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Ozeri Pro II Digital Kitchen Scale in Stylish Black, 1g to 12 lbs / 5.5 kg Capacity, with countdown Kitchen Timer
Ozeri Pro II Digital Kitchen Scale in Stylish Black, 1g to 12 lbs / 5.5 kg Capacity, with countdown Kitchen Timer
Offered by Ozeri UK
Price: £24.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant and stylish!, 16 Oct 2013
I'm not going to lie- because of The Great British Bake Off, I'm in a baking frenzy at the moment. Our old scales were unreliable and elderly, so I wanted something light and easy to use. This set of scales fit the bill perfectly! I like how accurate they are and also like the timer feature, too.

The Day of the Locust
The Day of the Locust
Price: £0.77

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Interesting story, terrible edition, 12 Mar 2012
I bought this, expecting an interesting read. And it is. Sort of. It's a bit of a disjointed narrative, but once you get used to it, it's not too bad (although not terribly exciting and a bit confusing at times! I wanted stuff to 'happen', but it never really did.)

The real problem with this edition is that it is really poorly edited; all sorts of mistakes littered the story, which was distracting and annoying. I'd recommend that you pick up a cheap paperback copy- at least there will have been a hope of an editor and proof-reader getting their hands on it first!

The Night Circus (Vintage Magic)
The Night Circus (Vintage Magic)
Price: £3.67

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A book that wishes it was a film, 13 Feb 2012
This book looks beautiful in the bookshop and I obviously did judge it by its cover. Unfortunately, the contents did not live up to the hype. It says something when the accompanying online game is more interesting than the the novel it is based on.

The descriptions are beautiful and really make the circus come alive- I can see this being made as a film by Tim Burton, what with the black and white stripes dominating the landscape. The author has written a book that wants to be a film, rather than a novel.

But the story itself is a bit... flat. The focus was all over the place: time-wise, character-wise, geographically. It was a bit hard to follow at times what was going on. There are a lot of characters and a lot of layers; this is not necessarily a bad thing, but could get a bit much at times. I also felt that some of the characters were sort of dropped by the wayside as the story moved on and some events not properly explained, which was a bit of a shame really.

All in all, probably not worth the hype- wait until it's died down!

When God was a Rabbit
When God was a Rabbit
by Sarah Winman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.09

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Not terribly impressed, 13 Feb 2012
This review is from: When God was a Rabbit (Paperback)
I am almost finished with this book and I must say, it has failed to live up to the hype. As others have said, it's a jumble of a novel and one that is immensely unsatisfying. There are also a few things that annoy me in books that I've come across here.

- Small children do not talk the way that Elly does as a four year old. I'm sorry, but it really rankles me when toddlers speak better than some adults.

- I have spotted numerous errors in the actual novel. (For example, Elly 'peaks' round a corner, rather than 'peeks') and there are lazy typeset and apostrophe errors. I know that this might not be the author's fault, but when I am already disaffected with a book, it's going to grate on my nerves.

- The chances of Elly knowing someone who suffers the fate of at least one of the peripheral characters would be remarkable, but knowing four characters involved in such events is mind numbingly unlucky. There's too much going on!

- I don't like the character of Elly. I can't quite put my finger on why, but I don't.

This was so hyped up by co-workers in the summer, that I was looking forward to reading it, but sadly it's a bit of a let down. I will keep reading, as it was a Christmas present and I hate to leave any book unfinished. But I am racing to the end so I can read something better!

Courtiers: The Secret History of the Georgian Court
Courtiers: The Secret History of the Georgian Court
Price: £5.39

5.0 out of 5 stars Really fascinating!, 25 Sep 2011
I bought this book when it was in the Amazon Kindle sale, otherwise it wouldn't have even been on my radar. I've never really been into Georgian history.

Then I caught Lucy Worsely on 'Elegance and Decadence' and really enjoyed her style of presenting. I remembered that I had the book and began to read. I found a playful, fun historical read which greatly changed the way I see the Georgian court and Kensington Palace.

The author uses the mural of courtiers on the staircase of Kensington Palace as a launching pad to tell the stories of Kings George I and II, their entourages and their staff. There is an almost gossipy tone, which can make you forget you're reading a 'proper' history book. Worsely seems genuinely fond of some of her subjects (I especially loved Queen Caroline, described as 'fat and funny') and this shines through in her descriptions of their day to day lives.

I really enjoyed it. So much so, that at least one of my friends will be getting this as a birthday present!

Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition)
Night of Hunters (Deluxe Edition)
Price: £14.18

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A definite grower, 25 Sep 2011
I love Tori Amos, almost to the point of obsession, although I don't always like her albums (Abnormally Attracted to Sin was a big let down.) So I was guarded when I first played this.

On first listening, it was pretty overpowering; I was unable to work whilst it was on. I figured it was 'difficult' and left it for a couple of days. I'm glad I did. I'm now listening to it as I type and I think it's a beautiful, interesting album and Tori's voice sounds amazing. I was a bit surprised when I realised that Tori's 11-year-old daughter was singing and couldn't believe that her voice belonged to a little girl.. it's haunting in its own way.

Anyway, it's not my favourite album, but I like it more and more every time I hear it. I think listeners need to be prepared for a bit of hard work and then to be swept away after a few listens. It really is worth it!

The Châtelet Apprentice: The first  Nicolas Le Floch investigation: The First Nicolas Le Floch Investigation (Nicolas Le Floch Investigations)
The Châtelet Apprentice: The first Nicolas Le Floch investigation: The First Nicolas Le Floch Investigation (Nicolas Le Floch Investigations)

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful descriptions, plodding plot, 15 July 2011
I was really excited to read this, as I love historical crime novels. Unfortunately, I was a bit disappointed.

The plot is a bit plodding, which is not helped by some clunky translation and repetitiveness on the part of the author. We are told time and again how much of a 'newcomer' Nicolas is (although earlier on, we're told he's lived in Paris for over a year...) and his sidekick is a bit of a cliche too. I found myself not really caring who had committed various murders or why and I thought the ending was very, very old fashioned. I know that this is set in 18th century Paris, but a bit of imagination would have gone a long way. I also found that a lot of background information was shoehorned in, somewhat clumsily at points, and that this had the effect of being slightly jarring and unnecessary. I did like the use of footnotes though, so I think that should be used throughout instead of rather stilted dialogue.

However, in its defence, I found the descriptions of Paris really vivid and the city came alive in certain chapters. I can also see how the characters could be attractive if you like old-fashioned detective novels. Unfortunately, I don't and so I won't buy the next novel in the series.

Paris: The Secret History
Paris: The Secret History
by Andrew Hussey
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.69

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Generally OK as a starting point, 14 July 2011
I bought this in Paris as I fancied something to read on the area as an introduction to the history of one of the most important cities in the world. I found it quite difficult and dry (and I'm used to reading academic historical texts!), but it did lead me to do my own research.

I felt that some major incidents were glossed over in favour of more trivial generalisations of life in Paris; I felt that certain events in the Revolution, the Terror and World War II could have had more time given to them, especially as these are the events that were so important and famous to those living outside France.

I wanted to know about the seedy underworld of Paris that was promised and although there is a bit of that, there wasn't enough to warrant the title of a 'secret' history. I also agree with some of the other reviewers that Hussey himself creeps in a little bit too much in the main body of the text- an epilogue is fine, but you don't expect a write to pop up in his own chapters! It was a bit unnerving, really, rather than a major distraction.

Overall, a bit disappointed.

The Invention of Murder
The Invention of Murder
by Judith Flanders
Edition: Hardcover

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating, 14 July 2011
Judith Flanders has written a comprehensive and beautifully paced account of the Victorian media's obsession with murder and gore, which has brilliant parallels with today's slightly shady media! It's a great account of how stories of murder fuelled a growing newspaper industry and vice versa. Flanders then details how these fuelled a craze for murder-inspired theatrical shows. It seems that uptight Victorians off all classes loved a juicy story.

Flanders has written about her subject with a gentle wit and excellent sources. Her passion for her work clearly shines through and she doesn't patronise her readers. The only negative I can think of is that some of the passages are quite long and this is a hefty old book, so not a holiday read in the hardback format.

This is a brilliant book for anyone who is interested in Victorian crime and media; it's not a straightforward true crime read and is meticulously researched. I really enjoyed it.

The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders
The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders

4.0 out of 5 stars Not as scandalous as her reputation!, 12 July 2011
I downloaded this book with a very fixed view of what I thought this view would be about- a bit of scandal, a bit of naughtiness and a fair bit of adventure. All three are sort of included in the book, but not as much as the reputation of this novel might have you think, although obviously modern views have probably affected this.

I thought Moll, overall, was a very likeable character and Defoe has written her well. The scenes in prison were well written (which is because of his own experience in the notorious Newgate prison!) and I found that I did sympathise with Moll. However, it can be a difficult and confusing text at points; I got really muddled when one character at one point was called Robin and another Robert... I'm not sure if that's just this free copy or if it's in the original manuscript. The text can also be a bit heavy going too, due to the archaic language used, so it wasn't a book I read when I was tired!

Overall, a good read... just not as scandalous as Defoe might have expected!

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