Tuesday, April 30, 2019

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe

The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (Chronicles of Narnia, #1)The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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John Fisher Four siblings enter a wardrobe and find themselves in Narnia, a magical, but dark wintry land ruled by the evil White Witch. Published in 1950, the story is set to the real world background of England during World War II. Readers easily made comparison to their own wartime experiences. The book is made even more interesting because of its strong Christian overtones. 

Audible reviewers wrote, "The four young heroes and Aslan the lion are lovingly created and detailed, and audio [narrated by Michael York] brings them to brighter life in one's imagination than any movie or visual recording can." 

Michael York's reading of this classic is as "enchanting" as the story. "His British accent is fitting, all intonations are perfect, and he adds just the right amount of drama in all the right places." The narration of each character is distinct and fits perfectly their personalities.

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Sunday, April 28, 2019

The Gods of Guilt (Mickey Haller, #5; Harry Bosch Universe, #25)The Gods of Guilt by Michael Connelly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

John Fisher Past failures have hurt defense lawyer Mickey Haller's reputation and estranged his daughter. Haunted by these ghosts of his past, Haller works tirelessly and bring all his skill to bear on a case that could mean his ultimate redemption or proof of his ultimate guilt. In the Gods of Guilt, a web developer pimp is accused of murdering a prostitute, but claims to be innocent.

Michael Connelly tells a suspenseful story, with plot twists, that keep the reader involved in the story. He is a master of courtroom drama. I was so fascinated that I listened all night long. Finally, at six a.m. I finished the story and then fell asleep.

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After Anatevka: LiveAfter Anatevka: Live by Alexandra Silber
My rating: 3 of 5 stars


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John Fisher A special live performance for Fiddler on the Roof fans about what might have happened to Tevye’s family. A cast of rising Broadway stars joined actress and author Alexandra Silber in celebrating the Audible release of After Anatevka, the historical novel she wrote about Tevye’s second-eldest daughter, Hodel. Silber’s fascination with Hodel began when she played her in a production of Fiddler in London’s West End. Actors often write a backstory for the characters they play so they can fully imagine and embody them onstage. But Silber was more interested in Hodel’s fate than her history. “I had never played a character who felt so much like me,” she says. “I felt responsible for what happened to her after she boards the train to Siberia to join her revolutionary fianc√© Perchik.” 

While this presentation highlights some wonderful singing from the original score, the story of Hodel really didn't keep my attention and I soon lost interest. 

(Excerpts taken from Audible's description of the presentation.)

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Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Couscous and asparagus salad

Couscous and asparagus salad

Sometimes young people are hesitant to try new things. This couscous and asparagus salad was a great success with the seven young missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who recently had dinner with me in my apartment in Pristina, Kosovo.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz whole wheat couscous
  • 1 lb thin asparagus spears, tough ends trimmed
  • 3 medium tomatoes, cut to bite size
  • 1/4 cup red onion, minced
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1-2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbsp fresh parsley, minced
  • salt to taste
  • fresh cracked pepper, to taste

Directions:

  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, add asparagus and cook until tender, about 3 minutes.
  2. Remove with a large slotted spoon and rinse in a colander in the sink under cold water to stop it from cooking.
  3. Add the couscous to the boiling water and cook according to package directions.
  4. Chop the asparagus into small 1/2 inch pieces.
  5. Drain the couscous and rinse under cold water, place in a large bowl.
  6. Add the chopped asparagus, tomatoes, red onion, lemon juice, olive oil, parsley, salt and pepper to the bowl.
  7. Taste for salt and pepper and serve room temperature or chilled.

Nutrition Information

Yield: 5 servings, Serving Size: a little over 1 cup
  • Amount Per Serving:
  • Weight Watcher Points: 5
  • Calories: 170 calories
  • Total Fat: 4g
  • Saturated Fat: g
  • Cholesterol: 0mg
  • Sodium: 10mg
  • Carbohydrates: 30g
  • Fiber: 5g
  • Sugar: 0g
  • Protein: 6.5g