Best Books of the Month Shop Men's Shoes Learn more nav_sap_SWP_6M_fly_beacon $5 Albums All-New Fire TV Stick with Voice Remote Beauty Videos Amazon Gift Card Offer jrscwrld jrscwrld jrscwrld  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 Kindle Voyage AutoRip in CDs & Vinyl Fall Arrivals in Amazon Outdoor Clothing Learn more
Profile for Matt Talken > Reviews


Matt Talken's Profile

Customer Reviews: 5
Top Reviewer Ranking: 6,856,997
Helpful Votes: 18

Community Features
Review Discussion Boards
Top Reviewers

Guidelines: Learn more about the ins and outs of Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Matt Talken RSS Feed (Quincy, IL United States)

Page: 1
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
The Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien
by J. R. R. Tolkien
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.02
96 used & new from $0.66

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for any Tolkien scholar or enthusiast, October 7, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
For a casual fan, this book isn't really something I would recommend.

However, for anyone actually studying Tolkien, this is a must-have. It allows insight into what Tolkien was thinking on so many minor and major issues within The Hobbit, LotR, The Silmarillion and his other works.

It's a rare instance where the general public can get insight into the craft that is behind a great book (or set of books), but that's what The Letters of JRR Tolkien offers us.

Pack  and  Stack
Pack and Stack

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great family game., March 6, 2011
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Pack and Stack (Toy)
Pack and Stack is a great family game. In a nutshell, each player runs their own moving company. You roll dice to figure out how much stuff you have to move, and then you try to be the fastest to grab for the right card that shows how much space you have in your truck.

It's a great game for spatial intelligence, as it involves packing these shapes into spaces to see if you can get the "perfect pack" as my family refers to it. Sometimes things go your way and you get the perfect truck for what you need and sometimes you get an itty-bitty truck when you got the mother load of all the little wooden blocks. The game is very well made and very durable, as the blocks are made of wood and the cards are a very thick and stiff cardboard.

My family and I tend to play a lot of games when we gather together at any given holiday, and this is one of the games that almost always makes an appearance due to the ease of play, the fact that the games aren't quite as long (as many Mayfair games can be) and the fact that it's just a lot of fun to play.

P90X DVD Workout - Base Kit
P90X DVD Workout - Base Kit
Offered by Beachbody
Price: $139.80

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great program. So far it delivers on what it promises., March 6, 2011
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
P90X is a very tough workout for someone who's otherwise not in top shape. However, if you're still in good health and don't have any significant injury risks, it's a fantastic workout. Aim to have an hour a day you can dedicate to doing the workouts, and if you're trying to lose weight, be prepared to follow an Atkins-like diet at first. Having said that, in the first week, I lost 7 lbs. Since then, I haven't been able to get through 6 workouts in a week (I'm hitting 4-5 a week) and I've lost a couple lbs. each week while feeling stronger and in better shape.

For anyone who can find the time to at least get most of the workouts in, I'd highly recommend P90X as a workout regiment. Be warned though, that I think someone personally wronged Tony Horton before he taped the Plyometric workout. It's a real butt-kicker and even 3-4 weeks in, it destroys me.

The Odyssey
The Odyssey
by Gareth Hinds
Edition: Paperback
Price: $13.21
49 used & new from $7.92

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Fantastic and Accurate Retelling of Homer's Classic, December 3, 2010
This review is from: The Odyssey (Paperback)
Gareth Hinds' graphic novel retelling of The Odyssey is an excellent version that anyone from middle school age and up could appreciate. The language within the text is ornate enough to bring about the spirit of the epic poem without being so difficult that only someone with a degree in English can appreciate it. Having read both Fitzgerald's and Fagles' translations, I can also say that this graphic novel version is mostly accurate to these very popular translations, and even identifies as it moves from Book to Book, making it very easy to use alongside any of these other versions as well.

In addition, the artwork is fantastic. As a high school teacher, when I first got this book (luckily a signed copy, as I was able to meet the author at NCTE '10!), I was excited to bring this book back to share with my teachers to show them the beautiful depictions of scenes like that of the battle with Polyphemus, the cyclops, or the final battle with the suitors at the end. In fact, these battle scenes are the only reasons I say it's appropriate for only middle school and up, because the artwork is faithful to the story, which is fairly violent. This is not to say that Hinds has gone overboard with any of the scenes at all, but merely that when there is a violent moment in the storyline, it's not sugarcoated either.

Sadly, I no longer teach the Odyssey, because it's in a different level grade than I teach within our curriculum, but if I did, I wouldn't hesitate to use excerpts from this graphic novel within the class to help engage the students. Highly, Highly recommend!

Hector and Achilles The Trojan War
Hector and Achilles The Trojan War
Offered by OldOakSales
Price: $29.76
3 used & new from $19.78

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A more complex game of war, August 9, 2010
= Durability:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
I bought this game at GenCon 2010 (a gaming convention in Indianapolis) because I teach literature including the Iliad and Aeneid, and it intrigued me. Also, it was on clearance for [...].

I played the game with my brother a couple times and I basically look at it as a more complex version of war. However, while war is a pretty mindless game, this isn't, which is why I say "more complex version." There is definitely some strategy here.

The game also has at least some educational value, as it does involve the heroes of the Trojan War, both for the Trojans, including heroes like Paris, Aeneas and Hector and for the Achaeans (Greeks) like Achilles, Agamemnon and Odysseus. The educational value is not a great reason to buy this game though.

At [...], I thought this game was definitely worth it. For [...], I think this game is still worth it if you're especially into games that have some level of historic/literary connection, but for the casual gamer, I don't think it's a great bargain at [...], especially since it is only a 2-player game as well.

Page: 1