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The Big Book of Realistic Drawing Secrets: Easy Techniques for Drawing People, Animals, Flowers and Nature
The Big Book of Realistic Drawing Secrets: Easy Techniques for Drawing People, Animals, Flowers and Nature
by Carrie Stuart Parks
Edition: Paperback
Price: 16.99

5.0 out of 5 stars For anyone who wants to learn to draw realistic portraits, 16 May 2014
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I have been drawing on and off since I was a child and am for the most part self-taught. This year I am focusing on learning to draw realistic portraits with the help of this book.

"The Big Book of Realistic Drawing Secrets" is written by a husband and wife team of forensic artists. It walks you through how to make great realistic graphite drawings from photos- what materials to use to get the best results, how to use your reference photo to make great drawings, how to draw facial features and textures, and how to put it all together to draw realistic portraits.

It's designed so a beginner artist can work through the entire book and so slightly more experienced artists can dip in and out of it as they need to.

It has great instructions that are easy to follow and lots of exercises to try. It's setting a whole new standard for my work, and I love it.

I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to start drawing realistic portraits.


Lent with Pope Benedict XVI: Meditations for Every Day
Lent with Pope Benedict XVI: Meditations for Every Day
Price: 6.62

4.0 out of 5 stars An easy to read Lenten companion, 31 Mar 2014
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"Lent with Pope Benedict XVI: Meditations for Every Day" is an easy to read Lenten companion. It's a compilation of short meditations for each day of Lent, taken from his Lenten homilies, written in clear language. The meditations are deceptively simple and meet you where you are.


Cravings: A Catholic Wrestles with Food, Self-Image, and God
Cravings: A Catholic Wrestles with Food, Self-Image, and God
by Mary DeTurris Poust
Edition: Paperback
Price: 8.39

3.0 out of 5 stars Cravings left me hungry for more, 31 Mar 2014
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I'm afraid I had an unfortunate experience with the paperback version of this book (some missing chapters, others appearing more than once) which may have coloured my opinion of this book. I couldn't return it since I had already started taking notes when I noticed the mistakes.

I was very much looking forward to reading a book on this subject from a Christian (particularly Catholic) perspective. But while the author makes some good points, I feel the title is a bit misleading. I don't mind the author exploring Eastern philosophies and religions and using them in her book, it's her book, but if she does that, she can't really promote it as a Catholic book. Most of the Christian ideas backed up by Eastern philosophies could quite easily stand on their own.

Having said that, I did a lot of underlining and took lots of notes throughout the book, and will implement many of her ideas. At times I felt she was inside my head and began to cry from the enormity of it. Her thoughts on using the Eucharist as a guide, and embracing food as part of our faith, spoke straight to my heart.

I may still purchase it on Kindle. Reading it again as it was intended may give me a better view of the book.


Radical Hospitality
Radical Hospitality
Price: 6.02

5.0 out of 5 stars Radical Hospitality, 30 Oct 2012
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"Radical Hospitality" is an absolute gem of a book! It gently challenges our current view of hospitality, and shows us the real meaning of the word.

Some books speak to the very core of your being and demand you sit up and take notice. This is one of those. It is an easy read, full of examples giving a better idea of the concept, but also very substantial. Although I read it in a couple of days, I know I will return to it again and again as I let each idea sink in.


Use Your Words: A Writing Guide for Mothers
Use Your Words: A Writing Guide for Mothers
Price: 10.29

4.0 out of 5 stars "use your words", 26 Oct 2012
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Kate Hopper's "use your words" is a great guide for mothers getting (back) into creative nonfiction.

Kate shows the budding mama writer how to write a compelling story. Each tip/ chapter is backed up with examples and writing exercises, with additional prompts at the end of the book. Being a busy mother herself, she also dispels some of the common writing rules in favour of more mama-friendly ones.

I loved this book. Like many mothers I feel compelled to remember/ write down the stories of pregnancy, birth and childhood, but would be bored stiff writing a "then I did this and this happened" kind of account. I want to write proper, fleshed out stories, but haven't written anything like it in years. This book reminded me how to go about it


Breville VKJ428 Black Illuminated Jug Kettle
Breville VKJ428 Black Illuminated Jug Kettle
Price: 28.85

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Breville VKJ428 kettle, 28 Dec 2011
I was so hopeful when I bought this kettle, it had such great reviews in other stores, but it is atrocious. It doesn't pour at all well, so water runs down the outside of the kettle when you are trying to make yourself a cuppa and leaves great big puddles on the work surface and floor if you're not careful. Such a shame.


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