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Supersymmetry
Supersymmetry
by David Walton
Edition: Paperback
Price: $8.90
16 used & new from $4.85

4.0 out of 5 stars Interesting sequel., August 29, 2015
This review is from: Supersymmetry (Paperback)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Not many months ago I read Superposition, the previous book set in Walton's World. It was a novel about physics. This is a book about physics. If you like reading fiction about physics, then this is a good book to grab. This is also a book about intelligent life forms. No, obviously not us. Other life forms who happen to be intelligent. Or, at least one other life form with whatever it/they have that is like brains or CPUs or whatever.

Some of our main human characters are back from that previous book, though they are a decade and a half older. Of course, in a book about physics there has to be a mad scientist. He joins the twin girl (yeah, I know the number doesn't agree, so please don't comment on it, OK?) and various other required characters to solve the mystery of the "varcolac". Or some group of scientists and others try to stay alive long enough to stop the varcolac from doing whatever it is a varcolac does on a day-to-day basis.

There is enough action, science and human interaction to keep things moving along toward the finish. I gave the previous book (Superposition) four stars and I've done the same for this. Parts are too predictable, but it's a fun book. I do recommend reading Superposition first, though.


Bats of the Republic: An Illuminated Novel
Bats of the Republic: An Illuminated Novel
by Zachary Thomas Dodson
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.37

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too much "cleverness" quickly stops being "clever" at all., August 22, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I look forward to books that try some new things and that get the reader involved in some way other than merely turning pages. The promise of this book caused me to give it a try. Unfortunately, the printing effects made this far, far more difficult to read than it should have been. The trick to creativity is to do it without causing your readers to want to pitch the book before they reach page 100.

I nearly quit after reading the first group of page after page of black type on gray pages. I had to put the book down frequently to give my eyes (20/20) a rest. Too many times of that made it more and more likely that I wouldn't pick it up again. I have many other books that are as well written that let me keep turning pages without the fatigue.

Also unfortunately, the story got lost in all the font, type size, and paper color changes. When I got to page two hundred something or other and was faced with even more of the black type on gray paper pages, I flipped through the rest of the book. More of the same to come with too much regularity and then white type on black paper for a change (and too many pages of it). At that point, I put it aside for a few days while I read some other books, both paid for and review copies. What a relief.

After those days, I realized that I did not care one whit about what happened in the rest of this book. Zero interest was left. This book clearly showed that more of something is not necessarily better. I've given it three stars since it had promise and could have been quite good had it been readable without so much effort; plus those who were able to wade through it seemed to like it. Disappointed that the author and publisher chose to go with special effects over readability.


Avery Shipping Tags, Reinforced Hole, Manila, 4.75 x 2.375 Inches, Pack of 100 (11011)
Avery Shipping Tags, Reinforced Hole, Manila, 4.75 x 2.375 Inches, Pack of 100 (11011)
Price: $7.14
5 used & new from $5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Just like it says - they are tags., August 20, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
These are tags to be used for more than shipping. They can be fastened to boxes and bins as labels so the containers don't have to be taken from the shelves in order to see what's in them. The wires are quite long. How long? Just a little more than a foot. Of course the wires can be removed; and strings can be used instead. Are the strings included? No. And, they could even be taped onto containers and used as standardized labels.

And, though I don't exactly understand how with the wires, they can be used for shipping. Or, once upon a time they could have been since I remember such being done back in the ancient times of the 1950s. Plus, if you give them to youngsters (without wires or strings) you will learn other uses as I'm going to experience the next time the grandkids come visiting.

The cards are sturdy (they're Manila, so think good quality file folders) and totally plain except for the reinforced hole for the wire (or not, or string).


So You Don't Get Lost in the Neighborhood
So You Don't Get Lost in the Neighborhood
by Patrick Modiano
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.03

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps it's easier to get lost in some neighborhoods., August 20, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Not long after reading the first few pages, I sensed that I was reading about someone who was not as he seemed - even to himself. Then I sensed that he was not where he should have been or could have been and even though he might know that, he didn't necessarily know exactly where he should go to be there. Then it seemed to me that others perhaps knew the who, where and perhaps why that would fill in the story of Jean Daragane (our protagonist).

As the story continued, so did the mysteries (or rather confusion?). Of course, we don't know as much as any of the characters so we have to try to tag along with all of them until we figure out which to believe (or believe more than others). I'm not suggesting that anyone lies, but not everyone tells a lot of the truth; certainly not the whole truth.

Put this in the "I've already come of age, but for the life of me don't remember how (or when, or where, or ...)." sub-genre of some genre that's more literature than mystery. Or, call it literary mystery. Only at the end to you realize who might have remembered what or who had forgotten the least or maybe something different. Enjoyable and, though quite short, it's of the proper length for what Modiano wanted to say.


Ivory Vikings: The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them
Ivory Vikings: The Mystery of the Most Famous Chessmen in the World and the Woman Who Made Them
by Nancy Marie Brown
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $15.69
25 used & new from $10.56

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great depth., August 18, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is more a history book than a mystery. While quite readable, it is very detailed in its telling of that part of Europe a thousand years ago (plus or minus). Some of the historical figures may be "known" to students of general history, but most will only be known, and perhaps remembered past the closing of the cover at the end, by those well versed in that place and time.

Of course, all this history has been prepared to explain the mystery of the who, what, etc. of the chessmen. The author has included a lot of court intrigue from the Scandinavian sagas. And, of course, no story of any history can be told without its share of battles - especially in a book about the battle game of chess.

Though readily available online, it was disappointing to have zero pictures of the chessmen as a whole. A single view of one side of one example each piece begins each chapter and that is it. Per the illustration credits, this isn't just a feature of the Advance Readers' Edition. The author spends a lot of time describing what could have been better "described" by the addition of photos.

The depth might discourage casual readers from getting too far into this book. For those really interested in the subject or the times and people, this provides a fascinatingly detailed look.


Jade Dragon Mountain: A Novel
Jade Dragon Mountain: A Novel
by Elsa Hart
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $14.76
26 used & new from $12.33

5.0 out of 5 stars Just plain fun., August 11, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
We travel back a few centuries and a significant way around the world to visit the China of the 1700s. Our hero, Li Du, gets to play detective in solving a murder. He has been exiled to the outer reaches of the empire by the Emperor, yet his intelligence is needed to get his cousin, the area magistrate out of potential hot water.

This is a mystery as a mystery should be written. There were enough clues to provide the reader with a good brain game; enough red herrings to provide many ways for the reader to make mistakes; enough interesting characters and history to keep the pages turning. All in all, one enjoyable book.

I am hopeful that this is the first of a series. I would gladly read what this author writes of Li Du's travels and adventures.


The Unnoticeables: A Novel
The Unnoticeables: A Novel
by Robert Brockway
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $13.74
69 used & new from $7.59

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars It was the worst of times; then it was the worst of times again., August 8, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
What humor there is in this book is colored red. What love there is ... wait, wrong word. What lust there is in this book is also colored red. Frankly, pretty much everything in this book, eventually at least, is colored red. If you are thinking of reading this book it's a good thing to like red.

If you are reading reviews to learn what the book is about, just re-read the product description. Add to it the fact that there is no limit to what this author did to elicit emotional responses from his readers. Well, there is no limit to the graphic things. None. Enough said about that and those and them.

There is a lot of gratuitous, well, everything. If that bothers you, then do not even start this. If such doesn't bother you, you may still OD if you take this book in very large doses. If non-gratuitous whatever bothers you, then, well, it's unlikely you're still reading this. Remember the "no limit" stuff?

When too much becomes too much, there is more. Then, at some point, the book ends. Thank heaven or somewhere.


We Install: And Other Stories
We Install: And Other Stories
by Harry Turtledove
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.56
16 used & new from $7.42

5.0 out of 5 stars Great fun., August 5, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I've read dozens of Turtledove's books over the past several decades and usually enjoyed them greatly. For some unremembered reason, perhaps dealing with trying to keep up with too many series, I stopped grabbing his new ones when they came out. I'm sure I have some on the shelves that I never got around to. I may have to do something about that.

Now to this group of stories. I am not now and have never been a steady reader of short fiction. I like things to develop more than a few or a few dozen pages can allow. But, since this was Turtledove, I decided to give this a try. From the five stars I've given it, you can see than I had an enjoyable time.

Like any collection of stories, some were better than others. Here, he even mixes genres. Some of those I enjoy more than others. One thing is a constant with his works, though, regardless of length. He just plain knows how to tell a story.

If you have read him before, you may have run into a few of these stories before (though I had forgotten enough for that to be a problem). If you have wondered about whether you would enjoy his books, then this is a pretty painless way to become introduced. Warning, though - it could be habit forming.


Trust No One: A Thriller
Trust No One: A Thriller
by Paul Cleave
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.54
42 used & new from $12.50

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disturbing., August 4, 2015
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By page fifty, I was ready to go to the doctor since I was sure this book had caused the onset of dementia. I am old enough to be concerned about such anyway, so this will be read differently depending on the readers' ages.

The book is about an author named Jerry Grey. The story of Jerry gets told in alternating chapters of his life leading up to his being unable to function on his own and life after he needs full time assistance. The former is basically his writing a journal to be read during later times as a reminder of who and what he was. I found one set of segments to be far more interesting than the other.

While the book is quite different it was too slow moving over all to really keep my attention. There were some good mystery elements, but too much was lost in the "medical" story. For me, this wasn't particularly bad and it wasn't particularly good. Hence the three stars.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 14, 2015 12:27 PM PDT


The Beautiful Bureaucrat: A Novel
The Beautiful Bureaucrat: A Novel
by Helen Phillips
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $14.20
53 used & new from $9.62

0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Numbers maybe never lie., July 30, 2015
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a very quickly read story about the type of bureaucracy created by writers half a century ago. Our main character Josephine gets a government job. In a typical drab office in a typical drab building she gets to enter seemingly meaningless numbers into a seemingly meaningless database.

That's about it. Oh, she gets curious about things and about her husband, Joseph. She does do some exploring (or there would have been an even shorter book). She learns some things.

Thus, we learn some things, too. She still has questions. We still have questions. That makes everything come out even. Story's over.

For a quirky, but interesting, read, take a look at this. It's different.


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