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review 2018-02-20 20:02
WALK WITH ME by Debra Schoenberger
WALK WITH ME - Debra Schoenberger

I am a huge fan of Debra Schoenberger photography books. She takes some amazing photo's. Her photos are not staged which I love the most. She just walks down a street and pops off some photo's. I love taking pictures myself and have about 70,000 on my computer. A lot of my photo's are just like hers. Something caught my eye and I took a photo of it. I am sure we all have photo's like this. 

 

Debra shares her photo's with all of us. Most of her books have a theme, like her book To Be a Child, is pictures of children, Her book India is sites taken in India of both people and places. This book, Walk With Me doesn't really have a theme. There are several pictures of shoes though.  I think it is one of her best books yet. The photo's are pictures of everything you can imagine, people, places, and things. Some are even out of focus. The pictures are taken from all the places she has visited. 

 

There is one photo in the book where she has taken a photo of a man taking a photo of a building in front of them. You can see the building through his camera lens. it is an awesome photo. There is another picture of a woman with a pigeon setting on her arm, she is taking a picture of another lady with her cell phone, and you can see the lady standing there and also through the cell phone screen. 

I absolutely loved the photo of of a broken sidewalk with a puddle of water. In the puddle you see a large buildings reflection. 

 

I could go on and on about the pictures in this book that spoke to me. Debra is amazing. Grab a copy of this book and see for yourself. I am sure at least one will bring a smile to your face. 

 

I received this book from the Author Debra Schoenberger via iRead Book Tours to read and review.

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review 2018-01-24 11:15
Framing the question
The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas - Ursula K. Le Guin

Having known nothing of this tale but rumors that it was striking coming in, I would have preferred that the introduction had been placed at the end. I entered instead forewarned, spoiled, because I could deduce it'd be some beautiful Le Guin version of The Lottery. Then again, this is less a story than a question or a parable, as the author herself says in the after-word. It certainly left me thinking (particularly, of the photograph of the vulture by the dying child, but also of third world country people producing luxury items for paltry food and roof).

I loved this quote:

"The trouble is that we have a bad habit, encouraged by pedants and sophisticates, of considering happiness as something rather stupid. Only pain is intellectual, only evil interesting. This is the treason of the artist: a refusal to admit the banality of evil and the terrible boredom of pain."

As for my thoughts on it (disjointed still)

Part of the beauty of the set up is that being contained, the possibility of denying the bargain and the way is clear. In practical terms, leaving does nothing for the child; it only assuages the personal sense of morals. Doing something for the child, taking the child from misery, condemns all others to it; morals wounded by the misery of one would not perpetrate same on many. Freeing the child would be the equivalent of a violent revolution by a minority. Each that leaves takes responsibility for their own choice. The hope is that at some point, nobody takes the bargain.

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review 2018-01-22 15:26
should have hit my sweet spot, but it missed the mark for me
Billy Lynn's Long Halftime Walk: A Novel - Ben Fountain

I am perhaps the last person who truly wanted to read this book to finally do it. This was the very first book I ever bought on my Kindle. Several Kindles later, I finally got around to reading it. What threw me over the top was 1) noticing it became a movie while I've got a book that was bought on the strength of a pre-release review, which inspired me to 2) borrow the audiobook from the library and that gave me a deadline. I usually speed up audio at least a little, but this guy sounded like a chipmunk with any speed at all. He also had an annoying way of portraying all women with what I can only describe as a "stereotypical gay voice." It was so bad and so slow that I got impatient, pulled out the Kindle & just read the darned book already.

 

The title is one-hundred percent spot on. Almost all 315 pages take place on Thanksgiving Day at a Cowboy's football home game.

 

Billy Lynn is a 19 year old kid who ended up in Iraq after a judge gave him a choice. He and “Bravo squad” -- 8 close buddies and their Sargeant "Fine," are now War Heroes after a battle is caught on video and shown on Fox News. They've been brought home to do a two-week "Victory Tour," oh and bury Shroom -- one of their own who was killed in the skirmish. Shroom was Billy Lynn's closest friend, and while he's not physically there, he is ever present in Billy Lynn's mind. While on tour they've picked up Albert, a Hollywood type who has bought the rights to their story and is trying to quickly fashion a big movie "deal" before they all go back to Iraq. Oh and the US Army would prefer they didn't mention they're going back.

 

Billy Lynn comes off at first as a stupid hick, but we learn otherwise. He may lack formal education, but he's been reading over in Iraq, with recommendations from Shroom. He's read many of the books that people who don't sign up for the military pretend to read. His list is basically a "great American Books" series. He's simplistic but sharp. He lacks confidence to act impressed by himself though, and he's never sure that what he says is on target. What he has is a clear view on right and wrong, and good insight into the differences between those who fight and those who talk about the fight.

 

The satire is deep, rich and almost constant. It's well-written with great metaphors and one-liners. There's also a wonderful scene where they're greeted by yet another adoring, rich Friend of George Dubya who is foolish enough to proclaim that he's drilling oil "for the troops." Fine loses it in one of the most exquisite tirades I've ever read. 

 

I wondered what Ben Fountain would do with the current climate and all the contradictions involved in today's convoluted "patriotism;" kneeling for the anthem, or dreamers who have fought in the US services being deported...

 

Satire can be emotionally gripping, but this one wasn't. I laughed aloud and nodded agreement with the Bravos frequently. I just wasn't much affected by what I read. A book about the public-military disconnect, performative versus actual patriotism, the rich keeping their kids home while making money off the war machine; a loveable, slightly neurotic, too-smart-to-be-educated main character: this one should have hit my sweet spot, but it missed the mark for me. Nonetheless, I would still recommend it without hesitation to anyone interested in the topics I've mentioned.

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review 2018-01-06 20:16
How to Walk Like a Man (Howl at the Moon Book 2) Eli Easton Review
How to Walk Like a Man - Eli Easton

Deputy Roman Charsguard survived Afghanistan where he lost his best friend—his K-9 handler James. Roman was a military dog until two years ago when he developed the ability to shift into a human. It’s not easy to learn how to be a man. He found a place to live in Mad Creek, a haven for the secret world of dog shifters. Finding a reason to live has been harder. That is, until a certain human walks into the Mad Creek Sheriff’s office and starts making trouble.

Matt Barclay has the worst luck. First he was shot in a SWAT drug raid, then he was sent as DEA investigator to Mad Creek, a little town in the California mountains. Matt’s job is to keep a lookout for illegal drug farms, but nobody in the town wants him there. And then there’s Roman, Matt’s erstwhile baby-sitter. He’s the hottest guy Matt’s ever seen, even if he is a bit peculiar. If this job doesn’t kill Matt, sexual frustration just might.

The town is counting on Roman to prevent Matt from learning about dog shifters, Matt’s counting on Roman to be his work partner and tell him the truth, and Roman’s trying to navigate love, sex, and a whole lot of messy human emotions. Who knew it was so complicated to walk like a man?

 

Review


This is a fairly light hearted shifter romance. I like the mythos and the characters. I would like it better if it was a known paranormal world. The conflict of "nobody must know" gets a bit old but it fun.

 

Roman is wonderful of course. It is cool the way Easton has him settle into his human body.

 

I like Matt less and would have wanted more time with him after he was out but all in all this is a sweet fun tale with adventure thrown in.

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text 2018-01-05 21:31
Reading progress update: I've read 194 out of 194 pages.
Judge Dredd Origins - Brian Bolland,Carlos Ezquerra,John Wagner,Kev Walker

Review to come later tonight.

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