I’m not a New Years Resolutions person, but I do like to set goals – regardless of the time of year. And the start of another year seems fit for new goals, so I guess you could say this is somewhat of a resolution for me…
In short, I’d like to read (and finish) more books on a yearly basis than I have in the past …I’d also like to write more, but that’s a whole other blog post 😉
SO I thought about doing a monthly reading list, a way of putting out there what I intend to read in one month, to hold myself “publicly” accountable to my own expectations on the great and vast world wide web. That should do it, right?? I should definitely be able to attain that goal now!! Well, we’ll see.
Looking at my stack of books… I realize there’s probably no way on this earth that I’d read and finish all of these books by the end of January, being that we’re already half way through the month!
So for my first list, I’m incorporating January with February. I think it’s doable, don’t you?
1 The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Burrows
I started reading this book on my flight to South Africa the day after Christmas and thought, “Surely I’ll finish it over there.” Ha! Much to my enjoyment, I did not. Not because the book is boring. Far from it!! There was just so much to do and see that I didn’t have one second of wakeful energy to sit down and devote any time to reading this beautiful book. But now that I’m back in the States, I do! I’ll continue reading and loving this delightful story.
2 A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah
When one of my co-workers learned I had traveled to South Africa, she loaned me this book to read. Granted, it’s setting is not in the Cape but in Sierra Leone – far from where I was. But she said she read it in a weekend, couldn’t put it down it was so engrossing, and thought I’d enjoy it as well. Honestly, reading just the blurb on the back, I’m sure I’ll have a hard time putting it down too.
3 An Elephant in My Kitchen by Francoise Malby-Anthony
I saw this book at one of the wineries we visited in Franschhoek, SA and immediately felt I had to read it – without even knowing what it was about. I took a photo of it (the book I saw was a display only – not for sale) to remind myself to look for it once back home. It took about a week of being away from Africa and longing for the Cape, and looking through the hundreds of photos I had taken, to come across the picture of this book in the Haute Cabriere cellar and remember to order it. I can’t make up my mind, whether to read this one first or A Long Way Gone. But if I’m being completely honest, this one will probably win out. I can’t imagine what it was like living the life of the author and having a baby, orphaned elephant wander into your kitchen. Oh, my heart stops!
4 Holiday and Celebration Bread in Five Minutes a Day by Zoe Francois and Jeff Hertzberg, MD
Zoe Francois’ page on instagram is one I follow, and I am always in constant awe at her bread-making skills and baked goods she creates. I recently viewed one of her stories about making croissants – it featured this book as the source for the recipe – and immediately I looked it up to order. I’ve been dying to learn how to make croissants. For they are one of my husband’s and kids’ most favorite breads!
5 Cupcakes & Cocktails
Frankly, I love cupcakes. And who doesn’t love a good cocktail? Combine the two and you have heaven. I saw this book in one of my favorite shops and thought, “Well, now, that’s an awesome combo for sure!” In the check-out basket it went.
6 The Silver Palate Cookbook by Julia Rosso & Sheila Lukins
My sister-in-law introduced me to this cookbook while visiting in South Africa. She pointed out which recipes were true winners, so (once again) I took a photo of it to remind myself to buy it once back in the States. Once it arrived, I read the intro and it appears to be written by the Julee of the story, Julie & Julia. Have you seen it?? I love that movie!! It’s based on the true story of one girl cooking from start to finish Julia Child’s The French Chef. Now, it doesn’t come right out and say it’s her in the introduction of The Silver Palate Cookbook, however who else has been well-known to cook cover to cover Julia Child’s cookbook?? It HAS to be her. Nonetheless, the recipes read deliciously amazing, and I can’t wait to try them.
7 America, The Great Cookbook by “100 of Our Finest Chefs and Food Heroes”
Another cookbook I found in my favorite haunt, Tuesday Morning. It’s always a treat to find cookbooks there, since they don’t always have them. That shop is one of those rare finds shops, quite lovely to me. This cookbook hosts numerous chefs, their stories and their recipes. By purchasing this book, you’re also donating towards the No Child Hungry campaign. A no-brainer for me. A meshwork of various American cultures and food histories lies ahead within these binders. Such an interesting variety to explore.
Now… the cookbooks – – I most likely won’t read from cover-to-cover in a month. It takes time to explore recipes, place them back on the kitchen shelf then reach for them again when inspired and discover something new. But nevertheless, I’ll be diving deep into each of them and trying numerous new dishes.
The novels… Yes. I’ll be reading all three from cover-to-cover. And can’t wait.
What do you have lined up to read?? Any suggestions for me for next month’s list?