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J. H. Sweet
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Desiderata
Desiderata
by Max Ehrmann
Edition: Hardcover

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Words and Drawings Very In Sync With One Another, 14 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Desiderata (Hardcover)
This is mainly a review of the way this work is presented, rather than a comment on the message itself, since Desiderata can mean different things to different people, and can even change in meaning and impact at various stages of our lives.
I love the way this poem is expressed in this particular book. The illustrations are uncomplicated blue-line drawings, echoing the purity and simplicity of the author's words. None of the line drawings of people have faces and are completely anonymous, adding weight to the "Everyman" application of this work. I also like the fact that there are no page numbers to distract from the words and drawings, allowing us to experience the message effortlessly as we seek to find our way in this world.


Showers: The Complete Guide to Hosting a Perfect Bridal or Baby Shower
Showers: The Complete Guide to Hosting a Perfect Bridal or Baby Shower
by Beverly Clark
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Information for Planning and Hosting Showers, 14 Feb. 2006
The information in this book is very thorough, covering the many different types of showers. The timeline planner/checklist is very helpful in staying on track and not missing important details such as mailing invitations in a timely manner. Wonderful recipes are included for desserts, drinks, hors d'oeuvres, and main course items. The detail in each section of the book is excellent. For example, the chapter covering "Bridal Shower Themes" not only gives clever themes, but also includes extensive lists of gift suggestions.

I recently hosted a shower and used several of the games Ms. Clark recommends; they were a lot of fun. I definitely recommend this book.


Water's Path [DVD] [1984] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Water's Path [DVD] [1984] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Offered by books_from_californiauk
Price: £74.80

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Best of the Series for Relaxation, 14 Feb. 2006
I have the entire series of Windham Hill DVDs, and I believe this is my favorite as far as beauty and serenity for promoting relaxation. Those who use white noise and sound conditioning to help with rest might find this useful to watch while trying to induce sleep. As with all of the videos in this series, the scenery is exquisite and the music flawless with very peaceful and smooth transitions between the pieces. However, I live in a part of Texas that has frequent drought; and the water theme is definitely something I cling to in times of desperation so this may have something to do with my choice of Water's Path as favorite.


The Seven Wonder of Sassafras Springs
The Seven Wonder of Sassafras Springs
by Betty G. Birney
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.95

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Story that Touches the Heart, 14 Feb. 2006
This is a wonderful book for all ages. I absolutely love the wisdom, flow, perspective, and profound storytelling ability of this author. In seeking life's intrinsic treasures, what better way to question how to measure greatness, meaning, happiness, and wonder than to seek and discover these things hidden in our own back yards?
The story Ms. Birney weaves is so close to my own heart, I could almost swear that I grew up in Sassafras Springs. Though I am sad to say that my dissatisfaction growing up in the country, on the outskirts of a town with seemingly little to offer, did not allow me to realize the wonders surrounding me in my youth until I was well into adulthood. I sincerely wish a challenge similar to that of Eben's had been issued to me growing up so I could have learned at a much earlier age to appreciate what I now recognize I missed. In relation to my own childhood, the moving nature of this story made me weep.
Matt Phelan's illustrations are a wonderful compliment to this book. His drawings are completely classic and fit the story so perfectly, they remind me of Garth Williams' insight for the illustrations of the Little House series and E.B. White's enchanting tales. Though many recent books feature trendier artwork, the purity of Mr. Phelan's style is parallel to the purity of the story he brings to life with his drawings.
This book is destined to be a great classic, perhaps equal in significance to works such as A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Tom Sawyer. I have already begun a second reading of this story, and I am sure I will reread it many more times during my life as well. I believe it is my favorite of all the new books I have read in the last ten years. I literally could not put it down until I had finished it, and even dropped it into the kitchen sink at one point while combining daily chores with reading. This is a meaningful story of the heart and speaks directly to the meaning of life. I recommend it for everyone.


Frannie and Pickles
Frannie and Pickles
by Preston McClear
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Classic Style of Storytelling & More Fun than a Carnival, 14 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Frannie and Pickles (Hardcover)
This is a wonderful tale and a beautiful book, one I am thrilled to add to my collection of children's books to cherish and read again. Frannie and Pickles is truly a significant contribution to modern children's literature, yet the author has a classic style of storytelling comparable to that of Beatrix Potter and L. Frank Baum.
The story of best friends, a woman and a dog, switching places for the day is zany and amazing fun. I loved their adventures. And I love how a great book makes me feel. This story reminded me of many book and movie adventures I enjoyed in childhood. After reading this story, I found myself reminiscing about great Disney films like The Parent Trap, The Apple Dumpling Gang, and The Jungle Book. I also found myself thinking about wonderful books I read growing up like The Brave Little Tailor, Johnny Appleseed, Rikki Tikki Tavi, and for some reason, Oliver Twist. I believe Mr. McClear's fantastic ability to tell a good story brought about my fond memories of these classic tales.
Great literature is very powerful and has the ability to make us laugh, cry, and reminisce. Frannie and Pickles does all of these things. I am looking forward to reading it again.
J.H. Sweet, author of The Fairy Chronicles


Greco-Roman Wrestling
Greco-Roman Wrestling
by Bill Martell
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Observers, for Understanding and Insight, 14 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Greco-Roman Wrestling (Paperback)
I would like to describe how extremely helpful this book is to a spectator of the sport of wrestling. Since I am merely a fan or observer of this great sport, I don't have the inside knowledge to understand exactly what I am seeing when I watch wrestling. This book has been an excellent reference text and teaching guide for me to learn more about my favorite sport.
Since so much happens in such a short amount of time in wrestling matches - which is one of the reasons this sport is truly special and so exciting to watch (no endless waiting for something to happen, no standing around, no lengthy time-outs) - this book does a wonderful job explaining in depth what actions the observer is witnessing.
I know this book is intended as a training/how-to manual, but I feel it is great for non-participants (cheerers) too. I intended to pass this book on to a family member to encourage participation in the sport, but I am afraid I am keeping it for myself, at least for the time being.
Great photos, easily understandable technical/strategy information, and a nice history/background section - this book has it all. I already had a tremendous appreciation for the sport of wrestling as far as the sportsmanship, strength, endurance, strategy, training, skill, etc. Now I have a greater understanding of the complexities and nuances as well. This has given me wonderful insight into something I could admire, but only slightly understand before. And I am planning to employ some of the flexibility exercises in a non-wrestling context. This is simply a wonderful book for everyone to enjoy, not just wrestlers and coaches.


Winning Wrestling Moves
Winning Wrestling Moves
by Mark Mysnyk
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Anyone Interested in Wrestling, 14 Feb. 2006
I purchased this book in tandem with Greco-Roman Wrestling by William A. Martell, and I can't decide which I like better. They are both good.
Winning Wrestling Moves is well written, thorough, and easy to understand. As a mere spectator/admirer of the sport of wrestling, I am pleased with the photos and detail in this book, which help me to understand exactly what I am watching.
Though "Winning" is stressed in this book, the flavor/tone of the author's words also emphasize the love for the sport, competing against one's self to achieve success, and sportsmanship, which is admirable and impressive, since there must naturally be a winner and a loser - both of which are honorable. Also impressive is the fact that this book does not seem to be about shortcuts, just hard work and great technique.
This book has wonderful descriptions with good flow, and though it is technical, it was easy for a non-wrestler to understand. I recommend it for everyone interested in this great sport, not just athletes and coaches. <


Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle
Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle
by Betty MacDonald
Edition: Paperback

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mrs. Piggle Wiggle is the Best Teacher, 14 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle (Paperback)
I read my copies of Mrs. Piggle Wiggle books to shreds as a child, and I still love to reread the stories today. The books contain valuable lessons for children; and though some are more magical and fun than others, all are well done with regards to capturing children's attention in a unique manner and making them want to improve themselves by fixing their own problems. Mrs. Piggle Wiggle is truly a brilliant and clever teacher, using extremely creative teaching techniques in presenting values, morals, and good habits for children to emulate, develop, and strive for. This book, though not particularly subtle as far as the lessons it tries to impart, is fantastic with regards to children learning something from their storybooks.


Knitting the New Classics
Knitting the New Classics
by Kristin Nicholas
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Exquisite Patterns, Thorough Instructions & More, 14 Feb. 2006
I have been knitting nearly thirty years, since I was a young child, and I have never seen a collection of patterns this unique and beautiful. There is a nice assortment of designs for men, women, and children, ranging from easy to extremely challenging as far a skill needed to complete.
The designs are truly classic, intricate, artistic, and well balanced as far as style and form. The instruction grids and pattern piece drawings are very detailed, easy to understand, and precise as far as measurements. With lovely photographs and clearly stated written instructions, this book is very thorough. There is also a nice section of tips for knitters - equivalent yarns, how to read charts, figuring sizes, etc.
The patterns are not at all dated, and I don't believe they ever will be. In the same way I can picture my mother wearing these sweaters, I think they will be completely wearable fifty years from now, so the time spent in the creation of these treasures might well be appreciated when they are passed down to an ancestor, if the sweaters are well cared for, gently worn, and still in good enough shape.
My only problem with this book is that even the easy/simple patterns seem incredibly difficult. But I admit that I am intimidated by sweaters. I am more expert at socks, hats, scarves, and throws. Even recognizing my anxiety regarding sweaters, I do not think a beginner should attempt these patterns because it might lead to frustration and discouragement with knitting in general. I believe this book is more suitable for intermediate to advanced knitters


Big Book of Knitting
Big Book of Knitting
by Katharina Buss
Edition: Paperback

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete, Helpful, Wonderful, 14 Feb. 2006
This review is from: Big Book of Knitting (Paperback)
I learned to knit at a very young age from my mother and never used a book until about twenty-five years later, but progressing to harder patterns has made using a reference book necessary for me. This book has excellent explanations and illustrations, and answers to every one of my questions. It is incredibly detailed and comprehensive. I likely will not use the older patterns in this book, but it is a terrific reference book that is easy to understand - even complex stitches and patterns. I believe this is a must have for beginning to intermediate knitters, and is particularly suited to me as I strive to become a great knitter like my mother and aunt who were true masters.
J.H. Sweet, author of The Fairy Chronicles


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