Eric S. - Reviews

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Across a Wine-Dark Sea
Across a Wine-Dark Sea
Author: Jessica Bryan
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 10
Review Date: 2/4/2007
Helpful Score: 3


This is one of the most fascinating and original books I've read in a long, long time. And even though it wasn't heavy on the romance and was more plot than character driven (my usual preference) I literally could not put it down.
Thalassa, born and raised as an Amazon warrior, is happy with her life. It isn't an easy one and her people are constantly at war with men but she is free. Fighting and protecting her sisters is what she lives for - until the day she is abducted by Dorian, King of the Merfolk, who sweeps her away to his world under the sea. She is furious and despises him immediately but tempers her rage when she realizes that her Goddess has ordained their match. Eventually this gentle God-like man with super human powers begins to tear down her defenses with kindness, fairness and patience and allows her to accept her fate and his love. But she never forgets her beloved Amazon sisters. And when she overhears that their lives are in danger she and Dorian risk everything to enter the battle.
Filled with historical and fantasy details that I've never before read about, I learned so many amazing things about the strong but doomed ancient tribe of woman warriors known as the Amazons and the mythical Merfolk who created a peaceful life under the sea. Interspersed with the fantasy elements are rich historical details of daily life and survival in those brutal times where women were little more than slaves. There were several sub-plots and secondary characters that were all equally riveting and I couldn't turn the pages fast enough.


The Adventures of Creighton Holmes
The Adventures of Creighton Holmes
Author: Ned Hubbell
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 1/13/2007


Book Description:
Recently discovered papers have proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that the great detective Sherlock Holmes had a son. And later, a grandson.


The Ardennes Tapes
The Ardennes Tapes
Author: Timothy Benford
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 1/13/2007


A survivor of a massacre where over 200 US and Nazi troops were killed inside the Ardennes Forest and its secret cave wakes up in a psychiatric institution and begins to tell a tale about what really happened there on Christmas Eve in 1944. His wild tale describes how both troops came to fight an ancient evil, which was released from its prison after being sealed there for many centuries. Original, great, scary.


Battle Circle
Battle Circle
Author: Piers Anthony
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
 31
Review Date: 5/9/2007


Battle Circle incorporates the stories of SOS the rope, Var the stick, and Neq the sword: this is Piers Anthony work orginally published in the early 1970s.
The stories of SOS, Var, and Neq are based in a barbaric world (possibly america), where honour rules supreme, and disagreements are sorted by challenge and battle in the "circle". Each story is vastly entertaining and follows the trials and tribulations of each man fulfilling his destiny and dream/s.

An avid Piers Anthony fan, I believe that this novel is one of his best works and so was surprised that only used books are available for this novel!

Piers Anthony's Battle Circle is original, thought provoking, and evokes emotional interest/empathy with each character (which is something worth mentioning: a truly good author is hard to come by these days!).


Review Date: 4/22/2007


Every so often you read a book that changes the way you look at everything because it shows that something we took for granted is wrong. This is one of those books. Frank is not a terrific writer. There are slow passages and sections that are overly detailed and filled with arcane information. However, he is a scientist that stumbled on the origin of water on Earth . . . small comets that are constantly hitting Earth's atmosphere. This is astounding and went against all of the accepted geologic theories of the origin of water on the planet.
This book is also about the tunnel vision of scientists and the vicious in-fighting that goes on in academia when the status quo is challenged. There is a truism that scientists don't change their minds; they just die off and are replaced by scientists who believe the new theories.
I read this book when it first came out and was mightily impressed. Just recently a newly lofted satellite has proven Frank correct and a Scientific American article detailed the proof and the fact that his nay-sayers are now either eating crow or are marginalized in their continued denial. Highly recommended, especially for those interested in Earth sciences.


The Book of Lists for Teens
The Book of Lists for Teens
Author: Sandra Choron, Harry Choron
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.6/5 Stars.
 7
Review Date: 5/6/2007
Helpful Score: 1


Face it: no self-respecting young adult likes to be caught out of the know. But few teenagers have the time or inclination to plow through Web sites, almanacs, and weighty reference books to find the answers to all their questions. The Book of Lists for Teens is an informative, lively, and engaging source of information about all kinds of things, and it's fun. It's all here: everything that matters most to people aged twelve to sixteen, from lists on cyberfun, music, and movies to advice about social pressures, family matters, and planning for the future. Packed with Internet addresses, recommended reading, and project ideas, The Book of Lists for Teens provides a resource that goes far beyond its pages. Featuring: - Tips for raising well-adjusted parents - Consumer scams especially aimed at teens - Foods to eat before taking a test - Tips for buying a stereo - How to stay safe at concerts - Reasons to keep a private journal (and ways to make sure it stays that wayprivate!) And much, much more . . .


BORRIBLES
BORRIBLES
Author: MICHAEL DE LARRABEITI
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 1/13/2007


What is a Borrible? Borribles are runaways who dwell in the shadows of London. Apart from their pointed ears, they look just like ordinary children. They live by their wits and a few Borrible laws-the chief one being, Don't Get Caught! The Borribles are outcasts-but they wouldn't have it any other way....
One night, the Borribles of Battersea discover a Rumble-one of the giant, rat-shaped creatures who are their ancient enemy-in their territory. Fearing an invasion, an elite group of Borrible fighters set out on what will become known in legend as The Great Rumble Hunt. So begins the first of the three epic adventures in Michael de Larrabeiti's classic trilogy, where excitement, violence, low cunning, greed, generosity, treachery and bravery exist side by side.
Reviews:
"No one can deny that de Larrabeiti has written a modern epic. It's a brilliant invention."--Publishers Weekly on The Borribles
"With considerable ingenuity and finesse, de Larrabeiti has projected a grim, violent futureworld...he presents an alien culture with its own folkways, legends and taboos. The Borribles won't win friends among the starry-eyed or squeamish, all the same they are the offspring of a singular imagination."--The New York Times on The Borribles
"May be regarded as a moral satire on the consequences of violence and cupidity or a cynical recognition of the times in which we live. Either way this Clockwork Orange projects a gripping story through slam-bang action."--The Los Angeles Times on The Borribles
"The adventures of The Hobbit and the rabbits of Watership Down are more than once called to mind...and de Larrabeiti has brought something of these mythologies to the street markets and the back-alleys of South London and the thronged waterway of the Thames itself."--The London Times on The Borribles
"A strong and vivid fantasy, much recommended."--The Observer on The Borribles


California Thriller (Mike Haller, Bk 1)
California Thriller (Mike Haller, Bk 1)
Author: Max Byrd
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 1
Review Date: 12/30/2006


Private eye Mike Haller turns his collar up against the damp of San Francisco's fog and smells trouble coming in like the stink of fish off the bay. He's looking for a newsman who took a quick trip north to the Sacramento Valley and never came home. A tearful, boozy wife wants her husband found, but somebody's put out a "cease and desist" order ... a .38 with Haller's name and address on it.


Case of Charles Dexter Ward
Case of Charles Dexter Ward
Author: H.P. Lovecraft
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.6/5 Stars.
 4
Review Date: 4/2/2007


If you want really classic Lovecraft at the top of his form, then this novel is it. It is a good, tight, driven read- except for the extensive prose tour of his beloved old Providence near the beginning. Yet, even this detailed introduction helps to weave an unmatched atmosphere that draws you deeply into Lovecraft's world. This is an ode to Providence, and to those unobtrusive and unlikely heroes that would keep it safe from cosmic evil.

Lovecraft carries us from colonial days to the "modern" 1920's in this tale. We are introduced to the hidden brotherhood of dark magicians and necromancers- those to seek to wield unnatural power from beyond the grave and beyond the stars. So much concentrated occult information, or rather enticing hints of such information, is packed into the narrative. Mystery within mystery unfolds. Yet, it is rather ordinary men that are called upon to confront this inconceivable evil, even though it threatens their very sanity.

Besides being an extremely well written tale of supernatural suspense it also serves as a teaching tale. There is madness out of time and a horror from beyond the spheres that threatens to entrap and destroy the unwary. Do not call up what ye lack the power to put down. Upon this depends more than can be put into words- all civilization, all natural law, perhaps the fate of the solar system and the universe. Perhaps even more than this- all because one fool opened a door and there was no one there with the knowledge to close it...


The Case of the Mystery Cruise (Adventures of Mary-Kate & Ashley, #2)
Review Date: 1/13/2007


When I read these books I feel as if I am actually watching their videos. It is like that with the other books I read, like the Full House books. If I really get into the book I could sit there and read the book until it's finished.


Castle Roogna (Xanth, Bk 3)
Castle Roogna (Xanth, Bk 3)
Author: Piers Anthony
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 43
Review Date: 12/30/2006


Millie had been a ghost for 800 years. But now, restored by the magic of Xanth, she was again a very desirable woman. She could have any man she wanted ... except the man she did want, Jonathan the zombie. To grant Millie her desire, and to prove his right to rule Xanth in the future, young Magician Dor embarked on a quest for the elixer which would restore Jonathan to full life.


The Cat-Dogs and Other Tales of Horror
The Cat-Dogs and Other Tales of Horror
Author: Susan Price
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
 7
Review Date: 5/9/2007


"The Cat-Dogs" opens with the same-named short story by Susan Price. It takes place in England, where a lot of these stories occur. This one is about a young woman who raises a litter of unknown animals (a mix between cats and dogs), only to have them grow bigger and seek human victims. By the synopsis on the back cover, I thought this book was about creatures like this; but the other five short stories involve everything from possessed pianos ("The Piano" by Diane Hoh) to houses ("The House That Jack Built" by Garry Kilworth) to train stations ("The Station With No Name" by Colin Greenland), as well as other beings like the Devil ("The Devil's Footprints" by Malcolm Rose) and a group of vengeful toys ("Softies" by Stan Nicholls).


Chessmen of Mars
Chessmen of Mars
Author: Edgar Rice Burroughs
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.8/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 4/21/2007


Throughout the novel, Gahan is forced to prove himself in the approved heroic manner of all Burroughsian protagonists in his effort to win Tara's heart. As always, the heroine must be rescued from numerous perils and sticky situations.


Concise Illustrated Book of Planets and Stars
Review Date: 4/22/2007


This fascinating book explores every known planet as well as the most interesting of the many unusual moons, stars and galaxies which make up the universe. Each subject is described in depth and is complemented by an original artwork and photograph.


Confession
Confession
Author: Lori Herter
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
 10
Review Date: 12/30/2006


"Watch out, Ann Rice ... Lori Herter has created a new genre - the vampire romance. Herter has given the vampire myth a fresh new twist that left me thirsty for more. Wonderful!" - Norma Beishir


The Covenant of the Crown (Star Trek, No 4)
The Covenant of the Crown (Star Trek, No 4)
Author: Howard Weinstein
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 11
Review Date: 1/13/2007


An Enterprise shuttle is forced to crash-land in a violent storm on the barren planet Sigma 1212. Spock, McCoy and Kailyn, the beautiful heir to the Shaddan throne, survive in the near disaster. Now, pursued by primitive hunters and a band of Klingon scouts, they must reach the mountain where the fabulous dynastic crown is hidden.


Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn (Xanth, Bk 8)
Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn (Xanth, Bk 8)
Author: Piers Anthony
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 98
Review Date: 12/30/2006


Jordan was a ghost in Castle Rogna now, spending his time with little five-year-old Ivy and watching his own pastunfold on the magic tapestry. But once he had been a valerous knight, riding his ghost horse Pook on a fabulous and dangerous mission. He had been betrayed with a cruel lie by two wily magicians and the woman he loved. But his body can be restored if he can remember how he died.


Dark of the Sun
Dark of the Sun
Author: Wilbur A. Smith
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 2
Review Date: 1/13/2007


Bruce Curry sets out with a trainload of mercenaries to relieve a mining town besieged by rebels in the heart of the African jungle. The journey, turns into a nightmare, softened only by Shermaine, a Belgian girl he meets and with whom he falls in love.
But love is no elixir. In fact, it considerably complicates Curry's struggle to carry out his mission and stay alive. He finds himself buffeted by emotions he thought would never visit him again, and he notes with wry amusement his own distraction.
"If the phrase 'a man's book' has any meaning, it describes the powerful, savage story which packs murder and love, revenge and rescue, treachery and loyalty into a gripping fast-moving novel."


Dove
Dove
Author: Robin Lee Graham
Book Type: Paperback
  ?
Review Date: 5/9/2007


Years ago, when I was growing up, I read the account of Robin Lee Graham as the young man who sailed around the world alone, and also got married along the way, in three installments of the National Geographic, circa 1965-1970. These articles so affected me that I also wanted to sail around the world. However, as I read this book it soon became apparent to me that this book is also an account of a true life love story, between Robin and Patti, both with simple values and needs, in sharp contrast to most people who are primarily concerned with money and social status. They were deep in love and would, and did, do anything for each other.
Robin alone, and later with Patti, sailed to some of the most beautiful places on Earth, I think they must have enough memories for 20 lifetimes. The writing style makes you feel that you are right there with them.


The End of the Matter (Pip and Flinx, Bk 3)
The End of the Matter (Pip and Flinx, Bk 3)
Author: Alan Dean Foster
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
 13
Review Date: 1/13/2007


Accompanied by his faithful minidrag Pip and a most troublesome alien called Abalamahalamatandra -- Ab for short -- Flinx set out for Alaspin, the ruggedly primitive homeworld of his flying snake.

There he hoped to find the giant man with the gold earring who somehow held the key to Flinx's mysterious past and to the strange powers he possessed. Chasing down his heritage was trouble enough, but Flinx didn't know what real trouble was until he realized that the Qwarm -- a deadly assassin squad -- were three steps behind him with a contract to kill.

But the minidrag's homeworld did not offer safety and Flinx had a terrible time just staying alive ... a matter complicated to no mean degree by a collapsar already set on an unstoppable death course across the galaxy! --This text refers to an out of print edition of this title.


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