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Radio Girls A novelRADIO GIRLS A Novel
By Sarah-Jane Sratford

$16.00 New American Library
www.sarahjanestratford.com

From author Sarah-Jane Stratford comes RADIO GIRLS, a work of historical fiction based on the British Broadcasting Corporation in its infancy.
Maisie Musgrave is a twenty-something girl in search of a dream. When she’s hired as a secretary for the BBC, she can hardly believe her luck, as unemployment is still running rampant in London and good jobs for women are hard to find. Doing double duty as an undersecretary to both the Director General, John Reith and Hilda Matheson, the producer of Talks programming, Maisie must do her best to please everyone, all the time, which, although a tall order, is one she has a handle on. She quickly rises through the ranks to become Talks assistant and as her responsibilities grow so too does her sense of self, which changes her personal landscape.


Enter Simon Brock-Morland, a handsome writer for an alternative newspaper who hails from a wealthy family. He wants to sweep Maisie off of her feet, but her dedication to work keeps her from moving too quickly. As political unrest begins to butt heads with creative expressionism, the Talks department is trying to change the shape of their country by helping it find its voice. And in addition to the long hours Maisie puts in at the office, she and Hilda are spending many evenings working on a side project, as Maisie’s discovery of a secret fascist conspiracy comes to light. But when Simon is sent to Germany to attend to his family’s business, Maisie begins to question his loyalty to country and crown, while forces beyond her control bring her face to face with the challenge of her life.
Complete with cameo appearances by notable literary figures of the 1920’s such as Virginia Woolf, E.M. Forrester and T.S. Elliott, this well-researched novel will take you on the ride of your life.

Stratford has a talent for creating larger-than-life characters that veritably dance on the page, and who draw you in so closely you can almost hear them breathing. I was hooked from the first word and I couldn’t get this fascinating story out of my head, even when I wasn’t actively reading. A great title to add to your summer reading list, this is a novel you won’t want to miss.

Forgotten Days for Modern DaysFORGOTTEN WAYS FOR MODERN DAYS Kitchen Cures and Household Lore for a Natural Home and Garden
By Rachelle Blondel

$25.00 Perigee
www.dockandnettle.com

There was a time not that long ago, when chemically induced cleaning products were not the norm. People used things like white vinegar, lemon juice and baking soda to take care of the dirty work. But then, we got busy with our work-a-day lives and mass marketed cleaning products became the norm. This has led us to poison, not only our environment but, at the base of it all, our homes as well.

Luckily, however, there is a better way to keep our homes and ourselves sparkling clean and naturally beautiful, and Rachelle Blondel is here to tell us all about it in her new book FORGOTTEN WAYS FOR MODERN DAYS.
This handy guide is separated into four sections wherein Blondel gives us all of the tips and recipes we need to make our own products. In Section One: House and Home, we learn how to make everything from Forest Fresh Floor Cleaner to Beeswax Furniture Polish and even Homemade Paint. There are tips for keeping our whites white without bleach, getting stains out of fabric without commercial stain removers and we are introduced to the wonder of lemon and all its mighty cleaning powers.

Section Two: In The Garden, takes us into the garden where we learn how to Nourish the Soil Naturally, Plant What’s in Season and How to Keep Chickens. Section Three: Natural Health, introduces us to Vinegar and its myriad of uses such as softening blankets in the wash, killing fruit flies and banishing bad smells from your dog’s coat. Next, we are treated to treatments for everything that could ail us from colds and coughs to stomach aches, cuts and bruises, and even sunburn. Section Four: Natural Beauty provides us with recipes for such lovely concoctions as Almond and Rosemary Cleansing Cream, Sunny Sunflower Seed Mask and Homemade Infused Essential Oils.


This little bible for all things natural, organic and good for you is not only chock full of fantastic information, but it’s peppered throughout with gorgeous photos that seem to take you back to a simpler time, when chemicals did not rule the roost. Making your home a safer, more pleasant place to live is Ms. Blondel’s goal here, and it’s one that she achieves with grace, beauty and a great deal of panache.

The House on Primrose PondTHE HOUSE ON PRIMROSE POND A Novel
By Yona Zeldis McDonough

$15.00 NAL Accent
www.yonazeldismcdonough.com

From author Yona Zeldis McDonough comes her latest novel, THE HOUSE ON PRIMROSE POND a sweeping story of love, loss, redemption and the secret ties that bind.

 Historical novelist Susannah Gilmore is in mourning. After her husband dies unexpectedly, she uproots her two children and herself from their comfortable life in Brooklyn and re-plants them in Eastwood, New Hampshire, which is about as far from her former life as you could get. The summer home her parents left her seems like a perfect place to begin again, a sentiment Susannah’s daughter Cally hardly shares. But Jack, her youngest, is easier to sell on the idea, and the three of them begin set up housekeeping and go about the business of getting on with life. 

Various townspeople who remember Susannah’s parents fondly, such as Alice, her widowed neighbor and Janice, the town librarian, rally around her, as does Corbin, resident hunk and Susannah’s teenage crush. When it becomes clear that the crush wasn’t one sided, she and Corbin pick up where they wish they’d left off and they begin a romantic interlude; one more thing of which Cally does not approve.

As her daughter turns to Alice for support, Susannah wonders if she’s bitten off more than she can chew, both on the romantic front and at home. She’s begun to research and write a novel involving a local, 18th century crime, and while doing so, she has simultaneously stumbled upon an old, unsigned love letter addressed to her mother, in handwriting she doesn’t recognize. Unable to stop herself, she goes on a mission to discover the secrets of her mother’s past. And as these long-hidden secrets collide with her day-to-day life, which has become a minefield of emotions, she comes face-to-face with a secret that’s bigger than anything she ever could have imagined.

Elegant and effortless prose carries you away from the very first page and refuses to give up the ghost until the very last. Ms. Zeldis McDonough has a talent for painting her characters with the brush of familiarity, which makes you come to care about them as if they were living, breathing creatures. I was totally entranced by this novel. It is, hands down, a must read.

Lean In 15LEAN IN 15: 15-Minute Meals and Workouts to Keep You Fit and Healthy
By Joe Wicks

$24.99 William Morrow
www.thebodycoach.co.uk

Joe Wicks had a lot on his plate when he started posting 15 second cooking videos to Instagram from his Kitchen in 2014. As a personal trainer who ran boot camps, he was healthy, fit and successful. But he’d compiled a slew of recipes that took 15 minutes or less to cook and knew he had to get the word out. To hear him tell it, his friends thought he was crazy to undertake such a time-consuming project, but before long he had 975,000 Instagram followers and thousands of them were losing weight and getting in shape, thanks to his 90 Day Shift, Shape and Sustain Plan. Before long, his new cookbook LEAN IN 15 was born.

Filled with tasty, easy-to-cook recipes, this great cook book is divided into three sections with menus tailored for each one. Reduced-Carbohydrate features recipes for such scrumptious dishes as Cauliflower Couscous Chicken Salad, French Style Cod with Black Olives, Chili Con Avocado and Tomatoes, Eggs and Chorizo. Next we have the section that features Post-Workout Carbohydrate Refuel Recipes with dishes like Winner’s Protein Pancakes, In-A-Hurry Curry Fried Rice and Joe’s McLeanie Burger. And in the third section, Wicks features his Snacks And Treats recipes for such delightful treats as Chocolate And Almond Protein Cake, Joe’s Granola and Tuna And Zucchini Fritters. Wicks rounds things out by taking us through his HIIT (High Intensity Interval Training) method of working out, which also takes 15 minutes and, when coupled with his eating plan, is sure to make you less round in 90 days.

Peppered throughout with gorgeous color photographs that look good enough to eat, this is a must have for those who are looking for an easy, healthy way to get in fighting shape. Wicks, who hails from the UK, is quite the cut-up, (he calls broccoli “midget trees”) and his sense of humor not only makes this book a delight to read, but his enthusiasm makes you want to join in the fun on the way to getting fit.
 

www.Dishmag.com / Issue 181 - September 3169
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