I adore cookbooks! The best I can say about this one is that it's well organized. There may be some worthwhile recipes but most are rather some bizarre compendium of dreamed up dollar stretcher recipes that I doubt were ever tested out. I sit here and wonder if these recipes where ever tested or were simply typed up meant to 'fill' the pages of a quite condensed book. The illustrations are quite ample and well done. I have to give that much to the author "R.J. Lavigne". The author did do a lot of research and compiling of information but it falls short of what the trumped up description makes you believe it truly is. The reviews I found made it sound comparable to the quality of the More-With-Less cookbook. I ordered CookMISER instead and am sadly disappointed.
Look at it this way.. besides the obviously lawyer legalese "Warning-Disclaimer" at the beginning of the book (wow! I've never seen this type of thing in a cookbook before!).. the book ENDS with this paragraph by the author on page 250:
"PLEASE KEEP IN MIND that CookMISER is a book of ideas, if you don't like one, joyfully move on to the next. It doesn't matter that they're not necessarily all winners. The important thing is that the book or its contents averages well. Moreover, always test new, complex or bizarre recipes by yourself before subjecting your family, friends, or guests to them." Uh.. well said!! If you DO get this book, then definitely heed the authors own advice! The CookMISER book isn't worth my shelf space.
As you can tell by now, my experience with this book has been negative. If you can check it out firsthand (from a library or such) then I highly recommend doing so. It may not be what you are expecting even if you are into the Frugal lifestyle hardcore! If you are looking for 'tried and true' then I don't think this is the book for you. My own recommendations in the frugal vein are the following. I enjoy, own and refer often to my treasured copy of 'The Tightwad Gazette I, II & III' which I happily ordered from Amazon after a 3 month stint of borrowing it from my local library. It's the beginner Frugal persons bible.. and stemming from it has come other books of note. One in particular that I also have enjoyed very much is called "Not just Beans"... for it's tried and true frugal recipes. Not touted as 'frugal', but I also enjoy Patti LaBelle's recipe book because it is amazingly loaded with awesome inexpensive homestyle recipes if you want to learn how to make veggies (& other dishes) in a way that makes you Enjoy them... southern cooking style! Another favorite of mine is called Desperation Dinners. The recipes are fast, many are frugal and I've never been dissapointed.
I'm just not happy with this book and will return it as I would prefer to give the More With Less cookbook a shot at teaching me some new tricks in the kitchen.