Saturday, June 29, 2013

Who Was Dracula?:

Who Was Dracula? Bram Stoker's Trail of Blood
Non-Fiction: History, Classics, Biography 298 pages
Book Count: 17

As you can see from the title this book is on Dracula the book / vampire and not on Vlad Tepes a.k.a. the Impailer.  This book looks at who Dracula was by looking at the life of Bram Stoker and devoting a chapter to each person in his life who might have influenced his classic story.  It also managed to do a good job of interweaving the life story of Stoker as well as his famous book throughout, so although each chapter is mainly about one person in his life it also tells his story in a largely chronological order.

Friday, June 28, 2013

June E-Books:

Edible History: Easy Ancient Celtic, Gallic and Roman Techniques for Leavening Bread Without Modern Commerical Yeast By: Cassandra Cookson
Non-Fiction: Cooking, E-book

The title of this book is almost longer then the book itself.  It has one Celtic, one Gallic and one Roman method for gathering wild yeast to make bread with. Each method is rather easy and it has a good amount of historic information in it as well, but I am glad I picked it up for free as the methods used can be found quickly on-line or in more comprehensive books on the subject.

Miracle at the Museum of Broken Hearts By: Talli Roland
Fiction: Chick Lit, E-book

What happens when a hopeless romantic gets a job setting up a museum dedicated to broken relationships? And her boss has a broken relationship with his mother? And her boyfriend is a jerk? Craziness, that's what.

Armed Gunmen, True Facts, and Other Ridiculous Nonsense: A Compiled Compendium of Repetitive Redundancies By: Richard A. Kallan
Non-Fiction: Writing, Humor, E-book

This book is about tautologies, which are a form of redundant phrases. It has a phrase followed by humorous definition and then similar phrases.  As well as some areas of prose filled with tautologies.  Most of the book is slightly funny by it's noting of redundant phrases that we use in day to day life without thinking about how redundant they are.  However there are a few phrases that aren't necessary redundant.  For example it lists good Samaritan as one, however a Samaritan is simply someone that was from Samaria and even in the Biblical story where we get the phrase from it in no way implies that Samaritans are noted as especially good, in fact it was a surprise that the Samaritan was the good guy in the story.  It also lists Easter Sunday, because Easter the day is on Sunday, but Easter the season is much longer in a number of churches and so they do have Easter Monday etc.

There's no taste like home: Beer-making for the complete novice By: Jan Colombini
Non-fiction: Cooking, E-book

First this book appears to be written in the UK. Which if this book is a true example of the home brewing movement in the UK, it's about 40 years behind America in home brewing.  The simple beer making in this book is buy a can of pre-hopped malt, add water and table sugar, heat, cool and add the packet of yeast from the top of the can. So it is not a good book if you want to learn how to make beer.  It is very useful on information on the history of beer, starting with the 1st beers up to modern times.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

The Bad Catholic's Guide to the Catechism:

The Bad Catholic's Guide to the Catechism: A Faithful, Fun-Loving Look at Catholic Dogmas, Doctrines, and Schmoctrines By: John Zmirak
Fiction: Religion, Humor 272 pages
Book Count: 16

This book is part of the Bad Catholic's series which we have already reviewed the one on holidays and the one on booze.  This one is a little less humor and more on the actually beliefs. (There is a sidebar of "questions from your stoner neighbor" and the humor within the main writing its self, but as it is dealing with such heady and complex subjects there is less joking around.) As such I did not enjoy it as much as the others, as the thing that I like about the whole series is the way it is a funny book that also sneaks in some interesting things that you might not know about the faith.  But it was a good intro to how a catechism works and some of the things in it, which is a book that can be daunting to anyone that isn't an expert on religion, so it is a very good book for that.

Monday, June 03, 2013

Rembrandt's Ghost:

Rembrandt's Ghost By: Paul Christopher
Fiction: 347 pages
Book Count: 15

I got this book expecting it to be a Dan Brown type novel, but about art.  From it's first sentence-paragraph it did not disappoint on following that formula. There were insane amount of coincidences, the main characters almost died over and over again only to be fine a couple of paragraphs later, there was tons of danger, "facts" all over the place and as a plus everyone had at least 5 names and maybe a couple of titles. 

Saturday, June 01, 2013

May E-Books:

Note: All titles are written the way that they appear in the e-books.

Nikola Tesla: Imagination and the Man That Invented the 20th Century By: Sean Patrick
Non-Fiction: History, Biography

Although this book is in part about Tesla, it is mostly about how the creative mind works and things that you can do to increases your creativity.  It does this by going over the main points of Tesla's life. But if you were looking for an in dept biography of Tesla or wanted more details on how much of a jerk Edison was this is not the book you want.

How Much Do You Weigh?: The Stigma Defying Photobook By: Erin Nieto

This book is a series of photos of women of all sizes and ages along with how much they weigh. It was made to work on ending the taboo on talking about weigh. It also includes quotes from the women about why they wanted to do this and what they hoped it would do.

Beginners' Guide To Coffee At Home: Coffee basics for coffee enthusiasts. By: A. Edward Gur
Non-Fiction: Cooking

The title tells you all you need to know about this short book.  It's on making coffee at home.

So Easy Herbal: Ten Herbs How To Grow Them Use Them And Save Money By: Karon H. Grieve
Non-Fiction: Cooking, Home Ec.

This short book is about ten herbs that are easy to grow at home and have a number of uses.  If you know nothing about herbs and gardening this book doesn't have quite enough information in it.  If you are experienced on herbs and growing plants this book is too simple. It would work as a quick refresher for more beginner level herb users.

Seven Exes Are Eight Too Many By: Heather Wardell
Fiction: Humor, Romance, Chick Lit.

A woman desperate to find love signs up for a dating TV show.  She gets picked for the show and after signing a contract that requires her to pay thousands if she backs out she finds out that the show is more like "Survivor" mixed with the dating and all her teammates are exes of hers, and the other team is another ex and all his exes.  Also everyone else there was also tricked into being on the show and can't leave without paying either. So she is stuck on a island with a suitcase full of sexy dresses and 7 men she never wanted to see again who don't want to be there either.