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Charles S. Fannin's Profile

Customer Reviews: 29
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Charles S. Fannin "Chuck Fannin" RSS Feed (San Jose, CA USA)

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3.0 out of 5 stars Great Blog, delivery is problematic, January 7, 2015
This review is from: Lifehacker (Kindle Edition)
I would give the content of this blog five stars. Lots of interesting tips and tricks, some things to think about, and some good deals on tech gear.

However, since I first subscribed, it stops updating at the beginning of every month and I need to unsubscribe/resubscribe to start getting it again. Fix this, and I give it five stars.

Spirit of Steamboat: A Longmire Story (Walt Longmire Mysteries)
Spirit of Steamboat: A Longmire Story (Walt Longmire Mysteries)
Offered by Penguin Group (USA) LLC
Price: $9.93

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thrill Ride!, October 19, 2013
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I forgot I pre-ordered this, noticed in on the Kindle this morning. Done. Couldn't stop. Not a mystery, if you are paying attention you figure out who the mystery woman is right way. It is an edge of the seat thriller, but because it is told as a flashback you already know the outcome. Best if you have read other Longmire stories first, so that you already know the characters. The meat of the story spans a couple of hours time, one crisis after another. Walt has to save the day, repeatedly. Lucian and Doc Isaac also hold their own.

It is a novella, it won't take long. Open it up, and enjoy the ride. Looking forward to the next novel.

(This one could probably be adapted very well into an episode of the TV series.)
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 20, 2013 2:54 AM PDT

Holy Toledo: Lessons From Bill King, Renaissance Man of the Mic
Holy Toledo: Lessons From Bill King, Renaissance Man of the Mic
by Ken Korach
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.40
34 used & new from $6.49

8 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Looking forward to the book, please make available for Kindle!, September 2, 2013
A book about the great Bill King just needed to happen, hopefully this is the impetus for his deserved enshrinement in Cooperstown. We trust his last broadcast partner, Ken Korach, is going to do him justice. We have already ordered a hardcover autographed by Ken, but would really like it in eBook, as well.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 7, 2013 7:18 AM PDT

The RCA Albums Collection
The RCA Albums Collection
Price: $159.99
25 used & new from $96.04

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The originals, and then some, July 18, 2012
I was pleasantly surprised by this collection. I expected each CD to have the same tracks as the original vinyl, which is what one would expect looking at the CD sleeve reproductions of the original album covers. However, many of the discs contained extra tracks that were included when the CDs were released individually. The booklet that comes in the box contains the complete track listings, along with more interesting background material.

Listening to the discs in order, you get an idea how his musical style evolved over the years.

The quality of all the CDs is excellent. If you are a John Denver fan, and want all of his RCA albumbs in one compact package, this is for you. If you just want an overview of his work, better to buy the Greatest Hits collections. (Which are also included in this set.)

If all you remember from the 70s is "classic rock", and don't understand why anyone would listen to this artist, then I don't know why you are still reading this.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 20, 2014 10:07 AM PST

A Blaze of Glory: A Novel of the Battle of Shiloh (Civil War: 1861-1865, Western Theater series)
A Blaze of Glory: A Novel of the Battle of Shiloh (Civil War: 1861-1865, Western Theater series)
Offered by Random House LLC
Price: $9.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Battle between the armies, battle within the armies, June 16, 2012
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The other books Jeff Shaara has written cover periods of months, or even years. This book covers a single battle lasting TWO DAYS. (Although it also covers the days leading up to the battle) Events are detailed, from several viewpoints, hour by hour and even minute by minute. If any literature can give you a sense of what it felt like to be there, this is it. The cliched term "Fog of War" becomes very real.

Along with the riveting account of battle, you also get the internal battles within the command structure of each army. There is plenty of detail about "The Men who carry the rifle", as well as soldiers on horseback.

Spoiler Alert! Besides details of the battle, the conditions in the camps of both armies, and even the food the troops were served, is detailed. Too Much Information? I don't think so, not if you want to get a sense of the conditions the men doing the fighting had to endure.

The gruesome details of the battle, and the aftermath, are told in excruciating detail. You even get s sense of something unthinkable to the majority of us who have never been in combat, men who were in the middle of the action admitting they love it, and yearn for more.

An intense but ultimately rewarding read. I am looking forward to the next volume.

Dangerous Ground
Dangerous Ground
Offered by Macmillan
Price: $7.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice combination of technology and team dynamics, May 19, 2012
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This review is from: Dangerous Ground (Kindle Edition)
Back before Amazon, when I went to bookstores more often, it was always a treat when to discover something good on a Friday afternoon, start reading, and finish sometime early Saturday morning. This is that kind of book. Except now, I'm more likely to stumble across a good deal for the Kindle on a Friday, download it, and start reading. You can say I "have no life", but if you are reading this review, odds are neither do you.... :)

Larry Bond has written some big epics, like "Red Phoenix" and "Cauldron". This is a very good story on a much smaller scale, submarines stalking each other in the northern Atlantic. The main character, Pete Mitchell, is a grounded Navy pilot who has switched to submarines, trying to break into another elite fraternity, nuclear submariners. There are internal conflicts to be resolved on the US sub, as well as an external threat, the Soviet submarine trying to stop them from completing their mission.

The characters are interesting, you care what happens to them. I always like it when the author gives you insight into the characters on the other side, and Larry Bond is good at that. The technology is interesting, Mr. Bond finds a way to put Pete Mitchell's pilot skills to work, while still underwater. Also a very entertaining chapter about the ritual submariners perform for crewmen crossing the Arctic Circle for the first time. Don't know if there is any truth to it, but given the author's knowledge of submarines, there just might be.

An entertaining read. Also first of a series, and the next two get progressively better. Best to read this one first, order does matter.

Rendezvous with Destiny: Ronald Reagan and the Campaign that Changed America
Rendezvous with Destiny: Ronald Reagan and the Campaign that Changed America

5.0 out of 5 stars Epic and approachable, May 11, 2012
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This book gives you a day-by-day breakdown of the 1980 presidential election. The focus is on Ronald Reagan, but all other major candidates are covered. Many of the names of people involved in this campaign are more recognizable today, even George W Bush is mentioned.

Mr. Shirley is exacting in his research, he gives reasons why Reagan won the election, and also tells you how he almost lost it. (By waiting almost too long to fire his first campaign manager) This election is remembered as a landslide, but the author drives home the point that until the final hours, the outcome was no sure thing.

I learned things about Ted Kennedy that gave me new respect for him. He was asked to say that Reagan was anti-Catholic to help Jimmy Carter win, and that he would not do this because is was not true. According to this book, many members of the Kennedy family voted for Reagan in 1980.

Long and detailed, scenes in hotel rooms, restaurants, TV studios and on the campaign airplanes are described in detail. It is not a breezy overview. If you are not a fan of "nuts and bolts" history, this is not a book for you.

There is no doubt that Mr. Shirley is a Reagan fan, but he is fair to all of the subjects he covers.

Make sure you have time to read before digging into this. One more thing: the picture on the cover is stirring and appropriate.

Robert B. Parker's Lullaby (Spenser Book 40)
Robert B. Parker's Lullaby (Spenser Book 40)
Offered by Penguin Group (USA) LLC
Price: $9.25

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not Parker, but pretty good, May 3, 2012
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Ace Atkins "gets it", this book has much of the feel of one of RBPs Spenser novels. He plays it safe, staying in the Boston area and using many of the recurring characters that we have come to know. Nothing wrong with that, it gives him a lot to work with! Hawk had not appeared in the last two RBP Spenser novels, but he is a major part of Lullaby. With Spenser, there is always the "story within the story". In this case, he is trying to help 14 year old Mattie find her way, while he looks for the person who killed her mother 4 years ago.

These stories are always told from Spenser's point of view. The author knows his way around inside Spenser's head, from way he reads people. to the literary, food and sports references, to the way he notices attractive females. It is pure Spenser. The action scenes are fast and graphic, also the way Parker wrote them. No beating around the bush.

As good as this is, there is still room for improvement. The dialogue between Spenser and Hawk, or Spenser and Susan, is not reminiscent of Parker. I used to laugh out loud at some of the exchanges between Spenser and Hawk. In this book, Hawk sometimes sounds more like Spenser. It can't be easy writing for characters that another author spent 40 years perfecting, hopefully this improves with the next book.

A solid beginning for Mr. Atkins, looking forward to the next one.

Second Wind: The Memoirs of an Opinionated Man (Fireside sports classic)
Second Wind: The Memoirs of an Opinionated Man (Fireside sports classic)
by Taylor Branch
Edition: Paperback
25 used & new from $10.00

5.0 out of 5 stars One of my top ten books, ever!, April 15, 2012
I have probably read a couple thousand books in my life. Fiction, nonfiction, history, technology, biography, etc. If I had to choose a top ten, this would be one of them.

Admittedly, I'm a 6'10" guy who loves basketball, but many jock biographies are shallow, predictable and boring. This is none of those. He discusses the painful periods of his life, not just the successes. As stated elsewhere, only about a third of the books is about basketball. He is an African American man from the south who came of age during the 1950s, then spent his entire professional career in a place where people of his race were not treated well.

Mr. Russell is an intelligent, thoughtful, and (as the title states) opinionated man. You don't have to agree with him, but his positions come from a lifetime of experience and contemplation. Jim Crow, identity politics and racial profiling are all discussed in this memoir. There is a humorous anecdote where he is pulled over for DWB (driving while black).

As a basketball player, he won 11 NBA titles in 13 years. Think about that. That's Jordan plus Kobe. Throw in two NCAA titles and Olympic gold. Yes, he had tremendous ability, but you may be surprised by his deep analysis of the game. Have you ever thought about how you could use the blindspots in your opponents eyes to your advantage? Bill Russell has. And as they say in infomercials, "wait, there's more".

His co-author, Taylor Branch, is also a historian of the civil rights movement. Another clue that this is not your typical sports book.

I first read this book over thirty years ago, and have read it at least once in every decade since then. I realize it is no longer in print, and I wish there was an ebook edition, but if you like biographies, you will find it worth your time. If you are a basketball fan, even better. It may make you think differently about the state of game today.

Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters
Highest Duty: My Search for What Really Matters
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers
Price: $10.49

5.0 out of 5 stars Fast, engaging and intense, April 14, 2012
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This is one of those "we all know what happened, so tell us what we don't know" stories. Captain Sullenberger succeeds.

The man who landed flight 1549 on the Hudson without the loss of a single life tells the story of those fateful three minutes, wrapped inside the story of his life. You want to hear about the flight, but the story of his life is well told, and moves along well enough that I was not tempted to skip to the details of the flight.

Once he gets to the day in question, he does a great job telling you everything that was going through his head, along with what wasn't. He also tells you about the other participants: His copilot, the flight crew, and the people on the ground who all helped to keep this from being a tragedy.

Along the way, you learn plenty of things you probably did not know about the aviation industry.

Well worth the time.

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