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Fender: The Golden Age [Standard Edition]
Fender: The Golden Age [Standard Edition]
by Martin Kelly
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £25.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Fabulous Fender, 25 Oct. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely Octopus Books on Twitter.

This is a delightful and interesting book and a must for any Fender or guitar enthusiasts.

Charting the history of Fender, from the birth of Leo Fender in 1909 through to the company he formed and covers electric guitars and amplifiers made during the period 1946 to 1970, this is a fascinating insight into all the Fender guitars and associated equipment. There is mention of the artists that used fender guitars with a whole chapter devoted to Jimi Hendrix.

Although the font is fairly small, each page is crammed with lovely photographs, that makes it an easy read for even the unitiated like myself but will no doubt keep true enthusiasts entranced for hours! This will make a wonderful gift for my guitar obsessed husband!


Macaroons & Biscuits (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
Macaroons & Biscuits (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
by Australian Women's Weekly
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Biscuit Heaven, 25 Oct. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely @CookAWW on Twitter.

Having a sweet toothed family, I was looking forward to getting this book and I was not dissappointed.

As with all AWW books, the presentation is excellent: Clear, easy to understand recipes with lovely glossy photographs.

After a brief introduction, the book is split into chapters that cover Plain Biscuits, Filled Biscuits, Macaroons, Biscotti and Slices. At the end there is a useful glossary and conversion chart.

Favourites so far have been Mandarin Polenta Biscuits, Lime & Ginger Kisses and Apple, Cranberry & White Chocolate Biscotti - the biscotti is so much nicer than shop bought varieties.

If you have a family who loves biscuits (and who doesn't!), this will be perfect for you. It would also be ideal for making up some home-baked gifts for christmas - a real personal treat!


Bake & Cook with Kids (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
Bake & Cook with Kids (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
by Susan Tomnay
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.41

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Baking can be fun!, 26 Sept. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the love @CookAWW on Twitter.

If you're looking for something to do with your children or grandchildren that involves hours of fun then this book is definately for you!

The book starts with some basic tips for cooking with kids such as pesonal hygiene and what clothes and footwear to wear.

It then goes through the alphabet with a recipe for each letter. For example C is for cookies, E is for Eggs,Q is for Quesadillas etc There are a two or more recipes for most letters.

Each recipe is broken down in to easy to follow steps with lovely colour pictures to show you what you are making. There are recipes for different levels/ages such as an easy recipe for banana and blueberry bread or pizza faces through to the more complex watermelon sorbet and citrus mousse.

An excellent way of engaging children in a fun activity and introducing them to different foods. From my experience, kids are much more likely to try new things if they have had a hand in making them!


Pies: Savoury & Sweet (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
Pies: Savoury & Sweet (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
by The Australian Women's Weekly
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Pies!, 26 Sept. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely @cookAWW on Twitter.

I am such a fan of the AWW cook books and I love pies so I was eagerly awaiting this book and the opportunity to try some recipes out.

The book starts with a very useful step by step guide to pastry with pictures making each step very easy to follow. The book is then split into chapters covering: Poultry pies, Seafood pies, Meat pies, Vegetable pies and finishing with Sweet pies and tarts.

The back cover includes a conversion chart and some helpful tips for pastry decoration.

The recipes are well set out with easy to follow instructions and lovely colour photographs for every dish. There is a good variety of different types of pies and as an added bonus not all the pies were pastry based - some had scone and crumble type toppings instead.

Favourites of mine include: Vegetable and Lentil Potato Pie, Double Crust Pizza, Onion and Smoked Cheddar Tarts and Vanilla Custard Pie.


Sweet Puddings & Pies (The Australian Women's Weekly Minis)
Sweet Puddings & Pies (The Australian Women's Weekly Minis)
by Australian Women's Weekly
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.50

5.0 out of 5 stars Sweet Heaven, 16 Aug. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely Cook AWW and was looking forward to a sweet treat and I was not dissapointed!

If you've got a sweet tooth (like me!)you will love this little gem of a book.

It's split simply into the two sections: Puddings - with further sub chapters on crumbles and trifles; and Pies - with further sub chapters on easy puff pies, easy shortcrust pies and (somewhat away from the main title) ice-cream toppings! But then who wouldn't want to serve a lovely pie or crumble without ice-cream and these delicious sauces just finish them off perfectly.

The recipes are well laid out, simple to follow with lovely colour pictures.

Favourites up to now have been Summer Pudding, Peach & Amaretti crumble, Banoffee Pie and Baked Passionfruit Tart. Lovely!


I Love to Bake
I Love to Bake
by Tana Ramsay
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars More than Baking, 19 July 2011
This review is from: I Love to Bake (Hardcover)
I was sent this book to review by the lovely Octopus Books. Having perused many of hubby Gordon's cookery books, this was the first one of Tana's books that I had seen. I did wonder whether it was a case of jumping on Gordon's coat tails but most definately Tana is an accomplished cook in her own right.

The title of the book is a little deceptive as I expected a book full of cakes and puddings but also included are numerous main courses and starter dishes.

The book is split into ten chapters plus an introduction and acknowledgments section and as well as the expected chapters such as Cakes & Cupcakes, Biscuits & Traybakes, Puddings and Sweet Pies & Tarts there are also chapters covering the unexpected Savoury Pies & Tarts, Meat Bakes and Fish & Vegetable Bakes plus a Bread chapter, an Easter, Halloween & Christmas Chapter (perfect for baking with children) and a whole chapter on Chocolate!!

The recipes are clearly set out with a foreword from Tana and are straightforward and easy to follow. Some such as Swiss Roll with Raspberry Jam have step by step pictures making it even easier to follow.

My only criticism would be that not all the recipes have a photo with them. I like to be able to see what the finished recipe should look like even if mine don't turn out that way!

Favourite recipes from the book include: Orange and Poppy Seed Cake; Blueberry Flapjacks; Lemon Tart with Blackcurrants and Asparagus, Marscapone & Cashel Blue Slices.


Savoury Bakes (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
Savoury Bakes (The Australian Women's Weekly Essentials)
by The Australian Women's Weekly
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Comfort Food at its best, 19 July 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely @CookAWW on Twitter. I was very excited to receive this book as any sort of bakes that can be made ahead of time and then set to cook in the oven on a timer so that its ready when I get home works very well for me!!

This cookbook doesn't disappoint and as a vegetarian I was very pleased to see so many veggie recipes (or easily converted) included in the book.

The book is split into six sections: Pasta, Vegetables, Potatoes, Fish, Chicken and Meat plus a Glossary section and a very handy conversion chart. The recipes are clearly laid our with lovely colour pictures of the finished dish (always a winner in my eyes!).

Not really a book for the dieter as it includes real good hearty comfort food but you could adapt some if you needed to. Established favourites already include: Rocket Pesto and Spaghetti Frittata; Spaghetti Rosa Bake; Pumpkin, Spinach and Ricotta Canneloni and Pastitsio.


Spice It Up (Enhanced Apple): Fabulocious recipes to spice up your life
Spice It Up (Enhanced Apple): Fabulocious recipes to spice up your life
by Levi Roots
Edition: Hardcover

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spice World - The Kitchen!, 30 Jun. 2011
I was sent this cookbook to review by the lovely Octopus Books. My family all love spicy food so I was looking forward to trying out some of the recipes!

The book is really well presented and starts with an interesting and amusing introduction from Levi with hints and tips and some funny anecdotes from his childhood growing up in Jamaica.

There are then 12 further chapters with interesting and mouthwatering titles such as 'Sugar, Honey & Chocolate', 'Limes, Oranges & Other Citrus Fruits' and 'Mangos, Pineapples & Bananas' to name but a few. There is then a spice glossary to finish the book.

What surprised (and delighted!) me about the book ws the number of deserts and the number of vegetarian (or easily adaptable) recipes it contained.

Each recipe contains a foreword from Levi and they are easy to follow with further tips on how to cut and prepare the ingredients etc. The photographs are very clear and inviting and my only (minor) criticsm of the book is that there are a number of recipes without pictures. I always love to see what the finished product should look like.

The recipes tried so far have been a hit with favourites being Huevos Rancheros, Mustardy Macaroni Cheese, BBQ lime & Bay Haloumi with Red Onions in Pitta Bread and White Chcololate & Vanilla Mousse with Strawberry & Black Peppercorn Sauce (a real winner!)

If you love spicy food (not necessarily hot food), you will find lots here to capture your imagination and tastebuds!


200 Risottos & Rice Dishes: Hamlyn All Colour Cookbook
200 Risottos & Rice Dishes: Hamlyn All Colour Cookbook
by Hamlyn Cookbooks
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.99

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Real Good Comfort Food, 23 Jun. 2011
I was sent this book to review by the lovely Octopus Books. As a vegetarian I am a huge fan of risottos and rice dishes so couldn't wait to see what different dishes there would be to inspire me. I wasn't disappointed.

Like all of the hamlyn all colour cookbooks, this books is a handy size and easy to use in the kitchen. The introduction gives you lots of information about different types of rice and how to cook them and then it's broken into seven sections covering 'It's ready', 'salads', 'finger food', 'wok, 'takes time', 'paella' and even 'desserts'.

The recipes are clearly laid out with easy to follow instructions and a full colour picture of the dish on the opposite page - this gets a definite thumbs up from me as I so hate cook books that don't show you what the finished dish should look like!

Lots of lovely recipes for vegetarians and non-vegetarians with the stars being the risottos - one of my favourite comfort foods. My particular favourites are:Rice with Leeks, Ginger and Cumin, Lemon Vine Leaves, Saffron Risotto with Ceps and Beetroot Risotto.


Extraordinary Dogs (TV Tie in)
Extraordinary Dogs (TV Tie in)
by Elizabeth Wilhide
Edition: Paperback

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A real feel good book, 5 Feb. 2011
I was given this book to review by the lovely Quadrille Books and I wasn't sure what to expect. I tend to find that books that accompany a TV series don't always stand up on their own or you really need to have watched the series to follow it properly but this one was different. It stood up perfectly well for an enjoyable read regardless of whether you had watched or intended to watch the TV series.

The book has nine chapters - the first two looking at general characteristics of dogs and different breeds. The remaining chapters look at different types of 'extraordinary' dogs for example dogs that are trained to detect illnesses before we would ever notice them in 'Doctor Dogs' and in 'Rescue Dogs' it looks at dogs that are involved in helping search and rescue teams like searching for survivors in earthquakes.

The book includes 38 true life stories that really lift the spirits. My particular favourite is Miniature Schnauzer Scamp who became sensitive to when residents of a nursing home were nearing the end of their days and enabled relatives to say goodbye to their loved ones.

An interesting heart warming book that tells tales of incredible intelligence and bravery - a great gift for all my dog loving friends!


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