Thursday, November 25, 2010

Ranting about nothing

Today is Thanksgiving, and normally I would save today for words of gratitude for family and friends. However I must aqueous to more urgent matters. Last evening I went into the Jackson Michigan WalMart (first mistake) and with my good friend, we bought a simple. Frozen. Rock hard turkey.

Now that was not the problem. The problem was, it would not scan. As this was the case, the entire world stopped. Stage one was the cashiers look of puzzle, as she scanned it not once, but fourteen times, then six with her wand. Then came a call for a manager, who could not get it to scan. So Lee my BFF asked, "Why not just punch the price in?" This was met with a perplexed look by the manager, and a look of horror by the cashier.

"We cant do that here." The manager said. So we stood there for 13 minutes (yes thirteen) while they... guess..

Tried to get it to scan.

This resulted in us telling them we would just go back and get another one. Which we did, waited another 20 minutes in line, only to get up there.... It would not scan. We walked out to dirty looks by the cashier as to why we would not wait to let them solve the problem.

One more reason I rarely go into that place, and one MORE reason I will avoid it even more now.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Whitesmoke Part Deuxe

Well awhile back I did a review on Whitesmoke. The infamous editing software that touts is a solution to the writers editing ills. Well a new version is out that I was graciously told about via the constant SPAM I get from the creators, and so I fiured what the hell, I will flush 49.99 down the toilet and see if there is an improvement.

Well, before doing so I made it a point to email them that I had a 64 bit operating system, as the old version cannot handle 64 bit. The older version is for 32 only. The email I received was very helpful as it explained to me "possible" delight that, indeed one of the improvements was in fact it supported 64 bit systems. YAY!

Well no.

I downloaded it, installed it and it has a new and fresh interface that I have to admit is more user friendly, however that is where it stops. The software flagged their and there in the worng way, and in syntax where I had slang it changed the words to things that I had NO idea what the hell it meant. Also worst of all were the same infamous issues with taking an entire paragraph and combining every letter into one.

I am being very gracious by giving it.

1 Star

Oinga Boingas Oh My

I wanted to say off the bat on this book that at first glance the book is cute, colors are bright and the artwork on the cover is top notch. Opening it up and scanning it it is laid out in typical fashion, image to one side, text on the other.

The story line is cute, and without ticking any of the creatures in my house off, is fun and teaches a lesson which is a bonus in my book. It seems Oinga Boingas are little balls of fir that make messes. Move over Gremlins there is a new sherriff in town. The imagery is clear, very colorful and the artist is very talented.

The associated storyline is fun, linear in its flow and is pleasing to the little ones. I read it to my famous test audience my neices and nephews and they seemed to like it. I gave it to a friend who works at an undisclosed daycare center and she stole the damn thing from me. They want it for their kiddies.
The author indicates in the book she is writing other works, Please do so, however dont mess with the style of the images, as they are timeless in their presentation. I give this new and hopefully up and coming author a very well deserved.

5 Stars

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Eddings - Belgariad

I normally do not review multi book series, nor do I normally have the time to read series stories. This is due to several reason's such as time, and well... time.

However at the prompting of someone dear to me, I read a book and originally I was going to do a review of it on its own merit. However one turned into two, and well two turned into the entire damn series.

David Eddings is someone I have read "about" however never had read. I have heard allot of good and bad about his stories, and frankly the bad made me really not want to delve into the covers. Saying that here is my review. (Sorry for the intro)

The Belgariad is a five book series, and book one Pawn of Prophecy is a very good book. They get better as they go. The story is about a boy, who is not as he seems, the characters around him are not as they seem, and he is pulled along into a huge and vast adventure. I mean this story is so interwoven, and interlocking with characters, intrigue, and story... The writing is at times simplistic, however it is done sometimes to make the story simple to read, and the author has a great way to make the complex seem understandable at a basic level.

Character development is somewhat a cliche in allot of ways, however he does place cool twists on things at times that makes the story interesting. The writing is clean, however this actually could be because I read a umpteenth printing of the book, so I imagine (or hope) the editing has been spot cleaned.

Overall the books stop and carry on in correct and logical places form book to book, and the ending although predictable in some ways, is fun as it leaves the knowledge that there is something else in the works byt he author. Indeed there is as there is another five book series called the Mallorean that the author continues the story line on with, I am in the middle of the first book of that and like it alot.

The author is deceased passing away a few years ago, and he has reason to smile from above, as he left a legacy to be proud of. Thus we give the Belgariad a well deserved...

5 Stars

Monday, November 1, 2010

Life is short - Buy a book.

I went to L.A about a month ago, and I was amazed at something I heard in the airport as I waited for my plane. (Northwest Airlines is horrid)... At any rate, I was sitting there and someone left a book on the seat, this little girl of maybe 9 walked up, picked it up and opened it up. By the cover I saw it was one of those kids chapter reader books. Nothing bad or inappropriate.

The girls sits there for an hour, quietly reading it, Mom then shows up. Please do not ask me where mom was... I have no clue. She asks the girl where she got the book, little girl tells her it was right there, so she wanted to read, it and loved it. As a matter of fact she tells Mom. "Mom, I like this, I want some more books, can you get me some?"

Mom replies. "No, books are stupid, put it down."
I was floored, the girl argued with her Mom, and finally mom's ultimatum was, "Put that dumb book away or I am going to take your makeup away!"

Gee sounds like a deal to me.

Little Love Bug

Little Love Bug by Allison Halsted. This is a childrens book designed I feel for the pre kindergaten crowd, and is nicley illustated by artist Sharon Merchant. The story line by this new author is cute, and tells the story of a little boy who is called love Bug by his mother, so he goes into the yard and has an adventure.

Basically, he learns through interations with bugs and anumals that he is really his mommies love bug. Now this is a very simple story, however it is so well done by the author, this is one of those books that is classic in its story, and is something I could see on a parents shelf, to one day be handed down to their child.

There is even a cool thing in the back of the book that is so the parent can dedicate the book to their child. I hope to see more books by this wonderful new author, and thus give this wonderful book a solid...

4 Stars


Eleganta by Denny Swartzlander is an interesting read overall. Taking place in medieval England, his writing style reminds of us of Eddings in that it is simplistic, yet engaging. The story is basically about a fairy is born and this event is unique, as it is a rare thing indeed. So naturally it garners lots of attention and this attention is not always positive.

So the fairy becomes the desire of a old evil troll, and this evil troll goes after the baby fairy. Now simplistic as the story is, the story is somehow engaging and interesting. The storyline pulled me into the book, and I actually read thie book in two sittings, however between my first sitting and the last one, I was anxious to get back to it.

This book is interesting, fun, and I think would be a great gift for Christmas. So for this book we give Eleganta a solid.

4 Stars

A new round of books

We have finally gotten through yet another round of books for review, and wanted to post these this morning. We are reviewing today four books that we have been through, and four more later today or tomorrow.