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Tag: book blogger

March Reads

March Reads

Well, I didn’t read much in March. I aim for at least 2 books a month. Things came up I guess. I also had a hard time getting through the one book I did read so I guess that slowed me down a bit. My […]

My Favourite ‘Comfort’ Reads

My Favourite ‘Comfort’ Reads

Many of us, myself included, have a lot more time to read these days. I’ve always been a big reader. It’s a great way to escape into another world. There are a few books that I read over and over again because they are warm […]

February Reads

February Reads

Evvie Drake Starts Over by Linda Holmes

5/5 Stars

I had heard of Linda Holmes years back. She made a few guest appearances on a Survivor podcast I listen to, so I was excited to hear she was writing a book. I had this on my holds list for a while, and I felt like a few of the books I had waited a long time for didn’t really live up to the hype. This was not the case with ‘Evvie Drake Starts Over’ – I loved this book!

Evvie Drake is recently widowed, and everyone in her life thinks she has been withdrawn because she misses her husband, but that’s not really the case. She’s trying to deal with the guilt of not missing him at all. Her friend asks her if she is interested in having a lodger, his old friend and struggling baseball player Dean Tenney. They spend the year dealing with their issues, separately and together.

I really loved this book. It’s definitely going to be in my favourite books I’ve read this year come December. It was emotional, funny, and the story really drew me in. I don’t think the ending is spectacularly unexpected, but I loved the way we got there.

Dear Girls by Ali Wong

3.5/5 Stars

This memoir/advice book by comedian Ali Wong is written to her daughters. I love this genre of books, so I was really excited to read this.

I really enjoyed this book. Ali’s point-of-view is unique and engaging. She tells her stories in a way that makes you really connect with her. I laughed and I cried. It was a fun love letter to her beloved daughters.

For more on what I’m reading, follow me on GoodReads

January Reads

January Reads

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren 4.5/5 Stars In the latest offering from the writing duo Christina Lauren, the frequently unlucky Olive ends up taking her twin sister’s honeymoon due to an extreme illness that took over her and her beau’s entire wedding. The catch? She […]

December Reads

December Reads

Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows by Balli Kaur Jaswal I read The Unlikely Adventures of the Shergill Sisters in June, and then immediately put in a hold request for Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows. It took this long to come in. It’s been a popular book […]

2019 Favourites

2019 Favourites

Books

My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite

This was a really interesting read. It had a really different style than I was used to. My Sister, the Serial Killer had short chapters and it was a really quick read, but it was gripping right from the beginning. I finished it in a few hours because I just could not put it down. It had a few interesting twists, and I loved the style of the book. There’s a reason this was one of the most talked about books of 2019.

Kitchens of the Great Midwest by J Ryan Stradal

I think this was my absolute favourite book I read in 2019. The whole book followed the life of Eva Thorvald’s life. Every chapter is from someone different in her life’s perspective. It was heart-warming and breaking. I loved the story.

Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn

I’m a little late to the game on this one, I know. This was a nice little vacation read. It was definitely dark and twisted, and the ending wasn’t THAT surprising. It was still a page-turner regardless. I tried to watch the show, and that’s just not for me!!

Buttermilk Graffiti by Edward Lee

As a Top Chef fan, I was really excited to find a book by former Top Chef contestant, Edward Lee. It is a really cool book about Edward visiting various communities in America where immigrants have had a big impact on the cultural and food scenes. I learned a lot from reading it and there were some recipes inspired by the communities in the book.

Katie Fforde Novels

I’ve been looking for another author that does it for me in the way that Sophie Kinsella does. I believe I have with Katie Fforde. Sure, you know where a lot of her stories are going right from the beginning, but that’s fine with me. She creates some really nice stories, and I have really enjoyed reading her books this year.

Television

Taskmaster

Taskmaster was on my 2018 Favourites too. It deserves a place in this favourites list as well because it is just so good. It makes me laugh so, so hard. Series 8 and 9 which came out this year were two of the best seasons. Every episode is amazing. You can watch episodes on YouTube here.

Vanderpump Rules

I put this on as something to watch. I didn’t really think I would like it that much, since I usually prefer my reality shows to have a bit of a competition element to them. I was wrong and I loved it. I motored through all of the seasons in a matter of weeks, and I can’t wait for the new season to come out!

Schitt’s Creek

This was on my list of ‘Things to Watch in 2019‘ ( I tried my best, okay?) and I’m mad at myself for waiting for long. It is so, so unbelievably funny. And in its later seasons it’s developed this beautiful warmth that has gone hand-in-hand perfectly with the comedy of it.

Richard Osman’s House of Games

This is one of my more recent discoveries. I’ve had a great time watching this show. It’s a fun twist on your usual trivia shows. It features people from all walks of British celebrity.

Makeup

Alamar Beauty Blush Trio

I resubscribed to Boxycharm for this palette specifically, and it did not let me down. I received the Reina del Caribe V1 palette and Ojitos Brush Trio in Boxycharms as well and I’ve been very impressed with all of their products. The products are not crazy expensive in comparison to other brands. I love this blush palette, it was perfect for spring and summer. There’s a sale on a bundle right now including all three products I mentioned plus a lipgloss that you can find here.

Bite Beauty Amuse Bouche Lipstick in Beetroot

I own a lot of lipsticks, but this one really stands out to me for both formula and colour. It leans purple, but it’s not unwearable. I love the Amuse Bouche formula. It’s creamy, but pigmented. Here are all of the BITE products I’ve tried.

Media

Hayu

Hayu quickly became my favourite streaming service of 2019. I spent a lot of hours watching shows on Hayu. My Vanderpump Rules and Top Chef watches couldn’t have happened without it! It’s also pretty reasonably priced at $5.99 a month.

Bon Appetit Videos

The Bon Appetit Test Kitchen videos took the internet by storm this year. Who doesn’t love charming people talking about and making food? I know I do. Obviously Claire Saffitz’s ‘Gourmet Makes’ series is my favourite.

Who? Weekly

A friend introduced to me Who? Weekly very early on into 2019. It quickly became one of my favourite podcasts. I never miss an episode (and there’s 2 a week!). If you love pop culture, this podcast is a must.

Everything Else

Google Home Nest

In this household we are suckers for Google Home. Sorry, we can’t help it. We recently got a Google Home Nest for the kitchen and it is a game changer. It’s great for playing music, looking up recipes, and watching videos. I really love having this in the kitchen.

Alison Roman

Food posts on Instagram is not for everyone, but it is very much for me. I started following Allison on Instagram after hearing about her on the Jam Session podcast. Since then, I’ve been a big fan of her and even bought her two cookbooks. I love her approach to cooking and hosting, which is that it’s not going to be perfect and that food is to be enjoyed.

Lightroom

I’ve been hearing about Lightroom for years, but never really explored it. I finally tried it out early this year, and I love it! It’s an easy way to make photos look nicer. If you can believe it, I’d been using PowerPoint for years to lighten and edit photos. I graduated from that this year, and I think my photos have benefited from it.

Check out the rest of my year-end posts here.

October Reads

October Reads

No Judgments by Meg Cabot 4/5 Stars In Meg Cabot’s newest offering, Bree has come to live in a sleepy island town in Florida after a traumatic experience. A hurricane is starting to roll in and while most of the town is evacuating, she decides […]

September Reads

September Reads

September was a really crazy month. My work schedule was packed, and that mixed with other events, commitments, etc made it tough to do much reading. Also, most of my holds are still like, 6 months away from getting to me. Sometimes I feel like […]

August Reads

August Reads

The Matchmaker’s List by Sonya Lalli

2/5 Stars

I had this book on my holds list for about 5 months before I finally got to read it. I was really looking forward to it, and frankly I was a bit disappointed.

The story follows Raina, an Indian-Canadian woman in her late 20’s whose grandmother is dying for her to get married. Raina is much more focused on her career, and still suffering from the heartbreak of her last relationship. This is all well and good.

I was still enjoying this story, until <<SPOILER ALERT>> her ex-boyfriend comes to town. To cover this up, she more or less leads her grandmother to believe that she is gay. Her grandmother is very accepting, but the community around her is not. Raina’s best friend is upset because she knows this is a lie. A former family friend comes to her and tells her that he is also gay and she convinces him to come out to his family, which didn’t go well. And he is justifiably upset when he finds out she isn’t gay. I didn’t love that she was lying about her sexuality. The story would have been more interesting if she was actually gay. It just felt all a little off for me. I also hate stories where the trouble people get into are from their own doing over lying.

I didn’t realize before I started it that it was set in Toronto. This was super exciting, I rarely find books that are set in Canada. So I did really love that part. The whole book just felt too long, with the inciting incident coming pretty far into the story. Let me know if you’ve read this one and feel differently.

Lethal White by Robert Galbraith

3/5 Stars

This is the 4th book in the Cormoran Strike series by J.K. Rowling’s alter-ego Robert Galbraith. I have really enjoyed reading this series. I’d have to say that this is my least favourite book in the series so far. If you’ve read the Harry Potter series, you know that she has the knack for really detailed stories. Well, that’s definitely true here. It almost feels like a long book just for the sake of being long. There are so many characters that it’s almost hard to keep them all straight. And I just kept waiting and waiting for the moment when the story actually started. Which, I’m not even kidding, was like 300 pages in.

I’d definitely recommend this series, the Cuckoo’s Calling was an incredible page-turner. This addition to the series just felt a bit meh.

The Second Worst Restaurant in France by Alexander McCall Smith

3.5/5

I picked this up at the library because I liked the cover, and I figured I could get into a book where France itself was basically a character.

Cookbook writer, Paul Stuart, is stuck while writing his latest book. His cousin invites him on a trip with her to France, and he thought that a change of scenery would treat him and his book well. His time in France is filled with ups and downs and just a touch of food poisoning.

I really enjoyed reading this book. This is the first one I’ve read by Alexander McCall Smith. I love books set in small French cities, and this one didn’t disappoint. It felt a little slow in some parts, and I wouldn’t say it was one of my favourite books I’ve ever read. But it was a light, easy read.

I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella

3.5/5

Sophie Kinsella is one of my favourite authors. I’ve read so many of her books over and over again. I was super excited to read this one.

Fixie Farr is dealing with managing her family store after her dad dies a couple years ago. This isn’t easy with her mother getting sick, and her siblings being pretty useless. After a run-in with a stranger that changes her life, she works to act for herself instead of everyone else.

I liked this book. It wasn’t my favourite ever of her stories, but it wasn’t my least favourite. It’s a fun, easy read. I tore through the book in a day. I think I will definitely re-read this one at some point.

July Reads

July Reads

Maybe This Time by Jane Mansell This had the makings of a perfect book for me: set in the UK romcom/chick lit endorsed by one of my new favourite writers, Katie Fforde Mimi goes to visit her dad and his partner in the Cotswolds, where […]