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minty (cornwall)

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A Parisian Affair and Other Stories (Penguin Classics)
A Parisian Affair and Other Stories (Penguin Classics)
by Guy De Maupassant
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

5.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable selection of short stories, 11 Jun 2013
Wonderful to read, often full of humanity, humour and wisdom. It seems amazing to relate richly to this time in France, amazingly just over 100 years ago.


Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming into Existence
Better Never to Have Been: The Harm of Coming into Existence
by David Benatar
Edition: Paperback
Price: 18.90

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An important book, 11 Jun 2013
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Its a bit of a taboo subject, this, so its wonderful to see it in book form. Its perspective on life is something I have always felt on some level. I have awarded the book 5 stars, mainly for its courage in being written! It is also well written and interesting, though occasionally I found it a little academic/dense for my own tastes.

May I also recommend "On The Suffering Of the World" by Arthur Schopenhauer, a pamphlet book written over 100 years ago, but beautifully and freshly written on more-or-less the same subject.


The Blue Hour: A Portrait of Jean Rhys (Bloomsbury Lives of Women)
The Blue Hour: A Portrait of Jean Rhys (Bloomsbury Lives of Women)
Price: 4.63

5.0 out of 5 stars Evocative and wonderful read, 28 May 2013
I really enjoyed this book, being a huge admirer of Jean Rhys's work. And I really agreed very much with her conclusions.

It is not as detailed perhaps as Carole Angier's (also excellent) biography. Neither does it focus so much on detailed analysis of her work (which matters little to me as I am so familiar with it anyway). But it has a lovely, creative and simple way of describing Rhys's life, in different countries, homes, and so forth, written in a style that is somehow in keeping with Rhys's own style of writing and life. It was also a joy and a pleasure to read. I devoured it in two days. The biography is also well written, and highly evocative at times, so many thanks to the author.


Criterion Collection: Red Desert [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Criterion Collection: Red Desert [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Dvd ~ Monica Vitti
Offered by RAREWAVES USA
Price: 20.07

5.0 out of 5 stars A beautiful and amazing film, 16 May 2013
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Admittedly seen in its full glory at the cinema, where it was breathtaking. The lead actress is incredibly beautiful and mysterious in her role. The colour, the sets, the fashion, the scenes, the acting, true art. With gratitude and full credit to the directors and writers, a film full of feeling and understanding and beauty, simply heaven.


All Passion Spent (VMC)
All Passion Spent (VMC)
by Vita Sackville-West
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful and stunning novel, 16 May 2013
Full of wisdom, mystery and simply delightful writing. Each time I have re-read it I have gleaned something new and remarkable in its insight and lyrical writing.

(I would however correct Amazon - the book is by Vita Sackville-West. Joanna Lumley did not co-author this and it is wrong to credit her thus; she simply wrote an introduction.)


Silk Jewellery Roll, Fairtrade, Turquoise Silk with Embroidery
Silk Jewellery Roll, Fairtrade, Turquoise Silk with Embroidery
Offered by EcoBlue
Price: 11.95

2.0 out of 5 stars pretty but small and overpriced, 27 April 2013
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This was nearly 12, which I thought was pricey, though included P & P. It was pretty, but small and flimsy and I would have sent back except for the cost of postage.


Quiet: The power of introverts in a world that can't stop talking
Quiet: The power of introverts in a world that can't stop talking
by Susan Cain
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Important book, 1 April 2013
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Important book. The beginning was a revelation, and a tour de force. Like others, I recognised myself very well. Also very sensitively and subtly written.

I have dropped a star for a couple of small reasons. Firstly, the middle of the book sagged with too much research details. It is important to cite research, but I think the author went into way too much detail and it felt heavy, hardgoing and unnecessary at times.

Another criticism, many pages were given over to introvert children and how parents should deal with them, excellent ideas and advice. BUT WHAT ABOUT INTROVERT PARENTS of EXTROVERT CHILDREN and HOW TO DEAL WITH THAT?!!!

Perhaps extroverts could have been given a more positive rap, too? Though I do realise the book is in large part about trying to redress the balance, I think some more positive things could be written about them?

But overall, a super and important book, well-overdue.


The Power of Focusing: Finding Your Inner Voice
The Power of Focusing: Finding Your Inner Voice
by Ann Weiser Cornell
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.59

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Terrific book, 29 Mar 2013
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I found the bright colours of the cover a bit off-putting for some reason, so didn't read it for a while.

However, once I did start to read it, I realised it was an excellent book. Simply written, but with a great eye to the subtleties and realities of focusing. Thank you.


Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times
Staying Alive: Real Poems for Unreal Times
by Neil Astley
Edition: Paperback
Price: 8.40

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A confusing hotpotch, 29 Mar 2013
I notice that alot of the less positive reviews have got the "thumbs down" or even hostile comments because they are less than 100% impressed with this tome. Are less than rosy reviews not welcome? An unfortunate development and not in the spirit of fair literary criticism.

My own thoughts - I thought there were a few good poems scattered about the book, but lost in the general mass of poems or should I say mess of poems. There was such a hotchpotch and all the poems seemed completely disconnected. I also agree with a couple of reviewers who point out the poor quality of many poems. The constant shift in different styles, subjects and approach from one poem to the next made me feel a bit queasy to be honest, like being at a huge buffet there the tables are groaning with food from every culture, and alot of it of questionable quality. It seemed to me the focus of the book was quantity, rather than quality i.e. if the editor provides enough poems in terms of volume, surely a few of them will hit home with the reader. But this "mass" publication approach left me cold (as well as being a physically large and cumbersome book).

Also, for me there was a big problem with presentation. The type is tiny and without character, a rather loveless and artless presentation of poetry - it could have been a computer manual. It felt as if the editor wanted to squash as many poems as possible into the book and so the quality and beauty of the book itself was sacrificed in the process which felt horrible to me.

The result is that the page doesn't do one individual poem any justice and for me, despite the occasional gem, it was unreadable.

I am sure there are other poetry collections that are much better and pay greater respect to the poets themselves.


Vax U90-MA-R Air Reach Multicyclonic Upright Bagless Vacuum Cleaner
Vax U90-MA-R Air Reach Multicyclonic Upright Bagless Vacuum Cleaner
Price: 239.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poor suction, 29 Mar 2013
The suction power of this vacuum cleaner was too weak for me. The carpet was only superficially cleaned. The attachments were complicated to attach and I thought they were also pretty ineffective. The only positive was that it was a light vacuum cleaner and easy to move around.


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