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Content by Rick
Top Reviewer Ranking: 5,615
Helpful Votes: 552

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Reviews Written by
Rick (Suffolk, England)

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Flagship (A Captain's Crucible Book 1)
Flagship (A Captain's Crucible Book 1)
Price: £1.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Mind Expanding Story Telling., 25 Feb. 2016
Isaac has an amazing imagination which I found my own brain couldn't keep up with. There is a magnificent space battle with some mighty clever tactics written in and I found myself wishing I could see it in 3D so I could understand what was going on but that says more about my lack of spacial awareness than any criticism of this book.

It is fair to say that, apart from the gates that allow near instant travel to and from star systems, without which, all sci-fi would be hundreds of years and many generations to simply get there, Isaac works hard to keep the laws of physics real enough to enjoy the story without having to suspend belief too far, after all, for the time being, this is a work of science Fiction.

The story promulgates the idea that other space faring civilisations are never happy to see mankind which is, I suppose, the story line that offers up more scope for an exciting read than meeting a band of traveller who cure all our ills in the first few pages. It seems we like to face death and destruction wherever we go in fact or in fiction.

Book 2,3,4... will no doubt see mankind victorious after the obligatory loss of blood, friends and family... but there is no guarantee.
I look forward to it.


Terminal Phase (Ethan Galaal Book 3)
Terminal Phase (Ethan Galaal Book 3)
Price: £4.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Move over Ian Flemming., 29 Dec. 2015
Isaac displays a more than mildly disturbing vision of terrorism and counter terrorism with remarkable clarity and, I would suggest, some scary insight.

The characters are believable with human strengths and weaknesses unlike a typical super human spy type that can bench press 300 pounds and speak thirteen languages.

With a slight tendency towards extreme detail, this is a well researched creation and the villains of the piece are equally believable and one cannot help but feel some empathy for them even if their methods are unacceptable in a sane world.

Isaac presents a very real world scenario with very little suspension of belief required to thoroughly enjoy the book.
It does beg the question as to how close to a potential real world threat are we because with not much effort, this could read like a memoir of a military intelligence officer in retirement.

It is to be hoped that there are checks in place to prevent any of Isaacs vision coming true but equally, for every lock there is a key and somewhere, a literary mirror image of Isaacs vision may play out to an alternative conclusion and whether this alternative is better or worse than the nail biter Isaac portrays, we must live in hope that the world runs out of mad men before it runs out of people altogether.


Testors Aerosol Enamel Paint 3oz-Dullcote Lacquer
Testors Aerosol Enamel Paint 3oz-Dullcote Lacquer
Offered by Hobbybase
Price: £9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Superb Dull finish., 8 Aug. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
There are some things that need comment about this generic product.
1). The Post Orifce, refuse to handle aerosol cans as I could not buy this product from ANY on-line model shops without HUGE special carrier charge. Well done Amazon but this can arrived in a thin, padded paper bag by Royal Mail.

2) The CAN says 'clear coat' and the removable lid says "Dull coat". It IS, in fact DULL and the finish is absolutely superb.


Beyond Ruinland (Dark Apocalypse Book 5)
Beyond Ruinland (Dark Apocalypse Book 5)
Price: £0.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A very dark read but well worth it., 24 April 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is not a long book so I suggest you download all of them and read end to end.
Thought provoking stuff.


Trumpeter 182 cm x 42 mm Two speed Turntable Display
Trumpeter 182 cm x 42 mm Two speed Turntable Display
Price: £14.99

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simple to modify as required, 24 April 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I bought this table 'blind' in that I wanted to hack it about to provide power to an illuminated Sci-Fi model.
Disassembly is easy. The parts are tough enough to work with and, after fitting some copper tape as slip rings and making up three sets of brushes to eliminate any power interruptions due to iffy contacts, fitting a 2.1mm DC connector, the job was done.
The 1.5 volt motor at 'full speed' takes 30 seconds to make a complete revolution, A diode is switched in for the slower speed which is effective.

Taking 2 off C cells in parallel (never a good idea to parallel up dry cells), I found several hours of use from ONE AA cell (same length as a C cell) though fitting one C cell is all that is required for domestic use, such as displaying a model at a show.
The mirrored top is plastic. The two holes I drilled to bring my DC wires up to the surface tend to show but as I plan to overlay an additional platter for diorama uses, the mirrored plastic I will leave in place as it provides additional rigidity for the turntable.

All in all, I shall most likely but at least one more as my Illuminated model collection grows.
If I have any criticism, I would add three rubber feet, as the base has 5 points of contact with any surface so it will rock and slide about on some surfaces. Easily 5 stars.

The image shows one of several of a tutorial on facebook, how to modify this table. The two LED's in shot are powered from an external 12 volts supply and the table is indeed rotating. The figure is all I had at the time to hold the LED's up.
My bench is usually this messy.
Comment Comment | Permalink


The Mosquito Story
The Mosquito Story
by Martin W. Bowman
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £8.99

4.0 out of 5 stars more like A5 and just about 10mm thick with the heavy ..., 9 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Mosquito Story (Hardcover)
This book is very small, more like A5 and just about 10mm thick with the heavy covers.
Small pages, large text.
For such a major player of WWII aviation, it's a brief Chat, hardly a story.
Expensive for what it is.


WD TV Media Player
WD TV Media Player

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Too technically fragile for commercial sale. Needs a complete software audit., 9 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: WD TV Media Player (Accessory)
This is a technical review based on simply trying to get moving images out of it.
Author is a 62 year old Ex BBC/ITN Broadcast Engineer.

This is my replacement unit as the first was just so creaky and unstable, it had to go.
The NEW unit is not much better. It may go back as "Unfit for Purpose".

Having used the replacement unit for some time, I am deeply disappointed with it and reaffirm my contention that this is a box of almost usable parts connected by poorly written 'glue software' rendering the box useless in a domestic environment for several reasons.
1) IF you ask the unit to do something it can NOT, like look for a network share that simply doesn't exist, the unit is happy to sit for hours (done it) with the rotating arrow. In other words, it has crashed or has no valid watchdog to detect the error.

2) Subsequent operations that require the playing of material, from, say a USB stick which it has previously played, result in "Unknown" codecs for every file on the stick.
The unit needs to be Reset at this stage as it is broken yet cannot recover from the error.
This reminds me of a BUG FIX where NOTHING works after trying to use BBC iPlayer.

3) IF you have a previously played USB stick or hard drive and you scroll quickly by HOLDING the down button, the unit then decides that ALL of the files are "Unknown" and you need a reset to regain control.
If you have a large number of files on the stick / drive, you can get frustrated selecting a file to view as it SEEMS that the unit cannot be hurried before moving to the next file else it crashes the software that determines which codec to use.

4) The unit takes an age to boot up. IF it seems to boot in a fraction of the usual time, as mine does about 50% of the time, it has FAILED to boot properly and NONE of your files will play, the network is not recognised though you can STILL select web based video features and watch the arrow going round for ever.. Another reset is required.
IF there is no network, WHY show me network based options ?

5) Removal of the USB stick when the unit is OFF seems to upset the stick data structure as subsequent presentation of the stick to a PC will result in a scan to 'fix' the stick. Perhaps the unit does not close the files it is using when it powers down, which is shabby programming.

6) Despite writing copious files to the stick, I would expect that a file marker to tell the unit the correct codec having seen the file once, rather than have to scan the file each and every time, would not be impossible. This is truly a racehorse design by committee that ends up with a camel.

7) An Ejected device cannot be reselected until it is electrically removed and plugged back in.
An option to "rescan USB ports" would work but this simply reaffirms my statement that this is lots of software and hardware 'lumps' cobbled together into a fairly useless object.
IF you are not actually WRITING to the stick, there is no need to to formally eject it as there is no WRITE CACHE to empty and, because what files that ARE written are small, these can be completed as there are no time critical operations going on that demand the Write process be held up. Smells of windows operating system here as Linux does this much better.

8) Menu Navigation within the (many that do not work in the UK ). 'features' is appalling where 'Back', rather that step one pace backwards takes you back to the main screen as IF you had just switched the unit on requiring a LOT of drilling to get back to where you were... IF you can remember where you were. In other places, BACK does what you expect.

9) I would expect this unit to be as good if not better than the lowest quality FREE PC media player and frankly, it has NOTHING to recommend it over MPCSTAR which IS free and offers screen grabs and single frame step forwards and backwards on any file I have thrown at it, and handles more media files that the WD device which cannot even handle Windows WMF files.
My humble laptop with an HDMI output can do everything this unit does and a LOT better and faster.

10) I would expect the USB outputs to be capable of providing much more current to an external device than it can. There is no reason why I SHOULD have to use both USB outputs to power ONE external drive unless the USB port is one of the "parts" bolted on to do a job with no thought given to what is likely to be connected, like potentially power thirsty, older drives.

11) Overall, there are more things wrong with this box that right.
I hate it because had I beta tested this unit, it would not have a fraction of the Gotchas and breaks it clearly has.
This says more about the end product testing done by Western Digital than it does about me as I believe that a product such as this SHOULD be intuitive and not reliant on pre-knowledge of the reasons why Operating Systems fail and how to get round them.

This would be a great Raspberry Pi project to show at a school technology fair but as a commercial product from an allegedly reputable company, it is shameful.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 11, 2015 10:40 AM GMT


Enter Ruinland (Dark Apocalypse Book 1)
Enter Ruinland (Dark Apocalypse Book 1)
Price: £0.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I wish it were a lot longer, 27 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This is believable sci-fi in that it all seems possible and frighteningly so.

I am an Evolutionist so I appreciate the science over faith and religion angle which may not go down well in bible states in the USA that would, if modern law allowed it, burn you at the stake for blasphemy, (rather than just sack you … as they do, I know. I have relatives in the USA who lave lost their job for not being a church goer.. sickening).

One of the (very) few books that, despite it brevity (I wish it were a lot longer), can stand a really good discussion with pals over a coffee or something stronger.

Would you put your life in the hands of a machine with autonomous intelligence, rather like the 'smart bomb' in “Dark Star” which became self aware and said “Let there be light”.. and detonated in the ship?

I look forward to more from CJ.


Novelty Tattoo Sleeves Set of 2 (colour and styles may vary)
Novelty Tattoo Sleeves Set of 2 (colour and styles may vary)
Offered by SHINA
Price: £1.89

4.0 out of 5 stars Better than expected, 14 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Bought to shock at a work reunion, these are just great.
They keep your arms toasty warm too !
Very realistic. Fooled everyone.
Good quality too. Very comfortable to wear.


2 X MAGIC OVEN GLOVE HIGH HEAT FLAME RESISTANT COOK ADJUST REPAIR & WORK SAFLEY CAN WITHSATND UPTO TEMPERATURES OF 540°F !
2 X MAGIC OVEN GLOVE HIGH HEAT FLAME RESISTANT COOK ADJUST REPAIR & WORK SAFLEY CAN WITHSATND UPTO TEMPERATURES OF 540°F !
Offered by Buy a Bargain
Price: £6.60

4.0 out of 5 stars Work a treat., 14 Oct. 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Non slip ribs make certain you keep a good hold of whatever you take from the oven.
Note however, that if you get them wet, the water conducts heat, so you could get a scald.
Not the fault of the glove. Just be aware.
A safe buy.


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