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Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills
Back to Basics: A Complete Guide to Traditional Skills
by Abigail R. Gehring
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $21.07
42 used & new from $18.03

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Guide to Self-Sufficiency, November 6, 2014
I don’t live on a farm or even out in the country, but I always imagine what it would be like if I did. Back to Basics is the perfect book for a dreamer like me. Abigail Gehring, who is a bit of an expert on country living herself, has brought this classic guide to self-sufficiency up-to-date; everyone from a ranch-hand to a stay-at-home mom can take away something new.

Have you ever wondered about buying land and building log cabins? How about running your home on wind or solar power? Or growing and canning your own vegetables? From soap making to barn raising, Back to Basics is full of inspiration for anyone hoping to live a simpler lifestyle.

The text is written in a way that is easy to understand and has a ton of great practical advice no matter what skill level you are in terms of DIY. There are hundreds of projects with step-by-step instructions, charts, pictures, etc. The best part is that you can start small (weaving a rug) and work your way up (housing livestock) without feeling like you have to go all-in at once.


The Watercolor Bible - A Painter's Complete Guide
The Watercolor Bible - A Painter's Complete Guide
by Joe Garcia
Edition: Spiral-bound
39 used & new from $5.50

4.0 out of 5 stars Great Guide for Beginners and Established Artists, October 24, 2014
As an artist, I’m always looking for new material to add to my toolkit. When it comes to books, I find that the more comprehensive one is, the better. Comprehensive is definitely the best word to describe "The Watercolor Bible."

I would recommend "The Watercolor Bible" for both beginners and experienced artists. For those new to the world of watercolor, there is a ton of great information on everything from how to choose the right colors to editing for stronger composition. Anything you could ever possibly want to know, it’s there.

But don’t think that just because you’re an experienced watercolorist you won’t find this book useful. It’s a great reference when you’re experimenting with different techniques and it’s full of tips and tricks that you may not already know. Yes, it has handy exercises for beginners, but it also has the solutions to some common painting problems.

One of my favorite chapters was Collecting and Recording Ideas, which goes beyond the technical aspects of watercolor and into the creative process as a whole. I also enjoyed the photography tips.

Make sure your paintbrushes are ready, because you’ll want to get painting as soon as you finish "The Watercolor Bible!"


The Watercolor Bible: Painting Tips and Techniques for the Beginner
The Watercolor Bible: Painting Tips and Techniques for the Beginner
by Joe Garcia
Edition: Paperback
Price: $18.45
36 used & new from $4.98

4.0 out of 5 stars Great Guide for Beginners and Established Artists, October 24, 2014
As an artist, I'm always looking for new material to add to my toolkit. When it comes to books, I find that the more comprehensive one is, the better. Comprehensive is definitely the best word to describe The Watercolor Bible.

I would recommend The Watercolor Bible for both beginners and experienced artists. It's just as good as the classics like The Watercolor Book. For those new to the world of watercolor, there is a ton of great information on everything from how to choose the right colors to editing for stronger composition. Anything you could ever possibly want to know, it's there.

But don't think that just because you're an experienced watercolorist you won't find this book useful. It's a great reference when you're experimenting with different techniques and it's full of tips and tricks that you may not already know. Yes, it has handy exercises for beginners, but it also has the solutions to some common painting problems.

One of my favorite chapters was Collecting and Recording Ideas, which goes beyond the technical aspects of watercolor and into the creative process as a whole. I also enjoyed the photography tips.

Make sure your paintbrushes are ready, because you'll want to get painting as soon as you finish The Watercolor Bible!


Learn Watercolour Quickly
Learn Watercolour Quickly
by Hazel Soan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $9.74
42 used & new from $8.71

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars For those who believe in quick fixes, I guess, September 2, 2014
This really isn't a book that I can recommend to others. The premise alone that watercolor can be learned quickly irks me, so I'll be upfront and say that I am biased against the book at the start. In fact, I don't think the personality of Soan* really matches my own at all, for her other best-selling book is about 10-minute watercolours. I belong more in the camp of Zoltan Szabo and Alwyn Crawshaw*, and my idea of a great beginner's watercolor book is Landscape Painting in Watercolor.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 1, 2014 8:30 AM PDT


The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer
The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer
by Siddhartha Mukherjee
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.39
134 used & new from $6.59

4.0 out of 5 stars Everything has its story, September 2, 2014
The history of cancer is far longer than I would have imagined. Read this book if you are looking for solace and understanding in this mysterious disease.


The Life of the Automobile: The Complete History of the Motor Car
The Life of the Automobile: The Complete History of the Motor Car
by Steven Parissien
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.94
57 used & new from $2.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bringing Humanity to History, May 27, 2014
Has anything shaped the modern world more than the creation of the car? Stephen Parissien's The Life of the Automobile: The Complete History of the Motor Car offers a comprehensive look into the past, examining the development of the car over a 130-year span. It covers each decade, beginning with the earliest automobiles and ending with modern auto company bailouts.

A car is not simply a machine; it is a creation that took years of dedication and the minds of devoted figures. This book delves into the concepts designed by figures like Karl Benz, Sir Henry Royce, and the visionaries behind Fiat, BMW, Porsche, Ford, and much more. Readers will find a decent combination of quotes and secondary sources from the very first pages that explore "motor mogul" Henry Ford's death to the final pages explaining the bailout.

Readers will walk away from this book with the notion that the history of cars mirror the entirety of modern history. Cars have changed the way we find entertainment, the way we do relationships, and even the way we think about war. This "elegant and authoritative" book gives us insight into the many changes prompted by the domination of cars as competitive status symbols and mechanisms of travel. If you do happen to be more of a auto-aficianodo, as a fellow reviewer seems to be, you may also find this book lacking in areas. For further reading, there are many deeper and dorkier texts on cars. A particular favorite of mine is by Allan Girdler, who is both an expert on motor vehicle history and a great writer - check out American Road Race Specials, 1934-70: Glory Days of Homebuilt Racers.


Techniques of Motor Cycle Road Racing
Techniques of Motor Cycle Road Racing
by Kenny Roberts
Edition: Paperback
27 used & new from $33.52

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Classic Road Racing Literature at its Finest, May 20, 2014
His book may be out of print, but the knowledge Kenny Roberts passed on in Techniques of Motor Cycle Road Racing remains as relevant as ever. The book covers everything from preparing your bike to testing your own skills - all without the step-by-step processes than can seem tedious when you already know the basics.

What truly makes this book unique is its ability to pass on information while maintaining a personal connection with the reader. Rogers is a successful motorcycle racer known throughout history as the first American winner of the Grand Prix motorcycle world championship. Additionally, he has won two AMA Grand National Championships. You will not find another author with this much talent in the field he is discussing. As he says, "No matter how much natural ability you have... you have to LEARN TO RACE a motorcycle."

This is one of the true classic books on road racers, alongside Harley-Davidson Racing, 1934-1986 and Harley-Davidson Xr-750.


Harley-Davidson Racing, 1934-1986
Harley-Davidson Racing, 1934-1986
by Allan Girdler
Edition: Paperback
Price: $24.64
26 used & new from $19.95

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Affordable Paperback, May 8, 2014
I never forgot this book after I lost my original copy in a move. It wasn't until this new paperback edition came out that I could justify buying another copy. The cover is new, but the material inside remains the same. The images and text are of very good quality. Allan Girdler is a great storyteller! I highly recommend this book.


The Art of the Racing Motorcycle: 100 Years of Designing for Speed
The Art of the Racing Motorcycle: 100 Years of Designing for Speed
by Phillip Tooth
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $35.84
46 used & new from $29.62

4.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful Monograph, May 8, 2014
The Art of the Racing Motorcycle follows the growth of the sport bike, from early French designs to the uprising of brilliant British machines in the 1930s. The 1950s and 1960s are the domain of Italian motorcycles, and then the influence of American racing in the 1970s and 1980s takes precedent until we finally arrive at today's Japanese superbikes.

Written by Philip Tooth: The Art of the Racing Motorcycle, gives us a definitive look at the design evolution of the racing motorcycle. It covers the technology, design, companies, and people. I particularly enjoyed the discussion of how competition between companies pushed the envelope of design and engineering, giving rise to the racing motorcycle. In chronological order, you learn about the major players like Harley-Davidson, Peugeot, Velocette, Moto Guzzi, BMW, Kawasaki, and Ducati. The photographs that fill this book are either archival images that give the subject matter scope within the context of classic races, rallies, and motorcycle show or are contemporary portraits that present the machines as works of art. Its really exciting to see up-close the milestone bikes like 1902 Manon, 1922 Harley 8-Valve, 1948 AJS Porcupine, and 1954 Moto Guzzi, just to name a few!


Bathroom Book of Motorcycle Trivia: 360 days-worth of $#!+ you don't need to know,  four days-worth of stuff that is somewhat useful to know,  and one entry that's absolutely essential
Bathroom Book of Motorcycle Trivia: 360 days-worth of $#!+ you don't need to know, four days-worth of stuff that is somewhat useful to know, and one entry that's absolutely essential
by Mark Gardiner
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.95
9 used & new from $12.95

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Honda CX500 Turbo 1982, May 8, 2014
I have been reading journalist Mark Gardiner's insight to the motorcycle world for years, as his writing has appeared in every major English-language motorcycle magazine. This book enabled me to discard the all outdated and dog-eared magazines that clutter the bathroom, while still giving me something engaging and interesting to read. There are 365 trivia entries that really make you think! Like what was the first production motorcycle with electronic fuel injection... ok, that one is kind of easy. He also has an interesting opinion on the "Best places for motorcyclists to live" and "Lessons, Track Schools and why you need them". You're sure to learn a fun thing or two each time you sit down with this book. If you're a Harley fan, I'd suggest one of Allan Girdler's books, who just had several classics reprinted like Harley-Davidson Racing, 1934-1986.


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