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Oh Rats! #Review & a #Recipe for @SciFiMagpie & @NicolasWilson #MondayBlogs

Euphoria-Dysphoria-Tour-BewitchingRats?? OH ya! #omnomnom

Hey, don’t fret! Here, there.. there are rats and there are dystopian deconstruction, and sky pirates (sorta) and… and.. well!! Anyway, welcome to my Monday review and a recipe. I would say this is Mama’s Kitchen Monday but… I think when my mom reads this she is going to call me and ask me if I need to up my meds *wicked smile* … well, that actually doesn’t sound to bad.


I am really excited to have this book on the blog today. The authors are really great people and the book is a worth addition to the dystopian genre. Oh, and.. the recipe my mom is gonna freak about? Well….. rats, it is a gourmet rat recipe. In the book the two protagonists are forced to slay a huge rat as well as small ones. Of course they won’t have had access to many of the recipes, but this recipe can also be made with different meat. Enjoy you guys, and don’t forget to enter the giveaway too! Thanks to Bewitching for another great read!



I have read and reviewed Michelle Browne before and I have to also admit that she is one of my dearest friends in the community. Nic is someone I am just beginning to get to know and as I have read some of his pontifications and other things I knew when I opened this book up I was going to be impressed. This book did teach me to not go into a book with expectations. Having read Michelle’s prior works I expected clean and tight writing. I think this was to tight and because of this I was confused for the first half of the book.

That being said, it is still one hell of a ride. We were thrust right into the story without getting a chance to breathe. Those of you who are not dystopian readers will be completely lost and I still think everyone should give it a go. True dystopians are so hard to find these days. It was bleak, there was no hope, the characters were metaphors and symbolic statements of the aspects of society which will evolve and devolve within any dystopian world. We don’t have a clue what happened but because of my background in reading this genre, I did not expect any back story, it is just afterall, another world build about the destruction of our own.

You guys will fall in love with the two main characters, I had a hard time reading them because I could hear Michelle due to her writing style and kept confusing the two girls. Perhaps this was on purpose, I don’t know. It kept me totally off kilter and I finally did manage to not be confused because their characters were finally fully flushed out.

(Gee say that three times fast… finally fully flushed out.. finally fully flushed out.. finally fully flushed out…. giggles.. oops sorry I am getting rather woozy, must be a Hal *snort*).

As I mentioned the world is build upon a destroyed world from the past. It is controlled by a cast structure and the police are simply called enforcers. The world is toxic, the air is poisonous the lower you get in levels and everything is circled in deadly clouds. There are pirates (grin called scavengers), rats as big as one of the girls and the rule of “three strikes, you’re out” rules the lives so you best not pick anyones pocket or worse. Christine is a creature of the lower levels and when she runs into Ilsa a maid from a higher level we get to see a contrast of what the world has done to their denizens in comparison. Throw in someone on the run who is pregnant (Ilsa) and you have one hell of a ride.

I waffled a bit on rating this due to the ending (which I literally read 40% of the book today) because of how it just seemed to end. Not an actual cliff hanger but … I tried to turn the page and nothing. *grumbling and flipping Michelle off). Yep, I gotta wait for book two but I know where they both “live” and I have a force of ninja assassin rats ready to go at a moments notice on my squirrel Herbert’s command.

Possible triggers due to violence, especially of the rat variety. There are some other triggers which would give away too much. This is a dark dystopian, don’t let the 14-year-old read it unless you feel that 14-year-old is equipped to handle some of the issues that come up… well wait my 14-year-old could handle it (when he was 14)…. just use your best judgement. This is a book targeted towards adults, not old farts like me, but just keep that in mind.


I struggled with a recipe and decided to do a quick search. Having posted a squirrel recipe plus actually having ate some myself a long time ago, I want to say, don’t run away and go ewwwwwwwwwwwwwww…. and if you do not want to go to your local feed store to get some rats, try it with rabbit or lamb. The recipe is for a large crowd, just in time for the holidays! *grin* Happy Monday everyone! So.. how do you want your rat?

5.0 from 1 reviews
Rat Braise
This is quite a lovely adaptation to a survivalist meal. It was done as performance art and the rat can be substituted for Rabbit or lamb
Cuisine: Post Apocalyptic Elegance
Recipe type: dinner
Serves: 20
  • 15 whole rats, skinned and gutted, tails removed (if using rabbit; 5 rabbits. Lamb you want about 10 lbs.)
  • Salt and pepper 6 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 medium white Spanish onions, chopped
  • 3 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 carrot, peeled and chopped
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • Zest of one orange
  • 1 head of garlic cut in half down the center vertically, not peeled 1 pint blueberries
  • 2 quarts chicken stock (if using lamb or rabbit use vegetable or make a stock from the bones)
  • Red wine vinegar to taste.
  • 2 cups veal glacé
  1. Lightly season rats on one side with salt and pepper and sear on both sides in 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil until lightly browned using an oven-safe rondeau or braising pan large enough to comfortably fit without crowding. Transfer rats to a 5-by-8-inch molded edge sheet pan
  2. Add onions, celery and carrot to the rondeau or braising pan and sweat, about 5 minutes. Add thyme, bay leaves and rosemary and sweat until aromatic.
  3. Deglaze the pan with wine, add cinnamon, orange zest, garlic and blueberries. Reduce by ¾.
  4. Add rats back into the pot along with any drippings. Add chicken stock and veal glacé and bring to a boil. Return to a simmer, cover with a lid or foil and place in a 330-degree oven and cook for about 90 minutes or until meat is tender.
  5. Let meat cool in liquid until it is easy to handle, and then transfer to sheet pan.
  6. Strain liquid and reduce until ¾ to 1 cup remains.
  7. Pick the rat meat and discard all bones. Once liquid is reduced, mix ¼ cup to a ½ cup into meat until just moistened (you do not want a lot of liquid), and season with salt, pepper and red wine vinegar.
  8. Line the sheet pan with plastic wrap, with the wrap extending over the edges. Pack meat onto the sheet pan and fold the plastic over so it completely covers meat. Refrigerate overnight to set.
  9. Unmold the meat while still cold and cut into 20 portions. Heat a sauté pan with 3 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil. Sear one side of the meat until golden brown, transfer to an oven at 350 degrees until hot all the way through. For sauce, reduce remaining liquid from meat by ½ until it is the consistency of syrup. Serve with a full-bodied cabernet sauvignon.
Original recipe and article found on the New York Times website: "Heads, Yes. Tails, No."
Photo Credit: Evan Sung for The New York Times


Oh Rats! #Review & a #Recipe for @SciFiMagpie & @NicolasWilson #MondayBlogsEuphoria/Dysphoria
by Michelle Browne, Nicolas Wilson
Pages: 203
Illustrator •Published by Self-Published
on November 16, 2014
Genres: Apocalyptic & Post-Apocalyptic, Dystopian, Fantasy, GLBT, Science, Science Fiction, Steampunk
Amazon • • Goodreads •

Execution above or extinction below...

“Please help me. I'm pregnant.”

A chance encounter with a fugitive has turned Christine's life into a nightmare.

Survival is hard enough in the poverty-stricken streets of the Lower Blocks, and this woman is far from the first to flee the Engineers who oversee the City. But now Christine's a target: hunted by the aristocracy, her future uncertain, and past laid bare. And a person with Christine's powers can't afford to be caught.

Humanity built the Foundation to elevate themselves from the poisoned earth, but Christine and Ilsa must choose whether to descend to hell below, or remain in hell above.

From post-apocalyptic authors Nicolas Wilson (Homeless), and Michelle Browne (The Underlighters) comes Euphoria/Dysphoria, a biopunk dystopia.

I received this book from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.


About Michelle Browne

Oh Rats! #Review & a #Recipe for @SciFiMagpie & @NicolasWilson #MondayBlogs

Michelle Browne is a sci fi/fantasy writer from Calgary, AB. She has a cat and a partner-in-crime. Her days revolve around freelance editing, jewelry, phuquerie, and nightmares. She is currently working on the next books in her series, other people's manuscripts, and drinking as much tea as humanly possible.

She is all over the internet, far too often for anyone’s sanity, and can be found in various places.

About Nicolas Wilson

Oh Rats! #Review & a #Recipe for @SciFiMagpie & @NicolasWilson #MondayBlogs

Nicolas Wilson is a published journalist, graphic novelist, and novelist. He lives in the rainy wastes of Portland, Oregon with his wife, four cats and a dog.

Nic's work spans a variety of genres, from political thriller to science fiction and urban fantasy. He has several novels currently available, and many more due for release in the next year. Nic's stories are characterized by his eye for the absurd, the off-color, and the bombastic.

For information on Nic's books, and behind-the-scenes looks at his writing, find him across the web here:


bewitchingbooktoursEuphoria/Dysphoria tour presented by Bewitching Book Tours

5 ebook copies of Euphoria/Dysphoria and swag packages containing a pendant, bookmarks, etc.

Open to shipping within the US or Canada only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Breakdown on my Rating
4 Stars
Character Development
3.5 Stars
5 Stars
World Building
4.5 Stars
Overall: 4 Stars


  1. Awwww yeah! Thabks for the fantastic review!

  2. I’m late to the party, but thanks for reading! Loving that recipe.

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