Friday, August 29, 2014

Friends of Mine: Thirty Years in the Life of a Duran Duran FanFriends of Mine: Thirty Years in the Life of a Duran Duran Fan by Elisa Lorello

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book was offered for review on Book Blogger

  The books description intrigued me; a grown up, a professor, a novelist discusses her love for a Pop Band.  I have been a fan of certain bands. and have always been a viewer and never a performer.  My brother Andy listened to Duran Duran and his musical world exploded.   He has gone on to be a musician featured on the cover of a notable San Francisco paper.   I desired to be a crafted musician, but no matter the amount of practice; I was unable to get my heart into it.   I found that my role was to celebrate the music of the band.

     Elissa Lorello's book is like a keen chaperon of the 20th century Pop Music Museum. The book provided balance between context (private and historical),  and the music of Duran Duran.
  I had a couple questions I wanted answered before beginning this book. What is the purpose of music? How does music mark the depths of history? How do bands create clarity in our lives? How does popular music create clarity in a world turned chaotic? What is "fan club glee", or why be a fan of a bunch of dreamy musicians?  Other writers would have been more heavy handed in one of these areas.  The heavy handedness would leave us scratching our heads and asking, "so what?"  However, Lorello does a balance review of her life and its intersections with Duran Duran. Friends of Mine: Thirty Years in the Life of a Duran Duran Fan,  is a well crafted answer to the role of music in an unstable world. 

View all my reviews

Monday, August 25, 2014

Book Review: Robert Kroese "Starship Grifters"

   I found myself bored one uneventful summer morning.  I opened the front door to check the mail box, but I was stopped cold when I found a plain brown envelop.   I ripped open the envelop and found "Star Ship Grifters".  I slipped into reading mode and read the first paragraph, and I  knew that this book would make my day more interesting.
Starship Grifters is a three snort hilarious planetary road trip, through a George Lucas parallel universe, with a little glimmer of Ian Flemming (James Bond). 
     My joy in reading this story was not the polish of heroic soldiers (Luke Skywalker, Han Solo, Princess Lea); but of reading of a bumbling, clueless hero named Rex.  Rex is an idiot savant.  He, like Voltaire's Candide, walks into trouble without realizing the peril.
    The trouble begins when Rex attempts to solve his personal debt crisis by taking part in a game of chance.  The game of chance is won, but the victory is just the beginning of Rex's troubles.  The quest leads Rex in a battle to restore balance to his life and maybe become a little less debt ridden.   Rex's goals are small but this does not mean they are easily come by.        
    The story is narrated by Rex's  personal robot assistant who must keep from thinking or suffer hard reboot.   The dilemmas in this story make it comedic.  The book is average for a star-ship comedy, but this does not mean that it is not worth the read.  I think this book would have made Groucho Marx smirk; you can bet your life.  

Friday, August 22, 2014

The Metaxy ProjectThe Metaxy Project by Layton Green

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was lucky enough to receive this book from the author; this was the first time I have read Layton Green.  I will read more Layton Green and look forward to his Dominic Grey and Viktor Redek series.  

The Metaxy Project is a great book that makes the paranormal and agnostic faith tangible to the reader.   

Layton Green takes time to flesh out the characters in the first quarter of the book.  The details at time became tedious and I thought, "Man, I should not have chosen this book, and the author wants me to review it."  Layton Green's use of cliche stilted the voice of his characters; the dialogue at times was melodramatic and made me cringe.  However the author's use of dialogue improved as the action took flight.

Green does a great job at setting up these believable characters in unbelievable circumstances.   I could feel the stress that Gemma felt in providing for her sick child, and became enraptured with her character. 

The setting of Atlanta is described expertly and one can envision the complexity of the monstrous city.  The author knows Atlanta and can show the reader its various facets.

I had a hard time, in fact, putting the book down during the chilling climax.   I will read more Layton Green.

View all my reviews

Search This Blog