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The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks
by Rebecca Skloot
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Riveting book, 23 Sep 2011
I am not a scientist and tend to mostly read non-fiction. I bought this book because it was on special offer and started to read it somewhat reluctantly. After only a few pages, however, I found myself totally gripped by the story. The author declares it to be a a work of non-fiction. It is so much more than this. It is a turns a fascinating account of a bygone era both in terms of family relations, poverty and the history of medicine. It is extremely educational for someone like me, who would have struggled to describe a cell and its functions. Although I could in no way relate to the story of Henrietta Lacks's family and their subsequent brushes with the law and dysfunctional family relationships, I thought the author wrote about them with sensitivity and understanding and, according to her account, worked hard to bridge the gaps between herself and them. I cannot rate this book highly enough.


The Help
The Help
Price: 2.99

5.0 out of 5 stars I couldn't put it down, 20 Sep 2011
This review is from: The Help (Kindle Edition)
I really enjoyed this book. I thought the telling of the story from 3 different viewpoints was very effective. I felt totally immersed in another era. I have studied this period of history but this book brought it to life. I found the story at turns funny, sad and ultimately uplifting. I read the book in a few days and, if I had a help of my own to do all the cooking, cleaning and childcare for me, would happily have sat and read it cover to cover in one sitting.


Let Not the Waves of the Sea
Let Not the Waves of the Sea
by Simon Stephenson
Edition: Hardcover

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautifully written, 29 Aug 2011
I was lent this book by a friend who heard it serialised on Radio 4. I found it to be an incredibly moving account of the author's loss of his beloved brother. It was, however, also much more than this. The story of the aftermath of the Tsunami for the author and his family was unexpectedly compelling and I finished the final chapter with tears streaming down my face. This book reminded me of Blake Morrison's memoirs about his parents. I look forward to reading any future works by this author.


How To Be a Woman
How To Be a Woman
by Caitlin Moran
Edition: Paperback

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Funny, at times sad but compelling throughout., 8 Aug 2011
This review is from: How To Be a Woman (Paperback)
I absolutely loved this book. I bought it on a whim for my kindle, having only been vaguely aware of Caitlin Moran's writing in the past.

I thought the autobiographical elements were outstandingly funny. I loved her description of growing up in a large working-class family. I also could relate to her experiences of motherhood. In fact, I wish that she had written more about her experience of motherhood. I could completely identify with her struggles to find clothes that fit, coming to terms with body shape and size and the horror of weddings.

There were elements of this book that I found rather too frank in places and couldn't help wondering what her family members would feel reading the sections about masturbation and her experience of abortion.

Finishing this book felt like ending a conversation with a funny like-minded friend. The experience has been enriching and enjoyable and it feels reassuring to know (by the number of 5 star reviews this book has received) that so many others must share these views.


Ben and Jerry's Homemade Ice Cream and Dessert Book
Ben and Jerry's Homemade Ice Cream and Dessert Book
by Ben R. Cohen
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.59

3 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Extremely American, unhelpful layout, 1 Aug 2011
I should have realised that a Ben & Jerry's cookbook would be a very American affair. As a result, I have found it very hard to use. Despite the colourful cover the inside of the book does not have any photographs of the finished product. The quantities are are all aimed at the American market - i.e. cups of sugar etc and many of the ingredients are not available in the part of the UK in which I live - for example I have never heard of a 'Heath Bar'. I wish I had saved my money and bought another ice-cream recipe book instead.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 1, 2011 6:43 AM GMT


Dead Man's Bones
Dead Man's Bones
Price: 7.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Catchy, quirky and very listenable, 24 July 2011
This review is from: Dead Man's Bones (MP3 Download)
I'm not quite sure how I found out about this album, but I'm glad I did. I love the ghoulish lyrics and use of haunting piano melodies. The choir add to the overall effect nicely and I have found myself humming the tunes after only a few listens. Great stuff.


Easy Beats: 30 minutes of low intensity jogging music (125 BPM to 145 BPM). This workout has no voice over coaching.
Easy Beats: 30 minutes of low intensity jogging music (125 BPM to 145 BPM). This workout has no voice over coaching.

2.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't work for me without coaching, 24 July 2011
I really like the coached audio fuel albums. I'm afraid without the coaching these albums don't really work for me. They are just not interesting or catchy enough in their own right to listen to whilst running.


The Last Weekend
The Last Weekend
by Blake Morrison
Edition: Paperback
Price: 7.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Well written and truly gripping, 24 July 2011
This review is from: The Last Weekend (Paperback)
I really enjoyed Blake Morrison's non-fiction books 'And When Did Last See Your Father' and 'Things My Mother Never Told Me' and I looked forward to reading this. I wasn't disappointed. I thought his development of the main character was fascinating and it reminded me of Donna Tartt's 'Secret History'. I couldn't put this book down. A very good read.


Blue Valentine [DVD]
Blue Valentine [DVD]
Dvd ~ Ryan Gosling
Price: 8.00

4 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This film continues to haunt me, 21 July 2011
This review is from: Blue Valentine [DVD] (DVD)
I didn't find 'Blue Valentine' particularly gripping for the first 30 mins. However, after it was over I have found myself thinking about it often.

I really liked the narrative style, the intersection of past and present as it really enables the viewer to see where things have gone awry in Dean and Cindy's relationship. However, one also has to question whether they were really compatible even when they seemed to be in love. This is a film which draws you in, to the extent that you identify or oppose the actions of the characters. It is an excellent study of a relationship. The acting is superb on all counts.


Brainy Bugs: Funny Facts for Curious Kids
Brainy Bugs: Funny Facts for Curious Kids
Price: 0.77

1.0 out of 5 stars Rubbish for the Kindle, 21 July 2011
I'm sure this is a good book in its usual form. However, it was a total waste of money for the kindle as the pictures are hard to see, as is the text even when enlarged. Not worth the money.


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