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D. Blankenship RSS Feed (The Ozarks)

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Price: $0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Good grief...why on earth did I not think of this...Arrrrgh!, July 29, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Every so often you run across and idea or and accomplishment or a services offered by someone that is so simple and forward that when you examine it, you slap yourself on the forehead and ask yourself, ‘now why didn’t I think of that!’

And so it is with this little book list and the others in this series!

Between my wife and myself we read well over 400 to 500 books per year; many of these books are novels and many are parts of a series by particular authors. Some of the series books have just a few published while others have dozens and dozens. We both have found, through many years of trial and error that many of these series books really should be read in order in order to enjoy them more; indeed, in many cases, to simply be able to understand them.

Now this review is for the published books, by series, of the author James Rollins and is a good example of what the creator of this series has done for dozens of authors.

These are simple list books which is precisely what we wanted. You get the name of the book, what series it belongs to and the date of publication. No summations of each book (thank goodness), no whistles and bells and no digging through useless information.

Much of the information found in this book can be found via search engines on your computer. We have found though that quite often these lists are not kept up to date and truth be told, are a pain in the hind quarters to find and interpret at times. Also, unless you print the list you finally find, it is not portable.

The list book in question is automatically updated as new books are published and the author has given simply directions as to how you update your book. The author has also provided simply instructions as to how to highlight each book on your Kindle as you read them. I like this portable aspect and all my list in on place rather than hauling a stack of paper to the library when I search for new books or, which happens in many cases since we have a small library, request a loan from one of the other regional libraries. I have yet to request a book they cannot find.

Now you can make a point that much of the information in these list books are available for free on line and this is true. But truth be told, for .99 cents it is worth the avoidance of the hassle of searching and searching for information which is not as cut and dry as we found in these list books. As one reviewer has stated...”Best dollar I ever spent!” So true, so true! If you don’t believe me, go search out a list on line for Agatha Christie and try to come up with a comprehensive list...try it with Terry Pratchett.

Between my wife and myself we follow at least 30 plus different authors and their series...we do love these list books.

Breach of Duty: A J.P. Beaumont Mystery
Breach of Duty: A J.P. Beaumont Mystery
by J. A. Jance
Edition: Hardcover
181 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars A good solid and entertaining read, July 29, 2016
Slowly, throughout the years, I have been following and attempting to read all of the books by J.A. Jance. The reason for this is that I simply like her writing style and feel she is an excellent story teller. I particularly like the J.P. Beaumont series as they are part police procedural, part mystery (they have all the elements of a good mystery), there are no “super cop” elements involved (leaping tall buildings in a single bound and the like) and for the most part, they are serious and low keyed. They strongly show the human side of the characters involved in the story.

This installment (and we now know it is not the last) in the Beaumont series deals with two different cases. A woman is murdered by being burned in bed, and mysterious bones from a defiled Native American grave give the story a bit of a mystery as several people who handled these bones come to rather brutal ends.

The story has several elements including Beaumont’s relationship with is partner (J.P. is hard on partners), spousal abuse, and the high lighting of the in and outs of investigating a crime. I like they way the author is methodical in her recording of how a crime is solved...much like true police work. Very little is in this work to challenge the readers demand for credibility which is a bit refreshing when dealing with this particular genre at times.

This work, along with the rest of the books in this series is a good solid reads. These books are relative fast reads and there is very little conflict in information from one book to the next.

This was a library find.

War Against the Mafia (The Executioner Book 1)
War Against the Mafia (The Executioner Book 1)
Price: $4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars This was the beginning and if you are a fan...well, you need to read this one, July 28, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I collect this Executioner series started by Don Pendleton back in the late 1960s. I have not read all of them yet and possible never will but for what they are they are not bad.

This is the first of the Executioner books featuring Mack Bolan and is actually penned by Pendleton. He did go on to write 37 others before contract writers took over the series which now numbers in the hundreds; if you count at least three off shoot series.

This is truly pulp fiction and is not meant to be high literature. Surprisingly though, they are not have bad as far as plotting and prose. Yes, some of the books are better than others but all pretty well stick to the basic formula of high body counts, a touch of sexual action and almost non-stop action.

In this one we learn where the Big Warrior, Mack Bolan got started on his epic war against evil, starting with the Mafia and has since morphed into a war against drug dealers and terrorists. This book lean towards explaining why Bolan does what he does; what is motivations are and his philosophy of life – and of course death.

While this work is not the best of the best in this series, it never the less is a good fast read with plenty of action. You can read this thing in one setting. Bolan fans and followers owe it to themselves to read this thing if for not other reason to learn just what started it all.

I fear to tell you that the publisher who issued these hundreds of books has gone belly up and the series, along with the off shots, have no ceased to be. You can still find these things in used books stores for about .25 cents each and they are an ideal book to pick-up to simply enjoy a bit of extremely violence and the down fall of many, many very bad people...Mack seldom, if ever, take prisoners.

TCP New 60 Watt Equivalent 6-Pack, A19 LED Light Bulbs, Non-Dimmable Soft White, LA927KND6
TCP New 60 Watt Equivalent 6-Pack, A19 LED Light Bulbs, Non-Dimmable Soft White, LA927KND6
Price: $20.99
5 used & new from $17.84

5.0 out of 5 stars Well...these puppies most certainly work for me, July 28, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I’ve been using this sort of light bulb for quite some time now; different brands, bought at different locations and with a wide range of prices.

These bulbs, like others I have been using claim that they will last 18 years using them 3 hours per day. Needless to say I have no way of verifying this as I have yet to use them for that long and to be frank, I never will be able to verify it because at my age...well, I will no doubt be long, long gone before the end of the 18 year test mark. I figure I might be able to attest to a five year longevity mark if I am really lucky, and I will come back here in five years if I can find the room my computer is in and give you an update.

These are very nice bulbs and give a nice and almost perfect light in the lamps and fixtures I use them in. The lights, for me, are ideal for reading books at my reading chair and I use them to light three halls in our home. The generate very, very little heat and use very little electricity compared to the old style bulbs. As long as the light properly and as long as they save me money I am happy.

No I recently bought a six pack of these bulbs at a local retail store and paid about seven dollars more. I have noted others that cost much, much more than this. Why there is a cost difference I know not. They all appear to my eyes to be the same, they all make the same longevity claim and all make the same electricity saving claim.

I have personally not experienced the problems a couple of the reviewers here have but then I have no fancy dimming switches or remote switches and such things...just off and on switches.

Bottom line is that I am quite pleased with these and as my old style bulbs go poof in the night, I will be replacing them with these things.

Wine Enthusiast Silent 21 Bottle Dual Zone Wine Refrigerator with Curved Doors
Wine Enthusiast Silent 21 Bottle Dual Zone Wine Refrigerator with Curved Doors
Price: $299.00
7 used & new from $239.20

3.0 out of 5 stars Works fine for my wife and I but......, July 26, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
You most certainly could not classify me as a judge of fine wines and as a matter of fact not even a wine enthusiast. That being said though, both my wife and I do keep wine on hand which is normally used as table wine and is available to be offered to the occasional guest we have. We never purchase ‘cheap’ wine, but on the other hand we don’t go wild as we have found that neither of can normally tell the difference in cheap and we split the difference...primarily for appearances sake. I have never owned one of these specialty wine coolers before so I have absolutely nothing to compare it with. What I am trying to say is that I am really not an expert on these things and at my age it is quite likely I never will be.

Be that as it may, I received this thing, set it up and plugged it in and filled it with 12 different bottles of wine which we had on hand. I know it will hold more but I cannot for the life of me can figure out what we would do with more wine than we have.

After a week or so of use we have noted that there seems to be a fluctuation in temperatures and after testing with an independent device we found that the temp recorded on the unit is not necessarily the exact temp inside the cooler. For us this is not big deal...for us chilled is chilled, but I can see where the true lovers of wine will quite likely find this annoying at the least and unacceptable at worse.

The unit we have is very quite. The light is quite bright but since we have our cooler set up in a small sewing room off of the kitchen it is kind of nice since it sort of acts as a night light which keeps me from stubbing my toes when I hit the kitchen late at night for a quick snack.

The wine, when taken from the cooler, is fine for our taste. Neither of us like our wines to be COLD but neither of us like them warm...we like chilled and chilled is precisely what we get with this thing.

The unit is quite attractive and I have no doubt that strangers and guest who stumble into the sewing room off of the kitchen will be quite impressed and say things like “wow.”

I am giving this cooler three stars. If it were just my wife and I to consider, I would give it four stars since it meets our specific needs, but since I strongly suspect that there are many pickier than we are who will be less than happy, I am taking one star off....ergo, the three stars.

Shock Wave (Dirk Pitt Adventure)
Shock Wave (Dirk Pitt Adventure)
by Clive Cussler
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: $7.50
180 used & new from $0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Another high-tech swashbuckling sea tale featureing Dirk Pitt, July 25, 2016
Like all Cussler novels, this one cannot be classified as ‘high literature.’ but what it can be classified as is a heck of a good swashbuckling sea tale that is a cross between absolute fantasy, SiFi and just a good high adventure story with a unlikely plot that is simply fun to read.

The bad guys; or in this case, the bad family is trying to corner the market on diamonds by destroying the world’s diamond market and replacing it with colored gem stones...of which the evil family owns most of. It all starts with massive killings of wildlife and sea life and a whole bunch of people due to what is presumed to be some sort of instant plague...or is it?

Of course the world saving crew from NUMA led by super good guy Dirk Pitt attempt to stop the evil doers from controlling the world, There is plenty of action, damsels in distress being rescued...most of the time, evil damsels and a satisfactory body count.

While it is impossible to take these stories seriously, this one, like all the others in this series, is an absolute hoot to read. In many ways I am reminded of the old Doc Savage pulp novels although the writing by Cussler is a bit better.

This book and the others in this series are pure adventure. They are extremely fast reading and the bad guys always get their just reward. To be honest, you do not have to be a rocket scientist to figure out how the story is going to go or what the ending will be but hey, that is not why I or many others read these books. I suppose in a lot of ways they are pure and selfish escapism from the realities of what we are dealing with today...which, if you think about it, are just as horrifying as some of the unrealities that Dirk is dealing with.

This was a library find.

Breathless: A Novel of Suspense
Breathless: A Novel of Suspense
by Dean Koontz
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: $8.99
299 used & new from $0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars Could have and should have been great but......, July 25, 2016
I have to tell you that I, for the most part, truly enjoyed this book. For this particular genre it has some of the best prose I have read in quite some time now. The author has borrowed (as far as style goes) a bit from Ray Bradbury and just a bit from the best of Stephen King. His description of the countryside and the animals is quite impressive.

Now this is indeed a strange story and despite the fact that I like it, after reading the negative comments from other reviewers I must agree with some of the criticism thrown at the book. While I personally loved the story, I must admit that parts of it troubled me just a bit. I suppose the primary complaint I had was that the author needed at least 200 more pages to complete what he started. The concept of this story was great but in several aspects Koontz simply did not follow through.

Two strange creatures appear from out of nowhere in an isolated area in the Rocky Mountains. The author follows these creatures and the two individuals who discover them but at the same time has at least four...maybe five...sub plots going and more or less fails to link these plots by the end of the story.

These two new creatures who appear out of nowhere are simply here to change the world. The author is never specific as to how this change is to take place and leaves far too much to speculation on the reader’s part. I suspect that 100 people could read this work and come-up with 100 different opinions.

There is some extreme violence involved in the primary plot as well as at least one of the secondary and to me anyway, the violence seemed a bit gratuitous and really did not add all that much to the story in the end.

Three fourths of the book was great and then it sort of crashed and burned and while I hate to use the word “lame,” it is the only way I can describe the ending.

It is difficult to review this book because there are so many twists and turns and each of these twists, if discussed, would be a major spoiler...something I simply cannot do.

If you want to read something a bit different and get a good peek at some great writing then you should give this one a shot. Be prepared though to feel sort of let down by the time the book ends.

This was a library find.

Plews 30-465 Industrial Grease Gun
Plews 30-465 Industrial Grease Gun
Price: $20.46
55 used & new from $13.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Cost effective and gets the job done - read review in reference to possible modifications., July 23, 2016
Since I do not work on automobiles the only reason I have this grease gun, or any grease gun for that matter, is for maintenance on my yard tractors, riding mowers and the different attachments, and of course on very rare occasions, bicycles. I guess what I am trying to say is that I am a low use individual for such items but have to have one to keep my equipment going and avoid big, big bucks having to pay the guy I use to fix such things.

This gun works well. I bought mine at a local hardware store and paid three dollars more than it is selling here on Amazon. If you have Prime and don’t have to pay shipping, then this is a pretty good deal.

This gun is easy to use once you figure out how to load big task, just takes some figuring. The grease cylinders it uses come in different grades and cost about six dollars (or a bit less) per container and can be purchased at any hardware or auto parts store.

One specific note though. The 5 3/8 inch grease pipe and coupler (which is slightly angled) is ridged and I found that it simply would not get the job done on a couple of my simply would not give me the proper angle. I would suggest you purchase at least an 8-10 inch flexible coupler to replace the ridged one that comes with the unit. They are interchangeable. I was lucky because I had two of them off old grease guns I had purchased for a dollar each at auctions....the guns were broken (just my luck) but the flexible tubes were still fine. Making this exchange allowed me to reach all the area that needed reaching with no problems and the old flexible necks worked fine.

The 10,000 psi is more than adequate for anything I use this thing for. The unit is built rather sturdy and is able to put up with quite a bit of abuse (all accidental on my part). If you get mad and throw the thing against a brick wall it will probably break but that is your problem, not the units.

The longish lever on this thing gives you plenty of leverage so you won’t wear your hand and arm out in five minutes flat like a lot of the units I have used in the past.

All in all this grease gun is quite cost effective and dose the job I bought it for and I have absolutely no complaints other than the fact that I wish I had had more time and researched and bought it here and saved myself a couple or three bucks.

Note: This thing can be suction or bulk loaded.

Now if the relatives that “borrow” this thing will just return it....a problematic, indeed...but I can always hope.

Medusa (NUMA Files)
Medusa (NUMA Files)
by Clive Cussler
Edition: Hardcover
339 used & new from $0.01

2.0 out of 5 stars love this author, love this series, but this book...Yawn...I just did not care, July 22, 2016
This review is from: Medusa (NUMA Files) (Hardcover)
I’ve gotten a lot of reading pleasure from reading novels by Clive Cussler over the years and must say that of his novels; the NUMA Files series to be specific, have been good and I have enjoyed at least 90 percent of them. I will admit I like the ones featuring Dirk Pitt more than the ones featuring Kurt Austin (which this one does), but overall, there has been some good reading all around.

This particular novel, “Medusa” falls in the 10 percent that I did not much care about. My reasons for this are sort of mixed and vague but I suppose it all boils down to the fact that I found this one to be exceedingly boring; boring right from the start. I went through quite a number of chapters where absolutely NOTHING happened!

Now this is not to say that there were not good parts in this work because indeed there were. It is just the fact that the whole thing was, for me, rather slow and boring and so very, very predictable.

Of course the book followed they typical Cussler formula; a fact that does not particularly bother me since I feel he has a good formula, it is just the fact that in the overall process of saving the world from disaster simply did not have its normal ‘zip.” In this one we are dealing with a deadly virus (as so many of his books do), an evil being as so many of his books do, and a disaster that is underestimated and then grows and grows and grows. And of course the world does not come to an end and the heroic folks at NUMA save the day at the last possible moment. In the case of this book I found myself simply not caring.

Now I personally found this one to be one of the weakest offerings in this series but do feel that that is a matter of personal taste and strongly feel that many might like and enjoy this work more than I did. By no means do my critical comments mean I will stop reading this authors work and the work he teams up with other authors to create, no it just means that I was not thrilled with this particular work, ergo the two stars.

This was a library find.

Radio Flyer Build-A-Wagon Steel & Wood - Rubber Tires, Canopy, Storage, Seat Pads, Whirl Fashion
Radio Flyer Build-A-Wagon Steel & Wood - Rubber Tires, Canopy, Storage, Seat Pads, Whirl Fashion
Price: $268.92

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every kid should have a Radio Flyer, July 21, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Radio Flyer wagons have become an American icon. My father had one, I had one, my kids had one and my grandsons had one. Now we are working on our first great-granddaughter and now she has one.

I can remember using my father’s wagon which was still in her basement. This thing dated back to the 1930s. It was made of steel and was extremely heavy and almost indestructible. I had a lot of fun with that old wagon until I got my own and I think it is still around somewhere...possibly my sister has it.

Anyway, this new Radio Flyer Wagon is not constructed with the heavy steel that the old, old one was but I have to tell you that it is well made and should last a long, long time. I know I have one right now that was made back in the 1960s which is still working fine as a flower bed on my patio.

The wagon being reviewed here does require that the owner put it together. I hate this sort of thing but have to admit that I did nit with little hassle. It took me about one hour of fiddling around to complete the task. All you need is a screwdriver, pliers, wrench and some sort of hammer. I found that a socket set worked best although you could manage quite well with an adjustable wrench. I also recommend a rubber hammer or wood mallet to placing the “hubcaps” on the four wheels...that will save minor dents and paint scratches.

Mechanically this thing works quite well. The colors have been baked on and it is quite scratch resistant. The wheels run smoothly. The wooden sides are strong and well built despite the fact that they may look a bit flimsy when coming out of the box.

There is something like 10 different configurations you can go with on this wagon. We found right away that our granddaughter likes the plane simple wagon the best and did not care much for the canopy.

The wagon is well built and I am sure it will last as long as her interests in such things go. The nice thing about these wagons in that once the children move on to bigger and better things, these make wonderful tools for hauling things around the house and yard.

I have to tell you that I took quite a nostalgic trip when working on this one and then playing with it with the granddaughter.

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