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About Me

I'd like to share what I know about: Philosophy, History, Writing, Martial Arts

I'd like to discover more about: Philosophy, History, Writing, Martial Arts

I'm a retired bureaucrat (having served, most recently, as an Assistant Commissioner in a municipal agency in a major Northeastern American city). In 2002 I took an early retirement to pursue a lifelong love of writing, having previously written and published an historical novel (1998) about Vikings and Indians in eleventh century North … more

reviewed Tigana. March 02, 2012
This was a long book, not that there's anything wrong with length in a book of course, but when you notice it that can be a problem. And I noticed it even as I continued to read. At first I enjoyed the …
The Travels of Jaimie McPheeters
Huck Finn Goes West might have been a good alternative title for this one, although our hero and primary narrator, young Jamie McPheeters of St. Louis, fourteen years old at the start of his journey to …
Empire of the Summer Moon: Quanah Parker and the
A very fine narrative concerning the history (both the rise and fall) of the Native American people known today as the Comanche (from a Ute word meaning those who like to fight or who fight a lot). An …
reviewed Telegraph Days: A Novel. September 18, 2011
Telegraph Days: A Novel
In this nicely written, albeit light, episodic tale of the old West, heroine Nellie Courtwright and her kid brother Jackson make their way into the tiny frontier town of Rita Blanca after the suicide …
reviewed Territory (Emma Bull book). September 13, 2011
Emma Bull's talent with the succinct turn of phrase and her terse but vivid imagery (saloon barflies troop after a stranger in the first few pages "unconscious as ducklings") combine with taut, clever …
reviewed The Religion: A Novel. August 23, 2011
The Religion: A Novel
The mysterious Countess Carla La Penautier seeks passage to Malta, the land of her birth, in search of the boy she bore as a young girl out of wedlock, a babe spirited away from her even as she was sent …
reviewed Northwest Passage. July 29, 2011
Northwest Passage
This tale, cast as a memoir by a fictional acquaintance of the historical Robert Rogers who gained fame in colonial America for creating and leading "Rogers' Rangers," is lengthy but compellingly told, …
A Feast for Crows (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 4)
This, the fourth in the series, turned out to be somewhat disappointing in light of the earlier books though you could see the problem developing in the earlier volumes as Martin plays what amounts to …
A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, Book 3)
Having decided to read these books on the basis of the HBO series, I've now gotten well ahead of the TV version (which faithfully, allowing for some minor innovations, captures the first book, Game of …
A Clash of Kings (A Song of Ice and Fire, book no. 2)
In this second volume of the series (which I began because the quality of the recent HBO series enthralled me), George R. R. Martin carries his tale of discord, violence, magic and collapse in Westeros …
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December 02, 2010
Congrats on earning the Robert Langdon badge from the Cafe Libri Reading Community. Feel free to suggest new badges too for me to create. Happy reading and reviewing! :)
May 05, 2009
Hello Stuart! I'm so sorry you lost that review you were writing! But cheer up, we now have the autosave feature, you'll never loose another review, it will 'save itself' as you are writing :) It is true that being 'the next me' is much more original than being the next [fill in with name of well-known writer]. I don't remember where I read this quote, but it resounds with what you wrote: "You were born an original, don't die a copy." I was wondering what you think of Ernest Hemingway's The Sun Also Rises? I am assuming you read it, but there are no reviews of it here so I am not convinced I should read it. What is your take on it?
May 06, 2009
Thanks for your feedback. I'll have another go at it shortly. It was a bit frustrating when I did it that last time but maybe things will go more smoothly now. (Maybe it's just me but this isn't the easiest site to navigate!) -- SWM
May 06, 2009
We are working to make it more user friendly, your feedback would be very much appreciated. You can either use the 'feedback' button at the very top right of the page, or you can tell me directly what issues you find with the site, I'll be glad to help and make this an easier place to share your opinion! As always, you can refer to the FAQ page for any general questions such as how to write a review.
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