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Dolphin (Oxford, England)

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The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir who got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe
The Extraordinary Journey of the Fakir who got Trapped in an Ikea Wardrobe
by Romain Puertolas
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.09

4.0 out of 5 stars Wonderfully absurd, 16 Aug 2014
I liked this book. Did I see any point? Not particularly. Did the story make sense? Not at all. But it was just wonderfully bizarre. You never quite knew what was coming next. Perhaps not nailbiting stuff, but quite a few unexpected twists and turns. Only the five zillion different ways in which his unpronounceable name was unpronounced eventually turned a bit too daft to be funny. But other than that - lighthearted, feel-good material. To be read on a sunny summer's day with a cocktail by your side. Alternatively wait for the next rainy day and spend it reading this book on the sofa.


Demon Dentist
Demon Dentist
by David Walliams
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £5.85

5.0 out of 5 stars A great mix of everything, 18 April 2014
This review is from: Demon Dentist (Hardcover)
This is a brilliant book! I used to love Roald Dahl in my younger years, and just could not resist test-reading this one. No regrets, I may even have to get another of David Walliams' books.

Style and story line are very reminiscent of the old Roald Dahl books: a poor little boy with a loving Dad, a horrible "Baddie," little boy fights bad grown up with LOTS of bizarre things happening, and in the end it does all turn out well, but only after remarkable twists and turns. And it is in the various twists and turns, and in the setting of the story that David Walliams firmly finds his own style. First and foremost, the story is set very clearly set in 21st century Britain, with ironic side glances at the culture and references to current events: texting boy, who is blissfully unaware of anything happening around him, as he is constantly glued to his mobile, Winnie, the meddling social worker (who turns out not to be so bad after all), closed down coal mines and volcanic ash clouds.Some of the events in the book are definitely not for the faint-hearted and I almost found them a bit too gruesome - there is quite a bit of blood and gore to be had. I was wondering if this was perhaps a bit too much for younger children, and would agree with a 9 or 10+ rating - but then I wonder if grown-ups are perhaps sometimes more squeamish than kids. It is certainly not violence in a senseless video games "let's shoot everybody" kind of way, it is firmly associated with the bad characters, and so over the top that it is clear that it is part of a story and not real.

When I was reading the book, I found myself laughing, squeamishly revolted, nail-bitingly in suspense, and, in the end, moved. A roller coaster ride through all sorts of emotions in quick succession and certainly extremely good entertainment. Highly recommended - for children of all ages from 9 - 99...


BT 4500 Cordless Big Button Phone with Answer Machine and Nuisance Call Blocker
BT 4500 Cordless Big Button Phone with Answer Machine and Nuisance Call Blocker
Price: £30.99

7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, 7 Nov 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was very disappointed with this product. It has a cheap, light plastic feel about. I have awarded it one star rather than none, as it has a few technical tweaks which are nice - answering machine, hands free, alarm function. But the hands free function only works when you hold the phone upright, otherwise the loudspeaker seems to move inside and it becomes unintelligible what the person at the other end may be saying. While this may be an individual fault, I found the whole sound quality of the phone appalling. There was always a noise in the line - not with my previous phone. Very hard to understand the conversation partner. I do not think that was a production fault, that is the make of the phone. Will be returned, now that I have had a few days of trying it repeatedly.


A Wife On Gorge River
A Wife On Gorge River
Price: £14.87

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Kiwi nostalgia, 6 April 2013
I have read the book rather than the kindle version - not that it makes any difference to the contents. Which I really enjoyed. Admittedly, I am just back from a cycle tour around the South Island, so still wallowing in the beauty of New Zealand, and the book was the perfect opportunity to get back into the holiday feeling. And to expand on it and get an idea of what it is like to live in such a remote area. I thought Haast was remote when I came through there, but obviously the life described in the book goes quite a bit further.

I do not think the book is disjointed. It is not particularly chronological, but the chapters are each dedicated to specific topics (food, pets, travel etc). I liked it because it is very much a "does what it says on the tin" book - a straightforward description of life in a remote place. No great artistic ambitions, which would have been wrong - for me it just conjured up the feeling of smelling the sea and feeling the sandfly bites.

It is a quick read, and I just spent a very enjoyable Saturday morning feeling almost as if I was back in New Zealand. Difficult to say if it would be as enjoyable for someone who has not been there, but I think it would be. Certainly for people who want to get a feel for family life in the great outdoors.


Running with the Kenyans: Discovering the secrets of the fastest people on earth
Running with the Kenyans: Discovering the secrets of the fastest people on earth
by Adharanand Finn
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fun, instructive and inspirational, 29 April 2012
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I loved this book. A really good mix of travelogue, "run-a-logue" and interesting description and thoughts about what makes Kenyans tick and why they are so good. A fascinating description of life and training in Iten, and also an enlightening view of how running means something completely different for Kenyans, and for "Western" leisure runners and, to some extent, also athletes. A balanced view of current "in-aspects" of running, such as barefoot running, and of the (overanalysing?) Western mind - and how each of these fit into the different lifestyles and cultures. And running through this the author's own experience of running with the Kenyan's, during which he never takes himself too seriously, and also of his family, who moved out to Kenya with them and also experienced being a "mzungu" first hand. Highly recommended - particularly for running enthusiasts, but also for fans of travelwriting.


A Dip in the Ocean: Rowing Solo Across the Indian
A Dip in the Ocean: Rowing Solo Across the Indian
by Dame Ellen MacArthur
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.21

5.0 out of 5 stars Felt as if I was there, 19 Jun 2011
An absolutely amazing book. It is not just the feat of rowing solo-handed across the Indian Ocean. The "little English rowing girl" manages to take us on the journey with her. You can feel the ups and downs - both in her mind and on the water. And it is not just the journey across the water, it is also the journey of conquering the grief of losing her father. I am sometimes a bit wary of books where people describe life-changing experiences, as there is always the danger of them getting too esoteric and emotional. But this book is completely different. Everything is described in a completely straightforward, open way - which makes it so realistic, even when lying on a nice dry couch. I wouldn't have been surprised to see the occasional fish swimming by when reading the book, and I was painfully aware of not having any Mars bars in the house, the favourite fare on the boat. Also I don't usually shed tears when reading, but the reunion in Mauritius did make my eyes well a bit. All I can say - an Sunday afternoon well spent. A fabulous read!


Saucony Running Glove Mitt, Size L/XL
Saucony Running Glove Mitt, Size L/XL

5.0 out of 5 stars Wouldn't want to be without them, 1 Feb 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Saucony Running Glove Mitt (Misc.)
These are one of the few, if not the only, pairs of running mittens around. I am quite troubled with cold hands when running and have found that running gloves (with separate fingers) do not really do the trick. Running mittens do, because you have the warmth of the whole hand in one compartment. These ones are wonderfully light and soft and comfortable, and - most importantly - they keep the hands warm. Running in the cold is a whole new experience...


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