The Blog's Mission

Wikipedia defines a book review as: “a form of literary criticism in which a book is analyzed based on content, style, and merit. A book review can be a primary source opinion piece, summary review or scholarly review”. My mission is to provide the reader with my thoughts on the author’s work whether it’s good, bad, or ugly. I read all genres of books, so some of the reviews may be on hard to find books, or currently out of print. All of my reviews will also be available on I will write a comment section at the end of each review to provide the reader with some little known facts about the author, or the subject of the book. Every now and then, I’ve had an author email me concerning the reading and reviewing of their work. If an author wants to contact me, you can email me at I would be glad to read, review and comment on any nascent, or experienced writer’s books. If warranted, I like to add a little comedy to accent my reviews, so enjoy!
Thanks, Rick O.

Thursday, March 30, 2017


Ian McGuire’s second novel is as dark as it can get, yet somehow the author’s story has occasional breaks in the clouds. How did he do that? Even the protagonist, Patrick Sumner, who is normally a somber and gloomy individual portrays hope and optimism at the story’s bleakest times. This takes writer skills that are unrivaled. I’ve read darker novels, such as Cormac McCarthy’s Outer Dark (see my review of 3/1/2013), but somehow I enjoyed the few breaks in the gloom with McGuire’s novel...while still experiencing Cormac’s terror. Surprisingly (since it’s a new novel), rates McGuire’s novel as the sixth best whaling novel ever written. Which novel is first? You know the answer is Herman Melville’s 1851 novel Moby Dick which was a readers lesson in perseverance. I tried to find faults in McGuire’s novel but couldn’t, which is a rare statement from me. Alrighty then, let’s get a taste of the story.

The year is 1859. The whaling ship Volunteer and its sister ships are off from Yorkshire to the north waters of the Arctic Circle on a commercial whaling trip. The owner of the ships, Mr. Baxter, confers with the Volunteer’s Captain Brownlee before they ship out. Does Brownlee have orders from Baxter other than harpooning whales? Mr. Baxter hires an ex-British Army surgeon, Patrick Sumner, as the ship’s medic. What is Sumner hiding from the crew about his recent discharge from The British East India Company during the Indian Soldiers Rebellion of 1857? Was he released Honorably? What is he hiding in his locked military footlocker aboard the ship? Am I asking too many questions? (just throwing out some teasers). The next crew member of note is the nasty harpooner Henry Drax, who believes in no laws except his own. The First Mate is a Mr. Cavendish, who the Shetlander crew deem worthless. Mr. Baxter says, “Cavendish is a great turd and whoremonger, it’s true, but he will do whatever he’s told to.” The Second Mate is a Master Black. Then we have the two other harpooners, Otto and Jones-the-whale. The main characters are kept to a handful, which is to my liking.

As they sail out towards the north waters, Our protagonist, Patrick Sumner, thinks to himself, “ By and large it will be an easeful, perhaps a mildly tedious, sort of time, but God knows that is what he needs after the madness of India: the filthy heat, the barbarity, the stench. Whatever the Greenland whaling is like, he thinks, it will surely not be anything like that.” Really! Think again (Haha). On the way to the whales, the ship stops on Jan Mayen Island to kill seals for their blubber and skins. Sumner almost dies as he falls in the icy waters and isn’t rescued for three hours. He suffers some frostbite and while he is comatose, he dreams of what happened in India. After Sumner recovers, a cabin boy appears at his room complaining of stomach pain. It’s actually butt pain. Sumner realizes that a seaman sodomized the boy, but the boy will not talk. The wrong man is accused and put in chains after the cabin boy is found dead in a empty cask. Who killed the boy? The stage is set...what happens next?

Otto, the harpooner, has a dream. He tells Sumner, “You will be killed by a bear - when the rest of us are already dead,” Otto says. “Eaten, swallowed up somehow,” “You are a good fellow, Otto, but what you are saying is folly”, Sumner tells him. “We’re not in danger anymore. Set your mind at ease and forget the f***ing dream.” Will the dream be a reality? Sorry, I’ll stop my review here, so you can buy your own copy of this thriller to enjoy. I have to say that this was the fastest 255 pages that I’ve ever read. (I love that irregular verb). Which means what? Yes, I loved this novel! I highly recommend this novel.

RATING: 5 out of 5 stars

Comment: My favorite nautical novel is Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island (see my review of 8/23/2016). If you read my long review, you know that I loved the novel. By the way, if you want to know more about Robert Louis Stevenson read Nancy Horan’s Under the Wide and Starry Sky (see my review of 3/15/2014) was a fabulous historical novel.

So what did think of Treasure Island? The following is their teaser: “The most popular pirate story ever written in English, featuring one of literature’s most beloved “bad guys,” Treasure Island has been happily devoured by several generations of boys-and girls-and grownups. Its unforgettable characters include: young Jim Hawkins, who finds himself owner of a map to Treasure Island, where fabled pirate booty is buried; honest Captain Smollett, heroic Dr. Livesey, and the good-hearted but obtuse Squire Trelawney, who help Jim on his quest for the treasure; the frightening Blind Pew, double-dealing Israel Hands, and seemingly mad Ben Gunn, buccaneers of varying shades of menace; and, of course, garrulous, affable, ambiguous Long John Silver, who is one moment a friendly, laughing, one-legged sea-cook...and the next a dangerous pirate leader.”  

Friday, March 24, 2017

COINMAN, An Untold Conspiracy

The author sent me a copy of his novel to review:

Pawan Mishra has written a humorous and tormenting story... all at the same time. The funny side reminded me of the American version of the TV show The Office. Coinman prompted me to think of the quirky Dwight played by Rainn Wilson. The bullying side reminded me of a adult office version of William Golding’s Lord of the Flies, but a more civil edition. Coinman’s office was ruled by a gang of four, while the stranded boys were ruled by a gang of three with Piggy playing the counterpart of Pawan Mishra’s Coinman. Why was Coinman an outcast in his office? Because he loved “the joy of coin jingling!” What? Yes, that’s the hypothesis of the story. I’m going to email the author to find out how he thought of the idea. Anyway he took that zany habit and built a delightful tale around it. Coinman fell in love with coins when, as a baby, his father spilled coins on the floor. Baby Coinman found the one coin his father didn’t pick up and did what any baby would do...he put it in his mouth and swallowed it. Somehow his digestive system dissolved the coin, and he was forever hooked on coins. He had to have coins at all times in the left pocket of his trousers unless he had to use his left hand, then the coins would be moved into his right pocket. “Jangle jingle! Clink clatter! Ding-a-ling! Ring-a-ding!” Is that funny, or what? And if he had to hold a chart with both hands for a colleague at a office presentation, he would make the excuse that he had to go to the bathroom.

The venue for the story is a office building in Northern India. The managers are on the second floor, and the regular office workers are on the first floor sitting in individual desks. By the way, the reader never really finds out what the company actually does. It seems like they spend the whole shuffling papers and scheming against Coinman. According to Coinman, it looks like all the desks on the floor inch away from him on a daily basis. Coinman knows it’s true because he measures the distance from his desk to his neighbors desks as a daily routine. Nobody wanted to hear the constant jingling of coins in his pocket. “The coin-stricken souls at the office used as pain-killers some fabricated tales about Coinman’s buffoonery, yet these pain-killers were not good enough to make even a dent in the constant trauma the coins caused. The mind-paralyzing sound of the coins, mixed with the hatred against him, evolved to a stubborn assessment in their minds that Coinman was perpetrating the most unbearable experience they’d ever known.” The group’s attitude was simple, “They wanted independence from coins at any cost!” Coinman’s real name was Kesar, but somehow it changed to Coinman when his office mail, office newsletter, and official records started to be addressed to Coinman instead of Kesar. He went to the second floor to protest, but they said Its always been it stuck, go figure!

I have to say that I thought the author’s prose was excellent, mainly because I’m a fan of descriptive writing. Pawan Mishra took two pages (pages nine & ten) to describe Coinman’s appearance...that’s what I’m talking about! Getting back to the story, we learn about Coinman’s personal life such as, how he lives jam-packed with his mother, Kasturi, father, Daulat, his wife, Imli and a distant cousin, Shimla. Coinman’s wife is an actor who has the habit of adopting the personality of whoever she is currently playing on stage. For instance when she played a doctor on stage, she would come home as a doctor with a medical bag. She even gave Coinman a needle in the butt while he was sleeping (Haha). Okay, let’s get back to the conniving office gang of four: Hukum (the leader), Daya, Sevak and Panna. They are now joined by co-conspirators, Ratiram and the lovely office female, Tulsi, who has decided enough is enough. All the office workers have a meeting in the building’s cafeteria. Tulsi takes the leadership role, “Let us strip him of his coins, let’s rob the filthy insect of its wings, let’s snatch his happiness and share it equally among us.” Then she dropped her voice to almost a whisper. “Let’s do it in a way that lets us kill the snake without breaking the stick.” Okay, I told you enough of the story, the best is yet to come. What plan did the office gang finally come up with? What will Coinman do if he can’t jingle his coins? The author came up with a strange but simple story that somehow captivated me. Pick up your own copy, indulge yourself with this duck soup novel.

RATING: 4 out of 5 stars

Comment: This is the first novel I’ve read pertaining to bullying, however co-contributor, Pat Koelmel wrote a review on R.J. Palacio’s Wonder (see her review of 8/25/2014). It’s the story of a ten year old boy named Auggie, who has a rare medical facial deformity. His parent’s enroll him into a private school after years of home schooling. There, he faces bullying for the way he looks, not because he jingles coins in his pocket.

Saturday, March 18, 2017


I finally read a Larry McMurtry novel, and I’m glad I did. Most of the reviewers of this 2014 novel gave it one or two stars (47% on Amazon). I think they are way out of line. Surely the author of the best western novel ever written (so says and many others), Lonesome Dove, couldn’t have written a stinker...could he? No, I don’t think he did. His style was smooth and deliberate with a touch of western humor. I don’t think that Larry McMurtry had any intention of writing a serious novel about Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday as they traveled from Long Grass, Texas to Denver, Colorado and eventually to Tombstone, Arizona for the showdown at the O.K. Corral in 1881. Larry McMurtry states in the forward, “The Last Kind Words Saloon is a ballad in prose whose characters are afloat in time; their legends and their lives in history rarely match. I had the great director John Ford in mind when I wrote this book; he famously said that when you had to choose between history and legend, print legend. And so I’ve done.” With that said, I read McMurtry’s story with a grain of salt. Apparently most of the reviewers either missed that early quote or didn’t understand what he was saying. I thought the author’s prose was first-rate, sprinkled with the local flavor of the waning years of the old west. Some reviewers said the chapters were too what. This style of writing makes me want to read more pages per session. I’m the type of reader that counts pages to see how many are left if it appears the chapter is too long.

The story is mostly lighthearted with both Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday not the deadeye shooters that most books portray them to be. Wyatt hardly ever has a job in this novel and is either drunk or arguing with his wife, Jessie, the bartender at The Last Kind Words Saloon owned by Wyatt’s brother, Warren. By the way, when the Earps leave a town, Warren brings the saloon sign with him. Wyatt’s brother Morgan is always the sheriff and Virgil Earp is his deputy. The novel introduces the reader to the real life Texas rancher Charlie Goodnight (known as the father of the Texas Panhandle) and his fictional partner Lord Benny Ernle, a British Baron. Lord Ernle gets killed early in the novel while sprinting with his horse on unfamiliar territory where he falls off a cliff and breaks his neck. We meet  Madame San Saba of the brothel, The Orchid, in Long Grass, Texas. Supposedly, she was rescued from a harem in Turkey by Lord Ernle and taken under his wing. San Saba was reported to still be a virgin (what?). The reader meets the authentic telegraph operator and reporter Nellie Courtright, who was reputed to be the girlfriend of Buffalo Bill Cody, who also makes am appearance in this novel. As a matter of fact, Buffalo Bill hires Wyatt Earp and Doc Holiday to join his Wild West Show in Denver for a $100 a show, each to stage a gunfight skit with blanks of course. The boys are a tad leery of blanks, “I’d be wary of it. What if some fool forgot to put blanks in his gun?”, said Doc. The Comanche Chief Quanah Parker, the son of kidnapped Cynthia Ann Parker and Comanche chief Peta Nocona also makes a brief appearance. I wonder if the 1956 John Wayne movie, The Searchers, is loosely based on the authentic Parker incident.

I’m not going to get into the Tombstone gunfight between Wyatt, Doc Holliday, Morgan, and Virgil Earp versus Ike and Billy Clanton, and the McLaury brothers (Johnny Ringo left town before the showdown) at the O.K. Corral. But I will tell you about a funny incident at Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show in Denver. Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday’s first show didn’t go off too well. “The gunfighter skit involving Wyatt and Doc did not, at first, go well at all. For one thing the pair had not bothered to practice - both despised practice, on the whole. “Pull a pistol out of a dern holster and shoot it - why would that require practice?” Wyatt wondered. “Everything about show business requires practice,” Cody told him. “Sure enough, on the very first draw, Wyatt yanked his gun out so vigorously that it somehow flew out of his hand and landed twenty feet in front of him with the barrel in the dirt. Doc, meanwhile, had the opposite problem; he had jammed his pistol in its holster so tight that it wouldn’t come out. This behavior annoyed Doc so much that he ripped off the holster and threw it at a bronc, which happened to be loose in the arena.” I told you that the novel had some humor, didn’t I? Look, I know that this wasn’t McMurtry’s best novel, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. So do I recommend this lightly regarded novel? Did Babe Ruth hit home runs?

RATING: 4 out of 5 stars

Comment: Reading a Larry McMurtry novel keeps my quest to read at least one of all the great cowboy author’s novels intact. The next writer has to be either Louis L’Amour (1952’s Hondo), Jack Shaefer (1963’s Monte Walsh or 1949’s Shane), or A.B. Guthrie (1947’s The Big Sky).

Larry McMurtry’s credentials are amazing. His 1966 novel, The Last Picture Show,also became a hit movie winning two academy awards, as did Terms of Endearment (1975), which won five academy awards. And he and co-writer Diana Ossana wrote the screenplay for Brokeback Mountain, which won three academy awards. Lonesome Dove (the 1985 Pulitzer Prize novel) was a successful winner of seven Emmy awards as a miniseries. Wow!    

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

edna & luna

The author sent me a autographed copy of her novel to review:

This is another novel that reminds me of Seinfeld’s theme for his TV series, which was “a show about nothing.” This was a novel about nothing. It was a pleasant story and well written but a tad uneventful. I’m just not sure what caused Gleah Powers to write this story. Maybe she wanted to write a story that was the opposite of the 1991 film Thelma and Louise. Thelma’s husband has the same name as Luna’s trailer park landlord, Darryl. And Louise has a boyfriend who would not commit like Luna’s Dr. Mark. Okay, I’m just having some fun, but Gleah Powers’ novel was a bit stodgy...don’t you think?  One last thing...both story venues are in the Southwest. Okay, so what’s this yawner about. Well, there are two main characters, which is a good thing.

The first character is Edna Harwood. She is seventy years old and just lost her husband, Hank, three months after they moved from Chicago to Phoenix. She is lonely. She just found out that she needs a hysterectomy. This reminds her of the miscarriage she had at a much younger age. To make matters worse, somebody burglarizes her home and accidentally dumps Hank’s cremated ashes onto her carpet. For some reason the author often has Edna in a supermarket (usually buying bourbon). Anyway, she meets Joe at a Sun City Senior Citizens Club dance. Joe agrees to build a windbreaker in her backyard. Are you excited yet? Anyhow, Edna will eventually run into Luna at the supermarket...of course.

The second character is Luna, who just left her violent husband. She moves into a trailer park near Edna’s home with her dog, Tula. Luna has been a healer all her life and advertises that fact but has no paying customers as of yet. She has occasional sex with the park’s landlord, Darryl, and a Dr. Mark that she recently met.

So now that I whet your appetite with the modus operandi of the two centerpieces, I’ll leave their subsequent meeting and the crux of the novel for you to read. I don’t want to appear to be uncaring to the author because she has impressive credentials as a painter, actor, and dancer besides other literary accomplishments. But this novel was...humdrum.

RATING: 3 out of 5 stars

Comment: This is probably the shortest review I ever wrote. But besides the Thelma and Louise comparison I made in the first paragraph, which was tongue-in-cheek, there is nothing that I’ve read to compare with her novel.    

Monday, March 13, 2017


The author sent me a copy of her novel to review:

I didn’t think anybody could make the world of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) a somewhat gripping read-through, but Polish writer Kata Mlek easily met my challenge. This is the first novel of a planned trilogy. I thought the ebb and flow of the novel was outstanding with some intervals of relative calm and then many chapters of great peril. The only salient criticism I have of the novel is that there are too many main characters for my taste. I found other minor faults in Kata’s novel, but since I haven’t read her second book in the series, The Last Man, it wouldn’t be fair to bring it up. Jeffrey M. Smith’s 2003 noteworthy expose`on GMOs, Seeds of Deception, seems to back-up the foundation of Kata’s novel. One thing for sure is that Kata Mlek is one fine storyteller. So let me tell you a little about her novel.

The novel takes place in the very near future, mainly in Poland, Hungary and Africa. Miroslav (Miran) works for TransAgra, a company that makes transgenic oats, but Miran wants to start his own GMO company that he names Genesis. He is backed financially by the heir to a Belgian mining fortune, Andreas Maes, and romantically by his best researcher, Sylvia (Satia). Miran is apparently bisexual since he has relations with both genders (Andreas and Satia). The other main player in the GMO world is VitaGen run by Elliot Goldblum. Andreas and his investors decide that Goldblum must go. They kidnap his son Zachary in exchange for his stock in VitaGen. He refuses. A box with his son’s head is mailed to him. I’m only mentioning this because VitaGen and the Goldblums are a very small and early part of the story. Obviously, Andreas' group takes over Vitagen and make Miran the president of the new company, Genesis.

Now the other player in this story is Will Smart, the CEO of EatSmart of Hungary. Since his company knew that GMO plants were mostly outlawed in Europe, he ran a series of Smart’s Organic Farms (SOFs) to compete. His company’s war against Miran’s GMO company is the focal point of the story. How was Genesis going to get their GMO plants unprohibited? What lies did EatSmart make up to enrage the public against Genesis? Smart’s farms would recruit families to live on his farms to produce “crops using natural seeds and fertilizers.” Why was Smart running his farms like a cult? Is Smart’s EatSmart company just as unprincipled and miscreant as Miran’s Genesis company? You Bet Your Bippy! And, you haven’t met the Beata and Yatsek family; the Anna and Mihal family; Emeryk Baranovski or Levi yet. The struggle for the dominance of the world’s food supply by Genesis and EatSmart goes on throughout the 247 pages of this novel. And, according to the author, into the next novel.

This novel was a surprise to me. The teasers that I read didn’t make it seem that I would like the story. I think the big reason this novel was a joy to read was because Kata Mlek left out all the technical jargon about GMOs. If I want to know the technical side of GMOs, I will grab a textbook on the subject (Haha, highly unlikely). Good job, Kata, I highly recommend your novel.  
RATING: 4 out of 5 stars

Comment: If you want to see a first-rate movie about the GMO problem, watch Daryl Wein’s 2015 movie, Consumed, starring Danny Glover, Zoe Lister-Jones, and Victor Garber.

Environmental activist Erin Brockovich said about the movie, “Entertaining, relatable, suspenseful and informative, and a real eye opener to what is going on. This film has re-inspired and educated me. BRAVO!"

Friday, March 10, 2017


Candice Millard’s third book is more than satisfactory, but not as exciting as her first two narrative nonfiction efforts. The first book, Destiny of the Republic (see my review of 1/17/2012) was about the assassination of President James Garfield and the second book, The River of Doubt (see my review of 2/19/2012) was about the near death of Theodore Roosevelt on an unmapped tributary of the Amazon River. They were rousing page-turners. This novel is about the younger years of Winston Churchill, and it did not stimulate me like the first two books did. Maybe the deadpan or dry British wit got to Candice Millard...I’m not sure. Since she writes in the style of Erik Larson and David McCullough, she is still one of my favorites. What is amazing though is that by 1913 (eleven years after the Boer War was over), the British still controlled 24% of the earth’s total land area and 23% of the world’s population (412 million people). How did that little country do that? And don’t forget that those numbers were after they lost the American territory in the Revolutionary War. Does Queen Victoria (who reigned for over 63 years) get credit for the great expansion of the British Empire? One would have to say...yes.

Winston Churchill was born with the proverbial silver spoon in his mouth. That said, he wasn’t a person that always took advantage of that fact. His father, Lord Randolph Churchill, was Chancellor of the Exchequer and the leader of the House of Commons. Winston’s parents were personal friends of the Prince of Wales, Queen Victoria’s heir. Notwithstanding, Winston, since childhood, wanted to win his own glory and gallantry in battle. He practiced his battle plans with his 15,000 toy soldiers as a youth. When he was finally able to join the army, The Daily Chronicle called him a whippersnapper. “Churchill knew that the surest and quickest route to recognition, success and perhaps, if he was lucky, fame was a military medal.” For that “He was willing to risk anything, even his life.” Churchill believed that, by hook or by crook, he was predetermined to be famous and that was the crux of his bravery. “Churchill had seen real fighting for the first time in 1895. Instead of spending his leave playing polo or foxhunting like most young officers, he had gone to Cuba as a military observer, joining a fighting column of the Spanish army during an uprising that was a prelude to the Spanish-American War.” It was during this time that he began the life-long habit of smoking cigars (preferably, Cubanos).

In 1896, Churchill arrived in India hoping to fight in the Pashtun revolt, but commander Sir Bindon Blood sent him a telegram saying, “Very difficult; no vacancies...come as a correspondent; will try to fit you in.” Churchill saw for himself how astonishingly accurate the Pashtun riflemen were. “Even more frightening than the Pashtuns long-range marksmanship was the ferocity with which they fought hand to hand, face-to-face.” Churchill observed, “Careless of what injury they may receive, they devote themselves to the destruction of their opponent...unflinching in the face of their own suffering, the Pashtun were merciless when it came to the enemy’s. They did not just kill but slaughtered, slicing men’s bodies to ribbons with their long, curved swords.” That is the review of the first 14 pages. The rest of this 381 page narrative nonfiction book deals with Churchill’s time in South Africa during the second Boer War, his incredible bravery, capture and daring escape to freedom. Now that I know what made Churchill “tick”, I have the utmost respect for him. Candice’s book or historical fiction novel (I’m never sure what to call a narrative nonfiction) is backed up by 63 pages of notes. It’s worth reading this obscure piece of history.

RATING: 5 out of 5 stars

Comment: What surprises me is that in 1899 the British were still a believer in the fair fight. Didn’t they learn their lesson during the Revolutionary War? “Unlike the Boers, who had been sharpshooters nearly all their lives, this was an entirely new world to the British. So alien (are you kidding me?) was the concept of a man who shot from a distance and in hiding, rather than in a highly visible battlefield formation, that even the word “Sniper” was new to them.” Don’t they remember the American ambushes? Finally after many lost battles, the British were waking up, “Whether they liked it or not, however, battle by battle the British were learning from the Boers. They were beginning to see the advantages of blending into their surroundings, being quiet and quick, and even ducking.”    

Sunday, March 5, 2017

GRIM NORA and the Secret of the Skull

The author sent my thirteen year old grandson, Kai, an autographed copy of her novel to review:

Grim Nora starts off very strange. Right off the bat, the first paragraph starts with Nora’s father already dying on her sixteenth birthday. After being late to her birthday celebration with her friends at the Yggdrasil Coffee Shop, she is approached by a odd figure who asks about the strange skull-shaped pocket watch that her father gave to her before his mysterious death. To make Nora’s birthday worst for her, she soon discovers that her boyfriend, Connor, is cheating on her.

While walking home depressed, Nora realizes that she is being followed. She tries to lose him, but the man is soon sprinting after her. Nora ducks into an alleyway, but she is discovered. The man turns into a horrible beast and tries to take her pocket watch off her. Luckily, the beast is fought off by the owner of the coffee shop that she was just at. From here on, Nora’s life will not ever be the same.

Overall, this fantasy YA novel by A.M. Albaugh was very good, except for one thing. In my opinion, at the end of the novel, there are too many things that are concluded that I think should have been saved for another novel. For this reason the novel just misses a five star rating. I would give it a 4.5 star rating if I could. I would recommend this YA novel to the 12 to 18 age group.

RATING: 4 out of 5 stars

Comment: I noticed that as Kai gains experience reviewing YA/fantasy novels, he has become a tad stingy in the five star rating department. Once you’ve read many similar type novels, you start forming opinions on what you like or dislike. That’s when a reviewer stops “rubber stamping” every novel that he/she reads with five stars.