This is one of the best comic books and graphic novels I have ever read! I got this by chance at Pass It On Thrift Store in CresMy review from Amazon:
This is one of the best comic books and graphic novels I have ever read! I got this by chance at Pass It On Thrift Store in Crestwood, IL here in the USA. It was a great book to read filled with an interesting and exciting cast of characters, storyline, plot and drama not to mention comedy, action, adventure, romance and plenty of ads in a few panels advertising real world products or knockoffs of them.
Paul Chadwick did a great job writing this series and this particular book in general.
The Complete Concrete by Paul Chadwick is a most awesome grapic novel and a different take on the superhero genre.
It stands out from other books and graphic novels in that it has a somewhat different story then most superhero comic book and graphic novels.
The cast of characters, dialogue, story, images, product ads and events and people we can relate to along with numerous pop cultural references make this a fun and interesting graphic novel to read along with plenty of drama and tension at times.
Many of the same dilemmas, challenges and emotions that we face in real life is what Concrete and his companions face even adversaries at times.
A great graphic novel.
I give it 5/5 stars.
All in all a great read and a must have along with Watchmen and Batman Year One and Batman Thew Dark Knight Returns.
"Concrete is a comic book series created and written by Paul Chadwick and published by Dark Horse Comics. His first appearance is Dark Horse Presents #1 (July, 1986). The eponymous central character is a normal man whose brain was transplanted into a large, stone body by aliens, and who lives an extraordinary life on Earth following his escape.
The Concrete series focuses on realism. Apart from the aliens (which disappear in the origin issue and are never heard from again) and Concrete's own high-tech artificial body (which includes superhuman sight), there are no supernatural or science-fiction elements to any stories.
The hero tries to use his body for noble endeavors, such as helping out on a family farm. Leter, Concrete climbs Mount Everest, becomes involved with a group of hardline environmental militants, and reluctantly agrees to become the spokesperson of a campaign to voluntarily reduce the earth's population.
Concrete's sexuality is addressed in the series. An artist at heart, he collects paintings of female nudes. He is noteably embarrassed at his lack of sexual organs.
Real-world physics apply to Concrete. Examples include Concrete breaking objects by sitting on them, or Concrete being shot forward from a braking car, due to the momentum of his large body. He is constantly breaking telephones and doorknobs, and must hire an assistant Larry Munro, because his hands are too clumsy to handle a pen.
The series makes frequent use of thought balloons, showing characters' interior thoughts and feelings.
In addition to the comic, Paul Chadwick has drawn Concrete in many paintings. Most show the character wandering in nature, perhaps looking at a flower or some other natural curiosity."
"Awards and recognitionThe series won the Eisner Awards for Best Continuing Series for 1988 and 1989, Best Black-and-White Series for 1988 and 1989, and Best New Series for 1988, and their Best Writer/Artist Award for Paul Chadwick for 1989. It received the Harvey Award for Best New Series in 1988, and won Chadwick their Award For Cartoonist (Writer/Artist) for 1989." ...more
The Simpsons: A Complete Guide to Our Favorite Family is a well written book, covering the first 8 seasons also some of the funniest ones) of our favoriThe Simpsons: A Complete Guide to Our Favorite Family is a well written book, covering the first 8 seasons also some of the funniest ones) of our favorite family.
The book is loaded with page after page of useful information about each episode (often limited to one page though but still plenty of info per page) with colorful images, quotes, trivia, character descriptions (from almost every character, from God to Homer)The Stuff You may have Missed (items and references you may have missed in an episode) Show Highlights, blackboard gags, episode description and number, an introduction by the show's creator Matt Groening, etc.
A great book for hardcore Simpsons fans and those who are casual viewers of the show alike.
There are of course some errors to be found but only hardcore fans might notice this on some pages (check with the website SNPP.com for more info on this books errors)
I give it 5/5 stars for being very well written and filled with many Simpsons images to look at....more
This is one of the best apologetics books I've ever read!!
Greg Koukl, President of Stand To Reason at str.org has written a great and informative booThis is one of the best apologetics books I've ever read!!
Greg Koukl, President of Stand To Reason at str.org has written a great and informative book that is very thought provoking and often points out atheist contradictions and logical fallacies not to mention how lackluster and ignorant atheist thinking is.
Recommended. A valuable tool to assist Christians in sharing and defending the faith.
I have a bit of an aversion to books on apologetics. I don't know exactly why this is, but it may be that many of them seem to teach methods of defending the faith that either manipulate or bludgeon. Somehow grace and apologetics do not seem to go together as they ought. So it was with perhaps just a bit of reluctance that I began reading Gregory Koukl's Tactics: A Game Plan for Discussing Your Christian Convictions. This is a book that promises to teach a new method, a respectful method, of defending the faith and of attempting to convince others of the truth of Christianity. This is not an apologetics 101 text, as in a book that will compare and contrast various apologetic methods; instead, it is a guide, a book that seeks to lead the reader into a new method of sharing his faith with others.
"If you're like a lot of people who pick up a book like this, you would like to make a difference for the kingdom, but you are not sure how to begin. I want to give you a game plan, a strategy to get involved in a way you never thought you could, yet with a tremendous margin of safety." Here is what Koukl promises--he sets no small goal. "I am going to teach you how to navigate in conversations so that you stay in control--in a good way--even though your knowledge is limited. You may know nothing about answering challenges people raise against what you believe. You may even be a brand new Christian. It doesn't matter. I am going to introduce you to a handful of effective maneuvers--I call them tactics--that will help you stay in control."
This tactical approach is a useful one, for it allows you to stay "in the driver's seat in conversations, so you can productively direct the discussion, exposing faulty thinking and suggesting more fruitful alternatives along the way." It is important to note that "tactics are not manipulative tricks or slice ruses. They are not clever ploys to embarrass other people and force them to submit to your point of view. They are not meant to belittle or humiliate those who disagree so you can gain notches in your spiritual belt." Instead, they are ways of guiding a conversation to expose poor reasoning and then use that as a bridge to the truth.
Koukl begins by looking at three basics skills the Christian will need if he wishes to be an effective apologist. First, he must have knowledge, having a familiarity with the central message of the Bible; second, he must have knowledge that is tempered by wisdom that makes his message clear and persuasive; third, he must have the character of a Christian, embodying the virtues of the kingdom he serves.
Then, over the course of four chapters, Koukl unveils his tactic. He calls it "The Columbo." The key to this tactic is to "go on the offensive in an inoffensive way by using carefully selected questions to productively advance the conversation." Never make a statement when a question will do the job. When you ask questions and listen carefully, you gather information that can be used to show a person where his thinking is faulty. Questions can be used to gather information, to reverse the burden of proof or to lead the conversation. Either way, the person asking the question is the person who leads the discussion.
He sets a modest and realistic goal for his interactions with unbelievers. "My goal," he says, "is to find clever ways to exploit someone's bad thinking for the purpose of guiding her to truth, yet remaining gracious and charitable at the same time. My aim is to manage, not manipulate; to control, not coerce; to finesse, not fight. I want the same for you." The goal of this kind of apologetics, then, is not necessarily to win someone to Christ. That may be an ultimate goal or an ultimate hope, but the goal of an individual encounter is nothing more than, in Koukl's words, "putting a stone in someone's shoe." "I want to give him something worth thinking about, something he can't ignore because it continues to poke at him in a good way."
In Part 2 of the book, Koukl offers guidance in finding flaws in the way people reason. He offers specific tactics to unveil poor reasoning and to turn it back against a person. He calls these things like Suicide, Sibling Rivalry, Taking the Roof Off. He offers advice on countering the human steamroller (you've tried to discuss issues with people like this) and the Rhodes scholar, the supposed expert.
When I think of Christian apologetics, I tend to think of Evidence that Demands a Verdict or some of the classics of days gone by. But in this book Koukl offers a new approach and one that is well-suited to the times. He teaches the Christian to think well, to exemplify grace and to humbly lead a conversation to the truth. "We may spend hours helping someone carefully work through an issue without ever mentioning God, Jesus or the Bible. This does not mean we aren't advancing the kingdom. It is always a step in the right direction when he help others think more carefully. If nothing else, it gives them tools to assess the bigger questions that eventually come up."
Apologetics is not always a discipline that is done with grace. But in this book Koukl shares tactics that will prove beneficial to any Christian. They may just revolutionize the way you interact with unbelievers. I highly recommend it."
I give this book 5/5 stars and recommend it to both Christians and atheists alike as well as everyone in between.
Thomas Woodward wrote a most excellent book about the history of the ID movement and to a certain extent the Darwinian movement as well.
The book looks nThomas Woodward wrote a most excellent book about the history of the ID movement and to a certain extent the Darwinian movement as well.
The book looks not only at the history of ID and Darwinism but also the rhetoric of both sides as well.
Woodward is very fair to both sides even though he himself is a Christian design advocate.
Lot's of info and scientific facts abound in this book and at times it can get a bit technical and boring as well as over intellectual.
I do like however how Woodward uses clever war analogies such as comparing the battle between ID and Darwinian evolution advocates and their debates to battles in World War II such as The Normandy Invasion.
Woodward talks a lot about Philip E. Johnson and his book Darwin on Trial as well as Michael Denton's book Evolution: A Theory in Crises and Michael Behe and William Dembski as well not to mention many evolutionists such as Gould and Futuyma.
Nonetheless, I give Woodward's book 5/5 stars for his excellent writing and research into both sides of the evolution, design and origin of life debate as well as being fair and honest.
Note: This book was written in 2003 pre-Dover trial....more
A good book for learning about the History of the world and facts about certain things such as rocket science, The Holocaust, Einstein, The Civil RightsA good book for learning about the History of the world and facts about certain things such as rocket science, The Holocaust, Einstein, The Civil Rights Movement, etc.
Watchmen is an awesome comic books series that ran for about one year in 12 issues and is written by Alan Moore and published by DC Comics.
It is probabWatchmen is an awesome comic books series that ran for about one year in 12 issues and is written by Alan Moore and published by DC Comics.
It is probably one of the best comic book series and graphic novels in recent times including one of the best of the 80's besides Frank Millers Batman: The Dark Knight Returns and Year One.
The story, atmosphere, characters, dialogue, humor, drama, action, panels, artwork, etc. of Watchmen are awesome and dark and sometimes disturbing especially the ending.
This 5 star review from Karl Allen from about.com sums it up best:
"So you want to know more about graphic novels because you've read about Christopher Ware in The New Yorker, or you noticed that Alan Moore's labyrinthine Watchmen just made Time Magazine's 100 best books in the English language list. But you also wish to avoid stores with names like "Forbidden Planet" and "The Dragon's Den?" You want to know what's good and what's bad. What's hot, what's indie, what's superhero, what's art, what's funny, what's dramatic, or simply what's going to be the next basis for a film? What follows is a highly condensed and thoroughly unfair portrait of a burgeoning genre with the briefest of glimpses at only a few representatives. It's only a start.
Let's look at Watchmen first. One of the reasons it's been proclaimed great by such disparate crowds as Time Magazine readers and comic book nerds alike is that it manages to spin so much depth into a medium that had been undervalued as a literary resource for so long. In other words, it surprised the hell out of everyone. This is a superhero comic book but Batman it ain't. Released in 1986 and 1987 in individual issues and then collected into a single volume (as is typical of most graphic novels) Watchmen's superheroes are going through some existential angst as they reach their forties and they start to feel a little reticent about running around fighting crime in costume. Officially banned from public servitude, costumed superheroes are trying to get on with their lives after having been forbidden to wear their tights and underwear and utility belts. You'll recognize the skeleton of this plot as having been co-opted in various forms since Watchmen's release, most notably in films like Batman Begins, where the notion of a costumed vigilante is treated in realistic terms, and also in The Incredibles.
Where Moore and artist Dave Gibbons take you is much bigger than that, though. Watchmen spans the 20th century in a world where Superman was released by DC comics and instead of spawning an industry it inspired otherwise normal people to create alternate identities for themselves and band together to fight crime. One of their partners in crime-fighting, The Comedian, is murdered at the beginning and as each of the former band of Watchmen reflect on their histories as superheroes we see their influence on world events, from the end of World War II through Vietnam onto the Cuban Missile Crisis and JFK's assassination and up to the book's own bizarre twist of an ending to the century.
Moore and Gibbons opened the door through which the comic book and graphic novel (also referred to occasionally as linear art or novel-length comics) would eventually enter the world of respected literature. However, it's doubtful that Watchmen would have made Time's list in 1987. A lot has happened since then to pull Watchmen back into the forefront of Time's consciousness. Artists working in varying forms of the medium have turned illustration into an art form in its own right and have done much to bridge the gap between literature and visual art.
Charles Burns, who has been doing commercial illustration since the mid-80's (and who has, incidentally, done a cover or two for Time), has also been hard at work on a graphic novel about a group of teens in the 1970's who are falling victim to an unexplained disease that changes their physical appearance. His bold and iconic artwork can be spotted on every cover of the literary magazine The Believer as portraiture of the different authors interviewed in each issue. Burns was made prominent through his association with Art Spiegelman who himself is best known for the great graphic-novel-to-mainstream-literature jumper Maus, about his father's experience in a concentration camp told in the guise of cats and mice."
The second part of the review is continued on this link:
"Watchmen is a twelve-issue comic book limited series created by writer Alan Moore, artist Dave Gibbons, and colourist John Higgins. The series was published by DC Comics during 1986 and 1987, and has been subsequently reprinted in collected form. Watchmen originated from a story proposal Moore submitted to DC featuring superhero characters that the company had acquired from Charlton Comics. As Moore's proposed story would have left many of the characters unusable for future stories, managing editor Dick Giordano convinced the writer to create original characters instead.
Moore used the story as a means to reflect contemporary anxieties and to critique the superhero concept. Watchmen depicts an alternate history where superheroes emerged in the 1940s and 1960s, helping the United States to win the Vietnam War. The country is edging towards a nuclear war with the Soviet Union, freelance costumed vigilantes have been outlawed and most costumed superheroes are in retirement or working for the government. The story focuses on the personal development and struggles of the protagonists as an investigation into the murder of a government sponsored superhero pulls them out of retirement, and eventually leads them to confront a plot that would stave off nuclear war by killing millions of people.
Creatively, the focus of Watchmen is on its structure. Gibbons used a nine-panel grid layout throughout the series and added recurring symbols such as a blood-stained smiley. All but the last issue feature supplemental fictional documents that add to the series' backstory, and the narrative is intertwined with that of another story, a fictional pirate comic titled Tales of the Black Freighter, which one of the characters reads. Structured as a nonlinear narrative, the story skips through space, time and plot. Watchmen has received critical acclaim both in the comics and mainstream press, and is regarded by critics as a seminal text of the comics medium. After a number of attempts to adapt the series into a feature film, director Zack Snyder's Watchmen was released in 2009."
Hope this information and review was helpful ;) ...more
Batman: The Long Halloween is a great story of Bruce Wayne's early career as Batman and this story is similar to Batman: Year One by Frank Miller, evenBatman: The Long Halloween is a great story of Bruce Wayne's early career as Batman and this story is similar to Batman: Year One by Frank Miller, even taking place after it I think.
I think Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale did a wonderful job writing and illustrating this, the art, story and characters are that epic and great.
The story involves a killer, killing people, namely from a big name mafia family, around the holidays, starting on a Halloween and ending a year later. This book covers all 12 issues with a few pages of extras. The killer is dubbed "Holiday" btw.
Besides Bruce Wayne/Batman, Jim Gordan, Harvey Dent (later to become Two Face in this story) their respective wives, Catwoman/Selina Kyle, The Joker, Calender Man, The Riddler, Solomon Grundy, Scarecrow, Mad Hatter, Poison Ivy, A few mafia family's, and other characters make appearances.
I won't spoil the ending, it is interesting though.
All in all, a great, epic and exciting story and artwork to boot. ...more
Dr. Jeff Meldrum has written a fine book about Sasquatch, Bigfoot and the scientific case for their existence.
His book covers first hand exp. of SasquaDr. Jeff Meldrum has written a fine book about Sasquatch, Bigfoot and the scientific case for their existence.
His book covers first hand exp. of Sasquatch and Bigfoot sightings, reports, encounters, historical reports (many by Native Americans of North America) scientific evidence for the existence of these creatures including dermal ridges from footprints, handprints, body casts, video footage (such as from the famous Roger Patterson and Bob Gimlin film of "Patty" from the 1960's shot in (or near) Willow Creek, California) sound analysis of recordings of these creatures, DNA evidence including suspected hairs, fecal matter, saliva and even blood. A variety of experts have been consulted on these issues, some of whom are doctors and scientists.
This book also has a section on Cryptozoology.
This book has 16 chapters in it and is about 300 pages long.
Skeptics and their claims are also dealt with in this book to a certain extent.
The book is very interesting to read though it is written in a very scientific and technical manner that sometimes may be hard to read for an average person like me who only know basic science, biology and zoology.
I give Dr. Meldrum's book 4/5 stars for a well written book and very interesting to read that deals with the Sasquatch and Bigfoot phenomenon in a serious and scientific manner.
On a side note a video of the same name is also available on here and youtube as well. ...more
This book is a great but also sad book on The Holocaust from a perspective of an eyewitness and survivor (then 13 year old) Livia Bitton-Jackson growinThis book is a great but also sad book on The Holocaust from a perspective of an eyewitness and survivor (then 13 year old) Livia Bitton-Jackson growing up in the 1940's in Europe in Hungary during the invasion of her region by the Nazi's and how she, her mother, father, brother and family were deported to Auschwitz and their terrible ordeals they had to go through as well as how life was in a Nazi concentration camp.
It is not that long of a book and can be finished in a week or less at only 234 pages.
I really think this is one of the best accounts of any Holocaust survivor ever written. It might not be as detailed as other books on the subject but it is nonetheless well written and engrossing.
Bruce Shieman, Author, Atheist and wannabe Theist wrote a most excellent book about the ongoing debate between science and religion.
This review says itBruce Shieman, Author, Atheist and wannabe Theist wrote a most excellent book about the ongoing debate between science and religion.
This review says it pretty well:
"An Atheist Defends Religion: Why Humanity is Better Off with Religion Than Without It by Bruce S. Sheiman. Finally, a very balanced treatment of the theism/atheist debate.This book is a welcomed alternative to some of the poorly reasoned arguments of the new atheism. I am glad to see this author understands reality. And as much as I don’t like the term religion, this author realizes it is not going anywhere! The author notes that unlike other atheists who embrace the rejection of religion as intellectual triumph, religion provides a combination of psychological, moral, emotional, existential, communal, and even physical health benefits that no other institution can provide."
"If you pay attention to the headlines, you could be excused for believing that science and religion are mutually exclusive and incompatible. In truth, that characterization applies only to a minority of people, the extremists on either side of the debate. But because extremists are usually the most vociferous, theirs tend to be the only voices we hear. Because extremists are the ones writing books and giving speeches, it is easy to think that this conflict reflects the sentiment of the majority of Americans. But it is a manifestation mainly between religious fund- mentalists on one end of the spectrum and militant atheism on the other end.
The Danger of Extremism
Physicist Freeman Dyson said of the extremists "The media exaggerate their numbers and importance. The media rarely mentions the fact that the great majority of religious people belong to moderate denominations that treat science with respect, or the fact that the great majority of scientists treat religion with respect." Thus the battle underway between religion and science, but between religious and secular extremists--hardened adherents who believe they hold the exclusive truth." -Page 151
"Within the past 5 years, numerous books my militant atheists have highlighted the destructive legacy of fundamentalist religion. In this chapter, I focus on the other end of the ideological spectrum: the extent to which militant atheists misuse science in their effort to chal- lenge the validity of religion as a meaningful paradigm for understand- ing the world, a perspective I identify as "scientism." -Page 152 excerpt.
I give this book 5/5 stars for great points about both sides in this ongoing debate, why Religion and Science are not in conflict and a somewhat neutral stance that Bruce takes on this often times confusing and complex issue. ...more