logo
Wrong email address or username
Wrong email address or username
Incorrect verification code
back to top
Search tags: 16-festive-tasks
Load new posts () and activity
Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-11-15 23:13
Festive Task 7
Cold Blood: Nick Stone Thriller 18 - Andy McNab

 

Task 7 

Book themes for Saint Lucia's Day: Read a book set in Scandinavia (Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Sweden - and Finland for the purposes of this game) or a book where ice and snow are an important feature.

 

 

Nick Stone is getting recruited to help a group of amputees to go to North Pole. 

 

Ice and snow is the elementary danger beside the guns and fire. 

 

The plot starts with Nick Stone reluctantly drawn into a task that he didn't want in the first place. 

A guy he knew wanted Stone's help to get his son safe when he and a group of amputees tried to go to a hike on the North Pole. 

 

The son Jack was in the military and got his leg blown off shortly after he got into action.

 

Now that Jack and his fellow friends, other amputees would like to get to the North Pole but their sponsor pulled out.

 

Where to get the money is part of the problem.

 

Now they just landed on a place where there are some armed Russians want to get part of the action of oil underneath the ice.

 

The came the father drawing in Rune, a geek that suppose to put equipment on the ice to see if the ice is melting. 

 

The twist is that everyone is lying. The friend Jack has that could get the money is lying. And they got shot at.

 

After being chased. They ended up stranded  on ice. Cold and dying. Then they got escorted to a Russian submarine. 

 

The bigger picture is the behind twist. Who get the oil? The Americans or the Russians? 

 

Not as engaging as I hope. But I'm not that into extreme sports. 

 

Still a 4 stars read.  

 

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-11-14 19:26
Winter Solstice ★★★★☆
Winter Solstice (Audio) - Rosamunde Pilcher,Carole Shelley

I was a little impatient with this slow-moving story at first, but in the end was glad that I stayed with it. It’s a warm, comfortable story of people who are adrift at the end of a relationship, who find one another and begin anew. It’s not a Romance, but it is a story of love in its many forms. It was a little like a book form of those sweet, staid BBC and PBS shows that seem to mostly feature nice people sitting and talking, or walking and talking, with just enough offscreen drama to keep it interesting. I can see why so many people enjoy this story as an annual holiday comfort read.

 

Audiobook, via Audible. Lynn Redgrave provides an okay performance – it’s possible that this book needed someone a little more lively to spark it up.

 

I read this for The 16 Tasks of the Festive Season, and I will be using it as the Holiday Book Joker for Square 9 December 21st: Winter Solstice is the longest night of the year in the northern hemisphere, also known as Yaldā Night in Iran. The same day is the summer solstice in the southern hemisphere, giving them the longest day of the year.  This book takes place during the weeks leading up to the Christmas holiday, but the key turning point takes place on the evening of the winter solstice.

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-11-14 09:45
A Burnable Book
A Burnable Book - Bruce Holsinger

This book was both everything I love and everything I loathe about historical fiction. 

 

Everything I love includes characters pulled straight out of history: Chaucer, Gower, Richard the II, Hawkswood, and plots that involve books and codes and secret symbols.  

 

Everything I loathe is, ironically, everything that makes this a more or less accurate work of historical fiction.  Told from different points of view throughout the book, two of the perspectives are those of prostitutes and there's no sugar coating the language or the profession.  It's raw and graphic and just not what I enjoy reading no matter the setting or the time period.  There are also POVs from mercenaries and the acts they threaten to carry out and ultimately do carry out are disgustingly graphic and inhumane.  Verisimilitude can go too far for my tastes and does so here.

 

But, by far, the things I loved kept me glued to this book, even when the things I loathed would have me DNF it.  It was so well written, I wanted to know what was going to happen to John Gower, and Simon, and Millicent.  And of course, I wanted to know more about the Burnable Book.

 

So, if your tastes are more tolerant than mine, I highly recommend this book.  I'm not at all sorry I read it - it was a great story, I couldn't put down - even when it offended my delicate sensibilities.

 ;-)

 

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-11-13 02:17
Up Front ★★★★★
Up Front - Bill Mauldin,Stephen E. Ambrose

This is a fascinating collection of Bill Mauldin’s cartoons, drawn while serving as an infantryman, then later as part of the press corps for the US Army in Europe during WWII. The cartoons are accompanied by the personal stories and recollections behind their inspiration and creation. These cartoons wouldn’t have made much sense to me, otherwise, having never served in the military or had family who served during WWII. He tells his stories with humor and empathy, but does not pull punches in describing the infantryman’s experience on the front lines of the war – fear and hunger and exhaustion and foxholes and trench foot and screaming meemie bombs and butterfly bombs and potato mashers. But he also speaks of courage and camaraderie and duty and brotherhood, the sort of commitment that keeps the men together and fighting their common enemy. And in this book, the common enemy is the German soldier, and Mauldin is explicit in describing the GI’s point of view.

 

Some shells scream, some whiz, some whistle, and others whir. Most flat-trajectory shells sound like rapidly ripped canvas. Howitzer shells seem to have a two-toned whisper.

Let’s get the hell off this subject.

 

 

 

It would take a pretty tough guy not to feel his heart go out to the shivering, little six-year-old squeaker who stands barefoot in the mud, holding a big tin bucket so the dogface can empty his mess kit into it… But there is a big difference between the ragged, miserable infantryman who waits with his mess kit, and the ragged, miserable civilian who waits with his bucket. The doggie knows where his next meal is coming from. That makes him a very rich man in this land where hunger is so fierce it makes animals out of respectable old ladies who should be wearing cameos and having tea parties instead of fighting one another savagely for a soldier’s scraps.

 

 

 

They go on patrol when patrols are called for, and they don’t shirk hazards, because they don’t want to let their buddies down. The army couldn’t get along without them, either. Although it needs men to do the daring deeds, it also needs me who have the quiet courage to stick in their foxholes and fight and kill even though they hate killing and are scared to death while doing it.

 

 

They are very different now. Don’t let anybody tell you they aren’t. They need a lot of people speaking for them and telling about them – not speaking for fancy bonuses and extra privileges. You can’t pay in money for what they have done. They need people telling about them so that they will be taken back into their civilian lives and given a chance to be themselves again.

 

 

  

Hardcover edition, loaned to me by my father. I read this for The 16 Tasks of the Festive Season: Square 3 November 11th. Book themes for Veterans Day/Armistice Day: Read a book involving veterans of any war, books about WWI or WWII (fiction or non-fiction).  –OR– Read a book with poppies on the cover.

Like Reblog Comment
show activity (+)
review 2017-11-13 00:01
Night In Jerusalem
Night in Jerusalem - Gaelle Lehrer Kennedy

Square 8 for the 16 Festive Tasks....

 

David Bennett travels to Jerusalem in 1967 on a journey to find himself. His cousin Johnathan has been studying Judaism in Jerusalem and believes that his mentor, the chief rabbi, Reb Eli will be able to help David with his troubles. David arrives in Jerusalem planning only to stay one month, however, he is quickly taken in by the beauty of the city and Reb Eli's ways. When Reb Eli suggests that David visits a local brothel for help with his women's troubles, David is taken aback. However, when he finally decides to visit, David meets Tamar and his troubles seem to vanish. Meanwhile, Reb Eli's widowed daughter, Sarah is feeling depressed and out of place without a husband or child within her Orthodox community. Sarah longs to love once again and when a mysterious Englishman enters her home, Sarah's senses are awakened. As David and Sarah begin their new journeys in romance, the Six Day War breaks out in the Middle East and forever alters their lives.

Recreating the biblical story of Tamar in a more modern setting, Night in Jerusalem has a fairy-tale quality to it. I immediately felt immersed in the city of Jerusalem, from the golden glow of the city, to the quaint diners and the people of many religions mingling together. I easily took to David and Sarah's characters as lost souls as well as Reb Eli's comforting character. I was surprised at Reb Eil's suggestion for David's troubles as well as how sensuous many of the scenes were. Along with learning the tale of Tamar, I learned many things about Jewish Traditions and life in Jerusalem. The intricacies of Shabbat seemed beautiful and I wish I could have heard Sarah's singing. The Six Day War was something else that I learned of, I had no idea that this tragedy or the reasons why it had happened. The most interesting aspect of this story is the interwoven tale of Tamar told through David and Sarah. Their mystery to one another kept the story suspenseful and their romance kept me intrigued. Overall, an interesting portrait of Judaism in 1960's Jerusalem interwoven with an updated biblical story.

This book was received for free in return for an honest review.

More posts
Your Dashboard view:
Need help?