Rory Gilmore reading challenge book review: 151.) Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly by Anthony Bourdain

Hi my hot cute girly geeks and boy geeks of course. I finished my mandatory books for January and high on my wanting to read books from the Rory Gilmore reading challenge was the book by Antony Bourdain.

Kitchen Confidential

I have a thing for chefs, cooking, eating and everything. This has to do with the fact I wanted to be a chef when I grew up. Until I was about 13 I had every intention to go to culinary school. Until I found out it was really hard to get into and it just didn’t seem appealing anymore for some reason.

That doesn’t change the fact I still love cooking and baking. During college I even worked as a cook in a Cuban tapas restaurant. It was a very small kitchen. We had a chef, myself and on busy nights a boy for washing the dishes. Along with bar staff and waiters and such. My boyfriend hooked me up with the job as one of the chefs was the bassist in his band. I did mis-en-place, worked the stove, did appetizers, desserts and washing up if needed.

I knew working in a kitchen wasn’t romantic. It’s a tough job, hot, smelly, dirty and a man’s world. You really need to have a thick skin, especially if you are a woman. I mean, the intellectual level of talk in the kitchen is about six feet under and if you aren’t discussing orders or prepping food stuff it basically is all about boobs, dicks and sex. You need to be one of the guys if you want to fit it. You need to be able to lust after the waitresses just as the boys, able to stand in your underwear in order to change into your kitchen uniform in front of the guys and be able to take comments about your ass and boobs. You need to be able to make dirty jokes, talk about booze, wave around heavy and very sharp knives. You need to be able to have your hands and arms splashed by hot oil and not bitch about it. You need to be able handling the bloody finger of your chef before he faints (he looked so pale, but it still gives me the giggles thinking about me fussing and bandaging his finger) You need to be able handling the yelling if you’re not fast enough or screwed up a dish. You need to be able handling the gross stuff in the kitchen (mice droppings and food falling on the ground and being put back into the pan ready for serving). Oh god I really miss it.

I learned a lot during that year and a half I worked there. I know my body now wouldn’t be able to handle it anymore, but reading Anthony Bourdain’s books did bring back so much memories. I enjoyed every minute of it.

The show he has on TV, No Reservations, is really brilliant and I never knew he’d written a book about his culinary adventures growing up and him becoming the chef he is today. I don’t think anything is exaggerated, especially how things in the kitchen go.

If you want to know what goes on inside a kitchen and have a strong stomach, are not afraid of swearing, drug and alcohol abuse and enjoying cooking or knowing more about restaurants, this is the book for you. It’s an easy read, Anthony writes like he talks, a high pace filled with alcohol, smoking and swearing. You will really enjoy this.

He takes you along his youth, what made him passionate about food in the first place, how he ended up working his first job in a restaurant, going to culinary school, his career, ups and downs, his drug abuse (by the way, what I gathered during my time in the kitchen, although I personally didn’t participate, the drugs part is true as well), how he got clean and his act together and pretty much everything else. Until his job at Les Halles, working as the chef.

Have you read this book or other culinary books? Do you enjoy cooking or eating out in restaurants?

Love, your own hot cute girly geek, Mendy

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How to survive the world cup if you’re not a sports geek.

Hi my hot cute girly geeks and boy geeks of course. The world cup has started when you are reading this. And I’m not into soccer or football, depending on where you are living. Hell, I’m not into sports period. And I don’t know how it is over where you guys are living, but my country and fellow Dutchies are going crazy. My whole country turns orange, our national colour. And I mean everything, foods, drinks, houses, and people.

So I decided to help out my fellow geeks who despise the craziness just as I do.

I asked my fellow geeks online how they would deal with surviving the world cup and we came up with a pretty epic list.

Stella is gonna hide in a bomb shelter and avoid human interaction at all costs. During said time in the bomb shelter she is gonna read books, binge watch all the TV series and bake a shitload of cupcakes. Hmm, wonder where I can find a bomb shelter which provides such things.

Ilana is going to catch up with her DVD sets from TV series and movies, as well as a huge stack of books. And she is gonna add it with lots of edible goodies and she wants to invite other geeks over to enjoy all these things. Well, count me in!

My good friend Lex added moving to the US, apparently they don’t consider football a sports. Ok, maybe to rigorous to do, but maybe an extended holiday may be a good idea for the next world cup.

Laura gave the tip that most TV networks also have programs for non-sports lovers. She mentioned one of our Dutch networks are doing a rerun on detective shows, including Sherlock. And if you’re into romantic movies, another Dutch TV channel shows those almost every night.

Tracy, my favourite bear polare suggests going to libraries, museums, book stores because they will be empty.

And Nieke who is a massive geek and epic cosplayer loves all the football madness and her tip is to try and understand the rules, maybe you’ll enjoy it.

Lauren gave the tip to create your own world cup of TV shows. Creating team with random episode vs episode. Winner is your favourite episode and continue watching the rest of the show as a reward!.

My own tips:

  • Have a geeky picnic, the weather is nice, team up with fellow geeks and try to come up with geeky recipes.
  • Learn how to crochet, you can find excellent tutorials online and ravelry is full of epic geeky patterns.
  • Fill your mp3 player with audiobooks and listen to them to drown out the craziness.
  • Start sewing your own cosplay outfit.
  • Participate into Camp NaNo in July.
  • Prepare for GISHWHES!!!

Just check my blog to get ideas about what to watch and what to read, and if any of you geeks want to meet up to escape the madness just let me know.

So how are things in your country, do you have any other survival tips, share in the comment section so other geeks can enjoy.

Love, your own hot cute girly geek Mendy.

The Petrosian Invitation by T.P. Keating, a book review

Hi my hot cute girly geeks and boy geeks. The perks of running a book reviewing blog is that sometimes authors find your blog, contact you and ask you to read their books. Oh and in the process they actually provide you with a book to read. I love free books and I’m to Dutch to turn such an offer down 😉

That’s how you end up with this latest review. And just let me say, vampires, Russian Culture, cooking and a to die for Chocolate dessert? Oh yes please! Beware of some spoilers, although I try to keep them to a minimum.

About the book:

  • ASIN: B00DQ9JSGY
  • edition language: English
  • Author: T.P. Keating
  • Genre: vampire romance novel

add-to-goodreads

 

 

Synopsis according to Goodreads:

Oleg Petrosian, the self-made Russian Billionaire, wonders when his un-beating heart will experience a glimmer of love. On a business trip to London, to seal a gas deal, he meets Sam Latham, the chef at a swanky restaurant in South Kensington. After she caters for a business meeting at his nearby home, his private Learjet (flown by his cosmonaut sister) whisks Oleg, Sam and her younger actress sister to Oleg’s cliff top home in Russia’s Anapa, a health resort on the Black Sea. But can their fledgling romance survive Oleg’s deep, dark secret?

About the Author:

Hmm, I have to say this author seems to be as mysterious as Oleg. All I could find about the author was on Amazon:

I live for writing, and travel has always been an awesome source of inspiration for me. I love my cats – which mean I cannot travel so much nowadays. At home with 6 cats and my wife, I am never far from my keyboard. I was a former semi-pro musician; until my wife convinced me to switch to writing (she’s full of good ideas like that). You can contact me by email at keatingwrites@yahoo.com. Or drop by my website at www.tpkeating.com.

My thoughts:

The fact I read this book in just 2 days (and I had to work those 2 days) says enough about me that I really liked it. I mean, I’m a sucker for vampire novels, mix that with Russian culture (which I’m also interested in) and some cooking and I am sold.

And my biggest issue with this particular novel is that it’s too short. Now don’t worry I’m going into a bitching mode. But I like more elaborated books. Sometimes the story feels too rushed or things aren’t explained to properly. For example I would love to read more about Oleg’s background. And this is addressed in the book briefly I want more explanation. Or Sam going through the motions a bit more. I mean, she accepts Oleg’s invitation a bit too easy for my taste, dragging along her sister into a big adventure. Certainly towards the ending, which came way too early for my taste.

But Oleg’s Russian background is a relief for all the current American sparkling vampires walking around. Finally a bit more man instead of teenage boys swooping up the public.

I loved Sam’s no nonsense attitude and hard working attitude towards life. It gives it a ‘real’ feeling to the story. And the fact that she’s a female chef (where do I get the recipe for that Mousse au Chocolate Noir???) is a big bonus for me. She’s not some troubled young female in need of rescue. (Thank god for that one).

I like books that have a different outtake towards vampires instead of walking along the better known paths of vampire history. And T.P. Keating certainly delivers on that front.

I don’t know if this book is getting a second part or is going to be re-written into a longer novel or if it’s gonna stay the way it is. But I found it funny, well-written, new in its genre, a bit of romance, which is always good and it made me hunger for more.

Where to get your own copy:

buy-on-amazon.combuy-on-amazon.co.uk

 

 

My rating:

I rate this book 7 out of 10. And that’s just based of the fact I want more. So should you read it? Yes definitely. If you like strong female characters, handsome Russian vampires and a bit of romance added in the mix. So go get your own copy and leave a nice review on Goodreads for this author!

Top 10 on Thursday, 10 geeky gifts for your geeky girlfriend

Hi hot cute girly (and boy) geeks of mine. This time a guide with 10 geeky gifts for your geeky girlfriend. We geeky girls are not like any other girls so the normal rules of gift giving don’t apply, but not to worry, here is a list what you should get your geeky girl!

Because we geeky girls come in different styles, first thing to do is find out what kind of geeky girl you have. Is she a gaming geek, IT geek, gadget geek, comic geek, book geek, TV geek or another type of geek? But beware, we geeky girls don’t usually like just one subject. In my case, I’m a TV-loving, book reading, IT and gadget geek.

10. Books, and I don’t mean e-books, but paper books. Go through her bookcase, see what series she likes and which edition she is missing and buy her that. Also pay attention to the fact if she has hard cover editions or paperbacks, we usually like our books to match.

09. Or even better, if you can score the autograph of her favorite writer! Most writers are nowadays easily approachable trough social media. Explain the reason and maybe you get lucky. And if you can combine a new book your geeky girlfriend doesn’t have with an autograph in it, you score! Big time!

08. New season of her favorite TV-show. Like all geeky girls we love DVD’s more than downloads. She if she’s nuts about a particular show. It shouldn’t be too much trouble to find out, because she won’t stop talking about it. And buy her that new season.

07. Even better, if possible, find out if the actors from her favorite TV show attend a convention near you and take her there. Be sure to check the website of the convention and see if taking photos with these actors are possible, usually you have to buy tickets for these too. It would be a shame if you took her to a convention and she can’t take a photo with her favorite actors!

06. Gadgets! A gadget to make your geeky girls life a little easier. For example. I once got a media box from one of my ex-boyfriends. It allows me to watch my downloads on TV, instead of my laptop. Best gift ever! Or buy her a fancy looking on the road chargers for if one of her electricity powered devises turns out empty on the road. (I don’t go anywhere without a Smartphone, mp3 player and e-reader, and nothing gets my mood down if one of these turns out empty).

05. Games, you have 3 different gaming geeky girls. The PC/game console gamer geek, the AD&D gaming geek and board gaming geek. In case of PC/ game console geek, buy that new game she is waiting for. Or buy something she can use on her PC or game console to make gaming easier. In case of AD&D, maybe some nice looking dice always works. Or there are a lot of cool D20 stuff on the internet. And board games. Again, find out which one she already has. Like, I collect monopoly games and it’s cool if you can find a special edition.

04. Home cooked meal. Who says that the fastest way through a man’s heart is his stomach? That applies for geeky girls also. And don’t cook mac and cheese. Think more like a Tardis Pizza, or a medieval meal in style of Game of Thrones, vampire diaries cupcakes with fangs. So ask our mother, sister, neighbor, whatever to help you prepare this nice meal and don’t forget the mead, or honey whine with your dinner.

03. Build her stuff! Only if you are a handy man geek! Look through the internet, there are a lot of cool geeky thing you can build her. Build her a tardis! http://youtu.be/rtWUrJU46M8 or what about a book chair, or one of these nice tissue boxes: http://blog.kanojo.de/2011/01/05/geek-ish-tissueboxes/ (p.s. we don’t mind if you cheat and hire someone to build us something cool, we won’t tell)

02. This is for the lazy geeks. A gift certificate for Think Geek: http://www.thinkgeek.com/ But don’t use this one too often.

01. Jewelry. We love shiny things just like any other girl. But please, don’t buy us the LOTR ring or Arwens evenstar! Too cheesy! Think more in the line of this transformers ring. Or like one of my ex-boyfriends did. He ordered custom made earrings which looked like dragon wings, and these where made with a 3D printer. Those where awesome! Although he is gone, I still have the earrings and I love them!

I hope you found this useful. So guy geeks, use this handy guide to buy a nice present for your girly geek. And girly geeks, send this blog over to your boyfriends! And if you still have trouble, go to her best geeky friend and ask for help!

Love your hot cute girly geek!