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Torchwood - Miracle Day (Series 4) [DVD]
Torchwood - Miracle Day (Series 4) [DVD]
Dvd ~ Eve Myles
Offered by themediamerchants
Price: 13.40

16 of 22 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Definitely not the Torchwood that I know and love, 23 Mar 2012
Too American, too long, too little happening......what more can I say. Just so not the TW that I fell in love with. I really hope that's it, TW is dead and buried. Best thing that could happen to it after this travesty of a series.

In My Dreams
In My Dreams
Price: 5.00

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very happy to support this great cause, 16 Mar 2012
This review is from: In My Dreams (Audio CD)
I'm so pleased that the Military Wives have followed up their amazing success with an album. I pre-ordered as soon as it was listed, and good old Amazon dispatched ahead of schedule. I felt as though I'd been given a sneak preview! I love the album. The tracks are well sung and beautifully arranged. It doesn't have quite the same "WOW" factor for me as the single did, but then quite honestly what could? The waif-like Sam Stevenson's solo brought out emotions that I didn't know I had. But well done Gareth and ladies, and I look forward to a follow-up TV series and more music very soon!

Hollow Earth (Hollow Earth 1)
Hollow Earth (Hollow Earth 1)
by John Barrowman
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.24

14 of 30 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Glee Didn't Last Long for me, 23 Feb 2012
I had been waiting forever, and so dove in with glee. Alas, the glee didn't last for long....

The language and terminology used are very heavily American, surprisingly so for a story supposedly set wholly in the OK, and written by British authors. There are nouns such as "nightstand" and "worktable", "realization" with a z instead of an s, and "leaped" as in "steeped" instead of "leapt" as in "kept". Even worse, there are typos. The twins' mum's name changes inexplicably towards the end of Chapter 6 from Sandie to Sandy and back again. For such a key character, that's bad. All of these should have been weeded out at the latest, by the end of proofreading.

There is next to no plot resolution. Okay, I know there are more books (and possibly a TV series) to come, but I had no real sense of satisfaction at the end, probably because so much was still up in the air. I'm not comparing this book to Harry Potter (although the authors would probably like me to do so, and favourably!), but each of those is a story in its own right. Same with Alex Rider, and practically every other series fiction I can think of. Much more of an episode than an instalment, I thought.

One really strange thing, for me, was the complete lack of mention of any schooling for the children. I still can't work out how, if at all, they are educated, and if they are not, then this would certainly attract the attention of the authorities. Homeschooling is still quite unusual in the UK.

The chapters are extremely short, and I found this really irritating, as so little seemed to happen in each of them. I read a number of chapters through the middle of the book, and honestly couldn't tell you a single thing that happened in them. Worse still, I didn't care. In the end, it was a bit of a relief to have it finished.

I then lent my copy to a couple of kids that I know. The older one read it, didn't like it very much, and immediately returned to more conventional teenage fiction. The younger one read the first few chapters and then gave up. There was really nothing there to sustain the effort of reading.

I did like the character Solon, and felt that more could have been done to weave his story into the plot.

This is really bog-standard, cheap end, mass market fiction, and is just the sort of thing you get when an actor/entertainer ventures into writing. So, in the nicest possible way John, don't give up the day job!

Finally, I rated it as a 1 and not a 2, which would have been my instinctive award, NOT because I hated it, but just to balance out the saccharine 5 star reviews that are already on here, which I really felt were totally undeserved.
Comment Comments (9) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 4, 2012 11:00 PM BST

I Am What I Am
I Am What I Am
by John Barrowman
Edition: Hardcover

6 of 16 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars JBMeganFan Mark 2, 3 Oct 2009
This review is from: I Am What I Am (Hardcover)
Well, I suppose that the previous reviewer's moniker (JBMegaFan) could apply equally to me. I've been to nearly everything that John has done in the last six years, after I saw him in the National Theatre's revival of Anything Goes. I'm a big fan of musical theatre, but had never followed an individual performer before, so this was very much new ground for me. I couldn't tell you how many hours I've spent following the Barrowman in time since then, let alone the money I've spent.

I must confess to a sense of impatience when the book didn't arrive on time. Having pre-ordered months ago, I was eagerly anticipating it, and so I couldn't help feeling like the child that Santa forgot. Days went by, and still no book. Eventually I learned that the delay was because some last-minute amendments had not been signed off in time to meet the printing schedules. Ho hum...

One week after the promised date, and my book was with me. I cleared everything non-essential out of my diary, and started to read.

And this is where I part company with JBMegaFan. I have to say, that I found the whole thing a real disappointment. And here's why.

With its large font, generous spacing and short chapters, I was done in less than three hours. I found the book completely lacking in substance. I've heard many of the stories before, and believe me they are much funnier when John tells them in person. I was hoping for so much more in terms of content than this volume delivered. I almost feel cheated that I've spent time and money rereading old material. The footnotes, that I found so amusing in the first book, were banal and irritating this time around. And the obsessive compulsive in me was, quite frankly, annoyed by the many factual and chronological inaccuracies. We all know that John is not the world's greatest historian, but really, the last three years of his career are so well documented that it wouldn't have been hard to verify the detail.

The content is light, fluffy and airy, and could never be considered to be a serious read. It comes across as very rushed and lacking in focus. It was rather like reading one of those cheap weekly magazines, or the worst of the red-top press. The fact that the book was barely a year from conception to publication is, I feel, a major contributing factor here - the very best things in life should not be subjected to the clock.

Even the incident John refers to as "Ballgate" (the Radio 1 debacle last December where he exposed himself in the radio studio), reads as though he blames the media for the ensuing scandal, and appears to absolve himself of responsibility for his actions. I count myself as a loyal fan but really, I can't be that loyal. He gave the press the ammunition they needed, the moment he opened his flies. The fact that the incident was only heard and not seen is completely irrelevant. Apologise and move on, John. Everyone else has.

Finally, and probably most importantly for me, the book just didn't sound like John. It sounds like Carole. Which I don't have a problem with as such, but then it's not an autobiography, is it?

So I for one, won't be queuing up to pre-order volume three, if there is one. I'll just carry on watching and listening to the real thing. That's worthy of so much more than this book delivers.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 7, 2009 5:55 PM BST

Anything Goes: The Autobiography
Anything Goes: The Autobiography
by John Barrowman
Edition: Hardcover

53 of 60 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An invitation....., 18 Jan 2008
As a long-time fan of John, I have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of his autobiography. It seems an age ago that the announcement was first made. In reality, it was only last June. Imagine the lovely surprise then, when I arrived home from work yesterday, and there it was, my copy of the book, a whole week ahead of schedule!

First impressions are good. The front cover has a true-to life photo of John looking natural and very happy. Colour theme is blue and silver - his colours, and very classy.

The book is short - just 245 pages, so no room for wasted words! Many more pictures inside. And a final treat - on the back cover one of him as a boy, one as Captain Jack, and one of him in his bathers!!!!! At that stage, I melted all over the floor.

And so, at 11pm last night, I started to read. And I just HAD to finish in one go. Forgive me if I'm not making sense today; I turned the last page at 4am. I don't ever do well on two hours' sleep, as my family will testify. But maybe adrenaline is keeping me going, or perhaps some of John's legendary energy levels evaporated off the pages and into my brain, because I really don't feel too bad today.

In the introduction, John asks us to imagine that we're sitting in our pyjamas in the lounge of his Cardiff sitting room, sharing a drink, some music and the memories. That's almost an invitation isn't it??????

The book is divided into chapters, each named after a song from some of John's favourite musicals. So themes such as "Being Alive", "Live, Laugh, Love" and "High, Flying Adored" very aptly set the scene for what is to come.

The events described in the book are not arranged in chronological sequence, but as a series of reminiscences. So I found myself travelling, to and fro in time, as the themes developed. Good job Captain Jack is a Time Agent!

The style of the book is witty and intelligent, with just the right blend of content and comedy. I can imagine that John and his sister Carole had much fun and many a laugh whilst writing! I had quite a few laughs myself too.

What a life! John has packed more into his 40 years than many of us would struggle to manage in 400. John's explanation for this is simple, his mother taught him that, "You're a long time dead, son. You can sleep when you're dead." It's hard to imagine that John currently gets any sleep at all.

If the book has a down side, then for me it's that there's very little of John the man. I have seen and heard John many times, met him a few, and follow him in the media, albeit here with a very large shed load of salt. I have therefore heard many of the stories and anecdotes before, and for me there was very little new material. What I had been hoping for from the book was this: a better insight into the beautiful person, inside and out, that John is. His thoughts, feelings, opinions and emotions. I didn't get it. The content is very action and event-oriented. I finished the book feeling a tad disappointed that I didn't actually know John the person any better than when I started it.

All in all though, a very enjoyable and worthwhile read. The true value of the book for me is that at last I have this collection of stories direct from John's mouth, and all together in one place. That's worth its weight in gold.

And hey, this is theatre, so it's not all over till the fat lady sings. There's always Act 2, so bring it on, John and Carole!!!!

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