Jul 31, 2010

Alasandra's Reading List ~ July

  1. Ground Zero by F. Paul Wilson - Jack's childhood friend Weezy is targeted by "The One" as she suspects that there was a sinister plot behind "The Twin Towers" being destroyed on September 11th. With Jacks help she discovers that The Towers had to be destroyed so The Order could dig up the first column and create the Fhinntmanchca, whose sole purpose is to destroy The Lady. Can Jack save The Lady.
  2. A River in The Sky by Elizabeth Peters - Well the editor found another lost manuscript so this book takes place before they discover Sethos is Emerson's half-brother and before Ramses and Nefret marry and produce children. Ramses is working in Samaria with Reisner when a British operative makes contact with him. After he finds the operative dead he attempts to reach Jerusalem but is waylaid by Mansur and Frau von Eine. When Ramses fails to turn up David sets off to find him and finds himself waylaid by the duo too. Ramses & David escape. Meanwhile Emerson and Peabody have this hands full with Major Morley and his con artist sidekick Plato Panagopolous treasure hunters who are looking for the Ark of the Covenant.
  3. The Witch's Daughter by R.A. Salvatore - Rhiannon (the daughter of the Emerald Witch & Del) is an adult now.  For her birthday she asks to visit the lands outside Avalon and Brielle arranges for Andovar and Belexus to take Rhiannon with them to Pallendara. Before they reach Pallendara, the combined Morgan Thalasi-Martin Reinheiser thing (The Black Warlock) raises and army of talons and sets off to conquer the world.  The three friends must help hold the army at bay until help can arrive and The Black Warlock can be defeated.  But before he can be stopped The Black Warlock raises the wraith of Hollis Mitchell. Will anyone be able to stop the evil Mitchell's insatiable hunger for revenge.
  4. Frankenstein Lost Souls by Dean Koontz - this is a cliffhanger and you will have to wait until Spring 2011 for the next book. Deucalion's intuition tells him that Victor is alive. He goes to San Fransisco to consult with Michael & Carson about where to look for Victor, when they get a call from Erica Five, she has spotted Victor in Rainbow Falls, Montana. The trio head to Rainbow Falls to stop Victor. Nummy ( a 30 year old retarded boy) is in jail for his protection and his cell mate is Mr. Lyss (a burglar) when the first batch of old humans are brought in for processing by A Builder. After seeing what is going on Mr. Lyss breaks them out of jail. They manage to destroy three of the cocoons (future Builders) in a house they have broken into. They are attempting to flee town but the Replica Police have road blocks around the town. Bryce ( an elderly western writer in the hospital with chest pains) and Travis (a young boy in the hospital for severe allergies to chlorine) realize something is amiss. After seeing one patient clubbed to death after attempting to leave the hospital by the front door they make a daring roof top escape and seek refuge at  Colonel Sully York's. Denise Benedetto (an elementary school teacher who has been replicated) manages to escape long enough to meet Carson & Michael at a dinner and beg them to save her "baby", before the Replica Police take her away. Getting her address from the waitress Carson & Michael kill the Replica Denise and have Deucalion take her daughter to Erica. Victor's planned slaughter at the roadhouse goes amiss when the Churchgoers manage to break out. (to be continued).
  5. Born of Fire by Sherrilyn Kenyon ~Sheridan Wade has spent a life time paying for his Father's crimes. Wanted for crimes he didn't commit and unable to clear his name without facing the Mother who abandoned him,  he is determined to trust no one. Seax Shahara Dagan has sworn to bring him to justice but discovers the "real man" behind the mask. Will she choose love or duty?
  6. The Spine of the World by R.A. Salvatore - Wulfgar is falsely accused of plotting to kill Captain Deudermont. Tortured and fixing to be executed Wulfgar and Morik are fixing to be executed when Captain Deudermont insist that they be pardoned. Expelled from Luskan Morik and Wulfgar set out for The Spine of the World, and set themselves up as highwaymen. Falsely accused of rape by Meralda, Wulfgar is captured by a wizard, and brought before Meralda's husband (Lord Feringal) for punishment. Wulfgar refuses to betray Meralda's secret and escapes with Meralda's help. Wulfgar decides to turn his life around and stops drinking, fearing for Meralda's safety he returns and claims her babe as his own.
  7. Spandau Phoenix by Greg Iles - When prisoner # 7 dies a German Soldier stumbles upon his diary and uncovers a plot to destroy Israel. With the help of his father and a mysterious Jewish Agent can he save his wife and stop a madman. This is an old favorite of mine and the ending still makes me cry.
  8. Born of Ice by Sherrilyn Kenyon - Merjack (the grandson of Syn's old enemy) is determined to capture Devyn (Syn & Shahara's son). Merjack blackmails Alix Garran into fabricating evidence against Devyn but Devyn comes up with a plan to turn the tables on the tyrant. Then Paden (Syn's son) enters the picture.
  9. Sea of Swords by R. A. Salvatore - Wulfgar joins forces with Bruenor, Catti-brie, Regis and Drizzt to regain Aegis-Fang. Le'lorinel plots to kill Drizzt.
I have been asked to do a Book Review of Earth is Not Alone by John Knapp II, which I am reading now. The review should be posted shortly.

    Jul 23, 2010

    Zucchini & Cheese Bread

    • 4 oz. sharp cheddar cheese shredded ( 1 cup)
    • 2 oz. grated Parmesan cheese (1/2 cup)
    • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    • 1 medium red pepper, finely chopped ( I substituted a banana pepper)
    • 2 large eggs
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 1/2 cups flour
    • 1 tablespoon sugar
    • 1 zucchini, shredded
    • 3 green onions, chopped
    • 1/2 cup milk ( may need to add additional milk if mixture appears dry - I put in 1 cup)
    Preheat oven to 350. Grease a 9" x 9" baking pan.

    Mix Cheddar and Parmesan cheese. Combine flour, sugar and black pepper. Stir zucchini, red pepper and green onions into flour mixture.  Add beaten eggs, milk and oil, stir until evenly moistened.

    Spoon batter into pan and spread evenly. May sprinkle top with additional cheese if desired.

    Bake bread 50 to 55 minutes, until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool bread 5 minutes. Invert bread onto large plate. Makes 16 servings.

    Flowers on Friday

    Jul 19, 2010

    Musings on Monday

    The Butterfly Garden.

    Popcorn Tree down by the pond.

    Front flower bed.

    Jul 18, 2010

    Flowers for a Rainy Day

    It is raining today, so I thought I would share some of my flowers with you. This is a close up of my Catmint blooming.

    Devil's Trumpet (Datura). I grew this one from seed.

    Foxglove, I am really pleased with the way it reseeded itself, and am transplanting some to other beds.

    Pineapple Sage



    We finally got the roses planted in the Rose Garden.

    Some sort of succulent. I don't know it's name.

    Jul 17, 2010

    Basil & Roses


    I know you aren't really suppose to let the herbs flower if you are going to use them in cooking, but I can't resist letting at least some of the herbs flower.

    Nice delicate rose. I am planting the bush this rosebud came off in my rose garden.

    Playing around with the camera. Didn't exactly get the effect I was aiming for.

    Jul 1, 2010

    Alasandra's Reading list ~ June

    1. Love in a Time of Homeschooling by Laura Brodie reviewed at Alasandra's Homeschool Blog.
    2. By the Sword by F. Paul Wilson- Jack teams up with Glaeken ( glad I finally meet the guy) to retrieve a katana and Rasalom regains control of Dawn and her baby. Glaeken & Jack also stop the Black Wind from destroying New York and Jack learns more of the Secret History of the World.
    3. Servant of the Shard by R. A. Salvatore - After tricking Drizzt into giving him the Crystal Shard in the previous book Jarlaxle starts making mistakes. Realizing the Shard is manipulating Jarlaxle, Artemis Entreri determines to steal the Shard from him and take it to Cadderly to be destroyed. Unfortunately Jarlaxle's lieutenants in Bregan D'aerthe plot to overthrow him and take the Shard. After outwitting them Jarlaxle & Entreri reach Cadderly and take it to a Red Dragon's lair in order to destroy it. Before it can be destroyed Bregan D'aerthe attacks. Artemis saves Danica while Jarlaxle destroys the Shard. Jarlaxle turns Bregan D'aerthe over to Kimmuriel so he can stay on the surface with Artemis Entreri. (Entreri still believes he killed Drizzt).
    4. Breathless by Dean Koontz - Grady and his Irish Wolfhound Merlin discover two strange animals in the woods, who follow them home. Tom Bigger returns to his parents old home in time to save the life of a young woman and her son from a hired killer and Henry realizes he can't live with murdering his own brother in order to assume his identity.
    5. Echoes of the Fourth Magic by R. A. Salvatore - The survivors of The Unicorn find themselves in the future on a Earth that has been destroyed by a nuclear holocaust. Angelic beings saved 4 adults and trained them as wizards to care for the children of the holocaust. The first mutation of man, the Talons are a wicked race serving Morgan Thalasi's  (one of the 4 adults) designs for power. The second mutation of man were Elves, due to their experience with the Talons the Humans (Calvans) treated them harshly and drove them into exile. Now Jeff "Del" DelGuidice has to teach the Elves and the Calvans to get along before the New Earth is engulfed in constant wars between the two.
    6. Trixie's Guide to A Happy Life by Trixie Koontz, Dog as told to Dean Koontz - Very cute. This is a great book to read if you need cheering up.
    7. Frankenstein ~ dead and alive by Dean Koontz - Book 3 in the Frankenstein trilogy. Victor Helios' New Race is experiencing a break down in their programs and killing the Old Race in New Orleans. Erika Five and Jocko are determined to escape from Victor.  Deucalion, Carson O'Connor and Michael Maddison are determined to foil Victor's plans and end his life. But can Victor really be stopped.
    8. Relentless by Dean Koontz ~ Milo and Lassie (an Australian Shepard mix that Milo rescued from a shelter) save Milo's parents from a diabolical book critic.
    9. a big little life A Memoir of a Joyful Dog by Dean Koontz (aka Trixie's Dad) ~ The inspirational story of how one dog (Trixie) changed her family's life and the wonderful difference she is still making in the lives of so many, even though she has gone to the Rainbow Bridge.  The Dean, Gerda and Trixie Koontz Campus of CCI as well as the Trixie Fund which helps to pay catastrophic medical bills for the dogs of people with disabilities.  
    10. Ceremony of the Innocent by Taylor Caldwell - A simple housemaid Ellen is loved by two men. Jeremy Porter whose realism will cost him his life and Francis Porter whose idealism will betray him. Through the years Ellen's insistence on "loving & trusting" the wrong people will lead to her destruction.