Tag Archive: texas



Bittersweet (China Bayles, #23)Bittersweet by Susan Wittig Albert
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

My librarian suggested this book knowing I wanted to try a ‘real’ book written by and starring a strong female. Now that I am finished with it I can say I did enjoy much of it. (I had to renew it–six weeks!)

“Oh, but here comes her complaints…” I hear some of you saying. And, yes, I do have some negatives.

The very beginning. I think it is highly unnecessary. When you read the Prologue you’re given the answer to the whole mystery. Many call this a cozy mystery. What, I ask you, is cozy about murder? Not just one but TWO? What is cozy about people who think more about money than the environment that we all have to live in humans, fauna, and flora alike?

At least the author uses this as an educational moment. That is what brought it up to four stars. Otherwise, I would have said I was rather bored. Though the excitement of the mystery gets wrapped up, the parts of the book I cared about, the main character’s mother’s husband’s health. It is the cliffhanger of that issue that brings this rating down to a three again. I didn’t like this story where the men of this book were being talked about. If women can grow, let’s show that men can grow, too. Many have been raised with sisters or single moms so they know the issues and don’t need to be cavemen.

I loved learning about the herbs and plants.

I never knew about the shooting-fish-in-the-barrel type hunting and moving the game to places they shouldn’t inhabit and the problems that brings. I will have to look into our area and see if that is here. I don’t have a problem with hunters. I hope we never get desperate enough to look to that as a food source, but if we do I guess I will have to accept it. Plenty of people around here do that for their food source. There are laws to keep it safe and less draining on the environment while filling the freezers with protein for cold winters. I’m a vegetarian because I don’t like the texture of meat, not a preachy one telling others what they should or shouldn’t eat. Anyway, the things I learned here made the rating roundup.

I don’t like to cook. Most of the foods in the recipes here did not appeal to me but I take no points away from the book for these. There are people who will love that aspect. I do appreciate that most of the recipes are at the back of the book where they don’t interrupt the story flow.

One more thing, I did get my eyes checked and will be getting new glasses soon. Meanwhile, I couldn’t read the hardback for very long at a time. Luckily, the Kindle version was available on our e-library to borrow. Once into that version, I was able to immerse in the story and rest my eyes as needed.

Check it out and tell me what you think of this book, regardless of version

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Exiled: Memoirs of a CamelExiled: Memoirs of a Camel by Kathleen Karr

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I wish I had the hardbound book. I am glad that I was able to get the Kindle Unlimited version.

This is a fun little story based on true events between the gold rush and civil war. Camels were brought to America to aid in travel in the western deserts. This is from a fictional camel’s point of view. Being from the land of the pyramids, Ali prays to Allah as is the custom from where he comes from.

Author, Kathleen Karr, wrote lovable characters. At times, there is a stretch of unbelievability, such as how the camels can understand both the language of their birth and then the English here in America. But if one takes a moment to think of how our pets seem to understand us and seem to know, regardless of language, what we want from them. Whether they mind us or not shows they have free-will like we humans do. So when the camels decide not to do what they are told it is because they don’t want to. I found that humorous.

This is a great book to use as teachable moments. From our own history, and the real camel importing, Comanches, geography from Egypt across the sea to Texas and on to California. Comparative religions and the similarities between peoples. And, of course, spend time learning about CAMELS. I have read a few books about camels lately and I am falling in love with them!

This is a great book for children of any age, even 65-year-olds! 😉

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