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Reviews Written by
Ronald W. Maron "pilgrim" (Nova Scotia)
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Siddhartha
Siddhartha
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers CA
Price: CDN$ 0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars We are all Siddhartha...............if only people would pay closer attention, May 27 2014
This review is from: Siddhartha (Kindle Edition)
It is interesting to have read this book as a High School assignment at the beginning of my adult life and now I have read it fifty years latter. Yes, I feel we are all Siddhartha, if only we would pay closer attention to the movement of our life as it goes through its intricate and purposeful steps that evolve before us. No matter where we step in life a path in that direction always opens up to us, no matter which side of the coin we are living at that moment we are already perfect, and because time is simply a man-made illusion that we created in order to determine the space between two events, we are already immortal. The steps shown in this book parallel our lives; We are born already empty and blameless (childhood), we sacrifice our physical happiness for the sake of being disciplined (religion), we refuse to seek the wisdom of others by feeling we already know life's answers (independence), we become immersed in the world and all its powers and pleasures (materialism) and we eventually reach an age where we allow ourselves to reflect on the life we have just struggled through (retirement). These are the concepts I became initially aware of in an English course so many years ago and these are the concepts through which I knowingly evolved through as an adult. Yes, the book finally makes receives a full five stars as being a road map of life but only because I allowed my path to take the direction that it needed to go; my own spiritual maturity and understanding of life, death and infinity.

Yes, as other critics have noted there are a few typo. mistakes in this issue. No, the world is not perfect as they wish it to be, but, then, it was never meant to be. So, please be less critical of the editor and more critical of the footpath that you are following. I think that this may serve you well................

Answers about the Afterlife: A Private Investigator's 15-Year Research Unlocks the Mysteries of Life after Death
Answers about the Afterlife: A Private Investigator's 15-Year Research Unlocks the Mysteries of Life after Death
Price: CDN$ 9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Am afterlife primer for the slightly informed.............., May 23 2014
The author, like myself, has spent a great deal of time researching the works of others, contemplating his findings and drawing clearly stated conclusions from this arduous task. He has presented them in an question and answer, easy-to-read manner. While his work produces no new conclusions that I have not previously deduced, it is an excellent read for those persons who wish to move beyond the 'toe-in-the-water' approach into a greater level of understanding. Every topic that is conceivable in the area of diffuse area of the afterlife is described in a pragmatic and clearly defined manner. My only reservations about this work is that it is a bit repetitive in places, confuses some psychosocial and learned behavior for being genetic caused and casually mentions the questionable influence of astrology on our development. A purchase of this book can initiate a discussion with friends and relatives about the most critical topics that are never discussed, our
obvious mortality and our eventual demise on this earth...................

Capital in the Twenty-First Century
Capital in the Twenty-First Century
Price: CDN$ 11.22

12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book is meant to create an adult discussion and not a childish rant................, May 16 2014
I would be remiss if I did not respond to the negativity generated by the 'patriots' who felt it necessary to grant this writing a single star along with their swift action by the back of their hand. My review will center on not only the content of this tome, but others like it that encourage us, as a country, to closely examine the tenets we were told to memorize in secondary class rooms in order to test their present day validity.

Recent statistics reveal to us that in terms of 'comfort and happiness' the USA ranks 37th in the world. That should neither be something to be proud of nor entail an intellectual death struggle in order to maintain this lowly position. The countries that compile the highest scores are the Scandinavian, socialistic countries of Northern Europe. (but, I used that bad word, 'socialistic', didn't I!). They rank in this elite class due to the levels of equality they feel among themselves, the 'cradle to the grave' concept of personal security, and having the government look out for their, and not corporate, interests. Yes, their tax level is higher than the US and Canada but the return on their investment in a people-centered government is much greater. The US, on the other hand, has since its inception viewed monetary accumulation as being the ultimate goal that all of should plug into and spend our lives trying to attain. While persons who collect newspapers and stack them to the ceiling or have their homes overrun with hoards of cats are considered to be crazy, the person who also acts on his equally irrational compulsions and collects piles of money and then ships it to overseas tax-free accounts has his picture placed on the cover of a Fortune 500 magazine. Why the difference? The difference lies in our socially determined value structures; money, and the control of it, is more important than the needs of others. The answer to the question of "Am I my brother's keeper' is no longer a hesitant 'Yes' but now it has become an emphatic "No!'. Societies are created and built for the benefit of all others within its borders, not solely for the over-bloated 1%. But, through the amassing of such unbelievable wealth the 1% not only have captured the money streams of the country but have captured the media outlets for their benefit as well. The third rail of our democratic experiment is under the clutches of those who desire change the least and whose concerns for the poor are the worst; namely its wealthy.

As the author so vividly points out, this is not a novel situation for it has gone on since the original shekel was invented and given in return for goods or services. Class struggles have long revealed a bloody trail across civilization's jagged history. And, it seems to building up to that tantamount again. Guns are being dispersed like Pez candy drops, militant groups have grown ten fold in the last two decades, political unrest, fueled by racism and prejudice, stands on the edge of a cliff while the income disparity of its people is totally nothing less than selfish greed run amuk. Mr. Piketty is not here to lay out a road map of where to go, what restaurants we must frequent and what sites are required viewing for journey that is call 'Life'. Mr. Piketty is here to show us the data and concluded factoids of earlier events and social cataclysms, provide a sensible conclusion to these previous facts and allow us, as adult participants, to begin to have a discussion about how we wish to travel our road ahead. Anyone who fails to enter into this discussion due to 'knowing' the answer beforehand is not welcome. But, not being welcome does not entitle you, as a reading public, to denigrate someone who has actually examined both sides of the same coin while you, who only can repeat the propaganda heard from the corporate media, have a tendency to lash out in an obvious prejudicial and close-minded manner. Please "Shut up" and let those of us who actually are interested in words like 'progressive', 'humanistic', and 'fairness' make the steps forward that our country requires.

Please read this book, even if your not interested in the world economy. It is more about you and where you are headed rather than being a dull tome of economic projections as the title suggests..............

Silo Submerged: (The Runner, The Diver, The Watcher)
Silo Submerged: (The Runner, The Diver, The Watcher)
Price: CDN$ 4.26

2.0 out of 5 stars Did I love it? Not so much............., May 15 2014
While I give praise to WJ Davies for a good attempt at sci-fi writing, there are a few things that troubled me about his effort.
#1. If a person is going to attempt 'piggy-back' writing through attaching his work to one previous, the first thing he must achieve is excellence in writing skills. While the author, himself, is more than adequate at narrating a story line, his skills are far less than the original author, Hugh Howey, that he is trying to emulate.
#2. The factoids that an author presents must be accurate. Human sexuality is a genetic presupposition to a specific gender. One is either attract to males or attracted to females. There is no 'omni-sexuality' as the author implies.
#3. Lastly, good authors maintain a high level of suspense as a reader delves into the last chapter. This rendition, however, was highly predictable half way through the readings. Next time Mr. Davies put a twist to your conclusion and try not to copy the 'happily ever after' syndrome that Walt Disney made so alluring..............

Dust (Wool Trilogy Book 3)
Dust (Wool Trilogy Book 3)
Price: CDN$ 6.94

5.0 out of 5 stars A tremendous trilogy that was presented in the wrong order......., May 10 2014
Trilogies generally follow the same path; the introduction and the conclusive books are the best whereas book #2, the tie in volume, flounders on the topic and merely hovers about until we set out towards the conclusion of the tale. Hugh Howey's second book failed, however, for a different reason. In his attempt to avoid this floundering in book #2, he flashbacked to a time period prior to book #1. While the story in itself was entertaining and gave background to the first tale, the lack of linearity of the telling of the tale leads the reader to periods of confusion and memory gaps of the first book once you begin the third book. The sequence of this trilogy should have been book #2, book #1, book #3 rather than the manner in which it was presented.

That being said, Hugh Howey is one of the very best new sci-fi authors to hit the scene in a long time. His tales are gripping, his characterizations are alive and the imagination that goes into his tale-telling is quite creative. I am looking forward to continuing to follow this author throughout his career.............

God Bless America: Strange and Unusual Religious Beliefs and Practices in the United States
God Bless America: Strange and Unusual Religious Beliefs and Practices in the United States

4.0 out of 5 stars A well written summation of cultic beliefs.............., May 2 2014
The author, Karen Stoliznow, does an admirable task in relating the core beliefs of the more well known cultic worship groups. She takes us through the polygamistic and Fundamental Mormons, the anti-Christian Satanic cults, the diffuse New Age movements, the remnants of William Penn's Quakers, the austere life patterns of the Amish, the Sci-Fi and snare-filled world of Lafayette Ron Hubbard, and a few others. While the book is less than 250 pages the author is able to capture both the quirks and the danger involved with the membership requirements that these groups adhere to.

My question was not answered and remained by the text's end, however; "What separates recognized religious groups from note worthy cults?" They both have beliefs in myths and folk tales. They both coerce their membership into supporting their financial causes. And they both shun their members from questioning their honesty and veracity. The only major difference from this reader's standpoint is that cults have far fewer members than religious institutions and, by having these numbers, they are more immune to an honest evaluation of their activities.............

Driving Blind
Driving Blind
Offered by HarperCollins Publishers CA
Price: CDN$ 9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars The Bradbury of 'Dandelion Wine'; Classic............., April 12 2014
This review is from: Driving Blind (Kindle Edition)
While Ray Bradbury earned his rightful reputation by the writing of science fiction, there is a much more sensitive and compassionate writer that lies behind the popular façade of space ships and aliens. There are three short stories in this collection that easily match the standards he set in the tale of the young adventures of Douglas Spaulding in 'Dandelion Wine'. In a phrase, Bradbury reveals his ability to be a writer of 'poetic prose'. Putting pen to paper the entire collection reflects his biographical tale of a younger life in everyone's America that should strike at the heart of every purposeful reader..........

The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History
Offered by Macmillan CA
Price: CDN$ 14.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent oversight into our future quandry......, April 7 2014
Anyone who has a least a moderate knowledge about science with find this book a pleasure to read and will not require the accompanied study guide. Ms. Tolbert has a clear and readable ability of describing a somewhat difficult, yet important topic. In a somewhat casual writing approach she takes us with her as she travels throughout the world and examines the various signs of the destruction that mankind is bringing upon the world he claims to love so much. Are we doomed? The author wisely avoids answering this question directly but, rather, poses the possible defeats and/or victories which may lie before us. I highly recommend this book as being part of both a study in paleontology and the future of global warming trends.......

Children That Time Forgot: PAST LIVES : Children Time Forgot (Paranormal Trilogy)
Children That Time Forgot: PAST LIVES : Children Time Forgot (Paranormal Trilogy)
Price: CDN$ 1.03

4.0 out of 5 stars While non-scientific it is very convincing.........., March 24 2014
No, this is not on the same level as the professional studies done by Ian Stevenson. They lack the tenacious oversight he provided, the reliability of the data he collected and the follow up studies that he enacted. But, that being said, this is a very convincing group of pre-life tales told by parents of their very young children and the concept of having lived a previous life. Could they all have reinforced having their child discuss what other parents may simply discount as childhood imagination? Perhaps. But the more likely scenario is that these English children are responding in the same manner as the Eastern children that Stevenson was involved with. While his studies do not implicitly prove the concept of reincarnation, they certainly point strongly in that direction...............

Stop Worrying! There Probably is an Afterlife
Stop Worrying! There Probably is an Afterlife
Price: CDN$ 6.49

5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent summary of non-religious, progressive concepts............., March 21 2014
Having been interested in the processes of death and dying since my Junior year in college, I have perused numerous texts for the answer to the question "What happens when we die.". This, undoubtedly, is one of the most sincere, easily read and conclusive books presently on the market. The author covers all areas from quantum physics, near death experiences, mediums, super-Psi and supernatural sightings in a convincing, yet questioning manner. No, he does not bring the world's many religious beliefs and tenets into his conversation but, rather, simply examines the droves of facts and experiences we have experienced as a population. I strongly advise the reading of this text by all; from the well read person to the person who is, just now, peaking behind from his/her dark curtain of denial and peering out into eternity.

The one adage that this book proves, however, is that "You cannot tell a book by its cover.". I almost did not read this book due to both its inane title and cartoonish cover. Please Mr. Taylor replace both of these! I think you will be pleasantly surprised by how your sales of this book will dramatically increase if you do..........

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