Book Mix 9

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Book Titles & Summaries

All About Volcanoes
 
Excerpt:
People in Iceland use the heat from volcanoes to make electricity. Pipes pump water through the hot rocks underground near a volcano. As the water heats up, it turns to steam. The steam is used to make electricity.
 
Contents:
All About Volcanoes
Front Cover
Back Cover
Copyright
Glossary
Contents
Chapter 1 Mount Saint Helens
Early Warning
Chapter 2 How a Volcano Forms
Chapter 3 Volcanoes Under the Sea
The Islands of Hawaii
Chapter 4 Volcanoes and People
Chapter 5 Studying Volcanoes
 

The Ultimate Beer Lovers' Cookbook: More Than 300 Recipes
 
Dating back thousands of years to ancient Babylonia, beer is the most famous and best-loved thirst quencher the world has ever known - the Bible praises it, Egyptians were buried with it, and Noah and the Mayflower set sail with. Whether bottled, canned, on-tap, or whipped into cheesecake, beer is all about friendship, laughter, and celebrating life to the fullest.Now beer fans everywhere can raise their glasses in celebration once more as this fantastic volume brings together a collection of more than 400 delicious food and drink recipes that use beer as a vital ingredient. From scrambled eggs with beer in the morning, through a lunchtime burger and beer-battered onion rings and, to beer-infused surf 'n turf, beer lovers will find a dish to suit any occasion. It also includes a massive selection of drinks recipes - including shots, chasers, punches, milkshakes and more.
 

Bare Bones: Conversations on Terror With Stephen King
 
In this revealing and varied collection of interviews, Stephen King talks about his life, family, films and in particular about his macabre novels of the unknown that have made him so well known.
 

Career Opportunities in Journalism
 
As technology advances and expands the ways the world communicates, new media such as the Internet have become a major outlet for journalism, providing unlimited access to a world of information. Today, journalistic opportunities abound for those passionate about sharing the truth and enlightening the public, whether they are writers, reporters, editors, or behind-the-scenes producers, directors, photographers, or engineers. "Career Opportunities in Journalism" covers more than 70 careers in a variety of contexts, from newspapers and broadcasting to education and new media. Extensive appendixes include listings of related educational programs, professional associations and publications, companies, and internship and scholarship resources. The career profiles include: Advertising copywriter; Broadcast meteorologist; Field producer; Film critic; Foreign correspondent; News editor; Online editor; Reporter, radio; Staff writer; and, Travel writer.
 

Serious Games: Games That Educate, Train, and Inform
 
Learn how to take the skills and knowledge you use to make games for entertainment to make serious games: games for education, training, healing, and more. Serious Games: Games That Educate, Train, and Inform teaches game developers how to tap into the rapidly expanding market of serious games. Explore the numerous possibilities that serious games represent such as the ability to teach military training in a non-lethal environment and the ability to convey a particular political viewpoint through a game's storyline. You'll get a detailed overview of all of the major markets for serious games, including the military, educators, government agencies, corporations, hospitals, non-profit organizations, religious groups, and activist groups. Discover the goals of each market, the types of games on which they focus, and market-specific issues you need to consider. Case studies of how professionals in these various markets utilize games provide ideas and inspiration as well as credibility for serious games. "Serious Games" shows you how to apply your game development skills to a new and growing area and also teaches you techniques to make even entertainment-based games richer and more meaningful.
 

Christianity: The First Three Thousand Years
 
The National Book Critics Circle Award-winning author of The Reformation returns with the definitive history of Christianity for our time Once in a generation a historian will redefine his field, producing a book that demands to be read-a product of electrifying scholarship conveyed with commanding skill. Diarmaid MacCulloch's Christianity is such a book. Breathtaking in ambition, it ranges back to the origins of the Hebrew Bible and covers the world, following the three main strands of the Christian faith. Christianity will teach modern readers things that have been lost in time about how Jesus' message spread and how the New Testament was formed. We follow the Christian story to all corners of the globe, filling in often neglected accounts of conversions and confrontations in Africa and Asia. And we discover the roots of the faith that galvanized America, charting the rise of the evangelical movement from its origins in Germany and England. This book encompasses all of intellectual history-we meet monks and crusaders, heretics and saints, slave traders and abolitionists, and discover Christianity's essential role in driving the enlightenment and the age of exploration, and shaping the course of World War I and World War II. We are living in a time of tremendous religious awareness, when both believers and non-believers are deeply engaged by questions of religion and tradition, seeking to understand the violence sometimes perpetrated in the name of God. The son of an Anglican clergyman, MacCulloch writes with deep feeling about faith. His last book, The Reformation, was chosen by dozens of publications as Best Book of the Year and won the National Book Critics Circle Award. This awe-inspiring follow-up is a landmark new history of the faith that continues to shape the world.
 

Action Origami: Over 25 Animated Paperfolding Projects
 
Action Origami is a fully-comprehensive practical guide that combines a fascinating history of the art, an inspirational gallery featuring the work for the world's top origamists, detailed descriptions of the paper to use and over 80 step-by-step projects designed to entertain, challenge, and delight.
 

Origami Ornaments: The Ultimate Kusudama Book
 
Origami Ornaments is based on the design of traditional Japanese Kusudama ceremonial spheres. But the Japanese designs regularly require the use of glue to hold several parts together. Lew Rozelle has designed four basic models - base, joiner, clip, and hinge - which can be folded together, hanging in lovely globe or lantern shapes, thus remaining true to origami purist standards. Folded out of colorful paper, the ornaments can be made small enough to hang on a Christmas tree or large enough to hold aromatic potpourri. As the ornaments rest they will open gently, like flowers, but still not come apart.
 
Also included are instructions for incorporating string for hanging as well as tassels into the design - a lovely finishing touch. There are no limits to the number of unique ornaments you can make from the four basic models. Try using various wrapping paper patterns and colored paper - the possibilities are endless. Origami Ornaments is the perfect book for holiday crafters and origami enthusiasts alike.
 

Intarsia Woodworking for Beginners: Skill-Building Lessons for Creating Beautiful Wood Mosaics
 
Although intarsia—the assembly of various woods into a unified mosaic piece—is often perceived as a challenging, unapproachable woodcraft, this guidebook rejects that notion by describing the small, achievable steps, thereby offering crafters an easy entry-point into this rewarding art form.
 

Master Posing Guide for Portrait Photographers
 
Master Posing Guide for Portrait Photographers: A Complete Guide to Posing Singles, Couples and Groups
Photographers are guided through every aspect of posing-beginning with the consultation and continuing with specific tips for posing children, high school seniors, wedding parties, families, events, teams, groups, and pets-in this comprehensive manual. Maintaining that good posing is 80 percent mental and only 20 percent technical, this guide stresses the importance of communication between photographer and subject to creating a portrait that not only captures the subject's personality but also makes the subject comfortable, fostering repeat business.
 

Between the Gates: Lucid Dreaming, Astral Projection, and the Body of Light in Western Esotericism
 
One of the most overused phrases in the English language these days is "I just don't have the time." It's particularly familiar to those of us who teach spiritual traditions that place regular practice and the development of the self's hidden potentials at center stage. If you'd like to get a rueful laugh wherever teachers of spirituality gather, just ask how many students utter those words when asked to put even so little as ten minutes a day into some form of inner work. Granted, leisure time can be in short supply these days, and an industrial society that thrives on the manufacture of artificial desires has no shortage of distractions to throw in the way of the novice in any spiritual path. Yet it's equally true that much of what passes for a shortage of spare time can be solved by figuring out one's real priorities and paying attention to where time actually goes. Plenty of people who are convinced that they have no time for an inner life spend time every evening staring blankly at TV shows that don't really interest them, or fidget away an hour or more on a commuter train every workday. And, of course, nearly every one of us spends six or eight hours coursing through the realms of dream every night, only to brush aside the fading memories of our inner adventures as we stumble from bed to shower to breakfast table to front door.
 

Encyclopedia of Race and Crime
 
Criminology and criminal justice involve the scientific study of crime, criminals, and the criminal justice system. Interest in the problem of crime began centuries ago, and in the 18th century, after several European countries experienced social unrest, writings about crime began to appear. During the 19th century, social scientists studied social problems, including crime and responses to it. Interest in criminology in the United States began in the late 19th century and flourished in the 20th century. Initially there were two major areas in the study of criminology: theoretical and applied criminology. Theoretical criminology included the etiology of crime, theories of criminality, typologies of crime and criminals, and the extent of crime. Applied criminology included the study of justice agencies and processes, often referred to as criminal justice, as well as the law. Today, the terms criminology and criminal justice are often used interchangeably, and the dichotomy between the two is less clear. For example, some of the subject matter in many criminology and criminal justice textbooks often overlaps although the original foci of each remain.
 

Bridge of Stone and Magic
 
Bridge of Stone and Magic is partially a prequel to Bridge at War, set in Napoleonic times, when the original Lyndesfarne bridge was being constructed. It is also partially a sequel to Death on the New Bridge, set in the present time, with Kevin, Bret and Tanji investigating a suspected new crossing between the worlds, a crossing which was supposed to have been closed permanently several centuries ago.
 

Death on the New Bridge
 
A sequel to New Bridge to Lyndesfarne, Death on the New Bridge once again follows Kevin and Tanji, who are asked by Bret to assist with the investigation of the mysterious death of Andrew Wollack, a microbial epidemiologist who was found in the exact centre of the new bridge shortly after its official opening.
 

Bridge at War
 
A prequel to New Bridge to Lyndesfarne, Bridge at War is set in 1946, immediately after the end of the Second World War. The story follows three young men - Tom, Alistair and Bram - who were comrades in the Army during the War. Bram gently introduces the world of Lyndesfarne to the others, and engineers their recruitment into the Guardians, one of the secretive organisations whose purpose is to protect the crossing to Lyndesfarne.
 

New Bridge to Lyndesfarne
 
Set in the present day, New Bridge to Lyndesfarne follows Kevin, a talented but lonely forty-something who is commissioned to design a second bridge between the Two Worlds. Accompanied by Tanji, his guide and interpreter from Lyndesfarne, Kevin inadvertently discovers a conspiracy to destroy the bridge which puts their lives in danger.
 

Fragile Darkness
 
Kwon has had a lot of trouble trying to find a place he can call home. In the past year he’s gained good friends by joining the small but skillful band of Lower Knights led by Captain Belandar. Unfortunately, some old habits die hard. In Fragile Darkness, Kwon leaves the group to travel with a bounty hunter he hardly knows: his way of trying to find perspective on things. Problems left unresolved don’t take the month off, though. Before long, they catch up with him (as well as new problems and new enemies) and catch up in full force. People he cares about are put at risk. Only letting go of the past and learning real trust will get him out of this mess. Fragile Darkness is part three of a series of stories following Kwon and his friends, called the Knights of Belandar Saga. While this is a conclusion to that part of the Lower Knight episodes, it can be read on its own as a complete story.
 

The Great Global Warming Blunder: How Mother Nature Fooled the World's Top Climate Scientists
 
The Great Global Warming Blunder unveils new evidence from major scientific findings that explode the conventional wisdom on climate change and reshape the global warming debate as we know it. Roy W. Spencer, a former senior NASA climatologist, reveals how climate researchers have mistaken cause and effect when analyzing cloud behavior and have been duped by Mother Nature into believing the Earth’s climate system is far more sensitive to human activities and carbon dioxide than it really is.
 
In fact, Spencer presents astonishing new evidence that recent warming is not the fault of humans, but the result of chaotic, internal natural cycles that have been causing periods of warming and cooling for millennia. More carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is not necessarily to be feared; The Great Global Warming Blunder explains that burning of fossil fuels may actually be beneficial for life on Earth.
 
As group-think behavior and misguided global warming policy proposals threaten the lives of millions of the world’s poorest, most vulnerable citizens, The Great Global Warming Blunder is a scintillating expose and much-needed call for debate.
 

iPad Made Simple
 
Get the most out of your iPad with iPad Made Simple—learn all the key features, understand what’s new, and utilize dozens of time-saving tips and tricks. This book includes over 650 pages of easy-to-read instructions and over 1,000 carefully annotated screen shots to guide you to iPad mastery.
 
With iPad Made Simple, you’ll never be left wondering, “How did they do that?”
 
What you’ll learn
 
* Set up and customize your iPad
* Get up to speed lightning fast with the excellent Quick Start Guide
* Master the multi-touch display Surf the web like never before
* Browse, buy, and read with iBooks
* Discover and download great Apps from the App Store
* Use iTunes to find music, videos, TV shows, and more on your iPad
* Organize, view, and share your photos and albums
* Improve productivity with Mail, Calendar, and Contacts
* Stay in touch with friends on Twitter and Facebook
* Customize the Electronic Picture Display to make sure it shows exactly what you want
* Use accessories such as the keyboard dock, camera connector, and VGA connector
* Synchronize your iPod touch with your Windows or Mac environment
* Employ time-saving short cuts and hidden gems to help you organize your work and social life
 
Bonus material includes an iTunes Mega Guide! Tap the power of iTunes including: creating and managing playlists, the genius feature, home sharing, getting great free content from iTunes U, authorizing and de-authorizing computers, redeeming gift cards, importing movies from DVDs, and much more.
 
Who this book is for
This book is for new iPad users, as well as seasoned iPhone or iPod Touch users who are ready to explore the new world of the iPad.
 

iPhone and iPad Apps for Absolute Beginners
 
The iPhone is the hottest gadget of our generation, and much of its success has been fueled by the App Store, Apple’s online marketplace for iPhone applications. Over 1 billion apps have been downloaded in the 9 months the App Store has been open, ranging from the simplest games to the most complex business apps. Everyone has an idea for the next best-selling iPhone app—presumably that’s why you’re reading this now.
 
So how do you build an iPhone application? Don’t you need to spend years learning complicated programming languages? What about Objective-C, Cocoa Touch, and the SDK? The answer is that you don’t need to know any of those things. Anybody can start building simple applications for the iPhone, and this book will show you how.
 
This book takes you to getting your first applications up and running using plain English and practical examples. It cuts through the fog of jargon and misinformation that surrounds iPhone application development, and gives you simple, step-by-step instructions to get you started.
 
* Teaches iPhone application development in language anyone can understand
* Provides simple, step-by-step examples that make learning easy
* Offers videos that enable you to follow along with the author—it’s like your own private classroom
 
What you’ll learn
 
* Get both yourself and your computer set up for iPhone application development.
* Start by making small changes to existing applications to build your knowledge and experience before creating your own applications.
* Follow steps in plain English to build simple apps and get them working immediately.
* Style your application so that it looks good and users can easily navigate through it.
* Make use of the iPhone’s touch screen and accelerometer.
* Use shortcuts and cheat sheets to create apps the easy way.
 

The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite
 
Most of us know what it feels like to fall under the spell of food when one slice of pizza turns into half a pie, or a handful of chips leads to an empty bag. But it s harder to understand why we can't seem to stop eating even when we know better. When we want so badly to say "no," why do we continue to reach for food?
 
Dr. David Kessler, the dynamic former FDA commissioner who reinvented the food label and tackled the tobacco industry, now reveals how the food industry has hijacked the brains of millions of Americans. The result? America s number-one public health issue. Dr. Kessler cracks the code of overeating by explaining how our bodies and minds are changed when we consume foods that contain sugar, fat, and salt. Food manufacturers create products by manipulating these ingredients to stimulate our appetites, setting in motion a cycle of desire and consumption that ends with a nation of overeaters. The End of Overeating explains for the first time why it is exceptionally difficult to resist certain foods and why it s so easy to overindulge.
 
Dr. Kessler met with top scientists, physicians, and food industry insiders. The End of Overeating uncovers the shocking facts about how we lost control over our eating habits and how we can get it back. Dr. Kessler presents groundbreaking research, along with what is sure to be a controversial view inside the industry that continues to feed a nation of overeaters from popular brand manufacturers to advertisers, chain restaurants, and fast food franchises.
 
For the millions of people struggling with weight as well as for those of us who simply don't understand why we can't seem to stop eating our favorite foods, Dr. Kessler s cutting-edge investigation offers new insights and helpful tools to help us find a solution.
 
There has never been a more thorough, compelling, or in-depth analysis of why we eat the way we do.
 

Minimalist Lighting: Professional Techniques for Studio Photography
 
Photographers learn how to create amazing photography with this simple, basic, money-saving approach to working in the studio. While exploring available lighting and equipment, this reference tackles the concerns of studio photographers regarding too much gear, not enough space, and a strict budget and offers alternative techniques for photographing subjects. Tips for how to set up a studio in a limited amount of space, what kind of equipment works best for different effects, and finding great tools for budget prices make this a truly comprehensive reference.
 

Rolando Gomez's Glamour Photography: Professional Techniques and Images
 
From working with models to lighting and posing, everything aspiring glamour photographers need to know in order to run a successful business and take gorgeous pictures is included in this thorough manual. Written for both the amateur and professional photographer, this handbook explores how to build a professional rapport with subjects while creating sensual portraits similar to those found in Maxim, Playboy, and other men’s magazines.
 

Classic Glamour Photography: Techniques of the Top Glamour Photographers
 
Classic Glamour Photography is a brand new edition of the classic guide published in the 80s. Classic Glamour Photography takes readers behind the scenes to reveal the secrets of the world’s top professional glamour photographers. Through a series of major features, each devoted to the work of a single photographer, it uncovers the keys to individual approaches, styles and techniques.
Its combination of authoritative in-depth analysis and vivid illustration makes it an essential purchase for all photographers, whether aspiring amateurs or seasoned professionals.
he book is divided into two main sections - “Classic Photographers” and “Working Professionally”. The first section examines the work of such top professionals as Bob Carlos Clarke, Trevor Yerbury, Eric Kroll, Emma Delves-Broughton, Ben Westwood, Trevor Watson, Lucien Clergue, Jan Cobb, Patrick Lichfield, Craig Morey, Robert Farber, Char Ray Krider, Nigel Holmes and more. Each of these photographers is featured individually, with a selection of their favourite shots. The text explains their basic philosophy and approach to the subject and the technical tricks of the trade they use.
The second section of the book provides the essential practical back-up to this information. There is coverage of cameras, lenses, film, accessories and digital cameras. Light and lighting, working in the studio, shooting on location and composition are discussed in detail. How to find and shoot models, using the internet, and post production work using Photoshop completes this guide to the world of professional glamour photography.
 

Walk Like a Giant, Sell Like a Madman: America's #1 Salesman Shows You How to Sell Anything
 
Walk Like a Giant, Sell Like a Madman is a recapitulation of the techniques that made real-estate sales veteran Ralph R. Roberts a giant in the world of sales. It offers basics for beginners, a review for pros who hope to advance, and a primer for entrepreneurs who must sell their products or services as well as themselves. By relating personal experiences and those of other super-sellers, Walk Like a Giant shows how specific practices--such as maintaining client databases, investing in cutting-edge technology, and engaging in self-promotion--can make the difference between failure and success.
 

Son of Sparta
 
Echelas was born in fifth-century Sparta, with the golden hair said to herald favor from the gods. However, if his life has been divinely blessed, Echelas would not have believed it. From his brutal childhood in the wilds to an adolescence spent mastering the art of war, Echelas has constantly struggled to prove himself a true son of Sparta. Framed for murder and awaiting the inevitable moment of his execution, Echelas is left dependent on the word of a mad, deposed king to see him vindicated.
From his prison cell, Echelas recounts his life and those who have graced it, including Elara, a young woman heis forbidden to love but who he is helpless to resist. Even as he tells his tale, a new threat is rising in the east. The massive armies of the Persian empire are advancing and they mean to conquer not only Sparta, but the entire Greek world with it. Echelas soon finds himself faced with an even greater challenge as he must join the Greek forces in their valiant, defiant stand against the Persian invasion, taking his place along the front lines and shield walls of one of the most heroic and bloody battles in history.
 

Eye of the Storm
 
In this never-before published sequel to Resurrection,* Paul Frances hunts for monsters. A seasoned veteran of the Metro Police Department, Paul's made a renowned career out of tracking down serial killers. It should have given him the life of his dreams, with fame, notoriety and respect, but instead, it's given him nightmares?literally.
He dreams of torturing young women, driving them to the brink of death and beyond, over and over. These visions plague his nights and haunt his days, and when he discovers he'd been sleepwalking, disappearing for unaccounted hours at a time, he can't help but beg the question: has the monster-hunter become a monster himself?
 

Resurrection
 
In 2007, I took the novella, Resurrection and decided to rework it into a novel-length manuscript. This meant adding on about 20,000 words or so. Easy enough, or so I thought. What was supposed to be mostly minor revisions, some additions here and there, turned out to be a major overhaul -- in the end, nothing short of an almost complete rewrite. Now for the first time, you can check out both versions of the story -- the original novella-length incarnation, and this, the never-before-released novel-length version. If you've read one, you definitely haven't read them both, because the novel-length version has new twists and turns, new characters and even more suspense.
 

Highwayman Lover
 
Not every pirate lives in the Caribbean...
Wounded souls, passionate romance and swashbuckling adventure combine to make a remarkable love story.
Readers will thoroughly enjoy this moving account of an honorable man unwittingly set on a dastardly course and the resourceful woman intent upon changing his direction... Humor, tenderness, adventure, betrayal and misunderstandings will keep readers hooked from beginning to end... Reinke continues to deliver the goods
 

Hearts Ransom
 
When Kitty Ransom, daughter one of the most celebrated captains in the English Royal Navy, is abducted by pirates, she finds herself an unwitting pawn in a seafaring game of cat-and-mouse. To make matters worse, the longer she is held, the more Kitty finds herself drawn to her captor -- and the less against her will her circumstances seem. When Rafe Serrano Beltran finally has the chance to seek revenge against John Ransom, the legendary "Hawk of of the High Seas," he seizes it. A physician by trade, and unwilling pirate by honor bound, he agrees to kidnap Ransom's only daughter. How could he have known she was blind? Or beautiful? Or clever enough to find the pair of manacles hidden in his shipboard stateroom --the pair without a key? Or that once inadvertently chained to her side, he might not want to leave?
 

Tethers
 
In space, no one can hear you scream.but don't let that stop you. Survivor Kathryn Emmente must decide who is friend and who is foe when her cargo vessel, the Daedalus explodes under mysterious circumstances. Many among her crew are killed and the rest are left helpless and stranded on a terra-farming colony moon of Jupiter called X-1226. They have no means of communicating with Earth or even the nearest stellar platform for aid. Kat soon learns that the detonations aboard the Daedalus and the deaths of her fellow crewmates may not have been as accidental or incidental as they first appeared. She begins to suspect that one among the survivors may be operating on a hidden, sinister agenda-and that she and her young daughter, Jerica could be the next victims. Warning, this title contains the following: violence, strong language, sexual situations.
 

Five Falling Eagles
 
Apocalyptic Fairy Tales For Adults
 

Dungeons & Dayjobs
 
Have you ever delivered meals to shut-in trolls or warlocks? Ever solved a shaman's murder by details you noticed at the lizard orgy? Ever made one of those wagers with a deity where you just know a dozen mortals will end up insane or beheaded, daughters marrying fathers, cousins stabbing grandmothers, and almost always, somebody has to lose an eye? What if you could bend a paperclip into an intricate, spring-loaded pattern that would allow it to walk across your desk, write reports for you, brew coffee and do your entire job? Escape from your dayjob into this collection of 2d6 short stories, 5 recipes and a novella.
 

Dungeon Seeds
 
In the land of Alceid, a pall of grave darkness has engulfed the land. Living dungeons erupt forth from the very earth itself, belching accursed monstrosities into the mortal world. One lone hero, the Promised One, has trained in the ways of the swordsman since his birth. Prophesy says that only he can deliver the world from the plague of the biolabyrinths. Then he falls down the stairs and dies. No one really liked him anyway. Torf Falconbridge is a seasoned Dungeon Hunter, who has been fighting the forces of evil for nearly twenty years. Monsters cower in fear at the sound of his name, and the very thought of his legendary holy sword. This is not his story, either. This is the tale of his teenage son, Rodis. He's cocky. He's arrogant. He's a pervert. He's a lunkhead. And he's our next best hope.
 

Dawning
 
The land of Unedea has known peace for many years, but as the kingdoms of the land enjoy prosperity, a threat in the north grows secretly. As this collective of evil searches out the Untouchable Stave, its influence spreads to the many cities of the land. Arum, a young half-elf living in the countryside of Artemia, leaves his childhood home to seek out a new life and finds unexpected adventure. With a ragtag band of companions, Arum must fight to save the city of Helsing from becoming a beacon of evil. This is book one of The Untouchable Stave Trilogy: Dawning.
 

Dark Becoming
 
A fantasy epic reminiscent of J. R. R. Tolkien, L. Frank Baum, and the Dark Crystal. The standard quest with fantastic characters, but with a dramatic twist ending that pits magic against science in a way that you might not expect.
 

China Dog in Oz
 
One of March Laumer's BEST Oz books, detailing the romance between Eureka, the Pink Kitten, and Toby, the porcelain dog.
 

Children of the Apocalypse Part One: The Beginning
 
Three girls are thrust together by their shared abilities and the roles they are to play in the nearing apocalypse. They are guided only by the mysterious Michael, whose contempt and dislike of them is clearer than his motivations for saving their lives. With assassins and betrayal at every turn, the Children of the Apocalypse must fight to stay alive while discovering their gifts and respective roles in the approaching final battle.
 
Harder still, however, is knowing who to trust...
 

Children of the Apocalypse Part Two: The Immortal
 
The girls have survived the fight of their lives, but aren’t without scars. Genevieve must deal with the magicks she preformed to save everyone, as well as the fact that Michael almost let her die; Sage must face the grief and guilt surrounding a loved one’s death; and Merri’s past is rapidly closing in. Worse still, Michael has been keeping secrets about their origins, destiny, and the fact that they may not be the only Children of the Apocalypse after all...
 

The Ultimate Pirate Adventure
 
1718. The dreaded Blackbeard is unaware that in one week he will be killed in a naval battle off the coast of South Carolina. 1783. Captain Edward James Yoke, once feared pirate and now British Royal Navy officer, abandons his ship and crew. 1993. An aging John Seamore, the last legitimate pirate threat sailng the ocean, is about to be thrust into an ultimate adventure to rival all time!
 

This Is Not a Game
 
The book is written in a three act form. The first part of the book is fascinating and sets the context for the moral issues that arise later in the book. Reading this book it seemed to me that Williams was "doing" an impression of William Gibson, picking up on some of the themes that Gibson has touched on. I enjoyed this, especially because Gibson hasn't been doing Gibson much these days (sadly his Spook Country was one of his weakest books). Nor do I see anything wrong with one artist being influenced by another.
This Is Not A Game is set in the relatively near future. One of the things I enjoyed about this book is its technological speculation. I am a computer scientist and I found most of the speculation reasonable. There was some suspension of disbelief required when it comes to the ability of software to "learn", but I didn't find that this detracted from my enjoyment of the story.
One way I judge a book is whether I'm still thinking about it after I've finished reading it. I keep thinking of bits and pieces of This Is Not A Game.
 

The Wrong Mother: A Novel
 
Sally had an affair. She was exhausted and in desperate need of a break. When her business trip was unexpectedly cancelled, she decided to get away anyway. She met Mark and their tryst began. They talked about lives they lead, about their work and about their families. When the vacation came to an end, the two parted ways thinking they would never see each other again.
One night while Sally and her husband are watching TV and to Sally's surprise, Mark's name comes up on the news. To her surprise, his wife and child have both been killed. When they show Mark's picture, Sally realizes that the man she was with was not really Mark, her short term lover was using the identity of someone else. Now she is in panic mode and scared for her family. Will she be able to protect her family from this madman that she once shared a bed with?
I'm addicted. Now I have to go out and buy all of her other books. Seriously. This was a phenomenal read that blew my mind. I actually received an ARC of this at the beginning of the summer, so I had actually read it a while ago. I am still in a daze over how wonderfully thrilling this book was. If you aren't going to buy it, at least enter my giveaway because I really think you all could get hooked on Sophie's writing. If you do, maybe we could start a club. LOL.
 

The Wife's Tale: A Novel
 
It's a wonderful feeling to say that I knew from the second page of this book that it would be good. Not having read Lansen's earlier novel, The Girls, I now feel envious of those who have, since talent like hers as shown in The Wife's Tale makes me believe all her writing must be wonderful.
The Wife's Tale is a novel about Mary Gooch and her life. Her constant battle with food and her body, her ever-present hunger, her ghosts from the past reminding her of better times. Times when she was happy, and carefree, and skinny. It's about her secrets and her husband. Her husband of twenty-five years who she married when she was young and svelte and pregnant, before she gained the weight and lost the baby. Her husband who disappears the night before their anniversary, saying and doing nothing, just leaving. Leaving her with her secrets and hunger until the day she wakes and realizes she doesn't need food. She wakes from her life and chooses to take a step in a new direction, to embark on a journey. To become someone other than the woman who only wears dark navy scrubs, the woman from Leaford who is incredibly obese. To be the woman who solves her own problems. In the journey she takes to find her husband, she finds herself: the Mary without the food.
This story was heartbreaking and sad, but also incredibly beautiful and lyrical and literary and uplifting. Lansen weaves Mary's memories into the story which help us to understand her pain, weight issues are something to which most of us can relate. Brutally honest and blunt, occasionally fresh and funny, but always true and real from the perspective of an overweight women who feels helpless, this was a touching message of hope and the power of change and strength in us all.
I loved Mary Gooch. I loved her for being honest with me about who she was and the secrets she has. The chocolates, the binges, the tabloids, the obsession. And I loved her for making a choice, for leaving Leaford, for going after her husband, and then changing direction on the way. For following her father's old advice to "take a drink from the hose and push on."
 

Farraday Road
 
Although I loved the plot, I was underwhelmed by the character development - after spending almost 400 pages with the main characters, I did not find them compelling or feel attached to them. The wife of the main character is murdered at the beginning of this book, and although she is mourned and memorialized by the other characters, I found the descriptions of her and the behavior of the living characters to be rather two-dimensional and lacking in depth and realism. The plot was full of unexpected twists and turns, but the characters themselves were predictable and flat.
I also found the spiritual component of this work to be lackluster, at best. While I don't expect every piece of Christian fiction to have a pat overview of the gospel and basic theology, Collins has presented very "churchy" characters who appear to have been transformed more by "learning to love themselves" than by a relationship with God. If I had picked this book out of the secular mysteries at the local library, I would have appreciated it for being free of bad language or scenes that I wish weren't burned in my imagination. Since it came in a box of Christian books from Zondervan, however, I found it shallow and void of real truth and substance.
Overall, definitely worth reading if you'd like a fun and fast-paced work of fiction. Just don't expect anything profound!
 

A Long Way to Freedom
 
A Long Way to Freedom is the story of one refugee family’s harrowing journey to safety, from a daring escape out of their own country, North Korea, to years of surviving their way over half a continent. This is a tale of bravery, great fortune, and also terrible failures and defeat. It is an epic adventure of love, violence, danger, true friendship, and betrayal. But it ultimately ends in success, and a hard earned victory over unbelievable odds.
 
 
 
 

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