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Mithu S. (Cardiff, S Glam United Kingdom)

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Dirt cheap, and works perfectly, 22 April 2014
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2 items arrived as promised. Not tried the second one yet, but I plugged my headset into the device and slotted into my laptop - immediate recognition and spot on with Dragon Naturally speaking software, and Skype. Only had for one day so can't speak for longevity, but at this price I simply can't argue


No Title Available

5.0 out of 5 stars Great bit of artwork, 10 Jun. 2013
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Ordered for a BMW owning friend and he was well pleased. The colour customisation is pretty nifty too and thus this product and 'Lazy Cow' get top marks from me


Sony Xperia Z Hard Hybrid Cover black
Sony Xperia Z Hard Hybrid Cover black

2.0 out of 5 stars Not great, it broke within a few weeks, 10 Jun. 2013
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Plasticky black cover fitted pretty well, but was flimsy. Within a few weeks the corner nearest the charger port had snapped off. Hadn't been dropped or subject to any rough treatment


Artemis Fowl and the Last Guardian, 8
Artemis Fowl and the Last Guardian, 8
by Eoin Colfer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £12.99

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Back to basics, and all the better for it, 20 Aug. 2012
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After finishing the book, I had a quick flick thru some other reviews of AFLG before starting this review. Obviously I've grown up with this series and everyone else sharing their opinions had their own ideas of how this should end (is this the end?) - I struggled for a while to decide on my rating. So here's my logic on going for the full 5 star treatment.
First of all, thanks to Eoin Colfer for putting together a truly imaginativeand memorable series. Some of it has required some serious concentration to disentangle the story, a great deal of suspension of disbelief, and sometimes an infuriating resorting to convenient story lines to get from one point to another (my personal bugbear was the squandered opportunity of Artemis' memory wipe circa book 3 which could have led to all sorts of fun and conflict, but was reversed far too quickly)
But what has kept me hooked throughout is the development of character and elegance of writing style. Artemis Fowl starts as a precocious, mean spirited, cold and calculating 11 year old who sees an opportunity to gain supremacy at the expense of an entire race of people. It takes considerable literary guile to develop him into a multi-faceted and admirable anti-hero who ,by the end of AFLG, has no hesitation in carrying out the ultimate act of selflessness. I've also been drawn in by the colourful and sharp-witted team around him, his loyal elf ally Holly Short, ever self-sacrificing bodyguard Butler, and the many characters who 've come and gone along the way. The death of Holly's commander Julius Root was a poignant and painful reminder that this was no child's play that Artemic Fowl frequently found himself drawn into.
Mulch is welcome light relief here as he has frequently been. It has been noted that his appearances in AFLG have been somewhat convenient for our heroes' escape from peril, but there has rarely been a literary hero who hasn't relied on a little luck to emerge victorious.
To the book itself, and with some relief I read the first few pages to be met with the reassurance that, following the disturbing lack of our hero through Atlantis Complex, (I've reviewed that elsewhere, and found it more than a little disappointing) Artemis is well and truly back with us, and this time we're straight into the action as all the jetsetting and dimension-hopping has been discarded in favour of getting back to the place it all started, the Fowl Manor outside Dublin, where super villainess Opal Koboi is preparing her ultimate plan for world domination. In true Mission Impossible 4 style, our heroes are cut off from their high-tech support system and have to rely on their own wits and courage to save the day.
Unlike some of the other books, I found the narrative quite straightforward and direct this time. No space-time continuum quandaries or paradoxes to deal with here. There are enough clues from the start to piece together how Artemis will try and outwit his opponent, but it is still satisfying to see him stay one step intellectually of everyone including his firends, and they all recognise this, but this matured Artemis recognises also the qualities of his friends that he has come to rely on in his many adventures.
I've noticed that some were hoping for more loose ends to be tied up - I'm not sure this necessarily leads to a more 'satisfying' conclusion than otherwise it might be. JRR Tolkein spent a lot of time on loose ends with LOTR and that just resulted in a great story that went on for far too long. Would we be happier if the last chapter of AFLG hadn't been written? Is 'The Sopranos' any less of a TV show given that we never find out what happens to Tony? Personally, I think the nuanced and complex relation ship between Artemis and Holly makes far more interesting reading than any Mills and Boon nonsense.
So, 5 stars to Eoin Colfer for delivering the characters we love, doing what they do best, and for coming up with the goods with AFLG after coming off the rails a bit with the previous book. Artemis Fowl, boy genius, we'll miss you


Bontempi iGirl Electronic Keyboard (49 Keys)
Bontempi iGirl Electronic Keyboard (49 Keys)

4.0 out of 5 stars Good solid musical gadget, 22 April 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
What I like is that it stands up to being bashed about by a small child, and looks attractive. One minus point is the annoying background buzz when powered up, not sure if this is a design fault or ours, but not a disaster


Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex
Artemis Fowl and the Atlantis Complex
by Eoin Colfer
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £12.99

1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Artemis losing his marbles, 25 Aug. 2010
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Have been reading the Artemis Fowl books right from the start, always look forward to a new book with great anticipation.
Artemis has been busy inventing a way of saving the polar caps, but he's also developing obsessive compulsive disorder with paranoia. As a result, he's losing his rational and logical personality and when trouble hits, he ends up lost in his own mind as his friends are under attack from an imprisoned criminal with designs on world domination.
The main problem for me, while excellently written and zips along at the usual frenetic pace, is that without the solid dependable Artemis and his mastermind character, the story falls mainly on the shoulders of Holly, Butler and co. While not necessarily a bad thing (these are great characters capable of holding centre-stage) - this is exactly the point - why is this an Artemis Fowl book at all? If needed be, I'm sure Colfer could have concocted a 'spin-off' adventure for the fairy people. Artemis seems to be just along for the ride on this one and that seems a shame, as the series up til now has been based on Artemis' character developing as he gets more involved with the fairy people, and this hasn't really moved forward with 'Atlantis Complex'.
Also, the arch-enemy seems a bit feeble, his motivations rather blurred and his eventual defeat rather unsatisfying to my mind.
In conclusion - I'd like more Artemis Fowl in the next Artemis Fowl story!


The Game: Undercover in the Secret Society of Pickup Artists
The Game: Undercover in the Secret Society of Pickup Artists
by Neil Strauss
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.84

3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun to read, but cop-out ending..., 20 Oct. 2008
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Recommended to me by friends telling me it had changed 'their entire perspective on dating', not to mention their 'success rate', the book follows a self-confessed dating loser who hooks up to a community of pick-up artists and then becomes a master himself.

Techniques in seduction are expanded upon and success follows, as our hero 'Style' gets to date women way out of his supposed league, and basically lives the life of Riley with a group of fellow serial daters in Hollywood until egos tear apart the lifestyle they had built together.

Very well written and a real eye-opener. Many will baulk at the morality of how far the PUAs are willing to go to hit on women, (it's not really lying, but the whole truth just isn't as interesting...) but the story also focuses on the importance of self improvement in the quest to become more attractive to the opposite sex.

The only disappointment come as the story reaches the final act, and our hero, after ridiculing the chumps hankering after the one special girl, then proceeds to fall in love himself, give up his lifestyle and, well, you can guess the rest. But don't let the denouement put you off, if you are interested in personal growth and development, you won't find a more inspirational and funny story to point the way.


NHS Plc: The Privatisation of Our Health Care
NHS Plc: The Privatisation of Our Health Care
by Allyson Pollock
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it and see how little politicians care about your health, 6 Sept. 2008
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Allyson Pollock's book takes us on a fascinating journey from the inception of the NHS in 1948 to the present day situation, and how the principles on which one of our most revered and envied institutions has been torn apart from the inside by bureaucrats, vote-grubbers and the just plain greedy.

AP reserves her most scathing criticism for New Labour and the almost religious fervour with which it has embraced private sector money to slice the NHS into smaller, 'profitable' areas, with not the slightest evidence that such measures would be profitable, or indeed effective. She writes about how the shiny new hospitals, or 'foundation trusts' if you would, trumpeted by this government as the future of health provision, have to survive by closing wards and cutting services almost the moment they are opened to pay for its board of directors and shareholders. One only has to stand in front of the University College Hospital at Euston, London, and a few basic calculations will tell you that this is unsustainable as a hospital, as the huge interest payments on the construction drain funds supposedly for patient care. It signifies everything that New Labour stands for, all style and no substance.

Hospitals of course make up only a fraction of the NHS remit, and Pollock casts her eye over long-term care of the elderly, which has now become a postcode lottery of means testing, as private companies swooped to buy up nursing homes, close the unprofitable ones, dump experienced staff in favour of cheap labour, and ensure that any patients that require real nursing care are quickly rejected as being too high maintenance ie money-losers.

One of the few areas which, as yet, the govt has failed to enable private firms to really sink their claws into is the primary care sector of GP surgeries. GPs have traditionally been not only the gatekeepers of the NHS but also the ultimate patient advocate for whatever treatment they required, and have been the most vocal opponents of the creeping privatisation. New Labour have responded in their usual way, by ignoring reasoned arguments and evidence, rubbishing them with falsified data, publicly denouncing doctors as greedy self-interested slackers (this from people who award themselves generous year-on-year pay rises while ensuring the public sector workers see their incomes cut) and feeding the popular media with GP-bashing stories every 3days to cover the massive waste of money spent on managers, management consultancy, private accountants etc etc.

Not that New Labour can be entirely blamed for the situation, as it is demonstrated how the process of privatisation began in the Thatcher years, at a time when all other national industries were being sold off at an astonishing rate. The failure of a privatised gas/electricity private sector to create open competition is clear for all to see, as companies far from competing, act in their own self interests to line the wallets of directors and shareholders, while the most vulnerable in society are squeezed to the limit. So shall be the fate of healthcare in coming years.

But why would any govt even choose to go down this path? What right minded person would be against ensuring the provision of the healthcare of society's most vulnerable? The answer can be seen in terms no more complicated than that of self-interest, as politicians rush to line up their post-government years as directors/chairmen of the very companies they helped make very rich while in power. Sadly there is little evidence that an incoming Conservative govt would be remotely interested in standing in the way of this 'progress'.

Happy 60th birthday NHS, you will be missed.


Trust Me
Trust Me
Offered by A ENTERTAINMENT
Price: £3.94

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Includes one of the top tracks of 2007!, 24 Nov. 2007
This review is from: Trust Me (Audio CD)
Having not heard much from CD for some while, he has suddenly burst back onto the scene with this pleasant mix of ballad and dance. I got this on the back of hearing the opening track while having MTV on in the background and, for the first time this year, suddenly looking up with a 'Whoa, what's this?!' moment.

There are no disappointing tracks here, and CD's voice is as smooth and soulful as ever. He's the X-factor winner Cowell and co could only dream of finding in their annual trawl of the hopeless and talentless. Trust Me has current pride of place on my iPod and likely to be for some time


Big Train : Complete BBC Series 1 & 2 [1998] [DVD]
Big Train : Complete BBC Series 1 & 2 [1998] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Amelia Bullmore
Offered by HalfpriceDVDS_FBA
Price: £9.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Early Pegg at his finest, 18 Oct. 2004
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Like all sketch shows, there's a bit of a hit-and-miss quality with Big Train, but the star and comedy of Simon Pegg is evident even here. Look out for the scene where the office team are told who the new manager will be, I haven't seen it in ages but it still cracks me up just thinking about it!


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