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Reviews Written by
Mookie "Baylock" (UK)

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The Blade Artist
The Blade Artist
by Irvine Welsh
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.09

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An OK read but hard to take seriously, 21 April 2016
This review is from: The Blade Artist (Hardcover)
As a standalone story, The Blade Artist is actually not a bad read. Reformed jailbird nutter turns life around, gets drawn back towards his past, goes through the internal struggle of resisting a lapse back into his old ways.

However, insert the fact that the central character is Franco Begbie and it all becomes a bit hard to take seriously.

Welsh's press for this novel focussed heavily on redemption, and the ability of people to change. No arguments there - people can change. My problem with the Blade Artist is this - yes you can see a violent man becoming less violent, and you can also see an uneducated man discovering a passion for art. However, you can NEVER make a thick man clever, and the Franco Begbie of Trainspotting, Porno and Reheated Cabbage is undoubtedly thick.

In this novel, Welsh has him waxing lyrical in a style you just can't reconcile with the Begbie character we know of old. He even has him going a bit Jason Bourne in the latter stages of the novel - just ridiculous.

So, overall it's a decent enough novel. It's short, so you can digest it quickly, but it is nowhere near the standard of Welsh's best work.


Battery Operated Water Pump (482)-transfer Any Liquid In Minutes. Remove Flood Water.
Battery Operated Water Pump (482)-transfer Any Liquid In Minutes. Remove Flood Water.
Offered by homeandco
Price: £20.03

1.0 out of 5 stars Cheap rubbish., 20 April 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
You get what you pay for i guess.

I took a chance on this thinking it might be useful for shifting a small but stubborn bit of surface water i've got in my garden. As soon as it came out of the box i had my doubts - looks like cheap plastic rubbish. I soon found out its performance lived up to that expectation.

Waste of time. But then again, for that price it was worth a try.


Olympus Tough TG-4 Camera - Red
Olympus Tough TG-4 Camera - Red
Price: £264.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good camera, careful how you handle it in water!, 20 April 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Great camera, and yes it is waterproof. However, please make sure you have the ports fully shut with the lock switch activated. I am speaking from painful experience here.

I had mine on a belt loop whilst swimming in a lake and, whilst fumbling around for the camera in choppy water, inadvertently flicked a port open for the merest of seconds. Result; camera trashed. My fault, not theirs, but it is fairly easy to flip the ports open by mistake.

Takes good clear shots though. I will get another.


Monster iSport Bluetooth Wireless SuperSlim In-Ear Headphones - Green
Monster iSport Bluetooth Wireless SuperSlim In-Ear Headphones - Green
Offered by GLOBAL NET
Price: £99.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Overpriced. Very., 20 April 2016
Well, they are sweat proof and they do stay in place, so in that respect they are good for running.

However, the sound is tinny. I found putting the biggest set of buds on does help you get a satisfactory bass on them. They come fitted with the smaller buds, so when i first listened with these in i was wholly disappointed. I've heard better bass on headphones a tenth of the price. Putting on the biggest sized buds that come in the pack fixed this, though really all they did was bring the bass up to the level i'd have expected from a set of headphones costing over a hundred quid.

My biggest annoyance is the battery life and the charging. There is no means of telling how much charge you have left, bar a small icon that appears on the top corner of whatever device you've paired the headphones to. This icon isn't much help - i've had it showing half a charge still left only for the phones to pack in 15 minutes later.

So really, on a set of headphones coming in at this cost i'd have expected better.


The North Face Men's Thermoball Hooded Jacket
The North Face Men's Thermoball Hooded Jacket
Price: £112.40 - £169.99

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Depends what you need it for, 15 Dec. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Depends what you're buying it for.

It looks good, is definitely lightweight, and does pack small. However, it's being pushed in some areas as a 'belay jacket'. If I was sat on a belay in British winter conditions I'd want something much warmer and much more waterproof than this. Its slightly disappointing seeing it getting promoted by some well known outdoors centres in the UK as a piece of kit for winter mountaineering - I don't think it has much application for that, even as part of a layering system, and if that's your game then the money would be far better spent on a Buffalo jacket.

So, overall a decent buy but think carefully what you need it for before parting with the cash. Like a lot of North Face kit there's a certain amount of style-over-substance here, and it will reinforce the opinion of many climbers and mountaineers that NF is glorified leisure wear for the town.


Black + Decker GLC3630L20-GB 36V Cordless Strimmer with 2.0Ah Li battery + battery charger
Black + Decker GLC3630L20-GB 36V Cordless Strimmer with 2.0Ah Li battery + battery charger
Price: £124.95

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Best battery powered strimmer by far, 13 Aug. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was dubious about this as I've had battery powered strimmers before that have been underpowered. This was recommended to me and was my last throw of the dice before going petrol operated.

It's a great product. Really easy to put together and packs a really good punch. Smashed through tall weeds no problem and gives a good hour of hard strimming in full power before a recharge is needed.

No issues at all with the line feed.

If you want to be time efficient then get a second battery, as it takes an hour to recharge.

Overall a great bit of kit for the money, and by far the best battery strimmer I've used.


A Decent Ride
A Decent Ride
by Irvine Welsh
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Someone beat me to "A decent read", 5 May 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: A Decent Ride (Hardcover)
it's not Welsh's best, but it's good and his fans will like it.

I do think Juice Terry works better as a supporting character though. He struggles as the main man, and his antics start to get a bit repetitive fairly early on in this book. Likewise, Wee Jonty Mackay isn't a particularly strong character to double-tag with Terry as the leading man.

I also feel Welsh tries too hard to shock at points, as he does in many of his books.

Overall though, if you're a Welsh fan then this will hit the mark.


Fitbit Charge Wireless Activity Tracker and Sleep Wristband
Fitbit Charge Wireless Activity Tracker and Sleep Wristband
Price: £89.26 - £199.00

4.0 out of 5 stars A good bit of kit with a major flaw, 1 May 2015
Decided to give one of these a try.

It's a very user friendly way of tracking your daily activities, and the accompanying app is well put together.

However, it has one major flaw in my view - it will record journeys taken in vehicles in your step count. I'm not sure if this has been mentioned in other reviews, but I found it a major glitch in the product.

It's claimed Fitbit will 'accurately' track your daily steps. Yes it will, if walking / running / jogging is all you are doing to get around each day. If you have daily vehicle transport as part of your routine, you can either remove the Fitbit before each journey, or try and figure out some way of factoring that journey into your daily stats. Neither of these is a great option I think most will agree.

So, vehicle journeys will render your stats pretty useless. Please bear that in mind before you buy.


Sony RDP-XA700iP X Series Wireless Speaker Dock with AirPlay with DMC Technology
Sony RDP-XA700iP X Series Wireless Speaker Dock with AirPlay with DMC Technology
Offered by WorldTech UK
Price: £89.99

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent product, 4 Mar. 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is a first class bit of kit for the money. Good bass that doesn't buzz or overwhelm the sound, no 'tinniness' at high volume. Overall it packs a great punch for its size and is ideal for filling a room. The Airplay feature is great, allowing you to remote-play from IPod/IPhone without it being attached to the unit. Highly recommended.

Edit - just noticed the RRP on the product. I paid about half of that on here - shop around.


vs. & Vitalogy 3 CD Deluxe Edition
vs. & Vitalogy 3 CD Deluxe Edition
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £21.65

22 of 27 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great albums, but did they need a re-release?, 30 Mar. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The original production on these 2 records was so good they still sound fresh today. Consequently there's no real noticeable difference in this remaster unlike the Ten remaster which was markedly different in sound.

The extra tracks are interesting - the alternative version of corduroy in particular. You get a good live album too that is a prime cut from the grunge peak era of 1994 - that said there's so many live PJ recordings out there the average fan will probably already own a healthy selection.

So while there's nothing 'bad' here i'm not sure it's worth the 30 quid. I suppose we'll see lots more of this as Sony milk the catalogue of a band no longer in their stable.

Probably one for completists only.

NB - as standalone albums i'd give Vs 4 stars and Vitalogy marginally more. Both very good rock records from a golden era of the genre.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 16, 2011 4:42 PM BST


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