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review 2020-03-30 18:37
Golden in Death
Golden in Death - J.D. Robb

So for the 50th book in the series was slow to build. I know that readers have complained before about Robb just jumping in and throwing murders at us, but this one I have to say had a nice slow build and had us actually become invested in the victims. I also loved the backstory to what led to the murders. I also loved how Peabody was in this one. She's been working my nerves through several books now, but for once we get to see how smart Peabody is and how tough she's become. The main reason why I gave this four stars though is there is the usual stupid fight (well half fight) between Eve and Roarke. I also just started skipping over the sex scenes. I just don't care anymore and I hate the words "pour" now. Also Robb is still a bit focused on flowers/plants/trees from her latest stand alone as Nora Roberts that bled a bit over into this one. And for the love of all that is holy, let Eve and Roarke not talk about Eve's clothes for one book. I beg of you. A solid entry in the "In Death" series. 

 

"Golden in Death" follows Eve as she and Peabody investigate when a family pediatrician is found dead in his home. When Eve and others quickly realize that someone used a chemical agent to kill the dead man they worry that a bio-terrorist is on the loose. When Eve and Peabody link the next victim to the first, it all leads back to a school that where all that glittered, did not shine. 


Eve is Eve in this one. She and Roarke read a bit more subdued in this one though. Not a bad thing. They have a min-fight (that was beyond stupid since it's been an argument they have had before about money) but quickly get over it. I also can't anymore with Eve and now Roarke learning from a material arts master. I am sorry, I am a terrible person, every time I read about it I roll my eyes and snicker. This was a good showing of how thorough Eve is though. For once we don't have her experiencing nightmares or just instantly knowing who did it. We actually get to see her investigate (hallelujah) and what leads her to the guilty party(ies). 


Peabody was solid too and for once did not act like a psychopath. She had a great scene and smackdown of a terrible character in this one and I loved it. Usually she's sweetness and light and also kind of a dick about people who are not part of her "family".


We also get a showing of characters we haven't seen in a while, Louise and Charles. I was happy to see how they integrated into this one and I hope we get to see more of them in future installments. We of course have Summerset, Feeney, McNab, Harpo (Queen of Hair), Morris, Mira, Mr. Mira, Dickhead (I can't even remember his real name anymore), Callendar, etc. 

 

Kudos for once not having Eve and Nadine do their BS dance about exclusives. Frankly I did not miss Nadine and was glad she wasn't in this one. There are a few mentions of the Icove case and the movie, but blessfully it's not in our face like prior books. 


I did love the writing in this one and the look at the ugliness of school and what kids can do to each other. The flow was slow to start, it took a while to get going.

 

The setting of this one is New York in April 2061. We hear a lot about Spring, the smell of grass, flowers, etc. There's even a scene about a tree and I just did not care. I felt a little bit like I was reading Roberts last book, "Under Currents". Some of the science I kind of raised my eyebrow at. I don't know it seemed overly complicated. 


The ending in this one was really good. We don't get to hear the results, but we can guess. 

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review 2020-03-29 17:43
Passionate Minds by David Bodanis
Passionate Minds - David Bodanis

This is a frothy historical biography best described by its title. Unfortunately it does not live up to either the dramatic promise of its subtitle, or to the serious intentions stated in its preface. In that preface, the author bemoans the lack of recognition of early 18th century aristocratic French scientist Emilie du Chatelet, stating that she was written out of the canon by men who didn’t believe a woman could make serious contributions, and that the society hostesses and later feminist writers who might have championed her lacked the technical knowledge to understand her work, with the result that female biographers just focused on her wild sex life. Bodanis then proceeds to tell a story of du Chatelet’s life focused on her wild sex life, with only brief segments about science that provided little enlightenment to this reader.

In particular, Bodanis is enamored of du Chatelet’s tumultuous 15-year affair with Voltaire, and structures the book around that. It’s almost a dual biography (to the point that my library shelves it as a biography of Voltaire), except that Voltaire outlived du Chatelet by decades and those years aren’t covered in this book. Bodanis seems attached to the notion that this relationship provided du Chatelet with the confidence and support she needed to engage in scientific work, but it seemed to me that much of the evidence he provides argues against this conclusion. For instance, in one episode, Voltaire decides to enter a scientific competition, and du Chatelet spends her days assisting him with his experiments, but for some reason feels she can’t tell him where he’s going wrong, and meanwhile secretly stays up late every night working on her own submission, which she hides from him and ultimately mails off with the assistance of her extremely laid-back husband, who appears genuinely indifferent throughout to the fact that she’s living openly with another man. Which of these people is actually providing useful support, and which one has become an obstacle? I came away from the book with the impression that du Chatelet’s penchant for falling wildly in love with various men was a tragic distraction from her work, perhaps in part due to the author’s focus.

It’s a focus, in the end, that involves compressing complicated events into such short segments that I found them a bit difficult to keep track of, while lovingly expanding on descriptions of emotions and relationship dilemmas. These people wrote constantly, so I don’t think Bodanis is speculating, but it does come across as frothy. Interestingly, in the acknowledgements he says that while writing the book, he sent it out in installments to friends, and they and their friends and coworkers all eagerly signed up for more. But then, he says, that draft, nearly twice the length of the book he ultimately published, “wasn’t quite right. . . . There was to much to-ing and fro-ing, too much textual analysis and historical background, and too much elaboration of science and the biographer’s evidence.” I for one suspect I would have thought more of this book if it had included all that stuff, and the contrast between the word-of-mouth excitement Bodanis describes around his draft and the small number of readers who have rated the completed version on Goodreads makes me suspect it’s not just me, and what he cut was more essential than he realized.

Ultimately, this was an interesting book that I don’t regret reading, and it had a great start, but after 60 pages or so I began to fall out of love with it and never regained that level of enjoyment. Great material, but perhaps not the best possible treatment of it.

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review 2020-03-28 16:28
Wonderful look into Jyn's background
Star Wars Rebel Rising - Beth Revis

I'm a huge fan of Rogue One and loved the novelization by Alexander Freed, so I was wary of picking this up and wanting it to meet the same standard of the movie and novelization. 

 

But thankfully, I was not disappointed. This is a highly readable book that works really well in YA form to explain how Jyn Erso came to be who she is.

 

I really appreciated the development of Jyn's character and her motivations. Her psychology makes so much sense, and Beth Revis did an amazing job of portraying Jyn's relationship with Saw and adding all this wonderful detail that fleshes out the world of Star Wars even more.

 

Highly recommend! Well worth the read. 

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review 2020-03-27 04:27
Find Science and Technology Jobs for Freshers & Experienced

You will discover there are openings for measurable jobs in science & technology inside powers all through the world to help with on-going examinations. There are likewise employments for Archaeology criminological researchers whose work includes the examination and examination of authentic articles and scenes of wrongdoing.

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review 2020-03-26 14:00
How to Find a Higgs Boson—and Other Big Mysteries in the World of the Very Small
How to Find a Higgs Boson—and Other Big Mysteries in the World of the Very Small - Ivo vanVulpen

[I got a copy through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.]

A good, solid read about particle physics in general, and the confirmation of the Higgs boson at CERN. The beginning may seem deceptively simple for a layperson who already knows the basics, but it's obviously here to pave the way for what follows, which goes a little more into the nitty-gritty technical details. Maybe someone who really doesn't know anything about physics might find it difficult to follow, although I'm not convinced; the way it's explained should take care of that. It was really interesting, and a testament, too, to what a venture such as CERN can accomplish.

Also, yet another proof that we really, really need to stop funding research and experiments according to "how much money we can make off it", because if this keeps happening, we'll just stop making new discoveries altogether. Another interesting side of this book was how it illustrated in which (often unexpectedly) physics CAN actually lead to very useful applications, even though the research may have appeared as random at first--PET scanners, for instance: who would've known?

The author's writing is easy to follow, both when it comes to the book's structure and to its translation. I'll have no qualms recommending it to non-physicists, and to physicists as well, come to think of it.

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