Profile for Gargantua Pantaloon > Reviews

Personal Profile

Content by Gargantua Pant...
Top Reviewer Ranking: 4,910,684
Helpful Votes: 256

Learn more about Your Profile.

Reviews Written by
Gargantua Pantaloon "The Limarian" (london)

Show:  
Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10
pixel
A Most Wanted Man
A Most Wanted Man
by John Le Carré
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars thin, watery and washed out, 17 Sep 2010
This review is from: A Most Wanted Man (Paperback)
I get confused easily these days unless something really forces me to pay attention - and this one doesn't - i couldn't be bothered to remember all the names of the various improbable larger than life characters- over drawn and unlikely and just not very interesting. It's just a drag of a book - there is so much better stuff around. its' saving grace is that it easy to read - you can pick it up, put it down , its just something to read when there's nothing else around.


Life Cycle Costing in Aircraft Maintenance: Life Cycle Cost Models Development and Implementation
Life Cycle Costing in Aircraft Maintenance: Life Cycle Cost Models Development and Implementation
by Edy Suwondo
Edition: Paperback
Price: £62.53

5.0 out of 5 stars Lawrence's Pocket Money, 26 Aug 2010
Length:: 0:16 Mins

Russell makes a trip from his home in Australia to visit his dying brother Lawrence in England. Lawrence gives him two thousand pounds as a Christmas present for his kids. Russell starts to feel paranoid about the money and zips it into the inside pocket in his jacket. He puts the jacket in the overhead locker on the plane and forgets it. After the flight he feels so exhausted, it's so hot and there is such a rush to get off that he forgets the jacket. He tries to sneak back onto the plane but he can't find the jacket and now the cleaners are coming. He hides in the toilet and finds a trap door on the ceiling and crawls in, falling asleep in the tiny space. The plane takes off and lands in Poland where he is discovered. He gets accidentally knocked unconscious as the police try to drag him off the plane. He insists he has to look for his jacket. In the struggle he falls down the steps, banging his head and losing his memory. He is transferred to hospital where he meets Olaf. Olaf offers him a job as a diamond courier.

Olaf explains how easy it is, looking at him in that strange way, 'in fact..' he says, and pushes a wad of notes across the table, 'you don't have anything to lose', Russell is a person without a history- maybe there were things waiting for him somewhere that needed his attention. There was a nagging anxious feeling that there was something somewhere unresolved, but he couldn't connect to anything, it was just nothing. 'You are free now, you have no history, you have no definition my friend, you are just living for the day, you might as well start building a new life'. He knew there were reasons why not, he couldn't remember the details of all the moral codes he sensed were out there, but there was the nagging reality of a mouth to feed today, of a road ahead. It all felt so unreal anyway, he might as well just drift, what was there to lose anyway. Olaf was right, whatever happened from now on, at least he would be creating something as he moved through his time, at least there would be the small beginnings of some personal story. Life was so complicated and ragged when things go wrong and there's nothing to hold on to he thinks. He puts his elbows on the table and cradles his head in his hands, pressing the palms into the sockets of his eyes and descending into the vast empty enveloping darkness . Making right decisions was going to be so very hard.


The Cobra
The Cobra
by Frederick Forsyth
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £17.12

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars pot boiler, 26 Aug 2010
This review is from: The Cobra (Hardcover)
I read this over a wet weekend and it passed the time pleasantly enough but there's no way it qualifies as literature. You get the impression that the author has a team of ghosts doing a bit of research on the details and he gets these bits of research and threads them together round a single rather simple idea - namely that a few good men of quality can defeat the evil in the world. Where have I heard that before - oh yes, some old SAS documentary, or was it Alan Clark, or maybe I read it in the Daily Mail. Well that's it - that's the book.
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Sep 21, 2010 12:48 PM BST


Stochastic Calculus for Fractional Brownian Motion and Related Processes (Lecture Notes in Mathematics)
Stochastic Calculus for Fractional Brownian Motion and Related Processes (Lecture Notes in Mathematics)
by Yuliya Mishura
Edition: Paperback
Price: £50.05

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Andy from the bookshop, 9 Aug 2010
Andy Greville Wynne works in a bookshop - it suits him - he's quite shy after all. He wouldn't have been at all happy in the cut and thrust of office life he feels and he is comfortable there. Sometimes Mr. Ellis leaves him on his own to look after the shop while he goes for a lie down at the back. However, there is more to Andy than meets the eye - he has a secret. When he can, he likes to hide behind the bookshelves and spy on pretty girls. It's a kind of game - it's a way of getting something he would be too timid to get otherwise, but it has become compulsive, a bothersome addiction. He gets caught one day of course, but instead of the embarrassing fuss he had expected, Sheila is pleasant and smiling - she slips round the back of the stack and he realises that she has been watching him while he was watching the girls in the shop. What an understanding woman he thinks. They talk - she says she works at the clinic nearby and he assumes she is a nurse - how nice. At first he finds conversation difficult, he haltingly shyly, she more self assured. 'A good listener' he thinks. He finds it difficult to stop his mind from wandering. Her naturalness, her ease is exciting for him and wonders what it would be like with her, what it would be like to be close to her.

He makes up his mind to bump into her - as if by accident, and to ask her out. With the help of Mr Ellis' secret supply of vodka he finds the will to drive to the clinic that evening. Waiting in the van in the car park he sees Sheila's name on the clinic welcome board - she is one of the psychotherapists at the clinic. He is shocked - that must be why she has time for him and his dirtiness. He feels a surge of humiliation and hatred. She wasn't interested in him - he was just a specimen as far as she was concerned, He finds her scooter at he back of the clinic and pulls out the spark plug lead. Sheila comes out of the clinic but cannot get the scooter started. Andy, who has been watching, pretends that he was coming to meet her and offers to take her home. Reluctantly she agrees. The vodka he drank earlier for the Dutch Courage to visit her is starting to burn through him. He isn't used to it. he is driving too fast but he can't seem to slow down. Sheila panics and tries to get out, but just as she is opening the door he accelerates jerkily and Sheila falls out and disappears under the back wheels of the van. Andy is terrified , he pulls the van over and tries to stir Sheila but she is lifeless. Looking down at her he realises in an instant that this was not an accident, it was just fate helping him along. This was what had to happen. he rushes back to the van and drives off. If he gives the van a good wash - nobody would know - after all, it's right that she had to be punished in some way for leading him on like that, and that's just how it worked out. This was a lesson to be learnt - better to just avoid other people.


Between Each Breath
Between Each Breath
by Adam Thorpe
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.73

0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Maybe i'm being too harsh, 18 April 2010
This review is from: Between Each Breath (Paperback)
I couldn't get on with this one at all - after thirty pages I started to skip-read 'till page 150 then I gave up. The prospect of another 250 pages was just too much. All these 'utterly brilliant ' reviews - what nonsense. Anybody that can write lines like 'she had amazingly beautiful knees as well', or have characters called Jack Middleton is living in The Archers - land. Richmond, Hampstead, Chopin, people called Howard and Felicity, lively fiddle playing, etc - I'm just not interested. It's Just more pap for the novel-writing, overfed, four wheel driving, Waitrose - shopping, Guardian-reading, gibberring classes to drool over.
Comment Comments (5) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Oct 11, 2012 2:58 PM BST


Strangeland
Strangeland
by Tracey Emin
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.29

3 of 9 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars a long way from normal, 22 Mar 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Strangeland (Paperback)
Well, I'm sure she had a hard life and all that...and I don't mean to be unkind, but well, anybody that is pretentious enough to publish trash like this lays themselves open to whatever gets chucked back.

I put this woman's work in the category of 'dismissable curiosities' rather than something to stand back and marvel at - which is what I want out of artwork. It's all very well saying 'yes but it's a commentary on the way we live in the 21st century etc' but it doesn't make it attractive.

And the book - which you can read in an hour-well it's not a book, it's a collection of sad, disconnected, diaristic scraps of experience with little in the way of interest or literary style - which is just like her productions actually.

You get a bit tired of learning all about everything that oozes out of Tracey-I just don't need to know-and if it's her therapy-well why not keep it to herself and the shrink-I just don't want to be in the room at the same time.

What amazes me is the plaudits on the cover-it just confirms my belief that everybody in the art world is busy stroking each others egos regardless of how untalented they are.

Nevertheless, i did enjoy the last few pages about her Egyptian experience -very accurate and amusing.
Comment Comments (8) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 4, 2013 4:39 PM GMT


The Secret Magdalene
The Secret Magdalene
by Ki Longfellow
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.73

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars ignorance is all there is of evil, 17 Mar 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Secret Magdalene (Paperback)
A truly extraordinary piece of work and imagination. Much research and background has produced writing that is often evocative and exciting, penetrating a dusty ancient world and bringing it to life.

I read this after 'Wolf Hall' - another brick of a book that tries to take you back to another world. I have, by comparison, all but forgotten Wolf Hall, but this book lingers in the mind, transporting you two thousand years back into a scorched, sandy, pre-Darwinian world struggling to make sense of being a human. It's hard work - like the characters, roaming round the desert for most of its' life, then introducing the Jesus story and the terrible broken world of misunderstanding, bigotry and closed minds. I kept thinking of the mess of the modern Middle East with the intolerance, factional rivalries and petty stalking religious arguments through its' history - the longing for peace and security while still steeped in the aggression and murderous defensiveness of our ancestors.

It's good to see the Jesus story portrayed more realistically in its' social and political dimension without the silly romanticisation and mystique. It makes it all the more astonishing that the human will to contain and organise ideas can take a simple message and turn it into a vast world movement responsible for so much bloodshed and corruption crashing its' way through the centuries. It's would seem an impossible task trying to bring enlightenment to a babbling world of corruption, superstition and desperate human needs.

The book does tend to drag in places, not really saying very much or seeming to go anywhere, and for such a long book it seems rather rushed and thin towards the end. However it does draw a vivid picture of a pre-Christian society dominated by brutal Roman repression and the muttering undercurrents of resentment and insurgency.


The Interrogation
The Interrogation
by J.M.G. Le Clézio
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.44

2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Meanderings of a loon, 17 Mar 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The Interrogation (Paperback)
There is a respectable French intellectual obsession <Camus and Houlebec>-with the detailing of the solitary self reflective internal world. Generally this makes for an interesting reading experience, but here it's relentless - drawn out ad nauseam with no concessions.

If you want to know what it's like following a dog through town or killing a rat for fifty pages, including every tiniest flash of observation and wildest nuance of thought and imagination, this is the book for you. Only a Frenchman could produce this kind of drivel.

I read this as an example of Nobel literature prize quality material-it's certainly extraordinary-that a writer can sustain excreting this babbling brook of nonsense for 223 pages. But it's a curiosity, not a great work.

If I had a lifespan of several thousand years I might be tempted to pass a bored afternoon fruitlessly flicking through this garbage, but as things stand I relished holding it up lightly between my thumb and forefinger, releasing my grip and letting it fall into the cavernous open mouth of the rubbish bin.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 4, 2011 9:33 PM GMT


The Ultimate Banjo Songbook: 26 Favorites Arranged for 5-String Banjo
The Ultimate Banjo Songbook: 26 Favorites Arranged for 5-String Banjo
by Janet Davis
Edition: Paperback
Price: £13.70

3 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Willy's banjo, 12 Feb 2010
When Willy finds that somebody has stolen his beloved McAllan banjo from the back of the school bus he begins to question his life at the Tiptree boarding school. He sees that he has just been 'bumbling along' pursuing his musical interests with no awareness of how wicked the world around him actually is. He has no real idea as to who would want to steal the banjo but his suspicions come to rest on Professor Moins, the chemistry teacher when he finds the banjo case stuffed down the back of the cupboard in the science lab where they keep the bunsen burners and heavier chemistry equipment. He remembers how Moins always seems to look at him in a strange way and, for want of any other suspects, concludes that Moins must be the thief. That evening, he comes back to the lab after the school has closed. He sets fire to one of the wooden benches, but the lab door blows shut and he finds himself locked in. He manages to smash the glass window in the door and climb out but in his panic he drops his scarf and cuts his arm badly. The next day he is arrested and taken to the police station where he is charged with arson. The scarf apparently had a name tag sewn in by his mother and the cuts on his arm and torn clothing were enough for the police to make a strong case against him. He escapes going to prison with a conditional discharge but he never returns to Tiptree, continuing to study music at home with a private tutor. Several years later Willy gets a job with the London Philharmonia as lead percussionist. Nobody is aware of his past life and the incident at Tiptree, and eventually his own memory of that dreadful evening fades away.
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 7, 2014 3:11 PM GMT


Ben, in the World
Ben, in the World
by Doris Lessing
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars a sad and mildly engaging pot boiler, 9 Feb 2010
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Ben, in the World (Paperback)
'The Fifth Child' had a kind of haunting resonance that left you wondering 'what happened next' - but it would have been much better if it had been left at that. A useful long plane journey kind of read I suppose. It has to be said it's not at all well written - too hasty and casual - and the story is pretty hammy. You get the impression it was written more in the sixties than in 2000, the detail is just too naïve, superficial and cliched - certainly not what you'd expect from a Nobel prize winner. It's going to the bookshelf in the garage 'till I can find somebody to palm it off on.


Page: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10