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Alexander Hamilton 1st (first) edition Text Only
Alexander Hamilton 1st (first) edition Text Only
by Ron Chernow
Edition: Hardcover
30 used & new from $6.57

5.0 out of 5 stars You Are There, April 23, 2015
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Have a PhD in Government from Claremont and taught politics in college for twenty years.

My teaching of the early years of government for this country would have been much better if Mr Chernows book had been available much earlier.

The detail and excellent writing will take you back to those times.


The Road to Character
The Road to Character
by David Brooks
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.80
91 used & new from $12.29

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed this book very much except for the principal ideas ..., April 23, 2015
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This review is from: The Road to Character (Hardcover)
Others have written synopses and I suggest you start with theirs to get the basics. I was a big fan of DB's Social Animal and wrote a review for it.

I enjoyed this book very much except for the principal ideas that Adam 1 is so strong and Adam 2 needs augmenting and extra emphasis. And as I am writing this, I can dismiss Adam 1 almost entirely.

Parents start with character and put the idea of right and wrong in all situations at the forefront of everything they do with their children, forever.

And children know this. They know that the first concern of the parents is always for the straight and narrow. Success means nothing without the basics.

Employers, partners, friends, mates all value the trustworthiness of the people they work live with and love first and foremost. It is the bedrock of association.

The book is very well researched and written. Again, I enjoyed it very much.

We only need to quietly take the idea of an Adam 1 to the trash can.

For other information about Mr Brooks, his Wikipedia page has much information. There is also a link to his two TED talks.


75 Glenn Miller Masterpieces
75 Glenn Miller Masterpieces
Offered by skyvo-direct-usa
Price: $15.99
39 used & new from $8.59

0 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, June 24, 2012
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First is the picture of the band leader. An artist's effort, no resemblance to the leader.

The warning on the back of the set box says every effort has been made to eliminate surface noise. Do not believe that is the problem.

The problems are a collection of mostly unfamiliar songs and the sound is poor.

The product is made in the UK and should not have left there.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 5, 2012 4:01 PM PST


Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China
Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China
by Ezra F. Vogel
Edition: Hardcover
47 used & new from $19.60

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The country and the man are mind boggling, March 26, 2012
Having been privileged to serve at the Muncipal, County and Federal levels in the United States, then compare my experiences with a leader of a country that has three times the population of the United States, a different governing system and culture during a time of rapid improvement is mind boggling indeed.

Others have said that truth is stranger than fiction and the most talented novelist would be hard pressed to come up with a more fantastic and improbable story than the life of Deng and the way he was able to create and produce his accomplishments against overwhelming odds and difficulties.

This book is much more than a biography as it includes much information about the country, its strengths and problems.

Author Vogel indicates that he was looking for an individual to express the center of the recent transformation of China and was repeatedly given the suggestion of Deng Xiaoping.

I belive Mr Vogel made an excellent choice.

One of the criticisms of the book is that it is repetitious. This is a big book with large scope and scale. I do not have a photographic memory and am grateful for being reminded at appropriate intervals of how where we are fits with material already covered.

Having lived through most of the events described in the book from the thirties until the nineties and seen them described from the United States, European, Korean, Vietnamese, and Russian views, this book was essential to me to obtain a more balanced view of what happened and to provide background for future events.

The book is presented from the Belknap Press of the Harvard University Press and represents the publisher well.


No Cheating, No Dying: I Had a Good Marriage. Then I Tried To Make It Better.
No Cheating, No Dying: I Had a Good Marriage. Then I Tried To Make It Better.
by Elizabeth Weil
Edition: Hardcover
105 used & new from $0.01

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Compares with Social Animal: Very funny, You will learn much-and the book should have a hernia warning attached-you may bust a g, March 13, 2012
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The Social Animal by David Brooks describes current psychology and social science in an interesting memorable book that provides a lot of knowledge in a palatable novel form with indexes and references for further study. In some ways it really is a textbook.

No Cheating, No Dying is about two writers who are well enough along in their marriage that the wife has concerns about the partners drifting apart and then she tries to make the marriage better. They partake of many of the helps available and provide hilarious information about what they found.

It is not the length and depth of The Social Animal. Where Brooks effort was a contrived novel to bring some life to his thoughts, No X 2 is real life and fall off your chair funny.

A most enjoyable and valuable one hundred and seventy two page read by a superb Elizabeth Weil.

Am going to send both books to our five grand-daughters.


The Hornet's Sting: The Amazing Untold Story of World War II Spy Thomas Sneum
The Hornet's Sting: The Amazing Untold Story of World War II Spy Thomas Sneum
by Mark Ryan
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.40
68 used & new from $0.97

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thomas Sneum had an incredible life and was fortunate to have the best possible author for his biography, September 28, 2011
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The subject of the book, Thomas Sneum, is most unusual and gifted, the author does the best job imaginable with his research and writing. If you review the author's background you may find that he is as gifted as his subject though his life is more conventional. His family says thank goodness.

The accumulation of knowledge, including many interviews with Mr Sneum, for the book by the author took most of a decade.

I am surprized that it took me three years to find the book, it deserves more wide acclaim and readership as it is one of the best biographies written and with the twists and turns of Mr Stenums life including the interest and suspense of the challenges he made for himself, no one could have written a better account.

Whether you choose the paperback edition or the Kindle version as I did, please find yourself a block of time before you begin as you will not want to stop until you have completed reading the biography. Great work, Mr Ryan. Thank you.

And thanks also to Amazon.


Kingpin: How One Hacker Took Over the Billion-Dollar Cybercrime Underground
Kingpin: How One Hacker Took Over the Billion-Dollar Cybercrime Underground
by Kevin Poulsen
Edition: Hardcover
41 used & new from $2.69

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thanks Mr Paulson and Wired for supporting his efforts, March 20, 2011
Safety and convenience. From online banking vs checks in the mail which save a half a day to email vs phone calls and letters we continually make our life more effective. That life for most of us includes a wide use of credit cards.

Kingpin contains well written, vital information.

The author reaches the conclusion that the credit card banks in the US are using ancient technology with safer encryption methods available that are not being used because it is cheaper for the banks too big to fail to continually expose us to losses and life disruption that could be avoided with a change to modern technology.

Our lives could be safer and much less disruptive.

Let's fix this.

After reading the book, maybe you can determine how to accomplish the change.


Crazy U: One Dad's Crash Course in Getting His Kid Into College
Crazy U: One Dad's Crash Course in Getting His Kid Into College
by Andrew Ferguson
Edition: Hardcover
137 used & new from $0.01

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Outstanding Reporting, Very Informative and Non Stop (almost) Fun, March 10, 2011
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Andrew Ferguson and his family present us with one of the epic struggles many families endure and that is helping a child transition to the first stages of adulthood with little left unsaid, with a master reporter's insight, rare access to people essential to explore the subject thoroughly, a superb gift for humor in unexpected places at times so unexpected that a lot of explosive laughter resulted.

Having completed several other careers in public service, I spent the first twenty years of retirement teaching in Southern California colleges and have an acquaintance with the issues discussed.

The information found in this book is most valuable, with information included that is difficult if not impossible to find anywhere else and is appropriate for the very wealthy and all of the rest of us.

I think you will like this book very much.


The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement
The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character, and Achievement
by David Brooks
Edition: Hardcover
269 used & new from $1.37

31 of 51 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Magnificent Accomplishment, March 9, 2011
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Mr Brooks is an Op-Ed columnist for the NYTimes, I read his work regularly and enjoy his efforts. He writes about public policy in his columns and some may see him as the token conservative for the Op-Ed group, but I think he is more of a middle road thinker between liberal and conservative. Have lived in Southern California my adult life and have completed careers as a Police Captain, Marine Corps Officer and Mayor. Have a PhD, two Masters and a Law Degree.

To see what the book is, I think we need to review the author's objective. He states that for many years during his writings of public policy he has been interested in the studies relating to the brain and psychology. The author says that he is borrowing a technique from Rousseau to create personalities to bring life to the ideas he discusses. I think there is a connection with being concerned about public policy and the brains that create public policy. Also in general I think we are interested in why we and others act the way we do and how we function mentally. In addition, we get a cross section of the economic and social levels in the United States, and visit inner large cities, Aspen and Davos.

The objective is a tall order. Some other commentators have mentioned a comparison of the outstanding work of Malcom Gladwell, who is quoted several times in this book. I believe a more apt comparison is with James Michener, who placed an even grander task before himself and created large sweeping novels. The criticisms of Mr Brooks book match those of Mr Michener as far as literary depth is concerned. All three authors in this paragraph are bringing us a huge amount of quality information extremely well written in an interesting manner with references for further study.

After you finish this very important book, please take some time to reflect on how many significant studies have been used to create this work, and how adept, enjoyable, compelling and memorable the author's efforts are.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 19, 2011 8:02 PM PDT


The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine
The Big Short: Inside the Doomsday Machine
by Michael Lewis
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $16.91
654 used & new from $0.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best of the bunch, February 25, 2011
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What caused these comments is one from Publishers Weekly. To quote the remark, If you are going to read just one book about the crash maybe it should not be The Big Short.

Have read most of the books available on the crash and did not read TBS until about the last. It is enjoyable, vital, well written, technical in a way the layman can understand, and thoroughly interesting. My opinion is if you are only going to read one book about the crisis, this is the one that should be read.


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