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Bottom of the Barrel Book Reviews — Special Operations Team Raptor

samzenpus posted more than 5 years ago | from the could-be-worse dept.

Idle 85

If you like stories about maverick billionaires, cliche mercenaries, government sponsored super hero teams, leading edge technology and the ultimate evil of an alien human resources dept. then Special Operations Team Raptor The African Incident, by Daniel A. Dawson, just might be for you. Weighing in at a mere 103 pages, SOTR will only waste a few hours of your life. While it may be as fresh and creative as a crafts class at summer camp, it's not a complete waste of your time. Keep reading below to see if your mom would like it as much as your macaroni art.It all starts when maverick billionaire, Adrian Garland, finds a mysterious sphere composed of an unknown metal at one of his mining sites. He orders his men to drill into it. They try and the drill breaks. At this point Adrian decides what any sane person would. The sphere is from an alien civilization. He has his secretary, Mrs. Whisper, contact his personal mercenary team. He wants his team to break into a DARPA research facility, codenamed Mind Shaft, to steal a top secret laser called, The Lighthouse project. You're never quite sure how he knows about this super secret laser. Perhaps at some point he needed to tarnish the reputation of a professor by popping a massive amount of popcorn in his house from space. In that case, it would make sense that he knew all about the Lighthouse project but the book is a bit unclear. What is clear, is that even with a billion dollars the quality of mercenaries in this day and age is quite poor.

Adrian's team is led by Frank Edwards, a professional thief who suffers from a bit of a Fezzik complex. Frank only steals from countries or very large corporations. When he tries stealing from just one person or a single bank he fails miserably. It was one such bank heist in Atlanta that has Frank down on his luck. He can outwit countries but not the local FBI who did such great work in the Richard Jewell case.
Miguel is the tech guy. He is on the run from the Cuban government after they caught him double crossing them. He lives in a shack. The fact that the people's computer defense network, were able to gather around their 486 and track him doesn't seem to worry anybody. Undoubtedly Miguel simply updated his Facebook page with, "Right now, Miguel is ripping off the Cubans." by accident.
This leads us to The Darkness. The Darkness is an amalgamation of every cool, bad-ass killer in every movie you have ever seen. He tracked down 241 secret agents across Europe and killed them in 70 days. He is the leading cause of death in Africa. He walked up to a CNN reporter one time and the reporter died of fright. The Darkness is in every nightmare Chuck Norris ever had. While he is a genius at killing, he isn't very discreet. German agents found his family and killed them all. When we meet him, The Darkness is very dark indeed.
Finally we have Lisa Johan. She is a cute little Swedish woman who can control the minds of the weak willed and unfocused. She is not a regular part of the gang. Lisa is being held captive in the basement of Gina's Sex Plex, a strip club. Her captors are auctioning her off to the highest and most unsavory bidder. Since strip clubs are known for being bastions of order, good judgement and iron will she is unable to control anyone's mind and escape. The team decides to recruit her even though they are wary. As Miguel so cleverly puts it, "Women can't be trusted. A woman with mind control means you can't trust anybody and everybody trusts somebody."

This B team makes some fake Id's and attacks the DARPA facility. It only takes a few minutes for all of the Keystone Cops guarding our nations secrets to be killed, tricked and humiliated. Then the sex starts. Being such a predictable book, I was surprised that it had taken so long for the cute Swedish psychic and The Darkness to get it on. I had hoped for something a bit more exotic than sex on the getaway plane. Something involving mind control induced fantasies of dragons flying into the sun or at least a clever catch phrase but it wasn't to be.

Since our government looks down on people attacking us, The Secretary of Secrecy, Teresa McDonald and other officials activate the Special Operations Teams. Team Raptor is a collection of super-hero like caricatures that you have seen in a hundred other bad books and movies.
Colonel Sam Reed is in charge of Team Raptor. He's a hard-nosed military man who lost his Family in the 9/11 attacks.
Suzie Matthews is ex-CIA and leads the team missions. She doesn't have any powers, which makes her an interesting choice as mission leader.
Stephen Pachinko is an angry Russian with the power to heal from his left hand.
Sgt. Kim Maddox is a tiny Korean woman with superhuman strength.
Tom Bane can alter the flow of time.
Kelly Burke is the colonel's secretary. She can read minds in a 100' radius but falls on the floor convulsing if she is around more than 20 people. This makes her a lot of fun at parties.
Finally we have Dale Winston, he's in charge of gadgets. Miguel has a run for his money when it comes to worst tech guy, thanks to Dale. With all the funding of the US government, Dale has come up with infra-red glasses that can tell when someone is lying and a gun that has two clips. That's a whole extra clip of ammo people, think about it.

It takes the government a few seconds to figure out who stole the laser and even less time to figure out where it is being held. Finally, the collection of cliches and the team of caricatures face-off to decide once and for all who is the most predictable. Frank, Miguel and Suzanne die immediately, proving that normal people aren't very good at fighting people with super-powers. Everyone who survives the initial fight scatter, in the hopes that something interesting will happen. It does.

The Laser finally burns through the sphere. Three Aliens walk out. They try to communicate with the assembled scientists, researchers and technicians. When it becomes apparent that the humans can't understand the strange visitors, the aliens become frustrated and turn all the metal in the room into dust. When the dust settles they kill everyone, including Adrian. The aliens now have some privacy to talk things over. We learn that they have been trying to fix their ship, the sphere, for the past decade. They were almost done when the humans burned through the magnetic drive shields. Now they are stranded. Although their people have mastered interstellar flight and have created atomic and phase disruptors, they haven't invented roadside assistance. My new favorite characters in the book decide that their best bet, is to find someone with a knack for diplomacy and make a deal before more humans show up and dissect them.

Everyone knows the best way to get people who hate each other to cooperate, is to introduce something else they can hate together. The aliens serve this purpose. Team Raptor joins up with Lisa and The Darkness to fight this new and more interesting foe. Kim and one alien are killed in the melee that follows. All the rest of the humans are on deaths door so they escape. The Aliens re-group and stumble upon Mrs. Whisper, who has been hiding this whole time. She doesn't try to stab, shoot or set them on fire, so they take an instant liking to her. At this point they remember that they have a translator in the ship, which makes the murder of the scientists earlier seem like a waste that could have been avoided, if the author could have known what he was going to write a chapter ago. In any event they strike a deal with Mrs. Whisper, who has all of Adrian's bank account info, and escape before more humans, who would actually shoot an alien and not try to fight him hand to hand, show up.

A few months later we find the survivors of Team Raptor's first mission training hard with a new purpose, to destroy aliens. They even have a few new recruits, a clone, a woman who shoots fire from her fingers and one Lisa Johan. The government, having forgotten that she can't control alien minds, has pardoned her. (To be fair to our fictitious elected officials, I believe this is due to the author forgetting what he wrote earlier again.) Team Raptor is going to need everybody when they see what the aliens have been doing with their free time. Not being the kind of aliens who are content to sit on their laurels, our aliens have hatched the most diabolic plan mankind has ever seen. With the help of Mrs. Whisper, they are making a corporation that hires only felons, single parents and the uneducated. They are building company stores, schools and housing for their employees. This way they can pay someone $15k but give them benefits that equal a $60k job. They plan on placing officials in government with the voting power of their employees, covertly teach the children to fly spaceships and offer a laser in the face severance package to anyone who won't toe the company line. They plan on using the power of an alien human resources dept. and intergalactic socialism to rule the world. Their studies show them that it will take less than a decade. SOTR ends here but not before Daniel A. Dawson threatens to write a sequel, Special Operations Team Raptor, The Alien Plan.

I have mixed emotions about this book. It belongs in the barrel but I get the feeling Mr. Dawson doesn't take himself or this book too seriously. You might want to waste a couple hours of your life and read it before you throw it away.

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We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymore? (4, Funny)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847089)

maverick billionaires

That must be a McCain endorsement, right? That might explain why I can't click on anything without seeing a McCain ad on slashdot anymore...

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (2, Funny)

db32 (862117) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847229)

I had wondered about that myself. How is it that Slashdot has so many McCain ads?

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (2, Funny)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847537)

Slashdot has ads?

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

db32 (862117) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847681)

I'm not a rich Republican that can't keep track of how many websites he has paid subscriptions to...

In all honesty I am pretty sick of all the politics. Newsflash, everyone in office, running for office, or visiting the offices are all self serving, lying, overpaid scumbags. With nearly every branch of our government with elected officials having alltime lows in satisfaction, incumbants will still be winning. People thing "it's not my self serving asshole representative that is the problem, its all those other ones". Everyone makes jokes about the McCain housing thing, but please please please find me a Democrat in a high office that makes less than six figures and maybe I will start to buy the diatribe about rich Republicans. The difference between making a 7 figure and 8 figure income is much smaller than the difference in making a 5 figure and 6 figure income.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

jcgf (688310) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847889)

I'm not a rich Republican that can't keep track of how many websites he has paid subscriptions to...

It seems you also don't just block ad servers you come across in /etc/hosts either.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848805)

Everyone makes jokes about the McCain housing thing

Actually, I specifically picked McCain because of the phrase

maverick billionaire

From the article here. We can pick on both sides for being wealthy if we want, but only one side has one (or two?) candidate(s?) running as a "maverick".

Feel free to pick something out of there to pick on Obama or Biden if you like.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

ravenshrike (808508) | about 6 years ago | (#24853241)

Sooo hopeychangey isn't considered maverick?

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

Lost Engineer (459920) | about 6 years ago | (#24854071)

To be fair he's a maverick politician who's married to a billionaire heiress. A great deal less sexy.

Actually I don't see what makes him such a maverick. He still votes for FISA, unconditional war spending, offshore drilling, faith based initiatives, and military commissions. He is bought and paid for by big business in nearly every conceivable way despite the fact he doesn't really need their money and he'll die before retiring so they can never pay him back with a cushy board placement.

So what if he's opposed to torture and tried to compromise on immigration. Ron Paul is more of a maverick than John McCain ever will be, but you won't see him running around bragging about it.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850157)

I don't really disagree with you except that I wanted to point out the incumbent might not be wining this time.

Most of the time the polls show a not my guy sentiment when approval ratings of congress goes down. What I have been seeing lately is that the people who are disapproving of government are blaming their own guy for once.

Let me explain that a little. historically, it's ben the other senator's and congressman's fault for whatever the people don't like. Now, they are claiming it is their senator and congressmen too. I have a feeling that being the incumbent is more bad then good this election cycle if the opposition is halfway competent in their presentation and campaigning..

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

db32 (862117) | about 6 years ago | (#24858459)

Halfway competent meaning what? The Dems got lucky with Obama catching on. When faced with the trainwreck Bush administration, with almost a sure victory for a Dem candidate... When they could have run a pet rock against the Republican and won... They picked a woman and a black guy, two presidential firsts that will be difficult to deal with for many people. It is almost like they are trying to lose. In the meantime the Republicans run Bush 2.0.

I can't believe you would even dare to mention even halfway competent and campaigning in the same line. I will be really surprised if incumbents don't come out ahead again. Not that it matters much, I rarely see anyone voting based on issues rather than party membership.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 6 years ago | (#24860769)

Halfway competent meaning what? The Dems got lucky with Obama catching on. When faced with the trainwreck Bush administration, with almost a sure victory for a Dem candidate.

Quit your knee jerking defense of your messiah. Bush isn't up for reelection which means I'm not talking about Obama or the dems in particular. I'm talking about incumbents holding office on a federal level that will be up for reelection. Do you understand what that means? To everyone else it should have been obvious with the comment I made in the paragraph that says let me explain this. You know, the same paragraph that you missed where I said "historically, it's ben the other senator's and congressman's fault for whatever the people don't like. Now, they are claiming it is their senator and congressmen too." and went straight to the competent part and autocratically assumed it was an attack on your boy.

When they could have run a pet rock against the Republican and won... They picked a woman and a black guy, two presidential firsts that will be difficult to deal with for many people. It is almost like they are trying to lose. In the meantime the Republicans run Bush 2.0.

Keep telling yourself that. You just keep lieing to yourself all you want. Just don't come crying to me when it backfires. McCain isn't Bush 2.0 and if you even spent any amount of time looking into him instead of following orders from your messiah or believing everything they say with more blind faith then the average Christian uses, you would know that. But hey, your the one convinced and your the one so screwed up that you had to inject this because somehow you took a comment about politics and read it as an assault on your savior. I guess me telling you to look for yourself is a little to late for you.

I can't believe you would even dare to mention even halfway competent and campaigning in the same line. I will be really surprised if incumbents don't come out ahead again. Not that it matters much, I rarely see anyone voting based on issues rather than party membership.

Listen, I'm only going to say this one more time. The polls are showing that for the first time, not only are Americans disappointed in the performance of their government, they are blaming their own representative and senators for whatever causes their disapproval. In other words, people don't think their incumbent senator or representative is doing a good job. Anyone with a halfway competent campaign should be able to unseat them and take control. Now notice that once again I said senators and representatives and I DID_NOT_SPECIFY_ANY_PARTY. Democrats could beat democrats and republicans could beat republicans as well as the two could beat each other and unseat the incumbent.

I seem to find myself saying this more and more when we are in an election cycle and every since slashdot put the politics section in, but you really need to learn how to comprehend what you are reading and you need to learn to pay attention to what was actually said. Your trolling these places and attempting to defend Obama with more fervor then you would defend your mom or sisters honor and your looking like a brainwashed ass in the process.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

db32 (862117) | about 6 years ago | (#24860873)

Kneejerking defense of a messiah? You certainly are an interesting one. I have no love for Obama either, nor did I imply that I did. I simply mentioned his name and you went flying off the handle. I only pointed that insane mess as an example of why "campaign half compentently" is a damned joke.

What is really telling here is that at the mention of Obama you leap into a explitive laden tyraid about how stupid I am and so on. And I have looked at McCain. He espouses the same failed policies of Bush. Even when he says something else, his voting record shows otherwise. It is ironic that you mention the whole blind faith Christian crap, because his running mate is exactly that. Pro creationist, anti-sex ed. Genious.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 6 years ago | (#24884133)

Kneejerking defense of a messiah? You certainly are an interesting one. I have no love for Obama either, nor did I imply that I did. I simply mentioned his name and you went flying off the handle. I only pointed that insane mess as an example of why "campaign half compentently" is a damned joke.

Lol.. Trying to save face huh. Actually, you shaped your entire reply around the defense of Obama for president when I was talking entirely of congress.

If it was meant as a joke, I'm sorry I didn't get it.

What is really telling here is that at the mention of Obama you leap into a explitive laden tyraid about how stupid I am and so on. And I have looked at McCain. He espouses the same failed policies of Bush. Even when he says something else, his voting record shows otherwise. It is ironic that you mention the whole blind faith Christian crap, because his running mate is exactly that. Pro creationist, anti-sex ed. Genious.

Lol.. so now it is because of their religious values. Well, that is why I specified you and blind faith. You have seemed to find a messiah in Obama and are just repeating what his preachers have told you. You havn't looked at McCain because he isn't the same as Bush. Well, maybe I am mistaken and you have looked at McCain but are totally fucking clueless about Bush. The point remains that you are simply wrong and if you would open your eyes when looking, it would be clear enough for even you to see.

McCain is not Bush 2.0.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

db32 (862117) | about 6 years ago | (#24886505)

You really are entertaining. Let me break it down for you in simple concepts, because apparently anything complex is terribly difficult to register for you. You said campaign half competently. As evidence of their inability to campaign competently I offered Democrats running a black man and a woman in an election that should have been a sure win by any less "radical" choice of candidate. Republicans facing a tough election chose to put up McCain who supports most of the same failed foreign and domestic policy (Iraq, Wiretaps, FBI powers, Eminent domain, the list goes on), and while he has managed to say some pretty out of line for Republican things about wanting to teach evolution and sex education, he picks Palin, a fundie nut hell bent on killing sex ed programs and teaching creationism. So to me, that is clear evidence of completely and totally incompetent campaigning on BOTH SIDES. The fact that you somehow warp that into a bizarre defense of Obama just because I mentioned his name pretty much shows the mindless automaton the McCain crowd tends to be when they hear the word Obama.

I still don't understand how you get the idea that I support Obama at all, specifically when I said he was a dumb choice for the Dems to make. That slimeball voted for Telcom immunity after constantly talking about how bad it was. So...here you are accusing me of "finding a messiah" and listening to what his "preachers" have said. So even beyond your complete and total lack of reading comprehension that I actually said I thought Obama was a bad pick and you somehow warped that into I believe he is a messiah in your simple and twisted little Republican mind is stunning. Further, the fact that you insist on using rhetoric like messiah, and preacher, and offer NO differences on Bush and McCain policy other than to claim how stupid I am for not realizing they don't support the same moronic policy. I have given specific examples of McCain, Palin, and Obama policy in this discussion.

The most amusing thing to me here is that for all of your use of "messiah" and "preacher" you are the one going with the weird blind faith nonsense on the party of the religious right. Maybe you are right...maybe McCain is not Bush 2.0...maybe he is worse.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 6 years ago | (#24890015)

You really are entertaining. Let me break it down for you in simple concepts, because apparently anything complex is terribly difficult to register for you. You said campaign half competently. As evidence of their inability to campaign competently I offered Democrats running a black man and a woman in an election that should have been a sure win by any less "radical" choice of candidate. Republicans facing a tough election chose to put up McCain who supports most of the same failed foreign and domestic policy (Iraq, Wiretaps, FBI powers, Eminent domain, the list goes on), and while he has managed to say some pretty out of line for Republican things about wanting to teach evolution and sex education, he picks Palin, a fundie nut hell bent on killing sex ed programs and teaching creationism. So to me, that is clear evidence of completely and totally incompetent campaigning on BOTH SIDES. The fact that you somehow warp that into a bizarre defense of Obama just because I mentioned his name pretty much shows the mindless automaton the McCain crowd tends to be when they hear the word Obama.

Wow.. You still don't get it. OK, here it is spelled out as best I can, I was specifically talking about incumbents in congress. You comment about Obama or anyone not running for congress to either save their seat or or unseat the incumbent isn't addressing anything I said. Your right, I did say campaign half competently, But I said it about running for congress not the presidency ot dog catcher or anything else. I'm not going to argue how my point is wrong when it is applied to the mayors office or the presidency of the United States of America in which I said nothing about. Now here is a hint, an incompetent campaign for the presidency has nothing to do with anyone from any party running for a representative or senate seat being halfway competent and unseating the incumbent.

But you had to ignore the idea of only talking about the incumbent congressmen and inject Obama and then proceed to bashing Bush. Now, even after explaining that I wasn't talking about the office of president, your faulting Obama for his race and pounding his opponents for their core values that the american people have accepted. You expect me to not believe that your injection of Obama into a congress race and one sided arguments aren't the defense of obama?

I still don't understand how you get the idea that I support Obama at all, specifically when I said he was a dumb choice for the Dems to make. That slimeball voted for Telcom immunity after constantly talking about how bad it was. So...here you are accusing me of "finding a messiah" and listening to what his "preachers" have said. So even beyond your complete and total lack of reading comprehension that I actually said I thought Obama was a bad pick and you somehow warped that into I believe he is a messiah in your simple and twisted little Republican mind is stunning. Further, the fact that you insist on using rhetoric like messiah, and preacher, and offer NO differences on Bush and McCain policy other than to claim how stupid I am for not realizing they don't support the same moronic policy. I have given specific examples of McCain, Palin, and Obama policy in this discussion.

How did I get it? You injected the comment about Obama into a conversation about something completely different then the presidential race and after 2 or 3 posts of me attempting to say I wasn't talking about them, your still bringing it up and just now started faulting Obama for something other then being black. Big deal, he supported a bill that was necessary and proper after talking trash about it, he could have fucked Jackie Chan missionary style for all I care in the context of my comments. And after repeated attempts to say leave the president boys out of this, your still injecting him, your still making statements about his opponents being worse then him, and you have done it all under the guise of an attack that you somehow need to defend. Just face it, I said nothing that when kept in context should envoke anything about the presidential candidates or a specific party. It's the incumbent, whatever party they associate with that is threatened by a halfway competent campaign.

The most amusing thing to me here is that for all of your use of "messiah" and "preacher" you are the one going with the weird blind faith nonsense on the party of the religious right. Maybe you are right...maybe McCain is not Bush 2.0...maybe he is worse.

I'm not sure why you find it amusing. I never expressed support for either candidate. In fact, I have done my best to say they don't belong into this conversation. I don't know if your hashing things that didn't happen out in your head or if you are confusing two or more threads or if your just a troll attempting to inject your hero like the Ron Paul people, but your still harping on something that is completely out of context and doesn't belong in the thread.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

db32 (862117) | about 6 years ago | (#24890979)

Actually I can sum this up for you. You mention halfway competent campaigning of Senators, I make a joke about how incompetently the groups of Senators running for President have campaigned so there is no reason to believe any of it will be done half competently. I say bad things about your trophy Republicans and you go into a weird rant about Obama worship while insisting McCain isn't a total sellout. The funny thing is that when I dared insult the precious Republicans it somehow turned my insults of the Democrats into praise and worship. When I explain why they were insults you somehow construe that to be an attack on Obama's race rather than the indication that the party should have supported members less likely to draw fire for race/sex when they should have a sure win of the office being campaigned for because the incumbant is a total failure.
This is why I find the modern Republican so funny. Your complete and total lack of thought being replaced by rabid responses is pretty classic responses for the modern Republican. The rhetoric from the left tends to just be whiney nonsense. The rhetoric from the right is comically ignorant or offensive. Enjoy your mouthfrothing.

The other amusing thing is the posturing about being so tough when they are the biggest bunch of pussies in office. "Oh but we need the government to control every aspect of our lives to protect us from terrorism!" Fuck off already, please! Either grow a pair or get the fuck out. I hear China doesn't have much of a terrorist problem and the government has total control and does plenty of monitoring, you all should be right at home.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

sumdumass (711423) | about 6 years ago | (#24910207)

Actually I can sum this up for you. You mention halfway competent campaigning of Senators, I make a joke about how incompetently the groups of Senators running for President have campaigned so there is no reason to believe any of it will be done half competently. I say bad things about your trophy Republicans and you go into a weird rant about Obama worship while insisting McCain isn't a total sellout. The funny thing is that when I dared insult the precious Republicans it somehow turned my insults of the Democrats into praise and worship. When I explain why they were insults you somehow construe that to be an attack on Obama's race rather than the indication that the party should have supported members less likely to draw fire for race/sex when they should have a sure win of the office being campaigned for because the incumbant is a total failure.

So when I'm talking about the incumbent, you actually think that injecting something completely different is appropriate. You started off in defense mode over obama and didn't inject McCain until after I called you on it and your still claiming that you did so out of some relevance to any congressional race. Well, only in a twisted world but I guess I will just give it to you. But make no mistake, I didn't all the sudden anything after you did something except for your first reply. And My so called defense of republicans was nothing more then telling you to open your eyes and look again because your re-spouting falsehoods originally aired by the Obama Camp. And you wonder why I think your an Obama worshiper.

This is why I find the modern Republican so funny. Your complete and total lack of thought being replaced by rabid responses is pretty classic responses for the modern Republican. The rhetoric from the left tends to just be whiney nonsense. The rhetoric from the right is comically ignorant or offensive. Enjoy your mouthfrothing.

Lol.. Man you are so delusional. You inject comments about your messiah into comments that don't need it then get corrected about your falsehoods on McCain with a simple you better look again and I'm the one frothing at the mouth. Here is a clue, It wouldn't matter if it was the Obama is a musim or that he went to one of those schools that breed hate towards the US or something that was incorect about McCain or anyone running, I would step in and say something. Your not saying anything or adding anything that wasn't spouted incorrectly by the Obama camp first and you have showed no signs of intellectual honesty nor fortitude to even look for yourself. And you have the gull to fault me and not the cult of Obama syndrome, you crack me up.

The other amusing thing is the posturing about being so tough when they are the biggest bunch of pussies in office. "Oh but we need the government to control every aspect of our lives to protect us from terrorism!" Fuck off already, please! Either grow a pair or get the fuck out. I hear China doesn't have much of a terrorist problem and the government has total control and does plenty of monitoring, you all should be right at home.

I don't know who or what your talking about... You have lost little or no freedoms under the current administration and I'm willing to bet that your an ignorant fuck who is going to blow everything out or portion like the TSA (monitoring) program. So tell me, outside of talking to terrorists or somehow otherwise having dealings with them, what can't you do that your could do before Bush took office? What aspect of your life is under government control that wasn't when the current administration took office? I'm willing to bet that outside of taking liquids on an airline, your going to be making shit up or have no clue when those freedoms were actually lost.

And after spouting neo party line bullshit like your posts, you actually expect me to believe that your acting independently of anything and that your not defending Obama. I mean you started off by claiming democrat first then jump directly to trashing Bush, McCain and eventually anyone who might have voted to anyone. Perhaps your just "convinced" or something and don't see it yourself. To anyone with an objective outlook, your just as bad as those Ron Paul shitheads who did everything possible to inject inject him into a thread and then trash everyone else. Well, good luck with life, I sense that you will need it.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1, Funny)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847397)

ad? get firefox.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (2, Interesting)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847459)

ad? get firefox.

I have firefox. I'm just not running adblock right now. The ads don't usually bother me that much, though the barrage of McCain attack ads gets annoying quickly.

But its nice to know that at least he isn't running a negative campaign or anything...

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

Kingrames (858416) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847715)

". I'm just not running adblock right now. " then that's not firefox! sheesh, that's like dual-booting linux just so you can say you run it instead of windows.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

mhall119 (1035984) | more than 5 years ago | (#24851883)

No, that's like showing your appreciation of the service Slashdot provides (idle excepted), and deciding to allow ads on it's websites so it can continue it's revenue model. At least, that's what I use my whitelist for.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

Kingrames (858416) | about 6 years ago | (#24854617)

That's like wearing a chastity belt ...most of the time. what's the point?

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

lgw (121541) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850017)

I was in Florida in 2004. The ttack ads (from both sides) were so bad that the morning radio DJs (hardly the prtectors of moral values in any market) were apologizing to listeners for the ads, and begging listeners to stop calling to complain about the ads.

Give me McCain's "Obama is a nice guy, but ..." ads any day! At least the ads haven't gotten viciously personal yet.

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850257)

Granted, I don't know just how bad they were down there - I'm one who still hasn't forgiven Florida for the 2000 election debacle.

But I consider McCain's "unconditionally talking to foreign leaders" ad to be weighted, misleading, and highly negative. And I thought McCain promised he wouldn't get involved in negative campaigning and attack ads, didn't he? Well, he's endorsing attack ads right here on slashdot...

Re:We just can't escape politics on slashdot anymo (1)

lgw (121541) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850805)

Surely you're not surprised by what a politician's promise is worth?

Still, the tone of this election's ads are (so far) orders of magnitude more positive than the past two elections in which His Satanic Magesty, Dark Lord Karl Rove was involved. In the 2000 primary, the Bush campaign push-polled the idea that McCain had an unacknowledged black bastard son in areas where racial sensitivity was high. As with any Dark Lord, you can't fault his effectiveness, but it was quite unpleasant to be in a battleground state.

McCain has made it clear that he won't sink to the level of HSM Rove, which believe me is good news, even if he sinks lower than we'd like.

Realistically, though, candidates *must* claim that the opponent is a terrible choice in addition to proposing their own agenda, that's just politics. Whether the attack ads seem to cross the line is largely a matter of whether it's the guy we like being attacked.

Help (3)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847109)

I cannot turn off the damn idle section. I go to preferences, I say I don't want the damn thing, but I cannot save. There must be another section, but I cannot scroll down to see it.

Re:Help (4, Informative)

eldavojohn (898314) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847215)

I cannot turn off the damn idle section. I go to preferences, I say I don't want the damn thing, but I cannot save. There must be another section, but I cannot scroll down to see it.

This this link [slashdot.org] , it should allow you to see it as a form instead of a popup.

Also, if anyone's reading this, the preview on the main page of idle still renders improperly as is this box that I'm typing in different from all other sections!

Re:Help (4, Funny)

MyLongNickName (822545) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847235)

Thank goodness. My next child shall be named after you.

Re:Help (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24853915)

Oh! Sweet baby Eldavo NickName! How precious!

Re:Help (1)

madprof (4723) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850049)

These book reviews are the funniest thing I've read on /. in years. I wish all book reviews could be this good.

The goggles... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847113)

...they do nothing.

Apostrophes and commas (4, Informative)

abigor (540274) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847197)

Note to "samzenpus": when writing reviews about terrible books, it's a good idea to be grammatically correct. You don't put, commas in the middle of sentences, like this one. Nor should you misuse apostrophe's like I just did there. I hate to be so preachy, but what could be quite funny was rendered practically unreadable.

Re:Apostrophes and commas (2, Interesting)

b4dc0d3r (1268512) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847727)

also, this is a summary as
if we are getting the cliff's
notes version. I did not
want to read this book, but
i felt like I already have. I
was hoping for some
stinging commentary, or
at least some zany insults,
but it was the same old
"predictable, stock"
complaints. If your
main complaint is that
the book delivered what
you expected, you'll
have to be more specific.

Re:Apostrophes and commas (1)

lgw (121541) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850051)

Hey now, the review was far more entertaining that the book likely was! I'll overlook a comma or two given the sacrifice the reviewer made for us all.

Re:Apostrophes and commas (2, Insightful)

sumdumass (711423) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850241)

Well,
if he,
is trying,
to write like Captain Kirk talks,
his comma,
usage was pretty good.

At least better then mine.

You misunderstand! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24852081)

He puts com'mas and, apos'trophes in in'appro'priate pla'ces, to remin'd, yo'u, that, y'ou, sho'uld, be imagin'ing, tha't, William Shatner, is read'ing the bo'ok to yo'u. Its' no't, the're, jus't, t'o mak'e, yo'u, wan't, to, go'uge, you'r eyes out.

Re:Apostrophes and commas (1)

xorm (847210) | more than 5 years ago | (#24852185)

I read through the entire article and didn't notice the misplaced commas until I read your message and looked back over it. Consider becoming a proofreader.

Re:Apostrophes and commas (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 5 years ago | (#24852423)

I know you were joking, but I'd actually love to get into proofreading as a means of supplementary income. However, I have no idea how to get into it, exactly. Suggestions?

Re:Apostrophes and commas (1)

aamcf (651492) | about 6 years ago | (#24855953)

Speaking to someone in the STC might be a good start - http://www.stc.org/ [stc.org]

Is this supposed to be funny? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847203)

Why would you waste our time and yours with this crap? Seriously, THIS is what you are getting paid for? You can't edit a paragraph long summary, but you can write this. Are you deliberately trying to insult us?

Hmmm... (1)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847243)

104 pages. 70 minutes, and I'll still feel hungry.

I need more Stephenson.

Google Books! (1, Informative)

Cinnamon Whirl (979637) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847265)

I am going to read this, it sounds rad as hell. Google Books! [google.co.uk]

Please stop! (5, Insightful)

owlnation (858981) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847355)

Welcome to the Diggocracy.

Bow to your lolcat overlords.

Here's just yet another libelous juvenile review. This, despite the overwhelming evidence that /. readers don't want this crap.

When will it all end?

Re:Please stop! (1)

x1n933k (966581) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847471)

When we and the un-maverick Billionaire types, rid the world of the scum of Libelous Juvenile! Muhuhahaha!

[J]

Re:Please stop! (3, Informative)

Yvanhoe (564877) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848317)

It will end when you'll remove "idle" from your preferences.

Re:Please stop! (1)

istartedi (132515) | more than 5 years ago | (#24849239)

When will it all end?

When people stop posting replies. Zero replies, zero page hits, zero ad revenue, zero profit. Then, it will eventually be cut since it's a cost sink.

Re:Please stop! (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 5 years ago | (#24849663)

Here's just yet another libelous juvenile review. This, despite the overwhelming evidence that /. readers don't want this crap.

Just a tip: Slashdot looks at the comment count, too. When their threads start getting a whopping 10 posts, then we'll start seeing fewer of them. But when everybody complains...

Re:Please stop! (1)

Call Me Black Cloud (616282) | about 6 years ago | (#24856435)

Overwhelming? I do not think it means what you think it means.

I like the occasional idle item. And if I didn't I would just skip over them, much like I do when seeing things I'm not interested in. You know, you don't have to read everything on Slashdot - it's ok to pick and choose.

Where's my damned quote tag? (1)

damn_registrars (1103043) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847359)

Why isn't the quote tag rendering properly in idle?

Am I the only one not seeing this text properly set for the quote tag?

This other, non-quoted, text looks exactly the same as the quoted text above!

Re:Where's my damned quote tag? (3, Funny)

StrategicIrony (1183007) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848243)

That's because idle recently had a failed suicide attempt and has never been the same.

See, even idle doesn't want idle to show up on the main page.

I dunno (1)

cvd6262 (180823) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847391)

The review makes it sound better than (or at least as well thought through as) Twilight.

What do you expect from a self published novel? (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847573)

Look at the credit for this book - it was published by iUniverse. From iUniverse.com:

iUniverse makes it possible for writers to achieve the dream of becoming a published author. Together with the selling expertise provided by a strategic alliance with Barnes & Noble, iUniverse offers a unique mix of self-publishing products and services and the skills of a professional team dedicated to enabling authors to see their books in print. By offering a variety of affordable publishing, editorial and marketing services, iUniverse helps authors get their manuscripts off their desks and into the marketplace.

RPG log? (2, Insightful)

Cyrano de Maniac (60961) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847575)

Sounds pretty much like a GM's recollection of a (sloppily run?) role-playing adventure. The internal inconsistencies and fanciful but less than coherently planned characters and plot would be par for the course in many RPG sessions.

Sounds familiar... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24847607)

Adrian's team is led by Frank Edwards, a professional thief ... Miguel is the tech guy ... This leads us to The Darkness. The Darkness is an amalgamation of every cool, bad-ass killer in every movie you have ever seen

This sounds like Japanese porn manga plot #28.

Finally we have Lisa Johan. She is a cute little Swedish woman who can control the minds of the weak willed and unfocused. She is not a regular part of the gang. Lisa is being held captive in the basement of Gina's Sex Plex, a strip club. Her captors are auctioning her off to the highest and most unsavory bidder.

Oh wait, this IS Japanese porn manga plot #28!

Book review? (2, Insightful)

Ender Wiggin 77 (865636) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847719)

Since when is a book review just a detailed recounting of the entire plot? I'm not going to read any more of these for two reasons: 1. Book reviews aren't why I some to \. Frankly I'm having trouble remembering why I *do* come here. 2. I might want to read one of the books "reviewed" and don't want the whole plot told to me beforehand, spoilers and all.

Re:Book review? (1)

basscomm (122302) | more than 5 years ago | (#24849311)

This isn't a book review, it's a book report. With the super-short sentences that I'd expect to see coming out of a middle school English class:

"The Laser finally burns through the sphere. Three Aliens walk out. They try to communicate with the assembled scientists, researchers and technicians."

I think I've read this before (3, Funny)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847721)

Yeah, i liked it more when it was Alpha Squad Seven: Lady Nocturne, a Tech Jansen Adventure.

When ridiculing the stupid, there's a fine line between wit and snark versus being every bit as stupid as the object of ridicule. Given that this has shown up in Idle, I think we all know which side of the line the writer came down on.

From the write up (1)

g0bshiTe (596213) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847755)

If ever there were a book to support book burning, this sure as hell sounds like that book.

Re:From the write up (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850593)

This is the first and only book I've ever regretted buying: The Guardsman [amazon.com] .

Compared to it, SOTR sounds like just your average wannabe blog writer's vanity book.

Literacy should be required for book reviews. (1)

someguy (23968) | more than 5 years ago | (#24847983)

How I envy samzenpus the ability to get paid for mocking books that he apparently writes at a lower level than.

Superior airs don't work when you come off as an illiterate jackass.

MOD PARENT UP (1)

DwarfGoanna (447841) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848253)

I'm not terribly averse to some sort of humor type stuff on /.

(I'm not saying it's a great idea either)

However, I think it should either be done well or not done at all. This really doesn't reflect the sensibilities or intellect of your audience, Taco. And no, I'm not new here.

I say again, hire a funny, geek-centric comedy writer or pleasestop.

HATE HATE HAT (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848353)

Dear Slashdot:

Owing to my brain being washed into pretentiously clean hipsterism by $12 cups of coffee, I cannot stand any amount of lightheartedness in my day and thus hate Idle. More to the point, I am wholly unable to not pay attention to things; as soon as a story like this appears in my RSS reader, my hand, through sheer power of instinct, clicks the link and forces my eyes to read it and absorb it into my brain. I know I am ultimately right in this mental retardation; the near-xenophobic exclusion principles of my clique of like-minded (to the point of clone-like) colleagues says so.

Further, and indeed more importantly, I can no longer sneer with smug satisfaction at the lesser people who read Digg or other websites that contain frivolity. Do you understand what this means, Slashdot? It's Digg! Fnord fnord Digg fnord fnord! They actually smile over there! Any effort on the part of my face to modify its expression from its permanent scowl of contempt at the world around me would lead to my jaw breaking off! Why do you want to kill me, Slashdot?

So, in conclusion, I hate. HATE HATE HAT

Signed,
Lord Snide Stickupmyass, the Level 45 Wizard

Fullext, for the eyes (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848439)

If you like stories about maverick billionaires, cliche mercenaries, government sponsored super hero teams, leading edge technology and the ultimate evil of an alien human resources dept. then Special Operations Team Raptor The African Incident, by Daniel A. Dawson, just might be for you. Weighing in at a mere 103 pages, SOTR will only waste a few hours of your life. While it may be as fresh and creative as a crafts class at summer camp, it's not a complete waste of your time. Keep reading below to see if your mom would like it as much as your macaroni art.

It all starts when maverick billionaire, Adrian Garland, finds a mysterious sphere composed of an unknown metal at one of his mining sites. He orders his men to drill into it. They try and the drill breaks. At this point Adrian decides what any sane person would. The sphere is from an alien civilization. He has his secretary, Mrs. Whisper, contact his personal mercenary team. He wants his team to break into a DARPA research facility, codenamed Mind Shaft, to steal a top secret laser called, The Lighthouse project. You're never quite sure how he knows about this super secret laser. Perhaps at some point he needed to tarnish the reputation of a professor by popping a massive amount of popcorn in his house from space. In that case, it would make sense that he knew all about the Lighthouse project but the book is a bit unclear. What is clear, is that even with a billion dollars the quality of mercenaries in this day and age is quite poor.

Adrian's team is led by Frank Edwards, a professional thief who suffers from a bit of a Fezzik complex. Frank only steals from countries or very large corporations. When he tries stealing from just one person or a single bank he fails miserably. It was one such bank heist in Atlanta that has Frank down on his luck. He can outwit countries but not the local FBI who did such great work in the Richard Jewell case.
Miguel is the tech guy. He is on the run from the Cuban government after they caught him double crossing them. He lives in a shack. The fact that the people's computer defense network, were able to gather around their 486 and track him doesn't seem to worry anybody. Undoubtedly Miguel simply updated his Facebook page with, "Right now, Miguel is ripping off the Cubans." by accident.
This leads us to The Darkness. The Darkness is an amalgamation of every cool, bad-ass killer in every movie you have ever seen. He tracked down 241 secret agents across Europe and killed them in 70 days. He is the leading cause of death in Africa. He walked up to a CNN reporter one time and the reporter died of fright. The Darkness is in every nightmare Chuck Norris ever had. While he is a genius at killing, he isn't very discreet. German agents found his family and killed them all. When we meet him, The Darkness is very dark indeed.
Finally we have Lisa Johan. She is a cute little Swedish woman who can control the minds of the weak willed and unfocused. She is not a regular part of the gang. Lisa is being held captive in the basement of Gina's Sex Plex, a strip club. Her captors are auctioning her off to the highest and most unsavory bidder. Since strip clubs are known for being bastions of order, good judgement and iron will she is unable to control anyone's mind and escape. The team decides to recruit her even though they are wary. As Miguel so cleverly puts it, "Women can't be trusted. A woman with mind control means you can't trust anybody and everybody trusts somebody."

This B team makes some fake Id's and attacks the DARPA facility. It only takes a few minutes for all of the Keystone Cops guarding our nations secrets to be killed, tricked and humiliated. Then the sex starts. Being such a predictable book, I was surprised that it had taken so long for the cute Swedish psychic and The Darkness to get it on. I had hoped for something a bit more exotic than sex on the getaway plane. Something involving mind control induced fantasies of dragons flying into the sun or at least a clever catch phrase but it wasn't to be.

Since our government looks down on people attacking us, The Secretary of Secrecy, Teresa McDonald and other officials activate the Special Operations Teams. Team Raptor is a collection of super-hero like caricatures that you have seen in a hundred other bad books and movies.
Colonel Sam Reed is in charge of Team Raptor. He's a hard-nosed military man who lost his Family in the 9/11 attacks.
Suzie Matthews is ex-CIA and leads the team missions. She doesn't have any powers, which makes her an interesting choice as mission leader.
Stephen Pachinko is an angry Russian with the power to heal from his left hand.
Sgt. Kim Maddox is a tiny Korean woman with superhuman strength.
Tom Bane can alter the flow of time.
Kelly Burke is the colonel's secretary. She can read minds in a 100' radius but falls on the floor convulsing if she is around more than 20 people. This makes her a lot of fun at parties.
Finally we have Dale Winston, he's in charge of gadgets. Miguel has a run for his money when it comes to worst tech guy, thanks to Dale. With all the funding of the US government, Dale has come up with infra-red glasses that can tell when someone is lying and a gun that has two clips. That's a whole extra clip of ammo people, think about it.

It takes the government a few seconds to figure out who stole the laser and even less time to figure out where it is being held. Finally, the collection of cliches and the team of caricatures face-off to decide once and for all who is the most predictable. Frank, Miguel and Suzanne die immediately, proving that normal people aren't very good at fighting people with super-powers. Everyone who survives the initial fight scatter, in the hopes that something interesting will happen. It does.

The Laser finally burns through the sphere. Three Aliens walk out. They try to communicate with the assembled scientists, researchers and technicians. When it becomes apparent that the humans can't understand the strange visitors, the aliens become frustrated and turn all the metal in the room into dust. When the dust settles they kill everyone, including Adrian. The aliens now have some privacy to talk things over. We learn that they have been trying to fix their ship, the sphere, for the past decade. They were almost done when the humans burned through the magnetic drive shields. Now they are stranded. Although their people have mastered interstellar flight and have created atomic and phase disruptors, they haven't invented roadside assistance. My new favorite characters in the book decide that their best bet, is to find someone with a knack for diplomacy and make a deal before more humans show up and dissect them.

Everyone knows the best way to get people who hate each other to cooperate, is to introduce something else they can hate together. The aliens serve this purpose. Team Raptor joins up with Lisa and The Darkness to fight this new and more interesting foe. Kim and one alien are killed in the melee that follows. All the rest of the humans are on deaths door so they escape. The Aliens re-group and stumble upon Mrs. Whisper, who has been hiding this whole time. She doesn't try to stab, shoot or set them on fire, so they take an instant liking to her. At this point they remember that they have a translator in the ship, which makes the murder of the scientists earlier seem like a waste that could have been avoided, if the author could have known what he was going to write a chapter ago. In any event they strike a deal with Mrs. Whisper, who has all of Adrian's bank account info, and escape before more humans, who would actually shoot an alien and not try to fight him hand to hand, show up.

A few months later we find the survivors of Team Raptor's first mission training hard with a new purpose, to destroy aliens. They even have a few new recruits, a clone, a woman who shoots fire from her fingers and one Lisa Johan. The government, having forgotten that she can't control alien minds, has pardoned her. (To be fair to our fictitious elected officials, I believe this is due to the author forgetting what he wrote earlier again.) Team Raptor is going to need everybody when they see what the aliens have been doing with their free time. Not being the kind of aliens who are content to sit on their laurels, our aliens have hatched the most diabolic plan mankind has ever seen. With the help of Mrs. Whisper, they are making a corporation that hires only felons, single parents and the uneducated. They are building company stores, schools and housing for their employees. This way they can pay someone $15k but give them benefits that equal a $60k job. They plan on placing officials in government with the voting power of their employees, covertly teach the children to fly spaceships and offer a laser in the face severance package to anyone who won't toe the company line. They plan on using the power of an alien human resources dept. and intergalactic socialism to rule the world. Their studies show them that it will take less than a decade. SOTR ends here but not before Daniel A. Dawson threatens to write a sequel, Special Operations Team Raptor, The Alien Plan.

I have mixed emotions about this book. It belongs in the barrel but I get the feeling Mr. Dawson doesn't take himself or this book too seriously. You might want to waste a couple hours of your life and read it before you throw it away.

Is there an editor in the house? (2, Insightful)

WankersRevenge (452399) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848509)

This review was pathetic. It wouldn't make it through a high school English class, never mind a competent editor. I would be ashamed to have my name associated to it. Seriously Samzenpus, you need to take classes. You need to improve your craft. You will never survive by your writing outside of Slashdot. By taking the time to craft well written sentences, you impart respect to your audience. It shows that you have invested your own time to say something important (no matter how silly) and it is that effort ... that commitment to the written word ... that makes people listen to you and ultimately, respect you. Whether they disagree with you or not.

Re:Is there an editor in the house? (2, Funny)

mi (197448) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848857)

never mind a competent editor.

To be able to afford a competent editor, /. would have to run Obama-ads [yahoo.com] , rather than McCain ones.

Re:Is there an editor in the house? (1)

madprof (4723) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850083)

You are kidding right? There are print jouirnalists who make a living out of articles just like the one Samzenpus wrote.

Re:Is there an editor in the house? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24853047)

As a college writing teacher, I can assure you that much worse writers have apparently made it through their high school English classes, and subsequently been admitted to universities.

So... (1)

julesh (229690) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848689)

Oh, look. iUniverse.

So it's a self-published novel then. Nothing to see here, move on. They're all like this.

If you're after more, my I recommend my dissection [absolutewrite.com] of the first few paragraphs of PENITENTIARY PACIFIC ("The action-novel[sic] of the year!!![sic]" - its author), a novel published by PublishAmerica (a company that claims to vet submissions for quality). The following comments are also worth reading. :)

Re:So... (1)

PingvinRich (604829) | about 6 years ago | (#24860403)

"Loose one or the other"

Pot ... kettle.

Re:So... (1)

julesh (229690) | about 6 years ago | (#24875549)

"Loose one or the other"

Pot ... kettle.

Right. Because the quality of grammar in my hastily-written comments on a web forum should really have the same standard applied as those in the first pages of a published novel.

As opposed to average billionaires? (1)

tjstork (137384) | more than 5 years ago | (#24848743)

I think the phrase "maverick billionaire" is so absurd that it doesn't even qualify as a cliche.

Audiobook (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848859)

I can't wait for the audiobook read by David Sedaris

FROST +PIST (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24848891)

sling, return it to And suggesting Assholes, as 7hey the bottoms butt

Outstanding (1)

Ravalox (640829) | more than 5 years ago | (#24849593)

I don't understand why people complain about idle, the last few times I've seen it it's brought something outstanding to my attention. This is a great example of what I'm talking about, reading this was like a classic somethingawful review, fabulous.

This is not a review. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24849971)

Could someone please explain to this guy the difference between a "review" and a "plot synopsis"?

Did I just read it? (1)

StrategicIrony (1183007) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850081)

I feel like I just read a poorly written book.

But all I read was marginal plot summary of a poorly written book, spoilers and all.

Maybe that's why I feel like I read a poorly written book...

I haven't seen this since... (1)

compass46 (259596) | more than 5 years ago | (#24850471)

The a violent reaction against Idle is something I haven't seen on /. since the days of Jon Katz.

I actually liked the review (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#24850529)

I got a few chuckles out of it at the end of a work day.

PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE. (1)

teallach (729563) | more than 5 years ago | (#24851329)

(To quote Blackadder). How much negative feedback does it take to change before you remove this plonkers ability to put stuff on the front page. Alternatively, can you enable the following option www.slashdot.com/index.html?samzenpus=false BTW you can't remove idle from the front page on the mobile version.

Rewritten for clarity (1)

basscomm (122302) | more than 5 years ago | (#24852137)

Now, I'm not a professional editor by any means, but here's my small attempt at making this thing readable. Disclaimer, everything I know from the book I gleaned from the review, so if I screwed up any of the details, I'm sure it just increased the 'review's readability, and blame the whacked out Idle CSS for the formatting not working properly:

-----------

If you like stories about maverick billionaires, cliche mercenaries, government sponsored teams of super heroes, leading-edge technology, and the ultimate evil of an alien human resources department, then Special Operations Team Raptor The African Incident, by Daniel A. Dawson, just might be for you. Weighing in at a scant 103 pages, SOTR won't waste more than a couple of hours of your life, and while it may be as fresh and creative as Wallet Craft Class at Summer camp, it's not a complete waste of time. Keep reading to see if your mom would like it as much as she loved changing your dirty diapers when you were an infant.

It all starts when maverick billionaire Adrian Garland finds a mysterious sphere composed of an unknown metal at one of his mining sites. He orders his men to drill into it, after which the drill breaks. At this point Adrian concludes what any sane person would: The sphere is from an alien civilization. He has his secretary, Mrs. Whisper, contact his personal mercenary team to break into a DARPA research facility, codenamed Mind Shaft, to steal a top secret laser called The Lighthouse project. You're never quite sure how he knows about this super-secret laser. Perhaps at some point he needed to tarnish the reputation of a professor by popping a massive amount of popcorn in his house from space. The book, though, is a bit unclear. What is clear is that even with a billion dollars the quality of mercenaries in this day and age is less than spectacular

Adrian's team is led by Frank Edwards, a professional thief who suffers from a bit of a Fezzik complex, he only steals from countries or very large corporations because when he tries stealing from just one person or a single bank he fails miserably. One such bank heist in Atlanta has Frank down on his luck, he can outwit countries but not the local FBI who did such great work in the Richard Jewell case.

Miguel is the tech guy, on the run from the Cuban government after they caught him double crossing them. The fact that the People's Computer Defense Network, were able to gather around their 486 and track him doesn't seem to worry anybody. Undoubtedly, Miguel simply updated his Facebook page with, "Ripping off the Cubans, BRB."

Next comes The Darkness. The Darkness is an amalgamation of every cool, bad-ass killer in every movie you have ever seen. He tracked down 241 secret agents across Europe and killed them in 70 days, making him the leading cause of death in Africa. This guy is so bad-ass that he walked up to a CNN reporter one time and the reporter died of fright. The Darkness is in every nightmare Chuck Norris ever had. While he is a genius at killing, he isn't very discreet.When we meet him, German agents had found his family and killed them all, making him very Dark, indeed.

Lastly, we have Lisa Johan, who isn't a regular part of the gang. She's essentially what The Shadow would have been if he were cute little Swedish woman. Lisa is being held captive in the basement of Gina's Sex Plex, a strip club, where her captors are auctioning her off to the highest and most unsavory bidder. She's unable to control anyone's mind and escape because somehow strip clubs in this criminally insane universe are havens for the strong-willed. She gets recruited by the team, even though they are wary of her. As Miguel cleverly observes, "Women can't be trusted. A woman with mind control means you can't trust anybody and everybody trusts somebody."

This ragtag team then makes some fake IDs and attacks the DARPA facility. It only takes a few minutes for our heroes to kill all of the Keystone Cops guarding our nation's secrets. But that just paved the way for the delicious sex. This book was so predictable, I thought the the Swedish psychic and The Darkness were going to start dry-humping each other as soon as they met. I had hoped for something a bit more exotic than sex on the getaway plane. Something involving mind control, tequila, and a traveling circus, or at least a clever catch phrase. But it wasn't to be.

Since our government tends to take attacks on its citizens personally, the Secretary of Secrecy, Teresa McDonald, and other officials, who may or may not have had names or titles, activate the Special Operations Teams, consisting, apparently, of only Team Raptor, which is a collection of super-hero-like caricatures that you have seen in a hundred other bad books and movies.

The man in charge of Team Raptor is Colonel Sam Reed, a hard-nosed military man who lost his family in the 9/11 attacks.

Mission Leader is ex-CIA Suzie Matthews. She doesn't have any super powers, which makes her the logical choice to be mission leader.

Stephen Pachinko is an angry Russian with the power to heal from his left hand.

Sgt. Kim Maddox is a tiny Korean woman with superhuman strength.

Tom Bane can alter the flow of time.

Kelly Burke is the colonel's secretary. She can read minds in a 100' radius but falls on the floor convulsing if she is around more than 20 people. This means that she's pretty much only qualified to go on missions in cornfields or Nickelback concerts.

Finally we have Dale Winston in charge of gadgets. Thanks to Dale, Miguel has a run for his money when it comes to worst tech guy. With all the funding of the US government, Dale has come up with infra-red glasses that someone can wear to tell when someone is lying and a gun that has two clips. Two! Imagine if you ran out of ammo. Sucks, right? Not today! Blam! Two clips, bitches!

The government pretty much instantly figures out who stole the laser where it's being held. Obviously, this results in the Team Cliche and Team Caricature facing off to decide once and for all who's slightly less predictable. Frank, Miguel and Suzanne die immediately, proving the old expression, "Never bring a normie to a metahuman fight". Everyone who survives the initial fight scatters, in the hopes that something more interesting than watching paint dry on a growing lawn will happen.

It does.

The Laser (remember the Laser?) finally burns through the sphere and three aliens (the space kind) walk out. They try to communicate with the assembled menagerie of techpeople, and when it becomes apparent that the humans can't understand the strange visitors the aliens become frustrated and turn all the metal in the room into dust. When the dust settles they kill everyone, including Adrian. It turns out that the aliens just wanted a little alone time to talk things over. Turns out that they have been trying to fix their ship, the sphere, for the past decade. They were almost done when the bastard humans burned through their magnetic drive shields, leaving them stranded. Apparently their people have mastered interstellar flight, have created atomic and phase disruptors, and apparently forgot to invent roadside assistance or space-telephones. My new favorite characters decide that their best bet is to find someone with a knack for diplomacy and make a deal before more humans show up and realize that they killed several people and destroyed some kind of military installation and dissect them in repayment.

Everyone knows the best way to get people who hate each other to cooperate, is to introduce something else they can hate together, the aliens in this case. The remains of Team Raptor join up with Lisa and The Darkness to fight them. Kim and one alien are killed, and the rest of the humans are on deaths door so the aliens escape. The aliens re-group and stumble upon Mrs. Whisper, who has been hiding this whole time in a box of Hamdingers. She doesn't try to stab, shoot or set them on fire, so they take an instant liking to her. Suddenly, they remember that they have a translator in the ship, which makes the murder of the scientists earlier make absolutely no sense. "Hey, we're on an alien planet and hole just got blown in the side of the ship, let's see what's up." "Shouldn't we take the translator?" "Naah, I'm sure they'll figure it out" . In any event they strike a deal with Mrs. Whisper, who has all of Adrian's bank account info, and escape before more humans, armed with actual weapons, show up to kill them all.

A few months later we find the survivors of Team Raptor's first mission training hard with a new purpose, to destroy aliens. They even have a few new recruits: a clone, a woman who shoots fire from her fingers, and one Lisa Johan. The government apparently forgot that she can't control alien minds and has pardoned her. (To be fair to our fictitious elected officials, I believe this is due to the author forgetting what he wrote earlier again, possibly due to writing the pages in a random sequence.) Team Raptor is going to need everybody they can get their hands on when they see what the aliens have been doing with their free time. These aren't the 'stick stuff up the butts of yokels' or 'make cows explode' kinds of aliens, they've hatched the most diabolical plan mankind has ever seen. With the help of Ms. Whisper, they are making a corporation that hires only felons, single parents and the uneducated. They are building company stores, schools and housing for their employees, so that they can pay someone $15k but give them benefits that equal a $60k job. They plan to place officials in government with the voting power of their employees, all the while covertly teaching children to fly spaceships and offer a laser in the face severance package to anyone who won't toe the company line. The plan is use the power of an alien human resources dept. and intergalactic socialism to RULE THE WORLD in less than a decade. SOTR ends here but not before Daniel A. Dawson threatens to write a sequel, Special Operations Team Raptor, The Alien Plan.

I have mixed emotions about this book. It belongs in the barrel but I get the feeling Mr. Dawson doesn't take himself or this book too seriously. Reading this book is actually less painful than setting your own foot on fire, so you might give it a shot if you're into that kind of thing.

Idle Critism (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 years ago | (#24853501)

Idle should be just that... Idle.

Inspirational (1)

gtada (191158) | about 6 years ago | (#24854333)

Usually I agree with the saying that you can't judge a book by its cover, but this design [buy.com] gives us mere mortals a glimpse of supernatural genius.

From WHAT department? (1)

Anonamused Cow-herd (614126) | about 6 years ago | (#24858283)

from the could-be-worse dept.

Is this department heading intended to be ironic, like "Fair and Balanced?"

A plot summary is not a review (1)

bigbigbison (104532) | about 6 years ago | (#24866199)

This is just a plot summary. While reviews typically discuss the plot they do more than that. They, well, review the book. This doesn't do that.

Although, while the book may stink, the cover is pure awesomeness [google.com] !
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