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Paul Holding

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Seven Elements That Have Changed The World: Iron, Carbon, Gold, Silver, Uranium, Titanium, Silicon
Seven Elements That Have Changed The World: Iron, Carbon, Gold, Silver, Uranium, Titanium, Silicon
Price: £6.49

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Did not like at all, 2 Jan 2014
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I did not like this book at all to be honest and apologies for the scathing review but I became very annoyed on reading this book.

I was hoping for a book that was going to be purely scientifically based, informative and help me to understand some of the processes better. It does include science within it contents but it's very heavy on the author's message and socio-economic drivel and corporate responsibility. It is his take on the world and he relates a lot of it back to his life and what he had done himself (He was the chairman of BP) which I did not find interesting. The feel of the book is one of an old, kind, man who naively believes that humans are good and that it will all be okay despite the fact that he partook in some of the most polluting industries known to man. There is mention of his philanthropy e.t.c. which makes the author seem like a cliche of a wealthy, privileged man deeming he is doing good deeds and probably making things worse. There is an assumed arrogance in that the author knows best.

I would say people interested in science are realists and I did not find this book or its message real at all. If this book was a president, it would be Ronald Reagan while he was trying to win office, selling dreams while Jimmy Carter saw tough times ahead and advocated caution. We all know who the electorate listened to.


Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman
Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman
Price: £6.17

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great book, 2 Jan 2014
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It's been a while since I read this book, so I am a bit hazy on the details. All I can say is that this is a great book for anyone who is interested in Richard Feynman. Very accessible book to in terms of the science and what he came up with. Just the right kind of book to ease you into the basics of quantum physics put in real world context so as not to struggle with the abstraction.


Daniels' Running Formula, Second Edition
Daniels' Running Formula, Second Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Book, 2 Jan 2014
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Really good book for running.

To get the hang of the book though, it does require some use of the brain to understand new concepts and reflect on what has been said. The first time I read it, it made sense while I was reading it but there was so much information that once I'd finished, I couldn't remember a lot of what I had read. I just had a feeling that I understand the book but couldn't cite examples or use it properly.

The second time I read the book, I took my time and use a note pad for the bits most relevant to me and it gave me all I needed to make a programme for myself. He is very conservative in what you can achieve in a given time frame which makes for a running ideology which is much less prone to injury. Definitely not a book for quick fix junkies of programmes which are big on amazing gains and promises which are unrealistic.

So, all in all, this is a great book but only for someone who is prepared to put time in to learn it. But like everything, the more you invest in something, the more you get out of it. That definitely applies to this book.


The Prince of Mathematics: Carl Friedrich Gauss
The Prince of Mathematics: Carl Friedrich Gauss
Price: £10.63

4.0 out of 5 stars Not too shabby, 2 Jan 2014
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I had struggled to find a good book giving some background on Gauss and was pleasantly surprised when I found this. Only to be a little unsure when I started reading it.

The style of the book is written almost as a story with lots of dialogue between Gauss and all those he deals with throughout his life. The dialogue seems like it's out of a children's book in many places and I found that very annoying and unnecessary. Once I got over that though, I thought the book was not too bad. You get a good feel for what Gauss got up to during his life.

Very accessible book and some interesting titbits about number theory thrown in there.


The Martyrs of Science, or, The lives of Galileo, Tycho Brahe, and Kepler
The Martyrs of Science, or, The lives of Galileo, Tycho Brahe, and Kepler
Price: £0.00

2.0 out of 5 stars Not great, 2 Jan 2014
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I didn't know what to expect from a book that was written in the mid-1800s and to be honest it wasn't great. I didn't come away feeling I had learnt very much.

I was looking for a book that would tell me more about what each of the scientists had actually done but this was dealt with very, very superficially and the contents of the book concentrates largely on where they were born, the things they experienced in their lives with almost nothing on for example Galileo's laws of motion (just a mentioning). I don't feel like I know anything about what Kepler did other than the fact that he was a famous astrologer and the same can be said about Tyco Brahe and Galileo to be honest.

The book seems to be more interested in what they were like as people and nothing more, making it slightly gossipy. I did not receive much value from this book.


The Servants of Twilight
The Servants of Twilight
Price: £5.49

3.0 out of 5 stars Trying to recapture my youth with the first Dean Koontz book in 15 years, 2 Jan 2014
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I've read a lot of Dean R Koontz books from the days of the Watchers and the likes and thoroughly enjoyed them when I was a teen. At a lost of what else to read, I thought I would give another one a go.

Sad to say that the book did not have the same appeal as when I was younger. No longer being so naive and a bit more realistic about the ways of the world, the book didn't evoke my imagination in the same way as it did when I was younger. The romance was cheesy (I actually skipped those pages as it became irritating) and there was nothing really worth shouting about for me.


Tommyknockers
Tommyknockers
Price: £6.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Picking Up Stephen King after 15 years, 2 Jan 2014
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This review is from: Tommyknockers (Kindle Edition)
I used to read a lot of Stephen King in my teens and I enjoyed most of them (Needful Things and the Stand stick in my mind) decided to pick up a new book on my Kindle.

I'm not a fan of sci-fi to be honest and this is all about a spaceship, so I supposed I was doomed from the outset with this book, hence the reason for giving it three stars. It is a bit of a tomb too but I have yet to give up on a book and finished this one too although I found that it drags on at times.

I did enjoy defamiliarising myself with Stephen Kings style of writing. He can definitely write there is no denying that. It's also funny to read a book written in the eighties where a lot of the technology we now take for granted is absent which makes a story line possible which no longer would be.

If you like sic-fi and Stephen King, I'm sure you'll enjoy this book.


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