Wednesday, February 23, 2011

The Crazed Bookshelf

Gotta love this short video I found on YouTube!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Curiosities of the Civil War - by Webb Garrison

Curiosities of the Civil War
Webb Garrison
Thomas Nelson Publishing
ISBN: 978-1-59555-359-1

I have always held a fascination with the Civil War, so when I was offered the chance to review this book, I simply jumped at it! And I wasn't disappointed!

Garrison feeds us tidbits, facts, and fun stories of the Civil War as if they were bon bons to be enjoyed and savored!

At first glance, I thought to myself, I will have to read this one fact at a time and set it aside or I will soon be overwhelmed with facts and figures! However, Garrison leads us through a myriad tunnel of information, much as though we were walking through a fine art gallery, allowing us to stop and view each work and allow it to stand on its own merit before we procede further.

The front cover states "Strange Stories, Infamous Characters, & Bizarre Events". It doesn't disappoint!

If you're not into history, or the Civil War, you might want to skip over this one. But if you are... then you'll probably devour it as greedily as I did!

I give this one...
...five stars and...

... my thumbs up award!

****DISCLOSURE: This book was offered free for review from BookSneeze, a division of Thomas Nelson Publishing.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

The Raw LIfe

The Raw Life
Becoming Natural in an Unnatural World
Paul Nison
343 Publishing Company
ISBN 0-967528-0-7

First off, let me begin with, I opened this book with no pre-conceived ideas of the Raw Diet. I was mildly intrigued, having read several blogs by individuals who were gradually immersing their dietary lifestyle into this phenom.

That said, I found the book utterly worthless.

The drivel which flows from Mr. Nison is of such utter nonsense that I am surprised anyone would even contemplate his lifestyle!

His premise that an individual can go raw was one which I might have pursued. It certainly intrigued me. However, his utter disregard for medical science astounds me!

Mr. Nison lumps medicine into that category of malpractice of the mind! He states such nonsense as going to see a doctor is inviting one self to get sick.

"All doctors and medicine are designed to make you sick."

While I can somewhat agree with the doctor who is in a general practice, in that they are trained to treat the symptom rather than the cause, that is not true of a homeopath.

Then, nutrition is basically set aside, as individuals are enlightened about "mono" fats and fruits and vegetables.

And the one that really set my teeth on edge???

Emaciated and skeletal are all part of the plan!  Nison even shows photographs of individuals who could easily appear as poster mascots for the holocaust!

I certainly cannot add my endorsement to this book in any way!

However, let me say this... the raw diet as I had perceived it, was one that would provide the individual with all necessary nutrients, yet in a raw, natural form. That being said, I am willing to seek out more information on that lifestyle.

I simply will not be following the advice of Mr. Nison.

My advice?

Don't waste your time, or your money, on this book.

****DISCLAIMER: This book was purchased for my personal library.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


Johanna Spyri
the Helen B Dole translation
Copyright 1927 by Ginn & Company
ISBN 0-448-17339-5

Call it a desire to revisit an old friend, but when I came across this copy of Heidi by Johanna Spyri I simply had to purchase it.

You see, Heidi was the first full-length novel I ever read as a youth. Heidi was a little girl, of my own age, at the time I read it, and I was enamored with her adventures on the Alm with her grandfather, The Alm-Uncle.

In Heidi we find a child who has been dealt a hard life, but who with the grace of God, learns to make something good out of even the worst situation. She touches each individual who comes into her life, blessing and enriching their lives as no other could.

In this edition of Heidi, we are given a brief biography of the author at the end of the book.

Born 1827 at Hirzel, Switzerland the author was named Johanna after her father, Dr. Johann Jacob Heusser, and was nicknamed Hanni. Her mother was a poet.

Well versed in education, and well-travelled, she eventually married a schoolmate of her brother's, Bernhard Spyri, in 1852 when she was 25.

Hanni, it is said, wrote the very first of her stories to entertain the wounded soldiers of the War of 1870. Heidi  was the very first of her longer stories, and was first published in 1880. Outliving both her husband, and only son, Hanni spent a great deal of time with a little niece, it is said she wrote many of her stories to please the child.

Hanni died in 1901 at the age of 74.

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Diet-Free For Life

[Image Unavailable At Time of Posting]

A Perigree Book
Penguin Group
ISBN 978-0-399-53636-6

I have been a long-time follower of Robert Ferguson, and have successfully lost over 100 pounds using his highly acclaimed Food Lover's Fat Loss system.

This work is not only a great recount of that plan, but also enhances what he originally put into it!

There are a ton of recipes for those who are new to follow his ideas, as well as great exercise routines that are designed for every level of a person's activity capability.

Bringing to life what this country truly needs, Robert Ferguson gives America a sense of responsibility for one's own physical condition and obesity. However, he kindly hands them the key to living forever diet-free in a manner that is so simplistic that anyone can follow it.

There are no complicated formulas to follow. There are NO DIET RESTRICTIONS! Yes, you truly can have your pizza and chocolate and soda! The key is in moderation and increased activity!

Pure common sense if you are open to common sense!

No miracle pill or plan is disclosed. However, followers of Robert Ferguson are well aware of the vast success his plan has brought, and are quick to inform you that his plan does indeed work!

I give this book my five star rating, and my thumbs up award!

****DISCLOSURE: This book was a private purchase for my personal library and is under no obligation to perform this review.

Saturday, February 5, 2011


Scot McKnight
The Ancient Practices Series
Thomas Nelson
ISBN 978-0-8499-0108-9

This is an insightful look into the ancient Christian act of fasting, and its implications on Christians today.

McKnight remains objective in the many reasons for use of the fast, including for health, religion and spirit. I found this book a delight to read, and was very thought provoking.

In the closing statements of the text, McKnight leaves us with this statement which, to me, was the "be all and know all" of the book:
"...instead, we will fast because we will sense God's response to the very conditions around us, and it will leads us to join in the good work of God. I suspect that we will discover that joining God is all we really wanted anyway."
Profoundness in simplicity.

I give this book
....four stars and....

... my thumbs up award!

****DISCLOSURE: This book was provided by BOOK SNEEZE in exchange for an honest review of the work.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Traditional Knitting...

Traditional Knitting
Patterns of Ireland, Scotland and England
Gwyn Morgan
St. Martin's Press
ISBN 0-312-81314-7

This is a beautifully written, researched and photographed book!

Wonderful old patterns from Ireland, Scotland and England are shown. Not only are the patterns written in easy to understand style, but the origins of the patterns are given as well.

This will become a treasured addition to any knitter's library!

I give this book
...five stars and...

... my thumbs up award!

****Disclosure: This book was purchased for my private library and independently reviewed.

The Sugar Solution Cookbook

The Sugar Solution Cookbook
Ann Fittante, MS, RD
Julia Van Tine-Reichardt
Rodale Inc.
ISBN 13 978-1-59486-272-4

I have had this cookbook on my wish list for a long time, when suddenly it was gifted to me!!! I was ecstatic to get it!

I was thrilled to get to try out many of the recipes, and find how truly delicious it can be to rid one's body of the artificiality of processed sugar! Having gone that route several years ago, I had just about used up all of my recipes and was eager to find new ones. I was not disappointed!

Fittante guides us through living a life free of processed sugar, and gives us over 200 recipes to assist with a sugarless lifestyle, or for the diabetic.

The meals are superb! Your family will thoroughly enjoy these delicious dishes, and they are ones that you will be thrilled to serve to guests as well!

I did however find a flaw with every recipe I have tried so far [I've tried 14 of them to date]. Fittante lists all of the nutritional information with each prepared dish. However, when I compared the nutritional values she lists, with those on other well-known nutrition websites, it seems Fittante may have under estimated every value she has listed! From calories, to carbs, to fats, to protein, and mostly to sodium! On each of the recipes I reviewed, I copied the recipe and purchased the ingredients directly from the ingredients listed, followed the recipe meticulously, and then put in the recipe and ingredients and came out with higher values.

While this won't stop me from using the recipes, it will cause me to use other sources for the nutritional values.

Still, I do recommend this book.
I rate it three stars.

***Disclosure: This book was a gift and is independently reviewed.