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review 2017-03-22 02:36
Autobiographies, Charles Darwin
Autobiographies: Charles Darwin (paper) - Sharon Messenger,Michael Neve,Charles Darwin

Reading this feels a bit voyeuristic, in that it was intended as a family document rather than a public one. It's short and not a very good biography; it talks in little detail about Darwin's life or character, whilst rambling about the personalities of various other contemporary scientists, Darwin's religious views and his own books. It's nevertheless of some interest and so short as to hardly allow for getting bogged down. It's nowhere near as fun as The Voyage of the Beagle or as important as On the Origin of Species, however.

 

It is probably most useful for the section on how developing his theory of evolution eroded his faith in literal interpretation of the Bible and eventually in Christianity altogether.

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review 2017-03-20 08:27
TRILOBITE! Eyewitness to Evolution by Richard Fortey
Trilobite!: Eyewitness to Evolution - Richard Fortey

Trilobite! (with the exclamation mark) is Richard Fortey's passionate account of trilobites - their physiology, their crystal eyes, legs, development, evolution and history.  This book grew out of the author's love of trilobites.  His stated aim is to invest the trilobites with all the glamour of the dinosaur and to see the world through the eyes of a trilobites.

This enthusiastic account of trilobites is written in a colourful narrative style that mixes science with personal anecdotes and historical stories.  The chapter on trilobite eyes was especially fascinating.  There are a few technical terms to be learned, but nothing excessive that would be difficult for the lay reader.  The book also includes numerous black/white photographs and diagrams.

Trilobites are interesting creatures, but I wanted more focus on the trilobites and fewer anecdotes. I would also have like more information on what may have caused their extinction.  However, this book is still fascinating and a joy to read.

 

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review 2017-03-19 17:12
Keen (Terran Times Second Wave Book 3) by Viola Grace Review
Keen (Terran Times Second Wave) - Viola Grace

Being invited into the Alliance was a shock for Kyna. She was wanted for an archivist assignment on a far-off world that needed her…specifically. Kee gets an implant that allows her instant access to generations of information, and she heads off to Jhenno for her new life in one of the most comprehensive archives in history.

When a co-worker tries to take her life, he forces the hand of her would-be suitor, and for the first time ever, Kee faces a dragon.

Jherin has been asleep for a few thousand years. He was thrown back in time to be at the right place at the right time to find his mate; he just missed the mark. When the mind of his mate begins to dim, he can’t spend time waiting for a long courtship.

 

 

Review

 

Who doesn't love librarians and dragon shifter? A nice quick read with a hint of danger and a fated romance. 

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review 2017-03-19 16:48
Einstein: His Life And Universe - Walter Isaacson

This is an incredibly well researched, detailed account of all aspects of Einstein's life, personal, scientific and political that I can highly recommend to anybody interested. I learned heaps I didn't know and had the record set straight on a number of points, mainly regarding Einstein's political views, how they changed over time and his level of support for setting up the Manhattan Project.

 

I read the book with a specific research agenda, which was to independently form an opinion as to whether Einstein was autistic, an idea not first suggested by me and not on the author's mind either. Conclusion: Yep, autisticker than an autistic person with autism.

 

Towards the end there is an account of how Einstein was affected by and responded to McCarthyism. He was opposed, seeing in it the oppression of free speech and free thought characteristic of both Fascism and Communism. The author takes the view that McCarthyism was a passing fad, doomed to fail in the long term because of the greatness of the American Constitution. I found this level of complacency offensive to all the victims of McCarthy, all the people who spoke up in defense of freedoms and all the people who defended the constitution legally.

 

On it's own the constitution is nothing; without those people willing to risk reputation, career, even liberty, would McCarthyism have been a "passing fad"? Given the current political situation, we need such people more than ever. You disappoint me in this, Isaacson. Einstein, who used his world famous name to stand up for moderation, tolerance and freedom of thought and speech, does not.

 

Still, overall an excellent book.

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review 2017-03-18 23:23
Alien Caged (Clans of Kalquor, #8) by Tracy St. John Review
Alien Caged - Tracy St. John

For most, the Earth/Kalquor War ended years ago. Yet veteran destroyer captain Zemos and clanmates Oret and Miragin have been captured by a renegade Earther battlecruiser. They’ve been held in a cell for months now, with no idea where their ultimate fate lies. Threatened daily, they know their lives can end at any moment. The only bright spot during their imprisonment has been the lovely woman who brings them their meals and offers the one friendly face amongst their enemies.

Elisa Mackenzie is among the desperate Earthers trying to survive in the wake of Armageddon. Surrounded by fanatics who won’t give up a long-lost war, she can’t let herself care for the Kalquorians the ship has taken prisoner. Her lonely heart, empty for so long, has other ideas. Knowing the Kalquorians are dangerous and her fanatical shipmates are even more so, Elisa fights her feelings in vain. Ignoring the harsh lessons of long-lost youth, she falls in love.

Zemos, Oret, and Miragin know they must escape before the Earthers deliver them to an unthinkable end. They also know the key to opening their cage means turning on the woman who has infiltrated their fierce hearts. Elisa already has their adoration. She deserves their protection and care as well, but enemies both new and ancient threaten the Kalquorian Empire. To save their people and themselves, the three men may have to destroy the woman who would complete their clan.

Mild BDSM, including anal play/intercourse, bondage, Dom/sub play, and multiple sexual partners (m/f/m/m).

 

Review

 

To enjoy this book, you have to suspend you disbelief, a crazy lot.

 

If you can do that, you are in for a very sweet erotic Sciene Fiction Fiction Romance.

The heroine has grown up on conservative patriarchal Earth. She is almost 50 and is the sole woman on a battleship that has escape the destruction of Earth and the ending of the war.

 

She is tasked with feeding the Aliens Earth was a war with and of course, has a big crush on a clan of three males, who are of course wonderful.

 

The fact that the wooing and sex happens during a take over of the ship is just silly but I enjoyed this less BDSM more character driven entry into this series with older heroes and a kind heroine who is slowing deprogramming herself.

 

So, nice (if a burning hot sexy book can be nice. It Can)

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