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jbarr5

jbarrett5 book reviews, etc

I read a lot and post my reviews
Off the Cliff: How the Making of Thelma & Louise Drove Hollywood to the Edge - Becky Aikman

post june 27 Off The Cliff: How The Making of Thelma & Louise Drove Hollywood To The Edge Warning: swearing Starts out with Callie and how she grew up in KY, moved to TN and then onto CA over the years she's had many jobs and has met many people. Also goes into what the movie industry is doing as not many movies staring women are endorsed as much as those with men in them. Lots of name dropping so you understand who is out there doing their best. Follows the people at the top of the production as they are selected, along with actors and actresses. Goes into their family life also and what motivated them into their field. Amazing when it gets to the actual production and the complications they come up against. Lots of references and quotes listed at the end. Enjoyed the book mostly because of all the descriptions of the locations that I've yet to visit. Storyline was a bit different than what I'm used to reading. I received this book from a publicist via Net Galley in exchange for my honest review.

This House is a Home: A story of coal mining, family and the Sengers of Stiritz - Philip Nork

This House is a Home by Phil Nork
Enriching and heartwarming story!
Last class assignment for the year and Pete has to find out about his ancestors and what better way then to go visit and talk to them.
Family, uncles and grandparents load up the car and lead to southern IL where other parts of the family live. Treasure the history of this one family and how it's portrayed to those of todays age.
Love how the author also explains what mining terms mean and how they were done.
Mining accidents and telling the time by the sun so much to this book.
Loved hearing how they use everything growing on the land.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest opinion.

The Navigators - Dan Alatorre

The Navigators by Dan Alatorre
Not so sure I'm going to like this being that it's a sci-fic and time travel but will give it a chance.
Starts out where the group decide on the dig they will go to. Once there it's hot and they find themselves in a serious medical emergency because of a machine they found...
Like the adventure and action and bit of romance but the sci fic stuff is not something I totally believe in but makes the story...
Made it til the time travel, swearing present also.  Not my cup of tea.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

The Navigators - Dan Alatorre

The Navigators by Dan Alatorre
Not so sure I'm going to like this being that it's a sci-fic and time travel but will give it a chance.
Starts out where the group decide on the dig they will go to. Once there it's hot and they find themselves in a serious medical emergency because of a machine they found...
Like the adventure and action and bit of romance but the sci fic stuff is not something I totally believe in but makes the story...
Made it til the time travel, swearing present also.  Not my cup of tea.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.

The Award: A Novel - Danielle Steel

The award by Danielle Steel
Enjoy the author's works and know I will enjoy this one.
Starts out Giella and she's about to get the award. Chapters go back to when she was 16.
Rebecca came from Germany, Giella's best friend. The Jews are being forced from their homes.
One day she sees them take Rebecca's family and throw them into a truck and they disappeared. She tracks them down and visits and is able to talk to Rebecca and even gives her a coat with promises to come the next day.
She visits through Christmas and for many months later always bringing foods and clothes for the family.
Story tells what she had to do to survive and she ends up in the fashion industry.
Love hearing of the model world, travel, the art world and the places she visits.  Tragedies and there are happy times also from both sides of the ocean.
Really enjoyed this book and glad she went on with her life but went back to her past endeavors... Didn't like that the author didn't spend as much time devoted to all of her children...
I received this book from National Library Service for my BARD (Braille Audio Reading Device).

Blue Farm - Charles C.  Anderson

Blue Farm by Charles Anderson Have read #4 and 1 and 2 so going to enjoy this one also. Starts out with the twins and they are on their way to college, they bring their younger disabled brother Peewee along to get a feel for the campus. Peewee is kidnapped and they have to call their parents, who call the CIA and FBI. Days later they return home to find things scattered about which lead them to their brother's body. They talk and realize after seeing the camera pictures who is to blame. The twins are at college now and become friends with twins from Paris. Things become very intimate with both couples as they are learning about sex. Story goes on following the twins as they experience sex at college and also follows the parents at home as other clues come in to help them understand who is after their family still. Lots of very technical information about weapons of varying degrees. Lots of action, adventure, romance and travel and mysteries-something for everybody. Sexual adult actions and discussions.

Nuclear Farm - Charles C Anderson

Nuclear Farm by Charles Anderson Second book in the farm series and am enjoying this one as much as the first. Lots of travel, history battles studied to put into effect on their own farm-such strategies, high tech weapons, bit of romance mixed in with a mother who's a nuclear physicist, father who's a ER doc among other talents and a set of twins that at the age of 10 are ready for college. Love that the same characters are still in place, 10 years from the previous book and this starts up where the other left off so you are brought up to date on the happening around the farm and town of Farmville, VA Used to play Farmville on facebook and I can say it's nothing like this farm. Love caves and tunnels not to mention the toys and gold. Love hearing of how they are able to track down different components of this story. I can see this actually taking place in todays world of oil and nuclear weapons. Can't wait til twins are a bit older-next book coming up! Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.

The Farm - Charles C. Anderson

The Farm by Charles Anderson
I had read book 4 in this series and loved it so much I went and bought the first 3 books and just now getting to them.
This story starts out with Josiah and his buddy Andy exiting a crashing helicopter but he doesn't make it. Carlson will still continue the mission and does on his own but doesn't find what he was expecting.
Later he's at his night job in the US at the ER and he comes across a few Saudi Arabia princes who have been beat up-they will be returning home now that classes are over for the summer months. Problem is his RN Lindsey will be going with him to the farm for 3 days and they discover something not quite right.
Thing is we hear Lindsey's side to the story also and Andy is clueless, so far but he knows things are not adding up.
Love all the technology, weaponry and discovering the hidden treasures at the farm.  Love the history in this book about the area.
Lots of action, travel, adventure and romance and I learn so much about things I don't have a clue about. US and other countries are involved and he is gathering the clues to solve the mysteries.

[ Spoken from the Heart: Parenting 101 Vol. 2 By Swalwell, Cheri ( Author ) Paperback 2014 ] - Cheri Swalwell

Spoken from the Heart: Parenting 101 Vol. 2
Like the opening part where the author talks about her connection with God and how he helps her raising the children and caring for those that are in her charge.
Loved the different parts of this book as the child grows older and goes through the phases of becoming a toddler. Comparison of that and how adults handle difficult things.
Love challenges that are presented and how the author strives to get you involved. Love the encouragement to keep going.
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest opinion.

Spoken from the Heart: Parenting 101 Vol. 3 - Cheri Swalwell

Spoken from the Heart: Parenting 101 Vol. 3
What I like about this book is the links inside that lead you to another's post concreting the evidence. Love learning the balance/moderate and how that came into play.
I sometimes also get things out of order in my priorities.
Love the questions that challenge me to answer. Like how each chapter starts out with a scripture passage and the remaining part of the chapter is based around that phrase.
Love the symbol that spaghetti squash represents-so cool!
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest opinion.

Spoken from the Heart: Parenting 101 Vol. 5 - Cheri Swalwell

Spoken From The Heart: Parenting 101 Vol 5 by Cheri Swlwell Have read the other works by the author and have found them inspiring. Starts out with dedication page and works of the author, then the table of contents. To me this book is a daily devotional for more than a month. Each day has a different theme and what I really like are the connections between the real life events. Used to attend classes when the kids were young and it really did help to hear from others and as a group we moved on. Scripture quotations are noted as they present themselves with the discussions. So open, honest about her life experiences, even if they are embarrassing. Such a good role model! Authors work have such a calming effect on my day after reading and thinking about things discussed. Can't wait for the next installment. I connect in so many ways with the experiences presented here. I was given the book by the author via Book Fun (The Book Club Network) and this is my honest review

Cajun Recipes: 101 (for beginners) - Cajun Cookbook and Food (Cajun Cookbooks - Cajun Cooking - Cajun Food - Cajun meals - Cajun Dishes - Cajun specialties) - Clara Taylor

Cajun Recipes: 101 (for beginners) by Clara Taylor
Introduction starts out this book with history and I especially like the meanings of some of the cajun words and phrases I've heard as to what they really mean.
Has chapters for breakfast, lunch and dinner meals.
Recommended books are listed at the end. There is no nutritional information although if you do substitute for your dietary needs the dish may not taste the same.
There are NO pictures but this is a treasure to have the recipes of the area.

Powerboat Racer - Thomas Hollyday

Powerboat Racer by Thomas Hollyday
Have read other works by this author and have enjoyed the books.
This one starts out with John Loggerman and he's arrived in the USA in hopes of meeting up with his daughter who he's not seen in ten years.
His ex wife keeps her nearby and she lives in the Tinker community where they walk around with machine guns. John learns Stephanie, his daughter, is on a mission and not able to see him.
She does contact him via phone and tells him she has to do what she's told or her mother's life is in danger.
He just wants his products boarded so he can get out of there, with his daughter. The protestors don't want him to have the products nor leave..
Fond memories of one year's boat race on the water during July, a yearly event. Story follows many different angles and is still full of twists and turns. Lots of action.
Like learning how using codes the Tinkers sends messages about their events.
Like technical talk of how to balance the ship.  Brutal savage attacks-very detailed with descriptions.
Especially like that this book is good for a man or woman. It will hold their interests til the end. Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
Received the book from the author and this is my honest review.

Breakfast Recipes: 50 Quick and Healthy Breakfast Recipes (Quick & Easy Breakfast Recipes, Delicious Breakfast, Everyday Recipes) - Nancy Kelsey

Breakfast Recipes: 50 Quick and Healthy Breakfast Recipes (Quick & Easy Breakfast Recipes, Delicious Breakfast, Everyday Recipes) by Nancy Kelsey
Each recipe starts with a title, color photo, prep and total time, servings. List of healthy ingredients and you should be able to substitute for your dietary needs.
Directions on how to make the dish are included. No nutritional information.
Lots of bonus recipes at the end along with other works by the author. Most of the ingredients are fresh and healthy.
Not liking that you use hash browns out of the freezer to use-they are so processed and have too much sodium for our diets. Gonna try making them from potatoes where I control the spices and herbs used and store them in the fridge for quick useage.

Waking Up Married - Mira Lyn Kelly

Waking Up Married by Mira Lyn Kelly
Story starts out with Megan and she's in Las Vegas for a friends wedding and the night before she meets up with Connor.
Having many drinks they go off by themselves and next thing she knows it's the next day and she's in the bathroom getting sick, having no recollection of what happened the night before.
He informs her they are married and all the details but they've yet to sleep together. She is not sure she wants to stay married and he knows there's just something about her, he wants to stay married and try to work things out as they've talked for many hours the night before.
There are rules and then she goes along with the three month trial. Love the travel and the descriptions of the places.
She is out to make him want out but he's got a LOT of patience. So funny the things she tries.
Steamy sex scenes and she goes to other countries with him on business.  Their past lives catch up with them.....lots of twists and turns along the way.

Cookbook Boxed Set: THREE GREAT COOKBOOKS! - Dan Alatorre

Cookbook Boxed Set: THREE GREAT COOKBOOKS!  by Dan Alatorre
Had read one of the authors other works and he liked my review and redid the books to add in the suggestions I posted about.
Other works by the author are featured at the beginning of the book.

First book: 35 great recipes you wish your mother made. Lots of categories to choose from.
Each recipe starts out with a title, beautiful color photo, some include servings, and a summary and then the ingredient list. Instructions on how to make and a tip on how to serve is also included.
There's just a handful that do not have a photo. Like tips along the way that make some recipes just special.
Cole Slaw will be one we will make during summer months from fresh garden ingredients, looks similar to our recipe but this one has a bit more zing.
Love all seafood recipes as we live on the coast in the Northeast and can easily obtain them. No nutritional information but you should be able to substitute for your dietary needs.
Pizza dough sounds like a winner also as it's all within our meal plan. Chocolate cake recipe is a winner also but I'd use liquid eggs without frosting and pour into muffin pans as that is the size of a piece we'd be able to eat.
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35 more amazing recipes your mother would be proud of!
Bonus recipes included with the different categories.
Each recipe comes with a title, summary, beautiful color photo and list of ingredients. Some also have servings.
There is NO nutritional information but you might be able to substitute for a healthier option.
Love the Ohio connection as I put together a recipe book for my husband's family who lived there.
Love the variations with the shrimp scampi, similar to one I used to make-it's so easy to put together.
Love tips about different kinds of cookies: crispy, chevy, puffy.
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All American Favorites
Love stories of holidays and what food was available. Similar to how we grew up with relatives as neighbors.
Beautiful color photos, bonus recipes along the way. Even though it might be a basic recipe the author adds his creativity to make it for a special treat at a holiday gathering.
All little notes and tips and how to make it different. No servings or nutritional information but you should be able to substitute for your dietary needs.
Think I'd rather see 'about the author' at the very beginning because then I know who Michelle is, wondering if it's a sister or mother or wife.
Other works by the author are highlighted at the end.
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What I like about the recipes are the stories that go along with them about how they came about or why they love to experiment with new ingredients to make it better.
For the most part there are beautiful color photos only a small amount do not have one. My reviewers like to see a picture of the dish they are going to try to make. There is no nutritional information nor servings size so you will have to experiment but should know how much one pound of lean meat will provide a meal for. Very few repeat recipes.
Some of the ingredients you might be able to substitute for a healthier option  (low fat, low sodium) but it is not going to taste the same as what the recipe calls for.  Grew up making a lot of these recipes and don't have my mothers recipes any longer so these are a godsend although I probably won't make them much as they contain too much sugar or other foods we are not allowed to have any longer.
Great comfort foods for the day once a month you can cheat from your diet. . Like tips along the way that make some recipes just special.   Love the variety of categories-makes it so anybody can find a recipe to try no matter what lifestyle/diet they follow.
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A KEEPER!
Received this review copy from the author and this is my honest review.