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C. J. Smith "mar-esre" (W Midlands)
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The Tibetan Empire in Central Asia: A History of the Struggle for Great Power Among Tibetans, Turks, Arabs and Chinese During the Early Middle Ages
The Tibetan Empire in Central Asia: A History of the Struggle for Great Power Among Tibetans, Turks, Arabs and Chinese During the Early Middle Ages
by Christopher I. Beckwith
Edition: Paperback
Price: £37.95

3.0 out of 5 stars Where have the Tibetans gone?, 30 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This book is a comprehensive collection of the known facts about the region and its various peoples during the 7th to 9th centuries. The problems are firstly it is mostly just a very dry collection of often disparate facts, the dryness is the writers fault its disparate nature is due to the fragmentary, skewed and sometimes ambiguous nature of the written sources that history has left behind. The second problem is in the title 'The Tibetan Empire in Central Asia'. When a book carries this title you would expect it to be focused upon the Tibetan Empire but it doesn't, in fact it has far more material about the Turkic tribes in the region and the Chinese than about the Tibetans, who for the most part are an aside in this book. This is no doubt due again to the lack of source material but even so to put Tibet front and centre in the title is a bit much as they are barely in it after the first few chapters. Also, and this is just a personal thing here, I would hardly call the rag tag collection of small, petty princedoms and cities that the Tibetans often briefly and loosely controlled an 'empire' nor do they appear to have been any more or less a power/nuisance to the Chinese and the Arabs than any of the Turkic tribes of the region. Overall I was disappointed with both the book and the so called Tibetan empire.


Another Collection [DVD]
Another Collection [DVD]
Dvd ~ Tsutomu Mizushima
Price: £19.96

0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What a carve up!, 11 Sept. 2014
This review is from: Another Collection [DVD] (DVD)
Warning this contains spoilers.

'Another' an anime that will live long in the memory as one of the great duffers of all time. 'Girls und Panzers' was disturbing, 'Princess Resurrection' was just crap but 'Another' was something else. For me western horror flicks were always a bit camp until the 70's when gore was discovered then they just became tasteless and nasty. 'Another' follows this with a vengeance.

It starts off as an uninspired tale of death and terror in a Japanese school. The plot is senseless as 99% of the time the answer to the problem is talk to each other, but this seems beyond the characters to do. Don't break the class rules (ominous crack of convenient thunder) or else something terrible will happen. But no matter how much the lead character may ask no one will tell him what the rules are or what will happen if he does, it's safer that way. How in the name of god can it be safer!!!! A touch of Judge Fish (for all you Judge Dread fans).

Most of the deaths are silly and more than a little contrived, if not ridiculously over the top at times. The plot could be a good one if it was toned right down and written more as a psychological, detective, horror.

But the icing on the cake are episodes 11 and 12 where the whole thing flies apart in an orgy of death and destruction second to none. The funniest and most apt quote from one of the characters, a teacher, in episode 12 is "This is not normal." Really! when did you notice that? was it possibly the long chain of weird deaths by such things as runaway digger, umbrella, boat, passing electrical cables, exploding windows etc. Or was it, god forbid, the fact that before him stood a hotel full of his surviving students that was burning down and exploding during a thunderstorm whilst all those within were more interested in butchering each other than paying any attention to the flames? And I mean everyone staff, kids the works. Meanwhile one of the characters knows who the main villain of the piece is but won't tell, now there's a surprise, lest it stops everybody from killing and maiming each other. It's no doubt safer that way!

I have rare seen an anime disintegrate quite as badly or as quickly. was it meant to be 22 eps but had to finish at 12 or was it just crap to start with? Neither have I seen such utter nonsense nor laughed quite so much at same.

'Another' is an anime to miss unless, you like this sort of thing (ominous thunder crack) or want to laugh out loud at the last two episodes which are OTT personified.

All in all episodes 1 - 10 5/10 episodes whilst 11 & 12 well I can't tell you, it's safer that way O.K.


Maid: The Role-Playing Game
Maid: The Role-Playing Game
by Ryo Kamiya
Edition: Paperback

3.0 out of 5 stars Maid not for the stodgy gamer., 27 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This one is a must for all Anime and RPG Otaku. If you want an in-depth, rule heavy, chugger of an RPG I suggest you avoid this one and go buy something with a D20 style system. If on the other hand you want a system so light it's almost not there then this is one for you. Maid is exactly what it appears to be, a very silly, tongue in cheek, slightly saucy RPG for people who want to have fun, or just have a good smirk at the weird and wonderful stuff in its many game creation tables. Examples include clothing options such as Restraints, Nun's Habit or Bikini Armor or items like the Carnivorous Refrigerator or Murder Condom! On the down side the examples, which do become interminable, are to the most part completely useless as are the Scenarios at the end, where they give you the NPC's a brief overview of what's meant to happen then instead of the nuts and bolts of the thing the creators give you a transcription from bits of what happened when they played it with they're friends and play testers. Neither funny nor useful. As a gaming system it's non-existent, but that's the point as it leaves the players free to role-play to their hearts content and go absolutely bonkers in a ludicrous and anything goes setting.


Signstek Pat-530 5.8Ghz 200m 20m 8 Channel Wireless Audio Video AV SD TV Sender Transmitter & Receiver with IR Remote
Signstek Pat-530 5.8Ghz 200m 20m 8 Channel Wireless Audio Video AV SD TV Sender Transmitter & Receiver with IR Remote

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Nice kit shame about the interface!, 27 July 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Item is fine except for one major limitation, it will only plug into your digi-box's and TV's AV Sockets (Yellow, Red, White). This isn't too great a problem unless you have a digi-box like mine which has only Scart connections. This has meant that I've had one hell of a time finding an AV to Scart adapter that would work, four attempt before I found the right one. If interested it's the kind of AV to Scart connector that has an input/output switch on it.


Doctor Who - The Enemy of the World [DVD]
Doctor Who - The Enemy of the World [DVD]
Dvd ~ Patrick Troughton
Price: £7.78

2 of 20 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Enemy of Entertainment, 10 Feb. 2014
Much as I am an avid Doctor Who fan I, unlike many, refuse to meekly praise the series' second rate offerings and The Enemy of the World is one of these. The story is long, dull and ambling with the characters flitting about hither and yon for no real good reason at all other than to waste time. From the start the premise is weak and the plot loose at best, indeed at times it has more holes in it than a string vest, and leaves many questions unanswered. And what do we get after 5 episodes of dawdling and padding? A final episode that ends unsatisfactorily and in unseemly haste. I'll grant that the twist was unexpected, but this alone cannot save it. One to lay down and avoid.


Devil May Care (James Bond)
Devil May Care (James Bond)
by Sebastian Faulks
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

7 of 12 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Devil May Care but I Don't, 17 Jun. 2009
What can I say? I have read all of Flemings original works which, to be honest, fluctuate between good and appalling in equal measure balanced by a few OK ones. Where does Devil May Care sit amongst these? For me, very much in the latter. It begins reasonably enough but then just becomes more ludicrous and desperate as it goes on. The plot is nonsense, the villains wouldn't look out of place in an Austin Power's film and Faulks seems intent on chucking everything in including the kitchen sink. It's corny, strained and derisory. For me the further the book goes on the more ludicrous it becomes. It's neither fish nor fowl, neither Fleming nor Broccolli. I can only assume the publisher didn't bother to read it before committing it to print either that or they just couldn't give a monkeys - paw that is. Give this one a wide birth.


Soloman Kane Stories
Soloman Kane Stories
by Robert E Howard
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Nice Collection Shame About The Spell Ch#12!!, 8 Jun. 2008
This review is from: Soloman Kane Stories (Paperback)
Though it's great to have these -Soloman- Kane shirt stories together in one volume it- should have been nice if the publisher had bothered to "proof read it!, or even get the heroes name right on the cover#60££i.

A potentially -nice - book spoilt by sloppy publishing.THEEND


Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Revenge of the Cold Machines v. 2
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - Revenge of the Cold Machines v. 2
by Junichi Fujisaku
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Another Excellent Offering, 22 July 2007
Yet again Junichi Fujisaku adds another praiseworthy chapter to the GIT SACs' genra. Unlike his first novel 'The Lost Memory' this book is comprised of three short stories 'Double Target', 'First Love, Last Love' and 'Revenge of the Cold machines'. The first deals with an assasination attempt on Daisuke Aramaki, the second is a Tachikomas love story - not as grim as it sounds and the last, well wait and see.

All of these tales centre upon the GITS SAC 2nd GIG.


Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - The Lost Memory v. 1
Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex - The Lost Memory v. 1
by Junichi Fujisaku
Edition: Paperback

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A pleasing first attempt, 13 July 2007
I usually avoid TV tie-ins as I personally tend to find them, more often than not, to be soulless, hack written rubbish created solely to cash in on the franchise. This said I allowed my inordinate love of ghost in the shell, along with the very reasonable price, to spur me into buying all three books in one go. I have yet to read volumes two and three but it must be said volume one `The Lost Memory' is a very good effort. Even though you can see that this is the writer's first attempt at a novel his rather economic style lends the narrative a good pace. Add to this a clever plot, good characterisation and a well captured atmosphere and you have a book any GITSAC buff will thoroughly enjoy and I'm looking forward to the next two instalments.


Ghost In The Shell - Stand Alone Complex - SAC 1st GIG - Complete Box Set [DVD]
Ghost In The Shell - Stand Alone Complex - SAC 1st GIG - Complete Box Set [DVD]
Dvd ~ Masamune Shirow

9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Anime triumph!, 31 Jan. 2006
Many moons ago now I saw and fell in love with the original Ghost in the Shell movie. This led me to buy the original manga book upon which the film was loosely based but the TV series Stand Alone Complex is heavily based. This series, and from what I've seen its follow up 2nd Gig, sets a new benchmark for the anime and indeed Sci-fi genres. If your serious about your Sci-fi then this is a must have item. For me everything works in this series from the great animation to the brilliant music score, the individual plots and characterisations are strong and the overall story arc is as enthralling as it is incredible. Section 9, a secret government taskforce, which are a mixture of the Professionals meet Blade Runner, battle against the forces of terrorism, cyber-crime, political corruption and intrigue, whilst slowly but surely uncovering the truth behind the mysterious puppetmaster incident which culminates in an end as explosive as it is unexpected. This is a series that will have you hooked from start to finish.


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