Books for your Kindle Collections

1.99 Hear That Lonesome Whistle Blow: The Epic Story of the Transcontinental Railroads, by Dee Brown (Author of Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee)

2.99 for Diane Setterfield’s The Thirteenth Tale

FREE: A Noble LIfe, by Dina Maria Mulock Craik:
Amazon Review:
The last Earl of Cairnforth is born severely disabled, just days after the death of both his parents. He grows up unable to walk or feed himself. But his nature is affectionate and even cheerful, his expression sweet, and his intellect precocious. With these few assets, and many physical liabilities, the “wee Earl” is launched into life’s adventure.

Henry James was scornful of Craik’s predilection for disabled characters, but Victorian readers enjoyed plenty of pathos and a good moral lesson with their novels. Craik’s books were popular.

The Scottish locale is charming, the Earl’s extensive property is wonderfully picturesque, and the Scottish tenants are industrious and forthright. The local minister, while not a brilliant preacher, is religious in the best sense and a thorough scholar. He becomes tutor to the Earl, and gives him the classical education considered de rigueur for a gentlemen.

In the early pages of the book, my eyes were misting over constantly, as are those of all the good people in charge of, or serving, the tiny Earl. Yet despite his physical helplessness, the Earl survives to live a life rich in love and friendship, visited by a modicum of disappointment and heartbreak — and full of wise business decisions!

I read the excellent introduction with great interest. Craik was a strong woman who took on unconventional subjects in her fiction with skill and courage.

This may not be one of the great Victorian novels, but it’s very good storytelling — and a fascinating window into the sentimental and devout heart of the typical Victorian reader.

2.99 Fix It and Forget It Big Cookbook

FREE: The Fairy Godmothers and Other Tales by Mrs. Gatty

.99 Stock Market Investing for Beginners: Essentials to Start Investing Successfully, Tycho Press
Some reviewers felt it wasn’t basic enough, but even most of them suggested it was worth it as a reference tool. HEre is one positive review (the average is 4.5 for over 100 reviews): This book de-mystifies the world of investing for those of us who have maybe been scared off by terms and numbers we didn’t understand. This does not read like another “get rich quick” book at all, but rather encourages the reader to educate themselves by not only reading this text, but others as well, which are listed in the bibliography and “for future reading” sections. It’s filled with easy-to-read charts and graphs, and gives simple equations that can be used to easily calculate the number you’re looking for. In the end, Chapter 11 recaps the book with a great section entitled, “Building Your Perfect Portfolio”, which is straightforward and easy to follow. I highly recommend this book for anyone interested in becoming more active with their investment strategy.

FREE: John Halifax, Gentleman, by Dinah Craik

.99 for The Well-Fed Microbiome Cookbook: Vital Microbiome Diet Recipes to Repair and Renew the Body and Brain
by Kristina Campbell
Amazon Reader Review: This book is for you if any of these are true!
– You’re looking for a basic lesson in how our guts and the billions of good microbes that reside there work
– You are curious and have heard about the benefits of probiotics but haven’t tried them yet
– You’re constantly on the go with family commitments, but still want to feed your family in a healthy way that supports good “gut health”
– You have specific gastrointestinal issues and are looking for a long-term solution which focuses on restoring your gut flora (rather than a “quick fix” solution)

The book begins with a very accessible explanation of gut health and the human microbiome (the sum total of the microbial community in and around our body), aka the “gut flora”. The author is a scientist but the information is understandable by anyone. Probiotics, prebiotics and the working of the human gut are all explained.

As a scientist, the author is careful not to make any claims beyond what is currently scientifically known. Admittedly, modern science is in the early stages of understanding how this newly discovered “organ” operates within the context of our body.

As a mom, she has made the advice, technique and recipes family- and budget-friendly.

The book provides common sense dietary guidelines on how to work with, restore, and feed your gut flora. She lays a foundation of how to change your habits in order to be most successful, with tips such as “go shopping once a week” and “shop the perimeter” of the supermarket. I think the phased approach for people suffering from ailments is wisely prescribed. The recipes are simple and made from ingredients found at any supermarket.

2.99 The Best Quick Breads: 150 Recipes for Muffins, Scones, Shortcakes, Gingerbreads, Cornbreads, Coffeecakes, and More
by Beth Hensperger

FREE Free: http://amzn.to/2l4ySQv The Story of Rome from the Earliest Times to the End of the Republic

1.99 The Return of George Washington: Uniting the States, 1783-1789

FREE: How to Live a HOly Life by Charles Ebert Orr

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Overwhelmed by Laundry?

I actually set ours on fire in the yard once. Had a big bonfire. 
 
Long story short, we had 3 kids, and then adopted two more kids who came with scabies, and it kept recurring no matter what I did and my husband, OF COURSE, was always deployed when we had another outbreak.  The kids, btw, were 2, 3, 5 but severely disabled, 8 and 9. Essentially, as long term readers know, we had 24 hours notice they were coming and they arrived 2 weeks before Christmas with nothing but a few outfits which were scabies playgrounds.  I had never even heard of scabies before.  At first when the social worker told me they had scabies I thought it was some  kind of allergy.  Cue hollow laughter.
In addition to homeschooling and parenting five stair step little girls, we moved to the country and had goats and chickens to care for, and the deployments did not decrease.   So, about the fifth scabies outbreak/husband deployment in a year, I went to the doctor again, in tears, asking him what else we could do.  He said if I wanted to be really insane about it, I could throw out our clothes and get new ones, steam clean stuff, and, once more, use the toxic lotion we had used all the other times.  He said that as though obviously I would not want to do all that other stuff, and he would just write me another prescription.  Silly man.
 
I decided Insanity was highly appealing and easier than resistance at this point.  I burned all our clothes and stuffed animals, steam cleaned the house, threw out other stuff, bought us each five outfits (Walmart, new), and at last we never had another outbreak.   We also insisted on no more gifts from the birth mother unless they were new and still in the package.  I felt really bad about this, but all the other outbreaks were rather co-incidentally timed with receiving second hand gifts that were none-too-clean from her.  I did always wash them first, and it is entirely possible it was just coincidence, but I was clutching to ragged little remains of my sanity by shreds of cobwebby, tenuous stuff, and couldn’t take the chance.
I also discovered that really, about 7 outfits was all we needed to make life simple, and one of them should be our ‘We are going to town so don’t let’s look like homeless hillbillies, ‘k?’ clothes.
We could have gotten by with three outfits for home and one for going out, except that far too often it was an emergency if I didn’t get one load of laundry done every day, and some kid had to run around with nothing on but a pinned towel until her clothes dried.  I needed a cushion for those nights I couldn’t get the laundry done, or those days when the stomach virus from Hades raced through the ranks.
Did I say long story short?  I, um, exaggerated.
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As the life of a flower…

“[To ] lament that we shall not be alive a hundred years hence, is the same folly as to be sorry we were not alive a hundred years ago. Death is the beginning of another life. So did we weep, and so much it cost us to enter into this, and so did we put off our former veil in entering into it. Nothing can be a grievance that is but once. Is it reasonable so long to fear a thing that will so soon be despatched? Long life, and short, are by death made all one; for there is no long, nor short, to things that are no more.

Aristotle tells us that there are certain little beasts upon the banks of the river Hypanis, that never live above a day: they which die at eight of the clock in the morning, die in their youth, and those that die at five in the evening, in their decrepitude: which of us would not laugh to see this moment of continuance put into the consideration of weal or woe? The most and the least, of ours, in comparison with eternity, or yet with the duration of mountains, rivers, stars, trees, and even of some animals, is no less ridiculous.—[ Seneca, Consol. ad Marciam, c. 20.]”

Essays of Montaigne

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Living here

Ideally, you do wash your clothes the night before, or in the morning early and get them out on the line, because it’s going to rain in the afternoon.

We have a washing machine. It’s outside.  A friend from church tells me I am fortunate, most Filipinos wash by hand.  He asked if I had ever done that before.    It was years and years ago when we were poor and had no money for a washer or the laundromat.  So I did sometimes wash clothes in the bathtub. He was surprised to hear it- astonished, in fact.  I told him I hated it, and as soon as we had any money at all, that was one of the things I stopped doing.

In the morning a vendor peddles down our road peddling a food of some sort.  I can’t recall the name, and I haven’t bought any yet- usually he comes about the time I am busy getting the Cherub up and dressed and I can’t stop and run out.  I’ve been told it’s a kind of dessert/breakfast food.  I have been told it is delicious and that it is disgusting.  It’s sort of a sweet, sticky (sticky like mocha or raw biscuit dough consistency) thing. I think I will be among those who like it because I’ve had similar thing at a church potluck and at a mall vendor and I liked it, but don’t know yet for certain.

In the evening another vendor comes- two, actually.  The first is selling balut, the half grown duckling in the egg.  I am not ever going to try this.

The last vendor of the day is ringing a bell.  I don’t know how it is in other neighborhoods. In ours, it is a family and they are selling home-made ice cream in cones.  The ice creams so far have been ube (deep purple) and pandan (deep green.  Ube is sweet potato.  I can figure out what, precisely, pandan is.  I have had pandan cookies and I like them, but the flavor doesn’t match what I am told pandan is, and the ice cream tastes the same no matter what colour it is.

Because so many people don’t have their own transportation, almost everywhere, we are told, has some kind of delivery system.  You can even call and have McDonald’s or Kentucky Fried Chicken deliver (COD).  We haven’t had much luck with that because accents over the phone are difficult in both directions.

There are apps, but you still deal with other issues.  For example, we tried McDonald’s.  It took forever to get the app to complete our order. Than we got a phone call- they did not carry the drinks the app said they had. We said okay, just remove it.  They said okay and hung up. Then we got a second phone call- keep in mind, phone calls are not free for the receiver. I forget what the second phone call was about- possibly asking for clarification on the directions.  Then, about the time we thought the food would be arriving, we got the third phone call.  In an order consisting of five chicken sandwiches, on apple soda (that they did not carry), and two French fries, they were now calling to tell us they were all out of chicken sandwiches, would we like cheeseburgers instead?  The burgers were more expensive.  We canceled the order and removed the app from our phone and the HM walked ten minutes away to the Chinese restaurant and ordered carry out and brought it back.  We also got their menu and they also deliver.  We’ll give them a try some time.

It’s hot here, but it’s not just the heat.  I keep forgetting the tropical sun is tropical because we are near the equator.  It burns.  Filipino women carrying parasols or umbrellas are not just being quaint (I read a book on Philippine history, supposedly by an expert, and he referred to the custom as some sort of residual affectation from Spanish Colonization).  It really does make a difference.  Men working out in the son will wrap t-shirts around their heads for some of the same reasons.

We had a housecall from our new vet.  It cost about five dollars, and that included some medicine for the dog, who has not been eating well since he had his free rabies vaccine.  The vet is a friend of a friend, newly returned to Davao City.  He was practicing in Manila, but was homesick.  He wants to start a clinic, so he is asking around for new clients, and making housecalls to build his client list.

We asked them to stay for dinner, and they did.  The deviled eggs were immensely popular, but they didn’t like the name.

I also had a masseuse come make a housecall.  She, too, was a friend of a friend.  Her nephew asked me several times if I wouldn’t like to have his auntie come do this (I’d been sick, and he thought it would help a lot).  I finally gave in and accepted, thinking this was as much for building relationships and helping nephew help his auntie as it was for me.

However.  That should have been only around ten dollars, but I had didn’t have a small enough bill and it ended up being closer to 20, which was frustrating.  However, the massage itself was terrific, and it did help.  I had been sick with a high fever- we d0n’t know how high because I didn’t bring a thermometer and I haven’t seen one to buy.  But it was awful hot, and I hurt like crazy, and alternated cold chills and hot sweats.  When it all went away I had this weird rash on my lower calf and ankle.  It wasn’t really rashy looking, it looked like a giant burn- very reddish in colour, but not speckled or anything.  It felt bruised.

Well, ‘Auntie’ massaged that and it felt like ripping off an old scab- you know, kind of painful. but relief at the same time.  When she was done, it was almost all gone.  The massage was terrific- lasted nearly an hour and she really worked my joints and muscles everywhere.

But when the whole thing was over, I asked if I was supposed to pay and that’s when I found out I was.  I had only the larger bill and I hesitantly held that up and explained I had nothing smaller, and the nephew took it quickly and said that would be fine and would I also share these fliers about a housing property Auntie managed with all our friends, and also I should get this massage at least once a month, okay?  Off they went. My husband texted him and suggested they could give us our change by buying load for our phone- you can do this here. You buy load and you can send it to anybody whose phone number you have.  This is how we put new load on our cell phones- we go to the local sari-sari store and tell him we need load, and he looks at his phone and tells us how much he can spare, we pay him, and he sends it to our phone number.  Anyway, so my husband suggested to our friend the nephew that he give us our change this way.  He gave us half the change due via texted load to our phone,  and said nothing about the rest.  We dropped it because relationship.  But I won’t be getting this massage once a month.   It’s an experience I am (mostly) glad to have had once, but won’t be repeating.  I also will probably not let nephew talk me into any more services (previously he’d also tried to get us to have a friend make our dog a kennel, only it turned out the kennel was going to cost three times more than buying one at the store, which we could not afford).

Our son bought long pants for his school uniform and decided he wants shorts.  We asked around if anybody knows a sew lady who has a machine to him them into shorts for him.  This cost us about 60-80 cents a pair, and we didn’t have to do anything but give them to a friend who delivered them to the seamstress and brought them back- in one case the same day (he had two pairs done because he couldn’t find the third, and then he had the third pair done later when he found them).

Our water bill was about five dollars.  Our electricity bill is considerably more.  Our internet bill is not the 80 dollars we were originally quoted (from a company that decided they couldn’t come out after all), but about 20-25 dollars.

We are going to start taking weekly Visayan lessons.  This will be interesting, as my husband and I are taking them together.

Our household helper has told us if I will give her money in advance, she will go to the palinke (I am undoubtedly spelling this wrong)  before she comes to work and buy us fruits and vegetables because they will be much cheaper there.  My husband has been twice.  I have yet to go, because nobody thinks it is a good idea to take the Cherub with me- there are too many things for her to grab, and the walkways are narrow, uneven, and often wet.

Those are just a few things from our life here so far, and in no order.  Is there anything in particular you are curious about?

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Free and bargain basement priced books for Kindle

Truman by David McCullough, 2.99 for your Kindle version
The Pulitzer Prize–winning biography of Harry S. Truman, whose presidency included momentous events from the atomic bombing of Japan to the outbreak of the Cold War and the Korean War, told by America’s beloved and distinguished historian.


1.99 for Rice, Noodle, Fish: Deep Travels Through Japan’s Food Culture
Blurb: Finalist for the 2016 IACP Awards: Literary Food Writing
An innovative new take on the travel guide, Rice, Noodle, Fish decodes Japan’s extraordinary food culture through a mix of in-depth narrative and insider advice, along with 195 color photographs. In this 5000-mile journey through the noodle shops, tempura temples, and teahouses of Japan, Matt Goulding, co-creator of the enormously popular Eat This, Not That! book series, navigates the intersection between food, history, and culture, creating one of the most ambitious and complete books ever written about Japanese culinary culture from the Western perspective.
Written in the same evocative voice that drives the award-winning magazine Roads & Kingdoms, Rice, Noodle, Fish explores Japan’s most intriguing culinary disciplines in seven key regions, from the kaiseki tradition of Kyoto and the sushi masters of Tokyo to the street food of Osaka and the ramen culture of Fukuoka. You won’t find hotel recommendations or bus schedules; you will find a brilliant narrative that interweaves immersive food journalism with intimate portraits of the cities and the people who shape Japan’s food culture.
This is not your typical guidebook. Rice, Noodle, Fish is a rare blend of inspiration and information, perfect for the intrepid and armchair traveler alike. Combining literary storytelling, indispensable insider information, and world-class design and photography, the end result is the first ever guidebook for the new age of culinary tourism.

FREE! Free, http://amzn.to/2lms18j 37 page Kindle booklet on dog training.

FREE!! Voyage of the Liberdade: A Journey from Brazil to America in a Hand-built Boat, by Joshua Slocum
Blurb: About the Author
Born in Nova Scotia, Canada, Joshua Slocum was the first man to sail single-handedly around the world. An international bestseller, Sailing Alone Around the World was a critical success upon its publication in 1900. Slocum enjoyed widespread fame in the English-speaking world, including an invitation to speak at a dinner in honor of Mark Twain, until his disappearance while aboard his boat the Spray in 1909. At the time, it was believed his boat had been run down by a steamer or struck by a whale, however it was later determined that the Spray could also have easily capsized. Despite a lifetime at sea, Slocum never learned to swim. He was declared legally dead in 1924.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.
Joshua Slocum is widely known for his Sailing Around the World Alone, the story of his solo circumnavigation. The Voyage of the Liberdade, his first book, is equally compelling. In it he recounts his journey to Brazil and back – he sailed down on the Aquidneck, his own ship, and returned on the Liberdade, which he built there. What happened?
Slocum describes sailing from port to port in Brazil, trying to take in and deliver enough cargo on the Aquidneck to make her voyage profitable. Through a series of mishaps he is saddled with a crew which turns out to be composed of brigands, not sailors:
“My pirates thought their opportunity had surely come to capture the Aquidneck, and this they undertook to do. The ringleader of the gang was a burly scoundrel, whose boast was that he had “licked both the mate and second mate of the last vessel he had sailed in, and had “busted the captain in the jaw”…Near midnight, my wife, who had heard the first footstep on deck, quietly wakened me, saying, “We must get up, and look out for ourselves! Something is going wrong on deck; the boat tackle has been let go with a great deal of noise…” My first impulse was to step on deck in the usual way, but the earnest entreaties of my wife awoke me, like, to a danger that should be investigated with caution. Arming myself therefore, with a stout carbine repeater, and eight ball cartridges in the magazine, I stepped on deck abaft instead of forward, where evidently I had been expected…”
Slocum, who landed in jail for shooting a one of the mutineers, eventually lost the Aquidneck on the reefs. Not wanting to remain a castaway in Brazil, he and his family build the Liberdade, the ship that would bring them home

1.99 AGatha Christie’s Body in the Library

FREE!
Mister Mottley and the Key of D: An Edmund Mottley Short Mystery
This is just a short story (17 pages) but the three pages I read were so funny I downloaded it to my Kindle to finish later. She’s published three other books, one is just 2.99, the other two are .99 each.

FREE! Tupenny Hat Detective – period mystery written for teen audience, so clean (plenty of murders, though). Over forty people have reviewed it and it has a solid 4.5 star rating.

FREE! Sherlock Holmes and the VAlley of FEar

1.99 for The Basque History of the World

Here’s a blurb: The Basque History of the World is the illuminating story of an ancient and enigmatic people. Signs of their civilization existed well before the arrival of the Romans in 218 B.C., and though theories abound, no one has ever been able to determine their origins. Their ancient tongue, Euskera, is equally mysterious: It is the oldest living European language, and is related to no other language on Earth.
Yet despite their obscure origins and small numbers (2.4 million people today), the Basques have had a profound impact on Europe and the world for more than 2,000 years. Never seeking more land, they have nonetheless fiercely defended their own against invaders ranging from the Celts and Visigoths to Napoleon and Franco. They have always been a paradoxical blend of inbred tradition and worldly ambition, preserving their indigenous legal code, cuisine, literature-even their own hat and shoe-while at the same time striving immodestly to be leaders in the world. They were pioneers of commercial whaling and cod fishing, were among the first Europeans in the Americas, Africa, and Asia during the age of exploration, and were prosperous capitalists when capitalism was a new idea, later leading the Industrial Revolution in southern Europe. Their influence has been felt in every realm, from religion (the charismatic Ignatius Loyola founded the Jesuits in 1534) to sports and commerce. Today, even while clinging to their ancient tribal identity, they are ready for a borderless world: The unique Basque concept of nationhood has never been more relevant, at a time when Basques are enjoying what may be the most important cultural renaissance in their long existence.
Mark Kurlansky’s passion for the Basque people- their heroes and commoners alike-and his exuberant eye for detail shine throughout The Basque History of the World. Like his celebrated book Cod, it blends human stories with economic, political,
The Basque History of the World is the illuminating story of an ancient and enigmatic people. Signs of their civilization existed well before the arrival of the Romans in 218 B.C., and though theories abound, no one has ever been able to determine their origins. Their ancient tongue, Euskera, is equally mysterious: It is the oldest living European language, and is related to no other language on Earth.
Yet despite their obscure origins and small numbers (2.4 million people today), the Basques have had a profound impact on Europe and the world for more than 2,000 years. Never seeking more land, they have nonetheless fiercely defended their own against invaders ranging from the Celts and Visigoths to Napoleon and Franco. They have always been a paradoxical blend of inbred tradition and worldly ambition, preserving their indigenous legal code, cuisine, literature-even their own hat and shoe-while at the same time striving immodestly to be leaders in the world. They were pioneers of commercial whaling and cod fishing, were among the first Europeans in the Americas, Africa, and Asia during the age of exploration, and were prosperous capitalists when capitalism was a new idea, later leading the Industrial Revolution in southern Europe. Their influence has been felt in every realm, from religion (the charismatic Ignatius Loyola founded the Jesuits in 1534) to sports and commerce. Today, even while clinging to their ancient tribal identity, they are ready for a borderless world: The unique Basque concept of nationhood has never been more relevant, at a time when Basques are enjoying what may be the most important cultural renaissance in their long existence.

Mark Kurlansky’s passion for the Basque people- their heroes and commoners alike-and his exuberant eye for detail shine throughout The Basque History of the World. Like his celebrated book Cod, it blends human stories with economic, political,

Reviews are largely positive though they note two things consistently- he is very pro-Basque so it’s not really neutral (that is okay by me so long as we know), and he’s a reporter, not a historian. I have beefs with journalist authored books in general- they can be tedious, circular, repetitive, and I suspect this is no different. At the same time, they are usually informative and have plenty of interesting stuff. I just usually wish they had an editor cut their stuff down by about a third.

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