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Sirius "Macca2007" (Coventry)

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Mr. Standfast (Richard Hannay Book 3)
Mr. Standfast (Richard Hannay Book 3)
Price: £0.00

2.0 out of 5 stars Wading through syrup, 28 Jun. 2015
This book in no way matches the pace of the 39 Steps, but it does retain facets of the tension and derring-do of the first book. Mr Standfast does drag in places, and Buchan lays on the propaganda element (which is outlined in the foreward/introduction) that quite heavy for the American audiences, Blenkiron being the main driver of this. Overall its a good but slogging affair with sprouts of action here and there, and as one reviewer noted plenty of 'happy coincidences' - such as arriving at a remote train station in the middle of the night to find a chum who you haven't met in 2 years, who just happens to have a spare plane to aid your journey.....'. It's up to you to decide if you like it or not.

Agricola Board Game
Agricola Board Game
Offered by 24/7 DIRECT
Price: £48.40

3 of 25 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A game so utterly boring that I nearly cried., 1 Mar. 2015
This review is from: Agricola Board Game (Toy)
I had the wonderful experience of playing this game with 3 other people who said - and I quote word for word here - "it's really cool; it's like Monopoly with farms". No. No it ruddy isn't.

The premise is this: you are a peasent, and you have to build a farm/land on which to make your farm bigger. Yep. That's it.

For science's sake save your money, and instead buy Cards Against Humanity - which at least doesn't involve farms.....
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Mar 26, 2015 2:02 PM GMT

All the Countries We've Ever Invaded: And the Few We Never Got Round To
All the Countries We've Ever Invaded: And the Few We Never Got Round To
by Stuart Laycock
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £5.44

14 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Carte blanche empire building, 16 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
As you know, there exists here on amazon, a wealth of books relating to all the empires: from Babylonia all the way through to Pax Americana. In the latter's case, we often castigate and condemn any military/foreign policy action it carries out. Any attempt at imperialism in the 21st century is immediately pounced upon from every Ipad waving free-thinker on the planet as 'vicious' or 'unwarranted'. If the US attempts to quell tensions in a region by sending a handful of destroyers, we see another chunk of legitimacy torn from its status as 'hyperpower', by the media. The US has to deal with the minefield (excuse the pun) of international laws that hinder its attempts at maintaining its position in the world. It must provided reason to the UNSC members as to why military action is required; and it must think about human rights, environmental issues pertaining to the use of certain munitions, and of course the socio-cultural factors that form concept of boots-on-the-ground occupation - and in addition to this you have to legitimise and win over your own domestic audience at the same time.

The British Empire on the other hand....

Well, let's just say this book outlines very lucidly every country in the world that the British Empire and it's military apparatus has: a) directly invaded b) invaded then occupied c) defended then occupied c2) attacked from the sea d) put British boots on its soil (from downed airmen in WW2 to peacekeeping) f) `supported/ecouranged' British buccaneering/pirating/ naval officers who decided to invade because there was nothing else to do, or g) invaded because your country is called France.
This reference book is a great way of really appreciating how utterly relentless the empire was its quest for expansion. The days of empire are over, but the fascinating way in which the author breaks down all 171 'invasions/occupations' into digestible chunks really lets you see how global the reach of Pax Britannica was. If the British wanted something, or were vexed by a certain country's attitude toward it, they just sent in the gunboats (and LOTS of them). My favourite line in the book is taken from the section on Chile: "Pretty much as soon as we made it around Cape Horn, we had our eyes set on the Chilean coast and not in a friendly way... In the 1590s, Richard Hawkins popped in for a spot of looting and plundering..."
This is a great book to dip into now and again as a means to refresh your knowledge into the largest empire to ever grace the planet. For those of you who are fans of QI, this book should grace your shelves, post-haste. Here are 3 common reactions you may find you have whilst reading this book:

Laughter: at the humour of the author juxtaposed against the unabated breach of maritime, domestic and international laws (if there were any at the time of the British Empire).
Shock: at the realisation of how laisser-faire the British kings/government was at power projection to get their point across 'Lets go over there an take some of what they've got/shut them up with a bit of cannon'
Regret: for even once thinking or saying a bad word against the `brutality' of the US empire.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 27, 2013 4:30 PM GMT

Wahl Chrome Pro Mains Hair Clipper Set & Instructional DVD 79524-800
Wahl Chrome Pro Mains Hair Clipper Set & Instructional DVD 79524-800
Price: £28.25

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Excellent...for shearing sheep, 2 Jan. 2012
Having used clippers most of my life, I found that this set has only one major downside: the vibration. After using them for 2 minutes I have to turn them off because the vibration they give off is more like something from a pneumatic drill! The cut was also quite patchy, and doesn't live upto the standards of other products within the Wahl clipper range.

Good [DVD]
Good [DVD]
Dvd ~ Viggo Mortensen
Offered by Door2DoorEnt
Price: £5.91

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A look at the domestic impact of the Third Reich, 30 Dec. 2010
This review is from: Good [DVD] (DVD)
In the past decade, there have been many high quality films that have not registered on the radar of those people with an affinity for all things cinematic: The Good Sheppard - a deeply engaging docu-film about the formation of the CIA at its activities from the start of World War Two to the mid-60s; the Swedish crime drama The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo which puts an nice non-gore fest spin back into the genre (something which many people have been asking for many years); and finally this film, with it's simple title 'Good'.

The reason I like this film, is the same reason I like The Good Sheppard: it engages your mind, and gives you a new look at a period in history. Today's film world is dominated by high-octane pap that has something exploding every 5 seconds - (a knee-jerk reaction to audience demands?) All none-action films with directors that have read `word books' are eclipsed by this lower brain form of entertainment, and as a result these types of films are only in the cinema for same amount of time as it takes to breathe out (after breathing in..).

"Good" gives you a look at how the inherently insular nature of National Socialism changed the vast majority of Germans into robots that could be easily manipulated by Hitler and his minions. It centres on a single character and how his excellent writing abilities, and benevolent views on euthanasia,, help to further support the Reich's propaganda machine (something he didn't aim to do when he originally wrote his books). The repercussions of this really do bring home the manipulative force that the NSDA was, and shows how it, like a virus, attempted to infect everyone in Germany.

This is a great piece of cinema for those who want a nice alternative to the `mouth-breather' movies that populate our billboards!

The Middle Sea: A History of the Mediterranean
The Middle Sea: A History of the Mediterranean
by Viscount John Julius Norwich
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.08

0 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Clinically Forensic, but dry, 26 Aug. 2010
If you want a highly detailed, clinically forensic book about the history of Mare Nostrum and the countries surrounding it, you cannot go wrong by buying this book. The author lays out everything in a manner that leaves very few stones unturned. The only downside to this book is that it is quite dry in places, but do not be put off by this as I have been brought up on a diet of Cornwell and Pilger so, comparatively speaking, I may be being unfair. You have to make your own mind up!

If you are looking for a detailed book on the finest sea in the world, you need this one!

Second World
Second World
by Eddy Shah
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars The first 1/2 is great. But the rest is not!, 9 July 2010
This review is from: Second World (Paperback)
I've read many sci-fi books and this one has to be a bottom rung of the ladder read. The whole idea of Real and Second (VR/Web) world is quite a good spin on ideas from Michael Marshall Smith's first few books, which is what kept me hooked for the first half of the book or so. But about 150 pages from the end it hits a wall. And stops. The plot is completely, well lost!

Gran Torino [DVD] [2009]
Gran Torino [DVD] [2009]
Dvd ~ Clint Eastwood
Price: £2.88

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I thought it would be rubbish, 20 Mar. 2010
This review is from: Gran Torino [DVD] [2009] (DVD)
Having believed flims released in the past 5 years possessed a depth of dialogue and script quality that bearly ebbs past feeble, I was pleasently blown away to find that Gran Torino destroyed this suggestion.

This film is Clint Eastwood at this best, a real gem of a movie. There is even a Dirty Harry scene where he has a bad guy looking down the barrel of a gun (brilliant nod to the 70's classic). It may seem a little slow in places, but this is what real films are supposed to be about, they aren't supposed to be 'non-stop' action and guns/guts fests. A film is supposed to keep you on that line between thinking/not thinking, and continually sway backwards and forwards accross this divide.

This is a great film that will probably be one of Eastwood's last as both Director and Lead Actor. If this proves true, he has really raised the bar for those in Hollywood just starting out in the Director's seat.

The Good Shepherd [DVD]
The Good Shepherd [DVD]
Dvd ~ Matt Damon
Offered by best_value_entertainment
Price: £2.60

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A return to classic cinema, 14 Feb. 2010
This review is from: The Good Shepherd [DVD] (DVD)
The past 25 years of modern cinema has witnessed a continual bombardment of our senses by the 'action' films; the films that provide that hit of 'explosive cinema' such as the early Die Hard films, the pairing of Russell and Stallone in Tango and Cash, or the recent trend of apocolyptic pap that has only recently ended with a film with a headline that I overheard one cinema-goer call 'quarter past eight?'.....2012.

So used to this unabated violence are we, that we shy away from quality acting and scripts that revert to classic theatre (where you have to sit and think about the dialogue as opposed to have it given to you, and to be patient with the formulation of sub-plot). This film swims away from the banality of plots that are around today; those bereft of imagination; and those that eschew patient and forensic attention to detail in every aspect of production.

For those of you who like to absorb dialogue and have the capacity to sit and watch a story unravel without needing to hit the 'action' switch; this one is for you.

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone
by J. K. Rowling
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ....awesome., 3 Nov. 2009
In 2003 a friend of mine who is serving in the British Army told me that I had to read the Harry Potter books because they were 'ruddy awesome'. I completely igonored what he said; and this was a BIG mistake.

In February of this year I bit the bullet and borrowed my friends copy. It utterly and completely changed my view of reading (From War and Peace/Wild Swans to reading Potter is a gulf!). This is an awesome series, for any age, and well worth the money.

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