Book Bean Symposium

This is the Cafe Book Bean open Discussion page.
Source: Book Bean Symposium

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Formidable Classics

classic-novels-on-shelves2  I love Classic literature and adore many genres within the classics. Once I started reading them I was hooked, and have forever been changed as a reader. I have read many classic books and so I’ve developed  much in skill and maturity. As I broaden my scope, reading more and more amazing books from the greats, I find myself looking at a few that I keep putting off. The books that I find either a bit daunting, or time consuming, or just find myself hesitating on aimlessly. I need to address these books that challenge me from my shelf.

Here are a few Challenging Classics calling to me in anticipation:

War and Peace
This is the book of books to read for any person interested in classic literature. It is a well known challenge, and one I think I am up for. It’s a book that although I may find challenging or time consuming, I do actually think that I will really enjoy. I think I just need to commit to reading it, and get to it. Oh and did I mention it is a whopping 1296 pages, no small feat. Hopefully a worthwhile one.

Rated 4.4 on amazon.com
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Book Bean: Russian Tea
Within Russia, tea usually includes lemon, and sugar or jam. Tea sachets are widely popular, but when a teapot is used it is very common to make a strong brew, then pour some into a cup and top it with hot or boiling water, adding milk and sugar afterwards.

Utopia
A utopia is a community or society possessing highly desirable or near perfect qualities. The word was coined by Sir Thomas More in Greek for this 1516 book Utopia (in Latin), describing a fictional island society in the Atlantic Ocean. The term has been used to describe both intentional communities that attempt to create an ideal society, and imagined societies portrayed in fiction. I don’t know if this classic book is a challenging one or not, but I do know I’ve been meaning to read it for a very long time.
Rated 4.3 on amazon.com

cafe-de-olla-in-a-mugBook Bean: Café de olla
Traditionally brewed in large quantities over a wood fire in a heavy earthenware Mexican cooking pot called an “Olla”. Place 4 cups water, 2/3 cup dk brn sugar, 1tsp molasses, and 2 cinnamon sticks (and aniseed optional) in a saucepan. Slowly bring to a boil, and stir thoroughly to dissolve sugars. When the mixture reaches boiling, stir in 2/3 cup drk rst coffee (med. grind) remove from heat, cover, and steep for 5 minutes. Strain into stone cups, and enjoy with cinnamon sticks.

 

Moby Dick
It’s a whale of a book! Or so I hear 😀 This book does not really speak to me, as far as content I feel compelled to read. However, it is so well known as a literary masterpiece that I feel I must one day challenge myself and read it. It’s a novel by Herman Melville, in which Ishmael narrates the monomaniacal quest of Ahab, captain of the whaler Pequod, for revenge on the albino sperm whale Moby Dick

Rated 4.2 on amazon.com
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Book Bean:
Seafoam Tea
In a blender blend; 1/2 can coconut milk (cold) till frothy. Add in 2 cups of white tea (cold) and re-blend. Last add a pinch of finely ground lavender leaves (and/or mint, is a nice option)  and 1 cup of cool whip (or ice-cream.)

 

The Scarlet Letter
I have always wanted to read this book, but for one reason or another I just never do. I hope that one day I will, but it’s not looking promising. I always start reading it, but then I set it down and don’t pick it up again. It’s bothersome really. I don’t know if in the end I will like, love, or hate this book, but I do know that I will be glad I read it!

Rated 4.4 on amazon.com

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Book Bean:
Sinful Cinnamon Dulce
Temper white chocolate in a mug. Steam and Froth milk of choice (I like rice for this recipe) and pour over chocolate. Top with a small zip of whip and sprinkle with cinnamon. Stir and enjoy.

 

These are the formidable classics on my shelf, what are yours?

If you don’t read the classics, what challenging books have been haunting you?

Sci-Fi Sunday

maxresdefaulI am a huge Science Fiction fan, but I have been such a slacker. I have not read any Science Fiction novels, for quite some time now. I have a To-Be-Read list that stretches far and wide, many of which  are Sci-Fi books.

Here is a little taste of my Sci-Fi TBR List:

1984” by George Orwell
A warning about the menaces of totalitarianism. The novel is set in an imaginary future world that is dominated by three perpetually warring totalitarian police states. The book’s hero, Winston Smith, is a minor party functionary in one of these states. His longing for truth and decency leads him to secretly rebel against the government. (via amazon)

Rated 4.5 on amazon.com

 


The Martian” by Andy Weir
[Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.
Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there]

I am so very intrigued by this novel, it’s Sci-Fi, it’s extraordinarily well reviewed, and it just sounds awesome!

Rated 4.6 on amazon.com

 

Cloud Atlas: A Novel” by David Mitchell
I saw the movie and absolutely LOVED it. I recently discovered that it was based on this book. I’m a little shocked because the movie was peculiar, as far as time-lapse and multiple stories etc. I’m interested to see how it plays out in the novel.

Rated 4.0 on amazon.com

 

Here is a Sci-Fi book I’ve read and love:

Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card
This is one of my favorite Sci-Fi books. It was written I believe for a younger audience, but you know me, I don’t really pay attention to those distinctions. Ender’s Game is a fantastic book, it is so well written, and a must read for any Sci-Fi (or book for that matter) fan. The story is catchy and interesting, the characters are great, and the twist will entertain even the wisest of readers. I have not read any of the books in the series because I fear it will dilute my experience, I’m probably wrong, but a bit paranoid anyway.

Rated 4.6 on amazon.com


Book Bean: 
Milky Way Mocha
Malt, Chocolate, Espresso, Steamed almond milk (if you like your drinks sweet add caramel in the liquid, I don’t.) Top it off with whip and a swirl of caramel.

What is you’re favorite Science Fiction book?
Do you have any on your tbr list?

Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute

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“The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.”

 

In honor of his birthday January 15th 1929


The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr.
Via Goodreads: King scholar Clayborne Carson has constructed a remarkable first-person account of Dr. King’s extraordinary life. Beginning with his boyhood, the book portrays King’s education as a minister, his ascendancy as a leader of the Montgomery bus boycott, his pivotal role in the civil rights demonstrations in Washington, D.C.
Rated: 4.6 on amazon.com

This is a great book if you want a deeper level of understanding of Dr. King’s spirit, and his intentions in the Civil Rights Movement.


Benefits of Being a Bibliophile

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There are many benefits to being a book lover. Maybe we have an unhealthy compulsion to buy books. Maybe we have no surface space not claimed by random literary treasures. We may regularly suffer from book hangovers, but by gollie we:

 

 Prefer simple pleasures                              Never go to bed lonely
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Get excited easily                                          Have better vocabulary 😉
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Never get bored                                              Travel to distant landsa01696412fc05b59444a1f1bdaf05b1bFavim.com-9108
Never stop learning                                        Have less stress
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Improve memory                                          Have plenty to talk aboutimages.jpgimages (1).jpg

So we sometimes lack sleep, can’t leave a bookstore without buying something, and regularly use books as coasters, but we are happier and more whole because of it. Be proud.

How does being a book lover impact your life?

WISO: “Midnight in The Garden…”

It’s the middle of the week again, and another blustery day in the N.W. The perfect Winds~day for my next ‘What I’m Sipping On.’ The title of this book alone is enough to make you want to read it.

I am reading “Midnight in The Garden of Good and Evil
(Click picture &/or title for more info.)

So far this book is extremely interesting and intriguing. It takes place in quaint little southern city of Savannah. A place thick with the feeling and personalities of the old south. I was a bit worried that it would not hold my interest, considering I saw the movie first, but it has yet to be a problem. Not only is the set up for the story line much different then the movie, but there are enough little extra quirks in the book to keep you angling for more.
It’s definitely an oddball book, one where you don’t quite know what is happening or where the books is going, but that is part of what makes it good. The most interesting thing about this reading experience, is that about 1/3 of the way through it, I discovered that it is a non-fiction book. Not only was I surprised due to the overall subtle-ness of the fact, but also because the story is so bizarre! John Berendt shows himself to be quite an impressive writer by this little fact alone.
I am only about half way through, but I am really enjoying the book. I love the quirky off the wall quality that it has. I like how easy going it is to read. I find myself interested enough that I look forward to reading it, but I don’t have this craze all the time to finish it. It’s just pleasant to pick up and read a chapter here and there. I can see why it is so revered, I just hope the second half doesn’t disappoint.

Have any of you read this book, or seen
the movie, or both?

What were your thoughts? (no spoilers please!)
I  will of course update this post when I’ve finished it. 🙂