Book Review: News of the World

Wether you are going away or hunkering down for a staycation this long weekend, one book you can add to your reading list is News of the World, a novel by Paulette Jiles.  I learned about it from a fellow reader who also organizes book groups at our local library.  We were talking about recent titles and ones worth picking up, when she mentioned News of the World.  I  had no idea what it was about and just took her word for it, sometimes that is the beast way to dive into a book.. with no expectations.  The novel is set in the 1870’s and follows Jeffrey Kyle Kidd as he travels through Texas reading the news from papers far and near in local halls for a small fee, bringing  entertainment and information to small towns. In one town along his travels, he meets members of the US Army who pay him a $50 gold piece to deliver an orphaned 10 year old girl back to her family in San Antonio. We follow them through their journey to get her home and the events that surround them.  It is beautifully written, with descriptive settings and interesting antidotes.  I really enjoyed it and highly recommend you give it a read. Let me know what you think if you do pick it up!

Ridgely Brode reviews Paulette Jiles Novel, News of the World, on her blog Ridgely's Radar.


Click Below to Preview News of the World

Book Review: A Great Reckoning

Truth be told, I found the book A Great Reckoning by Louise Penny off a billboard!  I have been standing by the advertisement for weeks and it triggered me to buy the book. I had no idea what I was about to read and I am so glad it turned out to be such a treat. It is the 12th book in a mystery series about Chief Inspector Armand Gamache and my only regret is not reading the 11 other books before I got to this one.  I loved all the characters, the intrigue, attention to details, the way the story weaved in characters that must be ‘regulars’ but I didn’t feel like I was missing the inside joke or story line.  I can’t wait to start with book one and follow along with this cast of characters.  If you are a mystery lover, pick it up, you won’t be disappointed…promise!


Click below for a Preview and to Buy A Great Reckoning:

Book Review: My Name is Lucy Barton

For our January Book Club we read My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout.  I did not like it at all.  I could not understand where  she was going with the story, what the premise was, and/ or what the  point of the book was.  I was so disheartened because the reviews were great and I really enjoyed Olive Kitteridge (our book club read it way before I started this blog and, therefore, there is no review for me to go back and refresh my memory!).  Turns out I was not alone with my disappointment, as the others who read it in my group did not like it either. If you read it and loved it, or not, please let me know your thoughts in the comments below.  I am curious why it has gotten such rave reviews when I clearly missed the boat.

Ridgely Brode reviews the book My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout on her blog, Ridgely's Radar

Click below for a Preview of My Name is Lucy Barton by Elizabeth Strout


Book Review: Along the Infinite Sea

I was able to read several books over the Holidays and one that I really enjoyed was Along the Infinite Sea by Beatriz Williams. It is historical fiction that takes place in the 1960’s with a storyline that goes back to the 1940’s.  There is intrigue, love stories, twists and turns that make it a fun and exciting read.  I read the author’s best selling novel A Hundred Summers a few years ago and now am  curious to read some of her other titles, namely The Secret Life of Violet Grant which is about the sister of Pepper Schuyler, one of the main characters, in Along the Infinite Sea. I don’t think it matters which one you read first as it is not considered a sequel or series.  Pick one or both up and let me know what you think!

Ridgely Brode reviews the book Along the Infinite Sea by Beatrix Williams on her blog Ridgely's Radar.

Click below for a preview and to buy the book

Book Review: The Little Paris Bookshop

I can’t believe it took me so long to read The Little Paris Bookshop!  I got the Kindle Paperwhite, if you hadn’t noticed I had been hinting about wanting it, for Christmas and I was so excited to download a ton of books to read.  I LOVE my paperwhite;  it is white, small, light, so easy to use, is readable in the sun or at the beach, has a light for reading at night and I am obsessed! Everyone needs a Kindle! I had to get that off my chest! Now back to the book, The Little Paris Bookshop. What a wonderful story, it was a travelogue, love story, personal journey and so poignant. I didn’t want it to end. If you haven’t read it, you must.  It made me want to take a boat down the Seine, to see the vistas and eat the food.. oh, how I want to eat the yummy sounding food, drink the wine and lie on the deck looking at the stars.  It was a vacation from my life and the perfect book to get away. Read the little preview below and then download it.  The Best Book!

Ridgely Brode reciews 'The Little Paris Bookshop' by Nina George on her blog Ridgely's Radar

to buy: The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George


Click the PREVIEW BELOW and see what I mean..

Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies

Want to try one of the most delicious cookies ever?  Then these Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies from the God’s Love We Deliver Cookbook should be the next ones you make! They are that good!  We have been working with God’s Love We Deliver for as long as I can remember and they are an amazing organization that provides life-sustaining meals and nutrition counseling to people living with severe illnesses in the New York metropolitan area. This year alone, God’s Love will cook and deliver more than 1.4 million nutritionally-tailored meals (Free of charge!) with the help of 8,000 volunteers.  Wow.. That is a lot of meals and a huge team!

In celebration of over 30 years of service, God’s Love We Deliver  has created a cookbook featuring family recipes and personal stories of 75 celebrities and friends of the organization. From Trish Yearwood’s Chicken Noodle Soup to Ina Garten’s Perfect Roast Turkey to Rosanna Cash’s Coconut Layer Cake, each delicious contribution is featured in the cookbook along side a note from the person and a photograph of the recipe. There are so many good recipes that I want to try but chose to feature the Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies because they are one of my favorite treats and I have been waiting patiently for the cookbook to be released so I could get the recipe! Be sure to click the link to see more about the God’s Love Cookbook and by purchasing one (or more!) you are supporting a wonderful organization.  Enjoy!

These Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies are one of Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode's favorites and she shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar.


These Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies are one of Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode's favorites and she shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar.


These Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies are one of Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode's favorites and she shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar.


These Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies are one of Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode's favorites and she shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar.

Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies from God's Love We Deliver Cookbook
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American
Serves: 4 Dozen
  • 1½ cups all-purpose flour
  • 4½ tablespoons cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 4 ounces (1 stick) butter or margarine, softened
  • ¾ cup light brown sugar
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 1 cup chocolate chips
  1. Prehat oven to 350F
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the flour, cocoa powder, and baking soda. Blend well
  3. Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugars until blended.
  4. Add the eggs and vanilla, beat until incorporated.
  5. Add the flour mixture and beat until just incorporated.
  6. Fold in the oats and chocolate
  7. Drop rounded tablespoons of dough onto parchment or silicone-lined cookie sheets about 1 inch apart.
  8. Bake 1 sheet at a time until golden brown. about 8 to 10 minutes per batch
  9. Transfer cookies to a rack to cool
  10. serve


These Double-Chocolate Oatmeal Cookies are one of Lifestyle Blogger, Ridgely Brode's favorites and she shares the recipe on Ridgely's Radar.

to buy: God’s Love We Deliver Cookbook

Shop the Essential for making this recipe below