Sunday, May 31, 2015

Dior Diorskin Nude Tan Tie Dye Blush in Coral Sunset Review and Swatches

Gorgeous warm blush!

Loreal Pure Reds Lipsick Collection in Blake, Doutzen and Eva Review and Swatches

A lighter formula but very pretty indeed.  Blake is a bright cool blue red.  Doutzen is more orange than red.  And Eva is a subtle light to medium brick red.

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Givenchy Color Confetti Face Powder Review and Swatches

The ultimate unicorn...and is very beautiful in person.  A little more sheen and pink than Meteorites.

Kerosene Unknown Pleasures Eau De Parfum Review

To purchase:

This fragrance is a wow.  Tea, lemon, caramel, vanilla and it's still edgy.  Stunning...

Tom Ford Velvet Violet Lip Color Matte Lipstick Review and Swatches

Oh but this is pretty...a creamy and vibrant matte.  More fuchsia purple than Violet...but beautiful!

Melt Cosmetics Dark Room and 6X6 Lipstick Review and Swatches

Dark, matte and velvety in appearance but with that stiff matte texture (which you either love or hate!).

GRWM Smoky Summer Eye Tutorial with Bright Blue

Just for fun...a look I've been loving...

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Etude House Peach Choux Blush Review and Swatches

Finally something to replace my (limited edition) MAC Cream Soda blush.

Creamy, lovely and such a softly gorgeous matte peach.

Commodity Goods Book Eau De Parfum Review

My favorite of the Commodity scents.  It starts with a burst of cucumber then I feel fresh woods, with a little kick of citrus, lavender and vanilla.  Modern, clean and unisex.

Korean BB or CC Cushion Overview with Banila, Etude House and DSB

My favorite cushions…they allow for more control over the coverage you apply…

Saturday, May 9, 2015

Book Giveaway The Book of Life by Deborah Harkness

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter May 10 to 17, 2015.  US only (sorry).

Book Giveway Cut Me Loose by Leah Vincent

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter May 10 to 17, 2015

Book Review Phenomenal Leigh Ann Henion

Some books are hard to describe.

With the birth of her son, writer Henion begins to feel conflicted and confined.  Not an uncommon reaction for independent women in today's world.  How Henion copes is unusual. She begins to search for the world's most extraordinary wonders and travels to visit them, writing all the while.

What follows is really a spiritual journey with science added in and religion removed.  I really enjoyed Henion's steps along the way.  And each of her trips is described vividly.

My viewpoints are somewhat different but the book still struck me personally.

A very interesting read.

Book Review The Poser by Jacob Rubin

This book is quite a narrative!

Giovanni can mimic anyone and his mother encourages him.  Soon he's a famous performer but working with some less admirable characters and losing touch with himself.  Then he meets a woman he can't mimic.

Yet we all give ourselves away with certain gestures so why won't she?

Giovanni must come iback n touch with many emotional and psychological elements.  So how will the book end?  Can he do it?

While I admit it lags in the middle I really enjoyed this book!

Book Review Bettyville by George Hodgman

Penguin very kindly offered me some books recently that really hit an emotional nerve, and each in its own way.

In some ways, I have nothing in common with a glamorous, and gay, man who writes for big media companies (including Vanity Fair) who then goes home to Paris, Missouri to help his 90 year old mother.  In other ways, I have everything in common with him.

In this memoir, the author returns home to a somewhat difficult mother now facing a failing memory, health problems and her loss of the social life she treasured.  Mother and son are both stubborn, but also burdened by the past. 

This book addresses a lot.  And aging parent, being out of place growing up and gay in a small society, drug addiction, aids, coming of age and the pain of being different.  We don't always fit in with regards to our family expectations or the parts of the world in which we find ourselves.  But mostly we learn to cope.

And this book is also a mature one, that hints at finding a balance and reaching the maturity to deal with an aging parent.  And the past.  Denial was a huge part of his family norms, so now the author deals with his own issues of closeness and trust, even as he mourns the loss of community in a place he never felt he belonged.

Touching and lovely.

Book Review Small Mercies by Eddie Joyce

Ten years after 9/11 a family comes to terms with losing their loved one, an early responding fire fighter.  We're heartbroken early as the novel begins with Bobby's mother and the void that his death, her youngest son, left.  We then hear from his widow, Tina, who might finally begin to love again.  And then the author moves on.

The family is working class, in Staten Island, though one brother has prospered while the third never seems to have moved past his brother's death.  We get to know each family member but also their world.

Each page is rich in time and place, making this book very atmospheric.  This book is one that slowly seduced me, drawing me further into the family and how they had each individually coped.  So worth a read!

Book Review: Cut Me Loose by Leah Vincent

Cut Me Loose by Leah Vincent is a brutal book.  And I mean that in the best way.

Vincent actually does cut, herself, many times.  She engages in other self destructive behavior and aches from being rejected by her ultra orthodox family after being caught at 16 sending letters to a boy. Breaking free after being rejected and having essentially no practical skills or knowledge of the world, Vincent eventually soars.  She even gets accepted into Harvard.

This book is very painful to read as we walk with Vincent through her quest.  Her parents coldly cut her off and refuse to be at all forgiving.  People take advantage of her youth and innocence.  She can't forgive herself.

This book is so worth reading and is beautifully written.

Book Review Reagan The Life by H.W. Brands

This books is what a master biographer can do when approaching a great president's life after history has had time to settle and we can get the full picture.  I've long been a fan of Ronald Reagan and watching him speak to a large audience had a huge impact on me many years ago.  His presence and delivery left little doubt in my mind that Reagan was a man of principle.

And I do believe he was a great president.

Politics aside, Brands has done a great job with this biography.  The timing is perhaps good in that we now have some time and space to fully analyze the impact that Reagan had on the US and, indeed, globally.

Brands brings in an FDR analogy but also grasps not only the man but how the world shaped him, leading to his way of dealing with situations and people. This isn't Brands' first big historical biography and his mastery of the medium is apparent.

I learned so much reading this book and, hefty though it is, had a hard time putting it down.  Some men are great and this book is nuanced enough not to fall into the obvious but rather presenting a human being (and doing it well).

Book Review Louis Begley's Killer Come Hither

Louis Begley has written 10 novels before Killer Come Hither.  He's a lawyer and in this book, the hero's uncle, a lawyer in NYC has just committed suicide.

Or did he?

And let's be clear, I really love this story.

Our main character, Jack Dana, decided to defer graduate school to fight for our country after 9/11.  His father was a veteran as was his grandfather.  But his uncle oddly didn't fight for some mysterious medical reason.  Both of Jack's parents are dead and his uncle is his main mentor and surrogate parent.

Upon returning from the war, Jack writes a hit novel.  He then heads to South America when his uncle decides to commit suicide.  Of course, Jack soon realizes that the storyline behind his uncle's death is very different.  And behind it are a billionaire client and some of the partners at his uncle's law firm.

The book is paced beautifully and the story line kept me enthralled. Some details are a bit cliche, but the author handles his material with such finesse that such bumps aren't a bother.  Great book!