I love strawberries! | TMS Book Club

I love strawberries!

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Janet Joy loves to share great books!

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I love my homegrown strawberries and I’m dreaming of the day the snow will melt and they will grow again in my front yard garden.

Choosing books for The Morning Show’s Valentine’s Day theme makes me wander from the usual to the unexpected. I hope you enJOY my selections starting with poetry because isnt’ that the most romantic thing ever?!

LOVE POEMS by PABLO NERUDA  (1904-1973 born in Chile) is a perfect poetic gift to yourself or to the one you love.

In 1971 he won the Nobel Prize for Literature and is revered as one of the greatest major poets of the 20th century in any language.

This collection was written anonymously in 1952  and the poems caused a scandal !!  WHY?  Possibly because they are charged with sensuality and passion. Pablo Neruda’s love poems are the most celebrated of the Nobel Prize winner’s oeuvre, captivating readers with earthbound images and reveling in a fiery re-imagining of the world. Mostly written on the island paradise of Capri (the idyllic setting of the Oscar-winning movie Il Postino), Love Poems embraces the seascapes surrounding the poet and his love Matilde Urrutia, their waves and shores saturated with a new, yearning eroticism.

Here’s a sample …

And when you appear
all the rivers sound
in my body, bells
shake the sky,
and a hymn fills the world. 

SIMPLY VIBRANT by Anya Kassoff (author of the The Vibrant Table)

The way to anyone’s heart is through their stomach right?

These are vegetarian recipes for colorful plant based cooking. I recently had Shingles and to expedite my recovery I changed my diet to support my immune system.  The creative, inventive, and colorful recipes will absolutely become part of my healthy future.

The idea of cooking seasonally goes hand in hand with practicality. The resources are available at farmers’ markets, they’re tastier and more affordable. Plants are the heart of this book. I love Anya’s emphasis on seasonality, and her creative approach to leaf-to-root cooking, and using every ingredient to its fullest potential without wasting a single seed!

With everyday recipes inspired by the seasons and practical preparations, Anya leads the way to colorful, internationally-flavored foods that delight the palate and the eyes. This book offers a modern way to eat—breaking the boundaries between sweet and savory with intuitively nourishing foods. Start your day with Creamy Steel Cut Oats with Rainbow Chard and Pine Nuts, throw together a rainbow-colored salad for lunch or make black rice sushi for a quick snack, and later, feed your sweet tooth and your body with Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies. This is fresh, fun, delightful whole food.

What am I going to try first?  Breakfast Superfood Summer Porridge, Lunch Winter Bowl, Weekend Oven baked Potato Latkes and for dessert Sweet Potato Chocolate Brownies! 

THE MUSIC SHOP by Rachel Joyce

I loved THE UNLIKELY PILGRIMAGE OF HAROLD FRY. It made me laugh & then cry buckets.

Her newest book goes further as it adds the power of music. Inside the cover, there is a link to The Music Shop playlist. This was awesome! I sometimes listened as I was reading and other chapters I’d listen, read, and listen again just to the piece of music.

It’s 1988 and Frank owns a music shop packed with records of every size, speed and genre. It’s its in vinyl, he sells. More than that – customers come in and they’ll ask for one thing and he’ll just listen to them and then give them what they need. They enter a wardrobe – yes he’s renovated a clothing wardboe into a listening booth … people emerge transformed by the music he choose for them.

Then in walks Ilse Brauchmann. 

The rest of novel is layered with flashbacks to Frank’s childhood, the current economic situation and we are all on the edge of seat hoping the two of them will get pass all the misunderstandings and get together because they both fell in love with other at first glance.

A book about learning to listen, second chances and choosing to be brave despite the odds.

It’s not surprising that Rachel Joyce has written over 20 original afternoon plays for BBC Radio 4, and major adaptations for both the Classic Series, Woman’s Hour and also a TV drama adaptation for BBC 2. In 2007 she won the Tinniswood Award for best radio play. She moved to writing after a twenty-year career in theatre and television, performing leading roles for the RSC, the Royal National Theatre, The Royal Court, and Cheek by Jowl, winning a Time Out Best Actress award and the Sony Silver.  I say not surprising because reading The Music Shop is very cinematic and her dialogue is pitch perfect.

 It is a heartwarming novel that makes you smile while reading it. 

“He was perfectly fine with emotions,
so long as they belonged to other people.”


 A BEDTIME YARN by Nicola Winstanley is utterly charming and practical for helping little ones fall asleep! I wish I had this book when my son was between 3- 7 as during that time I taught him how to knit.  Today at 22 years of age he is an exquisite knitter and this story will unravel all kinds of ideas!

Frankie is a little bear who has a hard time falling asleep. The dark is scary, and he hates to be alone. So his mother gives him a ball of yarn to hold when he goes to bed, and she keeps the other end in the next room, working it into a surprise for Frankie. 

Every few nights the yarn color changes, and Frankie dreams in all the colors that he and his mother pick out. One night he’s swimming in turquoise water, another night he’s in a cool gray fog. He plays with a marmalade kitten and eats delicious chocolate cake. Eventually Frankie and his mother create something special–and Frankie learns that he’s always connected to those he loves, even when he’s alone in the dark.

Like a well-worn, snuggly blanket, this sweet bedtime story about a little bear who’s afraid of the dark and his mother’s creative solution will warm and comfort readers big and small.

 With love,


Love Poems
Written by Pablo Neruda; Translated by Donald D Walsh;
A Bedtime Yarn
Written by Nicola Winstanley; Illustrated by Olivia Chin Mueller;
The Music Shop
Written by Rachel Joyce;
Simply Vibrant
All-Day Vegetarian Recipes for Colorful Plant-Based Cooking
Written by Anya Kassoff; Photographed by Masha Davydova;