Monday, February 18, 2013

Wheel of Time and Other Books,

A Memory of LightI am impatient. I am certainly impatient about receiving a book I have been waiting for for some 20 years. I was on a waiting list at the library for the final book in the Wheel of Time Series which is called A Memory of Light. I went from 12 to 7 and seem to have been stuck there; sod it I thought, and have ended up sending for it from I have been waiting too long for this book. Some years ago, Robert Jordan reported that he was sick, but he assured us, his readers, that he would be able to complete the series. Luckily, despite the sadness of Jordan’s death, Brandon Sanderson seems to have been able to finish the series which, apparently, was largely outlined by Robert Jordan in the first place. I think Brandon Sanderson has done a great job with the two books I’ve read.
I really don’t know why authors enter into something so huge, The Clan of the Cave BearGeorge R. R. Martin has done much the same thing. I no longer remember what the hell his books were about. I guess I need to re-read from the beginning. The first book was great, but somewhere along the way, he lost the brilliance and his later books have not been nearly as good, IMHOP. Another author like this is Jean M. Auel. Her first book. The Clan of the Cave Bear was absolutely brilliant, but after that her stories degenerated. They tried to make a movie of the first book but it was very badly done, I believe Jean Auel sued the film company. I think Robert Jordan sustained his narratives very well, but then he popped his clogs before he finished.

MoonsDreamingSmIn case you get the wrong impression, I don’t only read well established authors, for a start I read many books through Kindle which I usually get for free, but if I find them any good, I usually end up buying the sequels. Right now I am reading Children of the Rock, a duology by Susan Sizemore, Moons’ Dreaming and Moons‘ Dancing which I am enjoying. Then there are Alex J. Cavenaugh’s books, Cassa Star and Cassa Fire with Cassa Storm in the works. Great stories. Stephen Tremp has a trilogy out too – Breakthrough. All of which are excellent reads.

I am in shock, I have just seen the final episode of Season 3 of Downton Abbey which ended up with the accidental death of one of the principle characters. I can’t believe they did that to us, the audience. Now we have to wait a year before finding out how things go on.

We love lamb, but many people don’t enjoy it. This recipe suggests you can use beef if you wish.

Caribbean Grilled Lamb Skewers With Long Beanscaribbean_grilled_lamb_skewers_with_long_beans

By The Food Gal
WebMD Recipe from

12 servings
  • 3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup lime juice, fresh
  • 2 tablespoons lemon zest, grated
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seed
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon curry powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2  jalapeno peppers, minced
  • 3 pounds boneless lamb loin, or well-trimmed leg, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1 pound long beans, tips removed, left long or cut into 3-inch segments; or substitute green beans
  • 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
  • 12  wooden skewers, soak in a pan of water for at least 20 minutes (we have metal skewers so can skip this part)
  • Kosher salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  1. To prepare the lamb marinade, whisk together ½ cup of olive oil, lime juice, lemon zest, garlic, cumin, chili powder, curry powder, 2 teaspoons salt, cayenne, ¼ teaspoon black pepper, and jalapenos in a medium bowl. Taste and adjust salt, pepper, cayenne, and lime juice.
  2. Put lamb cubes and marinade into a large glass baking dish and toss, rubbing marinade all over lamb. Thread 4 to 5 pieces of lamb onto each skewer. Place skewers into baking dish, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 1 and up to 4 hours.
  3. While lamb marinates, preheat a grill or broiler to medium-hot and prepare beans. Sauté beans in remaining ¼ cup olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring frequently, until they are tender and begin to blister. Stir in butter, 1 teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon black pepper. When butter just begins to brown, transfer beans to a warm serving platter and drape with foil.
  4. Grill lamb, turning skewers every few minutes, until medium rare (internal temperature of 130 degrees), about 6 minutes. (Alternately, skewers can be broiled until medium rare.) Transfer skewers to a plate and let stand for 5 minutes.
  5. To serve, place long beans to the side, and lay skewers across them.
Have a great day.


  1. I remember that Clan of the Cave Bear movie. It wasn't very good. My YA series is five books and I would never do it again.

    1. You are so right, it wasn't very good.

      Five isn't as bad as 14 which is what Wheel of Time ended up as. I personally think, as a reader, a duology or trilogy is plenty.

  2. No way I'm writing something that massive. I gave up on Jordan's books years ago because it didn't look like it would ever end.

    1. I stuck with it and I'm glad I did, it really was an excellent saga, but I still think 14 books was way too many. I had to re-read them all recently to recap on what had been happening. Prefer your trilogy.

  3. Hello, Jo! I wanted to visit and say, "Nice to meet you!" to a fellow Spunky Soldier. :)

    I haven't read the Wheel of Time series yet, but my brother loved them. They've been on my to-read list for a looong time, but the problem is my list keeps growing and growing. I need a thousand lifetimes to read all the books I want!! I read the first two A Song of Ice and Fire books; I need to re-read them before I continue because I kind of forget what happened. My husband is reading the second book now.

    See you around the blogosphere, especially during A to Z!

    1. Nice to meet you Laura, I'm afraid I haven't got round to meeting anyone yet, time pressures just at the moment.

      I know what you mean about TBR books, its impossible to keep up. The Song of Ice and Fire started well, but I think the later books wandered somewhat. Why introduce the original family and their wolves when he then disposed of them. Waste of time I thought.