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A great deal of the book is devoted to Middle-Earth and J.R.R. Tolkien's works. There are the creepily reptilian dragons, spiders chasing hobbits, the majestic Elves, several different incarnations of the Balrog and its battle with Gandalf, the black-armored and evil Morgoth, the dwarves dining in Bilbo Baggins' hole, a misty Treebeard, Smaug asleep on his glowing gold, the Dark Tower of Mordor with a hissing Fell Beast in front of it... all sorts of goodies. The pictures come from book covers, book illustrations, game boxes, and so forth.
But Howe's artwork is not just for "Rings" and Middle-Earth. Oh no. There are sketches (uncolored) and previously unpublished artwork. There are illustrations from picture books like "Jack and the Beanstalk," "Rip Van Winkle," Howe's fascination with armor and Arthuriana, which includes lots of solid horses, armor, and sword-wielding knights; his illustrations for books by Anne McCaffrey, Robin Hobb, Charles de Lint, Guy Gavriel Kay, Jan Siegel, Margaret Weis, a compilation of Merlin-related stories, and much more.
Howe's artwork has a lot of variety, and many of them look almost like photographs. While you can tell that they're paintings, they're frozen in one second, often in the middle of an action scene. So you almost expect them to start moving. He uses light and shadow expertly, such as in the pic where we see Smaug on his gold -- under his wings, the golden reflection of his treasure is lighting up his face and scales. Or when he is shown attacking Laketown, where everything is dark and shadowy except the fire.
When the "Lord of the Rings" movie trilogy was given the go-ahead, Howe (along with Alan Lee, ) was hired by filmmaker Peter Jackson to help with the sets and landscaping and other designs. Now Jackson has written a foreword to this book, in which he talks about what a fan he is of Howe's artwork (and was, even before the movies!), and how his artwork served as a guide of sorts to how certain things should look. (Such as Ian McKellen's "Gandalf" look, which was based on Howe's famed picture of the wise old wiz) And the afterword was by fellow artist and friend Alan Lee, who describes how they met in New Zealand in 1998, starting work on the movies, and praises Howe for his energy and skill.
This is a fantastic read for fans of J.R.R. Tolkien's works, not to mention people who enjoy good artwork and fantasy/SF pictures. A lush, fantastical book of dragons, halflings, Elves and suits of armor. Marvelous.
This book shows you a collection of the art of John Howe, a well-known artist of fantasy art, and someone who designed a lot of visual aspects in the Lord of the rings movies. It contains lots of artwork that has to do with the work of J.R.R. Tolkien, but also some of Howes other work with various subjects.
I can really recommend this almost everybody,because it's just fun to have this for the pretty pictures. The impressive things are not only the detail, the design and the colorscheme, but also the fact that the work really seem to show a certain greatness and movement. They make you believe that those moments were keymoments in the history of some other world.
This a MUST-HAVE.
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Herbert Reece has inspired many of us who have had the privilege
of growing up with the knowledge that he was a part of our family. My mother was always so proud of him. Because of him it was instilled into us that we too might accomplish the art of writing.
Thanks Mr. Jackson for writing the book!!
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Alan Jackson is my favorite country music performer. Watching him and other country artists had rekindled my intrest in playing guitar. It had been years since I'd played. I couldn't remember half of what I'd been taught nor did I have any songbooks to help me out.
That was quickly remedied. I simply accessed [...] and ordered Alan Jackson's "High Mileage" songbook. At the same time I sent my long-neglected, acoustic guitar in for reconditioning and a new set of strings.
Soon I had my "High Mileage" songbook in hand, but I could only play three out of the ten songs on the album. I needed to take it a step further and sign up with a guitar coach. I did just that. My "High Mileage" songbook has come to class with me every week. My instructor has been teaching me new chords, rhythms, and picking styles previously unknown to me. At this time, I can play eight out of the ten selections.
My point in telling you all this? So that you might better understand my joy at being able to play along with my favorite country artist. When I crank up my High Mileage CD and play along with my guitar, using my "High Mileage" songbook...It's been the next best thing to jammin' with Alan Jackson himself. My overall rating for the songbook is excellent. It's easy to read and follow along. My guitar coach (a man)was excited to find the Metronome settings, listed for each song. But I (a woman)was more tickled to see the large photos of "AJ" that adorn the book. After all, the man is easy on the eyes.
I did however, find just a couple of problem areas that were mildly frustrating and easily remedied. The first was on page thirty, the song, "Hurtin' Comes Easy." A "D" chord was missing in the eighth measure. The chords should have been, E-D-A. Then on page forty-three, the song, "Little Man," there was no indication to use a guitar capo. The capo should be used on the first fret.
In my opinion though, these minor upsets were nothing compared to the hours of joy I've spent playing along with Mr. Country Music! I've been playing my guitar more than ever before and together were're strumming up some "High Mileage" of our own.
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In the past, I have generally hated the X-Men's adventures in the Savage Land, or whenever they would go to outer space or get into really super sci-fi type situations. I always felt the X-Men stories worked much better when they were grounded in very normal, down-to-earth settings, because it made the X-Men themselves stand out and seem that much weirder. But this book is an exception to the rule. It's a big, crazy, larger-than-life adventure, part of which takes place in the prehistoric Savage Land, and part of which gets hyper technological, and it works out OK.
The artwork is tough and gritty. Jim Lee draws a mean, shadowy, ugly Wolverine who kills lots of villains and looks like he needs to take a shower very badly.
And Lee's women - whoa. This book contains more gratuitous cheescake shots than any X-Men graphic novel I've seen, but it's all very pleasing to the eye. Especially the scenes with Rogue, whose bare skin can kill anyone she touches and thus, understandably, was always the one major female character who kept herself completely covered at all times. This was the first storyline in the series where they finally drew her as a scantily-clad, sexy heroine. A real treat for male Rogue-fans who'd been reading the series patiently for years.
This storyline also chronicles the transformation of innocent young Psylocke into a mature woman trained in the art of Ninjitsu, and she becomes an ultra-violent, sexy bad girl. And then there are cameo appearances by other Marvel superheroes, namely Captain America (from the Avengers series) and The Black Widow (from the Daredevil series). All in all, it's a satisfying, action-packed, well-drawn, crowd-pleasing comic book in trade-paperback format.
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The author's extensive knowledge of Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism add richness to the discussion of Christianity by presenting the faith within the context of alternative belief systems.
Bordering on brilliance, in my view, and begging for more extended discussion are the sections on "A Mythical Christ" and "A Mystical Christ."
Remedial Christianity is written and illustrated with a touch of refreshing humor. It is a treasure trove of information and ideas, and it is affordable.
As part of a study on the history of Christian theology, my church's Adult Education Ministry offered this book to small groups for discussion. I had the pleasure of leading one of those groups, and engaging in a very thorough debate of this text. Opinions about some of the conclusions drawn by Dr. Laughlin varied - some were very supportive of his view, others were dissenting. What was so refreshing about the experience was the number of times that people in my group came to a meeting about a particular chapter saying "I never knew that." The knowledge we gained from reading this book- whether we agreed or disagreed with the views of the author - caused us to examine our own faith and understanding of Christianity. Far from causing anyone to doubt their faith, the text provides an opportunity for a deeper understanding of faith and theology, and is one of the best resources to help indvidual Christians come to their own understanding and "image" of God.
Happily, we also had a chance to meet the author and listen to lectures based on this and other material. He was content with any points of disagreement with his scholarship, and genuinely interested in alternative points of view.
I highly recommend this book, and I highly recommend its use by any congregation looking for a good study and debate about Christianity. You can agree or disagree with it as much as you want. Just do not pass up the great opportunity Dr. Laughlin provides to learn more about the Christian faith.
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Mr. Gropman clearly demonstrates what many authors are unable to do: the ability to present an opinion based on fact, rather than speculation. I was impressed with this book because it provided me with much information on Joe Jackson's life, particularly on whether he was or wasn't involved in the scandal. The facts lead to the conclusion, not the other way around, and I like that. Baseball fans interested in the history of the game should read this book. They will enjoy it.
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For those who are looking for a book to teach them how to play their drum, I would suggest Dworsky's other books, specifically, "How to Play the Djembe" and "Conga Drumming - A Beginner's Guide to Playing with Time". Both of these are excellent resources and probably the best books available for entry level instruction for these instruments.