Howard McEwen

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Entries Tagged as 'Book Review'

The Fellowship of the Ring

August 14th, 2015 · No Comments

One of my reading projects for 2015 was to read the Hobbit, Lord of the Rings and the Silmarillion. As I wrote about The Hobbit back in January, I’m not a fantasy guy. Wizards, magic, dragons, elves and the like make me go running. But I read the books incompletely as a teenager and knew […]

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Observations on The Hobbit

January 26th, 2015 · No Comments

Here’s the thing: I’m not a fantasy guy. I never got it as a young reader. I was more practical minded. A story had to be real. Dragons and wizards and elfs were…well, they were silly. And not a road to go down for a teenager looking to lose his virginity. But I had friends […]

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Octopussy and The Living Daylights

December 8th, 2014 · No Comments

The last Fleming Bond book I read was the collection of previously published short stories called Octopussy and The Living Daylights. I like shorter fiction. It’s more direct and immediate. And, let’s face it, it requires much less commitment. Contrary to what the title says, the book contains four stories. The first, Octopussy, has Bond […]

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Ian Fleming’s The Man with the Golden Gun

December 8th, 2014 · No Comments

Wikipedia says this was Fleming’s last book not quite finished before he died. Compared to You Only Live Twice, I’m thinking impending death made him better. That action-less, plot-less somewhat contrived novel paled compared to this simple, straight-forward narrative. Bond is sent to kill an assassin who has killed several British agents. It’s a simple […]

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My thoughts on Ian Fleming’s You Only Live Twice

November 26th, 2014 · No Comments

This wasn’t a boring book, nor was it exciting. Bond, washed up and despondent, after the murder of his wife Tracy is barely hanging on with the Secret Service. To challenge him to snap out of it, he is sent on an almost impossible misson to Japan. Once there, he talks. And talks. And talks […]

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Review of On Her Majesty’s Secret Service

July 28th, 2014 · No Comments

It’s the one where James Bond gets married. That’ll make for something different, I thought. Unfortunately, you can just feel Fleming run out of steam. Or is it interest? The cold assassin is gone. There’s more emotion here. Its’ the emotion of a middle aged man, it seems. Fleming was 55 when he wrote it. […]

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My thoughts on Ian Fleming’s The Spy Who Loved Me

July 23rd, 2014 · No Comments

“If only someone would come, someone to stay with me, someone to tell me that this was only a storm! But it wasn’t! It was catastrophe, the end of the world! And all aimed at me! Now! It would be coming again! Any minute now! I must do something, get help!” Well, help does come […]

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My Review of Ian Fleming’s Thunderball

June 19th, 2014 · No Comments

I’ve waited three weeks after finishing this novel to get my thoughts down so this will be incomplete. I’ll probably just bullet point some thoughts as I flip through the novel and review my high lights. I think this is the second or third novel in a row that begins with Bond feeling bad. In […]

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Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass

June 19th, 2014 · No Comments

I read this years ago in college, I think. It may have been high school. I’d no interest in reading it again but did so for a book club. Why no interest? Simply put: I thought it’d be boring. Yes, it’s a terrible story about a horrific time in history but I’d heard it all […]

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Review of Ian Fleming’s For Your Eyes Only

May 28th, 2014 · No Comments

For Your Eyes Only is not a Bond novel. It’s a collection of short stories based on outlines for a CBS TV series Fleming was going to sell but that was scuttled. The first, ¬†second and fourth stories, From a View to a Kill,¬†For Your Eyes Only and Risico are pure action stories. Bond investigates […]

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