Tag: books

Book Lover’s Gift Guide & a Giveaway!

It can be a daunting task to pick out a book for the book lover in your life. I’ve picked a few of my favourite books from this year that would make any reader happy!

Astrology: Using the wisdom of the stars in your everyday life This book is great for someone who likes astrology, and wants to learn a bit more about it. This book dishes up practical advice about careers, starting a family and more, customized to your star sign. A great gift for your spiritual friend.

The Healthy Instant Pot Cookbook Instant Pot fever has swept the nation. Even I have one, and use it to make pulled pork and apple pie filling, among other things. This handy book shares tasty healthy recipes that you can whip up in a flash using your magical instant pot. A must for any Instant Pot owner.

Woman World by Aminder Dhaliwal Woman World is a funny, touching graphic novel. What if men went extinct? Where would women be? This book answers that question and so much more. Perfect for the graphic novel lovers in your life.

Spice This book is perfect for a foodie or cook. It breaks down the origin of spices from around the world with beautiful full colour photos, facts and recipes.

I can’t get enough of the recipes in this book! The recipes all have mouthwatering photos, and have fun names like Texas Trash Dip. The dishes are easy to create and for the most part, use items you might already have stocked in the fridge. This would be awesome for a foodie who’s getting into cooking.

Art This stunning coffee table book covers the history of different art movements from Greek to modern art. This beautiful book is a must for the art and culture lover in your life.

Thanks to DK, I’m giving you the chance to win your very own copy of Art or Astrology from DK. Enter below!


[Book Nook] May Reads


There are some great books coming out in May that I’m really excited for!

  1. When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right? (more…)

October Reads

Yes! It’s finally fall, the best time of the year, and my favourite time for new books. Here’s what I’ll be reading this month whilst consuming cups of tea.


Bobbette & Belle: Classic Recipes from the Celebrated Pastry Shop Bobbette & Belle is one of my favorite bakeries in Toronto! They are super cute inside and make delicious cakes and hot chocolate. They are finally sharing their recipes with the world in their very first book!

Allyson and Sarah share their most loved recipes that fill their French-inspired pastry shops, from Soft and Chewy Ginger Cookies and Dark Chocolate Brownie Fudge Cake to Caramelized Almond Torte and Mile-High Lemon Meringue Pie. Over 100 recipes and variations including classic cookies and bars; cupcakes and layer cakes; loaves, scones, bundts and tortes; crumbles, tarts and pies; French macarons; confections and more to create your own magical world of sweets at home.

boyThe Boy is Back by Meg Cabot: Reed Stewart thought he’d left all his small town troubles—including a broken heart—behind when he ditched tiny Bloomville, Indiana, ten years ago to become rich and famous on the professional golf circuit.  Then one tiny post on the Internet causes all of those troubles to return . . . with a vengeance. Becky Flowers has worked hard to build her successful senior relocation business, but she’s worked even harder to forget Reed Stewart ever existed. She has absolutely no intention of seeing him when he returns—until his family hires her to save his parents.

Now Reed and Becky can’t avoid one another—or the memories of that one fateful night.  And soon everything they thought they knew about themselves (and each other) has been turned upside down, and they—and the entire town of Bloomville—might never be the same, all because The Boy Is Back.

oOtherworld Chills: Final Tales of the Otherworld by Kelley Armstrong. Sob! I hope these really aren’t the final tales. I love this series too much to let go. The fifth and final collection of stories–including an original novella exclusive to this book–featuring the fascinating werewolves, witches, necromancers, angels and demons of Kelley Armstrong’s internationally bestselling Women of the Otherworld series. A must-have for fans!



crosstalkCrosstalk by Connie Williams In the not-too-distant future, a simple outpatient procedure to increase empathy between romantic partners has become all the rage. And Briddey Flannigan is delighted when her boyfriend, Trent, suggests undergoing the operation prior to a marriage proposal—to enjoy better emotional connection and a perfect relationship with complete communication and understanding. But things don’t quite work out as planned, and Briddey finds herself connected to someone else entirely—in a way far beyond what she signed up for.



Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave


I love when books are unexpectedly amazing, and then you get to fall in love with a brand new author! Laura Dave has written a book that’s perfect for summer. It has food, love, heartbreak and wine. And of course, humour. What more could you want?

Eight Hundred Grapes captivated me. I devoured it and couldn’t put it down. Dave has a beautiful, descriptive writing style that really makes the main character, Georgia, come to life in many unexpected twists and turns. I found something endearing about each character, from her brothers right down to the new lawyer in town. Eight Hundred Grapes is laugh out loud funny in some parts and heartbreaking in others. It has a really satisfying ending that makes me want to read more of her books! You need to read it and I’m sure you’ll love it just as much as I do.

Growing up on her family’s Sonoma vineyard, Georgia Ford learned some important secrets. The secret number of grapes it takes to make a bottle of wine: eight hundred. The secret ingredient in her mother’s lasagna: chocolate. The secret behind ending a fight: hold hands.

But just a week before her wedding, thirty-year-old Georgia discovers her beloved fiancé has been keeping a secret so explosive, it will change their lives forever.

Georgia does what she’s always done: she returns to the family vineyard, expecting the comfort of her long-married parents, and her brothers, and everything familiar. But it turns out her fiancé is not the only one who’s been keeping secrets…

Eight Hundred Grapes by Laura Dave
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published on June 2015

Favourite Books for February


1. My American Duchess by Eloisa James (Eloisa James is definitely one of my guilty pleasures.)

2. Displacement by Lucy Knisely (I loved her graphic novels, French Milk & Relish. This one seems good too!)

3. Paris for One by JoJo Moyes

4. Get in Trouble by Kelly Link (She writes fantastically creepy fantasy stories, so this should be good.)

5. Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman (I LOVE Neil Gaiman. Looking forward to this short story collection.)

6. The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead (I’m so sad that this is the last book in this series. Super addictive and I’m in love with Adrian.)

7. Shadow Study by Maria Snyder (I’m so happy that this series has a new book! Excellent series for fantasy and romance lovers)

8. Sweet & Simple by Canadian Living (Filled with comforting recipes and desserts, perfect for winter.)

9. The Glittering World by Robert Levy

Listen to the Squawking Chicken by Elaine Lui [Review]


Listen to the Squawking Chicken had me Googling the meaning of moles on my face and calling girls “low classy” under my breath.

I don’t read very much biography, but I loved this book. I also don’t know much about Lainey Gossip (my sister saw me reading this book and filled me in) so I was able to read this book without a preconceived notion of who Elaine is.

I devoured the Squawking Chicken over Chinese New Year weekend in equal parts delight, horror and fascination.

Delight, because parts of Elaine’s coming of age story is very funny. Bra shopping with her mother, making friends, bringing home new boyfriends- hilarious. This book explores the complicated relationships between mothers and daughters. It’s clear that Elaine loves and respects her mother and values her advice above all things.

Horror, because I’m a big wimp. As a rule, I try to avoid horror at all costs. From books, to television to haunted houses at Halloween.

The first chapter, “Never Bring Home an Umbrella from the Street,” terrified me. It’s safe to say that this chapter has ended my habit of picking up interesting things from the street. This chapter is full of folklore from China and superstitious things that happened in the Squawking Chicken’s past.  In fact, this whole book is steeped in superstition and stories.

The Squawking Chicken is a devout believer in Feng Shui. When Elaine was younger, she had a mole on her face. Her mother made her remove it because according to Feng Shui someone with a mole in that position would die by age 22 by drowning. Ahh!  (I wish I could tell you that I didn’t research the moles on my face, but I totally did.)

This goes for everything, from the food you eat to buying a house. As Elaine says,

The point is, you just have to believe. That’s it. And if you don’t believe, well, you’ll see. That’s Feng Shui blackmail, the “or else” is always implied. ….The “or else” would hang there, over my head, like an upside-down-jack-in-the-box just waiting to pop out and fuck me up.

Fascination, because the story of the Squawking Chicken is really, really interesting. From her childhood, to her marriage, I remained captivated. The harrowing tale of how she became the squawking chicken will stay with you.

I loved reading about Chinese cultural tidbits. The way money is viewed, certain numbers and traditions were fun to learn about. I related with Elaine’s boe doe, the habit of checking in with her mother. Whatever she’s doing, wherever she’s going, she always checks in with her mother. In this way, I’m like this too.

If you’re a fan of Lainey Gossip, you definitely need to read this book. If you aren’t a fan of Lainey Gossip, by the end of Listen to the Squawking Chicken you are guaranteed to be a fan of Elaine Lui, and her mother too.

Listen to the Squawking Chicken by Elaine Lui
Publisher: Random House
Hardcover, 240 pages
Published: April 1, 2014

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