Hilarious and Warm-Hearted look at Ireland and The Irish

Book title: Is Shane MacGowan Still Alive?
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Is Shane MacGowan Still Alive? - book cover picture

If you love Ireland and the Irish, know who Shane MacGowan is, don't know who Shane MacGowan is (but are curious), enjoy warm, humorous, good-hearted travelogues and don't mind if the author is as daft-as-a-brush, then this is the book for you.Tim Bradford's travels around Ireland are laugh-out-loud funny - his gift for reporting on the eccentric, the humorous and the just-plain-bizarre is wonderful. Not your typical travel guide (many of his attempts to 'do things' - such as attend plays, visit monuments are often (hilariously) thwarted), but his style and charm are guaranteed to win you over.If you would like to take an 'alternative' journey into the heart of Ireland and the Irish, via many pubs, music sessions and meetings with altogether wonderful characters - then why not pick up this terrifically enjoyable guide to the Emerald Isle; you won't be disappointed.

EAN: 9780002258562
Pages: 320
Publisher: Flamingo
Tim Bradford

A Girl that All Girls (and Women) Can Relate To

Book title: Dragonsinger (Harper Hall Trilogy)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Dragonsinger (Harper Hall Trilogy) - book cover picture

The first time I read Dragonsong, it struck such a deep chord within me. Menolly's trials were very much like my own; as a young girl with hopes and dreams, seemingly alone in a place where people only saw the hard realities of life.Menolly is sensitive, yet resourceful. I totally cheered when she ran away to live alone in a cave, with only her music and a gaggle of fire lizards as company. Hey, at one point in time, that didn't seem like such as bad idea to me.One of the best parts of the book is Menolly surviving on her own--taken right out of some boy scout handbook, Menolly fends for herself, and Ms McCaffrey, whether aware or not, gave young girls like me a heroine to truly look up to.Like the companion 'Dragonriders of Pern', this is a classic series that lives and breathes. Another masterwork from a grand mistress of fantasy.

EAN: 9780553258547
Pages: 256
Publisher: Spectra
Anne Mccaffrey

Desolation indeed...

Book title: Desolation Angels
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Desolation Angels - book cover picture

From the moment I opened On the Road, I knew Jack Kerouac
wasn't just any author. A new spirit and new feelings, stirred
up by mere words...It doesn't happen often enough.
In that respect, Desolation Angels is typical Kerouac. The
incredibly flowing mad descriptions and details, his friends
as real as the stars, beautifully rendered real personalities.
From his isolation as a fire lookout, long time to be sober
for Kerouac, he jumps back into his old life...Drinking
screaming talking crazy friends Ginsberg Cassady et al. A
trip to Mexico, living above an old junky, Mexican women,
writing. Friends come to Mexico...you can imagine.
Tangier and William Burroughs, another junky...Kerouac helps
him, typing the manuscript of Naked Lunch (Nude Dinner, he
calls it, just like the other pseudonyms he assigns...)...
Back to the States, more of the wonderful same, always fresh
and exciting...But in the end, I was only surprised. He left
his Desolation Angels.

EAN: 9780586089071
Publisher: Harpercollins Pub Ltd
Jack Kerouac

Full Access

Book title: Access Washington D C (Access Washington Dc)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Access Washington D C (Access Washington Dc) - book cover picture

The ACCESS guides are so smartly organized by neighborhoods that you'll be lurking like a local in no time. The color coding for attractions, restaurants, hotels and shopping make skimming for your favorites a breeze. More often than not, their sly 'insider' comments are right on the money. I used ACCESS Washington, DC to acclimate myself to my new home, and I still use it whenever company comes to town. Like any travel guide, the latest edition is a must (but even that won't compensate for fickle diners and undercapitalized restauranteurs) and it's certainly time for a newer version than the 2000 edition. But having said that, I still purchase an ACCESS guide if I'm going to spend any time in a city I haven't fully explored.

EAN: 9780062772329
Pages: 233
Publisher: Access Press
Richard Saul Wurman
Margaret Bowen
Access Press

Looking for a way to make your holidays more elegant?

Book title: Holidays : The Best of Martha Stewart Living
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Holidays : The Best of Martha Stewart Living - book cover picture

This offering from Martha Stewart provides a new, more
elegant way to celebrate the holidays. The menus she
presents are a refreshing departure from the traditional
"turkey and dressing". Her decorating ideas are absolutely
exquisite (a fact that did not go unnoticed by our guests).
My friends and I enjoyed making the decorations and
preparing the meal as much as our guests enjoyed looking
at the decorations and eating! I only wish she had provided
more decorating ideas.

EAN: 9780517882719
Pages: 144
Publisher: Clarkson Potter
Martha Stewart

Correct me if i'm wrong about this one!

Book title: The Corrections: A Novel
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
The Corrections: A Novel - book cover picture

Franzen has written a novel with awesome character development, wit, insight and humor into one family's dynamics. I personally loved to deplore Gary's wife and him at times;and their spoiled rotten kids. Denise was the wonderful, carrer-driven, lesbian-confused daughter who also had my sympathy. Chip from the onset was hilarious with viewing his parents in the NY airport as "killers". Enid and Arthur are the demented mainstays and midwestern parents. Read the book. Love the book. Take it slow though, you'll regret it when you do turn the last page that it's over.

EAN: 9780312421274
Pages: 592
Publisher: Picador
Jonathan Franzen


Book title: Martha Stewart's Hors d'Oeuvres Handbook
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
Martha Stewart's Hors d'Oeuvres Handbook - book cover picture

I have a number of books on Hors d'Oeuvres but this is the most comprehensive and complete. There is something for everyone, and then some. The instructions are very detailed and simple to follow. The finger foods vary from simple to "show stopping", and all that I have made are delicious. The best thing about the simplicity of the ingredients is that you can easily make substitutions to suit your taste and it will be great!This book makes me want to have a party!

EAN: 0045863603104
Pages: 496
Publisher: Clarkson Potter
Martha Stewart


Book title: Earth
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Earth - book cover picture

There's a lot to complain about in this book. You spend the first few hundred pages trying to keep track of who's who. The last two hundred contain a plot twist that is incredible (in the sense of hard-to-believe).But it doesn't *matter* - the journey makes it all worthwhile. To a very real extent, the main character of this novel is the setting itself. Brin fleshes out a future world that is detailed, enticing, cohesive, plausible and frightening.A very thought-provoking novel.

EAN: 9780553290240
Pages: 704
Publisher: Spectra
David Brin

Like having coffee with your best girlfriend

Book title: An Italian Affair (Vintage)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
An Italian Affair (Vintage) - book cover picture

I really enjoyed this book and since having finished it have found myself missing the story. (I'd love a sequel!) I'm a recent mom (a 1 yr old)and happily married yet there's always that question about what life might've been like had I chosen or fallen into single woman adulthood. Spending time with Laura was like exploring my alternate life. (I was a videomaker and budding writer in my college days and my dream was to be a travel videographer. C'est la vie...neeeded money at some point, went to grad school and became a college counselor instead.) Anyway, Ms. Fraser's descriptions of Italy, California, London and Morocco are colorful and visual. She has the strong voice of a woman who knows herself...for better or for worse and is confident in who she is by the end of the book. I admire her spunk, independence and humor. I also sympathize with what she might have imagined her alternate life to be.

EAN: 9780375724855
Pages: 240
Publisher: Vintage
Laura Fraser

Brave and Free...

Book title: Into the Wild
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Into the Wild - book cover picture

"Into the Wild" is one of those treasures you rarely find in non-fiction media. This is a journey of ultimate freedom. Chris McCandless walks away from a life that many would envy. He becomes a nomad in a country that cherishes stability and security. He bravely did what most people just talk about. His adventures in the underground realm of the United States of America are truly fascinating. I admire his love and pursuit for such a raw freedom, but it scares me to even think about doing something similar. I just simply find the whole account of his journey fascinating, yet very haunting. Nature can be a dangerous playground, especially for us post-modern, urban Americans. I can't help but think what Chris McCandless did is not that out of the ordinary for most other countries, but shows how we, Americans, are too comfortable with our security and stability to truly be free. I highly recommend this book to anyone.

EAN: 9780330351690
Publisher: Pan MacMillan
Jon Krakauer

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