“Food Lovers’ Guide to Los Angeles” Is The Best

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I don’t often review things for Amazon, but I felt compelled to write up something about my friend Cathy Chaplin‘s new book, Food Lovers’ Guide To Los Angeles because I loved it so much (and I’m not just saying that because Cathy is a friend). Anyway, I figured rather than write a whole new entry here on the blog, I might as well just share my review.

After the jump, check out my thoughts on Cathy’s book. Spoiler alert: I approve.

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VIDEO: It’s ‘The Hunger Games’ Trailer!

People are obsessed with The Hunger Games, and I’ve been informed that unlike Twilight, this literary series is actually worth the devotion. Therefore, it should come as no surprise that everyone is now all atwitter about the new Hunger Games trailer that just surfaced. I’m not 100% swayed by it, but I like the presence of Lenny Kravitz. Maybe I’ll read those books after all (must tackle The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo first though).

What do you think about the trailer? Are you into the Hunger Games?

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Win A Free Copy of Kelly Cutrone’s Book, ‘If You Have To Cry, Go Outside.’

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How much do we love Kelly Cutrone? Let me count the ways…

Unfortunately for us, it doesn’t appear as though Kell on Earth or The City are returning to the air anytime soon (booo!); so while we wait for another reality show to display Kelly in all her splendor, we have her book to play around with. In fact, if you’d like your own free copy of If You Have To Cry, Go Outside, by all means head over to my friends at Socialite Life who are holding their very own contest. Jump on this opportunity now before IT’S FUCKING FASHION WEEK!

Socialite Life: Socialite Life Giveaway: Kelly Cutrone’s ‘If You Have to Cry, Go Outside’

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The First Annual B-Side Blog Holiday Gift Guide

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Over the past year, various companies have sent me all sorts of cool swag, and in an effort to pay it forward, I’ve decided to compile a list of my favorite freebies (as well as a few that I did fork over some cold, hard cash for). For all you last minute shoppers out there, take heed: this might be the guidance you so desperately need.

My humble gift-giving suggestions after the jump…

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Second Meeting With Ina Garten Proves To Be Short and Sweet

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Two years ago, I stood in line for many hours all for the opportunity to meet Ina Garten during a signing for her cookbook Back to Basics. Well, now she has a new book out (How Easy Is That?), and of course, that meant she was back in town to meet and greet the fans yet again. Like the devotee that I am, I trekked on back to Santa Monica and stood in line for two hours with seemingly every housewife and her daughter in the Los Angeles county environs. Luckily, I wasn’t alone this time: my friend Andrea — a fellow Ina fiend — joined up with me, and together we got to assault Ina with our praise and adoration. Of course, we really wanted to tell her to fix her damn show, but that would have been rude, and who can be rude to Ina? She’s just this wonderful little ball of giggles and joy! Barbara Lieberman on the other hand…

Anyway, after the jump are some pics from my second and Andrea’s first interaction with The Barefoot Contessa…

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Baz Luhrmann To Ruin ‘The Great Gatsby’

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Many people adore director Baz Luhrmann’s Moulin Rouge. Even more love his Romeo + Juliet. I am not one of those people. Something about Luhrmann’s style makes me want to stab my eyes out with Nicole Kidman’s stiletto heels. That’s why I cringed with disdain when I learned the director would be taking on one of my favorite books of all time, The Great Gatsby. To some, the pairing is rather perfect; Luhrmann taking on the decadent world of 1920s “West Egg,” (a.k.a. Great Neck, NY) seems like a task tailor-made for him. To others, like me, this seems like a recipe for an indulgent, frenetic disaster. I sincerely hope I’m proven wrong, especially since the rumored cast of Leonardo DiCaprio and Tobey Maguire actually seems somewhat perfect.

For more information on the film’s development, read the full article here.

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BOOK REVIEW: ‘The Real Housewives Get Personal’

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It’s not often that I review books here on B-Side Blog, what with my penchant for such lowbrow offerings as Big Brother, Jersey Shore, and various silly adventures in my friends’ apartments. However, every so often a volume comes my way that feels totally apt for this site: specifically, The Real Housewives Get Personal, a companion reader to the hit Real Housewives franchise. I was lucky enough to be sent an advance copy of the book (before Bethenny received the alleged “first copy” on Watch What Happens), and I was only too happy to curl up by the pool and comb through it.

I’ll get right to the point. As much as it pains me to say this, The Real Housewives Get Personal is essential reading for fans of the show. Or rather, it’s essential reading for fans of the show who are headed to the beach, many of whom are probably are doing just that this very weekend. The book is big, splashy, glossy fun — full of colorful photos, charts, and sidebars. Heavy reading this is not. Instead the whole thing presents itself like a giant issue of People Magazine, minus perhaps some of the journalistic gravitas.

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Come To The 'Reality Matters' Reading Tonight!

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If you live in Los Angeles and love reality TV, you should bust a move to Barnes & Noble at The Grove in Hollywood tonight at 7 PM. Why? Because there’s going to be a reading of Reality Matters, the new anthology about reality TV, and guess what? Imma gonna be a-readin’ from it tonight! That’s right, I’ll be reading as well as fellow contributors Melissa de la Cruz, John Albert, Wendy Merrill, and the book’s editor Anna David.
I’d like to think that our collective presence alone would be enough to draw you to the reading, but in case it isn’t. I have further reasons why you should come after the jump.

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BUY THIS BOOK: 'Reality Matters' Edition

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Today the book Reality Matters hits store shelves, and I want each and every one of you to buy it. The volume is an anthology about reality television, and not only has it been edited by my friend Anna David, but it also features the contributions of such authors as Toby Young (Top Chef), James Frey (A Million Little Pieces), Neil Strauss (The Game), Stacey Grenrock Woods (The Daily Show), Jerry Stahl (Permanent Midnight), Mark Lisanti (Defamer, Movieline), and even yours truly (pause for applause and gentle adulation). Yes, this is the first time my writing has been published in a book, and I’m quite excited, especially since I’m in such esteemed company.
Clearly, if you want to support me, my friend Anna, and America in general, you’ll do the right thing and buy this wonderful book.
Additionally, there is a whole slate of events tied in with the release of Reality Matters. California readers of this blog should take note. On Wednesday, April 21st, I will be taking part in a book reading for Reality Matters at the Barnes & Noble at The Grove (on 3rd and Fairfax). The following week, I’ll be up in San Francisco on Thursday, April 29th to do it all over again at the Borders in Union Square (400 Post St.). Both events start at 7 PM. This is my very first book reading (at least since perhaps a 7th grade recital of my epic story, “The Pocket Watch”), and as such, I am very excited. Come on by and check it out!

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DEAD CELEBRITIES: JD Salinger Edition

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Literary giant JD Salinger has passed away from natural causes at his rural New Hampshire home. The reclusive author, who penned the iconic Catcher in the Rye, was 91.
For more information, click here.

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