Michael Cavacini

An award-winning arts and culture blog.

Archive for the tag “Book”

Audible Review: X-Files Cold Cases & Stolen Lives

The X-Files is a pop culture phenomenon that has spanned decades and various mediums, including TV, movies, video games, and audiobooks. Speaking of which, there are two Audible Originals for X-Files fans to enjoy: Cold Cases and Stolen Lives. Both of these books feature David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson reprising their iconic roles. There’s also a full cast and various sound effects to round out the top-notch production, making each audiobook feel like a full-fledged episode of the show.

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WWE 35 Years Of WrestleMania

DK is back with another WWE book. This time it’s an updated version of WWE 30 Years of WrestleMania, a book I got autographed by “Mr. WrestleMania” himself: Shawn Michaels. This new edition expands on the previous one by adding five additional WrestleMania events, as well as other content. Below is my video review of WWE 35 Years of WrestleMania.

KISS: The Hottest Brand In The Land

KISS: The Hottest Brand In The Land is a new coffee table book by Nicholas Buckland. Clocking in at 390 pages, it is the officially licensed story of the KISS merchandising craze of the late 1970s and early 1980s. While the Ultra Deluxe Edition, which was autographed by Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons, and the Deluxe Edition are sold out, the Standard Edition is still available for $99.

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Book Review: The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver

I love thrillers and I’m a huge video game fan. The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver is supposed to blend the two together. The problem is video games aren’t referenced until over 100 pages in. To make matters worse, the first chunk of the book is rather boring. Even more puzzling, what appears to be the main mystery of the story is resolved within the first 130 pages. Not all thrillers need to follow a formula but they should be well structured and true to their description. As a video game fan, I was let down. As a thriller fan, my interest became non-existent after 130 pages. With this in mind, I can’t recommend this book. It’s a shame because I was looking forward to reading it.

Rich Dad Poor Dad: 20th Anniversary Edition

Rich Dad Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki is the #1 best-selling personal finance book of all time, which is quite an achievement since it came out in 1997. The audiobook version of the 20th anniversary edition of this book was just released, and it’s worth picking up. While his subsequent books pale in comparison to this one, Rich Dad Poor Dad is still an excellent read with useful lessons. Even better, the book is updated (for 2017, at least) so you’re getting Robert’s thoughts on what’s happened with money, investing, and the global economy over the past 20 years. These updates are interesting because they demonstrate to the reader whether or not Rich Dad’s lessons hold water. The narrator of this book does a fine job and is pleasant to listen to throughout. If you’ve never read Rich Dad Poor Dad, I recommend you do so and this is the version to get.

WWE SmackDown: 20 Years and Counting

DK is back with another hardcover book about WWE. This one, WWE SmackDown 20 Years and Counting, celebrates the first 20 years of WWE SmackDown, one of WWE’s most popular and iconic TV shows. Is this book worth your hard-earned cash? Watch my video review below to find out.

Audiobook Review: Fake by Robert Kiyosaki

Robert Kiyosaki, author Rich Dad Poor Dad, has a new book entitled Fake: Fake Money, Fake Teachers, Fake Assets. I chose to review the audiobook version of this book, and the narrator did a fine job with the material. That said, Fake is best described as a conspiracy book, explaining how certain key aspects of our society – money, teachers, and assets – aren’t what they appear to be. For example, he argues that U.S. currency is hanging by a thread and that “God’s money” (i.e., “real gold and silver”) is the way to go, for a variety of reasons. Kiyosaki also says that owning gold attracts money, as if it has some supernatural powers. While some of his logic in the book makes sense, the supernatural elements and conspiracy theories make him seem paranoid and out-of-touch with reality. Worse yet, entire sections of this book are copied and pasted throughout. In other words, identical sections and stories in one chapter appear in another. This has been noted in numerous Amazon reviews for the book, and this egregious quality-control error is present in the audiobook. That makes me wonder, did the narrator have to read the same parts over and over again? If so, wasn’t he wondering to himself, “Boy, this sounds familiar? I swore I already read this.” With all of this in mind, I can’t recommend this book. There are some interesting concepts but the quality control issues and goofy content in this book aren’t worth your “fake” money.

 

Backstage Pass by Paul Stanley

Paul Stanley has always been my favorite member of KISS. I’ve had the good fortune of doing a cover story interview with him, taking part in a backstage guitar meet and greet with the Starchild a few years back, meeting Paul numerous times during KISS meet and greets backstage, interviewing his son Evan for his first U.S. cover story, and much more. His music, personality, and sense of style are appealing and admirable. I loved his first book, Face The Music, so I was eager to check out Backstage Pass.

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Audiobook Review: Breathe To Succeed

Breathe To Succeed is focused on the power of mindfulness and owning one’s breath. As someone who does DDP Yoga every day, I fully understand the power of my breath. While this is an important concept to understand and master, it doesn’t warrant an audiobook that is nearly five hours long. The narrator does a fine job with the material, and the author clearly cares about the subject matter. However, I think it would be better suited for a TED Talk or a podcast episode, not a full-length book. Therefore, I can’t recommend it unless you know absolutely nothing about owning your breath and are willing to sit through a nearly-five-hour discussion about it. If that sounds appealing, this is the book for you. If not, you should read a more comprehensive book on mindfulness.

Audible Review: Is Wrestling Fixed? by Bill Apter

I recently listened to the audiobook Is Wrestling Fixed? I Didn’t Know It Was Broken! by Bill Apter. This Audible Original was highly enjoyable for a variety of reasons. First, Bill narrates the book himself, making it infinitely more charming and compelling. Second, I grew up watching professional wrestling (and still do) and I fondly recall buying many of the magazines Bill was affiliated with, including Pro Wrestling Illustrated, The Wrestler, and Inside Wrestling. Prior to the internet, these magazines were the best way to see amazing photos and read articles about my favorite professional wrestlers, and this was during the 1990s when the WWF (now WWE), WCW, and ECW were hotter than ever. It was a magical time to be a fan and this book captures that era, and many others, from Bill’s perspective.

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