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My 2013 Book List

Happy New Year!

Every year, I am asked to share my book list. Goodreads has made that easier than ever with the ability to share on my FB page. You can find that here: JaneAnnThompson and see my full list of reads, but I thought I would share with you my favs for the year, out of the 54 read.

I know, I know, you don’t have time to read, but that’s a matter of opinion. Here is how I manage to read at least 52 books a year.

1. I always have some sort of spiritual or inspirational read going. I read from this book every morning. I do not watch television in the morning and I get up thirty minutes earlier than I would have to so I can drink my cup of tea and read. Try it. Your day will be better for it.

2. I take a book to work with me and read during my lunch. This is usually when I read non-fiction either for building my business or about health. I get at least 30 mins in usually. On days I work from home, I do the same, but allow myself an hour.

3. I read every night before bed. We do not have television in our house. We have a monitor on which we watch movies, and do watch something most evenings, but no matter, we still go to bed and read for at least thirty minutes each night. Though some nights I am so exhausted I can barely keep my eyes open, most nights I manage to get in at least 30 mins. Studies show that people who watch television in bed or stay on the computer until getting in bed do not fall asleep easily and do not sleep as well. Also, to my couples friends, having a television in the bedroom means that  what should be happening in the bedroom is often times neglected. Move that television out of the bedroom and give it away. Same for your kids. READ!

Still not convinced? Time yourself and see how much time is wasted on Facebook and other social media. I’m as guilty as the next person, but try really hard most days to limit the time. Seth Godin has a really good blog on this today. Check it out! 

So here’s my favs and find the entire list with reviews here.

The War of Art: Break Through the Blocks & Win Your Inner Creative Battles

The War of Art is not listed on my Goodreads summary for 2013 because technically I read it on New Year’s Eve, 2012, but I considered it my first read of the year because it was so impactful for my year. A small and concise inspirational read of completing your ART, no matter what that looks like for you. I have reread a couple of times, and because my copy got loaned out, I am ordering an extra to have on hand. 

This is an excellent read. Heartbreaking and frustrating, but so worth it.
Read this on my Kindle when I went backpacking this year. Though she does some pretty stupid things (I suggest not following her lead for backpacking and get some expert help) this is a great read. I loved the adventure and the thought of being out on my own, though I was with a group of nine.
One of my favorite non-fiction reads this year, Moss exposes the food industry and how they have hooked us on unhealthy food.
After reading Wild, I decided to read this book my Strayed also, and just loved it. She has some great advice for everyone. She wrote an anonymous advice column for sometime, and this is the best from the blog.
Diaz is one of my new favorite authors and I will read anything he writes in the future and actually read this year, everything he has written and there was not a bad one in the bunch. Originally from the Dominican, he writes of family and friends like no other.
Need a good laugh? This will do it. One of the funniest books ever, I read this while traveling in England and got strange looks every time I started guffawing (have never used this word before, but truly, there is no better way to describe the laughter this book induces) out loud. Short, sweet and hilarious!
Heard this was a best seller in Europe and decided to check it out. This novel pulls you in like no other and keeps you riveted to the end (well except for maybe a few pages here and there where the author digresses, but no biggie).  It’s a story of the ocean and the men who went to sea and the women who stayed home.
Brilliant. Read it!
Never saw the movie, had no desire to, but my sister told me she read it and liked it, so picked it up to take to the beach with me and could not put it down. Tells what happens as the world comes back from the zombie apocalypse. Great beach read!
I liked this book a lot. A very compelling story. I have read her others books and liked them too, so when a friend sent us an early reader’s copy, we jumped on it.
Really great non-fiction about the men and women who saved the art stolen by the Nazis.
Spooky! A 1984 for our day. Read it!
Another fav non-fiction about how our brains work and why exercise is so important.
Just saw the movie, and though good, the book beats it to pieces. You need to read it to really get his full story. Excellent! And it’s a short fast read.
I am a huge fan of writing about food writers. They were the last of an era and this book gives lots of the details of how their opinions and actions have affected us since the 1970’s. Has some weak points, but I just loved it.
Um, you don’t have to be on drugs. You don’t have to be unhealthy when you die. You could do like generations in the past and just get old and die in your sleep. Finished. Kapoot. The end. Read it. Live healthy till you die.
Who knew shame and perfection were so closely linked? Brene Brown’s research is so eye opening and this book gives you some easy ways to deal with it. Though simplistic in someways, I still enjoyed it and have learned a lot. I will reread again soon.
AND drum roll…..most beneficial book of the year:
Want to be the star in your own life? Want to be indispensable at work, on the job, in your family? Can’t say enough about this book. Will definitely reread and reread and reread….
book cover appetite for reduction

Book Review: Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

book cover appetite for reduction

Whether a vegan, vegetarian or just someone looking to add vegetables to the daily menu, Appetite for Reduction: 125 Fast & Filling Low~Fat Vegan Recipes, by Isa Chandra Moskowitz, is a cook book that fills the bill. It has become a recent favorite in my cookbook collection. Because I am a nutritarian, I am always looking for great recipes composed of nutrient dense ingredients and easy to prepare for weeknight meals. Moskowitz’s book is packed with interesting vegetable dishes which include, salads, sides, beans, tempeh and tofu (though I don’t use these a lot, still nice to have available) pasta, soups and comfort dishes, like chili, stews and curries. She also includes cooking tips throughout. Though, not many pictures, and all located in the center of the book, for the price of $12.36 on Amazon, I will live with it.

I didn’t purchase the book because of the low~fat element, as I tend to already cook low~fat, but I appreciate that aspect of the recipes. One of my favorites is the Unfried refried beans. Refried beans are usually chock-full of fat, but these take the fat out and maintain their moist consistency by using tomatoes. I also love the Bhutanese Pineapple Rice, with a bite of heat and sweet, this delicious dish is a frequent side at our house. Brussels Sprouts Potato hash is fantastic and if eggs are on the menu, a great side. Butternut coconut rice is on my menu tonight.

The recipes are detailed well for the most part, allowing even a beginner to follow along. The indexes that list by ingredient and also break down into categories, helps make a search for certain ingredients or the amount of time I can allot easy. Other cookbooks by Isa Chandra Moskowitz include, Vegan Brunch and Vegan with a Vengeance. If this book is any indicator, I will definitely try out one of her other cookbooks soon.

You can find this and other items in My Favorites. I recommend this book to anyone looking to add some great veggie recipes to their menu. If this cookbook is part of your library, let me know which recipe is your favorite. Enjoy!




An Everlasting Meal by Tamar Adler

An Everlasting MealAn Everlasting Meal: Cooking with Economy and Grace, by Tamar Adler has become one of my favorite cooking books ever. Not a traditional cookbook by any means, though there are recipes scattered throughout, this wonderful read is a “How to…” book on cooking economically, using what is on hand in the kitchen, and making every scrap usable. Beautifully written, the prose flows with description that will have you chomping at the bit to get into the kitchen and put her recommendations to work. Though I am not a meat eater, I enjoyed the information presented on meat and still learned from these chapters. The first chapter is “How to Boil Water,” and though you may think you know all about boiling water, wait until you have read this chapter before patting yourself on the back. I recommend this book for any level of cook.  Interested in purchasing? You can find this book on My Favorites page for quick ordering!

Tomatoland, by Barry Estabrook



Tomatoland, by Barry Estabrook, is an eye opening book about what goes on behind the scenes in the land of tomatoes. He gives a history of the ugly hiring and employment tactics of big tomato agribusiness in Florida, a state so ill suited to growing tomatoes that dangerous pesticides are the norm. Understanding where our food comes from and how it is grown and processed to market, gives us more control and say in what we want to put in our bodies. This book provides just that. Though repetitive in some places, over all it is an interesting and compelling read. Understanding why supermarket tomatoes have no flavor, how flavor has been bred out in place of rock hard solid tomatoes that can make it to market and survive rough handling, helps make the case for growing your own or buying them at a local farmer’s market. It also makes the case for eating fresh tomatoes in season only and using canned the rest of the year if tomatoes are a must. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes to know where the food they eat comes from and how it gets to them. This book has made me think twice about what kind of tomatoes I purchase and from where I make the purchase. Overall, an interesting read. Find a copy in My Favorites.

I am currently reading this book

A Thousand Sisters book jacket

I am reading the book, A Thousand Sisters, a memoir about a woman’s efforts to raise money for the women of Congo. In doing research, I ran across this video and thought I would share. Our lives in this country are so easy. Don’t take a single one for granted and find a way to do something for others. Happiness lies within us, but so does unhappiness. Getting outside ourselves and devoting ourselves to a cause is one of the best ways to be happy!

I Am Congo video link

I Am Congo is a groundbreaking video series featuring five amazing people living their lives amid the deadliest war in the world.

Canada by Richard Ford

Canada Book Cover

by Richard Ford

Though not a fan of Independence Day, I have greatly enjoyed his later two books, Lay of the Land, and now Canada. A very compelling read. The story of twins and how their life was blown up by their parents, sending them in different directions, the story is engaging throughout. I highly recommend it!