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ms sarah m findley

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A Pocketful of Holes and Dreams
A Pocketful of Holes and Dreams
by Jeff Pearce
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.39

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A classic tale of love, loss, and success, 17 Feb. 2011
As a young lad growing up during hard times in 1950's Liverpool and beyond, Jeff Pearce spent much of his early life begging rags from the rich, to help his beloved mother turn them into clothes to sell on the markets. Life was hard and money was tight, with Jeff's dad often squandering the food money, yet Jeff learned many important lessons and enjoyed learning the ropes of trading.

With his mum as his mentor and friend, Jeff worked hard, believing that this would one day equal wealth and success. Yet it all looks a little unlikely when Jeff leaves school at 14 to enter the workplace and help support the family. With severe Dyslexia, and having been told by a teacher that he would never amount to anything in life, Jeff is determined to prove her and others wrong, and is eager to rise above the slum life he knew and carve out a new life for himself.

Unfortunately Jeff's mum soon falls ill, and eventually passes away, leaving him heartbroken but determined to make her proud of him. It is fair to say that the relationship they shared was a very strong one, and one which had a profound impact on Jeff and the way he relates to people and the world around him.

After a series of jobs, Jeff meets Gina and they fall in love and set up business together, selling teenage fashion on the local markets. Soon their business expands and they are able to open a shop, and from here their business goes from strength to strength. They become very wealthy, have two children, and continue to work hard and enjoy their extravagent lifestyle and all the trappings of wealth.

But then the recession hits, and very quickly they lose the house and business they have worked so hard to achieve. Jeff is forced back out on the markets, but decides to start again at building his fashion empire. Times are very tough indeed so can he deliver on his promise?

This book was really enjoyable and is different to many of the other 'true life' stories out there. For a start, there is no awful child abuse element, and nothing really terrible happens. In fact, this is an uplifting tale and despite the poverty, Jeff had a happy and colourful upbringing. Much emphasis is placed on friendships formed, and strong family relationships. Even Jeff's dad is not all bad, and despite being a drinker and irresponsible, still loves his family. The childhood section of the book tells the story of a different time, where many people were in a similar boat, and people pulled together and helped each other out.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading the references to life in a bygone time, when things were easier in some ways, but harder in others. It was interesting to read about the excitement television was causing, and to hear about the rag and bone man, and how the world was changing rapidly at the time, with people trying to embrace the changes without really understanding them.

The characters are strong and likeable, and I was rooting for Jeff and his family throughout all their triumphs and struggles. I wanted him to do well, as he is the kind of person who never gives up, despite many a door being slammed in his face over the years.

The values instilled in Jeff, thanks to his beloved mother are strong ones, and as such he has a sound work ethic, respect, and old-fashioned family values. He looks after people and has charisma and charm, inherited from his wayward father.

This is a really enjoyable book, and I read it eagerly. As well as being well-written in a storytelling style, it is easy to relate to. Yes there is poverty, but nothing that would have been unusual at the time of Jeff's childhood, and yes there is loss, but there are also themes relating to success, failure, family, loyalty, love and of course triumph over adversity.


The Intimate Adventures Of A London Call Girl
The Intimate Adventures Of A London Call Girl
by Belle de Jour
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.74

26 of 33 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An insight into an alternative lifestyle, 27 Feb. 2006
Far from being the biographical account of a victim, this book tells the story of a high class call girl by choice. Detailing Belle's personal relationships, and those with her clients, this unique tale is wickedly written and very funny at times. It provides an upbeat and rare insight into the glamorous and not so glamorous parts of selling sex to wealthy clients with varying strange desires! Not to be missed especially for those wishing to pick up professional tips!


French Women Don't Get Fat
French Women Don't Get Fat
by Mireille Guiliano
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A new take on so-called dieting, 26 Feb. 2006
Jumping on the bandwagon of a whole pile of diet books comes this offering, which is surprisingly refreshing, non patronising and unique. The book is based on something which seems to be lacking these days - common sense. As the author discusses typical French eating habits, it becomes increasingly clear that the ONLY way to lose weight for life is to follow a sensible eating plan incorpporating fresh produce and a variety of foods. This principle seems to have been swallowed recently by a swamp of ridiculously pointless wonder diets. All in all the book is good fun as it does not take itself too seriously. Ps: Check out the included recipes which are mouth wateringly good!


French Women Don't Get Fat
French Women Don't Get Fat
by Mireille Guiliano
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A new take on so-called dieting, 26 Feb. 2006
Jumping on the bandwagon of a whole pile of diet books comes this offering, which is surprisingly refreshing, non patronising and unique. The book is based on something which seems to be lacking these days - common sense. As the author discusses typical French eating habits, it becomes increasingly clear that the ONLY way to lose weight for life is to follow a sensible eating plan incorpporating fresh produce and a variety of foods. This principle seems to have been swallowed recently by a swamp of ridiculously pointless wonder diets. All in all the book is good fun as it does not take itself too seriously. Ps: Check out the included recipes which are mouth wateringly good!


Twin Towers Remembered
Twin Towers Remembered
by Camilo Jose Vergara
Edition: Hardcover

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Visual Masterpiece, 13 Feb. 2002
This review is from: Twin Towers Remembered (Hardcover)
This book is a stunning tribute to the architectural triumph that the Twin Towers were. Some photos make the towers look imposing, others look welcoming, but all pictures reflect the huge impact the world trade centre had on New York. All photographs capture the spirit of the city, with their amazing angles and lighting techniques. The book is a genuinely outstanding pictorial masterpiece, and manages to avoid being tacky, in the aftermath of the events of September 11th. Essential for anyone who has visited New York and also for those who want to remember the way New York once was.


Writers' and Artists' Yearbook 2002 (Writers' & Artists' Yearbook)
Writers' and Artists' Yearbook 2002 (Writers' & Artists' Yearbook)
by Deborah Moggach
Edition: Paperback

23 of 23 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An industry bible!, 11 Jan. 2002
Utilised by Harry Potter creater JK Rowling, this book is one of the most useful resources available for people working in - or hoping to work in the elusive and competitive world of the media. It contains a comprehensive guide to all magazines and newspapers in the UK, including relevent addresses, phone numbers and names of editors. There is also a shorter section comprising of overseas contacts. One of the books major advantages is the variety of information available. There are practical tips on how to get established, backed up by details of professional organisations and societies. The content includes short summaries of the many competitions aimed at both amateurs and professionals in this field. The book uses simple language and is divided into managable sections. It avoids repetition as it is updated every year, with up to the minute information included. This latest edition, for example, includes useful website addresses, and other internet based help such as E-publishing. There is even a chapter on finance and an analysis of media law, in order to help the reader identify potential pitfalls. This is basically motivation in a book, all in all an essential read!


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