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Pieter Stok (Geelong, Australia)
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The Early Years: 1959-1966
The Early Years: 1959-1966
Price: £15.30

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars When Music was Simple and Pure ..., 10 Jan. 2014
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This is a collection of music that brought tears to an old fan's eyes. This catalogue of songs shows the progression, development and experimentation that made the Shads great. It is a worthy replacement for all the early albums. It is worth every cent, penny or whatever currency you use.


Tales Of The Unexpected - The Complete First Series [DVD]
Tales Of The Unexpected - The Complete First Series [DVD]
Dvd ~ Pamela Stephenson
Price: £8.20

4.0 out of 5 stars Perverse Imagination, 25 July 2013
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The perverse imagination of Roald Dahl is always a treat. This first series showcases his talents and should be a delight for anyone who likes a quirky story, well told. The sets and clothes are clearly dated but the stories aren't.


Twilight Zone - Season Two [DVD]
Twilight Zone - Season Two [DVD]
Dvd ~ Robert Cummings
Price: £16.62

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Good writing doesn't age., 25 July 2013
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The brilliance of The Twilight Zone series lies in the writing. The scripts are tight, clever and varied. Even though the origins of this series are set firmly in the angst of the Cold War and the Space Race, the ideas are clever enough to continue to be entertaining and thought provoking in the C21st.


Unapologetic: Why, despite everything, Christianity can still make surprising emotional sense
Unapologetic: Why, despite everything, Christianity can still make surprising emotional sense
by Francis Spufford
Edition: Hardcover

10 of 12 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An emotional defense of the faith, 12 Dec. 2012
If you like Theme Parks and fast rides you may very well like this manic excursion of Spufford's heart and mind.

The author takes on the thinking of the New Atheists and others but not by engaging in the "God is dead debate" from a calm, rational, fact and logic perspective (which, incidentally will never work, as both Christianity and Atheism must come from faith perspectives). He tackles it from the heart wrenching depths of the human experience. He looks at God's encounter with his life from the point of view of someone who has to go through the mire of life.

Warning: if you are offended by language, particularly a word starting with the sixth letter of the alphabet you may wish to read a book by Max Lucado instead. This word is repeated or implied often. As much as I don't like it, it is effective because it does describe our propensity to completely foul our lives.

Spufford brings us to the foot of the cross - the God/man who not only lives our lives but takes on himself, our foulness. The image Spufford paints with his words is uncomfortable, yet profound.

The author confronts the image of the church and acknowledges that it has done itself a disservice in history. Yet also reflects on some of it wins. However, the strength of the book lies in the personal journey of the author coming to grips with the personal reality of grace in in his own mucked up life and in a mucked up world.

I have a few quibbles. Spufford glibly glosses over some important issues with a dismissive wave of his hand, such as the creation/evolution debate, same sex marriage and homosexuality. I would rather he hadn't mentioned these as they detracted from the main thrust - and quite frankly his approach annoyed me. At another point Spufford speaks flippantly of the Kingdom as a Republic. This muddies the beautiful picture of Christ the King and the Kingdom, and also takes away from the main thrust of his un-apologia.

His writing style is manic. I described it to a friend as "Stream of Consciousness on Steroids". I found myself rereading paragraphs and pages just to remind myself where he was going with his thought. But that may just be me.

Overall: not a book for everybody, but for those who see life as it is - warts and all, it is a great reminder of a God who steps into this walk with us and for us. It is also a challenge for those who see God as non-existent, absent or remote -Spufford's God is none of these.


The New Conspirators: Creating the Future One Mustard Seed at a Time
The New Conspirators: Creating the Future One Mustard Seed at a Time
by Tom Sine
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mustard Seed Theology for the C21st, 29 Sept. 2011
In 1980 Tom Sine challenged western Christians in the "Mustard Seed Conspiracy" to use their wealth in small seemingly insignificant ways to make a real difference in the world. He heightened that call in 1999 in "Mustard Seed versus Mac World" when he explored the dangers of Globalism and the consumer culture and suggested ways in which, via the mustard seed metaphor, Christians/the church could respond in Biblical ways.

"The New Conspirators" maintains the metaphor and the call. Written before the GFC occurred, it nevertheless says much to challenge us .

He starts off by taking us on a journey, exploring how "new conspirators" are being and doing church, in what Michael Frost would call this "Exilic" age. Sine explores 4 models: Emerging, Missional, Mosaic and Monastic. I found this section particularly exciting as it revealed ways in which church can be relevant in an age that (in western cultures) is rapidly turning its back on the Christian faith. This section also shows that there is no one answer and that our God given creativity is a key to how we make ourselves relevant.

In the next section Sine asks to what extent globalisation is shaping our culture (and imagination) . This scenario becomes the basis for his call that Christians have been called to create life transforming alternatives - alternatives that take regard for all sections of society - in particular the vulnerable.

He concludes by giving us five imaginative challenges with regard to the world as it is, stewardship, mission, community and entrepreneurship.

This is a challenging book, but unlike many that can be deflating by revealing a disheartening picture that is too immense, Sine's mustard seed approach, littered with current examples of effective action, is spirit enlivening. If you are challenged by what it means to be a relevant Kingdom worker in this post GFC globalised economy, in which the Kingdom of Christ is being marginalised - take heart and instruction from this book. After all, it only requires a mustard seed.

P.S. This book has handy questions at the end of each chapter that can be used to engender discussion and action.


Total Church: A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community
Total Church: A Radical Reshaping Around Gospel and Community
by Tim Chester
Edition: Paperback
Price: £11.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A (re)Fresh(ed) Approach to Church, 31 Aug. 2011
Currently my wife and I are "between churches". We're looking for a church. The usual reaction from our friends and acquaintances is, "You won't find the perfect church." And my usual tired rejoinder is, "If we do, it won't be once we join."

Currently a lot of Christians are dissatisfied with "church" and more than a few books have been written about it. George Barna's "Revolution" and Michael Frost's "Exiles" are just two excellent examples in this area.

Total Church is a worthwhile addition because it adds further Biblical understanding together with "how to" practicality. Chester and Timmis explore what church is, and then show how it can look in practice. It highlights the connection between a living, growing (in understanding and relationship with God) organic community and the task of being God's witness to the world, and how the two are inseparable.

Coming from an evangelical/reformed perspective, they correctly, in my opinion, highlight the centrality of the Word of God in proclaiming the gospel. However, they emphasise that this needs to be done in community and relationship. That is why the organic church is such an important instrument of God in this world.

If anything, in their attempt to counter the wishy washy-ness of the social gospel they overstate the case. Psalm 19 is used as evidence for the centrality of the Word, but in the process they omit the first 6 verses in which the psalmist declares that the glory of God can be read in the heavens. We know that this is not a salvific Word but it is still God revealing Himself, and the apostle Paul reminds us that leaves us without excuse (Romans 1:20).

But why quibble! I found this book an encouragement as to what church could be in a church world of institutions, programmes, mega churches, church orders and constitutions. The irony is that their view of church is far less tangible as it is not about buildings and programmes but relationships and community, and yet, in an Acts/New Testament sense they have painted a picture of church that is far closer to the maker's intentions.

They do not dismiss other models of church, but they do challenge them to be aware of the pitfalls and not to take their eye off the main game - the revelation of Christ.

If you are looking for a living, breathing community desiring to serve and proclaim God in this world, this book gives you some great ideas for your search. One the other hand, you may need to gather like-minded people to grow this living expression of God in this world. As for me, my view and expectation of "church" has been irreparably altered.


MEAL WITH JESUS PB (Re:Lit)
MEAL WITH JESUS PB (Re:Lit)
by Tim Chester
Edition: Paperback

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Challenge to church and Christian, 24 July 2011
"Jesus is either going to, coming from or at a meal." This fresh approach to the Gospel of Luke by Tim Chester is, on the one hand an exciting picture of the "feast to come" for believers, but also a pointed reminder of the task of the church and believers in this present age. Through his study of the Gospel of Luke, Chester gives us a glimpse of how the meal can be a catalyst for grace,community and hope in a world which desperately needs all three.

I encourage church leaders, in fact all Christians with a passion for those who don't know Jesus (shouldn't we all have that passion!) to read this book and to be challenged. In this challenge Chester gives us the simplest of clues as to how we can be more effective - our dining table.


Charles Dickens's England - extended version [DVD] [2009]
Charles Dickens's England - extended version [DVD] [2009]
Dvd ~ Derek Jacobi
Offered by Home Entertainment Online
Price: £6.94

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Journey about Charles, 12 May 2011
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If you like gentle, well told stories then this documentary is for you. Sir Derek Jacobi takes us to the sites that inspired and shaped Charles Dickens. Sir Derek does it with that subtle expression, the raised eyebrow, the look and demeanour that is so familiar. The journey is informative and interspersed with appropriate readings. The readings in themselves are worth the price of the DVD. The disk of extras is just extra cream on the cake. It is a no nonsense, well told story that leaves us with a sense of understanding and empathy for Dickens.


Coast - BBC Series 1 (New Packaging) [DVD] [2005]
Coast - BBC Series 1 (New Packaging) [DVD] [2005]
Dvd ~ Nicholas Crane
Offered by RCDiscs
Price: £14.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Great Journey Begins, 21 April 2011
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The great journey begins as we head around GB in, what we know now to be, the first series of Coast. The BBC team in Birmingham have blended a wonderful balance between entertainment and education. Natural history, geology, geography, anthropology, archeology and history are woven together into a mesmerising programme as we move seamlessly between one topic or location and the next. For example, in programme 4 we move from ancient copper mines to Leatherback turtles to engineering wonders in the Menia Strait and more, but it is never superficial or "Tabloid". I first encountered Coast in Series 3 and have now moved back to the start. It is great to see that the quality of cinematography, commentary and editing never fails. Once again the BBC has shown us the high standards that can be achieved in worthwhile entertainment. Congratulations.


Ken Burns: National Parks: America's Best Idea [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Ken Burns: National Parks: America's Best Idea [DVD] [Region 1] [US Import] [NTSC]
Offered by Newtownvideo_EU
Price: £52.77

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Spectacular Vision, 20 April 2011
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This series is a superbly documented history and vision of the National Parks in the US. The filming, as you would expect from Ken Burns, is exceptional. The writing by Dayton Duncan is both informative and personal. It has a homely touch which I found was a healthy counterbalance to the vastness of the topic. This series is a also an exciting reminder that that there have been individuals and communities striving for the the conservation of our environment for a long time. Native Americans as well as people like John Muir have predicted the dire environmental situation we find ourselves in now. The series comes with a whole host of extra material - all of which is worth watching.


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