Crazy Knitter Reviews

The place where this crazy knitter reviews books, TV, movies and recipes

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

It Ain't All About the Cookin' by Paula Deen - #15

The memoirs of one of the Food Network's most popular stars. In this book Paula opens up and is very frank about her life. She talks about her childhood in Albany, Georgia where the food her mother and grandmother made had a big influence on her at an early age. We also learn about her marriage at 18 and the difficulties she and her husband had. She also discusses her battles with agoraphobia and getting her business off the ground. We find out that she had a 10 year affair with a married man and that her blended family did not blend so well at first. She gives tips on how to start a restaurant and describes how she became friends with former president Jimmy Carter and his wife, Rossalyn.

I really enjoyed this book. It was full of the humor Paula is known for. I have always liked watching her show because she reminds me so much of my own mother. The book also contains some yummy recipes, including her mother-in-law's banana walnut cake which I can not wait to try. I really recommend this book to all my fellow Paula fans. With this book I reached my goal of 15 books for the year. Maybe next year I will aim for 20!


Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Rudolph, the Red Nosed Reindeer

This is another favorite from my childhood. Rudolph is born to Donner, Santa's lead reindeer, but he has a problem. His nose is red and glows. His parents try to hide it but one day at the reindeer games his fake nose falls off. Soon the other reindeer are laughing at him and will not allow him to play anymore games. He decides to set off because he is such a misfit. He leaves with Hermey, a misfit elf who wants to be a dentist, and they soon meet up with a prospector named Yukon Cornelius. Along their journey the meet the Abominable Snow Monster and land on the Island of Misfit Toys. Soon Rudolph leaves his friends because the monster is following his nose and he does not want them to be hurt. When he arrives home he learns that his family has left to look for him. He manages to save the day and even leads Santa's sleigh during the worst Christmas storm in history.

I love this special. It gives a wonderful message to kids but it is also very entertaining. The music is wonderful and I always laugh at the end when Cornelius brings in Abominable to show he has changed. Burl Ives is also terrific as the narrator, a talking snowman named Sam. A great family classic.


Dr Seuss' How the Grinch Stole Christmas

This is my all-time favorite Christmas special. The Whos in Whoville love Christmas. Every year they open gifts, play with their noisy toys, sing songs and have a large feast. This really gets under the skin of their neighbor to the north, the Grinch. One year he decides that he can not take anymore Christmas from the Whos so he needs to stop Christmas from coming. He makes a Santa suit and hat, dresses his dog up as a reindeer and goes on his way. He goes into town an steals everything - the trees, food and toys of all the Whos. However, once the sun rises and he hears the Whos singing he realizes that he Christmas is much more than a feast and gifts.

I have seen this so many times that I know most of the lines by heart. I never saw the Jim Carey version because, to me, it can not even compare. Boris Karloff is wonderful as the narrator and the voice of the Grinch. If there is anyone left out there who has not seen this they need to be tied down and forced to watch it immediately!


Tuesday, December 04, 2007

A Charlie Brown Christmas

This is one of my all-time favorite Christmas specials. Charlie Brown is depressed because he does not know what the true meaning of Christmas is. He is slated to direct a play with his friends as the stars and he is not sure how he is going to pull it off. Soon though everything is falling apart and he becomes very frustrated. He feels that everything he touches, including the sad little tree he bought, is ruined. Can his friends help him discover the true and important meaning of Christmas?

I remember watching this every year with my om when I was little. It is still as wonderful to me now as it was then. I love that Charles Schultz bucked the network and kept the religious monologue in the special. I hope to one day watch this with my children.


Sunday, December 02, 2007

The Ghosts of Sleath by James Herbert - #14

An interesting and creepy ghost story. David Ash works as a paranormal researcher. His newest assignment will take him to the small English village of Sleath. He has been called there by the daughter of the local priest, Grace Lockwood. Grace is very worried about the tension she can feel in the village. Everyone is on edge and several strange deaths have taken place. She wants David to prove the paranormal phenomenon but he always tries to disprove paranormal activity. However, Grace and David soon learn that they are both drawn to each other in a very strange way. It is almost like they are connected spiritually even though they have never met. Soon they are investigating the bloody history of the town, much to Reverend Lockwood's chagrin. It seems that his family has run the village for several centuries and that the sins of his forefathers maybe causing the horrors in Sleath.

I really enjoyed this book. Herbert really sets the stage for the ending well. While it was slightly slow at times overall he was really able to build the tensions. Some of the characters were not as well developed as they could have been but that was simply because of a lack of space. If you like scary stories this book is a definite must read.