Friday, January 30, 2015

Ice Cap and The Rift

The Ice Cap & The Rift is written by Marshall Chamberlain and is book 2 in the Ancestor Series. This book picks up where the first book (Mountain Place of Knowledge) left off. The main character of Dr. John Henry Morgan is still the main player of the story with a new event revolving around a combo-quake that has made a huge split in Iceland, exposing a huge rift and possible caves.

The pace of this book is a lot faster than the initial book with the Chinese, CIA, and UN all vying to be in charge of anything that may have been exposed. There is of course a return in alien technology to include alien mobile craft.

I thoroughly enjoyed the ancestor part of the story as well as the descriptions of the newly found environment. Unfortunately I wanted more time to be spent in the environment exploring, and to have a better sense of the size of the found area that was entered.
This book has a main focus on the red tape, and political movement fight that is trying to stay one step ahead of the Chinese and trying to negotiate with the CIA and Americans while appeasing the UN and not compromising the upper hand.

There was definitely a LOT of nail biting action and it was great to see Dr. Morgan take a stand. His ignorance at the feelings between Dr. Mary Ellen Rollins and himself is so frustrating at times. I had moments of wanting to reach through the book and slap some sense into him for her.

Chamberlain does a superb job of making identifiable characters. I had many moments of feeling like if this book was a tv show that I would be yelling at the characters to connect the dots and see what was right in front of them. I love the Triad connection, and found it highly interesting and entirely plausible.

If you know your current events in world powers, this book is definitely an intriguing and exciting look at how all of the players in the game for “power” line up and contend with one another, while trying to save face for the press. As a computer/intel geek I loved the set up at the underground work space and the brilliant descriptions.

Overall I give this book 5/5 stars as it is very well written and comes from a brilliant mind. The Ice Cap & The Rift definitely takes a different tone than the original book, but it is still the ongoing cat and mouse game. I hope to see more of the Ancestors and the exploration of the Alien Technology in the next book, and maybe we can FINALLY get a jump on the Chinese before the end is here. If you are into suspense, adventure, sci-fi, fiction, political, action, espionage, etc.

*I received this book for free in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Donut Muffins

I have so many recipes all over my house and so many photos on my camera.  I sincerely apologize for being gone for so long.  In exchange for your patience, here is a delicious recipe I have to share :) 
*I do want to note that the batter was reminiscent of cookie dough and I wasn't sure it was going to turn out very "muffin" like, but they turned out splendidly.  Very good with custard or strawberries or both.  I ended up with a total of 18 full muffins from this recipe.

3/4 Cup Butter (softened)
1 Cup Sugar
2 Large Eggs
2 1/2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
3/4 tsp Baking Powder
2 Cups Milk
1/2 tsp Nutmeg

2 Tbsp Butter (melted)
1/2 Cup Superfine Sugar
1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

Preheat oven to 350 Degrees.  Grease or use muffin cups in a 12-cup Muffin pan.
In a large bowl, beat butter and sugar together until creamy.  Add the eggs, beating in between each one.  Sift the flour, baking soda, baking powder and nutmeg together. 
Add half of the creamed mixture with 1/2 Cup Milk.  Gently fold the ingredients together before slowing adding in the flour with additional milk.  Continue this process until all of the ingredients are mixed together.  Spoon the mixture into the muffin pan, filling about 2/3 full. 
Bake for 15-18 minutes, or until muffins are lightly brown.
Mix the sugar and cinnamon together for the topping.  Remove muffins from oven, brush the tops with melted butter and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar on top.

Monday, January 12, 2015

October 2014 Playlist

I know, it's a few months late, but I am playing catch-up, and even though I was unable to post the blog, I still had my notes written for the songs of the month! Enjoy these 31 songs of my 31 days of October.

1. We Can Make the World Stop-The Glitch Mob: The Glitch Mob is always great for a multitude of tasks.  I love jamming out to them while I am cleaning or cooking, or just dancing around the house with Liam.  The beats of Glitch Mob always stand out as unique in a world of copycats.

2. A Thousand Year-The Piano Guys: I never understand why these guys are called the Piano guys when only one of them plays the piano and one plays the cello.  I LOVE Christina Perri and I love this song, and instrumentals and they did a great job on this.

3. Stars Align-Lindsey Stirling: If you have ever seen any of my previous playlists, you will already know of my love for everything Lindsey and her unique videos!

4. Rain-Blackmill: Blackmill is always a calming force in my world.  Great beats also.

5. Live It Up-Jennifer Lopez feat Pitbull: J Lo is always good for some upbeat tunes.  I think that this song is fun.

6.  Crank It Up-David Guetta feat Akon: I love collaborations with David and Akon.  Akon's voice sounds great on Guetta's beats.  Another fun upbeat song.

7. Love-Musiq Soulchild: This song is always a classic R&B ballad.  You can't go wrong with Musiq talking about love.

8. One Love- Trey Songz: Songs like this make me want to fall in love

9. I Can Transform Ya-Chris Brown feat Lil Wayne & Swizz Beatz: I always loved this song, makes me want to dance around the house, and I also think that the video is fun.

10. Heartbreak Hotel-Elvis Presley: Liam really got into this song thanks to the movie Lilo & Stitch.  So we listen to it all of the time now.  Liam always thinks it's hilarious when we sing low to the "I Feel So Lonely, Baby" part.

11. Why-Secondhand Serenade: I have yet to hear a Seconhand Serenade song that I don't love.  This song is very powerful and real.  The lyrics are definitely worth taking a hard listen to.  If you have every been hurt to the point of feeling broken, then these will speak volumes.

12. Prime-Revenge of the Fallen: How can you not love this iconic score from the Transformer's soundtrack.  It always stands out whenever I hear it.

13. Heavy in Your Arms-Florence and the Machine: Florence always has such deep lyrics.  This song speaks volumes, and is great to listen to.

14. #1Nite-Cobra Starship feat My Name is Kay: Cobra Starship always makes music that is fun to listen to :)

15. Dead & Gone-T.I. feat Justin Timberlake: I will always love this song.  Justin and TI in one song?  Yes Please.

16. Blow-Ke$ha: Ke$ha is always great for a fun song and a jacked up video.

17. When a Heart Breaks- Ben Rector: You can just feel the emotion in this song.

18. Live It Up-Colbie Calliat-I just realized that I had too songs with the same name on this playlist haha.  Well they both have the same message that you must enjoy and revel in today!  So get to it!  I love that this one is more self-empowering though :)

19. Take Me Away-Keyshia Cole: Another song that makes me want to have someone to love :)

20. New Flame-Chris Brown feat Usher and Rick Ross: I just really love the beat to this song.  Chris Brown and Usher are always a great combination to me. No matter what Chris Brown does, the boy can sing and dance.  Although I can't help by comment on the white shorts with white leggings/jeggings/meggings look...  like wtf?  But we do get some iconic Usher dance moves in this video.  I could have done without Rick Ross at the end though.  It's kind of like when Lil John was thrown into Lovers & friends haha

21. Best Day of My Life-American Authors: I am a newer fan of the American Authors, but this song definitely sealed me in as a fan for them.  It is a fun song to make you happy about your day :)

22. Killing Me Softly-Fugees: Classic, always a loved song of mine.

23. Shine Your Way-Owl City & Yuna: Liam and I have watched the Croods more times than I can count and I still LOVE this movie.  It was only fitting when we started watching this music video as well.  If you haven't yet seen the Croods, get on it.  You are missing out.

24. Are Your Feeling Me?-Aaliyah:  Aaliyah is never far from my heart!  I loved her so much!  This is one of my favorite songs of hers.  Plus I love Jet Li :)  Romeo Must Die was super cheesy in a way that you still love it haha

25. In Public-Kelis feat Nas: Sometimes you just need a great sexual song on your playlist.  So here you go.

26. Mangalam-Deva Premal: Very calming and trance inducing.  I love her mantras and music.

27. Take Over Control-Afrojack feat Eva Simons: This song is very dancey and makes you want to sing along :0)  Plus I love Eva's voice

28. Higher-Taio Cruz feat Travie McCoy: I love both of these guys.  So upbeat and fun :)

29. My Happy Ending-Avril Lavigne: I have definitely felt this way before.  And I love Avril.

30. All I Wanted-Paramore: This is seriously one of my favorite songs that I have heard in a LONG time.  When  you are longing for someone you know you won't have.

31. Letting the Cables Sleep-Bush: Bush will never get old :)  I love the slower tempo of this one.