Subscribe to one of Suzanne's online bookclubs and receive her daily
column at: DearReader.com
Sample Suzanne's book at:
Muffins and Mayhem, Recipes for a Happy (if disorderly) Life
AUTHORBUZZ: Discover new books, "meet" the authors and enter to win: Goto: http://authorbuzz.com/dearreader
Chocolate covered malted milk balls and chocolate covered peanuts were my father's favorite when I was a kid--mine too. But when Dad brought home chocolate covered grasshoppers (a strange fad in the 60s) this kid switched to eating red and black licorice circles. My childhood chocolate memories were triggered when I read today's guest column, "Chocolate is a Girl's Best Friend" written by author Sheila Roberts.
Sheila's new novel, Better Than Chocolate is available right now, and she's giving away two copies to book club readers. One of those books is waiting for you. Simply send an email to Sheila (you'll receive a personal reply) and your name will be entered in the giveaway. Her email address is: email@example.com
I will return from my vacation this coming Monday. Thanks for filling in for me today Sheila.
CHOCOLATE IS A GIRL'S BEST FRIEND
I've always been a chocoholic. I'm not sure when this condition started. Maybe with my first M & M? Or maybe I inherited it from my mother. I can still remember coming home from school to the smell of chocolate chip cookies baking in the kitchen. Yum! And my mother's chocolate cake recipe is the best. I still make it for special occasions.
Growing up, chocolate and I were constantly together. We had a soda fountain milkshake maker in our kitchen and I often made chocolate milkshakes for my high school friends after school. Needless to say, Sheila's house was always the place to be. When I was young, my father owned a small grocery store. He allowed me to help him take inventory...of the candy. You can imagine how many chocolate treats disappeared while I was "helping" with inventory. My family was big into having fun, and I don't think we ever sat down to a game of cards without a bowl of some kind of chocolate treat nearby to sustain us.
Once I had my own family, of course, I carried on my mother's tradition, baking chocolate chip cookies and making brownies. (I have the world's best brownie recipe, and a fancy holiday version of it actually found its way into my book On Strike for Christmas.) It has been proven that dark chocolate is actually good for us. Sadly, that was never my favorite kind. I preferred my chocolate to come loaded with extra fat and sugar. And if I could put it over ice cream that was even better! Ah, chocolate is a girl's best friend. Over the years I've collected a ton of fabulous chocolate recipes, and when I wrote Better Than Chocolate, I had a great time coming up with new recipes for the book, which, of course, I tested. Friends suggested recipes, too, and I tested those as well. And I gained ten pounds!
Sadly, these days chocolate doesn't agree with me. We're still friends, but we don't spend time together the way we once did. Now I burn chocolate scented candles and splurge on chocolate scented body butter. So things have changed between us.
But hey, we still have our memories. (And I'm now ten pounds lighter!)
Sheila Roberts lives in the Pacific Northwest. She's happily married and has three children. Her novels have appeared in Readers Digest Condensed books and have been published in several languages. Her holiday perennial, On Strike for Christmas was made into a movie for the Lifetime Movie Network. When she's not writing songs, hanging out with her girlfriends or hitting the dance floor with her husband, she can be found writing about those things dear to women's hearts: family, friends, and chocolate.
Readers really do win books from our Guest Authors, like these winners of Anjali Banerjee's book, ENCHANTING LILY: Joan Bendall, Heidi Shinbaum, Becky Motchenbaugh, Jody Pearch and Carolyn Gutierrez.
And Dee Stillings won a copy of PRESUMED GUILTY by last week's Guest Columnist, James Scott Bell.
Thanks for reading with me. It's so good to read with friends.
* This month's Penguin Classics book is THE TUNNEL by Ernesto Sabato. Start reading now and enter to win a Penguin totebag. Go to: http://tinyurl.com/Sept12Classics
AUTHORBUZZ: KILL SWITCH by Neal Baer and Jonathan Greene
Claire Waters is a dedicated forensic psychiatrist with unnervingly personal insights into the criminal mind. Haunted by a disturbing childhood incident, Claire has always been drawn to those rare "untreatable" patients who seem to have no conscience or fear. But one shocking case could make or break her career--and it's waiting for her in the psychiatric wing of New York City's Rikers Island.
Go to: http://authorbuzz.com/dearreader click on KILL SWITCH to read more and to email authors Neal Baer and Jonathan Greene, you'll get a reply.