The Book Blog and ETC.
|Posted on December 5, 2016 at 11:40 AM|
The most fundamental aspect for every woman and man is to leave footprints in the sands of time. The birth of a child is usually one of the most profound and exciting time of a parent’s life. For Patricia Nombuyiselo Noah the moment was set with excitement, joy, and the purest love any mother can have for a child. However, even with the deepest love, there was a veil hanging over the moment of the birth of her son. A veil of secrecy that concealed the identity and lineage of her son’s father and their crime.
Patricia was Xhosa, the father of her child was a Swiss-German, she gave birth to their first and only child together, Trevor Noah. His birth took place during a time of apartheid in South Africa, a time in which his birth was a crime, punishable my imprisonment. Trevor Noah’s childhood was not an ordinary childhood, but then again, Trevor Noah was not an ordinary little boy. Not until his Daily Show debut, a late-night talk show on television on Comedy Central, many may have been unaware of the South African born comedian. Mr. Noah once a recurring contributor, succeeded Jon Stewart as the new Daily Show host. And if you ever wonder about the man behind the Daily Show persona, Mr. Noah has put pen to paper and filled in the blanks with his memoir titled Born A Crime.
Mr. Noah, the author, told his story of his childhood in such a way that you felt like you were having a conversation with him. Unlike a traditional memoir, the stories did not fall in any traditional order, but instead told by times and events that impacted his life. Although there were no pictures in this book, you were filled with clear images in your mind of the sights, sounds, and taste of South Africa, as South Africa and Mr. Noah metamorphosis during apartheid, the collapse of apartheid, and post-apartheid.
At times, as a reader you may have felt that Mr. Noah, a half white, and half black, was a man without a country. But it was quite clear that Mr. Noah represented every aspect of South Africa and could adapt to every situation as it presented itself. There is no denying that the most paramount goal for a man is to leave footprints in the sands of time, but there is always a point where you must be carried, and if you are lucky enough, the person that carries you will be your mother. Mr. Noah leaves no room for uncertainty who carried him before he could crawl as a boy or walk as a man. His mother’s fearlessness was evident throughout the entire book, her faith in God never wavering, her fearlessness often challenged Mr. Noah to be the best version of himself at every stage of his life. Whether Mr. Noah was entrepreneur or simply being a mischievous kid, there was always a lesson to be learned and she made sure he learned it.
But beyond the seriousness of the book, we got opportunity to see the comedian develop in Mr. Noah as a child from his quick come backs with his mom as they both debated on why they should or shouldn’t go to church during dangerous rioting in the streets, or his justification to himself as he turns his grandmother’s kitchen into a temporary out house. Born A Crime is not just about Mr. Noah’s childhood in South Africa, it’s about the two mothers that raised him. The mother, Patricia, who gave birth to him, and who nurtured him, and South Africa, the motherland that helped him grow through life lessons. This memoir, is no doubt, a homage to both.
|Posted on November 7, 2016 at 4:55 PM|
Chef Giada De Laurentis is no stranger when it comes to making people happy with her cooking and in her cookbook Happy Cooking she shares with us her secrets on how to live a happy, but healthy life, when it comes to cooking.
Now I have to confess, I had the opportunity to get my hands on this cookbook long before it hit the shelves in your local bookstores last year. Now you must be asking yourself that one question, why did it take me so long to do a cookbook review. Well the answer is quite simple, I cooked my way through the entire book, with the exception of the Peanut Butter Dog Bone Treats, which happens to be the last recipe in this book.
Often recognize for her Food Network Show Everyday Italian, De Laurentis admits that her weakness is definitely traditional Italian comfort food. But Happy Cooking is all about clean and healthy eating without losing the enjoyment of indulging in wholesome and flavorful food. This cookbook is packed with 301 pages of amazing recipes and some pretty damn amazing food photography that will make every single member of your family happy, even the family dog.
Happy Cooking is divided into sections and the organization of the cookbook takes the guess work of what you are trying to find. My favorite section in this cookbook is definitely Treats & Sweets and if you know me, then you know why. I’m a sweetaholic with a capital “S” and I’m not embarrass to admit it.
Although Treats & Sweets happens to be my favorite section, this cookbook is filled with some pretty amazing recipes that I keep going back to time and time again. Recipes like Stovetop Clambake, Noodle Paella, Mussels with Fennel, and last but not least, the Cupcake Shake.
And speaking of cupcakes, De Laurentis warns that this recipe should only be used in a case of an emergency. Oh by the way, this Cupcake Shake recipe is just for us grown-ups, and yes, we have plenty of emergencies in my household and this recipe has been deployed a few times. Try the Cupcake Shake and the Stovetop Clambake recipe for yourself…And Happy Cooking!
|Posted on February 2, 2016 at 8:00 PM|
Ask any immigrant about the American Dream and some might say that it doesn’t exist. In the recent waves of immigrants crashing against the shores, one can’t help but pay attention to those who were not fortune enough to make it to shore…Alive. Once again the spotlight has been directed towards immigrants, but this is not the first time, and the truth is the spotlight was always there. The only difference…the waves crashing against the shore swept away America’s rose colored glasses causing an uncomfortable picture that could no longer be ignored.
Without those rose colored glasses, we could no longer turn a blind eye to truth. The truth of what is really like for an immigrant fleeing their country. Coveting the American Dream by Author Jacintha Griffith forces us to start a conversation that is long overdue. Although the story is fictional, there is nothing fictional about the trials and tribulations endured by the characters.
This book is a quick read, and not to give away too much about this book, this book takes us across many genres, faith and religion being one, and romance being the other. Despite the fact this book is a quick read, the impact that it has on you will last forever. From the first page you are totally and completely invested in the characters and you are no longer imprisoned to the idea of defining characters as Immigrants or Americans. When you start looking at other human beings for who they are… humanity takes over. Which I believe is the strongest message in this book.
In Coveting the Dream, the main character of this book leaves her country of Belize and enters the United States illegally to pursue her own dream, and what happens next took me on an emotional roller coaster, one that I was not prepared for. Not only does this book sheds light on what its really like to be an illegal immigrant, it gave a voice to the voiceless, a face to the faceless, and for those who lost their lives trying to covet the American Dream…this book reveals the true price and makes you wonder if the roles were reverse…would the price be worth it. This book was well written and I think this would make an excellent starter if you were considering having a book club. Personally with all the movies that sensationalize entering the United States illegally, I think this book being made into a movie will provide those with preconceive notations… a reality check.
|Posted on November 22, 2015 at 11:55 AM|
“I was drowsy, but the thoughts were running endlessly in my head, keeping me from the sleep I so yearned for. It had been many months since the last time I managed to sleep a full, satisfying night. The street outside was very quiet. Unlike the previous few days, there were no gunshots, no thundering boots that shake the walls—and the cries of distress of the past nights from the Jewish quarter had ceases as well.”
“Lalechka: An Amazing Holocaust Survivor Rescue Story (World War 2 Book 1)” is based on the real life story of a Jewish Family and a little girl born in the middle of the chaos of the holocaust. However this book is more than just stories of the holocaust.
This book is about the truest… and deepest… meaning of friendship of three little girls.
The Author Amira Keidar did an amazing job of transporting us to a time in history where Poland was sliced up and violated by her emerging and stronger neighbors, based on entries in a journal, interviews, letters, and other documents.
At times the story was very hard to read emotionally because you became immediately invested in the characters in this book. There is always something sad but beautiful when you read stories about the Holocaust and the survivors.
Beautiful… in the sense that is shows the purest form of love and compassion. Sad…because something that is so beautiful as love for your fellow man, woman, and child was put to the test because of the most unthinkable and heinous acts against human being.
This book will make you cry…but it will also educate you on a little piece of history that sometimes get lost in translation…and it will also make you smile as you see the strength and determination of what the human body and the human spirit is capable of doing when love is the common denominator.
Do I recommend this book?
|Posted on October 13, 2015 at 5:30 PM|
There's no question that chefs, actors, and musicians have more in common than we think. What once used to be a surprise…is now becoming the norm…celebrities putting on their chef’s hat and let their alter ego take over in a cookbook or cooking show. So what happens when you get an indie rocker and a photographer in the kitchen??? Oh yeah…did I forget to mention that the photographer happened to be a former restaurant cook and the musician, songwriter, and producer is wicked in his own home kitchen.
Food has always been a canvas for people to create, I, myself, find cooking to be very relaxing…so it’s only natural that we who love to cook will always gravitate towards our kindred spirits. One of the things that I love the most about this cookbook is the food porn…I love when a photographer photographs a dish that just makes you want to jump to your feet and run to the kitchen to check to see if you already have the items in your pantry…And this book did that for me. Kudos to the Photographer Nicole Franzen…the photographs are absolutely…Amazing! But honestly this book had me at hello…Did you check out the cover of this book???
This cookbook cover evoked so many memories of me sitting at the table with family and friends, that honestly, it just fueled my desire to create every single thing in this book…and this was before I even turned to the first recipe. Now I know it might be a little bit early to think about Christmas, but I think this cookbook is definitely that perfect gift for a new cook and even a seasoned cook. I absolutely loved how the authors Ithai Schori and Chris Taylor and contributor Rachel Holtzman planned out your entire dinner menu by seasons.
And if you are a coffee lover like I am, you will absolutely scream for joy with the section in this book dedicated to what I consider the gifts from the gods…coffee. This section is short and brief and it explains how to store coffee, brew coffee , and of course how to make a good cup of coffee But what really makes this cookbook stand out…is the incredible details. There is a section thiscookbook entitled “Techniques+Terms+Handy Advice” and then there is another section entitled “Tools+Pantry+Shopping For Ingredients” which is pretty much self-explanatory…it’s like having Ithai Schori, and Chris Taylor in your kitchen helping you enhance your cooking skills regardless of your expertise.
|Posted on October 3, 2015 at 11:00 PM|
Sadly New York Fashion Week has come to an end and now Halloween is almost upon us. But never fear, Costume designer, XOJane fashion columnist, and the author of “How to Get Dressed,” Alison Freer has a book filled with magical tricks and tips on how to make our clothes look, feel, and fit as if it was made for us. But that’s not the best part…Alison Freer helps us become our very own best fashion expert…Without breaking the piggy bank. Now the title “How to Get Dressed” might be a little bit deceiving. If you are looking for a book that will instantly turn you into a high demand Fashion Stylist then this book is not for you. This book provides practical advice, tips, and tricks to better utilize things in your closet. For example, Freer gives us advice on how to use those paper covered wire hangers from the dry cleaners for hanging scarves, jewelry, and as stocking holders.
However it was the advice that spit removes blood stains that really piqued my interest. Yes...that’s right…saliva removes blood stains. Who knew?! But if you’ve taken chemistry in school…then you know... like removes like. And if you want to know more… than you will just have to read the book for yourself. I definitely think this a book is worth investing in…it was definitely a fun read. It’s not a book about fashion or trends…but it’s definitely a book that the fashionista in all of us can appreciate...And I highly recommend it.
|Posted on July 20, 2015 at 8:30 AM|
If you love dumplings…and I know you do…then you will definitely love the book Crazy Dumplings by Amanda Roberts. Of course Crazy Dumplings is not new to the scene, this cookbook made its debut in 2014 and it is 178 pages of yummy…delicious…and innovative recipes that will definitely make you see dumplings in a whole new light.
Crazy Dumplings is the holy grail of dumplings…this is definitely not your average cookbook. You will find traditional dumpling recipes and the not so traditional…And with recipes like honey pear duck dumplings, fancy lobster dumplings, cherry pie dumplings, cheesecake dumplings and so much more. … there is a dumpling in this cookbook for everyone.
So whether you like it hot or spicy… or sweet and savory…with detailed instructions, easy accessible ingredients, this cookbook will definitely help you impress that special someone…And make you the master of the Kitchen...leaving nothing to the imagination. Here’s Amanda’s Basic Dumpling Wrappers Recipe to get you started.
Basic Dumpling Wrappers
3/4 cups flour
1/3 cup boiling water
Dash of salt
Flour for dusting
1. Mix flour and salt together in a mixing bowl.
2. Drizzle in water, mixing with a chopstick or fork.
3. Leave in bowl, covered with plastic wrap for 15 minutes.
4. Gather dough up into a ball and kneed on counter for a minute or two (until the dough is
5. Pinch off small portion of dough and roll into a ball (about 1 inch in diameter). Roll out into a
flat circle on the counter, dusting with flour to keep dough from sticking.
6. Put small amount of preferred dumpling stuffing mixture into the middle of the flat
dumpling wrapper. Pinch the dumpling closed.
7. Cook dumplings.
a. To fry dumpling, preheat oil for 30 second then lower heat. Cook dumpling on each
side for only about one minute or until golden brown.
b. To steam dumplings, place in a steamer or on an elevated plate in a wok over water
for about 10 minutes.
c. To boil dumplings, place in boiling water for about 5 minutes.
8. Always cut a dumpling open to make sure it cooked through.
|Posted on June 20, 2015 at 12:50 AM|
I’ve always been a fan of Joan Rivers, she had this accept me as I am kind of quality about her. I’ve never met her, but watching her on television made me feel like I knew her. I love how she would make bold statements… drop that invisible mic… and then walk off her invisible stage.
Melissa Rivers, Executive Producer, Daughter of Joan Rivers, and now Author of the book titled “The Book of Joan: Tales of Mirth, Mischief and Manipulations, allows us once again to be spectators of the life of Joan Rivers with the same accept me as I am kind of quality.
When I do a review of a book, I usually read the book before attending any type of author events, but in this rare case, I had the privilege to watch the live interview of Joan Rivers and Hoda Kotb courtesy of 92Y before reading the book. The interview really got me excited about the book and really made me understand the meaning behind the book.
Now this book by no means is a tell all story of Joan Rivers.
No, it’s definitely not a Memoir. It is what it is…Tales of Mirth, Mischief and Manipulations, accompanied by photos and humorous essays. A book written in the style, that I believe… Joan Rivers would have really appreciated.
The Book of Joan: Tales of Mirth, Mischief and Manipulations, is a reminder that we are not alone when it comes to our mothers. This book made me laugh… and at sometimes it made me cry. I definitely felt a little sentimental of the fact that the world lost an amazing woman.
Writing a book so soon after her mother’s death could not… by any means…have been an easy task for Melissa Rivers. And yet she did it with such flair. I couldn’t put this book down, and I read it in one sitting. Any book that does that… definitely has earned its place on my book shelf. . I think this was definitely a wonderful tribute to her mother, and definitely a must read. The Book of Joan said so much about the relationship of a mother and a daughter, that at times, when there were no longer words on a particular page, our hearts filled in the blanks.
|Posted on May 26, 2015 at 3:50 PM|
Nigel Barker, a man who really needs no introduction, is an internationally renowned fashion photographer, former model, author, filmmaker, a tv personality known for his time on America’s Next Top Model. as a photographer and judge. As well as, a host alongside Naomi Campbell on “The Face,” and the creator of his own show on VH1, “The Shot.”
But whether Nigel Barker is behind the camera or in front of the camera, he never forgets to pay homage to his humble beginnings by giving back to the world my using his own celebrity influence. Whether he is advocating for EGPAG (Elizabeth Glaser Pediatric Aids Foundation), campaigning for gender equality with HeForShe, or being a champion for GirlUp an innovative campaign for the United Nations Foundation, or campaigning for FTBC (Fashion Targets Breast Cancer) …Nigel Barker is definitely a Model of Influence.
Model of Influence being the definitive word, the book “Model of Influence: 50 Women Who Reset the Course of Fashion” definitely teaches us the definition of beauty…And it doesn’t start with clothes, makeup, a certain size, color, or shape. This book is without a doubt…A Must Read.
|Posted on May 10, 2015 at 11:10 PM|
It is said that photographers view life differently. Everything from a child striding down the sidewalk, the fruit at a farmer’s market, to the jewel studded shoes on the doormat becomes a potential subject in the minds of a photographer.
If you are a female photographer than the social network “Clickin Moms” is nothing new to you. Clickin Moms was founded by professional photographer Kendra Okolita in 2008 and it has grown to the largest female network in the photography industry.
Sarah Wilkerson the CEO of Click Moms, a graduate of Duke University and the University of Texas School of Law, teaches an advance course on photography composition and creativity, and the book “Capture The Moment” by Sarah Wilkerson recently made its debut.
Capture The Moment represents the creative expression of over 100 female photographers. The book intends to help foster the way we see the world by making lessons and information easily accessible to photographers of all level. But more importantly the book provides “the motivation to advance, to help you illustrate your world powerfully, and—above all—to empower you to embrace a passion as a creator of beauty, keeper of memories, and teller of stories. 100% of the royalties from this book goes to Ronald McDonald House Charities”.
The chapters in this book covered Natural Light, Composition, Storytelling, Fine Art, Black & White and Low Light, and each chapter covered an array of valuable lessons.
I enlisted Fashion Photographer to help me complete those lessons, and although I cannot take credit for the photography, I think the results of our collaboration is pretty amazing.
So just in case you weren’t sure….I absolutely love this book in regards to the spark of creativity and inspiration it provides. Now this book will not turn you into an instant photographer overnight, there are no step by step instructions. However, this book will push you to expand your horizons and upgrade your technique in photography. Now for an advanced photographer, I’m not sure if this will serve as anything more than a coffee table book.
Now it is only fair to warn you… if you own a point and shoot camera, or only use your camera phone to take pictures…..this book may not be for you. You need to have a DSLR camera in order to take advantage of this book. However, all is not lost…there are some pretty inspirational composition ideas in this book that any photographer can appreciate.
I think Capture The Moment is a fascinating collaboration of female photographers at various levels of their journey. The most valuable lesson in this book was not at the end of the chapters, the valuable lesson in this book…was the book. The book teaches you to see the world through the eyes of another…Understanding a story without hearing a single word. Life is not picture perfect…Sometimes our vision is blurred and out of focus, Sometimes life is not always black and white, and Sometimes we have no real direction and we just have to sit still with our eyes close and enjoy the moment.
Life is truly unscripted…This is the most powerful aspect of photography. And when you can understand that…then you can truly capture the moment and appreciate the moment for what it was. I think this book is a must have for anyone who is interested in photography.
|Posted on May 6, 2015 at 12:45 AM|
Last year at the Book Expo America, the book publishing industry and the tech community met for a blind date, bringing together the best of Silicon Alley and the book publishing industry, and what resulted was the first ever publishing Startup Challenge. Again this year, the event that showcased the most innovative startups in publishing will meet again at the Book Expo America.
Thanks to the sponsors Ingram, Sourcebook and DeSilva +Phillips, the Startup Challenge brought to you by BookExpo America and Librify just might be a match made in heaven, allowing the book publishing startup community to gain access to top venture capital and investment professionals and traditional publishers. On Wednesday, May 27 there will be a Startup Alley at BookExpo America.
Twenty startups will be selected to showcase their companies in Startup Alley, a unique opportunity for startups to be part of book publishing’s largest industry event and to receive high visibility, access to industry executives, investors and VCs. Participating startups will compete to appear before the judges from the Venture Capital and investment community to be chosen as BEA’s 2015 Most Promising Publishing Startup.
In addition, this year the BEA Startup Challenge will add the People’s Choice Award, selected by the attendees and exhibitors to BEA. All Startups selected to be included in the event are eligible for prize consideration. A select few will have the opportunity to make their case to the judges at this year’s event.
BookExpo Startup Challenge will be accepting applicant startups at bookexpochallenge.com. Startups who would like to apply for selection in “Startup Alley” and be part of the BookExpo Startup Challenge should visit bookexpochallenge.com to apply. Others seeking more information regarding this year’s BookExpo America at the Javits Center should visit www.bookexpoamerica.com. All registered attendees and exhibitors of BookExpo America are invited to attend the final BookExpo Startup Challenge event at 3:30PM on May 29th on the Downtown Stage.
The BookExpo America (BEA) is North America’s largest gathering of book trade professionals attracting an international audience. The event is widely known as an ideal place for content creators, media, booksellers, rights professionals, and movie and television executives to meet new authors, discover new books, learn out trends shaping the book industry, and network with those who have a passion for books and reading. Librify based in New York City was founded by publishing industry veterans. Librify is currently creating the world’s first book-of-the-month club for ebooks, bringing a dramatically improved shared, social reading experience and discounted pricing model to book clubs and readers across all platforms and devices Librify was also the co-organizer, along with the Perseus Book Group, of the first ever Publishing Hackathon in May, 2013 at AlleyNYC and BEA, bringing together the technology, venture capital and publishing communities.
|Posted on April 21, 2015 at 8:35 PM|
Photographer John Shaw’s trusted advice has helped many photographers achieve impressive shots in the great outdoors, capturing the beautiful world around them. In his new roles as an Author, John Shaw provides in-depth advice from A-Z on everything you need to know about Digital Photography with his new book “John Shaw’s Guide to Digital Nature Photography.”
This book is as inspirational, as it is as educational, and honestly it’s the next best thing to having him in your living room. I was completely blown away on how helpful and detailed this book was. But I must warn you, if you have a simple point and shoot camera like I do, then this book is not for you. I found myself researching cameras just to be able to recreate some of those stunning photographs in this book. This book is definitely for the big boys…or gals…I’m all about equal opportunity. Nonetheless, I truly believe that this book is all you need to learn about nature photography.
John Shaw did not miss at beat when he wrote this book.
Any and every question that you might think of as a new or seasoned photographed…John Shaw has answered for you. There is nothing that I can say bad about this book….I absolutely love it…and if you are photographer or an inspiring photographer…then this book should be on your book shelf.
|Posted on March 25, 2015 at 1:50 PM|
You’ve probably experienced this at least once in your life…
That moment where you are reading a book…and that one sentence…those few words…leaps off the pages and gives you that warm hug and a pat on the back that lets you know that everything will be okay.
Well that’s how I felt when I read “Tim Gunn: The Natty Professor” it was these few words “So many people who do great things in life follow many different paths before ending up in the role that defines them, and none of that time is squandered if they’re learning” that let me know that I was about to embark on an amazing journey with this book.
To be honest, I expected this book to be all about Fashion and perhaps about the hit TV show “Project Runway or “Under The Gunn” after all who does not know the loveable mentor of the hit TV show Project Runway and the crème ah la crème of the spin off show “Under The Gunn”. However…Tim Gunn gives us more than Project Runway and Under The Gunn. He teaches us that life is our Runway… and everyday it’s a new project… and no matter how small or big the project… even when you are looking into the barrel of the gun …each moment is a learning experience.
For a few hours…
Those precious moments in time…
The book Tim Gunn: The Natty Professor let those of us who often feel alone, unheard, awkward in our skin, and sometimes invisible…know…that we aren’t so unique after all. A life lesson for many us out there who often feel alone on this runway called…Life.
Tim Gunn has an unbelievably passion for teaching and mentoring and it started years before Project Runway. Actually he was a classroom educator and a chair for Parsons Fashion Design Program, and although he is no longer in the classroom he stills considers himself a teacher. The book underscored many different aspects of life by categories with the clever acronym Teach;
(T)ruth-telling, (E)mpathy, (A)sking, (C)heerleading, and (H)oping for the best.
What I loved about this book is that it was cleared that the advice he was giving us was based on his own life lessons. When I finished reading this book I felt like I could take on the world. The book was a welcomed surprise, Tim Gunn let us see another side of him, the man beyond the Fashion…the educator….and the student.
To say that I absolutely love this book would be an understatement…this is definitely a book that you should add to your library. And if you are lucky enough to be in New York City on March 31, 2015 then head over to 92Y my favorite place to be where Tim Gunn and Fern Mallis will be in conversation as part of the Fashion Icon series.
|Posted on March 23, 2015 at 2:20 PM|
Like a fine bottle of wine Martha Stewart only gets better with time…
And just when you thought Martha Stewart couldn’t get any better...
The Queen of the kitchen who brought us “One Pot” in 2014 brings us back to the kitchen one more time for the New Year with a “Clean Slate”.
This cookbook is no ordinary cookbook…then again…you should never expect just the ordinary from Martha Stewart. With a glossary of the best sources of health boosting nutrients, along with tips on stocking your pantry, this book is like having your own personal health coach at your finger tips.
Clean Slate made its debut December 16, 2014… just in time to help us usher in 2015. This cookbook is filled with mouthwatering recipes, menus for a simple 3-day cleanse and a 21-day whole-body detox, and beautiful food photography for inspiration. And to kick off the launch of Clean Slate… some of us had an opportunity to celebrate with the Queen herself for a kickoff party in honor of her newest addition to her cookbook family.
First we had a drink to our health…and rebooted with a “Green Machine Smoothie,” followed by a cooking demonstration, and a brief Q&A session. The highlight of my evening…besides being in the presence of Martha Stewart was this unbelievable Green Goddess Dressing…Absolutely…Delicious! This dressing had me licking my fingers…in Public!
Now a cookbook review is not a review without a little kitchen testing of my own…
Ok…channeling my inner Martha Stewart…I head to kitchen and made two amazing dishes…One for my Vegan Lovers and One for my Non-Vegans. What recipes did I choose?
Drum rolls please…the winning recipes “wild salmon, asparagus, and shiitakes in parchment” and “roasted portobellos with kale and red onion”
And the dishes were absolutely…Amazing!
All Hail The Queen!
Martha Stewart has done it again with her newest cookbook “Clean Slate.”
Do I recommend this cookbook?
Eating healthy has never been so finger licking good.
|Posted on March 19, 2015 at 7:35 PM|
“One Good Daughter” by author James Tucci is not new to the literary world, matter of fact this book made its debut in 2001. So in honor of throwback Thursday, I think this book deserves a little time in the spotlight with a book review. This book had all the elements that I look for in a good chick lit…mystery, suspense, an independent woman, a handsome columnist, a love story…and a walk on the wild side with the Mafia.
The author takes us on an amazing journey from the war ravaged Italy, to Miami Beach, to the most exciting place in the world…New York City. John Vittone, a sixty-three year Sardinian native, is the mastermind of the drug arm of the Pucchini Family, one of the five crime syndicates in the New York area.
Life is wonderful for John Vittone until his only child, his daughter Pia, watches as her life and career in the elite world of Wall Street and International Law slowly disappear after being arrested. What happens next will keep you on the edge of your seat with an amazing rollercoaster ride. John Vittone’s nefarious ways have now come to the surface, bringing all the havoc he caused to the forefront, which can ultimately destroy the life of his daughter.
However, John F. Hampton the handsome Princeton educated…forty-six year old New York Daily News Columnist… has made it his mission to vindicate and salvage Pia’s career. One Good Daughter is definitely a book that you will want to curl up with, this book will draw you in, and you will become immediately invested in the characters.
If you haven’t read this book yet…then what are you waiting for?
|Posted on March 8, 2015 at 10:05 PM|
Authors of “The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen” Rebecca Katz and Mat Edelson bring us back to the kitchen one more time with their newest cookbook “The Healthy Mind Cookbook.” The cookbook made its debut on February 10, 2015 and trust me….eating healthy has never tasted so damn delicious.
Gone are the days that the word healthy eating had you running for the hills.
Rebecca and Mat put an innovative twisted on nourishing the mind, body, and soul with mouthwatering recipes that will satisfy the pickiest eaters.
“With a culinary pharmacy listing the benefits of key ingredients, complete nutritional details for each dish, and flavored-packed recipes for every meal of the day” this book brings a whole new meaning to the statement… eating makes me happy.
The Healthy Mind Cookbook is like your personal nutritionist, and your mind and wellness coach assisting you in the elimination of depression, heart disease, diabetes and so much more by helping you boost your brain function and health.
I don’t know about you… but with all the snow in my neck of the woods… all I want to do is curl up with a big bowl of soup. One soup recipe that caught my attention was the “Robust Chicken Soup”…not quite a soup… and not quite a stew… according to the author you can refer to it as a “stoup.” And whether you call it a stew…or a soup…I call it delicious.
Of course there is more to this cookbook then just soup, this book is divided into chapters from soups to sweet bites… and everything imaginable in between. The recipes are easy to follow, the ingredients easily accessible at your local supermarket and farmers market with beautiful food photography for inspiration.
Do I recommend this cookbook?
|Posted on February 27, 2015 at 2:05 AM|
“I am Malcolm
I am my father’s son
But to be my father’s son means that
they will always come for me
and I will always succumb.”
Malcolm Little also known as El-Hajj Malik El-Shabazz, the man that most of us know today as Malcolm X , was one of the greatest and most influential African Americans in history. A Human Rights Activist… Civil Rights Leader…A Muslim Minister… A Son… A Brother…A Husband…A Father.
X: A Novel by authors Ilyasah Shabazz and Keekla Magoon takes us back in time to a place where Malcolm is just a young boy, we watch as Malcolm is ripped from his home as child, and imprisoned as a young adult. But we don’t watch Malcolm’s journey as spectators, we travel the road with him as we become immersed in this historical fiction.
It’s a story of hope…a story of courage…we watch as a loss soul find his way out of the darkness and into the light during a time in history where equality was not so equal. A time where sex, drugs and liquor could give any loss soul the illusion of solace.
Author Ilyasah Shabazz, the third daughter of Malcolm X, is an activist, producer and a motivational speaker did a phenomenal job of creating a piece of history that honors the man…the man behind the X. It is so easy to get caught up in the details of one’s mistake, over analyzing the hows and the whys, and letting our inner critic become the judge… and the jury. We often forget the bigger picture when we let the inner critic take over…the picture that we ALL should be paying attention to…the picture that shows …that we ALL… are human.
We all are vulnerable, and sometimes we reveal ourselves, and sometimes others give glimpses into our lives. What resonated on a deeper level for me was the message I got from this book…which is…sometimes we must step backward to see where we are going… in order to move forward.
This is not a book that you should read just for Black History Month…this is a book that you should read about the History of Blacks…Any Month. Authors Ilyasah Shabazz and Keekla Magoon capture the vibrancy of the very life of Malcolm X and his trials and tribulations and brought them to life on the pages of this book. But not only was his trials and tribulations brought to life on these pages, so was the life of every African American, and even with progress…some of these trials and tribulations we still live with today.
Malcolm X was assassinated in New York City on February 21, 1965 but his legacy lives on.
|Posted on February 23, 2015 at 7:15 PM|
As an award winning journalist, Greg Archer is not new to storytelling for the masses, trading in his microphone and all the glitz and glamour that goes with it, Greg Archer stepped out the limelight….And what happened next was an amazing discovery of self, and the uncovering of his family’s odyssey.
“Grace Revealed: a memoir” emerges a story of a forgotten odyssey during the 1940s under the reign of Joseph Stalin in Eastern Europe. Greg Archer takes us on an unforgettable and heart wrenching journey as he allows us to be spectators to his own personal trials and tribulation… as he tells his own story at times with flair of humor. This book was as entertaining, as it was educational, and there were times it just simply left you in tears…taking you on an emotional rollercoaster.
But what makes this book worth its weight in gold… was learning about a part of Eastern European history…that I have Never…Ever… learned about in any history class in college. History, has always focus mainly on the genocide of Jews, however no history has been more misrepresented…more distorted…than the history of Poland.
Grace Revealed: a memoir weaves together many different lives across a variety of genres, exposing the cyclical nature of life. There were so many different life lessons in this book, from the metamorphosis of Greg Archer, to being transported back to a time where Eastern Europe and the people who lived there had to yield to change… and accept the faith that life handed them under the reign of Joseph Stalin.
Grace Revealed: a memoir, gives a voice to the voiceless of almost 2 million European civilians… the Non-Jews of Polish descent. The European civilians...the forgotten civilians... the men, the women, and the children who also suffered from the most horrific acts in history now has a voice...And that makes this book truly monumental. Honestly, I would love to see this as a made for TV movie, I think there is a lot to be learned from this book, and I do believe a documentary is in the works. This book really makes you stop and think about your own individual purpose in life, and how the actions of others not only impact the past, but impact your present, and your future.
This is definitely a book that you will want to read, and I highly recommend it. Stay tune for my author interview with Greg Archer on i-netradio in March. In the meantime learn more about Greg Archer's books, articles and television segments at www.gregaracher.com.
|Posted on February 12, 2015 at 7:45 AM|
I’m sure the name Alice Randall doesn’t need an introduction…
But just in case you haven’t heard of Alice Randall…allow me to do the honors. Alice Randall is the first African American Woman to write a number one country song, she is also Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution Nashville Ambassador, and has been recognized by the National Institutes of Health as a Health Champion, she is a screen writer, and an author... A New York Times bestselling Author to be exact.
And Alice Randall has returned to the literary world with her daughter Caroline Randall Williams for a second time with their new cookbook “SOUL FOOD Love” and with a title like that…what better time for this cookbook to make its debut… but in the month of February… the month synonymous with love…the month of Valentine’s Day…the month of Black History.
SOUL FOOD Love is not your ordinary cookbook…it’s a love story…a love story paying homage to three generations and five kitchens. The recipes tell a story of love, family, culture, tradition, history, and the joys and pains of being a woman in Black America.
The authors give us a unique opportunity to travel back in time as they trace their family culinary tree.
As spectators we see that each kitchen created a tapestry that created the very fabric that resulted in the recipes in this cookbook. The Mother and Daughter duo has taken traditional recipes that has been passed down from generation to generation and created healthier versions.
SOUL FOOD Love is one of those cookbooks that you have to take to the living room and read cover to cover to really appreciate the stories and the 80 recipes… before taking it to the kitchen. The family photographs, along with the amazing food photography, makes you feel like you’re sitting at the table with a long lost relative at a family reunion.
I especially appreciated the story and the recipe of Dear’s Sweet Forgiveness.
Actually there were a few recipes I couldn’t wait to dive into, and who can blame me with such amazing food photography. And the results… amazing. However “Dear Sweet Forgiveness” was my favorite story, making the recipe that goes with it unforgettable. I would love to tell you the story but I don’t want to spoil it for you because I know this is definitely a cookbook you will want to add to your collection.
However feel free to check out 3 of the 6 recipes that I kitchen tested by following this link---> http://soulfoodlove.com/soul-food-love-recipes . You haven’t had chicken… until you have had “Spicy Pepper Chicken.”
I think this cookbook is a must have for any cook who is looking for a healthier alternative to cooking soul food. The recipes were definitely versatile enough to please any vegan, vegetarian, and our meat lover in your family. The recipes were easy to follow, the ingredients were easily accessible at my local farmers market and supermarket, and the recipes were absolutely… Delicious. This is a cookbook that I highly recommend if you want to start off your New Year with some healthy and affordable recipes.
Dear Sweet Forgiveness
1 finger of elderflower liqueur, such as St. German
1 cup sparkling water
3 Dears’ Ice Cubes (recipe follows):
12 fresh raspberries, blueberries, or Clementine pieces. Put 1 piece of fruit in each compartment of a 12-slot ice cube tray, fill with water, and freeze until solid.
In a rocks or old fashioned glass, pour the elderflower liqueur over the ice cubes, and top off with the sparkling water.
Sip and Enjoy!
|Posted on February 6, 2015 at 8:15 PM|
"White Water" made its debut in 2011 and it is inspired by a true story…the story of Michael S. Bandy… one of the co-authors of this book.
It took several years for White Water to become a children’s book and the story that inspired this children’s book has become a made for TV movie that will premiere on TV One.
White Water tells the story of a young Michael excited to take a trip into town with his grandmother. What makes this children’s story unique is that it is set during a time of segregation where black and whites had to use separate facilities.
On this particular day, a white boy drinking water from a white only water fountain piqued the interest of an ambitious Michael and sparked a curiosity that only white water could cure... Or at least that is what Michael believes. Michael began to fantasize about what the water from a white only fountain must taste like….hence the story of White Water was born.
However this story is more than Michael getting a taste of water from a white only fountain, this story is about segregation through the eyes of a child. I think this book can serve as an amazing tool to teach young children about a time in our American History where equality was not so equal.
I think the Authors Michael S. Bandy and Eric Stein did an excellent job telling this story in the form of a children’s’ book. The illustrator Shadra Strickland did an excellent job with her illustrations…making this book a keepsake that you would want to past on from generation to generation. This is no doubt a phenomenal book…A book that I think that every child should have an opportunity to read at least once.
And for those of you who haven't had the pleasure of seeing the White Water movie trailer here's a link that gives you a preview of White Water the movie---->http://vimeo.com/116876993