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The bookloving Norman (Italy)

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Spleen and Ideal: Remastered
Spleen and Ideal: Remastered
Price: £11.65

5.0 out of 5 stars The past returns, 10 May 2017
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What can i say my sister posted one song on FB (spleen and ideal): I had not listened to Dead can dance since the early 90's - I was blown over. What a record. I got it yesterday and listened to it thrice in a row,. I realise I had missed them His voice, especially. Not a very objective review i suppose. I love this record, that is all (I usually listen to quite different things, led Zeppelin and Pearl jam)


The Last Kingdom - Season 1 [DVD]
The Last Kingdom - Season 1 [DVD]
Dvd ~ Alexander Dreymon
Price: £7.80

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars It's not Vikings, but it's fine, 10 May 2017
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I am very fascinated by the Dark Ages (ok, the so called D.A), especially in Northern Europe. I was curious, after reading the review of an episode in the second season, so I bought the first. OK, it's not Vikings, the History channel series - I worship Vikings, its passion, it's well-rounded characters;in "The last kingdom" there is no space for the supernatural, the storytelling is straightforward, no prophecies to interpret, The characters don't have the humanity, madness and humour of Ragnar Lothbrok and his kin, but it is a watchable story; the reconstruction of Ninth century England is well done (more money than in Vikings,it seems, so more extras etc) although everyone's costumes and hair are always absolutely prim, even after sleeping in the forest or riding for days. As for the cast, the two big names (Mcfayden and Hauer) die in the first episode.The others are ok. The protagonist should look torn between identities (christian and pagan, Viking and Saxon), he only looks handsome. Which isn't bad, of course. I am going to buy season 2, too.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 6, 2017 9:14 PM BST


To Walk Invisible [DVD]
To Walk Invisible [DVD]
Dvd ~ Finn Atkins
Price: £9.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A remarkable portrait of an extraordinary family, 10 May 2017
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This review is from: To Walk Invisible [DVD] (DVD)
I thought I had bought a documentary film, so the initial scenes (which I don't wanto to spoil as they're among the best things in the film) caught me by surprise. Biopics can be boring or agiographic, this is intense, the dialogues are credible, the acting is great. Most of the films which try to eplain what made an artist what he was fail, but here the combination of personality, family history and environment (both social and natural) are at the same time very clear but not at all obvious. The care in rebuilding the settings (it seems they built a replica of Haworth, or part of it) and costumes is top level, as you expect from British costume drama.


Dark Raven Women's Crew Neck Classic T-Shirt Medium
Dark Raven Women's Crew Neck Classic T-Shirt Medium

5.0 out of 5 stars The dark raven is wonderful., 27 Nov. 2016
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Very nice. It is as I expected. Thank you.


Wallander - Series 4: The Final Chapter [DVD] [2016]
Wallander - Series 4: The Final Chapter [DVD] [2016]
Dvd ~ Kenneth Branagh
Price: £12.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Great Branagh!, 24 July 2016
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Fantastic series. Fantastic Branagh, environments, Actors, colours. Better the series than the books.


The Normans / R. Allen Brown
The Normans / R. Allen Brown
by R. Allen (Reginald Allen) (1924-) Brown
Edition: Hardcover

4.0 out of 5 stars A history of my ancestors, maybe a bit old-fashioned but interesting, 24 April 2016
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I have always been interested in the Normans, since childhood, because I bear a Norman family name and I am very likely descended from one of the families that settled in Apulia in the 11th century. In time, as I read more and studied the history of the "dark Ages" (which we don't study much in Italy, as most historians and teachers find "the barbarians" uninteresting) I realised I was much keener on Viking culture, from which the Normans stemmed - paganism and a simple society respectful of individual freedom and of women instead of Christianity and feudalism. Anyway, I wanted to go back to the Normans to try and understand the passage from Viking to Norman. R.A. Brown's essay is interesting and very detailed in dealing with the historical events that brought different parts of Europe to be under the control of the Normans, while the more cultural and anthropological aspects are not given much space. In a rather old-fashioned manner, the author takes it for granted that becoming a Christian culture with a lot of structure is good, so how the Vikings led by Rollo the Walker established themselves in Frankia, changed their ways and ended up as Christians is only given a couple of pages; in discussing the conquest of England he takes the Norman side honestly admitting, at least, that it is also a matter of personal mentality if you think the destruction of Anglo-Saxon England was or wasn't a loss. Language isn't discussed at all, so if I want to understand what happened as Old Norse speakers created their own brand of French I'll have to find something else.The writer's language is rather dense: in the introduction the author says it was difficult for him to find an editor that didn't ask to cut his sentences into shorter ones. Pictures are all in black and white, mostly of architecture (The Normans were great builders). The the pictures from the Bayeux Tapestry are in colour.


Crimson Peak [DVD] [2015]
Crimson Peak [DVD] [2015]
Dvd ~ Charlie Hunnam
Price: £4.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Very good Victorian Gothic tale, 24 April 2016
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This review is from: Crimson Peak [DVD] [2015] (DVD)
I bought this film because I read it was good, because I like the Gothic both in films and in books, and because I like Tom Hiddleston very, very much. A very talented actor and a rather handsome guy. I'll add that I am easily scared so as I was watching it I thoght it wasn't so bad I had missed it at the cinema, I would have probably freaked out. I think it is very good - a bit like "The others" it is consciously built on classic 19th century Gothic, but it is more openly horrifying, and less based on the imagination- there are glimpses or really horrid things and creatures, which I count as a slight defect. The acting is good, with the two women looking quite Pre-raphaelite. The best element in it, which is totally victorian as a concept, is the way the house is a physical metaphor of the people who own it. Costumes are also very good (the first time you see Jessica Chastain plaing the piano in a tight red silk dress you are reminded of Blake's red dragon, or at least I was).


Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Latin): Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis (Latin) (Latin Edition)
Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Latin): Harrius Potter et Philosophi Lapis (Latin) (Latin Edition)
by J.K. Rowling
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £13.48

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Certainly funnier than reading Cicero, though it does need an effort., 24 April 2016
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Of course this is not a review of JK Rowling's Harry Potter novel - which I have read and reread I don't know how many times, but of the Latin translation. My husband sometimes wants to do something new, and a few months ago he started a basic Latin course for adult learners. He only studied it a bit for a couple of years, something like 45 years ago. As a teacher of English, I see everyday that the one thing that helps learna language is reading, reading fiction most of all. Rather than trying to read the absolutely boring stuff you read at school, I suggested one of the short Potters, as he, too, has read them. I think reading something that you already know and that you like can help a lot, but of course the easy part was buying it. He has started reading and finds it good, though it takes time and the help of the English original. Sometimes I read the Latin to him (I studied it for longer) while he reads the original. It is intriguing, the funniest part is the descriptions of the characters and also, the stranslations of modern words, such as "pyroboli" for Christmas crackers and "birotula automataria" for motorbike, I think it would be even more stimulating for someone who is studying the language at school and is "fresher" tha we are - I had not touched anything in Latin since 1982. Anyway, my intrepid husband has already bought "HP et camera secretorum" .


Vikings: Season 3 [DVD] [2015]
Vikings: Season 3 [DVD] [2015]
Dvd ~ Travis Fimmel
Price: £9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Valhalla or Glory - or both, 22 Mar. 2016
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I love Vikings - I don't think there has been a series which I have found so compelling in ages. The characters have evolved over the seasons but remain true to themselves, the plot works wonderfully. Series three does have some minor defects - calling them weak points would be too much. Let's say that in a couple of moments one thinks "this goes a bit too far", whether it is Queen Kwentrith saying "ladies and gentlemen" (ironically) or a couple of Frankish aristocrats engaging in a bit of kinky - very chaste compared to Game of Thrones. Anyway, in season 3 we add Frankia as a setting, which complicates communication a little; we meet some new characters (one of them, slightly boring, dies in series 4, so we only have to bear with him for a while) and we say goodbye to some much loved old ones. Each must die some day, and at least two of them should be welcomed in Valhalla for the way they die, so that is some consolation. It's good, it is really good. And series 4, which is currently at episode 5, is once more as flawless as 1 and 2.


Kindle Fire HDX 7", HDX Display, Wi-Fi and 4G, 16 GB - Includes Special Offers (Previous Generation - 3rd)
Kindle Fire HDX 7", HDX Display, Wi-Fi and 4G, 16 GB - Includes Special Offers (Previous Generation - 3rd)

5.0 out of 5 stars It is so good we bought another one, 7 Dec. 2015
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This is our second Kindle fire - we bought it because we liked the first one we got (which does not have 4G) so much we wanted to have one each. It is fast, easy and reliable, I like it much much better than the ipad I use for school: it's half as heavy, the spellcheck is well conceived so it makes writing really easier (the ipad's spellcheck is a total and complete nightmare) and customer care is great. I have to add, we haven't yet managed to use it with 4G, but that is because where we live, in Italy, Kindle fire versions with 4G are not available yet, so we have to understand how to overcome this snag. Not such a big problem, anyway, as that is not why we bought it.


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