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Catch Me If You Can: The True Story Of A Real Fake
Catch Me If You Can: The True Story Of A Real Fake
by Frank Abagnale
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.59

5.0 out of 5 stars A great read, 6 Feb 2012
This is an enjoyable page-turner, almost too far-fetched to be real, but even better because it is! It's quite astounding what Frank Abagnale achieved, especially at such a young age, and reading his retelling of his exploits is a delight.

Not exactly Shakespeare, but a fast, entertaining read.


Glitter Crayons 16-Pack
Glitter Crayons 16-Pack
Offered by K Direct
Price: £1.86

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Where's the glitter?, 5 Feb 2012
= Durability:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Fun:3.0 out of 5 stars  = Educational:3.0 out of 5 stars 
This review is from: Glitter Crayons 16-Pack (Toy)
Lovely glittery crayons that don't transfer the glitter to the paper! After covering an area about an inch square, only three bits of glitter could be seen on the paper; the rest was clumped up on the tip of the crayon. You also get scratchy effects where the glitter has scraped wax off the paper. Yuck! Not recommended - a nice idea but it doesn't work!


The Hunger Games,(Hunger Games Trilogy Book one)
The Hunger Games,(Hunger Games Trilogy Book one)
by Suzanne Collins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.85

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Breathtakingly good, 27 Jan 2012
I don't think this book needs yet another 5 star review, but here it is. The Hunger Games is breathtakingly good, completely gripping, reading-every-spare-minute-you-get addictive. Shows great imagination and writing skill; books this good don't come along very often. I wish I could read it for the first time all over again!


Samsung S5830i Galaxy Ace Onyx Black
Samsung S5830i Galaxy Ace Onyx Black
Offered by Digi-Fun
Price: £74.99

4.0 out of 5 stars I'm in love!, 27 Jan 2012
When I joined T-Mobile two years ago I chose an LG Pop phone, whose unresponsive touch screen I soon became frustrated with. It found itself being traded in for a much more basic £30 model from Argos.

Two years later - present day - I was eligible for a handset upgrade, and convinced that not all touch screen phones are evil by playing with my husband's Samsung Galaxy, I chose the Samsung Galaxy Ace. It was love at first sight. It can do everything I want it to do, and then some! The touch screen is super responsive, and the range of apps is staggering. We have had a few laughs playing with the voice recognition software - it usually gets it right, but when it doesn't it's often with very funny results!

The only downside to it is that it devours battery power like nothing I've ever seen before. I fully charge it every night before bed, then by 3 p.m. the next day, after some app use and texting, it's running low and asking me to plug it in. I'm going to keep it charging during the night in future, to give it more life during the day. It's a shame though, as I find myself limiting my use of it, for fear of it dying during the day when I might need it.

So: lovely compact smartphone with lots of impressive features, but watch out for the short battery life.


The Secret History
The Secret History
by Donna Tartt
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.29

4.0 out of 5 stars Impressive, but not flawless, 19 Jan 2012
This review is from: The Secret History (Paperback)
I read this book on the recommendation of a friend whose opinion I trust. I struggled to get into it at first; the beginning 100 or so pages did little to draw me in. I found the initial lengthy discussions about Greek history alienating, as it is an area I have little knowledge of, or interest in. However, from about page 150 onwards I was hooked.

The book is intelligently written - in fact the author uses so many words I had to check the meaning of in the dictionary that, as an avid reader, I started to feel embarrassed at my vocabulary! - and the characters intriguing and vividly drawn. I think the plot was spun out at an appropriate pace, and although some parts of the story dragged, I disagree with other reviewers that the book is overly long.

I am undecided about the epilogue - readers often want to know what happens to characters after the main story finishes, but I wasn't one of them in this case. I would have been happy to have been left to imagine their future paths. I think its inclusion gave the book a somewhat soft and vague conclusion (almost bullet point brief, a stark contrast to the great detail found in the rest of the book), and it would have been better to leave it out entirely.

If you're curious about this book, I'd recommend giving it a go. Expect difficult words, lots of Greek history, and a gripping storyline.


The Worst of Me
The Worst of Me
by Kate le Vann
Edition: Paperback
Price: £4.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gripping, and a pleasure to read, 16 Dec 2011
This review is from: The Worst of Me (Paperback)
I enjoyed this book. Le Vann has a way of writing as if from inside the head of her protagonist, in a very real way. Her writing is free of cliches and she picks up on the intricate thoughts and neuroses experienced by many teenage girls. Although I am much older than Cassidy, I can still remember feeling exactly like she did at times.

The plot material is serious and thought-provoking, with a shocking climax, but the book is still an enjoyable story of first love; very well balanced.

This book brings to mind Judy Blume's books for maturer readers, particularly the warts-and-all approach to relationships taken in 'Forever'.

A really worthwhile teen read, enjoyable by older readers too (I'm 28!).


The Dead and the Gone (The Last Survivors, Book 2)
The Dead and the Gone (The Last Survivors, Book 2)
by Susan Pfeffer
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars A let down, after Life As We Knew It, 2 Dec 2011
I loved Life As We Knew It and was eager to read the follow up. Sadly it was a huge let down. There just doesn't seem as much effort put into this book as was put into the first.

Little effort is made with characterisation, or with establishing the characters' backgrounds, so when the disaster hits (within the first few pages) you don't much care about the people involved. For the remainder of the book the protagonist, Alex, seems to go through the motions, being all stoic and determined, but with little emotion. Seeing rats gnawing off corpses' faces doesn't warrant anything more than a cursory remark. He just came across like a robot, which is a shame as the main reason Life As We Knew It was so gripping was because of the three dimensional protagonist.

I suppose I'll read the third book, but I'm not sure what to expect after this book being such a disappointment.


Life As We Knew It
Life As We Knew It
by Susan Pfeffer
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars The best book I've read in ages, 24 Nov 2011
This review is from: Life As We Knew It (Paperback)
I've loved apocalyptic teen fiction ever since I was in the target age group - I'm 28 now and when I started reading this book I was transported back to the days when I'd spend all day and all night devouring the latest Robert Westall.

I simply couldn't get enough of this book - I stayed up until the wee hours, read it on the walk to work, during my lunch breaks, on the way home from work, in the bath, on the couch...

A believable premise, written so well that it seemed as if it had actually happened and the author was inside the protagonist's head the whole time, taking notes. The plot is so carefully thought out, each detail considered, so many 'what ifs' answered, that it just seems so plausible, and as if you're there too.

If you've read the synopsis and think you might like this book, you're right. You'll love it, and you'll probably read it in 24 hours like I did!


Super Princess Peach (Nintendo DS)
Super Princess Peach (Nintendo DS)
Offered by STOCKTASTIC
Price: £30.06

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A really enjoyable platformer, 25 Aug 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
I wanted a fairly 'light' platformer for my DS as I'm not a hardcore gamer but rather someone who enjoys gaming to relax or just pass the time. This game is well balanced, fun to play and not as easy as I was worried it might be. It's challenging enough to hold my interest, and although you do feel a bit spoonfed at times (there are little blocks which give you hints about how to deal with certain bosses) it leaves you to work things out from time to time too.

It's not sophisicated or deep, but if you want an enjoyable platformer then you'll like this.


Puzzle Bobble Galaxy (Nintendo DS)
Puzzle Bobble Galaxy (Nintendo DS)
Offered by CD DIXIE
Price: £24.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't put it down!, 9 July 2011
= Fun:5.0 out of 5 stars 
I suppose you could call me a casual gamer - I love to watch my husband play all sorts of games on our consoles, but when it comes to playing games solo on my Nintendo DS, there are very few games I become immersed in. Most of my games are puzzle games, and this one is the jewel in the crown. Such a simple concept - fire the coloured bubbles so that they meet other bubbles of the same colour, thus popping them and preventing your screen from filling up - but incredibly compelling. I usually have little persistence with games when I come up against difficult challenges, but in the VS mode in this game I find I just can't give up until I've beaten my opponent! The various modes are great, but the straightforward game would be enough to keep me happy on its own.

This game is a must-have - buy it!


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