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Mr. T. Baker (London, UK)

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Kitchen Tape Timer - Pull the tape and set the time. Gift Of Year 2005 finalist
Kitchen Tape Timer - Pull the tape and set the time. Gift Of Year 2005 finalist

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Quite Fun, 17 May 2009
It's not possible to be super-accurate with this timer (within a minute or so I would guess) but I like it. It looks a lot nicer than your average kitchen timer. It ticks quite loudly which is what I wanted (I use it to time blind raises in poker games as well as food, and the ticking adds a dramatic note).


Word Freak: A Journey Into the Eccentice World of the Most Obsessive Board Game Ever Invented: Heartbreak, Triumph, Genius and Obsession in the World of Competitive Scrabble
Word Freak: A Journey Into the Eccentice World of the Most Obsessive Board Game Ever Invented: Heartbreak, Triumph, Genius and Obsession in the World of Competitive Scrabble
by Stefan Fatsis
Edition: Paperback
Price: 10.99

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Book for Game Players, 8 Dec 2002
Anyone who ever cared a bit too much about a game will love Stefan Fatsis' fascinating book about the world of 'professional' scrabble players. The book is both a sequence of pen portraits of the world's (mostly Americans actually) top scrabble players and also the story of Fatsis's own growing obsession with the game.
I've never been a big scrabble lover but off the back of this book I ended up buying a new deluxe set, a set for some friends and getting back into chess! Do yourself a favour and read this book ...


The Story Of The World Cup (new edition): The Essential Companion to Japan 2002
The Story Of The World Cup (new edition): The Essential Companion to Japan 2002
by Brian Glanville
Edition: Paperback

5 of 8 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing and uninspiring, 14 Mar 2002
Published by Faber and Faber and written by a famous football journalist I expected a lot more of this book. As a statistical record it is appalling (no "score after 90 mins" in matches that went to extra time, for example) and as a history of the World's greatest competition it is sorely lacking.
I am no Politically Correct crackpot but when a fifteenth player is described as "a striding negro" or "a wiry mulatto" you just wish someone had gone over the notes since they were originally written (the fifties?) rather than just publishing them as is.
Add to this the meaningless subtitles within each chapter that often do not relate to the text beneath them, the paragraphs that run into one another and the repetition of images (how many teams, players and managers have a "calvary" in this book? How many teams pick a player "comme il faut"?)
Yes, there is some interesting information here - I was too young to know that Cruyff refused to play for Holland in 1978 or that Germany had already pulled a goal back when Bobby Charlton was so famously substituted in 1970. But the nuggets pop up rarely in a very long hard stretch of dry prose.
Perhaps the fault lies with my addled brain but I found it difficult to follow what was happening in the matches described or even to know what stage of the tournament a particular match was played at. I was continually referring to the (too short) statistical record at the end of each chapter to find out which match was being described.
I was also depressed by Mr. Glanville's negativity. I know that football in general, and the World Cup in particular, have a chequered past but to spend the first page and a half of the review of 1970 talking about the "inexcusable" decision to play in Mexico and not the glorious Brazilian team and the success of attacking football seems churlish. This is indicative of the tone of the book.
In summary, I do not reccommend this book as a general read. Perhaps if you need a reference to pick through for specific facts (but not statistics) it would be useful but as a cover-to-cover read it was a hard slog.


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