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Groggie "Groggie" RSS Feed (Gaithersburg, MD USA)

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When the Gods Were Born: Greek Cosmogonies and the Near East
When the Gods Were Born: Greek Cosmogonies and the Near East
by Carolina López Ruiz
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $43.50
33 used & new from $32.62

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique and Valuable Contribution to Scholarship on the Ancient World, December 13, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Solid, erudite scholarship. The breadth of Lopez-Ruiz's knowledge of ancient languages and cultures, including Greek, Hebrew, Phoenician, and Ugaritic allows her to draw connections between mythic themes and tropes that more narrowly educated classicists or semitists might miss. It also allows her to construct a wholistic and balanced picture of syncretic cultural, religious, and mythological exchange in the Ancient Mediterranean World.

by C. L. Hanson
Edition: Paperback
Price: $17.72
25 used & new from $15.04

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Rare Literary Novel about People Leaving the Mormon Church, August 23, 2011
This review is from: Exmormon (Paperback)
Now in a spiffy new-and-improved illustrated edition, this book was written by a multi-talented former Mormon who's now an expatriate living with her family in Switzerland (she's also a blogger, and did her own illustrations for the book). It's a series of novellas with linked characters and plots, and centers around the experience of growing up Mormon. Some characters are true believers, some are skeptics or struggling, and others have left the Church. The stories explore conflicts between people in various states of Mormon-ness and the world outside Mormonism. While the book has some of the usual flaws of a first novel (e.g., sometimes it lacks scene-setting descriptions, or dialogue comes across as stiff and clunky), it also has a lot of insightfulness and humor, and is well worth a read for anyone interested in literary depictions of Mormons struggling with or leaving their faith.

The Evening and the Morning (Signature Mormon Classics)
The Evening and the Morning (Signature Mormon Classics)
by Virginia Eggertsen Sorensen
Edition: Paperback
26 used & new from $2.07

5.0 out of 5 stars A Mormon Virginia Woolf, August 22, 2011
In this largely forgotten jewel of a book, first published in 1949, the prose is rich and lush. The main character of the book is a women born in the last years of polygamy, who goes on to marry monogamously and have a long affair with a neighbor. Not only is the writing just knock-you-off-your-seat gorgeous, it's a fascinating book from a feminist perspective. The book looks at the roles of women in the traditionalist world of pre-1950s Utah Mormonism without judging these women for doing traditionalist things like putting up fruit and making jam and having loads of babies. Yet at the same time, it also shows how that world can be corrosive to women's spirits as well as forcing them to be dependent on others' mercy in a worldly sense. And it shows these women displaying their own fierce sort of heroism in spite of it.

No Title Available

0 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Okay for what it is but not safe, June 30, 2011
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On the plus side, this seat is a lot of fun, and fits my daughter okay even though she is nearly 4 (she is well under the 40 pound limit). And it was not too hard to install and fit on my bike, even though my bike is an electric one and has a slightly odd-shaped frame as a result. On the negative side - the other day the bike fell over with her in the seat while we were at a stop - the bike is heavy, particularly with her in it and my gear stowed in the front basket, and I wasn't able to catch my balance or have the strength to stop it from falling. If she hadn't been wearing a good toddler helmet, she could be dead right now as a result. I heard her helmet make a big loud "THWACK" on the pavement, if you can imagine such a thing. The helmet saved the day - she got right up, was just a little shaky, and wanted to get back on the bike. But the experience was probably one of the most terrifying I have had as a parent. I'm going to throw this seat away and get a trailer instead.

Schwinn Toddler's Carnival Girl Helmet
Schwinn Toddler's Carnival Girl Helmet
Price: $17.99
7 used & new from $17.99

26 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Saved my child's life, June 30, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Thank goodness for this helmet. It probably saved my almost-four-year-old daughter's life the other day when the bike we were riding together (with a child seat for her) fell over at a stop. I heard her helmet make a big "thwack" on the pavement, if you can imagine such a thing ... but thanks to the helmet, she was uninjured, just a little shaken, and got right up and wanted to go back onto the bike. If she hadn't been wearing the helmet, I probably would have been calling an ambulence and rushing her to the hospital, if she'd even been lucky enough to survive ... (and on a related note I DO NOT RECOMMEND EVER EVER USING A CHILD SEAT ON YOUR BIKE. They are just too dangerous. Spend the money for a good child bike trailer with a safety flag instead!!! Risking your child's life, even with a helmet, is just not worth it.)
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 3, 2012 9:23 AM PDT

What to Expect The Toddler Years
What to Expect The Toddler Years
by Arlene Eisenberg
Edition: Paperback
786 used & new from $0.01

7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Definitely outdated, July 27, 2008
I agree with other recent reviewers that this book is very outdated, especially as regards their recommendation on weaning at one year. Not only does the AAP say nowadays that breastfeeding should continue for at least the entire first year, but also that it should continue for as long afterwards as is mutually desired by mother and child. Moreover, the World Health Organization recommends that breastfeeding along with complementary foods continue for up to two years OR BEYOND.

It is serious misinformation to state, as the authors do, that breastmilk has no nutritional value beyond the first year. It still contains many important nutrients and conveys important immunological benefits (in other words, it still functions to pass your immunities to your child and helps to prevent your child from getting sick!)

They really need to do a revised edition that includes this extremely important health information and notes the immunological benefits of continued breastfeeding. It is problematic for the unrevised book to still be on the market with the series as popular as it is and misinformation that could be injurious to public health.

Paris Sweets: Great Desserts From the City's Best Pastry Shops
Paris Sweets: Great Desserts From the City's Best Pastry Shops
by Dorie Greenspan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $24.07
86 used & new from $6.87

6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Charming Book, Magnificently Delicious Recipes, March 24, 2008
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I ordered this book because it was the only cookbook I could find that included a recipe for Opera Cake. Opera Cake is my husband's favorite dessert, and so I thought I would make it for his birthday. Well, unfortunately, I learned that the recipe for Opera Cake actually has six (yes, SIX) subrecipes, and would probably take me about 3 days to make ... and with a new baby, I wouldn't have three days to spend on a dessert. So the Opera Cake, the original rationale for getting the book, never got made. But still, I found it somehow heartening that such a complicated recipe could be broken down into readable and comprehensible component parts ... something that a mere mortal could actually reproduce in her own American home kitchen - if she had three days and didn't happen to have a newborn to cater to, that is.

One small disappointment was that Greenspan doesn't give a recipe for almond macaroons (macarons), which were my favorite treat when I spent a little time in France. She just gives a lengthy description of how wonderful they are and says they are hard for the home cook to reproduce. I know she is right in saying so, as I did try to make them once at home using the recipe in Martha Stewart's Baking Handbook, and they turned nothing like the ones I'd had in France and I considered that recipe a failure. Still, on there are about 20 different single-subject cookbooks in French on making macarons at home, so I still hold out hope that it's actually possible and I'll find a good recipe someday (or get around to ordering one of the French-language macaron treatises).

That said, this cookbook is a delight in every other way. The book is partly a travelogue describing the atmosphere and offerings at Paris's most famous patisseries, and her writing is so evocative, and so charmingly illustrated with line drawings, that you while reading you tend to feel as if you were standing in front of a gleaming case of sweetly scented pastries with a rotund pastry chef behind the counter sending up clouds of artisanal flour as you contemplate your order in line behind an elegant femme in couture high-heels leading a poodle on a leash.

Along with the travelogue descriptions you get the occasional informative discourse on ingredients such as chocolate and flour and eggs and how the ones the French pastry chefs use are different from ours.

And, of course, there are recipes, wonderful recipes. I made the choclate sables, and they were easy, and totally addictive as Greenspan warns. And I made the hot chocolate and it was so rich I had palpitations afterwards, but the taste was worth the risk of a heart attack. (And it was also easy peasy to make. I called my mom and gave her the recipe over the phone.)

Ten stars for this wonderful book.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 16, 2009 1:01 PM PDT

(Dean's) A Book of Fairy Tales
(Dean's) A Book of Fairy Tales
by Janet & Anne Grahame Johnstone
Edition: Hardcover
22 used & new from $10.79

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Crime That This Book Is Out of Print!, March 19, 2008
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This was my favorite book of fairy tales when I was little in the seventies, because the illustrations were just so amazing. Now that I have a daughter of my own I sought out a copy so that I'd be able to share it with her, too, and couldn't believe it had never been reprinted. I'm so glad Amazon saved the day with some used copies (my mom wanted one to replace her old copy, too, as we'd read it so much as kids that hers was falling apart). I'll just reiterate: The illustrations are incredible. Some of my favorites were from The White Cat - the picture of all the ghostly hands holding up torches in the corridor of the castle, and the cat and the prince resplendant in 17th century finery. I also loved the pictures of the robbers in Babes in the Wood, with the giant feathered plumes in their hats, and of course the rainbow umbrella of Luckoie the Dustman, and I could never forget the final picture of The Little Match Girl with her soul spiralling up to her grandmother's arms in the glow of the dying match flames ...
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 12, 2009 5:38 PM PDT

Roasting: A Simple Art
Roasting: A Simple Art
by Barbara Kafka
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $25.14
281 used & new from $0.01

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful!, March 19, 2008
This review is from: Roasting: A Simple Art (Hardcover)
It's hard to say enough good things about this cookbook. I always was scared of meat and poultry until it entered my life and opened up a whole new world of culinary possibilities. I know that sounds like purple review prose, but I'm not exaggerating. Under Kafka's guidance, any lingering intimidation you feel in the face of animal protein will melt away like dew before the sun ... it turns out that roasting is actually incredibly easy when you do it the Kafka way, and hard to mess up. And oh, my God, did I mention the vegetables? Ummmmmm. And the recipes for leftovers? Extremely good. I love her concept of the continuous kitchen - you roast a bunch of stuff and then nothing goes to waste - bones, caracasses, offal, leftover meat, rendered fat ... it all goes to make more fabulous meals down the road; stocks, salads, pates, soups, pies, sauces, and gravies. The method lets you economize not only on money but also on time and planning and thought, as you used the meat and the dividends for many recipes down the road, and not just with no loss of flavor but with a big boost to your taste buds at every turn.

My one criticism is that I would have liked the book to have twice as many recipes and ideas and be twice as long - it's just that good. But seriously, if I could award only 4 1/2 stars, I might just because I really would have liked to see more. I wish she would do a volume 2.

I actually haven't had tons of problems with smoke, but maybe that's because I always crowd the pan with veggies on the side. But the book is worth a few fire alarms going off, don't be deterred, just buy some earplugs.

No Title Available

3.0 out of 5 stars You get what you pay for ..., March 19, 2008
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I bought this when the shipping was still only like $6 (I see they just bumped it up to $30, which makes more sense, I think the earlier cheap shipping price was listed by mistake), and at that price it beat everything comparable on Amazon. However, my husband and I weren't hugely impressed by the quality. It's a case of getting what you pay for - and for the price I got it at, it wasn't so bad ... But to be more specific, the positives about this item are that the material it's made of looks decent enough and is actually fairly heavy considering it's not "real" wood but rather "rubber wood." Also, the drawer is nice to have - the comparable cart at Target that I was also considering does not have a drawer under the top surface. So you get that little bit of extra storage space. Another positive is that it was easy to put together, at least in theory. Unfortunately our cart had one screw that was hard to insert because one of the pieces was a little too short - it seemed it hadn't been measured quite right when it was manufactured. Another negative is that the drawer sticks and doesn't pull in and out easily. My husband actually tried sanding part of it to make it stick less, but basically he said that the runner is so cheap, it's kind of just crappy quality. However, if you can't afford the $800-$1200 for a really nice heavy duty Boos kitchen island from Williams-Sonoma, and are just looking for something cheap, this is okay, and it's probably comparable to the Target cart, and probably costs about the same in the end.

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