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Content by K. J. Noyes
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Reviews Written by
K. J. Noyes "Katy Noyes" (Derbyshire, UK)
(TOP 100 REVIEWER)   

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925 Sterling Silver Double Heart Paved w/ Pink CZ Necklace (16 Inch) Women Jewellery Anniversary Wedding Gift
925 Sterling Silver Double Heart Paved w/ Pink CZ Necklace (16 Inch) Women Jewellery Anniversary Wedding Gift
Offered by MBLife UK - Personalize Your Surprise
Price: £60.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Pretty and delicate silver heart necklace, 1 July 2016
4.5 stars

The chain is 16 inches, quite a delicate one. The double heart necklace is lovely, quite light but very pretty. The pink cubic zirconias do not look the same colour as in the pictures though, more a clear colour.

One pure silver heart, one zirconia intertwined, it's a lovely gift item, would suit an adult more than a teenager possibly, but I'm sure any buyer can make their own mind up.

I'd be worried about the chain snapping with everyday wear, this is much more an 'occasion' necklace.

Very pretty, comes in a plain black square box on a foam cushion.

With thanks to the manufacturer for the sample product, sent for review purposes.


Wireless Presenter, Breett 2.4GHz Wireless USB PowerPoint PPT Clicker Presenter Remote Control Presenter Pen with Red Laser Pointer Pen for teaching, presentations (Black)
Wireless Presenter, Breett 2.4GHz Wireless USB PowerPoint PPT Clicker Presenter Remote Control Presenter Pen with Red Laser Pointer Pen for teaching, presentations (Black)
Offered by Amazing-deal
Price: £35.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent presenter pen, could do with the instructions being written in a different order though, 1 July 2016
Once I'd worked out what to do, a doddle to set up and use!

Of course, it didn't help that I didn't realise I needed to set up the device first, the instructions aren't in order, talking about using the remote before setting up the USB with your device. Once I'd noticed this, it's easy to pull out of the bottom, put in a laptop/computer, and it sets itself up 'pairing' with your machine.

When this was done, I had only to turn on the presenter pen and click up and down to scroll backwards and forwards through my presentation. I've been preparing a presentation to give in my library and found the pen works all the way around the room even when I'm not pointing it at the screen/computer.

I believe you can programme the arrow keys to do a couple of other functions, but I am happy with the up/down becoming left/right in a Powerpoint.

It came with a AAA battery inside already, which was great.

The laser function works perfectly too, and it's light to hold and carry.

Very worthwhile little gadget to have, love it.

With thanks to the manufacturer for the sample product, sent for review purposes.


Coofit Women's Canvas Backpack Rucksack School Bags Striped Book Bag Daypack
Coofit Women's Canvas Backpack Rucksack School Bags Striped Book Bag Daypack
Offered by Yesken
Price: £14.89

5.0 out of 5 stars Cool, understated design, great for girls/women as a daypack, 1 July 2016
I think either schoolgirls or adult women would love this. It's not overly colourful (black, stripes) but I think it is pretty cool and has a beach look to it.

A canvas bag, with adjustable straps and a hook on the bag, it's the right size for a 11 year old or older. On the front is a stiched on monkey logo (not too obvious), with a popper front pocket (blaco top / stripy underneath), two side pockets (would fit a drink) and the main storage, accessed by a zip.

Inside you could fit school books and paperwork, lunch or PE kit. There's an additional small zipped pocket, two sewn into the lining, and a separator (velcro) making the inside two potential sections. inside is brown, outside a mixture of black and white stripes and plain black.

A good thick canvas, this isn't waterproof, but the straps are secure and the bag feels well enough made to cope with everyday carrying (though the white may get grubby after a while).

With thanks to the manufacuere for the sample product, sent for review purposes.


Coofit Women's Leather Backpack Purse Shoulders Bag Travel Bag Daypack (Camel)
Coofit Women's Leather Backpack Purse Shoulders Bag Travel Bag Daypack (Camel)
Offered by Yesken
Price: £25.98

5.0 out of 5 stars Soft leather backpack for adults, very well made, 1 July 2016
Very nice indeed. A lovely classy choice for ladies (not really one for school children).

I love this camel colour, and the leather feels soft and good quality (with that slight odour of leather about it). It came in a dust protector and with padding to keep its shape.

At the back, the adjustable straps can be zipped together, there is a hook for hanging the bag up, there is a small zipped pocket. On either side is a phone-sized pocket with zip and decorative metal poppers. Excellent stitiching. There are also two 'slit' pockets with zips around the side-to-front.

To the front, you need to unclasp the metal to open the bag and access the other front pocket (square with zip). The bag is closed with a pullcord and opens up to an open space inside, with a zipped pocket on the inner back and two lining pockets (a creamy colour). It opens out well to give enough room for A4 folders,a lunchbox, diaries etc.

This feels really well made, a lovely design for adults and I love the colour.

With thanks to the manufacturer for the sample product, sent for review purposes.


Sunny Side Up (Geek Girl Special, Book 2)
Sunny Side Up (Geek Girl Special, Book 2)
by Holly Smale
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £6.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Mini-Harriet, a back step from book 5, but a BONUS chapter of Nick's first meeting with Ms Manners!, 30 Jun. 2016
4.5 stars

I've read all the Harriet Manners books. I'm a loyal devotee, even at 35. She is my idol! But I'm also not afraid to say when I see flaws here and there.

After book 5, when Harriet finally matures and sees her own imperfections, this is book 4.5 in essence, taking place before the events of number 5 but after she has split up with Nick.

Which almost feels like a backwards step for her, as all she has learned in the most recent book is undone and we have a mini (modelling) adventure again, great fun of course, but emotionally she (and we as her loyal fans and readers) have already moved on.

I would suggest that readers would be best reading this short Harriet episode BEFORE book 5, as they do follow sequentially.

The story itself is great, and very typically Harriet (more modelling disasters and backstage goggle-eyed awe), with a typical 'forgot to wee before I put the dress on' scene and 'Harriet wrecks it all - or does she?' moment (or two).

For me, the real highlight of this book was that we get to re-experience Harriet's first moments in the series, being scouted by an agent - and by Nick. It is HIS PERSPECTIVE and first feelings about Harriet Manners, who stands out from the crowds at the fashion show. Loved this, it gives him depth he's not quite achieved when we see him through Harriet's eyes. A very short chapter but well worth buying this for alone.

Only takes an hour or two to read, a nice little Harriet fix between novels, and great to have Nick's voice and perspective in here.

Review of a Netgalley advance e-copy


The Life of the World to Come: A Novel
The Life of the World to Come: A Novel
Price: £17.95

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Honest and intelligent look at relationships, unusual directions taken and rather deep..., 28 Jun. 2016
4.5 stars

Intriguing, unusual, hard to put down in words what I thought...

In some ways, it's easy - it's about the rise and fall of a relationship, a burning love. And it's also about a death row inmate facing execution, using faith to get through it.

In others though, it's a metaphysical journey through emotions, time and space. Not to make it sound wishy-washy. Almost everything the characters say to each other, I found myself thinking "I've wondered about that!".

Leo and Fiona were madly in love, deliriously happy after meeting at university and moving in together. Fiona, an actress and Leo a trainee lawyer, seem the perfect couple, talking long into the night, sharing dreams and a deep love for each other. Then one day Fiona ups and leaves. And Leo's world falls apart.

Forced to keep living of course, he finds himself in the middle of a 'death row' case, where a man due to be executed is believed to be innocent of the murder he was charged with. Leo is assigned his case, and finds his client's calm manner unnerving, disarming and alluring. We then follow discussions between Leo and his client, and Leo and his fellow lawyers that bring out some truths:

"Everyone is dying, Rachel... All of life, honestly, when you get down to it, is about learning to die.."

It's an intelligent read, the Big Issues are brought up - life, love, death, afterlife, the nature of time and space. But it's readable, though a few words (syzygy, ivresse) jarred and I had to look them up!

I found this very honest. Relationships DO break down, even the ones that seem built to last. People do die, sometimes life treats you badly.

The plot took directions I agreed with, I liked the route it took to its conclusion, it felt realistic. There are moments of humour (especially regarding Fiona's new less-than-sharp man), a lot of pathos. There is a fascinating college scene where Leo and a friend debate their professor about the death penalty, one to use in KS4 classes potentially, especially when the professor's motives and feelings are revealed.

Leo is an everyman going through things a lot of us do at one time or another. It is his own decision how and when to pull himself out of the mire and start living again.

In the end, it's a hopeful story, smart and grounded in reality. The death row section felt secondary to Leo's own, though in itself it was interesting (though the religion was overdone). One for adults and older teenagers.

With thanks to Netgalley for the advance copy, provided for review purposes.


Wave
Wave
by Paul Dowswell
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Barrington Stoke title for readers interested in stories of war and brothers, 26 Jun. 2016
This review is from: Wave (Paperback)
I always enjoy trying the latest Barrington Stoke titles. Some of our best authors contributing shorter works to a series of well laid out and varied books for reluctant and dyslexic readers.

This one, I wanted to read as a much longer novel, I wanted to know more about the characters and about what happened to them after the events of the story. Set in the present and in World War I, two brothers, Charlie and Eddie (as brothers discovering an old photo and their predecessors off at the Front) learn of their history and show us history at the same time.

We get a good feel for life in the trenches, and in moments reminiscent of Blackadder episodes, the lunacy and downright imbecilic slaughter of so many men. It's honest in its approach to the past, to what happened at the Front without being graphic in the violence.

Lots of discussion points - Conscientious Objectors are brought up, the incompetency of the Generals, the underage boys fighting, the injuries and effects of war.

I hadn't known the facts (brought up after the story) about Pals battalions, something interesting and very sad to learn from this story.

Well told story, past and present brought together well, and at 70 pages a perfect quick read.


Sophie Hits Six (Sophie Adventures)
Sophie Hits Six (Sophie Adventures)
by Dick King-Smith
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely series opener about a sympathetic young animal lover, will be enjoyed by girls and boys, 26 Jun. 2016
We've read several King-Smith books now, since my son started school last September. He's loved them all, and I did wonder how he would take a female protagonist. But I needn't have been concerned - he enjoyed reading about a girl at the exact same age as himself, coming up to six.

My son was quite fascinated with all her pets, her twin brothers, the sports day and nativity play at school, her desperate wish for a dog. He could relate, I thought.

Sophie comes across well, an articulate (with lots of cute errors) girl who wants to be a "Lady Farmer", collects pets (looks after them very well though, a great example), and who takes her ambitions seriously. Her little escapades in school also caught my listener's attention and we read a chapter or two each night, finishing in just over a week.

Easy to read aloud for an adult, with just enough illustrations to bring out the main plot points for a listener. And a lovely ending that had my son asking for more books in the series.

For listeners ages 4/5 to 8.


Sophie hits six
Sophie hits six

5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely series opener about a sympathetic young animal lover, will be enjoyed by girls and boys, 26 Jun. 2016
This review is from: Sophie hits six (Paperback)
We've read several King-Smith books now, since my son started school last September. He's loved them all, and I did wonder how he would take a female protagonist. But I needn't have been concerned - he enjoyed reading about a girl at the exact same age as himself, coming up to six.

My son was quite fascinated with all her pets, her twin brothers, the sports day and nativity play at school, her desperate wish for a dog. He could relate, I thought.

Sophie comes across well, an articulate (with lots of cute errors) girl who wants to be a "Lady Farmer", collects pets (looks after them very well though, a great example), and who takes her ambitions seriously. Her little escapades in school also caught my listener's attention and we read a chapter or two each night, finishing in just over a week.

Easy to read aloud for an adult, with just enough illustrations to bring out the main plot points for a listener. And a lovely ending that had my son asking for more books in the series.

For listeners ages 4/5 to 8.


We are Not Frogs (Picture Squirrel)
We are Not Frogs (Picture Squirrel)
by Michael Morpurgo
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

3.0 out of 5 stars Rather disappointed - not hugely funny, nor clever, 26 Jun. 2016
Sad to say it, as a Morpurgo fan. I like the fact that it's a series for parents with dyslexia or similar literacy issues to read with their young children at bedtime.

But the story isn't great - Frogs are better at long jumping, the garden toads are resigned to this. One day the household sheepdog and children come out to play, the children catching 'frogs' (who are actually toads), and the chief toad manages to get them to 'let his people go' and tells them where to find 'real' frogs. The dog is blamed for the missing creatures when they disappear from their box but all ends well. With chocolate cake.

I wasn't impressed, there were roots of more than one good story here (tricking the children like the troll is tricked in the Billy Goats Gruff), a potential battle of wits between frogs and toads, a telling off and validation of Mutt's innocence in the missing frog storyline. But no, the children apologise to Mutt and give him CHOCOLATE CAKE. My FIVE-YEAR OLD told me this was bad and the do would be sick. What a terrible idea!! They didn't even say sorry.

A couple of bad lessons there then. And a fairly lacklustre story that didn't really go anywhere.

There is a 'counting' exercise on each page (finding 10 plates, 7 sunflowers, 22 frogs), that seems nice, but at bedtime, I don't always think my son wants to be counting and finding things, he's often too tired and just wants to listen. But it's nice to have the option for this.

Liked the pictures, but won't be reading this (library copy) again, I should think.

For suitability, it would be best with a 3-6 year old listener, slightly too much text on some pages for anyone younger.


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