Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Moriarty: A Novel by Anthony Horowitz

A Novel
by Anthony Horowitz
Hardcover, 304 pages

Holmes is Dead and Darkness Falls

Destined to excite Holmes fans everywhere, this book- with full support and blessing from the Conan Doyle Estate, examines the the famed and deadly struggle of Sherlock Holmes and Professor James Moriarty.

A detective from Pinkerton has jetted to Europe, desperate to find any clues leading to the capture of a dangerous criminal who has eyes on Moriarty's empire.

The game is afoot.

What results is a Conan Doyle-esque thriller that twists and turns in perfect Holmesian tone and timing.

A must read for fans of the original stories and books.

From the Back Flap:

Internationally bestselling author Anthony Horowitz's nail-biting new novel plunges us back into the dark and complex world of Detective Sherlock Holmes and Professor James Moriarty—dubbed "the Napoleon of crime"—in the aftermath of their fateful struggle at the Reichenbach Falls.

Days after Holmes and Moriarty disappear into the waterfall's churning depths, Frederick Chase, a senior investigator at New York's infamous Pinkerton Detective Agency, arrives in Switzerland. Chase brings with him a dire warning: Moriarty's death has left a convenient vacancy in London's criminal underworld. There is no shortage of candidates to take his place—including one particularly fiendish criminal mastermind.

Chase is assisted by Inspector Athelney Jones, a Scotland Yard detective and devoted student of Holmes's methods of deduction, whom Conan Doyle introduced in The Sign of Four. The two men join forces and fight their way through the sinuous streets of Victorian London—from the elegant squares of Mayfair to the shadowy wharfs and alleyways of the Docks—in pursuit of this sinister figure, a man much feared but seldom seen, who is determined to stake his claim as Moriarty's successor.

Riveting and deeply atmospheric, Moriarty is the first Sherlock Holmes novel sanctioned by the author's estate since Horowitz's House of Silk. This tale of murder and menace breathes life into Holmes's fascinating world, again proving that once you have eliminated the impossible, whatever remains, however improbable, must be the truth.

Anthony Horowitz is one of the most prolific and successful writers working in the UK – and is unique for working across so many media. Anthony is a born polymath; juggling writing books, TV series, films, plays and journalism.

Anthony has written over 40 books including the bestselling teen spy series Alex Rider, which he adapted into a movie that was released worldwide in 2006. The Alex Rider series is estimated to have sold 19 million copies worldwide. Anthony is also an acclaimed writer for adults and was commissioned by the Conan Doyle Estate and Orion Books to write a new Sherlock Holmes novel. The House of Silk was published in November 2011 and was internationally lauded as the top title of the autumn. He is currently working on the sequel. His highly anticipated novel, Oblivion, the epic conclusion to the Power of Five series, was published in October 2012.

Anthony is responsible for creating and writing some of the UK’s most beloved and successful television series, producing the first seven episodes (and the title) of Midsomer Murders. He is the writer and creator of award-winning drama series Foyle’s War, which was the Winner of the Lew Grade Audience award for BAFTA. DCS Foyle was voted the nation’s favourite detective in 2011. Anthony has also written other original complex dramas for ITV, particularly thrillers. Collision, a major five part “state of the nation” piece was transmitted on ITV1 in November 2009 to seven million viewers a night. He followed this with the equally successful legal thriller Injustice, also for ITV 1 - transmitted in June 2011. Foyle’s War returned in March 2013 as a Cold War thriller and was greeted with such critical acclaim and demands for more – that he is now working on another new series

Anthony recently joined the board of the Old Vic. He regularly contributes to a wide variety of national newspapers and magazines on subjects ranging from politics to education. He has been a patron to East Anglia Children’s Hospices and the anti-bullying charity, Kidscape, since 2008.

Anthony was awarded an OBE for his services to literature in January 2014.
Amazon B&N IndieBound Goodreads

Tuesday, 30 December 2014

What Are You Hungry For? The Chopra Solution to Permanent Weight Loss, Well-Being, and Lightness of Soul

What Are You Hungry For?
The Chopra Solution to Permanent Weight Loss, 
Well-Being, and Lightness of Soul
by Deepak Chopra

Trade Paperback, 304 pages

Just in time, as we recover from holiday feasting and imbibing, and head into a new year (Okay, one last day of feasting and imbibing) Deepak Chopra releases the trade paperback guide to living light - What Are You Hungry For?

Rather than being a typical diet book, which Chopra maintains don't work, or don't work for long, What Are You Hungry For examines what is missing from our lives that we have to stuff food in to deal with it.

I love this philosophy and can certainly appreciate where he is coming from. For those of us who get a wee bit antsy with New Age or even Older Age Spirituality, he is light handed and non-denominational in his teachings.

The words ring true - we, modern first-world beings with generous access to food and somewhat less active in our daily lives, fill the void in less than positive ways.

Chopra makes becoming "lighter", in body and mind, a path that we take together. He starts with awareness, no more zombie-like stuffing down dinner, and even includes nourishing, simple recipes that you can make at home.

Great book for the New Year!

From the Back Flap:

Basis for the upcoming PBS Special!

After promoting this message worldwide for thirty years, bestselling author Deepak Chopra focuses on the huge problem of weight control in America with exciting new concepts. What Are You Hungry For? is the breakthrough book that can bring weight under effortless control by linking it to personal fulfillment in every area of a reader's life.

What are you hungry for? Food? Love? Self-esteem?  Peace? In this manual for "higher health," based on the latest findings in both mainstream and alternative medicine, Deepak Chopra creates a vision of weight loss based on a deeper awareness of why people overeat - because they are trying to find satisfaction and wind up using food as a substitute for real fulfillment.  Repudiating the failed approaches of crash dieting and all forms of deprivation, Chopra's new book aims directly at the problem of finding fulfillment.  When that problem is solved, he argues, normal eating falls into place automatically, and the entire system of mind and body achieves what it really desires.

“Everyone’s life story is complicated, and the best intentions go astray because people find it hard to change,” writes Chopra. “Bad habits, like bad memories, stick around stubbornly when we wish they’d go away. But you have a great motivation working for you, which is your desire for happiness. I define happiness as the state of fulfillment, and everyone wants to be fulfilled. If you keep your eye on this, your most basic motivation, then the choices you make come down to a single question: “What am I hungry for?” Your true desire will lead you in the right direction. False desires lead in the wrong direction.”

Wherever you are in life, this book will help point you in that right direction.

Deepak Chopra, M.D.

DEEPAK CHOPRA is the author of more than fifty books translated into more than thirty-five languages—including numerous New York Times bestsellers in both the fiction and nonfiction categories. Dr. Chopra is a fellow of the American College of Physicians, a member of the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists, adjunct professor at the Kellogg School of Management, and a senior scientist with the Gallup Organization. He is founder and president of the Alliance for a New Humanity. Time magazine heralds Deepak Chopra as one of the top 100 heroes and icons of the century and credits him as “the poet–prophet of alternative medicine.”

Saturday, 27 December 2014

The Strange Library by Haruki Murakami

The Strange Library
by Haruki Murakami
Translated by Ted Goossen

Trade Paperback, 96 pages

Certainly one of the strangest books I have read in a while, The Strange Library reads like a dream - or possibly nightmare.

My first task was figuring out how to open said strange book about a strange library. After not too much difficulty, I had it unfolded and the odd bits tucked into the back so I could read uninhibited by folding flaps of cardboard.

I was struck by the pop art designs and illustrations that make up half the book. They add to the dream-like quality and the sense that this is not like most books.

It is a very quick read - but the Twilight Zone tone of it lingers for days.

The Strange Library is a whole new concept of book for me, and makes me wonder what Haruki Murakami's other book are like.

It's good to expand those horizons once in a while!

From the Back Flap:

From internationally acclaimed author Haruki Murakami--a fantastical illustrated short novel about a boy imprisoned in a nightmarish library. A lonely boy, a mysterious girl, and a tormented sheep man plot their escape from the nightmarish library of internationally acclaimed, bestselling Haruki Murakami's wild imagination.

HARUKI MURAKAMI was born in Kyoto in 1949 and now lives near Tokyo. His work has been translated into more than fifty languages, and the most recent of his many international honors is the Jerusalem Prize, whose previous recipients include J. M. Coetzee, Milan Kundera, and V. S. Naipaul.

Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Woman with a Gun: A Novel

Woman with a Gun
A Novel 
by Phillip Margolin
Paperback, 304 pages

Woman with a Gun is a well-crafted thriller that builds in intensity and complexity.

A writer is inspired by a photograph and feels drawn to find out the back story. What happens is a gradual unfolding of stories behind stories.

Where does inspiration come from? What lies beneath? How do you draw the line between the inspiration for a story and investigating the truth? What happens when you get too close to the mystery?

A unique crime thriller. Clever and filled with enough twists to keep you guessing until the last page.

From the Back Flap:

Master of mystery Phillip Margolin transcends his traditional territory in this new and different book, a haunting thriller inspired by an unforgettable photograph.

Visiting an art museum displaying a retrospective of acclaimed photographer Kathy Moran's work, aspiring novelist Stacy Kim is stunned by the photo at the center of the show - the famous Woman with a Gun, which won a Pulitzer Prize and launched the photographer's career. Shot from behind, the enigmatic black-and-white image is a picture of a woman in a wedding dress, standing on the shore at night, facing the sea. Behind her back, she holds a six-shooter.

The images captures Stacey's imagination, raising a host of compelling questions. Has the woman killed her husband on their wedding night? Is she going to commit suicide? Is she waiting for someone she plans to kill? Obsessed with finding answers, Stacey discovers that the woman in the photograph is Megan Cahill, suspected of killing her husband, millionaire Raymond Cahill, with the six-shooter on their wedding night. But the murder was never solved.

Drawn deeper into the case, Stacey finds that everyone involved has a different opinion of Megan's culpability. But the one person who may know the whole story - Kathy Moran - isn't talking. Stacey must find a way to get to the reclusive photographer or the truth may never see the light of day.

Phillip Margolin has written eighteen novels, many of them New York Times bestsellers including the recent Worthy Brown's Daughter, Sleight of Hand, and the Washington Trilogy. Each displays a unique, compelling insider's view of criminal behavior, which comes from his long background as a criminal defense attorney who has handled thirty murder cases. Winner of the Distinguished Northwest Writer Award, he lives in Portland, Oregon.


Saturday, 20 December 2014

Kii Naturals Crisps - my new favourite cracker. Bring on the brie!

It isn't Christmas without a giant wheel of brie, in my household. And for this cheese, plus whatever other fine cheeses and fruits that tempt me.... I need a good cracker. Not the over-salted cardboard that passes for crackers in the mass produced cracker aisle. But something hearty, chewy, and interesting. That pairs well with wine. Whatever you happen to be drinking. 

I was happy to be invited to try Kii Naturals Crisps. They hit the nail on the head. The flavour profiles are fearless and fun and their dedication to quality is heartwarming.

This year, be a better person - eat better crackers. 

The Kii Commitment

At Kii Naturals, we understand that for most families the realities of living a fast-paced urban lifestyle can cause us to compromise when making healthier food choices each day. We believe that moderation is a realistic goal for most of us and that choosing either excess or denial is not a sustainable lifestyle strategy. That's why we are so determined to provide you with healthier, great tasting ingredients and products that can be easily incorporated into your day to day. We aren't expecting you to entirely replace convenience food choices with our products, but rather include them in your repertoire of go-to food choices as a way of balancing what you are feeding yourself and your families.

That's why Kii Naturals is committed to:

    Sourcing the very best ingredients to North America from where they grow naturally throughout the world.
    Offering them in their natural state or after being gently milled or refined using our proprietary technologies.
    Including them exclusively in the products made in our Margaret's Artisan Bakery.

Rosemary PistachioOne of our newer savoury crisp flavours has the perfect amount of rosemary and parsley married with pure golden honey from Canada and pistachio nuts to give you a delightful zing with a hint of sweetness.
Goji Berry & PistachioGoji berries... a little powerhouse of anti-oxidants mingle beautifully with flavourful raisins and cholesterol lowering pistachio nuts. This blend creates a perfect storm of ingredients to promote good health. Enjoy!
Mango Curry & CashewThis savoury crisp with cashews from Vietnam and our very own curry blend dances on your tastebuds... makes you want to mango tango after the first bite!
Apricot Orange AlmondA superb companion for bitter cheeses. Our sweetest crisp flavour with perfectly tree ripened apricots and the freshest shelled almonds from the sunny south is sure to be a guest pleaser at your next soiree.
Date & WalnutThis earthy flavour pairs succulent dates from the Middle East and California's finest crop of aromatic walnuts for a rich treat that inspires imagery of moonlit nights at an oasis.