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Reviews Written by
JK "J. K." (UK)
(TOP 50 REVIEWER)    (VINE VOICE)   

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Gisela Graham Set of 6 Gingerbread Boys and Girls
Gisela Graham Set of 6 Gingerbread Boys and Girls
Offered by Giftsfromhandpicked
Price: £10.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Smaller sized gingerbread biscuits - so pretty., 27 Nov 2014
Set of 6 Gingerbread Boys and Girls (3 of each) by Gisela Graham. Nor particularly large, 5x4cm, but quite chunky and heavy. Pretty decorations that look like real, homemade biscuits hanging on the tree. I've bought quite a few Gisela Graham decorations this year because I've gone back to a more traditional theme for my tree. Not the cheapest decorations but they're well worth the cost and should last for years to come. This set of 6 gingerbread biscuits is particularly nice because they're packed inside a sturdy little box for storage. Happy to recommend.


Night After Night
Night After Night
Price: £6.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A haunted house and the Tudors - I'm in heaven!., 27 Nov 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Night After Night (Kindle Edition)
I'm a fan of the Tudors and very much a fan of contemporary haunted house fiction. For those reasons I was immediately drawn to 'Night After Night' particularly as it's a one off, stand alone, and not the continuation of a long series. Can't say I found the novel scary but; there's a certain eeriness that worked well with the dark and grisly history of 'Knap Hall'. I enjoyed the haunting themes particularly those set around Katherine Parr, wife of Henry VIII. In fact I enjoyed most of the supernatural elements. Where Phil Rickman has been clever is bringing his story up-to-date with current themes. He fills his haunted house with a television crew and a bunch of misfits all ready for a reality television show. The mix of old and new adds a lot of contrast to the plot and keeps it real. Excellent scene setting and I had no problem visualising the malignant old building with it's dark, complicated history. Spooky and tense with moments of humour and good story telling. Nice read for a dark, cold Christmas evening. Happy to recommend.


Hape HAP-E1451 Wild Animals Stand Up Puzzle
Hape HAP-E1451 Wild Animals Stand Up Puzzle
Price: £9.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Lovely, chunky, well made puzzle for very young children., 25 Nov 2014
Well made puzzle with 8 stand up wooden animal figures; monkey, zebra, giraffe, rhino, lion, crocodile, elephant and hippo. Nice, chunky pieces with the animal shape outlined on the board to help children put the pieces back in the proper place. The animals have a gentle, smiley expression that's a lot of fun. We bought a similar puzzle to this more than thirty years ago and still have it. I couldn't let my grandson play with that one so we bought him a new Hape puzzle instead. He already has the Farm Animal puzzle. Children love playing with the animal pieces and can fit them into all types of game. Size of the puzzle board is approx. 29.4 x 24.4 x 2 cm which makes it sturdy, easy to handle. The animal pieces are cut thickly enough to prevent them slipping out of the board. Happy to recommend.


Joyland (Hard Case Crime)
Joyland (Hard Case Crime)
Price: £3.83

4.0 out of 5 stars Great characters and scenery - not enough tension., 25 Nov 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
A simple story for this author and one more involved with building characters and painting scenery than it is about the horror and supernatural themes. Joyland is slow to build and quite emotional.

Central character, Devin, is a young man in search of life and experience. This he finds through his experiences of an amusement park where it appears at least one ride is haunted and a killer might well have been at work. The big revelation 'whodunit' forms the core of the story.

Although King introduces a host of eccentric characters and sub-plots he keeps Joyland relatively uncluttered, easy to follow, and what evolves is more a dark coming-of-age story than a hard hitting horror. There are a few 'in your face' scary scenes but King relies more upon a slow building eeriness and the careful development of Devin and his associates to draw in the reader.

I was slightly disappointed by Joyland. I can't fault the character development or the scene setting, trademark King, but the novel's too long. King shuffles away for page after page before turning around and wandering back to the plot. He's notorious for his rambles but there isn't enough tension in Joyland to hide them. As for the ending; emotional, dull and came as no surprise.

I really enjoyed reading large chunks of this novel but the plot doesn't develop into the promised darkness I expected and it's all a bit grey.


Niederegger Marzipanerie Marzipan Assortment 270 g
Niederegger Marzipanerie Marzipan Assortment 270 g
Price: £13.00

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Sticky, rich marzipan plus fruit flavours., 22 Nov 2014
20 pieces of chocolate covered marzipan, approx. 270gms, in three different shapes; loaf, oval and heart. In this selection six of the sweets, oval shapes, are filled with fruit liqueur flavoured marzipan. Makes this quite a sophisticated treat and perfect for passing around with a nice coffee after a meal.

Niederegger marzipan paste has at least 37% almonds and, in my opinion, is the best tasting marzipan around. Sticky and rich but not overly sweet because they don't add extra sugar to the marzipan. The dark chocolate is just a little bitter which adds a nice contrast. I buy a box of Niederegger marzipan sweets every Christmas and always struggle not to open the box before the big day.

Happy to recommend.


Spontex Microfibre Flat Mop Refill (Pack of 3)
Spontex Microfibre Flat Mop Refill (Pack of 3)
Price: £10.62

4.0 out of 5 stars Great refills, absorbent and machine washable., 22 Nov 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
What I like about the Spontex refills is they can be washed in the washing machine and last for ages. No matter how dirty they are give them a minimum wash at around 40 degrees and they'll be perfectly usable time and time again. They're absorbent, nice and thick and you can really squeeze out the excess water so you don't need to go back over your floors because they're too wet. Suitable for all floor types and for a pack of three, bearing in mind how long they last, I think I've had value for money. Happy to recommend.


Better Than Home
Better Than Home
Price: £0.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Sanity or insanity the lines are blurred!, 21 Nov 2014
This review is from: Better Than Home (Kindle Edition)
'Better Than Home' is one of the short stories featured in Joe Hill's anthology '20th Century Ghosts' originally published in the UK in 2005. You can still download the book from Amazon. It appears all of the stories are being re-released as Kindle singles and they're a nice place to start if you haven't previously read this author. Just be aware some of the singles are very short. 'Better Than Home' runs to approx. 22 pages and took less than half an hour to read.

Is 'Better Than Home' a horror?.Yes and no. This is the story of a troubled father and son relationship with a central theme of baseball. The horror comes in the blurring of the lines between sanity and insanity and is very subtle. In a story so short it's hard for an author to fully develop his ideas and build much in the way of tension. That's the problem with publishing these stories as singles. On it's own without the longer, darker stories from the rest of the anthology to prop it up 'Better than Home' seems a little lost. Reading the complete '20th Century Ghosts' is a much better experience.


Paths of Courage
Paths of Courage
by Mike Woodhams
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.52

3.0 out of 5 stars Fast paced action thriller that's quite flat., 21 Nov 2014
This review is from: Paths of Courage (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I found 'Paths of Courage' too much of a mix to take seriously. Reads more like a screenplay, an outline, for an action movie than a novel but it's easy to read, quite entertaining and doesn't take much thinking about.

The central idea of a 'mega' virus isn't too original but the author manages to squeeze every drop of intrigue from out of it. What follows are prolonged actions scenes, shootings and gratuitous violence as the Koreans, Russians, British Secret Service and bears! battle it out unfortunately; the key characters are washed away under the action. It's hard to take sides or feel any empathy because they're so totally flat.

I wasn't greatly impressed by the novel, it's certainly forgettable, but does have a certain entertainment value. If you're looking for a pacy action thriller without much depth and are willing to just 'go with it' you might well enjoy 'Paths of Courage'.


Acqua Di Parma Magnolia Nobile Eau De Parfum Spray - 50ml/1.7oz
Acqua Di Parma Magnolia Nobile Eau De Parfum Spray - 50ml/1.7oz
Offered by Asure Hair & Beauty
Price: £79.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Fresh, sophisticated, elegant floral perfume., 21 Nov 2014
Acqua Di Parma Magnolia Nobile is a sweet, fresh floral. A statement perfume that's strong on first contact with the skin but soon mellows into a lovely warm, feminine fragrance. I was surprised at how delicate the scent becomes after the big start. Doesn't go stale on the skin or develop 'sweety shop' sugary notes. If you're looking for an obvious floral you might be disappointed. This is magnolia with deep, warm undertones and a buttery richness that doesn't scream 'flowers'. I've been using Acqua Di Parma for a few years and I'm a real fan of Violet Nobile. Magnolia Nobile is a complete contrast and I absolutely love it. The perfume is housed inside a sophisticated gold box with purple base and gold highlights. Perfect gift and I'm delighted to recommend.


Spontex Express System Flat Spin Mop
Spontex Express System Flat Spin Mop
Price: £39.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Functional, nicely designed, easy to use., 18 Nov 2014
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Well made, solid, larger size bucket with mop. The bucket is divided into two sections both of which help to spin and squeeze out excess water. The flat head of the mop lifts at both edges to allow a tight fit into the bucket. A simple, forward click of the handle will flatten it out again. Designed to be versatile and suitable for cleaning most floor types, vinyl/wood/tile etc., without chemicals, if that's your preference. The fabric head can be removed and washed in the washing machine. Replacements are available.

For me there are two main advantages to using the Spontex Flat Spin compared to my usual flat mop. I can squeeze out more water which helps leave my tiled and wooden floors drier, less slippy. The handle is long enough to run the mop in, under and around furniture without much effort.

I like the product and don't really have many negatives. My only piece of advise would be to make sure you have storage space for the bucket..it's not small.


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