Archive

Category Archives for "Main Dishes"

Find main dishes inspired by your favorite fiction books and so much more, including memorable quotes and discussion guides! Thanks for stopping by!

The Book of Lost Friends Book Club Questions and Recipe

*If you are new here, WELCOME! For The Book of Lost Friends, I provide your book club with food ideas, a recipe, and discussion questions in that order!

The Book of Lost Friends Book Club Questions and Recipe
The Book of Lost Friends Book Club Questions and Recipe
The Book of Lost Friends Book Club Questions and Recipe
The Book of Lost Friends Book Club Questions and Recipe

In The Book of Lost Friends, Lisa Wingate conquers another fascinating, yet obscure, piece of American history. Not to be confused with The Book of Lost Names, which came out around the same time and centers on a WWII story (and is also fascinating), The Book of Lost Friends is a post-Civil War era novel.

This is another dual-timeline novel by Wingate. It follows Hannie, a freed slave, as she travels through post-war Texas in search of her people and attempts to return home to Louisiana, and Benny, a modern-day teacher, struggling to inspire her students until she unearths a history that links them to Hannie and much more.

I have to say that as much as I enjoyed Before We Were Yours, Wingate’s last book, I almost enjoyed The Book of Lost Friends more.

I really loved the post-Civil War timeline (Civil War era is one of my personal favorites), coupled with the struggling teacher timeline. If you are or have ever been a teacher, I think you will love Benny’s story. It echoes the teacher-trying-to-inspire-underpriveleged-kids theme that we’ve seen in many movies, but I thought the tie-in to the Civil War timeline made it fresh. Plus, I’m a sucker for those movies anyway.

This novel wasn’t as dark as Before We Were Yours was (due to its subject). And, while there was still adventure and drama and not every character got a complete happily-ever-after, it was overall an upbeat novel. So, if you’re looking for something inspiring and positive to read as a group, I think you will enjoy this novel.

Continue reading

Southern Shrimp and Grits Casserole

*If you are new here, WELCOME! For this post, I provide you with a delicious recipe for Southern Shrimp and Grits Casserole!

Southern Shrimp and Grits Casserole
Southern Shrimp and Grits Casserole

If you’ve never had shrimp and grits (casserole or otherwise), I am glad you are here! This recipe is absolutely delicious, pretty easy to make, and a family favorite of ours. My husband would eat this at least once a week!

If you’re stopping by here while searching for recipes, you may not know that the recipes here are all inspired by books! This particular recipe was created after reading Before We Were Yours. If you love reading, check out more about this great book HERE!

This recipe for Southern Shrimp and Grits Casserole combines smoky gouda, bacon, green chilies (for a kick!), and shrimp.

And, I know some people prefer their shrimp and grits without bacon. If that’s you, don’t fret. The bacon can be omitted from this recipe and it’s still delicious!

The flavors combine to create a warm and comforting Southern dish that’s absolutely delectable.

Continue reading

This Tender Land Book Club Questions and Recipe

*If you are new here, WELCOME! For This Tender Land, I provide your book club with a brief summary, a recipe, and discussion questions in that order!

This Tender Land Book Club Questions and Recipe
This Tender Land Book Club Questions and Recipe
This Tender Land Book Club Questions and Recipe
This Tender Land Book Club Questions and Recipe

If you’ve been stuck in a reading rut lately, especially due to the pandemic (or just life in general), then This Tender Land could be the next read for you. It’s a character-driven adventure story with all the feels, but it won’t leave you emotionally fatigued. I truly loved this book.

The novel centers around two young brothers and their two friends, a mute American Indian and a sweet-hearted girl with a mysterious gift. All four characters begin their journey at a brutal reformatory-like institution called the Lincoln Indian Training School. All four characters are orphans longing for family.

This Tender Land

The story follows the group as they make a narrow escape from the school after an accidental crime is committed and set out for a new home, making their journey down the Mississippi river. Along the way they encounter drifters, struggling farmers, and faith healers.

The book, set against the backdrop of the American midwest during the Great Depression, is a beautiful coming-of-age that explores questions of faith, love, and belonging.

Continue reading
1

Anxious People Book Club Questions and Recipe

*If you are new here, WELCOME! For Anxious People, I provide your book club with a brief summary, a recipe, and discussion questions in that order!

Anxious People Book Club Questions and Recipe
Anxious People Book Club Questions and Recipe
Anxious People Book Club Questions and Recipe
Anxious People Book Club Questions and Recipe

Anxious People by Fredrik Backman is a story about eight strangers who find themselves taken hostage by a desperate bank robber. Now that you have formed a thought about what a story like that might be like, ball it up, and throw it in the trash. Because that’s exactly what Backman, in his genius, does.

Anxious People by
Fredrik Backman

The story takes place at an apartment viewing where a bank robber who has failed to properly rob the bank across the street stumbles into eight strangers and the situation escalates into a hostage situation. What is usually a high-stakes thriller in the hands of other authors turns into a comedy about the compassion each of us requires simply to wake up and face another day.

As each of the hostages and finally bank robber reveals their deepest struggles, Backman moves the reader to examine her own needs and to consider the ways she can show kindness to those hurting around her. Much like in A Man Called Ove, nothing on the surface of these characters can be quite trusted and throughout the book Backman pulls back layer after layer compelling the characters and the reader towards compassion.

It is one of the best books I’ve read in quite some time. I found myself scribbling down poignant truth after truth. There is a way Backman disarms the reader with comedy and then delivers a blow to the heart. He’s done it time after time in all his novels and I encourage you to read more of his books! Find the list here!

Continue reading

One Day in December Book Club Questions and Recipe

*If you are new here, WELCOME! For One Day in December, I provide your book club with a brief summary, a recipe, and discussion questions in that order!

One Day in December Book Club Questions and Recipe
One Day in December Book Club Questions and Recipe
One Day in December Book Club Questions and Recipe
One Day in December Book Club Questions and Recipe

One Day in December is Josie Silver’s debut novel, released in 2018. It was featured in Reese’s Book Club and has gone on to be a New York Times bestseller.

While this isn’t your Pulitzer prize winning book club pick, it is a really great love story with true-to-life characters and a love triangle plot that will have you reading until the end. It is a wonderful read if you’ve just finished something heavy. And, (hint hint title), it’s a great read for the holidays.

To give you a quick idea of whether or not you’ll like the novel, consider if you liked Bridget Jones’s Diary or Love Actually. If you did, then you’ll love this novel, which has similar themes as both books.

One Day in December by Josie Silver

While some reviewers have classified this as a rom-com, I would say it leans just outside of that category and into the women’s fiction category by a hair. While you will get some of the classic rom-com feel, the characters also deal with some deeper internal struggles than you see in pure romance. The primary conflict arises because the main character cannot confess to her close-as-a-sister best-friend that the man she’s fallen in love with is the man the main character already fell in love with.

Friendship and what it means, what loyalties it asks of a person, is the primary issue explored. In addition, the main character experiences a self-discovery growth arc, as do several other characters.

One Day in December is also written in an interesting form, telling the story in short scenes that spread out over a period of ten years. Silver did a masterful job creating a unique form where such a long stretch of time is covered without leaving the reader feeling frustrated or confused.

Continue reading
>