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Pablo

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Artillery of Lies
Artillery of Lies
Price: £4.99

1.0 out of 5 stars The perils of buying Part 2 before you have endured Part 1., 6 Jun. 2016
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This review is from: Artillery of Lies (Kindle Edition)
I bought the trilogy on the basis of Robinson's war fiction - which I admire. In fact, I'm not sure if I can say I hated this book - I only got as far as Chapter 3 - by which time I had no interest in the story and a fixed aversion to the 'characters' - who are to a person wooden and implausible. It follows on from The Eldorado Network which was only very slightly better and which I struggled through. There is something freeing about abandoning a book - but unless this would be an experience that you carve, I would give this book a miss and read, instead, some of his straight war fiction.


Eldorado Network
Eldorado Network
Price: £4.99

2.0 out of 5 stars Wooden, limping and decidedly unfunny, 6 Jun. 2016
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This review is from: Eldorado Network (Kindle Edition)
I very much admire Robinson's war stories but this is very different. This tells a story based on fact that ,in it's unvarnished form, is barely credible. The many layers of 'varnish' that Robinson applies obscure that narrative. His 'comic' touch is heavy handed. The dialogue reads like a TV sitcom script from the 80's. I found the 'hero' irritating and the tone of the book unpleasantly 'jaunty'. Compare it with Greene's excellent 'Our Man In Havana' and even two stars seem generous.


Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream
Lyndon Johnson and the American Dream
Price: £6.64

3.0 out of 5 stars Time has not been kind to this biography, 18 May 2016
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I had expected a more thorough analysis of the socio-political dynamic of post war America. There is a somewhat dated feel to the style and quasi Freudian tone of some of the commentary. Despite this speculation, LBJ remains elusive. A man of contrasts and ambiguities, masks that do fall away only reveal other masks. Swift would have recognised a kindred spirit.


Restless: Dispatches from a Lifetime of Adventure
Restless: Dispatches from a Lifetime of Adventure
Price: £3.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Peerless' might have been a more appropriate title for an outstanding book., 5 April 2016
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A remarkable story of a remarkable life - told with modesty and humility. The only downside to reading this book for me was a pervasive sense of opportunities that I had missed and paths down which I had never thought to tread. Now, albeit vicariously, I have explored some of them in my imagination. I felt more participant than passive audience - a companion in adventures I am sorry never to have lived.
The book is engaging from the first page. The prose is lean and spare but illuminated with anecdote, insight and a droll wit. It is book that I know that I will reread.
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Damned Good Show (R.A.F. Quartet Book 3)
Damned Good Show (R.A.F. Quartet Book 3)
Price: £4.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Perhaps not as strong as Parts 1 & 2 of the Quartet but nonetheless enjoyable, 27 Nov. 2015
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Robinson rights with authority about the air war. Although his characters are mostly formulaic there is sufficient depth to the story to keep you reading


La Brava
La Brava
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Leonard close to his best, 27 Nov. 2015
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This review is from: La Brava (Kindle Edition)
A particularly well constructed example of Leonard's considerable narrative gifts - illuminated, as ever, by beautifully atuned dialogue and a sense of time (the eighties) and place (Miami). It would be very hard not to like.


The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins
The Profession of Violence: The Rise and Fall of the Kray Twins
Price: £3.14

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An aggregation of anecdote, 27 Nov. 2015
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This is billed as the 'definitive' study of the Krays - but at the end I felt that neither I nor the author had much insight into the inner world of either of them. It would benefit from tighter editing - one or two of the anecdotes re-appear a chapter or two down the line - occasionally with minor variations. The Krays used to keep a 'scrapbook' of references to them in newspapers. This is essentially a scrap book of anecdote and facts.


Stalin's Englishman: The Lives of Guy Burgess: The Lives of Guy Burgess
Stalin's Englishman: The Lives of Guy Burgess: The Lives of Guy Burgess
Price: £6.99

7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Exhaustive but empty, 10 Oct. 2015
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An exhaustively researched and wide ranging study - a quarter it's length is the list of references. The breadth is impressive the depth of understanding of Burgess is not. It is a catalogue of fact, anecdote and gossip - but at its centre there remains a vacuum. To this extent it is similar to Schindler's List. For all the plaudits that received, it failed to grasp the coexistence and interplay on incompatable impulse. Perhaps people like Schindler and Burgess can only be given three dimensional substance through metaphor or art. If you want a sense of Burgess that is memorable and haunting you are far better employed watching the old but impeccable BBC drama 'An Englishman Abroad' (though the same can not be said of the vacuous Holywood rendition of 'Schindler's List').


Used Songs (1973-1980)
Used Songs (1973-1980)
Price: £4.87

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tom Waits still sings the saddest songs ..., 5 Feb. 2014
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This review is from: Used Songs (1973-1980) (Audio CD)
just as he always has. A simple collection, compared with his later work - but it is, in the Elizabethan sense of the word - truly 'lyrical'.


Super soft blanket/throw. Range of Colours (Purple)
Super soft blanket/throw. Range of Colours (Purple)
Offered by Tumi Latin American Crafts
Price: £39.95

4.0 out of 5 stars Warm and appealing in colour, texture and impact, 5 Feb. 2014
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The finishing of the edges is the only blemish on what is otherwise a very lovely blanket that my daughter loves


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