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Chriss C. "CC" (London)

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Cuckoo Song
Cuckoo Song
by Frances Hardinge
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.59

5.0 out of 5 stars Chilling, brittle and breathtakingly beautiful., 14 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Cuckoo Song (Paperback)
Frances Hardinge isn't just the best children's writer around these days, she is one of the best writers full stop. Her prose is perfectly crafted, her ideas truly original and her plot twists devilishly clever.

This book centres around Triss, who may or may not still be Triss. She looks like Triss and has all of Triss' memories, but she is always hungry, and her sister seems terrified of her. As the story unravels and Triss learns more about herself, about the secret world around her and about her own cold, strange family, she is forced to confront her biggest fear.

It's a very dark book centered around the themes of loss and love, but at the same time it is full of life and hope and compelling characters. Superb. Brilliantly written. I would recommend it to anyone.

Northanger Abbey (Austen Project 2)
Northanger Abbey (Austen Project 2)
by Val McDermid
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 9.00

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Just AWFUL!, 27 April 2014
I've just finished this book and, whilst it was not quite as bad as the updated Sense and Sensibility (although you'd probably need very sensitive equipment to measure the difference), I still wish I could remove my brain and soak it in a bucket of bleach for a couple of days to remove the memory of it from my head.

Possible spoilers below.

The characters certainly live in RegencyModernTimes. They are constantly texting each other or on Facebook, but at the same time, people keep bowing formally to each other and saying stilted dialogue like, "I knew it. Honestly, Ellie, that is a complete fantasy. A lie. I made no such plans. He just wants me to come on this stupid outing so he can show off his fancy car again. I am determined to go walking with you and Henry tomorrow, not go to Glasgow or Linlithgow with that idiot." DETERMINED?! I MADE NO SUCH PLANS?!? Who speaks like that? And then Bella Thorpe can basically say nothing but 'Soz' and 'Totes amazeballs' and flirts all the time, yet never so much as kisses a man in the book, much less has sex with them (which I assume would be a given in a modern version of Northanger Abbey).

'Cat' (short for Catherine) is the heroine and a combination of a secluded childhood where she was home schooled and a dreamy nature has supposedly left her an innocent. Even this is not enough to explain the below thought process:

1. She really likes vampire novels.
2. She really like a young man who ran across town when it was cloudy.
3. Vampires like running and can go out in cloudy weather.
4. The young man is therefore a vampire
5. His family are therefore vampires
6. She must go to a secluded Abbey with the whole vampire family to confirm her suspicions

I mean. REALLY!?!

These books just aren't working. I guess it's partly because you cannot graft a Regency novel about manners into modern day society without all the motivations being contrived, but mainly I think it's because the heroines are so passive. It's understandable in a Regency novel as all the girls are dependent on attracting a husband and constrained by societal rules on how they can behave, but modern women aren't like that and you just end up feeling cross and cheated as a reader.

Crochet Ponchos
Crochet Ponchos
by Leisure Arts
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.90

3.0 out of 5 stars Not worth the money..., 21 Feb 2014
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This review is from: Crochet Ponchos (Paperback)
I bought this book as I was looking for an interesting poncho pattern specifically for crochet.

What I got for my money was six patterns, the best of which is the pattern on the cover of the book. The remaining five were very boring indeed - basically blankets with head holes that I wouldn't be caught dead wearing - and I'm looking elsewhere for a decent pattern.

EDIT: For fairness sake, I just wanted to add that I have made up the pattern on the cover of the book and its lovely - very flattering and easy to complete. I still think the other patterns in the book are very basic though and am not tempted to try them.

Button Bracelets - Refill Pack - John Adams 9553
Button Bracelets - Refill Pack - John Adams 9553
Offered by Buy-For-Less-Online
Price: 3.50

2.0 out of 5 stars Not worth the money..., 12 Oct 2013
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
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Button Bracelets is a great idea, and I am really pleased with the main pack, which contains everything you need to make button bracelets as well as a lovely big button storage box. The refill pack is another story.

You get a decent amount of sparkly wristbands and plenty of the little pegs to hold in the buttons, however there are only around 45 buttons! Absolutely ridiculous for a so-called refill pack. Very poor value for money. If you want more buttons, buy the main pack (currently 10 on Amazon) and get a decent number of buttons rather than the paltry refill pack.

by John Lloyd
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 5.89

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The perfect gift that you'll end up keeping for yourself., 2 Sep 2013
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This review is from: Afterliff (Hardcover)
Afterliff is the third in the Liff series started by John Lloyd and Douglas Adams and continues the good work of using carefully selected place names to define those little things in life that haven't currently got a word but deserve one.

This time around, contributions were sought from such luminaries as Sanjeev Bhaskar and Helen Fielding, as well as random people who just happened to be passing through (of which I am one).

It's a brilliant gift for anyone. The perfect Christmas present for maiden aunts (like me), nerds (again, me) or just the family nutter (I'm not doing myself any favours here...).
Comment Comments (6) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 11, 2013 5:01 PM GMT

All Islanders Sing Along Now!
All Islanders Sing Along Now!
Price: 7.49

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mad but perfect!, 13 Nov 2011
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Daily Greet.

This brilliant album offers all your favourite Jinsy melodies, including the Onion Song, Face Cake and Far Away.

It all rounds off with the shanty sung at the end of the final episode, and could only have been made more perfect if they had included all of them. Well worth a listen.

Nightly bye.

Enchanted Glass
Enchanted Glass
by Diana Wynne Jones
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 12.42

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Another High Quality DWJ Book, 19 Jan 2010
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This review is from: Enchanted Glass (Hardcover)
This book strikes me as a well-crafted, strongly-written Diana Wynne Jones classic.

There are some great fantasy ideas here and some extremely likeable characters.

Possibly the full-wealth of potential of the situation in this book isn't fully explored, but there is plenty of scope to set the characters up in their own series, like the Chrestomanci series, and look a little deeper into this interesting world.

All in all this story didn't appeal to me personally as much as House of Many Ways or Conrad's Fate, but it's still a decent, entertaining read and appears to be one of those books that improves with every subsequent read.

Highly recommended. Can't wait for the next one!

The Cutting Edge 2 [DVD]
The Cutting Edge 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Christy Carlson Romano

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Carbon copy of the first film. And not a good one either..., 1 Nov 2009
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This review is from: The Cutting Edge 2 [DVD] (DVD)
The first Cutting Edge film was poignant, romantic and funny. It carried you along with the storyline and made you care about the two leads and want to see them together. The idea to film a sequel to this, portraying Doug Dorsey and Kate Mosley as parents of a similarly driven ice skating daughter seeking Olympic gold could have capitalised on this success.

Sadly it doesn't.

Instead of fresh ideas, the filmmakers decided to basically copy every scene with only minor changes. The ice hockey player character becomes an in-line skater (who also rather unbelievably learns how to skate to Olympic standards in just three months simply to prove a point!). The ice skating bitch character becomes a stressed out bore. Kate and Doug are also wastefully portrayed as dull 'inspirational' parents with no personality at all, let alone the zing that they had in the first film.

This is a real waste of time. Stick with the first film. This half-baked copy isn't worth it.

15 Minute Workouts For Dummies [DVD]
15 Minute Workouts For Dummies [DVD]
Price: 7.57

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Top Fitness DVD!, 10 Aug 2009
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Brilliant exercise DVD!

I'm no fitness fanatic, but can generally set aside 30 minutes on Saturday and Sunday to do a couple of these workouts.

When you first start, the warm-up activities can seem a bit daunting, but you soon get the hang of the routines. The actual exercises are well-explained and easy to follow.

The presenter is warm and helpful and this DVD has really made a difference to my health, even though I only do each workout once a week.

Highly recommended.

The Really Useful Ultimate Student Cookbook
The Really Useful Ultimate Student Cookbook
by Silvana Franco
Edition: Paperback
Price: 3.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Recipes, 6 Aug 2009
Brilliant recipes for the student or the first time cook. The Pasta Fagoli recipe is particularly delicious.

Simple cooking, small lists of ingrediants required. Highly recommended.

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