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ken burnett (Newark UK)

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Built Up Toys Eiffel Tower 341 Piece Alloy Based Construction Set
Built Up Toys Eiffel Tower 341 Piece Alloy Based Construction Set
Offered by coolclobber
Price: £24.95

4.0 out of 5 stars An All-Metal Eiffel Tower, 6 Jan. 2013
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:4.0 out of 5 stars 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Bought this for a friend's little boy.

Found it took most of a day to assemble (one way to spend Sunday I suppose!) and was bit fiddly (My old Meccano skills came in very handy). However when finished it was much bigger than I had expected (over 2'6" tall) and looked most realistic with its close lattice-work of metal girders.

Fully recommended!


People Like Us - Series 1 [DVD] [1999]
People Like Us - Series 1 [DVD] [1999]
Dvd ~ Chris Langham
Price: £5.30

5.0 out of 5 stars Six Examples of the Spoof Documentary on one DVD, 6 Dec. 2012
I have just ordered the second series of 'People Like Us' If it's as good as this first series I'm in for a real treat as this is comedy of the very highest order.

No doubt we all have our favourite characters - mine was DCI Carpenter (aka Wiggy)- he of the enormous hairpiece in 'The Police' episode, closely followed by the Headmaster, Stuart Symonds. But for me the most marvellous single shot was when the PR woman in 'The Managing Director' looked at her watch and in doing so upended the carousel of carefully-prepared slides onto the floor! Comedy doesn't get much better than this. What these three individuals, as well as many other characters in the series have in common are a boundless self-importance coupled with a total lack of self-awareness.

After watching this absolutely superb DVD I found myself wondering about the title 'People Like Us'. Arguably, at least in the printed form (ie without intonation as a clue) it may be seen as having two meanings; the most obvious is that, deep down, the characters depicted are indeed in many ways similar to 'us', the viewers (ie the 'people' of the title). The other interpretation is that we,the viewers, are the 'people'and 'like' is a verb. But could we like the PE instructor, for example, in 'The Headmaster'. I don't think so somehow!!


Belfast Streetfinder Colour Map
Belfast Streetfinder Colour Map
by VARIOUS
Edition: Map

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Belfast City made easy!, 10 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Thia map is up to Collins' usual high standard. One small criticism though - it does not show Crumlin Road prison. This needs to be rectified at the next print run not least because it is opening up its doors to tourists on, I believe, Nov 19 2012. The Courthouse, however, just across the Crumlin Road does appear. Both buildings are well worth a visit (note to Amazon:suggest you correct the price given, which is obviously wrong!)


The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding North Korea
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding North Korea
by C. Kenneth Quiñones
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Not the ideal holiday destination!!, 10 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
North Korea, or more correctly, PRNK (Peoples Republic of North Korea) as this book clearly illustrates, provides us with a clear demonstration of how and why Communism has proved to be a failure in every possible respect. All the ingredients are there in PRNK and have all been made familiar to us in the erstwhile Communist regimes in the USSR, East Germany,Romania and China to name just four. These features include a repressive police system, powerful armed forces,arbitrary arrest and imprisonment for the most minor offences,gross mismatch betwen the lifestyles of the ruling elite and the living conditions of the population at large,and last but by no means least the elevation of the leaders to to near-mythical status. Kim Jong il (aka The Dear leader - he of the bouffant hairstyle and build-up shoes and notoriously extravagant lifestyle) is said to have achieved eleven holes-in-one on a standard 18-hole golf course. If you believe that you will believe anything!

My only regret on reading this book is that it was written before Kim's death in December 2011 so I was left wondering about his successor,Kim Jong-un, but then he is such a shadowy low-profile individual that it is difficult to see what the authors of this otherwise enlightening book could have found to say about him.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 12, 2012 8:27 PM GMT


The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding North Korea
The Complete Idiot's Guide to Understanding North Korea
by C. Kenneth Quiñones
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Not the ideal holiday destination!!, 10 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
North Korea, or more correctly, PRNK (Peoples Republic of North Korea) as this book clearly illustrates, provides us with a clear demonstration of how and why Communism has proved to be a failure in every possible respect. All the ingredients are there in PRNK and have all been made familiar to us in the erstwhile Communist regimes in the USSR, East Germany,Romania and China to name just four. These features include a repressive police system, powerful armed forces,arbitrary arrest and imprisonment for the most minor offences,gross mismatch betwen the lifestyles of the ruling elite and the living conditions of the population at large,and last but by no means least the elevation of the leaders to to near-mythical status. Kim Jong il (aka The Dear leader - he of the bouffant hairstyle and build-up shoes and notoriously extravagant lifestyle) is said to have achieved eleven holes-in-one on a standard 18-hole golf course. If you believe that you will believe anything!

My only regret on reading this book is that it was written before Kim's death in December 2011 so I was left wondering about his successor,Kim Jong-un, but then he is such a shadowy low-profile individual that it is difficult to see what ths authors of this otherwise enlightening book could have found to say about him.


First 100 Japanese Kanji Characters (First 100)
First 100 Japanese Kanji Characters (First 100)
by Eriko Sato
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.50

5.0 out of 5 stars Learn Kanji at a stroke (well, almost!), 3 Mar. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Probably the best book on writing Japanese/Chinese characters that I've come across.

The concept of publishing a series of volumes, each containing/describing 100 characters is simple but very effective. Each page gives useful space for practising writing the character drawn and described by the author (Eriko Sato) at the head of that particular page.

Not for the first time I found myself wondering how on earth any society could come up with such a complex system of writing, but there is no doubt that the characters, or Kanji, are most attractive when done properly (it is vital to make the strokes in the correct sequence). To obtain an authentic appearance it is also essential to to use a brush (available through Amazon; the easiest to use is what may be called a fountain brush, obviating the need to be continually using the traditional ink pad.

The whole writing experience I have found to be very relaxing and therapeutic.

Tuttle (the publishers) are to be congratulated.


Paris métro RER
Paris métro RER
by Collectif
Edition: Map

1.0 out of 5 stars Map of Paris Metro - very disappointing, 3 Mar. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Paris métro RER (Map)
The map turned out to be far smaller than I had anticipated;so much so that the station names were barely legible. It was no better than the maps you can get free of charge at the Metro stations themselves! I therefore returned it to the Amazon returns address in Dunfermline.

Some days later I received an email from the seller (Oli, at Tablet Books) advising me that the item had been returned to him as undeliverable, and asking me to contact him; rather difficult since he gave no email address!

I should add that the item was very late in getting to me in the first place. I shall have no more dealings with Tablet Books who could easily give Amazon a bad name.

I strongly suggest they be removed from the Amazon list of sellers.


Careless Talk Costs Lives
Careless Talk Costs Lives
by James Taylor
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £7.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fougasse-Cartoonist for Wartime Britain, 1 May 2011
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Fougasse (real name Cyril Kenneth Bird, 1887-1965)is best remembered for his series of eight 'motivational' posters 'Careless Talk Costs Lives'. The front cover of this book carries the first in the series 'You never know who's listening'. In common with many of his other cartoons it has a red edging and his distinctive handwriting which arguably carries greater impact than a conventional typeface; his capitals A,S and E are particularly noteworthy. His characters feature a great economy of line (what Fougasse called 'formula figures') but despite this are instantly recognisable - Hitler, obviously, but also Goering, head of the Luftwaffe who was a particular figure of hate for Londoners living through the Blitz.

Fougasse, a qualified civil engineer, was severely injured in WWI and, unable to return to his career after the war, became the the illustrator and cartoonist that we remember today. The name 'Fougasse' aapparently relates to his WWI experiences ('fougasse' was a French type of land mine noteworthy for its unpredictability.

Readers who enjoy this book may also be interested in Fougasse's near comtemporary, the cartoonist H M Bateman.

Review by Ken Burnett, Newark


WW-II German/Nazi Era Music - The Military Music of Adolf Hitler's Leibstandarte-SS 1933-45
WW-II German/Nazi Era Music - The Military Music of Adolf Hitler's Leibstandarte-SS 1933-45
Offered by tomahawk_films
Price: £13.69

14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Germany of the 30's comes Alive!, 1 May 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I have watched 'Triumph of the Will' the film of the 1934 Nurembarg Nazi Party rally numerous times; you do not have to agree with Nazi ideology to be able to appreciate this example of superb film-making.

This CD includes a number of songs and marches so familiar to me from the film, notably the Badenweiler March (you may not know the title but you will certainly recognise the music - it has been played at the Trooping of the Colour). The disc also includes the Horst Wessel song (Wessel was a minor Nazi street agitator shot dead by a Communist sympathiser when only 22 and subsequently elevated to martyr status by the Nazi regime). The disc also features the national anthem 'Deutschland Uber Alles' containing interesting historic references to Germany's borders as they were in the 1930's.

A must-have CD for anyone interested in the Nazi era; ideal for playing in the car. I'm sure my driving has improved since buying it!

Ken Burnett, Newark
Comment Comments (7) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 25, 2014 1:22 PM BST


Stalin and His Hangmen: An Authoritative Portrait of a Tyrant and Those Who Served Him
Stalin and His Hangmen: An Authoritative Portrait of a Tyrant and Those Who Served Him
by Donald Rayfield
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.92

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Real Horror Story - the USSR under Stalin, 28 Mar. 2011
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The names of the leading Nazis of the Thirties and Forties (Hitler, Goering, Himmler, Heydrich et al) are familiar enough to most of us; the names of their Soviet counterparts are with the exception of Stalin, less well known but they were nevertheless evil beyond comprehension - Yagoda, Yezhov, Beria and Vyshinsky to name just four.

More than once whilst reading this book I found myself wondering what it must have been like to awake in a freezing Moscow dawn to attend a Politburo meeting in the company of such creatures ('a nest of vipers' as Rayfield so eloquently describes them).

Beginning in 1934 with the assassination of Kirov, the Leningrad party boss, the nightmare may be said to have reached its peak with the February-March 1937 Plenum of the Central Committee, described by Rayfield as 'surely one of the most grotesque meetings in the history of humanity'. Two-thirds of the 1200 delegates present would be dead within two years, almost all at the hands of the NKVD.

A truly frightening and engrossing book.

Review by Ken Burnett


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