Today, nine out of 10 Americans live in places at significant risk of earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, terrorism, or other disasters. Tomorrow, some of us will have to make split-second choices to save ourselves and our families. How will we react? What will it feel like? Will we be heroes or victims? Will our upbringing, our gender, our personality - anything we've ever learned, thought, or dreamed of - ultimately matter?
First, this book is full of stories of actual survivors - and non-survivors -- of disasters, the stories are inspirational and motivational. Second, this book delves into the physiology and sociology of disasters which is so fascinating and presents a challenge I am trying to meet -- to be aware and be prepared.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
The Netflix series Making a Murderer quickly became a huge hit, with over 19 million viewers in the US in the first 35 days. The series left many viewers with the opinion that Steven Avery - a man falsely imprisoned for almost 20 years on a rape charge - was railroaded into prison a second time by a corrupt police force and district attorney's office. Viewers were outraged, and hundreds of thousands demanded a pardon for Avery. The chief villain of the series: Ken Kratz, the special prosecutor who headed the investigation and prosecution.
I watched Making a Murderer, and like most viewers, I felt a strong sense of unease in what I witnessed there, especially in light of the fact that Mr. Avery had previously been wrongly convicted of a crime. But even then I kept thinking no conspiracy can be this vast and that there is a strong likelihood that Steven Avery killed Theresa Halbach -- and that he probably dragged his naïve nephew into the crime, maybe intending to groom him so Avery would have someone to share his depravity with in the future.
This book offered a strong rebuttal of the tv show that made me appreciate the damage a one-sided documentary can cause -- popular opinion of the uninformed masses is not an effective means of achieving justice (Adnan Syed notwithstanding); and it is seriously unfair to invite all society to judge dedicated life-long law enforcement officers through a filter as slanted and murky as Making a Murderer.
While on routine patrol in the tinder-dry Topanga Canyon, environmental scientist Rafael Salazar expects to find animal poachers, not a dilapidated antique steamer trunk. Inside the peculiar case, he discovers a journal, written by the renowned Robert Louis Stevenson, which divulges ominous particulars about his creation of The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde. It also promises to reveal a terrible secret - the identity of Jack the Ripper.
Creative theory on Jack the Ripper, this book intertwines history and imagination in an entertaining way, I really enjoyed the book! Did not like the narrator's female voices, but the story was good enough to overcome that minor annoyance. Kudos to the author for a fresh and fun take on some old ground! And thanks for inspiring me to get Treasure Island for my kids.
A personal look at a crime of passion describes an FBI agent's successful career, family life, and extramarital affair that ended in murder, and the guilt that drove him to confess in spite of his impenetrable government shield. In a true story of crime, guilt, and conscience, a model agent's illicit involvement with an informant leads him to commit a crime that reveals all the workings of the human heart - and the dark side of the FBI.
The story of senseless self-destruction and its reverberations. This one bummed me out, but it is a well told story.
5 of 6 people found this review helpful
Having just celebrated her 26th birthday in 1976 California, Dana, an African-American woman, is suddenly and inexplicably wrenched through time into antebellum Maryland. After saving a drowning white boy there, she finds herself staring into the barrel of a shotgun and is transported back to the present just in time to save her life. During numerous such time-defying episodes with the same young man, she realizes she's been given a challenge.
I am so glad I found this book! It fascinated me and broke my heart, and it taught me a few things about history too. It made slavery real in a most uncomfortable unflinching way, but I couldn't turn away.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful
The dead talk - to the right listener. They can tell us all about themselves: where they came from, how they lived, how they died, and, of course, who killed them. Forensic scientists can unlock the mysteries of the past and help serve justice using the messages left by a corpse, a crime scene, or the faintest of human traces.
Narrator was hard for me to understand at first, but I got used to her, and I'm glad I stuck it out. This book covered historic and modern forensics in an interesting and detailed way.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Cassie Forrest isn't surprised to learn that the day she’s decided to get her life together is also the day the world ends. After all, she’s been on a self-imposed losing streak since her survivalist parents died: she’s stopped painting, broken off her engagement to Adrian and dated a real jerk. Rectifying her mistakes has to wait, however, because Cassie and her friends have just enough time to escape Brooklyn for her parents’ cabin before Bornavirus LX turns them into zombies, too.
I love the end-of-the-world stories, and this book has all the action, excitement, death and thought-provoking situations of its genre, but with a female perspective, an undercurrent of hope and romance; and some unexpected laughs. Why aren't there more end of the world books with a competent female protagonist?
I listened to the first book then immediately listened again, it was that enjoyable. And the characters ands story kept me entertained straight through all four books right up the "happy" ending -- I love happy endings, I just don't expect them when the world has been overrun by zombies.
Of course there were minor issuances, little annoyances as the story unfolds -- incredible coincidences, unbelievable escapes, but there always are in books like this, and it was really easy to let them go to continue the ride.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
Marilyn Sheppard, four months pregnant and mother of a toddler son, was bludgeoned to death in her Bay Village, Ohio, home in the early morning of July fourth, 1954. The cause of death was 27 blows to the head with a heavy instrument. Who took her life so brutally has been the subject of much controversy and debate for nearly half a century.
I read a lot of true crime, and this book had a unique perspective in that it principally covered a civil trial many years after the crime; however, I didn't get drawn in, it was more like I waded through it. Narrator was annoying, the voices he gave the lawyers made me dislike all of them--they couldn't all be so pompous.
1 of 2 people found this review helpful
New York Times best-selling authors Gregg Olsen and Rebecca Morris take a new look at Arizona's most notorious crimes, including a man suspected of marrying vulnerable women, then killing them; two infamous Arizona killers freed after decades in prison; television's "it girl" Jodi Arias; a woman who was her mother-in-law's worst nightmare; and a football mom who got a little too cozy with members of her son's high school team.
Okay as background noise while cleaning house, but lacking in depth, won't use any more credits on this series.
No disease the world has ever known even remotely resembles the great influenza epidemic of 1918. Presumed to have begun when sick farm animals infected soldiers in Kansas, spreading and mutating into a lethal strain as troops carried it to Europe, it exploded across the world with unequaled ferocity and speed. It killed more people in 20 weeks than AIDS has killed in 20 years; it killed more people in a year than the plagues of the Middle Ages killed in a century.
Educational and interesting, this book traces the flu epidemic and those that fought it but does so in a broader context of medical advances and war time politics (a lot of deaths could have been avoided, sometimes decision-makers make what turned out to be really bad decisions that seem horrifying in hindsight). The book was slow at times (especially the beginning), but I am glad I stayed with it, there was so much I didn't know about the flu and how it kills. I'll be getting my flu shots from now on!