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R. Bruce
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STV646 Mole Repeller
STV646 Mole Repeller
Price: £15.23

3.0 out of 5 stars Ole' Mole', 2 Oct. 2014
Perhaps ,here in Yorkshire, we have moles that are not fazed by these contraptions because a few days after installation, they were back but not, I have to say, as prevalent.


Domestique: The Real-life Ups and Downs of a Tour Pro
Domestique: The Real-life Ups and Downs of a Tour Pro
Price: £4.35

3.0 out of 5 stars A hard and negative life., 1 Oct. 2014
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This book certainly gives an insight regarding the support that has to be given to the "star performers " of cycling teams, at no obvious advantage to the 'givers' or domestiques. However, I found reading this book rather depressing due to the generally negative approach to the day to day life as described by Charly Wegelius.The book title mentions "Ups and Downs" but I did not detect many "ups" compared with the"downs". Fairly early on into the book I was asking why should anyone want to have such a miserable work-place existence ? Later on,I realised that this ,for Charly, extended for eleven years.
I cannot imagine that any young aspiring racing cyclist , reading this book, would be inspired to take to the life professionally, as descibed by Charly.
Obviously this will not be the case, otherwise we would not see any future 150 strong peletons bowling along but surely not every member of those peletons will be as downbeat as Charly Wegelius.


Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit of Lance Armstrong
Seven Deadly Sins: My Pursuit of Lance Armstrong
Price: £3.99

4.0 out of 5 stars A very good book ; but what's changed ?, 23 Aug. 2014
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Until reading this book, I thought that the Author, David Walsh had played a bigger part in bringing down the reputation of Lance Armstrong, due to the articles published in the Sunday Times. It is now clear from Mr Walsh's book that Lance Armstrong's actual downfall was instigated by the Federal Investigations carried out in the U.S.A plus the damning evidence provided at a late stage by Armstrong's fellow teammate, Floyd Landis.
Mr Walsh descibes how disconsolate he was after thinking that all his years of hard work in investigating Professional Cycling's drug culture were coming to nothing and that in particular , Lance Armstrong was being "let off the hook". However, because of the ongoing investigations, that was not the case and as we all know the disgraced Lance Armstrong did receive his punishment.
The unanswered question contained in this book is "what is being done about the criminal activities of the Cycling Team Doctors, Managers and Coaches etc? To me, these people are the criminal instigators of the doping culture, trying to gain unfair and financial advantage.
In this book, I found the description of how the use of drugs, particularly the performance drug E.P.O, worked on the human
body and how it made experienced cycle race watchers somewhat suspicious, due to the ever increasing speed and the better
hill climbing ability of the riders . But five year on, we are seeing exactly the same high level of perfomance by professional bike-riders . So what's changed?
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 18, 2014 3:42 PM GMT


Dear Leader: North Korea's senior propagandist exposes shocking truths behind the regime
Dear Leader: North Korea's senior propagandist exposes shocking truths behind the regime
Price: £6.49

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars "not too sure about this escape account", 31 May 2014
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Anybody who has read the large number of books avaiable about the North Korean regime, could come up with a version similar to this volume. I hate to say this but "Dear Leader"could fall into this category. I do not doubt that Jang Jin Sung did escape from North Korea to the south and due to his position within the North Korean hierarchy, was gratefully accepted by the South Koreans. However, there are a few examples which ask the question as to why this escape managed to suceed ? Firstly, even taking into account the allegedly poor state of communications, surely during the time it took of five days for the escapees to reach the Chinese border crossing, the authorities must have already been on the alert to apprehend such a high ranking fugitive. Secondly, If once on the run in China and knowing that the Police guards were closing in, why leave all your remaining worldly wealth in a jacket on the floor ready for the guards to find.? Thirdly, having described the fear, every time a heavily armed Chinese Policeman was spotted, was he able to escape unharmed when fleeing from the safe-house and at close quarters with his police pursuer ? Personally, I think that some of the details of this book have been inserted to make it more readable and build tension to what would have been a fairly routine, albeit courageous, escape. I do hope that I am wrong.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 22, 2014 5:35 PM BST


The Aquariums of Pyongyang: Ten Years in the North Korean Gulag
The Aquariums of Pyongyang: Ten Years in the North Korean Gulag
Price: £4.79

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars If you are not in North Korea, then don't go there., 30 Oct. 2013
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If you read this book the title for this review will become clear. It is a memoir about a successful Korean family living in Japan. Due to the Grandmother's entrenched socialist thinking plus the never-ending propaganda regarding North Korea being the only true "workers' paradise" , she persueded the family to emigrate to the North. It did not take long before the whole family were uprooted and incarcerated in a prison camp due to outspoken comments made by the Grandfather agaist the regime. The story is retold through the eyes of the grandson who, after the family's release after 10 years, eventually made his escape to the west via some timely bribes handed over to the border guards and others.It is well known that if any member of a North Korean Family committs any form of indiscretion , then the whole family will be punished. Therefore the question I ask is ,'what happened to the rest of the family once it was known of the grandson's escape? The lack of that information is the reason for awarding 4 stars and nor 5.


Escape from Camp 14: One man's remarkable odyssey from North Korea to freedom in the West
Escape from Camp 14: One man's remarkable odyssey from North Korea to freedom in the West
Price: £4.19

4.0 out of 5 stars when will this cruelty end?, 30 Oct. 2013
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I suppose the answer to my question above is ; the cruelty will end when the North Korean regime falls but the answer to that seems along way off at the moment. This account of life for one particular family within a North Korean prison camp underlines the injustces and misfortunes that befell the family due to the Grandfather being enrolled in the South Korean Forces at the time of the 1950/53 war between the North and South.
. The result being that once being committed to this particular prison camp,it was literally for life and there was no possibility of release. The only option was escape and to do this against unbelievable odds is the jist of this memoir. It is a gripping story and one that we all in the west should read and absorb and then think how lucky we are. The only reason for 4 stars instead of 5 is that once away from the North Regime and safely in the west, the psychological scars affecting the escapee start to emerge and this aspect , in my opinion, should have been further investigated but I feel they have been glossed over. ,,


Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis
Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis
by Timothy Egan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £16.97

4.0 out of 5 stars A FORGOTTEN TREASURE, 4 Feb. 2013
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THIS, TODAY, MAY BE BETTER DESCRIBED AS 'UNKOWN ' RATHER THAN FORGOTEN BECAUSE ALTHOUGH I HAVE BEEN AWARE OF THE MORE FAMOUS PHOTOGRAPHS TAKEN BY EDWARD CURTIS,OF GERONIMO,CHIEF JOSEPH, Etc.,I WAS UNAWARE OF THE DEDICATED LIFE THAT EDWARD CURTIS DEVOTED TO ESTABLISHING THE TRUE HISTORY OF THE NORTH AMERICAN INDIAN. TIMOTHY EGAN HAS DONE A WONDERFUL JOB IN PIECING TOGETHER ALL THE INCIDENTS IN CURTIS'S LIFE THAT RECORD THIS HISTORY. IT IS JUST A SHAME THAT BY THE TIME CURTIS STARTED HIS OBSERVATIONS AND PHOTOGRAPHIC RECORD,IN THE LATE 1800's, THE VARIOUS TRIBES WERE BEING DIMINISHED BY THE SO CALLED CIVILISING EFECT OF THE UNITED STATES GOVERNMENT. STILL, THIS BOOK IS PROOF THAT IT IS "BETTER LATE THAN NEVER". THE SECTION ON GENERAL CUSTER IS PARTICULARLY REVEALING .


Finest Years: Churchill as Warlord 1940-45
Finest Years: Churchill as Warlord 1940-45
Price: £6.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars FACTUAL RATHER THAN AN OPINION, 4 Feb. 2013
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THIS BOOK INTERESTS ME BECAUSE MAX HASTINGS HAS RESEARCHED HIS SUBJECT FROM THE HISTORICAL FACTS AVAILABLE, PRESUMABLY FROM THE HOUSE OF COMMONS RECORDS[HANSARD] , MILITARY RECORDS AND NEWSPAPERS. HE HAS PUT THEM TOGETHER IN HIS USUAL MASTERLY FASHION TO PRODUCE THIS IMPORTANT AND HISTORICAL VOLUME. IT MADE ME WONDER WHAT MY PARENTS MUST HAVE THOUGHT ABOUT THE SITUATION IN THOSE EARLY YEARS OF THE WAR, WHEN WINSTON CHURCHILL WAS THE ONLY POSITIVE THINKER SURROUNDED BY SO MANY PESSIMISTS. SOME SAY THAT IT IS NOT AN IDEAL SITUATION TO DWELL ON AND BE REMINDED OF WORLD WAR TWO BUT THIS IS A HISTORY BOOK THAT SHOULD BE READ BY ALL AND PARTICULARLY BY YOUNGER PEOPLE .


Vax H90-GA-B Gator Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
Vax H90-GA-B Gator Handheld Vacuum Cleaner
Price: £34.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent product, 7 Mar. 2012
I am extremely pleased with this purchase. It performs much better than other more expensive hand held vacuum cleaners having stronger suction and battery life before re-charging. It is also quite light to handle and the cleaning of the filter is no trouble in dismantling the the housing via the two buttons. Apart from the usual uses, like cleaning the car interior, it also very useful in removing crumbs from the breadboard and table, much more efficient than the chicken we previously used.


Offenbach: Les Contes d'Hoffmann -- Royal Opera House/Pretre [DVD] [2001] [NTSC]
Offenbach: Les Contes d'Hoffmann -- Royal Opera House/Pretre [DVD] [2001] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Covent Garden The Royal Opera
Price: £9.76

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent Production, 6 Mar. 2012
I cannot think of any weaknesses on the part of the cast performing this opera. One would not expect anything but a first class performance from Placido Domingo in the title role and he does not disappoint here. However, it is the supporting roles that make this B.B.C /Covent Garden production a gem. My only criticism is perhaps the picture quality, particularly the stage lighting that could have been better although it was recorded no doubt, on tape, some years ago.


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