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MSRenfrow has commented on (3) products.

Doomsday Book by Connie Willis
Doomsday Book

MSRenfrow, August 7, 2010

I read this book years ago. I had gotten to the point where I remembered that I had hated the book, but a lot of my friends had just read it for a book club and were raving, so I decided to purchase a copy and remind myself why I hated it.

Well, I remember now. The book drove me mad because everyone involved in the time travel aspect were absolutely dumber than a bag of rocks. The only logical explanation I can come up with for this lack of brains amongst people who are supposed to be well-educated is that the virus made them stupid.

The only character I have any sympathy for at all is Colin. Not because he isn't stupid, because he is, but he's a teenager with that invincibility complex that grown adults are supposed to have gotten over.

The plot is well written and only drags in a few places. The pace is quick, which means you sometimes are subjected to point of view whiplash. It's a solid novel, if you like reading about complete idiots suffering because of the completely idiotic things they brought upon themselves through their moronic actions.
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(1 of 2 readers found this comment helpful)

Shatnerquake by Jeff Burk

MSRenfrow, May 17, 2009

I really wanted to like this book. As Jeff Burk says in the opening of the book (a letter to William Shatner), "You have made a career out of playing a caricature of yourself." Shatner has chutzpah, and that should be honored.

This book, however, is a poor candle held to the light of Shatner's extensive and sometimes dubious filmography. The plot appears briefly to give you tantalizing glimpses to a world where there are Network Wars and Fiction Bombs and Campbellians out to kill every actor who isn't Bruce Campbell, but then the plot decides it's more important to describe the exact dimensions of the convention center rooms. Do we care that the green room is 100 by 100 feet? Or that the party room is 100 by 20 feet? Or that the theaters seat 3,000 people? No. "We're reading a book called 'Shatnerquake'", the people cry out, "Give us more Shatner!"

Instead, the book somehow manages to make one of the most iconic and recognizeable actors into a nameless, faceless Everyman. Rather than honoring William Shatner as he states in his opening, Jeff Burk dresses all his Shatners in a red shirt and makes them disposable, tossed into the grinder of the story and spit out, then stepped over and forgotten.

I paid 12.95 for 100 pages with a cheap binding and many, many grammatical and spelling errors, awkward sentence structure and for something billed as an 'action novel', Burk does a miserable job of actually, you know, describing action.

I like cheesy books, otherwise I wouldn't have picked this up. I like cheesy actors, otherwise I wouldn't have picked up a book that touted not only multiple William Shatners, but a cult dedicated to Bruce Campbell. But this book is like buying vegan rice cheddar cheese instead of the Kraft slices; it may be the same bright orange color, but it smells funny and doesn't melt.
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(7 of 10 readers found this comment helpful)

Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero
Veganomicon: The Ultimate Vegan Cookbook

MSRenfrow, February 19, 2009

I am not a vegan. I am not even a vegetarian. But this is the cookbook that I use more than any other in my collection.

I know! It surprised me, too!

Needless to say, if you're a vegetarian or you regularly cook for a vegetarian, you need this book. But if you're looking to increase whole grains or vegetables in your diet, or just broaden your culinary horizons, you totally need this cookbook. Think home cooking takes a lot of time? There's recipes clearly marked with prep times of 15 and 30 minutes. Hate tofu? It's a valid lifestyle choice, and there are over a hundred recipes in the Veganomicon that don't use it.

There is a good section on pantry staples and basic cooking techniques, but the part I've found the most useful is the desserts section. When you cannot be sure of allergies and dietary preferences at a gathering, the Veganomicon offers gluten-free dessert options that ensures everyone gets a tasty treat.
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(13 of 20 readers found this comment helpful)

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