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B. Hamilton (UK)
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The Office - An American Workplace - Season 8
The Office - An American Workplace - Season 8
Dvd ~ Steve Carell
Offered by brrsales
Price: 16.99

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Dutch Language DVD, 30 Jun 2013
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I'm sure the series itself would be worth 5 stars but this product is in the Dutch language (the seller doesn't seem to know what 'subtitles' means - don't be fooled by the English-language product image because it's not a true representation of what you receive in the post).
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 3, 2013 7:53 PM BST


BLOOD & GLORY: LEGEND
BLOOD & GLORY: LEGEND
Price: 0.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Comic book style gladiator journey, 19 May 2013
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This review is from: BLOOD & GLORY: LEGEND (App)
Great concept, brilliant design and really cool customization items. The first few fights are the tutorial so it gets a bit annoying waiting for those to end but it doesn't take long. Sweeeeeet game


Tron Legacy: Reconfigured
Tron Legacy: Reconfigured
Price: 7.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Original with Bite, 29 Jan 2013
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I don't always buy this sort of music but each track is so refined (without losing the Tron feel to it) that it's like an album of singles. M83 do an awesome cover early into the track list.


York Cast Iron Olympic Weight Set
York Cast Iron Olympic Weight Set

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Last a lifetime, 10 May 2012
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I got this set to focus on bodybuilding at home and am really pleased with it. The bar weighs 20kg and the collars are 2.5kg each. The weights are all packed up well during delivery and the delivery service was also really good - they called ahead etc. If you're looking to get started with bodybuilding, I've found Mike Mentzer's guidance to be the best of all that I've read about the subject.


Confessions of an Infallible Man: The Secret Memoir of Pope Leo X
Confessions of an Infallible Man: The Secret Memoir of Pope Leo X
by Stanley Wallerstein
Edition: Paperback
Price: 8.41

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great insight, 4 Feb 2011
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I really enjoyed reading Pope Leo's memoirs - he discusses, among many other things, his father Lorenzo, Savonarola, his long relationships with Giulio and Michelangelo, his pet elephant Hanno and his experiences of battle and strife in some detail. The way he makes fleeting remarks about others, like Leonardo da Vinci, puts his frame of mind into perspective and really helps you understand the differences between various people of the time. Modern literature can often blur the complex politics existing between every individual of the Renaissance years, which is why it's always very interesting to read firmly one-sided personal account.

Some of the historic detail in this book cannot be found in most of the modern texts written about the time which, again, makes it very worth the read. The reason it doesn't get 5 stars is that, after all, it's a book and should therefore be bearable to look at. This one is pretty ugly and poorly designed - a product of using Lulu publishing perhaps - but the translator gets my thanks all the same for having made Papa Lione's words available to us! The text itself, thankfully, is quite readable. A little bonus to this book is that it includes diagrams (poorly designed, yes) of various ruling families and maps of the time - handy for keeping up with the characters, as everyone at the time was called Giovanni, Giulio or Piero.

I don't know enough to give a proper measure of the translator's merits, but I found the book very straight forward to read with no seemingly awkward sentence structures/vocabulary which is something. He gives a really coherent conclusion to the book, of a few pages, reflecting briefly on modern views of Leo and the decade or so that followed the end of his papal rule.


The Montefeltro Conspiracy: A Renaissance Mystery Decoded
The Montefeltro Conspiracy: A Renaissance Mystery Decoded
by Marcello Simonetta
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 15.50

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars One of a kind, 12 Jan 2011
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The ultimate subject of this book is the 1478 Pazzi Conspiracy, though, as is clearly suggested by its title, it addresses the involvement of the then Duke of Urbino, Federico da Montefeltro, in the arrangements that were made for an attack on the Medici to take place.

I found this book unique for two reasons. Firstly, the author has a personal connection to the narrative he tells. His ancestor, Cicco Simonetta, was advisor to the prominent Sforza family and, as such, plays a key role through the book. You can sense the author's excitement and passion for what he had uncovered, having used a code book written by Cicco so long ago to break a coded letter composed by Federico da Montefeltro himself. The information in this book, therefore, is a new entry in our knowledge of the Italian Renaissance - it is not simply another history book, but a reaction to an incredible find.

Secondly, the book itself is fascinating. The design was clearly given some thought: the paper edges have been left untrimmed, a subtle debossing on the cover, and the grayscale images throughout the text are very well printed and very well selected - 90% of them I haven't even seen anywhere else. Well worth the price.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Aug 3, 2013 6:25 AM BST


The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy (Classics)
The Civilization of the Renaissance in Italy (Classics)
by Jacob Burckhardt
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.04

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 150 years young, 12 Jan 2011
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Of all the books that give a general account of the Renaissance in Italy, I've found this one to be the most entertaining, enlightening and thought-provoking. What I enjoyed most of all is the abundance of specific details in this book, which may be due to its very well-structured contents: it touches on everything and more, and even gets down to the 'nitty gritty' details where it can.

It begins by looking at despots, dynasties, republics and society. Once groups are dealt with, personalities are explored. It then moves into antiquity and the significance of humanism, the classics etc for Italy at the time. The exploration of the world is addressed, followed by categorised information about society - festivals, customs, even a paragraph or two on what measures some women took to improve their appearance. To close, Burckhardt looks at religion, morality, and the general state of mind in renaissance Italy.

I've never read a more information-packed book, full of characters and events; it is by his genius that Burckhardt managed to stitch this altogether so seamlessly.


Proportion: Science, Philosophy, Architecture: Science Philosophy and Architecture
Proportion: Science, Philosophy, Architecture: Science Philosophy and Architecture
by Richard Padovan
Edition: Paperback
Price: 45.74

5.0 out of 5 stars One of few in-depth discussions, 18 July 2010
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It's difficult to find a text that would totally immerse the reader in matters of proportion but, at 370 pages, I think this one does well. It touches on too many issues to list here; all I can say about the book is that it works through numerous practitioners' opinions on proportion and approaches them also from a philosophical stance so that the reader is given two things to consider: the numbers themselves but also the actual meaning of their application in art. Many texts simply consider the formulation of proportional systems and shy away from attempting to say what the actual significance of proportion is. The book comes from an architect's background but the subject itself is nonetheless applicable to all who take interest.


Renaissance Florence on Five Florins a Day
Renaissance Florence on Five Florins a Day
by Charles FitzRoy
Edition: Hardcover
Price: 10.01

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Concise commentary, 18 July 2010
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I enjoyed this very much as a fairly effortless read that covers Renaissance Florence quite generally and even includes some information I haven't come across elsewhere. The book is written as if it were addressing you during the times it describes (making it somewhat light-hearted). With short chapters on each subject, it runs through numerous issues: religion, the day-to-day Florentine life, politics, buildings and attractions, art and artists, executions and crime, tournaments and tradition, and even the surrounding cities or villages - like San Gimignano.

Even if you're keen to study Florence/Tuscany seriously, it is worth having this text for its more specific examples and details of Florentine life, which are difficult to find in most history books on the subject. It includes interesting little notes, excerpts from letters and quotes from characters of the time.

Thames and Hudson always manage to create beautiful books and this one is no different; it's well bound and includes two short sections of colour images as well as smaller black and white images on most of the pages.


The Divine Proportion: A Study in Mathematical Beauty (Dover Books on Mathematics)
The Divine Proportion: A Study in Mathematical Beauty (Dover Books on Mathematics)
by H.E. Huntley
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.14

12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A good one to get with Ghyka's `The Geometry of Art and Life', 6 Mar 2010
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I bought Ghyka's book first, wanting to learn more about the divine proportion/golden section/phi, and was given a good insight into it's role in much of art history and related topics. This book makes a more focussed study of the golden section, all the while discussing the nature of beauty in mathematics. The author suggests that we have two capacities for beauty - one is inborn and the other, acquired (with education). This book offers some of that education - it's up to the reader's grasp of mathematics (mainly in algebra and geometry) as to whether the book will be of use. I have only studied maths at GCSE standard and I found most of the book to be clear enough. Readers of limited mathematical ability who are determined to understand the book in its fullest will surely, with a few google searches, find out the meanings of the very few algebraic tools used in the book - like I did.

The author does a great job with the written side - which has about a 40/60 balance with the maths. He always considers those readers with a modest ability in mathematics and uses examples of poetry now and then to further explain his discussion. Another reason why this book complements Ghyka's is that Huntley gives no examples of phi at work in art, bar the Pantheon, and instead directs his equations to poetry and music, whereas Ghyka heavily illustrates the role of phi in painting and architecture. Huntley makes a better, more in-depth investigation of how phi manifests itself in most, if not all, corners of geometry and even leaves hints for the reader to make further explorations into the drawings in the book. His passion for the subject is evident from every passage and even half way through reading it I felt I'd unlocked a world of further possible experimentation with the golden section.

I also noticed that the book itself is more or less shaped by golden proportions, and the headings of the chapter pages appear to have been typeset with phi in mind - nice touch.


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