Tuesday, April 10, 2012

The Best of Kooler Design Studio Cross Stitch Collections

This is a lovely book with beautiful cross stitch designs in it. They are interesting, and very pretty. If you have ever cross stitched before, this book will reignite your desire for a new project. Even if you just enjoy stitchery this is a fun book to look at. I am currently stitching the design called "The Woods Behind My House" by Nancy Rossi on page182. It reminds me of a page from a nature lover's sketchbook. It has butterflies, a nest with eggs, and notes jotted in the margins. I also love "My Favorite Hat Collection" on page 64, and "A Moment of Tranquility" on page 196. Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Descendants by Kaui Hart Hemmings

I have been wanting to see the movie, “The Descendants”, but was surprised by the fact it was a book (like all good movies, it was a great book first!). The novel is a wonderful story of a family going through the emotions of watching their mother dying and a father reconnecting with two daughters that he has been absent from for years. I found myself laughing and crying with them along the journey of finding their way back. As I was reading I kept thinking of this as a movie and how the dialog was wonderful for a screen play and I see why it was made into a movie. However, I have a love/hate relationship with books being made into movies. I always want to see them but then I am somewhat disappointed when it doesn’t live up to my high expectations. I did watch the movie and it was a good movie but as always, it was a better book. Of course any movie with George Clooney is always a plus!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Drifting House by Krys Lee

Drifting House gives a glimpse of the Korean culture and the immigrant experience in the U. S. The author explores themes of love, loss, family, displacement and belonging in this collection of nine short stories. The characters and their struggles are indelible.
The title story is the most haunting. Two brothers and their dying little sister must cross the treacherous border of N. Korea to reach China in order to find their mother who has abandoned them. Under starvation and dire straits, the older brother faces a moral dilemma. How far the human spirits can endure is hard to fathom. I was saddened by some of the stories but was compelled to read them at the same time.

The Pioneer Woman Cooks Food From My Frontier by Ree Drummond

Ree Drummond has a very popular blog named the Pioneer Woman. On her blog she shares recipes, photographs of her ranch in Oklahoma, stories of her home schooled children and her husband "The Marlboro Man." In Drummond's second cookbook, like the first it has very easy to follow instructions and great step by step pictures. With recipes such as Steakhouse pizza, homemade Glazed Doughnuts and Coffee Cream Cake it made my mouth water. She also includes her own photography of the ranch and her family. This cookbook was easy to read and I thought most of the recipes looked great. I recommend this cookbook!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Home Front By Kristin Hannah

While I appreciate the focus on military families and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder this particular family along with their struggles dealing with deployment and an injury in country left a lot to be desired. I usually like Kristin Hannah’s books but this one was not one I would recommended to anyone. First, the military spouse in this case was the husband was completely ignorant when it came to what was expected from a military spouse after being married to a soldier for 20 years. The two children in the story were so unbelievable. The twelve year old was nothing but an obnoxious brat and the five year old acted like a two year old wanting to play patty cake all the time. As far as the PTSD that was right on with how a person struggles with their new life, but how she returned and reintegrated so quickly, having no help was so far from reality. I believe before this was published Hannah should have completed more research on how a deployment really happens.