3.07.2017

Review: Bless This Mother-effing House


Not as funny as the blurb reads. (3 stars)

I haven't cross-stitched since I was a kid but I love a snarky bit of needlework so I couldn't resist BTMeH. 

2.28.2017

Book Review: Mrs. White Rabbit

A bedtime tale moms will enjoy reading. (5 stars)

Dear parents... I feel your pain. There are only so many times you can read Goodnight Moon or Pete the Cat before the bedtime story gets painful. They're totally great books but it's nice every once in a while to read one that the kids enjoy that has a little tongue-in-cheek humor that plays to the adults. Mrs. White Rabbit had me in stitches but managed to be entertaining for my 7-year-old too.

Taking an inside look at a never seen part of Wonderland and the long suffering wife of the ever late White Rabbit. This witty tome is sure to be a hit with moms thanks to the clever writing and hilarious illustrations. It might never be as popular with your kids as their old favorites but it's sure to be a welcome break once in a while.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.


Mrs. White Rabbit by Gilles Bachelet

Children's, Humor, RetellingPrint (32 pages, EERDMAN'S)
A hilarious twist on a classic tale
Alice in Wonderland is one of the great classics of children's literature, but what does anyone actually know about Wonderland? Through the diary of the White Rabbit's extremely busy wife, readers finally get to see what happens in the background during Alice's adventures.
Mrs. White Rabbit loves her husband and their many children, but with an invisible housecat from Cheshire and a young female visitor who frequently changes size, living in Wonderland comes with a number of challenges.
With an abundance of wit and charm, Mrs. White Rabbit gives Lewis Carroll's famous tale a refreshingly modern twist. (Ages 6-10)





2.27.2017

Discover YOUR Master Chakra With This


See chakras in a new light. (5 stars)


The past couple of years have been intensely difficult in nearly every facet of my life. I wouldn't quite call myself a soul seeker or spiritual really but I've found that many beliefs considered new age or pagan allow me to tap into something that has been a much needed succor. Among these things I found many discussions of chakras that were engrossing, thought-provoking, and ultimately, something I wanted to learn more about.

Though I'm quite new to the study of chakras this book offered something I hadn't considered before to what I had learned. I was quite surprised to find that my own master chakra was not at all the one I thought it might be. Further, as I delved into the workbook for my master chakra I quickly discovered just how accurately the information fit. It gave me some food for thought and some practices to implement as I work on personal growth.

While my initial read through focused on finding my own master chakra and learning more about it I will most definitely dive back in at a later date to learn about how to cultivate other chakras. If you've wanted to see chakras in a new way or simply are looking for a new spiritual tool for personal growth, I think this book is a resource worth adding to your library.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.


Discover Your Master Chakra: Reveal the Source of Your Spiritual Gifts by Stephanie S. Larsen

New Age, Spirituality, Chakras
Digital/Print (336 pages, LLEWELYN)
You were born on a ray of light, born into a life purpose that lets you manage one chakra more than the rest, to create a dominant vibration within and without yourself. That is your master chakra, and it defines who you are and how you interact with others. Discover Your Master Chakra guides you in using your main chakra to achieve greater love, harmony with self and others, and fulfillment in life. Designed for beginners and beyond, this insightful book helps you:
Find out what your master chakra is through a simple quiz
Learn about the seven soul-ray colors and which one corresponds to your master chakra
Explore your spiritual gifts, and those of your family and friends, through a workbook on each color
Use your newfound knowledge to change your reality and improve your relationships with all beings
Providing detailed information on each of the chakras and related spiritual gifts, Discover Your Master Chakra shows you how to best use your areas of giftedness and life’s work to increase your master chakra’s power and influence.


2.21.2017

A must-have for plant-based lifestyles: Good Clean Food


A must-have for plant-based lifestyles. (5 stars)



 As much as I love to eat clean, coming up with ways to make it happen are just not my strength. Fortunately, there are inspiring and inspired folks out there like Lily Kunin who not only give you recipes, they make it a feast for the eyes too.

Good Clean Food would be worth buying just for the beautiful food photography but Kunin proves she's more than just an Instagrammer with her recipes. You'll find nourishing soups, filling Power Bowls, creamy plant-based puddings, and so much more. Even, a few recipes for hair and face masks!

In particular, what I feel is a very stand-out part of this book is the Back to Basics chapter. It teaches how to use dried pulses and grains—which can be daunting to many cooks—as well as how to make nut milks and veggies noodles, as well as how to batch roast vegetables. For novice clean eaters and vegans I think that chapter alone makes this book a very worthy investment.

From cover to cover I was impressed. Stunning food photos, a lot more acquirable ingredients than similar offerings, and recipes for year-round nourishment make this a must-have. I loved it and will be recommending it to my many friends, family, and colleagues who are vegetarian/vegan/flexitarian and so forth.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.

Release Date: March 7th, 2017





Good Clean Food: Super Simple Plant-Based Recipes for Every Day by Lily Kunin
Clean Eating, Nutrition, Cooking, Photography, Vegan
Digital/Print (224 pages, ABRAMS)
Lily Kunin, creator of the popular site and Instagram account Clean Food Dirty City, shares 100 simple, vibrant, plant-based recipes for looking and feeling your best
In her debut cookbook, Good Clean Food, health coach Lily Kunin shares plant-based recipes for irresistibly clean, wholesome food. With Lily's less-is-more approach, you'll learn how to create nourishing dishes, bowls, salads, smoothies, and more using gluten- and dairy-free ingredients. Her delicious recipes are complemented by the same vibrant, textured, and stunning photography that has become a trademark of her popular site Clean Food Dirty City.
Organized by the way that food makes you feel—awakened, nourished, cleansed, restored, sustained, and comforted—Good Clean Food highlights key ingredients that support healthy eating and clean living.
The book contains a flavorful mix of recipes, including:
Falafel Bowl with Mediterranean Millet and Green Tahini
Walnut Taco Salad + Avocado
Pesto Zucchini Noodles
Evergreen Detox Bowl
Sunny Immunity Smoothie Bowl
Salted Caramel Bonbons
The book also features a “Bowl Builder” section that walks readers through the process of building the perfect grain bowl, and provides helpful advice on how to stock a healthy kitchen and prep for the week ahead. Helpful tips and recipes instruct on using the same ingredients from your pantry for beauty enhancement, like a raw honey-turmeric facemask and rosemary-coconut oil hair treatment.
Good Clean Food reinforces the notion that clean, simple food can be beautiful, taste delicious, and provide our bodies with all the nutrients and healing properties we need to thrive.






2.19.2017

Ever wished you could live in a more romantic era?

Romantic era my hiney! (5 stars)

This is quite possibly one of the most fascinating and funny books I've read about women in history. I always knew the Victorians were a strange lot by current standards but woah. You couldn't pay me to deal with the hygiene issues and garments/torture devices let alone the patriarchal living. Nope. Super nope.

Oneill shares this knowledge with enough humor to make it digestible for all. Post-read I've got even more respect for the women who survived the era. Because even though society is still trying to tell us ladies to be ashamed of our bodies and desires, at least in this era we get to choose to wear corsets or not, we have indoor plumbing, boxed wine and Netflix.

Notes: ARC received via NetGalley.

Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners by Therese Oneill

History, Women's History, Etiquette, Humor
Audio/Digital/Print (320 pages, LITTLE BROWN)
Have you ever wished you could live in an earlier, more romantic era?
Ladies, welcome to the 19th century, where there's arsenic in your face cream, a pot of cold pee sits under your bed, and all of your underwear is crotchless. (Why? Shush, dear. A lady doesn't question.)
UNMENTIONABLE is your hilarious, illustrated, scandalously honest (yet never crass) guide to the secrets of Victorian womanhood, giving you detailed advice on:
~ What to wear
~ Where to relieve yourself
~ How to conceal your loathsome addiction to menstruating
~ What to expect on your wedding night
~ How to be the perfect Victorian wife
~ Why masturbating will kill you
~ And more
Irresistibly charming, laugh-out-loud funny, and featuring nearly 200 images from Victorian publications, UNMENTIONABLE will inspire a whole new level of respect for Elizabeth Bennett, Scarlet O'Hara, Jane Eyre, and all of our great, great grandmothers.
(And it just might leave you feeling ecstatically grateful to live in an age of pants, super absorbency tampons, epidurals, anti-depressants, and not-dying-of-the-syphilis-your-husband-brought-home.)



2.18.2017

Book Review: Hidden Universe Travel Guides: The Complete Marvel Universe


Pack your bags! (4 stars)

I truly got started as a comic book reader through Marvel titles like Daughters of the Dragon, Runaways, and X-23. Thanks to Marvel Studios I've come to appreciate and love other parts of the Marvel-verse, but there's still a lot to explore. And that is one reason this book was really fun to go through.


If you've ever wanted to travel the Marvel universe it looks like no stone has gone unturned here. To cap it off and make it a truly entertaining read though is the notations from the Guardians of the Galaxy. If you love the Guardians I think this is actually a collector's must-have.

Overall, this was a fun read that occasionally felt a little repetitive but is sure to amuse Marvel fans from all corners of the cosmos.

Notes: Review copy received via NetGalley.


Hidden Universe Travel Guides: The Complete Marvel Cosmos: With Notes by the Guardians of the Galaxy

Humor, Travel, Comics
Digital (160 pages, MARVEL COMICS)
Check out these hilarious notes!
The ultimate guidebook to Earth, the Nine Realms, and other dimensions from Marvel Comics, as told by Peter Quill, Rocket, Groot, and the rest of the Guardians of the Galaxy.
Ever since Super Heroes like Thor and the Guardians of the Galaxy started stomping around planet Earth, we’ve had to open our horizons a little and embrace the wider reaches of space. If you’re thinking of journeying to one of the many new realms for a little R’n’R, then don’t leave home without Hidden Universe’s guide to the cosmos. Whether you’re looking to enjoy the divine splendor of Asgard or soak up the multicultural atmosphere of intergalactic waypoint Knowhere, this is the book for you. It even provides some tips on surviving excursions to Planet Moord and Chitauri Prime, if you like your vacations to be on the extreme side.
• SEE THE COSMOS – Features information on the hot spots, history, and culture of more than forty locations in the Marvel Universe, including Planet X, Halfworld, Weirdworld, and the Planet of the Symbiotes.
• REDISCOVER EARTH – Get the lowdown on some of the Earth's most exotic and mysterious locations, such as Wakanda, Latveria, the Savage Land, and New Attilan.
• GET INVALUABLE ADVICE – Star-Lord, Gamora, Drax, Rocket, and Groot, aka the Guardians of the Galaxy, have filled this book with their own unique travel tips, from where to get a drink in Alfheim to dealing with Ego the Living Planet.





2.17.2017

Book Review: Pigments of Your Imagination

A good place to start. (4 stars)

I've been in an awful creative rut for about a year now. I just can't seem to make my innate abilities flow. It happens to many creative types but I think we all handle it differently. One of my ways is by looking into new materials or types of creative expression (writing and digital art are my usual areas of strength). It's often just what I need to kickstart my mojo.

Something I've been really interested in recently is alcohol ink. I wasn't sure where to get started or how to even use it when I picked up Pigments of Your Imagination. After reading it I don't think working with alcohol inks is really for me but I love the effect, the variety of styles, and overall how fresh it feels. If you've been interested in learning more about how to create with alcohol inks I think this is a fantastic resource.

Notes: Review copy received through NetGalley.


Pigments of Your Imagination: Creating with Alcohol Inks by Cathy Taylor

Art, Crafting, Hobbies
Print (200 pages, SCHIFFER)
Discover magic! Join the vibrant, prismatic world of luminous alcohol inks. Mercurial, versatile, inexpensive, and wildly colorful, alcohol inks are one of the newest mediums to hit the art community. This essential guide for working with alcohol inks has been greatly expanded, with new tips and techniques and more than 50 additional works from guest artists in an inspiring gallery. Discover how to choose which inks to use for each project and how to experiment with a wide variety of fascinating techniques and tools. Learn how to work on a variety of surfaces, including paper, glass, metal, fabric, and plastic, through detailed, step-by-step demos. Perfect for all levels, from the beginning craftsperson to the professional artist, Pigments of Your Imagination offers a broad insight into the expansive world of alcohol inks. Explore the limits of your artistic ingenuity, and jump-start your creativity!


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