Profile for JSRT > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by JSRT
Top Reviewer Ranking: 329,706
Helpful Votes: 15

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
JSRT

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2
pixel
98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive
98.6 Degrees: The Art of Keeping Your Ass Alive
by Cody Lundin
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Poorly written and edited, 20 Mar 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As much as I love Cody Lundin, and regard him as the best survival TV presenter around, this book isn't very good. While full of good advice, it is written and edited in the manner of a cheap, poorly thought out self-published work. It's repetitive, poorly organized, sometimes confusing, and trying to hard to be informal and "cool."


No Title Available

5.0 out of 5 stars Fits The Bill, 20 Mar 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is exactly what I wanted -- a light butt pack for carrying water and a little cargo on day hikes. It rides easy on the hips and waist, and thus far has proved durable.


Henry VIII: King and Court
Henry VIII: King and Court
by Alison Weir
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.24

4.0 out of 5 stars Solid 4-star book, but not better than that, 20 Mar 2014
In Henry VIII, Alison Weir has produced an good example of popular history, and a valuable read for anyone with a casual interest in the middle Tudor period (i.e. Henry VIII's reign). Her strong points are her masterful command of the Tudor milieu, using a dense layering of fact and factoid to paint a detailed picture of what Henry VIII's court must have been like in both lifestyle and function. As far as that goes, it is an excellent book, and one I would happily recommend to anyone interested in this particular subject who is not already expert in it.

What holds it back from being a five-star book is that Weir turned out to be a good historian, but not so good a storyteller. Far from being "spellbinding," as some reviews put it, her style is flat. She doesn't do for the Tudor English what, say, Adrian Goldsworthy does for the Romans. It's magnificently researched and organized history, but told in a merely competent and workmanlike fashion.


Rebel Empire: A Novel of the Spanish-Confederate War
Rebel Empire: A Novel of the Spanish-Confederate War
by Billy Bennett
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.46

2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars More wretchedness, 11 Jan 2014
I picked this book up from my cousin, wondering if Bennett had learned anything from his previous failure, "By Force of Arms." The answer is a resounding "no." This book has all the warts of his first work, and then some:

1) Bennett's vocabulary is fourth-rate for a writer, and he apparently doesn't even spellcheck his books, let alone runs them by a semi-skilled proofreader. The text is thick with typos and bad grammar. He repeats the same phrasings over and over again (some of them carried over from the first book, where he did the same thing), and makes Year Two mistakes like "steaks" instead of "stakes." The guy would fail an elementary English composition class, so writing a novel is beyond his ken.

2) His command of history stinks. Just look at the cover. The flag is that of the modern Spanish republic, not the Spanish monarchy. Stonewall Jackson tries to end slavery? That's as bad as Sherman running for President. Bad research and no research of a manner ten times worse than any of the blunders of Conroy or Turtledove appear in every single chapter, often more than once. There is very little history in this so-called alternate history.

3) The plot is little more than a Neo-Confederate happy sock. In 1953, there was a novel following these lines called "Bring the Jubille." If what you want from a novel is a manic Stars and Bars wankfest, then go get that book. It's much better written and thought out than this stuff.

4) He has the bare-faced cheek to call himself "The New Master of Alternate History." Look at the cover. On the basis of what? This?!?

I bought the first book and couldn't finish it, and not this one either. I saw my cousin had this one, and even as a Lost Causer, he couldn't finish it either. It's terrible. The only people who have any business reading this trash are Stars and Bars nutters whose command of English and history are so inferior that they go unaware of the many blunders and straight to this America-hating fantasy of a slavery-based Great Power destined to rule the world.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 14, 2014 2:19 PM GMT


Trick 'r Treat [DVD] [2007]
Trick 'r Treat [DVD] [2007]
Dvd ~ Quinn Lord
Price: £6.55

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Horror anthology in the classic model, 11 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Trick 'r Treat [DVD] [2007] (DVD)
This film is a collection of shorter horror stories, following the classic model of Creepshow. The style is more that of an action film, with the camera creating little of the dread of a well-made horror film. Even so, it's something any real horror fan should see and appreciate.


Days of Infamy
Days of Infamy
by Newt Gingrich
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Alt. History, 11 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Days of Infamy (Paperback)
The last (so far) of the G & F "active history" novels, where the alternate history is treated as detail rich, 100% plausible historical fiction. In the first book of the pair, the point of departure is that Yamamoto accompanies the attack on Pearl Harbor, and not only orders the third wave follow-up attack on Hawaii, but lingers in the area hoping to lure out the American carriers and destroy them. This book continues that story line to its inevitable conclusion.

This series improves on the Gettysburg novels by having more "common soldier" type characters. As usual, individual readers might dispute particular choices, but nothing the book does can be described as implausible. If you want an alternate history that isn't boring like Turtledove, lacking in the history department like Conroy, isn't about time travel, and isn't some guy's wet dream of world domination, buy this book and it's mate, Pearl Harbor.


The Song Of Troy
The Song Of Troy
by Colleen McCullough
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Early McCullough, 9 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Song Of Troy (Paperback)
The story of what the Trojan War might have looked like if it had actually happened along realistic, but still Homeric lines, "The Song of Troy" shows only some of the style that McCullough later brought to the "Masters of Rome" series. It's entertaining, to be sure, but not in the same league as similar efforts by Mary Renault and Steven Pressfield.

If you are looking for "myths as real world stories" fiction, this is an able novel. However, if you are looking for more ancient world McCullough, you'll be disappointed. She had some way to go before she was ready to tackle Gaius Marius after finishing "The Song of Troy."


Agatha Christie's Poirot - Collection 9 [DVD]
Agatha Christie's Poirot - Collection 9 [DVD]
Dvd ~ David Suchet
Price: £10.10

5 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The End of Poirot, 9 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's too bad the network and producers didn't leave some of the better Poirot stories for the very last season. Although these final episodes show all the virtues of the series, the stories themselves are the dregs of Christie's body of Poirot work. These are must-see episodes for Poirot fans, but I sincerely find myself wishing for some of the earlier films to appear here at the curtain call.

An added plus is the inclusion of the documentary Poirot and Me, which was very sweet.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 29, 2014 12:37 PM BST


And Then There Were None [DVD]
And Then There Were None [DVD]
Dvd ~ Oliver Reed
Price: £9.50

3.0 out of 5 stars OK, but not the best 1970s Christie, 8 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This production of And Then There Were None is OK, but nothing special. I can't compare it to other productions of "And Then There Were None," because I haven't seen any, but it doesn't measure up to the Peter Ustinov Poirots or to Albert Finney's "Murder on the Orient Express."


Quiet Flows the Don [DVD]
Quiet Flows the Don [DVD]
Dvd ~ Rupert Everett
Price: £6.30

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A little underwhelming, 8 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Quiet Flows the Don [DVD] (DVD)
Insofar as the DVD goes, it's pretty much what one would expect and as described. The film was OK, but not up to the scale of what I've come to expect from Russian war epics.


Page: 1 | 2