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What Milo Saw
What Milo Saw
Price: £4.72

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Moving debut novel, 31 July 2014
This review is from: What Milo Saw (Kindle Edition)
Nuclear families, degenerating health conditions, infuriating adults and a pig are just some of the problems that Milo has to deal with in Virginia Macgregors debut novel. When Milo's grandmother has to be put in a home Milo tries to find ways to get her home, he enlists the help of an illegal worker in the home and the new lodger and what unravels is a tale of nursing home neglect as well as how a child copes when all around him changes.

There have been a few books that cover children with Aspergers and similar conditions. Here Milo struggles with Retinitis Pigmentosa, which means he can only see through a pinhole and will eventually lose his sight. This device is well employed throughout this well written book. There are a lot of current issues dealt with either directly or indirectly through the book which helps as well as the main character. You can only be moved by Milo as a character and his determination to do things his way. It isn't perfect, the latter chapters seem to lose a bit of focus and for this reader the wrapping up didn't quite fit. However, there is enough here to delight and this is a novel which will have a very passionate readership.

Labor Pains
Labor Pains
Price: £3.29

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Funny but has issues, 16 July 2014
This review is from: Labor Pains (Kindle Edition)
Imagine that you didn't enjoy your job, took no pride in it. Imagine that you felt as if you had a divine right to promotion, despite a lack of effort and willingness. Imagine then that you are annoyed and frustrated that despite your worst efforts you still don't obtain that unworked for promotion. That's the position Kevin Taylor finds himself in. Working in a slightly exaggerated American company Kevin is increasingly frustrated by his job and his inability to get a new one inside or outside the company.

This books follows his descent from couldn't care employee to one that cares only about his possible promotion and abandonment of anything that loosely resembles morals. He hatches various plans and alongside this he sees his personal life fall into chaos and ruin.

This is a funny story. The rant's and satirical digs at working practices are good and funny. However, you really don't feel much empathy with the main character as he is just so disagreeable and unbelievable. So whilst its a great read it misses being a very memorable one because its too far removed from reality that you can't quite empathise when you should.

Delegating Work (20-Minute Manager Series) (20 Minute Manager)
Delegating Work (20-Minute Manager Series) (20 Minute Manager)
Price: £5.39

4.0 out of 5 stars Its a worthwhile short read and is a good starter for the new manager, 16 July 2014
This quick read is fairly no nonsense. It gives some guidelines on delegation, a few scenario's and some further reading. As the title suggests it is a very quick read and 20 minutes is about right. It is all fairly obvious stuff, but it does come with an element of practicality to give the reader something to really put everything into context.

Its a worthwhile short read and is a good starter for the new manager, or reminder for the more experienced one. Don't expect anything revolutionary though. This is good, solid practical advice delivered in quick form fashion.

Price: £2.48

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A funny and sad cautionary tale, 3 July 2014
This review is from: Meatspace (Kindle Edition)
We are constantly connected to the internet these days. Be it through smartphones, tablets or laptops we share our lives with friends, family, acquaintances and strangers. Kitab Balasubramanyam is no different as he tweets every waking hour of his life. The only thing that is different for Kitab is his name is unique, or so he thought. When his namesake who arrives on his doorstep from the other side of the world Kitab is forced into Meatspace, the place where things really happen. He begins to see his life differently and living through his brother Aziz’s stories of travelling to New York to doorstep his tattoo doppelganger he begins to start experiencing life in 3D.

Set in London Nikesh Shukla’s second novel sheds a darkly comedic look at our infatuation with social media. Its funny, sad and quite endearing. Aziz and Kitab are great foils and completely believable as they move from the online world to meatspace. The unravelling narrative is believable and yet altogether absurd. What unfolds is a tale of caution and one that makes you question your social media presence.

Fun and heartfelt this is a novel which resonates in today’s smartphone obsessed society. A true delight that is as funny as it is sad and well worth checking out.

This review was provided thanks to Netgalley and HarperCollins

Curried Chess
Curried Chess
Price: £2.02

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting but not as good as standard chess, 29 Jun 2014
This review is from: Curried Chess (Kindle Edition)
Curried Chess is an interesting proposition. It includes 10 different versions of chess which use the same pieces and board. Each version uses different endgames or different moves to give the traditional game a slight twist. Some are just very simple alterations of the game (rook moves for all for example). Others have strategic alterations or replace the capture of the king with a different winning goal.

10 variations of chess sounds interesting but reading through things liked barbed chess and some of the other variations you almost want to return to the faithful version. There are a couple of variations which lead you to want to try them but as each version only has two page descriptions its not very enticing. Ultimately its an interesting and very short deviation but you won't be blown away by the imagination and probably be returning to the pure form.

The Killer App: Would You Die to be Young Again?
The Killer App: Would You Die to be Young Again?
Price: £2.05

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Ideas over execution, 29 Jun 2014
In the near future British society is in meltdown. The economy is struggling, the environment has been wrecked by us and a new Prime Minister comes to office wanting to make a difference. A businessman and a geneticist team with him to conceive a cloning experiment that they intend to change society and right the ills.
The debut novel by John Writher attempts to bring this science fiction scenario to life. Following the three characters above and having a few twists along the way. The Killer App is a novel that uses this central idea to try and shine a light on some of our current issues and the potential outcomes of them. There is much to enjoy in the story and it is a book that drags you along with the pace. However, the narrative can be clumsy at times with over explanations of motives and a feeling of forced descriptions. It also tells of the experiment and could have told the story on a much bigger scale.
The ideas are very good, the execution a bit sloppy and therefore it feels somewhat like a missed opportunity when it could have been so much more.

The Shape We're In: How Junk Food and Diets are Shortening Our Lives
The Shape We're In: How Junk Food and Diets are Shortening Our Lives
Price: £2.29

16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thought Provoking, 24 Jun 2014
We all know that we are getting fatter. This age of convenience and plenty is leading to bigger waistlines, binge and famine diets and less activity. Sarah Boseley attempts to deconstruct this trend and identify reasons why we seem addicted to the wrong types of food.
The book is primarily focused on the food industry with the examination of diet culture firmly put into second place. There has been a lot of research here with Boseley visiting Wales, America, Mexico and other places to find positive and negative stories. The examination of Mexico, now the most obese country in the world, is particularly fascinating. It highlights the story behind their recently adopted sugar tax and why this is the hope the country has to improve matters. She also points her finger at the advertising of food and looks at how we are bombarded with food images which encourage us to eat badly.
The style is right side of hectoring and really does make you think about the food you eat. There are people out there trying to change things and in this book Boseley not only puts herself firmly amongst them but also manages to shine a light on those who have fought hard against the large corporations. We have so little time these days to consider our eating habits. Books like the impress upon us the importance of doing just that.
Review provided thanks to Guardian Faber Publishing and NetGalley

Look Who's Back
Look Who's Back
Price: £4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Re-rise of the third reich, 14 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Look Who's Back (Kindle Edition)
Look Who's Back imagines that Hitler woke up in the modern era and see the current Germany through his eyes. it attempts to point a satirical finger at the politics, media and everyday life of his country in the first person narrative approach. Rising from grave Hitler becomes a media figure thanks to his feature on a comedy show and this book chronicles his path to understanding the modern world and his media attempts to put his own views across.

For this reader it wasn't laugh out loud funny. However, there were moments that were funny and the book managed to shine a light on the more ridiculous aspects of modern life and in particular the media and the deification of celebrity. However, the narrative isn't entirely believable. A good example of this is the constant reference to how certain aspects of modern life are good because it allows for more German troops.

Hitler was an object of derision and humour for a long time. Many comedians would dress as the Fuhrer and put the comedic boot in. Perhaps Bruno Ganz excellent turn in Downfall turned that around as it was a look inside the horror of Hitler. This book tries the comedic turn and it feels like a step backward at times. It is funny. It is satirically sound. However, it misses the mark at times as, the leading character says on numerous occasions, 'it's no laughing matter'. An interesting concept, an interesting read. However, it just is a bit too forced.

The Cabana Cookbook
The Cabana Cookbook
Price: £8.58

5.0 out of 5 stars Inspiring, 10 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
If you like a cookbook that's attractive, colourful and has recipes that make you want to try them then this is for you. It is a barbecue themed Brazilian cookbook that covers a lot of the original as well as traditional Brazilian fayre. It also has salad's cocktails and sauces. There are some recipes that have alternative methods if they are BBQ based, which is helpful. Instructions are generally easy to follow and the plates that have recipes that go together are great if you are preparing a Brazilian themed meal.

I have tried a few of the recipes and loved the results. I keep wanting to try more. Its colourful and fun with some humour in between the recipes as well as some facts about Brazil. As a starter on Brazilian food I love it and would recommend it as there aren't many difficult to create recipes but they are all rewarding.

Battlefield 4 (PS4)
Battlefield 4 (PS4)
Offered by Gamesbuyer
Price: £47.99

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great Game But.., 27 May 2014
This review is from: Battlefield 4 (PS4) (Video Game)
Battlefield 4 is a potentially great game. Online it has huge maps, massive players, tanks, aircraft etc it really does come into its own. Its an FPS which rewards a bit of thought when you are playing as just running and shooting rarely works. The changing terrain is good. However, it still has problems with its servers and matchmaking. Rubberbanding still exists as does not being able to get on a server or joining a match at the end (pointless). This would be ok if this wasn't a problem on previous versions of Battlefield. EA should have sorted this by now. So a 4 star game due to the online experience.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jul 21, 2014 3:09 PM BST

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