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Graeme Hopson

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Karlology
Karlology
by Karl Pilkington
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.48

2.0 out of 5 stars Stick to the podcasts, 11 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: Karlology (Paperback)
I'm a massive fan of the podcasts that Karl did with Ricky Gervais and Stephen Merchant but found this book disappointing. What made the podcasts so great was Karl's dry delivery and comic timing, which doesn't come across as well in the written word. The book suffers from not having any input from Gervais and Merchant - it was the dynamic between the three of them, goading Karl in his wacky theories and strange take on life, that made the podcasts such a joy to listen to. It just feels a bit too researched, as though he's trying too hard, and lacks the spontaneity of the podcasts.

If, like me, you love the podcasts, you'll be disappointed by this book.


The Man Who Cycled The World
The Man Who Cycled The World
by Mark Beaumont
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Epic journey, dull book, 6 Jan. 2014
First, let me say that I admire Mark's feat of cycling 18,000 miles in record breaking time. That said, his cycling achievement doesn't make for an interesting or inspiring book. Since his priority is simply to clock up the miles each day, he doesn't have the time to stop and explore the places he cycles through or to meet any colourful characters along the way. Instead of the sights, sounds, smells and flavours of the countries he cycles through, all we get are repetitive whinges about his legs aching or not being able to find food or accommodation. He may as well have cycled the entire 18,000 miles on a gym exercise bike and written about that.


A Bike Ride: 12,000 miles around the world
A Bike Ride: 12,000 miles around the world
by Anne Mustoe
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Travelling with a stranger, 21 Sept. 2013
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An odd book, this. Despite the length of the book (290 pages) and the epic scope of the journey (12,000 miles round the world on a bicycle) we learn nothing about the author, other than the basic facts that she was a retired school headmistress with a love of ancient history. This, for me, is a major flaw. A good travel writer should make you feel like you're on the journey with them, yet after reaching to the end of the book, I couldn't tell you who I'd been travelling with or what her thoughts and feelings had been. This made it hard for me to warm to her and maintain interest in her journey.

Much of this book follows in the footsteps of Alexander the Great across Europe and Asia and it seems that the author is far more comfortable describing the ancient world than revealing her own thoughts and personality. The author doesn't really bring to life the places she visits and the people she meets. There is too much of 'I did this, then that..' kind of writing rather than expanding on the more interesting episodes, which would make for a much more interesting read.

The print and paper quality of the book is poor, making the small number of photos and maps that are included difficult to decipher. I should add that there is not a single photo of the author on the cover or inside the book, which is a strange omission.

In short, probably best to give this one a miss.


Apple iPod shuffle 2GB - Slate  (Latest Model - Launched Sept 2012) (discontinued by manufacturer)
Apple iPod shuffle 2GB - Slate (Latest Model - Launched Sept 2012) (discontinued by manufacturer)
Offered by You Want One

5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic mini iPod, 17 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
For anyone wanting a tiny, lightweight music player, this is the perfect. It is impressively small, about 3cm square, and so light that you forget you're wearing it. It has a clip on the back to attach to clothing. The 2GB storage holds hundreds of songs; I've uploaded 8 CDs worth of music so far and have only used about 10% of its storage. The player lacks a display screen but it does have the function to read aloud the track name and artist. The controls are minimalist but does everything you need without any fuss. It comes with a decent set of headphones and a USB cable.


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