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Mr. T. White (London, UK)
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How to Speak Money
How to Speak Money
by John Lanchester
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £12.59

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Iconoclastic 'Welcome' to the world of money: A Most Excellent & Mischievously Wicked Primer On All Things Financial., 18 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: How to Speak Money (Hardcover)
If nothing else, this book most admirably succeeds in making the potentially boring and intractable become interesting, accessible and dare I say - entertaining. In other words, for anyone involved in finance, this book is a most interesting economic primer, which also happens to be seasoned with quips and clever humour a plenty. Take "dead cat bounce" for instance. I couldn't help but give a wry chuckle when I read this, following its initial definition:

"...it's the same kind of bounce a dead cat would give if you chuck it out a window. If you're wondering who on earth would come up with a metaphor like that, greetings, and welcome to the world of money."

Ouch! It's just as well that the world of money is not quite crammed full of sociopathic, and sick individuals then. Right!?

Some can criticise this book for including many commonly understood terms, such as GDP, inflation, and insurance. But then again, not only is knowledge subjective but even when defining the commonly known, Lanchester arguably does a great job of injecting some fresh, and often downright piquant stimulus into even the most well trodden of monetary expressions. Take 'insurance' which is: "a great idea, but it is distressing how often... it turns out to be a scam dependent on the customer not having read the small print." How true, how very true indeed! But you have to agree, that such a cynical definition, suggests more than just a welcome degree of mischievously inspired iconoclasm. In other words, I love it. And, this book is most wonderfully packed with similar definitions.

This reviewer concludes - you must buy this book if you wish to witness a perfectly spirited mix of wicked entertainment, and (otherwise) boring financial terms.

That is to say, it most certainly deserves full marks.


PowerGen 12000mAh External Battery Pack High Capacity Power Bank Backup Charger Triple USB 3Amps output for Apple iPhone 5S 5 5c 4S 4 3Gs, iPod Touch, iPad Air, 5, 4, 3, 2, Mini (Apple lightning adapters Not included) / Samsung Galaxy S4 S3 S2, Note 2, Note 3 / HTC One X / Google Nexus 4,5,7,10; Nokia Lumia 920 1020; Motorola Moto G; Blackberry Z10; Sony Xperia Z [Designed for Apple and Android Devices]
PowerGen 12000mAh External Battery Pack High Capacity Power Bank Backup Charger Triple USB 3Amps output for Apple iPhone 5S 5 5c 4S 4 3Gs, iPod Touch, iPad Air, 5, 4, 3, 2, Mini (Apple lightning adapters Not included) / Samsung Galaxy S4 S3 S2, Note 2, Note 3 / HTC One X / Google Nexus 4,5,7,10; Nokia Lumia 920 1020; Motorola Moto G; Blackberry Z10; Sony Xperia Z [Designed for Apple and Android Devices]
Offered by E-TRADING24 LTD
Price: £89.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Review of Both E-Trading Customer Service And this Battery Pack, 15 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
It's great when a product works so well that you don't even need to worry about its warranty. Nonetheless, my review reflects my experiences when I needed a little problem looked after.

Basically, I had a little problem with my Powergen 12,000mah battery pack after 3 months usage. Basically the input where its charging wire should affix, resulted in a loose connection, which meant I was unable to get a stable charge into the battery pack for long. I wrote a review which reflected my experiences, and before saying another word, to my astonishment, 'E-trading' were apologising and offered to replace it. Frankly that is utterly outstanding customer service!

A couple of days later I'd taken delivery of its replacement, and so I simply had to delete my initial review, and moreover replace it with this advice: have every confidence when buying from 'E-trading', as their 'no quibble' customer service is second to none. If yours develops a fault within its warranty period, I can tell you from experience that you will definitely want to be dealing with E-trading. In other words, buy this battery pack and I can assure you, that you will be in the right hands and very well looked after, should anything go wrong within its warranty period. Utterly excellent! And the battery pack is, otherwise, very good too. Albeit, to be perfectly frank, were I to purchase another I'd likely go for an even higher powered one - as this will only charge my Kindle, S2 and Mp3 player before then needing a recharge. HTH


Audio-Technica ATH-A900X Audiophile Closed-Back Dynamic Headphones
Audio-Technica ATH-A900X Audiophile Closed-Back Dynamic Headphones
Offered by Trade Infinito EU
Price: £109.18

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ATH A900X Versus ATH M50 - If Not For Bass, Then Aural Perfectionists Might Find Themselves Splitting Hairs., 1 Sep 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Firstly, trying to say which headphones are better, of these two 'monitor level', audiophile grade, headphones, is a bit like splitting a hair, and then trying to determine which spliced hair follicle is left with more width. The 'technically' cheaper (remember that it's only because current, imported pricing is artificially skewing the actual difference between these) phones - the ATH M50 are still, it must be remembered, professional grade, monitor headphones. In other words they've been designed and manufactured to be among the best you can buy already. In other words, if you're looking for me to say which one is better, then I'm sorry to disappoint you - because each pair of headphones is as technically marvellous in the most subtly different sounding way.

Then again, let's also not forget that the ATH A900X are usually priced in the UK, at almost double the cost of the ATHM50 headphones; and on paper, at least, they appear to offer a wider frequency response: starting at 5hz and ending at a humanly indiscernible 40khz. Accordingly, on mere paper specification alone, the A900X phones should deliver a wider sound spread, compared with that of the M50's. And yet, I truly cannot perceive much difference (without, that is, my undertaking the aural equivalent of 'hair splitting') - both headphones give the most exceptionally natural, clean, pure, bright, airy and expansive sound, save for only one notable difference:

Bass sounds are but one equal *piece* of the overall musical experience on the A900X's, whereas bass, on the M50 headphones, is very much a slightly more defined *part* of the musical experience - that is to say, with a slight, but indeed perceptible, lean towards a 'phat', and far more punchy presence.

So, if you want an exceptional sound with punchy bass definition (or bias), then you'll want the ATH M50's. I must add that frankly, I had to wrestle with (another type of bias...) 'confirmation bias' in arriving at this conclusion (because their specification suggests that these should be the more 'bassy' of the two), however the sound from the A900X phones is, of course not only absolutely beautiful, it's arguably also (if only) slightly more pure, and moreover presents a most balanced overall sound spectrum; And therefore the sound of the A900x phones is, in the strictest possible sense, arguably just a little more unbiased than that of the M50 phones.

In conclusion, if you want your sound to be the most pure and beautiful that money can buy, then buying either of these headphones would be an excellent idea. Those who want the most pure and neutrally unbiased sound spectrum, should opt for the ATH A900X; and those who like their bass to have a little more of a presence should opt for the ATH M50 phones. Nonetheless, should you remove the slight difference in how bass is handled from the critical equation, then that leaves both headphones with the most perfectly beautiful musicality one could imagine.

Just before I go, I must offer this caution to prospective buyers: the ATH A900X are really only suited to those who have larger than average heads, because the odd looking mechanism, I've found, is just not as adjustable as might be thought from seeing the pictures of them. The ATH M50 headphones adjust in a far more conventional way and thus are more suited to a wider range of head sizes. Unlike me, my wife can't wear these ATH A900x without their slipping off her head some few minutes later. The ATH M50 phones fit her far better. Anyway, that's just something I thought you should all be aware of - *before* purchasing.
HTH - as I own both headphones , please feel most welcome to ask any question below. Cheers for now, t


5 in 1 Wireless Lost Key Finder Locator Find Locater Alarm Keychain 40m
5 in 1 Wireless Lost Key Finder Locator Find Locater Alarm Keychain 40m
Offered by BeautyMall(Shipped from HongKong)
Price: £11.62

10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Should've bought this indispensible, and near priceless, 'frustration saver' years ago!, 16 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I've been making use of mine for the past week and I must say I'm delighted with it - as a frustration saver, it's almost priceless. But there is something I need to clear up: some people here are complaining that "it's too quiet." Wait a moment... this is supposed to help *you* find your missing items - not you plus your next door neighbour, nor your entire street! For *you* to find your missing keys it sounds perfectly loud. Simply walk around with the locator control in your hand and as you enter each room in your abode - simply press the correspondingly assigned button on it, and voila! The electronic 'whirring' sound gives away the location of your missing item. BTW, it is strongly advised that you do not use batteries purchased from ye local 'pound shop' to power these items, unless, that is, you're seeking the disappointment of repeatedly having to change batteries...

As I said, mine's been working perfectly every time, it's been put to use; and my only regret is not buying it sooner. I'll spare you the embarrassing details of the wasted hours spent searching for my keys, *before* buying this. Nonetheless, if you've any questions in the meantime, then please ask me below. Cheers for now, t

Last, I wholeheartedly recommend this indispensable 'frustration saver' - however should it ever fail to work - then please be assured that I'll be the first to return here to warn you all. In other words, if you're reading this review some weeks, months, or even years later and I've *not* edited it with any complaint, then you can take it that mine's still working perfectly as should yours.

A definite 5/5


Book Wrap 25m long roll by 50cm wide
Book Wrap 25m long roll by 50cm wide
Offered by Handy Ideas
Price: £15.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sorry, But the Wrapping Which Is Used in Libraries is Better Than This., 15 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Firstly, please note that this is to be used to cover hardback dust jackets, rather than paperbacks. With that being said, what both the pictures for this product and its instructions do not show, is that you will definitely need to use plenty of sticky tape to make this stay on the cover of any book. No matter how well you cut it and fold it, you will find, without sellotape, that it simple comes right off any book. And I must stress that its instructions make it out like all you need to do is cut and fold and voila - "Bob's your figurative uncle". Hmmm, not exactly so.

When buying this, I was truly hoping that it would have the kind of consistency which meant that it did, indeed, cut & fold (as per its instructions) into place - without needing any sticky tape. But again folks, that is indeed not the reality: You will need to have umpteen pieces of sticky tape at the ready, if you are to stand a reasonable chance of making an impressively proficient job of covering any book. I've just covered my new Chambers Dictionary and although the finish is reasonably good, the actual process of getting this to look good required a lot of concentration and a dab hand with a roll of sticky tape & scissors. In other words, unwrapping presents on Xmas morning, this is not.

Would I buy it again? Definitely not. Why? Let's just say that I happen to have a library book beside me as I write this review, and it is immediately obvious that the wrap which they use is far superior, insofar as theirs uses an adhesive inside covering - the type which definitely does not require any additional sticky tape to affix to any book cover. And, if that type is good enough for a public library, then I will be passing this 'non-adhesive book wrap' by - and I'll just go straight for the adhesive based wrapping next time. I award it 3 stars because although it is quite good, there is still a far more professional means to wrap books; and while such is for sale too, need your reviewer say more? HTH
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 30, 2014 10:16 AM BST


A-Z of Hell: Ross Kemp's How Not to Travel the World
A-Z of Hell: Ross Kemp's How Not to Travel the World
by Ross Kemp
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £7.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars If it weren't for the TV series, this would've been a very good book. As it is, it adds little to that which was televised., 7 Aug 2014
I'm in two minds about this book. The main problem with it is that there is little, very little in this book which wasn't already hinted at, spoken about, or filmed in Kemp's accompanying TV series. You have, in other words, to turn page after page after page to find the smallest thing which wasn't already depicted, talked about or explicitly shown in the tv series; Which is all very well - if you haven't already watched every episode: but I did.

Sorry Mr. Kemp. As a standalone there's no question: I liked your book very much. But the reality is, it's not a standalone - it is supposed to accompany your TV series, but frankly it ends up being an approximated written record of same and little else besides. There are few juicy titbits, or interesting asides which weren't already opined or filmed, in some form or fashion, already in the TV series. Please don't tell us that only interesting things happened whilst the cameras were recording, because there must have been so many interesting things going on off camera too, which Kemp must have been aware of - and so it's arguable that a whole new and most interesting book could have been written about all the potentially interesting things which occurred off camera! For example, I'd like to know more about the lead-up to meeting many of the interesting (and usually dangerous) characters, Ross encounters in the TV series. But in the book, as in the TV series, it's usual for such folk to just miraculously appear and disappear just as quickly when the story is to move on. In real life, there must surely be plenty of interesting 'background arrangements' which (no doubt) Kemp's Fixers had to endure just to get Kemp anywhere near such individuals. Nevertheless, the most dangerous and wanted individuals just appear every so often - *as if* Kemp as the deity given right to talk to whom he wants, & whenever he wants! Hmmmm. Anyway that's just one example (of many that I can imagine) of just how this book *could* have supplemented as opposed to reproduce the TV series on paper.

For that reason I award the book full marks - 5/5 - but only for those few who prefer reading the written word to watching Kemp's frankly excellent and related TV series. Otherwise, I must mark the book as being an 'o.k.' 3/5 only because it, just as frankly, adds little of fresh value, to what's already been screened.


A Dictionary of Proverbs (Oxford Paperback Reference)
A Dictionary of Proverbs (Oxford Paperback Reference)
by John Simpson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A Book Browser's Paradise., 4 Aug 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
"If you can't have all the world's wisdom to yourself, then, surely, the next best thing is to revel in that of history's wisest thinkers" - so says your current reviewer.

What places this collection, at distance, from any other book on proverbs, are the rich and varied number of quotations which apply to each proverb. Many of which are most interesting indeed: thus - following "Lucky at cards, unlucky at love" - we find this:

"You had never believed the phrase 'lucky at cards, unlucky in love' until that night when you were the victim of a drive-by shooting from a jealous ex-girlfriend shortly after being dealt a full house."

I've tried repeatedly to think of a single proverb which I've been unable to locate, within this book's pages, yet, alas, I've failed every time. So, I must surely concede that it is a most brilliantly in-depth, and arguably unrivalled collection of proverbs. In other words, no fellow bibliophile should live a long life without at least sharing some of it in the company of this wonderful book. 5/5 for sure.


Assholes: A Theory
Assholes: A Theory
by Aaron James
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.29

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars But for the mud-slinging, instances of fallacious reasoning, & taking itself too seriously, it wasn't bad: It was pretty awful., 31 July 2014
This review is from: Assholes: A Theory (Paperback)
The title of this book (hereinafter "Aholes" otherwise... I'll likely fall foul of Amazon's reviewing guidelines), I must say, definitely took my initial interest. And, I must at least concede, before criticising it, that it must be very hard to write a book of this nature without being accused, at least at times, of slinging mud at certain others - some of whom are/were most undeserving of mention - I might hastily add.

Yes... some of whom, were, frankly, bizarre choices indeed: accordingly he first singles out (the more likeable and arguably less loutish) Noel Gallagher over his far more 'questionable' brother, Liam. As for singling out the venerable Professor Dawkins Emeritus Professor of Zoology at New College, Oxford University - a man of unquestioned extremely high intelligence, his attack (which perhaps reads as more of an 'agumentum ad populum' perhaps even a 'straw man' than anything more seriously correct) , for me, was nonetheless quite unforgivable. I only reproduce it here, (under James' most unashamedly iconoclastic sub-chapter heading of "SMUG A**HOLE"), because it is already in the public domain:

"Oxford biologist Richard Dawkins is similarly self assured in his broadside against theism and religious belief... he writes cocksurely that the views of millions of reasonable and intelligent people (even if ultimately mistaken) have no merit whatsoever and feels entitled to give sloppy treatment to arguments for the existence of God that have seriously engaged philosophers for thousands of years."

Don't you just love that "...even if ultimately mistaken" snippet?

Well, Mr. James, I put it to you, that you yourself concede that such popularly held views may well be "ultimately mistaken", yet you still try to pull a blatant 'appeal to the crowd' with such rhetorical nonsense - that is, if strongly held views are indeed "ultimately mistaken" (a case which Professor Dawkins has, it is submitted, argued far more eloquently than you, have ever argued in this book's pages) then what right have you to demean the stance of the venerable Professor in lieu of those who you argue deserve to be thought of as "intelligent" and "reasonable"? Where is the proof that such people are even worthy of being called "intelligent and reasonable" versus the incredibly fine tuned mind of Professor Dawkins? Without such proof, the snub against Professor Dawkins falters 'ab initio'.

By the way, on what criteria it takes to fit within Mr. James' carefully studied version of an 'Ahole' we are reassured that "a proper 'ahole' always has an underlying sense of moral entitlement." And this is a point which the book's author is keen to stress repeatedly throughout its text, nonetheless if one feels or reflects upon any degree of shame in being an 'Ahole' then "one probably to that extent, is not an 'Ahole'". Well thank the deity of one's choice for that!! But... there's more:

"On the other hand if the thought of counting as an 'Ahole' gives you no pause, if you retort "whatever", or if you feel a stable sense of delight, this is evidence" he assures us, "albeit inconclusive" in other words... without (cough!!) *any* peer reviewed scientific foundation "that you are an 'Ahole'. If you feel ambivalent, perhaps wondering whether there is some way to pull off being an 'Ahole', you may be a borderline or half assed 'Ahole' - not quite a proper, full fledged 'Ahole' but nevertheless an important kind of 'Ahole'."

Thankfully, not all of his attacks on others are as painfully pedestrian in substance as some: Thus regarding filmmaker Michael Moore, Mr. James writes that he is "slightly more coy, [than Noel Gallagher] dressing up sloppy treatment of his subjects in a cloak of social morality." Which is, perhaps, fair enough.

Speaking of sloppy treatment of his subjects, I couldn't escape the feeling while reading through this book that it is almost written, in all seriousness, as if 'being an 'Ahole' is a recognised diagnosis, under the precepts of behavioural psychology. Not enough mention is given to the underlying and academically recognised psychological components, which no doubt go (together or in part) towards being defined as a so called 'Ahole' - such as narcissim, sociopathy, psychopathy, borderline personality disorder etc., albeit at times he does, very occasionally, throw a nod to the canons of established academia - e.g., "the grotesque manipulative villainy of say, Shakespeare's Richard III is closer to what we now call a psychopath than to the proper 'Ahole'". Indeed...

Anyway, much as I'd love to write more, my review is getting quite long now, but I honestly couldn't stomach reading much of this book's contents, because frankly it rarely strayed from taking itself too seriously (almost as if this was devised to be the seminal tome on what exactly it takes to be a diagnosed an 'Ahole'), and moreover I strongly felt he had no right to outright name and shame certain persons as being 'Aholes' - if only to fit the popular appeal (i.e. the 'gutter-press' levels) of much of his book's thesis. Sorry, but barely a third into it, I'd had more than enough. Still, having said that, I hope you've got at least a flavour of what's seriously wrong with this book. If not, then please give me a few words below and I'll shortly add more for you. Thank you for reading.


Everything Is Bullshit: The greatest scams on Earth revealed
Everything Is Bullshit: The greatest scams on Earth revealed
by Priceonomics
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.67

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Almost 'Unputdownable'. How The World Really *is* Full of BS: If You're Not 'Cerebrally Challenged' You'll Surely Love This One, 17 July 2014
In all sincerity, this book was hard to put down. I found myself regularly picking it up, almost without thinking about it. Such was the degree to which it so very consistently held my interest. This book is figuratively stuffed full of the most interesting truisms, the kind which make you nod your head in tacit agreement - for instance most people cannot tell the difference between red wine and white wine when blindfolded. And as for so called "wine experts", when mixed great and 'far from great' wines were disguised most couldn't even tell the difference between the reputed best wines in the world, from ordinary bargain basement wines, when put to scientific test. Cutting to the chase - ergo the entire wine industry is indeed, just as you suspected, laden with the most sublime BS. Period. And, don't get me started on how the author views the art world...

Yes, the world really is full of BS - plus a majority of either those who produce it, or suck it up. Your reviewer naturally tries his best to remain on the sidelines when it cometh to said subject. Nonetheless (with a pronounced sigh) ...at least we can take some reassuring comfort in knowing we're not losing our minds, in seeing through it all, for what much of it evidently is. As such, this book provides almost all the reassuring comfort any reasonably smart person needs to take on this world by its horns & thorns: an indispensable purchase if ever there was one. Full marks for sure.


Anker® 14W Solar Panel Foldable Dual-port Solar Charger with PowerIQ™ Technology for 5V USB-charged Devices Including GPS Units, iPhone 6 Plus 5S 5C 5 4S, iPad 5 4 3 2, Air, mini, Android Phones and Android Tablets
Anker® 14W Solar Panel Foldable Dual-port Solar Charger with PowerIQ™ Technology for 5V USB-charged Devices Including GPS Units, iPhone 6 Plus 5S 5C 5 4S, iPad 5 4 3 2, Air, mini, Android Phones and Android Tablets
Offered by AnkerDirect
Price: £99.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars At Its Current & Continuing Half-price Promotion, It Represents Unparalleled Value. This IS The Solar Charger To Buy!, 1 July 2014
UPDATE: AUGUST 2014 - Using this panel and another, plus three 12000 mah power banks, I've actually managed from April of this year until now (late August 2014), to charge every single portable item I regularly use, without even once needing to use mains electricity. It's been a particularly sunny summer of course, here in the southeast. Nevertheless, I'm pretty chuffed that this Anker 14W has proved so useful over the course of this fine summer. In other words, it's helped to charge a Galaxy S3, a Kindle Paperwhite, a Galaxy Note 10.1 plus a Fiio X3 - and I've even used it to charge AA and AAA batteries using a portable USB battery charger, meaning that I've even been able to shave with an electric razor, for no additional electrical cost, as well as use the TV remote all because of the sun's free power! Just imagine the energy saved if everyone who lived in the south of England used the Sun's plentiful free energy - every Summer, to charge all their portable devices! It's simply crazy that we're rapidly burning through millions of years worth of fossil fuels for electricity, when there is a far better alternative... Here below is my original review. But just before I sign off - thank you to anyone who likes my review, but to the one person who ticked my review down: I'm really sorry it wasn't good enough for you, but if you're any questions you'd like answered, then please feel welcome to ask me, and I'll do my best to respond well. Cheers.

---

In early July, it managed to charge fully, from discharged, a PowerGen 12000mAh External Battery pack,PowerGen 12000mAh External Battery Pack High Capacity Power Bank Backup Charger Triple USB 3Amps output for Apple iPhone 5S 5 5c 4S 4 3Gs, iPod Touch, iPad Air, 5, 4, 3, 2, Mini (Apple lightning adapters Not included) / Samsung Galaxy S4 S3 S2, Note 2, ...] in approximately a day and a half. Conditions were partly cloudy, albeit more cloudy on the second day than on the first, yet still, that is very impressive performance.

Competitor products, such as the so called 'High Efficiency' Charger from 'Portapow', are, frankly, only 3/4 as efficient at charging, compared to this.
Must also mention that on another day, ye heavens didst spontaneously erupt, declaring vast lashings of wetnessness (a.k.a. 'rain') unto thee, yet... with tissue in hand and given only a quick wipe down, it was ready to charge again, within barely a minute. Its casing also protected a phone from being damaged by that impromptu rain-shower, which was (I must add) quite a relief to know. So I can confirm too that this works perfectly as a fully waterproof charger.
Unquestionably, if you're looking for a powerful, portable, waterproof and reliable solar charger - then look no further: here is it! If this writer were looking for another portable solar charger, then, particularly at its current discounted price point, I'd buy this again without question.


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