To Be Read By Rod Serling

Oct. 20th, 2017 01:00 pm
[syndicated profile] cakewrecks_feed

Posted by Jen

Deedeedeedeeedeedeedeedee

You unlock this bakery with the key of imagination. Beyond it is another dimension.

A dimension of icing.

A dimension of piping bags.

A dimension of wreckitude.

You're moving into a land of both shadow and substance, of bad taste and even worse skill. You just crossed over into...

The Twilight Zone.


BUM BUM BAAAAAHHHH...

 Picture, if you will... a monkey. This monkey:

I know, creepy right? [shivering] Brrrrrr. Totally.

 

[resuming serious announcer voice] Ahem. Now picture, if you will, five ravenous-yet-dim-witted Shih Tzu dogs:

[sternly] Let's call them Muffy, Boopsie, Precious, Buttercup and Mr. Snuggles.

 

Now picture, if you will, a face of terror that watches in malignant silence far beyond your present capacity to understand. A face enigmatically bizarre in terms of time and space. A face...

...of a tweety bird.

 

 Now picture, if you will, Meerkat Zombies...raising the roof.


"What up, playah?"

 

This is the stuff of fantasy, the thread of imagination, the ingredients... of the Twilight Zone.

 BUM BUM BAAAAAHHHHH... SQUEEDLEDEEEE!!!


Jennifer P., Matt N., Christine S., and Melanie L., picture, if you will... a dolphin eating a Snickers bar in flip-flops and a cardigan. Then tell me what that looks like. I've always wondered.

 

Note: A couple of people suggested the pictures should be in black and white which was an awesome idea. So we changed them. I think it adds to the ambiance, don't you? For those who really want to see the full color versions, click here.

UPDATE! LeAnna and Woobie took up the dolphin challenge and sent in their ideas.

 

First LeAnna's:
AWESOME! Check out the flip flop thongs on his flippers.

 

And next we have Woobie's
See, the snickers bar is wearing the cardigan and flip flops because I apparently have no grasp of sentence structure. ?thought Who would have

Touché!

 

One more!
This one's from Vanilla Smoke. Awesome!

 

*****

Thank you for using our Amazon links to shop! USA, UK, Canada.

Unwanted Girl by MK Schiller

Oct. 20th, 2017 08:00 am
[syndicated profile] smartbitches_feed

Posted by Carrie S

B+

Unwanted Girl

by M.K. Schiller
January 19, 2016 · Lyrical Shine
Romance

Unwanted Girl deals with serious topics and yet manages to be a sweet, satisfying romance. It’s quite a balancing act in terms of tone.

The hero of Unwanted Girl is Nick Dorsey, the writer of a series of bestselling spy novels of the James Bond type. Nick is also a recovering meth addict. When the book starts, he’s been meth-free for eighteen months, although he still drinks alcohol in moderation (N.B.: most recovery programs do not recommend continuing to drink alcohol after quitting other drugs, although it appears that some people are able to do it). Nick goes to Narcotics Anonymous, has been healing his relationships with family, and is struggling with writer’s block. He lives in New York City.

Nick likes to order sandwiches from a deli that delivers. The same woman always delivers his sandwiches. Eventually she introduces herself and invites herself in. Her name is Shyla, and she is from a small village in India. Shyla is studying education with plans to return to India to be a teacher. Shyla asks Nick to help her write a book of her own and as they work on it they fall in love.

Shyla promises Nick that her book has a happy ending. Nick finds this hard to believe, since her story is about the practice of female gendercide as well as spousal abuse and rape (obviously, HUGE trigger warnings for rape, spousal abuse, child abuse, and sexism). As they work together on her book, they also watch movies and she reads both his spy thrillers and his much more personal first novel. This leads to talk about culture, the meaning and purpose of fiction, and gender and race representation.

Shyla’s story forms a book within the book. It’s about a baby in rural India who is abandoned by her biological parents due to her gender and adopted by a woman who has recently lost her only child. This woman, Nalini, names the baby Asha and raises her with the support of a local nun and teacher named Sarah. Sarah insists on Asha continuing her education well into adulthood. However, Asha is frustrated when she marries an abusive man whose mother is also abusive to Asha. Asha wonders the point of all this education is if she never gets to use it.

Even though the book Shyla is writing is full of trauma, and Nick is dealing with the consequences of his addiction, Shyla and Nick are very playful together. Their playfulness lightens the tone, rounds out their characters, and is just generally a kick to read. It also establishes that despite Nick’s original assumption about Shyla, she is comfortable and confident in her sexuality and not opposed to pre-marital sex. Nick makes many assumptions about Shyla and it’s satisfying to see her overthrow them one after another.

Shyla is an interesting character and I would have enjoyed learning more about the family and friends she works with and lives with in New York. She has a strong sense of self that I admired, and she also has the ability to be flexible in her understanding of the world around her without losing the core sense of who she is. For example, she explains that earlier in her life she would have been shocked at the idea that two women could be in a committed relationship and raise a child, but after living for some time in New York she accepts the idea that there are many configurations of family (Nick’s sister and sister-in-law have an adopted daughter). She has a wicked sense of humor that endeared her to me entirely. On the other hand, towards the end of the book she makes a couple of comments that drove me up the wall, including one about women needing to be ladylike. If she had made that comment at the beginning of the book instead of near the end I doubt I would have stuck with it.

Nick is a more bland character. He’s used to telling people what to do. His inability to comprehend things like the racism in Indian Jones and the Temple of Doom frustrated me. I felt that he tended to infantilize Shyla, assuming that she would be naïve and shy when actually she’s seen much more of the world than he has. Their relationship levels out eventually.

This book is basically a billionaire romance, with Shyla as a Cinderella who finds a rich prince. Nick isn’t a billionaire, but he is very wealthy, and he loves and is generous with beautiful things and good food. Meanwhile, Shyla is hardworking and, while not desperately impoverished, limited in her financial resources. The cross-cultural and feminist elements deepen the story and there’s a bit of thriller intrigue at the end involving a twist that frankly I did not entirely buy. There is a happy ending to both Asha’s story and Shyla’s story but readers should be warned that Asha goes through absolute (graphically described) hell before she gets to the happy ending that Shyla promises. The writing can be a bit stilted and the characters aren’t equally balanced, but the sensitive handling of difficult material and the balance of tragedy and humor bring the book up to a B+.

[syndicated profile] smartbitches_feed

Posted by SB Sarah

This is something of an all-in-one episode. Ready?

We begin with one last recommendation request for Amanda and me, and then we squee! Amanda and I both read a book we loved, and want to tell all of you about it. We go on at length, too, so be ready. It’s got magic and mystery and a terrific heroine.

But because I know so many of you immediately grab the next book when you begin a new series, I wanted to include a little information about book 2, which I DNFd after a scene that really irritated me.

THEN, I have an email from an anonymous listener who wanted to share some information based on episode 257, where we discussed BDSM and chronic pain. This is some fascinating stuff, so stay tuned for that.

Listen to the podcast →
Read the transcript →

Here are the books we discuss in this podcast:

Our anonymous listener mentioned shibari rope bondage techniques, and you can learn more online.

The episode our anonymous listener was responding to was episode 257: Bitches Assemble: Our Favorite Recommendations and the Expectations of Tentacles. 

If you like the podcast, you can subscribe to our feed, or find us at iTunes. You can also find us on Stitcher, too. We also have a cool page for the podcast on iTunes.

Thanks to our sponsors:

More ways to sponsor:

Sponsor us through Patreon! (What is Patreon?)

What did you think of today's episode? Got ideas? Suggestions? You can talk to us on the blog entries for the podcast or talk to us on Facebook if that's where you hang out online. You can email us at sbjpodcast@gmail.com or you can call and leave us a message at our Google voice number: 201-371-3272. Please don't forget to give us a name and where you're calling from so we can work your message into an upcoming podcast.

Thanks for listening!

This Episode's Music

Our music is provided by Sassy Outwater.

This is “Fishing at Orbost,” by the Peatbog Fairies, from their album Dust.

You can find all things Peatbog at their website, or at Amazon or iTunes.


Podcast Sponsor

organization Academy lighthouse logoThis episode is brought to you by Organization Academy.

Organization Academy the home of my online courses on using Google Calendar to declutter your schedule and organize your life. I did a series on SBTB about how I use Google Calendar to automate and manage every aspect of my day, including home, family, business, other business, freelance writing, podcasting, meal planning, and more.

Over the past year, I have developed a step by step instructional program outlining the method I use for meal planning, and I am about to launch my first online course, Menu Planning Mastery. It’s all about saving time, energy, and money by harnessing the power of Google Calendar to manage your meal planning.

If you feel overwhelmed sometimes by the question “What’s for dinner?” when you don’t know the answer, this course is for you. This method can save you time and reduce stress.

And what can you do with all that time? Read more books! While you eat good food! I love this plan.

If you would like more information, you can sign up for my newsletter at OrganizationAcademy.com, and you’ll be the first to know when the course opens. You’ll also receive weekly tips on organizing using Google Calendar every Friday.

Find out more at Organization Academy.com!

Remember to subscribe to our podcast feed, find us on iTunes or on Stitcher.
[syndicated profile] icanhascheezburger_feed
Animal sculptures made of radish

Crafted by Masanori Kono, these cute creations are made of grated daikon radishes. Each character looks like an adorable cartoon plopped into a bowl of warming vegetables. By adding these little animals, Kono puts a sculptural twist on the Japanese version of a hot pot dish. Seriously, what's more comforting in winter than eating a bowl of warm food topped by a cute animal? Via: So Bad so good

Submitted by:

Tagged: art , radish , Japan , sculptures , food , animals
[syndicated profile] icanhascheezburger_feed
an album of cute hedgehog photos

Azuki, the tiny Japanese hedgehog who goes on big adventures. Yes, it's true! This little guy loves to go out and see the world! Azuki recently traded his cozy dream house in for a set of miniature Coleman camping gear and took a trip to the great outdoors! We mean just looking at these photos just makes us want to go and enjoy some nice leisure time with the little guy! He sure looks like he knows whats he's doing when it comes to camping! 

Just take a look at some of his photos from his epic trip!

Want to see more of Azuki? Check out his Instagram: Here

Submitted by:

Tagged: cute , hedgehog , funny
[syndicated profile] icanhascheezburger_feed
beautiful animal photos featuring animals

Fearless Photographers is a unique photography directory of the world's best wedding photographers. Every two months, a curated competition is open for submissions from our members. Of these submissions, less than 3% are selected by a panel of curators as "Fearless Awards" - photographs that excel in redefining wedding photography. Here is a selection of the best ones featuring animals. 

Submitted by:

Tagged: photos , wedding , animals
[syndicated profile] icanhascheezburger_feed
funny list of dogs as main characters

Life is always better with a pet. And sometimes that pet is a dog. And sometime you're watching tv and your favorite show comes on and you think... this would be better with dogs! Well Barkpost decided that these shows are worth a chance! Barkpost writer, Lori Goldman, decided to take the best tv shows we all know and love and fit the perfect dog breed to patch thats character. Here's what it turned out to be...

Submitted by:

Tagged: dogs , funny , tv shows

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