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review 2017-06-22 21:56
Beautiful!
Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8: Willow (Buffy the Vampire Slayer: Season 8) - Joss Whedon,Andy Owens,Karl Moline

Gorgeously written and illustrated issue about Willow set during season eight of Buffy.   Won't make much sense without reading season eight first, but well worthwhile after.   

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review 2017-05-02 02:00
Hunting Down Dragons
Hunting Down Dragons: an Urban Fantasy (Moonlight Dragon Book 2) - Tricia Owens

Anne and her quirky friends are back. More is found out about the "Oddmakers." Will be interesting what job the Oddmakers have her do (assuming for future book). She did find out more about that happened to her parents and was able to get some closure (and vengeance).
The cameos continue their creepiness "Death to Anne Moody."

 

For Square #24 Adventureland.  Exotic animal on cover.  Dragon.

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review 2017-03-23 00:59
Just didn't work for me
Becoming Elite (Sin City #1) - Tricia Owens

*2.5 STARS*

 

So, I was trying very hard to like this one but there were a lot of things that turned me off. First, I listened to this one on audio, LOL.
The way the narrator did Maxmillian's voice was hilarious. For some reason, I just kept thinking of the movie Austin Powers and I'm not even sure why. Needless to say there was a lot of giggling that ensued.

Secondly, I'm not sure I liked this Max guy as a "master". He seemed really irresponsible to me. Ethan was a title newbie to the lifestyle and he didn't seem to help enlighten him too much prior to him uprooting his whole life to be with Max.

Next, it just seemed so weird that Ethan was a PI and a model. Did that strike anyone else as odd? I don't know, I guess it just seems to be that someone that is supposed to be blending into the shadows shouldn't be model hot. 

Anyway, there were just too many things about this one for me to really get into it. And with the fact that it was extremely short, the story itself fell (wait for it) short for me too. 

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review 2017-03-03 00:22
The Original Dream by Nukila Amal, translated by Linda Owens
The Original Dream - Nukila Amal,Linda O... The Original Dream - Nukila Amal,Linda Owens

The writing was beautiful but I lost the overall point of the story. It never felt like I found the revelation it was adding up to which left me with a feeling of disappointment after a promising ride.

Along the way, the book was quite pleasant to read. The author changed from the third person point of view in the chapters about Maya's life and second person point of view in the chapters that are in her dreams, leaving a clear distinction between them and alleviating the reader from any sort of confusion about whether you were in reality. I really liked the way she did that because though it should eventually have been made obvious by events and characters that are only in one or the other, the style choice made it easier on me.

Her life and her dreams were both interesting and fun to read about. Maya's dreams included parts of her real life but also distortions of it, delusions and sense sometimes in a single scene. Each scene was written in a way that propelled the plot forward, challenging Maia in the dream or Maya in real life to see things differently, or at least contemplate the differences.

The writing is gorgeous and this book had one of my favorite openings ever.

My father is a moon orchid, white, from the jungle. My mother is a red rose in the garden, near the fence. They met one morning in the port. Gave birth to me. Pink baby frangipani. A funerary flower.

Isn't that just gorgeous? I  get how it's also kind of nonsense, but it sets up a certain expectation of how the story will be told. The first chapter goes on this way, metaphorically talking about her parents and ancestors and there's a place where she goes through a photo album that is written in this romanticized way that just pulls at me. It was such a strong beginning. I had felt like it was all adding up to some revelation of who Maya or Maia was or what her place in the world was and then I felt like it just fizzled away in the last chapter. I did't get it.

That said, don't let it or the rating distract from trying the book out alone. It was only that the end doesn't make the plot clear but some stories just beautifully meander around and it's still nice to read. I would definitely read this again over several classics I was forced to read throughout college. I would read it before Dickens, for sure.

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review 2017-02-27 00:56
Disappointing.
Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love, and ... Radical Dharma: Talking Race, Love, and Liberation - Jasmine Syedullah Ph.D.,Lama Rod Owens,Rev. angel Kyodo Williams

I had read another book of Rev. angel Kyodo williams and jumped at the chance to read this one. While not Buddhist I was intrigued by the topics of the book supposedly addressing racial injustice, white supremacy, etc. in Buddhist communities and wondered what I could take away from that.

 

And initially it was fascinating. The purpose of the book, the need to address these issues both within and without Buddhisim, what some of the terminology meant, etc. It sounded like it would be an interesting read.

 

Unfortunately it goes downhill after the introduction or so. The book reads very much like a conversation between the three authors. And while that is a format that can work, I can understand why people felt disappointed. It seemed like a conversation that was very much for them and their community. There's nothing wrong with that in itself, but the text does seem jargon-y and "isolated" for reasons mentioned above. I wasn't sure what I was supposed to be getting from the book or their conversation.

 

It was interesting to read the perspectives of these practitioners and I felt I could somewhat get some of the points they were discussing. But ultimately the text was unapproachable for me. I don't know if someone who is an actual Buddhist might get more out of it but based on other reviews that might be a bit of a toss-up. 

 

I regret buying it but this wasn't readily available at my local library. I'm not sure I'd recommend this. You may have to read through a few chapters (as williams says, you can read this pieces) to see if it's something that is for you.

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