Oscar Alvarez

Joined a year ago

Oscar's Favorites
Murach's MySQL
Murach's MySQL
Murach's MySQL by Joel Murach. Rated 4.7 out of 5 stars, with 58 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the mysql category.
100 History Series 5 Books Collection Set (100 People Who Made History, 100 Events That Made History, 100 Inventions That Made History, 100 Scientists That Made History, 100 Women That Made History)
100 History Series 5 Books Collection Set (100 People Who Made History, 100 Events That Made History, 100 Inventions That Made History, 100 Scientists That Made History, 100 Women That Made History)
100 History Series 5 Books Collection Set (100 People Who Made History, 100 Events That Made History, 100 Inventions That Made History, 100 Scientists That Made History, 100 Women That Made History) by DK and Andrea Mills. Rated undefined out of 5 stars, with undefined ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the J. K. Rowling category.
Die Jury: Jack Brigance 1
Die Jury: Jack Brigance 1
Die Jury: Jack Brigance 1 by John Grisham, Charles Brauer, et al.. Rated 4.7 out of 5 stars, with 20 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the John Grisham category.
Le Clandestin (Best-sellers) (French Edition)
Le Clandestin (Best-sellers) (French Edition)
Le Clandestin (Best-sellers) (French Edition) by John Grisham and Patrick BERTHON. Rated 4.2 out of 5 stars, with 13 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the John Grisham category.
Das Gesetz: Stories (German Edition)
Das Gesetz: Stories (German Edition)
Das Gesetz: Stories (German Edition) by John Grisham , Kristiana Dorn-Ruhl, et al.. Rated 4.1 out of 5 stars, with 19 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the John Grisham category.
Esquecer O Natal
Esquecer O Natal
Esquecer O Natal by John Grisham. Rated 5 out of 5 stars, with 2 ratings. Read more and check out similar items in the John Grisham category.
Mastering TypeScript - Second Edition
Mastering TypeScript - Second Edition
This is a fantastic book.

When I was told that I needed to learn about TypeScript to fit into a new team at a client,
I purchased this book and spent around two weeks after hours working through the chapters and samples.

I found the flow of the book to be at a good pace, each chapter building on the knowledge learned from previous ones.
Coming from a C# background, and understanding object oriented principles, picking up TypeScript felt natural.

When I eventually joined the team, I was quite surprised at how much in-depth knowledge I had
compared to the existing team members. Where I felt comfortable writing basic things like declaration files, generics and promises,
most of the other members still did not fully grasp the concepts, and were still battling by learning through trial and error.

As a new team member, I thought that I would need to spend quite some time learning from everyone else, until my
knowledge had grown to their level. What I found, however was quite the opposite.

With the knowledge and techniques that I had learnt, I was able to contribute to the team's velocity very quickly.
I was also able to identify opportunities for re-factoring, and suggest to the team better ways of tackling difficult problems.

To me, the real strength of this book was the author's coverage of different frameworks. By working through and understanding
how the same concepts are implemented in each of them, I gained a broader view of the strengths and weaknesses of each. This
helped the team in identifying and selecting the right framework for each of our projects.

As a consultant, I am expected to be able to walk into a new customer, join a new project, and hit the ground running.
This book gave me all the knowledge I needed to do exactly that.
Warren Buffett: A Biography
Warren Buffett: A Biography
Per fortuna che mi hanno rimborsato. Davvero pessimo: scritto come fosse una tesina delle medie, forse una 20ina di pagine (le ho anche lette). Tutto materiale che può essere trovato online o su qualsiasi libro su Warren Buffet.
Mark Zuckerberg VS Google Brothers: Great Men with Great Vision
Mark Zuckerberg VS Google Brothers: Great Men with Great Vision
Two amazing stories. The book highlights to rise to fame of Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and the Google brothers Larry Page and Sergey Brin. All three men have acquired great wealth and notoriety and their stories were educational and inspiring.

The similarities of their rise to stardom were that they were all three master computer operators, started their companies with little money and little support. Zuckerberg was younger than the Google brothers at the time of his initial fame.

Some of the differences between Zuckerberg and the Google brothers besides age is the Zuckerberg keeps his face in the media much more than the Google brothers ho stay for the most part behind the scenes.

Their impacts on society are profound. Be it the connections people can make with one another across the world through Facebook or the ability to retrieve information efficiently and effectively from a single search engine in Google.

All three men utilized the American free market and time when a need for their skills was on the rise. In other words, they seized the moment. This book gave me insights into these men in way that I did not have before. It was a fun and educational read.
Earl Nightingale Reads Think and Grow Rich
Earl Nightingale Reads Think and Grow Rich
It's pretty much difficult for me to write the reviews of all-time best-selling books, classics. While reading the book, I didn't feel like checking out if he wrote the truth or not because what matters is the power of conviction, power of thinking, and that is what the author wants from his readers.

Think and Grow Rich is a weird book I ended up liking, just not for the reasons intended by the author. The language of Hill's book is very much like the polite business writing Carnigie and it is endearing and friendly enough that I was willing to fight it through to the end. The first part of his book seems perfectly rational. The rest is just strange enough to get a kick out of.

Some of the principles, values added in this book are astonishing. I don't know how much they will help one in becoming rich, and wealthier. But then there is no loss in trying these principles, activities. There is no problem in thinking that you are rich and you want to become richer, that you're wealthy and you want to become wealthier, that you're smart and you want to become smarter.

Napolean Hill, again and again, tells you to focus on thinking, thinking positive, thinking big and that is how this book lures the readers to do the actions that the author wanted to.

The crux of the book is that successful people think differently than the rest of us, and if we want to be successful, we need to learn to think like them. Fair enough. Hill, having spent a career studying successful people, then prescribes steps to learn to think like the successful. Develop desire, faith, and work at obtaining a specific knowledge. Get together with like-minded individuals and discuss your dealings with them in what he calls a Maser Mind Group. It all sounded pretty straight forward. It sounds like a good plan. Then he gets into how to develop faith.

There are a couple of more dubious but harmless ideas in this book. Hats, and men's fear of judgement, makes many men bald. Men are afraid of criticism, so they go along with the trend to wear hats. Many of these hats are too tight. They cut off circulation to the scalp thereby causing baldness. I am bald but I don’t think I ever wore hat!
Jeff Bezos: The Force Behind the Brand: Insight and Analysis into the Life and Accomplishments of the Richest Man on the Planet (Billionaire Visionaries Book 1)
Jeff Bezos: The Force Behind the Brand: Insight and Analysis into the Life and Accomplishments of the Richest Man on the Planet (Billionaire Visionaries Book 1)
Bezos was born in 1964 Albuquerque to a then unwed mother. ('Pops,' her father, came from a line of settlers - he enlarged the family ranch to 25,000 acres, and was also Regional Director of the AEC. She eventually married a Cuban immigrant of Spanish descent (Miguel) who came here via Operation Peter Pan (15,000 children airlifted in - without parents; his future stepfather was 15 at the time and Jeff would be four when Miguel adopted him). Miguel (Mike) became an EE.

Pops taught self-reliance to Jeff. Usually Jeff worked summers at the ranch; one year he instead got a part-time job at McDonald's. Hating every moment, he quit after a few days and started a summer camp ($600/, for a 10-day event for 4th - 6th graders). Six enrollees (including a brother and sister) - the focus was teaching reasoning. The course included reading parts of 'The Lord of the Rings,' 'Dune,' 'Watership Down,' etc. The science component included space travel, use of fossil fuels, fission generators, etc.

High school valedictorian (speech included evacuating humans for Earth), double major at Princeton - electrical engineering and computer science. .

Bezos decided to start with books in July 1994 because books were the one item in mail order catalogs that fit well with online purchase and shipping - there were so many titles that nobody could print a catalog and send it to every household. In 1994, Americans spent over $60 billion on mail-order products. The first e-commerce sale was a Sting CD in 1994. The Internet solved that problem. Bezos saw the Internet as a channel to reach millions, and books as a product to start with. Amazon began business a year later.

At the time there wasn't much you could get online - Amazon seemed to be an extension of a mail-order store where you got a catalog, then made a purchase over the phone. An Amazon catalog of books would have been larger than the NYC phone directory.

After about 4 months Amazon was doing about $20,000/week in sales.

He had decided to set up business in Seattle because of the tax structure there. (The Supreme Court ruled there would be no sales taxes collected from a company that didn't have physical presence in the state the sale was made - Washington has a low sales tax.) The next warehouse was in Delaware - no sales tax, the third in Reno (no sales tax, close to California.) Today it has a P/E ratio of 230, vs. 37 for Google, 46 for Alibaba, 17 for Apple, and 62 at Microsoft.

More than 100,000 sellers made over $100,000 in 2016, customers spent $200 billion in Amazon in 2017, it has over 40% of the U.S. e-commerce market and over half a million employees. Amazon spent $1.5 billion on shipping in 2016, and took in $3.3 billion from 32 million Prime customers; Prime members spend an average $1,600/year vs. about $600/year for the rest.

Bezos turned to 20 friends/family and raised $50,000 each for less than 1% of the company each. Overall, about 24 people contributed $1 million total for a sixth of the firm. that took about a year. Amazon went public in 1997, bringing in $148 million in revenue at that point. (About half startups make to the 5th year.)

Bezos believed that objectives superseded all other events - if you want to do something, you do it before you set out on doing anything else and you are not done until you succeed. Effort towards significant achievement is not about rewards - its the internal satisfaction.

It took 15 months to et the website ready.
Quotations of Henry Ford (Quotations of Great Americans)
Quotations of Henry Ford (Quotations of Great Americans)
Henry Ford has been quoted many, many times, and not for nothing: a true entrepreneur and over-achiever, we quite probably owe best part of the modern, industrialized world to his genius.

What impresses me the most, though, is his indomitable spirit:
"Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't: you're right!"
You might have heard this before, possibly without realizing it came from Henry Ford.

Another one I particularly like:
"We're looking for men with the infinite capacity to NOT KNOW what is impossible."

These quotes are para-phrased, but you get the idea.

The book is small and pretty; it makes a perfect gift to a relative for Christmas, New Year's, Birthdays or at any other time.

I for one am glad I bought it!

Mark Kislich
My Forty Years With Ford (Great Lakes Books Series)
My Forty Years With Ford (Great Lakes Books Series)
If you like business histories your normal challenge is to find books written by or about the founder or management during the years of your interest (in my case the first 40 years or so).

Charlie Sorenson kept diaries and was a key man during the first forty years of Ford.

This book gives you a real life picture of a company that accomplished incredible feats in spite of its critical flaws.

The management style of Ford during the first 40 years is completely different than say GM (read the Alfred Sloan book for comparison).

It is fun to see that there is more than one way that people go about accomplishing great things. You can read these stories and think about what helped them succeed and what you might do differently.
Complete Studio Master Takes
Complete Studio Master Takes
The best part here is the presentation...this set comes in a nice box, with a full color booklet that has some interesting info. The records on my shipment were in perfect shape, and are nice and sturdy, with paper sleeves. There are 5 full-size records and one 10" LP, and the title "complete studio master takes" is pretty accurate here; just about anything you could want from these two is included here.

The not so best part here is the reason you would buy a set like this; how do the records sound? Well, there's no background noise, popping, anything like that. Records are in perfect shape. However, the pressing isn't the best I've ever heard. Granted, I haven't heard most of these recordings on vinyl, and the only thing I have to compare is a SACD release of the first title in this set. I have that SACD, and it sounds pretty clearly better.

Bottom line is, if you want all of Ella and Louis' tracks in one collection with OK quality, this set is a no-brainer, but if you're looking for a pressing that is out of this world this one might disappoint you.

Oh, and one final caveat...I got this cheap. I mean, super-cheap, as in under $20. If you buy this for under $20, you should be awfully happy, just because of what you get. I can't imagine they could press the records and include the box and artwork for much less than that; I'm basing my review on the prices that it looks like today on Amazon.
Intro To Java Programming, Comprehensive Version
Intro To Java Programming, Comprehensive Version
The book is organized as a course and is primarily destinated to students. It starts from the very beginning. However, it is rather comprehensive but you can quickly review the first 13 chapters if you know an another OOP language like C++ or Python. I was shocked to see a completely nonefficient algorithm for computing the gcd of the integers (by simply iterating over the integers and checking if it is a divisor) in the book only to find that the efficient Euclidian algorithm is given at the end of the book. I guess is it for pedagogical reasons but using stupid algorithms is not the best way to learn how to program.

If you purchase this book new, you have access to supplement from the website (additional chapters and solutions to all exercises otherwise you have only the even numbered ones). As the code in the book can only be used one, this might not be available from second-hand books (you then have to purchase the access). If you are an Instructors at some school, you get more supplements; which I find stupid since it will probably leak onto the internet in one way or other.
Jordan Air Eclipse Chukka
Jordan Air Eclipse Chukka
Great looking shoe but this shoe runs small. This first time I brought actual form fitting gym shoe's. So maybe my mistake for not researching more on this. Hopefully I can stretch with wear, but I recommend a .5 size bigger.
The Disney Monorail: Imagineering a Highway in the Sky (Disney Editions Deluxe)
The Disney Monorail: Imagineering a Highway in the Sky (Disney Editions Deluxe)
disney editions titles can be hit or miss. they're authorized by the company, so of course you're going to have access to the studio and imagineering archives for concept art and professional photography. the first question is, how much of it has been published before? have i seen before? is this already on my shelves?

and then the second question is, what kind of text accompanies the images? yesterday's tomorrow by don hahn was pretty skimpy. i learned nothing new. the two volume marc davis set from last year, conversely, was a GOLD MINE. nearly all new information from personal, unpublished interviews with the author. not just quotes from the "e-ticket" magazine i've seen a hundred times before.

this book on the disney monorails (disneyland original, WDW fleet, and yes, the tokyo trains too) hits the sweet spot. granted, it's not a total gold mine in terms of text. but the voice is engaging yet thorough. the caption information is quite complete.

for the images and art, yea, WOW. probably 80% of this material i've never seen before, and i study theme park design for a living. everything here appears to be newly scanned and/or retouched up. no old kodachrome slides from the 70s like you find in other disney park books with blotches and hairs and soft focus.

i'd say must own. like the marc davis set, get it now. titles like this usually only go through a single large print run and then in a couple years you'll see them listed here on amazon for $800 or something ridiculous (jason surrell's attraction books come to mind). don't miss the [train] !!!
ILOVETOOL 2.0mm Diamond Jewelry Drill Bits Carving Bur Tools for Stone Pack of 30Pcs
ILOVETOOL 2.0mm Diamond Jewelry Drill Bits Carving Bur Tools for Stone Pack of 30Pcs
I drill holes in shells to make wind chimes and I love making them! I used to only buy the Drimmel brand bits. I could only do 40 shells or so before the Drimmel bits would give out. I got these for their price and am happily surprised! These bits are good and pointy, and they go though the shell nicely at first. After 10 shells the tip would break but I could keep going for a while after that with the now less pointy bit. When it starts struggling you get a nice sharp new one. All in all cheaper than brand name. These bits are a good value for my needs. If you’re reading this and plan to drill shells, make sure to use water. Put a sponge in a shallow pie dish filled with crushed ice and water. Drill the shell on the sponge and as you drill stick the bit in the sponge to keep it cool. You can even use a bit of water on the drill site. It’s fun to drill the holes too. Happy shell crafting!
KECOP 750 Underwater Metal Detector with Vibration and LCD Detection Indicator - PI Waterproof Probe Pulse Induction Technology Metal Detector Handhel
KECOP 750 Underwater Metal Detector with Vibration and LCD Detection Indicator - PI Waterproof Probe Pulse Induction Technology Metal Detector Handhel
It took me a couple tries to understand how this detector responds to different metals and depths but once i sorted out the behavior, it was a breeze to use. It’s very easy to use and calibrate for different types of metals. The sensitivity dial makes fine tuning simple as well. It's as simple as one would wish for. I have found 100s of items so far. It's still working great. But for anyone having trouble, practice at home and understand all the features prior to venturing out. It should work just fine unless defective.
Red Dawn (2012)
Red Dawn (2012)
It was fairly well done from a somewhat different perspective than the original, different location, different invaders, a more urban environment, same character names but different life experiences -- the rebel leader was an active-duty Marine home on leave, for example, instead of a high school senior. I enjoyed it, though there are a few glitches in the storyline, things happening without explanation, some things happening with explanations that didn't make sense. I didn't feel it was a cohesive as the original, but it wasn't entirely falling apart, either. One problem I had was that the North Korean invaders were vicious, as they would be expected to be, but not very aggressive in their pursuit of the rebels. One scene had them hiding out in a forest ditch while the NOKO captain and a few soldiers stood nearby with a bullhorn having the rebel family members talk to them with the bullhorn. I found that unrealistic; if the NOKO captain thought the rebels were within range of the bullhorn he would have had a squad or two of troops establish a perimeter around them and close in. But the movie seemed to have a lot more action than the original, and the action was believable.
WOLVERINE Men's Floorhand Oxford Steel Toe Construction Shoe
WOLVERINE Men's Floorhand Oxford Steel Toe Construction Shoe
Too early to comment on durability, but these look good (in matte black), feel comfortable, are sized well, and seem reasonably priced. I really did order one pair, wore them for about a week, and liked them enough to order a second pair (my reasoning is that once these wear out, I'd rather have another pair ready to use than hope this model/style that I like still exists in the future, nor do I want to hassle with finding some other pair I like if these are no longer available).

Note: be careful selecting the seller! The first pair I ordered through an Amazon affiliate and was $93 and were tax-free. The second pair I looked at would have been fulfilled by Amazon instead and seemed cheaper at $91, but then would have had an $9 tax added on, for a total of $100. I balked at paying tax on the same item I didn't pay tax on last week, so I looked through the "other sellers" list and found the original affiliate, now selling them for only $90, but still tax-free. So pay attention to the price+tax+shipping total and don't just click "add to cart"... comparison shop the other sellers to get the best deal!

I took one star off because I almost never give anything 5-stars, and because the shoelaces tend to un-tie themselves and so need to be double knotted (this is a common problem among boot laces, and is not unique to these shoes). But I do like these shoes.
Black List: Scot Harvath, Book 11
Black List: Scot Harvath, Book 11
In the forward, we are told the systems written about in the book are real.
Some are operational now and some will soon be operational.

When I was 80-100 pages in, I got on the PC and started doing searches. It was all there!
The programs, the systems, weren't made up. There are a LOT of things I was unaware of,
and I try to keep up with the news.

As I read the book, and followed the links turned up by code-names and program names,
I was watching Fox news and reading web news sites. After doing this for awhile,
I started to feel like Brad Thor was a Nostradamus, who had predicted our 2013 news, back in 2012!

After looking at things for a while, I also wondered why we needed a new NSA Data center in Utah, when we already have a huge NSA data center in San Antonio TX. Why so large, just to keep records? Data storage devices are getting smaller in size all the time.

Warning:
If you have been watching the political news closely this spring,
and like to do research, and read news on the web.
As you read Black List, you might find yourself feeling some very real paranoia,
when you look at your PC or iPhone.

At night when you want to sleep, you may start to wonder about those calls to your home number.
Those hang-up calls that went to voice mail. No message. Obviously just a bunch of wrong-numbers.
At 1AM, you might start asking yourself, why did I go with Verizon?
Were any of those wrong-numbers from one of those Boston Bombers, or one of their friends, over in Cambridge?

Anyways, I've read two other Brad Thor books, (The Last Patriot & State of the Union)
but 'Black List' is the best so far.
It's very much in phase with the bad news these days. These very scary days..

PS:
This book had a pretty big impact on me. I recently told some friends,
"Black List, should come with a tin-foil hat..
If you read it, while absorbing the daily news this past month,
you just might start thinking about conspiracy theories."
Marvel Deadpool 2 Pack Casual Crew Socks 6-12
Marvel Deadpool 2 Pack Casual Crew Socks 6-12
Husband loved them at first, but after about a month and a half, of wearing and washing them, the bottoms started to wear extra thin and get holes. Expected the material to be more durable and last longer. Wasted money.
Marvel Comics Video Library Volume 2: Fantastic Four vs. Doctor Doom - Meet Doctor Doom
Marvel Comics Video Library Volume 2: Fantastic Four vs. Doctor Doom - Meet Doctor Doom
I love these videos and have been collecting them since I was in grade school. Each video contains at least two episodes and for the most part they are centered around the character on the cover. The first episode involves The Fantastic Four and the first time they encountered Dr. Doom. Unfortunately this is not the Hanna Barbera cartoon series from the 60's but the DePatie/Frieling cartoon from 1978. But it is one of the better cartoons from that series (its not a bad series I just like the 60's one better) and is followed up by an episode from the 1981 Spider-Man cartoon entitled "Canon of Doom." Now don't be fooled this is not the immortal classic series "Spider-Man and His Amazing Friends" but the cartoon before it.
These large clamshell cases with their beautiful artwork look great on the shelf and hopefully you can find one that has been taken care of and a VCR to watch it on, then you could have a wonderful evening. Oh and each one comes with the signature of Marvel Comics Great, Stan Lee! Excelsior!
Dr. Seuss Goes to War: The World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel
Dr. Seuss Goes to War: The World War II Editorial Cartoons of Theodor Seuss Geisel
This is an interesting historical account of the fight by one publication, led largely by the efforts of the man who would become famous to us as Dr. Suess, to go up against hatred and discrimination of Jewish people and African-Americans. I especially was interested in the narrator’s commentary regarding “Isolationism” and the publication’s (as well as Dr. Suess’s) omission to attack hatred and fear of Japanese-Americans, but that’s a detail best learned by reading this thoughtful, inspiring history.

BLUSH FACTOR: No worries here.

EDITING FOR GRAMMAR AND TYPOS: This is professionally edited.

EXCERPT:

Instead of an excerpt, I’m attaching two screen shots of illustrations that, in my view, show the early versions of characters used by Dr. Suess in his books for children. By the way, I learned only from this book’s explanation that Suess, when correctly pronounced, actually rhymes with royce. Just one minor bit of knowledge that will form an ever-so-slight crease in my brain!

THE WRITING FLOW & STYLE: The narrative, before and after the 45 illustrations, is interesting and written in a manner that, for nonfiction, is more inviting than I had expected. Mind you, I would have preferred to place the illustrations throughout the text, rather than in, basically, smack dab in the middle section. Yet, I am delighted with what I did learn, especially what I learned about the fight against Lindbergh and his isolationist stance against America’s opposition to Hitler.

BOTTOM LINE

Five stars out of five.

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Dr. Seuss: Hats Off to Dr. Seuss Collector's Edition
Dr. Seuss: Hats Off to Dr. Seuss Collector's Edition
This is a surprisingly robust collection of Dr Seuss animated programs, most of which were originally TV specials in the '60s through '90s. The front cover highlights the five best-known stories and the back lists four more, but in total there are actually 12 scattered across this five disc set if you know where to look.

The Cat in the Hat disc also includes Daisy-Head Mayzie and The Hoober-Bloob Highway as special features. Likewise, The Lorax disc includes Pontoffell Pock & His Magic Piano and The Butter Battle Book. The Horton Hears a Who disc also includes Horton Hatches the Egg as well as duplicates of Daisy-Head and Butter Battle, with all four stories presented alongside each other in a "Features" menu (not to be confused with the Special Features menu). Green Eggs & Ham is actually the third act of a TV special originally called "Dr Seuss on the Loose" which also includes The Sneetches and The Zax. The Grinch is the only disc without additional stories, although that one has special features galore.

Also of note, there is a live-action program from 1994 included in the Horton disc's Special Features called "In Search of Dr Seuss" which includes edited alternate versions of several animated Seuss stories found in this collection as well as live-action retellings of some additional stories.

My only complaint is that the video and audio quality varies a bit from title to title, more so for the lesser-known stories, but that should be expected considering the age and original production value of some of these TV specials. Other than that, this is a fun (and educational) collection for kids and a great nostalgia trip for adults.
Darkness Under the Sun (Novella): A Tale of Suspense
Darkness Under the Sun (Novella): A Tale of Suspense
I'm a huge Koontz fan and have read many of his short stories. Koontz can raise your hackles in an economy of pages and does so here with aplomb. As other reviewers have stated the dialogue raises alarm bells in the reader's head while the young hero remains unaware of double meanings. A deep unease slithers through the reader's mind as Blackwood slowly reveals himself. The boy in the story is very likable, a picture of youth and innocence. Numerous times I wanted to scream at the book for the boy, Henry, to get out of there! Blackwood's character is well drawn in these short pages. He is clearly a person pursuing the perfection of evil, chiefly on the innocent and unsuspecting. Blackwood may turn out to be one of Koontz' most formidable adversaries. I would certainly never wish him on anyone. The small town could be just about any. Koontz' use of language is displayed through his typical masterfulness. The end of the story gives a lingering sense that the other shoe must at any moment fall and convinces us all that there is indeed darkness under the sun.

I highly recommend this story. The price is great. The story serves simultaneously as an introduction to Koontz' forthcoming book, What the Night Knows, and as a stand-alone tale. This download includes the first chapter of the full length novel as an addendum to the short story. In order not to torture myself with not being able to continue on immediately I have not indulged in the first chapter of What the Night Knows so I can't comment on it. But certainly don't miss the short story here! I can't wait to pick up What the Night Knows on December 28, 2010.
The Complete Odd Thomas 8-Book Bundle: Odd Thomas, Forever Odd, Brother Odd, Odd Hours, Odd Apocalypse, Odd Interlude, Deeply Odd, Saint Odd
The Complete Odd Thomas 8-Book Bundle: Odd Thomas, Forever Odd, Brother Odd, Odd Hours, Odd Apocalypse, Odd Interlude, Deeply Odd, Saint Odd
My ex wife and I had started to read these together after borrowing them from her sister. I really enjoyed the three we borrowed and then kind of forgot about them after my divorce. I started to re-read the one I had read before. Great stories with funny twists and intelligent humor. The characters are well developed and the story reads through in a way that you feel immersed in the story. Dean Koontz is a first class story teller.
Chasing Hope: An Anthology (Stanislaskis)
Chasing Hope: An Anthology (Stanislaskis)
This is a larger-sized release of a couple of novels from 1990 & 1991, which I was happy to get, because my old mass market versions were yellowed with age. I've read all the Stanislaski novels several times, and always enjoyed them. This volume has the first two books in the series. If you go for family-oriented romances with some sensuality, a touch of humor, and the occasional tear, you will absolutely love these books. "Taming Natasha" introduces the former ballet dancer, who now runs a very popular toy store in a small town. One of her little customers, Frederica, is looking for a mother and a baby sister; Freddie's dad, Spence, wants what is best for Freddie. Luckily, it appears that Freddie and Spence will find all their answers in Natasha. "Luring a Lady" brings us back to NYC, where most of the clan resides. Mikhail is living in a run-down building, and doesn't hesitate to have a run-in with the landlord...who happens to be a beautiful, but insecure, woman who has just taken over the company after the death of her grandfather. Mikhail is a wonderful hero, combining talent (he's a famous artist), practicality (he's also a licensed contractor who will fix the building) and a good sense of humor and romance, with more than a touch of alpha male...but, when it comes to any Stanislaski novel, it's all about family. And it's a wonderful family, so grab it and settle in for a great read!
Risky Business: A Passionate Novel of Suspense
Risky Business: A Passionate Novel of Suspense
Liz was a strong, independent woman who knew what she wanted. After finding herself pregnant by the man she loved, she found out that he had had no intention of making a life with her, especially after his parents threatened to cut off his money for college. He was studying to become a lawyer. He refused to become a father, threatened her, gave her a check and told her to end the pregnancy.
She left the united States and went to Cozumel. She worked in a hotel as a maid, pregnant, until she had saved enough money to start her own dive shop. She expanded to two diving boats, a fishing boat, and a glass-bottom boat. She did all this for her daughter. That was the most important person to her. She stayed away from men.
While her daughter was in Houston with her grandparents during the school year, Liz rented her daughters bedroom out to a man who was murdered. He worked for Liz, His twin brother showed up, shocking Liz. Demanding to know the answers to a lot of questions that she had no answers for.
While searching for these answers, Jonas realized that Liz had unknowingly been drawn into a situation she knew nothing about. It appears his twin brother had been involved in drug smuggling and had stolen some of the money and product. The drug dealers went after Liz demanding to know where it was. Jonas moved in with her to protect her and they worked together with the police to try to find answers.
Jonas realized the more time he spent with Liz and the more he found out about her, the more he was falling in love. Now if he could only convince her...and keep her safe.
Lots of action and suspense. Several twists and turns. A good read.
Stephen King, IT!
Stephen King, IT!
I wish the movie were not three hours. I had to rent it twice. That said, it's a great watch with awesome characterization, despite the bad 1990s special effects at the end. I'm glad I watched it.

Social commentary within the film: (Stephen King's characters are often partially wounded underdogs who need to pull together to beat society's bullying, or get revenge on bullies - think "Carrie"), but I liked the implication in IT that the monster is not just humanity's fear/brutality in general, but a particular form of society as in Derry.

"In some ways, this whole town is IT." (I wish this idea, stated near the end, could have been explored a bit more). The town's bullying, abuse of children, and bystander non-intervention when crimes or murders occur, certainly suggest that IT is the worst of human nature, not an otherworldly force. (Fear as the great shape-changer, etc).

Although the "We have met IT, and IT is us" argument works pretty well, the literal nature of the dead bodies in the sewer suggest that either there is an actual "IT" feeding on human life, or at least that (as in the case of Henry), IT is possibly completely non-corporeal and influencing humans to commit IT's murders for it. One oddity: during the battles, the duality of having to pretend not to believe in IT to reduce IT's power, yet having to fight IT materially is confusing, however. Not believing in IT's omnipotence I can see as a compromise. Yes, IT exists, but I make it stronger through fear, etc.

Morals seem to be: Pull together, you can't fight fear solo
You may conquer IT, but IT may come back. Pull together with friends again.

Random question...
Why is Derry a microcosm of something larger in society (fear/bullying/isolation), yet uniquely affected as a small town while the rest of the nation isn't? And does the town change after the events of the end?

I have not read the book, so perhaps the random questions I'm posing here are answered there.
The Berenstain Bears and the Bad Dream
The Berenstain Bears and the Bad Dream
We own many of the Bear Cub adventures, and always find Mama Bear to be a great Mama. This is a good title, but in my opinion a little too long on the build up to the bad dreams and too short of the "dealing with the bad dreams" and I was also sad to see NO "how not to have bad dreams" discussion.

But we still like it, we still read it. My 4 year old "read" it to his stuffed money last night when the monkey didn't feel good and was resting.

BB Learn About Stranges is a better one, dealing more completely with the issue of strangers whereas this one doesn't fully address bad dreams as i would like. However, most any BB cub adventure is well recieved in this home.
The Book of Lists 2
The Book of Lists 2
David Wallechinsky has had 2 series that he has done a number of titles on: "The People's Almanac" and "The Book of Lists". He has done these with other members of his family (his father was novelist Irving Wallace). This was originally published in 1980 and has guest contributions from notables such as Presidents Reagan and Ford, Grace Kelly, George Foreman, Muddy Waters and many more. The lists range from historical to sports to entertainment to trivia.
Some of the lists are dated by now while others are still fresh. Wallechinsky has continued to write further Books of Lists since this one and some of these lists have been reprinted in more recent editions. It is a very quick read as if one list doesn't interest you (say 8 Unusual Dolphin Incidents), you just move on to the next one. There's bound to be things in here for most people's interests. 4.5 Stars.
Los Hijos de Húrin
Los Hijos de Húrin
Debo confesar que al principio dudaba en comprarlo porque estaba consciente de que la historia de Túrin se contaba ya en El Silmarillion. Sin embargo, definitivamente valió la pena que sacaran un librito donde se contara únicamente la historia trágica de los hijos de Húrin. ¡Fue una experiencia casi religiosa! Se ha convertido en uno de mis favoritos y mi admiración por el maestro Tolkien se ha acrecentado.

Nota: en este libro se cuenta la historia de Turín Turambar más detalladamente que en El Silmarillion. ¡Vale la pena adquirirlo!
Further Up and Further In : Orthodox Conversations with C. S. Lewis on Scripture and Theology
Further Up and Further In : Orthodox Conversations with C. S. Lewis on Scripture and Theology
In the introduction, Dr. Humphrey laments the general lack of a classical education and how reading Lewis without one limits the fullness of our reward. We can add familiarity of the Scriptures to that, and add Shakespeare as an additional literary target where both are profitable —

“You, mistress,
That have the office opposite to Saint Peter,
And keep the gate of hell!” (Othello, 4.2.107-109)

Just as the true shape of an object is revealed by being illuminated from all angles, the stories of C. S. Lewis are valuable aids in expanding our two-dimensional view from the page to the three-dimensional Reality of the “the Existing One” and His personal relation to His creation.

Ultimately, Lewis’s stories remind us that we have no reality apart from God, and that there are paths of thought that are lawful and paths that we must avoid. That these warnings come from the mouths of fanciful creatures of myth is of no import – we are freed from our self-imposed moorings as we follow their adventures in fantastic worlds.

The writing is clear, concise, and insightful, with recurrent threads highlighting the commonality between the theology of Lewis and Orthodoxy. As the author suggests, reading the works of Lewis makes reading this work more profitable. It is unlikely that another author possesses the breadth and depth of Dr. Humphrey’s knowledge of Lewis and has the dedication and special gift to synthesize it all into a highly readable book.
Kindertag in Bullerbü
Kindertag in Bullerbü
Meinem Sohn hat das Buch sehr gut gefallen. Er wünschte, wir würden auch in Bullerbü wohnen😊 Es passiert nichts schlimmes in dem Buch und die Kinder haben viel Spaß bei ihrem Kindertag. Ein schönes Buch, das Kinder sehr gut vor dem Schlafen lesen können.
Baby Bling (Diamonds and Daddies Book 3)
Baby Bling (Diamonds and Daddies Book 3)
I really enjoyed this book and could hardly put it down. It's got everything. Romance, suspense, fast paced action, humor. Loved the characters. The reason I give it 4 stars instead of 5 is the book leaves some loose ends. Other than that, great book.
Twilight (Twilight Saga) (Traditional Chinese Edition)
Twilight (Twilight Saga) (Traditional Chinese Edition)
I collect the foreign language editions of this title, and, though I cannot read it, I can attest that it is a unique and well-bound asset to my collection representing one of the numerous Asian-language translations.
Serenity (2019)
Serenity (2019)
SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT

Okay, now that you have been warned, I will explain to you the plot. It's so sad that so few people seem to be able to follow a complicated plot these days-- the old crime thrillers thrived on the audience being able to follow something that is not spelled out for them, but that skill is lost these days. Even after this movie completely spelled out what is going on.

This is what happens in the plot of the movie, in time order:

A young man, John, is happily married with a kid son. Then he goes off to war in Iraq and is killed. His wife remarries a local construction kingpin, who becomes abusive to both the woman and her son. Her son is brilliant and hides away in his room every day programming his computer. He eventually creates a computer game about fishing (in remembrance of a great memory of fishing with his father) and populates the game with artificial intelligences (AI). The program is so good that these AIs become self-aware and think they are real people living in a real world (like the Matrix, or the Truman Show, or The Sixth Sense, the main character doesn't know what the real deal is until the end).

Eventually this kid becomes so disturbed at the violence of his father that he changes the game and inserts AI versions of his mom and his stepdad into the program, and then has the mom try to bribe the real dad (the AI dad in the program) to kill the AI stepdad. The greatly disturbed the operating system of the game, which is also self aware (represented in the program by a dorky guy with a briefcase). It tries to contact the AI version of the dad and convince him not to kill the stepdad, and instead to return to the original mission of catching a fish, and also tries to put road blocks in his way. The AI dad (the main character) forces out of the operating system AI the truth that they are all AI consciousnesses, not in the real world. Although he struggles to accept this, he decides to go ahead and perform the new mission of the son, to kill the stepdad, since the son is his creator. He eventually convinces the operating system to embrace this cause too, since after all they are all just doing the will of their creator.

So they succeed at killing the AI stepdad, and this inspires the kid to go kill his stepdad in the real world. In the end, the kid is in jail but has access to his computer, and he designs an AI version of himself and inserts it into the game, and the movie closes with him embracing his (dead, but now AI) dad. Perhaps they will live happily, or only until someone switches off the computer.

So many fascinating philosophical issues involved. If you realize you are an AI, and the creator is not a good and just creator but a messed up kid, are you duty bound to do the will of your creator? Or is there a higher law that binds you to do the right thing, even above the kid-creator? One of the AIs in the game, the second mate of the ship, argues that they must be faithful to a higher moral call-- but argues this on the basis that there is a creator. But he doesn't know the creator of their world is a messed up kid, not omnipotent. Could it be that he knows somehow in his heart that there is an even higher creator than the kid, a true Creator of the world that contains the kid? After all, the kid lives in the real world and knows about religion. Another question: does the AI dad have free will? Is he responsible for the kid in the real world committing murder? Or did the kid program him to do his will, without a choice? The movie seems to indicate that the kid was waiting to see what his AI-dad would do before making his own decision.

Some reviewers have complained that the opening of the movie is cartoonish--the AI dad is clearly cartoonishly copying the plot of Moby Dick; the AI mom is a caricature of a film noir vamp. But that is because they are the cartoonish creations of a 12-year-old! That's the point-- the whole "world" is a Matrix-like world, the creation of a smart but emotionally crippled child. The really interesting thing to ponder is what if you realized one day you were in that Matrix world.

This type of "what is real?" movie and "would I know the world was a mirage?" has become a genre, including the Matrix, the Sixth Sense, and the Truman Show. One could also put the old movies Gaslight and Walter Mitty (not the recent version) in this category. Serenity, the Matrix, and the Truman Show all ask the question, what if the creator isn't good? In the Matrix and the Truman Show, the main character fights against the creator (who, after all, is not the total Creator but only a sub-creator of a limited world), while in this movie the main character acquiesces to the will of the (deranged) creator of his world. There is an odd meta-nesting: he recognizes that he isn't real, but realizes that there was a real dad who loved his kid before he died, and he takes pity on the kid, trying to parent him by becoming what that real dad could have been-- even though the kid is his creator.

So fascinating. Too bad that so many people couldn't follow it. It will be discussed in philosophy classes for years to come.
O milagre (Portuguese Edition)
O milagre (Portuguese Edition)
Gosto desse autor porque ele fala de pessoas comuns, histórias da vida que realmente são possíveis de acontecer (ninguém aqui é dominador bilionário que anda de helicóptero pra impressionar moças virgens e pobres). Neste livro especificamente ele fala de pessoas de mundos de diferentes, uma a bibliotecária do interior que gosta da vida simples e um jornalista investigativo da cidade grande que gosta do que faz. Por ironia do destino esse jornalista vai investigar um mistério sobrenatural numa cidade do interior onde acaba se envolvendo com essa bibliotecária, aí rola aquelas dúvidas que todo mundo que namora à distância tem, mas no final eles acabam dando um jeito de ficar juntos. É um livro tipo "Sessão da Tarde", mas no geral é bom.
Intervention
Intervention
Anybody who enjoys reading biblical history combined with biblical mystery will love this book. Jack Staplelton finds himself enlisted by an old college buddy to assist in researching the contents of an ancient osowary (an ancient burial jar), secreted out of St. Peters cathedral at the Vatican in Rome. The contents of the burial jar could rattle the rafters of christianity. A third college buddy who happens to be the Cardinal Arch Bishop of New York is drawn into this mystery and attempts to stifle the investigation of the ancient burial jar. Jacks involvment is complicated by having to deal with his new born son, JJ, who has a potentially deadly cancer. This book is a real thriller with a wholly unpredictable ending.
Robin Cook's Virus
Robin Cook's Virus
"Do you love me?", he asks; "Not yet", she says-- the signature line of "cool" lady doctor whistleblower. Idiotic. If you don't love someone, why are you living with them? It's hard to get too interested in the story of someone so out of touch with morality. The motivations of the plague spreaders are just plain stupid. This movie had some dramatic moments that were exciting but was banal overall.
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Penguin Bedtime Classics)
Alice's Adventures in Wonderland (Penguin Bedtime Classics)
I start off by saying first that the book I received is gorgeous! BUT it was more so for me and not for me to read to my 7 month old daughter. I expected a children’s book like in the pic above but got a chapter book? And also it doesn’t say it delivered yet, it only says it shipped. I hope I get the book I paid for :/ I’m pretty bummed I might have to send the chapter book back :(
Red Sparrow: A Novel
Red Sparrow: A Novel
As I draft this review of Jason Matthews' novel, Red Sparrow, a film based on the book is showing in theaters nationwide. I've decided not to view the movie. I can't imagine that any screen adaptation, however skillful, could possibly do justice to this extraordinary tale of espionage.

Authentic detail of espionage
Red Sparrow is not a conventional spy story. True enough, it's well-written, ingeniously plotted, and endlessly suspenseful. On that account alone, fans of John le Carré, Joseph Kanon, or Alan Furst should appreciate it. But the book rises above the level of the genre because the author has infused it with detailed, intimate knowledge of authentic espionage tradecraft employed both by the CIA and by Russia's Foreign Intelligence Service, the SVR. Red Sparrow also reveals a great deal about the SVR's structure and practices. I was so taken aback by the level of detail that I checked a number of details at random; they all proved accurate. I can easily imagine this novel being passed around at the CIA training center known as the Farm as a fictionalized (if no doubt exaggerated) account of what an officer might encounter in the field.

Two central characters in a cat-and-cat game
The Red Sparrow of the title is Dominika Egorova, a niece of the First Deputy Director of the SVR. When an injury ends her promising career in the ballet, her uncle presses her into the intelligence service, sending her first to the standard officer training and then to "Sparrow School," where she is taught seduce enemy agents. Her assignment is to entrap and recruit Nathaniel Nash, the young CIA officer who is known to be the handler of MARBLE, a high-level mole in the SVR. "Nate was one of a small group of CIA 'internal ops' officers trained to operate under surveillance on the opposition's home ground." His assignment is to recruit her once she has managed to enter his life. The result can't be described as a cat-and-mouse game. It's a cat-and-cat game, and it's fascinating.

The supporting cast on the American side includes a pair of veteran CIA officers who assist and guide Nate as he maneuvers through his relationship with Dominika. There are also a sociopathic US Senator and a number of FBI agents who wander in and out of the background, all of them coming across as incompetent. (This no doubt reflects the ages-old suspicion between the CIA and the FBI.) On the Russian side, the leading characters include Dominika's uncle and several members of his staff at the SVR. One key figure there is a "poisonous dwarf" who serves as his counterintelligence chief. (He appears to be modeled on the five-foot-tall Nikolai Yezhov, a sadistic murderer who served for a year as head of Stalin's secret police. He was known as "The Poison Dwarf.") Vladimir Putin himself makes several cameo appearances.

About the author
Author Jason Matthews' official bio on his publisher's web site is worth quoting at length: "Jason Matthews is a retired officer of the CIA’s Operations Directorate. Over a thirty-three-year career he served in multiple overseas locations and engaged in clandestine collection of national security intelli­gence, specializing in denied-area operations. Matthews conducted recruitment operations against Soviet–East European, East Asian, Middle Eastern, and Caribbean targets. As Chief in various CIA Stations, he collaborated with foreign partners in counterproliferation and counterterrorism operations." In other words, it should be no surprise that Jason Matthews could write a book that exhibits authentic espionage tradecraft. Red Sparrow is the first novel in a trilogy of the same name.
The Edgar Rice Burroughs Western MEGAPACK ®
The Edgar Rice Burroughs Western MEGAPACK ®
Burroughs was clearly a world-class author of exciting adventure stories.
I don't read many westerns, but I enjoyed these. But first, the problems with the presentation:
The first novel, in particular, has some really wild typos in it although, since it also has several different dialects represented, some of those typos may have been intentional. It also has some reduplications but, if you just keep reading, you eventually get back to where you were and the story continues onwards. The others are better.
The first and fourth novel are set in the 1880s and, I think, 1900s: the first is explicit, the second has an automobile in it (a "Lizzie") and a telephone from a dude ranch into the nearby town, where the train station is. Both are mysteries; the second is actually a detective novel, complete with the sit-everyone-down-and-explain-everything ending.
The middle two are Apache novels, dealing with the early life of the adopted son of Geronimo and so also with Geronimo, particularly from when he became War Chief of all Apaches until he finally surrendered. Written from an Apache viewpoint with a lot of Apache (at least, allegedly Apache) terminology, they clearly stand in the same tradition as those films that came out in the 50s dealing with First People's leaders from their viewpoint.
Good and Justice (Gideon of Scotland Yard)
Good and Justice (Gideon of Scotland Yard)
Originally published as "Gideon' s drive this is one of the best in the Gideon of Scotland Yard series involving organised crime, murder and an escaped convict. Recommended
This Noble Land: My Vision for America
This Noble Land: My Vision for America
I am currently about half way through with this book and wonder how many people have read it. This is as thought provoking a book as I have read ever. Mr. Michener has an uncanny grasp of the challenges this country is facing and a pull no punches approach to the solutions necessary to repair the damage. Together with the lifetime of experience that he amassed as well as his stellar education his draws on the history of past countries and regions to show what our outcome could be if we stand by and do nothing but deny that we have any problems. We maybe apathetic of arrogant and self satisfied but it really does not matter because either way in the end if we don't address these issues we will reap our just rewards and we will deserve everything we get. Great Book. More people should read it!
Golden
Golden
I can't stop listening to this song. It really captures that "easy breezy" Fleetwood Mac sound. I was half expecting Stevie to make an appearance on it :)
LEGO Harry Potter Hogwarts Room of Requirement 75966 Dumbledore's Army Gift Idea from Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix, New 2020 (193 Pieces)
LEGO Harry Potter Hogwarts Room of Requirement 75966 Dumbledore's Army Gift Idea from Harry Potter and The Order of The Phoenix, New 2020 (193 Pieces)
This is a nice small set because it includes three important figures and two special patronus pieces that have never been released before. It connects well with other parts of the Hogwarts castle. I am very satisfied with it. The following is what I like and what I dislike:

What I like:
The new Patronus pieces are very sparkly and generally outstanding. In fact, I opened this box, my girlfriend saw them, grabbed them, and has refused to give them back to me the rest of my life (for now). The figures are also neat. I love Harry, Luna and Hermione’s Hogwarts robes and the target figure’s overall design. I normally hate stickers but I really appreciate the ones that come in this set because they are very detailed. The set connects well with the Hogwarts Castle set.

Cons:
My only con is that the moving wall can be clunky at times. But, I think all of the exclusive figures and parts make up for this, and I still think it is a great set for anyone.

If you have found my review useful, please let Amazon know by clicking “helpful.”
Give 'em Hell Harry
Give 'em Hell Harry
This really is fascinating stuff. David Susskind (the interviewer/discussion moderator here) used to have a late night talk show in the 50's with no time constraints. Just him and an interesting guest talking until they dropped; the sort of thing that hardly anyone has the character, constitution, intelligence, or attention span to either produce or watch these days.. Not on television meant for mass audiences, anyway.

And say what you want about Harry Truman's presidency - his dropping of the atom bombs, his stalemating the Korean War, his signing the UN charter and establishment of NATO, his advocacy of Civil Rights (most significantly in integrating the armed services), his support of the Zionists in directing the U.S. to be very first country in the world to recognize the independant State of Israel, his populist progressive social agenda in the Fair Deal that inspired and was later consummated by LBJ in the Great Society - One thing is indisputable: the man had character, a steel spine, seemed truly humble, and was universally recognized as basically honest and incorrupt. He doesn't dodge questions or responsibility, prevaricate, or second guess himself. When Truman was in office the buck truly stopped with him and he wants us to know it.

With Harry there were no juicy post office "speaking fees" from banks or other corporations, nor any $100 million "production deals" from media companies. There were no plush "revolving door" sinecures with the defense industry or lobbying firms, no lucrative plumb positions on corporate boards. There was certainly no eponymous foundation shaking down and milking billionaires, bankers and foreign entities in exchange for influence. He didn't even accept a Secret Service detail as a private citizen. He simply returned to his old home in Independance, Missouri and quietly lived out the rest of his long life as a private citizen without pretension or vainglory.

The interview that forms the first 3/4's of the film was shot in 1960 when Truman was a spry 76. He is unbelievably optimistic about the future potential of the United States. His administration did, afterall, bring WW II to a sucessful conclusion while laying the groundwork for what subsequently indisputably became "the American Century." He earned the right to this optimism: So much of what we have become was catylyzed by what he did..

I just wonder if he could speak to us now, in light of what has happened since, what he might say.. If he could be as zealously laudatory of this nation, if he would still entertain the same expansive patriotic hope and confidence for and in us..

I can close my review, however, by assuring you that you need not wonder if this film is worth your time. It most definitely is. Spending a couple hours with Harry will enrich your mind. Watch it.
Harry Potter - Hermione Granger Child Wig
Harry Potter - Hermione Granger Child Wig
Hermione had some crazy hair and some really bad hair days but this wig looks more like Hagrid just rolled out of bed after a long night at the Hog’s Head.

I didn’t have time to return it so I spend a couple
of hours trimming and thinning and using a fabric/clothes steamer to make it useable.

The first photo is me wearing it before altering it (my daughter wouldn’t even let me take of photo of her in it lol). The next two show how much hair I removed (I trashed some before I started making a pile for the photo). The last is how it ended up. I’m going to add a Gryffindor headband for the final costume to make it look a little better.

I can’t recommend this wig unless you are desperate to get it cheap and plan to be a wild Hagrid or want to spend hours fixing it to resemble hermione.
The World of Peter Rabbit and Friends: The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle and Mr. Jeremy Fisher [VHS]
The World of Peter Rabbit and Friends: The Tale of Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle and Mr. Jeremy Fisher [VHS]
I fell in love with Beatrix Potter during a sleepover at my sister and brother-in law's home one weekend when my young niece and nephew were aged toddler - early grade school. I was a young professional Aunt at the time totally in love with spending as much free time with them as I could. While I had planned to capture the moments with pictures, I never anticipated rekindling a relationship with Peter Rabbit or becoming friends with Jemima Puddle-Duck and the whole lot of story book characters. Once you have met one character you will want to meet them all. The story lines are so sweet and quant, the background scenery takes you there and the character voices are unforgettable. Of course I bought the entire series (which at that time was a set of several VHS tapes). I married and was more than delighted to introduce our first baby (and the two that would follow over the course of 17 years) to Peter Rabbit and Friends. I happily repaired and replaced my Beatrix Potter stash as needed as we have gone through many tapes and CDs over the years. This particular order was placed at the request of our 17 yr old son. "Mom we need a new Beatrix Potter!" You will love it too...
Benito & Benita Boys' Sweater Vest Cotton V-Neck Uniform Pullover Sweater for Kids 3-12 Year
Benito & Benita Boys' Sweater Vest Cotton V-Neck Uniform Pullover Sweater for Kids 3-12 Year
Sweater Vest was packed with tissue, in a nice zip poly bag. This sweater vest is a quality item at a great price! The fabric is soft and NOT SCRATCHY at all! Color grey is a nice medium/ lighter grey. I am very happy and impressed with this item and seller. I did order up one size and it fit my average size 10 1/2 year old grandson with some room for growing. Grandson is very happy with it also! I would absolutely buy from this seller again!
Farberware 21697 High Performance Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet - 12 Inch, Black
Farberware 21697 High Performance Nonstick Frying Pan / Fry Pan / Skillet - 12 Inch, Black
Very lightweight. Read the directions prior to using. It seems you cannot use this on high heat (oops!) or use it under the broiler (I don't allow the handle to get close to the heating elements). I did both on my first use. So far, so good. However, it also states it does a good job browning and this is simply not true. I guess if you cannot use it on high heat, the browning couldn't take place, could it?

I would not purchase this pan again, although it did come with a $5 rebate, making it very inexpensive.
Lee: Emerson Wolves—Paranormal Erotic Wolf Shifter Romance
Lee: Emerson Wolves—Paranormal Erotic Wolf Shifter Romance
I loved this book the best (except for the changing of the way Slone's name was spelled). This book had more of the good vs bad feel to it. Kimber's great-aunt, Kimberly thought that everything should be done her way & if you didn't do that then she would pay someone to kill you & she had killed a lot of people. Kimberly was a chef in France but was struggling because unbeknownst to her her great-aunt had paid a lot of people to keep her struggling. When Kimber loses her job & has to move back to the U.S. she winds up meeting Lee who knows immediately that she is his mate. & then the fun begins. This book contains a very insane great-aunt, a vampire, lots of sexy wolves, lots of sex scenes & a wolf/vampire hybrid. & of course most of all the previous characters from the other books in this series. Will be waiting to read about Graham story.
So, Now You Know...: A Compendium of Completely Useless Information
So, Now You Know...: A Compendium of Completely Useless Information
I bought this supposedly NEW book as a gift for my mom's 75th. I had purchased one just like it at Barnes and Noble some months ago and it's a fun coffee table book. HOWEVER! By the time I realized what lousy condition the book was in when it was sent to me, it was too late to return it and if I could I would make them give me my money back! The two front pages of the book were TORN OUT! as if someone else had written a note on the inside blank page, and this STUPID VENDOR, decided it was ok to just tear it out and send me what was supposedly a NEW book. I never asked to buy a USED BOOK! THIS VENDOR CLEARLY HAS NO SENSE OF INTEGRITY.

AMAZON SHOULD REMOVE THEM, AND GIVE ME MY MONEY BACK!!!!
I WILL NEVER ORDER FROM THEM AGAIN!
UV Sanitizer Box, UV-C Light Sterilizer for Cell Phone, (iPhone or Android Phone) Mask, Key, Glasses, Beauty Tools, Portable Ultraviolet Sterilizer with USB Cable
UV Sanitizer Box, UV-C Light Sterilizer for Cell Phone, (iPhone or Android Phone) Mask, Key, Glasses, Beauty Tools, Portable Ultraviolet Sterilizer with USB Cable
I’ve used this sterilization machine for 3 days. The whole process took about 3 minutes, same as the waiting time for a cup noddle. Really fast! And three things I really like are the loud voice broadcast, the safety protection, and the huge space it has.

At start, i didn’t expect that loud voice but after I turn out to like it! I usually get too focus on other things like school stuffs I have to do even just for 3 minutes, so I tend to forget that my phone is in the box. Love the voice broadcast to remind me to pick my phone out haha.

And the safety protection is pretty good. ‘Cause the uv light will damage our eyes and they just make it automatically stop if the cover is open, so we can’t really stare at the light. It would be a really nice choice for people who have children too. We all know kids like to observe the world, but this product have protection. No ones’ eyes are going to get injured.

Last the huge space! Fit any size of phone! When looking at the picture, I thought it’s probably gonna just fit one iPhone, but actually, it can fit an android phone and watches, masks, and necklaces and bracelets.

Whoever invented this product, thank you! Feel really safe especially in this covid period. And the price is not too expensive, gives everyone an opportunity to try. Anyway, love this! Hope these crazy virus stuffs can go away as soon as possible and good luck everyone on our daily activities:)))

P.s. the first pic is the outside, the second pic is an android phone inside and my hand on top to give you guys an idea how big the machine would be.
Thomtery Rose Gold Confetti Balloons 40pcs 12" Inch Latex Party Balloons for Baby Shower Bridal Shower Birthday Decorations (rose gold)
Thomtery Rose Gold Confetti Balloons 40pcs 12" Inch Latex Party Balloons for Baby Shower Bridal Shower Birthday Decorations (rose gold)
I loved the colors of these balloons! We used the rose gold and rose gold confetti balloons for my daughter’s first birthday party and they were darling! We took them to the local dollar store and they filled them with helium. The confetti balloons inflated to a clear balloon that you can see the confetti perfectly through. And the two rose golds matched well.

My only complaint is that the balloons did not hold the helium very long. I would say the balloons were sagging and shrinking within eight hours. So, if you are inflating them with helium try to inflate right before the party. That said, we had the balloons outside blowing in the wind for a while so that probably played into it. If they were inside, perhaps they would’ve lasted longer.
Power Rangers Kids Backpack
Power Rangers Kids Backpack
Trop petit pour un sac d école. Une simple pochette cartonnée ne passe pas. Donc encore moins un classeur. Bien pour mettre un goûter mais rien d autre.
6 Pieces Face Bandana Ear Loops Face Cover Scarf Ear Loops Face Balaclava Breathable Windproof Neck Gaiters Headwear Bandana for Dust Wind Motorcycle
6 Pieces Face Bandana Ear Loops Face Cover Scarf Ear Loops Face Balaclava Breathable Windproof Neck Gaiters Headwear Bandana for Dust Wind Motorcycle
If you are looking to only meet the required face covering mandates but you also like to breathe these are great! They are made from thin athletic type material and I can blow out a match easily when wearing one. I had bought some similar face coverings but they were too tight. These fit better and don't leave marks on my cheeks from wearing them for prolonged periods. Will they protect you from the "Rona?", nope. However, no cloth masks will protect you anyways so you may as well be comfortable and breathe freely.
How to Build Real Hot Rods
How to Build Real Hot Rods
I bought a copy many many years ago when I started my first streetrod build, from the ground up...A Deuce 4 door sedan...I was about 35 at the time and as green as a baby to actual-factual info about "Rods, geometry, possible/usual points of failure" in general..Four years later after doing all the work myself except welding of the underpinnings/suspension and steering bracketry and the electrical wiring, I fired the engine that evening and test drove it around the airfield apron, near the hangar in which it was built...
The next day I sent a note to Tex Smith expressing my great appreciation for such a perfect instruction manual, so clearly written and user friendly....12 to 15 years later I sold the deuce when life dictated but since then always encouraged other younger folks to find a copy, (long-since out of print and mine lost in moves)......
I recently met a youngester wanting knowledge and info about the "olden days " of rodding so that he could build a street rod too...
I went to your site during a search and wound up buying two copies since they were offered at such a low price and all we needed was serviceable, legible copies............They both arrived, promptly and in Brand-New condition!...I could not be more pleased...
Thank you for this service,,,,,J B...
EasyAcc Wireless Charger Desk Organizer USB Charging Station, Multi-Device iPhone iPad Tablet Charging Station Dock Stand, Induction Charger for iPhone 11 Pro X XS MAX XR 8, Samsung S10 S10e S9
EasyAcc Wireless Charger Desk Organizer USB Charging Station, Multi-Device iPhone iPad Tablet Charging Station Dock Stand, Induction Charger for iPhone 11 Pro X XS MAX XR 8, Samsung S10 S10e S9
My desk was beginning to look a bit messy, so I decided to purchase this organizer to...well...get organized and also to keep my devices charged. The wireless charger, in particular, set this organizer a part from others I'd looked at. I've had it for a couple of months now, and i'm not disappointed at all.

The wireless charger works really well - it has an indicator on the front that lets you know when it's charging. The USB on the side also works pretty well with my IPAD. I had to purchase a USB-C to USB adapter so that I could use the organizer to charge my iphone, but that wasn't a huge deal. My only complaint is that from time-to-time, I have to jiggle adapter to get my ipad to register that it's connected.

All-in-all, it gets the job done!
Wireless Charging Pad, ZealSound Qi-Certified Ultra-Slim Triple Wireless Charger Station for Multiple 3 Devices & New Airpods Ultra Slim Leather Mat W/AC Adapter for All Qi Enabled Phones (Black)
Wireless Charging Pad, ZealSound Qi-Certified Ultra-Slim Triple Wireless Charger Station for Multiple 3 Devices & New Airpods Ultra Slim Leather Mat W/AC Adapter for All Qi Enabled Phones (Black)
I got this charger mainly because it looks so refined. The leather finish gives it a really sophisticated look, and I plan on keeping it in the conference room at work. Being able to charge three devices at once it pretty awesome. I am guessing that the challenges of charging that many devices from one power-supply make it so that it does not fast-charge. Still, it does charge three devices in prompt fashion and although I can’t measure the output current, it doesn’t feel any slower than any other wireless charger. I guess because there is only one coil per slot, the phones have to be lined up just right, but it’s not hard to do at all, and as you can see in my photo, all three phones charge fine with cases on them.
El Puente Direct Lite Brite Magic visualización (estilo retro) Juguete
El Puente Direct Lite Brite Magic visualización (estilo retro) Juguete
It's fun, and works as advertised. But I am surprised for the bad decision of switching to a square pixel like pattern for the holes. Instead of the honeycomb. You only need to look at templates online to see the difference on how things look like. If you remake a toy. Would you want to give it every opportunity of success. I would readily gift this to our friends kids or buy a second one. Except for that terrible idea of doing away with the hexagon pattern. Hopefully someone reads this and makes a correction. And if you agree please vote this as helpful. I have not found a new version of this toy done "right".

UPDATE

I recently bought the new hexagon pattern version. The hexagon pattern is there. But the side detachable container with childproof cover is gone. There was only a plastic bag. No joke, the kiddos spread the pegs for the new lite bright all over the house. While the new one had few lost over almost 2 years since we bought it. Also the flexible pegs are gone too. I suspect the new ones resemble the 80s version more closely. But they are less bright. Plus the overall make is more flimsy too. The type of peg is not as important. The kick stand is too flimsy. And it is a cool feature to have dinner right. I feel sympathy for the toy designers. This may feel like filming the sequels for Star wars.
The Moviegoer: A Novel (FSG Classics)
The Moviegoer: A Novel (FSG Classics)
I just finished reading this great novel for the third time because I wanted to begin the year with an experience of something that I knew was great. The last time I read it was just over 14 years ago as part of the preparation for my first (and to date, only) trip to New Orleans. The impression that I've been left with each time that I have read it is that it is one of those singular novels that presents a first person narrator with a very unique perspective and way of viewing reality. It coats every page of the novel and it is so thorough that the character (or the character's creator) even creates his own lexicon for categorizing and flavoring the world in a similar way as the narrators of Kurt Vonnegut's 'Cat's Cradle' and Richard Brautigan's 'In Watermelon Sugar'. We see the world through the lens of Binx Bolling's idiosyncratic and distinct perception.

Binx sprinkles his narrative with cinematic references, naturally, and uses the personas of movie stars to interpret the world around him. These analogies are more meaningful when one is familiar with the actors he is referencing. Even when the reader isn't, however, the analogy somehow makes sense or at least can understand why the moment is significant to Binx. One could even assemble the titles of all the movies he sees or cites throughout the novel and conduct a Binx Bolling Moviegoing Festival.

On the surface, not a great deal occurs externally in the novel. It takes place the week of Mardi Gras on the eve of Binx's 30th birthday. Reaching the age of 30 is a pivotal milestone in the life of a man, signifying a new stage of manhood and an age of stock-taking. Binx's Aunt Emily certainly sees it that way and he knows that she would like him to fulfill his deceased father's dream of his son going to medical school. Initially, however, she summons him because she is concerned about her stepdaughter Kate, who was traumatized by the death of her fiancée in a car accident and whose mood swings and reliance on pills are escalating to possibly disastrous proportions. She wants Binx to provide guidance and stability for Kate, especially at this particularly fragile time.

Binx is an odd choice of one to turn to for stability. He is a stockbroker who spends most of his free time going to movies and pursuing romance with each of his successive secretaries. When he is not doing that he is engaged in what he calls the search. According to Binx, "the search is what anyone would undertake if he were not sunk in the everydayness of his own life." Binx wants to be delivered from the mundane qualities of a routinized life, in which he is fully entrenched. He has a regular work schedule. He tunes in faithfully to the radio show "This I Believe" every night. He goes through the motions of middle class existence and yet through all of it he seeks the search not so much for reaching the specific goal or destination as because it is an alternative to not seeking, which he sees as surrendering to despair.

Among Binx's preoccupations along the course of the Search are repetitions and rotations. A repetition Binx defines as "the reenactment of past experience toward the end of isolating the time segment which as lapsed in order that it, the lapsed time, can be savored of itself and without the usual adulteration of events that clog time like peanuts in brittle." For example, he cites an ad in a magazine for Nivea Creme and recalls that he saw the same ad twenty years ago in a magazine on his father's desk. The events of the intervening twenty years were neutralized because Nivea Creme was exactly as it was before.

A rotation is "the experiencing of the new beyond the expectation of the experiencing of the new. For example, taking one's first trip to Taxco would not be a rotation, or no more than a very ordinary rotation; but getting lost on the way and discovering a hidden value would be." As long as Binx experiences these epiphanies he doesn't surrender to what he refers to as the malaise.

Binx pursues his newest secretary and they become amorous on a trip to the beach but she unequivocally establishes boundaries between them, one being a young man who will become her fiancée. Meanwhile, Binx accompanies Kate on her mental rollercoaster and proposes marriage. She dismisses him by emphasizing that she would not want her mental instability to ruin such a union but readdresses the subject later and agrees to the possibility that if he guides her and tells her what to do she will trust his guidance and that will provide a foundation for stability. He impulsively asks her to join him on a business trip to Chicago and she agrees. She has difficulties but Binx manages to guide her through the minefield until his aunt catches up with them and chastises him for taking her with him without informing anyone what had become of her, taking full advantage of the opportunity to deliver her 'what are you going to do with your life' lecture and asking him what he truly believes. Binx cannot answer.

At the novel's conclusion, Binx appears to accommodate both the expectations of society (and Aunt Emily) as well as the compulsions of his Search. We do not know how successful he and Kate will be but at least the collective pursuit of their individual searches may prevent succumbing to the depths of the malaise.

Binx's existential search recalls another fictional searcher, the narrator of Proust's 'In Search of Lost Time.' Marcel searches for lost time and occasionally finds it in the taste of a madeleine. Binx searches not for a holy grail but for the novelty of living. 'The Moviegoer' is similar in its preoccupation with conventional suburban culture to John Cheever's stories of quietly desperate New York businessmen and Richard Yates' tragic 'Revolutionary Road' (finalist for the 1962 National Book Award that 'The Moviegoer' won). Percy contributes the Old South version of this lifestyle and in turn influenced Richard Ford's 'The Sportswriter'.

'The Moviegoer' is, however, in a class by itself. In a sense it is a celebration of the hidden misfit. Binx is perhaps more subversive than most political radicals because he is outwardly a conformist, living a conventional life, observing the rituals of the middle class life and fulfilling society's expectations. Beneath the conservative exterior lurks a strange eccentric moviegoer categorizing the world, undergoing a search as existential as any Kafkaesque or Dostoevskian antihero.
Hbada Ergonomic Office Recliner Chair - High Back Desk Chair Racing Style with Lumbar Support - Height Adjustable Seat, Headrest- Breathable Mesh Back - Soft Foam Seat Cushion with Footrest, White
Hbada Ergonomic Office Recliner Chair - High Back Desk Chair Racing Style with Lumbar Support - Height Adjustable Seat, Headrest- Breathable Mesh Back - Soft Foam Seat Cushion with Footrest, White
At my work, I used to nap during lunch time on a couch in the lunch room. However, it became too crowded and I had to move out of it to my office. For the last few years, I've been sleeping on an office chair, putting my legs on two other chairs. The back was not reclining and there was no headrest, so it was less than perfect. I was considering buying a love-seat or some other smaller piece of furniture, but it would be hard to fit in the office and an overkill for these 30-50 minutes of sleep I could get from it.

Finally, I got blessed with the idea of an office recliner chair. Looked at dozens of them on Amazon and elsewhere. This one got the highest ratings and decided to give it a go. It sat in the warehouse for a couple days and then came by DHL from Stockton, CA to Canada in 3 days!!! I emailed the seller for the tracking number and he replied almost instantly.

Assembling took me around 40 minutes, 20 of which I spent trying to screw the armrests in a wrong position :) If I were less technically challenged, I could assemble it in 20, because picture instructions are clear, nuts and bolts are in their own named containers in a blister pack and the hexagon screwdriver is attached.

The chair looks great, the cushion is soft, the back is breezy, but the real test for me was sleeping on it. So, there are only two levers under the seat, one to adjust height and one to recline. It could be reclined to a medium position, but I go all the way and boy, is that something else! A little cushion is hiding on rails underneath the seat, so it is hard to say it is there. But once you move it from beneath, it is such a comfortable support for my legs. No need to use two extra chairs to prop my legs! I am 5.10 and 210 lb, and the chair is very comfy. My wife is 5.3 and she says it's ideal for her. I however, feel that I could use something under the lower back, because there is kind of a little space between it and the seat back. So, I put a little pillow cushion and doze off! I also use a little neck pillow, to totally pamper myself and voila! When I was using a normal office chair, I was always a little bit stiff or sore after slipping upright, with this chair, I feel fully relaxed and refreshed after my power naps.

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