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Username/Login : LibraryMichael
Gender : Male
Occupation : Mutant Control/Library Assistant

My Reviews

 
Informative, Interesting, Insightful
Killing Lincoln

I would heartily recommend this book to a student writing a report on Lincoln, but there is no new information here and O\\\'Reilly relies on speculation and conjecture to make the story more interesting.

Hardcore O\\\'Reilly fans will undoubtedly love this book, but anyone expecting a scholarly work will be sadly disappointed.

 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Beautiful
The Shepard, the Angel and Walter the Christmas Miracle Dog

This was a somewhat atypical book for Dave Barry as we\\\\\\\'re usually entertained by his adult personna as opposed to Dave a s a child.

Anyone who lived through Christmas in the 60s will find many memories in this book. Anyone who has attended a child\\\\\\\'s Christmas pagent will be pleasantly reminded that these thing don\\\\\\\'t often go well. The best part is that Dave Barry makes it laugh-out-loud funny. There should be absolutely NO objections to this book - it\\\'s fun for everyone.

 
Book Club Recommended
Informative, Insightful, Interesting
Quiet

As a high school library-assistant, I\\\'m constantly enforcing the QUIET rule. During my five years working in a high school library, I\\\'ve come to realize that our \\\"library nerds\\\" are typically introverts who relish their quiet time alone. It\\\'s also no surprise that most of them are members of the National Honor Society, the school band or orchestra as well as various art or drama clubs.

Since reading \\\"Quiet\\\" I\\\'ve come to appreciate those tendencies in my own personality that dictate my need for solitude. Oftentimes in our modern world time alone comes at a premium. We are forced to congregate and socialize in spite of the fact that it\\\'s aganist the nature of most introverts.

Susan Cain is all over YouTube explaining her theory , but I think her book does it best! An individual does not need to be gregarious to be successful and Ms. Cain brings up several introverts throughout history who attribute their accomplishments to their time alone.

Susan Cain has made me aware that being an Introvert is NOT something to be ashamed of, nor is it a reason to think I don\\\'t care about others.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone, particularly if they are introverted themselves or if they\\\'ve ever told an introverted friend or relative, \\\"you should get out more often.\\\"

There should be no stigma for wanting to spend time alone. Solitary thinkers are responsible for many great things and we should encourage quiet time alone for all students.

The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
 
Book Club Recommended
Dramatic, Insightful, Beautiful
The Book Thief

I was given this book last year from Christmas and absolutely loved it! It doesn\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'t surprise me that it\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'s been made into a movie starring Geoffrey Rush as the \\\\\\\\\\\\\\\"father.\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\"

This is a touching book full of surprises and some tense moments. I loved the notion of looking at the war through the eyes of Germans who DIDN\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'T sympathize with the Nazis.

Don\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'t let the wartime setting put you off - this book is exciting, insightful, sad and uplifting. You won\\\\\\\\\\\\\\\'t regret reading it.

 
Book Club Recommended
Epic, Interesting, Brilliant
A Winter\\\'s Tale

When I first started this book, I was completely engrossed with the beautiful prose. The thought-provoking imagery jumps off the page because of the author\\\'s skill in writing memorable sentences.

However, I suspect this book is an anthology of the author\\\'s short stories. The \\\"main story\\\" is of burglar Peter Lake and his interactions with his nemesis Pearly Soames. There seems to be a slight religious connotation involved here as Pearly Soames\\\' gang (the Short Tails) seem more like mindless demons rather than simply short gangsters.

There is also the enigma of the \\\"Cloud Wall\\\" which is a recurring element throughout the book. It apparently surrounds New York City and all who pass through it are no longer mentioned. I suspect it\\\'s a metaphor for death.

My biggest problem with the book is that too many interesting characters are introduced only to die (or never be heard of again) a short time later. There are also other characters who vie for the main character label, and since the book has a great deal to do with time you\\\'re never really sure how they connect. This isn\\\'t even evident at the end of the book.

For all of its 750 pages, A Winter\\\'s Tale is a modestly good book. At times the prose is pure poetry and the one thing I consistently enjoyed. The problem is that the story is too convoluted and confusing. Too many interesting characters drift in and out of the plot for no apparent reason.

Then there is the overuse of \\\"deus ex machina\\\" where Peter Lake has the most expedient (and unlikely) solutions to all his problems. Toward the end of the book he even develops a sort of psychokinesis which is also left unexplained.

Late in the book Peter Lake suffers a stab wound to the stomach by one of the Short Tails gangmembers and although he\\\'s apparently bleeding profusely no one he comes into contact with after even notices the blood. I suspect that in this instance Helprin is attempting to make Peter Lake into a Jesus figure.

I would recommend this book to anyone who had a scholarly interest in descriptive prose and nothing to do for a week. They\\\'ll find that good prose, no matter how beautiful, CANNOT carry a story by itself. Mark Helprin understands characterization, but his skill with plot leaves too much to be desired for a book of this length.

Norwegian by Night by Derek Miller
 
Book Club Recommended
Adventurous, Inspiring, Confusing
A page-turner

This was a good first book for Miller and although there were a few inconsistencies sprinkled throughout the plot was interesting, the characters well developed and the story plausible. I'm anxious to see what his next book entails.

 
Book Club Recommended
Brilliant, Fun, Adventurous
What if . . .

. . . no one showed up to the Apocalypse?

How can you resist a book about a group of inept Satanic nuns who accidently deliver the Anti-Christ baby to the wrong family?

The book jumps around quite a bit, so if you\'re not a fan of Quentin Tarrantino\'s \"Pulp Fiction\" you might like a book that uses a more conventional chronology.

It\'s fun in its irreverence and a good read for anyone with a sense of humor.

Look Again by Lisa Scottoline
 
Book Club Recommended
Interesting, Dramatic, Adventurous
Zzzzzz

The reason I recommend this book for book groups is that a good discerning book group can always use a bad example of a good book. In other words, you can\\\'t appreciate excellent literature unless you have seen mediocre literature.

 
Book Club Recommended
Inspiring, Insightful, Beautiful
The Philosopher and the Wolf

I loved it, but I read a lot of philosophy. This book may be more work than you realize if you're not accustomed to how philosophical questions are posed. I thought it was intertwined with the story of Brenin (the wolf) well enough to keep it interesting. I thought the philosophy throughout paralleled Native American philosophy. In all a VERY interesting read and a very pleasant break from modern fiction.

A Man Called Ove: A Novel by Fredrik Backman
 
Book Club Recommended
Fun, Insightful, Beautiful
Great Story!

I read this book under the recommendation of the teacher's book group I belong to and I absolutely loved it! I couldn't stand Ove at first, but he endeared himself to me quickly. This will definitely make you empathize with the curmudgeon in your life. Don't pass this book up! I will make you laugh, it will make you cry, but most of all it will make you feel human..

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