Sunday, December 30, 2007
Friday, December 28, 2007
This novel is PG at worst. I really like Meyer's willingness to avoid the easy clichés of bad language and sex. The book does have some violence, but it's about monsters so you have to expect a little. However, this is still a teen friendly book. Highly recommended.
Sunday, December 23, 2007
Saturday, December 22, 2007
Sunday, December 16, 2007
There are always some things that drive me nuts. One is authors trying to make themselves sound more knowledgeable than they are. For the record Glocks don't have cylinders, hammers you can cock, or safeties you can check to make sure they're off.
I really enjoyed this story right up to the end when the author got on his political soap box and began to daydream about universal health care in this country. When he actually indicated that someday our country may enjoy universal heath care as good as Canada I was tempted to burn the book. Idiots can be authors too.
Friday, December 14, 2007
Monday, December 10, 2007
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Sunday, December 2, 2007
Just a warning, there's a lot of sex in this novel. I would contrast Bond of Blood with Twilight by Meyer. I enjoyed that novel also, but there were no steamy erotic scenes to distract from the storyline. It's sad when authors resort to sex instead of words. Worth reading.
Thursday, November 29, 2007
As I got closer to the end I realized I wasn't going to find a conclusion in this book. Duh! What did I think trilogy meant? I have the other two books in the trilogy ordered now and they're in my to-read queue. Highly recommended.
Wednesday, November 21, 2007
This novel is suitable for teens. There's no sex and no bad language, but it does get scary at times. However, younger kids probably won't sympathize with this much teenage angst. One reason I read this book was to see if it would make a good Christmas present for my grandkids. I'll let them get a little older before I give them this book, but it's on the list.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
Wednesday, November 14, 2007
This book took me a long time to read. I read the paperback, which has small print and 1,139 pages, including the appendix. It's long and seems convoluted at times but it finishes strong. If you're math challenged you can skip all the interesting problems. If you have any interest in cryptography and early computers this book is for you. If you're a WWII buff, you'll find this book fascinating. If you always wondered how global finance and corporate piracy worked, there's something in this book for you too. When I first started reading, I brooded that I wasn't getting very far. In the end, I was disappointed when I ran out of words. Very highly recommended.
Saturday, November 10, 2007
I have a friend who's almost computer illiterate, but I got him on the web with his business back in the 90's and he's got the same SPAM problem I do. I don't recommend this as an experiment, but it sure shed some light on his SPAM problem.
He managed to click on the wrong thing a couple of weeks ago and got a virus. A nasty one that required he have XP reinstalled on the computer. We saved most of his data, but he was off the net for almost a whole week. When we got his email client reinstalled and back online there was an interesting result.
He has one email address that he's had for almost 10 years. He has three other email addresses that I setup for him in the last year for other activities like communicating with students (he's a teacher) and special projects. After a week of not checking, these three email addresses had 24 email messages combined waiting to be downloaded. The 10 year old email address had over 3,000 messages waiting to clog his inbox.
For me the lesson is, if you want to ditch spam change your email address. I know that's not possible in some cases because it's a business address with lots of clients. However, if you get yourself another email address or two, and slowly start weaning your clients and friends over to these new addresses, eventually you can slam the door on the SPAM and free your inbox. You'll have to keep the new addresses close to the vest, and clients will leak them, but it will provide some relief for some period of time.
Tuesday, November 6, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Saturday, September 29, 2007
Monday, September 24, 2007
The amazing history that took place building up to and during the Columbian Exposition is fascinating reading. The historical figures and technological firsts are like finding hidden prizes throughout the text. The dark side of the book, the young women who went missing before, during, and after the fair, make an interesting counter point. If you're interested in the history of the city of Chicago this book is a must read.
The book gets bogged down in minutia at times, but it was hard to put down when Larson was writing tight. I really enjoyed the stories it contains. Highly recommended.
Wednesday, September 19, 2007
If you're interested in the other FBI thrillers Coulter has penned check out her web site. Reading them in order is a big plus.
Tuesday, September 18, 2007
Thursday, September 13, 2007
This book is kind of like an hors d'oeuvers smörgåsbord for readers. You get a little taste of a lot of things. There wasn't a story in here I didn't really enjoy. Some stories were self contained like Vampire Hours by Elaine Viets and The Mournful Cry of Owls by Christopher Golden. Others gave you a peek at a deeper story and I'll be following up for sure. Examples of these are The First Day of the Rest of Your Life by Rachel Caine and Blood Wrapped by Tanya Huff. I can't wait to read more by these authors. Very highly recommended.
Sunday, September 9, 2007
Then there are the wild statistics with no comments in the notes section to justify them. Take for example the assertion on page nine that "135,000 children bring guns to school each day." Just think about that and scratch your head. If this wasn't pulled out of thin air then cite the origin. To compound the lack of credibility, some of the references cited in the notes section are the news media. It's bad enough the Associated Press is cited but when I saw the New York Times I laughed out loud.
I read the 10th anniversary edition of It Takes a Village. I recommend reading it so you'll know what kind of person is running for president this year and what you're likely to get if she's elected. More government, higher taxes, and less freedom.
Saturday, September 8, 2007
Wednesday, September 5, 2007
Sunday, September 2, 2007
This is the continuing tale of Seregil and Alec, the lords/thieves/spies that are the main characters in this series. In this novel they make it all the way to Aurenen, Seregil's homeland. If you like fantasy this is an excellent choice. Highly recommended.
One caveat. Flewelling has chosen to make the main protagonists in this series homosexual lovers. There are no explicit sex scenes in this book. Unlike some authors, Flewelling makes the relationships in her stories important to the plot, but the emotional connection between couples is the thread woven into the plot, not their sexual activities. However if you have a problem with this life style you may want to think twice about this book. Especially for teens and younger readers.
Saturday, September 1, 2007
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
Sunday, August 26, 2007
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
Briggs is an accomplished author. Her contribution may have some familiar characters if you've followed her werewolves in the Mercedes Thompson Series. I plan to keep following :)
I think this is the first story by Wilks I've read. I'm very impressed. I'll be following up with some of her full length novels.
Chance has an amazing sense of humor. I really liked her story of the two-natured. I'll be reading more of her books too.
Sunny has provided another story in the Monere series. You have to have read the others in the series to really follow this story. Of course you could just read Sunny for the sex.
The woman is obsessed with sex. The other stories in this collection have some romance and sex in them, but Sunny is all about the sex. Monere heal with sex, share powers with sex, and even glow in the dark while having sex. I say -- what's wrong with that :)
Sunday, August 19, 2007
If anyone's interested in these books let me know. Books should be given to readers who will treat them with respect and pass them along when they're done. I make a habit of gifting sales people that come to my door with books from time to time :)
I gave up saving books for my kids to read. Maybe it skips a generation, but my kids read the TV Guide and that's about it :) OK, that's a bit of an exaggeration, but not much. I have friends who keep telling me "I'll wait 'till it's made into a movie," and I keep telling them it's not the same. Their loss.
That said, this is the first Dekker book I've read and it will probably be the last. The plot was a little too twisty for my taste and when I was done I didn't feel particularly satisfied. I don't think this book is a waste of time but in my opinion there are better story tellers out there.
If you're interested in the other Temperance Brennan books you can find a list on Reichs' web site.
No Humans Involved features Jaime Vegas. Jaime is trying to break into TV via a gig on a reality show. She's a spiritualist by trade. The difference is she's a real necromancer and can actually see ghosts. In this story she comes up against some formidable practitioners of black magic. She enlists the help of her friends from the Interracial Council to help in the struggle. This is a book you'll find hard to put down. Highly recommended.
This title just about says it all. You're in for more high flying adventure with Max and her gang. All the expected villains are present with some interesting twists. Highly recommended.
In Undead and Uneasy Betsy is about to get married. There are some things she's not willing to give up just because she's dead! But first she has that pesky problem of her missing fiancé to deal with.
Please read this series in order. You can find a list on Davidson's web site. All are highly recommended.
Saturday, August 18, 2007
Frankly, I liked the first books in the series better. Anita spent more time raising zombies and killing vampires back then. Now she spends most of her time in bed with vampires and weres of every stripe. Anita is part tiger, leopard, wolf, lion, and beast yet to be determined herself, but she's avoided the actual change so far. If you like intense descriptive sex scenes you'll appreciate the later books in the series. In spite of that, this novel is highly recommended.
If you want to follow the Women's Murder Club there's a link on Patterson's web site that lists these novels in order.
This is the twelfth book featuring Cross. It would help to read them in the correct order. Check out Patterson's web site and look for the Alex Cross section. He's got them listed in the right order. All of the Cross books are highly recommended.
The Cobra trilogy takes a young soldier in an alien war with the Trofts, who is turned into a stealth cyborg or Cobra, and follows him through a lifetime of conflict and peace to whole new worlds and future generations. It's a real treasure. Very highly recommended.
Friday, August 17, 2007
I'm going to school to be a teacher. I've been out of college for thirty years now, which some insensitive boob from the alumni associate reminded me of over the phone tonight, but now I've decided to go back and get a degree that will let me teach in secondary education. I've got a year's worth of classes under my belt and I've discovered lesson plan bloat.
I've had classes on lesson planning. I got that.
Then I had a class on Content Area Reading (CAR). In this class I learned that in addition to content area objectives, I should be spending a portion of each class working on reading, so I need some reading objectives in that lesson plan.
Nobody would admit it, but this is basically because elementary education has turned into a big day care center that doesn't teach kids to read because it could hurt their self-esteem. OK, that's a bit if a generalization, but when I was a kid, I learned to read starting in first grade with Dick and Jane, and by junior high I could handle it. Not anymore.
Now I have a class on English Language Learners (ELL). In this class, I'm learning that a significant percentage of my students won't speak English, in addition to not reading. I have to include language objectives in my lesson plans now. How I'm going to teach someone who can't speak English to read, write, and speak English, while I try to teach them science, will be interesting. I'm sure they'll teach me how to do that before I get my degree. OK, not really sure. More like hopeful.
So far, I have to include content area objectives, reading objectives, and language objectives in my lesson plans. I also have to list the state standards I'm meeting for content area, reading, and language. These lesson plans are getting crowded and I still have over a year of school to go. I can't wait to see what additional objectives and standards they'll be shoehorning in before that year's up :)
I recommend reading the Stephanie Plum novels in the right order. For a complete list check out Evanovich's web site. All her books are highly recommended.
Sookie can sort of read minds. An interesting talent that keeps her tangled up with vampires, weres, witches, and all sorts of interesting supernaturals. Unfortunately, her love life is the worse for were. I couldn't help it! Highly recommended.
Wednesday, August 15, 2007
This is typical Cussler, if such a mundane word can ever be used when referring to a Cussler novel. You've got ancient Phoenicians, mercenaries, early American presidents, archaeologists, librarians, and evil galore. It's another book you won't want to put down. Highly recommended.
Tuesday, August 14, 2007
Monday, August 13, 2007
Book of the Dead is another tale anchored by Special Agent Aloysius Pendergast of the FBI and his evil brother Diogenes. It includes the usual cast of characters. It would be better to read the books featuring Pendergast and his crew in order. For the Diogenes books that would be Brimstone, Dance of Death, and Book of the Dead. All excellent and hard to put down. Highly recommended.
Sunday, August 12, 2007
Saturday, August 11, 2007
I don't understand the trend lately for some very high profile authors to collaborate on books with a second author. Patterson is doing this a lot, but the quality doesn't seem to suffer. And if it means more books faster I'm all for it. Keep 'em coming.
This book features another insane monster that Alex tries to understand in order to catch. It's a twisty turny story. Highly recommended.
I have Obsession on order and can't wait!
Friday, August 10, 2007
Why is it they never make a movie or TV show based on a King book as dark as the original? I guess they figure too many nightmares :) I read Pet Cemetary and got the willies. I quit watching the movie about half way through and never finished.
The Dead Zone is worth the read, even the second time around.
Thursday, August 9, 2007
Wednesday, August 8, 2007
Q: Why is a lawyer like a condom?
A: You hope you never need one, but when you're getting screwed, and you do need one, you want it to be a good one.
Monday, August 6, 2007
I really like Czerneda. I highly recommend her Species Imperative and Web Shifters series as well. Just google 'em. You can't go wrong if you like science fiction. After all she's a scientist in addition to an accomplished author.
I know. I never expected Roberts to write a series about vampires and gods, but she did and it's excellent. It's got her signature romance threaded throughout but that's OK. That's what you expect from Roberts and she delivers all that and more. These three novels are well worth the read.
Sunday, August 5, 2007
This book's written at a level most people can follow with no problem, even liberals. Give it a read, and if you have problems with the statistics just let me know. Unlike some books you'll find on the subject of global warning, there are extensive references to every fact you find in this book. I wish every author who stated "facts" would do the same. You out there Hillary Clinton and Michael Moore?
Please read this book.
I'm not going to write long gushy reviews. You can google any book I list and get a dozen of those. I'm just going to list them with some comments. If I didn't like a book I'll tell you. If I did I'll tell you that too. Frankly, if a book's on my list I probably liked it, since I don't read books I don't think I'll like. But sometimes you get fooled :)
I'd be happy to discuss any book. I've been reading for about 50 years and I've covered just about every genre there is. Feel free to comment, criticize, or expand on what I write. I've been through flame wars in the 70s and 80s that make today's heated exchanges sound like a church social, so don't be offended if I ignore your criticism :) If you want to discuss a book please leave a comment.