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Reviews Written by
Mr. D. N. Sumption (Sheffield, UK)
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Verbatim 52602 LED Candle E14 4.5 Watt 350 lm Light Bulb
Verbatim 52602 LED Candle E14 4.5 Watt 350 lm Light Bulb
Price: £7.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Which has got to be a good thing, right, 23 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It's a lightbulb. And it works. And it uses very little electricity, compared to normal flourescent "energy saving" bulbs, let alone to the old tungsten ones. Which has got to be a good thing, right?


Anxiety Wrap
Anxiety Wrap
Price: £24.05

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Seemed to help a little, 16 Nov 2014
This review is from: Anxiety Wrap (Misc.)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
We tried the wrap a few times on our very jumpy Lakeland terrier. The first few times there was no noticeable affect, but eventually it did seem to calm her down a little - not a great deal, but a little.


Tacwise 1038 Hobby 53EL Kit
Tacwise 1038 Hobby 53EL Kit
Price: £26.04

4.0 out of 5 stars Works well. Needs longer cable & better manual., 12 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This gadget does exactly what you would expect it to do - quickly and easily fires stapes and nails - and is really handy for upholstery, framing and the like.

My only real complaints are that it could do with a longer cable and/or the option to use batteries, and the manual is not particularly clear - par for the course for this type of product, unfortunately, but still not acceptable.


The Perfect Meal: The Multisensory Science of Food and Dining
The Perfect Meal: The Multisensory Science of Food and Dining
by Charles Spence
Edition: Paperback
Price: £22.45

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, if a bit esoteric., 1 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is quite an extraordinary book. It is really not aimed at the household cook, although if like me you are an adventurous cook, always looking for something to set your meals apart, then you will certainly find something of interest in here. The real target are, I assume, professional chefs looking to improve their game (particularly those with an interest in "molecular gastronomy"), and probably also academics studying food sciences. The writing itself is rather academic and dry, and in almost every sentence there are bracketed references to primary sources and to other sections of the book (Spence and Piqueras-Fiszman, 2014) which would have been a lot less distracting as end-notes. However, the writing may be dry but the subject matter is far from it: along the way you will learn about all aspects of dining from the names of dishes and shapes of plates to the possibility of food grown in petri dishes and "virtual reality" eating. Far from a cook-book, and a bit high-level for most, but nonetheless this makes for a fascinating read.


Pebble Smartwatch - Black
Pebble Smartwatch - Black
Price: £92.83

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Does not work as a fitness tracker, 1 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I got this watch mainly as a replacement for my lost FitBit - I thought that I would be able to do the same sort of activity-tracking, plus get some extra functionality from the watch's integration with my Android phone. Well, the integration part went fine - in fact better than expected, I found that it was particularly handy for controlling my MP3 player when in the car, allowing me to pause or skip forwards/back a track. However, the activity-tracking is worse than useless. It worked fine for a couple of days - matching more-or-less step-for-step the counter on my HTC One phone - but then then it developed a mind of its own. Most days I will glance at the step counter at around 10am, by which time I'll have walked a good mile or two, and the Pebble tells me that I have walked 30 steps. Couple this with the lack of climb-tracking and no integration with the FitBit website, and it's basically useless for the purpose I bought it for. As a very expensive music controller and compass, however, it's great!


Woolly Woofers
Woolly Woofers
by Debbie Bliss
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.49

5.0 out of 5 stars A lot of fun!, 28 Oct 2014
This review is from: Woolly Woofers (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I bought this book as a bit of a joke for my wife, but it's actually a lot of fun. Really nicely laid out and clearly explained, with some great ideas for doggie knits.


Happiness by Design: Finding Pleasure and Purpose in Everyday Life
Happiness by Design: Finding Pleasure and Purpose in Everyday Life
by Paul Dolan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.00

3.0 out of 5 stars Useful suggestions, but a struggle to read, 23 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I struggled with this book at first: it is not particularly well-written, with important points buried amongst repetition, anecdote and poorly structured sentences. However, it contains many fascinating insights and particularly in the second half, where Dolan lays out some practical exercises, it becomes genuinely useful. In the short time since I read this book, I certainly feel both happier and more aware of the sources of my own happiness. It's just a shame that the book wasn't better written and about half the length.


ESSENTIAL FOODS Estate Living Dog Food
ESSENTIAL FOODS Estate Living Dog Food
Price: £50.01

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Sounds like the good stuff!, 23 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Well, this certainly isn't your everyday dog food! The packaging tells us that it contains such exotic ingredients as acai berries, seaweed and alfalfa, as well as two types of deer meat! Quite how necessary all of those things are to a dog's diet is open to question, but what is certain is that they are an improvement over the cheap bulking ingredients and high wheat levels in most dry dog foods. How did it fare in practice? Well, our Lakeland terrier wolfed it down, but then that's hardly surprising, there is very little that she will not eat. After a couple of weeks on the stuff, she certainly appears healthy and lively, although that is my subjective assessment based on just one dog. It's hard to say whether this is worth the money, but I can say with some certainty that you could do a lot worse!


Kings Bounty - Dark Side (PC DVD)
Kings Bounty - Dark Side (PC DVD)
Price: £19.04

3.0 out of 5 stars Old-school turn-based RPG, 23 Oct 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a fairly old-school computer game, a turn-based RPG. For what it is, it's decently done, and will provide hours of playing. I found it a little dated, with its old-school graphics and its requirement that you read reams of text from the screen (there were no recordings of characters speaking the script), and I have to admit that I didn't stick with it for more than a couple of days.


The Wake
The Wake
by Paul Kingsnorth
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.89

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Extraordinary, 23 Oct 2014
This review is from: The Wake (Hardcover)
This is an extraordinary novel, one which will live in my bones for a very long time.

The Old English-style language in which it is written is, of course, the first thing you notice. Initially you suspect that this "shadow tongue" may be a piece of trompe-l'œil, clever, eye-catching, but obscuring a lack of real depth to the story. Gradually though, as events spiral out from the fenland home of its protagonist buccmaster of holland, the tale gets its claws into you, the characters become terrifyingly real, and the suspense builds towards an inevitable tragic ending of an England ruled by the French.

The language makes reading the book relatively hard work - more difficult than books like Riddley Walker or Vernon God Little simply because some of the words are not "soundalikes", so you will need to refer frequently to the glossary to decipher terms like fugol (bird), cenep (moustache), whit (animal) and wyrd (herb). But gradually these terms too become familiar, and you find yourself increasingly inhabiting both the landscape and the mindscape of the "angland" of 1000 years ago.

From the many one-star reviews on here it is clear that people are struggling with the language and giving up. While that's understandable, I really don't think it's any reason to rate the book so lowly. Certainly it is a book that requires effort, but stick with it and it will more than reward the effort that you put into it.


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