Flying Cars & Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life: 2 Book Giveaways

by Mk

in Non-Fiction

Today’s giveaways are two books unlike any I normally review or give away; however each intrigued me for different reasons. One of them, Flying Cars by Andrew Glass, is designed for young readers at about middle school level but I think it will appeal to adults interested in the history of aviation who always thought we should have flying cars – people like me. The other one, Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life by Jason Hanson is definitely written for adults who want to be smart about protecting themselves and their families in the 21st century. Because these books are so different, we’re hosting separate giveaways for them. See if one or both are something you’d like for your own book collection or for someone on your holiday gift list and then enter the giveaway that’s right for you.

Flying CarsFlying Cars by Andrew Glass brought back so many memories for me. When I was growing up, I was convinced that we would all zip around like George Jetson by the 21st century or at least minimally we would have cars that could also fly. My dad flew light planes and I could easily see how cars and planes combined would be really wonderful things to have. It just made sense – when you landed your plane, you needed a car to get around so why not combine the two? If we could go into outer space, why couldn’t we do something like that? I had imaginative visions of freeways and interstates with car/planes zipping along them at different altitudes, depending on how far they were going, with the plane descending and becoming a car when it approached its exit to go onto city streets. It made perfect sense to me, so I was really disappointed when that vision and the prototypes tested didn’t result a common household vehicle.

Flying Cars details the history of our fascination with combining automobiles and aviation, a fascination that extends back to the earliest flights. It seems odd to me that nothing has ever come of that. Andrew Glass is adept at writing for young audiences without talking down to them, so he presents this history in an entertaining and fascinating way that is going to appeal to parents as well as their kids. This coffee table size book is filled with photographs as well as text, and includes a research bibliography at the back. That way readers whose interest is piqued can read even more about the subject and about the brilliant people who worked to make flying cars a reality…people like Buckminster Fuller, who I adore.

Bottom Line: If you or someone you know is fascinated by airplanes and/or cars, I think Flying Cars is going to be a book you and/or they will want to add to your collection. It’s brief enough at 102 pages (plus bibliography) to not be overwhelming for middle-grade and middle-school readers but interesting enough to entertain adults. Win-win!


Spy Secrets That Can Save Your LifeOur second book is quite different. Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life: A Former CIA Officer Reveals Safety and Survival Techniques to Keep You and Your Family Protected is by Jason Hanson. I have to admit I was more curious about this book than anything else. I don’t let fear run my life so I almost didn’t agree to take a look at it, since the title implies that it is going to instill fear possibly unnecessarily in people who read it.

So why did I agree to look at it? I was shocked when I moved from Los Angeles to this small beach to learn that some people never locked their doors at home or their car doors and that they didn’t take precautions I took for granted, to keep themselves safe. Even small towns and rural areas have burglaries and car thefts, as well as other worse crimes. It’s naïve and dangerous to think it can never happen to you in a small community, as if some magical shield protects you. People in large urban areas know this already because everything is so concentrated that it’s in your face whether you want it to be or not, so there are things you do routinely to keep yourself as safe as possible – most of which are common sense. I decided, if this book’s content was useful, that it might be something people could learn basic protection techniques from and that could be valuable.

Jason Hanson is an ex-CIA officer, who works in security, teaching civilians to protect themselves. If you’re a Shark Tank fan, you may have even seen him on there as a contestant (if that’s what people making successful pitches are called on that show). Spy Secrets contains a wealth of information on all kinds of topics. The chapters I feel are most useful to the widest group of people were the ones on Situational Awareness, How to Criminal Proof Your Home, Travel Safety, Survival Driving (Preventing Carjacking), and How to Escape a Disaster. These are situations the average person is most likely to encounter when they least expect it, and knowing what to do in those situations can literally save your life and/or the lives of those you love.

Here’s the Shark Tank presentation Jason Hanson made (it’s long but I thought some of you might enjoy seeing it):

So let’s look at each of my favorite Spy Secrets chapters briefly:
1) Situational Awareness: I’m surprised at how many people where I live now have no clue what’s going on around them. I see women leave purses in chair seats. I see people walk through parking lots oblivious to who is around them. I even saw a man sneaking up on a woman as she walked on a sidewalk, talking on her cellphone. When I pulled my car over next to her, he took off like a streak of lightning – and she still had no clue he had been there. Instead, she acted like I was some nutcase, which kind of falls into the “no good deed goes unpunished” category. Situational awareness is critical – it’s not paranoia but rather just being smart about your surroundings and not pretending you live in some protected bubble. Oddly enough, I learned situational awareness the hard way while living in a small town in North Carolina several decades ago.
2) How to Criminal Proof Your Home: These suggestions to me seem like just common sense; however, I’ve realized a lot of people are clueless about them. Will they make your house impervious to home invasion or burglary? No, yet they will make it much less likely that you will be a victim of either of these things. Even knowing what I do about this, I got lulled by our laid-back beach atmosphere and made a classic lax mistake recently. I arrived home to find someone had attempted to break in. They were disturbed in the process and didn’t quite succeed. I’ve since made it tougher and I won’t make that stupid mistake again.
3) Travel Safety: Traveling is so much fun that we tend to relax our vigilance. Again I’m not talking about paranoia, just about being smart. From the airport to rental cars to hotels to sightseeing, there are precautions you can take to help ensure your trip stays a fun one and doesn’t result in stolen identity, stolen items (from cash to passports to luggage). Just remember that there are people in the world who see your vacation or business trip as an economic opportunity – and I’m not talking about overpriced tickets or poor customer service.
4) Survival Driving: We all learn in driver’s ed to drive defensively, but these days that takes on a whole new meaning. I know people who’ve been involved in staged accidents and in carjackings. Believe me, you never want to be in either one. This chapter contains excellent common sense advice that again isn’t designed to make you paranoid but could easily save you from a world of hurt.
5) Disaster Survival: Disasters aren’t anything anyone can predict and, even when they are predictable to some extent – like earthquakes, a lot of people go into denial and just don’t prepare. Weather and geological disasters are known entities. You know if you live in an area prone to tornadoes or hurricanes or earthquakes, or even volcanic eruptions. Part of us wants to think those things won’t impact us because it’s stressful to have that in your face all the time. Preparing to survive such a disaster is important nonetheless. And then there are disasters we can’t predict – those things that can happen when and where you least expect them. This chapter is excellent about some measures we can all take that just make good sense, without going into apocalyptic mode. For those who live spy gear, it also goes into some of those items – items I’m not too comfortable with personally but some of you may love.

Bottom Line: I was pleasantly surprised by how useful Spy Secrets is. It does contains chapters and items in it that I’m not comfortable with and wouldn’t include in my personal survival/protection gear; however, I know each person has a different comfortableness level. I’m not dismissing those items as off the wall; they just aren’t appropriate for me. If you think you or someone on your gift list could benefit from and would enjoy this kind of information then I’d say this is a pretty good book to add to your or their collection.

Can’t wait to read either or both of these books? Flying Cars & Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life are both available from your favorite online bookseller below. Just click the link to get them for yourself or someone on your holiday gift list.

Barnes & NobleBuy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

I’d love to get your comments on Flying Cars, Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life, Andrew Glass, Jason Hanson, and/or this review.
Please note: The hardcover copy of Spy Secrets that we’re giving away does not include audio/video components.
Our Giveaway:
One lucky reader will win a hardcover copy of Flying Cars by Andrew Glass and one reader will win a hardcover copy of Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life by Jason Hanson!

Please note: The hardcover copy of Spy Secrets that we’re giving away does not include audio/video components.

Giveaway Rules:
1) The deadline for entries is Monday night, 11/30/2015, at 11:59pm EDST. No entries after that date/time will be eligible.
2) This giveaway is open to entries with U.S. mailing addresses only because we do not ship books outside of the U.S.
3) You must be at least 15 years old to enter these giveaways. I’m not going to put a higher age restriction on the second book; however, it’s really not going to appeal to people who aren’t adults – seriously.
4) You must use the Rafflecopter form. Even if leaving a comment is part of the giveaway, you must use the form in addition to leaving the comment for the comment to count as an entry.
5) If you already follow PopcornReads on Twitter or Linky, you must still complete that part of the Rafflecopter form for your follow to count as an entry.
6) If you do not provide a complete mailing address in the Rafflecopter form, your entry will not be eligible. We will use your mailing address to ship your book to you. Please allow 2-3 weeks for book delivery.
7) That’s it – it’s a very easy giveaway, so have fun and best of luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Click here to go to our home page, where you’ll find a lot more fun book giveaways you’ll want to enter!

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Cherei McCarter November 22, 2015 at 5:32 pm

I’ve read Spy Secrets and absolutely LOVED it!! The only reason I’m entering the contest.. is so that if I win.. I can gift a copy to a friend! ( I do NOT loan out physical books.. to anyone. EVER. lol) I also reviewed it on Goodreads and Amazon! Back in September!

My review:

My mind is bursting from all of the knowledge I’ve learned in reading this book cover to cover! I now know how to escape if bound with duct tape, rope, or zip ties. I have the basic knowledge of how to hot-wire a car, pick many types of locks, get out of handcuffs, and flat out put a major physical hurt on anyone dumb enough to grab me from any angle. Roadblock.. pfffffft.. child’s play. I’ll drive right through it!

I know that this is going to be one of those rare books that I will insist every person I know read and digest. I am so excited by this book that I’ll probably buy a box of them just to give away to all loved ones that I feel can benefit from reading the various survival skills taught in this easy to read and follow lifesaving book.

It will also be a book that I would recommend to anyone who wants some insight into basic survival skills when confronted by criminals. It is a MUST HAVE BOOK for research libraries.

A must read book for all humans who want to SURVIVE most any type of assault one may encounter. Rarely does a book captivate and hold my attention as much as Spy Secrets That Can Save Your Life: A Former CIA Officer Reveals Safety and Survival Techniques to Keep You and Your Family Protected
by Jason Hanson.

You MUST buy this book! It WILL give you the basic skills you need to survive in this crazy world we live in today. Seriously, why are you still reading?? BUY IT!!


Nadine November 22, 2015 at 5:59 pm

Grrrrr….my cat jumped at me and hit my hand so I hit the return key by mistake as I was typing in my address for the Spy Secrets book. The remainder of the address of the state and zip is missing but here’s the town to match to finish it: Westfield NY14787.


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