Book Review: For Love or Country by Jennifer Hudson Taylor

Book Review: For Love or Country by Jennifer Hudson Taylor

 

 

 

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The cover on this book displays a strong woman, capable of handling whatever is tossed her way. From the little bit that I read, that’s how I would have described her. Strong. Non-nonsense. The book is about Tyra MacGregor who works as a spy for against the British army. She is caught and placed under house arrest.

I tried to like this book, but I found it difficult. The story consists of a lot of conversations and i felt like I never really got to know Tyra. Now understanding that this is book two, perhaps that’s why. The explanation of the MacGregor’s and their life on the plantation was given in more detail in that first book. But for me, jumping in midway through, I found I was lost. In turn, I never really got to know Tyra. Which means, I never got to like her or was rooting for her.

This was one of the few books that I’ve owned that I didn’t complete. The back cover summary made me curious, but the words within didn’t capture my interest. I would have loved to have given it a positive review, but I can’t.

I received this book from a Goodreads Giveaway.

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Book Review: The Chopped Cookbook by the Food Network

Book Review: The Chopped Cookbook by the Food Network

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I like most everything by the Food Network. Their magazines are cool to flip through and get ideas, many of their programs are fun to watch. Chopped is one of the programs I enjoy watching, just to watch their ideas of what to make from a basket of odds and ends. So when the opportunity arose to get this book, I took it.

It arrived in the mail yesterday. It’s a nice hardcover book, you can tell money was not skimped on it. The graphics on the inside and the layout is very clean. The back of the book describes the contents as “If you’ve ever looked in your fridge, hoping for inspiration to strike, let The Chopped Cookbook help you shake up weeknight dinners. Just as each basket on Chopped has many appetizing possibilities, so, too do the contents of your refrigerator.”

The parts I liked about the book were the Chopped Pantry and the explanation on what goes with what, and how if you wanted to substitute certain ingredients for something you might have on hand instead. Such as if you don’t have greek yogurt on hand, but love sour cream, then this book encourages you to do just that. Make the substitution for what you as the foodie prefers to eat.

Of the recipes I’m most likely to try out, that would be pasta sauces (quick & easy marinara) and the mocha brownies with coffee and cinnamon. Not much I realize, but some of the recipes I’m sure would be quite delicious, they just were not calling out to my type of food. One would have to go beyond your comfort zone and try something totally different. Something out of the basket, per se. They are more involved than I want to spend on an unknown recipe.

Samples of some of the recipes are: Stuffed Peppers with Wheat Berries, Connecticut-Cajun shrimp rolls, Philly-style garlicky greens and egg sandwich.

I think for me, the pictures of the food just didn’t sell me. I wish it did. It may have prompted me to try a dish I totally wouldn’t have tried before. The food pictures just didn’t have the rich, clean feel that I expected from this book. Perhaps if the fonts and the style of the book had been different, then the photographs would have not disappointed me quite so much. At this point, I’d probably stick with the brownies and marinara sauce. They seemed easier and less involved.

http://www.randomhouse.com/book/232342/the-chopped-cookbook-by-food-network-kitchen

http://www.randomhouse.com/author/225258/food-network-kitchen

I received this book for free from Blogging for Books for this review.

Book Review: Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemyer

Book Review: Full Steam Ahead by Karen Witemyer

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I. Loved. This. Book.  Got that, right? I loved the book. Started on it the day after I received it in the mail. As always, I make the mistake of starting a book on my lunch break at work. But it usually isn’t a problem, because I can usually stop and put it down when time is up. Notice the word usually. As of late I seem to be picking up more and more books where the quality of writing pulls me into the time period. This is one of those books.

Full Steam Ahead is a young woman who is the sole heir to her father’s shipping business. He’s always wanted a son, and she grew up knowing that he wanted a son to carry on their name. So, when she returns home from school, due to her father’s health, she agrees to go to New Orleans to find a husband. To carry on the family business before it’s too late. Their family has a legacy, and that is Lafitte’s Dagger. Unfortunately, another family claims to own the rights to it. So Nicole sets off to New Orleans, with her legacy in tow. Unfortunately, she ends up on a side excursion where she finds more than she ever bargained.

As I said, I liked this book. But there were some areas where I wish it had either expanded or further explored. That is of Nicole’s parents. I understood their purpose in the book, but you get snippets of them at the beginning and then elsewhere. You ended up not caring if they were there or not, although they were important aspects to the story. Nicole, you got to know. Darius, you got to know. He’s a fellow whom I wasn’t so sure about at first, but whom I can to love. Perhaps not in the same aspect as Nicole, you know. There was drama, and where I thought the story would end. It didn’t. Just enough suspense, uncertainty to keep my interest there.

All in all, this will be a book that I will share, but will write my name in ink to not ever lose from sight. This one will not end up at the recycle bin at the local used book store. 🙂

I received this book from Bethany House Publishing for my honest review, which I have given. I was not required to write a positive review and have not been compensated for it in any way. All opinions expressed are mine.