Friday, 29 August 2014

The Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty: Review

The Husband's Secret
 After having read and liked Big Little Secrets, I made up my mind to finally read Liane Moriarty's most famous novel , which had been at the top of all best sellers' lists for a long time.

 I am not a big fan of best sellers, though, they usually end up disappointing me. I believe that the fact that a book is bought or read by a lot of people doesn't  necessarily mean that it is actually loved by all of them. Off the top of my head I can think of several  very popular books which were not only bad literature, but also  incredibly boring.

The Husband's Secret is not boring at all, in fact, it is quite entertaining and horrible at the same time. The lives of three perfectly nice women are turned upside down by the wrongdoings of some wicked men: a murderer, a cheater and a neglected son.The author has chosen men again as the evil characters of her novel. I felt that women were  depicted as victims and as the responsible ones who, in spite of everything, have to make things right in the end. The male characters were apparently  unable to clean their own messes , and I didn't like this idea.

I also disliked  the way the book ended. It reminded me of the old saying: An eye for an eye.But in this case the guilty ones weren't the only ones who suffered. That part of the book was by far the hardest one I have read in a long time. The last chapter of the book makes the horror in the story seem a little more bearable , but just a little.

The novel poses great questions,though : How far would you go to protect your loved ones? Does love justify everything?

The book is very easy to read .The combination of everyday life and life-changing events is engaging and  the female characters are very appealing. No wonder it has became such a huge best seller.

On a lighter note ,while reading the book,  I googled  pavlova , I had never heard of that popular dessert that Aussies like so much. I would certainly love to taste it.

Korean bookmark

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Genki Sushi at Langham Place Hong Kong



Genki Sushi is a very popular and affordable restaurant chain in Hong Kong. I went to the beautiful and impressive Langham Place shopping centre in Hong Kong and had dinner there.

 

I wasn't very familiar with the fact that in Hong Kong you have to queue for most restaurants .


                                                Although  I didn't have to wait very long.




                                             The place was crowded and we sat at the sushi bar.









Some of the things we ordered were good and others average, I have to say that the quality wasn't as good as at the Malaysian sushi restaurants that I love so much : Sushi King and Sakae Sushi .Perhaps it was because it was too busy , unfortunately I didn't have the chance to try it again.

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty : Review

Big Little Lies

I started reading this book by sheer chance. I just wanted some chick-lit , some light reading to pass the time. However, this novel is far from being easy to read, due to the tough issues the author addresses.

The three main characters have suffered and are still suffering because of men and although there are a lot of funny situations and comments throughout the novel, the way women are treated drove me to distraction. I was really mad at men (at all of them) until I finished.

I liked a lot how the writer included all the gossiping that went on, even if it made Kindergarten seem like a mine field.

The ending was quite fair ,in my opinion. I just wish real life was so fair, because as one of the characters pointed out, unfortunately, it can happen to anyone.

Monday, 18 August 2014

My First Time on an Airbus A380

I was really eager to see what flying on this huge aircraft was like. It didn't disappoint me. The boarding process was faster than I expected , given that  525 people had to board  this plane.

My seat was on the upper deck and it was more comfortable than the one on other smaller planes.I was sitting by the window and there was a small storage compartment by the seat, which was really convenient. I found that the noise in the cabin was more bearable than on other planes .

If I ever had the chance again , I would certainly choose to fly on an Airbus A380.


Huge

This was my seat by the window

This is the staircase that led to the lower deck.

This one was so beautiful that I had to take a picture


John Denver : Leaving on a Jet Plane

In the novel The Islands at the End of the World by Austin Aslan ,the characters sing this beautiful song before boarding a plane.I think we have all thought about this song at least once before a flight . 



All my bags are packed
I'm ready to go
I'm standin' here outside your door
I hate to wake you up to say goodbye
But the dawn is breakin'
It's early morn
The taxi's waitin'
He's blowin' his horn
Already I'm so lonesome
I could die

So kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me like you'll never let me go
'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

There's so many times I've let you down
So many times I've played around
I tell you now, they don't mean a thing
Ev'ry place I go, I'll think of you
Ev'ry song I sing, I'll sing for you
When I come back, I'll wear your wedding ring

So kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me like you'll never let me go
'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

Now the time has come to leave you
One more time
Let me kiss you
Then close your eyes
I'll be on my way
Dream about the days to come
When I won't have to leave alone
About the times, I won't have to say

Oh, kiss me and smile for me
Tell me that you'll wait for me
Hold me like you'll never let me go
'Cause I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

But, I'm leavin' on a jet plane
Don't know when I'll be back again
Oh babe, I hate to go

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

He Mele No Lilo : Traditional Hawaiian Song

While I was reading The Islands at the End of the World I felt like listening to some Hawaiian songs.This one appeared in the film Lilo & Stitch and it is originally from Hawaii.

Mahalo nui ia
Ke Ali iwahine
O lili ulani
O ka Wohi ku
Ka pipio mai o ke anuenue
Na waihooluu a halikeole
E nana na maka I ke ao malama
Mai Hawaii akea I Kauai

O Kal'kaua he inoa
O Ka pua mae ole I ka I'
Ka pua maila I ka mauna
I ke kuahiwi o Mauna kea
Ke'maila I K'lauea
M'lamalama I Wahinekapu
A ka luna o Uw'kahuna
I ka pali kapu o Ka auea

Ea mai ke ali I kia manu
Ua wehi I ka hulu o ka mamo
Ka pua nani a o Hawaii
O Kal'kaua he inoa
O kal kaua he inoa
Ka pua mae ole I ka I'
Ka pua maila I ka mauna
I ke kuahiwi o Mauna kea
Ke'maila I K'laue
M'lamalama I Wahinekapu
A ka luna o Uw'kahuna
I ka pali kapu o Ka auea

Mahalo niu ia
Ke Ali iwahine
O Lili ulani
O ka Wohi ku
Ea mai ke ali I kia manu
Ua wehi I ka hulu o ka mamo
Ka pua nani a o Hawaii
O Kal'kaua he inoa

He Inoa No Kalani Kalakaua Kulele

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

The Islands at the End of the World by Austin Aslan: Review

The Islands at the End of the World

This is what you need to read this action-packed book about the survival in the worst case scenario of a father and his brave daughter: a map of Hawaii, a Hawaiian dictionary, some information about  pidgin (Da Kine) and an open mind.

You may also what to give a look at  one of the orchids  painted by Georgia O'Keefe, and read about Hawaiian myths.



Google Maps



                                                               Hawaiian Dictionary                           
                                                              
Leilani thought that  with her medical condition she had enough on her plate . She didn't expect a world crisis to affect the beautiful islands of Hawaii.She didn't expect either to play a key role in the events .

What I liked most about the book was the connection the main character had with nature and the wonderful relationship with her father . The action was too realistic for me many times. I think the author knew very well what he was writing about when he described what happens in a dying society.  The sci-fi part of the novel was indeed original and nowadays that is a lot to say about a book.

I recommend this book to open-minded sci-fi fans , action lovers who don't mind a certain degree of violence and to people who want to know more about Hawaiian legends .



Sunday, 10 August 2014

Cuban Sandwich Recipe and Mariquitas de Plátano

I once had a Cuban Sandwich  in Havana and it was quite good.The film Chef made me remember that time.At the end of this video,the cook mentions Cuban mariquitas ,which are homemade plantain chips  . Here you have a nice recipe for these mariquitas de plátano.

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Herbal Garden in Asia: Polyscias


                                                              Scientic Classification

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Which Are The Best Portuguese Egg Tarts In China ?

One of the most delicious Portuguese desserts that happens to be very popular in China , especially in the former Portuguese colony of Macau, is the Egg Tart.

This so-called pastel de nata  or pastel de Belém was created in a monastery in Lisbon around two hundred years ago. Nowadays it can be found in many Asian countries, brought there by Portuguese descendants.

Since tasting local food is one of my favourite hobbies, I couldn't help but taste every single Egg Tart that I found during my trip to China. My aim was to find the best one and I did.


1st: Lord Stow's Bakery

It was rumoured to be the best and indeed it was, not too sweet and with a delicious flaky puff pastry. There are several outlets in Macau, unfortunately, all of them are a bit far from the historical area. The only place where you can buy them in Hong Kong is on the ground floor of the Excelsior Hotel in Causeway Bay, not far from the MTR. They are worth the trip.







2nd: Tong Yan Wu Yu Bakery

Walking up and down the popular Zhengyang pedestrian street you cannot this bakery in Guilin. It is always crowded and the Egg Tarts are kept warm and crusty at the back of the shop. They don't speak a word of English but point with your finger and show your money, they will understand.The Egg Tarts taste a little bit like coconut.




3rd: Hong Dong Shougan

On the way to Chunxi Road in Chengdu, there is a small shop which sells regular Egg Tarts and some with special flavours as well.They tasted slightly sweeter than the others I tasted.



4th: Koi Key Bakery

Right in the historical centre of Macau, you can find several outlets of this traditional bakery. I was too hungry after walking all the way to the Ruins of Saint Paul and I took a bite before the picture. They are a  little bit greasier than the others I tasted, IMHO.


According to both The Guardian and The CNN, egg tarts are among the world's best fifty foods.

By Foodie

Saturday, 2 August 2014

After The End by Amy Plum : Review

After the End (After the End #1)
I read the book because of a good review written by one of my Goodread's friends  and it turned out to be one of the best books I have read lately. I loved the way the two main characters get to know each other and how they get to like and understand each other even if they come from completely different worlds. Magic and nature are beautifully intertwined in this novel and it made me think of how much we miss living in big cities surrounded by technology with very little or no contact with nature.

It will be really hard to wait a whole year for the next novel.

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