Hello, little bit long time no speak (or read if I’m honest.)

Where I’ve been

So the last time I blogged was July 2017 which makes me feel a little bit sick. In the last 6 months I’ve broken up with my long term significant other (still friends), moved house (still in Greenwich,) moved into another room in the house (still lovely,) found a new job (still at the University of Greenwich) and reading/blogging just took a backseat. Almost to the point were I wasn’t sure I’d start up again. Although the main crux of my blogging silence was due to life bits and pieces I started to fall out of love with blogging (again.)

Every Girl Can

When I started My Little Book Blog I wanted to write and promote self-published authors. I thought they were unrepresented and wanted to help with that but quickly the floodgates opened and I was swamped. I have 500+ emails in my blogging inbox that I haven’t had a chance to read let alone respond to and instead of tackling it I walked away from it. It also felt like less people are blogging, or writing; bloggers would rather write a long Instagram caption, or create a story and I wondered whether I should do the same. However, despite being worried about stats, and readers, and comments I want back in. I want to barble on about books.

What do I think is next for this blog

I want to make the blog a little more based around books I really really love. Crime/thriller/horror are the genre’s I enjoy and I want to make them a priority. I do want to post about foods that I like making and eating while reading but I’m not going to be as strict in my ways. I’m going to bring back my Week Commencing posts on a Monday, book reviews will come on Wednesday’s and on a Friday (every couple of weeks) will be something book or food related, I think. I probably won’t stick to a schedule but I miss pouring my heart out here. I also saw a tweet last week that commented that many bloggers, like I have, just disappear off the face of the blogging world with no comment, no good-bye and instead of thinking, “glad I don’t have to write for my blog anymore” I felt sad. So I’m back and I’m excited to get stuck back in.

Vienna Book

So Lizzy, what’s her jam

I thought, since it’s been a year it was worth noting a few bits about me by answering some questions randomly generated by a computer. Enjoy.

What is your favorite season?

Autumn. This heat is killing me, and I cannot wait for gloves, giant cardigans and ankle boots.

What do you think your life will look like in 10 years?

I’ll be 25 in two days, so in ten years I’ll be 35. Hopefully I’ll have moved to the sea, have a dog or two, still working in marketing (specifically CRM) and with someone I love. Sounds fabby.

Are you a morning or a night person?

Morning, definitely.

Where did you go on your last vacation?

I went to Poland and it was really wonderful. We ate a lot of soup, drank quite a bit of vodka and did a lot of walking/exploring.

What is one weird thing about you?

Just one thing? I can’t stand to look or eat or touch (oddly) jelly.

Where do you currently live?

London, specifically Greenwich.

What was your first job?

I worked for a McDonalds and I still addicted. Filet of fish please.

What do you miss most about being a kid?

Spontaneous plans; sleep-overs, days doing nothing, bike rides, swing ball, cloud watching, that kind of stuff.

So hello again, feels good.

Memory of Water

Gimoka Coffee

I love coffee. A lot of readers do.

Gimoka recently got in touch and asked whether I wanted to try their compatible Nespresso Capsules. I couldn’t say no.

Gimoka offer coffee lovers the chance to explore a range of compatible Nespresso Capsules obtained from a careful selection of the best coffee around the world. The capsules are blended according to the best italina tradition by Gimoka coffee artisans. Gimoka just want to offer you the best blends for a fraction of the cost without any compromise on quality.

Also it’s good to note; historically  coffee has not always been considered healthy. Due to the improvement in food science analysis, the situation today is very different. The majority of coffee constituents are in fact bio-active: they have a positive effect on the metabolism of our cells. Furthermore, coffee contains several vitamins and minerals and it is a good source of antioxidants. So get pouring.

Blend?

I have tried number 10, 5 and 7 (Deciso, Lungo and Cremoso) from the Gimoka range. The Cremoso has an intense aroma but is sweet to taste. It’s a blend obtained from the best Robusta coffee beans from Central and South America and India with an intense and envelopment aroma for a full and lasting taste. The Lungo is less strong with a slightly more bitter taste but equally delicious.  In terms of usability they work brilliantly in my machine. No overflow, no water issues; which is all good.

Favourite?

Number 10 however is my favourite.

The Deciso Nespresso Compatible coffee capsule gives a strong, intense and rich taste. This espresso has a lot of body, warmth and gives off scents of both cocoa and dried fruits. There’s a froth on the top that tastes delicious and the roasting leaves a rounded after-taste. I like my coffee strong and this tastes delicious.

Overall thoughts?

It’s also a great way to have a true espresso at home. Or in the office with your Nespresso coffee machines using the Gimoka Nespresso compatible capsules. I’m a big fan.

Gimoka Coffee Pods

Gimoka Coffee Pods

Vegetarian food is delicious and easy to cook. I recently made an incredible split pea dal, courgette rosti and egg combo and I wanted to share.
This is a really simple but delicious recipe that you can make in bulk and eat in loads of different ways. With flatbreads, spread on toast and then a fried egg on top, mixed into scrambled eggs. Or served with rosti’s and eggs. Here’s the recipe.
Delicious Yellow Split Pea Dal

Put in your trolley

250g yellow split pea
1 litre water
3/4 tsp turmeric
1/2 red chilli cut into two large pieces
1tbsp vegetable oil
1 small onion finely chopped
2 cloves garlic finely chopped
2cm ginger finely chopped
1/2 red chilli finely chopped
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp cumin seed
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp garam masala
Juice 1/2 lemon

Step One

Rince the split peas until the water runs clear. Add them to the pan and a litre of water. Bring to the boil and then simmer for 30/40 minutes. (Add extra water if it begins to stick.) In a separate pan fry the onion, chilli, oil, garlic, garam masala and salt. Once the split peas are ready stir through and you’re there.
We served this with a courgette and potato rosti.

Step Two

Grate, or spiralise and chop 100g of courgette and 100g potato. (We used Charlotte potatoes.) Squeeze out all the moisture you can and shape into patties. Fry in a pan for a two minutes ish and then flip. At the same time fry two eggs sunny side up.
Serve the dal with the rosti and fried egg. Perfection.

Number’s if you’re bothered

Depending on how much dal you eat (it is delicious) this comes to around 400cals per portion. (If you split the dal into four.) If you want you can replace the egg with more vegetables to make it vegan too.)

Recommended Reading

I often include a book to read but this time I recommend cooking this dal with a friend/partner and cuddling up together on the sofa in your pjs. It’s the perfect weekend comfort food.
Delicious Yellow Split Pea Dal
Delicious Yellow Split Pea Dal

I like reading random facts about people – all the ins and outs that you would never think to ask. I’m not always great at asking questions, I think social media and texting has made talking really superficial. ‘Yu kay? Ye You? – Good WKend?’ I know we don’t all speak like that, but what was the last time you really asked someone a question. Here’s a few randomly generated questions from your truly.

What is your favorite thing about summer?

Ice cream. Is there anything better than sitting in the sunshine, sunglasses on, limbs splayed out, devouring an ice cream? Favourite flavours include mint chocolate chip, double chocolate, anything coffee flavoured, raspberry, or tiramisu.

What’s better, having high expectations or having low expectations?

Is it bad to say low expectations? As a kid I would have said high – but recently I’ve been better at taking life as it comes. If it goes well – brilliant. If it doesn’t? Well find another way to sort it out.

What is your favorite candy/chocolate?

Malteasers, boiled fruit sweets and dairy milk with Oreo’s. Big fan of crunch chocolate bars too.

What is your middle name?

Thomson – it’s my mothers maiden name and I kind of like it.

If you could choose to have any useless super power, what would you pick?

Be able to read squirrels minds.

Or maybe something to do with prossecco.

What is the first thing you do in the morning?

Turn of that dang alarm. Search my phone to check something terrible hasn’t happened during the night and then drag myself out of bed to brush my teeth.

Do you like to plan things out or be spontaneous?

I’ve always been a planner, not leaving any details out and getting super stressed if anything goes wrong. But recently I’ve been leaving things a lot more to chance. Life is a little too short to panic to much. Keeping things spontaneous is brighter.

What do you do to stay in shape?

CARDIO – at least three times a week and a lot of walking. I can’t drive (although not the end of the world in London) but I have always walked/wandered/explored a hell of a lot. I’m going to go and circle Greenwich park a couple of times this afternoon.

Do you shower in the morning or evening?

In the evening generally (after said cardio ^.) I have super long hair and it’s much less frizzy and crazy when it dries naturally overnight.

What was the last movie you saw?

Guardians of the Galaxy 2 – baby Groot is a little legend.

So there you have it – 10 questions about me. I’m off to find a re-run of Guardians and malteasers. Byee.

 

I recently went to Crete and it was fantastic.

Time to relax, time to take a minute, try and get a tan and read. Lots of reading. I downloaded The Memory of Water novel onto my Kindle purely because of the cover. I was desperately downloading books before my holiday and didn’t have time to really go through and look at every single one. The Memory of Water appearing under the search Free Romance, but that’s not strictly what is was. Here’s what I thought (either way.)

Blurb

Slade Harris will do anything for a story, including murdering the woman he loves.

Slade doesn’t think twice about jumping out of a plane or conducting disastrous love affairs to gather material for his work, but his self-indulgent life is catching up with him. Stumbling through his late thirties hopeless and a little drunk, Slade has a dazzling, dangerous idea which will change his life forever. It’s going to be Slade’s ultimate story … and all he’s hoping for is to survive it.

My Review

I didn’t read the blurb before beginning the book, but it goes a little like this. Haunted by his past and struggling with writer’s block novelist Slade Harris plans a theoretical murder in order to the get words flowing again. When the events of his outline begin to play out he can’t control where fiction and reality blur. Set in modern day South Africa the action moves between rich suburbs and seedy towns. The plot moves with pace and constantly keeps you on your toes guessing what is real and what is only in Slade’s head.

Slade Harris is an author who likes to experience life high’s and lows to feed his writing. He carries around a car load of baggage from a family tragedy and the author documents it sublimely. The style has a contemporary crime novel feel with modern and classic culture references. The twist at the end left me off guard but I had an inkling. I liked the hints of the locale language that helped place me as a reader in South Africa. The place depicted add a flavour without too much focus on the country and its recent history.

The writing is phenomenal (and I don’t say that too often.) It has a melancholic, deliciousness to it. Slade is a hedonist who is too self-absorbed but definitely lovable. He sees himself as a Jay Gatsby character; a little shady, with brushes with the law and a vagueness about his sister’s death. We do in the end have the stories of Eve and Emily tied up. I had to definitely re-assess Slade, but I still thought he was wonderful. It’s a crime novel but the sex scenes are evocative, dark and delicious. Big fan.

Final Thoughts

The ending isn’t perfect. We have a double ending which is interesting but doesn’t quite get pulled off. Otherwise, I adored this. I couldn’t stop myself from reading it. The plot is excellent, the characterisation is fantastic, the themes and writing are a storm. It’s one of those books I find super difficult to review because it’s everything I was from a book. Just go read it. It’s bloody gorgeous.

Amazon Goodreads