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K. M. Chance "average consumer" RSS Feed (Los Angeles, CA USA)
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Birthright
Birthright
by Nora Roberts
Edition: Audio Cassette
20 used & new from $2.90

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Avoid the Audio Version, November 29, 2004
This review is from: Birthright (Audio Cassette)
I had to drive to Sacramento and back and so picked up a Nora Roberts book to listen to on the drive. Roberts is a great standby for these sorts of trips because her books are predictably entertaining and fun. Unfortunately, "Birthright" gave me trouble. Don't get me wrong; the story itself was of the usual Roberts high caliber if not even a little better than some. The problem stemmed from the reader of the audio version. Sometimes I've found that readers try just a little too hard and in this book, it showed.

I appreciate the reader trying to differentiate between the characters by using slightly modified voices, but in this recording, it was incredibly overdone to the point of distraction. There got to be times when I would grimace when a certain character or another came back into the plot because the faked dialect was so irritating.

If I had it to do over, I'd save this book to curl up with on the couch on a rainy day and choose another to listen to for 14 hours in the car. You may want to consider doing the same.


The Hanged Man's Song (Kidd and LuEllen)
The Hanged Man's Song (Kidd and LuEllen)
by John Sandford
Edition: Hardcover
378 used & new from $0.01

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Finally Someone for We Techies to Root For!, November 29, 2004
I have heard that millions of people use Amazon and I have to wonder what percentage of those million fall somewhere on the technology spectrum between computer lover and baby hacker (like I do). I'd guess over half if not as much as three quarters. Being that's the case, I have some good news - we finally have a hero to root for and relate too. Instead of yet another detective, doctor or lawyer solving the puzzles and saving the day, John Sandford's "Kidd" novels highlight the talents of a computer extraordinaire.

Even better news is the fact that this novel is not the first to feature the great Kidd and his hacking skills. This novel is the 4th in the series and I strongly recommend going back and starting with "The Fool's Run" so that you can be properly introduced to Kidd as well as his amazing partner in crime, LuEllen, and the mysterious Bobby. If you have read the others, then prepare yourself for another fine installment in the series. I hate to break it to you, but Bobby is murdered in the first three pages and the rest of the book pivots around Kidd's desperate search to locate Bobby's laptop (full of the world's secrets naturally) and the killer. LuEllen is also involved and fleshed out even more, which is a plus. A very good read from a very good author.


Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life
Who Moved My Cheese?: An Amazing Way to Deal with Change in Your Work and in Your Life
by Spencer Johnson
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $11.27
3017 used & new from $0.01

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very much enjoyed it. Here's what you need to know., August 19, 2004
First, it's short. Very short. Took me approximately 45 minutes to read it cover to cover because, even though the book is listed as having 94 pages, the font they use it huge. So, if you're a fan of quick to read books, this is a plus. If you consider the book costs 20 bucks new, not a great bargain (however there are hundreds of used copies around). The book has three main sections (no counting author forwards, etc.): An intro where the stage is set to tell the story within the story (a group of adults at their high school reunion), the Cheese Story itself, and a follow-up that explains some points in the story (again with the group of adults). In my opinion, the intro and the follow-up are wasted space and should have been left out because the Cheese Story of the book could easily have stood on its own. The Cheese Story is basically a proverb about dealing with life's changes. It contains many clear and important messages such anticipating change and facing your fears. For anyone who is unhappy with their current lot in life or is facing major changes at work or at home (such as layoffs or divorce), this simple story can be very helpful.


Sacred
Sacred
by Dennis Lehane
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
118 used & new from $0.01

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very much enjoyed it. Here's what you need to know., August 19, 2004
This review is from: Sacred (Mass Market Paperback)
First, this is the 3rd book in the series. If you're like me and prefer to read a series in the order that it was written (and hence evolve with the characters), you'll want to get this book along with the other two that precede it (Drink Before the War & Darkness, Take My Hand). Also, Lehane does talk some about the plots that took place in the two previous books and those references will be lost on you if you start with book 3. With that said, I thought the book was very good. Like his others, it was filled with great writing, was very visually descriptive and nicely put together. Lehane's strong suite is his excellent characters. They are complex, believable and interesting. I can see why Mr. Lehane uses some of them again and again in his novels (a male and female pair of Private Detectives). The book is written in the first person primarily, which I normally don't care for but works well here because it's not overdone (thus giving the reader many perspectives). Unlike his first two books, the villains and situations are not quite as intense so I was a shade disappointed there. He makes up the slack though in the plot with this one as it is even more of a twisty-turn mystery than the others. Overall, if you enjoy authors like Patricia Cornwell or Thomas Harris or Phillip Margolin, then I recommend you try this novel. You won't be disappointed.


The Glorious Cause (The American Revolutionary War)
The Glorious Cause (The American Revolutionary War)
by Jeff Shaara
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: $7.99
161 used & new from $0.01

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Second in the 2-part series and just as excellent., August 13, 2004
So you're looking for a good book about the American Revolution - something factual but not boring? Seeking a book full of those famous people and places you've learned about in school but never really got to know? Guys like Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, or George Washington? Or lesser knowns like Nathanial Greene and Lafayette? If you answered yes to any of the above, then stop looking, you've found the right set of books. Get this one and its predecessor "Rise to Rebellion" and enjoy.


The First Four Years (Little House)
The First Four Years (Little House)
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Edition: Paperback
Price: $6.99
390 used & new from $0.01

42 of 46 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Warning! Read This Before Buying!, July 13, 2004
The Little House series is fantastic for readers of all ages. Laura Ingalls Wilder is a wonderful writer. It was her intention that the series end in the nice, neat little wrap-up she included in "These Happen Golden Years." However, this novel, "The First Four Years," was published after both Laura and her daughter Rose had died. And after reading the text, I can see why these pages were not really written to be published. Foremost, the book is too sad. None of the cheerful quips and passages that fill the other Little House books are included in this one. It is only a detailed account of all the incredible hardships the young couple faces. Second, the book contradicts parts of the other novels (in fact it starts with the same marriage proposal scene captured so sweetly in "Golden Years" only in this version, Laura initially says no because Almanzo is a farmer and she can't stand the idea of being a farmer's wife!) These are things to keep in mind before getting this book. Admittedly, it is interesting to know what happens next to Laura, but this book is not like the others. Be prepared.


Little House on the Prairie
Little House on the Prairie
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $14.14
210 used & new from $0.01

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Adults too!, June 16, 2004
Laura's family once setteld. They are great books! I am seeing the whole experience from a new perspective now that I am 35 (relating more with Ma I think) and I am enjoying the stories completely. It's also nice because the books can be read in a single afternoon or just a few hours. A wonderful look at the pioneer life with details on cabin building and settling a piece of land. I highly recommend these books but suggest reading them in order to keep the story of Laura's adventures straight.


Little House in the Big Woods (Little House, No 1)
Little House in the Big Woods (Little House, No 1)
by Laura Ingalls Wilder
Edition: Paperback
Price: $6.99
436 used & new from $0.01

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Wondeful series for Adults to read (or read again) too, June 16, 2004
I read these as a youngster and I am re-reading them after a trip near Independence, Kansas where we saw a house where Laura's family once setteld. They are great books! I am seeing the whole experience from a new perspective now that I am 35 (relating more with Ma I think) and I am enjoying the stories completely. It's also nice because the books can be read in a single afternoon or just a few hours. A wonderful look at the pioneer life with details about cheese making, maple suger harvests, and cabin building (in the later novels). I highly recommend these books but suggest reading them in order to keep the story of Laura's adventures straight.


Angels & Demons
Angels & Demons
by Dan Brown
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $21.80
810 used & new from $0.01

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Whew! That was fun!, June 14, 2004
This review is from: Angels & Demons (Hardcover)
If you read it just to have a good time and not to learn any real facts about Catholicism, Rome, Science, etc, you'll greatly enjoy this novel. I certainly did. It's as good as "The Da Vinci Code" (and is the first Robert Langdon novel), until you get to the ending. For some reason, Brown just goes on and on with one "suprise twist" after another until it's actually silly. Still a fun summer read.


One Door Away From Heaven
One Door Away From Heaven
by Dean Koontz
Edition: Audio Cassette
27 used & new from $3.34

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Just Too Many Characters which Dilute a Good Story, June 2, 2004
Sometimes I read a book and think, "this should have been two or three separate books" and that was the case with this Koontz novel. With so many distinct characters running around and so many plot lines whipping every which way, the story just gets too thin in places to be a good read. With me, it's always hit or miss with Koontz. Some of his work is my absolute favorite reading material ("Watchers" especially) and other times I come across something like this. If only it had just been about the special boy, or the crippled girl, or the Private Eye, or the psycho Phd... but unfortunately, Koontz crams them all in and thus takes a bunch of good stories and creates a crummy one.


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