Killian Carter

Joined a year ago

Killian's Favorites
JScript? .NET Programming (M&T Books)
JScript? .NET Programming (M&T Books)
JScript? .NET Programming (M&T Books) by Essam Ahmed. Rated 3.6 out of 5 stars, with 2 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the javascript category.
MySQL Phrasebook (Developer's Library)
MySQL Phrasebook (Developer's Library)
MySQL Phrasebook (Developer's Library) by Zak Greant and Chris Newman. Rated 4.4 out of 5 stars, with 7 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the mysql category.
MongoDB on AWS (AWS Quick Start)
MongoDB on AWS (AWS Quick Start)
MongoDB on AWS (AWS Quick Start) by AWS Whitepapers and Amazon Web Services. Rated 4.1 out of 5 stars, with 8 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the mongodb category.
MySQL 5.7从零开始学(视频教学版)
MySQL 5.7从零开始学(视频教学版)
MySQL 5.7从零开始学(视频教学版) by 王英英,李小威. Rated undefined out of 5 stars, with undefined ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the mysql category.
Barnaby Rudge
Barnaby Rudge
Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens, George Hagan, et al.. Rated 4.4 out of 5 stars, with 206 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the J. K. Rowling category.
Le pagine della nostra vita (Italian Edition)
Le pagine della nostra vita (Italian Edition)
Le pagine della nostra vita (Italian Edition) by Nicholas Sparks. Rated 4.5 out of 5 stars, with 166 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Nicholas Sparks category.
Dark Visions
Dark Visions
Dark Visions by Stephen King. Rated 4.3 out of 5 stars, with 32 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Stephen King category.
The Wind Through the Keyhole: The Dark Tower
The Wind Through the Keyhole: The Dark Tower
The Wind Through the Keyhole: The Dark Tower by Stephen King and Simon & Schuster Audio. Rated 4.6 out of 5 stars, with 2427 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Stephen King category.
The Stephen King Universe
The Stephen King Universe
The Stephen King Universe by Stanley Wiater , Christopher Golden , et al.. Rated 4 out of 5 stars, with 20 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Stephen King category.
The Kings of Cool: A Prequel to Savages
The Kings of Cool: A Prequel to Savages
The Kings of Cool: A Prequel to Savages by Don Winslow. Rated 4.3 out of 5 stars, with 271 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Stephen King category.
OCA / OCP Java SE 8 Programmer Practice Tests
OCA / OCP Java SE 8 Programmer Practice Tests
OCA / OCP Java SE 8 Programmer Practice Tests by Scott Selikoff and Jeanne Boyarsky. Rated 4.3 out of 5 stars, with 51 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'Java programming' category.
PHP Essentials
PHP Essentials
PHP Essentials by Neil Smyth. Rated 1 out of 5 stars, with 1 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'PHP programming' category.
SQL/400 Developer's Guide (Vol 2)
SQL/400 Developer's Guide (Vol 2)
SQL/400 Developer's Guide (Vol 2) by Mike Cravitz and Paul Conte. Rated 3.6 out of 5 stars, with 22 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'SQL database' category.
Kotlin Definitive Guide to Programming(Chinese Edition)
Kotlin Definitive Guide to Programming(Chinese Edition)
Kotlin Definitive Guide to Programming(Chinese Edition) by [ MEI ] DAI WEI · GE LIN HA ER XI [ MEI ] QIAO XI · SI JI EN. Rated undefined out of 5 stars, with undefined ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Kotlin programming category.
Parallel Computing in Science and Engineering: 4th International DFVLR Seminar on Foundations of Engineering Sciences, Bonn, FRG, June 25/26, 1987 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science (295))
Parallel Computing in Science and Engineering: 4th International DFVLR Seminar on Foundations of Engineering Sciences, Bonn, FRG, June 25/26, 1987 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science (295))
Parallel Computing in Science and Engineering: 4th International DFVLR Seminar on Foundations of Engineering Sciences, Bonn, FRG, June 25/26, 1987 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science (295)) by Dieter M??ller-Wichards, R??diger Dierstein, et al.. Rated undefined out of 5 stars, with undefined ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Scala programming category.
Express.js: Guide Book on Web framework for Node.js
Express.js: Guide Book on Web framework for Node.js
That's ESPECIALLY true if you are a beginner who wants or needs to know more about Node.js and leveraging it with the Express web-app framework with it. Check out what reviewers said about Rick "L's" other "books". Like those, this one consists of collection of isolated, typo-laden code snippets accompanied by terse and confusing explanations.
Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect
Social: Why Our Brains Are Wired to Connect
Matthew Lieberman’s book is good: it reads well, the structure is helpful and linear for the general-interest reader while also offering some depth for the detail-oriented bookworm or specialist. However, it sometimes overstretches in its interpretation of the brain activity generated in the experiments it considers. This is a classic problem, and the fact that it is starting to be solved within the neuro-science community means that the field is less likely to end up as the phrenology of the 21st century.

Lieberman makes clear that there are brain networks primarily in charge of social, self-referential and “mind-wandering” thoughts, and other networks that take care of problem-solving and analytical thinking, and these networks are both considered in building the case for how our brains make us human.

And two things for sure make us human: the fact that you can think what the other person thinks that you think (called higher-order theory of mind, and beautifully illustrated by the rock/paper/scissors game), and that we can project ourselves into the future (called long-term planning prediction and anticipation). No other animal can go that far; and the fact that humans created culture means that we have greatly complicated the inferences we can make regarding the evolutionary advantages of specific but complex behaviours such as altruism.

This apparently “human-only” characteristic is also well considered here, and it’s worth weighing Lieberman’s hypothesis about why we tend to avoid boasting about helping others and see it as a rewarding thing in itself.

Lieberman strikes me as an honest scientist, diligently searching for answers about why we feel pain on a psychological level (the end of a relationship, the death of a parent), or why we feel rewarded by praise or when we give money to strangers.

These are not new ideas, but Lieberman, like all original researchers, asks the right questions, looks for the best experiment to do, and tries to answer in light of real neural mechanisms. Classic social scientists are afraid of his kind. He is a threat to all those dark-matter classical psychologists who either backbench from half-dead theories or perform experiments sitting in their black boxes, where the mechanisms of “how behaviour happens” appear to have nothing to do with the workings of the brain.

I might not agree with some of the concepts Lieberman crafts from his experiments, but I am pleased that he shows determination in building a mechanistic, brain-grounded account of who we are. And surely one of the uses of this book should be as a spark to think about precisely that.

Lieberman the scientist is a firm believer in the theory that we are wired to connect, or, to put it rather better, that we have evolved, through natural selection, to be social animals that thrive now in almost all “ecosystems” using the unique feature of mentalising; and that we cannot avoid thinking, and thinking what the other person is thinking…capisce? He brings the book to a courageous conclusion in his attempt to use “social brain” concepts to guide policymaking. I cannot help but applaud any bid to use scientific evidence to back decisions for learning, business or politics in general. The way we are and how we think must be taken into account when deciding the kind of society we want – and the good news is that it can be based on real research into who we are.
The Water Dancer: A Novel
The Water Dancer: A Novel
The prose is magjestic(not a typo, a combination of magnificent and majestic). And the reason why I lead with that is simply, the magjesty(not a typo)will keep you going when this bold and very ambitious novel drags a little under the weight of the challenge of crafting a story about the ills and evils of slavery, without the loudness.

“It always happened like this—that is what I had been told. Bored whites were barbarian whites. While they played at aristocrats, we were their well-appointed and stoic attendants. But when they tired of dignity, the bottom fell out. New games were anointed and we were but pieces on the board. It was terrifying. There was no limit to what they might do at this end of the tether, nor what my father would allow them to do.”

The foundation of this novel is slavery, and the story is told in a whisper, not a shout, but it so fits the protagonist Hiram Walker. Hiram is the enslaved son of the master, Howell Walker on Lockless, a tobacco plantation in Virginia.

In a nod to that whisper I mentioned, Coates avoids the use of master, masters, slaves, enslaved, etc. instead of employing those terms so familiar to us all concerning slavery, Coates boldly creates a new language referring to the master class as the “Quality” and the enslaved as the “tasked.”An interesting choice of terms that speaks to ambition and boldness, no?

Although Hiram Walker is tasked in the house of his father and enjoys some ‘privilege’ he still pines for freedom. “So as to my freedom, the events stood thus: I knew that I would never advance beyond my blood-bound place at Lockless.”

In his quest for freedom, there are some costly miscalculations and Hiram suffers some setbacks that lead to greater comebacks as he becomes active in the famed Underground Railroad. Hiram is blessed with the power of conduction, not just in the regular sense of the word, but in a magical realism sense.

He has experienced this power in him during a near death drowning at Lockless, but has never learned how to harness this power at his demand. That all changes when he meets none other than Moses herself, Harriet Tubman while working the underground.

I find it very curious to write this conduction business as magical realism(for lack of a better term) because I think it diminishes all the courageous and daring actions taken by those on their way to freedom.

It feels dismissive of what one had to endure to reach freedom, and in some ways denies the obvious brilliance and bravery of a Harriet Tubman who chose to return to the coffin(slavery in the Deep South) again and again and..... I love Coates’ writing but I am not enamored with that choice.

Having said that, I still enthusiastically recommend this novel, just superbly written with a cast of engaging characters, some intrigue, some thrills, and yes some horror, but not written horrifically( the whispering). I’m certain this book will garner a multitude of discussion and commerce. Ta-Nehisi Coates can now confidently add novelist to his writing career! Thanks to Netgalley and OneWorld-Random House Publishing for an ARC. Book is out 9/24/2019.
6 Motivating Cross Stitch Patterns: Featuring quotes by Oprah Winfrey, Nora Ephron, Elizabeth Taylor, Martha Gellhorn, Geena Davis and Dorothy Parker (What She Said Stitches) (Volume 3)
6 Motivating Cross Stitch Patterns: Featuring quotes by Oprah Winfrey, Nora Ephron, Elizabeth Taylor, Martha Gellhorn, Geena Davis and Dorothy Parker (What She Said Stitches) (Volume 3)
I loved doing cross stitch as a kid, but didn't want to display my finished work, since it was all grandmotherly pillow covers and floral themes that weren't for me. This series of patterns, with feminist quotes and yes, even a little touch of floral, are right up my alley. Subversive, funny, feminist and well-designed - I'm on my third pattern from the book now, and will be thrilled to display them.
Donald Trump Gold Coin, Gold Plated Collectable Coin and Case Included, 45th President, Certificate of Authenticity Official
Donald Trump Gold Coin, Gold Plated Collectable Coin and Case Included, 45th President, Certificate of Authenticity Official
Looking for trouble? Well I have the perfect thing for you!
Love or hate the president, this novelty coin is beyond a conversation starter. You might just break up your family over it. Buy extras because people will take them from you with force. Being pragmatic, I got three, one for a supporter friend, one as a gag gift for an anti Trump friend and one as a social experiment. Have never seen so many people loose their **** in public before.
Romantic Jazz Ballads
Romantic Jazz Ballads
OMG, perfect. It is exactly what they say, "Romantic Jazz Ballads". Super relaxing, chill, and totally cool.
VPX Bang Rtd, Black Cherry Vanilla, 16 Fl. Oz (12 Count)
VPX Bang Rtd, Black Cherry Vanilla, 16 Fl. Oz (12 Count)
Shipping was ridiculous! I didnt get notified by phone I was notified by the loud bang on my doorstep when my package was literally TOSSED on my porch. One if the cans busted open and was still spraying everywhere when I opened it. If not for the careless delivery man being lazy and tossing the box all cans wouldve survived shipping...

As for the drink.... taste was ok at best, I was hoping it would taste like hansen's cherry vanilla but it doesnt. It's not horrible but not good either. Other flavors are definitely are better. Cherry limeade and purple guava are my favorite so far. I love that they give me normal energy with no yuck stomach and sick feeling. The added electrolytes with zero sugar is what really drew me in. Also coq10 is a big plus for me, I get migraines and coq10 seems to lessen thier frequency. All in all good product, crappy delivery guy!
BESTEK 300Watt Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter DC 12V to AC 110V Car Plug Inverter Adapter Power Converter with 4.2A Dual USB Charging Ports and 2 AC Outlets Car Charger, ETL Listed
BESTEK 300Watt Pure Sine Wave Power Inverter DC 12V to AC 110V Car Plug Inverter Adapter Power Converter with 4.2A Dual USB Charging Ports and 2 AC Outlets Car Charger, ETL Listed
This is not a review.

This is to give numbers so if a musician (or anyone with a sound system) decides to use their amp with an inverter, one will know approximate numbers.

Amp used - Boss Acoustic Singer Pro 100W - Power Requirements 110VAC 50W
Bestek 300W Pure Sine Wave Inverter
Battery - Raion RG12220FP - 12VDC 22AH (20Ah 10.5V SLA-AGM)
Current tester - Extech 380947 clamp on current meter

Battery connected to Inverter, Invert ON - .7A idle (Fan is running and USB power ports active)
Side note - With Invert off but connected to battery and cell phone connected, .4A draw
Amp Connected and turned on - 2.7A draw (2.8A with cell phone connected)
Playing @50% vol, 2.7A constant - 3.0A on hard sturmming

Based on this formula: 1A @12VDC will equal to 10W of AC power. In this case, the amp draws 50W which will require 5A from the battery. So based on those figures, I should get about 2~3 hours (don't forget efficiency calculations) of usefulness.

However, based on the numbers above, it look like maybe 4~5 hours if no one else is plugged in. I did not test with a microphone but I suspect the draw will not be much more than 3A with a possible max peak of 4 amps.

Added - CAUTION - the inverter is storing energy. Once turned off and disconnected from the battery, there is still the potential hazard of sparks flying if the (+) and (-) leads from the inverter touch. I did not test to see how long the energy is stored or if there is a bleeding resistor installed.

So if you are a musician or an entertainer who uses a sound system, this inverter will power a 100W amplifier for several hours (based on the AH of the batter used).
20 Eco-Friendly Bamboo Toothbrushes: The World’s Most Convenient Bamboo Toothbrushes with BPA Free Nylon Bristles, in 4 Colours and Individually Packaged! (20)
20 Eco-Friendly Bamboo Toothbrushes: The World’s Most Convenient Bamboo Toothbrushes with BPA Free Nylon Bristles, in 4 Colours and Individually Packaged! (20)
These are my very first set of eco friendly toothbrushes. I am confident to say that I am considering to continue to support bamboo brushes. I was skeptical at first, as eco friendly products at times dwindle in quality that we’re accustomed to minimize impact to the environment. These toothbrushes, however, are not the case.

The quality feels very high. The bamboo finish is very smooth and slick. It’s very lightweight but also very strong and sturdy. It doesn’t bend as many plastic toothbrushes often do.
The bristles also surprised me. I had the impression it wouldn’t hold up to my rigorous brushing habits on a daily bases. They hold up quite well. These are soft bristles rather than firm. Soft are supposed to be better for your teeth and enamel.

The only con, which doesn’t really matter to me now, is the size of the brush head. It is smaller than what I was used to using. After about a week of use, I got accustomed to the head size. I still get a great quality cleaning, so that did not impact my score at all.

Overall, I do highly recommend these. It is a great way to reducing the use of plastics. I never considered the impact plastic toothbrushes have on the environment. If every person goes through several brushes a year, that is an insane amount of plastic causing havoc to our planet and ocean. This is a great product to support in doing your part to reducing the use of plastic.
7.5 Inch Edible Cake Toppers – Avengers Infinity War: Thanos Themed Birthday Party Collection of Edible Cake Decorations
7.5 Inch Edible Cake Toppers – Avengers Infinity War: Thanos Themed Birthday Party Collection of Edible Cake Decorations
I was worried it would be thin and tear easily, but it was thick and laid down on top of the cake nicely. I'll have to cut holes with a knife to poke candles in it, but that's fine. It doesn't taste horrible; it just doesn't really taste like anything, so probably guests will just peel it off before they eat it. It says 7.5 inches but I had to use a 9 inch cake pan because the edges were hanging off when I compared it to the 8 inch pan I had planned to use, so keep that in mind.
Saban's Power Rangers
Saban's Power Rangers
Thank God I didnt pay anything for this garbage.....

The storyline was awful and seemed to throw everything together without allowing the Audience to get to know each character....

Okay, as someone who remembers the original series of power rangers, this drivel seems to be the complete opposite of what the series was about.

In the original series, we had five teenagers who were active in their community, role models for many, and displayed a positive message to the viewers....

In this rehash, the main character (jason) is a felon, the geek (billy) is an accomplice, a new girl in town (trini) is ditsy with no storyline other then having LGBT issues), the other girl (kimberly) is almost a outcast, the 4th character (zack) just loves to do whatever....oh, and they all meet in detention....

The character Billy is now black as well and her parents seem to idolize Jason...hmmmm...

So, they meet up in detention, they decide to "borrow" a van, deprogram a police ankle bracelet (obviously the police dont care to do welfare checks), and somehow all show up a old mine where they find ancient power coins and go underground to find zordon who's literally is stuck in a wall and alpha (who looks like a robotic version of jar jar binks).....oh, and they must all be pure of something to access the morphin....oh, I give up. Makes no sense....they see zords, zach decides to take one without permission, and Krispy creme gets involved....somehow

Oh, and then, there's Rita. Looks like more of a reptile then human. Needs gold for...try to follow, recreate GOLDar....unbelievable that they took the name quite literally....

The zords come together but they are still seperated and beat rita, the end...

I felt like I wanted an hour and a half back...

This was a complete mess of a movie with zero character development....
Jay Franco Deadpool Invasion Twin/Full Reversible Comforter (Official Marvel Product)
Jay Franco Deadpool Invasion Twin/Full Reversible Comforter (Official Marvel Product)
I looked at many Lightning McQueen comforters/bedding, before choosing this one. I'm really happy with my choice and my grandson loves it! The other bedding sets I looked at had that slick finish, where it slides off the bed all the time. This one does not and an added bonus is the reverse side is the softest material. Other Cars bedding may be brighter, but this one, which is a little more subdued in color, was exactly perfect for the look I was going for. I would've given this bedding a 5 star, but it doesn't come with a sham or even a pillow case - like most other bedding. This is one of the more expensive Cars comforters out there, so you'd think with the higher price, they'd include a sham or even a pillow case. BUT all in all, it's a great set. Highly recommended.
Rubie's Dragon Ninja Child's Backpack Weapon Set, Multicolor
Rubie's Dragon Ninja Child's Backpack Weapon Set, Multicolor
Great set for the price - but be prepared for the weapons to split almost immediately. My son bought this set without us knowing and then when it arrived, we agreed that he could pay for it with his own money given that the weapons were cheap and somewhat flexible (and with ample promises not to whack his brother and so forth).

So here is what you get: Out of the box, the swords were slightly bent - this was due to the packaging from the manufacturer, not Amazon. The plastic is very thin and the weapons are constructed out of two halves, so the seam splits easily after the weapon bends a few times. Once our kids realized that the swords bent, they started to bend them intentionally, by the way. Of course, they were disappointed that the weapons seem to be breaking, but not enough to actually stop playing with them. The handles to the swords are actual thread wrapped around the end, so the swords feel nice to hold and look nice. These have held up really well, I am surprised to say. The harness is made of webbing and there is a plastic holder that sits comfortably between one's shoulder blades. My sons like the harness - they add it to their TMNT costumes and sometimes also pretend to be (human) ninjas. Interestingly, given how low quality these toys are, we are not worried about the boys hurting themselves or others. So, 3.5 stars... cheap, but well-loved.
77 Shadow Street
77 Shadow Street
Dean Koontz's 77 SHADOW STREET is not an easy book to describe. On the one hand, it's a fairly familiar haunted house tale in which generations of residents at a posh Victorian mansion are sucked into a terrible nightmare. On the other hand, it's Koontz's little jab at the modern world, which he sees as disintegrating around us, leaving us unprepared to combat the ultimate forces of evil. The house itself, once called Belle Vista and now the Pendleton, happens to have been constructed on something Koontz calls a "space-time trapdoor," which opens every 38 years to suck in the hapless people unlucky enough to be in the vicinity. This can be scary, if a bit derivative (you'll be reminded of THE SHINING, 1408, THE MIST, and even the TV series AMERICAN HORROR STORY). There's an evil presence called "One" (who wants ultimate dominion), and another called "Witness" (who will help him achieve it). There are creepy creatures galore, and a few really grotesque happenings. But somehow the novel didn't work for me.

The biggest problem with 77 SHADOW STREET is the way Koontz tells his story. There is a huge cast of characters, which are introduced slowly over the first half of the book through a series of vignettes told from differing perspectives. At first it's difficult to keep track of all of them; it's also difficult to get very attached to any of them. Devon Murphy is a security guard still mourning the loss of his mother, Bailey Hawkes is an ex-marine investment counselor, Silas Kinsley is a retired litigation attorney who finds himself researching the history of the Pendleton, Twyla Trahern is a country music composer with a precocious 8-year-old son, Mikey Dime is a hit man with psychopathic tendencies, the Cupp sisters are octogenarian cake-bakers, Sparkle Sykes is writer with an autistic daughter - the list honestly goes on and on (and I haven't even mentioned the characters from past generations of Pendleton residents). It's not that these characters aren't interesting - some of them are. It's just that there are so many of them, and the story jumps from one to the other in little mini-chapters which never allow the reader to become really invested in any of them. This makes it hard to care all that much what happens to them when things go crazy at horror house.

Additionally, there is an amazing lack of dialogue in this novel. For almost the entire first half, Koontz's many characters are isolated from each other, each in his/her own apartment. The story unfolds from their many perspectives, with Koontz telling us what's happening, describing events, even summarizing conversations that we never actually get to hear. It's an odd way of telling a story, especially with so many characters involved. It leaves us, as readers, distanced from the core of the action, and kept separated from the characters we're supposed to root for.

Ultimately, Koontz's story is interesting, and I can't say the book isn't worth reading. I grew tired of it, however, which isn't what I expected from a Dean Koontz thriller. And by the end, I wasn't invested enough in any of the characters to really care why all this was happening and what we were supposed to learn from it. "This world," one character says, "is a dark place, and hard." That much comes through very clearly in 77 SHADOW STREET. I was disappointed, however. Two stars for the novel; the additional one is for Mr. Koontz, whose books I have loved for decades. I will always be a fan.
The Road to Gandolfo: A Novel (The Road to Series Book 1)
The Road to Gandolfo: A Novel (The Road to Series Book 1)
What did I like most anout this book? At least 327 laughs* in it! It was hilarious! Had it been serious, it would have been horrible. But wasn’t—it was preposterous, it was silly, it was funny!!

What did not like about it? Funny as it was, it was slow to develop. Real action on the main plot line didn’t start for almost 300 pages. But don’t let that deter you—the story was fantastic (note the pun there).

Another point on the plus side is the excellent Character development. it was very well done.

I recommend this to all Ludlum fans or those who wannabe.

P.S. This was at least my second (maybe third) read. And I am about to start my second or third read of The Road To Omaha.

*327 Sound like an odd number?. It’s AT LEAST one per page.
Clifford Grows Up (Clifford the Big Red Dog (Pb))
Clifford Grows Up (Clifford the Big Red Dog (Pb))
Clifford grows up is a very good book. I've liked Clifford ever since I was a little kid. I think it tells how friendly a dog can be and how to take care of your dog. I really like this book and I would recomend it to other people.
Les pages de notre amour (Roman contemporain) (French Edition)
Les pages de notre amour (Roman contemporain) (French Edition)
c'est la première fois que je lis un livre de nicholas sparks et j'ai été transportée par cette histoire d'amour ... beaucoup d'émotion, de tendresse et de pureté dans ce livre et une histoire d'amour comme on aimerait tous en connaitre ....le lien qui existe entre Noah et Allie dépasse le réel pour exister dans au delà.
je recommande vivement ce livre et je vais essayer de lire d'autres romans de cet auteur
Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana by Anne Rice (2008-03-04)
Christ the Lord: The Road to Cana by Anne Rice (2008-03-04)
Anne Rice is best known for her vampire novels perhaps but I'm not a fan of that genre. This is my second Christ the Lord novels I've read by her. The first, Out of Egypt, was excellent. This one, The Road to Cana, is even better. Ms. Rice weaves a compelling story of the life of Jesus Christ in the time leading up to and just as He begins His ministry.
From a historical perspective, little is known of Yeshua bar Joseph, the Nazareth carpenter who becomes Christ the Lord. Ms. Rice uses this to put together a believable tale of what might have been.
This story would be intimidating for any author to tackle. With a subject as great as this who is so dear to the hearts of so many it must have been a daunting task. But Ms. Rice carries it off without overdramatizing as so many writers have done.
The Jesus of this book is human, conflicted yet loving, willing but somehow reluctant to step into the fray. It is someone we'd be comfortable to spend time with, someone we'd like to know better.
This book brought tears to my eyes for the beautiful story we all know so well. And when I finished, I felt certain it might have been just this way.
I enjoyed it. I hope you enjoy it, too.
The Broken Vase (Tecumseh Fox Book 3)
The Broken Vase (Tecumseh Fox Book 3)
Tecumseh Fox is not NERO Wolfe or Archie Goodwin, but a fairly good combination of the two. Yes, the NERO Wolfe mysteries area good deal better, but I suspect that, had he continued the series Fox would have developed a stable of supporting players that would have helped to flesh him out.
It is a good stand-alone mystery. Should keep you guessing. In my opinion Stout could have made the phone book ( remember them?) Interesting.
Kobe Satsujin Jiken [in Japanese Language]
Kobe Satsujin Jiken [in Japanese Language]
見た目はとても良いものだと思って安心してました。所が本の本体の裏側にメモ書きがされていてびっくりしました。 
細部まで目を通してもらいたいなと思いました。
Knight Models HPMAG010 Harry Potter Miniatures Adventure Game: Malfoy Family Expansion Pack, Mixed Colours
Knight Models HPMAG010 Harry Potter Miniatures Adventure Game: Malfoy Family Expansion Pack, Mixed Colours
Unfortunately, based on the product I've received today, I cannot recommend this product. So much so, that I've felt the need to write a review now that I've just finished unboxing and building, which I think is a first for me. Warning this is also a long one.

My issue can be boiled down to a singular issue however; lack of quality.

On paper the concept of a Harry Potter miniatures game seemed like a really cool idea when I came across this product as a recommended product here on Amazon, particularly as someone who has a group of friends who enjoy all things board gaming (we've amassed everything from Warhammer, to Jenga, to Cards Against Humanity, to Brass and many other games in between), and from the pictures of this product that I'd seen here and on the Knight Models website, it seemed like a worthwhile investment, particularly at the lower price of ~£48 at the time I ordered it.

Now, I'll point out that I'll be holding onto this game, in order to test out the mechanics with the gang and get a feel for how it plays, so I'm not giving 1 star as I can't comment on play style, but to give it three stars would require me to want to buy more from Knight Models, which based on this offering I won't be (and I was initially considering further orders on the wider range, which I'm glad I resisted doing). I’ll also not hold the damaged metal box over them as this could have been a delivery issue.

Considering the RRP for the products in this line are on a par with many other miniature core box sets, I expected a similar level of quality with this product, but that is definitely not the case. Everything about this product instead seems more like it was put together as a proof of concept for a game or some attempt at a Homebrew game that a bunch of gamers like myself put together rather than a finished and polished product ready for commercial release. Everything just feels cheap and homemade rather than a quality licensed product. Below are some of the quality issues:

Damaged internal packaging

Not specifically a manufacturing issue but the inside plastic container was cracked and not on the side of the denting on the container suggesting this may have happened when it was inserted.

Damaged gaming boards

Again nothing to do with the packaging/delivery as they were in shrink wrapping with a foam cover to protect them, which I suspect means they were allowed to go out for sale in that condition.

Damaged models

The wands (which I believe another review has mentioned) were broken on two models when I opened the packaging, the packaging itself is not put together in such a way as to either stop the movement of the models or otherwise to protect them from damage. One of these definitely broke in the box (Hermione as I located the broken piece and was able to glue it back on, the other wand was not in the box, which was well sealed, which makes me wonder whether it went into the box damaged in the first place, which given my next point may be the case

Model quality

These definitely feel cheap, like they were made using a cheap home 3D printer, rather than a commercial production attempt, it’s even clear that different resin was used on different parts (presumably whatever was on hand when they made each batch?); they all feel flimsy and rough. Some of the models looked like they been clipped off a larger sprue without any care to presentation or quality of the models. Compared to other established companies such as CMON, FFG or GF9 or even some other independents on the net, these just are not quality builds.

Cards, Tokens & Rulebook

Again, just flimsy, cheap and lacking in general quality. The tokens don’t have the bulk you would usually expect of a token, so much so that when I first took them out I thought they were actually stickers and maybe the card (which turned out to be the boards) were the tokens to stick them on! But no, they are just really thin card, the laminate was even peeling off one of the larger pieces that came off the frame.

Similarly, the cards are all very thin, I can see them wearing out and becoming torn and bent very easily with any consistent amount of use that you might reasonably expect from a decent miniature game, they have cut edges too and even then the edges haven’t been consistently and evenly cut, again like a hand job rather than any kind of precision. The rulebook isn’t much better, it just doesn’t feel like it’s going to wear well.

You can tell with games like these when the materials used for the tokens, cards and rulebooks in particular have been considered for the job, because the materials used are built for wear and tear, being handled by lots of people, having people flipping back and forth to discuss rules and the like, which just doesn’t feel like it’s been considered here. There was so many quality issues everywhere that I even started to notice tiny things by the time I was done with unboxing it, like the lack of quality to the inlay of the dice, as petty as that may sound, the big issues, make everything else that more noticeable.

Again these all feedback to the fact that it feels like a homebrew or prototype quality build for testing or funding bids. At least if it was advertised like that you would have an idea what to expect, but there’s a whole line of products alongside this core box; the Chamber of Secrets box RRP’s at I believe over £100. Alas this box has sufficiently put me off Knight Models that I can’t see myself getting anymore of either this or the two other ranges of models they have in their lines (Justice League & Batman).

I can only hope they learn what works from some of the big names in terms of build and presentation quality and review and revamp product lines like this, because at present I wouldn’t recommend this game to anyone.
Wizarding World of Harry Potter Luna Lovegood Wand Replica
Wizarding World of Harry Potter Luna Lovegood Wand Replica
Purchased this wand for my daughter, it is beautiful. Exact replica from the movie. It looks like a closed tulip at the beginning of the wand. Comes in a nice Ollivander's Box. She uses almost everyday to cast spells over her brother hoping something might happen!
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
I bought this DVD as I have recently purchased a 3D TV. Having reviewed 3D titles on the internet, it is fair to say there are not that many to choose from. Hence why this one seemed a good buy.

I have to say at the outset that I am not a particular fan of the Pirates of the Caribbean series. However, I thought the story on this occasion was good. Johnny Depp reprises his role as Jack Sparrow, along with several other actors from the previous films. There was a notable exception - Kiera Knightly. Without giving too much away, Jack Sparrow goes in search of the Fountain of Youth, and along the way seems to have one mishap after another! The film is part action and part comedy.

The 3D special effects were good - lots of things coming towards you and literally jumping out on to the screen. It was worth it just for these alone.

As I have said, 3D films are very few and far between, so the cost can be prohibitive. At £17, these types of films are much more expensive than the traditional 2D - albeit you do get a bonus DVD in this collection which allows you to transfer the film on to your computer or iPad.

Strongly Recommended.
Ready to Be a Thought Leader?: How to Increase Your Influence, Impact, and Success
Ready to Be a Thought Leader?: How to Increase Your Influence, Impact, and Success
This book on Thought Leadership is a little more strategic around creating your impact and influence than some of the other books on Thought Leadership available.

For Brosseau, Thought Leadership is about delivering change around innovative new ideas. In her author's interview on the book's Amazon page, she writes:

"Thought leaders are change makers who move and inspire others with their innovative ideas, turn those ideas into reality, and then create a dedicated group of friends, fans, and followers to help them replicate and scale those ideas into sustainable change. They spread their ideas, programs, or initiatives far beyond one company, organization, or community to make a broader impact in their industry or in the world. "

Correspondingly, Brosseau's book is particularly strong around leading change and embedding the impact of your ideas into business or society. She encourages readers to identify the stakeholders, advocates, and champions that need to be engaged to deliver and embed the change.

Similarly, Thought Leadership is a LEADERSHIP activity. Brosseau makes this clear by discussing building and engaging a community around your Thought Leadership work.

I also like that, like Cal Newport in Be So Good They Can't Ignore You, she draws on Steven Johnson's idea of the "adjacent possible" that highlights that as we take steps, take actions, then new possibilities open up. There are many ways to get to where we need to be - and these opportunities open up as we get started.
Tienda de Navidad
Tienda de Navidad
Super cute Snowman Tin! I ordered a $25 Amazon Gift card, & the gift card that came with this one was slightly different than the others I've purchased in the past. The gift card feels like a hard, cardboard type paper, instead of the usual plastic cards. The cardboard was slightly bent, & the gift card itself does not have the denomination on the card. Not a big deal, but worth a mention. I'm sure the paper vs plastic card is probably more eco-friendly. ;)

The tin is adorable! It's about 4.5" x 5" x 1" & has a white hook so you can hang it. At current time of writing this, you can get the snowman tin with a gift card purchase of $25 - $2,000.
Moonglow
Moonglow
The new Avantasia album is an entertaining release with some solid songs but it unfortunately ends up being one of the weakest albums in the project's discography. While there is plenty of variety covering symphonic rock, pop rock, power metal, heavy metal, AOR and ballads, the songwriting is not as captivating as it was in the past.

The instrumental portion of the album is handled as usual by Tobias Sammet on bass and lead vocals, Sascha Paeth (ex-Heaven's Gate) on guitars, Felix Bohnke (Edguy) on drums and Michael Rodenberg responsible for the orchestrations. The list of guest vocalists includes Hansi Kürsch (Blind Guardian), Jorn Lande (ex-Ark, ex-Masterplan), Ronnie Atkins (Pretty Maids), Michael Kiske (Helloween, Unisonic), Geoff Tate (ex-Queensryche), Bob Catley (Magnum), Candice Night (Blackmore's Night), Mille Petrozza (Kreator) and Eric Martin (Mr. Big).

“Book of Shallows” is the heaviest song on offer and one of the best ones as well. It is fast paced and includes some powerful and heavy guitar riffs, a catchy chorus and nice vocal transitions between Hansi Kürsch, Ronnie Atkins, Jorn Lande and Mille Petrozza.

“Alchemy” probably contains the best chorus on the album and is another highlight. It is an atmospheric mid tempo melodic metal song with a darker atmosphere and some welcome heavier riffs. Geoff Tate blends well with Tobias Sammet and offers some nice vocal work that harkens back to Queensryche.

“Requiem for a Dream” is a fast power metal song with a soaring chorus and a major highlight. This is the only song to feature Michael Kiske on vocals and as usual he provides a stunning performance showing off his power and upper range. Although it is a signature Avantasia song it just works great and provides a twist with its atmospheric church chant intro and the inclusion of a bass solo.

“The Piper at the Gates of Dawn” is not perfect but generally works well and is another standout song. It is one of the longest tracks and the only to feature that many singers sharing vocals. The song includes some irritating modern keyboards and its chorus is similar to the Avantasia song Another Angel Down, but it is bombastic, catchy and features one of the best guitar solos on the album. In addition, guest vocalists Atkins, Lande, Martin, Catley and Tate do an admirable job and make the track a little more memorable.

Moonglow’s biggest flaw is the absence of catchy choruses on several tracks and the feeling of déjà vu in several song passages. The epic “The Raven Child” is the perfect example as it includes a Blind Guardian inspired intro, Iron Maiden and Savatage influences, an ending section that is identical to the Avantasia song The Scarecrow and a rather unmemorable chorus. Despite some great vocal work by Jorn Lande the whole thing ends up sounding unoriginal, boring and long. Another drawback is the general absence of guitar solos in the album. The last negative aspect of Moonglow is the fact that Tobias Sammet sings on all songs and doesn’t leave much room for the guest vocalists to fully unveil their talents.

Moonglow is definitely weaker when compared to the previous album Ghostlights. It is not a bad album as it is inspired, bombastic and offers some memorable moments, but it is not great either. It will probably sound good and interesting for someone not familiar with Avantasia, but for older fans it has unfortunately little to offer.
What to Expect When You're Expecting
What to Expect When You're Expecting
I'm not really sure how to categorize this movie for a review. It's not really good. But it's not really bad either. It's actually one of those movies that is more enjoyable after multiple viewings, like those old cable TV stalwarts from back in the day, where you'd turn it on while doing chores and then you'd turn off the vacuum for the parts you liked the best. The movie, mostly set in Atlanta, follows multiple couples at different stages in their lives with one thing in common: they got pregnant roughly around the same time. They also turn out to be interconnected with each other, some of them in surprising ways that the director keeps in his pocket until he's ready to spring that connection on you. This is not as annoying as it could have been because, to varying degrees, the characters are quite likable. Some of the gags do not get old (mostly courtesy of Chris Rock but Brooklyn Decker and Dennis Quaid also make an effective comedy duo), others were not really funny in the first place (but they get a sticker for trying, except for one joke made of so much cringe even J Lo couldn't save it, seriously who greenlit that joke, and the poor actor who had to deliver it looks mortified even while he's saying it). A lot of the tone is farcical, with the exception of one storyline that takes a turn for the dramatic complete with a musical stinger straight out of a horror movie. I mention this because (spoiler ahead) I think people expecting a fluffy comedy ought to be mentally prepared for a miscarriage storyline right in the middle of the movie if they're going to watch this. For the most part though, this is a comedy with quite a few satirical moments, and it is very rewatchable.
How to Setup Your Guitar Like a Pro: An Easy Guide for Beginners
How to Setup Your Guitar Like a Pro: An Easy Guide for Beginners
While the book is very straight forward and to the point - which I like - the author seems to have put little thought into the structure/order of the book. For instance, he starts off with telling you to remove all your strings and clean the fret board... but fails to mention that if you have a Floyd Rose that is a terrible idea. He does cover the Floyd Rose a little later, but not really enough attention is given to it IMO.

The strength of the book is also the weakness of the book... it's brief and to the point and therefore easy to read through... but... there is not a lot of information that many people probably need. Another good thing about the book is that there are a lot of good pictures in detail that show what he is talking about.

Overall, I give the book an "okay" rating. It's not fantastic or even great. But it's not bad. I wish he would have been a little more thorough and covered the Floyd Rose a little more, and in the beginning when appropriate.

I'm going to have to order How to Make Your Electric Guitar Play Great - Second Edition By Dan Erlewine now... to (hopefully) really feel comfortable with this stuff. When I was choosing between the two books to begin with I went with this one because I liked brevity... but now I realize that some things require a little more information!
Apple Smart Keyboard for iPad (7th and 8th Generation) and iPad Air (3rd Generation) - US English
Apple Smart Keyboard for iPad (7th and 8th Generation) and iPad Air (3rd Generation) - US English
I have tried and reviewed two keyboards recently for the 7th Gen iPad. One I did not like at all, and then there's this one.

This design is clearly well thought out. I was disappointed because I misread that this one was backlit. It isn't. I am also a little disappointed that the back of the iPad isn't protected at all by this case -- it isn't a folio. However, it ends up having a slight advantage by not being a folio -- the cover is removable easily and quickly when you don't need it, and there is as little bulk as possible. This is hardly bigger/heavier than a simple front cover with no keyboard.

Those of you who have had iPads for years will remember the first "covers" that ever came out were pretty much just like this -- a magnetic flap that covers only the screen portion of the iPad. I assume those still exist. I've only used the folio version the past 7+ years, myself. I hate the idea of the back getting damaged from regular use or dropping.

That said, I don't think you could design a keyboard cover any better than this one. It folds two ways, one with the keyboard in front of the screen and one way with the keyboard behind. When the cover is folded over either way, the hard plastic of the keys does NOT touch either the front or the back of the iPad. That's good design! The other, much cheaper, folio I bought and reviewed scratched my screen when it was closed. Yuck.

One thing I really appreciate about this keyboard is that it does not need charging or a Bluetooth connection. That is one less cable to worry about and the keyboard will never run out of power while you're using it. The way the cover connects is securely via the magnets on the side of the iPad. I suppose were it backlit, it would draw more power from the iPad. As it is, this keyboard is impossible to use in dark rooms if you don't touch-type, but fine in average-lit rooms or daylight. Honestly, I don't do that much writing on the iPad, but when I do, this works much better than the onscreen keyboard.

The keyboard is touted to be "full sized" but it falls a bit short of the width and height of full-sized Air keyboard. The action is pretty stiff, but the layout is such that you're not randomly hitting extra keys or functions. The delete and shift keys are where your hands expect them to be. I've owned some other third-party iPad keyboards that stuffed in random function keys or made the right shift key too small, so I always had to look at my hands rather than touch-type.

I do not think I would have paid full price for this keyboard, especially since it isn't backlit. The Amazon price is decent, especially if you want to have a very slim, very convenient keyboard that you never have to charge right at your fingertips. It definitely makes the iPad even more portable and functional. Whether you want to use the iPad to view videos at almost 90 degrees, to write with the keyboard at around 50 degrees, or take the cover completely off and hold just the pad in your hands, you can do all of that very quickly and easily. That, I think, are the smarts in this design.

I'll be looking for some sort of back cover or film, though, that fits with this cover. That way, the metal will be protected even when the front cover is off.
Komene Mesh Ergonomic Office Chair, High Back Desk Chair Swivel Computer Chair with Lumber Support Adjustable Height and Soft Foam Seat Cushion Task Chair, Hold on 350lbs Black
Komene Mesh Ergonomic Office Chair, High Back Desk Chair Swivel Computer Chair with Lumber Support Adjustable Height and Soft Foam Seat Cushion Task Chair, Hold on 350lbs Black
First off, why are there no reviews of this chair but 101 ratings???
The holes in the underside of the cushion did not match up to the arm rest assembly. We had to pull the arm rests to get the screws in the cushion holes. The chair did NOT go 90 to 110 degrees tilt, despite the adjustment rod going in and out for release and lock.
Going to return it. Lesson to all: Buying a chair online is a crap shoot without being able to sit in it and try it out, first.
Mikrotik RB3011UIAS-RM RouterBOARD 10xGigabit Ethernet, USB 3.0, LCD, RB3011
Mikrotik RB3011UIAS-RM RouterBOARD 10xGigabit Ethernet, USB 3.0, LCD, RB3011
I'm partner in a multi-national MSP, and have deployed hundreds of Mikrotik devices. In short, this is the best "bang-for-your-buck" router possible for a small-medium size business.

The RB3011 is an absolute monster router for the price. $170 for a 1U 10-port gigabit, SFP, and 6Gbps of WAN>LAN potential throughput. Though none of the ports can go faster than 1Gbps, the processing power is still there. When I ran a comparison of the specs between this and say, an equivalent Sonicwall (already lower-end gear), it's $170 for a RB3011-RM vs a $3,400 for a Sonicwall NSA 2600, more features too.

When you hold the device it feels like a prop, it's nearly empty since Mikrotik designs their equipment around CPU-based routing over dedicated hardware. It allows for the feature-set to be upgraded over time, increases reliability, and massively reduces cost. Though it's not uncommon for a switch to fail... and it's not impossible for a CPU to fail, when is the last time you've see a mid-range (non-server) CPU actually just completely die? Probably pretty rare. We have a few Mikrotik routers with over 3 years uptime, just cranking along without issues.

Another benefit -- everything is unlocked, no insane licensing fees like with Cisco gear! 50+ L2TP VPN users -- no problem! MPLS, Wireless Hotspot through the CAPsMAN Wireless Manager, Layer7 filtering. Mikrotik gives you all of the bells and whistles to work with, but no hand-holding -- you need to be familiar with network concepts and spend some time following their wiki. Mikrotik equipment is targeted at Wireless ISPs and networking professionals -- not for beginners to computers.

Good luck, have fun, for $170 it can't hurt to buy one and play with it a bit. Once you see the feature set for yourself, you'll likely be buying more of these.

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