Smut, of course, but to my surprise, it actually has a decent plot. It was also nice to read a smut book that didn't follow the "50 Shades" formula ofSmut, of course, but to my surprise, it actually has a decent plot. It was also nice to read a smut book that didn't follow the "50 Shades" formula of "millionaire seduces young girl."...more
When I saw this book, I was ridiculously excited. I have a probably unnatural obsession with anything Mormon-related. And it was a cookbook besides...When I saw this book, I was ridiculously excited. I have a probably unnatural obsession with anything Mormon-related. And it was a cookbook besides...win! Sadly, despite my excitement, I found this cookbook to be a disappointment.
The layout of the book is lovely. Plenty of pretty pictures. Numerous family anecdotes and family pictures if you're into that sort of thing.
The recipes, though, are just SO poorly written. No one who is not already an experienced cook should attempt to make anything from this book. The very first recipe in the book is for bread. I have not seen a bread recipe so vague outside of a cookbook from the 1940s. Not only that, but the directions are flat-out BAD. She instructs you to heat, on the stove top, the milk, sugar, honey, salt, and YEAST. People, if you know anything about baking bread, you know that heat is a surefire way to kill your yeast and produce a brick rather than a loaf of bread. Additionally, she only has you raise the bread once. Especially for a wheat bread, I find this to be extremely odd. I did make the bread; however, I only used her ingredient list. I completely disregarded her directions. The resultant loaf was a good one; however, I'm not sure I can give Mrs. Romney much of the credit.
I also read through her recipe for a Chocolate Jelly Roll Cake and watched her how-to video online. Once again, this is not a recipe I could recommend to anyone who doesn't already know how to make a jelly roll cake. Among other things, she tells you to just dump hot, melted chocolate into your whipped egg yolks. Unless you're looking to make chocolate-flavored scrambled eggs, this is a pretty lousy idea. Later in the video, she instructs you not to whip your cream too much because you don't want it to be too stiff. No mention of the fact that whipping your cream too much will get you butter. Yes, that's a pretty basic fact, and yes, most people should be aware of that. But if you're going to write a cookbook, you need to do it in such a way that a beginner can follow the recipe.
My other complaint is that this is being marketed as a family cookbook. Her favorite recipes that she made when her family was growing up. An extension of the three-ring binder of recipes she so thoughtfully gave to each of her daughters-in-law. (I have to interject here that this made me roll my eyes. What bride doesn't want her mother-in-law telling her how to cook?) Despite the "family" label, many of the recipes, though, are pretty "gourmet" for a family cookbook. One of the recipes is for a "potato gratin with Gruyere and creme fraiche." Really? I'm a pretty adventurous cook and do often whip out the gourmet ingredients just for the heck of it, but I really can't see myself making up a gratin with Gruyere and creme fraiche for my kids.
The religious overtones are pretty over-the-top and sanctimonious (good moms stay at home!), but, really, that's to be expected from a Mormon.
I will certainly update this review as I make more of the recipes. However, given what I've made and seen, I simply can't give this anymore than two stars due to the quality of the recipes. Mrs. Romney may be a fine cook, but she's a lousy recipe writer....more
I'm strangely uncertain of what how to review this book. On one hand, it's nearly 700 pages and I finished it in four days. On the other hand, I'm lefI'm strangely uncertain of what how to review this book. On one hand, it's nearly 700 pages and I finished it in four days. On the other hand, I'm left slightly disappointed.
The first quarter of the book was riveting. The suspense was wonderfully horrible, to the extent that I was texting people, just to distract myself and pull myself out of the story. And then....it fell flat. I guess that's a little unfair to say, in as much as I kept flipping the pages, but it was no longer scare-my-pants off scary. Which left me strangely disappointed.... despite the discomfort it caused, once the fear was gone, I felt let-down.
(Side note: adding to the initial creepiness of the book, I was listening to Christmas music while reading. Having been on the book's waiting list for a while, I'd forgotten all about the Christmas ties. And when the songs I was listening to started to match up with the songs mentioned in the book? Spooooooky.)
As others have said (and better than me), the story really goes on much longer than it needs to (shocking...who'd have seen that coming from Stephen King's kid? [end sarcasm]). And the foreshadowing was ridiculous. I'm NOT good at solving mysteries, but I could see this stuff coming from a mile away. "Here, Vic, take my coat! Maybe it'll save your life!" Seriously? Could you be any more obviously see-through?
All in all in, it was a good read, but one that could have been shorter and tighter.
I'm now on a search for a book that will scare the crap out of me until the last page....more
Such a fun kids' book. It was laugh out loud funny in places. I found the ending to be a bit predictable, but I think that's coming from me as an adulSuch a fun kids' book. It was laugh out loud funny in places. I found the ending to be a bit predictable, but I think that's coming from me as an adult. I'm sure that as a kid I'd have been shocked by the turn of events.
While I read this on my Kindle, the book is still in print and available in hard copy. My only complaint to that end is the cover. It's just ghastly. I know you're not "supposed" to judge a book by its cover, but we all do it, and certainly kids do. I think I'd have a hard time convincing a kid that this book was worth picking up in spite of the lame, cheesy cover. ...more
Note: I reviewed this book for a library and figured I might as well paste it in here, too.
When 16 year old Mallory discovers that her boyfriend hasNote: I reviewed this book for a library and figured I might as well paste it in here, too.
When 16 year old Mallory discovers that her boyfriend has "cheated" on her with an online girlfriend, she begins to rue technology. It is no surprise, then, that when she finds a list her grandmother made at 16, she is charmed by what seems to have been an idyllic adolescence. In an effort to embrace this simpler way of life, she adopts her grandmother's list:
1. Run for pep club secretary 2. Host a fancy dinner party/soiree 3. Sew a dress for Homecoming 4. Find a steady 5. Do something dangerous
(Never mind that she will first have to create a pep club at her school, or that she doesn't know a bobbin from button).
In an effort to maintain authenticity (and to avoid technology-based drama), Mallory shuns all technology newer than 1962. With her sister's help, she has soon traded out her cell phone for a rotary phone and her iPod for a record player.
Unfortunately, Mallory quickly realizes that going vintage isn't quite as simple as she expected it to be. In fact, when you factor in family drama (and secrets) and a certain cute boy in pep squad (who just happens to be her ex-boyfriend's cousin), the "simple life" is darn right complicated. Soon, Mallory starts to wonder if maybe there isn't a happy medium between rotary phones and a life spent glued to status updates on "FriendSpace."
Going Vintage is a light, fun, and entertaining read. While I felt some of the characters were a little too stereotypical (the "totally hot" mom; the "formerly hip, but now clueless" dad; the "hipster with a sensitive side" love interest), and some of the intervening plot-lines not very well hashed out, I suspect that's the adult in me talking. Overall, the moral of the story is good without being preachy, and one that I think the average 12-16 year old would do well to hear. I feel this book would make a good addition to any library's young adult section. ...more
This book was a solid five-star, up until the last 150 pages or so. At that point, it got far less about the stories of the family and far more of a pThis book was a solid five-star, up until the last 150 pages or so. At that point, it got far less about the stories of the family and far more of a political treatise. I confess, I skimmed a lot of the ending, simply because I was reading the book for the story, not the politics. Over, though, a great book....more
I know this is supposed to be really great, but I just depressed the fuck out of me. I skipped about 70 pages in the middle, just so I could force mysI know this is supposed to be really great, but I just depressed the fuck out of me. I skipped about 70 pages in the middle, just so I could force myself to finish it. I'm pretty sure I didn't miss anything, because, well, what is there to miss? She's slowly losing her mind.
I know this is supposed to be great and very accurate and all that, but it only served to freak me out and depress me....more