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Mstation Book Reviews
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Fri, 06 Apr 2007

Malice Box

Martin Langfield, The Malice Box,
Penguin/Michael Joseph

Just the thing for one of those weekends where swirling rain sets in after we've been teased by a glimmer of spring. This is an action/adventure yarn set in NYC in the recent post 9/11 past. It involves a plot to take over the planet by the forces of evil - and no, it's not a political thriller. Blair and Bush do not feature.

Rather, it involves supernatural forces and people who, somewhat digitally, are either very, very good, or very, very bad or, in one case, both.. This much might make you think you're much too mature for this sort of thing but actually it's quite a good story with links into the ancient past, modern alchemists, and a trail through Manhatten that might serve as a tourist route. It also has an everyman heroe who discovers in himself all sorts of interesting powers even though he gets regularly flattened as the story progresses.

There is also a game to be played online with a variety of prizes on offer .. maliceboxquest.com

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Soros - the age of anti-Bush

George Soros, The Age of Fallibility: the concequences
of the War on Terror, Phoenix

George Soros will be known to some as an-ultra successful financial speculator - one who made several fortunes in one go when he took on the Brit pound - that being just one example. These days he spends a lot of money through his foundation and one of the things he's been spending on has been getting rid of George W. Bush.

We know now that he didn't make it in the last election and we also know that it is highly likely that GWB didn't actually win anything: more like he stole it and the one before... and the lessons learned from those events seem not to have penetrated the US political mind - if that's not a contradiction in terms.

So this book is still, one year later, very relevant. Soros tkes us through his own philosophy and posits that the current age of relativism has gone so far from the Age of Enlightenment as to be fairly useless as any kind of guide. This ties in nicely with a USA which is similarly lost, and as the US is the one superpower of the moment, it can also make us fearful.

The book also refers to some of his money 'sploits which should appeal to the funds-punks out there.

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In the Mood for Food

Jo Pratt, In the Mood for Food,
Penguin/Michael Joseph

Is this our first cookbook? Could be. Don't expect an expert disection of the recipes from us as our expertise is limited. However, you can't eat out all the time so a little cooking seems a good idea and if there are ideas which are largely fuss-free but look and sound nice then this also seems a good idea.

And that's what this book is about. It even has a section on meals for one which are interesting and different and are quick to make. One such is honey-seared salmon with noodles. Jo is invited right over to make some. Jo is pretty, by the way, and graces the cover holding two plates with a Gordon Ramsay quote saying 'Jo's food is vibrant and fun'. But don't let that put you off.

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