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Helpful Votes: 33


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The Story of Spanish
The Story of Spanish
by Julie Barlow
Edition: Hardcover
48 used & new from $2.03

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Well written, interesting subject, fails in details, March 24, 2014
This review is from: The Story of Spanish (Hardcover)
I found this in the local library and was looking forward to reading it. The authors write really well and obviously have a love for their subject. Also, they get the basic history of Spain and language correct.

Unfortunately, it fails very often in the details, which is a real shame, because it ruins (for me) what would otherwise be a great and fun book to read. If you know nothing of the subject I think you can still get something out of it, but for someone like me who knows something on the subject it's sadly a bit of a waste of time.

Here are examples of the errors from the hardcover edition:

p.10
"toro" does not come from pre-Roman languages, it comes from Latin "taurus"
"puerco" does not come from pre-Roman languages, it also comes from Latin "porcus" (it even ends up in English in the form "pork", via Norman French).

p.25
the authors claim the English word "brother" comes from Latin "frater", which is way off... it's a Germanic word, like German "Bruder" and Dutch "broeder". They are similar to "frater", of course, but that's because Germanic and Latin both share Indo-Germanic roots.

p.29 (hardcover):
"sitio" supposedly comes from Germanic root when it come from Latin "situs"
"compania" also doesn't come from Germanic but Latin "companio"

I'm very surprised that all these errors would get through any kind of fact-checking or editing process.

For more accurate etymologies you can search Spanish words here: http://lema.rae.es/
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 7, 2014 11:04 AM PDT


Black Mens Leather Wallet Credit Card Holder With Coin Storage
Black Mens Leather Wallet Credit Card Holder With Coin Storage
Offered by Cygnet Gifts Online
Price: $11.99
2 used & new from $11.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Good wallet, November 16, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I purchased this item fairly recently so I'm not sure how well it will hold up in the long run. The wallet has everything I was looking for - space for cash, coins, and cards. It does not have the most space for cards, which is why I'm giving it 4 out of 5 stars - more card space would make it perfect. However, for the price this is a really good deal.


Smart Gear Wooden Classic Smart Balance Kids Bike
Smart Gear Wooden Classic Smart Balance Kids Bike
Offered by Green Beans
Price: $89.99
5 used & new from $89.99

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Child liked it, but poorly made and terrible support, July 30, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
My son absolutely loved this bike, and I've seen a lot of other kids enjoy bikes of this type.

Unfortunately I've found myself having to tighten the parts a lot more than I think I should, but I can forgive the occasional flaw. However, the fork of the bike broke within 6 months of usage. So far I am 27 days into the process of getting a replacement part and am none the wiser. The company's support system is absurdly obtuse and slow. For this reason alone I would recommend trying a different brand.


The Shadow of His Wings: The True Story of Fr. Gereon Goldmann, OFM
The Shadow of His Wings: The True Story of Fr. Gereon Goldmann, OFM
by Gereon Karl Goldmann
Edition: Paperback
Price: $11.42
109 used & new from $2.78

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, July 27, 2012
Unlike most of the reviewers of this book I am an atheist. It is a harrowing tale but well worth the read no matter what your cultural background. The inner strength of Goldmann through some of the worst possible places one could ever find oneself in are even beyond inspirational. It makes you want to change your life. Well worth the read, and the occasional re-read as well.


An Artist in Treason: The Extraordinary Double Life of General James Wilkinson
An Artist in Treason: The Extraordinary Double Life of General James Wilkinson
by Andro Linklater
Edition: Paperback
60 used & new from $2.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not your usual protagonist, May 17, 2012
In writing a historical narrative about General James Wilkinson, Andro Linklater chose a topic that always intrigued me for very personal reasons, being of both Spanish and American ancestry and having lived in New Orleans for many years.

The book is well-written, no doubt about that. But it suffers more than anything from the weakness of the story's protagonist. It is just difficult to read a story about a man who is ultimately a loser. I've found similar problems when reading about other historical villains; however, the heights reached by a Mao, Napoleon or Alexander, though they are obviously questionable human beings, are still epoch-making. Wilkinson is a story more of a dissolute, intemperate everyman, a rich kid who meanders through life and though he is able to achieve some goals ultimately falls short.

Another shortcoming is that a more thorough analysis of the Burr conspiracy would be desirable. Though the question of Burr's true intentions will apparently never be answered, the topic could have been explored more thoroughly.

The book does touch on some fascinating topics surrounding the general's life. The fragility of the early union as demonstrated by a constant secessionist threat allows Wilkinson's treacherous machinations with Spain to exist in the first place. The wretched treatment of the army as a source of political patronage make some of the divisive politics of our day seem overblown by comparison. His ability to remain commander-in-chief throughout from the administrations of Washington to Monroe, all extremely able and intelligent men, is a testament to his political skill in making himself the indispensable man in the military no matter who was in office. This is, in essence, the way bureaucrats have always survived, from his day to our own.

Though additional detail would have made it a more complete experience, ultimately I did enjoy reading the book, and Linklater's ends the work with a powerful passion and flourish.


No Title Available

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun and inspirational, May 15, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I believe that this book is really interesting and useful so long as you appreciate it for what it is. It is not an intense study of neurology - there is really a bare minimum of scientific detail. Also, a number of studies mentioned are not always balanced by contradictory studies or by more detailed mentions of other materials backing up the argument. Finally, the book does not always focus on creativity itself, but builds to a surprisingly didactic ending and goes through a lot of seemingly unrelated places to get there, that are nonetheless interesting to read.

Having said all that, I really enjoyed this book. It is full of wonderful stories and anecdotes, with a lot of handy ideas on how to enhance creativity in your workplace, your art studio, and even your family. It is well written, never dull, and well worth the investment.


Microsoft  Windows PowerShell 2.0 Programming for the Absolute Beginner, 2nd Edition
Microsoft Windows PowerShell 2.0 Programming for the Absolute Beginner, 2nd Edition
by Jerry Lee Ford
Edition: Paperback
Price: $34.99
44 used & new from $1.15

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Some interesting ideas, but lacks substance, May 1, 2012
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Just because the book is for beginners doesn't mean it should lack cohesion and substance. I believe that a more structured approach to the subject would benefit the reader. For example, equality operators are used from the start without explaining their syntax and usage. I found myself having to look up references online from the beginning, which means I may as well have started online.

That being said, I'm giving this two stars (instead of one) because it is just barely interesting enough to learn a few things.

Bottom line: do some web tutorials instead and buy a more advanced book when you get to that point.


A History of Knowledge: Past, Present, and Future
A History of Knowledge: Past, Present, and Future
by Charles Van Doren
Edition: Paperback
Price: $15.19
423 used & new from $0.01

4 of 15 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Factually inaccurate, February 24, 2012
I have never thrown a book into the trash until today. Various attempts were made to read or simply peruse this work, but I was unable to get past the astounding amount of factual errors. It is poorly written and rambles around various subjects, missing the point of its title entirely. Please discard this rubbish, it is total disinformation.
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 7, 2013 12:54 AM PDT


SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance
SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance
by Steven D. Levitt
Edition: Paperback
Price: $10.41
194 used & new from $2.15

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Good ideas, poorly researched, November 10, 2011
Both Freakonomics and Superfreakonomics are popular, clever, and highly readable works that challenge our common assumptions about how the world works.

Unfortunately, the ideas & solutions Levitt & Dubner propose are seriously undermined by a shocking lack of research.

One example: They flippantly dismiss any criticism of tech startup Intellectual Ventures as a "patent troll", when the only thing you will ever read about them in the media is that they are the most despised company in Silicon Valley, precisely because they hoard patents and make a living suing other companies for inventions they never made in the first place.

Their podcasts also suffer from the same basic flaw. They fall in love with a sexy notion about how the world works, and then present a very one-sided case for their point of view. Though entertaining, it makes it very difficult to trust them.

Perhaps the authors would have been better served challenging their own preconceived notions.


CoPilot Model A Double Bike Trailer
CoPilot Model A Double Bike Trailer

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars It works but has issues, April 19, 2011
This trailer has basically been functional. However, as has been noted, the clamp that attaches the trailer to the bike frame is very weak. It has a plastic component that wore out for us within a year and I've had to play with to make functional again. You'd expect better parts or design for the price of the vehicle.

There is also no proper brake on this thing. Highly inconvenient.

Otherwise, it does sit two children quite well, and rides fairly easily. If I'd spend the money again I'd buy a different trailer, however.


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