Sunday, May 30, 2010

Wreck This Journal - The Guts - Part XII

I'm still working on Keri Smith's Wreck This Journal. As I looked through my journal this week, I realized that I have quite a few pages I really don't want to do. It's not that I'm losing interest it just that I've already done my favourite pages and I'm left with my not-so-favourite ones. :( I'm not sure what I'm going to do yet...other than pout.

Anyway, here's my update for week 12 of my journal wrecking adventure:

Close Your Eyes. Connect the Dots from Memory: I did this 35 times with different markers. I also varied my starting point. Done.

Rub Here With Dirt:First I put the journal face down on the garage floor, then I stuck my fingers in the mud around the house and swirled them on the pages. I then stepped on it with my shoe. I wanted to dirty the page, but I kept in mind that I didn't want to totally destroy the book, yet. Probably a work in progress.

Pretend You are Doodling on the Back of an Envelope While on the Phone: I wasn't on the phone much this week, but I figured I'd start this one anyway. A work in progress.

Links to other updates: The Beginning, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, Part VII, Part VIII, Part IX, Part X, Part XI.

In my haste to post this I forgot to link to Shann's latest post on her journal. Check it out.

See you next Sunday for another update.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Never Look Away by Linwood Barclay

In Never Look Away, David Harwood, a reporter with the Promise Falls Standard, is working on a big story. His editor keeps shutting it down, but David can't figure out why. All of a sudden, though, David has bigger priorities. During a family outing, there's a mysterious and troubling disappearance. After the police uncover evidence pointing to David as a suspect in the disappearance, David mounts his own investigation to clear his name and restore his family.

This is the first book I've read of Barclay's and I can safely say it will not be the last. I loved it! The story was sensational, intense and left me breathless. Just when I got to a point where I could put the book down and take a break from reading, I'd come across a sentence or two that would make that impossible. I had to read one more chapter...then another. Barclay had me on the edge of my seat screaming "NO WAY" more than once.

The most amazing thing was that Barclay made it all seem so real, like this could really happen. David was just an ordinary guy with a wife and child. Perhaps one of his articles could land him in a bit of trouble, but not this. So let me ask you: Just how well do you know the people around you? If your answer is "pretty well", you're not alone. David probably thought that very thing when he left on the family outing that morning. Scary stuff.

Besides the main story, Barclay also included details of the newspaper business in the internet age and how the newspapers were adapting to the changing technology. I had no idea that articles could be (or would be) farmed out abroad. There was also information on privately-owned prisons from an article that David was working on. All really interesting stuff.

If I haven't convinced you to read this book yet, just take a look at this fantastic trailer:

Want to read other reviews? Here's one from Luanne at A Bookworm's World and one from Nicola at Back to Books.

Highly recommended. I'm going to hunt down more books by this author. He's definitely one of my new favourites.

For more information about this book, please visit the Random House Canada website.

For more information about the author, his other books and other stuff, please visit Linwood Barclay's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Random House Canada for this review copy.

Never Look Away by Linwood Barclay, Doubleday Canada (Random House of Canada), ©2010. ISBN 9780385668040(Hardcover), 415p.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton

In The Forgotten Garden, Nell learns that as a young girl she was abandoned on a ship and taken in by a dockmaster and his wife. She is devastated. She is determined to find out who she is and where she came from. However, before she does discovers the truth, she dies and leaves the mystery for her granddaughter, Cassandra, to solve. Spanning decades and continents, the story follows the characters as they uncover family secrets and find the pieces to this intriguing puzzle.

I loved this book. Because the book is 549 pages long, I wasn't sure I was going to be able to finish it. However, I didn't have any trouble. I really didn't want to put it down. Not even once. I thought about the characters even when I wasn't reading and could wait to get back to the book to find out what happened next. The short chapters really helped me as it was easy to pick up the book when I had a few spare moments. I loved how the author tied the end of one chapter with the beginning of the next even though many times the chapters featured time periods decades apart.

The other thing that drew me along was the fantastic story. It read like a really good mystery. The author presented a nice balance between the past and the present. Each of the time periods (1913-1914, 1975-6, 2005) received equal billing in revealing parts of the mystery. I also loved that the story was not always linear. It jumped back and forward amongst time periods and looped back to events that were previously mentioned. It sounds confusing, but it really wasn't. The author preceded each chapter with the location and year, which helped me follow the story.

I loved all of the characters, especially Nell and Eliza. I really felt bad for Nell. I can't imagine what her journey was like. She showed great strength and courage to start her quest. It must have been agonizing to have to abandon it without knowing the truth. As for Eliza, she had such a hard childhood. I hoped that she would find some happiness as she grew up.

I admit that I got Eliza, Nell, Ivory and Rose mixed up a couple of times. It wasn't that I didn't know who they were, I just had trouble keeping all of the relationships in line. I quickly drew out a "family tree" and that helped me to keep everyone straight.

One thing I didn't like about the book was the epilogue. It was a nice ending, but it bordered on cheesy and was unnecessary in my opinion.

Favourite quotes:
After Eliza loses a loved one:
Then she folded his memory as gently as she could, wrapped it in the layers of emotion -- joy, love, commitment--for which she no longer had need, and locked the whole deep inside her.(page 142)

On climbing a steep hill, Ruby says:
I feel like a von Trapp, but fatter, older and with absolutely no energy for singing(page 421). night she fell quickly through the thick layers of sleep, woke to find night lying behind her in one solid dreamless drift. (page 389)

It's a be able to look forward and not back.(page 391)

New word Alert:
elucidation (page 66) - clarification
perspicacity (page 150) - sharpness
toffs (page 190) - upper-class person
fecund (page 221) - prolific
secateurs (page 222) - scissors
espaliered (page 314) - growing method for a tree, especially a fruit tree, trained to grow flat against a wall
titivating (page 340) - doing up/dressing up/beatifying
sibilant (page 357) - a consonant that is pronounced with a hissing sound
inviolable (page 440) - unbreakable, sacred
There was one word I hadn't heard for some time: clack. It's not a new word for me, but I love it.

This book would make a great book club book. This edition of the book includes a Reader's Club Guide to get discussions started.

Highly recommended. I could go on and on about how much I loved this book. I'm really looking forward to reading more books by this author.

For more information about this book or to browse inside, please visit Simon and Schuster'swebsite.

For more information about the author and her other books, please visit Kate Morton's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Simon and Schuster for this review copy. Thanks Anneliese.

The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton, Washington Square Press(Simon and Schuster), ©2008. ISBN 9781416550556(Trade Paperback), 549p.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Wreck This Journal - The Guts - Part XI

I'm still working on Keri Smith's Wreck This Journal. I didn't spend a whole lot of time on my journal this week. I thought I might take a break and not post, but at the last minute I found some inspiration.

Two things I wanted to mention: First, I'm limiting my photos to three a week (plus the book cover). The photo files are quite large and take some time to upload. I made the decision in the beginning to set a limit, so it wouldn't take all that long to complete the post; I'd rather be reading or working on the journal. Second, I want to thank my husband for holding the book open while I take numerous photos of each page. Those are his fingers you see in each shot. He has more patience than me.

Here's my update for week 11 of my journal wrecking adventure:

Doodle Over Top of the Title Page: I dug out a set of markers I had stashed away and used those along with a straight edge. I had tons of fun doing this one.

Drip Something Here. Close the Book to Make a Print:I purposely picked colours from one colour family (red/pink). The beige is actually "peach". I like the effect, but now I wish I had included some blue or yellow. Anyway, it's done.

Doodle Over Top of the Warning/Acknowledgements Page: Ok. So I made this one up. All of the other pages had instructions for them, so I figured I'd wreck this one too. Anyway, I tried my hand at "Newspaper Blackout" poems (as per Austin Kleon's book Newspaper Blackout, here's my review ). It was hard, but fun. It's a little hard to read, but my "poem" says:
WARNING: Dirty foreign substances in you may begin to embrace your thoughts. Believe me. I charmed the world.

I have no idea what it means. However, I now have a headache from the fumes from the black marker. *sigh*

Links to other updates: The Beginning, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, Part VII, Part VIII, Part IX, Part X.

Hopefully, I'll see you next Sunday for another update.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Photo Friday - The Family

Optional caption I: My family drives me...
Optional caption II: My family is...

For more "The Family" photos, visit the Photo Friday website.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Newspaper Blackout by Austin Kleon

Newspaper Blackout is a collection of poems by Austin Kleon. Instead of starting with a blank piece of paper, he uses the newspaper and eliminates the words he doesn't need. From the back of the book: "Newspaer article + permanent marker = Newspaper Blackout Poem".

I'm not much of a poetry fan, but I loved this book. I found Kleon's style intriguing and like nothing else I've seen before. The book is fun, unusual and totally approachable. At first, I found a few of the poems hard to follow. Once I got used to the author's style, though, I really got into it.

Poems range from laugh-out-loud funny to profound and serious. The arrangement was loosely based on subject matter and added to my enjoyment of the book. Because I haven't read that much poetry, I really can't say much about the quality of the poems. I enjoyed them, though, and I think others will, too.

My favourites include: "The Bully" (page 12), "Children Play" (page 30), "Martin Strapped in" (page 34), "Kept Secrets" (page 113) and "His Wife Appears" (page 137).

Kleon's introduction about the art of newspaper blackout and its history was interesting. I didn't realize that similar art forms existed. I also enjoyed the section on how to create a newspaper blackout poem, which is included at the back of the book. It's harder than it looks...I know, I tried. One day I hope to post at least one of my attempts.

I found some of the poems visually appealing. It's hard to explain without an example, but the structure and flow of the words made some of them look like pieces of art. Beautiful.

Because this book is unusual, it might not appeal to everyone. Those who like quirky out-of-the-ordinary books will probably enjoy it as will poetry lovers. Highly recommended.

For more information about this book or to Browse Inside, please visit the HarperCollins website.

For more information about the author and to see examples of his work, please visit Austin Kleon's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Harper Perennial for this review copy.

Newspaper Blackout by Austin Kleon, Harper Perennial, ©2010. ISBN 9780061932973(Trade Paperback), 173p.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Wreck This Journal - The Guts - Part X

I'm still working on Keri Smith's Wreck This Journal. I worked on a few pages this week including one I started last week. I also marked a few of the pages that I'd like to do next. Hopefully, I'll get to those this week.

Here's my update for week 10 of my journal wrecking adventure:

Wrap Something with this Page: My main goal here was to be able to put the page back into the book. To do the "wrapping", I removed the page and cut out the sections to fold over the giant paperclips. They are sort of wrapped. I left the bottom one untied to expose the contents. Anyway, I'm going to embellish the page some more. Once that's done, I'll add the page back to the book.

Glue a Random Page from a Newspaper Here: I didn't want to glue a whole page or even a whole article here, so I just took a few of the headlines from the front page of the Winnipeg Free Press and glued them in. Done.

Sleep with the Journal: Describe the Experience Here: I couldn't print out the picture I featured last week (I'm out of colour printer ink), so I cut out some pictures of bedding and things from the newspaper flyers this week. I also took the text I used to describe my experience and added that. I think I'm done with this one.

Links to other updates: The Beginning, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, Part VII, Part VIII, Part IX.

See you next Sunday for another update.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The Queen of Palmyra by Minrose Gwin

In The Queen of Palmyra, eleven-year-old Florence lives in Millwood, a segregated town in Mississippi. Her mother is the neighbourhood cake lady, who secretly visits the bootlegger. Her father is a burial insurance salesman, who goes to secret meetings at night. During the day, they leave Florence in the care of her grandparents' maid, Zenie. Florence sees how segregation affects those around her, but things really heat up Eva, Zenie's niece, comes to town, in this sensational coming of age story set in the turbulent 60s.

This book was terrific. Written entirely from Florence's point of view, the story takes us through her life as she sees it. She acts as our narrator and witness to these dark, emotional and troubled times. The whole story was extremely sad and had very few instances where there was a glimmer of hope. It was so hard to read at times, but that did didn't stop me from finishing the book. It was so compelling.

At first, I was a little confused. Some events were merely suggested, making it a little hard to know exactly what was happening to Florence. I thought the author might be sparing us the horrid details of abuse, but then I realized that the story was being told from Florence's point of view and she was only eleven-years-old. She either didn't truly know what was happening or didn't have the words to describe it. This would have been an entirely different story had it come from one of the other characters.

Florence was easily my favourite character. I loved her as the narrator. I couldn't help but feel sorry for her, though. She was young and didn't really understand what was going on in Millwood or even in her own family. Her immediate family was a mess and her caretakers were scared, for good reason. She would have been a lot worse off had it not been for Zenie, Mimi, her grandmother, and Grandpops.

Because the book features extraordinary characters in extraordinary times and contains plenty of contentious topics, I think it would be an ideal selection for a book group. I'm sure some of the discussions would be quite lively.

New word alert: There was one word in the text that I didn't know: malfeasance - misconduct

Want to know what others thought of this book? Here are some other reviews: Julie's review at Booking Mama and Katie's review at the Dundee Writer.

Highly recommended. I'd gladly read more of this author's work.

For more information about this book or to Browse Inside, please visit the HarperCollins website.

For more information about the author and her other books, please visit Minrose Gwin's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Harper Perennial for this review copy.

The Queen of Palmyra by Minrose Gwin, Harper Perennial, ©2010. ISBN 9780061840326(Uncorrected Proof), 390p.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Photo Friday - The Coast

This week's theme for Photo Friday is "The Coast". This is going to be a tough one because I live smack dab in the middle of the North American continent. Where am I going to get a picture of the coast by next Thursday? There's another definition to coast ("progress with very little effort"), but I don't think that will photograph well. What to do? What to do?

Since the themes are for open for interpretation, I'm going to pretend that I misread it. Here's my submission for this week:

The Coast-er. I just realized that there's sort of a "coast" on my coast-er. I'm pretty sure it's a lake and "coast" to me says "ocean", so it's not quite right. But it's the best I got. Anyway, I got the coast-er free from Harlequin Books. It's pretty beat up and sort of ugly. It does the job, though and since my coffee mug is on it most of the time, I rarely see it.

To my regular readers: Occasionally, I submit photos for Photo Friday. You can read all about how it works here. I used to participate quite often, but have let it slide recently. I figured if I posted it here, I might pick it up again. I really heart my camera.

I'd love to post this on Friday (to fit with the name), however, it usually takes me a few days to come up with an idea and then execute it, so I'm not going to have a regular post day for this. If I decide to participate that week, I'll post a photo before the following Thursday.

Wreck This Journal - The Guts - Part IX

I'm still working on Keri Smith's Wreck This Journal. I got a little bit done this week, including finishing one page I had marked "a work in progress". Yay!

Anyway, here's my update for week 9 of my journal wrecking adventure:

Fill This Page with Circles: I think I added enough to this one to call it done. If I come across something in my travels that will be perfect for this page, I might add to it.

Doodle Over Top of the Instructions: When I was 5 or 6, I had pneumonia and had to be hospitalized. While there, I made a friend named Ruby. I can't remember much about her except that we had tons of fun colouring in our books. Somehow we ended up making little circles (like jelly beans?) on all of the pages after we coloured the pictures. I believe it was her idea; I thought she was a genius. Anyway, I don't know what happened to Ruby, but I still have some fond memories of her. So, if your name is Ruby and you were hospitalized at the Misericordia in Winnipeg in the early 70s, this page is for you.

Doodle Over Top of the Cover: Somehow one of those companies that send out mass mailings got the idea that I had children. So every once in awhile, they send me (and everyone else on the list) a sheet of stickers with the promotional material. Up until now, I didn't know what to do with them. I only put a few on the back staying away from the "to:", "from:" and stamp areas in case I decide that I really want to follow the instructions on the back (Tape This Journal Closed. Mail it to Yourself. ) I'm not sure I trust Canada Post that much. We'll see. A work in progress.

Sleep with the Journal: Describe the Experience Here: I enclosed the journal in a Ziploc bag to protect it (and us) during the night. I figured the safest place was under my pillow. Unfortunately, I had a terrible sleep worrying about house renovations. While I couldn't really feel the journal under the pillows, I think knowing it was there added to my sleeplessness. I hope I have better luck when I try the Bring This Book into the Shower with You page. I haven't yet described the experience in the journal. I'm going to print off this picture and perhaps add a few other "sleepy" type things to the page. A work in progress.

Links to other updates: The Beginning, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI. Part VII, Part VIII.

Shann from Illusion-Esk also has been wrecking her journal. Here's her latest update.

See you next Sunday for another update.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag by Alan Bradley

Flavia is back! This time she meets a puppeteer, Rupert Porson, of TV fame, and his assistant in The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag. They've been asked to stage a performance and Flavia has been asked to help them set up. During the presentation, Flavia notices that one of the marionettes looks like a child who died some time ago near the village. If that's not strange enough, Rupert dies while on stage. Flavia can't imagine how the two deaths are connected, but she knows that something strange is going on and is determined to find out.

Bradley has another hit on his hands. I loved this book. It was every bit as delightful and quaint as the first book in the series, The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (my review). Having said that, I did enjoy the first one just a wee bit more. In this book, I loved the opening scene with Flavia in the graveyard, but was a little confused by it at first. Ever since she found a body in the garden at Buckshaw, Flavia's become obsessed with death...and chemistry.

I loved Flavia, her sisters and their Father, but the book also has some other interesting characters; some pretty strange and quirky. For instance, Mad Meg, who seems to be the village lunatic, and Nialla and Rupert, the puppeteer and his assistant, were all fun to read about.

Flavia often surprises me with her actions and personality. She so mature yet we see child-like qualities peeking through every now and then. She fights with her sisters and complains about Mrs. Mullet's cooking, but I guess those actions not just confined to children, are they? Maybe it's just the way she does them that makes her appear younger. She is also quite put out when Inspector Hewitt treats her like a child.

There wasn't as much contact between Flavia and Inspector Hewitt as there was in the first book, but the author included enough to satisfy me. I just love how they interact with each other. I hope to see more in the future.

Even though the book is the second in the series, the first book/case was referenced only a couple of times. That was refreshing as I find series books often spend way too much time rehashing events or things from the previous books. I hope Bradley continues in this vein.

I appreciated the map of Bishop's Lacey and the surrounding area. I like to have a picture of the area in my head as I'm reading.

Years ago, I saw a very talented puppeteer on stage. His name was Ronnie Burkett. I couldn't help but think of him when I was reading this book. If you ever get the chance to see him, do so. He's magnificent. Oh, and leave the kids at home (unless you are sure the program is geared for children). His material can be quite raunchy.

Favourite quotes: Here are two of my favourites:

Inspiration from outside one's self is like the heat in an oven. It makes passable Bath buns. But inspiration from within is like a volcano: It changes the face of the world.(page 195)

To be most effective, flattery is always best applied with a trowel. (page 221)

New Word Alert: As with Bradley's first book, this one, too, had numerous new words for me. Here's a sampling:
insalubrious (page 51) - unhealthy
bathyscaphe (page 53) - submersible deep-sea research vessel
proscenium (page 60) - front of stage
exophthalmia (page 100) - The protrusion of the eyeball so that the eyelids will not cover it
rusticating (page 114) - to go to the country to live or make something appear rustic.
pustulent (page 162) filled or oozing with pus (according to Wiktionary).
charabancs (page 239) - sightseeing bus
muddlederumpus (page 261) - not sure. I couldn't find a definition anywhere, but I love the word.
obsequies (page 331) - funeral rites
inhumation (page 333) - to bury a dead body

Here's another review by Nicola from Back to Books.

Highly recommended. I can't wait to read the next Flavia installment called "A Red Herring Without Mustard", which will be published in the Spring of 2011 (according to The Flavia Fan Club).

For more information about this book, please visit the Random House website.

For more information about the author, his books and all things Flavia, please visit The Flavia Fan Club website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at Random House Canada for this review copy.

The Weed That Strings the Hangman's Bag by Alan Bradley, Doubleday Canada (Random House), ©2010. ISBN 9780385665841(Hardcover), 343p.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Suddenly by Bonnie Burnard

In Suddenly, three women, Sandra, Colleen and Jude, have been friends for a long time. Sandra and Colleen are sisters-in-law (Colleen married Sandra's brother, Richard), while Jude joined the twosome a bit later after a chance encounter. Now that Sandra's at the end of her life, the three of them, along with their husbands, examine their adult lives and come to terms with Sandra's illness.

I loved this book. I can see why Burnard is an award winning author. Her writing is superb. Because the book was so sad, I honestly thought I'd be a crying throughout the book. I was on the verge of tears for many parts, but I held it together because I really didn't want to put the book down. The book was captivating from beginning to end. I especially loved how Burnard transitioned between the present and the past. Actually, "loved" isn't a strong enough word. The transitions were beyond wonderful. The jump in time periods felt smooth and seamless rather than jarring. She sometimes had a character remember something from the past, but mostly she drew events from Sandra's journals, which spurred stories from past events.

At times through the book, I was oddly comforted by the actions of some of the characters. The way they cared for Sandra, reminisced with her and held it together while all they wanted to do was grieve. Grieve for the part of their friend they had already lost and the part they were about to lose.

Burnard's characters are real people with raw emotions and many flaws. I didn't really have a favourite character, but Sandra's crisis was the most heartbreaking. She faced her challenges bravely and with dignity. I had a little trouble getting a read on Jude. I liked her, but sometimes she felt standoffish and rude. I loved reading about the women's friendship through the years and how it affected the lives of their husbands and children.

The story had me thinking of who I'd want with me at the end of my life and what I'd want to say or remember at that time. I thought of loved ones who have passed away and wondered whether or not they were comforted (or bothered) by those around them.

Favourite quotes:
...everyone must find a way to endure the present and to imagine the future.(book jacket)

Always say no, automatically, because it's a lot easier to move from no to yes than to find your way back to a no after they've got your yes.(page 17)

...her rage waiting just offstage, the eager, warmed-up understudy read to go on.(page 154)

Highly recommended. I'd definitely be looking for more books by this author.

Here's another review by Jonita at the Book Chick.

For more information about this book or to Browse Inside, please visit the HarperCollins Canada website.

For more information about the author and her other books, please visit Bonnie Burnard's website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at HarperCollins Canada for this review copy.

Suddenly by Bonnie Burnard, HarperCollins, ©2009. ISBN 9780002254946(Hardcover), 317p.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cook's Country: Best Grilling Recipes

Cook's Country: Best Grilling Recipes features more than 100 recipes for those who like to cook outdoors using a charcoal or gas grill. There are recipes for: real BBQ (items cooked low and slow), steaks, burgers, chops, ribs, poultry, roasts, seafood and side dishes...just about everything you can put on a grill. Also included are recipes for accompaniments such as sauces, butters, salsas, relishes, mayonnaises and pickles. Besides the recipes, the book is filled with tips and tricks for successful grilling as well as an introduction that covers a range of topics that include: lighting the grill, tools and how to avoid mistakes.

This is a great cookbook. I loved that each recipe has directions for both gas and charcoal grills. Many of the recipes also include an explanation of the recipe's (or ingredient's) origin and the steps the editors took to arrive at this particular recipe (usually through testing, testing and more testing.)

I loved all of the sidebars that were scattered throughout the book. These feature techniques with great photos, shopping and product suggestions, as well as lots of other interesting tidbits of information.

While I loved this cookbook, it might not be for everyone. Those interested in cookbooks with lots of glamorous food photos may find it a little lacking. This one is pretty light on photos compared to others I've seen. It is, however, heavy on explanations. It would be perfect for those interested in recipe origins, techniques and ingredients. Of course, anyone looking for some awesome grilling recipes to try out this summer will not be disappointed. With all of the testing that goes into each of the recipes, you can be sure it's going to work the first time.

The one thing missing is a dessert section. I know that some dessert can be made on the grill so I would love to have seen some recipes included in this book.

A great cookbook would not be complete without a great index. I find that I really don't appreciate an index until a book has a limited one or a badly organized one. For me, it's invaluable when it's done right; next to useless when it's done wrong. In this book, it's done right. You can look up recipes by their names, by the main ingredients or by the type of dish it is. For example, I can find the recipe for "All-American Potato Salad" by using its title, under the potato listing, or with the other Salads. Priceless.

With the nice weather just around the corner, this cookbook will be well used in this household.


For more information about this book, please visit, America's Test Kitchen Bookstore website. For recipes and other cool stuff, visit America's Test Kitchen website or Cook's Illustrated website.

I'd like to thank those nice people at HarperCollins Canada for this book.

Cook's Country Best Grilling Recipes by the Editors at America's Test Kitchen, America's Test Kitchen, ©2009. ISBN 9781933615424(Uncorrected Proof), 244p(including index).

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Wreck This Journal - The Guts - Part VIII

I'm still working on Keri Smith's Wreck This Journal. I had tons of inspiration this week. Ideas sprang to mind with each and every page I looked at. I didn't do them all of course, but I now have some plans for some future pages. Yay!

Cindy from Cindy's Love of Books who started this journey and invited others to join her, hasn't been able to post her updates for while, but I still wanted to give her credit for this awesome idea. Her original post about the book can be found here. Hopefully, she'll post another update soon.

Anyway, here's my update for week 8 of my journal wrecking adventure:

Burn This Page: I didn't intend to burn the words right off the page, but fire tends to be a little unpredictable. I plan to add something else to the page to jazz it up a bit. A work in progress.

Fill This Page with Circles: A bunch of circles cut out of random materials I found in our house. A work in progress.

Collect Your Pocket /Dryer Lint, Glue it Here: I just need to apply the fixative to hold it more permanently.

I think I confused "Press leaves and other found things" with "Glue Random items Here". I knew I was collecting the items for some page and picked the wrong one. Anyway, now that the items are glued in, it'll have to stay like that.

I also realized that I have quite a few "works in progress". That's me. Not finishing one thing before picking up another. Hopefully a few of those pages will be finished in the next few weeks.

If you'd like to play along, you don't even need this book or a journal to do so. Just grab a notebook or even an old book (like an altered book) then check out the Random Exercise Generator at the Wreck This Journal website. You don't have to post on Sundays or even every week. Just when you feel like it. I'd love it if others joined me in this adventure.

Links to other updates: The Beginning, Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, Part V, Part VI, Part VII.

See you next Sunday for another update.