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book review, recipe

Queenie + Jamaican Bun

I excitedly picked Candice Carty-Williams’ Queenie as my Book of the Month in March, but since life gets in the way, I didn’t get a chance to read it until recently. I was so looking forward to it that I chose it as a part of a reading challenge I’m doing with Deanna (who you’ll remember from Gilmore week) now that she’s moved away. It fit perfectly in the “book with a one word title” category. 

Queenie by Candice Carty-Williams

Queenie is a 25-year-old Jamaican British woman living in London, where she works at a newspaper. After a recent breakup with her long-term white boyfriend, she’s struggling to cope in a healthy way. She can’t concentrate on her job, and her “getting back out there” has disastrous results. 

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Top Ten Tuesday – Favorite Books Released in the Last 10 Years (July Freebie)

It’s been a little while since I participated in Top Ten Tuesday, but I’m excited to be back and I’m super excited about this topic! This week is a freebie, and since I missed May 28th’s topic, I’m doing a mini-throwback to that one: My 10 Favorite Books Released in the Last 10 Years. It’s one I was really excited to dive into. 

We’re supposed to be limiting it to one book per year, and honestly, I did my best, but for two of the years I just couldn’t decide, so I’m going with a tie. As a bonus, you get two extra wonderful books this week! Without further ado, here are some of my favorite books published within the past decade:

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book review, recipe

The Island of Sea Women + Candied Sweet Potatoes

I recently joined a group of women in my town who were interested in starting a book club. With my other local book club disbanded (due to most of the members moving away), I was excited to have the opportunity to join another, and to be one of the founding members! The woman who brought us all together, Alissa, chose our first book, The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See.

The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See

My Meetup-based book club really enjoyed Lisa See’s previous novel The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane when we read it last year, so I was looking forward to this one as well! Unfortunately, most of us didn’t finish it in time for the discussion (including me), but I made sure to finish it up afterward. I thought the story was very intriguing. 

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book review, recipe

Recursion + Huevos Rancheros

As you may recall, Blake Crouch’s Dark Matter was one of my favorite books the year I read it. So, naturally, when I heard he was releasing a new similarly thrilling sci-fi novel, I was looking forward to it. I was lucky enough to get a copy of Recursion through NetGalley before its release (though it’s available now; it came out June 11th). And, most importantly, I am so happy to report it lived up to my high expectations! 

Recursion by Blake Crouch

Just like with Dark Matter, it’s hard to describe Recursion without giving too much away. But here’s what I can tell you: Barry Sutton is a New York City cop who stumbles into an investigation on something called False Memory Syndrome, in which those affected suddenly have a whole set of real, vivid memories from another lifetime; one they haven’t actually lived. Helena Smith is a researcher obsessed with memory. She has dedicated her life to trying to preserve those memories most precious to us, so they never get lost. 

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book review, of interest

Show Us Your Books – July 2019 Reading Recap

Hello again! For those of you who are avid followers of my blog, you’ve probably noticed I’ve been missing these past few months… and you would be right. My posts have been few and far between, and there are a couple reasons for that: 

  1. I went through a period of AMAZING books and then abruptly hit a whole lot of lackluster reads. I started slogging through these 3-star books, missing the glory days of back-to-back-to-back 4- and 5-star reads. And it’s hard to blog about books you’re not interested in, especially when they don’t have any food mentions (which are sort of integral to most of my posts…) 
  2. I found out I’m pregnant. Basically right after SUYB April (the last one I posted), my husband and I got the news and it was a lot to take in. We’re both super excited — and, at this point, have had some time to process and tell people — but in the beginning, I could not concentrate on books. There were a bajillion thoughts running through my head constantly. I was always tired (I kept falling asleep with a book in my lap… or on my face), and I was often nauseated, which made it hard to read (or cook). When I did dive into a book, it was usually a pregnancy-related one, and since I had to keep it all a secret, I could hardly post about those reads. But now that the cat’s out of the bag, here’s what our little announcement looked like:
Baby Announcement with Dog Feet

And, and now that I’m safely in the second trimester, I’m starting to feel much better and am getting back into reading (and cooking). So yay! Without further ado, let’s get into a long-awaited Show Us Your Books!   

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book review, recipe

Valencia and Valentine + Butterscotch Ice Cream

Valencia and Valentine is a contemporary fiction debut from Suzy Krause that came out just a few days ago. The novel is described as quirky and charming and perfect for fans of Maria Semple, Graeme Simsion, Fredrik Backman and even Gail Honeyman — all of whom I’ve enjoyed. Naturally, with those comparisons, I was excited to have the opportunity to join the blog tour hosted by TLC Book Tours!

Valencia and Valentine by Suzy Krause
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TBR Mix ‘n’ Mingle — What I’m Reading in June

Welcome to June! I haven’t posted in a while (with the exception of my recent blog tour post), and I’m hoping with this post, I’m getting back into the swing of things. I’ve begun recovering from my recent book slump, and I’ve got a few good ones lined up — head back tomorrow for what is sure to be a delicious ice cream recipe, just in time for summer!

I’m looking forward to diving into some good books this month, hopefully enjoyed in the backyard sunshine 🙂

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book review, recipe

The Woman in the White Kimono + Miso Soup

Ana Johns’ debut novel The Woman in the White Kimono is historical fiction inspired by true stories. It spans decades and continents, taking place in post-WWII Japan and the modern-day United States. I was intrigued by the description and excited to participate in this blog tour.

The Woman in the White Kimono by Ana Johns

In the late 1950s in Japan, Naoko has been promised to the son of her father’s business associate but she is in love with another—an American sailor. Though she attempts to get their approval of their relationship, Naoko knows it would bring shame on the family if she decided to marry him. Still, she can’t help but follow her heart. Will the consequences of her decision be something she can live with?

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