Book Reviews... in a flash!

Sharing a memoir and two cookbooks with you today. While I enjoyed reading each, I struggled to 'rate/review' two of the three. 

Glitter and Glue When Kelly Corrigan was in high school, her mother neatly summarized the family dynamic as “Your father’s the glitter but I’m the glue.”

After college, armed with a backpack, her personal mission statement, and a wad of traveler’s checks, she took off for Australia to see things and do things and Become Interesting.

This is a book about the difference between travel and life experience, stepping out and stepping up, fathers and mothers. But mostly it’s about who you admire and why, and how that changes over time.

Quick Take: I often struggle with mother/daughter/family stories, and this was the case with Glitter and Glue.  While I did not love this book, I did appreciate the story, and like I often say 'who am I to rate someone's life story'.

I read several reviews on goodreads hoping to have an ah-ha moment before writing my review.  For me the story has a good message, yet reads bland at times. My favorite part was probably the last page, when she looks for the family online.

Source: Review Copy (netgalley)

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My Paris Kitchen (Pub Date, April 8): A collection of stories and 100 sweet and savory French-inspired recipes from popular food blogger David Lebovitz, reflecting the way modern Parisians eat today and featuring lush photography taken around Paris and in David's Parisian kitchen.

In My Paris Kitchen, David remasters the classics, introduces lesser-known fare, and presents 100 sweet and savory recipes that reflect the way modern Parisians eat today. You’ll find Soupe à l’oignon, Cassoulet, Coq au vin, and Croque-monsieur, as well as Smoky barbecue-style pork, Lamb shank tagine, Dukkah-roasted cauliflower, Salt cod fritters with tartar sauce, and Wheat berry salad with radicchio, root vegetables, and pomegranate. And of course, there’s dessert: Warm chocolate cake with salted butter caramel sauce, Duck fat cookies, Bay leaf poundcake with orange glaze, French cheesecake...and the list goes on. David also shares stories told with his trademark wit and humor, and lush photography taken on location around Paris and in David’s kitchen reveals the quirks, trials, beauty, and joys of life in the culinary capital of the world.

Quick Take:  I enjoy reading cookbooks for the stories, ingredients, and understanding how a dish is made more than the actual process of cooking! This book is filled with stories and having spent time on the streets of Paris I was able to imagine the places, kitchens, moments. 

The photography is wonderful, the recipes are well planned and easy to follow.  This book contains everything you could ever want; it's a good must have cookbook for any kitchen.

Source: Review Copy (netgalley)

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Simple Thai Food (pub date, May 13): Thai takeout meets authentic, regional flavors in this collection of 100 recipes for easy, economical, and accessible Thai classics—from the rising star behind the blog She Simmers.

All of Leela’s recipes have been tested and tweaked to ensure that even the busiest cook can prepare them at home. With chapters on key ingredients and tools, base recipes, one-plate meals, classic rice accompaniments, and even Thai sweets, Simple Thai Food is a complete primer for anyone who wants to give Thai cooking a try. By the end of the book, you’ll be whipping up tom yam soup and duck red curry that will put your local takeout joint to shame. But perhaps more importantly, you’ll discover an exciting new world of Thai flavors and dishes—including Stir-Fried Chicken with Chile Jam, Leaf-Wrapped Salad Bites, and Crispy Wings with Three-Flavored Sauce—that will open your eyes to all the wonderful possibilities that real Thai cooking has to offer.

Quick Take: This cookbook was a challenge for my family since I'm a vegetarian and my husband doesn't like chives or onions. {ha}.  It has sparked an interest to go to the local Asian market for spices, which I view as a step in the right direction.

Have you tried cooking traditional Thai? Do you have any favorites?

Source: review copy (netgalley)