Monday, June 29, 2009

The Time Traveler's Wife -- Audrey Niffenegger

The Time Traveler's Wife The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

My review

rating: 2 of 5 stars
The Time Traveler's Wife is a story about a man who travels back and forth in time and creates an enduring relationship with his future wife.

I loved Audrey Niffenegger's concept but the book fell far short of my expectations. Her characters were inconsistent and because of the inconsistencies it was difficult to become involved in their lives and care about their futures.

The biggest problem in the book is with Niffenegger's endless attempts to make her characters hip with long lists of subculture bands and the arts not to mention her use of obscene language. She tries much too hard to add hipster credibility and, frankly, it is forced and boring--the opposite of what she was trying to do with these characters.

The second problem with the story is the writing itself. While there are moments of greatness in the writing, most of the content is wordy and tiring yet somehow through all those words, wonderful minute details were lost leaving the characters lacking depth. There was an entire paragraph devoted to the contents of a shopping list but the anger Clare feels at always being left behind is only briefly mentioned at various points through the story.

I appreciate the general idea of the story. That story would have been a great story to tell. Unfortunately, it ended up hidden behind Niffenegger's idea of a hipster, wordy language and flat characters.

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Smoked Paprika Roasted Salmon with Wilted Spinach

Serves 8

1/4 cup orange juice
2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, divided
2 teaspoons thyme leaves, divided
2 pounds salmon fillets
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 bag (10 ounces) spinach leaves

Mix orange juice, 2 tablespoons of the oil and 1 teaspoon of the thyme in small bowl. Place salmon in a large glass dish. Add marinate; turn to coat well. Cover and refrigerate at least 30 minutes, longer for extra flavor.

Mix sugar, smoked paprika, cinnamon, orange zest, remaining 1 teaspoon thyme and sea salt in small bowl. Remove salmon from marinade. Place in a greased foil-lined baking pan. Discard any remaining marinade. Rub top of salmon evenly with smoked paprika mixture.

Roast salmon in preheated 400 degree F oven 10 to 15 minutes or until fish flakes easily with a fork.

Meanwhile, heat remaining 1 teaspoon oil in large skillet on medium heat. Add spinach; cook and stir 2 minutes or until wilted. Serve salmon over spinach.


Friday, June 12, 2009

Trunk Music

Trunk Music (Harry Bosch, #5) Trunk Music by Michael Connelly

My review

rating: 3 of 5 stars
Trunk Music is a good crime novel. The story flows nicely and the characters are interesting to read. It is exactly the novel you would expect in this genre.

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