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gvantassle

Currently reading

On Combat: The Psychology and Physiology of Deadly Conflict in War and Peace
Dave Grossman, Christensen, Loren W., de Becker, Gavin
Pastoral Care: An Essential Guide (Essential Guide (Abingdon Press))
John Patton
Star Book for Pastoral Counseling (Star Books) (Star Books for Ministers)
Jason Richard Curry
Modern Buddhism: The Path of Compassion and Wisdom
Kelsang Gyatso
In the Wake of 9-11: The Psychology of Terror
Thomas A. Pyszczynski
Being Buddha at Work: 108 Ancient Truths on Change, Stress, Money, and Success
Franz Metcalf, B.J. Gallagher
The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Stieg Larsson
Changeless
Gail Carriger
The Dhammapada
Eknat Easwaran
The Heart Sutra

A review of "The Wrath of Fate"

The Wrath of Fate - Robert Brown

If you're a fan of Abney Park's music, this novel takes the tale told there and fleshes it out rather nicely. I really enjoyed it, particularly how the author tied lyrics of his songs directly into the story he's telling here.

"The Wrath of Fate" reads much like a biographical account of Robert's experiences as he starts off in the modern age, encounters a time-traveling airship, and sets out to right the wrongs of history. Unfortunatly for Robert and his crew, things don't go as smoothly as they'd like.

I'd give this 4 stars for the story telling and adventuresome spirit.

However... There are more than a few technical issues with the text. It is clear that a professional editor should have been used before it hit print. There are a number of mis-spellings that give the novel a certain lack of polish. Because of these faults, I feel that I have to drop my rating by half a point

The Prediction

The Prediction - Darren Sugrue Were there issues with the novel? Sure, but nothing that prevented me from enjoying the book. Where there uncomfortable parts? Definitely. Yes, there are traumatic triggers, but I'll leave that to other reviewers to recount.

I will say this: I thoroughly enjoyed The Prediction. It is a very human tale of love, loss, betrayal, and redemption. It tugs on the heart-strings, and is, at the root of it, a tale of human struggle.

I admit that I didn't read the blurb very closely, so while I knew to expect a thriller, I didn't know what form it would take. I knew that it would take place in Amsterdam and Dublin, but how did the academics fall into the typical "thriller" role, particularly a couple of maths geeks? I was intrigued by the possibilities, and I went into the novel with an open mind and expecting a good read.

I was not disappointed in the least. While I, as a jingoistic American, had a bit of trouble with some of the European references and terms, I thought that they added a nice flavor to the story, and allowed me to take a seat in a very different setting than my everyday.

What I *didn't* expect, though, was the big reveal. I'll admit that it was a fairly obvious "pistol on the mantel", but that didn't detract from the whipsaw of the reveal. I was taken in by the obvious answer that turned out to be a red herring, as it were.

I really enjoyed The Prediction. I look forward to Darren's next project.

The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence

The Gift of Fear: Survival Signals That Protect Us from Violence - Gavin de Becker A worthwhile book, although not entirely new subject matter in my opinion. The author uses examples from his line of work to hammer home the fact that bad people are out there, and they will do bad things, but it's not a requirement that you become a victim of their evil.

In my opinion, this is something that just about everyone should read. While some of the things in the book were (to me) obvious, such as "listen to your gut, it's usually right when it comes to survival" the reiteration was valuable. I just wish that I could convince my 20-year old daughter to read it.

Soul Identity

Soul Identity - Dennis Batchelder I thoroughly enjoyed Soul Identity. It started as a security audit job and ended up with some international espionage. The story telling was well paced and the characters were mostly believable.

The company that forms the backdrop of the story is interesting in concept. Soul Identity (the company name) acts as a depository and investment management for "soul lines" (that is, essentially, reincarnations) that have been identified throughout the ages. This lineage is, indirectly, part of the problem, as we learn well into the book.

I will be buying the second book in the series, and might just read this one again!

In the Wake of 9-11: The Psychology of Terror

In the Wake of 9-11: The Psychology of Terror - Thomas A. Pyszczynski Just got this in the post for my next set of classes. This is for "Psychology of Disaster" and should make for some enlightening reading. I'll be interested to see how this relates back to what I learned in my AA Psychology program.

Disaster Communications in a Changing Media World

Disaster Communications in a Changing Media World - George D. Haddow, George Haddow For me, this book was really kind of rudimentary, but it is an excellent introduction to social media (think Goodreads, Twitter, Facebook, blogs, etc) and how they can shape and be shaped by emergency and disaster situations.

This text provides some good examples of successful communication strategies, as well as suggestions on how to improve existing communication plans. This should be "must read" for anyone in emergency or disaster management (EDM), no matter what their level of responsibility. Especially, this should be high on the list for anyone in EDM leadership, as well as local government leadership. The suggestions provided are well presented and thought out.

The Joy of Pickling: 250 Flavor-Packed Recipes for Vegetables and More from Garden or Market (Revised Edition)

The Joy of Pickling: 250 Flavor-Packed Recipes for Vegetables and More from Garden or Market (Revised Edition) - Linda Ziedrich Very large selection of pickle varieties, and better yet, most of them are small batches!

Some of the pickles in the book are ready in as little as a few hours ("Quick pickles") and some take several weeks to get to be ready to eat. I'm new into the home preserving game, so this book is a God-send. The directions are simple, the ingredients are readily available, and it sounds like most of the results will be something that my family will devour.

Little Brother

Little Brother - Cory Doctorow I bought this after reading the text for free. It's probably the best summation of where the USA is headed that I have seen to date, in the form of a cautionary tale.