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D. Meakin "Marmon Wasp"

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8 Ball Pool
8 Ball Pool
Price: £0.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Cheating Game, 8 Sept. 2016
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: 8 Ball Pool (App)
After playing on the cheap to play tables for quite awhile due to not having enough coins to play on the more expensive tables I finally won enough coins to play on the 500 coin table. I was leading the game until the game decided to kick me out of the app! In order to try and get back into the game before my opponent won by my failure to show up I attempted to load the game again only to discover that the game had also uninstalled itself from my device! I reinstalled it only to discover that the inevitable had happened - the game had awarded the match (and my last remaining 500 coins) to my opponent! If the game has to resort to this kind of cheating in order to make me bankrupt in the hope that I buy coins off them then they can forget it!

The Mirror of Her Dreams (Mordant's Need)
The Mirror of Her Dreams (Mordant's Need)
by Stephen R Donaldson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £14.06

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Swords, Sorcery and Silly Storytelling, 6 Jan. 2014
This book is quite a curiosity. The first half of the book is very slow paced and almost nothing happens but the story does pick up in the second half only for it to be a victim of silly storytelling. The plot: the kingdom of Mordant is almost on its knees - caused in no small part by its king who is an aging, senile old man who is more concerned with playing Hop-Board (a version draughts/checkers)than saving his own land. A team of magicians known as Imagers concoct a plan to bring a 'champion' into their world via magical mirrors to save their land. At first they only manage to bring a New York girl called Terisa Morgan into their fantasy land who becomes the lead character in the story before they bring who they think is the real 'champion' into their world who destroys part of the stone fortifications upon his escape from the Imagers.

This is where it suddenly gets curious. Two sides are formed before the halfway point of the book. The first is the kings side who appears to not care less whether his land survives or dies while the other side is the Imagers who want to try to save the land they live in. The author is clearly (but also oddly) on the kings side despite him being written as someone who deserves to lose while the Imagers (who are later replaced as the kings enemies with warring neighbouring countries who want to take the kings throne) are seen as traitors and evil. A further oddity comes in the form of Arch-Imager Vagel. He never appears in the book yet he is mentioned several times as the person who is causing some of the trouble described within. No proof of him being part of this is given however yet he is still blamed for much of the troubles. We then get onto the silly storytelling where Terisa and her friend Geraden are constantly jumping to silly conclusions that just happen to be spot on despite a complete lack of proof to the contrary and they also appear to be in the right place at the right time. A good example of this can be found near the end where they jump to the wild conclusion that one of the kings daughters is going to poison the resevoir of water to make most the soldiers and inhabitants ill so that they can't fight against the attacking armies from neighbouring countries. They both head to the water resevoir moments before they catch the long missing Princess Elega poisoning the water (something that she could have done any time in the two or so chapters she had gone missing). The story ends with another bit of stupidity. One of the Imagers Master Eremis accuses Geraden of being a traitor despite no real proof while Geraden accuses Eremis of being the true traitor also, with no real proof. Unsurprisingly, the author (who is on Geraden's side because he supports the king) makes people believe that he's the one telling the truth even though Geraden can't string together any good reasons as to why he's truthful! Just as Eremis is about to call a witness to strenthen his own case against Geraden, Geraden comes over to the witness (which happens to be his brother who is in league with the warring enemies) and kills him! Geraden then makes a run for it which makes him even more guilty than he previously was (killing a witness to keep him quiet and then running away surely counts against him). Finally he has the audacity to claim that Eremis was the person who killed the witness using magic (as if anybody would believe that)before jumping through a mirror to escape.

In short, the author is clearly on the kings side but the side he supports he writes the characters out as people who deserve to lose while the opposition who is clearly more smarter and who shows reasons to want to save the kingdom is portrayed as the enemies! The author never makes it clear why he is supporting the side that wants to destroy the kingdom while pouring scorn over the side that wants to save it but thats what he does! Very curious.

Sony NWZE384 8GB Walkman Video MP3 Player - Black
Sony NWZE384 8GB Walkman Video MP3 Player - Black
Offered by The Outlet Shop
Price: £73.94

55 of 61 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Sony Walk-backwards!, 29 Dec. 2013
When I first tried this model I was shocked as to how poor quality it is compared to the previous E474 model. Things missing from this (so-called updated) model that was present on the E474: microphone function, games function, podcasts, Sensme channels and music unlimited function. Coupled with these are other missing functions - one of the most important I used on the E474 was the setting where I could set how long the album cover appeared on screen before going off which is also missing so now the album cover appears on screen for about twenty seconds before the screen goes blank and there's nothing I can do about it! Other functions are also missing from this poor quality 'update'.

Now onto the controls and screen.
The E474 had a hold button and volume controls on the side of the player. Both of these have now been amalgamated onto the face buttons which makes the player more fiddly to operate. On the E474 I could turn off the player from any function I was currently using or any screen I currently had displayed but on the E384 I am now forced to play a song, pause it and then hold down the option button to turn off the device. If I try to do this on any screen of my choosing on the E384 it will just activate the 'hold' function! The screen graphics also look terribly outdated compared to its predecessor. While the E474 had a crystal clear screen the E384 has a 1980's style resolution and isn't anywhere near as clear.

Don't buy this MP3 player if an E474 is available to buy. In fact, don't buy this MP3 player if other Sony Walkman MP3 players are available to buy. This is the worst I've ever seen. If you have a choice between the E474 and the E384 I suggest you buy the former. It's cheaper, better looking, has more functions and better controls.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Apr 24, 2015 6:51 AM BST

The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
The Da Vinci Code (Robert Langdon)
by Dan Brown
Edition: Paperback

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars The Da Vinci Mistake!, 26 May 2013

Where do I start with this book? Ahh yes, the beginning where a curator is shot by a somebody (who later turns out to be somebody who needs him alive in order to keep his research going)and while the curator is bleeding to death he finds the time to walk into one room, put a key to a bank depository box behind a painting, write the address to the bank on the key in 'invisible' ink, go to another painting (the Mona Lisa) and write in invisible ink a riddle to lead the person to the other painting then go back to the room where he was shot. Back in this room he draws a large circle on the floor in the invisible ink as well as a riddle to lead the person who discovers him to the Mona Lisa painting (and the next riddle)then strips naked, draws a five-pointed star on his chest, lies down spread-eagled in the middle of the large circle (he could clearly see the invisible ink without the need for special equipment) and then dies!

We are then lead on a series of wild goose chases where it reads that the book was written in two stages. The first half of the book Dan Brown had written it so that the mysterious Teacher was police inspector Captain Fache (Fache's bad attitude and the French accent of the Teacher leads one to believe this) while he is backed up by the albino monk Silas and Bishop Aringarosa of Opus Dei as well as manservant Remy (who knows the identity of the Teacher) and is planted in the house of good guy - the stereotypical English historian Sir Leigh Teabing (who dresses, speaks and acts like a member of the British Royal Family - the only type of English person some Americans are aware of). Later however it seems that Brown decides to alter the identities of the bad guys and makes Teabing as the Teacher (bizarrely, he even speaks to Remy in a French accent on the phone even though Remy knows he's British) and makes Silas and Aringorosa as pawns in a wider game of mystery. Fache's attitude changes from angry cop to all round good guy by the end, a few other minor characters just disappear between pages without any reason as to why and good guys Langdon and Sophie Neveu change from expert riddle solvers at the beginning to a pair who can't work out five-letter codes in the latter half of the book!

Chapter 103 seems to be a chapter full of excuses as Brown 'explains' all of the things that don't make any sense at the beginning when put into context with the things that happen in the second half of the book. This includes a silly excuse to explain why a listening device has been planted on a statue of a knight in the curators office at the beginning (Teabing asked the curator and owner of the statue to come around for dinner at his place and to bring the statue with him!) The end is also stupid. It is revealed that Sophie's grandmother and brother were not killed in a car accident as she had initially thought but rather they went into hiding to avoid being killed by the Church as Sophie's parents had been. Why the family didn't also bring Sophie into hiding to also protect her is a mystery but an even bigger mystery is their choice of hiding place - that of Rosslyn Chapel in Scotland (possibly the most obvious location for the Church to look if they wanted to track down and kill the family).

In short, the story is a mess that could have been better written. Characters attitudes change, some characters conveniently disappear when no longer needed, the Teacher kills off his manservent Remy even though he is needed to reach the communications device that has been stupidly hidden in the loft of an outdoor barn. Possibly the biggest bit of silliness is that the only four people who know of the location of the Holy Grail are all killed by somebody who wants them to remain very much alive!

James Hunt: The Biography
James Hunt: The Biography
by Gerald Donaldson
Edition: Paperback

1 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent but too trivial biography, 22 Mar. 2013
This is an excellent biography recounting the life of James Hunt from his very earliest days right through his entire racing career and his later life as a commentator. Being a warts-and-all biography expect a massive amount of details to be poured into the book. Some of this detail however is a bit too trivial. It is noted that Hunt vomited prior to the start of his races and this is mentioned far too many times up to a point where it seems to be an obsession from the author! Furthermore, Donaldson also seems to think that he must mention trivial details about other drivers deaths or serious career-ending accidents. These don't really form a part of Hunt life unless they actually happened during a race that Hunt was competing in and some of the deaths mentioned do deserve a mention such as the ones of Roger Williamson and Francois Cervert to name just two but others details of drivers deaths seem to have been included just because the driver in question is being mentioned at a specific time in the book. Overall this is an excellent read but it could have been made better without some of the more obsessive elements being included.

by John Nichol
Edition: Hardcover

3.0 out of 5 stars A story with several tired ideas, 18 Feb. 2013
This review is from: Stinger (Hardcover)
Although this a well written story it does suffer badly in certain areas. The first two chapters have almost nothing to do with the main plot and read as if they have been written by someone who has watched a load of news reports about Afghanistan and its surrounding areas and has written a stereotypical story around what he has watched. The book then gets going and, for about four chapters it is a riveting read until we get to the obligatory 'kill off every one of the good guys one-by-one leaving only the male story-teller and the female love interest'. After the first good guy is killed off it becomes a tired and predictable affair where you can almost predict who is going to get killed off next (in most cases its the one who has recently acquired an arm or leg injury which slows them down). In the early part of the story the story-teller Sean Riever mentions many times about how he saw the love of his life get killed sometime in the recent past and, when the female character Amica turns up you can predict that she is going to be his love interest before the end of the story. Then there is the bad guy Salan who spends much of the time as a menacing figure who appears to do more travelling around one country in one day than Father Christmas! At the end he his status is elevated from menacing figure to overall bad guy due in part to the main plot of the story ending early the author wanting to extend the book to a requisite number of chapters. In short its a good book but not overall amazing that has several tired plot points that have been used many times by other authors in other thriller novels.

The Devil's Teardrop
The Devil's Teardrop
Price: £3.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not as good as it should be., 2 Sept. 2012
The Devil's Teardrop is a nicely written book with a few interesting characters in it but it has two major problems. The first is the books timeframe. It is set within a 24 hour timeframe which would be okay had it not been for the content of the story. The FBI spends much of its time trying and largely failing to solve the problem they are largely facing. Their trouble is that the bad guy always seems to be several steps ahead of them and in fact, for much of the story the FBI thinks that the real bad guy was killed at the beginning of the story. Then, right at the very end they suddenly work out that the bad guy is still alive, who his name is and where he lives! It's as if the publishers gave Deaver a set amount of chapters in which to complete the story and by the penultimate chapter he still had a lot of loose ends so he quickly tied everything up hastily in the final chapter!

The second problem is that the FBI jumps to a stupid amount of preposterously idiotic (yet spot on) conclusions. They initially only have a ransom note and the envelope it came in but they discover that part of the note was bleached by the sun which they conclude that it was brought from out of a shop window from a shop facing the sun (what a stroke of luck! The writer of the note could have used some notepaper brought from an inland store and taken the specific pad of paper from the bottom of a stack of other notepads in the shop!) The ransom note and the envelope is also impregnated with brick dust, soot etc. which they conclude that the notepaper was deliberately impregnated with this stuff to throw them off the trail (the main bad guy must be a scientific genius) but the envelope was accidently impregnated with similar stuff (or maybe he isn't a scientific genius!). This leads them to conclude that the note was written in a specific town in the USA on a specific period of the year (they successfully locate the town out of the billions that exist in the USA!). They also conclude that the poor grammar that the note was written in was intentionally bad just throw them off the trail. In short, they dismiss some clues as red herrings without any proof at all yet decide that other clues are genuine without any proof at all.

With all of this in mind, the bad guy they are after is a scientific genius who thinks ahead by laying ridiculously obscure red herrings yet accidently leaves (in the same piece of evidence) genuine obscure clues that allows him to get caught 24 hours after he first formulates the plan! No bad guy in history has ever been that much of a genius yet also that much of an idiot in the same period of time to allow himself to get caught so easily!

Virgin Ency Of 80's Music
Virgin Ency Of 80's Music
by Colin Larkin
Edition: Paperback

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars A music encyclopedia for the opinionated, 17 July 2011
This book is an interesting one that lists a great many 80's artists that were big in the decade along with a great many obscure artists who never quite tasted chart chart success.

The introduction pages are however the most interesting. Under a sub-title called 'plagiarism' the author goes on about how he is insulted whenever people copy his work or use his material as a core reference. He even goes as far as claiming that many other authors and websites plagiarize his work and that when he finds such a criminal he will call in his lawyers and shut them down! The following section however is sub-titled 'chart positions and record sales' where he lists certain books that he himself has used as core reference! The phrase 'the pot calling the kettle black' comes to mind here!

It is however, highly unlikely that people of a sane mind will want to use his book as a core reference anyway. The book is littered with factual mistakes like certain band members names being left out of some entries and some song titles being incorrectly written. It is also highly opinionated and some entries (like the entry for Jive Bunny) will no doubt insult some fans of that particular artist. Coupled with the fact that the book is also swamped with acts that recorded one or two albums without ever hitting either the UK or US charts and you have a book that is far inferior to other, more better works on the bookshelves.

Devil May Care (James Bond)
Devil May Care (James Bond)
by Sebastian Faulks
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars What the devil?, 20 Feb. 2011
Where do I start with a book that claims is written in the style of Ian Fleming but is actually written in the style of Jilly Cooper in parts and a comedian/author in others.

Faulks starts the novel by constantly throwing in references to Fleming's Bond novels up to a point where in gets annoyomg. He then throws in references to late 1960's events as if he wants to constantly tell us that this novel is set after the run of Flemings works. Faulks also seems to have forgotten some vital plot points from the last of Flemings Bond novels. He mentions that SMERSH is still in operation when it was clearly referenced in one of Flemings last books that the organisation was disbanded. Also, it appears that Loelia Ponsonby is still Bond's secretary even though she left International Exports (or rather the new name for the organisation) near the end of Flemings booksand was replaced by Mary Goodnight.

Now onto the idiot plot points of which there are many, although I have (perhaps fortunately) cast some of them out of my mind. It seems that the token Bond Girl Scarlett seems to be stalking Bond. Everytime he books incognito into a randomly chosen hotel that he himself claims that nobody knows he's booked into Scarlett (and even her occasionally kidnapped sister Poppy) turns up at that hotel five minutes later asking for him! Bond also appears to have a mouth of steel as evidenced when he places two shards of glass under his tongue for later use and then goes to sleep without even doing the inside of his mouth any harm! We also get an idiot plot point that is based on an idea nicked from the film Moonraker. Bond notices that a security keypad in Dr. Gorner's lair gives off a different tone with every button pressed. He memorises the 'tune' that is played when the correct combination of buttons are pressed and later recites it to Scarlett. The Bond girl, we are lead to believe, knows nothing of the security keypad but strangely knows that the tune Bond is humming to her represents certain numbers on the keypad (that she has never seen) and quickly identifies the keypad sequence.

On top of that we get random minor characters being thrown in the story to keep certain plot points moving on, certain scenes involving Scarlett being written in as a kind of woman that wouldn't look out of place in a Jilly Cooper novel, Dr. Gorner telling his entire plan to Bond in great detail, Gorner letting Bond take the wheel of one of his jeeps, and later on, one of his helicopters as if he trusts the secret agent and lastly badly thought out chapter titles (one chapter is titled 'Good Trouser' which was a line uttered by a minor character in that chapter that has no real bearing on the chapter itself).

We also have characters that appear to be based on ones seen before. Dr. Julius Gorner's name is a nod to Dr. Julius No from Dr. No while his personality is a cross between Hugo Drax from Moonraker (the book not the film) and Franz Sanchez from the Bond film License To Kill. His sidekick Chagrin is an almost carbon copy of Oddjob from Goldfinger and the two Bond girls Scarlett and Poppy may be based off the Masterson sisters from Goldfinger.

Rant over!
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 17, 2012 1:23 PM BST

James Bond: The Authorised Biography
James Bond: The Authorised Biography
by John Pearson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A book that may interest some fans but insult others, 8 Sept. 2010
This book is a curious one. It doesn't take place within the same continuity of the Fleming Bond novels but rather in real life. It is assumed in the book that Flemings novels were based on a real life secret agent and his adventures - a secret agent whom Fleming knew personally. Author Pearson creates an interesting story that stands up well to reading whether you have read the original Bond novels or not (the novels are only largely hinted at in this book so it isn't essential to have read them prior to reading this).

It would however insult some fans who enjoy the works of Fleming. Pearson's biography of Bond discredits some of the facts revealed in the Bond novels as pure fiction and this will annoy fans of the books who believe that Flemings accounts of 007 really happened to the worlds best-known secret agent. As the title of my review states - it's a book that will interest some (for revealing Bond's previously uncharted past) but insult others (who are not fond of the bits of the book that discredit parts of the original novels).
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Nov 20, 2015 10:47 AM GMT

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