Don't let the cover fool you. It shows a woman in a black cape with a pentagram on her chest and holding an axe, but this book isn't about witches. An evil force is trying to take over the world and it's up to a slacker student and an ambitious female deputy to stop them, and they do fall in love halfway through! Without spoiling to much; Lee pulls no punches, from people who get sliced in half by a enormously large axe, to gruesome alien experiments and a zombie that can't be killed, COVEN has it all. Also worth mentioning is Lee's quirky sense of humor and his knack to create characters, which are most of the times stereotypical, but also make you laugh out loud because of their human traits. An example is the way he sends up rich, spoiled collegestudents, with their expensive cars and their taste in foreign beer.
This book is very hard to find (like most of Lee's older books) and I myself paid a ridicously large amount of money for it. But it was totally worth it and if you can find it I recommend it to any fan of extreme horror!
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Edwards starts at the beginning when Ed Feulner and others wanted to found a think tank to get ideas and papers out fast and timely. He follows through the troubled 70s into the triumphent 80s when Reagan became president. HE looks at the ideas Heritage put forth and how it did not hesitate to criticize Reagan if he went wrong. He follows through the Bush administration and into the 90s. This, like Feulner's book about conservative thought is a must read for all conservatives!
First is "Header". I'd heard for years about this Lee story called "Header" and always wondered, "What's a header." I can see now why this story's gained so much recognition. Ed Lee does what not a lot of writers of this type of horror can do--he makes you forget what initially got you into the story--the header--and soon you're involved in the story under that one--the REAL story. Header is a story of desperation and revenge. You come in meeting Travis Tuckton, learning about headers, and soon you realize, Hey that's not even what this story is about. Travis isn't the main character. Who's this cop, Cummings? He's the one to focus on. Header is nothing more than a cop story, turned up to eleven.
Then "The Pig". My only complaint about "The Pig" is the last 15 pages or so. And that's Ed's fault because he did such a great job building everything up, my expectations were high. All Leonard wants is to make his low budget movie and win the Sundance Film Festival, and he knows he can win because his movie, based on his own college-written short story, "The Confessor" is great. So, where does a guy fresh out of prison and with no prospects go to get funding for a movie? Thank God for Rocco who loans him the cash. Well, thank God until Rocco comes back a few days later looking for his money back. To pay the debt, Leonard is put to work, and this is where the story kicks into gear. I read this story in just a couple of days, grabbing whatever free time I could find to get through another couple pages, feeling sorry for poor Leonard and knowing I would never want his job. Remember the movie "8mm"? Same subject matter, but "The Pig" doesn't have Nicolas Cage moping around the screen and boring anyone.
And again, my only complaint here is that, with the kind of buildup Lee gives us here, I was expecting some big action-packed climax, a showdown between Leonard and Rocco (and Knuckles), but Lee chose the "let's give them something they weren't expecting" route and surprised me.
Last is "The Horn-Cranker", a story that should be winning some kind of award for Lee sometime. Dean Lohan, South Dakota Horn-Cranking champion and basic redneck, lives in Seattle now with his "loving" wife. But when his father goes into a coma, Dean has to go back home, where he finds something has been killing children by the dozens. This was my favorite story and a first-class job by Ed Lee. My wife and I were talking about this story last night, trying to decide who would make good cast members for "Horn-Cranker" the movie (I'm sticking by my vote for Bruce Campbell, but then I think he should be in everything), because it seems such a perfect choice for one of those independent horror movies that is able to go beyond what Hollywood will do . This is a story that could take Ed Lee to new heights in his career--well it seems from what I've read that his novel "City Infernal" might just do that, but this story could, too. I hate to use a King comparison when reviewing another horror writer, but this time I have to. because reading "The Horn-Cranker" it was like Lee has taken the best elements of a Stephen King novella, the stuff that makes King's novellas the great things they can be, and given them new strength, new life, and new intensity, to make the perfect combination of horror and humor in a long time.
There's a different level of energy to these stories that I don't often see in horror anymore. Some of today's horror seems more interested in style over substance, while some horror seems more concerned with what's going to gross out the reader. But Ed Lee's on a different plain from the rest of us and there's nobody else who does what he does quite like him. He's quickly proving, with each new book I read from him, that he's just a step or two above what the rest of us are doing these days.
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Imagine being forced to exist in a never-never world where you have no race to call your own, a world in which you are not only subjected to white discrimination, but those in your own community--including your own father--cannot accept you because you are not black enough. I have never read a stronger indictment of the insanity of racism. Mr. Edwards writes passionately, with raw honesty, generously offering his own trauma and recovery to give others hope A must read for anyone who says they care about social justice.
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Mountains" depicts Western North Carolina as a magical place full of the
finest arts and crafts, antiques and an abundance of natural beauty and
outdoor activities. And it is! This guidebook covers a 200 mile
stretch from Murphy to Boone and uncovers lots of hidden treasures along
the way. It's a fun read too, with unusual facts and recipes. My
personal favorite: Kudzu Jelly!
Call dibs on the shotgun seat as four enthusiastic travelers take you on a lively ride through western North Carolina in "Coasting the Mountains". The authors are friends...whose love of discovery shines through.
Their personal insights validate our enthusiasm for places we've visited and whet our appetites for those we haven't. Scattered throughout the book are recipes gathered during their rambles as well as boxes with notes of interest, little-known facts and insider tips. Plus they steer travelers to the best shopping and antiquing.
"Coasting the Moutains" is thorough and a lot more fun than most guidebooks.
Excerpted from The Atlanta Journal-Constitution
September 16, 2001
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Arranged alphabetically, Holton covers a wide range of leadership characteristics-from courage to management by objectives and virtual reality-that unmask problems and bottle necks in almost any private or public corporate structure. Personnel from any level in the corporate structure will find this readable, easily understood, and immediately applicable to their area of work.
This is a must for any organization that is or already has shifted to self-directed or high performance team management. Lee was a master of this strategy, and the details of his skill show clearly through Dr. Holton's work.
Having read extensively of the literature on Lee's command of the Army of Northern Virginia, I was very impressed with Dr. Holton's skill in matching the excerpts from primary sources of Lee's career with the 119 management concepts presented in this compact, 158 page, guide to leadership.
The only quote that I missed seeing in my reading of this work, which would have only added to the character portrait Holton develops, is a paragraph from the January 21, 1993 Congressional Record:
"Robert E. Lee's religious conviction was clearly expressed in his sense of honor and duty. He revealed this in a note he wrote to himself: 'There is a true glory and a true honor: the glory of duty done--the honor of the integrity of principle."
While few of us can muster the sterling qualities (and patriotic impetus) of Marse Bob, we can yet benefit from his wisdom and integrity, and aspire at least to emulate the qualities which made him one of the most respected figures in American history.
The present work is a companion to "From Battlefield to Bottom Line", a study of U.S. Grant's leadership, by the same author. Both are highly recommended to anyone who wishes to learn leadership from two masters.
(The numerical rating above is an ineradicable default setting within the format. This reviewer does not employ numerical ratings.
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The lessons are laid out chronologically in Lee's career. They highlight as much about his strengths as his weaknesses. More importantly for me, they give an insight into the Civil War that is uniquely from the perspective of General Lee.
This is a book that can appeal to Civil War readers, or it can appeal to those interested in Management.
It is an easy read, I like the style, and it is a book that you can stop and start as you like. No need to plough through it all in one go.
This book is one you can jump from chapter to chapter on and not read from start to finish if you wanted as it deals with leadership approaches for various subjects. This book I recommend to anyone involved in business be it a salesperson or manager looking to better themselves with great thought. Also it can be a book one could keep with them at work as a helpful guide to reflect back on for insight on how to deal with situations that arise. Lee's style of handling issues is usually the correct and friendly non-confrontational approach which many could benefit from reading. On another side of this great book, Lee's failures or mistakes are also covered and Lee offers his thoughts on how he should have handled things differently.
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The first story, "Goddess of the New Dark Age," concerns a washed up writer dying of cancer and his attempt to seek the meaning of reality. He goes to the usual sources one would consider in such a quest, heading down to the university to talk to a philosophy professor. The professor gives him a long, academic rant that is neither illuminating nor coherent. The author turns to sex, finding nothing lurking there that reveals reality. Only when he recognizes that the reality of our time is horror heaped upon horror, the reality of man's cruelty and endless heartbreak, does he discover what is real.
Lee moves down darker trails in "The Seeker," a tale even more obscure than the previous story. A writer wonders into a strange town, encountering several weird people in a local bar while the army searches for something strange in the surrounding environs. A few stomach churning scenes later finds the writer encountering what the army is looking for. What it is and what it means is unclear, but the man discovers the object has bigger plans than corrupting the local townspeople. Lee writes that the symbolism of this story is that the things we seek out because we believe it is the truth often turn out to be something completely different. Hmmm.
"Pay Me" unavoidably deals with the quest for sex. In this pornographic yarn, a man named Smith runs across Lisa, an old school chum, in a seedy bar. She is even more attractive than he remembers, and the two make small talk over drinks for a time. Regrettably for Smith, he soon sees what her job is in this type of bar. The descriptions here are graphic in a tone that suggests certain magazines available only to those over eighteen. Smith and Lisa do spend the night together, resulting in Smith's incorporation into the stage show at the bar. Lee claims this story deals with the biggest fear of the 1980's, namely the shroud of sexual terror that descended over the country due to the AIDS virus.
Ed Lee fans will want to pick this slim book up quickly, since small press stuff tends to quickly fade from view. I do not pretend to understand these mysterious stories, but they are quite different from the usual Ed Lee fare. For instance, I do not remember any rednecks or hillbillies turning up in any of the stories, definitely a rare and noticeable occurrence for this author. Ultimately, it is nice to see a writer in the grue genre attempt to stretch his talents now and again even if he does not necessarily pull it off.
Three stories, one chapbook, and the label out-of-print on all this beast's previous release. That is what this work, by Edward Lee, comprises on its Quest For Sex, Truth, and Reality. It also entails something that's well written in its short, 35-page run, something that reflects upon its author while the main character's ' all reflecting on bits of Edward's internal struggle ' search for something more, and a more meaningful side of the gore writer's persona. Personally, I find this time period in his writing life an interesting one, filled with reflections of what is going on in the author's mind after each tale told, letting you into the painter's mindset as the scene was crafted. To me, that is an important keyhole to sometimes peek through because knowing the author, its knowing something behind-the-scenes.
For fans of Lee's writing, this is something that you'll want to definitely procure because the alternative to picking it up here is paying way too much for the out-of-print volumes of this, his first chapbook. Also, Pay Me, the third story in the book, is also listed as exclusive to the volume, so that makes it a nice find, too. Included herein is Goddess of a New Dark Age, The Seeker, and the before-mentioned piece, evening it out as something that is worth picking up. For anyone that has yet to check out Lee, you should bear in mind that he is a horror creator and incorporates the spilling of internal stimuli to get his message across. If this works for you and you want a tale coated in the renditional imagery of terror, then this is worth picking up.