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Reviews Written by
J. Lyne (Forres, Morayshire United Kingdom)

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The Pocket Scavenger
The Pocket Scavenger
by Keri Smith
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

4.0 out of 5 stars Put down the video games, 16 April 2014
This review is from: The Pocket Scavenger (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It took me a while to get this book. I have been staring at it for a few weeks and reading through the various pages with a feeling of confusion. The introduction tires to sell it as some sort of life changing experience in that if we learn to scavenge then that will allow us to enrich our lives and so on.

The book is designed to be fairly robust, and so comes with a water resistant cover and thicker than normal pages. Each page contains a thing to find and allows a log to be kept of the time, date and location. These things can be physical such as an elastic band, virtual such as a rubbing from a gravestone or virtual as in something that is broken. The reader is then encouraged to write a story about it. Following this there are further tasks which can be performed on each thing by turning the book upside down and reading small notes at the bottom of each page such as "Frame it" or "add a colour based upon a memory associated with the item".

I eventually decided that I was thinking too hard about the Zen-like introduction to the book and the life-changing implications for myself and gave it to my niece whilst I was visiting for a long weekend. She immediately sent most of the day out and about collecting some of the things listed which she brought back and proudly displayed to us and we chatted at great length about them.

Which I guess indirectly achieved the aim of the book. Well played...

1 - Life On The Limit [DVD]
1 - Life On The Limit [DVD]
Dvd ~ Paul Crowder
Price: 10.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Formula 1 how it used to be, 16 April 2014
This review is from: 1 - Life On The Limit [DVD] (DVD)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I remember watching every Formula 1 race when I was younger, yet these days I can take or leave it. This film has brought back memories of those more exciting (although much more dangerous) years.

This documentary takes us on a journey which starts by showing a "horrific" crash during a relatively recent race and then goes back to when Formula 1 started and crashes were indeed horrific and usually fatal. Using clips and interviews with key figures and their families we are taken through the development of safety features which have ensured that the drivers are kept safe whilst maintaining the thrills as much as possible. I can't think of any activity which has been made more entertaining by Health and Safety, but the prevention of fatalities must come above everything else. This film explores the fine balance which was trodden through the years by both management and drivers to keep the sport as popular as it has remained.

A must see for fans of the sport.

My Husband Next Door (Audiogo)
My Husband Next Door (Audiogo)
by Catherine Alliott
Edition: Audio CD
Price: 15.00

3.0 out of 5 stars Quite an entertaining tale, 16 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Being unfamiliar with Women's books I thought I would have a listen to this one and see what my wife enjoys about them so much. Know your enemy and all that!

I struggled to get into the story at first, but as it went on I began to be drawn in to the various characters' back stories and quirks. I even drew a few parallels to some people I know and the situations they are in. Was it realistic? Not really. Was I compelled to finish the story? Not really. Was it "fabulously funny and wonderfully heartwarming"? Neither really.

But overall I did enjoy the story, and in the process may well have learnt a few important details about the female psyche to add to my arsenal for future use...

Men Rock Cut Throat Shavette
Men Rock Cut Throat Shavette
Offered by Gadget Grotto
Price: 9.25

4.0 out of 5 stars Because what man doesn't want to press a sharp blade to his throat?, 16 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have wanted to try "real" shaving for a few years but have not wanted to shell out the money for a full straight razor and all of the other gubbins needed to keep it in a condition suitable to shave. So this device has given me the opportunity to have a go before I take the plunge.

And actually I have discovered that it both works extremely well, and does not require the skill or maintenance (or cost) of a real straight razor.

The kit comes with the razor handle, a pack of double edged blades which require snapping in half before they can be used and a pack of sweets to keep you busy while you wait for the blood to dry out on your face after your first attempts. No instructions on how to shave though which was a bit disappointing.

So a trawl through various YouTube videos yielded the required instructions, and a day or so later I plucked up the courage and had a go. I quickly learned that I needn't have been so nervous. If you follow the instructional videos available and take your time then with a few days of practise you can achieve a finish as good as any multi blade safety razor.

Packs of single edged blades are available on Amazon for a very reasonable amount compared to the cost of safety razor blades, and even if you change the blade every shave (which I recommend) then this is both a very economical and satisfying way to shave.

Philips HairClipper HC5450/83 with DualCut Technology and Titanium Blades
Philips HairClipper HC5450/83 with DualCut Technology and Titanium Blades
Price: 32.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great cutting action with no snags, 16 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I have been a home haircutter for many years now, and have just enough left to review this product.

Over the years I have tried many brands and types of clippers to varying degrees of success. By far and away these are the best. The double action DualCut technology means that they sail through my hair without the snags of my other devices. The battery has so far lasted three cuts with no sign of running out, and you can use it with the cord if the battery does give up half watt through which is handy. The guard locks firmly in place, and if like me you are a self cutter, it gives an even cut with confidence. It is also very adjustable lengthwise with 1mm steps and includes some beard attachments which I have not used.

I found that (like most of my previous cutters) the guard can fill with hair and therefore needs clearing out half way through a cut. I also think that the case is a bit of a joke - it is well made but the insert which holds everything in place is just cardboard. For a few pence more the contents could be much better protected.

Overall though it is about cutting hair, and this device does this very well and with a minimum of fuss. Recommended.

Tenda P200 PowerLine Mini Adapter Kit - (Pack of 2)
Tenda P200 PowerLine Mini Adapter Kit - (Pack of 2)
Offered by Areema Online
Price: 19.95

5.0 out of 5 stars Literally Plug & Play, 16 April 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Opened the box and plugged in the adapters. One on the top floor of my three bedroom house and the other next to the router. Connected the supplied network cables and suddenly I no longer get the same connectivity issues I had when my PS3 was trying to use wireless.

I have also connected them to other home power line adapters supplied with my BT Vision box and have had no problems at all.


Golla Vincent Cover for Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite, White
Golla Vincent Cover for Kindle and Kindle Paperwhite, White
Price: 36.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Good protection bad bad feel, 20 Mar 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I am a big fan of Golla cases having owned many of their phone cases over the years. However I feel that this case is a bit of a let down.

My Kindle Paperwhite was a struggle to get in to the elastic straps. The case is quite big and inflexible which makes my Kindle feel even less like a book than other cases I have used. The hand holding loop is also quite small and I am unable to get my hand comfortably through the loop. Elastic would have helped here.

On the plus side I do like the styling, and the stiffness and oversize do keep the device protected more than softer and smaller cases. It feels like it will last for a long time.

So I guess it is a balance between style, quality and protection against feel and usability. And for me the latter is more important.

PowerDirector 12 Ultra (PC)
PowerDirector 12 Ultra (PC)
Price: 66.37

4.0 out of 5 stars Powerful and well featured, 27 Feb 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It took me a while to install this on my 4 year old AMD based laptop with 4 Gb of RAM. Over two hours in fact including downloading the update over my slow internet connection. I also had some issues entering the serial number with the program reporting that I didn't have administrator privileges when I did.. So I wasn't too hopeful of the final performance. However I was pleasantly surprised when I finally started the software.

It starts on a screen which asks you to choose between basic mode or advanced. Basic is a Windows Movie Maker style drag to import clips and output your movie. Advanced allows full control of the editing process including special effects and multi tracks.

There are a lot of interesting effects included. More than enough for the semi serious producer. These effects are rendered in pretty much real time even on my reasonable clunky laptop allowing an effective preview. Photo slideshows and audio and music tracks are simple enough to add too.

It seems to be very stable. After the update it has not crashed once on Windows 7 Home Premium even with some fairly intensive projects running. I was editing 1080p video in the Sony native format.

I have spent many years using both Vegas Movie Studio (due to the native Sony support) on my PC and more recently IMovie and Final Cut Pro on the Mac. This sits above iMovie and just a sliver below Vegas in terms of power and flexibility. Speed wise it is faster than my version of Vegas on the same computer but obviously fails to touch FCPX.

The best thing about this is that it actually comes with a real paper printed instruction manual so even then newbie will be up and editing in no time. (It makes a handy reference too for "experienced" people like myself...)

Overall this is excellent value for money. We live in a digital world and almost everyone has a phone full of video clips and photos. It allows the home user to compile all of those video clips into a decent home movie and produce a viewable DVD. For the more advanced user there is plenty here to keep them interested and learn more about the subject.

Alpen Porridge Raspberry and Apple Pot 60 g (Pack of 8)
Alpen Porridge Raspberry and Apple Pot 60 g (Pack of 8)
Price: 7.24

5.0 out of 5 stars Tasty and filling, 19 Feb 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I am now a big convert to these instant oaty porridge pots.

Get to work, add some boiling water and wait a few minutes. Despite the powdered milk they taste good and keep me full until lunchtime. The fruit tastes natural too.

Seagate STDR1000200 1TB Backup Plus USB 3.0 2.5 Inch External Hard Drive - Black
Seagate STDR1000200 1TB Backup Plus USB 3.0 2.5 Inch External Hard Drive - Black
Price: 49.99

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fast, neat and reliable., 19 Feb 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
A nice and compact 1Tb drive from one of the market leaders in the field. Having owned several Seagate drives over the years I can testify to the build quality and reliability of the brand. Obviously time will tell but I have no reason to suspect that this one will be any different.

The main feature putting this ahead of my other pocket sized backup drives is the speed. If you have a USB 3 connection then the speed difference is very noticeable. Video editing straight from the drive using Final Cut Pro is not a problem at all. Backwards compatibility with USB 2 ensures all computers are catered for.

I am reluctant to install the software on my Mac as I have had problems with Seagate software causing hang ups in the past. Besides which I can set it up to use Time Machine for backups of my important files. The function of the software seems a little random too - recovering all of your files from the cloud and storing them locally... It would seem that the era of the cloud for storage is coming to an end!

Overall though this is a very nicely made portable device which enables speedy transfer of files with or without the included software and will hopefully have the reliability afforded by my other Seagate drives.

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