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Reader X "RX" RSS Feed (Melbourne, Australia)

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Dont Call Me Ishmael!
Dont Call Me Ishmael!
by Michael Gerard Bauer
Edition: Paperback
40 used & new from $0.77

4.0 out of 5 stars A great read with excellent positive role models, March 26, 2015
This review is from: Dont Call Me Ishmael! (Paperback)
I read this book on the recommendation of my 11 year old son, who loved all 3 books in this series. It was a great read, made me laugh out loud, and provided some really good commentary on how kids can learn from others, form friendships and overcome bullying. The characters include some great stereotypes of typical kids seen in every school. The focus on the power of words, and (specifically) debating inspired my son to try out some debating techniques. There is also some good elements based around a character who has had surgery for a brain tumor, and his approach to fear. What does anyone have to be afraid of when they have faced brain surgery? A great read.


The Child That Books Built: A Life in Reading
The Child That Books Built: A Life in Reading
by Francis Spufford
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.02
79 used & new from $0.01

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars OK if you read the same books as a child, June 15, 2009
I love the idea of this book, and I really really want to like it more than I do, but I wonder if it only resonates with the reader if you have read the same books during your childhood as the author.

I enjoyed the autobiographical parts, struggled through the psychology because I felt I should understand it, but ended up skimming much of the book. Perhaps it's because I didn't enjoy the same books as Spufford when I was a child. If he had waxed lyrical about Anne of Green Gables I may have been more delighted.


The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution
The Art of Simple Food: Notes, Lessons, and Recipes from a Delicious Revolution
by Alice Waters
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $21.41
168 used & new from $5.71

33 of 43 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Very little that is useful for non-meat eaters, November 6, 2008
As someone who loves simple food and local food, I love the concept behind this book. As someone who is trying to eat less meat, I have hardly used this book because there are very few recipes that are not meat-centric. I have learned that just roast vegies taste fantastic, but was disappointed that so much of the rest of the book relies on meat as the major part of a meal.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 4, 2011 2:18 PM PDT


Sacred Harp Singing in Western Massachusetts 2000-2001
Sacred Harp Singing in Western Massachusetts 2000-2001
Price: $8.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Almost as good as being there, February 21, 2008
This is the CD I lend to people when I want to explain why I love Sacred Harp. It has all the raw energy that I associate with Sacred Harp singing along with fine quality recording, something the early field recordings lack, of course. It contains a wide range of songs, some with large groups of singers and some with small groups of singers. I love that you can hear the feet stomping! Now that I live in Australia, with only a small band of Sacred Harp singers, listening to this is almost as good as being there.


Noah's Ark
Noah's Ark
by Heinz Janisch
Edition: Paperback
24 used & new from $1.27

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Amazing illustrations let down by the words, July 8, 2007
This review is from: Noah's Ark (Paperback)
Perhaps it's just me, but I found the words in this version to be unusually stuffy. I really appreciated the ideas behind the way the story was told, but the words sounded too much like they had come from another world for me to enjoy them as much as the illustrations. The illustrations were mesmerising, beautiful and thoughtful. I loved the fact that more unusual animals were chosen, and the different perspectives on life inside the ark, and during the making of the ark.


Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen
Grub: Ideas for an Urban Organic Kitchen
by Anna Lappé
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.73
122 used & new from $0.01

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful, but not my local!, October 12, 2006
I love this book. It's wonderful to get an update on both good and bad farming practices and dietary habits since "Diet for a Small Planet", and wonderful to see so much hope for better eating. The recipes all sound so delicious and the ones that I've tried taste that way too. My only reason for giving it 4 * rather than 5 is that I'm not based in a large city in the USA where these ingredients are available. But in some ways, this is the point of Grub; a call to learn what is sold by small businesses in your local area, and a call to support local farmers. It's up to me to explore my local stores; for me this means learning to use the ingredients sold by my local Turkish, Vietnamese and Korean grocers, and what is grown by my local Italian, Greek and Vietnamese farmers. Grub encourages all to learn to use what is fresh, in season, and healthy. So I can only actually cook half of the recipes - but that's about average, and the book gives me inspiration to change my habits to find some of my own.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 17, 2012 1:23 AM PDT


Living with Less: The Upside of Downsizing Your Life
Living with Less: The Upside of Downsizing Your Life
by Mark Tabb
Edition: Paperback
Price: $12.92
51 used & new from $0.12

38 of 45 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Skimming the surface - but a good introduction, October 11, 2006
I read this book after reading a number of books on simple living, particularly from a Christian perspective, and perhaps that's why I found it less compelling than the other reviewers. I really felt that this book only skimmed the surface of the value of simplicity, so for me, was not a helpful resource at all. I became annoyed at the way the author endlessly quotes brand names (did he get commissions from Best Buy stores?) and relied heavily on a theology of a highly interventionist God.

It's easy reading thouh, almost like a sermon series, and if you are caught in a busy, materialist lifestyle it would be helpful, and fun to read. However, if, like me, you are already living simply and are looking for something to give you further inspiration, this is probably not the book for you,


Feminist Fairy Tales
Feminist Fairy Tales
by Barbara G. Walker
Edition: Paperback
Price: $14.99
81 used & new from $0.01

6 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Predictable rewrites that suck the good out of the originals, October 3, 2006
This review is from: Feminist Fairy Tales (Paperback)
Telling fairy tales to young ones used to worry me. Should we teach that all a girl needs in life is to find a Prince Charming to make them happy? Should we teach them that the beautiful are rewarded, and the ugly are happy only if transformed? Barbara Walker seems to believe that the only hope is to replace fairy tales with something much less offensive - rewritten "feminist fairy tales".

In the pages of her book we find rewritings called "Ugly and the Beast", "Little White Riding Hood" and "The Frog Princess". Unfortunately, they're all a bit laboured - the women are strong and ugly, but very, very predictable (although I still don't understand why Jill, now of beanstalk fame, travels to the "womb" of the earth and steals some new age crystals".

Walker lectures heavily, leaving no stone unturned - there is no elegant story-spinning here. If you want to read some true feminist fairy tales, leave Walker behind, leave Disney behind and get back to the originals. Read the real Brothers Grimm, read Angela Carter and Marina Warner's collections, read Italo Calvino, and Jacques Perrault. Many of these tales were feminist as originals, and it is only the later versions that have become saccharin-sweet.


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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, but beware of the price!, September 21, 2006
This is a wonderful book of songs, with unusual harmonies and lots of fuguing tunes (canons, or rounds). Some of the songs are well known hymn tunes, and others that are based on texts from Isaac Watts and Charles Wesley, but tunes that are less familiar. Please check other sources before paying the listed price. It is readily available directly from the publisher for $15.


Aussie Animals
Aussie Animals
by Rod Campbell
Edition: Hardcover
38 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple and interesting, July 17, 2006
This review is from: Aussie Animals (Hardcover)
My [...] started reciting this book after reading it a few times. The book has excitement both when you turn the pages "I can hear a digging noise. What can it be?" . After turning the page and identifying the animal "It's a WOMBAT!", there is then the fun of looking behind the flap to see a baby animal. Great fun, and good for learning about animals. Good, too, for additional interactive play - time to look in the garden behind piles of dirt for stray wombats!


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