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Notable Quotable # 95

Normally the only decoration in there was on Sham Hurga’s vest and the food was good solid stuff for a cold morning, all calories and fat and and protein and maybe a vitamin crying softly because it was all alone.

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Notable Quotable # 55

Despite its generally orange overtones – Alexia’s dress fit right in – Florence was indeed an attractive metropolis. It had a soft, rich quality about it that Alexia felt was the visual equivalent of consuming a warm scone heaped with marmalade and clotted cream. There was a pleasantness to the air and a spirit about the town that did not come from its colour, but from some inner tasty citrus quality.”

Codes and Cake

Digital Fortress By Dan Brown

When I finished Artemis Fowl and the Opal Deception (which I borrowed from my little bro) I looked at the pile of books to choose from and saw that the “from Scott” pile is now quite low, only three books high! I guess my bro has a lot less books than me (tho he’s also a voracious reader) and I’m running out of books of his I want to read 😦 So understandably the eeny meeny miny moe was quite quick and I ended up choosing Digital Fortress, the only Dan Brown book I haven’t read (which is ironic because it’s his first :P)

Regardless of the controversy and criticism surrounding Dan Brown I have enjoyed all of his books and take them for what they are – exciting, creative stories based on secret societies or conspiracies but not fact. From what I’ve read so far, Digital Fortress is going to be a riveting tale of unbreakable codes and I’m going to enjoy it 🙂

On the subject of books I’m going to enjoy, I returned Heavenly Pleasures to the library today and borrowed the next

Devil's Food By Kerry Greenwood

Corinna Chapman novel, Devil’s Food.

 
Yum 🙂

REVIEW: Heavenly Pleasures By Kerry Greenwood

Heavenly Pleasures

Heavenly Pleasures fits into my first category of books as food , as does all the Kerry Greenwood books I’ve read so far (the first eight in the Phryne Fisher series, and Earthly Delights, the book before Heavenly Pleasures in the Corinna Chapman series) and for this book it’s very fitting as food plays a big part.

Have you ever read a book that gives you cravings? It happens to me a lot, but usually it’s a craving to go to a particular place, or see a certain friend, or watch a movie/show that the book reminds me of or is based on the book. While reading Heavenly Pleasures I craved muffins…big time! …And Buffy the vampire slayer. The muffin craving was because in Heavenly Pleasures the main character, Corinna, is a baker and her former junkie assistant Jason (which she collects in the first book) is constantly experimenting with new mouth-watering muffin recipes. Only once did I feed this craving by getting a blueberry muffin from the cafe in the State Library of Western Australia which is across from Central Institute of Technology  where I study. But if I lived or studied near a bakery like Earthly delights (Corinna’s bakery) and I had a constant supply of muffin money, then I probably wouldn’t be writing this post because I’d have suffered a MOD (muffin over dose). Still, I would’ve died happy 🙂

Besides it’s obvious delicious-muffin-explaining  charms, Heavenly Pleasures was also a great light mystery read that isn’t too predictable. Kerry Greenwood is great at balancing a series of little mysteries that are sometimes connected and sometimes aren’t with just the right amount of clues presented to you and clues withheld so that even if you can guess “who-dunnit” in a few cases, there’s usually at least one thing that surprises you at the end.

In Heavenly Pleasures the main case to solve is who is tampering with the renowned chocolates at local shop, Heavenly Pleasures. *Someone* is extracting the creamy insides of chocolates with a syringe and replacing them with less tempting fillings, such as soy sauce and chilli sauce, before they get sold to customers. One of the owners of Heavenly Pleasures, Juliette Lefebvre, comes to Corinna for help after a few very disgruntled customers bring in defiled chocolates and she realises she also gave the baker a box. The chocolates she gave her did contain chilli sauce, which Corinna had discovered on biting into one moments before Juliette’s arrival, and so Corinna’s boyfriend, Daniel (who is a private detective) agrees to take on the case (with Corinna’s help of course). But besides the case of the chocolates, there is some other fishy things going on around the Insula building (a Roman themed apartment building which contains Earthly Delights, Corinna’s apartment and many other friends and residents). There is the mysterious new tenants: Mr. White, who keeps to himself and who no one seems to know anything about; and the glamorous Mrs. Dawson. Then there is a bomb scare; a missing kitten; a crazy cult-leader that Daniel recently got put into prison and now seems to be possessed; and countless other twists and turns.

I found this book just as enjoyable as Earthly Delights (very) and I think I will continue to be entertained by the others in the series. Perfect for someone who likes an unconventional hero (Corinna is a “plus-sized” woman who use to work in accounting and followed her dream to open up a little bakery; she enjoys food, cats, g & ts on the roof and goes to bed early) who solves mysteries, but also likes a mystery with plenty of humor, pop-culture references and food. And for those of you that are handy in the kitchen, at the back of the book is a few recipes of dishes that appear in the book (in this case there is Chocolate Orgasm Muffins, Chocolate Grog and French Onion Soup).

I give Heavenly Pleasures by Kerry Greenwood:

3 ½ / 5 Stars

Mmmmmm Books….. *drool*

So, I realised that I haven’t done a new post in a little while, because I haven’t started, finished or received any new books 😦 so I thought I’d share some thoughts I had a week or two ago.

When looking at the crazy pile of books from my friend Sarah (which is now the biggest “choosing” pile – yes Sarah, you win!) I realised the books I borrow from her are either quick fun reads, or pretty creepy shit (ie. zombies, Clive Barker) and it made me think of the different types of books I read – not the genre or recommended age range per say but more how they are to read – and because It made sense in my head, I compared them to different foods.

Firstly the fun quick reads, which for me include “light” mysteries (ie. Phryne Fisher mysteries), YA fantasy series, and currently, the Sookie Stackhouse series. These books I compare to junk food – not the stuff you feel bad about eating, like a maccas binge or a whole tub of ice-cream (those would be those “guilty pleasure” books *cough* mills and boon), but the stuff that doesn’t feel naughty because it’s so small and so worth it – like a bit of really good chocolate or a tiny cupcake. And those of you who have become hooked on a really enjoyable series would know, it’s just as risky to have a whole box set of an addictive series sitting there then it is to have a whole batch of delicious cupcakes – if you’re not careful they’ll all be gone before you know it.

The next group is the somewhat-hard-to-read-but-worth-it books, or the health food. Belonging in this category is creepy or gross or sad or disturbing books, books that (just like health food) are kinda difficult to swallow at times, but you know they’re well worth it. I need to include one of these most of the time, or else my reading experiences feel really fun, but kinda hollow, just like I could never survive on just cupcakes – i’d crave some fruit and veg after a while 😛

Another group is books that I have wanted to read, or have meant to read for a long, long time (ie. classics that I never get around to). These I compare to those restaurants you’ve heard great things about and swear you’ll visit, but never quite end up doing so; or recipes that you see in a magazine, clip out because you wanna make it some time, but completely forget about. These books, while seeming kinda pointless, are an important group – yes, some of them you’ll never get to, and some that you get to may not live up to the pedestal you’ve put them on (famous books that are somehow lacking ; a well reviewed restaurant that fails to deliver) but for those rare ones that you finally get to, and are amazing, it’s worth the wait.

Lastly (and don’t quote me one that – it’s likely that I’ll think of another one and re-post) there are the treasured books that you read over and over, or for those that only read books once, the authors who you love so much that you look forward to a new book by them, and devour it as soon as possible. These books are the family favourites; the meals that your mother or grandmother made when you were a kid that you never tire of; the dish at your favourite restaurant that no matter how much you tell yourself “This time I’ll try something new on the menu” you always end up ordering.

Happy reading (and dining) 🙂