Little Prints. Yellow Owl Workshop products are available in stores and worldwide at YellowOwlWorkshop.com.

 

AMAZON US

 

Review copy provided free of charge through Blogging for Books.

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review 2017-04-27 19:52
Saffire
Saffire: A Novel - Sigmund Brouwer

Saffire is a really fun and mysterious book. There the main character is brought to Panama Canal to do something and to have chat with General. You get a good history about the time period. You also get a romance and action packed.

 

What will happen to Holt? There are some historical characters in the book. Sigmund does a wonderful job of tells the facts about 1909. The year may by a bit off but the facts stated are true. You will find that at the end of the book.


If you enjoy historical fiction, you will enjoy this book. It tells of the building of the Panama Canal. I like that fell. It also gives a little mystery along with the action in the book.

Source: nrcbooks.blogspot.com/2017/04/saffire.html
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review 2017-04-26 03:13
City of Blades by Robert Jackson Bennett
City of Blades - Robert Jackson Bennett

This review can also be found at Carole's Random Life in Books.

This was one impressive read! I read the first book in this series, City of Stairs, a few months ago and really enjoyed it so I was really excited to finally get around to reading the second book in the series, City of Blades. A lot of times the second book in a series doesn't quite live up to the first so I was a bit worried going into the book. There was no need for any worry because as good as the first book was, this one was even better. I had such a hard time putting this book down and when I was away from it, I couldn't get it out of my mind.

I had really expected this book to focus on the same group of characters and I was somewhat wrong. The main character in this book is Mulaghesh who did play an important role in the first book but was not the lead character. I liked Mulaghesh in the first book but I absolutely loved her in this installment. Getting to learn some of her back story really opened up her character. She is tough, smart, and somewhat haunted by her past. I love the an older woman who has seen and done a lot of things is the person at the center of this story.

This book takes place in Voortyashtan which was very different than the setting of the first book. This meant that while some of the world building did build on the what was established in the previous book, a lot of this world was entirely new. The City of Blades ended up being something I would have never imagined but as it was described it I almost felt as if I were there. I really feel like there is almost no boundaries with what this series can explore.

The story in this book was very exciting. I did think that some of the earlier parts of the book were a bit tedious as I tried to figure out what was really going on. When the story took off, it really didn't let up. There are so many different things to solve that are all interconnected. The story took quite a few twists that I didn't see coming. I was a bit nervous as I read because I had no idea how things would work out for Mulaghesh and everyone.

I would highly recommend this book to others. This is the second book in the series and I do think that this series really needs to be read in order. The stories are not a continuation but the events of the first book really impacted the characters and the world they live in. I can't wait to see what is going to happen in City of Miracles!

I received a review copy of this book from Random House Publishing Group - Broadway Books via Blogging for Books and NetGalley.

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