Jason Kersten: The Art of Making Money (book review)

What a thrilling story about the guy who was able to crack the 1996 one hundred dollar bill (the most secured bill in the US at the moment). Not only was Art Williams a master of this highly illegal craft, but his counterfit was almost unrecognizable to the untrained eye, even when comparing it to real bills. The “pen” used to detect fake bills was useless because Art found a way to bypass this method.

Sometimes I’m skeptical when reading book that are not written by the person the book is about, but Jason Kersten did a lot of research and actually knew the protagonist well. There are a lot of inputs throughtout the book from Art himself.

The book starts at the very beginning of his life and covers everything until his arrests. From growing up in the streets of Bridgeport to his introduction to the art of making money, a craft he learned from an older man and ultimately perfected himself.

At the time of this book’s release Art was still in jail for a second attempt at making counterfit money, and was set to be release in 2013.

I hope one day there is another release from Art Williams himself where it picks up where this book ended. Very well written book and will keep you on the edge.

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Publisher: Gotham
Release Date: June 11, 2009
# of Pages: 304

Nikki Sixx: This is Gonna Hurt (book review)

Nikki Sixx has done it again! His second succesful book after The Heroin Diaries. This is much more than his Life Through Distorted Lenses. It is both part photography and part biography.

The high quality pictures in this book are incredible. They each have their own unique concept and are beautiful. Nikki takes you with him through some of the worst and most drug infected parts of towns to take his pictures, encountering homeless and drugs addicts along the way.

If you dont know anything about Sixx A.M. or how they came to be, this book will shed some light on that, and there is great detail about their recordings as well. Sixx takes pride on how much he loves Katherine (Kat von D) even to this day, and is not afraid to show his love for her, especially on the second half of the book.

I really enjoyed the Tour Entries at the end of the book, which really show you what he was thinking right then and there!

It was a short read but with a powerful message behind it!! This one will not dissapoint!

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Publisher: William Morrow
Release Date: April 12, 2011
# of Pages: 224

Flawless: Inside the Largest Diamond Heist in History (book review)

There are so many things i could say about this book but i’m going to try and keep it as simple as i can.

The writers of this book took a lot of time in researching everything the wrote. They explain with such detail that you wont want to put this book down. I cant go into much detail but it is one of the coolest most intriguing books i’ve read in this genre.

The masterminds behinds this heist come off as some very intelligent people, and well educated in diamonds, security systems, and bank safes. All of the thieves relied on each other and planned their robbery for 2 years before finally pulling off the greatest heist of all time.

While it is not exactly known how they actually pulled off robbing one of the most secured places on earth, the writers give you some of the most alarming clues how they could’ve done it, along with police reports and experts examining the evidence.

Buy this book or get it from your local library! I promise you will not be able to put it down!

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Publisher: Sterling
Release Date: 2010
# of Pages: 336

Chuck Berry: The Autobiography (book review)

The real deal story of one of the most influential guys in rock n roll history. Chuck Berry tells it how it is!

The book started a bit slow with him talking about his childhood and growing up in St. Louis. But after that it gets really interesting with his touring tellings. Mr. Berry doesn’t hold back on anything, from his days in prison (yes he was in prison for a few years) to his trouble with the IRS and the many women he met throughout his life (i bolded met for a reason)

Right on the back cover is a sentence written by John Lennon himself. “If you tried to give rock n roll another name, you might call it Chuck Berry” for a good reason. Mr Berry gives you a very detailed explanation of how some of his songs came to be and the inspiration behind his most famous songs. There is even a chapter included just about some of his songs only.

Get this book and learn about one of rock n roll’s most influential legends. It will not dissapoint and will make you wish you were born back in his time!

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Publisher: Harmony
Release Date: January 1, 1987
# of Pages: 352

Scott Ian: I’m the Man (The Story of That Guy from Anthrax) (book review)

First of all Id like to say many thanks to Da Capo Press for the copy of this book. Check their books at http://www.dacapopress.com

And with the review:

Until now there has never been an official autobiography of Anthrax. Scott Ian is such a cool and down to earth guy that you feel he is right there with you telling you all these stories. This is not a book about drugs or groupies (well maybe some) but rather a compelling story about one of the coolest guys in rock n roll history.

I couldnt wait to get to reading this book because I was always fascinated by music from the “Big 4”. Especially Anthrax because to me they seem the less “popular” out of the four. Scott explains in details how he was there for some memorable moments like the death of River Phoenix, when Dave Mustaine got kicked out of Metallica, and also the death of Cliff Burton. I couldnt help but laugh out loud at the stories of Al Jourgensen from Ministry. LOL

Scott doesnt waste anytime setting up the stories in long paragraphs, he just gets right to the point, which I as a reader always appreciate. From his childhood to his marriages and divorces, and all the way to the Big 4 show in Yankee stadium, and everything in between. You really get an inside peak of his life and how Anthrax came to be who they are now! I noticed that whenever Scott made a mistake, he would own up to it and not blame it on somebody else. (Unlike other autobios i’ve read)

If you are a fan of Anthrax, thrash music, or just like to know how things really went down back in the 80s and 90s, then get this autobiography, you won’t be able to put it down.

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Publisher: Da Capo Press
Release Date: October 14, 2014
# of Pages: 392

Jack Ballentine: Murder for Hire (book review)

Wow! What an interesting book. This book is about the life of one of the must successful undercover agents in the US. Jack’s specialty was working undercover as a hitman. And man some of the stories he tells are pretty crazy, and what people would say or pay to have someone killed.

This is a pretty easy read, at least for me it felt like i breezed through it! Jack talks about some of his undercover operations and as well as his life. Whenever he talks about his cases, you really do feel like you were right there with him and picturing everything in your mind.

There is just one minor problem i found. He rrpeated himself quite a few times saying things like “how hard is job is, how he is the best, or constantly talking about his friends”. While it was kind of repetitive it didnt take away from his exciting life as an undercover hitman.

Ballentine at the beginning of the book says he had a perfect record of 24 arrests and 24 convictions, but in the book he only talks about maybe eight or ten of them (if that), and while i understand he cant talk about every single one of them, i wish he would’ve talk about at least 5 more. There were some unnecessary chapters in the book and there could’ve been more chapters about more cases.

Overall really good book and very interesting story!

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Publisher: Thomas Dunne Books
Release Date: June 9, 2009
# of Pages: 320

Brian Johnson: Rockers and Rollers (book review)

First let me say that this is not a book about AC/DC. Or an autobiography of Brian Johnson. This is a book about stories he has about cars and his experiences with them.

Brian Johnson does seem like he knows a lot about cars, you can just tell in the way he writes about it in this book. He has countless stories about cars and some of the shenanigans thats happened to him and his friends while driving cars. Brian has been racing cars even before he was famous as the lead singer of AC/DC.

I found myself laughing outloud at some of the stories he has! From flying the “plane” in Australia to some of the experiences while driving with AC/DCs drummer! While the book is mainly about cars, there are bits and pieces of chapters that are about the AC/DC boys, although most of them are car related!

Such a cook book and i hope one day Brian does write a book about his life and AC/DC, he has so many funny stories! And if you’ve seem i terviews of him you know how funny he can be!

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Publisher: It Books
Release Date: May 24, 2011
# of Pages: 224