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The Amazon J (Various, time dependent)

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The Fury
The Fury
by Alexander Gordon Smith
Edition: Paperback

4.0 out of 5 stars Furious action, 26 April 2013
This review is from: The Fury (Paperback)
Cal, Daisy and Brick slowly awaken to a frightening new world. At first they are ignored by their peer group, then ostracised... and then the Fury breaks and their friends and family attempt to rend them limb from limb. This is a wonderful premise, tapping into all teenagers fear of not fitting in, and combining it with what at first seems to be a zombie story, which then flips into something more.
This is a writer with serious verve and confidence - taking his cue from Romero, the biggest danger doesn't necessarily lie with the hordes outside the group, but instead within the group itself as new members join, and past traumas and decisions come to light. As well as Romero, this also reminded me of Cell from Stephen King, but it rises above any accusations of being derivative with a really fresh take.
I would say however that the early chapters are a little repetitive, effectively telling the same story from 3 different angles, so I did find myself skimming through that quickly. There is some effort to flesh out the main characters, but I felt we could certainly do with finding out more about Rilke, who gets little backstory in comparison to Brick, who gets heaps. There are strange author decisions; Rilke doesn't get introduced until more than halfway through, whilst an adult police character is introduced early, but taken nowhere (that's a bad pun that you'll understand once you've read the book).
Overall, this is fresh, exciting, and (ahem) fast & furious. I absolutely enjoyed it, can't wait for the next part, and will most likely check out Gordon Smith's other work whilst waiting for The Storm


Department 19
Department 19
by Will Hill
Edition: Hardcover

3.0 out of 5 stars Plenty of bite, 24 April 2013
This review is from: Department 19 (Hardcover)
This is a strong debut novel, reclaiming vampires for the male reader after the sloppy dross of Twilight. It's non stop action from the beginning as young Jamie Carpenter watches his father gunned down by his former colleagues. Years later, with Jamie now 16, the vampires finally track him down and take his mother prisoner. Luckily for Jamie, his life is spared by sexy teen vampire Larissa (ok so there is a little bit of romance in here...) and Frankenstein (the monster) then takes him in to Department 19, the UK gvt's supernatural defence team.
Department 19 is definitely not a meritocracy, with the senior positions filled for the past 100+ years by members of four different families. The book gets a little bogged down in backstory, jumping from the 1800s to the early 20th century and then back to the current milieu, and I could have done with some family trees to reference which generation I was dealing with, but the fact a first time novelist is trying this is to be applauded. It's not a novel with many fresh ideas - indeed it reminded me greatly of a UK series called Ultraviolet I watched a good few years ago - but it is fast paced and frantic. It's also VERY gory and violent, these vampires are definitely far more 30 Days of Night than Lestat.
Definitely a good gift for a 15-16 year old boy who wants a bit of bite in his vampires, probably a bit too much wish fulfilment for the older reader.


The Informers
The Informers
by Bret Easton Ellis
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars you won't see it coming, 23 April 2013
This review is from: The Informers (Paperback)
This is clever. And nasty. And empty. And vacuous. Basically it's Ellis.

A series of vignettes take us through the standard Ellis tropes. Pretty boys with cheekbones as hard as their abs. Bored girls turning into bored housewives. Restaurant bookings and anonymous flat flings. But there's something there, in the background. A casual remark. A friend who just doesn't turn up. An escalating sense of dread. And then everything just gets flipped, like when From Dusk til Dawn goes from being a heist movie to being a horror movie. And it really, really works.

Of course it's Ellis, so we don't get an explanation. We definitely don't get a resolution. We just stare out of our limo windows at a body bleeding on the sidewalk until the chauffeur has driven the car round the next bend. And I can't enjoy a book like that. But I can be very, very disquieted about what is happening in some of the mansions of LA. I'm going to need a valium to sleep tonight.


Glamorama
Glamorama
by Bret Easton Ellis
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Grimorama, 23 April 2013
This review is from: Glamorama (Paperback)
Pretty much all of Ellis' work should come with a health warning that it is not meant to be read, except by final year students working on the effects of post-modernism on literature. Basically this is the story of a male model, who goes to the right restaurants, meets the right people, and takes the right drugs. One major slip-up however sees him cruise-linering off to Europe, into the hands of a model / terrorist organisation, who are behind a massive bombing campaign. Can you say Der-e-leeect?
Actually when I first read this, I presumed it was Ellis writing something truly unfilmable, just because all of his other books had ended up on screen; the irony that Zoolander basically took this premise and turned it into something entertaining is... quite wonderful.
Back to the novel, you can never tell what is true, what is really going on, and what is real. There is no resolution (there never is with Ellis). His characters are cyphers, indicators of general malaise, empty shells, not people in themselves, or people who participate in cause and effect plots. They are designed to inform us that our souls are dead, and that there aren't enough drugs to fill the gap. They are not designed to entertain us, and that is the problem - Ellis' books aren't entertaining, are a slog to read, and don't provide any payback for reading them (unless you consider the bitter after taste to be worth the while). Therefore I simply can't recommend reading them to anyone, unless you are someone who is quite happy to be bored by the books you read, and read for mood, not plot. Because there is no plot because either nothing happened or hundreds of people were blown limb from bloody limb by model agency bombing attacks; and no matter how many times you read this book, you will never know which of these scenarios occurred.


Neverwhere - The Complete BBC Series [1996] [DVD]
Neverwhere - The Complete BBC Series [1996] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Gary Bakewell
Offered by Helen's Goodies
Price: 7.90

2 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars stilted, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Richard Mayhew makes a bad mistake - actually, probably a good move, considering his nagging shrew of a girlfriend - when he stops to help a distressed young lady on the streets of London. That girl is Door, practically royalty in London below, which is a parallel London underground, incorporating the homeless, fallen angels, creepy psychopaths and a very extravagantly dressed Paterson Joseph.

I loved this when I first saw it, but a recent DVD purchase was a mistake - the central performances of Richard Mayhew and Hunter are just so wooden that they really detract, and the costumes make everyone look like they are going to burst into a song from Oliver, or perhaps knock over a flimsy Dr Who set. It's a great story, and the Angel is terrific, but I just can't recommend this because it reminds me of how British TV used to be - cheap and dreadful, doing little justice to great writing.


3.5mm Male Jack to Female Socket Extension 3m Cable
3.5mm Male Jack to Female Socket Extension 3m Cable
Offered by cheap4uk(From hongkong,2-3 weeks delivery)
Price: 1.36

5.0 out of 5 stars ronseal, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
does what it is supposed to. this is one review that doesn't need that many words. the earphones go in one end and the other end goes in the TV - job done


Groov-e GV9900MB Kids Retro Style Headphones - Midnight Blue
Groov-e GV9900MB Kids Retro Style Headphones - Midnight Blue
Offered by SENDERCITY
Price: 9.83

4.0 out of 5 stars do the business, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I like these headphones, I use them for my xbox after my flatmates have gone to sleep, and for music at work and they do the business on both. Sound is powerful, has sufficient bass for me, and I think the earphones look pretty good as well. So impressed, I bought a second set and kept them at work and the others at home.


Prometheus [DVD] [2012]
Prometheus [DVD] [2012]
Dvd ~ Noomi Rapace
Price: 3.00

7 of 13 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars oh dear, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Prometheus [DVD] [2012] (DVD)
This movie is an insult to the legacy of Alien/ Aliens. The Chronicles of Riddick was a better sci-fi movie than this. The only redeeming element is Fassbender's performance, which is a miracle, as his 'insane' android has simply no motivation at all. At various points in the movie he seems (1) covetous of the 'sexy scientist', (2) wants to impress his father, (3) has hatched the most ridiculous plot to kill his father, who he could actually have spent the entire journey torturing as Fassbender is the only one awake on the ship for years. The plot is an absolute mess, there are some ludicrous set pieces such as two people running for safety when a spaceship the size of a city is crashing down on top of them, or the biologist, who runs away the first time he gets the chance to examine a completely dead alien, but then tries to pet something that looks like a penis with teeth only minutes later. You are better off not knowing where the Space Jockey came from than watching this movie. It is dreadful.


Gamewright Forbidden Island Game
Gamewright Forbidden Island Game
Price: 13.04

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun fun fun, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This was a brilliant wee present for myself and is perfect for four people; I liked the co-operative element, playing against the island itself rather than the other players, and it has loads of playability due to the variable elements (you can start at different difficulty settings, the island set-up will be different each time, there are six different game play characters with different 'powers'). You should also check out the web for potential new island set-ups to try. Terrific game and you get a real sense of accomplishment when you collect all four treasures and helicopter out of there with the island sinking behind you!


The Ides of March [DVD]
The Ides of March [DVD]
Dvd ~ Ryan Gosling
Offered by HarriBella.UK.Ltd
Price: 10.00

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars West Wing lite, 23 April 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Ides of March [DVD] (DVD)
Ryan Gosling is Josh from the West Wing, George Clooney is the soon to be Bartlett. Gozzo gets it on with one of the interns, who may be 21, 19, or possibly even younger, although she looks about 30. Then he finds out he's getting Clooney's sloppy seconds. Phillip Seymour Hoffman is nice, then he's a bastard, then Gozzo gets him.
Clooney is on autopilot, and seems bored by his own character. This is the first move I've seen Gosling in, and he is woefully disappointing. His 'acting' seems to involve staring off into the middle distance with a petted lip, at every opportunity. In contrast to the West Wing, this film features long sections of silence, which I suspect are because Gozzo has forgotten his lines and is staring off at the middle distance looking for a cue board. The West Wing made politics exciting; this movie makes them dull again.


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