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1. Running the Books: The Adventures
2. ChiRunning: A Revolutionary Approach
3. Running Blind (Jack Reacher, No.
4. Dead Spy Running
5. Running with Scissors: A Memoir
6. Daniels' Running Formula - 2nd
7. Runner's World Complete Book of
8. The Barefoot Running Book Second
9. Running Anatomy
10. Running Scared
11. Barefoot Running: How to Run Light
12. What I Talk About When I Talk
13. Lore of Running, 4th Edition
14. Running Hot
15. Always Running: La Vida Loca:
16. Running in the Family
17. The Running Man
18. Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms
19. The Inmates Are Running the Asylum:
20. The Complete Book of Running for

1. Running the Books: The Adventures of an Accidental Prison Librarian
by Avi Steinberg
Hardcover: 416 Pages (2010-10-19)
list price: US$26.00 -- used & new: US$15.82
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0385529090
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

Avi Steinberg is stumped. After defecting from yeshiva to Harvard, he has only a senior thesis essay on Bugs Bunny to show for his effort. While his friends and classmates advance in the world, he remains stuck at a crossroads, unable to meet the lofty expectations of his Orthodox Jewish upbringing. And his romantic existence as a freelance obituary writer just isn’t cutting it. Seeking direction—and dental insurance—Steinberg takes a job as a librarian in a tough Boston prison.
The prison library counter, his new post, attracts con men, minor prophets, ghosts, and an assortment of quirky regulars searching for the perfect book and a connection to the outside world. There’s an anxious pimp who solicits Steinberg’s help in writing a memoir. A passionate gangster who dreams of hosting a cooking show titled Thug Sizzle. A disgruntled officer who instigates a major feud over a Post-it note. A doomed ex-stripper who asks Steinberg to orchestrate a reunion with her estranged son, himself an inmate. Over time, Steinberg is drawn into the accidental community of outcasts that has formed among his bookshelves — a drama he recounts with heartbreak and humor. But when the struggles of the prison library — between life and death, love and loyalty — become personal, Steinberg is forced to take sides.

Running the Books is a trenchant exploration of prison culture and an entertaining tale of one young man’s earnest attempt to find his place in the world while trying not to get fired in the process. 

... Read more

Customer Reviews (24)

5-0 out of 5 stars Looking at Prison Culture
Steinberg, Avi, "Running the Books: The Adventures of an Accidental Prison Librarian", Nan A. Talese, 2010.

Looking at Prison Culture

Amos Lassen

When Avi Steinberg graduated from Harvard, he thought he would become a rabbi, but he realized that neither his faith nor his chosen lifestyle made that a suitable career choice. At a loss as to what to do now that he was out of college, he applied to work in a Boston jail library. He was responsible not only for the day-to-day functioning of the library but also for teaching inmates creative writing (in itself a noble endeavor especially when he consider the level of education among prison inmates). He was tested not only by the inmates but by the prison staff as well. Here he tells us what went on his life at the prison and shares what is was like to react to those who were on the fringe of society. Steinberg was not aware of the challenges he would have to face. At the prison in Boston where he worked, his patrons turned books into weapons and Steinberg is charmed by the rough poetry of inmate essays and "kites" (secret messages) that he found hidden in some of the books.

Steinberg's prose is excellent especially as he manages to bring wit and seriousness together. He gives us a portrait of prison life that many of us would not have the opportunity to see. This is more than a book about a prison library, though; it is a book about faith and love and religion and crime and above all, the human condition. The narrative is filled with moral compromises, moments of redemption and games of power.We see that Steinberg loves the English language by the choice of words that he uses and his descriptions are detailed. Steinberg gives us something to think about while telling us a fascinating story. The portrait of the prison that he gives us is harsh and touching at the same time. His characters are complex, some are violent, some are cruel and many are dangerous. My mother would have said that this was no job for a nice Jewish boy.

There is a good deal of sorrow in the lives of the inmates and a good deal of unrest and violence. Several of the characters die before we close the covers of the book. Right from college, Steinberg took a job as an obituary writer but he did not get the direction he wanted in life and so he took the prison job (it also gave him dental insurance).
The book explores prison culture and is really about how one person tries to find a place for himself in this world and the result is a wonderful read.

4-0 out of 5 stars Gelati's Scoop
This novel opened my eyes a little wider. Avi Steinberg has given us a narrative from the other side of life, willingly, the tale of a librarian in a prison. He meets all types of people, both male and female, and their worlds collide. I am just going to give you a little taste of what is said on the back cover: "Running The Books is a trenchant personal exploration of prison culture and an entertaining tale of one young man's earnest attempt to find his place in the world while trying not to get fired in the process."
The novel was a mix of so many different emotions: love, violence, redemption, camaraderie. Steinberg doesn't miss much in the way of description and portrays the gritty no nonsense feel of what it is like to be behind bars, on both sides. One of the cons makes the comment late in the book: "now you know what it is like to see me behind bars." It is a very unsettling picture, as the character was only seen from that point by our librarian in the library, being polite, helpful, to the point where he was described as not being able to injure a paperback.
Running the Books is not the average prison novel. The viewpoint and narrative are interesting and intense. The thought process used by our librarian is an added bonus as it doesn't come from one of the convicts. He sees them and their surroundings in a different light, a different way, and that gives them that sliver of hope they were looking for but hadn't received. The novel itself is moving, driven and difficult to put down, I was happy to have a chance to read it. Shake up your schedule a little bit; go into solitary confinement with this and come out better on the side, having been the prisoner of a good novel.
What are you reading today? Check us out and become our friend on Shelfari & Linkedin. Go to Goodreads and become our friend there and suggest books for us to read and post on. You can also follow us on Twitter, and the Gelati's Scoop Facebook Fan Page. Did you know you can shop directly on Amazon by clicking the Gelati's Store Tab on our blog?Thanks for stopping by today; We will see you tomorrow. Have a great day. [...]

4-0 out of 5 stars I enjoyed the "watcher" element of Steinberg's view as an outsider commenting on the sociology of prison life
As a librarian myself, I was looking forward to reading Steinberg's book. But, while somewhat interesting, it wasn't the blockbuster I hoped it would be. Interesting, yes -- but, a bit hopped-up and all over the place in the beginning chapters and then slowing down to being more quirky in the later chapters than anything else. It's difficult to read continuously in a few sittings, but fun to read in small bites -- as, there are sections that are well-written and quite interesting.

It has a good hook -- here's geeky, Jewish kid that's a Harvard graduate who -- needing health insurance -- snares a job off Craigslist as a prison librarian at the Suffolk County House of Corrections in the South Bay-Boston area. We read how he tries to find his "place" in the library amid the walking debris that comprises the criminal class. He soon learns that he's caught between the prison guards and the prisoners themselves, even getting mugged by one of his patrons on the outside.

I liked the book more for the "watcher" element of Steinberg's view as an outsider commenting on the sociology of prison life as he saw it on a day-to-day basis than from the perspective of a librarian.

R. Neil Scott
Middle Tennessee State University

4-0 out of 5 stars An enjoyable read, despite some organizational flaws and too much detail
I wasn't sure what to expect when I started reading this book. The premise intrigued me so I dove right in and here are my thoughts.

Aspects of the book I enjoyed:

- I like reading about the secret lives of others and there is so much secrecy involved in the prison system that the public will never know. Hearing about all these secret codes, classifications, games, classes...etc. that happen in the prison was really interesting. They are still told from the point of view of a regular civilian, like you and I, but it's also interesting to see how much more deeply involved the author gets the longer he works there.

- Author does a great job at helping you connect with people and characters you would never think of caring about in real life. Murderers, thieves and pimps are far more likeable when you hear about their struggles and challenges. Thankfully the author does not try to justify the crimes they've committed (although they certainly try to justify them to him sometimes).

- The book has a nice mix of anecdotes that either made me laugh out loud (yes I actually did) or made me tear up. I think the author found a good balance between entertaining/humorous stories and emotional/moving ones.

Aspects of the book I didn't enjoy:

- The book could use more organization. The narrative jumps back and forth quite a bit and so characters are being left aside and then revisited a while later. There could have been more flow between plot events.

- There were points in the book when the author starting getting overly ambitious and delving into philosophical questions about what a "prison" really is and what it means to be locked up in a prison physically versus emotionally ..etc. There was room for reflections like this in the book but some parts just seemed to ramble on a bit too much.

- There was a little too much description of the prison building/other buildings and settings that did not add anything to the story (at least in my humble opinion).


This book was enjoyable to read once I accepted the lack of organization and skipped over the parts that contained too much detail for me. This is a case where the interesting and intriguing parts of the story outweigh any negative points so overall, a worthwhile read.

4-0 out of 5 stars A humorous, intimate look at prison life from the inside
No doubt Avi Steinberg never saw his life coming...a Harvard-educated Orthodox Jew and fledgling obit writer who becomes a prison librarian. This is the stuff good memoirs are made of and Steinberg handles his subject with humor, humility and honesty.

His hardened patrons, an intimidating assembly of murderers, rapists and gangsters, discuss with him everything from Steinberg's personal life to the intimacies of their own transgressions, always trying to lure Steinberg from the safety of neutrality to the culture of criminal life. In the end, Steinberg does succumb, taking an active role in some of their lives, revealing more about him, perhaps, than he really means to share. This intrigued me above all, watching the shift from a noncommitted intellectual who becomes a man of action, drawn into the culture, making compromises and decisions that have consequences in both his life and the lives of the prisoners. Though a slow start for me, this was a surprisingly good and original work. Recommended. ... Read more

2. ChiRunning: A Revolutionary Approach to Effortless, Injury-Free Running
by Danny Dreyer, Katherine Dreyer
Paperback: 320 Pages (2009-05-05)
list price: US$15.99 -- used & new: US$9.22
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1416549447
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
A groundbreaking program that teaches you how to run faster and farther with less effort, and prevent and heal injuries, for runners of any age or fitness level.

In ChiRunning, Danny and Katherine Dreyer, well-known walking and running coaches, provide powerful insight that transforms running from a high-injury sport to a body-friendly, injury-free fitness phenomenon. ChiRunning employs the deep power reserves in the core muscles, an approach found in disciplines such as yoga, Pilates, and T'ai Chi.

ChiRunning enables you to develop a personalized exercise program by blending running with the powerful mind-body principles of T’ai Chi:

1. Get aligned. Develop great posture and reduce your potential for injury while running, and make knee pain and shin splints a thing of the past.

2. Engage your core. Shift the workload from your leg muscles to your core muscles, for efficiency and speed.

3. Add relaxation to your running. Learn to focus your mind and relax your body to increase speed and distance.   

4. Make it a Mindful Practice. Maintain high performance and make running a mindful, enjoyable life-long practice.

5. It's easy to learn. Transform your running with the 10-step ChiRunning training program. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (142)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Ultimate Running Book
This book is an absolute must-have for any runner regardless of age, skill or level of running. The sub title is not just a catchy line, it's what this book is truly about. The technique taught changes the way you run on a physical level as well as changing your whole approach to what you're doing. Simple to learn and you can take the time you need to master it. Strongly recommended.

5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing results
Run with gravity not against it. What a novel running concept that I found really works.After running countless painful marathons and 5k/10k's, I read "Chi Running."I revamped my style as the author indicated. Then after a few practice runs I kinda felt a small feeling of chi...Then after a couple weeks, a slightly bigger dose of that chi feeling.All kidding aside, it was only after a month and a half of running and practicing with gradual increases in distance that I felt much more comfortable that I was on the right track. I know that that may seem like a long time for some of you, but, the increase in energy and more importantly the very noticeable decrease in effort was very dramatic for me.After a 5 mile run, I felt like it had been only 2.After 8 miles it felt like only 4-5. The most important thing was I had absolutely no aches or pains in my knees, back or legs.The pains were something that I had thought came with the territory.

It's been over a year now and still perfecting the technique, but, I absolutely love this concept.The book is easy to read and combines a lot of philosophy within the book.The actual Chi technique can be highlighted in a couple of chapters, so it is not extremely complicated.But, putting it all together in a smooth fashion does take work, focus, and practice.Did I say patience as well.Once you have the technique down, you will truely love and appreciate the Chi running concept. (Someone I tried to teach once told me it did feel a lot like learning how to golf... Lot's of detailed instructions on what to do with different body parts.I learned later, not to teach much in the first lesson..just like when you go out to practice.Focus on only a couple things at a time, adding something else piece by piece as you can absorb it.

After several months of training with the Chi method, I dropped 15 minutes off my half marathon time, and almost 30 minutes off my marathon time.I did these times with much less training, but, more focus on the Chi technique and making it 'my own.' That pretty much says it all. So hope you all get that Chi feeling!

3-0 out of 5 stars Take what you want from it
Sorry, but I don't think Chi running is too terribly different from the older "pose" method of running described by Coach Alexander Romanov.A few important adjustments, but not a "revolutionary approach."This might be a very good read for new runners or runners who have never considered their form.

The author implies that Chi running is "effortless" and that you don't use your leg muscles to run which is simply absurd; if it was there would be no need to train.The idea that you use form, posture and stride to work with gravity is very helpful and spot on, but still, one does have to move and lift the legs.

1-0 out of 5 stars Why is the Kindle version more expensive than the paperback?
I enjoy reading on my Kindle, I would rather have all of my reading content on it.I like seeing new titles come out on it, so I was very pleased to see this book that I looked at availble.Until I saw that it was more than if I ordered the paper back.

What are the publishers thinking?Does their greed know no bounds?They have no print set up or fees, no storage fees, no shipping fees and yet they are going to raise the price up for the same digital copy that they sent to the press?Did they somehow grab the music industry's winning PR notebook?

While I want this book I am not supporting the publishing company's short-sighted and greedy take on what they think a digital copy should cost.Amazon had it right when they launched the Kindle $9.99 for hot sellers, yeah I can get behind that but I can't get behind what the publishers strong armed Amazon into.

5-0 out of 5 stars Invaluable guide for runners
I am an asthmatic who has always wanted to run, but I never thought I would be able to run for over a few minutes. I read this book in it's first edition as a library book and it became such an integral part of my excercise program that I renewed it and then came back to the library the day after I finally had to return it so I could check it out again. I decided to buy it without delay. I love the new edition with the different organization and information. I am a beginning runner and started running with this program when I was 40 lbs overweight. Now, about two months later, I have lost 20 pounds and had no injuries. When I started I could barely run for 2 minutes. Now I can run for 20 minutes without to much fatigue. I have also gone off one of my asthma medications, and am hopeful that I will no longer need any medication as my distances and times increase. I am less stressed and more energized than I have ever ben in my life. The form taught in this book is mostly responsible for my success. I also have a history of back pain, and I had none because of the "leveled pelvis" and low impact taught in this book. Very easy to read, common-sense techniques that apply to the rest of your life as well. I am a Senior Vocal Performance Major in college, and the principals have also helped me greatly with my singing. This is a must-buy for anyone who wants to run in a way that is fun, energizing, and efficient. ... Read more

3. Running Blind (Jack Reacher, No. 4)
by Lee Child
Mass Market Paperback: 544 Pages (2007-08-28)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$5.47
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0515143502
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Across the country women are being murdered by a killer who leaves no evidence, no fatal wounds, no signs of struggle, and no clues to a motive. They are, truly, perfect crimes. In fact, the only thing that links the victims is the man they all knew: Jack Reacher.Amazon.com Review
Jack Reacher is back, dragged into what looks like a series of grislyserial murders by a team of FBI profilers who aren't totally sure he'snot the killer they're looking for, but believe that even if he isn't,he's smart enough to help them find the real killer. And what they'vegot on the ex-MP, who's starred in three previous Lee Child thrillers (Tripwire, Die Trying, Killing Floor), is enoughto ensure his grudging cooperation: phony charges stemming from Reacher'sinadvertent involvement in a protection shakedown and the threat ofharm to the woman he loves.

The killer's victims have only one thing in common--all of them brought sexual harassment chargesagainst their military superiors and all resigned from the army after winning their cases. The manner, if not the cause, of their deaths is gruesomely thesame: they died in their own bathtubs, covered in gallons of camouflagepaint, but they didn't drown and they weren't shot, strangled, poisoned,or attacked. Even the FBI forensic specialists can't figure out whythey seem to have gone willingly to their mysterious deaths. Reacherisn't sure whether the killings are an elaborate cover-up forcorruptioninvolving stolen military hardware or the work of a maniacwho's smart enough to leave absolutely noclues behind.This compelling, iconic antihero dead-ends in a lot ofalleys before he finally figures it out, but every one is worthexploring and the suspense doesn't let up for a second.The ending willcome as a complete surprise to even the most careful reader, and asReacher strides off into the sunset, you'll wonder what's in storefor him in his next adventure. --Jane Adams ... Read more

Customer Reviews (151)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Jack Reacher Series continues
I have commented on most of the Jack Reacher books.This one is fairly good; it has all the usual elements of suspense, intrigue, deduction, and revenge.It's good escape (and yes, I have used that before for these books as it is appropriate) writing that you just start reading and get in the flow of, and then suddenly you are hooked, and you have to know what happens.Childs is especially good at suckingyou in to know how his hero will solve the problem(s).

2-0 out of 5 stars confusing the reader on whodunit
On this book I have to get personal. I read five books of Lee Child's, this being the sixth. The others I would all rate four or five, this one is bad. What makes it bad? Well, I had selected the perp but as I continued reading I became confused. Good writer's share the protagonist's knowledge of the crime as it develops with the reader but in this case Child definitely tries to insert false clues. He uses italic type when he switches from Reacher's point of view, I will give him credit for that, he does use third person view point for one of his other characters but then inserts second person point of view for yet another, and I assume he thinks he is playing fair with the reader. We are supposed to know these two italicized inserts are two different people? How many people would know that? Not only that, they are so smoothly inserted I admit I was confused, thought they were the same and was forced to change my choice of perp. When the new one was unfrocked I had to admit I should have known, but that was only because I had taken creative writing courses. I would not think the ordinary reader would note the change in point of view, even I had to go back over the inserts and see that he really did maintain the point of view between the two. I felt cheated, and stupid. The story was interesting, why did he feel he had to use the inserts? They were not essential to the plot line except to confuse the reader. I still have nine Reacher stories to read, I hope I do not encounter this type of writing again.

3-0 out of 5 stars Decent Reacher tale - not the best
Of the first four Jack Reacher novels, this one is the weakest.I'm certainly not a reader who avidly tries to figure out all of the twists and turns before the big reveals at the end.I will quote this from the review: "The ending will come as a complete surprise to even the most careful reader".If you are even paying half-attention to the story you will figure out the killer early on.I looked down at my Kindle when I figured it out and I had read about 23% of the book.Childs actually points it out fairly clearly.So when he unleashed the reveal at the end, I shrugged instead of gasped as I knew who it was for most of the book.

I also felt the relationship between Reacher and Jodie was completely different in this book.You would be hard-pressed to tell they had secretly been in love for 15 years based on their interactions here.Worth a read, but not the best in the series so far.

2-0 out of 5 stars Condition of book
Running Blind was excellent, like all of Lee Child's books.The condition of the book was alittle less than I expected, but still very readable, not torn or pages missing.

2-0 out of 5 stars Disappointing
I've read about all the Jack Reacher books and I was terribly disappointed with this one. It tried to be a "whodunnit" and was short on the usual Reacher mayhem. That in itself isn't terrible, but this story seemed very mechanically cranked out, got awfully repetitive and after a while I really didn't care what happened. Although the ending is a big surprise, getting there wasn't worth it. ... Read more

4. Dead Spy Running
by Jon Stock
Hardcover: 320 Pages (2010-10-26)
list price: US$25.99 -- used & new: US$13.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0312644760
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

Matching the style of le Carré with the high-energy action of Ludlum, Dead Spy Running comes racing out of the gate as the first in a fantastic new series.
From its breathtaking start at the London Marathon, Jon Stock sets a breakneck pace that marks him as a formidable new thriller writer. Dead Spy Running will captivate readers with a story that leaps from a bomb threat in London, to a secret CIA black site in Poland, and on to India, where a spectacular assassination plot threatens to throw world politics into chaos.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

5-0 out of 5 stars superb espionage thriller
Thirty-five thousand runners are testing for the London Marathon.Two of them work for M16 though Agent Daniel is on suspension at full pay; the other is girlfriend Leila who worries about her lover's mental health since his father's death.However, just prior to the start, another operative Myers called Leila with a warning that electronic chatter says something is going to happen at the event.

About fifty minutes into the race, Daniel notices an Asian runner wearing a belt who seems out of place.He further sees two obvious American Secret service agents with another participant who he thinks is the U.S. Ambassador Munroe.He realizes the Asian is wearing a bomb.He learns the Asian is Pradeep from India and terrorists kidnapped his son with the admonition do the mission if you want your offspring to live.The bomb is defused, but Daniel is under suspicion as a terrorist.

Dead Spy Running is a superb espionage thriller, which contains the usual suspects of foreign agents and internal moles.However, what makes the story line super is rivalry between M16 and the CIA, M16 and M15, and the CIA and the Secret Service as each agency fails to work together, but instead prefers front dog status even if it causes problems for their respective country.Fans will appreciate Jon Stock's strong run.

Harriet Klausner

3-0 out of 5 stars Perfectly acceptable, nothing outstanding
While I don't agree with the publisher's claim that this is as good as the Bourne novels, this is a perfectly acceptable thriller to pack in your holiday suitcase.Reading it reminded me in many ways of the British TV series Spooks: it's equally fastpaced and equally unrealistic.The storyline centres on Daniel Marchand, an MI6 officer who has been suspended after his father (the former chief) was linked to an Indian terrorist and forced to resign.Daniel and his girlfriend Leila (another MI6 officer) are running the London Marathon together when he sees a man running behind the American ambassador armed with a bomb.He averts disaster, but MI5 and the Americans are suspicious about why he was on the scene and whether he himself is involved with terrorists.So he's on the run, trying to clear his name and his father's name.

The momentum of the book keeps you reading but there are a few structural problems.The main one is that there are two storylines which don't fully come together: without giving too much away, our hero doesn't really play a role in the book's climax.There are plenty of twists and action, but these are often squandered - delivered as throwaways rather than being maximized.Stereotypical characters make silly decisions (the head of MI5 repeatedly being a prime example).Poor proofreading also means that there are some continuity problems that are unnecessarily distracting.

However as I say, it's all quite readable and dead exciting in parts.The ending sets it up for a sequel and if there is, I'll probably read it.But it's not the new Bourne.

4-0 out of 5 stars For Fans of Le Carre & Bourne
Ten years ago, I read and loved Jon Stock's debut thriller The Riot Act -- about a young counter-cultural class warrior forced to go undercover. It was lean, taut, and had a corker of an ending. Four years ago, I was rather less taken with his followup, The Cardamom Club, which had problems of pacing, over-elaborate plotting, and somewhat sappy romantic content. Now comes his third book (the first of a projected trilogy), which bears all the hallmarks of the blockbuster international spy thriller.

The story kicks off at the London Marathon, where suspended MI6 agent Daniel Marchant happens to be running with his girlfriend, a fellow MI6 agent. Exciting events transpire, and soon thereafter he finds himself in the custody of his own people, and eventually the CIA. It seems his father, who had been head of MI6, was forcibly retired under suspicious circumstances, and now the son is under suspicion as well. More heartpounding events transpire and Daniel soon finds himself on the run from MI5, MI6, and CIA, all while a plot may be unfolding to kill President Obama (the unnamed "new guy") as he visits India.

The pacing problems of Stock's second book are gone, as the story switches back and forth in short bursts between Daniel's attempt to stay alive, flashbacks to his training and relationship with his girlfriend, and the heads of various intelligence agencies snarling at each other in plush offices. While this back and forth construction works for pacing purposes, it also means that the story becomes somewhat fractured between these two fronts, as neither Daniel nor the bureaucrats take center stage. Thankfully, toward the end, these two story lines begin to converge and everything gets a little more fluid and more exciting.

Stock's made no apologies for the influence of John Le Carre and the recent Bourne films on this book -- which is a good thing, since fans of either will find themselves on familiar ground. The intense bureaucratic infighting will appeal to fans of Le Carre, while Daniel's attempt to stay one step ahead of the various intelligence services will appeal to fans of Bourne. On the whole, it's a solid page-turning thriller, with all the requisite insider detail and international color. It gets especially good once on Indian soil, as Stock's familiarity with India enables him to bring a lot of local color to the story. Overall, a solid entry in the international spy thriller genre. ... Read more

5. Running with Scissors: A Memoir
by Augusten Burroughs
Mass Market Paperback: 352 Pages (2006-08-29)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0312938853
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description

RUNNING WITH SCISSORS is the true story of a boy whose mother (a poet with delusions of Anne Sexton) gave him away to be raised by her unorthodox psychiatrist who bore a striking resemblance to Santa Claus. So at the age of twelve, Burroughs found himself amidst Victorian squalor living with the doctor’s bizarre family, and befriending a pedophile who resided in the backyard shed. The story of an outlaw childhood where rules were unheard of, and the Christmas tree stayed up all year-round, where Valium was consumed like candy, and if things got dull, an electroshock therapy machine could provide entertainment. The funny, harrowing, and bestselling account of an ordinary boy’s survival under the most extraordinary circumstances…

Running with Scissors Acknowledgments
Gratitude doesn’t begin to describe it: Jennifer Enderlin, Christopher Schelling, John Murphy, Gregg Sullivan, Kim Cardascia, Michael Storrings, and everyone at St. Martin’s Press. Thank you: Lawrence David, Suzanne Finnamore, Robert Rodi, Bret Easton Ellis, Jon Pepoon, Lee Lodes, Jeff Soares, Kevin Weidenbacher, Lynda Pearson, Lona Walburn, Lori Greenburg, John DePretis, and Sheila Cobb. I would also like to express my appreciation to my mother and father for, no matter how inadvertently, giving me such a memorable childhood. Additionally, I would like to thank the real-life members of the family portrayed in this book for taking me into their home and accepting me as one of their own. I recognize that their memories of the events described in this book are different than my own. They are each fine, decent, and hard-working people. The book was not intended to hurt the family. Both my publisher and I regret any unintentional harm resulting from the publishing and marketing of Running with Scissors. Most of all, I would like to thank my brother for demonstrating, by example, the importance of being wholly unique.
Amazon.com Review
There is a passage early in Augusten Burroughs's harrowing and highly entertaining memoir, Running with Scissors, that speaks volumes about the author. While going to the garbage dump with his father, young Augusten spots a chipped, glass-top coffee table that he longs to bring home. "I knew I could hide the chip by fanning a display of magazines on the surface, like in a doctor's office," he writes, "And it certainly wouldn't be dirty after I polished it with Windex for three hours." There were certainly numerous chips in the childhood Burroughs describes: an alcoholic father, an unstable mother who gives him up for adoption to her therapist, and an adolescence spent as part of the therapist's eccentric extended family, gobbling prescription meds and fooling around with both an old electroshock machine and a pedophile who lives in a shed out back. But just as he dreamed of doing with that old table, Burroughs employs a vigorous program of decoration and fervent polishing to a life that many would have simply thrown in a landfill. Despite her abandonment, he never gives up on his increasingly unbalanced mother. And rather than despair about his lot, he glamorizes it: planning a "beauty empire" and performing an a capella version of "You Light Up My Life" at a local mental ward. Burroughs's perspective achieves a crucial balance for a memoir: emotional but not self-involved, observant but not clinical, funny but not deliberately comic. And it's ultimately a feel-good story: as he steers through a challenging childhood, there's always a sense that Burroughs's survivor mentality will guide him through and that the coffee table will be salvaged after all. --John Moe ... Read more

Customer Reviews (886)

1-0 out of 5 stars boring
I read this book awhile ago. And hated it. I thought it was one of the most self-indulgent, tiresome, bleak, gross (as in "yech") books I've ever read.

I'm sick of disgusting and depressing being touted as deep.

5-0 out of 5 stars it's just good
i do not comprehend negative reviews of this.it is very good.his books are best as audiobooks.

4-0 out of 5 stars Disturbing because it is true
I found the book to be an interesting read and was fasinated by the story.However, after first I didn't realize it was an autobiography.The book is engaging and will keep you turning the pages.Honestly, Augustine endured a lot during his childhood.

5-0 out of 5 stars Twisted and Funny
What an unusual childhood...It is amazing that Augusten was able to become an incredible author. He could have gone either way.

4-0 out of 5 stars This graphic "memoir" entertains!
Right off the bat I have to say I don't believe this is a memoir.To me, this is fiction.Fiction based on real life events, but fiction nonetheless.That being said, it was a funny, irreverent, absurd book.Its too fantastical to believe but that doesn't mean that the story being told wasn't interesting.This family of complete maniacs was hard to not read about.You wanted to see what insanity they would get into next.The sex scenes involving adults and children were graphic and utterly hard to read.Overall, the book is better as fiction because if its true it makes me feel bad for laughing during the book. ... Read more

6. Daniels' Running Formula - 2nd Edition
by Jack Daniels
Paperback: 304 Pages (2005-10-01)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$9.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0736054928
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
Get in the best shape of your running career with the scientifically based training in Daniels’ Running Formula. In the book that Runner’s World magazine called "the best training book," premier running coach Jack Daniels provides you with his proven VDOT formula to guide you through training at exactly the right intensity to become a faster, stronger runner.

Choose from the red, white, blue, and gold programs to get into shape, target a race program, or regain conditioning after a layoff or injury. Race competitively with programs for 800 meters, 1500 meters to 3000 meters, cross country races, 5K to 15K, and half-marathon up to the marathon. Each program incorporates the right mix of the five training intensities to help you build endurance, strength, and speed, and Daniels’ intensity point system makes it easy to track the time you spend at each level.

The formula can be customized to your current fitness level and the number of weeks you have available for training, and it provides the perfect solution for short training seasons. Get the results you’re seeking every time you lace up your shoes for a training run or race with the workouts and programs detailed in Daniels’ Running Formula. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (86)

5-0 out of 5 stars Running Jack Daniels'
Excellent!! Best running book I have read to date. Great resource. Must have. Good tid bits and helpful suggestions

5-0 out of 5 stars The only training manual you'll ever need
Basically, this is it.Jack Daniels wrote THE tome of how to train.I find just about everything I need to know right within its pages; this is no overviewy, written for novices, Runners' World publication.This has it all.

The only thing I recommend in addition is a gander at the FIRST training system.I think Daniels is a little unnecessarily heavy on the "junk" mileage he recommends between quality workouts.I prefer to substitute other nonrunning activities to create more of a generalist, all-around fitness and running plan.Crossfit is another good source for info on how to do this well.

But if you specifically only want to run, and race, your best, you can follow Daniels throughout your career and be sure you're getting the most out of your training.

5-0 out of 5 stars Running book
Excellent resource for a coach or a serious runner. Easy ride, lots of great info.

5-0 out of 5 stars Running like a pro... =)
Let's just say that after reading and using Jack Daniels' Running Formula, I have become a faster, stronger runner. I compete with more confidence than ever!! I plan on reading, re-reading and implementing training plans in this book throughout my running career.

5-0 out of 5 stars Daniels' Running Formula
If you want to take your running to a new higher level, this is the coach and the book you need to read and follow.Dr. Daniels' is one of the best running coaches in the world ... Read more

7. Runner's World Complete Book of Women's Running: The Best Advice to Get Started, Stay Motivated, Lose Weight, Run Injury-Free, Be Safe, and Train for Any Distance (Runner's World Complete Books)
by Dagny Scott Barrios
Paperback: 320 Pages (2007-10-30)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$11.55
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1594867585
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description

Now with a fresh design and thoroughly updated information, this nuts-and-bolts guide is designed specifically to address the unique challenges and rewards the sport presents to the fastest growing segment of the marketÂ--women runners

     More than 10 million women across the country now identify themselves as regular runners. In response to the dramatic increase in the number of women in the sport, Dagny Scott Barrios and the experts at Runner's World have created this singular guideÂ--now updated with 25 percent new materialÂ--where women will discover how to:

     • train for any race, from a 5K to a marathon
     • eat nutritiously and for maximum energy
     • lose weight permanently
     • deal with self-consciousness and body image
     • run during pregnancy and through menopause
     • choose the best clothes and accessories
     • run anywhere safely
     • prevent and treat injuries, especially those that women are most likely to encounter

     With clear photographs, running sidebars, and testimonials from women runners of all ages and abilities, this comprehensive resource provides the most current practical advice available anywhere for women runners of all levels.
... Read more

Customer Reviews (42)

5-0 out of 5 stars Helpful!
This book covers EVERYTHING. I'm a beginning runner. Just starting out, I was looking for something to give tips and explain different aspects of running. Everything about it is motivational. It gives a can-do approach to running. It even talks about running if you are pregnant or older, it covers it all. I am so thankful I ordered this book. I would recommend this book to any and every woman looking to start running and making a lifestyle out of it. It's that good!

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book for beginners!
Out of the blue I decided that I wanted to run a half marathon, but I knew nothing about running. After hours and hours reading reviews I picked this book, and all the reviews were right. This book has EVERYTHING!!!! Everything from how to pick out the perfect pair of running sunglasses to running when you're pregnant. It has great stretches and exercises to keep you balanced. While avid runners may find some of this information common knowledge, I think it has great tips that every woman needs to be reminded of, like how to be safe while running. I feel that I now have a great basic knowledge of the sport now, and I'm on my way to finishing my first half marathon.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very Helpful and Complete
This book was exactly what I needed.

I have run off and on for years for "fun", but have never had any real "training" on how to run. I've recently set the goal to run a 5K and I was looking for a book that could teach me both at a beginner level and at an intermediate level.[Just in case I go crazy and decide to do a marathon at some point. :) ].

This book was exactly what I needed. The author starts with the very basic things [like picking a good running shoe].She gives great training advice and training schedules for beginning runners.Then she proceeds to give advice and help to more advanced runners.The book is very thorough and complete and I think even a very experienced runner could learn some things from reading this book.

I also thought this book was very motivating - it really made me feel empowered to strive for my goal [despite being a somewhat "old" runner at age 40].

This is an excellent, helpful, well written, and easy to read "all purpose" guide for women who want to run.

3-0 out of 5 stars informative book, arrived in poor condition
So far I have nothing bad to say about the contents of the book, but I was under the impression I was receiving a new book. The cover was creased and had black stuff smeared on it. The pages were dogeared in the top corner. I was very surprised to receive a book straight from Amazon, not a private dealer, in such poor condition.

5-0 out of 5 stars Good encouragement for women runners!
I became a runner later in life and started running because it is inexpensive and convenient.I have been an intermediate runner for the last 4 years and have completed 2 half-marathons.Last year I hit a rut and lost my motivation to run.I enjoy the feeling of running consistently and needed something to help me get back into running again.This book provides a good background on women and running, and has helped me understand that we all go through our peaks and valleys with our training.The chapters that cover walking to jogging and jogging to running has reminded me of the fundamentals that I need to get back into a consistent running schedule. ... Read more

8. The Barefoot Running Book Second Edition: A Practical Guide to the Art and Science of Barefoot and Minimalist Shoe Running
by Jason Robillard
Paperback: 188 Pages (2010-08-15)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$14.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0615376886
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
The Barefoot Running Book (second edition) provides expert advice for new and experienced runners interested in making the transition to barefoot or minimalist shoe running. Why? Because runners find shedding their heavy, overly-cushioned shoes provides a more enjoyable running experience while reducing injury and allowing better form. Jason Robillard uses a combination of research, collaboration, and his own experiences to bring the latest methods for making a safe, enjoyable transition to barefoot or minimalist shoe running. This new expanded second edition includes training plans, information on ultramarathons, photos, tested running tips and helpful hints. Includes contributions from top barefoot runners and experts including Barefoot Ted McDonald, Barefoot Rick Roeber, Dr. Daniel Lieberman, Dr. Michael Nirenberg, Dr. Mark Cucuzzella, Dr. Scott Hadley, Dr. Joseph Froncioni, and many more. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (15)

3-0 out of 5 stars "Book" might be a misnomer
While I think that there are some good tips in the book on how exactly to get started barefoot running, at 61 pages, it's more of a pamphlet than a book.The price is a bit high for what you're getting.

1-0 out of 5 stars How much is the publisher and marketer paying you all?
OMG! 61 pages total! This book is as thin as my barefoot running minimalist shoes! And nothing new or special in it.
I could have bought other barefoot running with the same money!You can check it out and return it back to Amazon.com
This book would probably never be sold at bookstore.You could just finish reading it while you sip your coffee.

5-0 out of 5 stars Book Review: The Barefoot Running Book
I recently received a copy of Jason Robillard's "The Barefoot Running Book" in the mail and was excited to see what this experienced barefooter had to say on the topic. I heard of Jason previously through both of site, Barefoot Chronicles. Jason is also an active poster on the Runner's World Barefoot Running forum.

The book is short but full of informative information. It's written clearly, and the author injects humor here and there, making it more than just a boring textbook. Barefooting is supposed to be fun anyways, right?

After introducing himself, Robillard discusses the very basics of running barefoot, including taking it slow, listening to your feet, and just having fun doing it. Coming from a Pose Method background ([...]), I do differ with the explanation of how to run, but he still does a good job of explaining the most important concepts, which are that of the leaning from the ankles and pulling the foot off the ground. Besides that technical area, I thought he does a great job of explaining different drills you can do and reminding you to relax when you run. While it's important to keep your core active and tight, people get nagging injuries due to shrugging their shoulders, plantar or dorsi-flexing their ankles, or just remaining too rigid in the knees throughout the whole stride.

The book's "Concepts" sections are well thought out, the drill "Activities" are all extremely useful, and the "Issues" sections address well-known problems that newbie, and experienced, barefoot runners face from time to time. Robillard provides sections for all skills levels, from beginners looking to run a few miles to racers eager to set new PR's, and to people who'd like to get into barefoot running on trails where there are more hazards than when running on pavement.

The book definitely accomplishes its goal of introducing barefoot running to the uninitiated, and it's length and humor keep it accessible to adults and children alike. I highly recommend it if you are interested in learning barefoot running, as it inspires you to just get out there and go!

4-0 out of 5 stars Barefoot Running Book
Informative and easy to read basic and to the point. Writer happy to share his information. You could tell by the way he wrote.

5-0 out of 5 stars loved this little ebook
After reading Born to Run: I went out and ran for 11 minutes barefoot on grass. I came to a crashing halt at 11 minutes. The reason, I didn't know really how to start. I figured I'm fit from swimming so I should be able to do it. It was so effortless too. I was loving it.

After researching around for some videos and info I found this ebook. I downloaded the sample which was a decent chunk I liked what I read so I bought it. Using a Dell Streak 5 inch Tablet. Its great as a little ebook.

Well it seems the advice is go very, very easy in the beginning. Its muscles we don't use so be careful.

Tonight I tried the barefoot walking exercises as suggested. Well it was a lot of fun out the back and most helpful really. I understood better about this lift that's spoken about instead of pushing off the foot.

So its day one for now. I need to recover my calf muscle for the rest of the week due to the earlier run I did without reading up about it.

Seems funny to learn how to run again barefoot. But its important to take it very slow, even for seasoned runners.

The bottom line for me is a hope to return to running after a 8 year layoff due to a really bad trauma on the knee when I run more than 3 times. ... Read more

9. Running Anatomy
by Joseph Puleo, Patrick Milroy
Paperback: 200 Pages (2009-12-15)
list price: US$19.95 -- used & new: US$9.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0736082301
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
See what it takes to maximize running strength, speed, and endurance! Running Anatomy will show you how to improve your performance by increasing muscular strength, optimizing the efficiency of your running motion, and minimizing your risk for injury.

It features 50 of the most effective strength exercises for runners, each with clear, step-by-step descriptions and full-color anatomical illustrations highlighting the muscles in action. But you'll find much more than exercises--you'll also see their results.

Running Anatomy places you in the action, fundamentally linking each exercise to running performance. You'll see how to strengthen muscles, reduce injury, and improve gait efficiency for faster times and more fluid runs.

This book will prepare you for any challenge that comes your way. You'll find exercises for varying terrains and speeds, from hill running to off-road running and from sprints to marathons. Plus you'll learn how to evaluate and rehabilitate the most common injuries that runners face, including lower-back pain, knee aches and strains, and torn muscles and tendons.

Whether you're a fitness runner looking to conquer hills with more speed or strength or a competitive runner looking for that extra bit of performance and a finishing kick, Running Anatomy will ensure that you're ready to deliver your personal best. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars An excellent book!
This is an excellent book for any runner who wants to design strength exercise for injury prevention and performance improvement. It explains how each muscle group works in our running, how they can be trained, and how that training improves our running. Exercises also explained with illustrations so that you can visualize how you are supposed to perform them. Most exercises also have alternatives that work on the same muscle group so that if you don't like a particular exercise, you can substitute it with another one that has similar benefits.

3-0 out of 5 stars A Bit Too Technical For Me
I was super excited to get this one. I've been a somewhat serious runner since 1994, running moderate distances (anywhere from three to seven miles at a clip) and have recently returned to a regular running schedule after a six month hiatus. I figured a more technical text would give me the edge to improve my speed and distances.

Unfortunately, this one is a bit too technical for my taste.

While it does include a lot of weight training routines designed to build the muscles needed for strength, speed and general good running form, I feel as if I've seen all this information elsewhere - like Runner's World or Women's Fitness magazines. It's nice to have it all in one place, I suppose, but it feels a bit redundant to me. As far as the opening chapters of the book, this was where I kind of zoned out. I imagine a coach or seriously competitive runner might find a lot of really great stuff here, but I was having a difficult time concentrating on sections with titles like, "Results of the Training Progression Model," and "Event Specific Body Characteristics."

I think this is a great resource for dedicated athletes interested in serious training, but I'm not really qualified to review it from that perspective. For a casual runner like myself, I'd recommend skipping the first third of the book, which is a bit intimidating, and focusing on the weight training information in the back, particularly the butt-kicking core and lower body workouts, which I've begun to incorporate into my new, tougher, regimen. Hopefully, this will be just the thing to get me back in top form.

5-0 out of 5 stars The title says it all!
An excellent presentation of anatomy and how your muscles affect your running (and vice-versa).The muscle specific strength exercises are the key to this book w/good illustrations, step-by-step instructions, pointers on technique, and explanations of how the affected muscles impact your running.Highly recommended for anyone interested in running-specific strength training either for performance or rehabilitation.

5-0 out of 5 stars Any sports or general library catering to runners needs this approach
RUNNING ANATOMY offers a fine illustrated guide to running strength and building endurance that focuses on improving such performance by increasing strength and optimizing running efficiency. Fifty of the most effective strength exercises for runners accompany step-by-step directions and anatomical illustrations showing these muscles in action. Any sports or general library catering to runners needs this approach.

5-0 out of 5 stars Informative
I think that is an excellent book for people who have a good base of knowledge about the human body and its anatomy.It is a must for anyone who runs and especially for those with minor injuries and aggravations such a patellar tendonitis,patellar femoral syndrome;aka "runners knee" and shin splints.
There are no suggested running programs in this book, just solid information and advice on how to avoid injuries, how your body moves in the gait cycle and different exercises you can do to build the strength and flexibility you need to be a successful runner. ... Read more

10. Running Scared
by Lisa Jackson
Paperback: 480 Pages (2010-08-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$1.65
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 142010182X
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Fifteen years ago in Boston, Kate Summers made a bargain:she became the mother of a perfect, beautiful newborn baby, and she promised she would never breathe a word about the adoption to anyone. Now Kate has built a good life for herself and her son, Jon, in a small town in Oregon.She has almost forgotten her fear that he will somehow be taken away. Then Daegan O'Rourke arrives in town and strikes up a friendship with her and Jon. Daegan has his own past to hide -- one with shocking ties to hers. Someone is searching for Kate and her son and is willing to go to any lengths to claim him.And the one man Kate is tempted to trust has dangerous secrets that could change her world forever. Soon, the past Kate thought she could outrun will explode, unearthing a legacy of lies and treachery and a fury powerful enough to kill. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (14)

1-0 out of 5 stars Hated this!!
This book could have been written leaving half of it out . . . painfully long!!And, the ending was clear from the beginning - a classic love story!One of those books that you wish would just end!!

2-0 out of 5 stars Okay if you are into crime stories with romance
I am more into Stephen White, Lisa Gardener, tess gerritson, etc. This was my first Lisa Jackson Novel and I wasn't too happy with it. I usually read all of my books within hours, start to finish. I downloaded this on my kindle and in three days, I have yet to finish it. I am somewhat bored with the storyline and at times it gets predictable...If you like the authors i listed above, this is not the book you want to get.

5-0 out of 5 stars Running Scared
I loved this book.I read it in one day. What a exciting thrill.Keep writing Lisa.

Reviewer Lisa Mosley Reidsville GA

5-0 out of 5 stars I will read it over and over again!
"Running Scared" is an enticing and incredible story for anyone ages 16 to 60. The plot is intense and intriguing. You will not be able to put this book down! Lisa Jackson uses rich dialogue and a plot that has many twists and turns. You never know what's going to happen next. "Running Scared" is definitely one of my favorite books. I will read it over and over again! I cannot wait for Lisa Jackson's next amazing novel!

5-0 out of 5 stars Good reading
I haven't been readingLisa Jackson long but after reading this she will be among my choices. ... Read more

11. Barefoot Running: How to Run Light and Free by Getting in Touch with the Earth
by Michael Sandler, Jessica Lee
Paperback: 298 Pages (2010-05)
-- used & new: US$19.95
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0984382208
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Editorial Review

Product Description
"Enjoy the insights this book has to offer -- It is about form, joy and the love of running. Run Free!" - Micah True, AKA Caballo Blanco.

As seen nationally on TV, radio and in print, Barefoot Running is the original, most comprehensive guide to barefoot running, written by best-selling author and running coach Michael Sandler, who has coached and inspired thousands of runners, walkers, and hikers nationwide.

After a near-death accident left him with a titanium femur and hip along with 10 knee operations, no ACL, and an inch leg-length discrepancy, former professional athlete and Olympic hopeful Michael Sandler was told he could never run again. It was only by going barefoot and feeling the ground, he began to heal as he learned how to run light and free. He now runs pain free 10-20 miles a day and in all conditions. His step-by-step method helps runners overcome injuries, find their natural form and rediscover the pure joy of running, no matter their age, history, or fitness level.

Co-Author Jessica Lee hated running and nagging knee pain and swore off running until the day she went barefoot. Now she helps women experience the joy of running barefoot (and pain free) nationwide.

Written to help people get into running, back into running, or run pain free and at your best at any age, Michael Sandler's inspirational book and step-by-step guide is an easy to read bible of information and a must read for any runner.Barefoot Running is the how-to-guide that picks up where Christopher McDougall's inspiring book Born to Run left off. If you liked Born to Run, you'll love Barefoot Running.

Topics include: Barefoot Running for Kids, for Seniors, choosing footwear, transitioning safely, cold-weather running and more.

"You are holding in your hands a book as exhaustive and accurate of a description of barefoot running as you could ever hope for."- Barefoot Ted ... Read more

Customer Reviews (12)

2-0 out of 5 stars Not sure what to think about this...
I found this book by accident in one of my local outdoor stores. I had been interested in running barefoot for some time, ever since reading "Born to run". I had tried the Vibram Five Fingers, but had problems with a seam rubbing my arches, so that had put a damper on that experiment. When I saw this book, a little light went off in my head - hang on, maybe I can just ditch the VFF altogether and go completely barefoot! This book seemed to light the way. The apparent endorsement by Barefoot Ted, who was featured heavily in Born to Run, clinched the deal in terms of apparent legitimacy.

The outdoor store has quite inflated prices, so I decided to look for the book on Amazon. I was a little mystified to find that Amazon doesn't sell it, even though it is a very recent publication. And when I called my local Borders, they couldn't even find it in their system by the ISBN. So I went back to the little store and bought the copy they had. I noticed that it seemed to be kind of self-published, so maybe that explainsit.

The book has the usual fluff at the beginning - you know where they take 30 pages with lots of positive, vague, rah-rah motivational stuff. They do admit right up front that you don't even get to the running part until chapter 5. Ok, that's par for the course.

My first doubts surfaced when they started going on about being connected with the Earth, and how everything has a frequency, and how important it is to be "grounded". All of this is part of a justification, it seems, for why barefoot running is a Good Thing. Ok, I thought, fair enough - it's a bit much, but whatever.

Serious doubts began on page 19, when they started talking about something called the Schumann Resonance, which is apparently the frequency of the Earth's "heartbeat" (7.83 Hz). According to the book, "this number is important because it's the same frequency our brains use to survive and thrive. In other words, our vibrations are matched or we vibrate at the same frequency of the earth. Put another way, we evolved in sync with the frequency or heartbeat of the earth". Ok, again, whatever. But then there's this little gem: "NASA scientists have known this for years. In early space missions, astronauts became surprisingly weak and ill when they went into space and left the resonance of the earth behind. They now alleviate this process by having a vibrational device attached to the ships that resonates at the Schumann Resonance - by matching to the frequency of the earth, spacecraft help astronauts stay in sync".

Hmm. This was news to me, I was quite interested in space and NASA when I was younger, but I had never heard of this. As far as I know, astronauts become weak after periods in space because of the lack of gravity, which weakens their bones and muscles unless they take care to do resistance exercise. A quick search on a well known search engine pulled up as a top result for "Schumann frequency NASA" a thread that says this is bunk. I can find no official references to this at all. And what about airline pilots? They do long haul flights all the time where they are out of touch with the earth. Do they have these devices on airplanes? Why can't I find any reference to it anywhere, except on websites dedicated to debunking bad science?

Then, on page 20, referring to why people don't get hurt when lightning strikes their car, the authors call this the "Farridy Cage" effect. I laughed when I saw this (apparently) phonetic spelling of Michael Faraday's name.

They then go on a bit about things called "grounding pads", and how these keep us in touch with the earth, and how (surprise, surprise) they sell them at their website.

At this point I was having some serious doubts about the book. I mean, the authors are giving out some quite detailed advice on how to get into running barefoot, and if you do this wrong then you could end up with some quite serious injuries to your feet. If they are spouting nonsense about Schumann Frequency, "Farridy" cages and grounding sheets, then how can I take anything else they say seriously? Why couldn't they just stick to the barefoot running, without going off into cloud cuckoo land and thus throwing their entire credibility into doubt?

The book overall has the air of a somewhat breathlessly enthusiastic amateur. The biggest lesson to be taken away from it, really, is "take it slow, listen to your body". This can be conveyed in one single sentence, I don't really know why it needs to be fleshed out to a couple hundred pages, but I guess that's how people sell books.

I tried contacting the authors via their website contact form, telling them about the misspelling of Mr Faraday's name and asking for sources for their claims on the Schumann Frequency stuff, but I did not get any reply. Hmmm.

I thought this would be a straightforward book about barefoot running. However, given the ludicrous claims in the earlier parts of the book, I have to say it throws the whole idea into a cloud of doubt and uncertainty. When they talk about how Lance Armstrong's team uses these "grounding pads", how do I know I can believe it? How do I know I can believe one of the authors really cycled 5,000 miles across America in 2004 in 40 days, solo? It's a wonderful achievement (I've done this myself, but I took a lot longer, and trust me - averaging 125 miles a day for 40 days is quite a feat). The point is about credibility, and as far as I'm concerned, with the early parts of this book the authors really shoot themselves in the foot (sorry). My podiatrist says that running barefoot on concrete is a bad idea. This book says it's not. Who to believe?

5-0 out of 5 stars Read this book BEFORE you run in Vibram Fivefingers!
I can't say enough good about this book. Just buy it and read it... Then enjoy running like you were meant to run!

OK... I'll admit it, I bought the Vibram Fivefingers and ran way too much too fast. It felt SO good (too good, I guess...) and I no longer had the knee and low back pain I associate with running in shoes. However, My feet weren't quite ready for the full-on workout I was giving them every day! I used to run barefoot as a kid, and even as a college student. However, It's been almost 20 years since then... I WISH I had just bought this book first, BEFORE the VFF's! It would have saved me a lot of pain and recovery time. I am now convinced that running truly barefoot is much safer than in shoes. When winter comes again, I may have to run in minimal shoes... but only AFTER learning to run truly barefoot! (this book does have a section on how to condition your feet for cold though, so we'll see!)
Of course, you already know running barefoot means less impact on your joints, is more natural for our body, etc. If not, check [...] or [...].

injinji Performance Mini Crew ToesocksBorn to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen
FiveFingers KSO - Men's by Vibram

This book lays out all the good reasons for running barefoot, and a clear method of how to SAFELY transition to being an efficient barefoot (natural) runner, shoes or no shoes. For a mere 25 bucks, you can save yourself a lot of hassle, and regain the youthful joy of running free and light like a kid... Remember how good it felt? Soon you will!

5-0 out of 5 stars Great introduction to barefoot running
Similar to many readers, my interest in barefoot running started with "Born to Run." I find the book exceptionally informative and easy to read and apply. This book clears up many myths about barefoot running and provides insights to avoid novice mistakes, both of which are likely to turn off newcomers. I've been taking a slower, conservative approach to a barefoot transition, just as the book recommends, and I've been very satisfied with the results. I started running in minimal footwear before reading this book, but I hope use the skills and techniques from this book to make a more-or-less full transition to barefoot running. Great read!

5-0 out of 5 stars Exactly what I was looking for.
Whether you intend to run with or without shoes, this book is The Guide for every runner.I was intrigued by barefoot running and had many questions answered to my satisfaction by other runners or trainers. This book had everything I needed to start running the right way. i was logging 100 miles a week before this book, i can now say I am learning to run. i am thrilled to notice i am running better every day.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great resource!!
This book had solid exercises for building up foot strength, stretching, ankle strength, and balance activities important to those starting out in more minimalist and barefoot running, which I hope to start doing as soon as my foot heals from surgery and I'm able to walk on it on the bare ground without a shoe. I'm not sure if I will go completely barefoot due to how much of a tenderfoot I am (and have always been... and winter is around the corner) but I know for sure that I will be gradually starting using more minimalist shoes when I am able to run again. As I think I might have mentioned either on my blog or on my review for Born to Run, I've had experience with top-of-the-line running shoes as well as custom orthotics and my feet are worse for the wear. I figure after 5 foot surgeries (and already knowing that I have neuromas in my left foot that need to be operated on at some point) I'm going to try a different route and see if I can have some more success and have less foot problems down the road.

Sandler emphasizes going slowly when transitioning to running barefoot (or running in minimalist shoes) which I think it extremely important to anyone interested in trying this. By slowly he doesn't mean to actually run slowly (which I already do!! LOL!) but to literally run 100 yards and then call it quits for 2 days. Then if things are fine do another 100 yards. Two days later if you are still okay you can do 200 yards, all the while letting your skin be your guide. I really appreciate this slow and controlled process because like many other things (other sporting disciplines, eating), really listening to your body will serve you well every time.

The foot and ankle strengthening exercises are some of the same ones that I've currently been doing in my physical therapy sessions to build up my arch and metatarsal strength post-surgery. I even bought myself my own set of marbles that I'm doing regularly ON BOTH FEET, not just the one that needs it for recovery so that both feet are strong when I am ready to head out.

This book taught me a lot of things that I didn't know including foot anatomy and body mechanics, proper/efficient footstriking, and common injuries related to running with shoes, WHY, and how barefoot or minimalist running can help overcome it. My copy of this book is full of underlines, checkmarks, and starred passages and will definitely serve as my reference when I start running again.

Sandler spends a lot of time (at various points) talking about the need for a higher degree of awareness when running barefoot so that you aren't tuning out to your latest Genius playlist but are, instead, making sure you are paying attention to proper form and the surface you are running on. At times the reminders of this were repetitive but I think the suggestions on starting slowly, the actual plan that you can follow, the specific suggestions for moving to more minimalist shoes, and the section on kids barefoot running with some specifics more than made up for this.

I'm now waiting for shoe stores to catch on and offer some better alternatives for adults and kids that don't want running shoes with toe-lift and banana-shaped soles. Because although barefoot is good... there are still times when shoes are necessary and I'd like to make sure the shoes that we do wear don't end up harming our feet in the long run. ... Read more

12. What I Talk About When I Talk About Running (Vintage International)
by Haruki Murakami
Paperback: 192 Pages (2009-08-11)
list price: US$14.00 -- used & new: US$7.42
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0307389839
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
An intimate look at writing, running, and the incredible way they intersect, from the incomparable, bestselling author Haruki Murakami.

While simply training for New York City Marathon would be enough for most people, Haruki Murakami's decided to write about it as well. The result is a beautiful memoir about his intertwined obsessions with running and writing, full of vivid memories and insights, including the eureka moment when he decided to become a writer. By turns funny and sobering, playful and philosophical, What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is rich and revelatory, both for fans of this masterful yet guardedly private writer and for the exploding population of athletes who find similar satisfaction in athletic pursuit. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (83)

4-0 out of 5 stars Simplicity in running shoes
I discovered Haruki Murakami many years ago, when the New Yorker first published "The Elephant Vanishes".I was hooked immediately, and have read everything he's produced since then (at least everything that's been translated).As such, I am very much a Murakami enthusiast, and it has been said that this book is particularly for people like me.It's difficult to distance myself from my enthusiasm for Murakami's work, but I will say this... the man managed to get me interested in running.

Keep in mind that I don't run.I have horribly flat feet and after a while, running bothers my neck.I CAME to the book because of Murakami, agreed, but I STAYED there because of the book itself.Murakami's voice is very special, it is deep yet simple, profound yet humble.The only other writer that ever struck me in quite the same way was Primo Levi."What I Talk About..." is the perfect example of that very special voice, it's a quiet poem in a still desert, a whisper of a song at sea. Like an abstract painting, it brings a mood upon you, though you're not quite sure why.

As such, I imagine that most people who actually buy the book will either be Murakami enthusiasts or runners, but you'll love the book because of that voice.

5-0 out of 5 stars One of the best books I have ever read.
What I Talk About When I Talk About Running is one of the most insightful books I have ever read.

I keep this book on my night table and read sections at random.I have read the whole book twice.

2-0 out of 5 stars Left me a little cold.
We read this book for our book club where two members are runners.It was a little interesting to me, but sort of boring too.

4-0 out of 5 stars A book that honors runners
This is a book dedicated to every runner in the world. Running is an act that defies logic, leisure and modern habits. It is comforting to see how Murakami allows us runners, to understand better why we run, why we love to run and why we will keep on running until our legs and minds allow us. If you love running you will love this book.

5-0 out of 5 stars Very good delivery and service
Thank you for sending this item quickly. There were no problems, and the item arrived earlier than expected.

Thanks for the great service. I'd order from you again. ... Read more

13. Lore of Running, 4th Edition
by Timothy Noakes
Paperback: 944 Pages (2002-12-03)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$15.76
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0873229592
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Now revised, expanded and updated, Lore of Running gives you incomparable detail on physiology, training, racing, injuries, world-class athletes, and races.

Author Tim Noakes blends the expertise of a physician and research scientist with the passion of a dedicated runner to answer the most pressing questions for those who are serious about the sport:

  • How your body systems respond to training, the effects of different training methods, how to detect and avoid overtraining, and genetic versus trainable potential
  • How to train for the 10K up through ultramarathon with detailed programs from Noakes and several leading running experts
  • How to prevent and treat injuries, increase your strength and flexibility, and use proper nutrition for weight control and maximum performance

You'll also find a candid analysis of supplements and ergogenic effects and training aids. The book includes new interviews with 10 world-class runners who share their secrets to success and longevity in the sport. Features on legendary figures and events in running history provide fascinating insights.

And that's just scratching the surface. Lore of Running is not only the biggest and best running publication on the planet. It's the one book every runner should own. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (41)

5-0 out of 5 stars The Best Running Book Ever!
"Lore of Running" is the most comprehensive book ever written on running. Dr. Tim Noakes has covered every aspect of running both physiologically and psychologically. The eloborate training programmes for novice runners and advanced programmes for the elite runners are commendable. A must have for every runner.

4-0 out of 5 stars running book
This book is good for people who have a passion for running and want to know the ins and outs of the sport. The book is in very good condition and I received it quickly.

5-0 out of 5 stars For enthusiasts only
After reading the 900-page Lore of Running, there is probably no need to read any other how-to books on running because you will have heard it before. Like a steep uphill at the beginning of your run, Noakes starts off with how muscles work, oxygen transport, energy systems. The chapters are lengthy with many charts and graphs. The prose is like a medical textbook.

I might have organized the book differently. Chapters on staying injury free and running & your health are near the end of the book. I would have put that near the beginning. But one does not have to read the book in sequence.

This is not a good introductory book to running, but as was mentioned by other reviewers, a great reference or read for coaches or anyone else with a more in-depth interest.

Like the late great Ed McMahon would say, "EVERYTHING you ever wanted to know about running is in this book".

5-0 out of 5 stars Great book
I haven't gotten much chance to read it yet, but it's a great book, especially as a reference.

5-0 out of 5 stars Nothing like it.
There's really nothing like this book in what I've seen.I'm not an ultra-long runner - in fact, I'm not even a good runner.However, this book has a deeply researched, referenced, scientific approach to exercise physiology that I've been unable to find in other literature.My science-oriented background yearns for something more than vitriol or practical advice, and this book fills that role no matter what aerobic sport you wish to pursue.Page after page reveals "aha!" moments where I find out what the various "lores" I've was brought up with have some merit, or where they fail. ... Read more

14. Running Hot
by Stephani Hecht
Kindle Edition: Pages (2010-07-01)
list price: US$3.99
Asin: B003XRF0VG
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
A thrill of excitement always went through paramedic James Willson whenever he transported a patient to St. Michael’s hospital, but it had nothing to do with the rush of the job. It was one of the emergency department doctors that set his heart racing—the very sexy, very aloof Calvin Dane. For months now, James has admired Calvin from afar, but has never dared act on his feelings since the doctor didn’t seem to return his interest. Then one intimate encounter in the back of his ambulance forever changes thi ... Read more

Customer Reviews (3)

3-0 out of 5 stars Great, but...SHORT
As anyone reading the previous reviews can see, this book is great.Nice storyline, reasonable characters, hot sex.

But the book is short.You may be asking "What did you expect for less than four dollars?"I'll tell you what - atleast a third of a novel.The book has no major plot twists, because really - where would they go?There's a line of text "Four Months Later" near the end.THAT is where the novel this could have been went.One line of text.

I loved the book, don't get me wrong.But for the amount of content, it's too expensive.

Amazon - NOW HEAR THIS:We need a meaningful way to see how long Kindle books are.Paper books have page count.What can we get?

4-0 out of 5 stars 4 Hearts from TRS!
The story of James and Calvin is humorous and entertaining and keeps the reader involved until the end. The author captures those feelings and insecurities that surface when you are first starting a relationship well. The characters and secondary characters are interesting and amusing. The secondary characters help keep the story going with witty dialogue that keeps the main characters from being too serious. I like how Matt, James' partner, is accepting of him when he finds out Matt is gay by saying "That just means I get all the ladies to myself." Reader beware though. There is some steamy m/m sex so if that isn't something you like, this may not be a good book for you. This book also has an epilogue, which I always like because it allows the readers to see how things turned out for the characters and gives a sense of closure to a story. A good read for when you have a little time on your hands. - Ana

5-0 out of 5 stars Running Hot
Paramedic James has desired Calvin from the moment the sexy doctor started working at St. Michael's hospital, but Calvin has never noticed him...or so he thinks.To James's shock, Calvin's been lusting after him for just as long, only he didn't know James was interested.It doesn't take much for the sparks between them to turn into red-hot flames, but James is wary of putting his heart on the line.After all, how could a rich doctor like Calvin want a real relationship with a poor medic like James?

Uncertainty is the biggest obstacle two otherwise perfectly matched heroes face in this sensual story by Stephani Hecht.Running Hot features two incredibly likeable heroes that are obviously made for one another.James and Calvin are endearingly unsure of each other and it was a delight watching them navigate their way into a relationship.There are no surprises or twists in Running Hot, but that was okay by me.Sometimes the perfect way to spend an evening is curling up with a simple, sweet love story, which is exactly what Running Hot is.

Running Hot
Reviewed for Joyfully Reviewed ... Read more

15. Always Running: La Vida Loca: Gang Days in L.A.
by Luis J. Rodriguez
Paperback: 262 Pages (2005-09-06)
list price: US$15.00 -- used & new: US$6.82
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0743276914
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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By age twelve, Luis Rodriguez was a veteran of East L.A. gang warfare. Lured by a seemingly invincible gang culture, he witnessed countless shootings, beatings, and arrests, then watched with increasing fear as drugs, murder, suicide, and senseless acts of street crime claimed friends and family members.

Before long, Rodriguez saw a way out of the barrio through education and the power of words and successfully broke free from years of violence and desperation. Achieving success as an award-winning Chicano poet, he was sure the streets would haunt him no more -- until his son joined a gang. Rodriguez fought for his child by telling his own story in Always Running, a vivid memoir that explores the motivations of gang life and cautions against the death and destruction that inevitably claim its participants. At times heartbreakingly sad and brutal, Always Running is ultimately an uplifting true story, filled with hope, insight, and a hard-learned lesson for the next generation. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (189)

3-0 out of 5 stars Don't do drugs.Stay no to gangs.
I can see why this book is so popular among high school students: it provides a graphic, unflinching look at LA gang life in the 1960s, and it ends happily, with Mr. Rodriguez living to tell the tale. Unfortunately, the second half of the story contains too many things that make me question the reliability of its teller. I hope this book helps to keep kids out of gangs and in schools, even if its veracity is suspect.

And yet... the more I think about this, the more I see in it. I think this is actually a depiction of the violence inherent in people, rather than a specific comment on a time and place. The author's main excuse for gangs is unemployment. However, Mr. Rodriguez ends up portraying the police forces as little more than a rival gang with an unslakable bloodlust, though they obviously have jobs. The problem therefore can't be unemployment, unless all positions of power are necessarily corrupt, or the LA sheriffs are abnormally violent people. Other notable instances of violence are when young Luis gets pushed off his roof by his older brother, when a riot erupts at a peace rally, and when Luis upholds the tradition of a yearly brawl at a football. I guess this is the main problem I have with this book. The blame is misplaced. Mr. Rodriguez's gang involvement started before he was in junior high, so his own unemployment couldn't have been a factor. Since his father was well educated and employed, I have to lay the blame at his feet for failing to protect his son and teach him the right way to live. This sad family failure is then repeated between the author and his own son, Ramiro. The whole attitude of "learn from my mistakes; don't do what I did, son" just isn't enough for me.

5-0 out of 5 stars Always Running
Always Running was required for my English 28 class, and I've got to admit that I found the book very interesting.It gave me a look into gang life in East Los Angeles and the dynamics of that lifestyle.

4-0 out of 5 stars It's amazing what people endure...
Luis grew up in LA being raised by a Mexican family.He grows up way too quickly and starts stealing and committing crimes before becoming a teen.Soon enough drugs, sex and violence come into play, and lines and territories are divided across neighborhoods.Ultimately he ends up losing most of his friends to shootings and violent acts.He also blames the cops for constantly targeting Mexicans and African Americans.The educational system does not provide proper courses for minorities.They are tracked to take on vocational occupations while whites and Asians are taking English Lit and Trig on the path to college.If we provided protection, safety and good opportunities for these kids then they would not feel the need to join gangs to gain acceptance, protection and a sense of belonging.

4-0 out of 5 stars La Vida Loca - Still Happening
This book is on the ALA's list of 100 most frequently banned books of 1990 through 2000.

This is a memoir of gang life & of growing up poor and Chicano in East LA in the '60's & 70's. It's also about learning who you are and finding ways out - through writing, through painting, & through social activism.

Rodriguez is primarily a poet and writer of short stories & it shows in this collection of snap shots of moments from his past. For those wanting a standard tale with a classical throughline and neat conclusions, this book will disappoint.

I enjoyed the author's imagery and the ways he plays with the genre of memoir. What is memory? What do we remember? How do we remember it? For me so much of my memory is just what he provides - little snapshots of moments in time.

From a political/social perspective, this book does a good job of elucidating the reasons kids join gangs and the possible paths out. He talks about gangs as a kind of mass suicide & that's an idea that stuck with me - all these kids looking for family & hating themselves.

In one of those funny moments where influences collide that can happen while reading, I kept thinking of another gang memoir that I read when I was younger. I remembered that it was written by a Puerto Rican guy that grew up in Spanish Harlem & was also about all of the ways that books saved him, but I couldn't remember the name of the book. It was right there on the tip of my tongue. I could remember that the author was named Piri, but that was all. Then I turned a page & there it was - Down These Mean Streets by Piri Thomas - turns out Luis Rodriguez read that one, too.

This book is also full of shades of Sandra Cisneros - a Chicana writer & poet whose work I've read off & on since her first book - The House on Mango Street. Like Cisneros, Rodriguez' work is full of rhythm & bright color.

I liked this book a great deal, although I don't think it offers any long-term solutions to these problems. Like The Corner, David Simon's killer tome on life on a Baltimore drug corner, this book illustrates the condition. Perhaps education really is the only way out, but to get there we're going to have to spend some money & stop using our educational system to ghettoize people based on class, race, income level, & the phase of the moon on Fridays when the cat's too tired to sing.

The world is a complex & beautiful place & in the end maybe only words can save us.

3-0 out of 5 stars Poorly Written
This book lacks depth and much-needed perspective.The actual subject matter is interesting, and could have resulted in an incredibly powerful, insightful book.However, he stopped short every time the opportunity for reflection presented itself.As a result, I found myself unable to sympathize with his plight.His transitions from journalistic prose to "poetic" descriptions were jarring and indulgent.Overall, this book was a great disappointment. ... Read more

16. Running in the Family
by Michael Ondaatje
Paperback: 208 Pages (1993-11-30)
list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$6.26
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0679746692
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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In the late 1970s Ondaatje returned to his native island of Sri Lanka. As he records his journey through the drug-like heat and intoxicating fragrances of that "pendant off the ear of India," Ondaatje simultaneously retraces the baroque mythology of his Dutch-Ceylonese family. An inspired travel narrative and family memoir by an exceptional writer. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (33)

2-0 out of 5 stars Abstruse Organization, Soporific Content
Upon finishing the first few chapters of this book, I was left confounded by the poor organization of the chapters and material. This is not an esoteric review, but rather I am speaking for all students that have read this book. DO NOT READ THIS BOOK. It is one of the most worst books to read. STAY AWAY.

5-0 out of 5 stars Even Better Than The English Patient
Ondaatje at his loftily lyrical, yet unpretentious best. An undoubted favorite among Canadian literary memoirs, this is the story of Michael Ondaatje's crazy family, who were among the ruling class in colonial Ceylon, now known as Sri Lanka. The writing is a beautiful spectacle but the content is highly personal, at times almost vulnerable for all the impenetrability of the prose.

Also the book is very funny. Ondaatje views his family as ridiculous and distances himself from them, but does so with an unmistakable love. Any scorn (a feeling anyone with a ridiculous family will find reflexive and familiar) seems squeezed out and we are left with a sense of reconciliation and the poetry of all things.

3-0 out of 5 stars Tigers
The times in the recent past that we have read about Ceylon, now Sri Lanka, in the newspapers has concerned the Tamil Tigers who have finally been crushed and one wonders if they were fighting against a government controlled by Ondaatje-type people. The author's father was such a dedicated drunkard that its possible he actually was schizophrenic. I like the author best for his humorous detail but he never seems to get hold of a story too well and kind of staggers around with the shreds of it.At the end, I wondered was Doris his mother name or his stepmother's.Kudos to his mother for actually leaving his father and going to England where she earned her own living.The author doesn't think much of her but I do.What a brave woman.Is the author also a drunkard, I wonder?

5-0 out of 5 stars A Favorite Memoir
I thoroughly enjoyed this book for its exotic locale and irreverent description of the author's own family.In fact, it made me laugh out loud in places.

2-0 out of 5 stars Irritating
Ondaatje seems to be trying too hard. The language is overly flowery and the plot is often lost beneath the mound of words. It does have a few good moments, some funny, some touching. But in general, I spent most of this book irritated by the grandois manner of the author, as if by writing in a vague and pretty-fied manner, his words will sound important and deep.
Maybe it's just me, but I find that vague does NOT equal meaningful. ... Read more

17. The Running Man
by Stephen King
Paperback: 336 Pages (1999-08-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$3.97
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0451197968
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
The year is 2025. The Running Man is America's favorite television game show. Ben Richards is the program's latest contestant-and the Hunters' latest target in a rigged game of death.Amazon.com Review
Stephen King (writing as Richard Bachman) crafted The Running Manearly in his career, though after such mega-hits as Carrie and The Shining.A bit of adeparture from the supernatural horror that is most frequently associatedwith his work, the novel describes a science fiction dystopia where marketcapitalism and television game shows have spiraled out of control, and theseparation between the haves and the have-nots has been formalized withseparate currencies. King establishes characters quickly, creating sympathyin the first few pages for Ben Richards--whose 18-month-old baby girl issuffering from a horrible cough, perhaps pneumonia.Not able to affordmedicine, Richards enters himself in the last-chance money-making scheme ofthe Free-Vee games. The games include Treadmill to Bucks, in whichheart-attack prone contestants struggle to outlast a progressivelydemanding treadmill, or the accurately named Swim the Crocodiles. After a rigorous battery of physical and mental examinations, Richards isassigned "Elevator Six"--the path of a chosen few--that leads to TheRunning Man game.In this game, the stakes and the prizes are raised. Success means a life of luxury.Failure means death.Unfortunately,few ever win the game; in fact, as the producer tells Richards,in six years no one has survived.

The Running Man is a short book, tightly written to be read andenjoyed quickly.The future world it depicts is vividly captured with afew essential details. The action is also fast paced and, though the noveldiffers from much of King's other work, the sardonic social commentaryreveals a pleasing glimmer of King's characteristically twisted sense ofhumor. --Patrick O'Kelley ... Read more

Customer Reviews (104)

5-0 out of 5 stars Fantastic! a real page turner!
i have been reading king novels for years and this is by far one of his best. avoid the intro because it spoils the ending. luckily i skipped it and saved it till i finished the book. this book goes a milea minute. if u like fast paced thrillers then this is the book for you.

4-0 out of 5 stars A metaphor for workaholics
I LOVE YOU STEPHEN!!!!! It dawned on me that we are all running men, being followed by guards who keep us in line - buying the right cars, living in the right homes, spending, spending, working, working. . . When we get to the end will we be afraid to stop and collect our winnings?

1-0 out of 5 stars WARNING
So this would have been the first Stephen King book I read cover to cover. I was REALLY excited with the story line and could not wait to start reading it. The mistake I made and am warning you about is that during the introduction "The Importance of Being Bachman" King gives away the ending!!! Not just a "Oh, and then something negative happens" but "Blah, blah, and then he blah blah" specifically. If you want to enjoy the book (as I am CERTAIN I would have) DO NOT READ THE INTRODUCTION!!!!

Who does that?? Yes, I get it, it has been republished so you want to add a note, but for those who would have picked up the book for the first time (never had seen the movie either so I don't know if it tells the true ending) the book has been ruined!!!. . . I always pictured Stephen King as a smart man. . . WRONG!

So please! Add a HUGE SPOILER warning before you give the ending of a book before the story even starts!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5-0 out of 5 stars I should have read this years ago
What an idiot I am.I never read this because I've seen the movie.But this is a great thriller action packed short story.

This books just reinforces King is the thriller master.
(on a side note - also showcases the talent screen writers have to be able to to adapt a short story to a film and not copy the book.)

They are not the same story, but have the same premise.

Sit back and enjoy.

4-0 out of 5 stars You won'tfind Arnold in these pages
In the history of good books, people have created good movies using the books title (but have nothing really to do with the book).BLADE RUNNER and DO ANDROIDS DREAM OF ELECTRIC SHEEP is a good example of this.RUNNING MAN is another fine example of this.When I was a teenage, I loved the Arnold movie.Now that I am way past a teenager, I decided to read the source material.I was shocked and thrilled that I stepped into almost an entirely different world.

The Ben Richards of the novel is not a criminal, fabricated or otherwise.The Ben Richards in the novel is a desperate man trying to find a solution to a nightmare many fathers face.Richards is a character in this book faces a far greater challenge than that of the movie.The game arena is the USA.The foes are the good people of the United States of America.In this Dystopia, Richards finds himself struggle to find commrades and figuring out who to trust.

To give too much away would tell major parts of the book.Don't read this book expecting an action adventure film.Read this book expecting a character study of a man who would do anything for those he loves.The writing is not King's best, I thought some of it was a little unbalanced, but the story is captivating. ... Read more

18. Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help Save the World
by Paul Stamets
Paperback: 356 Pages (2005-10-01)
list price: US$35.00 -- used & new: US$22.40
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 1580085792
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
More mushrooms, less pollution! Yes, you heard right: growing more mushrooms may be the best thing we can do to save the environment. Microscopic cells called "mycelium"—the fruit of which are mushrooms —recycle carbon, nitrogen, and other essential elements as they break down plant and animal debris in the creation of rich new soil. What fungi expert Paul Stamets has discovered is that mycelium also breaks down hydrocarbons —the base structure in many pollutants. So, for instance, when soil contaminated with diesel oil is inoculated with strains of oyster mushroom mycelia, the soil loses its toxicity in just eight weeks. In MYCELIUM RUNNING, Stamets discusses this revolutionary trend in mushroom cultivation and provides tips for choosing the appropriate species of fungi for various environmental purposes. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (41)

3-0 out of 5 stars not practical for the backyarder
I bought this book, because I wanted to grow some edible mushrooms in our garden, and maybe do some eco-projects,but I was more confused than anything else. There are tons of information, but it is not well enough organized. You cannot find one simple descriptions how to grow mushrooms, the necessary information is spread over various chapters, mixed up with other infirmation about mushrooms.
There are no hints which mushroom project would be suitable for beginners and what is better left to experts.
The materials he suggests for mushroom growing like sawdust (must be untreated) or straw are either unobtainable for city dwellers or very expensive.
There is a great chapter about how vegetables grow better together with mushrooms, but again, no practical step by step guide other than purchasing tablets, which are not available here.
After reading the book I think I must search the internet to find out how I really can grow mushrooms.
Temperatures are only given in Fahrenheit.
The language in vast parts would be suitable for a scientific paper, it is not entertaining to read, even if the information given is quite amazing.
Still, the book is a worthwhile read, and I might come back to it when I finally find out how to grow mushrooms other than with a kit, if I find this out at all, as there are not many books on the market.

5-0 out of 5 stars Excellent!
Excellent book on the role of fungi in the ecosystem.The role Fungi in ecosystem decomposition and functioning are often overlooked and/or ignored.It very refreshing to see a scientist actually successfully connect science and real life so that it enables all people to become active in making a difference in their own worlds.

5-0 out of 5 stars Great
This book is great. Totally great. I pick and eat wild mushrooms all the time with its guidance, and I'm not totally whacked out because of it. GREAT.

5-0 out of 5 stars Groundbreaking, in many ways
This book jump-started my middle-age gardening career. You must consider going this route in this failing economy. There is no downside to investing in this book.

4-0 out of 5 stars Mushrooms for a sustainable future
When one considers mushrooms, one often thinks of a salad topping or a hallucinogen, but rarely does one consider mushrooms as a means to save the world. In Mycelium Running: How Mushrooms Can Help Save the World, mycologist Paul Stamets proposes that mushrooms can provide much more than a nutritious snack. Stamets is revered as a leader in the field of mushroom cultivation, having published five books on mushroom cultivation and use.By providing strategies by which mushrooms can improve both human and environmental health, cultivation techniques, and a species guide, Mycelium Running serves as an excellent addition to Stamets' other publications.
Mycelium Running is divided into three parts: The Mycelial Mind, Mycorestoration, and Growing Mycelia and Mushrooms.The three different parts provide the reader with a better understanding of mycelial structure, four unique mycorestoration strategies, and a detailed guide on how to grow mushrooms.Information is provided on how one can implement some of the proposed restoration strategies.
In the Mycelial Mind section, Stamets' passion for mushrooms shines through as he discusses the ubiquity of mushrooms, referred to as "mycomagicians," even claiming, "without fungi, all ecosystems would fail."The mycelium, which is a web of cells that fruits mushrooms, is "so pervasive that a single cubic inch of topsoil contains enough fungal cells to stretch more than 8 miles if placed end to end.I calculate that every footstep I take impacts more than 300 miles of mycelium." Stamets' introduction to fungi goes beyond standard textbook fare, while still providing introductory information on mycelia to any reader completely new to the topic.Stamets then goes on to discuss the medicinal applications of mycelium, including the role of mushrooms in fighting HIV.Other exciting mushroom applications presented in the text include mycorestoration and mycofiltration, where mycelium are used as a means to clean up contaminants, such as oil spills, and filter water.
This book presents many exciting ideas to help clean the environment, prevent further contamination, and improve human health, and Stamets managed to convince me of the role mushrooms will play in saving the world.I would recommend Mycelium Running to anyone interested in mushrooms, biology, the environment, human health, or innovative scientific ideas. ... Read more

19. The Inmates Are Running the Asylum: Why High Tech Products Drive Us Crazy and How to Restore the Sanity
by Alan Cooper
Paperback: 288 Pages (2004-03-05)
list price: US$23.95 -- used & new: US$12.14
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0672326140
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

Imagine, at a terrifyingly aggressive rate, everything you regularly use is being equipped with computer technology. Think about your phone, cameras, cars - everything - being automated and programmed by people who in their rush to accept the many benefits of the silicon chip, have abdicated their responsibility to make these products easy to use.

The Inmates are Running the Asylum argues that, despite appearances, business executives are simply not the ones in control of the high-tech industry. They have inadvertently put programmers and engineers in charge, leading to products and processes that waste money, squander customer loyalty, and erode competitive advantage. Business executives have let the inmates run the asylum!

In his book The Inmates Are Running the Asylum Alan Cooper calls for revolution - we need technology to work in the same way average people think - we need to restore the sanity. He offers a provocative, insightful and entertaining explanation of how talented people continuously design bad software-based products. More importantly, he uses his own work with companies big and small to show how to harness those talents to create products that will both thrill their users and grow the bottom line.

Amazon.com Review
The recurring metaphor in The Inmates are Running the Asylum is that of the dancing bear--the circus bear that shuffles clumsily for the amusement of the audience. Such bears, says author Alan Cooper, don't dance well, as everyone at the circus can see. What amazes the crowd is that the bear dances at all. Cooper argues that technology (videocassette recorders, car alarms, most software applications for personal computers) consists largely of dancing bears--pieces that work, but not at all well. He goes on to say that this is more often than not the fault of poorly designed user interfaces, and he makes a good argument that way too many devices (perhaps as a result of the designers' subconscious wish to bully the people who tormented them as children) ask too much of their users. Too many systems (like the famous unprogrammable VCR) make their users feel stupid when they can't get the job done.

Cooper, who designed Visual Basic (the programming environment Microsoft promotes for the purpose of creating good user interfaces), indulges in too much name-dropping and self-congratulation (Cooper attributes the quote, "How did you do that?" to Microsoft chairman Bill Gates, upon looking at one of Cooper's creations)--but this appears to be de rigueur in books about the software industry. But those asides are minor. More valuable is the discourse about software design and implementation ("[O]bject orientation divides the 1000-brick tower into 10 100-brick towers."). Read this book for an idea of what's wrong with UI design. --David Wall

Topics covered: User interfaces--good ones and bad ones--and where they come from. Also, how to improve the ones you create. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (141)

2-0 out of 5 stars Needlessly Arrogant
Software interaction design is one of my strong interests, so I took up this book with excitement to learn more of this important topic. As a software engineer and manager in the field for well over 20 years, I was shocked to learn that I am part of the problem. Turns out I'm in good company because all of Microsoft and every other engineering type is with me.

To give him credit (why I'm giving 2 stars instead of only 1), he does offer some interesting perspectives (software should be polite...) but you need to wade through vast piles of needless chest pounding and fault finding to get to the tidbits of curiosity.

I hate to write in my books, but I found I had to get out a pencil and start writing in the margins, notes to the author of how he is wrong in many of his analyses of situations, categorically condemns hugely useful and popular programs (email for example) because he thinks he found a feature everyone forgot.

I usually hate throwing away books until they are 20 years old. This is the first book I may actually throw away before it is a month old. I would never loan it to a friend or an enemy.

Don't buy it!

5-0 out of 5 stars Computer Programming Thought Out
The author, Alan Cooper, breaks apart the design cycle of creating software by separating the designer from coder. From experience and logic, he steps you around the traps while providing an easily followed track for producing a computer program.

Think of this book (almost) as an introduction to his other book, "About Face", a text book which every programmer/analyst/designer should read.

1-0 out of 5 stars Needs updating
Written in 1999, I think this book is an example of how software used to be written. While Cooper's attitude in the book is annoying and frustrating, I found his views about software and it's process narrow minded. In the 1999s, when a software package was rather small, spending tons of time doing software documentation made sense. Nowadays, Cooper's methods no longer apply. If you want a book to use as a reference of how not to do current day software, buy this book, read it, and do everything opposite of what Cooper suggests.

4-0 out of 5 stars Good case for interaction design, great for newbies
Why high-tech products drive us crazy and how to restore the sanity

by Alan Cooper, SAMS, 1999

Cooper wanted to provide with this book a business case for improved UI design. He wanted to make a case that there was a strong need for improved interaction design. The case no doubt stands as strong today as 10 years ago. While one sees progress at leading companies in terms of usability, the sheer abundance and explosion of human/computer interaction has no doubt caused the friction and frustration with poorly designed interfaces to increase ratherthan decrease.

Cooper has also written "how-to" books on interaction design:"About Face" in which he describes the techniques to come to good "interaction" design. If you're looking for techniques, it is no doubt more worthwhile to investigate "About Face".

In the "Inmates", Cooper raises several very worthwhile insights and approaches. Professionals in the industry will definitely connect with the messages and follow Cooper's reasoning. Design will reduce the number of iterations needed to come to a good product, and will reduce your overall time and cost needed. We know this, but do not necessarily do this in all projects. Which is why Cooper advocates the strong integration of design in your culture and processes. And why he wrote the book in the first place.

Yet, at the same time, Cooper's tone and stance towards engineers and programmers could easily be seen as alienating and by some even as arrogant. Which, in the end, somewhat diminishes the goal of the book. The goal after all is to influence the professional software community, existing mostly out of engineers and programmers. In my summary, I left out most of these comments when Cooper gets somewhat carried away about how software engineers are wired differently ('homo logicus').

In the end, it is a light and easy-to-read, often amusing book which is making a good case for the strongly-needed discipline of design. If you're not familiar with the topic, it is no doubt worth your time.


5-0 out of 5 stars A must read for anyone who has their hands in the software development process
This book was really eye opening to me. Showing how different software engineering is from traditional (civil, mechanical, electrical, etc.) in the sense that you are creating an ever evolving product. Though it also shows how we need to be treating it more like traditional engineering by going into the development process with more of a blueprint how how it should interact with the user. Imagine trying to build a house without blueprints! This is how I and most (if not all) other programmers that I know develop.

This book is not just for the developers out there, in fact it's only marginally for them. This book is aimed at managers of the software development process. Basically managers need to understand that more (some?) time needs to be placed on how the program will interact with *users* before it is sent to the developers.

Though with that said all people involved in the process of software development need to be aware of this shortcoming that is so often found in the development process. ... Read more

20. The Complete Book of Running for Women
by Claire Kowalchik
 Paperback: 416 Pages (1999-03-01)
list price: US$16.99 -- used & new: US$6.00
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0671017039
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Canada | United Kingdom | Germany | France | Japan
Editorial Review

Product Description

More women than ever are discovering the unique benefits of running -- for stress relief, weight management, endurance, and self-esteem. Women's bodies are not the same as men's, and though we can train just as hard and with the same passion for excellence, we have certain special concerns. Finally, there is a comprehensive guide exclusively for women who experience the pure joy of running, or want to.

It's the simplest, fastest, most accessible way to fitness and good health known to woman. You don't need a partner, equipment, or even much time. Now, Claire Kowalchik, former managing editor of Runner's World magazine, answers every question about the overwhelmingly popular activity that builds endurance, melts fat, and even prevents illness. In this total running book for women, you'll learn:

  • How to get started and stay motivated

  • What to eat for optimal nutrition

  • How to run during pregnancy and after menopause

  • Why running is the most effective form of exercise

  • How to prevent and treat injury

  • What to wear -- from sports bras to running shoes

  • How to prepare for everything from a 5K to a marathon

    Authoritative and friendly, The Complete Book of Running for Women is a sourcebook for both beginners and long-time runners. Along with wisdom drawn from the author's personal experience, you'll find advice from the experts: coaches, exercise physiologists, nutritionists, doctors, and other women runners. Including question-and-answer sections and a complete list of resources, The Complete Book of Running for Women tells you everything you need to know to be off and running toward better health and richer living. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (70)

    4-0 out of 5 stars Very Good Book
    The book is very informative for new runners. I wasn't sure what a fartlek and other running terms meant, and this book explains them.It also covers a variety of topics from stretching to training plans for different races.I got the order in about five business days.I am very happy with this book.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Amazing Resource!!
    I used to run cross country in high school; however, in college, I chose cheerleading over running and began focusing on easier workouts, like the elliptical.Then, I got married and had a baby.During the pregnancy, I gained well over 60 pounds.I started exercising again at the health club, taking classes, etc., but I was not losing the weight!It was very frustrating.Then I got a new job as a teacher and jr. high track coach!The idea of being a track coach who hadn't run since high school was frightening....so, I decided that I needed to get back in the swing of running.I figured that since I had tried to stay active, I could just go out and do it.I was wrong!!I got injured, and was frustrated.I decided to go on-line and see if I could find a book to give me the basics of how to get back into running after taking time off.I didn't want to run competitively, I simply wanted to be able to keep up with my track kids on an easy road run day for supervision purposes. :)

    This book was the answer!!It gave me the routine I needed to break back into running (no injuries from this routine!)It was also motivational!!I started waking up before my husband and daughter woke up and went for my run/walk work-out and then I would do the strength routine also provided by this book.I ended up losing all of my baby weight, and I was able to wear out my track kids.This year, I have started entering into races, and I have fallen in love with the sport of running all over again!!I highly recommend this book to anyone who is new to running or returning to running.It is very imformative on how to do it safely, stay motivated, and the benefits of running for your health!

    5-0 out of 5 stars What a great read :)
    I am a new runner who quickly incurred an injury because I went from the couch to "too much too soon". I knew nothing about running except get a new pair of great shoes, and get out there and run!
    I WISH I wouldve had the foresight to research running before I started. This book has it all, and it is a really easy read. I couldnt put it down. I believe that this book is one that you hold on to forever and refer to many people.

    I highly recommend this book to new and experienced runners :)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Most complete running book I've read so far
    I've been running for just over a year now (two half marathons and one 5k).A marathon is on the horizon for this year.I've read several running books so far, and this is by far the most worthwhile, well-written, and helpful read of them all!Honestly, I think it would be just as valuable to a man as it is to a woman.My favorite highlight of the book is the succinct, understandable way that it clarifies what exactly running jargon means (fartleks, tempo runs, etc) for us newbies.That said, advanced runners would benefit from this book as well.Fantastic book!

    5-0 out of 5 stars Complete Book of Running for Women
    I gave this book and the Runner's World Book of Women's Running to my daughter for her birthday.This book was quite cheap in comparison to the Runner's World Book but my daughter said it was very good and an excellent resource.She actually read both books within two days of her birthday and says she loves both although both are quite different.She says she will use information and training schedules from both books. She rates this book highly. ... Read more

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