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Customer Reviews: 1049
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Helpful Votes: 7699


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Armin Tamzarian "Young man, I can assure you my posterior is nothing more than flesh, bone, and that metal plate I got in 'Nam." RSS Feed (United States)
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

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*NEW* OtterBox SYMMETRY CLEAR Series iPhone 6 Plus/6s Plus Case - Retail Packaging - GREY CRYSTAL (CLEAR/GUNMETAL GREY)
*NEW* OtterBox SYMMETRY CLEAR Series iPhone 6 Plus/6s Plus Case - Retail Packaging - GREY CRYSTAL (CLEAR/GUNMETAL GREY)
Price: $49.95
2 used & new from $49.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Least bulky OtterBox protection I've used so far, February 3, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This latest in the SYMMETRY CLEAR series of OtterBox cases is overall excellent and definitely on the "less bulky" side. I had no problem popping this on, but it was a little stiff coming off and that's a good thing - I don't want my cases to come off easily.

Since this doesn't come with a screen protector your options are to go commando or to use with a third party protector. I am already using a CellBee® [Shielding Gladiator] Screen Protector and this case goes on fine with it, but appears to cause my phone buttons to be a little stickier. Without the screen protector, the buttons are a little easier to use. In both cases using the SYMMETRY CLEAR case is typical in that extra force is needed to push buttons. I personally prefer that so I don't accidentally turn my phone on/off, but I would like the feel to be the same when I have on my CellBee screen protector.

As good as any, and the smaller size and less bulkiness is excellent.


OtterBox DEFENDER iPad Pro Case - Retail Packaging - Black
OtterBox DEFENDER iPad Pro Case - Retail Packaging - Black
Price: $92.47
5 used & new from $76.22

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Industrial strength protection, industrial strength weight, January 29, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is the case you get if you need to protect your iPad Pro in an industrial environment, like a factory floor. It is noticeably heavy (description, not criticism) so this isn't a case I'd recommend for the casual user who wants to protect their Apple investment while regularly carrying the tablet around. At 1.4 pounds it will almost double the weight of your iPad which should weigh about 1.6 pounds. Heavy.

The iPad is still quite usable in the case, and the holster/kickstand works nicely. I see this used primarily sitting on a desk in a hectic office environment.

It is hard to put on but that tells me that it's holding the tablet securely. Your iPad will not accidentally slip out.

I give it 5 out of 5 stars for being an honest product that does what it says it does.


Falling Skies Season 5
Falling Skies Season 5
Price: $19.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Worth watching if you have seen the series to date, January 23, 2016
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Pretty interesting if you have been following the previous 4 seasons. Plots are not as interesting as previous seasons either.


Kaplan LSAT Premier 2016-2017 with Real Practice Questions: Book + Online (Kaplan Test Prep)
Kaplan LSAT Premier 2016-2017 with Real Practice Questions: Book + Online (Kaplan Test Prep)
by Kaplan
Edition: Paperback
Price: $34.49
49 used & new from $29.74

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty good prep, but not much difference from 2015 edition. And it's HUGE!!!, January 23, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Kaplan cranks out tons of test prep books and they're all universally useful, some more than others. This is actually on the "more useful" side, basically because of its thoroughness.

About the book: Huge! Almost 1000 pages. Pretty standard Kaplan resource with an introduction and explanation of the test (LSAT in this case), followed by a very thorough explanation of the sections of the tests, and the types of questions. This is probably at its best as a practice resource since the bulk of the book is exactly that: practice.

Here's an example of a typical section of this book:

Chapter 5: Logic Games.

You get a nice single page essay about "Logic Games Question Types." This is followed by a listing of 4 types of logic games questions: acceptability; Must be/could be; New "if" questions; Other.

The rest of the chapter goes into a little more detail, primarily by example, on how to approach and answer each type of question.

This is all followed in Chapter 6 with full practice and numerous questions (answer key at end) allowing you to practice what you (hopefully) have learned.

Editorial comment: Statistical analysis has proven that using this, or any other test prep book, tends to lead to higher scores; test prep classes lead to higher scores; taking the test more than once tends to lead to higher scores. But there is no guarantee that any individual will get a higher score or an outstanding score. A lot of the negative comments about ANY test prep book usually says "I didn't do good - this book is awful." End of editorial.


Kaplan Math Workbook for the New SAT (Kaplan Test Prep)
Kaplan Math Workbook for the New SAT (Kaplan Test Prep)
by Kaplan
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.76
41 used & new from $9.46

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful, not spectacular - you get what you pay for, January 22, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Ok, this is a workbook more than a tutorial. With that in mind, it will help your score on the SAT. Actually, ANY prep and practice will help your scores on any standardized test, so there's nothing that special here. However, it is an honest resource that does appear to comprehensively drill you on the types of problems you will face on the SAT.

As with all Kaplan book this is organized very well and does a good job on incorporating problem solving approaches to different types of problems.

Note that his does come with an answer key (if you're curious) and also a full length practice test.

Kaplan's solid here, but if you are bad at math you should look for additional resources. If you're already in good shape, this is more like mathematical calisthenics for your brain.


Paper Mate Inkjoy Gel Pen, Medium Point, Black (1953045)
Paper Mate Inkjoy Gel Pen, Medium Point, Black (1953045)

5.0 out of 5 stars Now I hate regular ball point pens, January 20, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
First time I've used one of these and they already make me despise regular ballpoint pens. My biggest problem is that with most of our cheapie government issue pens that when I write on something that has even the faintest skin oil on it the ink doesn't apply - it's like it's empty. Skin oil gets on paper the second you pick it up.

Now with this Paper Mate Gel Pen. I picked up one of the 3x5 cards I usually take notes on and ran me finger over the surface. My BIC acted like there was nothing in it (on a clean piece of paper it wrote fine). The Paper Mate Inkjoy Gel Pen didn't have any issues.

Now, will this stuff smear? Yes. I got it to smear. But I had to try. I scribbled a little with this pen and then immediately rubbed the ink and it did smear! Barely. If you don't immediately start trying to smear it, it seems to set within a couple of seconds as advertised.

Love this pen.


Eagle in Exile: The Clash of Eagles Trilogy Book II
Eagle in Exile: The Clash of Eagles Trilogy Book II
by Alan Smale
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $21.20

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Now that we know why they built the mounds! . . ., January 15, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
UPDATE 20 JANUARY 2016 Re: Spoilers

Too many of the reviews of the first book in this series, including the highest rated review, give up one of the major surprising premises of this series. Yes, it may be a stupid premise, it may be a cool premise (I weigh in on "cool"), but I find it unforgivable when a reviewer spoils the surprise. The reader neither gets the opportunity to guffaw and yell "THAT'S STUPID!!!" nor discover something excellent about the plot. Giving away the premise is like reviewing the new Star Wars Movie, The Force Awakens, and complaining about the death of a certain character by giving their name.

ORIGINAL REVIEW:

This is definitely one of those "if you didn't read the first book, don't bother starting here" works. I do highly recommend author Alan Smale's first book in this series, Clash of Eagles: The Clash of Eagles Trilogy Book I. If you have read the first in the series, this is the typical lull before the storm volume typical of trilogies. There is a lot more character development and exposition about the Hesperian (New World) societies than in the first book.

Struggling not to give up any spoilers (including a really big one if you haven't read Clash of Eagles), the main difference between the first and second books is that the first one has a lot more large scale action. Smales is excellent with his battle scenes, and if I have any complaint about the series it's that there aren't enough such scenes. One of the fun things about alternate histories are the "what ifs" involving different historical technologies that never encountered each other. You do get that in these books where there are scenes where a Roman short sword (gladius) goes up against a native american chert war club. But Smales is much more fun when he's describing larger battles where tactics designed for specific weaponry is explored.

Having now read the first two legs of the triology, I can say that these are a lot of fun. Smales' research really brings the different native american societies to life. He unabashedly focuses on the native american groups, primarily through his Roman protagonist (think A Roman Praetorian Dances with Wolves). I'm looking forward to, and hoping, that the final book in the trilogy will once again let us inside Roman military society.

In the end, fun.


The New Advisor Guidebook: Mastering the Art of Academic Advising
The New Advisor Guidebook: Mastering the Art of Academic Advising
by Pat Folsom
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $51.74
37 used & new from $42.03

5.0 out of 5 stars Coherent, solid based introductory work and overview, January 8, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Based on my experience as a librarian who contributes to collection development decisions in the area of education, I am consistently negatively predisposed towards ninety percent of almost all of the academic works in the field of education. In this case, however, Folsom et al have actually produced a solid and honest introduction and overview to the field of academic advising.

The structure of the book is quite clear. After an introductory essay, the subsequent three sections break down into three foundational components: conceptual; informational; and relational. These three sections comprise about two-thirds of the entire work and give a consistent and coherent model for academic advising. There is a thoroughness, including relevant references, that I often find lacking in a lot of these pedagogically oriented works. The editors have nicely compiled essays by a large number of relevant contributing authors within each of the foundation areas.

This is an honest and well done work highly recommended to educators and education students embarking on a career in academic advising, and for libraries supporting programs involved in the certification of those same educators and students.


Design Toscano Chorus Line Cats Cast Iron Statue
Design Toscano Chorus Line Cats Cast Iron Statue
Offered by Design Toscano
Price: $32.90
2 used & new from $32.90

5.0 out of 5 stars Cuter than the pictures, January 7, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Obviously for cat lovers (or as a gift for a cat lover). The only problem I have is figuring out where to put this. That's actually a good problem since I find that as a purely decorative item it works in a lot of different places (see pictures).

Very heavy cast iron, as advertised, the four marching cats look ready to take on, um, my woodpecker lamp? I'm sure one could come up with something functional to do with this tchotchke, but I find just using it to spice up some spare space works fine. It COULD be used as a doorstop. It COULD be used to hold keys. It COULD be used as a bookend. Or it can just be used to make you smile (it makes me smile).
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Portlandness: A Cultural Atlas
Portlandness: A Cultural Atlas
by David Banis
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $17.56
34 used & new from $13.41

5.0 out of 5 stars Quirky but excellent reference for Portland, January 1, 2016
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
It would be great to see other similar works produced about various other cities, but this apparently wasn't a trivial undertaking. Both authors apparently have both the academic, cartographic, and analytical chops to pull off this eclectic snapshot of "many things Portland."

The book also going to be an excellent snapshot in time of a Portland that will transform and change, as all cities do. A veritable plethora of maps describing dimensions of the city from areas from where sidewalks exist/don't exist to a list of bridges that are and were.

Would somebody not from Portland get a lot out of this book? I'm not sure, but I was fascinated with the coverage of a city, even though it's not my city. If you are from Portland, going to spend some time in Portland, considering moving to Portland, or looking to create a similar tome for your own environs, this is highly recommended.


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