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Profil für M. Broderick > Rezensionen

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Beiträge von M. Broderick
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Rezensionen verfasst von
M. Broderick "mikebinok" (Oklahoma City, OK USA)
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Lt. Leary, Commanding
Lt. Leary, Commanding
von David Drake
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 22,56

4.0 von 5 Sternen Good space opera, but a step down from the first book, 17. Juli 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Lt. Leary, Commanding (Gebundene Ausgabe)
This is a sequel to WITH THE LIGHTNINGS, which I really liked. I didn't like it as well as the first book, and it comes close to being a three-star novel rather than four. The book delivers the expected thud and blunder, though I got a little confused about what was happening in the middle of the book. The only serious complaint I have about the book is one that sometimes pops up in David Drake's work: One of the characters is EXTREMELY morbid. To the point where it becomes annoying. Ms. Mundy is repeatedly described as having thoughts along the lines of "It made no difference to her whether the spaceship blew up and incinerated everyone aboard, or took off as planned. But she admired competence, and wasn't going to let failure be her fault." At one point, I found her perpetual morbidity to be so bad I considered not finishing the book. Fortunately, this seems to let up about halfway through the book, and I really enjoyed the last half. Worth reading, but read WITH THE LIGHTNINGS first.


Serpent: A Novel from the NUMA Files
Serpent: A Novel from the NUMA Files
von Clive Cussler
  Taschenbuch

3.0 von 5 Sternen Acceptable potboiler for light reading, 17. Juni 2000
Unlike many of the reviewers here, I haven't read anything else by Clive Cussler. I gather that this book is co-authored, so don't know if this novel is typical of Cussler's solo work or not. In any event, I found the book fast-paced and entertaining. It did hold my interest. It is NOT particularly well-written, there are times when a paragraph reads like a list of brand names of scuba or paramilitary equipment, and other times when there is too much clumsy and lengthy descriptive prose.
All the major heroes are charismatic, super-competent, calm, and saintly. I almost started laughing out loud when I read the lengthy list of academic degrees, accomplishments and skills one hero had built up by the age of 30, any one of which most of us would be happy to achieve in a working lifetime. The heroes do get hurt and do make mistakes, but never seem to suffer more than inconvenience because of it. I kept expecting someone to cry out: "Zounds! It was only a flesh wound!"
As an archeology buff, I will refrain from posting my opinion of the archeology in the book, since Amazon would delete most of the words. I'll just say that if America had been visited by pre-Columbian Old Worlders as frequently as suggested in the book, the major hazard they'd have faced would have been colliding with each other at sea like the Andrea Doria and Stockholm do in this book!
Lest this all sound hypercritical, I will say that the book did keep me reading and interested. If I run across others of Cussler's NUMA books, I might even pick them up to read on plane flights and the like....


Blind Man's Bluff: The Untold Story Of American Submarine Espionage
Blind Man's Bluff: The Untold Story Of American Submarine Espionage
von Sherry Sontag
  Gebundene Ausgabe

5.0 von 5 Sternen Well-written, enthralling, and sobering, 7. Juni 2000
I highly recommend the book--It is a (roughly) chronological history of submarine espionage, at least on the American side. It starts with the first troubled mission shortly after World War II and runs past the end of the Cold War.
The stories are gripping, and would often be worth reading as fiction. It is amazing that they are fact. Some of the tales told are questionably related to the topic, such as the hunt for the US submarine Scorpion after it was lost, but even those are so interesting I will forgive the author for putting them in.
If the topic interests you at all, I predict you will enjoy the book.


The First Fossil Hunters: Paleontology in Greek and Roman Times
The First Fossil Hunters: Paleontology in Greek and Roman Times
von Adrienne Mayor
  Gebundene Ausgabe

4.0 von 5 Sternen Interesting and novel, 7. Juni 2000
Upfront I must confess that though I am very knowledgeable about history and science, I am neither a paleontologist nor an expert on Classical History. But I was intrigued by this book, and I found it fascinating.
The author begins the book with a slam-banger of an idea--The first chapter discusses the idea that the Greek legend of Griffons originated from Greek fossil observations in Asia. The author has very convincing evidence for this, based on how Griffons were described and handled differently by ancient writers, specific details of ancient writing, and fossil evidence still in place in modern times. I found it fascinating.
The later chapters are still interesting, though don't have the novel impact of the first chapter. The ancient attitude towards fossils is discussed, including quarrels between city-states over possession of fossils which were thought to be the remains of heroes and demigods.
I found the book interesting and convincing, but I cannot help wondering if maybe there is evidence being ignored when it would discredit the author's hypothesis. I lack enough expertise in either field to be sure. I fell for Von Daniken's Chariots of the Gods as a teen-ager, and the experience keeps me suspicious of revolutionary ideas in archeology and ancient history, even to this day!


Fortune's Stroke (Belisarius)
Fortune's Stroke (Belisarius)
von Eric Flint
  Gebundene Ausgabe

4.0 von 5 Sternen Interesting, but almost goes down to 3 stars, 7. Juni 2000
As you probably know if you've read this far, this is part of a rather long series. I enjoyed the book, in fact I finally stopped reading it at 2 am one morning so I could get to bed and get up at 7! I finished the last 1/4 of the book the next night. It may be the break in reading that cut the drama for me--I was just not as impressed with this book as with others in the series, and definitely not as impressed as I was with David Drake's other work. I suspect Drake did much of the overall plotting while Flint did most of the grunt work of writing (I have no evidence for this, just a suspicion).
The book is a good, enjoyable adventure yarn. As another reviewer has pointed out, it is predictable, but at least things do go wrong for the heroes from time to time. In fact, various characters in the book repeatedly harp on how things go wrong in combat.
There are repeated references in the book to historical parallels with real-world battles. Without dwelling on it, I will say there is a plot reason for doing this. But I suspect that readers who are not history maniacs (I am a history maniac) will find them puzzling or distracting. I didn't find the author's writing style as annoying as some of the other reviewers, but I did have trouble at first keeping track of the characters and events of recent novels in the series. I have completely forgotten some of the events of previous books, and this book didn't gently remind me of them as I might wish for. I hope the authors don't let the characters numbers "grow" anymore in future installments.
Good book, but not a great book. I'm toying with waiting for the paperback next time.


How to Organize Your Work and Your Life
How to Organize Your Work and Your Life
von Robert Moskowitz
  Taschenbuch

5.0 von 5 Sternen Very Valuable, 9. April 2000
This book has the expected material on organizing yourself, your home, and your office, that you'd find in any number of books. But it also has an extremely valuable and specific chapter on how to set goals for yourself. It does not define WHAT goals you should set, but describes a useful process for setting up goals and breaking them into steps to help you make a plan for reaching them. The goals chapter alone is worth the price of the book


How to Lie with Statistics
How to Lie with Statistics
von Darrell Huff
  Taschenbuch
Preis: EUR 9,40

5.0 von 5 Sternen Invaluable. Literally everyone would benefit from reading it, 29. März 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: How to Lie with Statistics (Taschenbuch)
The book is about how statistics can be used to lie and mislead. Despite the cynical title, it is really about how to see through claims supported by bogus statistics. It is concise, amusing, and vastly educational. I cannot say enough good things about this book! The book was written many years ago, and as a result, some of the examples are dated, but these do not detract from the value of the book. I personally find them rather quaint. I recommend this book highly. It is one of the most useful books I can recommend to anyone who would like to better understand how advertisers, politicians, business, and advocates use and abuse numbers.


How to Lie with Charts
How to Lie with Charts
von Gerald Everett Jones
  Taschenbuch

4.0 von 5 Sternen Interesting, but not the best, 26. März 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: How to Lie with Charts (Taschenbuch)
A better title would be HOW TO AVOID BEING FOOLED BY CHARTS AND HOW TO PREPARE CLEAR INFORMATIVE ONES. This sounds pretty dull, but it isn't. The book is readable and interesting. The subject is also an important one, at least if you depend on information from charts. It is especially valuable if you regularly prepare charts for others. The title is sort of stolen from an even better book called HOW TO LIE WITH STATISTICS. That is an even more valuable book which teaches some of the same lessons as this one.


Travels
Travels
von Michael Crichton
  Taschenbuch

4.0 von 5 Sternen Unexpected and worth reading, 26. März 2000
Rezension bezieht sich auf: Travels (Taschenbuch)
The book is a series of episodes from Crichton's life. The various short episodes include, experiences as an medical student, visiting psychics in England, travelling in remote villages in Asia, climbing Mount Kilminajaro, working with Sean Connery on THE GREAT TRAIN ROBBERY, and new age explorations. But the episodes all tie together to make a point. The most surprising thing in the book is that Crichton makes a very strong case for "psychic phenomena". From his work and education, I'd always assumed he would be a hard-science materialist, but he is not. He makes an interesting case for his viewpoint, and I'm sure he's sincere (he has little to gain from making such claims). But I can't say he convinced me. Even so, I've reread the book once, and will probably do so again. Very interesting and well-written.


Environmental Radioactivity from Natural, Industrial & Military Sources: From Natural, Industrial and Military Sources
Environmental Radioactivity from Natural, Industrial & Military Sources: From Natural, Industrial and Military Sources
von Thomas Gesell
  Gebundene Ausgabe
Preis: EUR 123,05

5.0 von 5 Sternen The classic work on this subject, 25. März 2000
This is the 4th edition of this book, which suggests that it is worthwhile. And that is the case. It is lengthy, thorough, but surprisingly readable. Chapters talk about various subtopics in modest detail. Often, I could wish for more specifics, but for a book of this scope of subject, that would not be practical. Illustrations and graphics are informative and useful. The book is timeless, though new research of course makes the new editions necessary--We still have a copy of the first edition (from 1963) where I work, but a copy of the latest edition is essential if you work or study in the radiation field.


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