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Samuel "Samuel"
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John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme: Series 2 (Audiogo)
John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme: Series 2 (Audiogo)
by John Finnemore
Edition: Audio CD
Price: £16.34

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sheer genius from the master of radio comedy, 18 Sep 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
John Finnemore may be little known, but the man is a comedy genius. Whilst those who do know him are likely to do so from the Radio 4 comedy Cabin Pressure (which he writes and in which he stars as the dippy but goodhearted Arthur), he's also responsible for the sketch show genius that is John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme. Unlike most sketch shows, he actually writes every single word, as well as appearing in every sketch. And what sketches there are!

In this, the second series (consisting of six 30 minute episodes across three CDs), there's a mixture of sketches, stories and song, all very silly, and all suitable for the whole family. Many are based on puns and misunderstandings, but all are brilliant. My personal favourites include a group of humble goldfish asking King Neptune for better memories with unexpected results, the dinosaurs' sung tribute to their God, Captain Dinosaurs (we raise our mighty voices, we wave our tiny arms....), and, best of all, the five minute storytelling monologues that finish each episode.

John Finnemore is a comedy God. It's doubtful whether there will be another series of Cabin Pressure, but John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme more than makes up for this. Buy it, listen to it, and you'll laugh yourself silly.


Paris
Paris
by Edward Rutherfurd
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars Great historical fiction, 18 Sep 2013
This review is from: Paris (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I've read most of Edward Rutherfurd's previous books - London, Sarum, New York, etc - and all follow roughly the same format. It's historical fiction, consisting of a telling of real life events as experienced by fictional people. You thus get effectively two things for the price of one - a history lesson, and a really good story.

Like his other books, Paris tells the story of the city from the point of view of several families - a mixture of classes, a mixture of backgrounds, seeing the same events from different perspectives. Unlike the author's other novels, Paris is not told in a strictly linear format, but jumps around in time, which can make things slightly confusing. There's an inevitable concentration on events leading up to and including the German occupation in WWII, and other areas are, somewhat surprisingly glossed over (notably the Dreyfuss matter), but all in all this is a really enjoyable read. If you enjoy historical fiction, you'll love this.


The Machine
The Machine
by James Smythe
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £10.39

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Bleak but brilliant, 15 Aug 2013
This review is from: The Machine (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
James Smythe's first book, The Testimony, was a gripping faux-apocalyptic tale, telling the story of what happened after what may have been the voice of God spoke to everybody on the planet. After that I was greatly looking forward to The Machine - and it more than lived up to expectations.

On the Isle of Wight, beset like the rest of the world by the effects of global warming, Beth takes delivery of a Machine. That at least is certain.

Beth is a teacher whose husband was seriously injured during fighting. Something known simply as 'The Machine' wiped his bad memories, and replaced them with happier ones that were not actually his, but designed to improve his mental state.

The book is told from Beth's point of view, and tells the story of her struggle to repair her husband, and to get him back to being the person who she got to know and married. This sounds relatively simple (in sci-fi terms), but there's an air of unreality about the whole thing. Beth's position is unpleasant, and this makes for a rather depressing read - and rather a puzzling one, as one is left wondering whether all is really as it seems. I don't think it gives away much to say that the ending is not as I expected, although the outcome perhaps was.

A pretty depressing read, but not in a bad way - it reminded me in some ways of the bleakness of Kafka, combined with the other-worldliness of Arthur C Clarke. A great read, and one that will stay with you for some time afterwards.


John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme: Series 1
John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme: Series 1
by John Finnemore
Edition: Audio CD
Price: £13.25

5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, 15 Aug 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
John Finnemore is, without doubt, a genius. He's the man responsible for the fabulous Radio 4 comedy series Cabin Pressure (which he writes, as well as playing the part of loveable clot Arthur); this is the first series of his sketch show, which has also been broadcast on Radio 4.

This contains the entire first series of John Finnemore's Souvenir Programme - four parts, half an hour each, spread across two CDs. Like all sketch shows it has its high points and its not-so-high points, but the majority of the material here is laugh-out-loud funny. Particular highlights are the until-now unknown scheme during the Second World War to have Spitfires crewed by cats, the sketch where Winnie The Pooh's friends stage an intervention to try to shock him into overcoming his honey addiction, and a brilliant Dr Jekyll/Mr Hyde sketch in which the conflict of sharing the same body is resolved in a very painful way.

There are a small number of comedic songs which are perhaps the least funny pieces on offer here (nothing as good as the legendary Captain Dinosaur song that appears in series 3), but even these are better than what you'd find in most other sketch shows. It's also completely clean - our ten year-old daughter has loved listening to this in the car with us.

As Arthur in Cabin Pressure would say, this is brilliant! Highly recommended, and we can't wait for series 2 and 3 to come out on CD later this year.


Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Hairball Chicken 2.55 Kg (Pack of 3)
Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Hairball Chicken 2.55 Kg (Pack of 3)

4.0 out of 5 stars Great quality catfood, 15 Aug 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Our cats love Iams, it comes in a strong packet that will withstand the fact that the pack will last a single cat for several weeks, and this variety claims to help prevent hairballs. I can't vouch for the last of these points after only a couple of weeks - our cats rarely get hairballs in any case - but it goes down well with the cats, so goes down well with us. Iams is simply the best dry food on the market.


Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Light Chicken 2.55 Kg (Pack of 3)
Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Light Chicken 2.55 Kg (Pack of 3)

4.0 out of 5 stars Quality dry cat food, 15 Aug 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
We have two cats that love Iams. This is the 'adult light' variety, which is for cats that are overweight, or have been neutered so are more likely to put on weight. Historically we've used normal Iams, but thought would give this a go. Whether it is healthier than the standard product I don't know, but the cats love this as much as the other varieties.


BT 1000 Cordless DECT Phone
BT 1000 Cordless DECT Phone
Price: £14.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good basic cordless phone, 18 Jun 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
The BT1000 Dect is the entry level BT phone. This is a single phone with a base station, although it's possible to buy additional handsets to link in. It's quite easy to setup (and I say that as somebody who is an expert at getting cable connections wrong). It's recommended that it's charged for 24 hours before use; I was desperate to use it as the cat had chewed through the wires for an old one, and it was able to be used, and maintained charge for the best part of a day, after only being charged for an hour or so.

The sound is crystal clear, and the range is good - using it in the garden 10 metres or so from the base station is no problem. The buttons are large, so good for those with clumsy fingers, and the display is very clear. There's no answerphone, but who needs that when BT have their own 1571 service?

My only moan would be that the base station is rather flimsy, and it's easy to put the phone into it without it clicking into place, thus meaning that you think it's charging when it's not. A good phone though, and as good as many more expensive ones.


Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Lamb 3 Kg (Pack of 3)
Iams Dry Cat Food Adult Lamb 3 Kg (Pack of 3)

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great cat food!, 18 Jun 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Iams is seen as being a premium brand of dry cat food; premium or not, our cats love it. The 3kg bag contains enough Iams for one cat for 46 days (according to the packet), although given how fast our cats go through it, it won't last anywhere near that long. The pack is so large that I was worried about it being flimsy and tearing easily, thus spilling large amounts of catfood everywhere, but it's sturdy enough and thick enough that this hasn't happened. Our cats love it, so we love it. Recommended!


Iams Cat Food ProActive Health Adult With Wild Ocean Fish & Chicken 3 kg (Pack of 3)
Iams Cat Food ProActive Health Adult With Wild Ocean Fish & Chicken 3 kg (Pack of 3)

5.0 out of 5 stars Great value cat food, 18 Jun 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Iams is seen as being a premium brand of dry cat food; premium or not, our cats love it. The 3kg bag contains enough Iams for one cat for 46 days (according to the packet), although given how fast our cats go through it, it won't last anywhere near that long. The pack is so large that I was worried about it being flimsy and tearing easily, thus spilling large amounts of catfood everywhere, but it's sturdy enough and thick enough that this hasn't happened. Our cats love it, so we love it. Recommended!


Gillette Fusion Proglide Silvertouch Power Razor
Gillette Fusion Proglide Silvertouch Power Razor
Offered by Your247Chemist
Price: £13.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic wet razor, 18 Jun 2013
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is my second razor in the Fusion Power series, and is a good replacement for the first. The selling point of the Power range is that the blades vibrate when shaving, powered by an AAA battery in the handle. The battery is supplied with the razor, which is a plus point, and the shave is incredibly close and easy. With a sharp blade, it's even possible to shave without shaving gel, which makes things quick and easily. I've tried many different razors, and although not cheap, this is the best yet. Highly recommended as a kind of cross between a traditional wet razor and an electric razor.


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