My Goodreads account is not keeping up with my books currently reading. I started this on Saturday (December 9th) and finished it yesterday.
Anthony Bourdain is always a good read to me. I really loved his first memoir, Kitchen Confidential. I think due to what is going on in the U.S. right now, I have been reading a lot of cooking memoirs the past few weeks. There is something wonderful about reading about other cultures and their love of food. And I have tried to recreate some menus (did not attempt any in this book though for obvious reasons).
Off the bat you get that Bourdain loves food. He loves meeting/talking to other food obsessed people. Starring in a television show that is taking him around the globe to eat food seemed like a win-win. Some scenes were rather hard to read about (the one describing how ducks are stuffed to make foie gras---no thank you), others are humorous, and at times you get a feeling of sadness depending on what Bourdain is going on about in a particular chapter.
I have to say that the book itself jumps around a lot. I don't know if this is the order he filmed or what. We go to Russia, Tokyo, Scotland, France, England, Saigon, and other countries with Bourdain and his camera crew along with local men/women who show Bourdain how to eat/prepare their favorite dishes.
I would say don't read this if you have a weak stomach though. You read about a pig being slaughtered, a goat, and about Bourdain hunting rabbits (seriously).
I think my favorite chapters has to be about Bourdain waxing enthusiastically about Gordon Ramsey and Hubert Keller. I really wish I could eat at The French Laundry cause it sounds wonderful.
I didn't rate this five stars since the book jumped around a lot and I didn't know what angle Bourdain was going for in the final execution of this book. Was it to share his love of food? His realizing there is no such thing as a perfect meal, rather it's the memory that you go chasing when thinking of your favorite food? Or was it to showcase other cultures and how they got really screwed by other countries (Vietnam and Cambodia).
Those that know me, know that I've been going through some stuff in real life, but the book world has been pretty kind to me! I've won several giveaways recently, and today I got a package in the mail and it was a book I wasn't expecting!
A while ago, I won a giveaway for Cooking For Ghosts Book 1 in The Secret Spice Cafe trilogy. The author just sent me book 2 out of the blue! It is called Spells & Oregano. I'm loving the titles. I've never been a great cook, but a ghost story with cooking? It sounds really interesting to me.
There was no giveaway for book 2, so that would make this my first unsolicited book. That's what you'd call it, right?
She even signed and personalized it, so she did not mail it to me by accident. Thank you very much Patricia V. Davies. I will get to reading and reviewing both books soon in 2018!
I don't have a huge following on any of my social media, so I am honestly not sure why she sent it to me, but it was the kindest gesture. It meant so much to me. It helped brighten my day. I am very thankful!
by Alicia Plummer, Melissa Schaschwary
As the cover and description would indicate, this is a book of knitting patterns. What's unique about it is an emphasis on stitch patterns that create romantic designs that are very fluid, like nature.
My one complaint about it is that a lot of the patterns are for 'accessories'. I counted 2 patterns for leg warmers, one flared, 1 pair of warm looking socks, 4 shawls, one with a massive cable design, 2 patterns for fingerless gloves with interesting textures plus a pattern for enclosed mittens, an interesting headband that I'll certainly make, 2 scarves, a sort of cabled hat with a big fluffy ball at the top plus 2 more hats, one that the texture pattern made me think of dragon scales, and a cabled blanket.
This wouldn't be bad if there were more patterns for pullovers and cardigans. Apart from the above there was a patter with delicate stitch patterns in a cardigan and shrug, a striped pullover vest, a turtleneck pullover, an interesting patterned cape that I would make longer, and one other pullover with a lovely pattern going down the sleeves which I am very likely to make. No jackets or dresses, which might have benefited from the sort of design that has gone into the projects offered.
There's an extensive stitch glossary, including some unusual ones like the long-tail cast on that I haven't seen elsewhere. I'd say this book is for the more experienced knitter. There are plenty of pictures in color and the stitches are illustrated with clear drawings.
Overall a good knitting book, but I'd like to see more patterns for everyday clothes. You can only make so many hats and scarves before you have too many, no matter how cool the designs.