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A Customer (Minnetonka, mn United States)

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The Last Jihad
The Last Jihad
by Joel C. Rosenberg
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
31 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, Feb. 14 2004
I really wanted this book to be good. Based on the hype and the endorsements, I expected Mr. Rosenberg to be the next Tom Clancy. Unfrtunately, this book falls short of the mark.
Unlike other genres, the techno thriller/political thriller relies of careful attention to detail. Now everyone makes mistakes, but here are a number of glaring technical errors related to systems, organizations and weapons through out the book. Finally the book is set in a post Bush administration where American weapon technology would be in the next generation. For example the F22 and JSF systems would be operational. National Missile Defense would be in place, and progress on the digital battlefield more advanced - none of this was really considered in the book.
The plot is straight forward enough. A coordinated attack against Canada, England, Saudi Arabia and America attempts leadership decapitation. The identified culprit is Saddam Hussein and the race is on to take him out. (Memo to Mr. Rosenberg: Heavy forces cannot be moved strategically overnight.)
There is a subplot involving the Four Horsemen (The Four Horsemen are amongst the most feared terrorists in the world), who are tied to an iranian/Russian organization. In the post 9-11 world, I suspect there are standing orders that if you find a bad guy you nail him. I am still trying to figure out why they decided to attack the retired MOSSAD head in Jerusalem.
This book does prove that you can write a bestseller without resorting to gutter language or engaging in a meaningless whirlwind romantic subplot. For that I am grateful and I wish more people would take the same tact.
The debate over the use of American nuclear weapons is interesting. I fail to see where it was right wing or left wing. I think it accurately reflected the ongoing debate of whether or not the United States can ever employ nuclear weapons as a first strike option. However I would point out, Presidents cannot declare war - that is a congressional perrogative.
If you can live with the inaccuracies, then spend an afternoon in a cozy chair.

The First Horseman
The First Horseman
by John Case
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
Price: CDN$ 10.99
43 used & new from CDN$ 0.01

4.0 out of 5 stars A little of this, a little of that, Feb. 8 2004
This book has weird cultists, North Korean bad guys, a biological weapon capable of killing billions and not the brightest main character ever to grace the pages of fiction.
Spanish Lady refers to the 1918 influenza outbreak that killed thousand of people around the world in a matter of months. All of a sudden, it looks like the North koreans may have figured out a way to bring Spanish Lady back from past, and the good guys need to get on top of this problem before the bad guys perfect their weapon.
The story shifts dramatically to Frank Daly, a Washington Post reporter, who stumbles across the story and gets entangled with a far out cult. The cult's founder, Luc Solange gets most of his money from the North Koreans (why the Nkors would pick Luc and company to deliver their weapon system is never explained).
Eventually, Frank Daly ends up in a life or death confrontation with Luc and company armed with nothing more than the First Amendment. Perhaps, this art initating life, but I would have arrived there with nothing less than a squad of Force Recon Marines and a couple of tanks.
Without giving away too much, journalist Frank saves the world from destruction at the hands of the Nkors and looney cultists.
If you forget that Frank is kind of dumb, the story holds together pretty well and demonstrates just how vulnerable we are to BW or CW attack using our infrastructure.
Worth a quick read.

The Hunt for Zero Point: Inside the Classified World of Antigravity Technology
The Hunt for Zero Point: Inside the Classified World of Antigravity Technology
by Nick Cook
Edition: Paperback
Price: CDN$ 17.82
28 used & new from CDN$ 10.67

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great scientific detective story, Feb. 8 2004
Anti-gravity, Zero Point Energy, Torsion Fields and time warps are the stuff of science fiction - right?
Well maybe not quite. Nick Cook delivers a book that deserves careful consideration. He follows the data and comes to incredible revelations. Perhaps, there is a way to either shield gravity or to produce an anti-gravity effect. Maybe there is more energy resting in a show box than all the oil fields and nuclear power plants dotting the globe. And what if the speed of light is not the boundary we have come to believe it is?
Before you discard the notion, I dare you to read the book and then go to your browser and start looking up names or places or ideas. There is a wealth of knowledge out there that is way outside the box.
Coupled with a tremendous scientific story are the efforts by the American government to keep much of this technology under wraps and behind closed doors. The black world (as Cook calls it) rarely meets the white world.
For anyone remotely interested in cutting edge technology, this is a must must read.

Warriors Of God
Warriors Of God
by William Christie
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
11 used & new from CDN$ 19.31

5.0 out of 5 stars Top Notch, Jan. 30 2004
The original copyright for this book is 1992. But just about everything described in this book has happened for real since it was written.
First the Iranians attack the USS Makin Island with a devastating bombing that almost sinks the ship (can you say USS Cole). The United States retaliates with an attack on Iran's main oil depot at Kharg Island (cruise missiles and high technology weapons). The Iranians respond with a command attack on a major oil pumping station in the United Arab Emirates, and then go one step further. They decide it is time to take the war to the United states and target the President. A small dedicated terrorist group penetrates America and slips behind the barrier of missiles, ships and planes defending the country (it is a 9-11 style attack except with commandos).
Through it all defense analyse Rich Welsh suspects the truth and tries to get somebody to listen. (I suspect he has a few real life aanalogues who saw the coming storm, but whose warnings went unheeded.) The Welsh character conveys the author's feelings about structural problems that plague the Marines and the Pentagon mentality.
This is a well written and well paced book. Get a copy today, this guy deserves a better sales ranking!

New Spring: The Novel
New Spring: The Novel
by Robert Jordan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 19.00
69 used & new from CDN$ 1.31

4.0 out of 5 stars An interesting glimpse into the past, Jan. 25 2004
This review is from: New Spring: The Novel (Hardcover)
This is a fascinating glimpse into the world that sets up the WOT series. A battle is raging on the slopes of Dragonmount, and an Aes Sedai seer foretells the birth of the Dragon. But this is twenty years before the first book in the series and we meet Moraine, Suian and Lan before the complex web of relationships is established. We also see the opening moves of the Forsaken and the Black Ajah.
For anyone who has been reading the series since the start, this is a book welll worth the time.

Black Storm: A Novel
Black Storm: A Novel
by David Poyer
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
12 used & new from CDN$ 1.11

5.0 out of 5 stars A big Book about small unit action, Jan. 13 2004
In the days prior to commencement of the ground war in Iraq during the first Gulf War, allied intelligence comes across a possible WMD weapon system called Flying Rocks. A hastily assembled team is inserted by helicopter and then moves over land to Baghdad.
I read the Publisher's Weekly blurb, and I'm not quite sure what they are complaining about. BLACK STORM and CHINA SEA are amongst Poyer's better books. BLACK STORM is the gritty action of a recon team that penetrates 500 miles into hostile territory to discover a horrifying weapon.
There are the complex interactions between the Force Recon marines, an SAS trooper who has been in the desert way too long, and two attachments. One of the charms of this book are the details as they walk across the cold desert, dodge Iraqi patrols and finally penetrate the Iraqi bunker beneath a hospital complex.
Another home run.

Shutter Island: A Novel
Shutter Island: A Novel
by Dennis Lehane
Edition: Hardcover
Offered by Your Online Bookstore
Price: CDN$ 40.03
49 used & new from CDN$ 2.09

5.0 out of 5 stars Teddy Daniels is in BIG BIG Trouble., Jan. 2 2004
U.S. Marshal Teddy Daniels has been sent to Shutter Island to find a missing patient. A simple chase down the clues, add them and solve the mystery kind of book.
Yeah, right.
The premise of this novel is to assume that nothing is as it seems. Teddy Daniels walks into a nightmare that slowly builds intensity like the hurricane descending on Shutter Island. His new partner Chuck is a great side kick, but not much help. Then there is the code of 4 that shows up. (Take a minute and puzzle out what is going on here.)
Subtle hint, the number 13 has a lot to do with everything, especially Teddy.
To discuss the plot is to ruin the plot. This is a masterful job that will have you looking for more.
A must read.

The Footprints of God: A Novel
The Footprints of God: A Novel
by Greg Iles
Edition: Hardcover
27 used & new from CDN$ 1.37

3.0 out of 5 stars Starts like a Ferrari; ends like a Chevy, Jan. 1 2004
Greg Iles is a very gifted writer. As he has promised us, he will never write the same book twice. So one should expect a certain amount of unpredictability.
The initial premise of creating an Artificial Intelligence computer based not on reverse engineering the brain, but by "cloning" the human mind into a machine is fascinating. The technology described does not seem far off, so the idea seems doable.
I ran into problems (and I always run into problems with books that go this direction) when the main characters develop a "God" complex where they have mastered all knowledge and are all powerful. FOOTPRINTS reminds me of a 1970's movie where the computer takes over the world and no one knows how to stop the cybernetic creation. My eyes glaze over whenever a novel attempts to transcend the nature of man.
That said, FOOTPRINTS is well written and it does keep you reading. I just didn't buy it after a while.
You'll either like this one or hate it.

by Jack Mcdevitt
Edition: Hardcover
30 used & new from CDN$ 4.51

5.0 out of 5 stars Very satisfying, Dec 26 2003
This review is from: Omega (Hardcover)
Once again Jack McDevitt delivers a hard sci fi thriller set in the not too distant future. This time the deadly omega clouds are approaching an small planet called Lookout 3000 lightyears from earth. A small survey team heads for the planet to determine whether any life exists, and at the last minute they discover a race of beings.
Now it is a race between human technology and the deadly omega clouds to attempt a recue of an entire planet. But 3000 light years is still a very long ways away, and it comes down to a handful of heroic people to attempt the impossible.
I never miss a McDevitt novel and you shouldn't either.

Tidal Rip
Tidal Rip
by Joe Buff
Edition: Hardcover
18 used & new from CDN$ 3.19

5.0 out of 5 stars Tidal thriller, Dec 19 2003
This review is from: Tidal Rip (Hardcover)
This is the second novel I have read by Joe Buff (the other being CRUISH DEPTH).
TIDAL RIP is an extraordinarily satisfying thriller that continues the story of the Boer/Axis war against America. The situation is desperate as Europe has already falen under the new Nazi domination and the axis powers are attempting to link up in Africa. Just as in previous wars, a convoy on men and equipment is steaming across the Atlantic to shift the tide.
Into this mix fall two submarine commanders: Ernest Beck and Jeffry Fuller. They command the world's most advanced submarine platforms (ceramic hulled, deep diving predators). Beck's mission is to kill the convoy and possibly win the war. Fuller's mission is to kill Beck. They have the whole Atlantic in which to fight.
A very satisfying read. Just one caution: Once I got going, I just kept turning the pages and forgot about going to bed.

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