The Shadow Garden

The Shadow Garden by Andrew Matthews

Thoughts Before Reading:

So I spotted this book when shelving and it immediately caught my eye as it looked like a spooky version of The Secret Garden. I just had to read it!

Plot Synopsis:

Matty Brand can see and speak the dead, a skill that runs in her family. Her mother asks her to keep it hidden, as others don’t understand it.

They tend to become one of these.

One day she is speaking to her dead father at his grave, spilling her worries on money and about her mother. She is overheard by a villager who speaks to the minister about it. The minister let’s them know that he’s been looking for a way to help them and has secured a job and new home for them at Tagram House.

Tagram House is run by a creepy man who cares for it while raising his ward. Matty can’t stand him as she senses the evil in him, evil that is further extended when she finds the spirit of two murdered children and that the the man running it is the cause of it!

Thoughts After Reading:

I could not get into this book. I found it incredibly boring.

For more children’s books, go to Garfield in The Case of the Mystery Mail

For more ghosts, go to Lowcountry Boil

Gingerbread Men Cookies

gingerbread-man-wearing-santa-hat

This recipe comes from the book

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Presidential Cookies: The Lure and the Love by Bev Young

Thoughts Before Baking:

I first made these cookies when my friends and I were having an Oscar party back in 2013. The rules of the party were that you had to pick a movie that was up for an Academy Award, and make one course that was relevant.

My film choice had been Lincoln, and I choose to make this Gingerbread Cookie recipe because this was one of Abraham Lincoln’s favorite desserts.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/2 Cup of Butter (1 Stick)
  • 1/2 Cup of Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup of Molasses
  • 1 Egg Yolk
  • 2 Cups of Sifted Flour
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Powder
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Baking Soda
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Cinnamon
  • 1 Teaspoon of Ground Cloves
  • 1 Teaspoon of Ginger
  •  1/2 Teaspoon of Nutmeg
  • 1/2 Teaspoon of Allspice
  • Icing

Directions:

  1. In a large bowl, cream the butter with the sugar until smooth.
  2. Beat in the molasses and egg yolk.
  3. In another bowl, sift together the flour, salt, baking powder, baking soda, and spices.
  4. Gradually beat the flour mixture into the butter-egg mixture.
  5. Cover and chill the dough for at least one hour.
  6. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  7. On a lightly floured board, roll the dough to 1/4-inch thickness.
  8. Cut into gingerbread men or other desired shapes.
  9. Place cookies about 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
  10. Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes.
  11. Cool on cookie sheet for a few minutes.
  12. Decorate with icing if desired.

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We have our Dapper 19th century men and a couple of pirates.

gingerbreadmencookies

My favorite is the zombie cookie who ate the other on in the lower right hand corner.

Gingerbreadcookies

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Thoughts After Baking:

I loved these cookies. I’m not the biggest fan of gingerbread as I like one or two and then am done; but these were so good I ate twice as much.

And of course one the best things is decorating the cookies.

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For more ginger cookies, go to Regency Ginger Cookies

For more cookies, go to Dinomite’s Fluffy Bites

For more holiday recipes, go to Hole in One

For more dessert recipes, go to Lemon Meringue Chiffon Cake

Pride & Prescience (Or a Truth Universally Acknowledged)

So I was about to review this book, when it hit me, why do it when my big sister blog already has it covered?

So here we go with an Austenian fused mystery, and perfect for October with it’s supernatural elements!

janeaustenrunsmylife

Pride&Prescience

Pride & Prescience: Or a Truth Universally Acknowledged by Carrie Bebris

So as I’m sure you are aware, whether from reading my post Happy Birthday Pride & Prejudice; or perusing your local bookstore/library; there are a lot of sequels to Pride & Prejudice. But unlike those that write about the Darcy children, or married life of Lizzie & Darcy, this one is a mystery.

IndianaJonesHmmMaybe

Yeah, at first I wasn’t sure about it, but when I started reading it, I actually enjoyed it. I solved the mystery quickly, but it was very well written and worth reading. There were a few things I didn’t like, but I’ll save that until the end.

So are you ready to take on this mystery?

splitupScoobyDoo

So the book begins at the after-the-wedding-next-day-breakfast. Jane was just married to Bingley, and Elizabeth to Mr. Darcy. Elizabeth is happy about how everything went, and even more…

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