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Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America
Drawing Down the Moon: Witches, Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other Pagans in America
Offered by Penguin Group (USA) LLC
Price: $13.00

4.0 out of 5 stars No Recipe for Spells, November 19, 2014
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I never read the first edition of Margo Adler's guide to earth-based religion in the United States, but after her recent death, I decided to check out the 2006 update. Adler had an inquiring mind, and coming from an irreligious family, she was draw to life-affirming rituals rather than religious dogma. She loved dancing around the May Pole, getting lost in Greek drama and feeling like Athena, and, eventually, drawing down the circle. Her interest coincided with Second Wave feminism, and after delving into a little paganism, she used her journalistic skills to track down its origins. Armed with a journalism degree, she sought out the Celtic and English roots of rituals that grew after Britain withdrew it's ban on witchcraft, and what she found was intriguing, if it wasn't particularly orthodox. Then she interviewed a variety of practitioners there and in the U.S. She is a dogged researcher and a generous interviewer and interpreter, and there's really nothing else quite like this account. Even though witchcraft doesn't call to me, I can identify with the search for celebration of nature without dogma and with a reverence for the feminine aspects of the divine. Her description of magic is that of an art rather than anything superhuman, and I found it intriguing.


The American Spellbound
The American Spellbound
Price: $4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars So You Think You'd Like to Be a Trader, November 19, 2014
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Ever wonder what Wall Street traders do all day? Katya Cohen tells you here. She's been there. Done that. Quit that. In this thinly disguised autobiographical account, she tells you not only what traders do and how they think but how the street is messing over the consumer and how difficult it is to rein it in. An orphan in Russia by the age of 15, Cohen's alter ego, Vika, buckles down and with the help of her older sister makes it through school there, then applies for a visa to study at an off-the-charts Arizona Baptist business school. After gathering her degree, she strikes out for Wall Street and makes her way up the greased pole. This is not exactly fiction or memoir but a long rant about what she learned. I found it compelling and worth the short read.


Out For Blood (Kindle Single)
Out For Blood (Kindle Single)
Price: $1.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Astutely observed, lovingly told, November 8, 2014
Anyone (librarians, teachers, parents) curious about the vampire epidemic in teenage literature would be well advised to read Margot Adler's analysis of its attraction for today's youth. Adler's own involvement with neopagan rituals and her personal story about losing her husband informs this book. She ties it all together very movingly. I'm told this is the short version of what became a longer book, but in my reading it stands alone as very satisfying.


The Wife: A Novel
The Wife: A Novel
Offered by Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
Price: $10.93

3.0 out of 5 stars Should have been called, "Wifely Rage", October 10, 2014
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This review is from: The Wife: A Novel (Kindle Edition)
I found the first half of this novel almost unreadable because of it's steady stream of rage, but I'd read other books I liked by Wolitzer, and I plowed on. Like its protagonist, Joan, she writes well and insightfully, but the tone grew annoying, just like listening to any victimized person who can't see her co-dependence. This is a rant against men like Joe, the famous-Jewish-writer-husband, all too common in post-WWII America. (think Mailer, Bellow, Roth), but I tired of it. And it fails to account for the philandering of WASPS of the species (think Updike, et al.) The end is satisfying in its own way, but I can't recommend the novel as one of her best.


Sony CD CD-R/RW digital Radio AM/FM tuner Cassette Recorder Portable Boombox with Mega Bass, Synchronized CD/Cassette Dubbing, Shuffle, Repeat, 20 Track RMS Programming, 30 Preset Radio Stations, LCD Display, Stereo Mini Jack & Headphone Jack. Includes Auxiliary Cable f/ iPod, iPhone, & MP3 Players, Xtech CD Lens Cleaner & HeroFiber® Ultra Gentle Cleaning Cloth
Sony CD CD-R/RW digital Radio AM/FM tuner Cassette Recorder Portable Boombox with Mega Bass, Synchronized CD/Cassette Dubbing, Shuffle, Repeat, 20 Track RMS Programming, 30 Preset Radio Stations, LCD Display, Stereo Mini Jack & Headphone Jack. Includes Auxiliary Cable f/ iPod, iPhone, & MP3 Players, Xtech CD Lens Cleaner & HeroFiber® Ultra Gentle Cleaning Cloth
Offered by Hot Deals Electronics
Price: $119.99
2 used & new from $111.59

4.0 out of 5 stars Retro, but Still Useful, October 10, 2014
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The perfect solution to all those tapes and CDs you've never managed to digitize. We picked the Sony because it promised the best sound, and although it costs a little more, we're happy with it. The radio's good as well.


Where X Marks the Spot
Where X Marks the Spot
by Bill Zavatsky
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.35
33 used & new from $0.56

5.0 out of 5 stars Inviting, Accessible, October 10, 2014
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This review is from: Where X Marks the Spot (Paperback)
How nice to find a poet who doesn't seem to take himself too seriously. These poems are spot-on, easy going and refreshing. (Such seeming effortlessness is of course the product of hard work.) I especially like the one where he doesn't look like himself anymore.


2010-2014 TOYOTA Prius Custom Fit Sun Shade Heat Shield
2010-2014 TOYOTA Prius Custom Fit Sun Shade Heat Shield
Offered by Autonotions, LLC
Price: $39.25
3 used & new from $28.53

5.0 out of 5 stars This shade fits out 2010 Prius perfectly, and surprisingly ..., October 10, 2014
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This shade fits out 2010 Prius perfectly, and surprisingly it's not bulky at all. It folds compactly and the Velcro strap makes a neat little package.


The Liar's Wife: Four Novellas
The Liar's Wife: Four Novellas
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $10.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Old-fashioned in the Best Way, October 1, 2014
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These four stories— two contemporary and the other two set in the Thirties and Forties—are reminders of the virtues of classic fiction. The characters in all of them have some tie to various countries in Europe, but they are essentially American and collectively they tell us a lot about American culture. Gordon draws on historical characters of Simone Weil and Thomas Mann in two stories to illuminate her subjects, and there are notes about both at the end. I urge you not to read them until you finish the novellas; you may want to know more, but there's enough on the page to make her point.

All the principal characters in this book are reflective. Some have lived long lives which they recall in a new light. Others are young and discovering the broader world. But it is Gordon's vision that makes them sing, and she's so observant and accomplished at revealing the right information at the right time that it sometimes took my breath away.

I read this on my Kindle, but I may buy a hard copy for easy access on my shelf.


The Snow Queen: A Novel
The Snow Queen: A Novel
Offered by Macmillan
Price: $11.04

3.0 out of 5 stars Not a Keeper, September 13, 2014
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If you've never read Michael Cunningham, please don't start here. I understand this is the last of his novels told from the point of view of three characters, and I think the formula was worn out by the time he wrote this novel. The Hours is a masterpiece. This one (as others have point out) feels like a slacker. In spite of his carefully wrought prose, Cunnngham is not sufficiently invested in the characters—Barrett, Tyler and Tyler's dying wife, Beth. I'm not saying these characters couldn't be found on the streets of New York City right now; they could. But I expect transcendence from Cunningham, and I felt he was going through the motions here. That mysterious light was too clumsy a plot device.


The Rise & Fall of Great Powers: A Novel
The Rise & Fall of Great Powers: A Novel
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $11.84

4.0 out of 5 stars Deeper, darker, September 13, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Two other writers--Dickens and Ann Tyler--came to mind as I read Tom Rachman's second novel. I was captivated by Tooly Zeberberg, his young female protagonist, born out of wedlock to Sarah, a flighty, possibly sociopath South African mother and Paul, a smart but shut-down American father. A psychologist might assume all kinds of attachment and abandonment issues, but Tooly (short for Matilda) swings from place to place and person to person with surprising resilience before she can fully realize the hand that life has dealt her. Also in her life are Venn, a sometimes slippery figure who deposits money on her bank card; Humphrey, a possibly Russian recluse who introduces her to Western thought and literature after she gets dropped from school in the fourth grade; Duncan, a law student she encounters while pretending to have been a childhood tenant of his apartment, and Fogg, who manages a bookshop she buys in Wales before setting off in search of herself. Rachman's second novel is more ambitious than The Imperfectionists. It's not simply a comedic farce, but a more nuanced coming of age tale, set in the recent past before 9/11, which must have made all the world travel a lot easier.


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