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Book reviews for "Joyce,_Michael" sorted by average review score:

The Oxford Dictionary of Music
Published in Hardcover by Oxford University Press (1995)
Authors: Michael Kennedy and Joyce Bourne
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A Real Disappointment
As a person who has taught literally thousands of students the joys of music, I'm always searching for a better music dictionary to recommend to my students and colleagues. I know I'd want a dictionary with enough diagrams to show the various music symbols and what they mean. I would want a book which also includes some biographical data as well. But here is where this book totally and I mean completely misses the mark. The vast part of the text is nothing more than a short to medium biography of just about every musician/composer you might (or might not) wish to learn about. The book should have been entitled, "Oxford BIOGRAPHICAL Dictionary of Music". As for notation? Forget it. Symbols? (such as what do note "accents" look like? Forget that, too. What about the parts of a harpsichord (for example). Well, no diagrams at all and a mere overview too complicated for the layman. In fact, there are NO diagrams in the entire work.
I certainly would get more out of a 'pocket' music dictionary than I would out of this. Better yet, try "The Harvard Dictionary of Music" which is considerably better. As much as I love the United Kingdom (I studied there)--I'd much rather defer to Harvard on this one!

Indespensible - if used as intended
I have had this book (The Dictionary) on my shelf for a number of years now (as a softcover). And before the current edition (1994), I owned the older edition.

My interest is mainly 20th century serious music, and jazz. Unlike the "Oxford Companion to Music", the Dictionary covers 20th century relatively well. Many obscure composers are listed who are not listed in other books, for example Lebrecht's "Complete Companion to 20th Century Music". As such the Dictionary indispensable for me. The information is more factual (and less opinionated) than Lebrecht's. I particularly like the alphabetic arrangement which allows me to quickly look up someone whose music I have discovered by change, or whose name was mentioned in an article or whatever. The listing of works by each composer is reasonably complete, particularly for well-know composers.

Of course the Dictionary covers more than composers or even 20th century composers. It covers artists (performers and conductors), major works, musical terms and forms, organisations, instruments, venues, etc. And entries are cross-referenced, as one would expect. The Dictionary contains very few illustrations.

There are 12,500 entries in the second edition, so one would not expect a huge depth. You will often need to know more. However, the Dictionary is a comprehensive, detailed, reliable reference work on music, and as such a good starting point for most topics.

Pick this one instead of the Harvard
For people buying their first music dictionary or trying to decide between the two leaders (Harvard and Oxford), this is the one to get. While both contain a wealth of information, you will find the Oxford to be superior to Harvard. Not only are there more entries, but Oxford also contains more up-to-date information. You don't buy a book like this every day, so spend a couple extra bucks and pick Oxford.

The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Music (Oxford Paperback Reference)
Published in Paperback by Oxford University Press (1996)
Authors: Michael Kennedy and Joyce Bourne
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The Oxford Music Dictionary is in some ways useful, but as the title depicts, one would assume that a "dictionary" would contain pronunciations, but this book does not. Its good to know what sfortzando and fortissimo means, but can you say them? Given that every book has some downfall or another, I felt this should be titled "The Oxford Collection of Musical Terms," with the exclusion of "dictionary."

An indispensible guide
A comprehensive, well-organized volume that covers composers, compositions, periods and styles, terminology (though I must agree with another reviewer--this really needs a pronunciation guide for some of the more difficult names and terms), instruments, vocalists, cultural context, and more. Major composers get more attention, with longer bios and more detailed entries, though the entries for some of the more notable people (such as George Gershwin) come up a little short in detailing their impact and significance. I purchased this book about a year ago, when I found myself becoming more interested in classical music, and it has proven to be extremely handy in identifying major pieces, performers, and composers. A must-have for music majors and libraries (both college and public) and for individual reference, and as an added bonus, is a godsend for those of us who do crossword puzzles.

Indispensable desk reference tool
As the maintainer of the Classical MIDI Archives, I use this reference every single day. Its contents has been most judiciously selected to permit searches on composers, musical forms, terms, instruments, orchestras and performers. Each composer's entry offers a work-list which provides an excellent perspective. An invaluable tool indeed.

Of Two Minds: Hypertext Pedagogy and Poetics
Published in Paperback by University of Michigan Press (1996)
Author: Michael Joyce
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A good critique of the written language
Micheal Joyce does a good job explaining the fundamentals of hypertext in his book. He provides a clear delineation between what the differences re between exploratory and constructive hypertext. Considering I found this book at one of the 80% publishers list price sales, it proved his point that books are merely fleeting objects soon to be replaced. At most time sthe book is fairly straightforward, but during some of interstitials, the paragraphs required multiple readings to understand what he was saying. I hope to get some mileage out of his argument on the Highschool poliy debate topic this year:eduation. I guess I should probably read Landow now too.

Grandaddy of Hypertext
_Of Two Minds_ is an ambitious attempt to delineate ways in which hypertext can be taught and the ways in which it affects reading/writing and our relationship to reading/writing. Michael Joyce, a professor of English at Vassar College, is the author of the first hypertext novel (Afternoon, a Story) and worked with the programmer of the most commonly used hyper-fiction program "Storyspace." He is, then, one of the singularly most qualified voices on the topic of hypertext(ual) pedagogy. Joyce elucidates what is a still-emerging and vastly complicated field.

Five Golden Rings
Published in Mass Market Paperback by Zebra Books (Mass Market) (2000)
Authors: Fern Michaels, Kat Martin, Jo Beverley, Katherine Sutcliffe, and Brenda Joyce
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christmas cheer
This was a really seasonal book that helped me get into the holiday spirit. It was an emotional roller coaster that had me anxious to see what would happen next. Each story had a happy ending that made it worth reading. I would buy it again and I hope to see more like it soon.

Heart of the Home
Published in Paperback by Topaz (1997)
Authors: Fern Michaels, Brenda Joyce, Bronwyn Williams, Denise Domning, and Fern Micheals
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Sweet, Enchanting Tales
Four stories were not enough in this book of romance! Very well written, this book would make an excelent gift for any romanticist! You get that warm fuzzy feeling from just a couple minutes of reading, and just know it will continue through all of the book....Please don't be discouraged that I gave this book only 4 stars... I would normally give a collection of tales like this 5 stars, only I didn't particularly care for part of the first story; a little TOO sappy for me.... other than that, this was a superb collection, one I definitely recremend you get!

Little Tree: A Story for Children With Serious Medical Problems
Published in Paperback by Magination (1992)
Authors: Joyce C. Mills, Michael Chesworth, and Joyce C. Mill
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A story that offers comfort and hope for ill children.
This healing story of a tree whose branches are taken from her in a storm helps children find comfort and inspiration in their own journey. The author writes with sensitivity and the illustrations are delightful. I would recommend this book to anyone who facilitates the healing process of children.

Suppose the Wolf Were an Octopus: Grades K to 2: A Guide to Creative Questioning for Primary-Grade Literature
Published in Paperback by Royal Fireworks Press (1996)
Authors: Joyce Foley, Michael Bagley, and Micheal Bagley
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Great Questions!
I have had to purchase a second copy because the first one was so worn!! This book is an absolute must for elementary teachers! It takes 50 well-known children's stories such as Cinderella and Stone Soup and gives you questions for every level of Bloom's taxonomy. Super resource!

Published in Audio Cassette by Penguin Audiobooks (1995)
Authors: Joyce Carol Oates and Michael Harris
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an intelligent study of the disturbed
always the author who plunges into the darker aspects of middle-american life, joyce carol oates chose jeffrey dahmer as the subject of her novel "Zombie." her novels and short stories tend to sordidly dig into the dark psychological turmoils of those who live in a "normal" household.

to oates, dahmer could not have been a better subject on which to base a novel. he was from a typical family and spent most of his childhood living in smaller ohio towns. oates manages to successfully show the transformation from troubled boy to serial killer. this is a superb book if anyone cares more to learn about the psychological churnings inside a serial killer's mind than to learn about the tabloid details of dahmer.

oates subtly shows america its own scars (particularly in the aspect of sexuality) in "Zombie." she attempts to show our poisons and how this can affect an unstable boy into becoming a man that we fear, a man one would label "a monster," as we tend to over-simplify. however, oates makes it clear that there are no monsters, only products of a dying society.

definitely one of her better novels, "Zombie" urges the reader to re-think about the ways american society works. "Zombie" also helps him gain a better understanding of the progression from "innocent boy" to "monster." she does this with ease, as it is obvious that oates researched psychological studies on serial killers in order to better write her novel. she understands many subtle keys which make QP (the character based on dahmer) a believable serial killer. QP obsesses over "squirrel" (the code name he has given to a young boy), who, in turn, bears striking similarities to an old love of QP. (many serial killers will stalk someone who reminds them of someone from the past. for example, ted bundy killed women who mostly resembled his fiancee.) QP's actions follow most other serial killer's M.O., down to donald j. sears' widely accepted 13 poi! nts of a serial killer. QP also seems to go through joel norris' seven phases through which serial killers pass as they murder. (for more information, i recommend "serial killers- the insatiable passion" by david lester, PhD.) in order to retain artistic integrity and keep QP a believable character, oates obviously did much research before penning her powerful novel, "Zombie."

written in oates' trademark eloquently simple, yet eerily disturbing prose, "Zombie" is definitely worth reading. it is an especially complete package with the equally simple drawings QP has created for his reader, letting him fully understand his obsessions and tantalize him with his wit.

what causes an unstable boy to become a serial killer? oates outlines many points, from sexual abuse, a feeling of unwantedness, to an over-whelming feeling of guilt and unacceptance. her character QP is believable and is not the typical paper-cut character one has grown to expect in modern novels. using QP as her puppet, oates manages to convey her theories on what psychologically induced dahmer to attempt to create his perfect zombie. it is a unique serial killer study in that it is a work of fiction, yet tells more truth than most tabloid "accounts" of dahmer.

Precursor to 'American Psycho'?
Fascinating look into a serial killer's mind. A Vulcan mind-meld softened by words. (Would you want to *feel* the insanity ?) You experience his meltdown.

He separates his father into two entities: 'dad' and 'Professor P__.' Later, he separates *himself* into two entities. One knows nothing of what the other does. In one sentence, he refers to himself both as 'I' and as 'Q__ P__.' Very convenient, as this allows him to completely detach from his actions. For example, he doesn't hit his victim with a crowbar; rather, the crowbar comes down and hits the victim. He does not act; the crowbar does.

His stories come out in jagged pieces: A few disembodied sentences here, more later; sometimes we never get the whole story. How can he be expected to think linearly, especially considering his odd relationship - or lack of one - with time. You see, his clock has no hands.

ZOMBIE is a book that can be read again and again. Read it superfically or delve into it to your heart's content. It's one of the most intriguing books I've ever read.

Addicting - One of a kind!
This was the first book I picked up by Joyce Carol Oates. At first I was disturbed by it, but that's what fascinated me. I couldn't put it down, I looked forward to going home just so I could read it and now I recommend it to my friends. Oates accomplished exactly what she meant to. Whoever says it wasn't deep, doesn't really know what "deep" is, you have to be "deep" to write the way Oates has here. Zombie is terrifying, disturbing - a book about a serial killer nobody else could have duplicated. After reading this book, I am addicted to Joyce Carol Oates. Her work is fantastic!

Published in Hardcover by Miramax (17 September, 2002)
Authors: Michael Chabon and William Joyce
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Major league disappointment
My eight year old daughter and I approached this book with such eagerness, as we both love baseball and magic. On page 115 we made the mutual decision to give up. Michael Chabon is a talented writer for adults but he has no clue how to structure a story for young minds. Characters are fuzzy, the plot is hard to follow, and there's a lot of overwriting. (We kept saying, "Who is he again? Who are the bad guys again? What do they want?" and paging back to find out. By page 115 we still weren't clear, and ceased to care.) The more I read other writers of fiction for young people, the more I appreciate J.K Rowling.

Clever, Imaginative Story Telling
I would have given it five stars if I loved baseball or if this book gave me a love of baseball but I do appreciate the author's, Michael Chabon, intense and passionate love of the game. A book for kids is the perfect follow-up to the wonderful Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Klay and it shows the author's gift for narrative to be as strong as ever and the story moves swiftly and breathlessly. The imaginary worlds he creates in Summerland come as more of a surprise, as they are both fresh and familiar as the same time. It may lack the sense of wonder of the Harry Potters or the complexities of His Dark Materials but it touches elements of both and brings in a little Americanism (reminiscent of Baum) along with it. He has turned the national sport into the stuff of myths and legends and turned the stuff of myths and legends into daily life. It is both a rollicking adventure story and a sweet meditation on story telling with (its only drawback to this non-fan) a lot of baseball. It is truly a modern American fairy tale.

Kinsella for kids!
I have not yet read any of Chabon's books for adults (but they're on my list), but Summerland was a wonderful place to start. It is another fine book in the collection of "for middle-schoolers but just as much for grown-ups" that are (delightfully) sweeping the shelves these days (Harry P, Artemis Fowl, Unfortunate Events, Pullman trilogy, etc). I will not summarize it again (it has been done above and below), but give you another perspective on comparison. Likened by others to C.S. Lewis and Tolkien as well, I find an analogy to W.P. Kinsella for kids to be more apt: its primary themes, baseball and magic (with Indian lore), are the meat and potatoes of Kinsella's novels and short stories. For those unfamiliar with Kinsella (an unfortunate but not uncommon occurrence in the US), all one has to say is: "Field of Dreams" (the movie was based on Kinsella's novel Shoeless Joe). If you never read Kinsella but loved Field of Dreams, or are (or were) a kid with baseball in your blood, and are willing to be transported to yet another world (or worlds, actually)---or at least Washington state---you will thoroughly enjoy Summerland.
(I do agree that the editing is wanting in the first edition, but I won't punish the quality of the writing and the story for that. But a new edition does require that someone at the publisher's establishment note the numerous errors and correct them)!

Listen to Your Heart
Published in Audio Cassette by Brilliance Audio (2000)
Authors: Fern Michaels, Joyce Bean, and Sandra Burr
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Great book!
Fern Michaels Listen To Your Heart is another winner. Great book and very touching story about 2 sisters and there loves. Highly recommended!

Listen To Your Heart
This is a very light & refreshing book .there are two dogs in the story & they make you fall in love with them ....they are just precious.! I think this book would be a wonderful movie ....light & funny & refreshing .... there is a lot in the book to remind us all of one very important person in our lives ...our mothers..

Really refreshing story
This is a story of twins that will keep your interest and with a smile or a laugh. The setting is New Orleans and though there is a love story, there isn't any descriptive sex. There also isn't any foul language. What a nice book and I loved the ending. A bonus is some recipes in the back.

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