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review 2018-09-26 09:38
the weakest one, for me.
The Wilderness (Lavender Shores #8) - Rosalind Abel
(Verified purchase, Sept 12 2018) This is book 8 in the Lavender Shores series, and you don't NEED to have read the others before this one. I would, however, probably recommend that you read book 6, The Glasshouse. You'll get a better picture of what Will suffered, and it gives a hint to this book! Will was left at the altar in font of a multi million viewing audience. Andre's wife passed away. Together, they get themselves through a really tough period. But it's not until Will decides to run clear across the world, does Andre realise what Will means to him, and just how much his heart would break, if he lost him. For me? The weakest of the series, and I've no idea why! And you KNOW how much that pains me!! I loved the other books, all 4 and 5 stars reads, and I really was looking forward to this one, especially after that hint in book 6, and I really don't know why in falls flat *insert wailing* It's well told, from both Will and Andre's point of view, in the first person, just like the rest. It's extremely well written and well delivered and I saw no spelling or editing errors to spoil my reading. And I DID read it in one sitting, just like the rest! It has very early (internal) professions of love, from both guys, and I don't usually like that but its quite some time before they SAY the words. It's a bit more . . . whats the word . . . lovey dovey . . . hearts and flowers . . . . .type of thing, than the rest, or at least I thought so? Maybe that's it?? **insert more wailing** I just don't know WHY this one didn't hit the spot, and for that I'm sorry. But still a nice read and a good addition to the series. 3 good solid stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

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review 2018-09-20 04:49
Review: Jungle Green (The Balcom Dynasty Book 2) by Richard Dee
Jungle Green - Richard Dee

Independently published (6th June 2018)

 

ISBN: 978-1983052606

 

Rating: 5*

 

Synopsis: 

TC is the wonder drug. Manufactured in secrecy on a remote planet at the edge of the galaxy, it makes worlds inhabitable; and Balcom Industrial lots of money. Then, suddenly, the people who need to take it to stay alive start to die! For Layla Balcom, fresh from wresting control of her father’s inheritance from those who would have destroyed it, the news is devastating. Can the drug be flawed? Or is something else going on?  

 

Review:

I very much enjoyed Ribbonworld, the first book in The Balcom Dynasty when I devoured it in virtually one sitting last year, so Jungle Green was an eagerly anticipated read for me. It was a real pleasure to catch up with Miles Goram again, the central character and unlikely hero of Ribbonworld.

 

The story piqued my curiosity from the off, the author laying a trail of breadcrumbs but there's no hand holding and leading you from one clue to the next; some things you need to work out for yourself! The plot is interesting and cast of characters varied and well rounded - some seemingly lovely, others hateful! 

 

Richard Dee has a wonderful way of weaving a way with words, he's a masterful storyteller and I suspect he doesn't even realise this. When I'm reading one of his books, regardless of genre, I'm utterly transfixed and lose all track of time. There could be a monsoon (or anything else) going on outside, I really wouldn't have the faintest idea! I am really pleased to see a prequel is forthcoming, I can't wait to read that! 

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review 2018-04-03 10:17
amazing read but you will need tissues!
Disjointed Lives - Morgan Sheppard
Independent reviewer for Archaeolibrarian, I was gifted my copy of this book. Imagine meeting your best friend for coffee and telling her something that happened ten years before, something that could possibly cost you her friendship. Because, at it's most basic, that's what this is : two old friends, best friends, meeting for coffee and Ava has to tell Paige something that happened ten years ago, when they were estranged, something that she NEEDS to say, but knows that Paige might not, hell, she WON'T like it, but she needs to know. At it's most complex?? It's the story of a woman who falls in love with an abusive partner and her fight to get out and away from that partner. The abuse is not physical, it's emotional, it's mental, it is total in it's destruction of Ava of old. It is total in cutting Ava off from everything and everyone she knows. It reduces her to a woman who, while maybe at the back of her mind knows that what is happening to her is not right, this marriage is not how it should be, she cannot be anything else but his wife. She knows no one will want her, because James tells her so. But Ava finds a friend at work who is not letting her wallow, is not letting go, and Jacob helps Ava. And Ava has been dreaming about Jacob, which is what prompted this coffee shop meeting, and it all coming tumbling out of Ava. It is beautifully written, painful reading though. While not told in great detail, there is some reference to Ava's abuse, to what James did, what he made her do. I had to keep putting it down, it made me cry in many places. It's not very long, but because I had to keep putting it down, it took me all day to read the 67 pages here. But so beautifully written! Cutting extremely close to home on two fronts. Because someone close to me went through what Ava did, but her abuse was physical, as well as mental. I watched her cutting us off, one by one, those closest to her first, and then spreading out, just as his tentacles spread out. And there was nothing we could do to stop it. We tried, oh Lord we tried, but she was in love. We had to wait til she came to the same conclusion, and wait for her to act on her own. She did. It just took a bit of time. And because I know Ava, because I AM Paige. Finding out a wonderful day spent in amazing company last October was the inspiration for this book made me cry. Made me feel incredibly proud to be part of this book, made me feel incredibly proud of Ms Sheppard. I cannot express, not really, how much this book affected me. But you should know that... IT IS AMAZING! 5 full and shiny stars **same worded review will appear elsewhere**

 

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review 2018-03-10 17:35
Wacky, wacky, wacky
The Power of Myth - Joseph Campbell,Bill Moyers

Some of us are old enough to remember the trash bag commercial that referred to the bargain brand as "wimpy, wimpy, wimpy."

 

 

The cheap brand broke, and all the trash spilled out.

 

With Joseph Campbell, it's wacky, wacky, wacky, and all the pretentious bullshit is falling out.

 

In the interest of disclosure, I should add that I was raised nominally Protestant, though I didn't get much education in that faith until I chose to become specifically Presbyterian in my mid-teens.  Much of my maternal family is Jewish.  So I come from a mixed and very spiritually tolerant background.  Growing up, I had friends who were Irish Catholic and went to the Catholic schools, friends who were Italian Catholic and went to public schools, friends who were Missouri Synod Lutheran and went to the Lutheran school, as well as plenty of friends whose religion was completely unknown and totally irrelevant.

 

And as I mentioned in a previous status, I have just enough background in cultural anthropology -- Malinowski and his Trobriand Islanders! -- to come to The Power of Myth with an open and curious mind.

 

The first couple of chapters irritated me.  I couldn't discern a real theme, a real thesis of what is myth, what is its power, how is that power used, by whom is it used.  Because my objective was an analysis of romance novels as myths, this was important to me. 

 

What I found through the 33% of the Kindle edition that I read was gobbledygook.  Bullshit.  Horse crap.  Garbage.

 

But I was determined to continue reading.

 

At the 30% mark, page 74, I came to this:

 

MOYERS: What do you mean? What can you make of the watch you’re wearing? What kind of mystery does it reveal?

 

CAMPBELL: It is a thing, isn’t it?

 

MOYERS: Yes.

 

CAMPBELL: Do you really know what a thing is? What supports it? It is something in time and space. Think how mysterious it is that anything should be. The watch becomes the center for a meditation, the center of the intelligible mystery of being, which is everywhere. This watch is now the center of the universe. It is the still point in the turning world.

Campbell, Joseph. The Power of Myth (p. 75). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

 

At that point, the book became a wallbanger.  Campbell, whose face and mannerisms and even voice I knew from snippets of videos, had become in my mind a pompous old man demanding attention and reverence even though he was spouting obvious nonsense.

 

When I was a graduate student in about 2002, I had a seminar class of seven students with two professors.  One of them I had had before, so I was familiar with his teaching style and I had taken the class partly because of that.  The other, whom I shall call Arthur for the sake of this discussion, was unknown.  Sadly, Arthur did 95% of the teaching.  If you can call it that.

 

We had some very difficult texts by some very difficult authors: Georg Lukacz, Walter Benjamin, Michel Foucault, Terry Eagleton.  I dutifully read every assignment, even though I didn't always understand what I was reading.  I came to class prepared to ask questions, discuss ideas, listen to other interpretations.  But what happened was that Arthur took over from the moment the class started, and he never shut up.

 

Non-stop, he rambled, on and on and on and on and on and on.  If one of us raised a hand to ask a question, Arthur would say something like, "I'll get to you in a minute," and the minute became thirty.  The class was two hours long, and he frequently talked for the entire two hours, not even allowing us the customary ten-minute break in the middle.  One of the students, a full-time firefighter, occasionally fell sound asleep.  And snored.

 

Nothing fazed Arthur.  One evening I managed to demand his attention and asked, "You do all this talking, but we aren't discussing the material.  What does this stuff all mean?"

 

He laughed and replied, "Welcome to grad school."  Then he resumed his monologue on some unrelated topic.  I don't even remember the name of the course.

 

One evening Arthur opened the session with a declaration that he was not going to talk more than fifteen minutes and then would open it up for discussion.  All of us who had questions about this reading material were eager to have the chance to air our thoughts.  Arthur of course talked for the entire two hours, less maybe five minutes at the end.  By that time, no one cared.

 

I thought of him often while reading Campbell.

 

I struggled through the rest of that chapter with the watch, because I really wanted to read about "The First Storytellers" and "The Gift of the Goddess."  But I couldn't get past the absurdity of Campbell's thinking.  I felt as if I'd gone back into that seminar room in the Sands Building and Arthur was once again droning on about some stupid shit that mattered less than Rick, Ilsa, and Lazlo.

 

This morning, even though I had already DNFed The Power of Myth, I took it up again to write this review.  I skipped ahead, skimmed some of the text.

 

Campbell gives a nod to the divine feminine in the chapter "The Gift of the Goddess," and I began to have some faint hope.  Very faint.  And I was quickly relieved of even that.

 

Frequently, in the epics, when the hero is born, his father has died, or his father is in some other place, and then the hero has to go in quest of his father. In the story of the incarnation of Jesus, the father of Jesus was the father in heaven, at least in terms of the symbology. When Jesus goes to the cross, he is on the way to the father, leaving the mother behind. And the cross, which is symbolic of the earth, is the mother symbol. So on the cross, Jesus leaves his body on the mother, from whom he has acquired his body, and he goes to the father, who is the ultimate transcendent mystery source.

Campbell, Joseph. The Power of Myth (p. 208). Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group. Kindle Edition.

 

I added the emphasis, because plainly Campbell still privileges the masculine over the feminine, no matter what he says in other places to the contrary.  And he still privileges the strict duality, despite dismissing it often enough . . . in theory.

 

There was a temptation to give this one or one-half or even no stars, but I went with one and a half because the negative lessons were somewhat worth it.  I still have some old anthro books that might give better insights into the value and true power of myth.  Campbell sure as hell didn't.

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text 2018-03-10 05:28
Reading progress update: I've read 30%. And DNF
The Power of Myth - Joseph Campbell,Bill Moyers

I know I said I was going to finish it, but I changed my mind because things.

 

When Campbell asks how do we know what "a thing" is and never answered except to go about how every "thing" is the center of the universe, um, no.

 

I ordered The Hero with a Thousand Faces from the library. The Power of Myth is just    . . . .  bullshit.

 

Now I'm going to find something fun to read.

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