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In Colorado we don’t officially have a “State Car,” but it might come down to a battle between Jeep and the Subaru Outback. Having said that, however, Subaru has another candidate that might just elbow its way into the debate.
The Forester shows off its newly-redesigned style and pizzazz for 2019 with cargo space for days and a healthy supply of new tech gear.
This crossover SUV gives you above-average ground clearance to go along with standard all-wheel-drive. That alone makes it popular for mountainous and/or snowy zip codes. But you’ll appreciate the Forester just as much if you keep it on the pavement.Continue Reading
This is perhaps one of the shortest books I’ve ever featured in my book club, and I love that. Maybe you’re like me and you’ve read 375-page non-fiction books that could’ve easily been condensed into 150 pages. Or less.
William McRaven is a former Navy Seal who addressed the graduating class of the University of Texas in 2014. His talk to those students went viral, with millions of people watching it online. And, just like that, the talk was distilled into a small book with large repercussions.
Okay, so it falls into the self-help category. But it’s not your ordinary self-help book. McRaven recounts many stories about not only his training to become a Navy Seal, but also anecdotes about how that training influenced his life and decision-making.
I’ve heard people say it’s a fantastic book to give to teenagers. Others have proclaimed it’s a perfect book for people in the early stages of a management career. Still others credit it for helping them get through difficult stretches of their life.
Sounds like an all-around tonic for helping you get centered and get started.
And perhaps it’s just what you need to read at the start of a new year to get pointed in the right direction. That’s why I chose it for the January book.
Pick it up at your nearest Tattered Cover Book Store. If you mention Dom’s Book Club, they’ll take 20% off the price of this title.
Sure, the old adage about “ain’t broke/don’t fix it” can apply to car design, but Volkswagen apparently feels strongly about it. While other car manufacturers are only too happy to roll out full redesigns of their models every few years, VW has decided that the Passat is just fine as it is, thank you.
And that seems to be okay with the fan base. While VW has seen scads of people flock to their newer SUVs, passenger cars like the Golf and the Passat continue to deliver.Continue Reading
Buick has been dogged by controversy over its Envision since its American debut in 2016, which must be frustrating for the car maker since none of it has anything to do with the quality of the vehicle.
First came the announcement that GM would be producing the Envision in China, which sparked an angry cry from American unions. And today there are concerns about the trade/tariff situation between the US and China.
Through it all, Buick continues to make a solid little SUV that consumers, based on sales figures, seem to like.
Nicely slotted between the smaller Encore and the heftier, three-row Enclave, the Envision satisfies the demands of people looking for a crossover SUV that can carry a fair amount of cargo without taking up two parking spaces.Continue Reading
This month, millions of Americans will either:
- See a stage presentation of A Christmas Carol
- Watch one of the movie versions – or Scrooged
- Read the book by Charles Dickens
For Dom’s Book Club in December I thought it would be fun to feature a novel about the writing of that classic tale.
Charles Dickens is not only down, he’s depressed. His book sales aren’t good, his publisher is clamoring for a hit, and they’re essentially forcing him to write a Christmas story that would make them rich.
But Dickens pushes back. As he walks the streets of London in despair, he encounters the mysterious Eleanor Lovejoy. It’s Eleanor who launches Dickens into his own dark, but strangely humorous, journey. What is born of this journey is often described as the best holiday fiction ever penned.
If you’re looking for something completely different this season, perhaps Silva’s first book is just what you need.
Mr. Dickens and His Carol is on sale at The Tattered Cover Book Store. If you mention Dom’s Book Club they’ll take 20% off the cost of this title.
Happy reading, and Merry Christmas.
I find it entertaining to trace the lineage of certain cars, trucks, and SUVs. We think they spring from nothing but the mind of some engineer, when in fact they often trace their roots back to now-extinct vehicles.
That’s the backstory on the GMC Terrain, which has not only one out-of-production SUV in its family tree, but two. They don’t necessarily share the same skeletons, but they were direct replacements.
The Terrain was born with the 2010 model, a replacement for the Pontiac Torrent when GM shuttered the Pontiac plant. But the Torrent was itself a replacement for the hideous (sorry, editorial comment) Pontiac Aztec, that strange beast made popular (well, familiar) on the TV show Survivor.
If you wanna use old King James Bible terminology, the Aztec begat the Torrent which begat the Terrain. Amen.Continue Reading
Subcompact crossover vehicles are becoming quite the rage, because they offer the kind of utility/cargo space that on-the-go urbanites are looking for, without the gargantuan size. Basically, they’ll dart around town and they’re easy to park.
The Toyota C-HR was originally going to be produced under the Scion brand until that division was shut down.
It provides a fun, sporty look with capable handling and good mileage. What it doesn’t provide is peppy acceleration, nor all-wheel-drive — which surprised me. Coloradoans will have to make do with front-wheel-drive only.
(For what it’s worth, I drove to the radio station one day in the snow and the C-HR handled like a champ.)
The C-HR (which stands for Compact High Rider) is available this year in three trim levels, after Toyota added the upper-tier Limited model for this year. The base unit is the LE, followed by the XLE (which I drove).Continue Reading
I’ve been reviewing cars for about 20 years, and it’s becoming rare to find myself behind the wheel of a sedan. Car makers are definitely caught up in the country’s infatuation with SUVs and crossover vehicles, to the extent that some are in the midst of pretty much phasing out their lineups of sedans. (Ford is a prime example.)
So, given that trend, I think I like the way Toyota is handling this. They’re essentially saying, “Thanks we’ll take the whole pie.”
And while they could’ve just taken the market by keeping things status quo with their own models, instead they’re upping the sedan game. Case in point: the redesigned 2019 Avalon and Avalon Hybrid.
I spent a week driving the hybrid version, and came away very impressed.
My own personal vehicle is a Lexus hybrid, part of the Toyota family, so I wasn’t surprised by the quality of the Avalon, both in materials and in ride. But it’s interesting to see how the hybrid price-bump is shrinking over the years, to the point now that the difference between this and the regular all-gas-power Avalon is minimal. Your fuel savings should make up the difference quickly.Continue Reading
It’s not very often that you find two big players in the automotive world working together to create a car. But that’s exactly what happened when Toyota partnered with Subaru to develop a sporty little number called the 86 under the Toyota badge and the BRZ when Subaru’s name is on the back.
The cars are not identical, but they’re pretty close. Some even refer to them as “the twins.” Subie upped the game a bit when they introduced the tS trim level for their BRZ. Before we get completely lost in the alphabet soup of car makers, let’s explain:
The tS is short for “tuned by STI.”
STI is the abbreviation for Subaru Tecnica International, the motorsports division of Subaru. It was formed in the late 80s to spearhead the company’s pursuit of road racing success.
And the BRZ? That’s shorthand for Boxer engine, Rear-wheel drive, and Z for the zenith.
Whew. Let’s move on.
First, I need to point out that this is truly a limited-edition car. Subaru planned for only 500 of the tS models for 2018, and somehow I was able to get my mitts on one of them and get it back to Subaru in one piece.Continue Reading
The first time I remember hearing about the USS Indianapolis was watching the scene in the movie Jaws where the guys are comparing scars and stories. Captain Quint sports a tattoo of the Indy, and proceeds to tell an abbreviated version of one of the most horrific real-life episodes in naval history.
Fast-forward to this summer when I devoured a book about that same topic in about four days. It’s called In Harm’s Way, and it’s downright chilling.
To condense the story for this post, the USS Indianapolis was the American warship that delivered the first atomic bomb to an island in the Philippine Sea. A few days later the ship was torpedoed by a Japanese submarine and sank quickly.
Almost 1200 men went into the shark-infested ocean, with only a few in lifeboats. The rest bobbed along wearing flimsy life jackets. But worst of all, nobody in naval command knew they’d been sunk. They were alone in the middle of a treacherous ocean with no help on the way.
Doug Stanton does a terrific job of setting the scene, describing the misery and fear these sailors experienced as they watched dehydration, sun, and sharks begin to take down the crew.
I won’t give away anything else. Just know that this was one of my favorite books of the year. It’s a riveting, dramatic telling, and the fact that it’s all true only adds to the reader’s anxiety.
Pick up In Harm’s Way at your nearest Tattered Cover Book Store. Mention Dom’s Book Club and they’ll knock 20% off the price of this title.
Dom In The Morning Blog
Cutting yourself while shaving
Cutting yourself while shaving