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El Loro (London, England)

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Fisher-Price Rainforest Take Along Swing and Seat
Fisher-Price Rainforest Take Along Swing and Seat
Price: £73.00

5.0 out of 5 stars A hit with Sis and Nephew alike, 18 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a hit with the bright youngest nephew.

It's a great improvement on our youngest's old baby gym because it's got added swingability, adding a new dimension to the experience. A Very Good Thing. Stimuli are good, no matter what echo chamber internet "experts" say.

It's a hit with the grown ups too. It's pretty light, folds conveniently, is easily wiped down (Sis hasn't tried the machine wash bit" and has five point harness instead of the old three point.

Quibbles? The motorised swing is a tad lazy; it reminds me of those cartoons where a Heath Robinson contraption rocks the cradle while dad sleeps. That's it.

I


Toy Story Battlesaurs Trixie
Toy Story Battlesaurs Trixie
Price: £10.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Is that it?, 17 April 2015
This review is from: Toy Story Battlesaurs Trixie (Toy)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a small toy dinosaur. Yes, it has some points of articulation and pretty sturdy but it's barely five inches long and doesn't do anything. No firing projectiles, no lights, no noise, nothing.

At a fiver, this would be alright. £10.99, even with a Toy Story label on the packet, isn't justified in playability.

At best, this can be used to play scenes based on the film - with each additional character setting you back more than £10.99. Take it out of that context and its nothing more than a small, very expensive, rather funky looking plastic dinosaur.

Mind you, the way it's marketed at boys is an authentic prehistoric touch.


Braun Silk Epil 9 9-558 Wet & Dry Cordless Epilator with 5 Extras Attachments
Braun Silk Epil 9 9-558 Wet & Dry Cordless Epilator with 5 Extras Attachments
Price: £105.59

5.0 out of 5 stars Smooth, 13 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is towards the top end of home epilators and justifiably so.

As an epilator per se, it does the job. If you're new to the process it will sting. No where near as bad as waxing, but you'll feel it. If you're used to it, however, it's fairly smooth.

The extras are what makes it stand out. The caps make it even more comfortable to use.

The facial epilator is a great idea and much better than hand plucking, male grooming machines and hair removal cream (don't try it at home, kids).

The light is fantastic. It means you can make sure you've got them all and don't miss the one that will stand out (in your eyes, if nobody else's) as a veritable rat's tail.

All in all, a great little machine that is a good investment or, if you're feeling brave and don't mind implying that your missus is a hairy warthog, a fab present.


TONI&GUY  Cleanse Dry Hair Shampoo 250 ml
TONI&GUY Cleanse Dry Hair Shampoo 250 ml
Price: £6.49

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Its 2015. You can have great looking hair without killing the environment., 4 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
As a shampoo, this is marvellous. The dispenser gives what seems to be just the right amount, which lathers marevellously and doesn't strip the hair.

Five stars.

What kills it for me is the overkill packaging. Do we really need shampoo in a non-reuseable, impossible to recycle container, with all the propellants it entails? In 2015, it can only be affectation, the illusion of quality.

Zero stars. Zed double minus. Go back to the drawing board.


Dancing in the Dark (Knausgaard)
Dancing in the Dark (Knausgaard)
by Karl Ove Knausgaard
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £12.59

5.0 out of 5 stars Sparkling., 4 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I approached this with trepidation after reading "The Hundred Year Old Man..." because I was jumping into an autobiographical sequence in the fourth volume, an autobiographical sequence which had only covered childhood and youth in the first three, possibly Proustian, volumes and shared a name with Adolf Hitler's literary high water mark.

I needn't have fretted.

Although literary, intelligent and witty, this has none of the meandering grammatical knotwork of the Proust or self-important pukings of Hitler. Instead, it reminds me of Steinbeck and Hemingway in accessibility, an accessibility which belies great depth.

Can I relate to it? I'm not sure. It's hard to remember being young, particularly in the eighties, among all the cultural noise.

Did I enjoy it? Very yes!


Minecraft Construction For Dummies
Minecraft Construction For Dummies
by Adam Cordeiro
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.94

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great entry level advice for middle aged men, 24 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Like a lot of men my age, I seem to be surrounded by youngsters who love this game. Like a lot of men my age, I struggle with any game produced since Windows 95.

This guide clearly lays out the basics and then some, with great illustrations, all in the pocket digest ....for Dummies format.

It's early days yet, but I think I'm getting the hang of it...
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 27, 2015 9:54 AM GMT


Minecraft Redstone For Dummies (For Dummies (Computers))
Minecraft Redstone For Dummies (For Dummies (Computers))
by Jacob Cordeiro
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.94

4.0 out of 5 stars Not for beginners., 21 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a fairly detailed, wel­l illustrated guide to the important Minecraft resource, all in the lovely smaller ...for Dummies format.

If you're after an entry level guide to the Minecraft craze, this is not for you. If, however, you're a reasonably experienced player looking to up your game, this is right up your street.


Oral B Vitality Plus Floss Action Electric Rechargeable Toothbrush
Oral B Vitality Plus Floss Action Electric Rechargeable Toothbrush
Price: £39.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A good low to mid range electric toothbrush., 20 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is not bad for a middling electric toothbrush.

Particularly commendable is the action, which feels great during and after.

My main quibble with electric toothbrushes is the battery life but, as this review is to a deadline, I can't comment on that.

What could make it better? A built in MP3 player that could transmit tunes through the bones and into the ear.


Philips HP6392/00 Precision Body Hair Trimmer
Philips HP6392/00 Precision Body Hair Trimmer
Offered by BestBuyUk
Price: £22.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Yes, but why?, 15 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have a similar trimmer, designed for men, with interchangeable heads for nostrils, ears, eyebrows and sideburns. All makes sense.

This one, aimed at women, has one head and a cap. It's marketed as small enough to fit in your handbag.

The question is why?

I'm assuming anyone buying this indulges in at least some grooming at home so why bother? In case you notice you missed it a bit while you're out? To trim a tiny patch of garlic bread in your left armpit while you're on the bus? To give yourself a quick tidy up down below after your fifteenth Malibu and coke and you're ready to pull someone? Anyone?

This is not a bad trimmer but its lack of accessories and the way it's marketed make me wonder why.


The Devil is a Gentleman: The Life and Times of Dennis Wheatley (Dark Master Series)
The Devil is a Gentleman: The Life and Times of Dennis Wheatley (Dark Master Series)
by Phil Baker
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent in parts, lazy in others, 13 Mar. 2015
This is, on the whole, a very good biography of Dennis Wheatley. It avoids a lot of the dry, ultimately sterile, analysis that plagues weightier literary biographies. With a light, fluid style, Phil Baker shows us suburban shop keeper's progress from rake to avuncular national treasure.

The book is at it's strongest showing Wheatley the man about town in the roaring twenties, thirty years too late for fin de siècle decadence but making up for lost time. Before he had even been published, we get a strong sense of a man who could walk with the common crowd and with kings, a man with a ravenous appetite for wine and women (and opium?).

It loses pace a little as we head into the thirties and the war. Phil Baker is refreshingly blunt about appeasement and its advocates, something we tend to forget in this time of predigested TV history. However, a few, possibly very interesting, situations are left undeveloped, such as the mutual coldness between Wheatley and Ewan Montagu (and by association, Ian Fleming)

Where its starts to come apart is after the war. Although Baker makes some memorably astute observations about life in the sixties and seventies, observations that will resonate with anyone who remembers the time, he seems to rely a little too much on Wheatley's own records. As a result, we get some pretty lazy assertions, like the one about communist penetration of British trade unions, passed off as fact. The first time this happens, it's a bum note. The second, two bum notes. After a few bum notes, the whole thing starts to sound out of tune.

It's a shame. For want of a little objectivity and fact checking, this slips from being an outstanding example of autobiography to merely (!) very good.

ADDENDUM: please don't tell anyone I almost agreed with Michael "please don't demote me" Gove.


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