Book Review: The Fever of 1721 by Stephen Coss


Author: Stephen Coss Title: The Fever of 1721: The Epidemic That Revolutionized Medicine and American Politics Narrator: Bob Souer Publication Info: Simon & Schuster (2016 Summary/Review: I received a free advanced readers copy of this audiobook through the Library Thing Early Reviewers program in exchange for an honest review. 1721 is a pivotal year in Boston history….

Book Review: Ben and Me by Robert Lawson


Author:  Robert Lawson Title: Ben and Me Publication Info: Boston, Mass. : Little, Brown, c1939. Summary/Review: I remember this story from when I was a kid, although I think I only saw the movie which I recall being less acerbic.  The basic gist is the same, Ben Franklin’s career as inventor, scientist, politician, and ambassador is aided…

Book Reviews: Haunted Castle on Hallows Eve by Mary Pope Osbourne


Author: Mary Pope Osbourne Title: Haunted Castle on Hallows Eve  Publication Info: Random House Books for Young Readers (2010) Summary/Review: There’s such a great variety of stories in the Magic Tree House series.  Having just read the historical fiction of a story set at the Paris World’s Fair of 1889, we read this book set in the…

Book Reviews: Night of the New Magicians by Mary Pope Osbourne


Author: Mary Pope Osbourne Title: Night of the New Magicians Publication Info: New York : Random House, 2006. Summary/Review: This is a really entertaining installment of the Magic Tree House series where Annie and Jack visit the Paris World’s Fair of 1889 to learn of for forms of “magic.”  The magic is actual the inventions and discoveries…

The Book Blogger Test


Here’s a book blogging meme via Ashley at Inside My Mind.  I took the advice to tag myself. What are your top three book pet hates? Books where the narrators are completely oblivious to their privilege and how they unwittingly disparage others. This happens in fiction (The Nanny Diaries) and non-fiction (Under the Tuscan Sun). Writers…

Sponsor Us for the 2016 Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon


On Sunday, June 5,  I will be riding with my 8-year-old son Peter in the Bikes Not Bombs Bike-A-Thon!   The Bike-A-Thon is always a fun event and it raise money for a terrific cause. This will be our fourth time participating. Based in Boston not far from where we live, Bikes Not Bombs serves two great purposes….

Podcasts of the Week: Planet Money & Decode DC


Two podcasts this week with a shared theme:  the people who work to sell you food (that’s largely bad for you). The first is Planet Money (Episode 700: Peanuts and Cracker Jack) which spent a night at Fenway Park to learn of the economy of concessions vendors at a Red Sox game.  There’s a draft for…

Song of the Week: YOU the Audience Decide!


Okay, so here are four new (to me) songs that I like, but none of them jump out as THE Song of the Week.  So I’m going to let my readers write this post with an unprecedented Song of the Week poll. Here are the contenders: Courtney Barnett – “Three Packs a Day” Jack Klatt…

Harpoon Camp Wannamango


Beer: Camp Wannamango Brewer: Harpoon Brewery Source: Draft Rating: *** (7.5 of 10) Comments: Harpoon prepares us for summer with this refreshing, light and fruity beer.  Wannamango pours out a golden color with a full head and tiny bubbles.  As the name implies, mango is strong in the aroma, although there’s some apricot too.  This…

Music Discoveries: Janelle Monáe


Today I finally begin a new feature on this blog I’ve been planning for a long time called Music Discoveries.  The idea is to find musical artists and bands I’m familiar with and do a deep listen of their full catalog of recordings.  I was inspired by a fellow blogger on Desert Island Mix Tape when…

Book Reviews: The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff


Author: Stacy Schiff Title:  The Witches: Salem, 1692 Narrator: Eliza Foss Publication Info: Little, Brown & Company (2015) Summary/Review: Stacy Schiff attempts to set the record straight on the witch hysteria of 1692, something that has been defined for modern people by how it is depicted in movies, plays, and books.  This is partially due to…

5 Reasons Why Sanders Campaigning to the Convention is Good for the Democrats


If you listen to the popular news media and supporters of Hillary Clinton, the contest for the 2016 Democratic Party presidential nomination is over and Secretary Clinton won.  But contender Bernie Sanders has vowed to continue his campaign until the Democratic National Convention in July, and even has a path to winning the pledged delegates….

Podcast of the Week: “The Supreme Court’s Loaded Gun” by Decode DC


The topic of this week’s Decode DC is the worst decision ever made by the United States Supreme Court.  Korematsu v. United States validated interning Japanese-Americans during World War II, and has never been overturned.  With the idea of surveillance and internment of Islamic-Americans under discussion in the 2016 election, a lot of people are…

Song of the Week: “Psychotubes” by Moon Hooch


“Psychotubes” is the first single off of the forthcoming album from Moon Hooch, Red Sky. It’s another example of their saxophone-heavy dance music so unique it has its own genre, cave music.

Beer Review: Hermit Thrush Poo-Tee-Weet


Beer: Poo-Tee-Weet Brewer: Hermit Thrush Brewery Source: Draft Rating: **** (8.3 of 10) Comments: This is a unique beer with a cloudy orange appearance and a big bubbled head.  The scent offers hints of sweet citrus while the taste is a sour mash with malty, sweet biscuit aftertaste.  The mouthfeel is light and the beer leaves…

Beer Review: Portico Escher


Beer: Escher Brewer:  Portico Brewing Company Source: Draft (Cask) Rating: **** ( 8 of 10) Comments: Sampled a glass of Escher from a cask. The aroma is of raw grains and grass, while the taste is citrus with a smoothly bitter background.  Nice balance of a variety of hops.  The mouthfeel is light.  Lots of…

Beer Review: Baxter Window Seat


Beer: Window Seat Brewer: Baxter Brewing Company Source: Can Rating:  *** (7.4  of 10) Comments: Window Seat pours out a deep black with lots of bubble and a thin head.  The coconut is strong in the nose, while the taste is coconut with a prominent almond flavor and a roasted coffee aftertaste. The mouthfeel is…