azriel308 - Reviews

1 to 17 of 17
The 85% Solution: How Personal Accountability Guarantees Success -- No Nonsense, No Excuses
Review Date: 4/28/2016

One of the worst books I have tried to read. After the first chapter, it is just a lot of the same self righteous garbage about how great and perfect the author is. Glad to have it out of my office.

American Jihad: The Terrorists Living Among Us
American Jihad: The Terrorists Living Among Us
Author: Steven Emerson
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3/5 Stars.
Review Date: 4/4/2014

Great book, good research and tells it like it is. Every American should read this, might open their eyes to what is really going on and has been for a long time. I have shared it with many co-workers and they agree.

Bartimaeus Trilogy: Golem's Eye - Book #2
Bartimaeus Trilogy: Golem's Eye - Book #2
Author: Jonathan Stroud
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.8/5 Stars.
Review Date: 6/19/2012

Was a good read, much like the first book.

The Hard Way (Jack Reacher, Bk 10)
The Hard Way (Jack Reacher, Bk 10)
Author: Lee Child
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 4.2/5 Stars.
Review Date: 5/22/2012

As usual, good book from Mr. Child.

The Kill Switch (Tucker Wayne, Bk 1)
The Kill Switch (Tucker Wayne, Bk 1)
Author: Grant Blackwood, James Rollins
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.
Review Date: 1/13/2016

Good book, read it in one go while on a flight. Don't usually do that. Enjoyed the relationship between the man and his dog, and could empathize with the mans feelings about his dog(s). Don't want to give anything away. Was a good book. Looking forward to reading the next one.

Kill Zone (Kyle Swanson Sniper, Bk 1)
Kill Zone (Kyle Swanson Sniper, Bk 1)
Author: Donald A. Davis, Jack Coughlin
Book Type: Mass Market Paperback
  • Currently 3.9/5 Stars.
Review Date: 6/22/2012

Pretty good book.

The Operator: Firing the Shots that Killed Osama bin Laden and My Years as a SEAL Team Warrior
Review Date: 6/18/2017

Let me start with, I have nothing but respect for these guys. They really deserve nothing but support and respect.

This was a interesting read, entertaining at times and funny at others. What really kind of ruined the whole thing for me was the Authors note at the beginning and near the end where he makes mention again of changing the elite warriors of the military. Both times the author had to toss in the unicorn drinking liberal social engineering garbage. I know it sounds petty, it just really ruined what would have been a good book.

The other thing that brought it down a little for me was the lack of actual time spent on the mission to kill the terrorist. Most of the book was around Mr. O'Neills time leading up to that. While this was interesting and well written, I was expecting more on the killing of OBL.

Overall it was a good book, and I enjoyed it for the most part. Was nice to read about Americans, the raid was a team effort, finally killing that terrorist that caused so much death in the USA.

Ordinary Thunderstorms
Ordinary Thunderstorms
Author: William Boyd
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 2.8/5 Stars.
Review Date: 3/3/2016

Got this in a box of books I bought at a garage sale. Really tried to get get into it, couldn't get past page 9. Even tried starting it again a few weeks later. Nope.

Outlaw Platoon: Heroes, Renegades, Infidels, and the Brotherhood of War in Afghanistan
Review Date: 11/1/2017

Well written book from the soldiers point of view about the war. Unlike so many that like to gloss over things, or not share what the enemy really does to people, this author shared it all. Enjoyable book. Several of my co-workers enjoyed reading it as well.

Author: Daniel Kalla
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.7/5 Stars.
Review Date: 1/26/2013

Since I was asked, I will review this one. I don't like giving bad reviews, seems like I will probably get stuck with the book Would rather be honest about it. This one just never ended. Got to where I was skimming the paragraphs rather then really reading them. If I hadn't been stuck on a 12 hour flight and this was the last book I had with me, wouldn't have bothered finishing it.

If you like reading about meetings, lots of them, broken up with little bits of this or that, mostly in a lab or hotel room, this is the book for you. It had lots or promise when it started out, specially with the story line being so believable and possible in todays world. It did bring to light how bad things could go, and how easily it could be done. At the about half way point though seemed like the author was just trying to stretch out the story and had run out of steam. The whole book seemed rough, didn't really flow from one thing to the next very well. Almost like he was adding fluff to make it a full length novel. In time maybe he will get better at things, my understanding is this is his first book. The story and subject are a good start, just never really got going.

First novel or not, the main character was pretty sad too, specially in his personal life. A co-worker who read it called him "just plain whipped to spinelessness". After reading the book, that description seem fits. He is supposed to be this great hero, and yet he comes off as a timid wishy washy husband who can't stand up on his own feet. Not sure what the author was going for with that character, it came across as just... Pathetic for the most part. If hwas going for sympathy for the main character, it didn't work.

The ending was very weak too. Seemed like something that was tossed together at the very last minute just to end it. Didn't seem to have much thought to it, and where the rest of the book had something of a believable and possible story line, the ending was just done to get it over with. The ending had a little truth to it as the FBI does like to over complicate things to the level of just total stupidity. For this book the ending was just that, an ending.

Maybe someone else will like it more. Personally I can't say it was the worst book I have ever read, certainly wasn't one of the better ones.

The Plantation (Payne and Jones, Bk 1)
The Plantation (Payne and Jones, Bk 1)
Author: Chris Kuzneski
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
Review Date: 2/24/2018

For a book that the first three pages were so good, this book crashed in a hurry. Couldn't get past page seventeen. The dialog was corny at best. It came across as hollow l, fake and forced for the most part. I really had promise, as long as the characters weren't talking.

Glad I had a second book with me.

The Red Line
The Red Line
Author: Walt Gragg
Book Type: Paperback
  • Currently 5/5 Stars.
Review Date: 6/1/2017

Read this in less than two days. It was that good.

I will get the one thing that really bugged me about the book out of the way first. The author, who was in the military, insisted on calling "magazines", "clips". Now to some of you that, may sound petty or just dumb. When an author goes to great lengths to describe tanks, air defense radar, and building characters up yet drops the ball entirely on something that simple, it just seems lazy or willfully ignorant. What really got me was that he was in the military. Don't remember the last time I heard anyone in the military call them clips.

Okay, bad part out of the way.

The book moved really well, didn't get bogged down with long drawn out battle scenes or unneeded dialog. The characters were well developed and I found myself actually wanting some to make it to the end of the book. Some do, some don't. It's a book about war, people die.

Aside from my minor irritation stated at the beginning of this review, the author seemed to have done his research. The strategies of the Russians seemed well thought out, and realistic for the most part. There were a few parts that I sort of wandered about, they didn't hurt the story at all though.

As much as I enjoyed reading it, the ending was good too. I sort of wonder if he hadn't watched a certain movie or had it in mind when writing the ending. Some of you will get the one I am referring to after reading the book. Unlike many authors, this one didn't seem to think he had to drag out the book, he knew there was going to be an end. It also didn't seem like he ran out of interest in writing to book and just cut it short. I am sure you have read books like that. All of a sudden things are over. The books that make you wonder if you didn't get some pages with the book when you bought it. That kind of thing. This author did a nice job of tying things up, and didn't just blow everyone up or anything like that.

Over all it was a good book and I look forward to reading more of his work.

Shooter : The Autobiography of the Top-Ranked Marine Sniper
Review Date: 5/12/2012

Enjoyed the book.

Thunder Dog: The True Story of a Blind Man, His Guide Dog, and the Triumph of Trust
Review Date: 2/17/2016

This wasn't a bad book, or poorly written. Just poorly titled. It was about a blind man, his dogs, and then for some seasoning, some of what he went through with his dog on 9/11. It's more of a autobiography of the mans life growing up blind in the United States, his first dog, famous people he'd met, how he learned to live with being blind, and a little bit about the towers coming down and how he and his dog dealt with that and the aftermath. Wasn't a bad book, just not what I was expecting.

Tom Clancy Point of Contact (A Jack Ryan Jr. Novel)
Tom Clancy Point of Contact (A Jack Ryan Jr. Novel)
Author: Mike Maden
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.3/5 Stars.
Review Date: 8/17/2017

To some there will be spoilers in this. You are warned.

Let me start off by saying I have really enjoyed the books written by Tom Clancy. Some more than others, enjoyed all of them though.

This one wasn't written by him, and was just miserable to read. The only reason I went as far as I did was I didn't have anything else with me to read on the plane. I was very disappointed in this book. I actually put it aside and read the air lines magazine from the seat back. That should give you some idea how bad this was.

If you read the dust jacket preview of the book, you read the good version of it. The first thirty pages weren't bad. Not great. Not bad though. Then things just go south and just when you think they hit bed rock, someone brings out a bigger shovel. The author wastes two chapters on dialog that comes across as over dramatic and forced, over Jack training in a dojo. Sounded more like someone just wanting to show how much they knew about some martial art and not knowing how to really brag about it.

Then it goes into a very long and boring travel journal of Jack and his coworker going about their day to day analyst work over seas. At night one drinks, well he drinks almost all the time it seems. Jack, goes on a dinner date, gets into a fight, breaks in a few places and wrecks a car because he is too high speed to remember that rain makes cars hydro plane. I forget how many pages were dedicated just the flights to their destination. Anyone who has been on a commercial flight doesn't need a reminder of the cramped seats in coach.

Once they arrive, it is like reading a travel journal from someone's business trip. Long boring technical explanations. A few comments on lunches they had or what they wore to work.

Aside from the few sneak and peaks tossed in with a car crash, a corrupt former senator, and that is about it for something to hold your attention. I stopped when my flight landed. Talk about boring. The one time I didn't bring more than one book, I wished I had. I won't be wasting my time on anything with Madens name on it again.

Tomorrow You Go Home: One Man's Harrowing Imprisonment in a Modern-Day Russian Gulag
Review Date: 3/8/2018

I didn't even finish this book. For me, that is saying something. After a chapter or two of reading some spoiled yuppy whine about being jailed for breaking another countries drug laws, I had enough and just tossed it back in my bag.

Short version, spoiler alert here, he gets arrested in Russia for bringing in illegal drugs from his home country. Oddly enough, Russia doesn't look at it in the same light as England. Not only that, they actually punish people who break the law in Russia. Oh, poor boy winds up in jail. Then he just drones on and on about how bad his life is now that he is in a real jail. Not some cushy jail with cable TV and soft beds.

Under a Graveyard Sky
Under a Graveyard Sky
Author: John Ringo
Book Type: Hardcover
  • Currently 3.4/5 Stars.
Review Date: 10/2/2013

I was looking forward to this one, even preordered it, since I enjoyed most of his books. This one just was a big let down. The conversations between characters seemed forced and over dramatic through the first third or so of the book. Got a little better in the middle, then went back to over dramatic and forced towards the end again.

Was an interesting idea for a story line at least.

1 to 17 of 17