New cookbooks for Francophiles, Anglophiles and lovers of sourdough bread, Prince Harry announces his autobiography book’s release, a new biography by Andrew Morton about the Queen, a favorite French film from the past too good not to miss, two new films receiving high praise, sweaters for him and her, a décor sale with fantastic savings, a fun French series about a “deadly” profession, and still, much more.
—Life is Hard: How Philosophy Can Help Us Find Our Way by Kieran Setiya
Released this past October, Kieran Setiya “offers us a map for navigating rough terrain, from personal trauma to the injustice and absurdity of the world” in Life is Hard: How Philosophy Can Help Us Find Our Way. “Drawing on ancient and modern philosophy as well as fiction, history, memoir, film, comedy, social science, paired with his own life stories, discover the helpful tools of philosophy to find your way through and to where and how you desire to live”.
—The Nature of Creativity: A Mindful Approach to Making Art & Craft by Jane E. Hall
Released this past spring, I learned about renowned textile artist and embroiderer Jane E. Hall’s new book while reading the latest issue of The English Garden magazine. “As a child, Jane loved playing outside and making things using natural materials, from daisy chains and petal-based perfumes to tiny tea sets of acorn cups and leaf saucers. Now, as a successful professional artist, Jane still finds great happiness and inspiration in connecting with nature, and here encourages you to attune to the beauty of the natural world as a way of stimulating your creativity . . . She shares the special spaces, both indoors and out, that allow her imagination to have free rein, and then presents 10 creative ideas inspired by nature.” Have a look at the Table of Contents below, and perhaps this is a book to spark your own creativity as you may have thought it was dormant or non-existent. The great and wonderful news is that it’s ready to be awakened, and it will always reside within each of us; we just need to set it free. ?
–Sweet Success: A Simple Recipe to Turn Your Passion into Profit by Candace Nelson
Coming highly recommended from Gwyneth Paltrow, I decided to take a look at founder of wildly successful Sprinkles cupcakes Candace Nelson’s new book. Released last week, readers will learn from Nelson’s mistakes, misses, and lessons learned the hard way:
- Obtain the key ingredients to any successful business
- Craft the mindset of an entrepreneur
- Learn the secret recipe for packaging a product for profit
- Turn kitchen experiments into top selling products
- Cultivate a community of brand evangelists
- Step into a personal brand to amplify the business
- Know where to put marketing dollars most effectively
—The British Cook Book by Ben Mervis
Released this past October, author and food historian Ben Mervis not only brings the recipes of the classics from Britain, but with his extensive research, delves much further than any typical cookbook you will find on the subject of British food. With more than 450 pages full of 550 authentic recipes, discover the “home-cooked classics, such as Shepherd’s Pie, Welsh Rarebit, Scottish Crumpets, and Victoria Sponge; lesser-known and regional recipes, such as Bonfire Night Black Peas and Dublin Bay Prawns; dishes deeply steeped in British history, such as Haggis and Devils on Horseback; and iconic dishes with roots outside of the United Kingdom, such as Chicken Tikka Masala, Curry Goat, and Sesame Prawn Toast.” I definitely want to welcome this cookbook into my library, not only for the recipes, but for the food history as well of cultures that have my heart and adoration.
I want to send out a festive thank you to long-time reader of TSLL Clare who reminded me to pick up Nigel Slater’s holiday food diary – The Christmas Chronicles, And, as fans of Slater will note most immediately, his exploration and celebration of “Christmas” is much more subdued, quiet and full or savoring of everyday seasonal moments indoors and out during this cozy time of year, so very much aligned to what we celebrate when we talk about living simply luxuriously. Paired with his simple and delicious recipes written in his unique and engaging prose style, be sure while reading The Christmas Chronicles to listen to the podcast titled The Cook’s Chronicles.
Beginning on the first of November and taking your through the entire month of December, delight in an entry (or two) each day and settle into a comfortable rhythm of joyful contemplation as the year comes to a close.
—At Home in the Cotswolds: Secrets of English Country House Style by Katy Campbell
American living in the English countryside, Katy Campbell’s new book is one for Anglophiles who love the English country decor. Being released next Tuesday, At Home in the Cotswolds “takes us on a tour of the villages and rolling hills of the Cotswolds as they uncover some of the most charming and inspirational homes in the region: a chocolate box cottage, an exquisite old rectory, a Georgian farmhouse, a quintessential manor house, an historic stately home, and more”. Follow her on IG, one of my favorite accounts, as she only photographs gorgeous English exterior home fronts that will make you want to book your next trip to England as of yesterday. Below, one of the many pictures you will find inside the book. What a garden and borrowed landscape of beauty. 🙂
—IvyLine, British Holiday home décor
The British just know how to make the holidays cozy (or should I say cosy), and IvyLine is an online shop to check out. Based in Britain, while they sell décor items year-round, I have linked to their Christmas shop – from tree baskets (square ones are rare, and this one fits the bill nicely) to statement making wreath hangers for your door and trays for candles that are magnetic, to ensure the candles stay upright, be sure to pursue what they have for unique and well-priced finds.
—The Queen: Her Life by Andrew Morton
If you follow the British royals, or even if you just began watching The Crown, you know that Andrew Morton is thee biographer of the royals – beginning with his biography on Princess Diana in 1992 that caused quite the firestorm in the 90s. Being released next Tuesday, his new biography spotlights Queen Elizabeth II and shares an “in-depth look at Britain’s longest reigning monarch, exploring the influence Queen Elizabeth had on both Britain and the rest of the world for much of the last century. From leading a nation struggling to restore itself after the devastation of the second World War to navigating the divisive political landscape of the present day, Queen Elizabeth was a reluctant but resolute queen”.
And the autobiography/memoir that so many have been waiting for and is said to have been delayed out of respect for the recent death of his grandmother, HM Queen Elizabeth II, now we know its title – Spare. Being released with the new year on January 10th, The Prince, The Duke of Sussex, shares his story (more than 400 pages) of the life so much of the world has watched through the headlines and photographs. I look forward to reading it.
A New York Times bestseller recently released by French chef and beloved television cooking companion to Julia Child and in his own right, Jacques Pépin shares through paintings (he has a penchant for painting as well as cooking), stories and recipes, his adoration for the humble bird, the chicken. The book takes readers “from his childhood in rural France, where he chased chickens and watched as his maman turned them into her poulet à la crème, to his demanding apprenticeship and long, illustrious career—cooking Chicken Chasseur for Charles de Gaulle and his family, turning down a chance to work as JFK’s White House Chef for a job at Howard Johnson’s, and appearing on television alongside food-world luminaries like Julia Child. Throughout are Jacques’ favorite chicken and egg recipes, conveyed as if he were sharing them over a dinner table.” And with the book filled with his own illustrations, enjoy takeing a tour of his art studios as well (read this article in The New York Times, full of photos to have a first glimpse).
Inspired by Maurizio Leo’s successful blog of the same name, The Perfect Loaf, his first book was released this past Tuesday sharing his “impeccably detailed techniques, foolproof recipes, and generous teaching style that delves into the absolute fundamentals of sourdough—plus the tools and confidence to explore beyond . . . Beginner bakers will have their hands held the entire way, with troubleshooting sections and numerous sidebars answering almost every question they may have—like how to store a sourdough starter long-term, how bakers’ percentages actually work, and a visual guide to common ‘bread fails’ and how to remedy them. Seasoned bakers will relish deep dives into the science behind baking processes and expert information on how to build their ‘baker’s intuition’ and level up by experimenting with hydration, ingredient ratios, freshly milled grains, and specialty flours.”
—Smitten Kitchen Keepers: New Classics for Your Forever Files by Deb Perelman
Already dubbed by Bon Appétit as the best cookbook of the year, food blogger Deb Perelman (explore her blog here) has just released her third cookbook which is “a collection of essential recipes for meals you’ll want to prepare again and again, from Cozy Chicken and Dumplings to Fettuccine with White Ragú, and from Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup Cookies to Strawberry Summer Stack Cake.”
—Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me, AppleTV+
Released last week, successful singer and actor Selena Gomez shares a “uniquely raw and intimate documentary [that] spans her six-year journey into a new light.” Have a look at the trailer below.
Critics are enjoying and Rotten Tomatoes has rated Sam & Kate 100% as of late. A unique casting as both the lead parent roles are starring alongside their own actual children. A comedy and a drama rolled up into one, set in “a small town in the heart of the country, Dustin Hoffman plays Bill, a larger-than-life Father to Sam (Jake Hoffman) who has returned home to take care of father and his ailing health. While home, Sam falls for a local woman, Kate. At the same time, Bill starts to fall for her mom, Tina (Sissy Spacek). The course of true love never runs smooth, and these four will be forced to confront their pasts while trying to make new love work in their lives.” Have a look at the trailer below and look for it in theaters today.
A far more dramatic film, but one that critics are buzzing about when the Oscars are mentioned, The Son. This film serves as a follow-up to 2020’s The Father, also starring Anthony Hopkins who plays the grandfather in the film The Son, Hugh Jackman plays a divorced father starting over again, but his son from his first marriage is the focus just as much as the father (Jackman). Take a look at this deeply emotional film’s trailer below and find it in theaters now.
—Alexandra Ehle, MHzChoice
Ah! I have an unexpectedly fun French series for you! I stumbled across Alexandra Ehle, who is a coroner in the Bordeaux region of France, and while you might expect this to be a dark mystery series due to her job of working with the deceased, it is actually a comedy/drama because Alex’s life and her girlfriends’ (who also work with her at the morgue) are really the main plot, and the murders just happen to need to be solved – a new one each episode. 🙂 There are two seasons, and the first one is now available to be viewed on MHzChoice. Having just finished watching all episodes in the first, I am eager to watch the second. Have a look at a peek for the first season below.
—Paris, IFC films or AMC
From more than 15 years ago, a film to watch for inspiration to appreciate the everyday moments of life and being alive. Paris, starring Juliette Binoche and Romain Duris centers around a young man’s waking up to the beauty of life in its everyday moments as prompted by his diagnosis that may mean his death is imminent. Have a look at the trailer below.
A bit of shopping for you this Friday per usual (look for an Outfit of the Month post next week). I found these straight-leg pants, and at a reasonable price from a trusted brand and wanted to share as they would be ideal for everyday style paired with just about anything.
This sweater. Okay, yes, it is for men, but I think I could live in it as well. Yum, yum, cozy, cozy.
—Serena & Lily Sale Event, 25% off everything
A sale to peruse now, give yourself time to ponder and then don’t forget to go back before the month’s end and pounce on those items that stay at the forefront of your mind. Use the promo code GRATITUDE to save 25% off through the entire month of November. I have shopped just a few items below because the ENTIRE site is on sale, but the code must be entered.
A slimming silhouette for a cozy sweater but with very long sleeves and a flattering color combo (white and navy stripes are also available – so the reverse of what is seen here). I will never tire of navy and white stripes.
—Rosaline, Hulu, film
The story that was never told, until now. Available to watch on Hulu, the story of Romeo’s ( of Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet fame) first love Rosaline. A comedic and thoughtful approach to her storyline. Have a look at the trailer below.
Holiday Gift Guide
Be sure to shop TSLL’s Annual Holiday Gift Guide that was released this past Saturday with more than 40 finds – advent calendars, holiday decor, clothing, dog gifts and of course Francophile and Anglophile finds.
Well, I’ll just be honest, it is taking all that is strong within me to not binge the entire 5th season of The Crown. ☺️??❤️ I sat down on Wednesday and watched the first two episodes, but what saved me from watching more than two was a small, seemingly insignificant setting in one scene with the Queen. I noticed how her desk was situated in this particular room at Balmoral Castle, and it sparked an idea for my own office. Pausing the television, off I went for the next two hours to rearrange my office, and what you see above is an important detail that also had to be rearranged – the pups’ beds (seen in their new location, aprés rearranging)!
Upon finishing the room, Norman approved, but yesterday began napping in Nelle’s (the French pronunciation – learn more about how we all met in November’s A Cuppa Moments) bed – just to seeeeeee if it was comfortable for her (?). Follow the progression of events yesterday regarding the dog beds in this IG post. Eventually, Norman made his way to his beloved bed and snoozed the entire work session as I typed away. (But I have to share this, as I am editing this post Thursday evening, guess where he is sleeping? Yep, in Nelle’s bed, snoring a sweet tune, and Nelle is in his bed because her’s was taken :)).
The week at home has been steady and lovely with one morning in which we woke up to a couple inches of snow (now melted), but what fun we had, oh goodness!
Afternoons and evenings find us in the kitchen – me, cooking, and these two, keeping watch and holding down the roles of my deux sous chefs ☺️.
The weather is now deeply in frost and freezing mode each night, so that means much cozying-in and bundling up each morning when we go for walks. Last evening, the power went out for about two hours, so by candlelight I was reading Palace Papers which is a wonderful pairing whilst watching The Crown. See, even the power company is trying to strengthen my will power to not binge. :).
I hope November began well for you, and you are looking ahead to a lovely weekend, a long one perhaps for readers in the states as we pay homage to veterans today. Thank you for stopping by and until Monday, bonne journée. Below are a few links and one video you might enjoy.
~This Georgian house tour of tech entrepreneur Rose Hulse’s home in England is, oh wow . . . [House & Garden UK]
~Jennifer Aniston opens up in a recent interview [Allure] (thank you Sarah H. for sharing with me)
~TSLL’s friend and author of the Provençal mystery series M.L. Longworth contributed a piece to The Wall Street Journal this past week – Unknown Towns of Coastal Provence—The Famous Writers Who’ve Escaped There
~Festive Christmas markets in the UK to visit [House & Garden UK]
~6 Essential Mindsets for Continuous Career Growth [Life Hack]
~9 tips for letting go and trusting the universe [Chopra.com]
~The full video interview with Ina Garten on 60 minutes, and if you have ever noticed that her cookbook’s pages always stay open while you are cooking – no forcing, or needing ‘weights’ to hold them open – there is a reason for that. It’s all in the details and shared in this interview.
~A podcast episode to listen to from Earful Tower. Almost French author Sarah Turnbull’s wonderful memoir (it was one of the first book’s recommended here on the blog more than 13 years ago) is one to read, and now, twenty years later, she is living in Australia and talking all about it.
~One more home to tour. This one in NYC and fashion designer Thom Browne calls it home. It is . . . ahhh … mazing. [Architectural Digest]
~For those of you (and this includes me), who adore Nicola Walker and just listening to her talk, a video for you . . .
A long-anticipated Anglophile favorite series returns, oodles of films, winter clothing for indoor and outdoor style and warmth, a book for food-lovers that involves history as well, books about friendship, healing, tapping into your inner strength, living and the beauty of Provence by a beloved American photographer, a documentary about a famed luxury shoe maker and still, much more.