Loving Jay by Renae Kaye and a Gorgeous Italian Rosé

LovingJayLGWell that was delightful! Loving Jay by (new to me) author Renae Kaye was absolutely charming. Liam and Jay were so frigging adorable and funny, I was totally and completely smitten from the moment I started reading. This book was so lovely and fun. That is not to say it didn’t have some serious moments, it totally did, but mostly it was wonderful to see Liam evolve in his feelings for Jay and become braver about who he was, just from what he had found in the man he loved.

For this one, I must say the bottle chose ME, I was browsing for weekend wines, saw this bottle and thought ‘This is perfect for Jay!” they were offering a tasting and it was delicious, so that sealed the deal. My pairing for today is the 2013  Carpineto Dogajolo Rosato from Tuscany, Italy, is  made with 100% Sangiovese grapes. This wine is wildflowers and sunshine, beautiful and aromatic. I put down that bottle in a hot second. So good, at $11 a bottle not cheap, but definitely worth the splurge, and that label, so gorgeous. photo So back to Liam and Jay, two of my new favorite fictional people! Liam is a bit reluctant (like he chants “I’m not gay!” a few times a day to himself)  to admit his proclivities, it just seems like too much is uncertain. His intimate experiences with me have left him cold, so he can’t go by that…There is also his family, mostly his dad, who is always mouthing off homophobic comments without provocation. Then there is society at large, Liam just hasn’t found any reason worthy of him putting himself through the grief of being openly gay. People are horrible to gay people all the time, nasty comments and looks…He just can’t see how anyone would be willing to go through that. However in the past months he has developed a mild (full blown!) obsession with a fellow commuter. Every morning this beautiful blond man with eyeliner, make up and extremely flamboyant ways rides the same train as Liam and just lights up his world. Everything about Jay (this is the name Liam has come up with based on badge the guy wore once, since they’ve never actually spoken) makes Liam want. He is beautiful, open and proud. Liam wants to badly to get closer to him…If only Liam were gay…Riiiiight.

On Liam’s lucky day he misses the train to work along with Jay, and they strike up a quick friendship. Jay, James actually,  talks a mile a minute and has NO FILTER from brain to mouth, but he still charms Liam completely. The man is smitten pretty quickly, if he could only man up and ask the guy out. That choice is taken out his hands when something bad happens and Liam has to stand up for Jay and face what he’s feeling. If he wants to be the man Jay deserves he has to be brave and step out into the light.

This book was so delightful, the humor was unapologetic, the characters genuine and endearing. I loved Liam and Jay, how they understood each other. Liam became such a brave warrior for Jay, what he couldn’t seem to do for himself came instinctually if it meant defending Jay. I just loved this book, it had the right mix of humor, romance, smexin, seriousness, and endearing characters to make it a very enjoyable read.

Definitely recommend.

Loving Jay is for sale at Dreamspinner Press.

Hope you give the book and the wine a try, you will fall in love TWICE!

Cheers and Happy reading!

Laura

Review: The Return by Brad Boney…French Rosès, “Food Truck Style Vegan Tacos” and my Bruce Springsteen Fangirl Moment

Return[The]Brace yourselves kids because this is a LONG ONE…The Return, Brad Boney’s sophomore effort complete with an extended visit with all the guys we got to know and love in his first book The Nothingness of Ben is completely brilliant, a fun, unique book with some heavy themes and strong writing, but even more than that it’s a beautiful and hopeful tribute/eulogy to  the  men who died and survived the AIDS epidemic, it’s an amazing lesson in music and it’s trascendence, it’s an optismistic and crafty story about the power of love and friendship. Yep, I loved this book.

I’m going to just start by saying that this book had me at Hello. I mean it was maybe at 3% that the Love Fest for Bruce Springsteen began and I was a GONER. Bruce Springsteen...SIGHS…I am a FAN, like stone cold, die hard, rabid FAN. One of the best nights of my life was seeing Springsteen in New York City in October of 2003. I get chills just remembering how magical that night was. The thing is, Thunder Road, it’s  my Battle Song. When I moved to New York City from Dominican Republic in 2002 (my homeland) for graduate school, Thunder Road was the only thing I listened to on the plane. It’s my BATTLE SONG. So with the Bruce Love, Brad went straight for my soul.

I loved Stanton, and Topher and Chris and all the men in this book for their reverence to Springsteen and music and what it meant for them, how it bound them…and I LOVED Brad Boney for writing this story…but I digress. On to the review…

First things first…The booze…Of course I could not just whimp out on Brad Boney and the amazing men he gave me in this book, so I didn’t just try one wine, nope I tried TWO. The boys in The Return get to try an amazing bottle of French wine in the book, so I wanted to stick with the theme. The two wines I tried were a 2012 Eclat du Rhône a Rosè from the Rhône Valley and a 2012 Grange Des Dames from the Ventoux Valley, both of these wines are less than $10 a bottle and are delicious summer wines. The Eclat is made with Grenache grapes, its a bit light and has a just a bit of a fruity kick that is really delicious. The Grange des Dames  with a Granache, Syrah and Mouvedre blend is a bit more crisp and a bit grassy, but still very nice well chilled. In the end either of these two wines would go PERFECTLY with the recipe I came up with for The Return. The book is set (partly) in Austin, so I went with that for the food pairing. I love Austin, particularly the amazing food trucks all over town, so I got my creative juices FLOWING and came up with the “Southwest by Northeast Vegan “Food Truck Style” Tacos with a Tequila Lime Slaw, and Sweet and Smoky Guacamole”…I know, I know it’s a mouthful! But they are insanely delicious and the guacamole?? You’ll want to name your future babies after me once you taste it. I am pretty happy with myself for this one, and hope I did this book justice with the food and wine I paired it with.

The Food, The Wine...THE BOOK.

The Food, The Wine…THE BOOK.

Now the story (I promise the song quotes are necessary, so bear with me :))… In reality, this book is four stories that kind of combine into one. We have two love stories, and two stories of powerful enduring friendship, all over one lifetime. The story of Today, Stanton and Topher and their best friends. The story of Yesterday, Stanton and Chris and their best friends.

Topher Manning is a musician (mechanic by day) who can’t get his songs out of his head, and into the world, he loves what he does and he loves his bandmates though. His bandmates and very best friends, Robin, Maurice, and Pete, with whom he left his hometown of Dime Box, Texas and came to Austin with to pursue their dream. Time is passing though and  they’re going to need something spectacular to happen soon, he is going to have to unlock those songs from his head somehow or their band just won’t make it…

I give you a song and open a door
And from the shadows you come through
I give you a song at dawn
When I most need your light…

…I give you a song like a gunshot
Like a book, like a word, like a guerrilla:
Like I give love.

-Silvio Rodriguez, Te Doy una Cancion

The extraordinary thing Topher needs one day literally walks into the auto shop he works in and his name is Stanton Porter. Stanton Porter the legendary music critic for NPR. Stanton is in town to cover the South by Southwest music festival and the car he borrowed has died before he got to pick up tickets he needs to get into the Springsteen concert that evening. Since the guy is in a jam and none to happy, Topher offers to drive Stanton to get the tickets. Fast forward to Stanton asking Topher to come to the show with him as a thank you. Best frigging day of Topher’s life! I mean SPRINGSTEEN, with Stanton Porter who he completely admires, and for some reason finds incredibly hot (even though he’s straight and Stanton is waaaaay older), if only his phone would stop buzzing in his pocket (for no reason! What the hell?!) the night would be pretty much be perfect and then…Then the opening notes to Thunder Road begin, and Topher is taken over by this feeling, this BIG feeling, like nothing he’s felt before, and the only thing he can do is kiss Stanton…Wait what?!…THAT’S when EVERYTHING gets a whole lot more interesting.

I’ll work for your love dear
I’ll work for your love
What others may want for free
I’ll work for your love
-Bruce Springsteen, I’ll Work For Your Love

Topher throws Stanton for a loop, he doesn’t know what to think when this 26 year old hot as hell kid, just comes on STRONG. Stanton has not done this in awhile, he’s fifty years old for goodness sake, he doesn’t know how to do “in love” anymore. He lost the love of his life long ago, and his heart never got up to trying again. But Topher he’s bringing those feelings back and Stanton’s scared. He’s scared of getting hurt, he’s scared of looking ridiculous triying to date a younger man, he’s scared of the weird signs everywhere, he’s just plain scared. But Topher is TENACIOUS and PERSISTENT, he’s only ever wanted two things this badly, and with this much clarity in his life, being a musician and Stanton. He’s going to do whatever it takes to convince this man that when something feels this RIGHT, not age, not distance, not anything should keep two people from love. He’s got faith enough for both of them.

Show a little faith, there’s magic in the night
-Bruce Springsteen, Thunder Road

Brad Boney wove two tales in this book that are intertwined in Stanton and his best friend Marvin. In the 1980’s Stanton and Marvin while spending a weekend in Fire Island met Chris (Hutch) Mead and his three best friends, Michael, Robert and Paul. From the moment Stanton and Chris looked at each other, they were one. Chris and Stanton fell hard and strong. Chris and his friends took Marvin and Stanton into their fold, they started a friendship that could never be broken. That first summer of youth, freedom and forging bonds that revolved around a common ground, passion for music and living openly was just the beginning. Life could not get better, Stanton and Chris were in love, deeply , completely, and their friends were there to share their lives, and for a few years “they had roses” and then things fell apart.

Mary you’re covered in roses, you’re covered in ruin
you’re covered in secrets
Your’e covered in treetops, you’re covered in birds
who can sing a million songs without any words
You cast aside the sheets, you cast aside the shroud
of another man, who served the world proud
You greet another son, you lose another one
on some sunny day and always stay
-Patty Griffin, Mary

The AIDS epidemic is a history in this country that is tragic, not only for the loss of lives, it’s particularly heinous in how shameful it is to remember how people tunred their backs on what was happening. Such an awful time to live through and to remember, so many men cast aside, so many regrets from the families that turned their backs on all that hurt. Normally when an epidemic strikes it hits EVERYONE men, women, children, young, it’s where a society bands together, to fight it, as ONE. With AIDS, no one cared, they kept quiet…It was only gay men dying, and who cared about them? Who cared about thousands of men in the prime of their lives dying within months of getting sick? Who cared about men who in many cases had been outcasted from their families, left alone living in fear of dying next, of having to see the people they loved most die? Who cared right? THEY did, they who died, they who survived…And THIS is what I loved, LOVED about this book, that little shining light…What if all those lives that were gone too soon, and those love stories that were cut too short could get a another chance? What if Stanton got a second chance at love and happiness with Topher and a bit of Chris’ soul in the mix?

Tonight this fool’s halfway to heaven and just a mile outta hell
And I feel like I’m comin’ home
These are better days baby
There’s better days shining through
-Bruce Springsteen, Better Days

The premise for this book is not going to hit the spot for everyone, it’s different, and it’s not your regular Gay romance, but man if it resonates with you it is AN EXPERIENCE. To see a man’s history and his present blend so that he can have the future he lost once. So CLEVER.

Oh I get by with a little help from my friends
Mm I get high with a little help from my friends
Mm going to try with a little help from my friends
-The Beatles, With a Little Help From My Friends

Topher and Stanton, they have a bit of a rough go. There are stumbles and a lot of what happens to these men is WAAAAAY out there to take in stride. But they have their friends, the old,  and the new, and the rely on them to help them navigate the strangeness of it all. They manage to come away with faith in what they have, and trusting that fate really is smiling upon them. Once they choose to see these things that are happening to them as the gifts that they are, they jump with both feet.

Stanton finally is able to look back on his past and heal the wounds he had left open for too long, and what he was left with was a full free life, with love and friends, and sex and fun and Topher…Topher…And even a bit of Chris.

Let’s fall in love again with music as our guide
We’ll raise our ready hands and let go for the ride
Down into unknown lands where lovers meet and hide

We got these lives for free, we don’t know where they’ve been
We don’t know where they’ll go when we are through with them
The starlight of the sun, the dark side of the moon

And in the air the questions hang
Will we get to do something?
Who we gonna end up being?
How we gonna end up feeling?
What you gonna spend your free life on?
Free Life…
-Natalie Maines, Free Life

I had a great time with this book, it was fun, sexy, sad, uplifiting, hopeful…I got to visit with some of the guys from The Nothingness of Ben which was FABULOUS…What else can I say? So much of this story resonated with me from NYC, to Springsteen, to friendships that are so good, and so right, and so big, and so solid that they are trascendental…Eternal.

Totally and completely recommend.

The Return is available for sale at Dreamspinner Press

And still there is more!!! THE FOOD!!! I do not exaggerate these tacos are frigging DELICIOUS!! I didn’t want to call myself a food genius over a taco recipe, but damn if I wasn’t tempted!  Here they are…

Southwest by Northeast Vegan “Food Truck Style” Tacos with Tequila Lime Slaw, and Sweet and Smoky Guacamole (makes about 8 tacos)
Level of Difficulty: Intermediate
Time: 30-45 minutes of cooking (reserve some time to marinade tofu)

This recipe is a little labor intensive, but the outcome is TOTALLY worth it! They are absolutely delicious and the extra slaw and guacamole will go AMAZING with some tortilla chips! If you make this for guests I guarantee they won’t bitch about missing the meat or dairy we usually get in tacos. I GUARANTEE! The trick is to the prep in stages and that will simplify getting your tacos on the table.

First Stage: Rub the tofu with seasoning, roast peppers and caramelize the onions.
Second Stage: Make the slaw and guacamole
Third Stage: Sear tofu and prepare your tacos!
Fourth Stage: Pour yourself a glass of Cotes Du Rhone Rosé and enjoy your meal and lovely book!

For Tofu:
1 package of extra firm tofu, drained, cut into ¼ inch slices and line the pieces in a plastic container that has a lid. (Try and get as much moisture out of the tofu as you can with a paper towel, without breaking it up)

Ingredients
1/2 teaspoon of chili powder
½ teaspoon of garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon of coriander seed
¼ teaspoon of cumin
1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Pinch of salt and pepper

Directions: Mix the ingredients in a small bowl and pour over tofu, close container tofu and gently move around until the tofu is covered with the marinade. Leave in the fridge to for at least two hours or overnight.

For Poblano Peppers and Caramelized Onions

2 Poblano Peppers
2 Large White Onions
1 ½ teaspoon of agave nectar
Salt and Pepper

Directions: Put the peppers in the middle rack of an oven preheated at 400F, after 10-12 minutes turn the peppers, leave them in the oven for another 8-10 minutes or until the skin is blistering and softened. Take them out, put them in a bowl, and cover with cling wrap until they are cool enough to remove the skin, seeds and veins.

Cut the onions in ¼ inch slices, put in a skillet with a bit of olive oil at medium heat loosen them so that the rings are separated, add a bit of salt and pepper to taste and the agave nectar. Stir until the onions are a bit translucent (2-3 minutes) than put the heat on low and cover. Cook for about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally so that the onions don’t burn. Once they are a nice caramel color turn off heat and leave them too cool.

These tacos are seriously amazing...

These tacos are seriously amazing…

Tequila Lime Slaw

1 small cabbage chopped for slaw
1/3 cup fresh cilantro chopped very finely
1 lime
1 ½ tablespoon of white tequila (I used Espolon 100% agave tequila)
2 tablespoons of olive oil
¼ teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon of brown ground mustard
1 ½ teaspoon of agave nectar
¼ teaspoon of garlic powder
¼ teaspoon of onion powder
½ teaspoon of Ancho chili powder (Optional, I used Penzey’s brand)
1 roasted Poblano pepper minced
Salt and Pepper to taste

Mix the cabbage, cilantro and Poblano pepper in a large bowl and set aside, in a small bowl mix the other ingredients and pour over cabbage mixture. Cover and refrigerate.

Smoky and Sweet Guacamole

2 ripe Hass avocados
1 lime
1 caramelized onion chopped coarsely
1 Poblano pepper minced
¼ cup cilantro chopped very finely
1 clove of garlic minced
1 tablespoon of olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Mash the avocados vigorously until they are soft and have no big lumps (you can also pulse in the food processor) add the rest of the ingredients to the mixture and taste to make sure you have seasoned properly.

For the final stage, take the tofu slices and sear them on a hot and lightly oiled non-stick pan (about 1 ½ minutes on each side at medium heat), or grill them about two minutes on each side until they start to darken on the edges or getting grill marks. Once they are done you can make your tacos!!!

Warm 8 flour or corn tortillas, whatever you prefer, then put a bit of the slaw, then some onions, then a piece of your tofu and a generous dollop of the guacamole. You can top with a bit of fresh cilantro and a squeeze of lime. Enjoy with a nice VERY chilled Rosé and while reading Brad Boney’s FABULOUS story!

If you managed to make it this far into this post, all that is left to say is…

CHEERS AND HAPPY READING!

Laura

Review: Forever Promised by Amy Lane and a Sparkling Spanish Rosé…Saying goodbye to The Pulpit with Crick and Deacon’s Champagne Cupcakes

ForeverPromisedI am so excited for this post!  There is just so much goodness for me to talk about that I could barely figure out where to begin…First of all could Amy Lane have possibly planned a more perfect week for the release of the final installment in her Promises series?!?!?!?!…The Defense of Marriage Act was declared unsconstituional by the Supreme Court of the United States  two days ago, making ALL couples legally married in this country absolutely equal under the law. ALL MARRIAGES, and  for me there is no other set of characters in M/M Romance that evoke well earned and hard fought happy married life more than The Pulpit Crew…Sooooo I had to go BIG for this review, I mean just a nice bottle of wine and some thoughts was not enough…This is a celebration!!!!!! When I celebrate, I pop a bottle of bubbly and make sure I have something delicious to bite into. So for my goodbye to the people of Promise Rock I went for one of my favorites, Jaume Serra Cristalino Rose Brut, a delicious Spanish cava with raspberry and very light creamy overtones that just compels one to raise a glass and toast to life. Cristalino has 60% Pinot Noir 40% Trepat grapes that go perfectly with lightly sweet treats, and for the amazing value of $8-$10 a bottle, this wine could not have been a better choice for my review of Forever Promised.…I  am not done though, because damn it, IT’S AMY LANE!!

I got creative and came up with a dessert worthy of celebrating births,  weddings, anniversaries, departures, homecomings and even the solemnity of grieving a loss…Crick and Deacon’s Champagne and Raspberry Vegan Cupcakes, a recipe created by yours truly are moist, just lightly boozy and a sweet, perfect combination for this beautiful story, to be enjoyed while sipping on some pink bubbly and smiling (sometimes a bit weepily) through what might be the best ending to a series I’ve read in this genre.

cristalino and cupcake pic jpeg

A glass of Cristalino and Crick and Deacon’s Cupcakes

But more on wine and cupcakes later…On to the story.

Amy Lane is a fucking CLASSY LADY, I mean finesse and elegance in telling a story, this lady HAZ GOT IT, no florid writing, no cheap outs of happy sappy walking into the sunset. Nope, the last installment in The Promises Series was true to itself  and to its characters from the first page to the last.

This was, Promise Rock: The Self-Actualized Edition…This book begins two and half years after we left our guys, Collin and Jeff are just married, things are getting along, they are all a little older and whole lot wiser, mostly though they are tightly knit as they ever have been. But keeping this family that they have has always  come at a cost. Jon and Amy have an amazing professional opportunity and will be moving to Washington DC to work as LGBT rights advocates. Drew and Benny are finally ready to get on with their lives as a couple, but the ties that Benny has to Deacon might prove to be too intimidating an act to follow and even though Drew loves The Pulpit  starting their life as a family might mean being away from their people.

Deacon as the patriarch is feeling a little adrift, even though him and Crick are finally feeling like they are whole. So when Benny offers the ultimate gift, to be a surrogate to Deacon and Crick, it is such an absolute act of selflessness and complete love that it’s almost too terrifying to consider despite how much they want a child. A child that would have a little bit of each of them, borne from Benny the little girl that  arrived in The Pulpit so that things could be held together at the lowest moment in Crick and Deacon’s lives, it was too much of a miracle to turn down, specially once Deacon understood that it was as much a gift for them to recieve as it would be for Benny to give it.

There is so much to this story, but what I loved the most about  is that we get to visit with every single one of the gang, each one gets to tell us a part of the story, and it’s like we get a chance to have a private final chat and a hug goodbye with each one before we have to see them go.

Amy Lane’s books affect me deeply, always they resonate with me, because they are so HUMAN so harsh so times, but it’s what always makes the good moments so joyful. These guys are special and I was scared that this last chapter would be a soft ball, a light happily ever after, nothing too upsetting or hard. I should have known that Amy Lane was not going to cut us any slack AT ALL, because what has made this series the special thing that it is, is precisely that we’ve seen these characters hurt and struggling so that when the good moments come, when the lightness and laughter hits they are seen and embraced as the gift that they are.

This book is about absolution and reflection. It’s about moving on soberly, being able to let go of the past with a clear understanding of just what a fucking miracle it is that even after the valiant efforts at self-destruction they all made, they got their bright future anyway. Many are not so lucky, so many people never get a second chance, but those who do they need to look at that miracle in the face and be nothing thankful.

I probably could talk about this book for 12 pages, but I can’t really go on forever, so I will talk briefly about the things that I loved the most.

Mikhail…He was the catalyst for the most powerful emotions in this book, he was mighty, in good ways, in terrible ways…He was atonement.

Benny and Crick, looking back on their lives and the good fortune that they had to have found a home and love in Deacon, it was wonderful to see them look back, to see what they had arrived to, after such a difficult beginning.

Jeff and Collin still in love, and still against all odds daring to be hopeful, and telling the world that they were brave enough  to want more out of life than people would probably allow them to.

Deacon and Crick…These guys. So wonderful after so much hardship, such heartache, such fear…They made it. They were together and whole (even if baring the scars of harder times) they were still in love and still saw in each other’s eyes that there was always something to hold on to, something to live for…Something to try to be happy about.

“Sometimes you just got to be happy, and worry could happen tomorrow”

This book could have been too easy, or too hard, or too angsty or too long or TOO MUCH. But it wasn’t, it was just right. There were moments that cut to the bone, followed by momenst of unapologetic lightness and absurd humor that could only make me laugh and shake my head. Like life. Like people. We are sad and we are bad, but then we turn to the people that can still see the best in us, and let them try to coax it out of us with a joke or a hug…or an emergency knitting project.

So many sad things happen in this life, every day to good people, but so many good things happen too. People move away, and people come back and people stay…But when there is love and goodwill every day brings what it must, and we can face it because we know that there will someone there to walk with us through whatever we must to do.

Fantastic final installment, I was left smiling, and weepy and secure in the bright future of my guys and gals in Promise Rock. What a joyful journey this has been. Thank you, thank you, thank you Amy.

Completely recommend this book and this series. I will miss my guys.

Forever Promised is out today on Dreamspinner Press: http://www.dreamspinnerpress.com/store/product_info.php?products_id=3980&osCsid=lrdsnsmg0lfg5oap2t3fuk85d2

So for those of you want to give Crick and Deacon’s cupcakes a try here is the recipe…I recommend that you only eat them once you’ve secured the bubbly for drinking while eating them and that you’ve secured a few hours free of distraction to immerse yourself in  Forever Promised.

Crick and Deacon’s Champagne and Raspberry Vegan Cupcakes (makes 10 cupcakes)

½ cup and two tablespoons of pink sparkling wine (I used Jaume Serra Cristalino)

½ cup of unsweetened vanilla almond milk

1 teaspoon of apple cider vinegar

1 ¼ cups cake flour

2 Tablespoons of cornstarch

¾ teaspoon baking powder

½ teaspoon baking soda

1/3 cup canola oil

¾ cup organic cane sugar

1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract

½ teaspoon of almond extract (you can substitute for vanilla)

Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and line a cupcake tin with cupcake liners. Mix all ingredients in a bowl adding the champagne last, mix until smooth but not too much or too vigorously. Fill cupcake liners halfway with the batter. Cook for 13 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean from center of the cupcake.

Raspberry and Champagne Buttercream Frosting

½ cup of shortening

½ cup of margarine (Earth Balance)

3 ½ cups of powdered sugar

2 tablespoons of Pink Champagne

2 tablespoons of vanilla almond milk (add a bit more if frosting is too lumpy)

2  tablespoons of raspberry puree (put 1 cup of fresh raspberries in the food processor and then run through a sifter to get rid of seeds)

1 teaspoon of vanilla extract

For garnish leave out 10 raspberries to decorate the cupcakes.

Separately put margarine, shortening and raspberry puree in an electric mixing bowl and mix until smooth, add sifted sugar, vanilla extract and champagne and mix again, add almond milk as needed.

Frost the cupcakes as you prefer and top with a fresh raspberry and enjoy with a glass of chilled pink bubbly! Make sure to make a toast to Crick and Deacon and The Pulpit gang!

CHEERS AND HAPPY READING!

Laura