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Stephen Mcdaniel
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The Vault: (A Wexford Case)
The Vault: (A Wexford Case)
by Ruth Rendell
Edition: Paperback
Price: 3.86

1.0 out of 5 stars Publisher needs to hire an editor, 19 Feb 2014
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Here's a short list of things wrong with this book:
1. There are a large number of glaring flaws including misspellings, repeats of the same verbiage within a few pages, digressions into descriptions of plants and foliage, etc. that should have been caught by any junior editor at a reputable publisher.
2. The character of of Det. Sup. Tom Ede is about as wooden and unbelievable as he can be.
3. Descriptions of Wexford's perambulations through London are annoying and mostly pointless.
4. The front of the book contains rave reviews from respected crime fiction authors who, I am willing to bet, never opened this offering.
5. As has been noted by other reviewers, the plotting, pacing and generally dysfunctional writing are a very long way from Rendell's best.
All in all - a great disappointment.


Puma Motorsport Fusion - Small Unisex Quartz Watch with White Dial Analogue Display and White Plastic or PU Strap PU911002006
Puma Motorsport Fusion - Small Unisex Quartz Watch with White Dial Analogue Display and White Plastic or PU Strap PU911002006
Offered by Watches2U
Price: 43.62

5.0 out of 5 stars Looks nice, works well, 18 Sep 2013
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Bought this for my wife as she has an allergic reaction to metal watch parts. As this one is silicon, she has no problem with it. Looks very nice, keeps good time, seems to be reliable, and the price is very good value. Recommended.


Joyland (Hard Case Crime) (Hard Case Crime Novels)
Joyland (Hard Case Crime) (Hard Case Crime Novels)
by Stephen King
Edition: Paperback
Price: 3.85

5.0 out of 5 stars A departure from Horror, but still vintage King, 13 July 2013
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Joyland is a jack-of-all-trades. It's a bit of a mystery, a bit of a crime novel, there is one extremely inoffensive ghost, but more than anything it's a memoir about a young man's summer job. Written in the first person. we follow Dev Jones as he takes a temp position at Joyland, an aging fun park-cum-carny, and more or less comes of age. King is an extremely adept storyteller, and he doesn't mind violating the standard conventions of the novel form whenever it suits him. Joyland is an easy read, but on every page the reader (particularly if he's a male at middle age or beyond) will find something identifiable in the coming-of-age in America. If you are strictly a horror fan, you won't get too much from this book, but if you simply enjoy falling into a thoroughly engrossing tale, you can't go wrong with this one. Highly recommended.


Timex Men's Quartz Watch with White Dial Analogue Display and Black Resin Strap T2N698PF
Timex Men's Quartz Watch with White Dial Analogue Display and Black Resin Strap T2N698PF
Offered by Jewellery Junkies
Price: 47.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Super product, 11 Jun 2013
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Does just what it says on the tin. Large clear face, easy setting of the time and date with a stem instead of 17 buttons, keeps excellent time, comfortable strap and great price. I bought this watch because of the exceptionally clear face. The white background with black sword hands is super clear, but is not overly large or heavy. Just the ticket!


Acer Aspire V3-771 17.3-inch Laptop - Black (Intel Core i5 3210M 2.5GHz, 6GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Integrated Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit)
Acer Aspire V3-771 17.3-inch Laptop - Black (Intel Core i5 3210M 2.5GHz, 6GB RAM, 500GB HDD, DVDSM DL, LAN, WLAN, BT, Webcam, Integrated Graphics, Windows 8 64-bit)

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent laptop, 21 Feb 2013
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This is a very functional and so far reliable computer. Everything worked properly first time out. The speed is first class, and the system boots and reboots very quickly. I was a bit dubious about Windows 8, knowing Microsoft's history of using their customers to beta test new software, but it is straightforward and simple. The guide included with the system was actually adequate, although I had purchased a commercial guide for 8 (for a $1.19). Within 30 minutes everything was up and running. The only thing that takes some getting used to is the fact that the keyboard is offset to the left to make room for a keypad, but it's is a minor annoyance. There is the usual amount of bloatware, but it doesn't slow the system down, so you can remove it at your leisure. And many of the apps that show up on the tiles at start up are not necessary, but deleting them is quick and easy. Highly recommended for the average or non-specialist user.


The English Patient
The English Patient
by Michael Ondaatje
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

4.0 out of 5 stars A readable Booker Prize winner, 25 Dec 2012
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This review is from: The English Patient (Paperback)
I vaguely recall seeing the film that was made of this novel some years ago and wanted to read the novel. I was also interested in seeing if a Booker Prize winner could actually be read as a story. This one can. It is, however, an odd mixture of the highly literary type of novel, interspersed with the kind of technical detail you would expect to find in a techno-thriller. It is a story dealing with a group of four people at the tail-end of WWII, all of whose lives have been turned upside down by the encompassing conflict. I have no hesitation in recommending it, but it takes a bit more effort that some lesser works.


Bad Business
Bad Business
by Robert B. Parker
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars First rate Spenser, 25 Dec 2012
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This review is from: Bad Business (Paperback)
This was my first Spenser novel and it was excellent. The dialogue is crisp, the characters laconic, and there is no wasted motion. Spenser is an interesting character, defying current stereotype detectives who seem to be predominantly angst-ridden. Spenser is a full-on hero with no bad traits and top level skills. Big, tough, wise, sensitive, literary, intelligent, you name it and our boy's got it. Robert Parker makes no apology for his hero. He also avoids the preoccupation of other detective writers who insist on maximum gore and the inevitable diabolically clever serial killer. The Spenser stories are a bit gentler and more realistic (except that Spenser seems to be able to shoot people fairly frequently without the cops being too bothered about it). These are very enjoyable reads and highly recommended.


The High Window: A Philip Marlowe Mystery
The High Window: A Philip Marlowe Mystery
by Raymond Chandler
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.79

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Chandler, 25 Dec 2012
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This is one of the lesser known Philip Marlowe tales, but it is very good. All of the Marlowe stories are slightly different in that they tend to emphasize different aspects of mystery writing. For example, The Long Goodbye really gets into Marlowe's psychological insights and emotions. The High Window is much more plot-driven, and the plot is very complicated. In fact it is slightly overcomplicated, which is why I have given it four stars rather than five. But for all that, it is still an excellent read and a full member of the Chandler genre. Highly recommended.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 14, 2013 12:40 AM GMT


It Looked Good on Paper: Bizarre Inventions, Design Disasters, and Engineering Follies
It Looked Good on Paper: Bizarre Inventions, Design Disasters, and Engineering Follies
by Bill Fawcett
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.29

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Noty too good on paper!, 13 Sep 2012
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Although there are a few nuggets embedded in these articles, many are not well written, and much of the information is very old hat. In at least one case with which I am intimately familiar, much of the article is either incomplete or misleading. And because the articles are written by different people, the quality and coherence is very uneven. Not recommended.


Oxford Take Off in German (Paperback with CDs)
Oxford Take Off in German (Paperback with CDs)
by Oxford University Press
Edition: CD-ROM

6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A useful tool for beginning German, 30 July 2012
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This is a very good beginning German learning set. It is not as sophisticated at Rosetta Stone or Transparent German, but that is reflected in the much lower price. The combination of CDs and workbook fit together very well, and make learning as easy as it can be. It also makes repetition easy for those without perfect memories! The dialog speakers also speak slowly and pronounce each word very distinctly, which helps you get it right the first time. A very good start to learning the language.


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