Book Review-Linda Howard: Drop Dead Gorgeous

Image credit: tieury / 123RF Stock Photo

Drop Dead Gorgeous is the second book in a two-part series Linda Howard wrote in first person.  The heroine. Blair Mallory, is a ditzy but savvy former cheerleader who now owns her own health club. (See my July 9, 2020 blog for info on the first book.) 

Drop Dead Gorgeous picks up where To Die For ends. Someone else is trying to kill Blair, but her detective now-fiance (Wyatt) doesn’t believe her.  We get to see how Blair and Wyatt resolve their problems . . . and stop another murderer before it’s too late.

The brisk pacing  and laugh-out-loud moments make this an easy but compelling read.

I use one line I stole from the book all the time in my personal life:

“How many pairs of <<insert color here>> shoes do you need?”

“One more pair than I already have.”

 

 

MJ Monday-Meals: Leftover Salt Potatoes for Breakfast

I learned this trick when I was in high school, when I would spend weeks at a friend’s camp in the Adirondack Mountains of upstate New York.

The first ingredient is leftover salt potatoes. Salt potatoes are a Central New York favorite. No summer event is complete without them.

I am not a fan of eggs. When I was younger, I would eat them scrambled only if they were well done. That holds true with this recipe.

Chop the leftover potatoes and add them to a frying pan with melted butter. Add chopped onion and heat through. Then add eggs. Scramble the eggs around the potatoes and onions. You end up with a delicious savory not-an-omelet breakfast dish that also doesn’t require turning on the oven.

Simply thinking about this breakfast brings back wonderful memories of cooking on the wood stove at camp, of cool mornings with mist clinging to the surface of the lake, of freshly picked wild blueberries (where I first learned to like them) polka-dotting the muffins and pancakes we made.

Thursday Thought: Self-Help: Make Your Creative Dreams Real

For several years, I was “into” SARK. Believe it or not, Positivity is one of my strengths, and SARK is very much into being positive. I love her bright colors and creative drawings.

When I saw her book Make Your Creative Dreams REAL in a bookstore I naturally had to purchase it. Like the more popular The Artists Way, the book is broken into twelve parts–in this case, months, not weeks. When I decided to follow the outline, I broke each month into weeks.

Unlike TAW, there is a lot of external reading involved.  Fortunately, my local library system had most of the books. I even purchased at least three that I loved so much I knew I would want to read them again. Since SARK’s book is copyrighted 2004, many of the books are no longer in the library. Many aren’t even available (except as used) on Amazon.  But I learned a lot from the books. It’s funny now, because I belong to a “reading club” and many of the books we’re supposed to read are either books from SARK’s reading list or rehashes of same.

There are also a lot of Internet links in the book. Many of the urls were no long active even when I did the year of introspection.

But the book is more than a reading list and websites. There’s a ton of introspection involved. I journaled my way through the book.

SARK is also a proponent of what she calls “micromovements.” I call them chunks. I call it eating a whole bear by myself–one bite at a time (thank you Julie Garwood). Don’t look at the whole picture at once, but break it down into do-able pieces. I live by this philosophy.

So even though the reading list is outdated and the website links are history, I still recommend this book for anyone wanting to define what it is they want from life and how to make that dream happen.

In

MJ Monday-Motivation: Lightning Bugs

Once again, my schedule–writing and day job–prevented me from getting to my patio/garden/back yard in a timely manner. It doesn’t help that the person who had all these grandiose plans for the space disappeared on me last year.

The first year of my garden was the best. It looked amazing. I had fresh herbs. I had colorful coleus, and planters of other beautiful things.

Since then, the space has become more of a jungle. I still love sitting out there, especially at night.

I love watching the lightning bugs. (Yes, I am born and raised in upstate NY, and we always called them lightning bugs. I never heard of a fire fly until I started school.) This year they start flashing early and continue to flash often.

No wonder summer is my favorite season.

Thursday Thought: Typewriters

The other day I recaptured a memory from when I was very, very young.

My aunts and uncles and cousins always got together with extended family, so I knew my cousins’ aunts from the other side of their family.  This memory comes before I went to school, so I couldn’t have been much older than three or four, but it is very vivid.

My cousins’ aunt, a teenager at the time, had a toy typewriter. It was red. It typed purple, like the dittos I would later receive in school for classwork. I was obsessed with the typewriter. I remember wanting desperately to play with it. Longing to use it.

Even then, I knew I was a writer.