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Money: Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom
Money: Master the Game: 7 Simple Steps to Financial Freedom
by Tony Robbins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.49

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Become an investor, not just a consumer', 13 Jan. 2015
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Having already read and loved 'Awaken the giant within' and 'Unlimited power' by Tony Robbins, I was excited to say the least when this book was published especially as better finances is one of my goals for 2015.

At 600+ pages this book is heavy reading! it took me a few weeks to finish the book but there is lots of great advice and wisdom in there which makes the effort worthwhile.

If you are completely new to this area and a book this size seems too daunting for you then you're probably better off reading 'The richest man in Babylon' by George S Clason and 'Rich Dad, Poor Dad' by Robert T Kiyosaki which cover the fundamentals of making money. Indeed, as Tony states on page 69 of this book "As a young man, I came across George Samuel Clason's classic 1926 book the richest man in Babylon, which offered common-sense financial advice told through ancient parables. I recommend it to everyone."

Whilst money: master the game essentially covers the same advice in the aforementioned books it goes into far more detail about investing on the stock market and as can be expected from a Tony Robbins book, there is a heavy emphasis on personal development too.

The biggest problem I found with this book is that I am British and it is clearly aimed at an American market so some of the advice is not relevant to a British or International audience. Having said that, there are some universal principles about investing in the stock market and you can still learn a lot from this book if you're not American.

One thing I particularly liked is the interviews with Billionaires. I had already heard of Warren Buffett but knew none of the other investors interviewed such as Ray Dalio, Carl Icahn, Charles Schwab, T Boone Pickens, Sir John Templeton, Jack Bogle, Paul Tudor Jones and David Swensen. I found all the interviews inspiring but particularly liked the ones with Ray Dalio, Carl Icahn and Sir John Templeton.

If like me you don't really know the difference between inflation and deflation and your eyes glaze over when news readers start talking about Consumer Price Index and the economy, there is a great video produced by Ray Dalio 'How the economic machine works' which Tony recommends readers watch at www.economicprinciples.org the video is half an hour long and it is brilliant! learning about this video was worth the price of the book alone as it makes everything easy to understand.

In conclusion if you are completely new to managing finances you will learn a lot from this book but at 600 pages it's a lot to get through so you may wish to try the two books I mentioned earlier first which can be read relatively quickly. If you are already in the game so to speak then the interviews with highly successful investors are very insightful.


Mofun 100% Brand New Essential Anti Slip Board Non Stick Mount Holder Car Sat-Nav GPS Rubber Mat Black for Tomtom
Mofun 100% Brand New Essential Anti Slip Board Non Stick Mount Holder Car Sat-Nav GPS Rubber Mat Black for Tomtom
Offered by Hotsellnow4
Price: £6.29

5.0 out of 5 stars Does the job, 10 Aug. 2014
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I have a tomtom XL traffic sat nav and I drive a Peugeot 107 and so far so good! I have driven to Coventry and back (approximate 2 hour drive there and 2 hour drive back) and it stayed in place throughout. I like the fact it is placed on the dashboard as opposed to the windscreen as the tomtom would always fall off when placed on the windscreen as the window suction was absolutely useless. This holder should come standard with sat navs.


The Palgrave Student Planner 2014-15 (Palgrave Study Skills)
The Palgrave Student Planner 2014-15 (Palgrave Study Skills)
by Stella Cottrell
Edition: Calendar
Price: £6.66

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Tenth planner in ten years, 3 Aug. 2014
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I have purchased this planner every year for the past ten years since my original purchase during the first year of my Law degree.

Whilst I'm not keen on the front cover design of the 2014/2015 planner, it usually has a very stylish cover and the cover changes every year. The main thing which distinguishes the Student Planner from other bland looking diaries is the fact that it looks good and is well designed throughout.

Having a planner such as this is essential when you are in education as you need to keep track of exam dates, term dates and assignment deadlines and you can plan week by week your lectures and seminars. Having now finished full time education I continue to use the diary to keep track of my life: friends and relatives birthdays (although I suppose we have social networks for that these days!), doctors and dentists appointments amongst other things.

I make good use of the notes section towards the back of the planner for recording important information and there are lots of tips and useful information interspersed throughout the planner which is primarily aimed at students but can be relevant to other people too.


Programmed to Kill: The Politics of Serial Murder
Programmed to Kill: The Politics of Serial Murder
by David McGowan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £15.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A who's who of serial killers, 17 July 2014
Where do I begin?! I have just finished reading this book which is pretty dense in information but a real page turner. The introduction of the book discusses mind control experiments conducted by the CIA and I immeditately became sceptical thinking this was just going to be a book full of far-fetched conspiracy theories.

It made me feel physically ill reading part one of the book 'the pedophocracy' however I cannot deny that what McGowan writes is untrue. Having recently watched a documentary on Marc Dutroux and the massive government cover ups in Belgium and in light of the recent revelations in the UK of government cover ups (Jimmy Saville and Cyril Smith spring to mind) I can only imagine that this kind of thing genuinely goes on hence why I felt pretty sick reading that section of the book.

The rest of the book is essentially a who's who of serial killers. I regularly watch crime documentaries and I am fascinated by serial killers and this book covers the best (worst?!) of them: Ted Bundy, Jeffrey Dahmer, Richard Chase, Charles Manson, Henry Lee Lucas, Richard Speck, John Wayne Gacy, Leonard Lake & Charles Ng, Albert DeSalvo (Boston Strangler), Angelo Buono & Kenneth Bianchi (Hillside Stranglers), Richard Ramirez (Night Stalker) and many more.

I thought I already knew quite a bit about most of these famous cases however McGowan covers a lot of stuff in his book which is never mentioned in the TV documentaries such as the police corruption, the planting of evidence, framing of suspects, unfair trials, the contamination of crime scenes and mysterious deaths of people connected to the case. Having studied Law at University and Law School it is apalling to read about some of the corruption that was rife in these cases.

A prevailing theme throughout the book is satanism and cults and CIA mind control experiments and I'm not too sure what to make of any of that. Nevertheless it was interesting to read and this is truely a fascinating, if disturbing tome.


The Walking Dead - Season 3 [DVD]
The Walking Dead - Season 3 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Andrew Lincoln
Offered by MusicnMedia
Price: £14.29

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars 'Fight the dead and fear the living', 3 July 2014
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There is a t-shirt for sale in the official Walking Dead store with ''fight the dead fear the living' emblazoned on the 'wings' of Daryl Dixon and that statement pretty much sums up season 3 of the Walking Dead as the walkers are the least of the group's worries.

In season 3 we learn of the fate of two long lost characters and we see the loss of four main characters and the introduction of several new characters, the most prominent being 'the Governor' who is quite possibly the greatest example of a psychopath that I have seen in a televised series. We also see the transformation of Carl from a boy to a man.

The first episode focuses on the band of survivors settling into their new accommodation-a prison. In episodes 2 and 3 we are introduced to the Governor who is the leader of Woodbury, a small town of human survivors, which seems pretty idyllic. As Michonne said in one episode however: 'this place is not what they say it is.'

The pace of the series really ramps up in episode 4 with the loss of two main characters in one episode and one of the most moving scenes of the whole series. For the rest of the season we see the escalation in violence as Rick's band of survivors go to war with the Governor's band of survivors. Oh, and some walkers are killed too (or 'biters' as they are affectionately known at Woodbury.)

Season 4 won't be out on DVD until September 2014 apparently but having already watched it on television, I can ensure you that the series gets even better and I cannot wait for season 5 to be released on television.


The Walking Dead - Season 2 [DVD]
The Walking Dead - Season 2 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Andrew Lincoln
Offered by MusicnMedia
Price: £10.92

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb second season, 1 Jun. 2014
I originally watched season 2 of the Walking Dead when it aired on television and I have just finished re-living season 2 on DVD boxset and I forgot it was such a strong season. You get more bang for your buck with season 2 as it has 13 episodes in contrast to the 6 episodes of season 1 so there is more gore and more action!

The bulk of season 2 is based on a farm where the band of survivors have holed up after leaving the CDC in season 1. As a result, there are several new characters in season 2 and we also see the loss of three main characters by the end of the season (two of the scenes are particularly moving.) The ongoing saga of the love triangle between Rick, Shane and Lori continues throughout season 2 and we see greater character development of Daryl.

I remember when the season aried on television there was a break halfway through the series and the mid season finale is probably one of my favourite Walking Dead episodes, it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end when I watched it on television. The build up in tension, the drama and the subsequent emotion was a tour de force....I'm afraid I can't be any more specific than that as it would give the game away. Out of the 13 episodes, there are at least 5 or 6 really strong episodes in this season which made it a joy to watch for a second time.

If you enjoyed season 1 and would like to see more action, some of the same humour, great character development, more twists and turns, iconic scenes and introduction of new characters then add this season to your cart! you won't be disappointed.


Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life
Learned Optimism: How to Change Your Mind and Your Life
by Martin E. P Seligman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £10.58

5.0 out of 5 stars Handbook for handling adversity, 18 May 2014
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As far as self-help books go, I rate Learned Optimism by Martin Seligman right up there with the seminal 'How to win friends and influence people' by Dale Carnegie.

As a regular reader of self-help books I have come across references to Martin Seligman and his work on several occasions and I was always interested in the concept of learned helpnessness which features in his work.

Learned Optimism provides a background into the author's research which is very interesting and it includes a questionnaire which allows you to assess whether you are an optimist or a pessimist. I was quite surprised to learn that I was at the extreme end of the pessimist scale as I consider myself to be more of an optimist than a pessimist however as the auhor conceded later on in the book, those diagnosed with Depression tend to have their scores of the two tests cancelling each other out.

Seligman explains that pessimists tend to think in permanent, pervasive and personal terms and this can lead to learned helplessness. I can definitely recognise the patterns of thinking mentioned in the book and the main premise is that these automatic reflexes/patterns of thinking influence how you react to adversity. By using the ABCDE concept illustrated in the book you can change your response to adversity by using an optimistic explanatory style instead of a pessimistc explanatory style hence the title of the book-learned optimism.

The book is a fascinating and enjoyable read and it gives you practical solutions for making positive changes in your life. I'm sure that in due course I will be citing this book as one of the handful which has had a significant influence on my life.


The Fourth Kind [DVD] (2009)
The Fourth Kind [DVD] (2009)
Dvd ~ Milla Jovovich
Offered by streetsahead
Price: £4.32

5.0 out of 5 stars Not easily disturbed but this perturbed me, 22 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: The Fourth Kind [DVD] (2009) (DVD)
I watched the Fourth Kind on television several months ago and a horror film has not had an impact on me like this had since I watched 'The Exorcist' and 'The Texas Chainsaw Massacre' (original version) when I was a kid. I watch a lot of horror films and the aforementioned are the only ones that have ever really scared me albeit I was underage at the time! (Although 'Them' and 'The Strangers' had me on the edge of my seat throughout due to the sheer suspense and imminent threat.)

The film starts with the actress Milla Jovovich claiming that the following footage is a combination of real video recordings combined with acted reconstructions. Call me stupid but from that point on I genuinely believed the film was based on true events although I became sceptical as the film progressed.

The 'real' footage was pretty convincing and the actress Charlotte Milchard did an amazing job as Dr Abigail Taylor. Just by looking at her you could see the trauma that she had been through. That alone creeeped me out as I knew she must have been through some serious experiences to end up looking like that. I've worked with people with severe mental health problems and you can tell just by the body language and facial expressions, just by looking at them, that something isn't right sometimes. I couldn't believe that was an actress playing that part.

The video footage of Dr Taylor interviewing her patients and hypnotising them were creepy as were the scenes with the owl. The film is essentially about alien abduction which I don't believe in but it would be terrifying if it were real as how can you defend against something like that? at least with Leatherface you could put a bullet in his head and the game would be over but how do you stop a technologically advanced alien race? That's why the film disturbed me as for half of it I believed it was real and even when I began to come to my senses, I still had a seed of doubt in my mind and had to do some research online just to be sure. Great, great film.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 28, 2014 9:00 PM GMT


How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt, and Live Prosperously*: Based on the Proven Principles and Techniques of Debtors Anonymous
How to Get Out of Debt, Stay Out of Debt, and Live Prosperously*: Based on the Proven Principles and Techniques of Debtors Anonymous
by Mundis Jerrold J
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.97

4.0 out of 5 stars Useful book with practical solutions, 22 Jan. 2014
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I work as a debt advisor at Citizens Advice Bureau so I purchased this book to see if I could learn anything which may be of use to my clients and also because I am in debt! I am up to date with all my repayments so my debts certainly aren't as problematic as those of my clients however my finances could be in better shape.

The author draws from his own experience and the experiences of others who have participated in the debtors anonymous program to set out a framework for systematically reducing your debt. The concepts are simple: do not take out more debt, record everything you spend, create a spending plan based on the record of your spending and do a pro rata offer of repayment to your creditors. The author surmises that the only way to reduce debt is to either cut back on your expenses so you have more money to pay off your debts or increase your income so you have more money to pay your creditors.

Whilst insolvency (bankruptcy) as an option is touched upon briefly, it is assumed that the readers will use the techniques in the book to pay off all their debts. Whilst this may be ethically sound, it may not be the most practical option for everyone.

The techniques certainly work and I have personally found keeping a record of everything I spend on a daily basis, using a petty cash book purchased from a stationary shop, to be a useful exercise in examining where your money is going.

One thing I found particularly interesting in the book, and this is something which has occurred to me previously, is that practical strategies for getting out of debt are not always sufficient.

People often get into debt because of their patterns of thinking/mindset and after attending a financial capability course recently, the tutor emphasised the impact of emotion in relation to money. Using practical techniques alone may not be sufficient if a person is still operating on the same mindset that got them into debt in the first place. It's the reason why we often see celebrities or lottery winners ending up broke because they are still operating on the same financial mindset they had when they were 'poor'.

Having read books such as 'The Richest Man in Babylon' by George S Clason (which is also recommended in the resources section of this book) and 'Rich Dad, Poor Dad' by Robert T Kiyosaki I can definitely see the patterns of thinking and different mindsets that 'poor' people have from rich people. Whilst this book is great in terms of the practical strategies and acknowledging that the practical strategies aren't always enough, it fails to explore the psychology of debt further.

If you have never previously read a book relating to finance this will be a good introduction and I also recommmend the two books I mentioned previously. If you already have experience in this area or have read other books on finance you will not learn anything groundbreaking but it's useful consolidation of your existing knowledge and it has certainly inspired me to work harder at managing my own finances.


Breaking Bad - Season 1 [DVD]
Breaking Bad - Season 1 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Bryan Cranston
Price: £7.50

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It gets better, 4 Jan. 2014
I bought Season 1 of Breaking Bad a couple of years ago in my local HMV after I heard rave reviews about it. I watched the first season in its entirety and whilst it wasn't bad, I didn't see what all the fuss was about.

Fast forward to 2013 and I decided to purchase season 2 on DVD, after hearing several work colleagues discuss the show in glowing terms, I thought I would give it another chance. I'm glad I did. At the end of season 2 I immediately rushed out to buy the remaining seasons.

The series follows the adventures of Mr White, a chemistry teacher diagnosed with terminal lung cancer who decides to cook crystal meth to make money to pay for his treatment and to leave a legacy for his wife and son. Mr White's brother-in-law Hank is a DEA (Drug Enforcement Administration) Agent who is unaware that one of his own relatives is involved in the drugs empire he is investigating. It is also a secret to Mr White's wife and son as well.

As the series progresses we gradually see the unravelling of Mr White's character as he is increasingly drawn into the shady world of drugs and the strain this puts on his relationship with his family and friends. The drama just gets better and better as the series progresses and there are some real laugh out loud moments as well as some moving scenes. Never before has a bad guy been so good and there are several other 'bad' characters in the series which you can't help but feel sympathy for.

I am currently on the last season and the whole Breaking Bad experience has been a Tour De Force. Hang in there, it's worth it.


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