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Customer Reviews: 463
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Reviews Written by
Nicole Del Sesto RSS Feed (Northern Cal)
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City on Fire: A novel
City on Fire: A novel
by Garth Risk Hallberg
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $20.26
206 used & new from $4.08

2.0 out of 5 stars Cliche; Cliche; Cliche, April 25, 2016
This review is from: City on Fire: A novel (Hardcover)
Has it come to this "great American novel?" Are you cliche? Are we? I know one thing, this book is.

Cliched characters tell this MASSIVE tale from their varying perspectives. The 1%ers, the junkie artist, the nerdy teen who got in with the in-crowd, the rock star vigilante, the black, gay lover, the evil step family, the quasi-Asian chick whose role was to be quasi-Asian, the detective with a heart of gold, the burnout reporter, the burnout fireworker, the burnout burnout, the "cool girl" and her myriad lovers including the husband of that 1%er ... There were interludes, and an epigraph, a prologue, facsimiles, evidence, seven books and 98 chapters. And the vocabulary ...

At one point somebody told a character "You’re being obstreperous". Oh, am I? Well I’m so sorry. Let me just look that word up in the dictionary to see what it means so I can stop being it. You ersatz(1) eponymous(2) exegesis (2) elegiac (1)!

Every idea this guy ever had is in this book, and every word he ever learned.

There's a part early on where the not cool/cool kid has to pee. And it keeps getting brought up over like 3 pages, until finally this: "There was a steady ache now in the region just behind his (sic) beltbuckle; systems of hydraulic tubes and reservoirs whose names he'd failed to learn in first-period bio were asserting their demands; if he didn't relieve the pressure right now ... "

TWO SEMICOLONS IN A SENTENCE ABOUT NEEDING TO PEE

Oh, and by the way ... This book took place in the 70's. And I strongly feel that it was set in the 70's so that the author had the freedom from technology. One of the characters said "that's a thing right?" - you know what's not a "thing" in the 70's, asking if something is a "thing." EDITORS!!!

The story (and/or 25 hours of my life I'll never get back) was as trite as the rest of it. And we won't go into the pretentious blather about art, or the mysterious inclusion of Zig Ziglar as a character.

There was one point where a bunch of the main characters ended up in a detectives office at the same time. So. Utterly. Improbably. It reminded me of the scene in "What's Up Doc?" (which I just watched on YouTube, and is great) where all the characters ended up in the courtroom at the end of the movie. Hilarious. Farcical. But this book wasn't slapstick comedy. It wasn't even very interesting. The first part sucked me in and I felt like I wanted to finish, but it was a mistake.

There could have been a good story in here, (maybe?) if the book was half the length with far fewer characters. Or if anybody bothered to edit it. For Pete's sake, the guy got a 2 million dollar advance.

It was painful. And you know what else is painful? My systems of hydraulic tubes and reservoirs; and you know what that means; that's right, I have to pee ....


Thule Versant Men's Backpacking Pack, Fjord, 60 L
Thule Versant Men's Backpacking Pack, Fjord, 60 L
Price: $252.55
2 used & new from $252.55

5.0 out of 5 stars Tons of features., April 24, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a fantastic backpack with so many features. First, it weighs 4.4 pounds which is nice and light and crucial. You want the least amount of weight possible. (My first trip to Europe I went with 3 pieces of Hartmann Tweed luggage, it was SO heavy!)

I love the rain cover, which is probably my favorite feature. Plus, there is a sling pack. It's sturdy and really nicely constructed. There are zipper pouches and pockets for every need. The color is really nice as well.

I think it's going to last a while.


OXO Good Grips Non-Stick Pro Dishwasher safe 11" Square Grill Pan
OXO Good Grips Non-Stick Pro Dishwasher safe 11" Square Grill Pan
Price: $39.99
5 used & new from $39.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Love it., April 24, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a really nice pan. Solid.
It cooks evenly and makes great grill marks. It was really easy to clean, even without putting it in the dishwasher, though I'm happy about that feature. I had it turned up really high for 20 minutes or so and was still able to use the handle without a potholder.

I'm really happy with it.


Dyson V6 Car and Boat Handheld Vacuum
Dyson V6 Car and Boat Handheld Vacuum
Price: $239.99

5.0 out of 5 stars So many accessories - it's like the Carrie Bradshaw of hand vacs, April 22, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Pretty much any attachment you could want, is here. This isn't just for cars and boats, I can't imagine a spot you couldn't get with this hand vac.

My house is starting to look like a Dyson factory. I have their regular vac which I love, the mattress one, and now this one. What I love about the Dysons are - the power, the ease of use (accessories, emptying the canister) and the fact that you don't replace the filters, you wash them. No waste, and no extra expense.

The suction is great, the hand vac is light and easy to use, and the battery lasts a good long time. I store my mattress one without being plugged in, yet it's always ready for use.

My car needs a good vacuuming! I'm looking forward to getting at it with my new accessories.


Sleep Master Traveler Premier Folding Twin Guest Bed, Plus Bonus Storage Bag
Sleep Master Traveler Premier Folding Twin Guest Bed, Plus Bonus Storage Bag
Price: $177.56
8 used & new from $174.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Handy!, April 16, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I live in San Diego and though I have a guest room, often times my guests have at least one child with them and we quickly run out of sleeping space. This is great to have around.

It was very easy to set up, and breakdown. The mattress is fairly thin, as you would expect from a folding bed, but it's quite firm. Almost too firm for me, but would be great for a child. Once I put it back in its carrying case, I was able to store it in the guest room closet with relative ease and it doesn't take up too much room.

Very happy to have this.


Zinus Modern Studio Platform 2000H Metal Bed Frame/Mattress Foundation with Headboard, Queen
Zinus Modern Studio Platform 2000H Metal Bed Frame/Mattress Foundation with Headboard, Queen
Offered by Sleep Revolution
Price: $169.99
3 used & new from $169.99

3.0 out of 5 stars I'm on the fence., April 15, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Like everybody else we struggled a bit putting this together but thankfully we followed the instructions from someone else's challenge and got it put together in less than 30 minutes. Mine came in good condition, and it's appropriate (decor wise) for the room I have it in.

What's prompting my less than stellar rating of the frame is that my bed does not feel as firm on this frame as it does on a boxspring. That may be totally psychosomatic. Tonight I'm going to move my mattress back to the box spring to try to compare.

Pros: I like the look
Cons: Not sure if it's as sturdy as a box spring
Neutral: The mess the instructions were, but now clarified

(arrows should be matched on all four corners and the holes aligned. Improper assembly will result in the slats being too wide and Part C being too short).

Edited: I put my mattress back on the boxspring last night, and it definitely felt more secure. It's about personal preference here, but I want the firmness. Sadly, this doesn't work for me.


Jarrow Formulas NattoMax, Supports Healthy Circulation,100 mg, 90 Veggie Caps
Jarrow Formulas NattoMax, Supports Healthy Circulation,100 mg, 90 Veggie Caps
Price: $11.19
22 used & new from $11.19

3.0 out of 5 stars Brand I can trust, April 11, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I realized after ordering these that it was going to be a difficult product to review. Everybody is different, so saying a product like this works for me doesn't mean it's going to work for you. That being said, this is a brand I trust, and I have not had any adverse reactions. I don't feel noticeably different.


Enchanted Islands: A Novel
Enchanted Islands: A Novel
by Allison Amend
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $20.98

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars No Enchantment, little time spent on Islands., April 7, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This novel takes some historical context and creates a pretty average story with characters that I couldn't 100% get behind. In fact, they all had some major issue which made them somewhat unlikable.

I'm fascinated by the Galapagos. I thought The Origin: A Biographical Novel of Charles Darwin by Irving Stone an enthralling book. Sadly, this book spent less than 100 pages on the islands, and there was still very little about the islands themselves. An occasional mention of a bird or tortoise. Beyond that, they could have been on any island, so I feel like the title and the premise of the book was misleading. A better title of this book would have been "The Story of Two Friendships in a Time of War." Because that's really what it was.

It wasn't bad, and it moved quickly, but I honestly didn't care if I finished it. I wasn't invested in any way.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 16, 2016 9:21 AM PDT


Steamfast SF-520 Fabric Steamer with Insulated Hose and Clothes Hanger
Steamfast SF-520 Fabric Steamer with Insulated Hose and Clothes Hanger
Price: $73.39
3 used & new from $73.39

5.0 out of 5 stars Everybody should have a Steamer!, April 2, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
When I worked in retail, I loved the steamer. I thought they would be way too expensive to own so I never really looked into them. Well, they aren't too expensive, and they are so nice to have around.

I much prefer steaming to ironing, in fact, I'll do just about anything to avoid ironing (including hanging clothes in the bathroom while showering, which does nothing! and using a flat iron on the garment WHILE I have it on!) With the steamer, you just flip the switch. and in seconds you have steam.

This was really easy to put together. Mine didn't come with instructions, but I didn't need them. Just hang the garment on the hanger and steam away. I don't know that it's faster than ironing when all is said and done ,but it is easier for me and I'm all about it. Plus, no messing around with the ironing board.

This works great.


JAPONESQUE Kumadori Powder Brush, 0.13 lb.
JAPONESQUE Kumadori Powder Brush, 0.13 lb.
Price: $28.00
3 used & new from $28.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice, March 28, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a really nice brush. Feels great and applies make up evenly. I may use it for blush instead of powder, but it works great for powder.

Now, if I can keep it away from the cats. They are seemingly enthralled with it.


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