Malcolm Patel

Joined a year ago

Malcolm's Favorites
It
It
It by Stephen King, Steven Weber, et al.. Rated 4.6 out of 5 stars, with 8116 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the Stephen King category.
Java Application Development on Linux
Java Application Development on Linux
Java Application Development on Linux by Carl Albing and Michael Schwarz. Rated 3.7 out of 5 stars, with 9 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'Java programming' category.
Python for Everybody: Exploring Data in Python 3
Python for Everybody: Exploring Data in Python 3
Python for Everybody: Exploring Data in Python 3 by Charles Severance, Aimee Andrion, et al.. Rated 4.6 out of 5 stars, with 433 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'Python programming' category.
Oracle SQL & PL/SQL Annotated Archives
Oracle SQL & PL/SQL Annotated Archives
Oracle SQL & PL/SQL Annotated Archives by Kevin Loney and Rachel Carmichael. Rated 4 out of 5 stars, with 7 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the 'SQL database' category.
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
The Everything Store: Jeff Bezos and the Age of Amazon
Grab an armful of business leadership books from your nearest bookshop and look through them for advice on how to treat staff. I doubt you'll find any of them encouraging business leaders to humiliate their colleagues in public more frequently.

Yet one of the most memorable stories in Brad Stone's account of how Jeff Bezos made such a success of Amazon is just such an encounter with a senior manager. They were giving answers that Bezos did not believe about the speed with which the phones were being answered by the customer service team. So in the middle of a meeting with senior managers, Bezos put a phone on loudspeaker, dialed Amazon's customer service number and started ostentatiously timing how long it took to be answered. He'd been told that calls were being answered in less than a minute, but the meeting had to sit in excruciating silence as the minutes ticked up before finally the phone was answered.

A devastatingly effective way of making a point, true. But how do you combine such a brutish attitude at times with an ability to recruit, retain and motivate the sort of brilliant staff you need, especially when Amazon wasn't paying high wages? The mystery is deepened by the grimly humorous collection of stories of other technology CEOs and their abrasive behaviour that Brad Stone presents in the book.

As with Steve Jobs, reading about Jeff Bezos and all his quirks in dealing with other human beings (not to mention Amazon's huge sums spent on failed takeovers) leaves you wondering for much of the time if you're reading an account of a brilliant success or a tragic failure. Clearly the path Amazon has taken shows he - like Jobs - is the former.

But whilst Walter Isaacson's biography of Jobs does answer the question of how Jobs and Apple ended up so successful despite his manner, in the case of Bezos and Amazon, Brad Stone leaves that question only partly answered. Early on in the book Amazon is but one amongst many online book selling startups. Stone explains well why traditional bookselling firms found it difficult to move into the online business, constrained as they were by their heavy investment in offline stores. Why, though, did Amazon triumph from all those different online startups? That Stone doesn't tell us.

The more successful Amazon gets, the better Stone's book does explain its gathering momentum, especially thanks to Bezos's insistence on using Amazon's scale to drive prices as low as possible. There are two types of company, Bezos says. Those that looks to charge as high a price as possible (think Apple) and those that look to charge as low a price as possible (think Amazon). Amazon's low prices may have kept its profits down, but they have hugely boosted its size and, while Apple's high margins have attracted big competitors eating into its market, Amazon's low margins have kept competitors out of the market, leaving more space for it to grow even further.

It's a shame though that the initial crucial breakthrough remains unexplained even by the end of an enjoyable book.
25 génies des affaires qui ont changé le monde: De Warren Buffett à Mark Zuckerberg (DD.ECO.BUSIN.GP) (French Edition)
25 génies des affaires qui ont changé le monde: De Warren Buffett à Mark Zuckerberg (DD.ECO.BUSIN.GP) (French Edition)
25 génies des affaires/RhymerRigby
Ce livre est intéressant à plus d'un titre : bien écrit dans un style alerte journalistique, il commence par une introduction particulièrement pertinente. D'emblée, une citation de Ruppert Murdoch (magnat des media) nous explique que le génie des affaires, « c'est une capacité à être en permanence à l'affût. » Par là même faire confiance à son intuition. Ëtre au bon endroit au bon moment.
Par ailleurs, l'intelligence n'est pas un pré-requis . Bien sûr certains de ces hommes exceptionnellement doués en affaires furent de brillants élèves (Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Sergey Brin et Larry Page (Google) par exemple), mais ce n'est pas une généralité.
Ce qui caractérise ces hommes (et femmes) avant tout, c'est l'ambition et le dynamisme, et aussi un certain goût du risque. L'intervention d'une dose de chance n'est pas non plus à négliger.
Après l'introduction, l'auteur essaie avec brio de nous faire comprendre le credo de chacun de ces entrepreneurs. Et puis tout au long des 220 pages, on apprend une foule de choses, comme par exemple que le premier mail envoyé sur Internet date du 29 octobre 1969 , et que Ryanair est la plus grande compagnie internationale en volume de passagers.
Dans le chapitre consacré à Ray Kroc, cheville ouvrière de Mac Donald's, celui-ci explique qu'une bonne idée ne suffit pas. Les 99 % restants sont de l'effort et du travail.
Certains furent gagnés par la folie des grandeurs ou même par une sorte de folie : ainsi Ruppert Murdoch croit en sa propre immortalité ; âgé de 80 ans, il déborde d'activité.
Peter Drucker, le roi du management, lui énonce ainsi son credo : « Tout manager doit se poser trois questions : quel est notre business ? Qui est notre client ? Qu'est-ce qui, pour notre client, représente de la valeur ? Il dénoncera le premier par ailleurs une certaine tendance perturbatrice : l'avidité des cadres, qui s'octroient des salaires et des indemnités scandaleusement élevées. « C'est moralement et socialement inacceptable » affirme-t-il.
Le credo de Ingvar Kamprad, créateur d'IKEA, se résume dans son souhait « de créer un meilleur quotidien pour chacun ». L'entreprise est « à mi-chemin entre le magasin d'ameublement et la religion, avec Kamprad comme grand prêtre. » On compare souvent ses complexes à des fast-food du style, et avec eux est né le concept de mobilier jetable.
Sam Walton (hypermarché Walmart), lui, souligne l'importance d'être populaire pour réussir et considère qu'un bon entrepreneur doit toujours être en apprentissage s'il veut durer et grandir.
David Ogilvy, roi de la publicité, affirmait « qu'un bon vendeur doit combiner la ténacité d'un bulldog et l'élégance d'un épagneul ! » Belle formule qui lui a réussi.
Et puis il y a les brutes comme Jack Welch (Général Electric) qui récompensaient les meilleurs 2O % de ses collaborateurs par des bonus et des actions, tandis que les 1O % les moins performants étaient licenciés. Il aurait réussi grâce à ce système et aussi en grande partie grâce à des tours de passe-passe financiers.
Michael Dell quant à lui, considère que l'approche directe du consommateur est essentielle : il a ainsi vendu des ordinateurs sans passer par des intermédiaires, ce qui lui a permis de vendre à meilleur marché., et obtenir de plus grands bénéfices
Un autre gourou du management, Tom Peters était en même temps un expert en développement personnel et un orateur spécialiste de la motivation. Il explique les huit leviers de la performance dans son célèbre ouvrage « Le prix de l'excellence ». On retiendra qu'il faut être à l'écoute permanente de sa clientèle, qu'il faut privilégier l'action, encourager l'initiative, constamment motiver les employés, préserver une structure simple, et allier rigueur et souplesse.
Akio Morita, créateur de Sony et du walkman, a toujours estimé qu'il fallait accorder de l'importance non aux qualifications des employés mais à leurs compétences. Ce fut une des causes de sa fulgurante réussite avec la vente de 230 millions de walkman à travers le monde. Il fut aussi l'inventeur du CD qu'il développa en collaboration avec Philips.
Une belle galerie de personnalités que nous propose là Rigby.
SpaceX and Tesla Motors Engineer Elon Musk (STEM Trailblazer Bios)
SpaceX and Tesla Motors Engineer Elon Musk (STEM Trailblazer Bios)
I ordered this book as a gift and here is the response. There were no reviews at the time and this is the first one.

FYI, the book you ordered me was only about 20 pages long and apparently written for elementary schools. I am not joking. It was published by some sort of lower education publishing house.

I still read it and actually learned a few things about Elon that I did not already know. I always thought he was from Canada, but he actually grew up in South Africa and moved to Canada at 17 to avoid South Africa's compulsory military service for all young adults
Amazing Grace 2 record set
Amazing Grace 2 record set
for me the best singers have always been from the church. the realness and depth is felt from the church. this is one of the first albums that i had ever gotten by Aretha Franklin and i loved it. She was singing/sanging with so much soul and depth here.as much as i love her R&B,POP material, her gospel material is right there and at times even more so because of the way she performs the songs. a must have for any Aretha Franklin fan.
OBJECT ORIENTED PROGRAMMING: La guida completa alla programmazione orientata ad oggetti con C++ e Java. Contiene esempi di codice ed esercizi pratici. (Italian Edition)
OBJECT ORIENTED PROGRAMMING: La guida completa alla programmazione orientata ad oggetti con C++ e Java. Contiene esempi di codice ed esercizi pratici. (Italian Edition)
Ottima guida a questo linguaggio informatico e programmazione.
Ebook molto eloquente, pratico e curato.I passaggi sono trattati con cura e chiarezza.
L'autore è impeccabile e sto, piano piano, puntando a completare la collezione di tutte le sue uscite.
Davvero un'introduzione impeccabile per i neofiti al mondo informatico.Tantissimi esempi pratici per imparare. Utile, consigliato
Webcam, Webcam with Microphone, Full 1080P HD Video Webcam, Streaming Computer Web Camera with Support 3D denoising and Automatic Gain, USB Computer Webcam for Video Calling, Online Classes
Webcam, Webcam with Microphone, Full 1080P HD Video Webcam, Streaming Computer Web Camera with Support 3D denoising and Automatic Gain, USB Computer Webcam for Video Calling, Online Classes
Ever since I had to work at home during the coronavirus pandemic, I have been looking for a better quality dedicated USB web camera to use at home. This is exactly the product I have been looking for! I work from home since March and this is a great product at a great price.

This product has all the features I am looking for and more. I can bring it anywhere and I don’t need to worry about it falling off of my computer. It clips on nicely to the monitor and the cord is long enough to plug into my computer’s USB port. The design is a simple clip attachment that works with any desktop or laptop. It is simple and blends in with any working environment. This webcam is a high quality webcam with great features such as 1080p and manual focus.

I like the clarity of the image and the overall design. The video quality is excellent and the image is crystal clear. It is lightweight, easy to mount on top of the desktop computer I have at home and overall it is very simple to use. I use this for conference calls with my coworkers and they really appreciate having crystal clear image quality and allows me to increase my level of professionalism. The product is very simple to use and is exactly what I need. I just wanted something that was reliable and will not break down or have quality issues during use.

Ever since my HR allowed me to start working from home, I have wanted a simple to use webcam that isn’t a hassle to use. This webcam is directly plug and play, meaning I don’t have to install any software for it to work.

This product is a must buy for anyone working at home.
Jordan Air 1 Mid SE (Kids)
Jordan Air 1 Mid SE (Kids)
I bought these shoes and the secruity tag was still on the shoe. Very disappointed in this purchase. Then when I emailed them about it they still haven't gotten an email back.
Next of Kin (Buddy Lock Thrillers)
Next of Kin (Buddy Lock Thrillers)
Ten-year-old Ben Brook is the only survivor after his parents and sister are brutally murdered. It looks like the killer might target other members of the wealthy Brook family clan so detective Buddy Lock is tasked with solving the killings and protecting Ben. Buddy soon discovers the Brook family might have wealth and privilege but they also are harboring dark secrets.

The story got off to a good start with a poor boy narrowly escaping death but unfortunately it was all downhill from there. There were just too many times where it felt unrealistic and ridiculous. The writing particularly when describing noises or during what are supposed to be tense action scenes was weak. (Chapter 10's last paragraph is an example of the type of scene you would expect in a terrible horror movie.) The one positive thing I can say about this book is there was one twist I didn't see coming but even that was so far-fetched. I enjoy most books I read, but I just did not connect with this book at all.

I won a free ebook in a giveaway but was under no obligation to post a review. All views expressed are my honest opinions.
DIY Autoflowering Cannabis: An Easy Way to Grow Your Own (Homegrown City Life)
DIY Autoflowering Cannabis: An Easy Way to Grow Your Own (Homegrown City Life)
I really wanted to like this book, but did not at all. There are a couple of good sections like the week-by-week photos of a fast growing auto, but overall I was very disappointed.

Most of the information in the book can be easily obtained from websites like growweedeasy.com. I was hoping to get personal growing guidance from someone with lots of experience growing autos, but there were only a few occasions where it felt like the content was more than just a regurgitation of what can be found online. One piece of advice comes to mind where he says he recommends 20-24 hours of lighting per day based on his experience. I wanted more of this because there are so many opinions online that it's hard to pull out valuable information from all the noise. It felt like a missed opportunity.

By the time you're done reading it, you will be tired of the term "Autoflowering Cannabis". It's an accurate term for the plant, but seeing it multiple times on every page felt like it was used to just make the book longer. Sometimes when he uses the term, he's describing something specific to autoflowers. Other times he's using it to refer to cannabis in general. This is super confusing and makes it hard to know what makes an autoflowering plant distinct from a photoperiod plant. Also, the number of times he compares growing cannabis to tomatoes is just annoying.

The whole section on plant deficiencies is sort of pointless without good pictures. Each deficiency sounds almost the same as the others in words, and you really needs pictures to learn how to tell them apart. There's a full-page illustration, but it's really confusing because you can't tell what part of the plant you're looking at and everything looks the same.

The number of errors in such a short book should embarrass the editor. Not including all the typos, there are things that are just plain frustrating to see. Things like two identical photos on different pages that credit two different photographers. Or like the website for Mephisto Genetics, a seed company with one of the best reputations for autos, is wrong. Somebody could have proofread a final copy in a weekend and made the published version 100x better.

If you're looking for a conversation starter for your coffee table, this might work. If you're looking for a solid intro to growing autoflowers, I would start with a more in-depth book on cannabis in general, then visit websites like growweedeasy.com and autoflower.net to get into the nitty gritty.
My Magic Mud - Earth-Friendly Bamboo Toothbrush, Activated Charcoal Infused, Sustainably Produced, Soft Bristles, 2 Pack
My Magic Mud - Earth-Friendly Bamboo Toothbrush, Activated Charcoal Infused, Sustainably Produced, Soft Bristles, 2 Pack
This toothbrush has firm but soft charcoal-infused bristles that thoroughly clean my teeth. I have receding gums from brushing my teeth too hard in the past, and this toothbrush is perfect for using with my activated charcoal toothpaste. The wooden handle is smooth and easy to grip. This is an excellent product, although it's more expensive than other similar toothbrushes. I would definitely recommend it!
Iron Man & Captain America: Heroes United
Iron Man & Captain America: Heroes United
The animation is very impressive...definitely a big step up from anything I've seen in a superhero animated feature. The only exception being the tracking on the facial movements, which has a strange, low frame rate look (hopefully something they can refine as these newer techniques are used more). But that aside, visually it was absolutely striking. The weak point, IMO, is some of the dialogue. At times, especially during the sparring sequences, it sounds like the kind of verbal exchanges you'd hear from a couple of 8-year-olds having a play fight with toy action figures. Tony and Steve have a few good one-liners and hit each other with a few decent zingers, but some of the dialogue is cringe-worthy, especially Taskmaster (you can't really blame Clancy Brown - what could he really do with some of those lines?). I think the Marvel live action films have demonstrated that you can have a story and dialogue that are engaging for adults and still enjoyed by kids. It would be great if Marvel's animated features came across as a bit more mature and sophisticated so adult comic fans (of which there are obviously many) could get more into them.
A Solitude of Wolverines: A Novel of Suspense (Alex Carter Series Book 1)
A Solitude of Wolverines: A Novel of Suspense (Alex Carter Series Book 1)
When I learned that A Solitude of Wolverines was a mystery with a wildlife biologist as the main character, I perked up. When I learned that the book was written by an actual wildlife biologist, I couldn't wait to get my hands on it. Now I can say that this first Alex Carter mystery is a winner, and I can't wait to read more.

Wildlife and the wilderness are at the center of this story, and you can really get a feel for the type of conservation work wildlife biologists do. If you love all creatures great and small, there's even a bibliography so you can learn more about the animals being studied in the book. But if the wilderness is at the center of A Solitude of Wolverines, Alex Carter is its beating heart. When asked to lie about her findings for her bosses who have taken bribes in a previous job, Alex refuses in spectacular style knowing that she has a lot to lose by telling the truth.

This is not your usual female character. Her mother was an Air Force fighter pilot who devised games for her daughter that taught Alex how to think on her feet and use the items at hand for her survival. When something like that is mentioned in a book, you can take it to the bank that this is going to be a big factor in the story later on-- and it is. There are plenty of high octane action scenes in A Solitude of Wolverines, and there is no candy-coating of the consequences for neither man nor beast. (I mention this for those readers who might be a bit squeamish.)

The only thing that made me wonder about Alex is her choice of best friend and boyfriend. Anyone with two working brain cells should have been able to deduce that her boyfriend was a high maintenance waste of space, but I suppose that tells us that she makes mistakes like the rest of us mortals. Her best friend is a typical high rolling Hollywood actress, and that makes for an odd combination with the middle-of-nowhere loving Alex. I do have to admit that it's probably not a good idea for a main character-- no matter how dynamic-- to be a hermit. There's also a shadowy third character in Alex's orbit. One that she didn't realize she had, and it would appear that this dangerous shadow will figure more prominently in the next book. Why is this person a "dangerous shadow"? Because he's Alex's serial killer guardian angel. How's that for a shocker!

A Solitude of Wolverines is a momentous opening chapter in Alex Carter's story, one that changes her: "A new sensation spread inside of her, a loss of innocence." I, for one, am looking forward to seeing what she does next.

(Review copy courtesy of the publisher and Net Galley)
Havok & Wolverine: Meltdown
Havok & Wolverine: Meltdown
Pena não ter uma versão capa dura e em português. Mas pela emoção de ter encontrado o que procurava há anos, valeu!!!
Funny Or Die MashUps
Funny Or Die MashUps
I haven't watched all the episodes, but so far the ones I have seen are o.k. They remind me of a movie trailer, which I think is intended sometimes. I appreciate the effort and these shorts are humorous enough for a little laugh.
Walden and Other Writings (Modern Library of the World's Best Books)
Walden and Other Writings (Modern Library of the World's Best Books)
This review is only about the Modern Library edition (print book), and not Thoreau's writings.

The inside margin is extremely narrow, so it's difficult to read the text, because the end of every line stretches too far into the binding. As a result, the words are on the part of the page that is both curved and hidden by the binding.

I imagine this was a conscious decision on the part of the book designer, to fit the text onto fewer pages. As is the text is 769 pages. The publisher choose to destroy the readability of the text, to fit the book into the 769 pages, instead of the 900 or so pages that would have been required by the correct margin width.
Journal of Henry David Thoreau, 1837-1861 (14 Volumes)
Journal of Henry David Thoreau, 1837-1861 (14 Volumes)
Note that this set includes not only the 14 rather thick volumes comprising Thoreau's JOURNAL but also a relatively thin (203-page) 15th volume titled "Botanical Index," which [excepting its first 31 pages of reasonably worthwhile and laudable prefatory content], to this non-botanist (and presumably MOST other Thoreauvians), is essentially a superfluity--albeit not exactly a veritable waste of paper and ink.

I bought my (conservatively rated) "Very Good condition" copy of this "1984" 15-volume set around early 1998, and I paid $100 for the fifteen largish softcover volumes minus their original slipcase [the absence of that "edge-wear-prone" slipcase then seemed--and today still seems--"not a deal breaker" to me]. Judging from today's prevailing prices for comparably used copies of this 1984 edition, I'm glad I nabbed mine while the getting was still relatively good (cheaper)!

In any case, speaking as a dilettantish Thoreauvian who likewise owns several hardcover volumes of Princeton's (arguably) "definitive" (and highly "academic") version of this work, I actually somewhat prefer this 1980's version to the Princeton volumes. The latter's painstakingly restored text "authentically" retains Thoreau's idiosyncratic punctuation and misspellings. By contrast, this 1980's version is, essentially, a reprint of the "original" 1906 (multi-volume) hardcover edition that was sensibly EDITED by Francis Allen. As Walter Harding's 1984 introduction (to the first volume of this set) states, "... because Allen did not hesitate to round off some of the rough edges of the manuscript readings, the 1906 edition [like this 1984 reprint of it] is in some respects more readable for the layman than is the Princeton edition, even though it is not always as precisely accurate."

In my opinion, any absolutely ardent disciple of HDT should (ideally) own not only this "1906" version but also the undeniably admirable and compelling Princeton volumes [or at least the first two of those scrupulously researched and "restored" Princeton volumes, which differ (relatively) more substantially from their closest "1906" counterparts than do the subsequent Princeton volumes].

That said, if I could only own ONE version of HDT's complete journal, I'd probably pick this "more readable" 1984 set. [But--before purchasing either version--you really should make up your own mind by first perusing one or more volumes from BOTH this "layperson's" AND the "academic" Princeton edition.]
L. N. Tolstoy - The Death of Ivan Ilych
L. N. Tolstoy - The Death of Ivan Ilych
This book deserves its reputation as a classic. It's short and easy to read but also immersively written and poignant, especially if you are in the mood to think about how facing death changes the meaning of life. It has enticed me to read more Tolstoy.
Life is Good!: Lessons in Joyful Living
Life is Good!: Lessons in Joyful Living
ADDED TO REVIEW ON 7/25/07: Today I learned that "our" beloved Trixie had passed away. I am not ashamed to say that I cried. Through Dean Koontz's unique "translations," we all came to know a wonderful and remarkable dog who had a beautiful heart and spirit. And we came to love a dog that most of us had never met.

I am so pleased to know that Trixie's columns will live on. I can only hope that one day she will be featured in one of her father's brilliant stories.

Because the proceeds of Trixie's books have always gone directly to the non-profit organization, Canine Companions for Independence, I promptly sent off a check in her memory. I hope that other readers, who came to love Trixie as I did, will honor her life in a similar manner with a contribution to Canine Companions - her favorite charity.

Rest well faithful dog. You showed us all the very best of intelligence, loyalty, playfulness and love that a dog could offer.
*************************************************************************

"Life is Good! lessons in joyful living" is the most perfect book to buy if you enjoy dogs or want to give a gift to a dog lover. I immediately bought another one for my sister who has a golden retriever. Additionally, all the profits go to Canine Companions for Independence - so it is a great cause!

This book is written by Dean Koontz's huggable golden retriever, Trixie. It is about 75 pages and is a medium/large (9"x9") hard-bound book that is FILLED with pictures!

I absolutely LOVED it!!! (See Trixie? I use exclamation points too!) It is HILARIOUS and yet really sweet too. I promise you that you will absolutely be enchanted with this book. And it truly does give one some excellent advice on what is truly important in life.

And Dean Koontz just soared in my opinion. I went out and bought all his books just so Trixie would have more Kibbles! Great job, Trixie. I hope you live forever.
Le Zahir (French Edition)
Le Zahir (French Edition)
To me, this book feels more like a reflection of the author's perception of himself.

A charactor states part way in a book, that any novel is always in some part autobiographical... then elsewhere in the book, the main charactor, a (supposedly) succesful author forces people to divulge what they earn, then boasts about how their earnings are based on expenses, that as soon as they lose their jobs those expenses are gone, but how _his_ wealth is based on the work he has created and from which he gets a continuous royalty stream that's set him up for life .... how superior!

Feel free to help him maintain that royalty stream if you wish... I can't see any other reason why he might have written this book.

Reading it, it just felt to me like the book was written because, well, possibly because the author feels he's an author and therefore should write, or perhaps his publisher demanded another book, or perhaps he needed a bit bigger royalty stream. Who knows. But to me it felt very superficial. It felt to me like it was trying to be deep and meaningful, but missed it by a mile and came across just so half-hearted and insincere.

The overall story line felt ... well... lacking. The language weak and repetitive. It just kept coming back to 'zahir', but almost as though he'd decided that was the title of the book, but didn't really have a good idea of how to work from it.
The Gaze of the Gazelle: The story of a generation
The Gaze of the Gazelle: The story of a generation
Heroes still exist. Myths are alive and playing out every day in this world. And we who have the immense privilege of freedom to speak out, read what we choose, travel where we want, wear what we wish, and pursue our dreams... we need to read this book and realise that even now, within 5 years of 2020 BCE, generations of human beings don't have the freedoms we take for granted, and young people are paying with their lives, trying to gain them!

And unless we find the courage that this Iranian author/publisher/doctor has demonstrated - living the heroic myth of his namesake and paying with the loss of the homeland he loves - more generations will live under the shadow of violence, suppression, fear, and death. If that can happen in Iran, it can happen anywhere. Despite superficial differences (the US president of the moment is anything but religious, though seeking the power of a god), the parallels between Iran's fundamentalist regime and current developments in the USA are blatant and chilling.

Beyond the rich Persian legacy of myth, poetry, art, and culture that are familiar to most "westerners," and beyond the news headlines I rarely pay attention to because they seem too far removed from my reality to be believable; I previously knew virtually nothing about the day to day lives of Iranians from the 1960's to the present day. I didn't even know any reason to want to find out. This book changed all that. There, but for the accident of birthplace go I, go any of us! And faced with the choices this young Iranian confronted, would I or any of us who take freedom for granted, have the conscience or courage to put our lives on the line for the ideals of justice and freedom that we are so used to that we hardly even think about them?

Honestly and beautifully written, this memoir of one young man and a whole generation reaches out and grabs the reader by the heart and the mind. Strongly recommended for an unforgettable reading experience, and a powerful antidote to complacency!
Rivers West: A Novel (The Talon and Chantry series Book 8)
Rivers West: A Novel (The Talon and Chantry series Book 8)
Even novels with great plots need second drafts. "Rivers West" starts out so promisingly it almost hurts reading the last 70 pages, when author Louis L'Amour becomes so obviously disengaged with his creation it becomes a matter of "last to leave turn off the lights."

It's 1821, and from the Quebec coast a young shipwright named Jean Talon lights off for Pittsburgh and what he hears are fresh opportunities making boats for the great rivers of the American West. Crossing a corduroy road at night, he discovers a dying British officer, recently stabbed, who tells him of a very bad man, one Jean later learns has plans to steal the fruit of the Louisiana Purchase from the new American republic. Before he can make up his mind about much of anything, events conspire to plunge Jean into the heart of the plot.

Right from the beginning, when L'Amour sets the scene with his description of "a ghost trail, a dark trail, a trail endlessly winding" to its atypically-set time and place (at least 50 years earlier and 1000 miles eastward of the usual setting for a L'Amour western), you get the feeling that the author was out to try something different. Using the idea of someone planning to steal the West away from the nascent United States draws your interest, even if the actual method of doing so is never explained. You forgive a lot with L'Amour, because you want what his readers might call the good parts, strangers becoming friends amid the sagebrush, fights to the death, and reminders of a simpler time. So when Jean is quickly befriended by a cheesy pirate character with a pegleg and "Argh matey" dialogue, you enjoy the Walter Scott spirit more than you mind the implausibility.

But the plot oddities keep coming, like friends and enemies Jean instantly recognizes without explanation. Worst of all is the female heroine, whose thorough obnoxiousness around the hero is explained away by one of his buddies suchways: "If you're going to have steam in the kettle, you've got to have fire in the stove."

The sketchiness of L'Amour's narrative gets in the way of your enjoyment most. He takes little time to fill in plot points that seem promising. There's a very cool steamboat that resembles a "great black serpent" on which the villain rides, but little is done with it, or for that matter, with the villain. At several points, Jean is cut off from his friends, episodes L'Amour too obviously uses to fast-forward the plot. There's a scene where Talon is befriended by some Omaha, but it goes nowhere except to show L'Amour's readers that he realized he was writing in 1975, when respecting Indians was expected of Western authors.

There are good moments here, particular in the scene-setting first half, and a reader with a fertile imagination can use it as a casting-off point for his or her own daydreamt adventures. L'Amour had a fine imagination, too, and it deserved better exercise than he gave it here.
Dragon Ball Z, Vol. 7: The Ginyu Force
Dragon Ball Z, Vol. 7: The Ginyu Force
Man, Akira Toriyama knows how to milk the suspense, doesn’t he? Son Goku STILL hasn’t arrived on Namek yet but his training has taken him to a new height - somewhere beyond anyone’s powers. Can’t wait to see him land and take on Freeza and co.

So, meanwhile: everyone’s playing silly buggers with the Dragon Balls. Freeza’s got 5 then he doesn’t. Vegeta thinks he’s got 7 but he’s got 6. Then Kuririn and Gohan swap Dragon Balls. Then Freeza has all 7! And so on. The swapping and changing was fun for a while but I’m kinda wishing we could get past it now - we have had 3 books of this!

Vegeta awakens in Freeza’s infirmary, freshly healed from his wounds against Zarbon, only to take him on again in Round 2. And here’s the thing: the Saiyans get stronger after a fight they lose - they are literally the embodiment of the phrase “what doesn’t kill you makes you stronger”! - so Zarbon’s really in for it in this rematch!

The reinforcements Freeza called for have arrived in the form of the Ginyu Force: five theatrically campy warriors who’re all supposedly the equal - even the better - of Vegeta! They’re essentially still more hurdles for Goku and co. to overcome before facing Freeza. The good news is Goku is on the brink of appearing on Namek and both Kuririn and Gohan levelled up thanks to the Grand Elder of Namek, so I think they’re gonna do alright against this bunch!

I was surprised to see that in a supposedly “All Ages” book there was a very visual decapitation scene, but there we go. I guess kids these days are desensitized to that sorta thing?

Even without Goku though, volume 7 has a lot of great stuff happening and you’ll find yourself unexpectedly rooting for Vegeta in some of the fights, despite his evilness! The enemy of my enemy and so on.

The volume ends with Goku about to take the stage - hopefully now Toriyama won’t spend another book keeping him back to tease the readers still further!
Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Vol. 3 (3)
Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Vol. 3 (3)
WHAT IS IT ABOUT?

“Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Volume 003” by Naoki Urasawa and Takashi Nagasaki is the third book in an eight-book science fiction manga series Pluto. The whole series is based on “The Greatest Robot on Earth,” the most popular story arc in Astro Boy series by a legendary manga master Osamu Tezuka.

The mysterious villain, who is targeting the seven great robots of the world and might be responsible for the related homicides, is still unknown. Meanwhile, members of KR, a far-right group aiming to eliminate robot civil rights laws, come up with a sinister plan. Finally, Atom’s little sister Uran, a robot girl with ultra sensitive receptors, befriends an odd robot.

THUMBS UP:

1) Excellent story building.
The story unfolds slowly, but I wouldn’t dare call it slow-paced as it is thrilling and completely engrossing. New background details and answers to the previous questions introduce new mysteries, moving the story along as well as keeping the suspense at its highest. The final three acts in “Pluto, Volume 003” are especially absorbing, and although quite a few puzzle pieces are revealed, I feel like I have even more questions than I had before and thus cannot wait to read the next volume to find out what’s going on.

2) Multidimensional characters.
The more I get to know the characters in Pluto, the more I like and care about them. Also, background details and side stories not only make the story line more complicated, more relatable and more engaging but also add some layers to the main characters, making them multidimensional, realistic and more interesting.

3) Social commentary.
This volume brings up a lot of interesting issues such as human and robot identity and human-robot conflict. A social commentary not only adds depth and complexity to the plot but also hints at a few universal topics such as humanity and compassion. For example, KR, a robot hater organization in Pluto, strongly resembles the Ku Klux Klan and its ideology.

COULD BE BETTER:

1) The last of the seven.
I didn’t really enjoy the act in which the last of the seven great robots of the world was introduced. The episode was rather uneventful and the character itself didn’t strike me as likable or particularly interesting. Hopefully, my mind will change in later volumes.

2) Static and colorless illustrations.
I know I talked enough about this issue in my previous reviews, but I still cannot get used to the artwork, which is truly stunning but too static for a comic book. The illustrations in the third volume seem more dynamic though, but only the ones picturing kids. The portrayal of adult characters is still too static (limited range of facial expressions and closed mouths when talking). What is more, in “Pluto, Volume 003,” only six first pages are colored and the rest of the illustrations are black and white, EXCEPT for two random panels towards the end of the book. Those few colored illustrations are SO MUCH better and just feel like a tease.

VERDICT: 3.5 out of 5

“Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Volume 003” by Naoki Urasawa and Takashi Nagasaki exemplifies an excellent story building and character development and contains an intriguing social commentary, but the illustrations portraying adults are still too static for a comic book.

POST SCRIPTUM:

Check out my reviews of the previous two volumes:
1) “Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Volume 001”: http://www.amazon.com/review/R39D2RIEIAPZRO/ref=cm_cr_rdp_perm
2) “Pluto: Urasawa x Tezuka, Volume 002”: http://www.amazon.com/review/R3PJZDE2SFGRI6/ref=cm_cr_rdp_perm
Merry Christmas, Alex Cross
Merry Christmas, Alex Cross
When I read the synopsis, I immediately thought "is that it?". The synopsis just seemed a bit `bleugh' if you know what I mean. Sadly this latest Cross novel left me feeling exactly the same way. As ever with any JP book, the chapters are short and sharp meaning it's incredibly easy to read. Sadly a few chapters in, and I just had that dreaded feeling of "I've been here before with this character".

The Henry Fowler character takes his children and ex-wife hostage and as usual Alex Cross is called in, but it happens to be Christmas morning. The story started to pick up pace and I thought we may well have been in for a treat, but I was to be disappointed as that part of the story finished rather abruptly. The reader is then briskly rushed onto the next part of the story involving a terrorist plot. I don't recall how far into the book this happened but it all just felt a bit disjointed.

The second plot of the book involving the terrorist plot certainly had all the right elements. However, it just seemed to lack any real feeling. I have been reading James Patterson for years and I took the time to pull my older reviews up today. It seems like my opinion of mediocrity has been recurring for a few years now and it seems like I am not learning my lesson. It feels like a huge number of us Patterson readers keep reading through both loyalty, and the hope that he will once again create brilliance like his early days.

Overall, it's a book that would keep you entertained for a few hours, but that's it. It shows how my interest is waning when I wait nearly a year from publication to read a Cross book. No doubt I will swiftly move onto the next book (book 20 in the series entitled Alex Cross Run). Overall, not a terrible read, just not like some of his earlier books.
Confessions: The Paris Mysteries (Confessions (3))
Confessions: The Paris Mysteries (Confessions (3))
SPOILER: The whole thing with CP and James made no sense and felt contrived. Plus, I'm still left with the feeling of "I should care about James, why?" We meet him for all of maybe 10 pages and he barely speaks. I also have no idea what he looks like. Not to mention, Tandy can't seem to decide if she's calm and intelligent or OVERLY emotional. Plus her brother's personality keeps changing as well. I feel the only people who remain the same person are Hugo and Matty who are so one-dimensional (muscle heads) that they probably look like flat lines IRL. This installation was a total mess from beginning to end, with roller coaster drama that is unnecessary and boring after the fifth ridiculous emergency. Oh, and the part with Katherine showing up out of the blue made NO sense (How did she find Tandy? Why fake her death? Why not tell Dominick? Why did she meet up with Tandy by grabbing her at night on the street???). Royal would NEVER have taken a shot at a teenage girl for no darn reason (he supposedly doesn't like to get his hands dirty, and just WHY??????? Why Tandy for goodness sake?). Isn't Tandy afraid of hospitals (PTSD anyone)? Why does she willingly check into a mental health institution? Plus, does ANYONE realize the police CANNOT question a minor without legal representation or parents present in most developed countries? Do your research lady (I know James Patterson tapped out on this one and barely skimmed it before putting his name on it). Here's hoping the next one is better.
The Gloriumptious Worlds of Roald Dahl
The Gloriumptious Worlds of Roald Dahl
This was a Christmas gift for a friend's young girl who is a big fan of Roald Dahl. Looking through it when it arrived, I was taken back to my own childhood; it's something I would have loved and had great fun reading when I was younger!
The Testament
The Testament
This story follows the emotional drama of an Israeli research historian, (the son of Holocaust survivors) who struggles to discover the mass burial pit containing the graves of 200 Jews who were murdered towards the end of the Holocaust. During this film, the protagonist yearns to uncover, discover, disclose, and cover up a number of personal truths, as well. His journey, in many ways, typifies the emotional struggle of children everywhere, whose parents have undergone unspeakable trauma.

I loved this movie -- It kept me on the edge of my seat all the way through. This thriller is not "action packed" so much as it deep-dives into the emotional roller coaster of the protagonist. Exactly the kind of film I enjoy!

To begin, it will help if viewers are familiar with Jewish law and Israeli culture:
1) Judaism is transmitted (by Jewish law and custom) through the birth mother;
2) And Israeli law embraces refugees who are first-degree relatives (including through marriage) ;
3) The majority population of Israel in 1948 (when the country was established) consisted of people who had already lived there for some time -- and were often wary of Holocaust survivors. It was understood that it was important to record testimony of survivors for posterity, but also to protect the testimony because people had often done terrible things to survive.

I can see that this film might not be for everyone. Much of the story requires the audience to understand fundamentals of history and Jewish life that might not be familiar to all. But overall, I loved this movie.
Them That Lives By Their Guns: Race Williams #4 (Black Mask)
Them That Lives By Their Guns: Race Williams #4 (Black Mask)
Well I got into Therese Race Williams stories as I heard that they inspired other great writers to write their detective stories. And that Carroll John Daly practically invented the hard boiled detective. And I San see that in his writing. A d am e enjoying watching this character develop more and more with each story. They are a real treat to read
Astrid Lindgren: The Woman Behind Pippi Longstocking
Astrid Lindgren: The Woman Behind Pippi Longstocking
This excellent biography reveals the woman behind so many of the world's best loved books. We learn about Astrid Lindgren's world, and her many lives, from writer, to children's writer, to editor, mentor, and later activist. She recreates her childhood in many books, but has her own bumps along the way, including the rocky beginning as a mother to an illegitimate child.
Her active imagination spawns the incredible Pippi, but, she goes on to write other books, some based on ancient legends and poems, such as the Tomten (another beloved book). In the meanwhile, she crosses paths with another Swedish writer, Tove Jaanson, who does the illustrations for the Hobbit. This book also includes the worship of Lindgren by German children's writers, and her own role in helping to mentor and foster love of books among the recovering nations of Europe after World War II. As a widow, she comes to revel in her "aloneness" and surmises that loneliness is very much a part of the human condition. My favorite parts of this book were not so much Lindgren's personal life, but her professional life: I did not know to the extent that she mentored, edited, and fostered such creativity among others. This book can be both a biography and an insight into the writer's craft and the role of editors in making changes (even to Pippi!).
Morning Comes Softly (Avon Romance)
Morning Comes Softly (Avon Romance)
For awhile I was afraid I wouldn't get my happy ending, but Debbie Macomber has never let me down. After Travis advertised for a wife in the local paper, he got little meek, mousy Mary. She had no idea what she signed up for but her journey is the most heartwarming part of the story.After they tied the knot, Mary went on to prove herself in many ways. It took time for Travis and Mary to finally see eye-to-eye on family matters. As they nutured the three children that Travis had been chosen to raise, it seemed at times this would end badly But the two strong-willed adults had to work together, which they eventually did. Travis' obsession with finding the person responsible for his brother's and sister-in-law's death took precedence over everything else. The person who was responsible for the hit and run turned out to be quite a surprise. You'll have to read this moving story yourself to find out more and see how Travis and Mary and the three children evolved jnto a besutiful family. A good read...
Debbie Macomber Cedar Cove CD Collection 1: 16 Lighthouse Road, 204 Rosewood Lane, 311 Pelican Court
Debbie Macomber Cedar Cove CD Collection 1: 16 Lighthouse Road, 204 Rosewood Lane, 311 Pelican Court
This was a real find for us. We listen to audios while travelling. I am the Macomber fan in our family (73 and a male) which is a bit unusual.

I think Macomber presents the problems of the average middle class woman in a very inciteful way. I am surprised that more males do not read her especially if either married or contemplating marriage. Every subject that might interest a woman is covered and some are pretty grim, and as a consequence they should interest men.

Ms. Macomber has a deft but no nonsense hand. She has many plots and characters that one could find just by walking in any neighborhood.

These audios are abridged which suited my wife just fine. She wanted to find out what held my interest, and this was as good a way as any. The stories and the reading is very enjoyable.
Zombiepowder., Vol. 3
Zombiepowder., Vol. 3
Not that the concept isn't weird enough, a trio of people chasing after the mythical (and dangerous) Rings of the Dead, which when put together make powered life force that can make a person immortal, but in this volume things get really weird as Gamma (S-class criminal and chainsaw sword wielder), Elwood (former thief and knife thrower on a mission to bring his older sister back from the dead) and Smith (mysterious, gun slinging, suit wearing master fighter) face down the weirdest troupe of circus performers ever over the body of a boy playing host to one of the evil rings. Foes in this action-packed manga include an undead box, a deadly assassin and his human target sisters and a magician who can bend space and time.
Zombie Powder #3 is very strange, but it continues to deliver the same strong characterization, western-theme and doles out the tidbits of mystery at a pace perfect to keep readers involved. Plus this volume contains a Kubo "bonus short" for die hard fans. Recommended for manga collections because when combined with the bonus shorts these books give a fine idea of the story spectrum available in manga.
Contains: cartoon-like violence, implied sexual threats and off-color relationships
Surrogate Child
Surrogate Child
SURROGATE CHILD unfolds with the suicide death of young Solomon Stern. His grieving parents in an effort to add more meaning to their lives take in a foster child named Jonathan. And lo and behold, seems like this new youngster is uncannily like their dearly departed Solomon.

Joe and Martha Stern, the parents, are annoying from start to finish. He's a typical macho man, unwilling to admit his failure in relationship with his dead son; she's a whiny, overly pushy mother, whose love for Solomon is questionably incestuous. Of course, Jonathan comes in, wins over Solomon's girlfriend, friends and everyone but Joe.

There's hardly any real suspense or chills in this book and Neiderman pads it with redundant speeches, and a ridiculous anticlimactic ending.

I have thoroughly enjoyed some of Neiderman's other books, but this is one I do not recommend.
The Wonderland Collection (Seasons Edition -- Summer)
The Wonderland Collection (Seasons Edition -- Summer)
What a beautiful book....The laser cut artwork of the front cover is stunning and also the dust jacket is of a high quality to protect the book. The book itself is gorgeous and the interior red of the book works very well. The bookmark is also a nice touch.
However, I was a little disappointed to see there are no pictures, and also, I always thought that it was Alice in Wonderland first and then Alice through the Looking Glass but in this book it is the other way round?
However, a stylish edition to any book readers collection.
Too Many Cooks (A Nero Wolfe Mystery Book 5)
Too Many Cooks (A Nero Wolfe Mystery Book 5)
“Too Many Cooks” (1938) was Stout’s fifth Nero Wolfe mystery, and it takes place at the Kanawha Spa in West Virginia where ten of the world’s greatest chefs, Les Quinze Maitres (there used to be fifteen of them), are holding their quinquennial get-together. Wolfe has been invited to speak on the subject, “Contributions Américaines à la Haute Cuisine.”

You may be wondering how Archie got his corpulent boss onto a train to West Virginia in the first place, since Wolfe has a very bad case of what Archie calls ‘enginephobia.’ It wasn’t easy. After the fact, Archie says:

“I would be prepared to submit bids for a contract to move the Pyramid of Cheops from Egypt to the top of the Empire State Building with my bare hands, in a swimming-suit; after what I had just gone through.”

When the ten remaining chefs de cuisine are assembled at the spa, three new members are going to be elected, so let the political infighting, name-calling, and back-stabbing begin. Archie makes the mistake of predicting to the spa’s chief of security that one of the chefs will be murdered. When he is proven to be correct, he must spend a certain amount of ‘quality time’ with the local law enforcers.

At first, Wolfe refuses to have anything to do with the murder investigation. Then the chef who had refused to sell Wolfe the recipe for saucisse minuit, which he has been angling after for years, is arrested for murder. Now the brilliant detective swings into action.

But not for money.

Even though Archie is at the top of his wisecracking form, and even though there is an excellent mystery to solve in "Too Many Cooks," it will never be one of my favorite Nero Wolfe books because of the multiplicity of racial slurs against the black cooks and waiters at the spa. I realize this book was published in 1938, but the language still makes me very uncomfortable. You’ll have to judge for yourself.
The Beasts of Tarzan
The Beasts of Tarzan
Edgar Rice Burroughs books, for me, are just about perfect. There is a reason why his books still have such great popularity to this day

I first started reading him as a child when I was about 6 or7 years old. It blew my mind then and continues to do so till this day. It opened up a world of adventure for me that fueled my ambitions to travel, my love of book reading, animals and plants. It introduced me to possibilities that I did not even know existed at the time like space travel (and boy does that age me or what), the possibility of time travel, aliens, life on different planets, the possibility of ancient civilizations existing and so on.

This is the third book in the Tarzan series and concerns the kidnapping of Tarzan's son. The chase is on and Tarzan gets captured and abandoned on an island. What happens to him there and the fate and survival of his son is the topic of this book.

New readers of ERB may consider this well dated as the plot twists may seem so familiar due to the fact that they will have encountered such writing twists from modern day writers. But this author was one of the primogenitures of this genre. Much like Arthur Conan Doyle created Sherlockian detectives, ERB created adventurers, 'wild men', anthropomorphic animals, and adventures you happily 'live' with all throughout your life.

This is a great read that you will go back to over and over again as you read further books in the series.
Recuerdos de otra vida (Spanish Edition)
Recuerdos de otra vida (Spanish Edition)
Die schöne und erfolgreiche Schauspielerin Natalie Raines wird beim Nachhausekommen brutal ermordet!
Von Anfang an richtet sich der Verdacht auf ihren Ehemann Gregg Aldrich, von dem sie getrennt lebt, doch ist ihm der Mord nicht nachzuweisen.
Erst, als eineinhalb Jahre später der Berufskriminelle bei einem Einbruch geschnappt wird und, um der erwarteten hohen Freiheitsstrafe zu entgehen, mit der Staatsanwaltschaft einen Deal aushandelt, bei dem er sich bereiterklärt sein Wissen preiszugeben und schwere Beschuldigungen gegen Gregg erhebt, kommt es zur Anklage.
Die ehrgeizige junge Staatsanwältin Emily Wallace wird mit dem Fall betraut. Überzeugt davon, dass Gregg seine Frau getötet hat und seinen vehementen gegenteiligen Beteuerungen nicht glaubend, tut sie alles, um ihn lebenslang hinter Gitter zu bringen.
Doch muss sie sich, je länger der Prozess dauert, eingestehen, dass sie immer weniger an Greggs Schuld glaubt! Und so beginnt sie, auf eigene Faust Nachforschungen anzustellen, die sie bald in höchste Gefahr bringen - und diese droht nicht nur von dem eigentlichen Mörder sondern auch von ihrem unscheinbaren, ihr dennoch Unbehagen einflößenden Nachbarn, der ein erschreckendes Geheimnis birgt....

Nachdem ich acht Jahre nach seinem Erscheinen "Recuerdos de otra vida" zum zweiten Mal gelesen habe - und dies mit der gleichen atemlosen Faszination wie beim ersten Mal -, muss ich sagen, dass Mary Higgins Clark einfach zeitlos gut, um nicht zu sagen brillant ist!
Kaum jemand versteht es so wie sie, raffinierte Geschichten zu schreiben, deren Spannungsbogen sich kontinuierlich aufbaut, die in die Handlung hineinziehen, mitfiebern lassen und die fesseln von der ersten bis zur letzten Seite.
Und wie es sich für einen guten Psychothriller gehört, spielt sich die Spannung vornehmlich auf psychologischer Ebene ab.
Wer grausame und blutige Szenen erwartet, wer die stets perfiden und gefühllosen Verbrechen, die die Autorin in ihren stilistisch höchst eleganten Romanen auflöst, gerne im Detail beschrieben haben möchte, gehört sicherlich nicht zur Zielgruppe, für die die Meisterin des subtilen Grauens schreibt.

Vielmehr verschafft sie dem Leser tiefe Einblicke in die Seelen der von ihr ersonnenen, oft vielschichtigen und komplexen, durchaus polarisierenden Charaktere, die es ihm ermöglichen, ihre Handlungen nachzuvollziehen, ihre Motive zu durchschauen und sie dadurch einfach besser zu verstehen.

Und genau dieses typische Higgins-Clark-Schema liegt auch dem vorliegenden Thriller zugrunde, der diesmal fast zur Gänze im Gerichtssaal spielt, eine Kulisse, derer sich die Autorin schon in einigen ihrer früheren Romane bedient hat, und eine Welt, in der sie sich fraglos auskennt und die sie so gründlich und so professionell recherchiert hat, wie man es von ihr gewohnt ist.
Und wie immer auch gibt es mehrere Handlungsebenen, die schließlich in einem Nervenkitzel-Finale zusammengeführt werden.
Hier liegt der einzige Schwachpunkt des ansonsten makellosen Romans! Wie auch in anderen Higgins-Clark-Romanen sehnt man die Auflösung zwar herbei, steuert das Geschehen zwar darauf zu, aber als es dann soweit ist, geht alles viel zu schnell! Gerne hätte man sich an dieser Stelle größere Ausführlichkeit gewünscht, vielleicht auch die eine oder andere Erklärung, auch eine Art Ausblick...
Aber das ist die Sache der Autorin nicht! In vorliegendem Buch noch weniger als gewöhnlich, wie mir scheint. Aber sei's drum!

Emily, die verwitwete, traurige, einsame und dennoch starke Protagonistin, auch dies wieder typisch für Mary Higgins Clarks Frauenfiguren, ist das bindende Element der unterschiedlichen Handlungsebenen. Nicht nur steht sie, ohne es zu ahnen, im Kreuzfeuer von gleich zwei erbarmungslosen Killern, nicht nur vertritt sie den Staat gegen den unter Verdacht stehenden, eigentlichen Sympathieträger Gregg, sondern sie ist auch jemand, der seit einiger Zeit mit einem transplantierten Herzen lebt!
Davon möchte sie schon aus beruflichen Gründen keinerlei Aufhebens machen und tut ihr Möglichstes, es nicht publik werden zu lassen. Doch immer drängender werdende verstörende Gedanken, ja sogar flüchtige Dejavus lassen sie, und gleichzeitig auch den Leser, vermuten, dass nicht nur das Herz des toten Spenders in ihrem Körper schlägt!
Ob so etwas im Bereich des Möglichen liegen könnte, lässt die Autorin jedoch offen und überlässt die Antwort darauf stattdessen der Spekulation des Lesers....
Stratton
Stratton
I wish the whole movie was as interesting, as the first mission, the main character goes on. Slowly but surely, the film starts to turn into a made for TV action movie. The production company could have copied and pasted, the last twenty minutes of any other action film, into this movie. Then used CGI to put in their own actors. They could have saved themselves time and money. It might just be me, but Dominic Cooper, doesn’t seem like a good choice as the star in this project. It could just be, that no one in the cast, is required to do any real acting. Gemma Chan, was about as animated as she was in the TV series, where she played an android. Derek Jacobi, must just have been in the neighborhood, and the producers said something like, “Hey Mate, if you’re not busy. Want to be in a scene or two in our movie”? Of course, they probably just called his agent, to see if he had a little time to kill. Lastly, I would have much preferred the actor, that played the first American serviceman. To the one that played his former team member. I can’t say more, because of “spoilers”.
Harry Potter and the Chambers of Secrets (Hindi Edition)
Harry Potter and the Chambers of Secrets (Hindi Edition)
With the adventures of Harry Potter, J.K. Rowling singlehandedly saved the publishing industry. It is impossible to overstate the impact these books had on both child and adult readers. The anticipation for the next sequel! The midnight release parties! While you missed all that excitement, you now have the joys of being able to read all the books at once.

Please do read the books; don’t just watch the movies.

PARENTS BEWARE: As Harry Potter ages, the subject matter grows more mature. J.K. Rowling was quite clear that she was not writing for young children. These books grow increasingly more intense. Exercise caution.
A Witch Come True (The Apprentice Witch)
A Witch Come True (The Apprentice Witch)
This is the third and final book in The Apprentice Witch series and I thought it was the weakest of the series. I just found it kind of disappointing. The story moves really slow and nothing even really happens until the middle of the book.

The first half of this book involves Arianwyn getting back to Lull, dealing with her father, and helping the town of Lull with Yule preparations. Nothing much really happens until the second half of the book when Wyn’s grandmother is abducted.

There wasn’t much time spent with interesting creatures or in the old woods. Most of this was politics and investigation. It was okay but pretty boring and not nearly as intriguing or exciting as the first two books. Everything is tied up in a decent way but there were no surprises.

Overall this book did an okay job of tying up the series but I didn’t love it. Things just moved really slow, there were no surprises, and the whole thing was pretty boring. I struggled to stay interested and engaged. While I am glad I finished the series, I feel like this was definitely the weakest book of the trilogy.
The Year's at the Spring: An Anthology of Best-Loved Poems
The Year's at the Spring: An Anthology of Best-Loved Poems
Gill & MacMillan have really done themselves proud with this fabulous little book of poetry illustrated by the brilliant Harry Clarke. This is not a facsimile, there are some new poems, other poems have been left out. Those included are well worth having in this edition. The illustrations are breath-taking and as most of the Harry Clarke illustrated books are somewhat larger it is marvellous to see a new smaller edition for a change. The original version of this book is called 'Years At The Spring: An Anthology of Recent Poetry' (1920) and of course, this one is 'Years At The Spring: An Anthology of Best-Loved Poems,' a new version, not a facsimile edition, but what a terrific new version it is. If you are lucky to have the original you will see how well they complement each other. Brilliant work Gill and MacMillan! This book is a must have for Harry Clarke fans, as well as lovers of excellent poetry.
Power Rangers Legacy ‑ 6.5-Inch Mighty Morphin Red Ranger Legacy Figure
Power Rangers Legacy ‑ 6.5-Inch Mighty Morphin Red Ranger Legacy Figure
I bought all the rangers and had them shipped. The only downfall was that for whatever reason, they delivered the Black Ranger at a later delayed date. Overall I love the boxing it comes in, and they really give my collection a nice touch to it. I recommend this product to any collector. Not so much a child, only because each ranger comes with parts and accessories that would get lost, broken or mishandled.
Power Rangers Beast Morphers Vargoyle 6-inch Action Figure Toy Inspired by The TV Show
Power Rangers Beast Morphers Vargoyle 6-inch Action Figure Toy Inspired by The TV Show
It's hard to tell from the front product picture, but there is a web of thin gray straps that are in the back. They're part of the figure, but they are only attached at the top of the shoulders and hang down almost like a veil. I am worried they will break off because they're only attached at the top. My kid is not a huge fan of the way these stick out and kind of poke them.

Otherwise the figure is great: all the joints bend well and the key works well in the Power Rangers Wristband that we already have.
Almost Human
Almost Human
The approach of the narrator in “Almost Human, ” and the interviewees,  is the same --  to view human beings as an ever striving species-being that has learned to deal with the effects of its technology - negative and positive - on the earth. As the film points out, the effect of humans on the environment is significant enough to warrant the widespread use of the term, “Anthropocene,” for the human period of the earth’s history.

The film is  non-judgmental about the human condition, as described. However, it presents a one-sided view which emphasizes human intellect as the main feature of human beings, with passing references, too,  to the role of emotions and intuition or hunches in experience. Other levels of possible human spiritual types of awareness and people's cultivation of this throughout the ages, is ignored, which is not unexpected for this group of scientists from Aarhus University in Denmark. This is because, as one scientist says, scientists rely only on empirically verifiable data about human perception and approaches to reality. The view, however, only a partial description of the history of science.

Fundamentally, “Almost Human” expresses a glaring oversight about the full potential of the human condition. It’s also true, however, that the spiritual awareness of humans, however, well-developed, has not been a sufficient condition to avoid the catastrophic situations the world is in, largely as a result of misapplied technology. If humans indeed create robots as their “Adam” as opined in the movie, one could only hope, along with the narrator and various speakers, that this experience of creation, would actually help to spiritualize whatever human-robotic-hybrids await us, in the future.  My hope is too, that an integration of the material and the spiritual could help restore social and natural balance to technology, going forward.

The movie is graphically very well done, with engaging narratives and commentary, and is worthwhile to watch.
Newest HP 15.6inch Lightweight Laptop, Intel Quad-Core i5-1035G1 Processor Up to 3.60 GHz, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 256GB SSD + 16GB Optane, HDMI, Bluetooth, Win 10-Silver (Renewed)
Newest HP 15.6inch Lightweight Laptop, Intel Quad-Core i5-1035G1 Processor Up to 3.60 GHz, 8GB DDR4 RAM, 256GB SSD + 16GB Optane, HDMI, Bluetooth, Win 10-Silver (Renewed)
I ordered this HP 15.6inch Lightweight Laptop, Intel Quad-Core i5-1035G1 Processor Up to 3.60 GHz, 8GB DDR4 for my wife as a gift because she is starting her BSN and needed a new computer. Amazon renewed has a 90 day return policy on this item (very liberal return policy for almost any reason) which is something you don't get when you purchase a "New" computer usually. The item arrived as expected, no noticeable defects of any kind. Packaging was sufficient and all the accessories were included. Performance wise: My wife is very happy and says that the computer's battery last a long time. I will update this review if needed or if we experience any issues, otherwise this was a excellent purchase.
Paquete de licencia de cámara IP Synology para 4 (CLP4)
Paquete de licencia de cámara IP Synology para 4 (CLP4)
So I have become pretty disappointed in Synology. Once own two of their nas drives and wanted home security cameras to record to them. I bought the drives before realizing IU had to pay an additional $200 dollars to get them to activate and record to the nas. OK fine, if it works and its supported then it may be worth it. So total investment between the nas drives and camera fee cars purchased on amazon over a thousand dollars.So the cameras need their surveillance station client to run and to view from an offsite location where I work. Their surveillance station client software to do this just never opens and lets you successfully log in. It is a known problem to them but they keep selling all the camera activation fee cards despite it. Its dishonest. . We appealed to synology tech support which occurs via email and it takes several days for them to respond. They respond with a request to provide a whole bunch of different details including screen shots and data files and etc. When I sent that in they responded again a few days later suggesting the same things they had already suggested and asking for the same data files as if they never bothered to look at your return email. after about 2 weeks of unhelpful advice they said that they just wont support surveillance station anymore. So I am out the cost of the nas, the camera activation fees and time! Thanks for nothing synology! It was so frustrating dealing with them I thru the nas away. I will never purchase a synology product again.
Undefined by Y
Undefined by Y
Great album. I will be following your carrier, good luck, great music.
VRV
VRV
Amazon is asking me to give stars on the Vrv app for ease of use (ok), Thickness (huh?), Sheerness (wtf?). Uh, yeah.. I dont know how to rate an app that.

Anyhoo, I got this I am an anime fan and use crunchyroll cause I am too impatient to wait a week to watch a freshly released episode and despise ads with a passion. With Vrv, you will not only get crunchyroll for your anime fix but Hi-dive and other non anime related channels.

Crunchyroll - Anime, some live jdrama, i think some manga too?

Vrv Has:
Hi-Dive: Dubbed anime titles. I used ro hate dubs but many have gotten better. Watch Log Horizon, Is it wrong to pick up girls in a dungeon and my favorite here: G.A.T.E.

Boomerang
Cartoon Hangover
Mondo
Rooster Teeth
Vrv Select

I dont really watch these but you may like em.

All this for 2 bucks more if you already have crunchyroll. Also, cons with crunchyroll or vrv booths sometimes give ya free stuff if you are a member. Got some sweet posters, pins and bags.

Both crunchy and vrv are free if you can stand the ads but remember, every bit of time you save from watching ads, lets you that much more anime 😄
The Flash: Rebirth (2009-2010) (The Flash: Rebirth series)
The Flash: Rebirth (2009-2010) (The Flash: Rebirth series)
"Flash Rebirth" is a great story, telling an emotionally-involving, character-driven story about a man struggling to reaffirm his place in the world after years of absence. The character of Barry Allen is made interesting and vivid to the reader, and his internal conflicts are just as engaging as the plot's central mystery. Dynamic artwork is supported by great emotional stakes and a great sense of fun, hope and optimism about the future that makes the whole thing feel triumphant. It is this story that brought my favourite hero back into the DCU, and reading the story I was reminded what made him my favourite by a story that was action-packed, fun and hugely emotional. I HIGHLY recommend to anyone looking to jump into the character's world.
TP-Link AC1750 Smart WiFi Router - Dual Band Gigabit Wireless Internet Routers for Home, Works with Alexa, Parental Control&QoS(Archer A7) (Renewed)
TP-Link AC1750 Smart WiFi Router - Dual Band Gigabit Wireless Internet Routers for Home, Works with Alexa, Parental Control&QoS(Archer A7) (Renewed)
This review is ONLY for those who wish to run OpenWRT firmware in the A7 router, and it's more about OpenWRT than the router itself. I own many of the original Archer C7 models, which are slightly more expensive. I run OpenWRT firmware in all of them, because it's much more powerful than the stock firmware. At this moment, the "release" version of OpenWRT for the Archer C7 is 18.06.2, but only the bleeding-edge "snapshot" version will run in the Archer A7. The "snapshot" version is working fine for me, but because the snapshot version doesn't have the "luci" GUI baked into the compressed binary image as delivered, I had to use up a fair amount of flash memory to add it. Fortunately, I was able to fit luci and everything else I that I really needed, but that storage is pretty full now. I expect that sooner or later there will be a fully-released version of OpenWRT that works with the A7, and then I'll have more storage left over to play with.
inkxpro Pigmento de marca Calidad HI 4 x 100 ml Recargas de Tinta para Epson Workforce 7010 7510 7520 3540 3520 3620 3640 7610 7620 Impresora
inkxpro Pigmento de marca Calidad HI 4 x 100 ml Recargas de Tinta para Epson Workforce 7010 7510 7520 3540 3520 3620 3640 7610 7620 Impresora
Spent a lot of time in research to use in my printer, all previous inks that I used before were with worse quality (prints were usually pale, and hard to read). And I didn't expect something differ from this ink. It was a good surprise for us when we printed some pictures and texts even on plain paper it was pretty good. I will definitely recommend this ink, and will by it again in future.
For the Love of Licorice: 60 Licorice-Inspired Candies, Desserts, Meals, and More
For the Love of Licorice: 60 Licorice-Inspired Candies, Desserts, Meals, and More
I didn't even know there was licorice powder available to cook with, licorice roots, grated raw licorice stick or licorice granules. Golden syrup and 2 oz of licorice toffee and raw licorice pastilles were new ingredients to me. 6-8 drops of liquid licorice aroma and 4 1/2 oz of dextrose for licorice caramels. 2 oz liquid malt and 1 fl oz. of glucose. It seems like it's from another country than the USA.

In the back she thanks her husband for going along with her to Italy, where licorice is grown.

First published as Lakrits by Elisabeth Johansson, Bonnier Fakta, Sweden, but now published by Skyhorse Publishing, West 36th Street, New York 10018
Bazooka - Goma de burbujas envuelta individualmente, sabor, caramelo retro nostalgia, tina, original, 225 unidades
Bazooka - Goma de burbujas envuelta individualmente, sabor, caramelo retro nostalgia, tina, original, 225 unidades
Taste is identical BUT weaker (from the very first chew, you notice it in seconds) than the original Bazooka gum sold by the piece for decades. The wrapper is certainly different, it has no comic either, but I don't care about either of these issues. Mine arrived very fresh, the gum was soft-- better in this regard than the original Bazooka, actually. The flavor didn't last very long at all. Pieces are slightly longer and narrower than the original one-cent Bazooka pieces.

Package was short by 6 pieces-- I counted everything (twice) because one was loose in the outer mailing box (the seal on this clear container wasn't so sealed), and because other reviewers have complained of short counts with this item. I can confirm that I, too, was shorted.

A solidly good copy; but not exactly the same. If you can live with it being not identical, but with the same exact flavor-- except not as strong-- then you'll like this product.

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