Read in December.

There was this holiday this month, you might have heard of it. It’s called Christmas? It cramped my reading style. I only read six books, but I was busy. I think I was sleeping better, too, which is nice, but means less reading time. Also, post Christmas I built shelves, and when I wasn’t doing that I was watching season one of The West Wing. So, not as much reading for me.

I’m pretty happy with Goodreads, though. Not the least because I have a place to put a permanent “to read” list that I won’t use. Thanks for recommending it, Sara. And thanks for the recommendations, April. Keep them coming.

Read this month:

Mrs. Mike
Benedict & Nancy Freedman
Hideous Kinky
Esther Freud

The Year of Living Biblically.
A.J. Jacobs.

The story of General Dann & Mara’s daughter, Griot and the snow dog: a novel.
Doris Lessing.

Accidental Happiness: a novel

Jean Reynolds Page

The Wishbones
Tom Perrotta

Started but didn’t finish:

As cool as I am.
Pete Fromm

I got the feeling things weren’t going to go well for the protagonist. I put down the book and didn’t every pick it up again.

Men’s Health ultimate dumbbell guide: more than 21,000 moves designed to build muscle and increase strength.

I’ve been flirting with the idea of starting a weight training program again and this was the perfect book. Imagine, doing a whole workout at home with just dumbbells. I’ll probably buy this book.

Low-Carbon Diet: a 30 day program to lose 5,000 pounds
David Gershon

I liked this book, it is very slender compared to many “save the earth” tomes. It’s a step-by-step book to reduce your carbon footprint. I’ll revisit this when I have more time.

The Pirate’s Daughter

Margaret Cezair-Thompson

I was really into this book for about half of it. It is a very interesting “suppose if” book. Suppose if Erroll Flynn fathered a child with a 16 year old Jamaican girl. Then suppose that girl grows up during the independence movement. I loved the writing style and the twisty and turn-y details. I just didn’t finish it and back it went to the library. Someday.

Legends of the Fall
Jim Harrison
I hated this movie when it came out so I decided to see if the book was any better. I started reading and became very confused because I was in Mexico, not Montana. I eventually figured out that there were three short stories within the book. I started reading “Legends” on the day it was due as I was taking it to the library and it did seem good. Maybe I’ll get it again soon.

Checked out and didn’t even read:
The Rising Sun.
Douglas Galbraith.

The Colony
John Tayman

Jokeman 8
Richard Melo
Flipped through it and saw some weird font, things going on. Ran out of time and decided to send this back.

New Luck for the New Year.

Did you eat your black-eyed peas and greens yet today? Better get them cooking. They bring good luck for the new year.
This recipe is from “Still Life With Menu” by Mollie Katzen. It’s easy, but the original makes a ton, so I halved it.

Black-Eyed Peas and Greens

  • 1.5 c black-eyed peas, soaked for 8 hours or so.
  • 3 c water
  • 3 medium-sized cloves garlic, minced
  • 3/4 t salt
  • 3-4 c. (packed) chopped mixed greens
  • 1 medium-sized leek, cleaned well and chopped.
  1. Place the black-eyed peas and water in a soup pot. Bring to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer and mostly cover. Cook gently until tender, checking the water level every now and then. If it appears to be getting dry, add water, 1/2 cup at a time. About 15 minutes into the cooking, add the garlic. The peas will take 30-35 minutes to cook
  2. When the black-eyed peas are just about tender, stir in the salt, greens and leeks. Cover, and continue to simmer just a few more minutes. The greens and leeks will cook very quickly.
  3. Season to taste with freshly ground black pepper and serve hot.

Chopping the collards.
Prepping the leeks.
Chopping the leeks.
Sirring it all together.
Mmmmm. Good luck and good food.