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Customer Reviews: 1151
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Helpful Votes: 4519




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Reviews Written by
Susan K. Schoonover "Sue Yingling" RSS Feed (Boulder, CO)
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Presonus Eris E4.5 2-Way Powered Studio Monitor
Presonus Eris E4.5 2-Way Powered Studio Monitor
Price: $199.95
18 used & new from $199.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Studio Sound But Sized For Home Use, April 20, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
These speakers are a great product. They yield a very high quality sound while taking up very little room in a home office area. I am simply using them as replacement speakers for my computer and I love them after listening to a variety of streamed music and films through them. The price is right for these as well considering the high quality offered.


Troika
Troika
by Adam Pelzman
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.42

3.0 out of 5 stars A Set Of Three, April 20, 2014
This review is from: Troika (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The new novel TROIKA is an unusual love story of sorts between three people. Perla a young woman who fled Cuba with her parents works as a dancer at a Florida strip club. She is probably the best realized and interesting of the three leads. Perla meets Julian a mysterious man who comes in the club and hires her for a private dance that eventually leads to some meet ups at his hotel room. Julian has a quite dramatic back story as he was born in Siberia, as a child killed a man there and after being orphaned shortly after that was sponsored in the NYC area by a wealthy man. Julian eventually became one of the richest men in Manhattan in his own right. After a few encounters with him Perla discovers Julian is married to the third leading character Sophie and to tell more about her would give away most of the story.

The tale is decently told though Perla by far is the most dynamic and interesting of the three lead characters. Potential readers be aware there are some very graphic passages about the realities of living as a quadriplegic. Other parts of the novel are quite melodramatic and overwritten and the resolution is extremely predictable. I have no problem giving this book three stars for a simply OK rating.


Brainwavz S1 In Ear Headphones
Brainwavz S1 In Ear Headphones
Offered by MP4NATION
Price: $59.50
3 used & new from $53.54

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars All Around Average Ear Headphones, April 19, 2014
These earbuds are not bad and yield a decent sound and are relatively comfortable in the ears. I tried them out listening to a variety of my favorite musicians on Pandora Radio and they yielded decent quality sound listening to everything from the Beatles to classical to show tunes and jazz. They are not flawless by any means and I would not pay the full almost $80 list price on Amazon for them but if you can get them for under $60 they are not a terrible buy and if you can get them for under $40 I'd even call them a bargain. A plus is they come in a nifty carrying case. I received a free pair of these ear headphones in exchange for an unbiased review.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 20, 2014 11:45 AM PDT


Olay Fresh Effects Dew Over Hydrating Gel Moisturizer, 1.7 Fluid Ounce
Olay Fresh Effects Dew Over Hydrating Gel Moisturizer, 1.7 Fluid Ounce
Price: $11.49
2 used & new from $11.49

4.0 out of 5 stars Light ,Pleasant Smelling Moisturizer, April 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This is a decent moisturizer for my fifty something skin. Thankfully it does not seem to flare my rosacea or adult acne prone skin and it does not leave a greasy look either. Not a miracle worker but a decent product at a moderate price that helps make your skin feel refreshed without doing any harm.


Samsung  MotionSync Bagless Upright Vacuum with Detachable Handheld Vac and Built-In Accessories - Refined Wine
Samsung MotionSync Bagless Upright Vacuum with Detachable Handheld Vac and Built-In Accessories - Refined Wine
Price: $399.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Another Amazing Samsung Product, April 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I love this Samsung vacuum cleaner almost as much as my Samsung smart phone and Galaxy tablet. Well, actually it is just a vacuum cleaner and the other devices do almost everything except clean the carpet. But I really am very impressed with this vacuum cleaner.

The filters on this machine are amazing. The room air actually seems to get cleaner as I am vacuuming. The 30 foot cord is plenty long. The dirt containers are very easy to empty, clean and snap back onto the machine. It takes a while to get used to the motion of the Dyson type ball, but it really picks up a lot of dirt very quickly. The first time I used it I did not realized the carpet brush has a separate on/off switch.

A few things I would like improvement on:

-- The 'handy' tool does not have enough suction. My small Royal Lexon canister with a brush does a much better job. It would be more convenient to use this hand held tool.

-- The carpet bush does not fluff up the carpet as much as other vacuums do. However, given how much dirt it picks up quickly in a small area I can't really complain about this.

The sleek, futuristic appearance of the machine is just an added plus.


North Korea: State of Paranoia: A Modern History
North Korea: State of Paranoia: A Modern History
by Paul French
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $93.56

5.0 out of 5 stars A lot of information and insight to an important and dangerous country, April 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
Paul French has provided a great examination of North Korea's history, economy, government structure and ideology. I especially liked the description of everyday life and the economics of North Korea. Pyongyang doesn't have to worry about traffic jams since there aren't many cars. And traffic is well-enforced since fines can be as high as two weeks salary.

The book gives a very good history of the Kim dynasty. Kim Il-sung was born the day the Titanic sank. Officials claim he was from peasant origins, however his father was actually a doctor and pharmacist.

One of the great insights of the book was a detailed explanation of how Khrushchev was able to de-Stalinize the Soviet Union and Deng was able to was able to alter Mao's decisions (70% good, 30% bad). In North Korea the rigid Juche thinking makes any alterations to ideology impossible. French describes Kim's government as a mixture of Soviet Marxism-Leninism, Maoism, Korean nationalism and Confucianism. The Confucian concept of an all-powerful leader and the successful transfer of power to the son has guaranteed the perpetuation of the cult.

The books gives an excellent discussion of the nuclear crisis and reunification.

This book is not a quick read by any means, but the time spent reading it is time very well spent.


King Oscar Sardines in Extra Virgin Olive Oil with Hot Jalapeno Peppers, Double Layer, 3.75 Ounce (Pack of 12)
King Oscar Sardines in Extra Virgin Olive Oil with Hot Jalapeno Peppers, Double Layer, 3.75 Ounce (Pack of 12)
Price: $32.95
2 used & new from $32.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Mine did not have Jalapeno Peppers, April 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The sardines I received were just sardines or maybe anchovies and they did not have any peppers or anything else with them. They were tasty enough and thankfully boneless and skinless and tasted basically like a fairly high quality tuna.


Thirty Girls
Thirty Girls
by Susan Minot
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $20.31
71 used & new from $13.34

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Too Much Jane, Not Enough Esther, April 13, 2014
This review is from: Thirty Girls (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
THIRTY GIRLS is the story of an American journalist named Jane who travels to Africa to try to document the stories of the school girls who were so horribly victimized by Joseph Kony's Lord's Resistance Army. Esther is one of the teenaged Ugandan girls Jane meets who was kidnapped by Kony and his followers to be used in unspeakable ways. Unfortunately THIRTY GIRLS chooses to focus mainly on Jane and her not particularly interesting past choices and current romantic life rather than the stories of Esther and the other victims who for me were the reason I chose to read the novel. Call me cynical but I couldn't help thinking the topic/setting of this book was chosen to capitalize on all the interest the atrocities of the LRA were causing in the US because of a viral video showcasing their insanity around the time Minot probably wanted to start a new novel. Another recently published novel COINCIDENCE features the LRA in a subplot and I learned more about this awful group from that book then THIRTY GIRLS which supposedly focuses on its victims. THIRTY GIRLS is the first book I have read by well regarded author Susan Minot and as some critics are calling it her best I don't think I will be seeking out her other novels.


People of the Great Journey
People of the Great Journey
by O. R. Melling
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.86
8 used & new from $11.86

3.0 out of 5 stars Starts Well But, April 13, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I really liked the first few chapters of PEOPLE OF THE GREAT JOURNEY. Olwen the heroine/narrator who at almost fifty is refreshingly middle aged receives a mysterious invitation to attend a gathering on a Scottish island from someone unknown to her named "Rose". At this event she finds herself on a mystical, sometimes nightmarish journey to find her authentic life. The book is very heavy with Celtic mysticism a subject I know little about as well as some other topics I would file under new age that don't particularly "speak to me". After the promising beginning the book left me in metaphysical confusion. I can think of people I know who would adore this book. I am not one of them.


Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won't Go Away
Plato at the Googleplex: Why Philosophy Won't Go Away
by Rebecca Goldstein
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $18.26
73 used & new from $12.95

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sadly, Over My Head, April 12, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I have to admit I never took a philosophy class in college but with a son who is considering a second major in the subject as well as the clever title I chose to read and review this for the Vine program. Sadly I found I apparently don't have enough background (though I have read The Allegory of the Cave) to get all the author's references. This may be an excellent book for those with a thorough background in the subject but frankly for the most part it is over my head.


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