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Stephen Pletko "Uncle Stevie" (London, Ontario, Canada)
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Outbreak (Sous-titres franais) (Bilingual)
Outbreak (Sous-titres franais) (Bilingual)
DVD ~ Diana Bellamy
Price: CDN$ 9.93
2 used & new from CDN$ 6.67

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "The single biggest threat to man's continued dominance on the planet is the virus", Jan. 26 2013
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"While fiction, [this story] is based on scientific possibility. In fact, the most frightening aspect of [this] story is the real possibility of such a contagion developing in the world at any given moment."

The above is from an extra on the DVD that accompanies this incredibly entertaining movie.

This disaster film focuses on the outbreak of a fictional, deadly virus (called "Motaba") that originates in the jungles of what was then called Zaire, Africa. This virus makes its way via a host to the United States.

Then we are shown how far U.S. military agencies might go to contain the spread of a deadly contagion.

So as not to get confused, its essential that you understand words such as host, strain, antiserum, antibodies, and mutation. Also, this is a movie not to be watched casually. You must watch it carefully in order to understand and follow the action.

This movie contains some big names: Dustin Hoffman, Rene Russo, Morgan Freeman, Donald Sutherland, Kevin Spacey, Cuba Gooding, Jr., and Patrick Dempsey. All actors do good jobs in their roles but I felt that Hoffman did an especially good job as a maverick army virologist.

What's really eerie is that a few months after this film was released, a real-life outbreak of the deadly Ebola virus occurred in Zaire!

Finally, the actual DVD (released in 2009) has only one interesting extra: production notes. (This is where the above quotation that begins this review comes from. The quotation that titles this review was uttered by a Nobel Prize winner.)

In conclusion, this movie is about "a fresh, brand new virus." And what's scary--it could happen!!

(1995; 2 hr excluding end credits; wide screen/full screen; 40 scenes)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Hell's Angels
Hell's Angels
DVD ~ Ben Lyon
Price: CDN$ 14.99
20 used & new from CDN$ 10.63

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "War doesn't change people...it brings out what people really are", Jan. 19 2013
This review is from: Hell's Angels (DVD)
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I wanted to view this movie because of all of the hype that surrounds it. Here is some of it:

(1) It was directed by eccentric billionaire and aeronautics mogul Howard Hughes (1905 to 1976). (More correctly, Howard Hughes, Jr. was one of the directors of this movie, the other two were unaccredited. Also, Hughes produced this movie.)

(2) Its title. "Hell's Angels" is the name of today's infamous biker gang.

(3) Some of the pilots used while actually filming this movie accidentally lost their lives.

(4) This movie suffered from an inflated budget. It was the most expensive film ever made for its time.

(5) A lawsuit was filed by Hughes against a competitor film released the same year.

(6) This movie is regarded as one of the first sound blockbuster action movies. (It was originally shot as a silent movie but Hughes retooled it over a long period of time to have sound and talking.)

(7) Finally, this movie is regarded as introducing legendary actress Jean Harlow (1911 to 1937) to the screen in her first major film role.

To tell you the truth, I thought this film would be a mediocre attempt by a bored billionaire to try to make a decent movie. So, did this movie live up to its hype? Surprisingly, YES (at least for me).

Set before and during the beginning of World War One (which began in July of 1914), this is the story of three Oxford University friends: two British brothers, womanizer Monte & straight-lace Roy Rutledge (Ben Lyon, 1901 to 1979 & James Hall, 1900 to 1940) and one German, Karl (John Darrow).

When all three are drafted to fight as combat pilots on opposing sides of the war, each has to choose between obedience to his country and his conscience. Throughout the movie, Roy (Hall) thinks that floozy Helen (Harlow) loves him.

Two scenes standout in this movie. First, there is the zeppelin (a rigid airship, also called a dirigible or blimp) scene (filmed in colour). And then there is the dogfight scene between R.F.C. (Royal Flying Corps) biplanes (an airplane with two sets of wings, one above the other) and German fighter biplanes. This dogfight scene was so well done that aviation enthusiasts regularly reference the quality and authenticity of World War One aviation in this film. I must say, I have to enthusiastically agree with them.

There is also a pistol duel (that's right, a duel!) in this movie that's filmed in colour.

The majority of this movie is filmed in black & white but Hughes made use of colour (as mentioned above) in certain scenes. I found this technique to be quite interesting. See if you can figure out why certain scenes were filmed in colour.

Despite what the critics say, I thought that the acting was good. There is one exception though: Jean Harlow. Perhaps I'm being unfair here because she was only age eighteen at the time and this was here first major film role.

Harlow does have a prophetic line in this movie: "Life's short, and I wanna live while I'm alive." She passed away at age 26.

This movie is a lavish period adventure. It has many underlying themes such as:

(1) friendship and loyalty (2) duty to one's country (3) brotherly love (4) the horrors of war (5) the importance of camaraderie

I found that surprisingly that the special effects were quite good (with no CGI).

This film was restored by the UCLA film and television archive. I must say that they did a terrific job.

The only problem some people may have with this film is that it is not filmed as one continuous movie (which is taken for granted today) but instead is filmed as a series of sequences. Some viewers may be distracted by this.

Finally, this DVD (the one released in 2004) has no extras. Be aware that this movie when released had a 10 minutes intermission but the intermission lasts for about 3 minutes on this particular DVD.

In conclusion, this movie is a terrific period piece that, in my opinion, was quite well-done. You may feel like a billion dollars after seeing it!!

(1930; 2 hr, 8 min; 18 scenes; full screen)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Waking the Giant: How a changing climate triggers earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes
Waking the Giant: How a changing climate triggers earthquakes, tsunamis, and volcanoes
by Bill McGuire
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 27.96
29 used & new from CDN$ 4.45

5.0 out of 5 stars Reawakening the slumbering giant beneath our feet, Jan. 12 2013
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"This [book] is NOT intended as a speculative rant based upon...hearsay, unfounded data, and unverifiable observation, but a straightforward presentation of what we know about how [the Earth's] climate and the geosphere [or the solid Earth] interact, combined with informed discussion about what implications such knowledge may hold for the [Earth's] future.

Inevitably, some conjecture is involved, but firmly grounded...in sound, peer-reviewed science."

The above extract comes from the preface of this fantastically informative book by Bill McGuire. He is Professor of Geophysical and Climate Hazards at University College, London. McGuire is also a science author and broadcaster.

The author tells us that the theme of his book is the "potentially hazardous response of the Earth's crust [to anthropogenic or human-caused warming] or "how abrupt and rapid climate changes drive the responses of the solid Earth."

And what are these Earth responses? As the subtitle of this book states, these responses are earthquakes, tsunamis (or tidal waves), and volcanoes. There are also other responses detailed in this book.

Using evidence accumulated from studies of the Earth's history as well as evidence from current observations and modeling, McGuire argues that we ignore at our own risk the threats posed by climate change and the waking giant (that is, the Earth) beneath our feet.

Here is this book's final paragraph:

"Through our climate-changing activities we are loading the dice in favour of increased geological mayhem at a time when we can most do without it. Unless there is a dramatic and...unexpected turnaround in the way in which the human race manages itself and the planet, then future prospects for our civilization look increasingly grim. At a time when:

[1] an additional 220,000 people are lining up at the global soup kitchen each...night and
[2] when the debilitating effects of anthropogenic climate change are insinuating themselves increasingly into every nook and granny of our world and our lives [then:]

the last thing we need is for the giant beneath our feet to reawaken."

There are almost thirty black-and-white illustrations peppered throughout this book. One of my favourite illustrations in the form of a graph has the title "Average monthly Arctic sea ice extent May 1979-2011." The first sentence of this illustration's caption reads as follows:

"Recent drastic changes suggest that the days of the Arctic sea ice are numbered."

Finally, the photograph on this book's cover (displayed above by Amazon) shows Minamisanriku, Miyagi Prefecture, northeastern Japan, March 13, 2011, two days after a massive earthquake and tsunami hit the area.

In conclusion, this is a tremendously informative book that indicates that "we could be on track to bequeath our children, and their children, not only a hotter world, but also a more geologically dangerous one."

(first published 2012; preface; list of illustrations; 7 chapters; main narrative 270 pages; selected sources and further reading; index)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Lost Antarctica: Adventures in a Disappearing Land
Lost Antarctica: Adventures in a Disappearing Land
by James McClintock
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 24.00
42 used & new from CDN$ 5.16

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A recent, detailed description (by a dedicated scientist) of the icy land that surrounds the South Pole, Jan. 5 2013
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"Few of us will ever make it to Antarctica. The bitter cold and three months a year without sunlight make [this] continent virtually uninhabitable for humans. [The author of this book] has spent three decades [in the form of fourteen scientific field seasons or research trips] studying [this] frozen land in order to better understand the world that lies beneath it."

The above comes from the inside front flap of this extraordinary book by James McClintock. He is an Antarctic marine biologist and professor of Polar and Marine Biology at the University of Alabama (at Birmingham). McClintock is considered one of the world's experts on Antarctica and has a point of land ("McClintock Point") on this continent named after him in honour of his extensive research.

This book is an intimate tour of a rapidly changing continent with our tour guide being a dedicated scientist who knows this land best. McClintock gives us insight into the unique problems and dangers of working in Antarctica.

He delves into his area of expertise by telling us of the extraordinary marine wildlife that exists in and around this place. One chapter is devoted to King Crabs and another chapter is devoted to the Adelie Penguin.

Throughout this book, we're told the findings of good, basic research. Even some latest research is discussed.

Also, throughout his main narrative, McClintock briefly tells us how climate change or global warming is affecting Antarctica and its fragile ecosystem.

The final chapter (entitled "Antarctica as a global solution") is almost exclusively dedicated to climate change and how it is affecting this continent. This is not done from an alarmist point of view but from the author's own personal observations. McClintock tells us,

"Climate change is real. I have seen it with my eyes."

This final chapter is the best material I've ever read on climate change. (The chapter on "the other carbon dioxide problem" is also quite good.)

In the middle of this book are eight pages of black-and-white photographs. My favourite photo is of a large chunk of ice breaking off (technically called "calving") from an Antarctic glacier. The author tells us in the pictures caption that:

"When I first began coming to [this research] station twelve years ago, these calving events were infrequent. Now, the harbour next to the station regularly resounds with the thunderous roar of ice crashing into the sea."

Finally, my only problem with an otherwise excellent book is that it has no map or maps. Yes, I did look at Antarctica on my globe and this gives general place names but I would have liked to have known the exact locations of the places the author mentions throughout his book. (For example, I would have liked to have known the exact location of McClintock Point, mentioned above.)

In conclusion, this book is truly "an evocative look at an extraordinary place." As an added bonus, everything in this book is written by a dedicated scientist so you know everything that's said is 100 percent accurate!!

**** 1/2

(first published 2012; acknowledgements; 8 chapters; main narrative 215 pages; notes; index)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Hunting the Elements
Hunting the Elements
Price: CDN$ 24.11
15 used & new from CDN$ 15.87

5.0 out of 5 stars Discovering gold, copper, tin, sodium, chlorine, carbon, iron, hydrogen, silicon, oxygen, neodymium, uranium, seaborgium..., Dec 29 2012
This review is from: Hunting the Elements (DVD)
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"Why do bombs go boom? How much gold is in 400 tons of dirt? And how come rare earths [or rare earth elements], the metals that make our gadgets go, aren't that rare at all?

We live in a world of incredible material variety. Yet everything we know: the stars, the planets, and life itself--comes from about 90 basic building blocks. All right here on this remarkable chart: the periodic table of the elements.

It's a story that begins with the Big Bang and eventually leads to us. And we're made almost entirely of just a handful of ingredients including one that burns secret fire inside us all.

Join me as I explore the basic building blocks of the universe. From some of the most common like oxygen to the least [common]: man-made elements that last only fractions of a second. Strange metals with repellent powers. Poisonous gases in stuff we eat every day. And now we can even see what they're made of.

If you're like me, you care about the elements and how they go together. Because more than ever MATTER MATTERS."

The above is what the narrator says in the preview of this remarkable film about the elements.

The narrator and host of this program is David Pogue, a New York Times tech correspondent. Due to his humour and inquisitiveness, he effectively brings, what can be a dry subject, to life.

As I said, this documentary is about the elements. What is an element? It is any substance that cannot be broken down or separated into different substances by ordinary chemical means. An element is a pure substance. Examples of elements are given in the title of this review.

Examples of topics covered in this educational film include atomic structure, properties of the elements, the elements of life, radioactive dating, man-made elements and, of course, the periodic table of the elements.

One of my favourite segments in this movie is when we're shown a table that's a periodic table. (In other words, a periodic table table!!)

Finally, what I did when viewing this film was to have a standard periodic table of the elements to refer too. In this way, I felt I got maximum value from this educational documentary.

In conclusion, if you were unsure about the elements that make up our universe, I guarantee you will not be unsure about them after viewing this comprehensive film!!

(2012; 1 hr, 55 min; wide screen, 12 chapters, Nova--PBS)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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The Wisdom of Psychopaths
The Wisdom of Psychopaths
by Kevin Dutton
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 20.06
6 used & new from CDN$ 12.31

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Believe it or not! This author claims that some psychopathy can be good for you!!, Dec 22 2012
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"Psychopathy is like sunlight. Overexposure can hasten one's demise in grotesque, carcinogenic fashion. But regulated exposure at controlled and optimal levels can have significant positive impact on well-being and life."

The above extract is actually the thesis of this book by Kevin Dutton. He is a research psychologist at the University of Oxford and teaches social psychology at the University of Cambridge.

For a psychology book, I found it incredibly easy to read. It includes elegant metaphors, many extremely well-written personal stories, and many allusions to intriguing psychological and neuropsychological studies.

However, I found it intriguing and odd that in a book on psychopathy, no modern definition of it is provided. Psychopathy is a disorder of brain and behaviour, the central characteristic of which is the complete absence of conscience. All of its other pathological features (such as ruthlessness, habitual lying, callousness) stem from this absence of conscience.

Thus, I also found it interesting that Dutton does not discuss conscience. In the entire book, he mentions this word only four times and then, only in passing. I found this to be the major fallacy of his entire argument.

I found that the author attempted to alter the definitions of key words. For example, Dutton plays fast-and-loose with the definition of empathy. He blurs the distinction between cognitive empathy (knowing that someone is experiencing a feeling) and emotional empathy (the ability to experience the feeling oneself). Having created this fuzziness, he declares that psychopaths are emotionally empathetic. This goes contrary to the mountains of scientific data that state the contrary.

I also had problems with much of the science in this book. Some of it was just misleading.

Dutton has a main chapter near the end of this book that's entitled "The Seven Deadly Wins." Here he reminds us of the "seven core principles of psychopathy:" ruthlessness, charm, focus, mental toughness, fearlessness, mindfulness, and action. He claims that we could all benefit from a small, controlled "dose of psychopathy." In reality, a touch of psychopathy would mean a streak of brutality, oiliness, predatory single-mindedness, callousness, endless self-involvement, and clinical impulsivity.

Throughout the main narrative of his book, it seems to me, Dutton does not convey the seriousness of the condition of psychopathy. (He has to do this in order to make his argument.) Thus, I was surprised when I found the following tucked away in his acknowledgements section, located at the back of the book:

"Psychopaths, undeniably are fascinating. But the plain unvarnished truth is that there is nothing funny about them. They can be dangerous, destructive, and deadly--and any serious writer has a duty of care to handle them as judiciously on the printed page as they would were they to encounter them in real life."

I also had the sense that this book was some strange homage to the author's father. He tells us in the preface that "My father was a psychopath." In fact, this entire book is dedicated to the "memory" of his father according to the dedication page.

Finally, the fact is that psychopathy is a profound and tragic disorder, one that has no cure. (Tucked away in the "Notes" section, Dutton tells us, "Psychopaths are notoriously difficult to treat.") No matter how successful he or she may be, the psychopath is not wise. There is no wisdom in psychopathy but only an emptiness that should not and cannot be served up in "doses."

In conclusion, if you are entertained by well-written stories from a research psychologist:

(1) who has used himself as a subject in a questionable neurological lab procedure
(2) who has toured Italy's "Museum of Serial Killers"
(3) who has visited some actual psychopaths at Broadmoor Hospital in England
(4) and if you have an interest in reading about famous pathological criminals (such as the serial killer that inspired movie psychopath Dr. Hannibal Lecter)--

then perhaps you will enjoy this book.

But if you want a scientifically-informed argument that answers this book's subtitle ("What saints, spies, and serial killers can teach us about success"), you'll probably be quite disappointed.

(first published 2012; preface; author's note; 7 chapters; main narrative 220 pages; notes; acknowledgements; index; a note about the author)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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In Search Of Haydn
In Search Of Haydn
DVD ~ Documentary
Price: CDN$ 33.23
6 used & new from CDN$ 33.23

5.0 out of 5 stars "History may...overshadow [Haydn] with his contemporaries but Mozart adored him and Beethoven sought him out as a teacher.", Dec 15 2012
This review is from: In Search Of Haydn (DVD)
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On the back of the DVD case for this film it states:

"This film rescues Haydn from any neglect he may have previously suffered."

This statement is one hundred percent accurate. If you knew nothing about Haydn before viewing this documentary, you'll certainly know him intimately after viewing this extraordinary film!

The long career of Franz Joseph Hayden (1732 to 1809), an Austrian composer, spanned the decades when the Classical style was being formed. He imprinted upon it the stamp of his personality, and made a contribution to his art--especially the symphony and string quartet--that in scope and significance was unmatched.

We are informed of Haydn's early years in Vienna. Before long, he attracted the notice of the music-loving aristocracy in Vienna. One wealthy family employed him and he remained in their service for almost an amazing thirty years (the greater part of his creative career).

Haydn's life can be said to be the classic example of the patronage system operating at its best.

This film along the way looks at Haydn's humour, his operas, his international success, and his London journeys.

Throughout this documentary, are comments by experts (historians, conductors, pianists, etc.) As well, there are performance of Haydn's works by the world's most celebrated musicians.

Simply stated, this film is a visual and aural feast!! I found the location footage especially beautiful.

Extras for the DVD released in 2012 include complete movements of some of Haydn's large body of work and an interview with the film's director (Phil Grabsky).

Finally, the movements for the extra mentioned above are from:

(1) Symphonies no. 30, 86, and 100
(2) String quartets no. 33/2 "The Joke" and no. 76/1
(3) Sonatas in E no. 34 and in E flat
(4) Piano trio in B flat
(5) Aria di Merlina

In conclusion, this documentary is a visual and aural extravaganza! It truly does save Haydn from obscurity!!

(2012; 1 hr, 40 min; 10 chapters, wide screen)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Why Suicide?: Questions and Answers About Suicide, Suicide Prevention, and Coping with the Suicide of Someone You Know
Why Suicide?: Questions and Answers About Suicide, Suicide Prevention, and Coping with the Suicide of Someone You Know
by Eric Marcus
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 13.51
34 used & new from CDN$ 2.14

5.0 out of 5 stars Answering 210 questions about suicide, Dec 8 2012
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"I'm very sorry for the shock I know my death will be for you. But it is much better that you remember me as you last saw me rather than some drooling idiot in an old people's home. I really am beginning to lose my faculties at an alarming rate, so if I did not end things now, I'm afraid I would become a costly, troublesome and unrecognizable burden. Besides, I'm not getting much out of life since Barbara [his wife] died--I'm tired of my dreary life as it presently is; it's pretty empty; I can't seem to get interested in all the activities you have so kindly suggested."

The above is the first paragraph of a suicide note left by a father to his daughter. It comes from this fantastically informative book by Eric Marcus. Marcus is a journalist and author. (His father and sister-in-law both committed suicide in 1970 and 2008 respectively. As well, in 2000 his mother told him that she was going to kill herself.)

The greatest strength of this book is that it is in question and answer format. Thus, it is a very practical book where you can pick and choose the questions you want answers too. (I read this book from cover to cover.)

What was Marcus' goal in writing this book? Here are his exact words:

"To create a resource that would be easy to read, easy to digest, and not overwhelming in details or length."

In my opinion, Marcus has achieved his goal admirably.

This book is divided into sections. Their titles (with the number of questions answered in each section) are as follows:

(1) The basics (61)
(2) How? (18)
(3) Teen/Youth suicide (23)
(4) Suicide and the elderly (22)
(5) Attempted suicide (15)
(6) Prevention and treatment (30)
(7) Coping with the suicide of someone you know (41)

Some of the answers to each of the questions in each of the sections of this book are brief, some are long, some include anecdotes or opinion or conjecture. All the answers are informative.

Finally, I read this book because I was interested in the topic and I did not want to read a book that would bog me down with excessive esoteric theory. As can be deduced from the section titles above, this book is not just for curiosity-seekers like myself but for a broad audience that includes:

(1) those struggling after a loved one's suicide
(2) those worried about a depressed child's risk of suicide
(3) those concerned about their own feelings of not wanting to live.

In conclusion, this book offers thoughtful and straightforward answers to many questions about this painful and complex issue. I leave you with a suicide note from this book by parents to their children:

"This we know will be a terrible shock and embarrassment. But as we see it, it is one solution to the problem of growing old. We greatly appreciate your willingness to try to take care of us.

After being married for sixty years, it only makes sense for us to leave this world together because we loved each other so much.

Don't grieve because we had a very good life and saw our children turn out to be such fine persons."

(this revised and updated edition published 2010; acknowledgements; introduction; 7 chapters; main narrative 205 pages; appendix: "Suicide Prevention and Crisis Telephone Hotlines;" selected bibliography; index)

<<Stephen Pletko, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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Surviving Survival
Surviving Survival
by Laurence Gonzales
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 17.87
28 used & new from CDN$ 4.57

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So you've survived a major crisis or trauma. Congratulations!! Now what??, Dec 1 2012
This review is from: Surviving Survival (Hardcover)
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"It is nearly impossible to live a full life without trauma. It may not be a shipwreck or war. It might be a husband who tries to kill you. It could be a bear that tears off half of your face. It might be cancer. But all such events share a dramatic quality that seems irresistible to the storyteller within us.

[These] stories always end like this: Just when Debbie and Brad seem doomed, the Russian freighter heaves into view and they are rushed to the hospital. Music up. Roll credits. Then they all live happily ever after. Offstage, of course.

But let's put the players back on stage and see what happens next."

The above extract is found in the prologue of this interesting and powerful book by Laurence Gonzales. He is a journalist and author.

This book is about coping and resilience AFTER a major trauma. In many cases, trauma or crisis survivors suffer more AFTER the trauma than they did during the actual trauma.

The author in each chapter describes the actual life-threatening experience that a person has survived (these alone makes for compelling reading) and how that person has coped in the aftermath of that experience.

Along the way (and I found this really interesting), Gonzales delves into several topics such as neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, and biochemistry.

The last two chapters are entitled "The science of adaptation" and "The rules of life." These chapters put together all that was mentioned in the beginning chapters into precise and concise packages.

Finally, there is a two-page "Author's Note" at the end of the book. Here, the author tells us among other things what's going on now with all the survivors mentioned in this book.

In conclusion, this book, in my opinion, is simply brilliant. It presents vividly unforgettable stories of "fear, courage, and the adaptability of the human spirit."

(first published 2012; prologue; 15 chapters; main narrative 220 pages; author's note; notes; references; acknowledgements; credits; index)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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The Real "CSI"  (FRONTLINE)
The Real "CSI" (FRONTLINE)
Price: CDN$ 24.00
19 used & new from CDN$ 15.37

5.0 out of 5 stars Just how trustworthy is forensic evidence??, Nov. 24 2012
This review is from: The Real "CSI" (FRONTLINE) (DVD)
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"Forensic science is everywhere. On T.V., it's used to arrest and convict. But what we thought was science, may not be. Like the science of fingerprints. In fact, there is no national standard for any forensic testimony. And what about getting certified in forensics? You can do that online. [This program is an] investigation of one of the increasingly controversial tools of the criminal justice system: forensic science."

The above is what the narrator says in the introduction of this revealing documentary.

This program was first broadcast on PBS on April 17, 2012. It is a production of the popular investigative reporting show "Frontline."

This episode of Frontline specifically looks into:

(1) fingerprints
(2) a report on forensics by the National Academy of Sciences
(3) the Casey Anthony case
(4) forensic certification

Finally, to get its point across, this program has comments from real CSI investigators, judges, lawyers, those accused of a crime because of CSI or forensic evidence, etc.

In conclusion, this program reveals the truth behind forensic science. The big question is:

Has this documentary caused me to stop viewing my favourite CSI television program (which is "CSI Miami")?

NO. I like the main actor's acting ability. But now I realize that Crime Scene Investigation in the REAL world is not so simple.

(2012; 55 min; wide screen; 7 chapters)

<<Stephen PLETKO, London, Ontario, Canada>>

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