A good book by the writers that also did "Those Guys Have All the Fun" which was on ESPN. This book on Saturday Night Live is written the same way. AA good book by the writers that also did "Those Guys Have All the Fun" which was on ESPN. This book on Saturday Night Live is written the same way. A couple of writers narrate the book a little, but then it is just a ton of quotes from the actors, writers and creator of Saturday Night Live. I really enjoyed the stuff on the first few seasons with John Belushi, Chevy Chase, Gilda Radner, Dan Akroyd, Bill Murray, Jane Curtin, Larraine Newman and Garrett Morris. The book was okay for the Eddie Murphy stuff but then got better once again with all the early 90's stories with cast members such as Dana Carvey, Mike Myers, Phil Hartman, Jon Lovitz, Adam Sandler, Chris Farley, Chris Rock etc. Then all the stuff on the cast with Will Ferrell, Chris Kattan, Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon was good and informing as well. The only problem with the book for me was it seemed to have overkill at some points. The whole chapter on Lorne Michaels at the end of the book did NOT need to be 45 pages. Maybe 10 or 15 at the most. But overall a great book to read during SNL's 40th reunion. ...more
Another good book by Eric Larson, who also wrote the epic book, Devil in the White City. I liked this book the least out of the three I own by LarsonAnother good book by Eric Larson, who also wrote the epic book, Devil in the White City. I liked this book the least out of the three I own by Larson (Devil in the White City and Thunderstruck are the other two), but it was still good. This book is about a storm that took place in Galveston, Texas in 1900. I had never heard of this tradegy, but I guess more people died in this storm than in any other United States natural disaster, even more than the Jonestown Flood or Hurricane Katrina. It's a good page-turner, but a sad story, and you must know that going into this read. I would recommend this book to fans of history or fans of Eric Larson. A quick read too, as it is less than 300 pages....more
David McCullough proved to me in this book that he is probably the best historian alive. The author of great books such as "John Adams", "The Great BrDavid McCullough proved to me in this book that he is probably the best historian alive. The author of great books such as "John Adams", "The Great Bridge", "1776" delivers again with this book I just read, "Brave Companions." Brave Companions is a short book with about 15 articles on people that helped pave our history, but often get overlooked. There are chapters on Alexander von Humboldt, Louis Agazziz, Harriet Beecher Stowe, Charles and Anne Lindbergh to name just a few. I really liked some of the chapters near the end such as the one on photographer David Plowden taking pictures in America. That chapter alone made the book worth reading, as did the one soon after called Recommended Intinerary, in which McCullough tells people to take time and visit places in the world that helped shape its history. Extraordinary times, about life since 1936 is also a great read, as is Washington on the Potomac, in which the author walks the streets of Washington D.C. and remarks about its history that people seem to take for granted. If you like McCullough, you'll like this book and it also makes you want to read more history books. Well done....more
For a while now I've been looking for an author that writes really good young adult fiction sports books like John R. Tunis did for years. I think I mFor a while now I've been looking for an author that writes really good young adult fiction sports books like John R. Tunis did for years. I think I may have found one with Mike Lupica. Although known more probably for his other work with Sports Illustrated(?) I still really liked this book a lot. Thought the end of this story was a little over the top and then realized for kids it won't be. I really like the characters such as the main character Mike Arroyo, a left-handed pitcher that nobody believes is actually 12-years-old because he is so good. The character I enjoyed the most is the catcher and best friend of Arroyo, Manny. I loved the lessons that this book teaches and its a really fun story. Hope every kid that likes baseball reads this. Good stuff. ...more
A nice surprise. I've seen this book in stores for over five years, but never picked it up thinking it was about the Red Sox 2004 comeback win againstA nice surprise. I've seen this book in stores for over five years, but never picked it up thinking it was about the Red Sox 2004 comeback win against the Yankees, since the book came out in paperback right around that time. I later learned it was about the Yankees from 96 to 2001, but I have a lot of those books dealing with the same subject. I have a book on the 96 team by Joel Sherman, the 98 team by George King, all the teams by Joe Torre and Tom Verducci called the Yankee Years, and even a book about the 2001 game called The Last Nine Innings. This book was better than all of them, and I really liked the Yankee Years and Joel Sherman's book.
This had great reporting and was very well-written by Buster Olney. He uses the 7th game of the 2001 World Series as the backdrop, explaining that game, but then going away from that game for a while to tell the stories of players involved and not involved in that game. What you come away with as a reader are good stories about the 96 through 2001 teams, and a little at the end of the book about the 2002-2004 teams when great players such as Paul O' Neill, Scott Brosius, Tino Martinez and David Cone were no longer around and instead replaced by guys like Jason Giambi, Gary Sheffield and Kevin Brown, who never fit in. You also hear great stories individually on just about every Yankee from 96 to 01, including good ones on Torre, Jeter, Clemens, Bernie Wiliams, Mariano Rivera, Pettite, Posada, Cone, David Wells, Tino Martinez, Soriano and a very good story on why Paul O' Neill and Lou Pinella didn't get along. A must-read for any baseball fan and especially Yankee fans who want to remember a time when the team had money, but also the same faces on their roster year after year....more
Dennis Lehane is quickly becoming one of my favorite fiction writers, and I plan on reading everything he's got.
After reading Mystic River and lovingDennis Lehane is quickly becoming one of my favorite fiction writers, and I plan on reading everything he's got.
After reading Mystic River and loving it even though I had seen the movie, I decided to look for a few of his books at the book fair and I found this one, A Drink Before the War, in the fiction bin. This was a really good book, even if you can tell it's his first. Some of the dialogue reminds me of a Dean Koontz, Lorenzo Carcaterra or even Jim Butcher a tad, but its his descriptions that really draw me in, along with the great characters. Here is an example of some writing on page 50 that won't give anything away...
"I turned onto Myrtle Street, the whole street no wider than a piece of dental floss, the tall colonial buildings squeezing in on me. It's impossible to follow someone on Beacon St without being spotted.The streets were built before cars, and I presume, fat or tall people. Back when Boston was this wonderful mythic world full of midget aerobic intructors, Beacon Hill must have seen roomy. But now, it's cramped and narrow and shares more than a little in common with an old French provincial town-very pleasing to the eye, but functionally a disaster. A truck stopped on the hill can back up traffic for a mile."
Just a really good cop book, where the imagery is great. I recommend this book for any fan of good mystery cop thrillers and fans of Dennis Lehane, who also wrote Shutter Island and Gone Baby Gone....more
Really good autobiography of Motley Crue, that is guided well by Neil Strauss. I haven't listened to this band for years, but it brought me back to siReally good autobiography of Motley Crue, that is guided well by Neil Strauss. I haven't listened to this band for years, but it brought me back to sixth grade when Dr. Feelgood was a big album, and back to junior college, when Generation Swine wasn't. I had almost forgot that in one of my favorite years of music (1994) they released a self-titled album with John Corabi as the lead singer. I never bought it and heard it wasn't that great, but it was nice to hear about that album in this book along with Motley Crue's other albums like Feelgood, Theatre of Pain, Shout at the Devil and others. This book is told by the band members and a lot of times will have one story told by as many as all four members, so you get a true sense of what really happened. These guys made okay music for a little while, except for Feelgood, which was great, but even more stressed in this book was just frieking crazy these guys were when they WEREN'T playing music. I didn't realize that there was more drama in this band than Van Halen and Guns N Roses combined. A good read for any heavy metal fan or just fans of music memoirs....more
My friends know that I read a lot of autobiographies of athletes that weren't really THAT great (See Eric Davis, Wayne Chrebet) because I get their boMy friends know that I read a lot of autobiographies of athletes that weren't really THAT great (See Eric Davis, Wayne Chrebet) because I get their books for a buck at book fairs. I also got this book for a buck at book fair, but what a gem it turned out to be.
I always see this book on lists of the greatest sports books of all time, so I figured it was time I read it. It's basically just a diary of Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Jerry Kramer of the 1967 football season, in which the Packers try to win the second Super Bowl ever played (they had defeated Kansas City the year before). Great insight information and I really got to like Kramer a lot as a person. Just a great human being. His descriptions on how he prepares for a game are stellar, especially the chapters in which he prepares to try and block Alex Karras of the Detroit Lions and Merlin Olsen of the then L.A. Rams. He also has a lot of great insight on other Packers such as Bart Starr, Ray Nietzke (spelling?) Paul Hornung, and of course the head coach Vince Lombardi.The book is not only insightful, but often very funny as Kramer talks about the day-to-day struggles to get ready for a game coming up later in the week. If you are a Green Bay Packers fan, why haven't you read this already? If you are a fan of the NFL or football in general this is also a MUST read.Edited by the late great Dick Schaap, this book is five stars all the way. What's even more great about this is the book I found must be from 1968 as well. I can't believe somebody didn't want this book or that the library didn't think this was required reading for sports fans anymore....more
Pretty good suspensful thriller. One of the few Grisham books that I haven't seen the movie for, so I really enjoyed this, especially the last 100 pagPretty good suspensful thriller. One of the few Grisham books that I haven't seen the movie for, so I really enjoyed this, especially the last 100 pages or so. The first 100 pages where Mitchell McDeere (the main character) gets the job at the Firm, however, could have been done in less pages, but not that bad. I now look forward to reading some of his other books. I've only read this one, Playing for Pizza and Bleachers. This one is my favorite so far....more
I'd be surprised if I read a better book than this one in 2014. Very, very powerful but sad at the same time. It's the story of the U.S.S. IndianapoliI'd be surprised if I read a better book than this one in 2014. Very, very powerful but sad at the same time. It's the story of the U.S.S. Indianapolis and how it was sunk by a Japaneese sub near Guam in 1945. This ship, which left originally from Mare Island in Vallejo and then Hunter Point in San Francisco, would be the ship that carried "Little Boy" the bomb that landed on Hiroshima. But while that bomb was going over over 900 people were forced to jump off this ship in the middle of the sea. About 300 had died on impact from the torpedo. Of the 900 that jumped ship, only 317 survived. Those 300 people had to deal with being in the ocean for almost a week and they had to constantly battle sharks to stay alive. These people were heroes and their story is very powerful. This book is very well researched and at 281 pages it doesn't get dull for a second. Anyone who actually knows how to read a book should read this book as soon as possible. ...more
Another good book by Lorenzo Carcaterra. Although I liked epic books like Sleepers, Gangster and Street Boys a lot more, this book is classic CarcaterAnother good book by Lorenzo Carcaterra. Although I liked epic books like Sleepers, Gangster and Street Boys a lot more, this book is classic Carcaterra and a good crime drama. Chasers is the sequel to the author's book, Apaches. The apaches are a group of castaways or misfits of ex-cops that can no longer work for the NYPD for multiple different reasons that I won't give away here. Instead, they take to the streets on their own to deliver justice for a horrible crime that takes a relative of Boomers, the leader of the group, at a young age in a shooting of a restaurant.
This book has the familiar characters of Boomer, Dead-Eye and Rev. Jim, along with some new great characters such as Ash, Quincy and a police dog named Buttercup. If you liked the first book, you'll probably enjoy this second book. The novel, which takes place three years later in 1985, takes awhile to get going, but I actually enjoyed the character development, which Carcaterra is very good at. Carcaterra used to write some episodes for Law and Order, and some of this book reads like a Law and Order episode.
A fun read, but the only problem I had with the book is that some of the lines used by the ex-cops are a little over the top and something you might see in a terrible Arnold or Stallone movie from the 80's. Also, Carcaterra uses a lot of the same phrases over and over again, like "I give a fuck" from a bad thug when listening to the ex-cops. Mix it up a little Lorenzo, you're better than that.
This book is basically all action and drama, but it does make your eyes water at times. Good stuff, I look forward to reading Carcaterra's books for years to come. ...more
A hillarious fiction book by Rick Reilly who is just as funny with a made up story as he is with his true sports stories. Basically, in a nutshell, thA hillarious fiction book by Rick Reilly who is just as funny with a made up story as he is with his true sports stories. Basically, in a nutshell, this book is like Caddyshack when its all said and done. Great characters and great dialoque and a little bit of a twist at the end. This book will have you laughing out loud a few times. Any fan of author Rick Reilly or just golf in general will love this book....more