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The Host
The Host
by Stephenie Meyer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $19.53
954 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A book that made me sob, but didn't leave me depressed, August 18, 2009
This review is from: The Host (Hardcover)
I went into THE HOST thinking I was not going to enjoy it. As a 34 year old female computer scientist, I like science fiction television shows/movies, but I thought the book wouldn't be that good. I had a tough time getting through the first few chapters in the book. I thought the story was a bit too out-there for me, and a bit boring...

However, once the book settled in about 100 pages, I became engrossed by the story of this apocalyptic society of 20+ people living together. Stephenie Meyer's descriptive writing had me picturing every scene with vivid imagery. Her characters seemed more realistic because of their flaws - she didn't write people to be perfect like so many authors. I could feel the characters. I could picture the caves and smell the sulfur. The way Meyer was able to describe something as simple as a character's level of thirst, or sitting in solitude in the dark for hours without speaking or eating... It was gripping.

I could put myself into their situation and asked myself constantly what I would do if it were me. It wasn't so much a book about aliens and science fiction as it was an examination of humans and relationships. I rooted for characters to learn from their mistakes. I saw hope in humanity reading this book.

I've read some reviews where people were frustrated with the author making characters to be misogynistic. I believe that is over-simplifying the complex situation that these characters were put into.

The book brought forth a lot of emotion from me. I sobbed during sections of the book because it was so moving and emotional - yet, I didn't feel depressed reading it. It was almost cleansing. I highly recommend this book (though there will always be people that don't like it). To me, it was very much worth reading. Just believe me that it will get better if you find the first few chapters a struggle to read.

Debt-Proof Living: The Complete Guide to Living Financially Free
Debt-Proof Living: The Complete Guide to Living Financially Free
by Mary Hunt
Edition: Paperback
176 used & new from $0.01

42 of 42 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A practical guide that I am still using 5 years later, June 8, 2005
In 2000, I left Graduate School with over $20,000 in debt from a student loan, car loan, and credit card bills used to pay for groceries during my graduate studies. ($800/month is not a lot to live on!)

I didn't learn any sensible budgeting techniques in high school, college, or graduate school. I decided I needed to learn to handle my money better and needed to get out of debt. I found this book at the Christian bookstore and purchased it. It revolutionized my financial thinking. It took about 18 months for me to get out of debt, and I have stayed out of debt since.

1. KEY THOUGHT: The Freedom Account. To this day, I still use a Freedom Account. I am married now, but my husband and I have a freedom account fully stocked for a new car in our future, health care, flood insurance, home insurance, car deductibles, etc. It is so freeing to realize you have that money set aside for things that may well/are going to happen. A great technique.

2. KEY THOUGHT: The RDRP (rapid debt repayment plan). So many people tell you you should pay off your highest-interest debts first. To me, it was motivational to start with my smallest debts. It was like a steamroller taking the money that I once was paying for debt A and sending double,triple, or quadruple payments to debt b. I really liked this technique! Currently, my only debt is a house mortgage. I use techniques I learned from the RDRP to pay down my mortgage early as well. I usually make more than twice the monthly payment so I can end my 30 year mortgage within 8 years.

3. KEY THOUGHT: Save 10%, Give 10%, Live off 80%. I really liked that Mary had her 80/10/10 rule . I think it's so important to realize that you have to save and give while still paying off debts. It was a very unique view, and refreshing!

I really think people will enjoy this book. I also subscribed to Mary's Cheapskate Monthly newsletter for several years as I got my finances in order. One nice thing there is as a subscriber you can have access to all the previous issues! I learned about many things there not covered in this book: Price Books, Once-a-month Cooking, Maximizing Food Dollar Value, etc. Fascinating reading :)

I hope I've helped someone... At the very least, you could check tihs book out from a library to read... but, you will likely find that it is well worth the price to buy it!

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