Showing posts with label serial killer. Show all posts
Showing posts with label serial killer. Show all posts

Sunday, January 22, 2017

The Insanity Plea - Larry D. Thompson, Author

Desdemona's Cheesecake -  Lemon Vanilla  Cheesecake
By Victoria Thompson - Larry's wife
This recipe takes all day so I consider it a Special Occasion Dessert only! It is gorgeous and tasty when done.

Shopping list:
6 vanilla beans
6 medium lemons
1 1/2 c. flour & 1 1/2 Tbl flour
2 1/2c. sugar & 1/3 c. sugar
8 eggs
1 3/4 c. butter
1/4 tsp. salt
2  8 oz. pkgs. cream cheese
8 oz. ricotta cheese or small curd cottage cheese
1 small container of vanilla yogurt
31/4 c. sour cream
1/2 c. powdered sugar
21/2 c. whipping cream
31/2 tsp. vanilla extract

Crust: Approx. 45 min. prep, 1 hour chill, 15 min. bake

2 vanilla beans
1 1/2 tsp. lemon zest
2 c. flour
1/2 c. sugar
2 egg yolks (save whites for filling)
1 c. butter diced into 4 pats
1/4 tsp. salt
 Pre-heat oven to 400 degrees F. during the chill

1. Split vanilla beans and scrape seeds into a medium bowl;
2. Stir in flour, sugar and zest.  Add egg yolk, butter and salt.  Cut in until crumbly.
3. Knead until a smooth dough ball forms, cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
4. Lightly spray springform pan with butter flavored spray.  Press dough on bottom and sides to 1/8th to 1/4 inch thickness.  Spray a sheet of foil with butter flavored spray, careful place the foil on top of the dough to line the pan.  Add beans into the foil lining to hold sides of dough in place while they bake.  Bake in the center of oven until lightly golden, about 10 to 12 minutes.  Remove from oven and carefully lift the foil full of beans out of the crust.  Cool.

Filling: Approx. 1 hour prep time – 2 hours baking time – 3 hours cooling time

2 eight ounce packages of cream cheese softened
8 oz. ricotta cheese or small curd cottage cheese
1 container of vanilla yogurt
1/4 c. sour cream
1/3 c sugar
1/2 c. powdered sugar 
1 1/2 Tbl flour
1/2 c. whipping cream
4 lg. eggs separated and one egg white retained from crust prep.
1 tsp. Vanilla extract
2 vanilla beans
1 1/2 tsp lemon zest

Pre heat oven to 350 degrees F.  Boil water for the baking bath.

Three bowl method to very fluffy and light cheeses cake.
1. In a small bowl, whip cream until lightly peaking, split vanilla beans and add seeds to cream as well as the extract, continue whipping until firm peaks form;
2. In a second medium bowl, beat egg whites until lightly peaking, add powdered sugar and continue beating until firm peaks form;
3. In a large bowl, cream egg yolks, zest, sugar, sour cream and yogurt.  Blend in cream cheese and finally the cottage cheese.  Do not over blend - should be light and fluffy.
4. Fold in (bowl#2) whites and (bowl#1) whipping cream, blend on low with a mixer just until smooth. Do not overbeat.
5.  Cover the outside of the springform pan (the cooled crust) with foil that goes above the edges of the pan (to be sure water stays out).  Pour the cheesecake mix into the crust/springform. Place the springform into a roasting pan, fill with boiling water to half way up the springform.
6. Bake in the center of the oven 45 to 60 minutes, until the perimeter of the cake is light brown and set and the center jiggles.  Turn off the oven and leave the door ajar for 1 hour.
7.  Take cake out of the oven and remove from the roasting pan.  Remove outside foil and continue to cool on a wire rack.  When the bottom is cool to the touch place the cake in the refridgerator for 3 hours before topping.

Topping:  3 layers

Lemon curd:  Approx. 30 min. prep time plus time to chill.

2 large eggs
3/4 c sugar
1 1/2 Tbl. lemon zest
1/2 c. fresh lemon juice 
3 Tbl. chilled butter in three pats

1. In the top of a double boiler, whisk eggs until smooth, whisk in sugar, zest and lemon juice.
2. Place over the bottom of the double boiler when the water is simmering and cook over low heat, stirring constantly until thick and pale yellow, 7 to 10 min.
3. Stir in butter one pat at a time until thoroughly combined and smooth.
4. Remove top of double boiler and set into a bowl of ice, stirring occasionally until cool.  Refridgerate.

Sour Cream topping: Approx. 10 minutes prep time plus time to chill

3 c. sour cream
3/4 cup sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
seeds of 1 vanilla bean

Beat all ingredients and chill.

Lemon Vanilla Whipping cream topping: Approx. 10 min. prep time plus time to chill.

2 c. whipping cream
1 tsp. lemon zest
1 tsp. vanilla
seeds of 1 vanilla bean

Whip cream until peaks lightly form, add other ingredients and continue to whip until firm peaks form.  Chill. 


Spread sour cream topping evenly over the cheesecake.
Spread a very thin layer of lemon curd over the sour cream layer.  Do not use all of the curd, just enough to make a very thin layer.

Pipe the whipping cream in peaks to cover the top of the cheese cake.  Decorate with the lemon zest curls, chill and serve.

The Insanity Plea - Review by Martha A Cheves, Author of:  Stir, Laugh Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

The killer held her with his left hand while he retrieved a knife from its holster on his waist.  He flipped open the blade and pulled it from right to left against the soft flesh of her throat.  Blood spurted from both carotid arteries and spilled from her neck.  She was breathing more and more slowly when she slipped to the concrete.  Her fluttering eyes became fixed as life drained from her body.  The killer smiled with satisfaction as he bent over and used his knife to slice the running shorts from her lifeless body.

When he started his slow jog back to the hotel, he felt a few drops of blood, trickling from his cheek.  He used her shorts to stem the flow.  I'll probably have to explain a Band-Aid on my cheek to my audience this morning as a shaving cut, he thought.  As he continued his job, he smiled.  She was number three.  Forty-seven to go.

State v. Little - The State of Texas arrested Dan Little for the murder of a jogger found thrown over the seawall in Galveston.  Dan, ex-football player, ex-attorney, had begun to hear voices and see people that only he could see and hear. He had been living on the streets for years.  He had also been in and out of institutions for many of those years.  So could it be that the voices had started telling him to kill.

His brother Wayne knew Dan's condition.  He also knew that the State of Texas shunned pleas of insanity but with the DA going for the death penalty, insanity was his only way out.  But, did he actually commit the crime?  According to his confession he did.  But did he know what he was saying when he confessed?

This was a 'don't put me down book.'  I read a few pages, told myself I would finish the next chapter and then come back later just to find myself reading the next chapter and the next.  This would make a great movie!

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Dark Mind - Jennifer Chase, Author

Easiest Cheesecake Ever! 
No baking required.
You will need - (1) 6 inch spring form pan or (2) 3 inch mini spring form pans

¼ cup graham cracker crumb
¼ cup pecans, crushed or ground in food processor
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 – 8 oz. package of cream cheese, room temperature
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ cup sugar
½ cup heavy cream, whipped

1.      Mix the graham cracker crumbs, ground pecans and maple syrup.
2.      Press the mixture into the bottom of your spring form pan.
3.      Mix cream cheese, lemon juice and sugar.
4.      Fold the cream cheese into the whipped cream.
5.      Pour the cream cheese mixture on top of the crust.
6.      Chill in the fridge.

Dark Mind - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

She felt a sting at the back of her left arm and pressure against her back.  Her first thought was a bee had stung her, but her vision melted into long vertical strips of disjointed puzzle pieces.  Blinking hard, she tried to regain her perspective.  Dizzying vertigo took hold of her balance, she fought the urge to vomit, swallowing hard as her body thrust into a tailspin.  Staggering to stay in a vertical poise, she fought in her mind.  Strong hands tucked under her arms and clasped across her chest, without anywhere else to go she fell into the arms of an unknown stranger.

Her name is Carolyn Sax and she is soon to become the first in a string of problems to intrude the quiet island of Kauai.  Sergeant Lani Candena would be working the murders that are soon to take place, but due to an earlier event, he had the 'pleasure' of meeting Emily Stone and Rick Lopez as they rescued a kidnapped child.

Yes, Emily and Rick are back at it in full force, along with Jordan who comes after Emily's request to help them solve the murders being committed on the island.  Each victim is brutally murdered and due to the evidence left, they appear to be used as sacrifices to some island legend.

This is my 3rd book to read in this series.  The first Compulsion introduced me to Emily Stone.  Dead Game became a permanent connection between Emily and Rick as well as an introducing the readers to Jordan.  No, I can't get enough of either of the characters and the stories that involve them.  These books have kept me on the edge through every turn of the page.  I can't wait to read the next book in the series Dead Burn.

So if you're looking for a book that's hard to put down, pick up Dark Mind, but even though the books in this series can be read out of order, I suggest you start with the first.  I could easily see these books being made into a TV series.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

The Dark Before Dawn - Laurie Stevens, Author

Chocolaty Caramel Pecan Bars
(In honor of the book series, which is dark and
   deals with mental issues!)

1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 cup margarine or butter, softened
1 Tbsp. whipping cream
1 cup all purpose or unbleached flour

24 vanilla caramels (unwrapped)
1/3 cup whipping cream
2 cups pecan halves (or pieces)

1 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup milk chocolate chips or semi-sweet
2 Tbsp. whipping cream

Heat oven to 325 degrees.  Line an 8 or 9 inch square pan with parchment paper.  If you don't have parchment paper, grease the pan.  In a medium bowl, combine powdered sugar, 1/2 cup butter and 1 Tbsp. whipping cream until well blended.  Add flour and mix until crumbly.  With floured hands, press evenly into pan.  Bake 15 to 20 minutes or until firm to the touch.

Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan combine caramels and 1/3 cup whipping cream.  Cook over low heat until caramels are melted and mixture is smooth, stirring occasionally.  Remove from heat.  Add pecans and stir well to coat.  Immediately spoon over baked crust, spreading carefully to cover but not rip the crust.

In a small saucepan over low heat, melt 1 Tbsp. butter and chocolate chips, stirring constantly until melted.  Stir in 2 Tbsp. whipping cream.  Drizzle over filling.  Refrigerate 1 hr. or until the filling is firm.  Cut into bars.  (You can also toss the topping ingredients in a microwavable cup, heat and stir until it's smooth enough to drizzle.)

The Dark Before Dawn - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

Dr. B sniffed and repositioned his glasses atop his nose.  "This last case you were on - you assaulted a grandmother."...  "Grandma had a twelve-gauge shotgun lying on a table in plain view from the front door.  Her drug-pushing grandson lives with the old lady and was a known gang-banger.  Grandma was very agitated with me.  Now, what am I supposed to think?" ... Dr. B chose his words carefully.  "But did you think first, Gabe?  When you pushed her, she fell and broke her hip.  She's an eighty-year old"...  "In a separate case two weeks ago," Dr. B said, "you nearly throttled a fifteen-year-old boy."...  "Then let's talk about the young man who was shot at that Halloween party you responded to when you were in uniform."

Los Angeles County Sheriff's Detective Gabriel McRay has seen and even created his share of problems.  Enough so that he has been sent to the department's psychiatrist Dr. Berkowitz, better known as Dr. B.  Gabe's problems are showing through his temper but Dr. B feels it goes a lot deeper than that.  He feels Gabe's problems stem from a deeply suppressed past.  Gabe is not only suffering from his temper but also blackouts which leave him not knowing where he has been nor what he has done.  And to top it all off, someone has gone on a murdering spree that always ends with a message being left for Gabe with the 1st one reading "We are one."

As Gabe's memory starts to surface he finds himself wondering if he could possibly be the killer.  Is this what he does when he blacks out?  Turns out that Gabe isn't the only one with these same thoughts.  Some of his fellow officers are having the same thought.  As the murders and notes continue with each becoming more and more morbid the suspicion reaches the point that the department has decided put a watch on him.

This book isn't for the weak.  It's graphic and nothing is held back but it's also one of the best books I've read in some time.  I had a very hard time putting it down after reading the Prologue.  I could see it being a great story for Criminal Minds.  Now I'm looking forward to reading the next in the series Deep into Dusk.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Without Consent - Bev Irwin

Maple Oatmeal Hazelnut Shortbread
(A Bev Irwin specialty)
3/4 cup hazelnuts
1 cup butter, softened
1/4 cup packed SPLENDA brand brown sugar blend
2 tbsp maple syrup
1/2 tsp maple extract
1 1/2 cups quick-cooking (not instant) rolled oats
1 cup all-purpose flour
In food processor, finely grind hazelnuts, set aside.
In large bowl, beat butter with SPLENDA until light, beat in maple syrup
And maple extract. Stir in oats and flour. Roll into balls using 1 tbsp dough per ball. Roll in nuts to coat. Flatten slightly, place about 1 inch apart on baking sheets. Refrigerate for 30 minutes or until chilled.
Bake in 350 degree oven for about 10 min or until puffed and set. Let cool for 1 minute. Transfer to racks, let cool completely. Makes about 36 cookies.
Without Consent – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
He probed for the next vessel, clamping and cutting in a similar fashion. The cavity brimmed with blood and he couldn’t see. But now, it didn’t matter. He had what he wanted. He lifted his hand. He felt resistance. A Tiny tenuous cord stretched out of the wound. Another vein. Grasping the scalpel, he carved through the connecting tissue and the organ came free. For several seconds he nestled the coveted organ as if holding a newborn robin in the palm of his hand. Its warmth seeped through his latex gloves. Below his hand, blood surged into the gaping wound. He shot a glance at the woman’s face. Mary Jane, her driver’s license said. How plane. He’d call her Gabrielle. Yes, she was more beautiful than a Mary Jane.
Dr. Claire Valincourt, works the ER at Grace Memorial Hospital. In her worse dreams she never expected to find what she found while jogging to work one evening. A foot, sticking out of the bushes. It was pale and white and Claire sound found, it was attached to a body. A dead body that looked as though it might be a patient that had for some reason left the hospital after having surgery. There was definitely an incision going down the woman’s stomach and the incision had been stitched back together. But why was she in the park and not still in her hospital bed. That’s a question that the police will have to answer.
Detective Gerry Rosko got the call that there was a body found in the park. What he never expected to find was that the woman didn’t just have surgery within the hospital but somewhere unknown. He learned after the autopsy that the sloppy job of her surgery had allowed her to bleed out and she was missing a kidney. Pressure on him was to find the killer but that pressure was increased tenfold when another victim was found in yet another park. As with the first victim, this one had bled out and was also missing a kidney.
Without Consent had me looking over my shoulder as I walked my dog at night. The tension this book puts out as Rosko tries to find a serial killer before he strikes again had me just about biting my nails. Then when it looks like he may go after Claire I was really on the edge of my seat. This is a good one for Criminal Minds to pick up. It’s believable and will scare the heck out of you for at least a few days.

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