Category Archives: Non-Fiction

Willams Sonoma Soup of the Day by Kate McMillan

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soup of the day Photobucket A colorful, calendar-style cookbook, Soup of the Day presents 365 recipes—and daily culinary inspiration— for soups and stews to match any season, occasion, or mood. Lavish photographs and a colorful graphic design add visual appeal to these fresh and fabulous recipes celebrating a favorite dish.ENDLESSLY VERSATILE, soup is perfect for any season and every occasion. What better way to capture the essence of spring than by simmering freshly shelled peas and fava beans in a fragrant broth accented by bracing mint and refreshing lemon zest? In summer, a cool gazpacho made by whirling perfectly ripe tomatoes, juicy cucumbers, and vibrant red peppers is fitting for a hot and humid day—no pot necessary! When the air turns brisk, soup nourishes and satisfies like no other dish. In autumn, white beans mingle with sturdy greens in satisfying, peasant-style pots, and starchy squashes and root vegetables blend into silky purées. Winter brings even more soul-warming fare, such as chilis and stews featuring sausages and other hearty meats and thick vegetable soups scented with woodsy herbs.

I have to admit to a weakness for soups.

A major weakness.

A weakness so strong that I started eating pork again (after a 10+ year hiatus) so I could get a tomato based crab soup mixed with a cream based crab soup.

Yeah. It’s like that.

This book drew me like a moth to a flame, lol!

There is only a HB version available for purchase…but I’m currently reading the ebook for review purposes. My God! These color photos makes me want to drool…and buy the hardback.

Also, I’d like to point out that it is currently Winter. I’m so not feeling the spring/summer soups right now.

I’ve completed several soups from this book. The instructions are clear, concise and easy to follow. The color photos are beautiful (and mouthwatering). The soups that I have made have been tasty and filling.

The problem that I had with this book is that – like Williams Sonoma, itself – it is not everyday accessible. A lot of the spices used are expensive and hard to locate. These are not soups that you can throw together using what’s in your (well stocked) pantry. Most of these soups will require a bit of prior planning. A lot of the soups are exotic to the “regular” palate, as well. I can’t see making a lot of these soups for children or a family weeknight dinner. A lot of these soups are more like “special occasion” soups – like using one of the (four) pumpkin soup recipes for Thanksgiving or Christmas dinner.
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Quickie: Everything I Know About Love I Learned from Romance Novels by Sarah Wendell

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Straight from the heart of romance blogger Wendell, this inventive gift book provides the best wisdom about love that the romance genre has to offer. Laced with signature witty commentary and peppered with thoughts from bestselling romance authors and avid readers, these pages reveal that while romances are certainly steamy, they have more to offer than just a sexy hero.

It took me forever to finish this book, but I really enjoyed myself!

EIKAL (as it is fondly called) is a love letter (essay style) to romance books and their readers. It’s very much preaching to the choir but it could also (possibly) persuade non-romance readers as to the benefits of reading romances.

I would also find this book to be highly educational for a romance reader to give to a non-romance reader who is clueless as to why people love romances so much.

For me, I felt that the book forced me to seriously think about what draws me to romance books. I often find myself reading romances when I’m sad or stressed or depressed. I never understood or even questioned why – I just did.

Written in SB Sarah Wendell’s typical upbeat, comical and chatty style, EIKAL is very easy to read and rather funny.

Another great thing about this book is the enormous amounts of recommendations to be found here. I started reading this book forever ago but just finished. Why? Because I constantly found myself being side-tracked by new (to me) authors.

I lay my current Jennifer Crusie addiction squarely at SB Sarah’s feet.

As much as I loved this book, I can’t see someone who does not already read romances picking this up. I do see people who read romances buying this for someone who doesn’t understand.

Best & Worst Books I Read in 2011

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So, this is the time of year everyone posts their best & worst lists together. I decided to get in on that. After the jump, you can find my list. Each item has a link to my explanation for why it’s here. Enjoy!
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Review: The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua

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“Chinese parents assume strength, not fragility.” – Amy Chua, The Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother

I’m having a hard time both reviewing and rating this book. I think one of the reasons is related to some anger at Amy Chua – she often comes across as unnecessarily harsh and cruel when speaking to her daughters. In fact, she sometimes comes across as crazy.

One of the things I can’t argue with are her results.
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