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Featured Book
The Ghost from the Grand Banks [Paperback]  The Ghost from the Grand Banks [Paperback]
by Arthur C. Clarke
Edition: Paperback
ASIN: 0553293877

Condition: Very Good
Comments: Very Good. 1992.

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Great Read!
I read this book for the first time about 10 years ago. Before Y2K and before the 1997 film Titanic tweeked everyones interest in the Titanic. The main story deals with the attempt to raise the Titanic from the ocean floor and transport it to a location where it can be maintained and saved from further decay.

Aside from the plot there were some very good subplots. One dealt with the YTK problem. This book was published a decade before YTK and way before most people, like me, were even aware that there was a YTK computer problem. The solution offered in the book obviously was not one that came to pass but it was still interesting to read about the nature of the problem and the difficulties that could arise if left unchecked.

The technology used to raise the Titanic was well described. I am not that scientific or math savvy and so I cannot say if the technology described is currently possible but it seemed possible the way Clarke described it.

The story is set around the year 2012, the 100 year anniversary of the sinkning of the Titanic. I'm quite sure some of the technology mentioned in the novel does not exist. One invention involving the future of windshield blades and keeping rain off of an automobile windshield was interesting. On the other hand I found the whole "M-set" thing to be beyond me. I'm not sure what role it actually played in the overall plot. I gather that the "M-set" is used in other novels and may make more sense to those that have read more of Clarke's novels.

Lastly, this book is a quick read. It is not to deep or to shallow. An excellent book to read during breaks on the job or to read during an evening when you have time to kill.

Customer Rating
The Clarke name says it all
Everyone knows this author; Arthur C. Clarke is a genius of his time and ours.
I myself think anything dealing with Titanic is going to be a boring attempt at a topic that has been very over done, but I actually enjoyed this book. This was a story I felt I had to concentrate on; I was trying to figure out the math questions on my own without much success but a headache, but don't let that put you off, if I concentrate to much on anything my head begins to throb, anyways:
The story line is fairly, well to be attempted. To bring Titanic up and of course it's going to take a few pretty pennies to do so. So why not make a big deal about it and have a race, two sides battle a way to the prize and to the success of having to bring up a snapped in half, ocean liner that sunk a hundred years ago? The interesting part is the year this book was written in and the year the characters are placed in, and of course what year you read the book. I was shocked at the way this author thought of the future, and it was so scary a mind could think that up.
I can't remember but years ago, people wanted to bring up the Titanic; they should of read this book and just left their grubby hands off it. (I think they did)
There is robots, huge squid, big high on their horse characters and over the top genius on this case and I even liked them.
The characters are well, not really that important, it's the idea and plot in the book. Sometimes I lost myself in all the gumbo jumbo about how, when, where, and exactly the way your going to do it, but still it was a good book. The idea of M-set interested me much and I even read the little, explanation of it at the end of the book. WoW!
I'd say if you like Clarke and his books, read it. If you like the idea of Titanic, read it, if you like sci-fi, Read it. I think it's a good thinking book and worth the time.
Customer Rating
A lack of direction causes this book to become lost
Clarke is a visionary, and he has prophesized some incredible ideas long before they were mainstream. He continues to explore fascinating scientific thoughts and insights in this book about the raising of the Titanic. However, I find that the book has no central focus. Attempting to use the Titanic as a focal point, Clarke jumps from story to story -- about the Mandelbrot Set (a fractal pattern that is self-replicating), an invention in the field of windshield wipers, automated undersea exploration, and the lives of several diverse characters -- while never focusing the story on any overlapping theme or circumstance. In fact, the story of the Titanic is written off early on and given very little play. It seems Clarke would have been better off simply writing an essay about new technologies instead of wasting the readers time with simple plot twists, one dimensional dialogue, and emotionless characters.

Mr. Clarke is still, in my eyes, a great visionary thinker. He also writes a good sci-fi story. However, this one certainly isn't it. Read it for the ideas, read it for the insights, but please don't read it for the plot.

Featured Book
The Rainmaker [Mass Market Paperback]  The Rainmaker [Mass Market Paperback]
by JOHN GRISHAM
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
ASIN: 044022165X

Condition: Good
Comments: Good. Creased spine. 1996.

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A book with gripping court scenes and a dash of idealism.
Rudy Baylor is a rookie lawyer who is almost broke. The first case he ever bags is a doozy. It is a bad faith case against a big insurance company. The insurance company could have saved a life if they had not denied a valid claim. Rudy Baylor's story is told in first person, using the simple present tense all through the book. Maintaining the interest of the reader throughout the substantially lengthy story using this kind of comparatively uncommon style of writing is indeed a feat and only a very confident writer would dare attempt it. John Grisham dares - and succeeds. The book starts by giving some background about Rudy Baylor. From there on, the plot threads off in diverse and interesting directions. The longest thread is of course the one about the insurance case. It occupies more than half the book. The next most prominent thread concerns the love affair of Rudy with Kelly, who is a young girl married to an abusing husband. The other plot threads involve Rudy's financial troubles, his relationships with various people: his business partner named Deck, an old lady nicknamed Birdy, two underworld characters called Bruiser and the Prince, and other assorted characters. The book has a lot going for it. It is well-paced. There is no lapse of interest at any time. The courtroom scenes are relentlessly gripping. The legal machinery is depicted with authority, and why not? Mr Grisham was a lawyer himself. The novel has no sleazy sex and it has a dash of idealism; two features that are becoming very rare in the best-selling fiction of today. Well done, Mr Grisham. The only gripes, and minor ones, that I have about the novel are two. First, in the initial part of the book, the writing is not tight. It is possible for the reader to skip chunks of text on almost every page and still be able to follow the plot threads. But the writing becomes almost air tight once the courtroom scenes start. My second gripe is about the ending. I don't know why Mr Grisham tried for multiple climaxes. They lessen the impact of the ending. In summary, The Rainmaker is one of the best books to reach the best-seller lists in the recent past.
Customer Rating
The Rainmaker
I found this novel by John Grisham very entertaining. I had a hard time putting it down until I was done reading it. It kept me guessing about what was going to happen next and I would often guess wrong Also having never read a book about lawyers before I learned a lot of new things that I would have never known out otherwise. If you like stories about underdogs you will truely love this book. Rudy is a true underdog in this story. He is a just starting out lawyer whose first case is fighting a huge insurance company for 10 million dollars. Not your typical first day on the job. This book moves at a fast pace and my only complaint is that sometimes its hard to keep up. But overall go get this book and it will not dissapoint.
Customer Rating
Definitely up there with The Firm and The Pelican Brief
The Rainmaker by John Grisham is a very exciting novel. I read it in the span of two days because I could not put it down. The story goes around a young lawyer named Rudy; a young lawyer who just passed his bar exam, and stressed out with the bill collectors. So now, he takes a case against a huge medical coverage company because they did not live up to the promise of one of their clients; he eventually died from lung cancer, and they didnt come through with the money to pay for the doctor bills. So now, they hire a huge law coporation to take the case. Now Rudy is over his head, but he wants to win this case because this could make him or break him in his law career. While the case moves forward, he meets what John Grisham calls 'a ambulance chase' and they start taking cases from other people, and Rudy still working on the medical case. Then Rudy meets a woman who is being abused by her boyfriend, so Rudy falls for and protects her from him. Now as the medical case moves along, eventually Rudy wins the case of $50 million dollars in grivence pay and medical bills. Rudy is happy winning his first case. Now he then finds out that the medical insurance went bankrupt and the family and Rudy would not see a penny coming their way. So now, with a old Volvo (it has I believe 130,000 miles on it, correct me if I am wrong), he then leaves the small firm he had with his buddy of his, and his new girlfriend and get out of town.

The Rainmaker I thought was a good book, I have not read all of Grisham's novels, but the few i did read (The Rainmaker is one of them), I felt like the man can write a good tale. I cant really call myself a huge Grisham fan, but I like his writing. Anyway, good book and definitely worth reading.

Featured Book
Double Novel: The Metamorphosis of Lisette Joyaux and the Story of Monique... Double Novel: The Metamorphosis of Lisette Joyaux and the Story of Monique...
by R. Kasak
Edition: Paperback
ASIN: 1878320866

Condition: Acceptable
Comments: Fair. Slight spine crease. Bookstore stamp inside front cover. Pages/Binding in great shape. 1991.

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Excellent Book
Two excellent books - I like lesbian erotica out of all forms of the adult erotica genre, and these two books have been on my wish list for a long time. Both books have a similar SM theme throughout and Lisette Joyaux is especially good. Don't want to spoil your reading, but if you like seriously well written 'dirty' erotica - which Masquerade Books are well know for - you'll enjoy these two titles! So good - I'm reading them again!!!
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A Favorite Fantasy Book
This is one of my favorite books to read and reread, over and over again. I think you get the picture.It has a great blend of all kinds of naughty yet fun fantasy situations that I could never have imagined on my own. There is a little of everything in this book. It's not like "Slave Island"'s violent revenge story, yet it keeps you very interested the entire time. I highly recommend it if you are looking for stimulating erotica.
Customer Rating
Loved the book! Great example of erotic progression.
I enjoyed this book a lot and kept rereading it over agian. It has just the right mix of different erotic issues.
Featured Book
Independence  Independence
by Dana Fuller Ross
Edition: Paperback
ASIN: 0553121456

Condition: Good
Comments: Good. Name on title page. Creased binding. 1979.

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The story that started the Wagon's West series!!
This is the first book in the Wagon's West series.

The president of the USA is calling in favors. He wants to make sure that the west is American territory and not British or Russian. To do this he calls on his old friend Sam Brentwood and asks him to start a wagon train to Oregon. Sam agrees and will guide the train to Independence, MO where he will stay and make a way station for the future trains to come.

This is where you first meet all the main characters and learn the interaction between them and the types of things that they must face if they are going to try and forge a new life in the west for themselves.

This is the story of their struggles against the British & Russian forces trying to keep them for making the trip.

This book is one of the 7th printing from back in the early 80's. If you are interested in the settlement of the American West this is one series that you need to revisit.

Customer Rating
British and Russian intrigue on the Oregon Trail
Andrew Jackson, the President of the United States in 1844,
tells Martin Van Buren, his vice president and successor, that "joint control is no control" because under the terms of the Treaty of Ghent, the United States and Britain have joint
control of the Oregon Territory. The book's set in 1837, which historically, isn't when the Oregon-bound settlers
set out. Chalk it up to dramatic license. You have your
cast of characters: Whip Holt, the assistant wagonmaster,
he takes over after Sam Brentwood leads the wagon train as far as Independence, Missouri. Sam marries Cathy van
Ayl's widowed sister, Claudia, and they stay on there to outfit
future wagon trains. You have Henry St. Claire, a British
spy, whose mission for Her Majesty's Government, is to
sabotage it. You also have a beautiful Russian, I forget her name, but she's blackmailed by the Czar's government into
sabotaging it too. Then there's Hosea, a runaway slave,
you also have the Taylor family, Danny, an escaped endentured servant, and Stalking Horse, a Cherokee Indian.
You also have a man dying of consumption, a father with a
daughter, and his illegitimate granddaughter. There's also
a bankrupt planter and his daughter, also named Claudia.
I highly recommend it.
Customer Rating
What a way to start
The greatest series of historical fiction starts with a bang. Hey, someone contradicts Andrew Jackson in the FIRST sentence.

With an interesting cast of characters, as well as action and intrigue, this book has it all as the wagon train starts its journey to Oregon by covering the eastern half of the US. Historically, settlers Oregon-bound did not start until around 1844, but we can let that slide. What is strange is that THE principle cast in this book take a diminished role in future titles, save for Cathy Van Ayl. (I'm not counting Whip, who was more prominent later on in Nebraska and aafterward). A MUST READ.

Featured Book
Cauldron [Paperback]  Cauldron [Paperback]
by Larry Bond
Edition: Paperback
ASIN: 0446600261

Condition: Very Good
Comments: Very Good. Slightly creased binding. 1994.

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Europe turns into a "Cauldron" of war in this novel....
The end of the Cold War and the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 was a blessing in disguise not only for the Pentagon but for writers of military fiction. Just as the armed services have had to develop new doctrines, strategies, tactics, and weapons systems to contend with new enemies (potential and real), authors such as Tom Clancy, Stephen Coonts, Harold Coyle, and Larry Bond have had to look at the world situation, read the proverbial "tea leaves," and write plausible scenarios pitting American soldiers against foes that are very different from the by-now all-too-familiar Soviet "Ivan."

The writing team of Bond and Patrick Larkin (Red Phoenix, Vortex) was one of the earliest practitioners of "the-Cold-War-is-ending, let's-look-at-other-story-possibilities" idea. Although the Soviet Union was still in existence when their first two novels were published in the early 1990s, its role in Red Phoenix (about a second Korean War) and Vortex (conflict breaks out in South Africa) is very limited...think of it as an old Mafia don giving limited amounts of money and guns to a younger up-and-coming capo.

In Cauldron, the international situation is very different. NATO has dissolved, its mission as Western Europe's shield against a massive Soviet invasion having been achieved. France and Germany have formed a loose military alliance, and right-wing elements now begin reviving the old empire building instincts most Europeans thought had died out with the end of the Second World War. But the wars in the Balkans and greed in the hearts of many government officials in France and Germany -- and even impoverished Russia -- have awakened the old demons of imperial ambitions and diplomatic arrogance. And when the new Franco-German alliance starts bullying the emerging democracies of Eastern Europe for financial gain, Hungary and Poland soon become the first victims of full-scale aggression. Only the United States and Great Britain, aided by a few other smaller European allies, stand in the way of a Third World War.

Long time readers of the genre -- and of the Bond/Larkin novels in particular -- know that the eventual outcome is never really in doubt. The techno-thriller, in some ways, is sometimes just as predictable and conventional as a Harlequin Romance novel....only instead of ripped bodices and heaving bosoms there are camouflaged fatigues and flying missiles. Still, the premise of American and British troops facing off against former allies is (while far-fetched) intriguing and a bit disconcerting.

Customer Rating
Bond dropped the ball on this one
After reading Red Pheonix, a flawed but easy to read and very entertaining novel, I picked up Cauldron, expecting much of the same. I got what I asked for, that's for sure. This book holds nothing new as far as the action sequences, with the possible exception of the French attack on the carrier group, it is rather dull. I really enjoyed the combat in Red Pheonix, and though it, saw Bond's influence in Clancy's Red Storm Rising (still the best all-out-war in Europe novel), but this time around it seemed recycled and boring. Also, Bond's depthless characters and annoying sideplots (the BS relationship between the U.S. officials in Moscow) started to get in the way. He would have done us a world of good if he had just eliminated all non-nessecarry dialogue.

The other issue of dispute is the paper-thin justification for the action that does take place in the book. The behavior of the French and German officials are totally irrational, unless you Bond means to assert that they are Hitleresque madmen. The Russian intelligence types were all cliches as well. As much as a kick-ass, no brains story (which this painfully tries to be at times) can be fun, this novel merely flops in its own rediculousness. Stick to the old style technothrillers, when the missiles were the stars and the politics seemed to, at least at a distance, make sense! Of course, Clancy's been pretty poor in recent years also.

Customer Rating
Fs all around for this work
I have read Bond's previous work, Red Phoenix and Vortex, and IMHO, they are the best military novels ever written. So when I picked up Cauldron, my expectations were high. Unfortunately, all I got for my 8 dollars was a poor and boring and predictable plot, with annoying and self righteous characters babbling about why they are entitled to start WW3 (see the CIA agents in Russia and the president). The action was anything but exciting, with American led forces kicking everyone's butts easily. The portrayal of the French was especially horrible. Throughout the whole novel, the French people are vilified and bashed throughouly, and they are portrayed to be so incompetent and cowardly that one has to wonder how in the world they managed to climb their way to the top of the European ladder in the first place. But somehow when the shooting starts, the French armed forces fight with the same skill and tenacity as your Sudanese militia. I was sorely disappointed with this work, and my opinion of Larry Bond has been substantially lowered as a result of this book.
Featured Book
The Locket [Mass Market Paperback]  The Locket [Mass Market Paperback]
by Richard Paul Evans
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
ASIN: 0671004239

Condition: Very Good
Comments: Very Good. Creased spine. 2000.

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Another great book from a truly gifted author
I have just completed reading The Locket. Richard Paul Evans has a natural gift of writing on paper what we all have felt at sometime. His books have you deal with all of your emotions and leaves you with hope. Hope in yourself, hope in mankind, and hope in the future. His books are an easy read but very addictive. Once you start you can't put the book down until it is finished. Always a good cry with his books. And that is not at all bad. Sometimes we need a release...
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Generations apart -- but each learns from the other.
How refreshing to read a book that has an inspirational message plus contains no graphic sex or vulgar language, yet at the same time, a believable story that is not contrived...a rarity these days!! I enjoyed the thought-provoking excerpts from Esther's diary at the beginning of each chaper...a clever touch by Evans. The flow is good and his descriptions of the characters and scenes "breathe" with reality. A few times, however, he overdoes the character descriptions with strings of trite adjectives. This is a poignant, touching tale that has a little bit of everything (except sex) and will appeal to males as well as females. I found it difficult to put down once I got into the story. Keep up the quality writing, Richard Paul Evans!
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Old People Are Valuable People
Wonderful! Wonderful! I have not read such a good book in a long time. I did not realize what a great writer Richard Paul Evans was until now. I have read about 5 of his books and have given ratings of 5 on each one of them. I don't give 5s to the well known writers sometimes. Read the book. You will have to love it.
Featured Book
Kid Rodelo [Paperback]  Kid Rodelo [Paperback]
by Louis L'Amour
Edition: Paperback
ASIN: 0553247484

Condition: As New
Comments: As New. August 1974.

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Pure, swift storytelling from L'Amour
I read this book in less than a day and enjoyed everyu moment of the experience. Dan Rodelo is released from prison (he claims to be innocent) and sets out to make things right. But who is Rodelo? And will he survive a trek across the desert with two outlaws recently escaped from prison and a woman almost a mysterious as Rodelo? L'Amour sets up all of these questions and answers them fully by bok's end. This story will keep you on the edge of your seat and constantly reaching for something cool to drink as the desert described in this book is guranteed to leave you parched.

I am sure all Western fans will love this book, but I'd go a step further and say anyone who is a fan of a well-told adventure would eat this up. L'Amour remains unequalled. (Though the books of George G. Gilman run a close second, check him out now).

One last note, read L'Amour's Last Stand At Papago Wells first. It works good that way.

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Chasing the Kid
The thing about this story is the surprise ending and L'amour does all he can to deceive the reader till the end. But again this deception is what makes the story - the chase - so gripping.

And as usual L'amour with his pechant for describing locales, brings to life the desert and its creatures. The characterizations are pretty memorable too!

 
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