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Hank Norville Carter "Juno" (Yorkshire, UK)

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Young Al Capone: The Untold Story of Scarface in New York, 1899-1925
Young Al Capone: The Untold Story of Scarface in New York, 1899-1925
by William Balsamo
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £18.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Balsamo's badly written fiction., 24 Aug. 2012
William Balsamo is notorious for writing bad fiction and passing it off as factual history. As well as being totally fabricated and haviing no historical merit, his works are also badly written, unimaginative and embarrassingly juvenile.

Danny Dyers Deadliest Men 2 [DVD]
Danny Dyers Deadliest Men 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Danny Dyer
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £23.99

4 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Overcompensation...Childish....Pathetic, 3 Jan. 2012
Danny Dyers DEADLIEST MEN!!!!!
HARD BASTARDS by The overwieght, middle aged mediocrity who married the gay Kray in a ceremony at Broadmoor Insane asylum....
Footballs toughest crazy persons = Vinny Jones.
When Budgies Go Mental - Geoffrey Capes.

How many more of these infantile productions are to be expected? Enjoyed by the type of people who fantasize about being gangsters (but work on production lines, packing fish fingers) they are the lowest form of entertainment, aimed at the lowest form of hardly educated, human life.
If you're the type of person who would LOVE American Wrestling but cannot understtand the rules, then this is for you!
Amaze your workmates with stories of criminal insanity and unlimited violence....then go back home for a night in watching Noel Edmonds with your elderly Mum. "Not fishfingers again, Mum!".
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 9, 2014 12:50 PM BST

Brideshead Revisited: The Complete Collection (30th Anniversary Remastered Edition) [DVD] [1981]
Brideshead Revisited: The Complete Collection (30th Anniversary Remastered Edition) [DVD] [1981]
Dvd ~ Jeremy Irons
Price: £10.00

12 of 70 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Emperor Wears No Clothes (at Brideshead), 3 Jan. 2012
This television drama is the ultimate example of late 20th century 'kidology' Hundreds of thousands of middle class 'aspirational' types swoon and coo about 'How wonderful' it is, simply because they dare not be the first to state the truth. IT IS MIND NUMBINGLY DULL AND UTTERLY PRETENTIOUS.
Notice the language of many of the reviews. Many of the reviewers actually merge into Brideshead character using language that is unusual for this day and age. Admirably....beastly....GET A GRIP!
I have allowed ONE STAR because, failing to find any temazipam, a half hour of Brideshead's homoeroticism, limited gene pool aristocratic inbreediness and horse-faced catholicism is more than enough to secure a firm hold on the beginnings of a wonderfully restfull nights sleep.
BRIDESHEAD REVISITED: Televisual Barbiturates for the non-pretentious....
Also the two thousand, four hour episodes seems to last forever!!!

Paint drying never seemed so exciting.
Comment Comments (13) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 15, 2013 9:48 PM BST

The American [DVD]
The American [DVD]
Dvd ~ George Clooney
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £1.49

0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The American't, 3 Jan. 2012
This review is from: The American [DVD] (DVD)
I cannot accept the positive without further additionals to the negative.
You have to accentuate the positive when you absolutely, positively MUST watch every minute of this DVD.
With nearly all films I recommend starting at the start and ending at the end. Reservoir Memento are three exceptions to starting at the finish in the middle of another film, completely different!
When I finally watch The American I expect it will be enjoyable.

Black Gangsters of Chicago
Black Gangsters of Chicago
by Ron Chepesiuk
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.48

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Chepesiuk. He's fast, 3 Jan. 2012
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Ron Chepesiuk simply recycles previously published materials.
No matter how stupid or improbable the original information, Mr Chepesiuk eagerly reuses it for his own title.
He's not fit to be called an author. He doesn't research any of the 'facts' he includes in his books.
He doesn't even bother with academic source notes.

Not long ago nearly all Organised Crime writers were more like failed novelists than historians. Recently a new generation have raised their standards and attempt to justify their statements.
Ron Chepesiuk is a member of the old school.
His regurgitated excerpts from the works of other writers were sensationalist guesswork to begin with. Now they are depressingly outdated, reused and unproven.
Mr Chepesiuk. Go to a library, find the original newspaper stories concerning the characters you write of, and add some honesty to your writing. Stop being such a fraud.

Five Days - Complete BBC Series 2 [DVD]
Five Days - Complete BBC Series 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Suranne Jones
Price: £14.59

3 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars 4 Days, 23 hours too many!, 3 Jan. 2012
Incredibly bad mini-series.
I would need 5 days to list everything wrong with this. It's badly written, lacks suspense, has no character development or (by obvious extension) formation of relationships but, in my opinion, its biggest failure is that it contains groups of people that relate to one another in ways that are entirelyunrealistic.
Take the English guy and his Pakistani wife, living with her family (Including her 'shall I/shan't I' fundamentalist brother.
I've lived in the North of England for 38 years and I have never known a relationship situation that comes close to such levels of acceptance and tolerance.
Virtually all the relationship dynamics struck me as the fantasies of a very optimistic (but very inexperienced) sixth form student.
Absolute crap from start to finish. Avoid like a suicide bombing brother-in-law!!!!!

The Killing - Season 1 [DVD] [2011]
The Killing - Season 1 [DVD] [2011]
Dvd ~ Mirelle Enos

2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Impossible to judge on its own merits but... SO LET'S COMPARE., 25 Sept. 2011
SPOILER WARNING!!!! SPOILER WARNING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!SPOILER WARNING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Killing (USA version) is impossible to judge purely on its own merits after also watching the Danish version.
Channel 4 started showing an episode of the US version every week, which I became addicted too. Then BBC4 repeated the original Danish shows every week night, timing the schedule so that both versions finished on the same night.
I considered the Danes the outright winners and chose to watch there finale first....
After 20 hours of viewing, just 15 minutes before the end, the murderer makes an unexpected confession and enrages the victims father (who is also his best friend) to kill him! Really unimaginative and downright lazy ending to what had otherwise been a fantastic drama.
Even with the creative team behind the (Danish) Killing effectively abandoning their attempts to suspend our disbeliefs they still manage to leave many of our questions unanswered. Nearly all the political/senior police cover-ups and Lund's belief that she had been watched were, at best, partly answered in the most unconvincing way or simply forgotten. The theories concerning the killer's psychological profile as a serial murderer were also simply left unanswered. The hit and run murder of the political aide and the subsequent near murder of Lund (leading to a fatal police shooting) were also left making no sense.
Many recent television drama's have been open ended with no thought given to tying up the loose ends with convincing and believable explanations (Flashforward, Prison Break, Lost) but this Danish drama was so intelligently made that I could never have expected such a cheap trick to end it all!
The last episode was the only one that I didn't bother to rewatch.

From the start I very much enjoyed The Killing USA but found myself preferring the original. However the USA version was still far superior to most things on TV...just not quite as good as the other version. Then the ending:
The Killing USA decided to finish with a traditional 'cliff-hanger' ending that was very well done and left me thirsty for answers from a season 2..

So both versions left most of the questions unanswered.
With the original version this ruined the entire season and made me feel cheated and lose interest in a second season.
The US version's lack of answers, however, had the opposite effect.
I still had hope that the truth could be revealed to me AND that it could be a believable explanation of the events - unlike the Danish revelations which was the televisual anti-climax of 2011.

(I must point out that if the answers are not forthcoming by the end of the 2nd season, and it appears that the easy option of an open-ended story with no explanation of events is going to be a recurring theme, I will no longer have an interest in watching. Shows like Flashforward and Lost are not for me).

Too many reviewers have been unnecessarily harsh concerning this excellent series. It has united great writing, accomplished film making and fantastic acting.
Who could forget Holder in narcotics anonymous, Belko's elderly and over sexed mother, Linden's struggle to accept commitment and the revelation that she was state raised.....TOO MUCH GOOD STUFF TO REMEMBER!!!

It's certainly a TV boxset that I will add to my collection....
In fact the only reason I have not yet bought it is because I hope to win a copy (plus the horrid brown wool sweater that Linden often wore) in a 4OD contest. Wish me luck.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 25, 2012 9:36 PM BST

The Double Life of Doctor Lopez: Spies, Shakespeare and the Plot to Poison Elizabeth I
The Double Life of Doctor Lopez: Spies, Shakespeare and the Plot to Poison Elizabeth I
by Dominic Green
Edition: Hardcover

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Hidden GEM of a book...., 9 Jun. 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this book because it was offered to me at a stupidly low price and I thought that maybe Francis Walsingham or William Cecil would be viewed from yet another perspective. In short I had very low expectations and only started it when another book I had ordered was delayed and I had nothing else to read. HOW WRONG I WAS!!! This is a fantastic book! Dominic Green's style of writing is the perfect balance between information (too much can be overpowering) and interest/excitement.

His descriptions of the Drake/Norris attack on Spain and Portugal are equal parts tragedy and comedy. He writes that a senior officer tripping over his own pike and fatally wounding himself was the perfect episode to capture the essense of the expedition.

This book deserves more. More advertising. More debate. MORE READERS.

Dominic Green is a writer to watch out for. I will pre-order his next book the moment I am made aware of its existence.

Rothstein: The Life, Times, and Murder of the Criminal Genius Who Fixed the 1919 World Series
Rothstein: The Life, Times, and Murder of the Criminal Genius Who Fixed the 1919 World Series
by Peter C. Whybrow
Edition: Hardcover

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Man Who Taught The Godfathers How It Was Done...Re-Examined, 20 May 2006
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Arnold Rothstein was the first of the modern Mob Godfathers- but he was refreshingly different from the thugs and sneaks who hold similar positions in the modern world. He used his brain to create complex and intelligent money making scheme's and avoided violence whenever possible. He was one of the first to recognise the power that the plug ugly street gangs actually had and the amount of money that translated into. Among his many nick-names was 'The Brain'. A label he certainly deserved.

So why is he relatively unknown compared to the Capones and Lansky's of the underworld? I don't know but this book goes some way towards righting this injustice.

This is the first attempt to understand Rothstein since John Koblers excellent 'The Big Bankroll' of the 1950s, which as been accepted as the definitive guide to Rothstein for over half a century. Although Pietrusza had a bigger 'try following that' problem than most he has managed to share the gold medal podium with Kobler by enlarging the information already in print and actually uncovering some revelations of his very own! Considering the subject of the book died in 1928 that is something of a miracle and the author deserves recognition for his skills as a researcher and a writer.

Going into more detail, especially on the 1919 'Blacksox' baseball scandal and Rothsteins 'unsolved' murder, Pietrusza has sharply observed the lesser known area's of his subjects life and used excellent research to shine a light on them.

His writing style is to the point and never stuffy. Which can sometimes make the reader unaware of the sheer volume of facts they are digesting whilst reading material that moves as fast as a thriller.

Excellent. Early Mob Essential.

Five Families: The Rise, Decline and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires
Five Families: The Rise, Decline and Resurgence of America's Most Powerful Mafia Empires
by Selwyn Raab
Edition: Hardcover

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Mobs Decline Examined in Detail., 20 May 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I could not quite justify the full five. I believe that full marks are for the exceptional works of genius that are seldom published. This is not quite upto that standard.
Despite this being an excellent account of the mafia's decline over the last 30 years, its chapters on the beginnings and haydays of the mob were sketchy and frequently incorrect. An example of this is Vincent Mangano being named as the first boss of the Gambino family from 1931-51. Anyone who has studied this group will know that their history goes back much further than 1931 and that Al Mineo and, for a short time, Frank Scalise both predated Mangano as family Boss.
The Mobs Golden years (40s and 50s) are also very low on detail. Joey Adonis is totally ignored.
But, and I think this was the authors point, the beginning and peak years of the Mob have been written of many times. By concentrating on the tragi-comic saga type decline of the Gambino's (Gotti), the Lucchese's (Amuso/Casso) and the Bonanno's (Massino) Raab as avoided re-writing the same stale old tales.
All the information in this book as already appeared in print but this is the first to catalogue concise versions of the stories and add analysis of what the events signify and what may come next.
Its an enjoyable read, never becoming dry and academic. A must have book for anyone with an interest in La Cosa Nostra over the last 40 years.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 29, 2013 9:12 PM BST

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