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The Gentleman’s Guide to Cooking

Who knew cooking would be so much fun, even for those that do not love cooking? In The Gentleman’s Guide to Cooking, Randy Motilall shares exciting and interesting ways of cooking. The author uses a variety of recipes to show his culinary skills. Have trouble making your favorite chicken curry? Bacon-wrapped shrimp? Peruvian Lomo Saltado? Or even Brazilian Cheese Bread? Randy Motilall has got you covered. The author guides readers through creating a satisfying meal and teaches readers the importance of experimenting with different cuisines of the world.

Randy Motilall not only teaches the reader how to make delicious foods, but he also shares tips on table etiquette. Many people are not aware of how to properly set the table for an elegant meal. Setting the table is the first thing your guests see and the backdrop to showcase the prepared meal. The author guides you on where and how to place the dinner plate, soup or salad bowl, wine glasses, various forks, knives, table napkin, salt shaker, among other things. In addition, there is an illustration of how to place different cutlery and how to use them. Finally, the author has categorized the various meals so readers will have distinct recipes for appetizers, drinks, bread, salads, soups, sides, entrees, desserts, what to have the following day, and extras. Every meal the author writes about is accompanied by pictures, encouraging you to try them out. The text combined with the beautiful images of the recipes made reading this book a wonderful experience.

After reading this book, cooking does not appear tedious at all. The foods shared in the book can take as little as 20 minutes for some. You can make a meal for one or a group, and it will still be delicious. With The Gentleman’s Guide to Cooking, you will feel like you have stepped into kitchens in Asia, the Middle East, Latin America, and many other parts of the world. The recipes are excellent, and the author shares personal stories and insights with the reader as he talks about the foods.

The Gentleman’s Guide to Cooking is filled with engaging language and humor. With this book, Randy Motilall may have targeted a specific demographic, but it can be recommended for anyone who enjoys spending their time in the kitchen preparing meals. In addition, readers who enjoy cooking, want to learn about cooking, and just love all things food will find the information and stories in this book and the recipes refreshing.

Pages: 176 | ASIN : B08XYV163C

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Gravity Games

Gravity Games

With an intriguingly unique title, Gravity Games, “A Nathan Sherlock Foodie Thriller,” by John Matsui certainly piques readers’ interests right from the start. The crossover of foodie and thriller novel is not one that is commonly found on bookshelves, and Matsui cooks up a plot that is decidedly more interesting than any book reviewer’s lukewarm cooking puns. The novel follows the title character, Nathan Sherlock, and his sidekick, Bonnie Nakagowa, as they venture through an international conspiracy full of modern-day super-humans and, of course, a few supervillains.

Gravity Games starts off at a quick pace with a plotline that immediately pulls readers in. Nathan Sherlock, famously known around the world as “Nate the Nose” for his otherworldly sense of smell that renders him capable of creating literally orgasmic food and wine pairings, also dabbles in crime-solving. Thanks to his heightened sense of smell, Nate can conveniently detect the smell of murder, as well as other useful emotions, like fear, lying, and attraction. The novel seems to relish the fun and lightheartedness of being a foodie thriller novel: the last name Sherlock, the food puns, and the clichéd beautiful FBI agent. But the superficial fun can only sustain readers for so long, and unfortunately most of Matsui’s novel falls somewhat short of expectations.

Matsui’s thriller deserves a well-earned four stars for creating a completely unique plot and fascinating set of characters. The international mystery that dabbles in physics, finance, and genetics is certainly full of enough intrigue to keep readers motivated, and Matsui also weaves in modern issues like the Occupy Movement, sex trafficking, and the energy sector to keep the thriller somewhat grounded in reality. That perhaps, though, is Matsui’s downfall: by creating so many captivating characters and throwing in a myriad of plot twists, it is hard to follow the novel’s true focus. There are several competing story lines, and each is mesmerizing but feels squeezed for time in Matsui’s concise thriller. Matsui also packs his fast-paced novel full of one-of-a-kind characters, from mad scientists to vicious oil tycoons to mysterious ladies of the night. But apart from Nathan and Bonnie, most of the characters lack the development that their interesting backstories deserve, and it feels as if Matsui could have dedicated entire other novels to some of his supporting stars.

Matsui writes in clever and well-written turns of the tongue, keeping a quick stride to accompany Nate and Bonnie on their adventures. Gravity Games weaves an unbelievable, eye-popping series of events into one cohesive tale that culminates in a delicious finale, leaving readers drooling for the second installment of the Nate Sherlock Foodie Thriller Series. Part of the joy in reading about super-humans and fantastic events is simply how unrealistically fun they are, and Matsui embraces that. Though readers may be craving Aunt Lucy’s famous cabbage rolls by the end, readers will be craving a more thorough and in-depth novel by Matsui even more.

Pages: 266 | ASIN: B01755YLN4

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