Great Finds of the Week

Welcome to my first Great Finds of the Week.

Every day, I come across wonderful content that you are all cooking, photography, experiencing, and writing about, so I’ve decided to compile a list of it all (kind of like my own Freshly Pressed). Here is a look at some great content from the past week.

Books and more

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When authors attack their book bloggers by Insatiable Booksluts looks at the fragile relationship between authors and book bloggers. Apparently, one self-published author thinks that book bloggers shouldn’t have any restrictions on the books they review.

Libby of Moments in My Head is hosting a giveaway for Twilight books. You can win them if you’re able to tell her why she should have read them. Continue reading “Great Finds of the Week”

my life in france

Back to Books: My Life in France

My Life in France by Julia Child with Alex Prud’homme.
Published by Alfred A. Knopf, 2006
5/5 spoonfuls of butter

my life in france

At five-forty-five in the morning, Paul and I rousted ourselves from our warm bunk and peered out of the small porthole in our cabin aboard the SS America… It was Wednesday, November 3, 1948, and we had finally arrived in Le Havre, France.

The first time I heard of Julia Child was when I watched the movie Julie & Julia (one of the late Nora Ephron’s many pieces of art). I immediately fell in love with the idea of cooking you’re way through an entire cookbook, no matter how overwhelming the recipes seem.

Yesterday, I finished reading Julia Child’s My Life in France. It’s so interesting to follow her on her journey of moving to France, learning the language, and discovering her love and passion for cooking, especially French cooking. I really loved this book and highly recommend it for anyone who loves cooking or likes to read a good (auto)biography. Mostly because it is a perfect example of discovering your true passion in life no matter what stage of life you find yourself in, and because it echos my belief that all great dishes take time, effort, and love to make (seriously, time seems to cease to exist while I’m in the kitchen). Continue reading “Back to Books: My Life in France”

Get your Mindfire going

Mindfire: Big Ideas for Curious Minds by Scott Berkun is a wonderful collection of 30 essays meant to help you “find passion, think freely, manage time, pay attention, and much more.” Far from a “self-help” book, what I loved about it is Berkun’s concise and humorous approach to questions of life that can easily be overlooked.

In our everyday lives, we can get so wrapped up in our routines and our own goals, that we forget to stop and think about our world and how things are done or even to question the status quo. This is a great book to spark such thoughts. Continue reading “Get your Mindfire going”

Kindling my fire

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Yes, as I’m sure you can guess from the title, I have joined the league of e-reader owners. More specifically, I am now the proud owner of a Kindle Fire. And you know what? I love it.

For the longest time I couldn’t see the point of having an e-reader. I, too, belong to those who love the feel of a book in their hands, turning the pages, even the smell of them. I like underlining and making notes in the margin. And yes, I even fold down my corners to mark my place. I love books. And nothing will ever change that.

But I was never one to say “I’ll never get an e-reader.” And honestly, you can’t knock it until you’ve tried it. So when I was asked what I wanted for Christmas, it made sense that I – as an avid reader – would ask for one. My bookshelf is to the point where I’m double-stacking books and some even live on the top of it (Billy from Ikea can only hold so much). Continue reading “Kindling my fire”

Finding Mañana

Yet another review originally written for Being Latino that I am sharing with you. My favorite thing about memoirs is that they give you the chance to journey back in time and experience events through the eyes of people who were actually there.

Finding Mañana (Penguin Books, 2005)
by Mirta Ojito

In Finding Mañana, Mirta Ojito takes us on a journey in what it means to have to decide whether you would prefer to just survive in the country you’ve grown up in or to fight for what you really believe in.

A decision that is brought about by a government that came to power on the promises of revolution, but chose instead to create a dictatorship that commanded unwavering devotion from all citizens. To voice your own opinion or to even display reluctance to the way of life created, was a sure way of attracting unwanted attention from the neighborhood watch and government, which could result in your sudden disappearance. Anyone who didn’t participate in revolutionary activities or hide their desire to leave the country was referred to as a worm. Continue reading “Finding Mañana”

The nature of love and power of destiny

Before you read on, I must preface this piece with the fact that I originally wrote this for Being Latino and am sharing it with you here because 1) I really enjoyed this book and 2) I didn’t feel like rewriting it. I hope you enjoy and that you share your thoughts with me.

Book Review: The Zahir (Harper Collins 2005)
by Paulo Coelho

Loss. Fixation. Obsession. Discovery. Revelation. These are some of the topics that you will encounter as you embark on the pilgrimage that Paulo Coelho’s The Zahir takes you on.

It is the story of a world-renowned author (I detected what could be potential auto-biographical elements), who has a wonderful wife and “everything” you could wish for and it is only her disappearance that makes him realize that he lost not only her but also who he was as a person.

Continue reading “The nature of love and power of destiny”

Back to books: Solstice

Yes, that’s right. Back to books. Amidst all this cooking, eating and baking and alcohol tasting, it’s been a while since I’ve taken the time to write a book review. But I have been reading since the last one. A recent trip to Barnes & Noble restocked my shelves with fresh words and I also got my hands on a copy of a book written by my friend, Ulises Silva.

This is the first time I’ve read a book written by an author I actually know personally and worked with. Until I opened the first pages of this book, I was only familiar with his work as a writer for Being Latino and personal blog.

Overall, Solstice is a great first novel by a writer led by his imagination and the desire to bring to life a world ruled by writers and controlled by editors. It could be said that writers sort of already do, but this book takes it to another level. Continue reading “Back to books: Solstice”