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Showing posts from June, 2008

Final Salute: A Story of Unfinished Lives by Jim Sheeler

So I really wanted to post this review yesterday, but the site was down for updates or maintenance or whatever Blogger does when it goes down, and I was unable to upload the photo at left. Luckily the site is working again today and I can post again.

Final Salute: A Story of Unfinished Lives by Jim Sheeler is one of the few non-fiction books that I've read in its entirety. It is a book that I think every American should read whether or not you support the war in Iraq--especially in a time when the government limits photos of flag draped caskets arriving at Dover, Delaware. It's easy to be detached from this war, to be ignorant of the sacrifice required of servicemen and -women and their families. This book will bring the war and the freedom we often take for granted in this country and the cost of both in human lives into your home--it's impossible to remain detached from this war after you've read this book.

Sheeler is a reporter who has followed a group of families a…

Midnight Nation by J. Michael Straczynski

I went to the Annville Free Library's book sale last night. Unfortunately I didn't find any books to buy, but I did find a couple items to borrow. One item was the graphic novel Midnight Nation by J. Michael Straczynski. Try saying that last name three times fast. I had a strange sense of deja vu when I started reading the first couple pages of this novel before I realized that, yes, I did already read it. So I decided to reread it, and after I was finished, I found out that I still don't quite "get" what the author meant by the ending. I don't want to say much more than that because I don't want to spoil the story for those who haven't read it yet.
David Grey is a homicide detective for the LAPD, and the latest murders he's caught are some seriously nasty news. Grey starts poking around and a witness points him in the direction of "the men" a.k.a "the Walkers" (not a surname). He tracks down an ex-con who may be connected to th…

No Time For Goodbye by Linwood Barclay

Cynthia glanced about for a note. Her mom was big about leaving notes when she had to go out. Even when she was angry. A long enough note to say, "On your own today," or "Make yourself some eggs, have to drive Todd," or just "Back later." If she was really angry, instead of signing off with "Love, Mom," she'd write "L, Mom." There was no note.
from page 5, No Time For Goodbye
Whoa. That's what I thought when I finished reading No Time For Goodbye by Linwood Barclay. The story is one wild ride starting from the first chapter as it careens around some dark twists in its complicated plot.
Twenty-five years ago Cynthia woke up one morning to an empty house--her parents and her older brother were gone. Her family has vanished without a trace, and the police have no leads and no explanations; there isn't a shred of evidence that points toward one theory or another. Cynthia is left the only survivor. The mystery of her family's …

The Descent

The Descent is a scary horror movie that stars six British actors I've never really heard of... and chances are if I've never heard of them, most other American viewers haven't heard of these people either. Apparently they are well-known in Britain.
The Descent tells the unfortunate story of six women who take a weekend to explore a cave in the Appalachia region of the U.S.A. Things go horribly wrong for the women when their path back to the entrance of the cave becomes blocked by a cave-in. Eventually this becomes the least of their problems. The women blindly press on deeper into the cave hoping to find another way out. Soon it is made clear to them that a freaky, carnivorous, cannibalistic, gross looking, species also calls the cave home. In addition to looking for another entrance, the ladies must also avoid becoming the species' next meal.
This movie is very dark--literally and figuratively. I mean, really, how much light can you expect to find in a cave? It is also…

Dark of the Moon by John Sandford

Considering when I read this book, this review comes a little late; I'm already deep into another book. How did you spend your Memorial Day weekend? I spent mine reading this book. About 30 pages in, I was still thinking about whether or not I was going to finish it or ditch it and move on to the next one. There are too many books on my reading list to mess around with one I don't like or that doesn't hook me in the first few chapters. I used to feel guilty about dropping a book after a chapter or two if it didn't work out, but ever since one of my college professors said it was okay, I don't feel so bad about ditching a book if it's not connecting with me. There's always the next one. Then the next thing I knew, I was in over 100 pages; this book sucks you in like that.

Dark of the Moon features Virgil Flowers, an off-beat agent for the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (I think it's an equivalent of PA's State Troopers... some states have s…