Profile for Silea > Reviews

Browse

Silea's Profile

Customer Reviews: 860
Top Reviewer Ranking: 784
Helpful Votes: 5734




Community Features
Review Discussion Boards
Top Reviewers

Guidelines: Learn more about the ins and outs of Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Silea RSS Feed (Pacific Northwest)
(TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20
pixel
DermaSav Barrier Cream and Skin Protectant, 4 Ounce
DermaSav Barrier Cream and Skin Protectant, 4 Ounce

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful for far more than diaper rash (at any age), September 18, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
If you have sensitive skin, are prone to rashes or skin-cracking dryness, give this stuff a shot. Yes, it's basically diaper cream plus calamine lotion, but think about that - what better combination of goo could you put on your latest round of contact dermatitis? Sure, it's a bit messy since it doesn't soak in (hence the name 'barrier cream'), but your skin will thank you.


Spark: A Novel
Spark: A Novel
by John Twelve Hawks
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.23

4.0 out of 5 stars The language is part of the story, September 18, 2014
This review is from: Spark: A Novel (Hardcover)
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I admit, it took me a few pages to get the hang of reading this book. It's told in the first person, that first person being one with a neurological disorder, and thus the way he perceives the world and the way he narrates are very abnormal. However, once you get the hang of it, you'll realize that the language itself is as much a plot element as anything else.

I liked this book, the way the past and the present are woven together such that the conclusion is the result not of a linear story but of a non-linear one. If the author had simply told it chronologically, it would have far less power and make less sense.

My only quibble is that the author's political cosmology goes past simply informing the story to outright overshadowing it sometimes. What starts as Underwood progressing toward a critical point in his life becomes, by the end, a puppet-show by the author to show us the dangers of a surveillance state and a citizenry without privacy.


The Authors Hand and the Printers Mind: Transformations of the Written Word in Early Modern Europe
The Authors Hand and the Printers Mind: Transformations of the Written Word in Early Modern Europe
by Roger Chartier
Edition: Paperback
Price: $23.12
30 used & new from $12.47

4.0 out of 5 stars Densely academic and quite interesting, September 18, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
This book is not for people expecting a light read on the history and social implications of the printed word. It is an academic text, written by and for academics. If you can't get through the following sentence without some sort of unpleasantness, do not order this book:
"That model of intelligibility that speaks pertinently to the multiple transactions that lend (or that attempt to lend) authority to all texts and all books that offer discourses within the regime of the true and the false." (pp 65-66)

If you can parse, digest, and understand a sentence like that, then i do highly recommend this book. The author's research and ruminations on books, their history, their meaning, and their importance are thought-provoking and intriguing. The language can be a little stilted at times, though i don't know if i should blame the author or the translator (or both) for that.


T.S. Shure Say It with Stamps Wooden Stamp Set (63-Piece)
T.S. Shure Say It with Stamps Wooden Stamp Set (63-Piece)
Offered by Quidsi Retail LLC
Price: $38.79
3 used & new from $24.45

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great stamp set for kids, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The description for this product includes such grandiose tidbits as 'heirloom-quality storage box' or somesuch. While i admit that the box is lovely, solid wood with joinery at the corners, no one is going to mistake this for an heirloom now or 100 years from now.

Likewise, it says this would be good for scrapbooking. I'm not a scrapper, myself, but i've known a few, and i don't think they'd consider this the ideal set. Better than nothing, sure, but the random style on the letters and the kid-centric set of designs on the other stamps is not anything they'd use if they had other options.

Realistically, this is a set for kids. 26 letters, an exclamation point and a question mark, and then a bunch of kiddie shapes like flowers, stars, hearts, and bubbles. A few message stamps ('thank you', 'to my best friends', etc). A few teacher stamps ('excellent', 'good job'). Now that i think of it, this isn't just a kids' set, it's a classroom set.

There are some nice touches, though. For example, the dual-color ink pads make it really easy to make the 'good job' stamp split along the middle, so 'good' is one color and 'job' is the other (i suggest pink and purple for this, as the black/blue inkpad makes it look oddly corporate). And the ink wipes off a toddler's fingers with just a damp rag.


LeapFrog LeapReader Read and Write Activity Book, Disney/Pixar Write it!
LeapFrog LeapReader Read and Write Activity Book, Disney/Pixar Write it!
Price: $17.99
5 used & new from $17.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Quite a challenge at the lower side of the age range - and comes with an extra set of worksheets, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
My kid just started kindgergarten, so he's within the suggested 5-8 age range, but many of the activities are simply beyond his skills at this point.

He still enjoys the stories, despite not having seen any of the movies that go along with them, and has already learned a few things from the activities. For example, symmetry. I didn't teach him that word, or what it means, but now he knows. His execution on the symmetry drawing pages was, well, age-appropriate, but he's got the concept down.

I also suspect that i wasn't the only parent constantly whining about how quickly the kids go through the little single-use worksheets that come with this type of book, because this one comes with a whole second set of them. I'm going to hide them away, so that in a year or two i can bring them out and he can try the drawing tasks when his fine motor skills are a bit more solid.


Spot it! Disney Planes - Alphabet
Spot it! Disney Planes - Alphabet
Price: $12.16
27 used & new from $8.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Good, even for kids under 3, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
My littling is a bit younger than the recommended age for this product, but he still loves it. Instead of playing the game as described, we lay out a bunch of cards and ask him to find, say, the letter 'o'. He'll pick up every card with an 'o'. He knows about half the letters, so this gives us a handy way (other than his 'game' of stopping me in the middle of story time to point to each letter on the page in turn) to introduce new ones. For example, "This is a 'j'. Can you find some more 'j's?" Off he goes, scooping up 'j's.


Spot it! Doc McStuffins- Numbers & Shapes
Spot it! Doc McStuffins- Numbers & Shapes
Price: $11.79
25 used & new from $8.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Good even for kids younger than the suggested 3+ years old, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
My littling is a bit younger than the recommended age for this product, but he still loves it. Instead of playing the game as described, we lay out a bunch of cards and ask him to find, say, the purple ball, or the yellow triangle. He looks at all the cards and picks up the ones that match the task. We're starting to use it for the number, too, but that's (obviously) a bit harder.


Spot it! Disney Princess - Words
Spot it! Disney Princess - Words
Price: $12.16
28 used & new from $8.00

5.0 out of 5 stars A fun way to learn sight-words and improve reading - great even for kids who haven't seen every (or any!) disney princess movie, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
While i'm sure kids who dress us as Belle for halloween and keep a spare Cinderella costume in their closet for emergencies will like this game the best, it's also a great deal of fun for kids who couldn't pick a Disney Princess out of a line-up. It's surprisingly challenging for adults, too - matching words to words, words to pictures, and pictures to pictures takes a bit of mental agility. (The instructions contain a full list of images and their associated words, which is handy because a few are a bit obscure. None of us could figure out what the lantern was until we checked. It also helpfully gives all the princesses names, but none of those are written out on the cards so you don't need to memorize them.)

We pretty much only play the simplest version of this game: flip two cards, and whoever finds a match first takes them. Whoever ends the game with more cards wins. Even after just a few rounds, it's already improving my kindergartener's sight-reading.


Dumplings All Day Wong: A Cookbook of Asian Delights From a Top Chef
Dumplings All Day Wong: A Cookbook of Asian Delights From a Top Chef
by Lee Anne Wong
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.54
46 used & new from $13.72

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Complicated, but worth it, and most of the recipes can be turned vegetarian quite easily., September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
I think the worst thing about this book is the 'celebrity chef' aspect. The author is compelled to name-drop every restaurant she's worked at in the various introductions to recipes. I'm glad she's had a successful and varied career, but i'm here for the dumplings, thanks.

Ok, down to business: dumplings are pretty complicated. Most of the recipes have a frighteningly long list of ingredients. However, most of the recipes have a very short list of instructions - typically, you dump it all in a food processor, then wrap it in one of several kinds of wrapper, then cook it in one of a few ways. If you're feeling lazy, store-bought wonton wrappers work on almost all of them, and usually at that point you can pan-fry or deep-fry as you see fit. And in most cases, if you're not worried about authenticity, you can do any kind of fold you want rather than concern yourself with the exact instructions given.

I've had more hits than misses with this cookbook, but one must keep in mind, i'm a vegetarian, which means i have to modify most of the recipes. This is ridiculously easy in some cases (the cheeseburger dumpling just required swapping ground meat for ground fake-meat), but disastrous in others (tofu is too slick to use in place of the pork for the scotch egg dumpling, and picking tofu-covered quail eggs off the carpet is harder than you might think).

If anything, i think the recipes tend to err on the side of mild. Take, for example, the kimchi mandu. A cup of kimchi is diluted with almost a cup of tofu and a wad of cellophane noodles and carrots and mushrooms, then wrapped in a thick dough. Starting with a fairly strong kimchi, i reduced the noodle volume and used thin wonton wrappers and could still barely taste the kimchi. It could just as well have been plain cabbage.

This is my first dumpling cookbook, and while i enjoy eating dumplings, i know very little about them. I can't promise that all, or even any, of these recipes are 'authentic'. I can, however, tell you that they're darn tasty.


Comics Squad: Recess! (Comic Squad)
Comics Squad: Recess! (Comic Squad)
by Dav Pilkey
Edition: Paperback
Price: $7.19
42 used & new from $3.97

4.0 out of 5 stars A fun sampler of kid-friendly comics, September 16, 2014
Vine Customer Review of Free Product (What's this?)
The only comic in here that made me, a boring old adult, laugh at all was the one full of puns that kids probably wouldn't get. However, there's a pretty good variety of styles here, of both art and humor, so there's bound to be at least one entry that'll catch a kid's fancy and open doors to new ways to read.


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11-20