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Monday, October 27, 2014

Go: A Kidd's Guide to Graphic Design by Chip Kidd

This is a wonderful book for kids. The author has designed the guide so that it is easy to read, appealing, and interesting for children. Not knowing much about graphic design myself, I learned quite a bit and enjoyed it as well. I find that it would also be a useful book to have in the art room, because of the creative design projects in the latter portion of the book. Both the front and back cover are eye-catching and appealing, as well. 

Note: I received this complimentary review copy in exchange for an honest review. 

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Foxcatcher - A Gripping Memoir by Mark Schultz

Foxcatcher by Mark Schultz , according to the cover is "the true story of my brother's murder, John du Pont's madness, and the quest for Olympic gold." I received an advanced reader's edition of this book in exchange for a review. The book will be published on 11/18/14 by Dutton. Additionally, the movie will be released in November 2014, as well. Steve Carell stars in the movie as John du Pont and Channing Tatum as Mark Schultz. As always, I would recommend reading the book prior to seeing the film!

The story is interesting, and ultimately has a very sad ending, with the loss of Dave Schultz, multiple time Olympic and World champion wrestler. The author, Mark Schultz, gives great play by play detail into each and ever wrestling match he competed in during his own journey for Olympic gold and World championships. If a reader doesn't really like sports, they may find the wrestling a bit too heavy on the description. However, I am not a sports lover and I felt the book was very well written. The relationship between Mark and his brother Dave is an example of the unbreakable bond of brotherhood. For fans of memoir, true crime, or even fiction, I would recommend this book.

Bread Revolution - An Abundance of Delicious Recipes

Bread Revolution by Peter Reinhart is a beautiful book filled with baking instructions and recipes for many different types of breads. The recipes are a mix of sweet and savory. Many are gluten-free and/or diabetic friendly. The book is sturdy because it is hard-bound, which would help it to hold up longer in the kitchen. The recipes include crackers, biscuits, rolls, pancakes, ciabattas, bagels, croissants, pizza dough, focaccias, cookies, biscotti, and even pretzels. For anyone wanting to bake healthy options, this would be a great guidebook. Chapter 1 includes a step-by-step learning tutorial for the bread baking process. Overall, this is a well put-together book. 

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

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Flour + Water Pasta : A beautiful pasta book with extremely fancy recipes.

Flour + Water Pasta by Thomas McNaughton is a beautiful book. Not only is it a cookbook with many sophisticated recipes divided into seasonal groupings, it also includes detailed instructions for making pasta dough to create beautiful fresh pasta of all shapes and sizes. Much like the cover design, the photography within the book is wonderful. Near the back of the book is a two page spread of photos of multi-colored handmade pasta created with the directions in this book. The recipes are certainly a bit on the fancy side, however, for those looking to simply cook a family meal (like myself). However, to the reader interested in cooking technique, this is a fabulous book. 

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

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

The Forgetting Place by John Burley

This book was well written and I enjoyed reading it. The ending totally threw me for a loop. After reading it, I can say that the plot reminded me quite a bit of the book and then movie adaptation Shutter Island. I would have never foreseen this outcome in the early stages of the novel. The author did a great job keeping up the suspense and mystery.

Winter Street - A Heartwarming and Charming Holiday Read

Winter Street was wonderful. I picked it up and read it cover to cover in one marathon reading session because it was so good. Elin Hilderbrand has a knack for hooking the reader with real family drama that the reader must keep reading to find out the outcomes. In years past, Starbucks lattes have been known to throw me into the Holiday spirit. However, this year, I can say for certain that it was Winter Street by Elin Hilderbrand. After finishing the book, I just want to make a Christmas dinner and decorate cookies with my mother. The book had many humorous moments that left me laughing out loud. Also included was some romance, but not over the top romance. I love the way Elin weaves in a little romance without being too "Fifty Shades"-ish. Even though the plot weaves back and forth between family members, the story is seamless and intriguing the whole way through. The ending leaves us hanging quite a bit, but that simply means there is hope for a forthcoming series. That makes me happy and excited. Thank you, Elin, for writing such wonderful stories.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

One Step Too Far by Tina Seskis (Similar, but Much Better than Gone Girl!)

I loved this book. It was packed full of suspense and kept me guessing until the end. The reader can't help but feel for the main character, despite her many flaws and turns in the wrong direction. Often compared to Gone Girl, the book does have some similarity, but I felt it was much better written with more plot twists than Gone Girl. The chapters switch back and forth between different character viewpoints, which help keep the suspense momentum going until the very last page. The story is well written and engaging. I would recommend this book without a doubt to fans of any type of novel.

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Awesome Idea Book & Stencils for DIY

DIY Type by Dana Tanamachi is a great book for crafters, hobbyists, or anyone who likes to experiment with DIY projects. There are both uppercase and lowercase sets of letter stencils, as well as a few decorative stencils at the end of the book. The book is sturdy so that the stencils will not fall apart after the first usage. The cover is attractive and appealing. This would be a great book to give as a gift. 

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

Friday, October 3, 2014

James Rollins' Newest Sigma Adventure - The 6th Extinction

A fabulous fast-paced action/adventure. James Rollins never disappoints, as his novels always keep you reading furiously until the final pages. He does extensive research into all of the topics covered and provides author's notes at the end of the novel. This is really informative and helps the reader to decipher what is or isn't true in the story. This book hooks the reader from the very beginning and provides thrills the whole way through. I LOVE IT!

Night Blindness by Susan Strecker

Night Blindness is an emotionally gripping and at times tragic novel of lost love and family in the midst of one heartbreak after another. The main character keeps the reader guessing as to which path she will eventually choose with the ending of the story. I was up all night (literally) with my bedside lamp burning bright while my husband slept. I could not put it down. After finishing the book, I couldn't stop thinking about the story. I absolutely loved this book.

Don't Look Back by Gregg Hurwitz

This book was excellent. The reader will find everything they hope for in a suspense novel. I was biting my nails until the finish. Great job, Gregg Hurwitz!! No wonder my absolutely favorite author James Rollins gave you a shout out and recommended this book. It's wonderful!

Mary Kubica's The Good Girl

This book was so good that I could not put it down. I was reading it while feeding my 1 year old baby food with the other hand! The surprise ending really throws the reader for a loop, but in a good way. This is one of the best fast-paced mysteries that I have read in a while. Not your average kidnapping novel, that's for sure! I highly recommend it.

Leaving Time by Jodi Picoult = Wonderful Read

This was a wonderful book and the ending was not at all what I was expecting. I learned quite a bit about elephants, based upon the research Picoult put into the writing of this book. This is actually one of my favorites from Jodi Picoult so far, next to The Storyteller. Highly recommend it!!!

Big Little Lies by Moriarty packs a BIG PUNCH!

This was an absolutely awesome book. I couldn't put it down. Well done, Liane. I enjoyed this even better than The Husband's Secret!

The Long and Far Away Gone by Lou Berney

This turned out to be a great suspense novel. It started out a bit slow, but once I got into it, I was hooked. I really wanted to find out what actually happened the night of the movie theater robbery and Wyatt's story, as well as what happened to Julianna's sister at the Fair. The author did a great job of weaving the two stories together just a bit so the reader wasn't lost. Well done.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

A Clever Drawing Guide for Dinosaur Lovers

Draw-A-Saurus is a clever, imaginative drawing guide with step-by-step diagrams for drawing various types of dinosaurs. The author does a great job of laying out the book with eye-catching photos, as well as the black and white guided line drawings. I would recommend this book for older children (middle school age and up) and even adults who love to draw. It would also be great for parents and younger children to team together learning to draw a dinosaur and then color it afterwards. My 5 year old thinks it is wonderful! The title is very clever and the cover and back cover are appealing and eye-catching.

I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review