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Katharine Kirby "Kate" (HELSTON, Cornwall United Kingdom)
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

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Pretty Baby
Pretty Baby
Price: £4.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Good Samaritan on a train station, 28 July 2015
This review is from: Pretty Baby (Kindle Edition)
Heidi, an American adult literacy teacher, who mainly looks after displaced immigrants, has an open heart. She hands out change to beggars on her route home and watches out for others. One rainy week, when awaiting her trains, she regularly sees a soaked through, young, frail, homeless girl huddling with a small, crying, baby tucked inside her coat. The ‘do-nothings’ just pass by on the other side, but Heidi eventually follows her quarry, observes her and then can’t resist acting. The consequences of her determined, driven efforts strongly affect her investment banker husband Chris, and their one child, awkward twelve-year-old daughter Zoe. Later it is Heidi who unravels. Buried in the roots of Heidi’s past, there is unresolved anguish that has left her aching for a life she cannot have.

The girl’s name is Willow, as she grudgingly admits, and she ‘doesn’t do shelters’; but when Heidi’s overtures tempt her into the family home, she unbends. How she and her baby came to be in such a precarious position in the first place is a growing mystery, one that it becomes very important to solve.

I read this on a train journey myself and was completely relaxed about delays, as I needed to know what it was all about. There is much more to Willow’s situation that meets the eye. Towards the end the pace gallops, revelations follow thick and fast, and the dangers are tangible. I loved the tangled web Mary Kubika wove from her modern parable, which gave me plenty to work out. The clues are there, and picking them out is a challenge worth rising to. Pretty Baby is an excellent second novel, which I was pleased to receive as a review copy from Harlequin. Incidentally both sisters also read my copy, and were like me, completely enthralled and keen to talk it over.


U7® 18K Real Gold / Platinum Plated Chunky Chain Bracelet (18ct Gold Plated Silver)
U7® 18K Real Gold / Platinum Plated Chunky Chain Bracelet (18ct Gold Plated Silver)
Offered by U7Jewellery
Price: £41.22

4.0 out of 5 stars Sunshine bright, glowing gold, a brilliant bracelet, 28 July 2015
This bright bit of 'Bling' arrives in a simple but good looking golden box, with a see through panel to show you what's inside. Initially you may have to be quite strict with the clasp, don't be afraid to use some force to open it at first, it settles down with wear. Also there were some unfinished, scratchy bits along the links, which can be rubbed away, nothing to worry about.

Smaller wrists/arms might like to have the length reduced at a jeweller. On my arm it hangs down over my wrist a bit. Nevertheless it is dazzling, the heart shaped centres to each link are charming, the feel is light and comfortable. With a tan it will come to life properly.

I was sent this to review, by U7, and it is lovely to have it. I feel the bracelet is a good example of what used to be called 'costume jewellery'.


U7® Luxury Heart Charms Pink Pearl Beaded Bracelets (White)
U7® Luxury Heart Charms Pink Pearl Beaded Bracelets (White)
Offered by U7Jewellery
Price: £41.94

5.0 out of 5 stars These Pearls aren't just for 'Girls' - Mums, Grannies and Aunties love them too!, 28 July 2015
Whereas this is advertised as a gift for 'girls' I think something has been unfortunately lost in translation. Don't imagine this is just a child's bracelet, or teenagers. It would be suitable for ladies too; I am really enjoying wearing mine, which was sent to me for review and I could only be referred to as a 'girl' fondly rather than literally, my being in my sixties..

The chunky, luminously glowing pearl, and bright diamante beaded bracelet has those marvellous magnetic fastenings that are no trouble at all to close, what a joy. The beads are silver effect with sparkly crystal 'diamonds' set around. There is a very pretty heart shaped centrepiece that hangs neatly from a bead and lifts the design from attractive to the positively gorgeous. Wearing it outside in the sunshine, you will see a terrific twinkling from the dozens of little sparklers. Would be wonderful for a summer wedding.

It arrives simply packaged in a gold box with a see through window to show you what's inside.

It all feels safe and well made, substantial yet light hearted, a pleasure to have. It looks especially lovely with a tan.


DBPOWER® DJS10 12000mAh Portable Car Jump Starter 400 Peak Amp Battery Charger Phone Power Bank
DBPOWER® DJS10 12000mAh Portable Car Jump Starter 400 Peak Amp Battery Charger Phone Power Bank
Offered by Bravo Tech
Price: £89.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Great for charging the mobile phone - not convinced for starting cars, 26 July 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
I was sent this by DB power for a fair review.

This smart, little powerpack has a range of uses and seems like something everyone could appreciate having to hand  - to get your car started but also to keep your devices charged if you're away from an easy electricity source for a while. 

It looks like a high quality piece of kit, it has a range of uses including as a back up powerpack for charging phones and tablets, jumpstarting cars and a torch with various signalling options.   In its own neat case, well protected from the bumps of the road, you could pack it in your spare wheel if you think you might need it for jump starting a flat battery, but it would equally be useful in a camping kit as way to keep your mobile phone charged up. It charged up quickly over a few hours, but also seems to lose its charge quite quickly, so you'd want to make sure you plug it in as close as possible to when you might need it.

It is pretty easy to work out how to use it, which is just as well as the instructions that came with it were a bit confusing - talking for example about a "Function" button when all it has is a power and on/off button.  The cap over the car starting plug outlet was a bit fiddly to get off (needed nails) and the instructions for jumpstarting a car were simply how to attach it then "jump start the car". I had to ask what that actually meant.

It charges my iPhone at around the same speed as plugging it into the mains but needed my own lightning cable.  It also only has one USB output so you can only charge one device at a time - still really useful for camping and travelling though.

I did try and use it to jump start my car but apparently the problem in my specific case was not to do with the battery but another part of the starter motor so it didn't work

At the current special offer price, I'd say this was worth having as a device charger alone if you're camping or travelling away from an easy electricity source. Not entirely sure I'd rely on it for starting the car - not giving up my AA membership yet


Lola Rose Benita Beryl Stone and Black Cherry Quartzite Bracelet of Length 15-21cm
Lola Rose Benita Beryl Stone and Black Cherry Quartzite Bracelet of Length 15-21cm

5.0 out of 5 stars Half and half make more than the whole, 24 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I must say that the large, square, pink velvet, beribboned and silk lined purse, that the bracelet arrives in, is pretty lavish. Lola Rose of London are proud to present their jewellery in proper style. As a gift, it would be impressive and exciting to receive.

I chose this because of the Beryl stones. Beryl is a family name, so anyway I felt drawn to it. The milky soft rose pink, translucent gem mineral of this kind is called ‘Morganite’. It could have come from California, Brazil or Africa, perhaps.

Lola Rose have tumbled, polished and cut five multi faceted drilled through chunks, each one different, shiny and reflective. They are light and smooth, strung on a magenta coloured, semi elastic thread, which seems quite strong. The backing of the bracelet is black cherry hue, small, smooth round quartzite beads, eleven of them, all equal in size. A tiny, gold effect oval logo charm, with Lola Rose inscribed, adorns the backing row mid way.

Worn with the Beryl group to the front, the look is understated and attractive. The fit was just right for my hand; I wear a large size in gloves yet it stretches neatly. I hope that the thread will last, as it is the weakest link. The bracelet doesn’t feel heavy or annoying, it doesn’t move about, you may well forget that you have it on.

Worn with a complementary shade of pink, the bracelet would pick up the tones most prettily and will surely become a favourite. I really like this bracelet. Thank you Lola Rose!

P.s. You may be interested to know the meaning of Beryl and its properties: "Beryl is said to bring creativity, reduce tiredness, and increase intelligence. It has been used as a talisman stone for artists of all kinds and especially sculptors. Beryl is used for research philosophical studies. It is a protection stone for trips, also. Beryl is used emotionally to help with fighting and disputes. Physically, Beryl is used in crystal healing for asthma, liver disease, eye problems including cataracts, and leprosy. Note that healing crystal meanings are spiritual supports to healing and are not prescriptions or healthcare information. Beryl is associated with chakras according to the color of the stone."


Oball Wobble Bobble
Oball Wobble Bobble
Price: £14.89

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A ball with a mind of its own - watch out though for little fingers, 23 July 2015
This review is from: Oball Wobble Bobble (Baby Product)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is hilarious! It actually comes alive...

Disco style fast heart racing speeded up mini tunes, a touch, a shake and a roll and it's off again.

Might drive the dog bonkers or even initially frighten a tiny but never mind it is a very jolly toy to chase around after. The sounds stop after about 10 seconds every time, it needs some attention to make it wake up again. You can switch it off, too. It comes with batteries inside a screwed tight compartment. To replace, buy 3 AA/LR6 type.

The vibrating wobble is great fun, an interactive toy that will keep the baby, or toddler absorbed and active. Oball is a robust and well as up for a good game.

All the colours of the rainbow, tactile and well designed, this says it will suit any child from three months upwards... However, it is really designed more for larger hands as tiny fingers would get trapped between the hard discs as it sets off - a frightening experience for a very little baby.


Philips SHK2000BL/00 Light Headphones with Volume Control Blue
Philips SHK2000BL/00 Light Headphones with Volume Control Blue
Price: £20.00

3.0 out of 5 stars The wheels on the bus go round and round, without everyone having to listen., 22 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
What a great idea! I chose these for a small grandson about to make a very long car journey with his baby brother. Having these on his head makes him feel very grown up and he loves talking story books, episodes of his favourite characters tales and of course, jolly singing tracks.

How sensible that they can't be inadvertently or deliberately turned up too damaging levels of noise, an equivalent of parental control that won't even be obvious. The pop open pack has jolly drawings, brightly and tidily presenting the headphones in a protective pack suitable for gifting.

The design is cheerful and rather toy like, in bright blue and lime green, simplicity itself to adjust, merely pull up the head band to a comfortable fit. So yes, they can grow with your child. Right ear placing is indicated with an R, the foam ear pads are thick but slightly rough and cheap in feel, the lead grey and a generous length, maybe to be fitted into an iphone, ipad controlled by parent in the front seat.

Disappointingly they do feel a little flimsy and they don't have any permanent purse, or pack to keep them for protection. I think that they will work OK for a three year old upwards, but may not survive much rough treatment.


Premium White Chalk Markers - Set of 3 bold color pens. Used on Windows, Labels, Bistros, Chalkboards. Water based wet wipe erasable paint pen - 4.5 mm Bullet Tip.
Premium White Chalk Markers - Set of 3 bold color pens. Used on Windows, Labels, Bistros, Chalkboards. Water based wet wipe erasable paint pen - 4.5 mm Bullet Tip.
Offered by Chalkola
Price: £7.77

4.0 out of 5 stars No longer a crime to draw on the walls..., 22 July 2015
I am late to the party over these chalk pens, I hadn't heard of them until recently. My grandchildren soon set me right, they know all about them. Used for painting on beach pebbles and stones, writing/drawing on mirrors, temporarily decorating their rooms...

I have found yet another use for these highly efficient, easy to use, reliable, white pens, that is teaching a four year old grandson to read. I write the name of things on them - Bread bin, Larder, cupboard, shower etc - and he learns to read without really realising.

Just having them in the home leaves you to discover new uses. Best of all they just wipe away when you no longer need the message - although don't leave it too long as they can leave a bit of shadow.

I was supplied with these for a fair review which I am happy to give.


Philips M1MK11BK Fidelio Headphones with Microphone - Black
Philips M1MK11BK Fidelio Headphones with Microphone - Black
Price: £151.62

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic on-ear experience, 22 July 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)


The Philips M1MK11BK Fidelio Headphones with Microphone make a very positive impression, from the packaging, through to on-ear comfort and outstanding sound quality.

The smart black packaging tells you straight away that Philips are taking these new on-ear headphones seriously. The packaging is smarter than it needs to be and gives you the impression that you are opening something special.

Within seconds I had the headphones out of the box, adjusted easily using the leather head strap, and on my ears - a new experience for me, having only previously used in ear ‘phones or full size ‘cans’. The headphones sit comfortably on the ear and the weight feels just right: substantial enough to sit tight, but not a gram more. After many hours of testing I can confirm that the memory foam works well, and that the headphones are comfortable enough to wear for long periods.

The overall look is understated, with only the smallest reference to the brand and model name, in a discreet location around the aluminium circular frame on each ear.

Despite the excellent packaging and superb build quality, at the heart of any review of headphones is of course the user’s experience of the headphones’ sound quality. I am not an audiophile or a musician, but am a music lover, and have tested the Philips Fidelio headphones on rock, pop, classical and everything in between, both direct from a CD and on MP3s ripped in iTunes. I would describe the sound as crisp, clear, and immersive. I did not expect the latter from on-ear headphones, but the combination of comfort and sound quality gave me that precious other-worldly feel of being completely immersed in the music and oblivious to the world around me. This was true whether listening quietly at home or on the less obviously tranquil setting of a bus journey - and a noisy old double-decker at that.

For years I have been a devotee of Bose Quiet Comfort cans, as much for their noise-cancelling quality as for the sound reproduction. I believe that the Philips Fidelio on ear headphones are at least on a par with my Bose headphones, and I tested some of my favourite songs back to back on each set to make sure. The Philips Fidelio have less emphasis on bass, or rather a more measured bass, which is why I chose the words crisp and clear as my best attempt to summarise the sound quality. I heard new elements of songs I thought I knew well - songs showing over 100 plays in my iTunes library. Tracks with acoustic guitar or piano fared especially well, and vocals spring out beautifully, again contributing to the immersive experience. If you have spent too long, as I have lately, consuming music through cheap in-ear headphones just for the convenience, the experience of the Philips Fidelio headphones is almost disturbing, as the complexity and complementarity of instruments and vocals reveal themselves even in the most familiar tracks and albums.

I have a few minor gripes with these headphones - the faux suede travel bag does not do justice to the quality of the headphones, which deserves proper protection when they are being transported. While the in-line microphone works well with Siri on an iPhone, I would have liked volume buttons to go with the pause/play button.That said, these are minor gripes which do not take away from the the truly outstanding listening experience which these headphones deliver. They are without doubt worthy of the 5 star rating, and will put a smile on your face as you discover, and rediscover, your music in tremendous comfort.



JollySports Swim Goggles with Anti Fog, Best for Adult Men, Women and Older Kids - Nose Clip, Ear Plugs and Case Included (Pink, One Size)
JollySports Swim Goggles with Anti Fog, Best for Adult Men, Women and Older Kids - Nose Clip, Ear Plugs and Case Included (Pink, One Size)
Offered by Grabbits
Price: £20.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Swim like a seal in these stunning gogs, 21 July 2015
The pink ones are absolutely fabulous. With reflective lens, anti fog and UV protection they are also very very sensible.

The bubblegum pink jelly strap, fastener and lens surround is extremely cool. Easy to adjust to the perfect snug fit, they are versatile, fitting grown up me and my nine year old granddaughter. Build quality is top class, they can take the punishment.

The nose clip to match together with the pink ear plugs, all neatly contained in a strong plastic see through case all make up very good value and a complete set for a great swim experience. To open the case simply turn the end round as shown by the arrow. (It took us ages to find that out!)

We completely love them and are going to order more pairs for other swimmers in the family.

Thank you JollySports for sending me this pair to review.


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