Warning: highly objectionable language used in post. Just fucking read it anyway.
I’ve said it before, but one of my favorite things that has ever come from blogging is when I receive ARCs. *advanced reader copies
When they show up in my inbox, I get that spine-tingly thing that romance writers use to describe what happens before a male orgasm.
Basically, screeners are my man junk, and opening them? Totally my rubbing one out.
I was lucky enough to get three screeners this week. I’ve only read one as of yet, and it was SO MUCH FUN.
You guys know I love Penny Reid‘s books. They’re the sort of smart and sassy contemporary romance novels that never fall off the cliff of head-shakingly predictable plots. Yes, you get your HEA, but the struggle to get there feels real.
Her books are funny and smartly-written, and this collection of short stories from the knitters is no different.
Here’s the catch! A few things before the meat of the review: One, The book will only be available for download from 12/1-12/15, and I’ll remind you of this. Two, ALL PROCEEDS BENEFIT TOYS FOR TOTS. Children get stuff if you read this book. Ok, they get it if you simply buy it, but buying and not reading is like going to a winery and saying “you know what, I’d better not.” THAT’S JUST STUPID. (unless you’re sober, then keep on keeping on and eat some cheese.)
TO THE REVIEW!
This collection of short stories is like being given a half of a bag of snack chips. On one hand, CHIPS, who doesn’t like em, right? On the other hand, I WANT MORE CHIPS.
I loved seeing a glimpse into my favorite fictional ladies’ lives. They are just as fun and frisky as they appear in their full-length novels. I particularly liked one bit of the Quinn and Janie story, because it is just so…them.
Why was this little snapshot so funny to me? Because when I first beginning to pick out a new pair of ladybags, I asked the man to look through the surgeon’s catalog with me. He was a bit taken aback. He looked at me and said “they’re boobs. just pick ones you want to wear. surprise me, even.” (lower case implying deadpan.) I was giving the man CARTE BLANCHE to ogle boobies, and he turned me down. I felt like I needed Diana Ross to go with me to judge.
That being said, that was not even my favorite bit of these shorts. My favorite bit was the final short story. Almost a novelette, it is the story of Fiona and Greg. Up until now in the series, they’ve been relatively cast toward the fringes of the books, only to pop up here and there and offer wisdom.
We finally get to see how they met. You’d think that with it being set in undergrad, it’d read like a NA novel, but it doesn’t. It reads like a richly textured adult contemporary. (this isn’t to say all NAs are one-dimensional) I think that it’s because Fiona and Greg have both gone through quite a bit by the time they reach education’s hallowed halls that they’re bringing more to a relationship than your average college students.
I don’t want to give anything away, but suffice it to say, it explains much in just a few pages. Why it is that such a young couple would have kids so young when so many are waiting…What would draw Fiona and Greg to clandestine occupations…and how it is they’re still so devoted to one another thirteen years later.
All in all? Five Stars, but I want more chips. I want a Costco-sized bag of Fiona and Greg.
Buy the book. It’s benefitting Toys for Tots. That is a military organization. So, basically, do it for your country. (or ours, whatever.)
Now? Christmas Cookies. I don’t know what they’re called by you, but these are actually pretty popular around here. The bakery nearest my house calls them “Italian Shortbread Cookies,” which is a pretty good description. Often called “butter cookies,” they’re a delicious, buttery cookie that you sandwich with jam, or do what I did, and make them all festive-like by adding maraschino cherries before baking. I cannot take credit for this recipe, just alterations. I use Giada’s recipe, and add two tbsp orange zest and one tbsp lemon zest. I also omit the vanilla extract and add 1/2 tsp almond extract. I pipe a few tbsp out a few tbsp apart from one another, roll them into balls, make a thumbprint, and drop a cherry in. Bake for 8-10 minutes at 350F