Immortal Unchained by Lynsay Sands

Book Review

 


Immortal Unchained (Argeneau, #25)Book Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Fantasy

Book Series: Argeneau #25

Released: 3/28/17 by Avon

Pages: 384 Price:$7.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I own a copy of this book.  

 

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Ever since Domitian Argenis recognized Sarita as his life mate, he’s been waiting for the perfect moment to claim her. Those fantasies did not include him being chained to a table in a secret lab or both of them being held hostage by a mad scientist. Somehow, they have to escape…

Sarita has seen some crazy things as a cop, but nothing to rival Domitian. A vampire? Seriously? But his healing ability, incredible powers, and their mind-blowing physical connection—none of it should be possible, yet her body knows differently. Now, not only do they have to save each other, but other innocent lives are at stake. Failure is not an option, for Sarita intends that Domitian show her exactly what an eternity of pleasure feels like…

My Review:

Another enjoyable addition to a series I adore.  I was disappointed to see how some of the blogs I follow are growing tired of this series and have decided they are done.  I get that this is addition number 25 after all and we won’t always love every new release Ms. Sands gives us.  I, however, am not done.  This is one of the series that I’m (most likely) going to see through to the end.  Why?  Because I know 8 out of 10 times I’m going to get a story that I love.  One where I sit on the couch all day and do nothing but read the latest escapades of the characters in a world I enjoy.  Ms. Sands books might have similar themes but she always delivers a story that helps me escape reality and leaves me smiling at the end.

I’ve said before in my reviews of this series that the books fall into one of two camps.  They are either silly fun romps, true chick-lit, or they are more suspenseful and even a tad dark, with gripping plots that keep you on your toes wondering what happens next.  This latest addition to the series was one of the suspenseful tales but it did manage to throw in some fun as well.

This was Domitian and Sarita’s story.  I have to confess I don’t remember Domitian at all but after 25 books Ms. Sands has to be scraping the bottom of the barrel as far as finding a new Argeneau for each story.  We have to be onto second cousins twice removed or something like that.  That’s okay.  I don’t need a long history with these characters to find their stories compelling.  I did find it interesting that this was the first time that an Immortal was waiting to claim their lifemate.  I guess it had never occurred to me what would happen if a vamp met their mate when they were a child.  Had to agree that the private investigator was a bit creepy but compared to some of the other things that went down in this book easily overlooked. I liked this pairing, the couples complimented each other nicely and I enjoyed my time with them.

What really hooked me about this book, however, was all the progress with the mysterious Doctor that had been kidnapping Immortals.  We finally got some serious progress on that storyline.  I don’t want to give anything away but he is a serious scumbag and I can’t wait until they catch him.  I kind of hope we return to this island though, there are some characters left here that I wouldn’t mind seeing again.  This whole multi-book plot thread though has definitely breathed new life into this series.  I’m looking forward to the next installment that comes out later this year.  I need to know what happens next!  I do hope we return to Canada again sometime, though.  I miss the exploits of my favorite matchmaker in the series and would love to check in with what is going on up there.

My Rating: 5 Stars

By Blood by Ellen Ullman

Book Review

 


By BloodBook Genre: Historical Fiction, Mystery

Book Series: N/A

Released: 2/24/2012 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Pages: 378 Price: $16.00 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

San Francisco in the 1970s. Free love has given way to radical feminism, psychedelic ecstasy to hard-edged gloom. The Zodiac Killer stalks the streets. A disgraced professor takes an office in a downtown tower to plot his return. But the walls are thin and he’s distracted by voices from next door—his neighbor is a psychologist, and one of her patients dislikes the hum of the white-noise machine. And so he begins to hear about the patient’s troubles with her female lover, her conflicts with her adoptive, avowedly WASP family, and her quest to track down her birth mother. The professor is not just absorbed but enraptured. And the further he is pulled into the patient’s recounting of her dramas—and the most profound questions of her own identity—the more he needs the story to move forward.

The patient’s questions about her birth family have led her to a Catholic charity that trafficked freshly baptized orphans out of Germany after World War II. But confronted with this new self— “I have no idea what it means to say ‘I’m a Jew’”—the patient finds her search stalled. Armed with the few details he’s gleaned, the professor takes up the quest and quickly finds the patient’s mother in records from a German displaced-persons camp. But he can’t let on that he’s been eavesdropping, so he mocks up a reply from an adoption agency the patient has contacted and drops it in the mail. Through the wall, he hears how his dear patient is energized by the news, and so is he. He unearths more clues and invests more and more in this secret, fraught, triangular relationship: himself, the patient, and her therapist, who is herself German. His research leads them deep into the history of displaced-persons camps, of postwar Zionism, and—most troubling of all—of the Nazi Lebensborn program.With ferocious intelligence and an enthralling, magnetic prose, Ellen Ullman weaves a dark and brilliant, intensely personal novel that feels as big and timeless as it is sharp and timely. It is an ambitious work that establishes her as a major writer.

My Review:

Another full disclosure time. I picked this book because the author’s last name began with a U.  I only need an author with an X to have read a book by an author of every letter in the alphabet.  Feel free to give me your recommendations below.   Now for the review.

I’m not usually a fan of historical fiction.  I’m also not usually one to read about the Holocaust.  Not that I am a denier or have anything but the deepest respect for the suffering that people went through.  I simply tend to be a sensitive person and I have trouble separating myself from the fiction I read.  I get emotionally distraught and it affects my mood and how I behave towards those around me.  So I tend to stay away from topics that could upset me.  Not the correct behavior I know but it is the approach I take in reading.  Life sucks why would I want to read about more suffering.  Still, I selected this book from my library because it sounded interesting and filled a reading requirement I needed.

I’m so glad I did.  This book captivated me.  Much like the narrator of the story, I became obsessed with the life the patient was revealing to her therapist.   I guess I am a bit of a voyeur too.  It was a bit of a strange read, however, and I get some of the criticism that has been posted in other reviews.  I almost find myself dividing the book into two different plots.  One plot thread revolved around the therapist and her patient and the other was the professor and his odd circumstance.    The eavesdropping on the therapist and patient being the more compelling plot.

So let’s deal with the professor first.  He needs help.  Serious help.  I can see why he was put on leave and was described as creepy.  It is exactly what he is, creepy.  Some say that his purpose was not well-defined but I disagree.  I think he probably got in trouble for sexually harassing a student and the institution he works for wanted him to disappear for a few months in hopes that the drama he stirred up would be forgotten or blow over.  While I did find him creepy I have to say I did not totally despise him.  I almost feel bad for him as I truly feel he needs help before he hurts someone.  Or it could be that I feel a tad guilty knowing I have become as obsessed with the patient’s story as he has.

Now for the therapist and her client.  This was a moving story and the sole reason I’m glad I listen to this book.  The patient’s story is that of a young woman in search of her identity.  Like many of us, she did not feel like she fit in and desperately needed to connect with her origins to make sense of the life she now leads.  What she learns is not pleasant and logically speaking should hold no reflection on who she is as a person but I can not say I would feel differently if I was in her shoes.  This part of the story is so worth wading through the creepy professor parts.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Aurora CV-01 by Ryk Brown

Book Review

 


Aurora: CV-01 (The Frontiers Saga #1)Book Genre: Science Fiction, Space Opera, Audiobook

Book Series: The Frontiers Saga #1:Part 1

Released: 12/19/2011 by Tantor Media

Pages: 301 Price: $29.99 Audiobook

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library

 

 

Book Synopsis:

A world recovering from a devastating plague…
A brutal enemy threatening invasion…
A young man seeking to escape the shadow of his father…
A ship manned by a crew of fresh academy graduates…
A top-secret experimental propulsion system…
A questionable alliance with a mysterious green-eyed woman…

What destiny has in store for the crew of the UES Aurora, is far greater than any of them could ever imagine. And this is only the beginning…

“Aurora: CV-01” is 77,000 word novel, and is Episode 1 of The Frontiers Saga.

My Review:

This was a fun audiobook that I borrowed from my library.  After reading some of the other reviews I have to agree with some of the criticism that yes, it is pretty much a Star Trek rip-off.  Maybe not blatantly but the similarities are hard to deny.  But so what.  It is still an action-packed well plotted read that brought me several hours of enjoyment.

Took me a moment to realize this book was set in the extreme far future after most of humanity had been wiped from existence.  After I caught on to that it surprised me just how familiar this society felt to our own, with the exception of space travel that is.  While entertaining the plot was pretty convenient at times as the author set all his characters into place for the longer story arch.  For me it was easy to overlook because when hasn’t a character been in the right place at the right time in works of fiction.

The characters were diverse and likable I would have enjoyed seeing where some of the relationships led towards.  I would have also liked to learn more about what happen to Earth in the past as well as the other colonies that were talked about.  But I’m afraid this is where I leave this universe.

While I truly enjoyed this book it is the only one available through my library so I will not be continuing on because with so many parts out (19), and yet to come (75 total!), this series is simply too expensive for me to continue with… I have suggested my library purchase the next three parts but it is highly unlikely that will happen.  Makes me kind of wish I had looked into the series availability before I borrowed it. I would have skipped it had I know how difficult and costly getting my hands on future parts would be.  Oh, well.  Live and learn.

My Rating:4 Stars

Yesterday’s Son by A.C. Crispin

Book Review

 


Yesterday's Son (Star Trek: The Yesterday Saga, #1)Book Genre: Science Fiction, Star Trek, Fantasy, TV Tie-in

Book Series: Star Trek: The Original Series #11

Released: 8/1/1983 by Pocket Books

Pages: 192  Price: $4.99

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I own a copy of this book. 

 

 

Book Synopsis:

With the help of the Vulcan leader T’Pau, Spock gets permission to use the Guardian of Forever, a portal through time constructed by a long-vanished race, to venture into the past. On another trip into history, on the planet Sarpeidon, Spock had loved a woman who could not return with him to the future, and now Spock wishes to see the son she bore him, 5,000 years earlier. But a Romulan attack on the Guardian’s planet could interfere, unless the Enterprise can keep the Guardian out of their hands.

My Review:

This is the first Star Trek book I ever read.  It must have been my early teen years, maybe 30 years ago, when I picked this one up at the bookstore.  Much of the plot was forgotten, only a few parts stuck in my memory.  I’m not sure what ever happen to that copy but when I picked up the sequel through a book exchange site I decided to read it again.  I also recently watched the tv episode that the events this book are based upon.  So the timing was perfect to revisit a piece of my childhood and my love of all things Trek.

This was such a good book.  I am probably bias here but I loved this book it is by far my favorite Trek book that I’ve read.  Ms. Crispin does an excellent job of capturing the chemistry and personalities of the characters it was exactly like reading an episode from the original series, only better!  Better because you get to be in the head of Spock, Kirk, and Bones,  you get to read the internal dialog of the characters.

As to the plot of this book I was totally engrossed I have never wanted to sit two characters down for a talking to as I did while reading this book.  Maybe even smack them upside the head…  I’m glad there is a second book because while I am satisfied with the ending it was so bitter-sweet, I wanted more for these two. Like I said the book read much like the tv series so if you enjoyed the show you should like this book.  If you were a fan of Spock then you are really going to love this one!  Looking forward to the next.

My Rating:5 Stars

Killing Rocks by D.D. Barant

Book Review

 


Killing Rocks (The Bloodhound Files, #3)Book Genre: Mystery, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

Book Series: The Bloodhound Files #3

Released: 12/28/2010 by St. Martin’s Paperbacks

Pages: 308 Price: $7.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I own a copy of this book

 

 

Book Synopsis:

FBI profiler Jace Valchek’s ticket home from the twisted parallel universe where she’s been called to duty hinges on the capture of serial killer Aristotle Stoker—and an alliance with a sorcerer known as Asher. The problem: Asher has joined forces with some of the most dangerous creatures Jace has ever encountered. The solution: There is none, without Asher’s help…

Jace’s goal seems simple enough—to get her man, like always. But just hours after she arrives in Vegas, she’s abducted…and she isn’t even sure who the real enemy is. Now Jace has to wonder if she’s the predator or the prey in a very dangerous game that could change not only her fate, but the world’s…Meanwhile, a serial killer is still on the loose. And time has already run out…

My Review:

Let me be blunt.  I didn’t care for this book that much and it has made me a little hesitant to continue on with the remaining three books.  I enjoyed the first two and still like most of the characters but this book was just off.  I struggled to become invested in the plot and kept waiting for it to simply be over.  I got down to the last 50 pages and almost walked away because I simply didn’t care.  I stuck with it and in the end, I’m glad I did, but man, this was a chore to read at times.

Now let me tell you why.  The flashbacks and side stories were the big issues for me.  I’m okay with one or two flashbacks but a reading pet-peeve of mine is when they continue through the entire book and this one did.  Also, most of the characters I cared about were absent for much of the book.  Instead, we get Jace paired up with this other woman from yet another world and I really never did care for her much so it didn’t bother me much when she simply disappeared without any resolution because I had been wanting her to disappear for most of the book.

I still enjoyed Jace as a character but this book was all over the place and felt a little like it was searching for a plot.  That the whole point of the book was to fill in back-story for the main character.  All of those details should have been spread over multiple book to lessen the info-dump feel that it ended up giving this one.

Sigh… simply put this book didn’t work for me as a reader and while I might have said good-bye to this world and moved on with my life normally I already own the remaining three books in the series and feel like I should really see this one out.  I truly hope the series gets better, closer to what attracted me to in book one.  I do think I will be taking a break, however,  perhaps if I put a couple of book by other authors between this one and the next I will be able to approach it with an open mind.  Fingers-crossed.

My Rating:2 Stars

The Long War by Terry Pratchett & Stephen Baxter

Book Review

 


The Long War (The Long Earth, #2)Book Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy

Book Series: The Long Earth #2

Released: 6/18/13 by HarperCollins

Pages:426  Price: $9.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed this audiobook from my library.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

A generation after the events of The Long Earth, mankind has spread across the new worlds opened up by Stepping. Where Joshua and Lobsang once pioneered, now fleets of airships link the stepwise Americas with trade and culture. Mankind is shaping the Long Earth – but in turn the Long Earth is shaping mankind… A new ‘America’, called Valhalla, is emerging more than a million steps from Datum Earth, with core American values restated in the plentiful environment of the Long Earth – and Valhalla is growing restless under the control of the Datum government…

Meanwhile the Long Earth is suffused by the song of the trolls, graceful hive-mind humanoids. But the trolls are beginning to react to humanity’s thoughtless exploitation… Joshua, now a married man, is summoned by Lobsang to deal with a gathering multiple crisis that threatens to plunge the Long Earth into a war unlike any mankind has waged before.

My Review:

While I am enjoying this series I have to agree with other criticism that has been made about this book.  That this is an interesting story that is fairly lacking in plot.  The authors have a point (I hope) and seem to feel that it is going to take hundreds of pages and several volumes to get to the heart of the action.  Also, much of this second book feels as if it is simply setting up future books.  Not the first time, and probably not the last, that a second book simply feels like filler.

I had trouble getting into this second book mainly because I had to wait so long for my turn at the library’s copy.  If I had been able to dive right into this one after the first I might have had an easier time remembering who carried over from the first book and who was new.  Around half-way through I was invested enough in this storyline that it didn’t matter that much and I could follow what was going on.

Still, I did enjoy listening to this book as the authors continue to bring up interesting questions of what makes a society, or makes us human, and what would happen if the people were truly free.  The technology continues to fascinate me as well as the idea of exploring parallel Earths with slightly changing variables in its environment, history, and development.  The characters continue to be well-developed and I spend much of the time thinking who they might represent in our own society.  Even though this book was written in 2013 I have to say who the authors wrote as the President reminds me an awful lot of who is our current President-elect…  Not a pleasant indicator of what our country might be in for in the next four-year.

Even though this story felt as if it was all over the place, though still interesting, I am going to continue for one more book at least (last one offered in audio format at my library).  I did get my act together and requested it before finishing this book and able to start right away.  I’m going to see if that makes a difference or not.

My Rating:3 Stars

Zoe’s Tale by John Scalzi

Book Review

 


Zoe's Tale (Old Man's War, #4)Book Genre: Science Fiction, Space Opera, Fantasy

Book Series: Old Man’s War

Released: 8/19/08 by Tor

Pages: 355 Price: $8.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I borrowed a copy of this book from my library.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

How do you tell your part in the biggest tale in history?

I ask because it’s what I have to do. I’m Zoe Boutin Perry: A colonist stranded on a deadly pioneer world. Holy icon to a race of aliens. A player (and a pawn) in a interstellar chess match to save humanity, or to see it fall. Witness to history. Friend. Daughter. Human. Seventeen years old.

Everyone on Earth knows the tale I am part of. But you don’t know my tale: How I did what I did — how I did what I had to do — not just to stay alive but to keep you alive, too. All of you. I’m going to tell it to you now, the only way I know how: not straight but true, the whole thing, to try make you feel what I felt: the joy and terror and uncertainty, panic and wonder, despair and hope. Everything that happened, bringing us to Earth, and Earth out of its captivity. All through my eyes.

It’s a story you know. But you don’t know it all.

My Review:

I have mixed feelings about his addition to the Old Man’s War series.  I did like it but just a little less than the others I’ve read so far.  I have a couple of theories as to why that I will go into in a bit.  I’m glad I read it, however, and would suggest if this is your first time through the series that you do as well.  If I ever decide to reread this series I will probably skip this one, though.

So what held me back from loving this book.  The big issue for me was that this is the same story as the previous book but from a different POV.  While it did shed some light on the action that wasn’t shared in the other book what I just feel like I wouldn’t have missed much by not reading this one.  The other drawback for me was that is a YA book, it reads like YA, I found it annoying like YA… I’m over YA at this point in my life.

That being said, I did find it fascinating that Scalzi did an amazing job of channeling a 17-year-old girl.  Kudos to him.  The drama and angst that he showed through his writing is spot on.   A couple of new scenes dealing with Zoe’s boyfriend were simply heartbreaking and seeing what happen when she left the plant near the end were worth the read.  I don’t know if it needed to read a whole second book to get to those parts, however.

The book did make me want to take a break from the series.  The format is changing for the remaining two books, they were written as serial releases, and I think taking a break and then coming back to this world might make it easier to accept any new changes in formatting coming my way.  I still plan to finish up the series but just not right now.

My Rating: 3 Stars

ARC Lucifer by D.B. Reynolds

Book Review

 


Lucifer (Vampires in America, #11)Book Genre: Romance, Paranormal, Urban Fantasy

Book Series: Vampires in America #11

Released: 11/18/16 by ImaJinn Books

Pages: 298  Price: $7.99

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source:I received a copy of this book from the publisher through Net Galley for an honest review.

 

Book Synopsis:

Montreal, Quebec . . . A charming city on the St. Lawrence River, historic, sophisticated, but beneath it all lies an extensive underground where treacherous vampires are plotting to seize the country.

Lucifer Scuderi is a vampire—handsome and charismatic, a powerful hunter of unusual skill—who arrives in Montreal to take on the most important hunt of his life. Someone has kidnapped the mate of Canada’s ruling vampire lord, and it’s up to Lucifer to find him before his death sets off a crisis that could engulf the entire continent.

Eleanor Morel lost everything—including the love of her life—when she became a vampire. But now, twenty years later, she’s a trusted bodyguard to the Canadian lord, Sophia, and the only person Sophia can count on to lead the search for her endangered mate. But what Eleanor doesn’t know is that the special hunter she’ll be working with is none other than her long-lost love. And he’s demanding answers.

Lucifer’s love for Eleanor burns as hot as his anger towards her for leaving him. But they’ll have to find a way to set history aside and work together if they’re going to unravel the twisted betrayal that threatens not only Sophia and her mate, but the whole continent. Because the European vampires are on the move. And if Canada falls, the rest of North America could follow . . .

My Review:

Book number eleven in this series I adore brings us back to Canada to deal with Lord Sophia’s missing mate.  He has been kidnapped by the European vampires who are becoming ever more bold in their attempt to claim this continent for their own.  While I love this author and series I have to say this book wasn’t my favorite in the series.  I would have to say it fits in with other books I didn’t care for in the series, books 3-5.  Still committed to this world just didn’t care for Sophia’s drama I guess…

So what went wrong for me. The book had a different feel to it as we gear up to travel to Europe and take the war to those vamps on their home turf.  I did like Lucifer and Eleanor but struggled to build a connection with them.  I also didn’t care for the flashbacks.  I know they were necessary to build the history between these two, but I’m usually not a fan of them when they are used in any book/series I’m reading.  I just don’t care for the jumping back and forth in time.  A few are okay but this story had quite a few flashbacks in the first 50 pages and it didn’t agree with me.  As we move into the current action they decrease and I was finally able to get into the story.

Most of this book I wanted to follow two threads; how were they going to rescue the mate and how were they going to work it out for these two lost loves to stay together.  I’m not going to spoil anything but it did work out nicely and I appropriated how things played out.  Having just read Aden’s story I did enjoy revisiting this character, even if he didn’t get a lot of page time.

If you are a fan of the series I would NOT miss this book.  Don’t skip it.  If you’ve not tried this world yet start back at book one and enjoy the ride.  I’m glad I read this one, even if it wasn’t my favorite.  Looking forward to the next.  I’m curious to see how the series shifts as we journey to Europe and kick some ass over there.  Its time to take this war to them instead of waiting for the attack at home.  Should be good!

My Rating:3 Stars

How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf by Molly Harper

Book Review

 


How to Flirt with a Naked Werewolf (Naked Werewolf, #1)Book Genre: Paranormal, Romance

Book Series: Naked Werewolf #1

Released: 2/22/11 by Pocket Books

Pages: 371 Price: $7.99 Paperback

Links:  Goodreads, Author’s Site

Source: I own a copy of this book

 

 

 

Book Synopsis:

Northern Exposure

Even in Grundy, Alaska, it’s unusual to find a naked guy with a bear trap clamped to his ankle on your porch. But when said guy turns into a wolf, recent southern transplant Mo Wenstein has no difficulty identifying the problem. Her surly neighbor Cooper Graham—who has been openly critical of Mo’s ability to adapt to life in Alaska—has trouble of his own. Werewolf trouble.

For Cooper, an Alpha in self-imposed exile from his dysfunctional pack, it’s love at first sniff when it comes to Mo. But Cooper has an even more pressing concern on his mind. Several people around Grundy have been the victims of wolf attacks, and since Cooper has no memory of what he gets up to while in werewolf form, he’s worried that he might be the violent canine in question.

If a wolf cries wolf, it makes sense to listen, yet Mo is convinced that Cooper is not the culprit. Except if he’s not responsible, then who is? And when a werewolf falls head over haunches in love with you, what are you supposed to do anyway? The rules of dating just got a whole lot more complicated. . . .

My Review:

This book has been sitting on my to read shelf since 2012, it was the fourth oldest book on my shelf over on Goodreads.  I have finally read it and how it moved up in my reading schedule is about how I thought it would happen.  I found book two at a library book sale and decided to go ahead and buy book one and start this trilogy.  It was just as good a read as I thought it would be and worth the wait.

I love Molly Harper, hardly ever get approved for her ARCS, but that’s okay as I know I will read them eventually.  It has been a while since I read a title in the Half-Moon Hollow series but I always keep an eye out for one of her titles.  This series has nothing to do with her vamp world but it holds within its pages everything I love about a Harper book.  Humor, wacky situations, strong female lead, great friendships, and a little mystery to set all these elements to motion with.  If you want a guaranteed good read I highly suggest giving one of Ms. Harper’s books a try, you won’t be disappointed.

This book had a fun start with the lead character Mo moving as far away from her parents as she could and remain in the United States.  Of course this took her to Alaska where she quickly learns she isn’t the kookiest character in town.  Playing on the men to woman ratio stereotype Mo soon has some of the locals vying for her attention.  Well, all except for one that is.  Of course our hero Cooper is the odd man out as he gives Mo nothing but a hard time, until they jump in the sack about half way through the book.

The story follows a fairly typical romantic comedy arc as these two work to end up together and figure out what is going on in their community.  I was surprised at how this book tended to have a bit more serious tone to it and for a bit I wondered if it was really going to work out between Mo and Cooper.

This book was great, just what I was in the mood for and I am excited to dive into book two, already having ordered the last…  I’m going to take a quick break though as I did score a review book I’m excited about too and its release date is coming up. If you are looking for something fun, a little quirky, and a sweet romance to boot then I suggest giving this book a try.

My Rating: 4 Stars

Soframiz by Ana Sortun & Maura Kilpatrick

Book Review

 


Book Genre: Cookbook, Non-Fiction

Book Series: N/A

Released:10/11/16 by Ten Speed Press

Pages:272  Price: $35 Hardcover

Links:  Goodreads,

Source: I received a copy of this book from the publisher through Blogging for Book(B.F.B) for an honest review.

 

 

Book Synopsis:

A charming collection of 100 recipes from Cambridge’s Sofra Bakery and Cafe, showcasing modern Middle Eastern spices and flavors with exotic yet accessible sweet and savory dishes geared toward everyday cooking and entertaining.

Ana Sortun and Maura Kilpatrick have traveled extensively throughout Turkey and the Middle East, researching recipes and gaining inspiration for their uber-popular cafe and bakery, Sofra. In their first cookbook together, the two demystify and explore the flavors of this popular region, creating accessible, fun recipes for everyday eating and entertaining. With a primer on essential ingredients and techniques, and recipes such as Morning Buns with Orange Blossom Glaze, Whipped Feta with Sweet and Hot Peppers, Eggplant Manoushe with Labne and Za’atar, and Sesame Caramel Cashews, Soframiz will transport readers to the markets and kitchens of the Middle East.

My Review:

Not finding a fiction book that I wanted to request from B.F.B I decided to explore the other genres offered and stumbled across this little gem.  After seeing the word Turkey while skimming the description I decided to put in my request.  The book arrived on Friday and as I opened the box in front of my husband he promptly took the book from me and claimed it as his own.  You see I married a Turk and he was thrilled to look through this beautiful cookbook, drooling over the pictures and making plans to try some of them out for our holiday celebrations this year.  His only “complaint” or more like wish was that there were some soup recipes included, but once I explained that this was from a bakery he understood their absence.  Still a nice selection of favorites he remembers from his youth and our travels.

This is a stunning book and of excellent quality.  Nice and sturdy, should hold up nicely in a kitchen while cooking or baking, still would be shame to mess this one up with spills or stains.  Many of the recipes feature lovely pictures and all come with a paragraph explaining the history of the recipe, either its origins in the culture or about its use in the author’s restaurants. The book is broken down into eight sections ( Breakfast, Meze, Flatbreads, Savory Pies, Cookies and Confections, Specialty Pastries Cakes and Desserts, Beverages and Pantry).  Not really enough variety for a full meal, but plenty of selection for treats or appetizers at a party or special occasion.  I though the Beverage section was most interesting and want to try several of the recipes listed.  I was also delighted to find a Simit recipe in there and might have to work myself up to trying to make this classic Turkish Street treat.  The pantry section in back was also very nice as it explained some of the less common ingredients, their importance and origins.  In the back is a handy index, which isn’t always featured in these specialty/fancy/coffee table cookbooks, so handy.

I am thrilled to be adding this book to our cookbook collection and actually have plans to attempt many of the recipes I found inside.  If you like food from this area of the world or simply looking to expand your palate this is a wonderful book to pick up.  Most of the recipes look to be of dishes that are fairly safe, flavor wise, and can be enjoyed by most people.  Nothing too far out there .

My Rating: 5 Stars