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Clem Neville (England)

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The Labyrinth: Volume 2 (Winter Woods)
The Labyrinth: Volume 2 (Winter Woods)
by Joni Mayhan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.48

5.0 out of 5 stars A great follow up to volume 1 in the Winter Woods trilogy, 17 Feb. 2015
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Loved the first volume of the Winter Woods trilogy about twin sisters Winter and Summer and their paranormal experiences in the town of Harmony, Indiana and this carries at the same frenetic speed. It would be easy to criticise certain aspects of plot or dialogue in what is a light, easy read. It can be read at a single sitting if you are in the mood. It keeps you held and wanting to find out what happens next. Perhaps this style may be at the expense of providing more in depth, emotional content to increase the tension by building slowly to the events that are presented instead much more straightforwardly. To me it does not detract from the enjoyment of the story, and there are lots of deep and meaningful, slow burners when the fancy takes me.

My only disappointment is that the price of the printed version has gone up by 50% over the price of the first volume when I initially purchased it, although this is also now priced at the same level. I am sure from a commercial point of view the author has little choice, with no doubt Amazon always making the best return for themselves. It is good that the system allows books from non mainstream authors to reach consumers in this way, but the danger is the price will prevent those first impulse buys to try out an author. I am generally prepared to take a chance at the £5.99 - £6.99 range, but at around £10 would be less inclined. Hey, ho, I am glad to have found Joni Mayhan and I have already started on volume 3.


Es gibt hier keine Kinder: Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen, Buchenwald : Zeichnungen eines kindlichen Historikers
Es gibt hier keine Kinder: Auschwitz, Gross-Rosen, Buchenwald : Zeichnungen eines kindlichen Historikers
by Thomas Geve
Edition: Hardcover

5.0 out of 5 stars Why so long out of print? - A fascinating view that should be available generally, 2 Feb. 2015
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An amazing book of illustrations by a 13 year old boy recalling his time spent in Auschwitz and Buchenwald death camps. The style is reminiscent of the match stick figures of L S Lowry, which makes the horror of the subject matter even more poignant. Published in Germany in 1997 the text is in German, Hebrew and English. Whilst the captions on each page beneath the 79 illustrations is only in German, these are also provided in English and Hebrew in a list at the end of the book. As far as I can tell this book is long and of print and has never been re-printed since the first edition. With the drawings now in the care of the Yad Vashem Museum in Jerusalem having subsequently been restored and conserved, I am amazed that no new copies have been circulated, particularly in this the 70th year since the liberation of Auschwitz. As a child's artistic perspective on the death and concentration camps surely this book would find an ideal place as a part of a school age education programme?


Elizabeth is Missing
Elizabeth is Missing
by Emma Healey
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.85

5.0 out of 5 stars Original, thoughtful, worrying and well worth reading, 1 Feb. 2015
This review is from: Elizabeth is Missing (Paperback)
A detective mystery type novel with genuine originality is not an easy scenario to achieve, yet that is what Emma Healey has done. OK, there are other novels with a main character of 70, 80, 90 plus, but they are usually spry, young at heart, amazing for their age, Miss Marple's on Benzedrine. But Maud is frail and forgetful, to the point of forgetting almost immediately what the notes she writes herself as reminders are about, when she wrote them, or how many times she has repeated these actions already. Yet it remains totally believable, frighteningly so in terms of the potential impact we all face. The frustration of her daughter Helen leaves the pages and becomes the readers own frustration with the character of Maud, to the point where it seemed so real I almost felt I could not continue reading the story. Yet all the while interwoven into the everyday, exasperated lives of Maud and Helen is a 70 year old murder story that you want to see revealed. So you get over the frustration and keep going, just like the characters in the book do. In real life when confronted by this descent into old age and approaching dementia you realise how helpless we can all become, whether as a victim or as an observer.


Raising Steam: (Discworld novel 40) (Discworld series)
Raising Steam: (Discworld novel 40) (Discworld series)
Price: £4.49

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Time to discover new worlds?, 1 Feb. 2015
I am not a passionate Discworld fan, and have certainly not read them all, but even from my incomplete and intermittent perusals of the opus of Discworld Raising Steam jarred. I am not sufficiently dyed in the wool of Discworld to make the comparisons with previous novels in the series that other reviewers have made, but I doubt that if this manuscript had been presented to a publisher by an unknown author that it would have been accepted. It lacks in originality and vitality, almost with a feeling of having been produced merely because it was expected, which I do not believe to be the case. I never escaped the opening which left me unable to shake off a Michael Palin Ripping Yarns plot and character portrayal.

It is too easy to criticise because of all that has gone before and I understand why an author would want to continue doing what he loves. The problem is that makes comparisons and perceived failures all too obvious. For that reason would it not be better for the groundwork to be laid for
an all new series which goes in an entirely different direction and for which a collaborative author could continue on at some point in the
future? Then fans, old and new, could once again become involved in providing input as they have done with the guides and maps for this one.


The Miniaturist
The Miniaturist
by Jessie Burton
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.85

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliantly entertaining, 1 Feb. 2015
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This review is from: The Miniaturist (Paperback)
I read this in a matter of days having been so completely captivated by it and anxious to reach the outcome, it came as something of a shock to read some of the negative feedback comments on Amazon. It always comes as a shock when something that has been such an entertaining and rewarding experience personally, has been criticised so strongly be others. Like anything creative, books, paintings, photographs, films, fashion, marmite that is how it goes. Who cares if, as others have asserted, there may be some minor historical errors. Although those people may well be in error themselves from the odd details I double checked. For instance the complaint from one reviewer that Whippets as a breed of dog did not appear until the 19th century is at odds with a Wikipedia entry which states that the dogs could probably trace their lineage back to ancient Egypt and the written English use of the word Whippet to 1610. So perhaps for the rich society of Amsterdam a Whippet could have been an item of hairy bling? Mind you that is Wikipedia, so I could have made the entry myself to prove a point. Except I am of the opinion that you should never let being picky get in the way of a good read. And a good read is what it is. I hope that there is a follow up in progress to find out more about the miniaturist, the fates of Nella, Cornelia and the other characters and of course what the future holds for the loyal Whippets.


Vilac Pocket Kite
Vilac Pocket Kite

4.0 out of 5 stars Hopefully more durable than a conventional kite, 26 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: Vilac Pocket Kite (Baby Product)
Nicely packaged and easy to take in a pocket just in case when going out for a walk. Purchased to replace a more conventional kite with bracing spars, which was broken within minutes by the small person. This should be more durable.


Kids Disney Toy Story Umrella
Kids Disney Toy Story Umrella
Offered by MacIntyre
Price: £6.78

4.0 out of 5 stars Lightweight but a reasonable price, 26 Jan. 2015
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Plastic and lightweight construction but reasonable for the cost, with good quality colour printing. In my experience small children are capable of demolishing even the toughest of much more expensive offerings, so this seems a better solution.


The Polar Express 2015 Calendar
The Polar Express 2015 Calendar
by Browntrout Publishers
Edition: Calendar
Price: £11.68

5.0 out of 5 stars Good gift to go with the book and DVD, 26 Jan. 2015
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Purchased as a gift to go with a Polar Express illustrated book. Well printed and an all year round reminder one of a small person's favourite films.


Yankee Candle Bucket Votive Holder (Mauve)
Yankee Candle Bucket Votive Holder (Mauve)

3.0 out of 5 stars Beauty may only be skin deep, 23 Jan. 2015
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Feels solid but the "do not wash" sticker makes me think the colour is merely a surface application rather than coloured glass.


American Road Trip 2015 Calendar: A Year in Cross Country Adventure
American Road Trip 2015 Calendar: A Year in Cross Country Adventure
by Graphique De France
Edition: Calendar

3.0 out of 5 stars Bland selection of images given the almost limitless choice available, 23 Jan. 2015
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Purchased as a gift, the image selection, given an entire continent to choose from, could have been better and would not convince me to take a road trip.


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