Best book I have read in quite a while

Book title: Weapons of Choice (The Axis of Time Trilogy, Book 1)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Weapons of Choice (The Axis of Time Trilogy, Book 1) - book cover picture

This was a real page turner. I really enjoyed the societal contrast between 1942 and our not too distant future! Good hard hitting techno descriptions give a great back drop. The hard headed Navy brass initial concerns jive with my experience. I particularly like the line about the prisoners being held in the Philippines and Singapore, "If they were our people we would go get'um!". The phrase just so neatly sums up the leave no one behind theme of the modern military? The WWII generation just were na?ve to the pervasive evil of their foes; but, alas we are not strangers to that evil are we? I will definitely read this series for no other reason then to see how Birmingham handles the fate of these 21st century refugees.

EAN: 9780345457127
Pages: 448
Publisher: Del Rey
John Birmingham

Great blending of east & west...

Book title: Buddha's Nature : A Practical Guide to Enlightenment Through Evolution
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
Buddha's Nature : A Practical Guide to Enlightenment Through Evolution - book cover picture

Mingling a western life with eastern philosophy can lead to a bouillabaisse of heartburn and disappointment. Not so here. Wes Nisker's book, Buddha's Nature brings the insightful depth of Buddhist teachings to the skeptical/rational western mind in an enjoyable and profound manner.

Experienced meditators will like this book for it's breezy western tone while staying on Buddhist point. Folks new to meditation will like this book because it's thought provoking without being pedantic. There are exercises in the book which, if practiced by a new meditator, will provide a great foundation for the time when you sit with a teacher.

I recommend this book to everyone interested in meditation and Buddhism. There is an old rule in meditation though: for every minute you read about meditation, spend ten minutes sitting in meditation.

EAN: 9780553106015
Pages: 256
Publisher: Bantam
Wes Nisker

Really liked it

Book title: Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Audio Cassette
Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West - book cover picture

Really great idea for a book, and I would highly recommend Wicked to anyone who likes the "Wizard of Oz." Suggested: go back and (re-)read the L. Frank Baum book after finishing Wicked.Book ideas I'll never make a million dollars from: "Late: The Life and Times of the White Rabbit" "Savage: The Life and Times of the Queen of Hearts" (Alice in Wonderland) "Gardener: The Life and Times of Mr. McGregor" "Silver: The Life and Times of Long John Silver" "Footprint: The Life and Times of Friday" "Swinger: The Life and Times of Cheetah"See also "Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead."

EAN: 9780060573768
Publisher: HarperAudio/ReganBooks
Gregory Maguire

Superb Introduction to Financial Planning

Book title: Personal Financial Planning (Dryden Press Series in Finance)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Hardcover
Personal Financial Planning (Dryden Press Series in Finance) - book cover picture

I bought this book for a non-credit Financial Planning class at Florida State. I didn't stick with the class, but I'm keeping the book. It seems to cover just about everything anyone except a financial professional could ever need to know about the financial planning process. If there's a downside to the book, it's that it reads like a textbook; HOWEVER, that's what it is. AND, being a GOOD textbook, the writing is clear and understandable.Anyone who would order this book should know that I received an e-mail today (February 24) from the instructor of the intro class at Florida State, making reference to a ninth edition. The instructor did not specifically mention this book by name. However, since [] is showing the eighth edition as of February 24, it may be safe to assume that this is the book the instructor was referring to.

EAN: 9780030084577
Pages: 656
Publisher: Harcourt Brace College Publishers
Lawrence J. Gitman

Excellent follow-up to "Hyperion" but different in style

Book title: The Fall of Hyperion
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Mass Market Paperback
The Fall of Hyperion - book cover picture

The follow-up to the Hyperion book is a complex, fascinating story that attempts to unify the tales presented in the Hyperion book. It is an absorbing, imaginative book with a very satisfying ending. The only drawbacks are somewhat long length and repeating subplots. Most readers will find it difficult to tie the loose ends of the story. The most memorable part of the story is the discussions with Ummon, an artificial intelligence. The are elements that will satisfy both the philosophical, thoughtful and the suspense-oriented readers.

EAN: 9780553288209
Pages: 528
Publisher: Spectra
Dan Simmons

Trick or Treat - this is a treat!

Book title: Space Case (Reading Rainbow Book)
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Space Case (Reading Rainbow Book) - book cover picture

"It came from outer space." Luckily it arrived on Halloween. While most of the natives were unfriendly (a cow and a chicken), the thing manged to find some friendly aliens out trick or treating. Buddy McGee takes the thing home only to discover that it is from outer space. He quickly makes friends with the thing and takes him to school. Will the thing stay with Buddy forever?Marshall has done it again with a wonderful story accompanied by droll illustrations. The beauty of this Halloween tale is its appeal to adults and children alike. This is a standard in my Halloween read aloud bag. It can be used from K to 5th grade with great results.

EAN: 9780140547047
Publisher: Puffin Books
Edward Marshall
James Marshall

A Must-Read

Book title: Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly - book cover picture

I am in love with this book, and Anthony Bourdain's straight-up, conversational style. Since I already knew better than to order a seafood frittata, the chapter covering food safety issues did not scare me. It only served to reinforce the idea that Mr. Bourdain is really giving his readers the straight scoop. Since he is still employed at a chef in a fairly visible NYC restaurant, he must be competent in the kitchen. How amazing to find someone whose creative abilities in one area are matched, if not surpassed, by equally impressive abilities in another - writing. He is witty, frank, crass, and just plain brilliant.

EAN: 9780060934910
Pages: 320
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Anthony Bourdain

Not the usual King, with a heroine that makes you care.

Book title: Rose Madder
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Audio Cassette
Rose Madder - book cover picture

This continues Stephen King's 'new' writing style, with a
strong heroine, less horror, and more suspense. I for one
enjoy it. This book goes far beyond "Gerald's Game", it
actually shows you the terror a beaten wife on the run feels
when she is first learning her way around the cruel world.
This heroine finds help, but her crazed cop-husband is
determined to hunt her down. I read this book from cover
to cover in one evening, and I think you might, too.

EAN: 9780140861587
Publisher: Penguin Audiobooks
Stephen King

A Science Fiction Collector's Top Ten reads of all time.

Book title: The Forever War
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
The Forever War - book cover picture

Forever War should be titled A Forever Read, because it is one of the best science fiction novels ever written. Better than Heinlin's Starship Troopers. As good as anything Asimov, Clark, Herbert, Smith, etc., ever wrote. I bought a new copy for my teenage grandson along with Amazon's new Steiger novel, Alien Rapture, which the SFWAA indorsed as the best speculative fiction this year. YES, buy this book.

EAN: 9780060510862
Pages: 256
Publisher: Eos
Joe Haldeman

The best Dickens ever

Book title: Great Expectations
Rating: 5/5
Binding: Paperback
Great Expectations - book cover picture

This book is superb. Everything about it is very real to life (unlike much of Dickens' other novels). Though it may be hard to comprehend, it doesn't take a genius to understand the themes of this book. I'm not going to spoil it for anybody, but believe me, the themes plays into everybody's life, including love, money, and heritage. I also recommend Catcher in the Rye if you're into the types of books that make you stop and ponder.

EAN: 9780140434897
Pages: 544
Publisher: Penguin Books
Charles Dickens

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