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M. White "Obyod Press" (UK)
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The Boy Who Talks to Stones: Day of Communication: 1
The Boy Who Talks to Stones: Day of Communication: 1
by Brett Moore
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.28

4.0 out of 5 stars Chisel be worth a read, 10 Nov 2014
Michelangelo once famously explained that every block of stone has a statue inside it; the sculptor’s task is to discover it and chip away the excess material. Brett Moore’s ‘The Boy Who Talks to Stones’ has something special at its core but a little extra chipping is required to discover its full potential.

The stones are talking to fourteen year old Sam Eunomia and judging from what they’re saying, he’s in for a rocky time. For Sam is the Communicator, chosen to show humanity the error of its polluting ways. For the past four cycles of its existence mankind has repeatedly met its destruction, Matrix Revolutions-like, at the hands or rather the elements of Mother Earth. If Sam fails to harness these elements of air, fire, earth and water and win their cooperation we are all in a lot of trouble.

Sam is not alone in this daunting quest, which begins with the tone and language of a Famous Five outing (chunky chips filling in for lashings of boiled eggs) before abruptly, and shockingly, broaching much darker territory. Moore segues from jolly banter to hair-raising fright with sneaky skill, lulling the reader before delivering sucker punches. One section in particular was so genuinely creepy I was obliged to check I had picked up the right book. A sizeable cast of characters is revealed but the stage never feels crowded, the protagonists evolving organically as their back-stories are revealed.

So far so good, but I mentioned some chipping. Moore works best when he tells, rather than writes, his story. Scenes and action set pieces are richly described and the human touches are vivid and genuine, but the novel suffers from overlong exposition and an unorthodox grammatical style that occasionally hinders rather than helps the storytelling. A final edit would not go amiss, but then again The Boy Who Talks to Stones feels altogether like the setup for something leaner and meatier - the cliff-hanger ending suggests a sequel broader in scope and with plenty of avenues to explore. If Moore picks up a polishing cloth before presenting his next sculpture to his audience, I have a feeling it’s going to rock.


The Foreigner [DVD]
The Foreigner [DVD]
Dvd ~ Steven Seagal
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.74

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars (Lots of) Foreign Bodies, 28 July 2013
This review is from: The Foreigner [DVD] (DVD)
As soon as this flick gets underway you recognise the signs. 'The Foreigner' hails from Seagal's healthy stable of shoestring-budget efforts usually set in Eastern Europe. This time it's Poland (he pops into the 'Hotel Polski' in case the viewer was unsure) and involves the usual crew of forgettable goons, snapped bones and the good old chestnut of English-accented villains. To give Seagal his due he plays it grittier and nastier than normal ("touch it again and I'll blow off your two-inch dick") but sadly the film as a whole did not really hold the attentio


The American [DVD]
The American [DVD]
Dvd ~ George Clooney
Price: £2.70

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars L'Americano, 21 July 2013
This review is from: The American [DVD] (DVD)
A film that starts out tense and promising, 'The American' reminds stylistically of taut thrillers like 'Taken' as the grim, intense turn by George Clooney gets underway. As the titular hitman goes about his mission in a sleepy Italian village one waits patiently for the payoff. It doesn't really come. After I finish writing this I will have to read around to work out exactly what happened, but as I go to press I am completely confused about the ending. I won't spoil it here but suffice it to say I was disappointed. There are one or two moneyshot car chases / shootouts but the film was watchable without being enduringly compelling. Clooney fans will doubtless approve but for me, 3 stars is more than enough.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 6, 2013 1:12 AM BST


The Transporter [DVD] [2003]
The Transporter [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Jason Statham
Offered by Bridge_Records
Price: £1.80

3.0 out of 5 stars Transports of Delight?, 31 Jan 2013
This review is from: The Transporter [DVD] [2003] (DVD)
Sporting a kick-ass aesthetic straight out of a Jackie Chan movie, 'The Transporter' gets underway with a simple but compelling character and his unusual driving business - transporting villains and kidnap victims, no questions asked. When he breaks his own rules to look in the package he's carrying, all hell breaks loose.

Statham is engaging and keeps his tongue firmly in his cheek as the ludicrous car chases and fight scenes unfold at a brisk pace. The film loses its way around the mid point with the introduction of an implausible doublecross and a Chinese hood with a dodgy accent, but there's enough action to overshadow such trifles. Superior to the sequels that followed it, this first installment of the trilogy will have you laughing and cheering in all the right places.


The Keep [1983]
The Keep [1983]
VHS

3.0 out of 5 stars you can keep this one, 22 Jan 2013
This review is from: The Keep [1983] (VHS Tape)
A supernatural tale fondly remembered from youth, 'The Keep' did not quite live up to my recollections when recently revisited. It's packed with enough heavyweight names - Ian McKellan, the excellent Jurgen Prochnow - and has a solid premise within its genre, but it has shown its age. The jarring eighties score is very much of its time and the effects leave something to be desired. The monster baddie is effectively realised but his ultimate demise is of the 'blink and you'll miss it' variety. Rather ponderous dialogue and pacing.


Yorkshire's Olympic Heroes
Yorkshire's Olympic Heroes
by Nick Westby
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.13

5.0 out of 5 stars pure gold, 22 Jan 2013
Lavishly produced to an impeccable standard, 'Yorkshire's Olympic Heroes' provides a fascinating insight into the men and women who brought home medals from London 2012. The well-designed sections lead us through the autobiographical background of each athlete and their road to success, culminating in vivid, atmospheric accounts of the events themselves. Complemented by choice quotes and well-selected, high quality photograph, a must for anyone who was there and a useful guide for future fans.


Mega Shark Vs Crocosaurus [DVD]
Mega Shark Vs Crocosaurus [DVD]
Dvd ~ Gary Stretch
Offered by skyvo-direct
Price: £6.53

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Do you think he saurus?, 17 Jan 2013
When one of the characters starts talking about his 'supersonic balls' with a straight face, you know you are watching something special. Not the effects, which remind of Ray Harryhausen's early efforts, and not the acting but simply the audacity which is required to bring cheese of this calibre to the screen. The plot can be summarised as follows. There is a giant crocodile fighting a giant shark (sizes fluctuate) apparently over the crocodile's eggs. SPOILER ALERT The military (including an 'invitation only' elite force) attempt to trap the beasts in the Panama Canal and when that fails, opt for setting off a volcano instead to resolve the carnage. Helicopters crash and are miraculously repaired, ineptitude abounds and the chap who played the doctor in Star Trek Voyager gurns about the place as though planning a serious talk with his agent. The hot FBI babe tells her prisoner 'I'll talk, you listen' then promptly walks out. A man is eaten by the crocodile and emerges unscathed while the shark consumes an entire nuclear submarine. It's all wildly unrealistic, frenetic, incoherent and great fun. To wind up proceedings the hero announces he's off to Japan to tackle a giant lizard, hinting at a sequel. Godzilla better watch out.


Collins Pub Quiz (Quiz Books)
Collins Pub Quiz (Quiz Books)
by Collins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.24

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Snowflakes?, 9 Jan 2013
For anyone seeking to while away the time or maybe in training for a big quiz, this book will provide hours of practice with questions graded at easy, medium and difficult. There are categories of question, such as pot luck or geography, within each level. One question gave me pause - the book states that all snowflakes are hexagonal. I thought this had been disproved? Aside from that, there are some fairly obscure questions that are quite taxing. Get it from the bargain bucket though


Christmas Memories Doodle Design: AND Festive Christmas Doodle Design
Christmas Memories Doodle Design: AND Festive Christmas Doodle Design

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Winter Wonderland, 8 Jan 2013
With around 50 well-drawn festive scenes, this book is great value and nicely produced. The line drawings are lightly inked which means the finished colourings look more impressive, and the pages are perforated for removal which is a nice idea. Including a page of quick tips, this is a worthy effort and a good stocking-filler


Battleship Hidden Threat
Battleship Hidden Threat
Offered by The Global Trader
Price: £2.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars You sunk my battleship!, 29 Dec 2012
= Durability:4.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Battleship Hidden Threat (Toy)
A card-based game take on the classic, Battleship: Hidden Threat takes a few goes to get used to. Once you do it's a fun little effort - basically both players lay out 12 cards face down, five of which are battleships with various powers. Then you use 'peg' cards to force your opponent to turn over the cards and when the ships are revealed, further cards to attack the ships. There are special power cards too, which are taken from the draw deck and which, for example, allow you to draw extra cards or repair damage to ships. When we played we didn't quite understand why you needed two draw decks; one would have been sufficient and two decks make the playing area slightly chaotic. You will need a decent sized playing area - this is not one to play in the car. A game takes about 10 minutes and like the original it is for 2 players only. Games always seem to go down to the wire and it has some lasting appeal; worth putting a shot across the bows of this one.


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