Jan 24, 2016

Review: Straight Drive

Straight Drive Straight Drive by Sunil Gavaskar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I purchased this as a kindle edition thinking this is the continuation to Sunny days the biography of Sunil Gavaskar but it was not. This book is the collection of articles or sports column written by the littler master from 1985 to 2009.


View all my reviews

Jan 20, 2016

Review: The Eagle Has Landed

The Eagle Has Landed The Eagle Has Landed by Jack Higgins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

It is disheartening to me whenever a good story comes to an end, one such book is Jack Higgins "The Eagle Has Landed". I came to know about this book last year. I borrowed from a library read quarter last year and was not able to get hold the book again. Fortunately this year I got the opportunity to hold this book and finished reading. I enjoyed each and every page, the characters Liam Devlin and Steiner will be cherished in my heart.

The story, Adolf Hitler hints about an idea of kidnapping the Prime Minister of England Winston Churchill. Colonel Radl was given the idea to be developed into a feasible mission, he selects the eligible person for the task. Devlin and Steiner comes in. An old woman Joanna Grey who despises the British and works for Germany sends information about the visit of Churchill and his over night stay in Studley Grange. Devlin was sent early to that village to make arrangements. There he meets Molly Prior (a love story very much enjoyable in between the war torn country) fells in love. Steiner and his team arrives then the mission nears the success stage. The last 30 pages will reveal what happened in the end.


View all my reviews

Jan 14, 2016

Review: Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy

Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy Crossfire: The Plot That Killed Kennedy by Jim Marrs
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

An exhaustive book to know the conspiracy behind JFK assassination. For the first timers I recommend to watch the Zapruder film available in you tube and the Dealey plaza map.

My knowledge of Oswald is the killer was changed after watching JFK movie. The Zapruder film captured the fatal frontal shot of Kennedy. The author Jim Marrs had written well researched account. The wealth of evidence including rare photos, documents and interviews reveals that Oswald was a patsy. The lone gun man theory the magic bullet etc. vanishes in thin air.

Jim Marrs had given the details in four big chapters:

Part I: THE KILL ZONE

Part II: MEANS, MOTIVES AND OPPORTUNITIES

Part III: AFTERMATH

Part IV: CONCLUSIONS

The book has 700 odd pages to read if someone find difficult to read every page, I recommend to read the Part I and jump to Part IV which will give you an insight into the conspiracy.

Spoiler alert:
The acoustics study from the motorcade radio captured nine distinct gun shots, after examination four are real gun shots. The three bullet fired from Book depository snipers nest become invalid and also the Altgens photo which captured when the first bullet hit JFK in the throat shows Oswald in front of the Texas book depository building!

The book is a very good read. Unputdownable.

Excerpts from the author which I like to quote:

"From this point on, there would be no further contact between the individuals who initiated the plot and those who carried it out. Consequently, there is little likelihood that the originators of the plot will ever be identified or brought to justice. However, the broad outlines of the plot can be discerned by diligent study of all available assassination information."

"A world-class assassin was recruited – perhaps Michael Victor Mertz, the shadowy Frenchman with both crime and intelligence connections, or even an unknown but competent shooter like John Christian."

"President Kennedy was killed in a military style ambush orchestrated by elements within the US government that included the military with the active assistance of organized crime.
Pressure from the top thwarted any truthful investigation.
It was an American coup d'├ętat."

"What then is the legacy of president John F.Kennedy ? The fact is that we will never know. His presidency always will be remembered not for what he did , but for what he might have done.
These five conspirators in my opinion, were Lyndon B.Johnson, J.Edgar Hoover, the Mafia, the CIA and the Cubans in Florida."

In the Likely scenario the author gives a better explanation how and by whom JFK was assassinated. And finally I like to give the last line of the book.

"One can still hear the said sad spirit of John F.Kennedy echoing from Dealey Plaza:
Et tu, Lyndon?"



View all my reviews

Jan 8, 2016

Review: Alexander the Great: The Macedonian Who Conquered the World

Alexander the Great: The Macedonian Who Conquered the World Alexander the Great: The Macedonian Who Conquered the World by Sean Patrick
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I received this as a free book for Kindle reader. I first thought that this book involves my favorite Hero Alexander conquest, but the book deals about motivation factors, taking up the life of Alexander's military conquest as an example.

I thoroughly enjoyed the book. The author Sean Patrick mentions that the drive/purpose is the motivating factor for everybody once when it ends the author quotes the later life of Alexander as an example. Strange both example is from Alexander's life.

Some of the quotes I liked to highlight are:

While many theories were put forth, there was one common factor that researchers recognized in all great performers: they practiced so hard and intensely that it hurt.

Swedish psychologist Dr. K Anders Ericsson called the “10,000 hour” rule. The greatness was a long, grueling process.

Any great adventure involves trials and tribulations that transform the hero into something greater than s/he was when s/he began it.

In whatever form your adventure takes, there will be obstacles to overcome. Your dedication to your cause will be tested. Your wits will be forced to their limits. People will try to exploit your weaknesses and negate your strengths. The journey toward greatness is not for the meek.

All barriers yield to one mythical quality: drive. The will to persist and overcome. To never give up. To never accept defeat.

Just as nothing produces paralyzing apathy like doubt and resignation, nothing produces cleverness like staring down a crisis with a lionhearted snarl.

Ambition shows you the path to success, but drive is what gets you through it.

(And my favourite quote) Washington Irving— the famous author, historian and essayist— said, “Great minds have purposes, others have wishes. Little minds are tamed and subdued by misfortune, but great minds rise above it.”

If purpose dies, the entire adventure quickly follows suit. But what is a purpose, exactly? The dictionary defines it as follows: The reason why something is done or why something exists. It is something set up as an object or an end to be attained; an intention.

I give 5 stars for this wonderful small informative book.


View all my reviews

Jan 7, 2016

Review: The UFO Phenomenon

The UFO Phenomenon The UFO Phenomenon by Janet P. Cave
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I firmly believe we are not alone.

This book had given me some information about Allen Hynek and Keyhoe. Which I am trying to obtain the books written by them.

The Air force/Project Blue Book always denied the UFO sighting phenomenon as some kind of natural occurrence. When a couple of patrolman tried to follow the oval light for over an hour, they (Project Blue book) made a ridiculous statement that they chased the morning star!

View all my reviews

Jan 3, 2016

Review: 177 Dumbest Criminal Stories - International

177 Dumbest Criminal Stories - International 177 Dumbest Criminal Stories - International by Leonard Birdsong
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I got this book as free for kindle. I expected much more humor from this book but disappointing. The author Leonard Birdsong has given a nice and brief introduction to each country and their law makers. And sometimes the law of the land allows some to escape.

A couple of news I find humorous is given below:

1. (Germany) Hello... Hello.. Police in Coburg recently pulled over a suspected drunken driver. They asked him to blow into a Breathalyzer, but the main thought it was a cell phone and tried to use it to call his lawyer. "We didn't really need the reading," one officer contended. "There aren't many sober people who would do that.

2. (Canada) A letter carrier refused to deliver mail to a home in Winnipeg because one of the front steps was two inches higher than the 12 inch step requirement limit that the Canadian post office puts on private homes. The homeowner is appealing the decision, but he may have to use more email.

3. (Canada) Police are trying to clear the name of a man suspected of killing his wife back in the 1960's when she disappeared. Marvin Johnson, who died in the 1990's, became a suspect because he didn't report his wife, Lucy, missing until she had been gone for four years. Police in a Vancouver suburb highlighted the cold case recently and discovered that Lucy had simply left and remarried and was living under a different name in a different town. looks like Gone Girl story

4. (Canada) A family in Guelph, Ontario that had not realized their home had been burglarized were surprised to get all their stolen possessions back the next day with an apology. When the family arrived back home after a short trip they hadn't noticed a screen door had been cut and an Xbox and digital camera were missing. The next morning they found a plastic bag hanging on the front door containing the electronics, $450 to fix the door and an anonymous not stating, "I have been having a very hard time financially lately and I made the worst mistake of my life. (A good thief)

5. (Brazil) One woman who stood for an election was arrested in her car she had in possession leaflets each having a package of heroin. (To get votes politicians tend to give money but heroin!)


View all my reviews

Jan 2, 2016

Review: Lost City of the Incas

Lost City of the Incas Lost City of the Incas by Hiram Bingham
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Hiram Bingham is an explorer and politician who made public the existence of Inca citadel of Machu Picchu in the year 1911. J.J.Nunez a prefect in Cuzco convinced him about Inca ruins. And then Hiram Bingham organized Yale Peruvian Expedition.

The book had a lengthy introduction by Hugh Thomson about the life and exploration of Hiram Bingham III.

I like to quote why the Lost City of Incas is called Machu Picchu.

"The ruins of what we now believe was the lost city of Vilcapampa the Old, perched on top of a narrow ridge lying below the peak of Machu Picchu, are called the ruins of Machu Picchu because when we found them no one knew what else to call them. And that name has been accepted and will continue to be used even though no one now disputes that this was the site of ancient Vilcapampa."

The writing style of Hiram Bingham is worthy to mention, compact writing. After reading this book I wanted to visit the cloud embracing Machu Picchu and feel the life in the mountains.


View all my reviews