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Daughter Of The Sun
Daughter Of The Sun
by Three Phoenix
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.98
15 used & new from $8.64

4.0 out of 5 stars Good for young children, March 26, 2013
This review is from: Daughter Of The Sun (Paperback)
The people of the valley of East Mountain are looked after by Elana, the Daughter of the Sun. Whenever she smiled, the sun would join in and spread happiness and joy over the whole valley. The people thought she was magic.

For unknown reasons, a feeling of unhappiness has come over the people. AhMun, the corn grower, and a couple of his friends decide to visit Elana and ask for her help.

Naturally, getting to Elana is not easy. When they reach her, AhMun receives a beam of sunlight from her, and imagines that the bad feelings in the village have disappeared. He gives a big smile back to Elana, who relays it to her father, the sun. AhMun and friends return to the village and everyone is happy. One day, a thundercloud comes by and learns that Elana has a very different interpretation of her dealings with the villagers than do the villagers.

This book is made to be read to children under 10 years of age. Older children will also enjoy it. Yes, it is worth the time.


Kalinda
Kalinda

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the reader's time, March 17, 2013
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This review is from: Kalinda (Kindle Edition)
This novel looks at the presidency of America's first black, female President.

In 2012, things are not going well for Kalinda Resbo. She can't get anything through Congress, mostly because Congressional Republicans have decided to say No to anything she advocates. Congressional Democrats are not much better, being too cowardly to stand with her. Her CIA and FBI Directors, along with her Vice President (they were forced on her by the Democratic leadership), are neo-cons who really want to start a war with Iran over their nuclear program. Because Resbo does not agree, they are actively hostile to her, undermining her whenever possible. In the eyes of some, as an unmarried black woman, she is automatically an America-hating lesbian socialist. With election season here, her poll numbers are not good, mostly due to her abrasive campaign manager.

There are some good people in her administration. Among them is J.B. Wellers, her Chief of Staff, who also ran her first presidential campaign. He is one of those who is not afraid to tell the unvarnished truth, even to her, which is why she values his advice so strongly. She asks him to take over her campaign again, and things start to improve. Resbo makes a bold move by announcing that she is running for re-election as an Independent, and with a new running mate. Unconstrained by party requirements, she makes a series of gutsy proposals for her second term. Among the things she advocates are: replacing the federal income tax with a national sales tax; geting rid of the two-party system; term limits for the Congress and President; campaign finance reform, filibuster reform and closing all foreign military bases. her two opponents, Mitt Romney and Leroy Skittles (her current VP) can't keep up with her and have to rely on the usual political nonsense. Resbo is ahead in the polls, but not enough to keep the election out of the House of Representatives. Meantime, a secret plan is brought forward to make sure that Resbo is a one-term President, using a method that was last used successfully in 1963 in Dallas.

This is not a liberal or conservative story, but it is a really good story. Both parties share the blame for America's current condition, and, if both parties can somehow put America ahead of Party, maybe some of it can get fixed. This is well worth the reader's time.


The 7- Minute Miracle: The Breakthrough Program to Banish Spot Fat Forever
The 7- Minute Miracle: The Breakthrough Program to Banish Spot Fat Forever
by Sheldon Levine
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $21.95
95 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Easy enough for everyone, March 14, 2013
This book describes a way to get rid of your body's spot fat, without special diets or joining a gym. All it takes is seven minutes a day.

It looks at the areas of troublesome fat, your arms, belly, hips, butt and thighs. The idea is to get adrenaline (also called epinephrine) to your trouble area, where it will tell an enzyme in fat cells to start the fat-burning process. The book gives pictures of exercises intended for each specific area. General exercising, like aerobics or jogging, might help your body overall, but it will do little, or nothing, for your trouble area.

Here is what you do. For instance, do belly exercise #1 until you can't do anymore. Go right to belly exercise #2, without stopping, and then go right to the third belly exercise, again without stopping. Continue through the cycle until you reach seven minutes, then stop. Do not eat or drink anything, except water, for the next 40 minutes. You don't want to bring the fat-burning process to a screeching halt by eating something filled with carbs or sugar. Then you should have your daily healthy meal. If you exercise in the morning, make breakfast your healthy meal. If you exercise in the late afternoon, make dinner your healthy meal. If it is not possible to follow the menus in the book, the author looks at the kind of foods that are healthy, or unhealthy, to eat.

If you have more than one trouble area, then, for instance, do your belly exercises on one day, your hips exercises the next day, and your butt exercises on the day after that. Don't combine them. If you workout regularly, separate your regular workout and your seven-minute workout by at least three hours, allowing your adrenaline level to return to normal. Simply adding seven minutes to your regular workout is a waste of time.

This fat-loss system seems to be easy enough for everyone. Anyone can spare seven minutes a day, even stay-at-home moms. Best of all, there are no special meals, or exercise gadgets, to buy. This is very much worth reading, for everyone.


The Absurd Adventures of Mira
The Absurd Adventures of Mira
by Sujata Rayers
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.95
11 used & new from $15.98

4.0 out of 5 stars Really interesting story, March 8, 2013
Mira is an Indian-American living in present-day Louisiana. She is also swarthy, weighs 250 pounds, and fantasizes herself as blonde, blue-eyed Cameron Diaz. At a high school party, she is raped by a member of the Black Panthers. her father refuses to acknowledge the rape out of concern that it will make her "spoiled fruit" when it comes time for marriage. Mira moves in with Andy, the manager of the local grocery store that soon goes out of business.

Among their neighbors is a Julio Iglesias look-alike. He is so convincing that a married couple, also neighbors, kidnap him and hold him for ransom. While they spend the next several years in prison, Andy and Mira become foster parents to their two children. Junior is a precocious child who is helping Dad write a guide to local plants while he is in prison.

Mira gets a job at a local clothing store, where her handmade Mardi Gras costumes are a hit. Another clothing store where Mira works is bought and becomes part of a chain. Mira is part of a group who travels to India looking for companies who can supply them with clothes to sell. Mira is able to meet some of her relatives.

Back home, Devi, Mira's sister, becomes part of the clothing empire (her proper, Indian, marriage ended in divorce). Mira has not spoken with her father since the day she disobeyed him by moving in with Andy (who was killed by a grizzly bear during a camping trip). Do they get back together? Do they at least talk to each other?

This is a really interesting story. It's plausible, and well-written, amd Mira certainly has plenty of "adventures." Yes, it's worth reading.


Digital Disruption: Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation
Digital Disruption: Unleashing the Next Wave of Innovation
by Josh Bernoff
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $13.99
88 used & new from $0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars Very much worth reading, March 6, 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The increasing digitization of our world has turned the business world upside down. In every industry, some companies are getting closer to their customers and undercutting other competitors. This book gives the details.

There are many, many free digital tools available to potential innovators. Next, a digital platform is needed to get it, whatever it is, to the customer as quickly as possible. These are usually very inexpensive. Keep a very close eye on your feedback. For example, if it says that upgrades should move in this direction, instead of that direction, don't wait until next quarter, or even next month, to do the upgrade; start on it today.

"Our company is innovative." "Our customers are totally loyal to us." "Our company is un-disruptable." Can you really afford to take such a chance? Companies no longer sell products or services; they sell total product experiences. It starts when a person visits your company online for the first time, and goesall the way until they get the product home and open it. There are ways to measure just how much time a person spends at your website or Facebook page. A company goal might be to get people to spend more time there, instead of simply increasing sales.

Don't ask "What new thing can we sell?" Instead, you should ask "What is next thing our customer needs? What adjacent need can we fill that our customer does not even know that they have?" It's tempting to fill any new product or service with benefits for the customer, to be all things to all people. Don't do it. Pick just a couple of the biggest benefits, and concentrate on those.

This book is full of examples of how even non-digital experiences like selling shoes can be digitally disrupted. It does a very good job of helping any company to be the disrupter, and not the one being disrupted. It is very much worth reading.


The Slow Fix: Solve Problems, Work Smarter, and Live Better in a World Addicted to Speed
The Slow Fix: Solve Problems, Work Smarter, and Live Better in a World Addicted to Speed
by Carl Honore
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $17.85
83 used & new from $1.45

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Recommended for everyone, March 6, 2013
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
In this speed-obsessed, quick-fix world, it has become almost normal to expend the minimum amount of effort, in business and in life. But that approach is never quick, and usually makes things worse.

If you make a mistake, admit it. Don't try to blame someone else. If you are the boss, don't treat that mistake as a disaster that requires that someone be fired. Instead, treat it as an opportunity to take a very close look at your entire process. It may seem preferable to worry only about immediate problems. Is that really better, and cheaper, than going through every bit of your business, top to bottom, to make sure everything is working properly?

An underlying, fundamental problem rarely has just one cause. Try linking the various pieces of that fundamental problem. Don't focus just on today; look at tomorrow, too. Will fixing Problem X now lead to other big problems next month, or next year?

Naturally, the devil is in the details. Be willing to see things in a new light. Preparation ahead of time, being ready for anything, will help keep problems from rearing their ugly heads. Don't be afraid to collaborate, especially with someone who has a different field of expertise. A different set of eyes may be just what is needed to solve your problem. There are times when crowdsourcing is the best place to go for an answer to your problem. Don't underestimate the power of games to solve problems.

Meant more for groups than individuals, this is an excellent book. It is very thought-provoking, and is recommended for everyone.


The Cellar Door
The Cellar Door
by Brett Gadbois
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.95
37 used & new from $0.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The reader will not go wrong with this one, March 5, 2013
This review is from: The Cellar Door (Paperback)
This is the tale of a young boy and his amazing adventures.

Sam Bixby is your average nine-year-old. His parents have been divorced for most of his life. The concern and uncertainty that comes with divorced parents comes back to Sam when Mom asks him to live with her in California. Sam and Dad live near Seattle. On a camping trip to northern Minnesota with Dad, Sam explores an abandoned farmhouse (the kind that children should not explore alone). He falls, and hits his head, and he wakes up in a very strange land.

An elderly human sage teaches Sam the ability to change into whatever he wants (bird, animal, etc.) simply by thinking about it. Sam meets a talking squirrel who is searching for his father. Squirrel Dad has been on the run for a number of years because of a botched robbery. Sam meets talking blueberries who are proud of their color, and streams of water that give Sam fits of laughter even on the worst days. Through it all, no one knows just how Sam can get home, but they suggest that a magic pool of water in a nearby city is the place to start.

Sam also meets several human/animal hybrids, including a pair with human bodies and the heads of crows. They really want the secret to Sam's transformation ability. While Sam is a bird, they trap him inside a bird cage until he gives up the secret. Will Sam spend the rest of his life as a bird? Will he ever be reunited with his father?

This book is made to be read to children, perhaps as a multi-part bedtime story. It's nice and weird, and many children can identify with Sam. The reader will not go wrong with this one.


Lilith Rising, 1969: A Coming of Age Novel
Lilith Rising, 1969: A Coming of Age Novel
Price: $2.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very good reading, February 28, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This novel is about one person's experiences in late 1960s America.

Lily is your average teenager living near Chicago. She ran away from home because life at home had fallen apart. At a party, she is noticed by Red, the leader of a local biker gang. Realizing that she is too far from home, Lily calls her mother, looking for a ride. To her shock, her mother says that coming home, at that time, was not a good idea. Lily has no choice but to hop on Red's motorcycle.

Lily soon learns that she is Red's prisoner. She has to ask his permission for everything, including getting money for food. She learns, the hard way, about Red's hair-trigger temper. He can go from decent and reasonable one second, to total, red-faced, rage the next second. Lily's feelings toward Red vacillate between hatred and fear for her safety.

One day, Cricket (his real name is Sam), Red's brother, shows up at their door. Having just returned from Vietnam, where he was an Army medic, Cricket needs a place to stay for a while. The attraction between Lily and Cricket is instant. Red expects Cricket to resume the biker lifestyle, but Cricket is very uninterested. While Red is off planning a war against another gang, the relationship between Lily and Cricket grows into real love. They make plans to run away together to San Francisco, but Lily is very scared of Red's expected reaction. Circumstances suddenly force them to move up their timetable, and head west, now. How does Red react? Do they make it to San Francisco? Do Lily and Cricket live "happily ever after"?

In a way, this is very unpleasant reading, but it's very good reading. The author does a fine job from start to finish. This story is not for the faint of heart, but it is well worth the reader's time.


All My Love, Detrick: A Historical Novel Of Love And Survival During The Holocaust (All My Love Detrick Book 1)
All My Love, Detrick: A Historical Novel Of Love And Survival During The Holocaust (All My Love Detrick Book 1)
Price: $3.99

33 of 37 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well worth the reader's time, February 19, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This is a love story set in Nazi Germany.

Detrick is an Aryan, living in Berlin, who, for years, has worked in the bicycle repair shop of Jacob Abdenstern. Accompanying Jacob home one night, Detrick meets Leah, his daughter. There is an instant attraction between them. They have to keep their romance very quiet, because, in Nazi Germany, any public affection between an Aryan and a Jew is very illegal. Detrick is extremely uninterested in anything to do with the Nazi Party.

Karl, Leah's brother, is one of those accustomed to using his fists in public. During a fight, he kills a member of the Hitler Youth, so fleeing Germany is suddenly a very good idea. He finds himself in the Warsaw Ghetto, preparing to fight. Detrick's sister, Helga, has fallen for Eric, an SS officer. He treats her like a goddess, showering her with gifts; that is, until the day he tells Helga that he is married, and cuts off all further contact between them. Helga is forced to travel to an isolated "institute" to have Eric's baby, without telling her parents.

Meantime, Leah's best friend, Dorothy, has fled Germany with her family. They are living with an uncle in Chicago. Her thick accent and unfamiliarity with English make school nearly impossible. She get a job, but her career choice goes over very badly with her father, who throws her out of the house. Dorothy is noticed by an older man named Tony, who also treats her like a goddess, showering her with gifts. But Tony tells her upfront that he is married, and still wants to see her.

Back in Germany, Detrick reluctantly joins the Nazi Party. He feels that it is the only way to earn the money to pay a sympathetic family to hide Jacob and Leah in their attic. detrick goes to work every day expecting that his deception will be discovered. Do Leah and Detrick "live happily ever after?"

This is an excellent piece of writing. It shows how the Nazi era tore apart even "good" Aryan families. It is well worth the reader's time.


The Monsterjunkies: An American Family Odyssey.
The Monsterjunkies: An American Family Odyssey.
by Erik Daniel Shein
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Well-done piece of writing, February 11, 2013
This is the story of a very unique American family.

The Monsterjunkies live in a walled compound on the coast of Maine. Talon, the father, is a crypto-zoologist who specializes in rescuing animal species thought to be extinct, with the intention of returning them to the wild. Pandora is his wife, and their children, daughter Indigo and son Crow are students at the local high school. Because they are "different," both children have been noticed by Rutherford, the school bully. Crow wants the bullying to end, and Indigo wants the family to start being a little more trusting of outsiders. No one is allowed on the property, and the family doesn't talk about it, which leads to the expected rumors of monsters on the property.

Indigo invites Winter, a friend from school and a budding artist, for an overnight sleepover, and shows her what is really going on behind the walls. Crow becomes friends with a trio of boys from school who attempt to sneak onto the property to see for themselves. They are stopped by an actual sasquatch, who, they learn later, is intelligent and is named Beauregard. The visitors are also introduced to a pygmy elephant named Thunder who loves marshmallows, and an actual sea serpent named Sybil who can't eat enough squash.

At school one day, the group publicly humiliates Rutherford, in front of a bunch of girls. Naturally, he is not going to go away that easily. Does the Monsterjunkie family get "outed" prematurely? Does the bullying stop, once and for all?

This is an excellent YA novel. It has a very strong environmental and anti-bullying message. It is a well-done piece of writing that is recommended for all young people (and adults, too).


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