Dec 31, 2017

Maya Padagu

மாயப்படகு

Fantasy themed short story. Not bad, taking into consideration that this story was written when the author was 17 years old, we have to praise his fertile imagination.

Dec 24, 2017

Long Road To Abilene

I came to know about this book through Men’s Adventures Paperback from the Facebook group. My first reading on the western genre, written beautifully by Robert Vaughan, friends from the group had told me that he was one of the under rated, prolific writer.

The hero of the novel is an old man named Cade McCall. One writer Owen Wister visits his palatial home to write his biography. And the story is revealed through the pages of the writer.

long_road_to_abilene


Cade McCall life changes when civil war breaks, he enlists in the army leaving his love life. After surviving the battle he was captured and held in prison camp. There he makes friends with Jed, Pogue and Dolan they became inseparable. They hatch a fool proof plan for escape but someone in their circle leaks and Cade gets the punishment. After the war he was released he goes back to his home to find that his lover had married his brother believing Cade had died in the war.


Robert Vaughan

The author of the book Robert Vaughan


As the life turns sour Cade leaves the house and helps his brother in paying the mortgage. On the way Cade was abducted from a bar and made a sailor against his wishes. When the time came Cade escapes from the clutches and became a free man. Destiny makes him a drover, there he finds Abilene a city without law. He fights the villains and uphold the law. The ending is so fast and I was not satisfied because much of Cade’s story is not fully narrated then I came to know at the end that this is a part of his adventure.

The story has all the action, romance and suspense. I liked the book and eagerly waiting to read other books on McCall.

My rating 5 Stars.


Dec 16, 2017

Benjamin Franklin: A Life From Beginning to End




Many years back I have read his biography. This book recalled most to my memory. The book provides lot of information on one of the Founding Fathers of United States of America, Benjamin Franklin.

Hourly History does a great job of offering small and concise book on famous people. Kudos to their tireless work. 

Dec 5, 2017

Theatrics Graphic Novel

Couple of days back I received a copy of Theatrics, a graphic novel from Net Galley in exchange for an honest review. Written by Neil Gibson, illustrations by Leonardo Gonzalez, Jan Wijngaard colorist and Jim Campbell letterer.

theatrics

The story is not that much complex but the story is well narrated via panels. The hero of the novel is Rudy Burns, tall, handsome and attractive Broadway actor. One night while coming out of a bar he was attacked by ruthless criminals. Rudy retaliates but he was assaulted from the back, pounded mercilessly by the thugs.


Rudy wakes up to find he had lost his good looking feature which is very much needed for Broadway. From then on he comes to know he has lost his money, girl friend and his home. Nobody gives him an opportunity. Finally like every beaten soul he makes up his mind for suicide. Before trying to kick the chair Rudy sees a mail and reads it, which tells him how hard he had come up in the life.


Rudy changes his mind, Sammy gives him a idea to become a boxer. Little bit hesitation first then Rudy understands that taking up boxing is also a kind of acting. Sammy creates a myth that Rudy now known as Barbarian Count.

theatrics_artwork2

And Sammy utters these golden words:

“What everyone really wants is not just a story, but a distraction from their tough lives. They want to escape. It’s why they drink. It’s why they read. It’s why Broadway is so popular. It lets people escape. People want to be entertained”.

“If you want to get rich, sell to the rich. If you want to get filthy rich, sell to the dirt poor”.

“You look like a monster, but you care like a father. You’ll scare the opponents, but charm the punters”.

Rudy Burns life turns as he wins matches one by one, his career graph finally shows a upward curve. Now Sammy pushes Rudy further by making him fight with famous boxers, with that ends the first volume of the novel.

In the final pages the author has given some examples of how the graphic novel is done and what fine tunings they have to do before final print.

The artwork and coloring are excellent. The artwork for Rudy Burns character before and after the accident and panel showing the life of Rudy from the tears (the image which I have given below) are worth mentioning. A good method they had followed is instead of giving chapters they separated as Act 1 and Act 2.

theatrics_artwork

An entertaining graphic novel set in 1920s. I enjoyed it very much.

Dec 2, 2017

Batman: Gotham By Gaslight

A superb suspense thriller of the Dark Knight set in the Victorian age. Bruce Wayne returns from London to find that Gotham city crime rate has intensified. The story is by Brian Augustyn and illustrations by Mike Mignola.


batman_mywork

The original artwork is by  cooey2ph, I reworked in Photoshop


Batman has to face the notorious Jack the Ripper prowling the gas lit streets of the city later Bruce Wayne has been charged of murders and locked up in Arkham Asylum.


batman-gotham-by-gaslight_cover

Book cover (when you enlarge the image you can see a building named after the illustrator)

Batman using his detective skills nabs the real Jack the Ripper. And who is that person is a revelation for us.


batman_jack

Batman confronts Jack the ripper

The art work is not that good but the Dark Knight costume is awesome. Given above are the two images right from the story book and another from the art work  cooey2ph in a website.

Nov 28, 2017

The Undead: A Tale from the Night

I have already read Akay brothers “Jason Cage” and have some knowledge of how their storyline will be. But this short story The Undead: A Tale from the Night is entirely different. After reading couple of pages I had a doubt is this is from Stephen King!


the undead

Our dead are never dead to us, until we have forgotten them.

– George Eliot


The above line is the first line of the book, the idea I grasp from the blurb and this line is entirely different after reaching the final page.


A first time father expecting a baby is the one line of the story. The story is told in first person narrative. The book has many gory moments as mentioned in the blurb we surely need guts to read. I have read this book 2 times, for the second time it really took me two days to sit and read it again.


This story is for the fans of mystery & thriller, fans especially those who like Stephen King will praise this book on the writing style.

Nov 23, 2017

Alexander the Great: A Life From Beginning to End (Kindle Edition)

Another wonderfully written concise book on History. The introduction part is very much captivating.

alexander

Alexander is the greatest conqueror of all time. He ruled a domain that encompassed the Aegean, Mediterranean, modern day Turkey, Syria, Egypt, Persia and India (small part).

Aristotle_Bust_White_Background_Transparent

Alexander’s mentor Aristotle

The author has given much information on Alexander and as well as about his father Philip of Macedon & Alexander's tutor Aristotle. The book has vivid description on the war tactics used by Alexander. A chapter is allotted how Alexander used myths, legends and psychology in conquering the enemies.


The author has mentioned Alexander’s oratory skills, his compassion towards his soldiers, enemies etc.


Quotes of Alexander from the book:

“We are free men, they are slaves… they will be fighting for pay… we, on the contrary, shall fight for Greece, and our hearts will be in it.” – Alexander to his troops on the eve of the Battle of Issus, as quoted by Arrian.


“An army of lions lead by a sheep is better than an army of sheep led by a lion.”


Nothing is impossible to him who will but try.


“The Strongest” – Alexander on his death bed when asked who he wished to name as his successor.

A very good book and I like to recommend this to history buffs like me. My rating is 5 stars.

Nov 17, 2017

Nostradamus: A Life From Beginning to End

“I will be seated at night in my secret study,
Alone, sitting upon a stool of brass;
A flame shall leap forth from the solitude,
Granting that which is not believed to be in vain.”
—Nostradamus

The book is concise and well written about the life of Michel de Nostredame, better known via the Latin form Nostradamus. He was born on December 14th 1503 in a small commune called Saint-Remy-de-Provence in the south of France. Nostradamus grandfather was a decisive force in his life. He studied medicine at the age of 14. Married to Henriette d’Encausse and had two children.


When the plague swept Europe, though Nostradamus was a physician he was not able to save his wife and children. After that he wandered over France. Later he settled and started his profession along with his study in occult.

In the year 1547, he settled in Salon-de-Provence, there he married a rich widow Anne Ponsarde, she give birth to six  children. Nostradamus moved away from his medical profession and took up occult science. He published almanac which became a hit and he become famous. Even the Queen of France Catherine de' Medici consulted him and later appointed him as Counsellor.

After publishing 11 almanacs Nostradamus wrote the famous Century  it had over 1200 quatrains, unfortunately only 946 of them remain today. At that time people like him are termed heretics and Inquisition prevailed. Nostradamus cleverly wrote the quatrains which would include not only the true languages of the old Masters— Latin and Greek— but also Italian and even a dialect from the Provence area of France which was unique to the region.

The author has written neutrally about Nostradamus prophecies. And he has made clear that we have to decide by our own wisdom.

A good book for reading from Hourly History.

Nov 12, 2017

Odessa Sea - Book Review

My 11th outing with Dirk Pitt adventures.


It is February 1917, Black Sea as Russian Imperial Navy ship Kerch is under attack in Odessa by Ottoman warships. The ship is overwhelmed soon and obliterated Kerch sinks. The story then jumps to April 1955, as Tupolev Tu-4 carrying deadly cargo crashes on the Black Sea killing all. Present time, now our hero Dirk Pitt receives a mysterious Mayday signal from Crimean Star. When Pitt and Al reaches the spot they find all the crew except one dead with a foul odor in the air. Trouble finds Pitt, entering the Crimean Star opens the Pandora box and nonstop adventure for us. 


There are many questions pops up while reading the novel such as what is the relation between Russian Tsar and British in World War I? Why Tech Billionaire and drone manufacturer Martin Hendriks finances a Bulgarian black market smuggler? Why Martin wants to start a war between US and Russia? all these are neatly answered by the author. The villains Mankedo and Martin Hendriks are more intelligent and calculative in their steps. Sometimes they outwit our hero Pitt. We can comprehend Clive's unique formula of intertwining four separate plots of the story and merging them in the final chapters without flaw. 


Inclusion of Dirk Pitt Jr. and Summer Pitt characters adds the needed pace to the story, we can feel Pitt Jr. showing of his father Dirk Pitt skills and humor. That's not all St. Julien Perlmutter aids Pitt's kids in finding the lost treasure which in turn help in Dirk Pitt's adventure. I find that Pitt Jr. and Summer have shared Pitt's action parts. 



I enjoyed the action scenes of Dirk Pitt, for example the technique used by Pitt for escaping from the closed tunnel, when the NUMA submersible was damaged by the villains the escape seems to be remote but the coolness of Dirk Pitt emerges once again, understanding the scientific fact of anoxic water and its importance in the destruction and getting hold the RDS-5 bomb in the climax, what more a Dirk Pitt fan needs. 

This novel is for Clive Cussler and Dirk Pitt fans like me.

Nov 8, 2017

The Phantom - The Treasure Of The Skull Cave

The comic book I read is 70s reprint, the library book has missing cover art. I liked the story as it re-created the Phantom myth and beautiful one liners.



The story opens with the introduction of Cappy Swargo and Pirate Pete. Soon their adventure lead to one common place "JAIL". In their next cell Llongo tribesman Buba was imprisoned. Over hearing their talk about treasures and treasure hunt, Buba tells them about the legend of treasures of the skull cave. At first they did not believe later Buba's tells them that he was the fan bearer for his uncle, he accompanied him to the skull cave and was a witness. He further tells them that to reach the treasure they have to cross the jungle and enter the Deep Woods, evade the poison people and most importantly the Phantom. 



The next day on the way to the trail Cappy Swargo arranges his friends for the escapade. After their escape they meet his influential friend 'The General". He explains the treasure to the General who had dire need of funds for the revolution. The General finances for the expedition to the deep woods. They plan to gas the tribe & Phantom and loot the treasure.



A larger part of the team waits near the dead volcano as Cappy Swargo and Buba venture into the deep woods. After a week journey they find the skull cave, Cappy Swargo asks Buba to hide the poisonous gas bomb and wait for his signal. Cappy acts that he was lost in the jungle as the Bandar tribe takes him to Phantom. The Ghost who walks is very clever and he ascertains that Cappy is acting. Later that night Phantom gives Cappy a guided tour to his major treasure room.


Did Cappy Swargo and Buba accomplished the mission? What happened to The General in the end are all answered in the remaining pages of the book. 


A superb story line with cunning characters and enjoyable read. I finished the comic book within 30 minutes but took me 2 hours to write a review!


Phantom - The Shining City

In this adventure The Ghost who walks meets a seductress named Athena Siossi. She ask permission the Phantom to cross Bengali. Phantom allows her at the same time he follows her gang. They reach the east end of Bengali to a city called New Athens where the Greeks are awaiting for their God Athena. 



Phantom understands that she has deceived the people of new Athens that she was Athena the Goddess of War and Wisdom. Phantom was taken into custody, Athena gives an option to be on her side and rule with her or face death. Phantom opts for the second choice. The next morning Phantom enters the tournament of death.



Did Phantom win the tournament and what happens to Athena Siossi are told in the concluding pages of the comic book.

The cover artwork is by Newton, the illustrations are good. I am little bit disappointed in the story line.

Nov 6, 2017

Review: Doctor Who: Four Doctors Special FCBD 2017 Edition

Doctor Who: Four Doctors Special FCBD 2017 Edition Doctor Who: Four Doctors Special FCBD 2017 Edition by Alex Paknadel
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A free comic book I downloaded through Google Play Books. I am a fan of time travel stories and Doctor Who is about time travel. I was little bit disappointed when story ended in 20 pages with a cliffhanger. The writer is Alex Paknadel and superb artwork by illustrators Mariano Laclaustra, Pier Brito & Nico Selma.


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Nov 4, 2017

The Ghost Who Died Twice

A different story from the Phantom, every time a new Phantom takes up his position either the old Phantom is in death bed or mortally wounded. But this story starts when Guran asks the Ghost who walks why that 11th phantom took over in 1757 when 10th Phantom was still alive and the death of the 10th Phantom was in 1758. 


The Ghost who walks enters the chronicle room to know about the story. The year was 1757 when Marianne and her son Chris (11th Phantom) were returning from France to Denkali on board Ile De France. But the Singh brotherhood headed by Ashar and his pirates surrounds the Ile De France and tries to kill Chris, the Phantom intervenes and both Phantom and Ashar take up their sword to settle. The cunning Ashar fires two shots on Phantom subsequently the Bandars and Muri tribe enters the ship and the pirates are overwhelmed. They escape, the tribes people takes the wounded Phantom and his son to the skull cave. 


The Phantom's right hand and his face are badly wounded. The medicine man treats and Phantom loses his right arm and his face becomes disfigured. The 10th Phantom hands over the good sign ring to the 11th Phantom and his son takes the oath. As the 10th Phantom regains his health after some months he vows to kill Ashar. Then the 10th Phantom leaves the skull cave and practices with his left arm for combat. 


Did the 10th Phantom took revenge over Ashar? and how did the Phantom died are all revealed in the remaining pages on the comic book.

Phantom uses a different mask after he recuperates and Phantom undergoing vigorous training to get his health back made me thought of Rocky movie.

The artwork is excellent with a good story line and enjoyable read for Phans (short for Phantom fans).

Review: James Bond #4

James Bond #4 James Bond #4 by Warren Ellis
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Excellent art work, superb panels of Bond hand to hand combat. The story ends in cliffhanger as James Bond stuck inside the lab.

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Review: The Bible Secret

The Bible Secret The Bible Secret by Will Edwards
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The book is around 50 pages and the author has made into two parts. The first part deals with Apologetic's with articles about the message of Jesus, the alternative, the religion, God's creative process and The Plain Truth.

Part 2 The White Stone, the articles include The Secret, My own story, Are you ready?, Activating the promise.

The author Will Edwards have written so beautifully and elaborately about the secret in understanding the bible. Such as what really is Kingdom of God, the White stone. He had pointed out what the bible really says and what we really should understand. Another instance is the difference between religious and spirituality.

A good book. The note from this book I like to share:

Jesus was, most notably, misunderstood by the religious people of his day: the very people who, if their hearts had been pure and their minds had been open, should have understood him.


View all my reviews

Oct 28, 2017

A Column Of Fire - Book Review

"We hanged him in front of Kingsbridge Cathedral. It is the usual place for executions. After all, if you can't kill a man in front of God's face you probably shouldn't kill him at all...

I was responsible for his death...

He was the last of many men I sent to hell, but he made me think of the first..." - Ned Willard, a spy in Elizabethan court.

I have read "The Pillars of the Earth" but not the second Kingsbridge series "World Without End" and this book "A Column Of Fire" the third series can be read as a standalone novel. 


What more drama can one need as the author Ken Follett has chosen turbulent 16th century England. The novel touches the rise of legendary Elizabeth Tudor, how she became the Queen and how she used the professional secret service to hold to her throne till her death. With the actual historical characters the author have used his imagination to create most lovable and most hate able fictional characters. I like to write about the 5 most important characters.

1. Ned Willard

A Kingsbridge resident and son of Alice who lost her fortune by the intervention of Catholic church. Then he witness the burning of a Protestant believer in Kingsbridge which made him emotional to choose Elizabeth, she promising religious tolerance. Ned wanted his country to be a place where Catholics and Protestants don't kill each other and for that he thought that Elizabeth Tudor should ascend the throne. A significant reason for Ned to join Elizabeth Tudor side first as an assistant to his patron Sir William Cecil and then to the spymaster Sir Francis Walsingham.

His life saw four essential women one his mother Alice, 2nd his lover Margery, 3rd his wife Sylvie Palot and 4th Queen Elizabeth. Unfortunately all his loved women predeceased him. Each character on their own, influences his life and his progress which we can grasp from the novel. And finally the author has made a question did Elizabeth was tolerant to Catholics? did she achieved what Ned thought off?

2. Sylvie Palot

Daughter of Giles Palot a printer in France. They belong to Protestant church and France Government killed Protestants without mercy. They secretly sell Protestant bibles. Sylvie falls in love with Pierre Aumande (an illegitimate son of Guise family) unknown to her that Pierre is spy sent by Francois the duke of Guise to know the whereabouts of protestants. On the day of their marriage Pierre betrays Sylvie's family, she loses her father and her fortune. Then she and her mother lives in a pathetic condition. I had to shed tears when I read that she was not having any money to buy food and she was tempted to become a whore. Penury drives her to that extent but God intervenes and saves her from the sin. She then becomes a seller of papers and ink in France. But her religious faith makes her to sell bibles. Sylvie a smart and daring girl she goes outside her country and orders bibles then she imports them into her country with necessary bribe. Her life makes a turn when she meets Ned Willard, knowing his past life she marries him. They make a great pair, unfortunately she cannot bear children and dies at the hands of Rollo, Margery's brother.

3. Margery

A girl from Fitzgerald household who loves Ned but political intervention makes her to marry Bart, son of Earl of Shiring. Later her father in law rapes her and she gets pregnant unknown to Bart. Even though she is Catholic she does not like her country to be with war with one another. During Ned's visits to Kingsbridge Margery loses her control and they make love. Again she becomes pregnant and bears a son resembling Ned. With her husband Bart she gives asylum to many Catholic priest sent by his brother Rollo who is also known as Jean Langlias a conspirator along with France and Spain help tires to assassinate Elizabeth. After Bart's death she marries her love of her life Ned. In later years she has to choose the side did she made a good choice? her decision becomes the pivotal point of the novel.

4. Pierre Aumande

The most loathsome character we will ever despise in A Column Of Fire. Born as an illegitimate he was not accepted by Guise family. He lives by deceiving others until he meets duke of Guise Francois. He asks him to penetrate the protestant group and get the address of the persons. Pierre finishes the task but he did not gets the due acknowledgement. After the death of Francois, Pierre acts fast and becomes the advisor to Henri, son of Francois Guise. His progress is halted by his marriage with a maid. Later he kills her. The author has picked up the interpretation of Jean-Louis Bourgeon, that the Guise family was behind the St. Bartholomew massacre. And Ken Follett cleverly uses Pierre and Henri characters in the massacre. Pierre does all the sins in name of God, at the end he gets the needed punishment.

5. Rollo Fitzgerald

Very cunning and intelligent antagonist of the novel, his involvement with Pierre increases the pace of the novel. A staunch catholic believer who despises Elizabeth and Ned Willard. The person who sacrifices his life for the cause and becomes Jean Langlias the most wanted criminal in England. He is the reason for not allowing Margery to marry Ned, conspires with Pierre to eliminate Queen Elizabeth, becomes the secret messenger for Mary Queen of Scots when she is in imprisoned in a castle, later a reason to her death, killing Sylvie Palot, burning protestants in Kingsbridge, cheating Alice, along with catholic church and the sin goes on. His final mission is to kill King James I in the parliament. Did he succeeded in his plan? The most elusive man hunted for many years and how he was caught are in the remaining pages of the story.

There are many more characters which adds pace to the story. One such is Ebrima Dabo first a farmer in West Africa, then a soldier, a prisoner of war, a slave in Seville, a soldier again in the Netherlands and at last a rich Antwerp iron maker.

I liked the vivid description given by the author on St. Bartholomew's day massacre, the conquest of Spanish Armada and the execution of Mary Queen of Scots. I also read the article about the cover design, the artist using the images of stacking burnt out papers and the symbol of Tudor in the center emphasizing the theme of the novel.

As I mentioned already what more drama is needed for the historical fiction buffs like me. I thoroughly enjoyed the novel. A big thanks to Ken Follett for making me  to read, rejoice and live with the 16th Century characters for the past one month.

Oct 20, 2017

Review: Ivan the Terrible: A Life From Beginning to End

Ivan the Terrible: A Life From Beginning to End Ivan the Terrible: A Life From Beginning to End by Hourly History
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book is very handy to know about Ivan IV also known as Ivan the Terrible. Ivan's grand father managed to free Russia from the Mongol horde. When Ivan was 3 years old he became the Grand Prince of Moscow.

Though he became the King at very young age, the country was ruled his regents. He was made to starve by them. After attaining the rightful age Ivan punished those who tortured him.

Much information is provided how Ivan came to known as Ivan the Terrible.

A good book recommended for history buffs.


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Oct 9, 2017

Review: Mayan Civilization: A History From Beginning to End

Mayan Civilization: A History From Beginning to End Mayan Civilization: A History From Beginning to End by Hourly History
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Less information about the Maya's. The book is good at getting basics about the birth of this civilization. Not much is given about the kings also.

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Oct 3, 2017

Fallen Eagle - Book Review

First of all I have to thank Thistle publishing and Net Galley for giving me a copy to read and review this superb book written by Robin Cross. 


The book has an exhaustive account about the last days of the Third Reich. From the reading we can understand how much the author has took pain in collecting the relevant information of the Second World War, the heroes & zeros of the war, types of war machines used and in depth detail to the Corps level. 


Boeing B-17 Flying Fortress (daylight bombing) picture comment from Wikipedia, B-17 Flying Fortresses from the 398th Bombardment Group fly a bombing run to Neumunster, Germany, on April 13, 1945, less than one month before the German surrender on May 8

The author's description about Hitlers status is riveting "In the summer of 1942, Hitler had sat at the centre of a vast communications web stretching from the Atlantic coast to the Caucasus. Now his links with the outside world had dwindled to a switchboard of the size required to run a modest hotel, one radio transmitter, and one radiotelephone link with the OKW headquarters at Zossen, fifteen miles south of Berlin".


Avro Lancaster RAF bomber (most successful of the night bombers in World War II)

The author has cleverly placed journal entries, letters and documents, which gives an authenticated look but sometimes they might turn a bit odd and feels us to skip. I like to quote one account given by Janina Bauman, who had escaped from the Warsaw Ghetto in 1943 and was living on a farm when a German soldier was hiding in her farm.

…. Just before dusk I went out to fetch some wood. In the semi-dark shed, crammed with logs and tools, something stirred. I sensed a human presence. I pushed the door wide open to let more light. Only then did I notice a flap of field-grey military coat sticking out from the between two logs. Calmly, I locked the shed and ran back to the cottage. In the kitchen, Mrs.Pietrzyk, tired and worn after the restless night, was busy cooking. Gasping for breath, I told her what I had seen. But she was not surprised. She already knew. Staring full in my face with her ancient, all knowing eyes, she said, as if quoting from a holy book, 'Whoever comes under my roof seeking shelter, no matter who he is, no matter what he believe in, he will be safe with me'. In a flash I understood. Shocked, I watched her fill a tin bowl with hot dumplings and pour pork fat over it. 'Hold it child', she screeched in her usual way. "Take it to him'. As if mesmerized, I blindly obeyed and went back to the shed. It seemed as deserted as before, even the field-grey flap had disappeared. I stood benumbed, the hot dish burning my fingers and filling the air with a strong smell of food. There was a brief commotion behind the pile of logs and unkempt head suddenly popped out. I saw the pale face of the German, a boy rather than a man, staring at me in terror. He grabbed the steaming bowl from my hands and fell on the food with unspeakable greed. He was still trembling from hunger and fear. For a long while I watched him blankly. I felt no pity, no hatred, no joy. 

The author Robin Cross has given vivid account on the rivalry between Zhukov and Ivan Konev and how Stalin utilized their rivalry for his goal. 


Zhukov: In World War II he participated in multiple battles, ultimately commanding the 1st Belorussian Front in the Battle of Berlin, which resulted in the defeat of Nazi Germany, and the end of the War in Europe.


Ivan Konev : He was a Soviet military commander who led Red Army forces on the Eastern Front during World War II, retook much of Eastern Europe from occupation by the Axis Powers, and helped in the capture of Germany's capital, Berlin.



Cemetery Heidefriedhof in Dresden

A soul stirring account of the bombing of 7th largest city in Germany, Dresden, was provided in the book. The author has mentions the people behind the operation and ends that chapter with quotes from cemetery Heidefriedhof in Dresden:

"How many died? Who knows the count?; In your wounds one sees the ordeal; Of the nameless who in here were conflagrated; In the hellfire made by hands of man".




North American P-51 Mustang picture comment P-51D of 374th Fighter Squadron, with under wing drop tanks.


The book ends at 88% and the remaining 12% is about Appendix 1 Key Items of Weaponry, Appendix 2 Notes on Personalities (which is more important as some might find difficultly in finding who the person the author mentions about) and select Bibliography.  


I thoroughly enjoyed the book, with 500 pages this book is must for World War II enthusiasts. 

Sep 30, 2017

Dirk Pitt Collections

Two decades back I read Inca Gold from a lending library, I was hooked into Mr.Clive Cussler's writing, but those days it is difficult to know and find what other books the author has written and I have no idea about the continuation of Dirk Pitt.

In the age of internet the task become simpler. After joining goodreads I started to add the books authored by the Grand Master of Adventure Clive Cussler. I was obsessed with the charming, charismatic and dare devilry of Dirk Pitt. 

Below are the 12 books I have collected out of 24. Half way, hope I will collect the rest of the adventure series. 

1. Dirk Pitt Series #4, Raise the Titanic! published in 1976.


2. Dirk Pitt Series #6, Night Probe published in 1981.


3. Dirk Pitt Series #9 Treasure, published in 1988.


4. Dirk Pitt Series #10 Dragon, published in 1990.


5. Dirk Pitt Series #11 Inca Gold, published in 1994.


6. Dirk Pitt Series #12, Shock Wave, published in 1996.


7. Dirk Pitt Series #16, Valhalla Rising, published in 2001.


8. Dirk Pitt Series #17, Trojan Odyssey, published in 2003.


9. Dirk Pitt Series #18, Black Wind, published in 2004.


10. Dirk Pitt Series #22, Poseidon's Arrow, published in 2012.





11. Dirk Pitt Series #23, Havana Storm, published in 2014.




12. Dirk Pitt Series #24, Odessa Sea, published in 2016.


13. Clive Cussler And Dirk Pitt Revealed, published in 1998, the book is about Dirk Pitt, the recurring characters and other characters that have appeared in his novels and brief synopses of the Dirk Pitt novels from Pacific Vortex to Flood Tide.