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Sarah Curran "Booksinbrownpaper" (Oxfordshire, UK)

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Unpunctuated, Until Gill
Unpunctuated, Until Gill
Price: £1.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clear, honest and moving., 11 Jun 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Michael Lacey's poetry is best appreciated as a body of work. The clarity and honesty of his poems become engaging and,at times, very moving. A modern day man, in his later years, Lacey's poems provide a context in which the minutiae of our own 'ordinary' lives can be evaluated. It may be 'just' poetry but it's also convincingly and often exhilarating-real life.


FoneM8® - New 2014 HTC One M8 100% Clear Gel Case Skin TPU Cover - Includes Screen Protector and Microfibre Cloth
FoneM8® - New 2014 HTC One M8 100% Clear Gel Case Skin TPU Cover - Includes Screen Protector and Microfibre Cloth
Offered by FoneM8store
Price: £1.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Don't be put off by the price..., 26 April 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Usually you get what you pay for, so I was a bit worried that for £2.49 the case wouldn't be up to much. I was wrong. The case fits brilliantly with a good, tight fit all round the phone. All the cut outs line up with one for the power button to allow the 'IR blaster' function to work. The case shows off the phone to its best and gives a good grip.

I'm really pleased with this purchase and would recommend it to anyone.


The Thin Executioner
The Thin Executioner
by Darren Shan
Edition: Hardcover

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Different to Cirque Du Freak and Demonata, 29 April 2010
This review is from: The Thin Executioner (Hardcover)
This is a stand alone fantasy novel and not the beginning of a new vampire series. If you are looking for another horror fest you may be disappointed as this is more of an adventure story set in a different world, involving slavery and religious ritual. There is however (according to my son) "lots of blood and gore" and the story is fast paced and a page turner. Overall he didn't enjoy it as much as Darren Shan's other books but this was mainly to do with his pre-conceived ideas about what sort of book this would be and him not being a particular fan of fantasy. However, he wolfed it down in a couple of sittings so I think as long as you are prepared for this to be a different Darren Shan read to the usual you ought to be perfectly satisfied.


The Boy with the Biggest Head in the World (Big Nate, Book 1)
The Boy with the Biggest Head in the World (Big Nate, Book 1)
by Lincoln Peirce
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.24

25 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for Wimpy Kid fans ..., 28 April 2010
...although I feel a bit guilty saying that. I bought this for my nine year old reluctant reader son as he is such a fan of The Wimpy Kid and this book looked to be of similar ilk. I assumed that Lincoln Peirce was jumping on the band waggon but actually Big Nate is a classic comic strip character and the inspiration behind Jeff Kinney's books. The back cover says "Big Nate is going to make you laugh big time!" and this book certainly had my son chuckling away. The combination of text and cartoons is attractive and combined with toilet humour makes this an ideal read for kids. It's a sure fire hit for fans of Wimpy Kid and Captain Underpants, pretty lightweight but no harm in that.


Shadow Child
Shadow Child
by Libby Purves
Edition: Hardcover

26 of 26 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a good starting point for this writers work., 13 May 2009
This review is from: Shadow Child (Hardcover)
It is difficult to say that you have 'enjoyed' a novel when the subject matter is so painful and especially when as a follower of a particular author you may be aware of events in their personal life. Shadow Child follows the lives of a couple in the aftermath of their twenty one year old son's sudden and tragic death.

The first part of the novel is in places sometimes painful to read, a grim account of grief's darkest hours, only someone who has suffered a bereavement could write with such honesty, clarity and insight I think. The plot moves more quickly during the second part of the novel but I have to say I found the events and characters during the second part of the book somewhat contrived and unbelievable, although I was still turning the pages and waiting for the resolution.

The characters seemed to fall into two camps, the believable Tom, Marion, Sam and Sarah and the sometimes cliched lesbian characters who take more of a pivotal role in the plot later on. I have read every novel Libby Purves has written and this for me was not one of the better ones.

If you are already a fan of hers then I think it is worth reading, if however you are approaching this writer for the first time I would recommend Love Songs and Lies as a better starting point. All the same I give this book five stars because in places the prose is exquisite, it was a book that made me think and I polished it off over a couple of evenings.


My Best Friend's Life
My Best Friend's Life
by Shari Low
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.79

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Really not that great at all, 25 Feb 2009
This review is from: My Best Friend's Life (Paperback)
I don't like to leave bad reviews but in this instance I feel compelled mainly because I purchased this book on the basis of all the 5 star reviews it had here - so I would like to redress the balance. I bought this expecting a light amusing read-in-the-bath book and I wasn't expecting anything more than that but I have to say I thought it was dreadful. The plot progresses at a snails pace, none of the characters are very likeable and it was pretty badly written. I persisted hoping it might improve but gave up half way through. Sorry, but it really isn't that great at all.


Tail-End Charlie
Tail-End Charlie
by Mick Manning
Edition: Hardcover

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A cracker of a book, WW2 Adventures, fantastic, 5 Dec 2008
This review is from: Tail-End Charlie (Hardcover)
Tail-End Charlie is a book about the author's fathers experiences as an airgunner in the RAF. That makes it sound dry, trust me it isn't. Mick Manning brings his father's daring exploits during bombing raids over Nazi positions in the Netherlands to life, but for me, it is the detail of the day to day wartime existence which is endlessly fascinating.

The illustrations are beautiful and detailed (reminding me of Raymond Briggs in style)and really add to the drama of the stories which are presented in a comic book/graphic novel way making them attractive and accessible to reluctant readers.

I bought a copy for my son for Christmas, this is a picture book perfectly suited to chapter book readers and think I will be ordering more for presents. As an added bonus Tail-End Charlie dovetails with the National Curriculum and Second World War studies.


The Comic Strip History of the World
The Comic Strip History of the World
by Tracey Turner
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £6.99

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Educational while fun, 4 Dec 2008
The Comic Strip History Of The World is a fun introduction to history for children (although adults may want to sneak a peep too)covering everything from the big bang up to the present day. While it is very much a potted history in a similar vein to the Horrible History series it's main selling point is having everything in it's place, giving an overview of events and the order they happened in, something not really focused on in schools. The illustrations are simple the humour is appealing, the book is a great way for any child to increase their general historical knowledge without really noticing they are being gently educated.


Quentin Blake's A Christmas Carol
Quentin Blake's A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens
Edition: Hardcover

11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars What I expected and yet somehow disappointing, 2 Dec 2008
I was looking forward to receiving this and expected to be giving a five star review, I hate to say it but this combination of Dickens and Blake is rather disappointing.

Firstly though the positives, for the price this is a good value substantial book, the cover is designed to give it an antiquated feel, the text is unabridged, the art work lively and familiar, the paper is good quality and the book has some childfriendly extas including a short biography of Charles Dickens and Quentin Blake and an interesting foreword from the illustrator.

The negatives, well for me there is not enough contrast between the scenes of warmth and jollification and the cold nights of despair, despite the former being in full colour and the latter in black and white, somehow it's just not enough. The ghosts quite simply are not scary enough, there are not enough full page illustrations, too little contrast between the Scrooge we see at the beginning and the one we see at the end, The Cratchits look remarkably healthy and well-fed.

Clearly the story is timeless and as Quentin Blake's work and style is so familiar to most children it makes Dickens more approachable to the younger reader, there is nothing wrong with this edition, I am content with my purchase yet all the same this book lacks the magic and wonder that Christmas is all about.


Jonadab and Rita
Jonadab and Rita
by Shirley Hughes
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.90

20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magical Fantasy Tale with echoes of A Midsummer Night's Dream, Pure Delight., 20 Nov 2008
This review is from: Jonadab and Rita (Hardcover)
Jonadab is a stuffed toy donkey who lives with Minnie in a flat in London. Minnie has lots of other stuffed animals and dolls including Rita a small, shy toy mouse. Jonadab and Rita have been with Minnie for as long as Minnie can remember and she is so used to having these two old toys around that she ignores them.
One day Jonadab gets so fed up with being left at the bottom of the toy box that he decides to fly away for a while snd flies to Holland park. When he gets there he sees a jaw dropping gathering of fairies, elves, and gnomes who invite him to their feast. Immediately for the adult reader there is a magical sense of A Midsummer Night's Dream and Peter Pan.
Jonadab loves being the centre of attention (in a sequence that will remind the adult reader of Titania and Bottom) after the wonderful night is over he is happy to fly back home to Minnie, imagining that she must be missing him, however he does not get the reception he expects.
Shirley Hughes introduces us to two new characters who young children, especially those who have felt left out on occasions, will immediately identify with. The story illustrates that the people who love them do not stop doing so.
As usual with Shirley Hughes the illustrations are pure delight not just engaging the child but the adult who reads aloud.
The Alfie, Dogger and Trotter Street creator understands children so well and her drawings inhabit a child's emotions, so that young readers can understand the story from the facial expressions alone. The expressions on Jonadab's face - from contentment to boredom, amazement to defiance - are instantly recognizable.
I believe Shirley Hughes is one of the greatest writers and illustrators we have, quite simply her work never, ever disappoints me.


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