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How to Run Your Home without Help
How to Run Your Home without Help
by Kay Smallshaw
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating dip into the recent past, 5 Nov 2014
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It would be stating the obvious to point out that as a guide to running the home in the 21st century this book is of little or no use at all. However, some things have not changed very much; women still undertake the bulk of the housework despite the fact that many more now work outside the home. Kay Smallshaw edited "Good Housekeeping" and this book was written at a time when WWII rationing was still in force and live in servants had become a rarity. This book is firmly rooted in reality and addresses the fact housework is arduous and tiring. The practical hints and instructions are fascinating, not only because they show the relative inefficiency and scarcity of labour saving devices but they also allow us to enter a, now vanished, world of darned socks, food rationing and the Monday wash day. There is even information on how much various household items cost; the sort of detail that I love along with specific menus for various different occasions. If you like dipping into the recent past and enjoy books actually written at the time this new, beautifully presented edition is definitely to be recommended.


Puccini: Madama Butterfly
Puccini: Madama Butterfly
Price: £16.22

3.0 out of 5 stars Life's too short, 24 Sep 2014
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Not as good as the Naxos complete historical version and the booklet is impossible to follow. Interesting if you have the patience. I sold this once before and then regretted it - but I think i will sell it again.


ARPCD 0069 - DELETED
ARPCD 0069 - DELETED

4.0 out of 5 stars They don't do it like this any more, 24 Sep 2014
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This review is from: ARPCD 0069 - DELETED (Audio CD)
Well worth the cost - heavyweight stuff with fruity brass and good old fashioned heft


Mozart;Die Zauberflote
Mozart;Die Zauberflote

1.0 out of 5 stars Not even at the price., 24 Sep 2014
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This review is from: Mozart;Die Zauberflote (Audio CD)
Don't go there - horrible conducting and acres of boring dialogue.


Gotterdammerung
Gotterdammerung
Price: £30.77

3.0 out of 5 stars Don't hesitate!!, 24 Sep 2014
This review is from: Gotterdammerung (Audio CD)
There is a strong sense of a real performance here - the conducting is strong and the recording expands realistically. If you'd paid to see this you would have enjoyed it - and spent a great deal more than this incredible asking price. For the price of a tea and bun, what are you waiting for? I enjoyed John Tomlinson's characterful projection as Hagen, but the tonal quality has really gone. There are a lot more unmusical soloists than this and i wouldn't agree that this is two stars - 3.5 perhaps, but I played it straight through and enjoyed it. Not as good at Keilberth ( what could be?) or Karajan (very underrated now) but sound is important and to have modern recording which is not Bayreuth is well worth it. If the other parts were on at a £5 I wouldn't hesitate.


Lohengrin
Lohengrin
Offered by thebookcommunity
Price: £33.15

5.0 out of 5 stars ... as his modestly priced set is one of the best performances of this work I have heard, 20 Aug 2014
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This review is from: Lohengrin (Audio CD)
This is superb but the review seemed to refer to another set - no problem as his modestly priced set is one of the best performances of this work I have heard.


Eugen Jochum conducts The Symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms & Bruckner
Eugen Jochum conducts The Symphonies of Beethoven, Brahms & Bruckner
Price: £26.98

0 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 20 Aug 2014
All fine- good value in good condition and sent promptly


Wonderwise: Supermum: A book about mothers
Wonderwise: Supermum: A book about mothers
by Mick Manning
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Who is this book for?, 25 July 2013
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The premise of this book is that children need factual books as well as fiction. The fact that the book starts with the fallacy that all mums are supermums in the animal kingdom (even a human mum with a multi-coloured mohican and piercings) adds nothing to its validity. While I would not advocate a book for younger children on rejection and abandonment, the fact remains that as a work of non-fiction this book is seriously flawed. For older children, the issues surrounding less than super mums, including rejection issues, are brilliantly covered in some of the fiction by Jacqueline Wilson and others.

Unfortunately, for both the author and illustrator, the bar has been set very high over the years so that the stilted prose and pictures that are neither realistic nor charmingly quirky do nothing to make the book attractive to young children.

There is a dreary didactic quality that pervades every page and the authors seem unsure of the age group for their target audience. My four year old grandson loves a bedtime story and, while he never seems to tire of some books, this one never even makes the shortlist. The idea of a book about animal mums and babies, including insects, birds, fish etc. is not original and there are several more charming examples that are not so self-consciously EDUCATIONAL.

The book claims to be part of an "award winning series" and has "notes on how to make the most of this book" by an educational consultant which are supposed to be read first, presumably by an adult. There is also an alphabetical index of animal supermums at the end. Why? The book finishes with suggested activities that are obviously aimed at a child who is an able reader and writer; which again raises the question who is this book aimed at? The big colourful illustrations, the format and limited text in the main body of the book suggest a pre-school age group.

My daughter agrees with me about all this so, to sum up, next stop the charity shop in the hope that somebody else might like it.


Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen (Recorded Live At The Bayreuth Festival 2008)
Wagner: Der Ring Des Nibelungen (Recorded Live At The Bayreuth Festival 2008)
Price: £93.05

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Der Ring des Nibelungen Thielemann, 9 May 2010
The Thielemann Ring cycle was greeted with modified rapture, the main reservations being about the singing. I am sure like many other Wagnerians I hesitated - 14 CDs is quite a big layout for a duff set, even though I had been to a Strauss concert conducted by Thielemann and had been very impressed. However, Wagnerians must take risks and I would like to reassure potential waverers not to be put off. Nothing can replace the classics sets ( among which the Moralt set which used to be available at a ridiculously cheap price and is of a live performance in post-war Veinna with Furtwangler in the audience ,must be included. That has the classic effortless Wagner style - with the artists able to project the words semi-conversationally yet with intensity and musicality. That is so rare that one cannot expect it to be recreated. What you get here is a mixture of weight of tone, rhythmic precision and convincving tempi from the orchestra and a really fine recording which allows the climaxes to expand. The singing is vibrant and rises to the occasion - from some of the reviews it seems that it will be dull or squawky - but that is just not the case - it is characterful and one is aware of the drama throughout. Wagnerians, please don't put off from having the intense experience that awaits. The five starsa are not for vocal perfection or evenness - but for the authentic Wagner sound and experience ( an additional consideration is that by looking around the price is about Naxos level!)


Pride and Prejudice
Pride and Prejudice
by Ian Edinton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.83

1 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars I can't think of anything to say, 5 April 2009
This review is from: Pride and Prejudice (Paperback)
I bought this book as a cheap replacement for a copy I lost while moving recently. P&P has been extensively reviewed, studied and analysed; possibly more than any other 19th century novel. I do not feel that I have anything to add. I am a reader not a writer.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 13, 2011 8:33 PM GMT


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