Valar Morghulis!

It isn’t particularly book related news, but as the show -is- based on the books, I doubt I’ll meet with any objection. So, what are you looking forward to this season? Whose your favorite character? Judging by the gif I posted here, you can see to whom I’m most loyal. I like Tyrion, Sansa and Margaery a great deal. I also like Cersei, which I know other people find very strange. Book Cersei is brilliant but I can’t think of anyone better to play her in the show. I’ll definitely miss her if they kill her (or any of the above mentioned) off. What do you guys think of the trailer? I’m so excited for it to start.

In other GOT news, sadly it doesn’t appear that ‘The Winds of Winter’ will be appearing this year. A representative at Harper Collins commented: I have no information on likely delivery. These are increasingly complex books and require immense amounts of concentration to write. Fans really ought to appreciate that the length of these monsters is equivalent to two or three novels by other writers.”

Whilst that is disappointing…at least season five is coming to tide us over!

When the moon hits your eye like a big pizza pie….

Author: Tony Gemignani
Hardcover, 288 pages
Published October 21st 2014 by Ten Speed Press
Provided by: Blogging For Books
Synopsis: A comprehensive guide to making pizza, covering nine different regional styles–including standards like Neopolitan, Roman, and Chicago, as well as renowned pizza sub-specialties like St. Louis and Californian–from chef, 11-time world Pizza Champion, and Guinness world record-holding pizza-spinner, Tony Gemignani.
Pizza is one of the world’s most well-known and beloved foods, and everyone has their favorite style. In fact, devotion to one particular style is so ubiquitous that most pizza books only cover one or two varieties of pie. But for those who truly love pizza, there’s no need to be monogamous. Pizza master Tony Gemignani brings pizza to the people in all its glorious forms, from Chicago deep dish to paper-thin Roman style. “The Pizza Bible” is the world’s first guide to making all of the major pizza styles, filling a hole in the market and elevating the craft of making pizza to that of bread or charcuterie.
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As I’ve said when reviewing other cookbooks, I’m not a cook. I can do some basic things in the kitchen, so when I saw this book, I thought, “How cool this would be?” I figured it’d have some basic things in there–and if I couldn’t do it, well, my mother can or we could combine our skills (she’s epic, I’m not, haha) and we’d go from there. This, unfortunately, is one of those cookbooks that reads more like a textbook and while Tony mentions that you can find these supermarket items, you can’t. Maybe up in NY you can find them easily, we looked and found nothing. So, for the skillset, I’m going to say you need a lot and as for the ingredients, they’re not going to be easily found.
I did enjoy looking at the photos and reading histories and the like. All in all, it is a fun book. Tony knows his pizza  and his love for it, definitely shines through. As with the Bible, there’s even a Ten Commandments! The only other complaint I have is that after a few reads, the spine is cracked and is separating from the book. Not a particular fan of that.
I’ll give it a 3.

Reflections: לעולם לא אשכח.

10371945_941693849189131_3960409325424247996_nAs today is the Holocaust Memorial Day, I thought that perhaps I would share some of my favorite books based in the Holocaust. I had the extreme privilege of visiting the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington D.C when I was 14, so that was 2000/2001-ish. It was a field trip with my class and whilst at first, I had my reservations about going, I am glad that I did. It certainly stuck with me and I would love to return someday. As a student, you’re interested and you comprehend only so much; with an adults eyes and ears, I imagine I’d be able to appreciate it more. (I’d also like to be able to take my time- rushed schedules with school didn’t truly allow for thoughtful and deep reflection.) We were learning about it and it was for the first time, where a teacher did not flinch or hide things from us. Granted, we had to have a permission slip to watch the (edited) version of Schindler’s List, but the rest of the time, he didn’t hide anything from us. Being in that museum, seeing what we saw, hearing what we heard…it was exceptionally moving, emotional, painful…I can’t put into words what is both a beautiful memory and horrible reminder of the depravity of humanity. Yet, even in that time, there were good souls and there were people willing to help and to put their lives on the line in order to save others lives.

I hope that you find the time to be thoughtful and remember those six million who died. These are a few of my favorite books based in that time period. What are yours? Sound off below! I’m always keen to read new things.

לעולם לא אשכח
(Never forget)

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Spotlight: A Highland Pearl

A Highland Pearl (Highland Treasures #1)
by Brenda B. Taylor

Synopsis: Inspirational Scottish historical romance.A sweet romance blossoms amidst feuding and war. With her reputation at stake after being accused of practicing witchcraft and hated as a member of a rival clan, Maidie considers leaving Clan Munro and returning to the home of her birth in Clan Cameron. Fierce battles, a tragic encounter, and a handsome clan chief compel her to make crucial decisions in this haunting romance set in the16th century Highlands of Scotland.

Maidie is summoned to Fàrdach Castle of Easter Ross-shire to assist in caring for the wounded of Clan Munro after a battle with Clans MacKenzie and Cameron. She dreads the task since her husband, Kenneth Munro, was killed in an earlier battle. Maidie is a healer, taught by her mother, with the skills and knowledge needed to tend the wounds of Chief Andrew Dubh Munro who is seriously wounded.

People in the castle and those in the village of Drumainn turn against Maidie. Angus, the castle physician, resents her for taking his job in caring for the chief. She is hated by some, because she is a member of the enemy Clan Cameron and came to live in Ferindonald, the Munro lands, with her husband.

Maidie considers returning to the land of her birth in Clan Cameron with her young son, Sven, but falls in love with Andrew while caring for his wounds. Although her neighbors now call her a witch, she wishes to stay in Drumainn because of her love for the chief.

Against an effort to guard his hardened heart from another hurtful encounter with a woman, Andrew falls in love with the tender, caring healer, Maidie. He wants her to stay in Drumainn, but his enemies, the Camerons and MacKenzies, have other plans. They use Andrew in an exchange for Maidie and Sven after their warriors capture the Munro chief. Her father, the brother of Chief Ewin Cameron, wishes for Maidie’s inheritance to stay within his hands. After the exchange, Andrew vows to get Maidie back and plots her return to him and Clan Munro. While inside Castle Lach, the seat of Clan MacKenzie, Andrew meets a small child who is his daughter. He takes the child with him to provide for her when he leaves Castle Lach.

Gavin, Andrew’s brother, falls in love with Maidie. She is attracted to him, but knowing his roving eye, avoids his amorous attentions. Gavin tries to woo Maidie and win her heart away from Andrew. He offers an alternative to rescuing his brother instead of using her as an exchange for the chief. Maidie will not put Andrew’s life in danger and refuses. She resigns herself to going back to her father’s home. Gavin decides he cannot stay at Fàrdach without Maidie and makes plans to leave.

Davina, the younger sister of Andrew and Gavin, harbors resentment toward Maidie because of her brothers’ attentions to the healer. Davina is also jealous of the young warrior, Tavish, who Andrew assigned as Maidie’s bodyguard, and who is infatuated by her sweet charm. Davina secretly loves Tavish and wishes to marry him, but her brothers desire her to marry the MacKenzie’s son to bring peace between the clans.

Although Maidie loves Andrew, she knows their love is forbidden. Too many adverse circumstances surround their relationship. Being a devout believer, Maidie is concerned about Andrew’s lack of spiritual convictions. She realizes they can never be happy with a gulf between their beliefs. Will Laird Andrew Dubh Munro and Maidie Cameron Munro overcome the barriers standing in the way of their love?