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The Scourge of Muirwood (Legends of Muirwood Book 3)
The Scourge of Muirwood (Legends of Muirwood Book 3)
Price: $3.99

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Started off strong but then devolved into moral and thinly veiled religious blather, May 15, 2014
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Well, to start off with, the writing IS good. A slightly older fashioned style but it works well. The first book in this series showed major potential and I was excited that I could get all three discounted and read straight through.

It was with the second book that I began to have misgivings. It's impossible to ignore the blatant plagiarism to Judeo-Christian texts. Floods wiping things out? Mystic power that guides you only if you believe in it? Water rites? Woman being the source of evil? For goodness sakes, if you're going to write something, why write something that's already been written and simply give things different names? Reassertion and supernaturally fast healing? Poisonous cider into water? Yet still, I read on because there were so many stellar reviews of this series already on Amazon.

The last book was a trudge to get through. It was massively repetitive and I could simply guess what was going to go on because I already had a western religions course in college. I don't mind drawing from such things (and the author admits to it in his afterward or forward in the earlier books) but please, add something new.

My main issue, religious rip offs aside (and if you have any issues with believe in God as a guiding power, this book IS NOT FOR YOU), Lia was terribly boring and a huge Mary Sue. She goes through no real hardship that isn't rather easily fixed by the Medium a page later. Not only that but she is suddenly a hunter because we skip a year in time and any time there might be a situation where she doesn't know an answer or path (because lets face it, she was brought up in a kitchen) she gets a feeling that happens to be right because of her faith in the medium.

Then, the ending. What a bizarre thing. We're given a summary of how things ended up in the last four pages only to have all of it contradicted in the last four paragraphs. What? I'm still not even really sure why certain things were relevant. Such as, why did Corvin have to marry Ellowyn? Any of the Ellowyns? It was never brought into the story. And that's merely one example of things left dangling and quickly mentioned in passing, as if the author had gotten to his word limit and needed to make a halfhearted pass at wrapping things up.

What are these books for? One thing I did really like was picking out certain sentences to highlight, particularly in the chapter headers of the first book. There was a good deal of food for thought in those. Unfortunately Wheeler was unable to move that into the greater context of his book.

Overall, I wouldn't recommend this, which is a shame since it's highly rated. Another example of not being able to trust book reviews off Amazon (most other products don't have this problem).


A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life
A Street Cat Named Bob: And How He Saved My Life
Offered by Macmillan
Price: $9.08

5.0 out of 5 stars For what it was, it was great, October 28, 2013
I started reading this while loitering in a store waiting for some friends. One noticed and gifted it to me as a birthday present. It's a short read based on a short moment in time of this man's life and how Bob changed it. It's heartwarming with it's ups and downs. If you want philosophy, this isn't it but if you want to feel good about animals and people, then go for it.


Thirteen Hours
Thirteen Hours
Price: $9.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Almost perfect, October 12, 2013
This review is from: Thirteen Hours (Kindle Edition)
As another reviewer said, this book is great...when you're only dealing with the two protagonists. It's a big one dimensional in that the entire book takes place only between these two characters. There's not much of a "world" to picture them in aside from some brief family interaction. Other than that, the story telling between these two is superb. You'd think you were getting 13 hours in an elevator, but it's so much more than that. I highly recommend if you're just looking for a book to relax with.


World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War
by Max Brooks
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.35
436 used & new from $2.38

5.0 out of 5 stars Not a character based book- humanity reins, April 20, 2013
A lot of the reviewers giving this book three or fewer stars are the kind of people who want to get attached to a hero and follow him/her as they smash through hoards of zombies. This is not that kind of book. Instead, it is a history of humanity's greatest challenge, survival against an ultimate predator, and therefore draws voices from as many realistic segments of society. The character you follow is an abstract one- humanity's struggle to survive- and just like a flesh and blood character you get addicted to the initial confusion, fear, hopelessness, determination, and eventual success. Just because there is no single name to pin it own doesn't make it any less awesome.

Yes there are elements of Brooks own ideology but any author who writes includes their own thoughts in some form. None of them are hugely offensive and if you find them so take a reality check- people exist with those ideas. Better learn to live with them.

This was one if the scariest books I've ever read. Murder mysteries and zombie gore feast are more shocking then scary. This book is scary because if you replace zombies with any real sort of infectious disease, bird flu, SARS, H1N1, you really could see people reacting exactly how this book describes. And that, is scary.


The Outcasts: Brotherband Chronicles, Book 1
The Outcasts: Brotherband Chronicles, Book 1
by John Flanagan
Edition: Paperback
Price: $8.99
81 used & new from $3.44

5.0 out of 5 stars Simply a good story, October 12, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Everything about this book, much like the rest of his Ranger's Apprentice series, is just good story telling. It's interesting, face paced, detailed without being overwhelming, and packs in wholesome morality that boys need to hear (in the only effective way - through stories of competition and battle). A great story for a son, grandson, nephew, or friend and also everyone else ages 9-99.


Star Trek: Voyager: The Eternal Tide
Star Trek: Voyager: The Eternal Tide
Offered by Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
Price: $5.74

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The good keep getting better!, September 19, 2012
I'm so happy that Beyer keeps writing for Voyager. Honestly, the first two post-season books were pretty sucky but luckily for us, Beyer has revived and upgraded! It's a page turner for sure and ties in quite nicely with the previous books. The only real downside was that the plot got a little complicated and hard to follow when it got deep into the time-space mechanics, but dealing with the multiverse will do that to anyone. Overall, I highly recommend if you're a Voyager fan.


Life Everlasting: The Animal Way of Death
Life Everlasting: The Animal Way of Death
Price: $9.99

15 of 24 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Know what you're buying, July 8, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
The book is well written and engaging but about halfway through I realized that this is not what I was expecting. The title is a misnomer. It should instead be something more like "From Death to Life: A cycle with no beginning or end". I was hoping to read examples of animals dealing with the own dead members or other species either through consumption or more unexplained behavior (of which there could be a decent number of individual and colonial species examples) but instead it was more about this fellow on his Maine/Vermont property watching things decompose. Which would've been fine if I wasn't expecting something else.
The idea is pretty basic- we are everything that's ever come before us- and if you've been exposed to or accept that idea already, the book is fairly boring. There are moments of great interest, particularly when he goes into details about various kinds of beetles, but they are short-lived and overall this book was most useful for the list of suggested reading in the back.


The Olympics Beat: A Spectator's Memoir of Beijing
The Olympics Beat: A Spectator's Memoir of Beijing
Price: $0.99

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Unique perspective but without too many solid facts, July 2, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I must start off by saying this book is well written and is great if you're looking for insight into the two weeks of the Beijing 2008 Olympics but lacks a little substance. Young has a fun writing style that engages all five senses. Having said that, that's not a style I particularly enjoy and at times the descriptions felt over the top and forced. Having also been in Beijing during this exact time period, I agree with many of her conclusions but also feel that there's a bit of nativity in her outlook on how China was at that time.

A bit more research and comparison to China of the past would've supported her claims that China really was newly showcasing itself to the world with these 2008 Games while still holding on to the fact that this novelle is a memoir and based off her personal experiences. I would've like to have heard more about how other cities tore themselves apart and rebuilt and had her compare that to what she saw.

Overall though, I enjoyed this for what it was and for 99c you can't really go wrong with it and I hope Young decides to write again, more in depth, on a similar topic.


Integrated Chinese, Level 1, Part 2 (Chinese and English Edition)
Integrated Chinese, Level 1, Part 2 (Chinese and English Edition)
by Tao-Chung Yao
Edition: Paperback
36 used & new from $4.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very complete and useful, September 26, 2007
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
This book, compared to my last one, is much better. The cultural notes are up to date, the words and conversations are relevant to today's world, and everything-characters, pinyin, and english is easily accessible to the reader. I definitely would recommend it.


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