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Mr Roger J L Varley

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The Drowning
The Drowning
Price: £3.21

3.0 out of 5 stars Moderatly enjoyable read but romance is not Mr Herley's forte, 24 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: The Drowning (Kindle Edition)
Richard Herley is one of my favourite e-authors. I loved The Penal Colony, The Refuge and the first 2 of the Pagans trilogy which are where his strengths lie - good old fashioned stories of 'man struggling against all odds'. My first reservations about his work kicked in with The Tide Mill and continued here with the Drowning. He always has a tendency to get bogged down in detail but I don't mind this when he's concentrating on the English countryside, historic facts, technical stuff etc. But when he enters the realms of affairs of the heart,, this tendency can go over the top. The essential premise (as in Tide Mill) is when, if ever, will the 2 true lovers ever get together. The continuous near misses are almost farce-like ( I think he must have been a fan of Vince and Penny in Just Good Friends!) but it's the minute exploration of the innermost thoughts of the protagonists that I find particularly grating. Unfortunately, Mr Herley takes this new direction to even greater extremes with Darling Brenda, so unfortunately my star ratings of his work have steadily declined!!


The Fall: Series 1 And 2 [DVD]
The Fall: Series 1 And 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Gillian Anderson
Offered by 101Trading
Price: £18.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent viewing and brilliantly acted, 24 Jan. 2015
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I missed Series 1 on TV but decided to give Series 2 a try when it was aired. I was immediately hooked and never greatly confused thanks to the detailed catch-up at the start of episode 1. So as soon as it finished I wanted to see what I'd missed with Series 1. The standard throughout both series is of the highest quality (by comparison, I'm struggling and disappointed with Series 2 of Broadchurch having also missed Series 1!!). Where Series 2 is essentially about the mesmerising dance between the murderer and his pursuer, Series 1 focuses more on the states of mind of the same 2 characters as the creepiness of the crimes is ratcheted up. Both series avoid the temptation to show the horrific murders in too much graphic detail and this seem to increase the shock levels. The acting throughout from the whole cast is terrific but Gillian Anderson and Jamie Dornan are magnetic. I'm now looking forward to re-running the second series in correct order and probably repeating both after that!! It really is an excellent piece.


The Pianist (2 Disc Special Edition) [DVD] [2003]
The Pianist (2 Disc Special Edition) [DVD] [2003]
Dvd ~ Adrien Brody
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £3.60

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Stunning, 24 Jan. 2015
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This is one very fine film and quite possibly the best of those I've seen about the horrors of the Nazi persecution of Jewish people. The film is both harrowing and uplifting. The resilience and hopefulness of the main character and the warmth of those who helped him always manage to shine through and, as a result, the film remains very watchable throughout. This is gripping stuff and one of the most rewarding films I've seen for a long time. The quality of the acting from an enormous "who's who" cast is exceptional even in the smallest parts and Adrien Brody's performance is stunningly good.


The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared [DVD]
The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out The Window And Disappeared [DVD]
Dvd ~ Robert Gustafsson
Price: £5.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious and faithful adaptation of a wonderful book, 24 Jan. 2015
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Loved the book and loved the film. I was keen to discover how a book that sprawls over some of the major historic events of the last 100 years would be treated on film and was not disappointed. The film faithfully follows the book, cutting (to my recollection) only one of the major historic figures and events. I'm especially pleased that the film does not lose the book's clever ability to exploit the facts to hilarious effect and yet retain a hint of truthfulness. This is a wonderful farce that made me feel at times that these events could really have happened like that and at other times made me roar with laughter. Great fun.


Darling Brenda
Darling Brenda
Price: £3.21

2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing. Overly cloying stuff from one of my favourite e-authors., 24 Jan. 2015
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This review is from: Darling Brenda (Kindle Edition)
As a big fan of Mr Herley's work, I was very disappointed by Darling Brenda. He often has a tendency to over-analyse everything he writes about but I don't mind this when he's describing the English countryside, historic facts, technical stuff etc. When, as in Darling Brenda, he's writing about affairs of the heart, his writing can sometimes fall into repetitive mush that feels like wading through molasses. For me, his best works are when he writes about 'man against all odds', such as The Penal Colony, The Refuge and the fist 2 of the Pagans trilogy. I first started to have reservations about his work when I read The Tide Mill with it's constant repetitive passages examining the innermost emotions of the main characters as they skirt around the question of whether they will ever be able to express their love for each other. Regrettably, Darling Brenda takes this same premise to extremes - will the nice, kind man ever win over the damaged gay woman who previously thought she was confident about her sexuality.. I do hope Mr Herley can get back on track soon.


2013 Nike M9 Cart Trolley Golf Bag Blackend Blue/White-Photo Blue
2013 Nike M9 Cart Trolley Golf Bag Blackend Blue/White-Photo Blue

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent trolley bag, 20 May 2014
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The bag sits so much better on my electric trolley than my old Nike carry bag but seems to be built to the same high standards. There's a pocket for everything and the layout is very well thought-out. My only minor criticism is that once the bag is sitting on the trolley, my umbrella is difficult to get at and the 3 small secure points for the umbrella are a little tricky to reposition after use - a criticism I could also level at my old Nike carry bag. I used the bag in the rain for the first time this week and all my kit stayed dry. Overall very satisfied.


Performs the Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett
Performs the Cautionary Tales of Mark Oliver Everett
Offered by ____THE_BEST_ON_DVD____
Price: £7.29

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The finest songwriter since Lennon - this would be 5^ for any other performer and may yet become 5* for me!!, 2 May 2014
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I'd give 5* for an album of this quality from any other performer but Eels set such high standards that, so far, I must be harsh with just 4^. I own and love every Eels album and finally got to see the band last year on the Wonderful Glorious tour and it was one of my all-time favourite gigs - that 5* album is still regularly playing on my car CD. The latest album is back to the more introspective and slower tempo style of Eels' earlier works and so, after the up-tempo and more collaborative Wonderful Glorious, I was a little surprised by this album. But that's Eels - they can rock with the best or wring you out with the most beautiful, heartfelt songs. I've been simultaneously listening to Cautionary Tales and reading E's autobiography (Things the Grandchildren Should Know) and having finished the book, the new album seems to gain even greater relevance; every song reads like another episode from E's remarkable, tragic but hope-filled life. After a few more plays, there's a real danger that this will become another 5*!!


Things The Grandchildren Should Know
Things The Grandchildren Should Know
by Mark Everett
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.98

5.0 out of 5 stars Hate autobiographies normally; LOVED this!, 2 May 2014
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I've only ever read one other autobiography - one of Barack Obama's! I shy away from them on the basis that I expect they'll reflect an overblown sense of self-worth and celebrity but that's the very last criticism that could be levelled at Everett's work (if not Obama's!). As a massive fan of E and his band Eels, I thought I knew something of the tragedy that has often engulfed him but it was just the tip of an iceberg. The raw courage with which he has clearly faced the many tragedies, struggles and disappointments in his life is matched by the raw honesty of the telling of his story. Is it any wonder that he is probably the greatest writer of autobiographical and social commentary songs since Lennon?!


Farah Vintage Bexley Patterned Men's Shirt Cream Medium
Farah Vintage Bexley Patterned Men's Shirt Cream Medium

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Very hapy with my comfortable, good looking and great value shirt, 14 Jan. 2014
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It's so hard at the moment to find smart casual shirts in a pale colour without too much pattern (I wanted one to go under a plain dark brown cord jacket). This seemed to fit the bill at an excellent price. I was initially a little wary at how open the weave is - even more open than an Oxford style BUT it feels completely different on - very smooth, light and comfortable. I like the pattern and my medium fit is perfect, including body and sleeve length - my main problem area with casual shirts (I'm just over 6ft and 38 chest.). Never bought smart shirts by internet before but I'm very happy with this.


Tales of Us
Tales of Us
Price: £5.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully haunting songs but the whole album is a little too one-paced, 23 Oct. 2013
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This review is from: Tales of Us (Audio CD)
I love all Goldfrapp's albums and agree with the other reviewers who say this is a welcome return to the early Felt Mountain days. Alison's haunting vocals and the beautiful production are dreamy throughout and will no doubt get picked off again for use as TV background music. A bonus is that the lyrical content is more important than on some of their albums. I love every number individually but I just find that when listening to the album straight through, there is no great variety in the mood or tempo. The complete lack of danceable or German umpah numbers make this an album for either piecemeal or late night headphone listening!!
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 23, 2014 9:07 PM GMT


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