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Amazon Customer "Sussman" (London CA)
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Jampires
Jampires
by Sarah McIntyre
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sam finds himself in jammy situation, when he bites into a dried-out jam doughnut, 21 Dec 2014
This review is from: Jampires (Paperback)
This is a book where the narrative gives the reader a `sweet tooth' laden fun and unpredictability - but very much a child friendly tale.

When Sam bites into a dry doughnut, the quick-witted jam aficionado sets up a cunning plan to entrap the robbers who seemed to have sucked his jam doughnuts dry. He soon finds two culprits who are infant `Jampires', these unusual creatures introduce him, via somewhat mystic trip, to Jampire Land. This is where his adventures really begin. Sarah McIntyre comes to fore with her brilliantly imaged illustrations that entertain and gel so very well with the narrative - if anything the combination is very much a `force-multiplier that makes the story appeal both to the child and the parent. This is a book that is jam packed with goodness - pun intended, sorry just could not help it.


The Night of the Triffids (Big Finish Classics)
The Night of the Triffids (Big Finish Classics)
by Simon Clark
Edition: Audio CD
Price: £14.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A relatively worthy sequel to the seminal SF title Day of the Triffids, 21 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
In terms of review its hard to add anything new to say as there are some very good reviews here, of this title. Timelord-007 does an especially good review, with permanent details and good synopsis of the content and the narrative contained within.

That said I will use my best efforts here; the narrative is really about survival in the midst of disintegrating and dead society. Add into the mix a relatively unique plant the Triffid - that is large, venomous carnivorous, capable of locomotion, communication and shows a degree of intelligence.

______________ "Better eat my greens, before the greens eat me"____________________________

Both books envision the apocalypse that follows from an almost universal blinding of the population after an extreme fall of brightly colour-laden meteorites - that somehow burns out the optic nerve. The Triffids had been used as a food crop, as a substitute for food oil (although in the TV serials the oil is petrol substitute). However, due to the resulting collapse of their careful management and harvesting. They then get loose from their `farms' and literally walk out; they became the killers of humankind. They are also happy to eat the resultant decaying remains. As the Triffids become more entrenched, they begin to squeeze any and all surviving human enclaves. Night of the Triffids is based some 25 years after the events ending in the first book as the narrative continues.


Music Box - Here Comes The Sun
Music Box - Here Comes The Sun
Offered by Papillon Gifts
Price: £6.25

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not what we were expecting, 21 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
May be we got a music box that was not working, anyway we are returning it for refund, as the music box we got was not fit for purpose.


2015 one day to a page A5 diary - assorted colours x 1 single
2015 one day to a page A5 diary - assorted colours x 1 single
Offered by 365DIRECT
Price: £5.71

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Just what we wanted, 21 Dec 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
In this day and age of smart devices such as smartphones and tablets, some will say who needs a paper-based diary. My answer in short is that there is need; old school for me works just fine. Please do not get me wrong - the other ways of information retrieval they are very good - but I always work well with paper, especially editing documents from my PC.

Anyway, with reference to the product at hand, it is well made containing all the bits and pieces that an average user would need. I like, and need a day to page diary the diary we got was a burgundy red and looks rather good, as the bumf says the seller has no control over which colour diary is sent out - that is pot luck.


Colony [DVD]
Colony [DVD]
Dvd ~ Laurence Fishburne
Price: £4.91

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Who knows what went wrong here, and who is the guilty party - for turning out such a poor quality enterprise, 19 Dec 2014
This review is from: Colony [DVD] (DVD)
It is the mid-21st century and humans have built specialist weather stations, around the world, to regulator the warming climate due to climate change and global warming. However, these machines break down, and one day it begins to snow and does not stop. What is left of humanity tries to survive in isolated bunkers.

The cover art to this DVD is just so deceptive, as you see military helicopters being shot down. Then you see the three principal actors running for their lives over a burning bridge - which is not a true reflection of what happens, in the film. Returning to the film itself, I guess the beginning of the movie sets a sort of interesting atmosphere, where there is an ice - age environmental catastrophe. The film boasts some relatively good set of actors - alas, they seem to be there more for `window dressing' rather than as a vehicle for good narrative. For me, the film just turns into clichéd set pieces that are not knitted well into the fabric of the narrative, there are half-developed characters and their half-baked various interactions.

As the movie progressed, I came away thinking there is nothing special here, which I had had not already seen in many other productions, and done better too boot. This movie at best, is badly edited/abridged version of B-movie. I really do not understand what they were thinking about when they storyboarded this film, or maybe they did nothing of the sort. Who knows what went wrong here, and who is a guilty party for turning out this poor quality enterprise.


Doctor Who - Death to the Daleks [DVD] [1974]
Doctor Who - Death to the Daleks [DVD] [1974]
Dvd ~ Jon Pertwee
Price: £7.71

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A narrative where the Daleks are at their "duplicitous best" - a quote from Radio Times, 17 Dec 2014
Some Spoilers

An interesting if not unusual narrative where by the Daleks are stranded on the planet with their ship and all their weapons drained of power. They have to agree a truce with the humans, who find themselves in a similar situation, and work together to try to find a way to overcome their power loss and escape from the planet. Both groups are in the vicinity due to the need to find a rare mineral that can cure a plague that is threatening both species. Of course the Daleks have no intention of keeping the peace and co-operating for the collective good. As soon as they can they quickly try to gain the upper hand. Then throw into this mix a TARDIS and its occupants.

This adventure has well-acted human characters, great performances from Jon Pertwee and Elisabeth Sladen in the lead roles and interesting use of the Daleks. The natives, the Exxilons are decent background characters with an approachable Exxilon providing an affable alien who is a well-rounded character in `his' own right. There is plenty of rawkus - action and mayhem and the use of the ubiquitous quarry scenes for the external shots. The 'roots' of the city are an attention-grabbing idea and very well thought-out especially the use of the defensive cybernetic appendages - very reminiscent of the 1950s film War of the Worlds Manta Ray-shaped Martian war machines in especially it's `head design'. The incidental music (OST) was both interesting and gelled well with the celluloid - lending an extra layer of the uncanniness of the whole situation. However, some of the other SFX does not bear well with the passage of time (no pun intended).

On first viewing in my earliest childhood I found it spooky as hell - but thoroughly captivating. On seeing it again in 2014 it is still entertaining, however, I can safely sit on the sofa and not behind it as did all those years ago.


Inside the Brotherhood
Inside the Brotherhood
by Hazem Kandil
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £20.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A study of the association between the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and its own affiliates, 17 Dec 2014
This review is from: Inside the Brotherhood (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The author Hazem Kandil is the Cambridge University Lecturer in Political Sociology and Fellow of St Catharine's College. His areas of interest are power relations in revolution and war, focusing on the Middle East, Western Europe, and North America.

Islamism is a term that seems to be used widely in general usage and within the context of this book. It's a term that refers to political Islam as a set of ideologies holding that "Islam should guide social and political as well as personal life". "Islamism" is a controversial neologism whose meaning sometimes varies. To my complete ignorance this is term I have not come across before, and thought it best to look-up and to try best explain its meaning, as it refers to the narrative at hand.

The founding of the Muslim Brotherhood in Ismailiyah in Egypt around 1928 by Hassan al Banna was possibly the first, largest and most significant modern Islamic political/religious organization. With the maxim "the Qur'an is our constitution," it wanted Islamic renewal through preaching and by supplementing its ethos through basic civic services including schools, masjids, and workshops. There was also the need to encourage and promote the use of Sharia Law in Egyptian society.

This book is comprehensive study of the association between the Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood and its own affiliates. The research that has gone into this work has taken years to gather through observation, interviews, looking through previously isolated organizational papers, and writings, the book provides a representation of the enlistment and socialization of Brothers, the development of their complex societal networks, and the creation of their `brand' ideology that forms their daily practices.

The author shows why an attempt to compare the Brotherhood to secular social movements or other types of religious activism is a misnomer, and seeks instead to decipher the group's unique mind set. The author gives his understanding of the Brotherhood's slow rise and rapid downfall from power in Egypt, and compares it to the `Islamist franchises' it created and the variations it enthused around the world.

This text will be of interest to students and scholars of the politics of the Middle East. It should also be of interest to anyone who wants to comprehend the intense events currently transpiring in Egypt and elsewhere in the wake of the Arab uprisings.


Under the Eagle by Scarrow, Simon (2008) Paperback
Under the Eagle by Scarrow, Simon (2008) Paperback
by Simon Scarrow
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars As Macro and Cato meet they are polar opposites, who become good friends, 16 Dec 2014
Under the Eagle is the first book in the Eagle Series, by Simon Scarrow. The book opens with a small preface set during the first Roman invasion of Britain in 55 BC. As a group of legionaries lose the army's pay chest in a marsh while withdrawing to the ships. The narrative then proceeds to the German frontier in AD 43, where a new draft of recruits is arriving at the base of the Second Legion.

We are then introduced to the two main protagonists; Quintus Licinius Cato and Lucius Cornelius Macro, are both Roman soldiers. Macro, a veteran with nearly 15 years’ service (at the start of the first novel) within the Roman Army, has recently been appointed to the Centurionate; Cato is subsequently made his Optio. From the get go straight Under the Eagle into the action and the reader is given a vivid account of in the Rome Army on the Rhine Frontier. For those of you who have sampled other books in the series you will no doubt be familiar with Mr Scarrow's approach to action scenes as the reader is immersed into the narrative, better than some video game. What you also get in this book are some new and interesting plot threads and the building of solid friendship between Optio and Centurion. There is action seen in Germany where the Romans are involved battle/skirmish with German tribesman. The action later on shifts to the second invasion of Britain by a Roman army.

Mr Scarrow also pays attention to historical element - the reader gets a thought-provoking look into Roman military society and here we really get to see the differences between say the new recruit and the veteran soldiers. The dialogue is framed in such a way - so you really get a feel for the merits of this book. The pacing, as ever is good, and is pretty engrossing as well as entertaining and at time amusing. Under the Eagle is literally edge of your seat stuff, as the author has mastered the art of balancing between well moulded characters and pulling the reader into their `world'. The characters of Macro and Cato are polar opposites, for they are the centre piece of the narrative and the series, they are really well crafted characters. They do not fail in keeping the readers interest; after all `we' the readers have `invested' ourselves in their lives - warts and all.
So, if you're interested in reading about the rich tapestry of Imperial Roman army and the Empire they forged, or you are already familiar with Simon Scarrow's Eagle series - then look no further as Under the Eagle will be right up your street. Great story telling that only Simon Scarrow could have put together.


When the Eagle Hunts
When the Eagle Hunts
by Scarrow Simon
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Cato & Macro go on a mission of rescue behind enemy lines, 16 Dec 2014
This review is from: When the Eagle Hunts (Paperback)
Possible Spoilers

This is the third book in the Eagle Series by Simon Scarrow. It is 44AD and a Roman army has finally taken ‘Camulodunum’. This book starts off from where the last book finished. It is winter, so the campaign year has stopped until spring. General Plautius's wife and children are shipwrecked in a storm and are captured by the Druids. As you can guess by now, the druids are the bad guys this book.

A book that can be split into two parts, the first is the winter part of the campaign, there is the odd skirmish and plenty of drinking. It is here that we meet up with a young lady called Boudica, from the Iceni tribe. She has a liaison with Macro and is a major part of the narrative. Considering this is a young Boudica that we meet, so I guess we will hearing from her again in future books. The second half of the story sees Macro and Cato, along with Boudica and her cousin in a rescue attempt of the Plautius's family. There are less mass battles here, but some good skirmishes with all the viscera that this entails.

Simon Scarrows’ plot devices hides’ fresh suspense round every corner; his characters are well-rounded and are enjoyable to follow through the narrative. There are fresh faces, in the form of Boudica and Prasutagus who are likeable, alongside some of the more familiar comrades. For example Vespasian, with his softer qualities but stern exterior is a particular well done. Scarrow gives even the most minor of characters a full bodied personality. Once again there is attention to detail without the need to get bogged down in technical terms.


Paddington [Blu-ray]
Paddington [Blu-ray]
Dvd ~ Nicole Kidman
Price: £17.25

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Peruvian Bear stows away on a boat in order to access the UK. He is then housed and fed by British taxpayers, 16 Dec 2014
This review is from: Paddington [Blu-ray] (Blu-ray)
First BBFC rating issue with the Paddington, based on Michael Bond's classic set of children's books, the film has been rated PG for "dangerous behaviour, mild threat, mild sex references and mild bad language". Personally I cannot see the problem, but thought it best to share. We are seeing the movie again this week with our nephews and niece.

My Partner has real soft spot for Paddington Bear and was determined that we go and see the movie. I must say I was pleasantly surprised the film was very good. The narrative is engaging and the animation of Paddington is truly amazing and is some the best I have seen lately. As another reviewer has said the story is quite funny in the way it deals with fear of the unknown, being alone and life in general when you trying just to find a new home, in new country and city. In essence narrative that is about a Peruvian Bear who stows away on a boat in order to access the UK. He is then housed and fed by British taxpayers - tell me, where is the harm in that?

I would to say to Adults that your inner child should really like this film, and children of all ages will like it too, well worth a very good five stars.

Review update_______________________________________________________________________________

G. A. Holohan (19/12/2014) Points out that the Browns may also have potential bedroom tax problem
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 19, 2014 2:12 PM GMT


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