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Keith Douglas (Wales,UK)

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Captain Scott
Captain Scott
Price: £7.49

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A terrific book., 11 May 2015
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This review is from: Captain Scott (Kindle Edition)
This book is as well researched, objective and knowledgeable as I would expect from a man as experienced in polar travel as Ranulph Fiennes. It shows what a great man Robert Falcon Scott was.

Scott And Amundsen: The Last Place on Earth
Scott And Amundsen: The Last Place on Earth
by Roland Huntford
Edition: Paperback
Price: £16.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An excellent read but lacking objectivity., 19 April 2015
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I must say at the start that I found this book very entertaining and a real page turner. I already have read some works about the exploration of the South Pole, but this book was by far the most readable, I found myself picking it up at every opportunity.
The way that Huntford writes is very compelling, and I shall certainly be reading his book about Shackleton.
However, this praise comes with a but, and it is a big but.
I am not aware if Huntford has a grudge against Scott and his family, but this must be the least objective book I have ever read. Amundsen is praised from the off, and hardly comes in for any criticism at all, even though his methods of man management at times left a lot to be desired. As did his deception of his men, his creditors and his friend and mentor Nansen.
There is never a word of praise or respect for Scott or any of his team. Huntford attaches psychological analysis that he cannot possibly support, to many of Scott’s men. His character assassination of Dr Edward Wilson is particularly harsh. At Wilson’s death he writes ‘he was a born loser, that he understood’. This is terribly unfair, considering the great respect and affection that ‘Uncle Bill’ was held in by most of Scott’s party, and his achievement in reaching the Pole, even though Amundsen was first.
Huntford seems to have the American obsession with winners and losers. After the suicide of Johansen, years after the Norwegians return home, who Amundsen shunned after an argument on the expedition, Huntford says that Johansen paid the loser’s penalty .
Ultimately I would agree that the Norwegians prepared better, were better organised, more thorough, and left nothing to chance, and deserved their victory.
But I also feel that the men of Scott’s party deserve praise for their determination, and ultimately although they died on their return, Scott, Wilson, Bowers, Oates and Evans deserve huge respect for their own achievement.
I am now reading Sir Ranulph Fiennes biography of Scott, which I suspect will have a more objective view by a man who has been there and done it, unlike Mr Huntford.

Primus thermal food containers Design 500 ml 2014 thermos
Primus thermal food containers Design 500 ml 2014 thermos
Offered by Sub Zero Store
Price: £18.07

2.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing performance., 2 April 2015
I had high hopes for this, Primus being a top Swedish brand, but what a disappointment. I have put hot soup, casserole and pasta in it, and all lose their heat very quickly. I bought it to take lunch to work, but it's useless if you are leaving the food for over an hour. And it is also hard to clean properly, the lid especially smells tainted by what you put in it. Buy a Thermos flask is my advice.

Military Spec. Anorak Smock (L, Beige)
Military Spec. Anorak Smock (L, Beige)
Price: £25.98

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great kit at unbelievable price., 29 Mar. 2015
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What a great bit of kit. Really great quality, strong material and good seams. I love the fact there are no zips. The collar is adjustable via a Velcro fastening. The pocket on the front is huge, I can fit endless bushcraft items in there. The hand warmer pockets are also big and excellent. It is made of canvas so it's not waterproof, but it's windproof and ideal for layering. It also does not melt when worn by a camp fire. Finally, the price is fantastic. If this was made by Fjällraven it would cost ten times as much. Highly recommended.

Persuader (Jack Reacher, Book 7)
Persuader (Jack Reacher, Book 7)
Price: £3.66

3.0 out of 5 stars Not the best, but it entertained., 5 Mar. 2015
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This was not the best of the seven Reacher books so far, but still a great read. Looking forward to the next.

Piece of Cake (R.A.F. Quartet Book 1)
Piece of Cake (R.A.F. Quartet Book 1)
Price: £5.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A superb read., 14 Aug. 2014
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This is a superb novel, which although fiction, is historically accurate. The characters are wholly believable, flawed men like all people, but forced to take part in a war they were only partly ready for. The flying sequences are superbly written. You may not like all the protagonists, but you will probably recognise that these are real people with strengths and weaknesses like you and me.
I cannot recommend this enough. I cannot wait to read the second of Derek Robinson's WW 2 novels.

Roberts CD9959 Swallow LW/MW/FM Radio CD Player
Roberts CD9959 Swallow LW/MW/FM Radio CD Player
Price: £42.37

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb value for money., 10 Aug. 2014
I dithered and hesitated before buying this. At this price there are many choices of product that roughly do the same thing. The tipping point that made me chose this over the Sony CFDS50D was that this has long wave, so I can listen to test match special.
However, the CD player is excellent too, the sound is clear with a good bass. I tried playing it loud with several CDs, Rautavaara's Cantus Arcticus came through brilliantly clear, as did Jean Michel Jarre's Magnetic fields and Arpegiator, both real tests of sound. Beethoven's Eroica sounded brilliant, filling my living room with wonderful sound.
For forty pounds this is superb.

Cockroaches: An early Harry Hole case (Harry Hole 2)
Cockroaches: An early Harry Hole case (Harry Hole 2)
by Jo Nesbo
Edition: Hardcover

30 of 33 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but not yet fully formed., 29 Dec. 2013
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My first Harry Hole novel was `the Redeemer', an odd place to start, but the book was in Sainsbury's, so I bought it on impulse. It was excellent, so I then bought `the Redbreast', the first of the Oslo books, but now the third book overall, as the two books originally only available abroad are now in English too.
So `Cockroaches' is the second book.
Confused yet?
I looked forward to both `the Bat'(the first book) and this second book, and although both are very good, they are not, for me, a patch on the later books, all set in Norway.
In the same way as Morse away from Oxford was never the same, or Wallander out of Ystad, Harry Hole is a product of Oslo, and it is in his native Norway that we get his full character and personality traits that make him such an appealing, if flawed, man.
In Cockroaches he has been once again sent abroad to solve the murder of a Norwegian national, this time the Ambassador. The action this time takes place in Bangkok, Thailand, and the atmosphere is well drawn, giving us the feeling of claustrophobia and suffocation of the overcrowded and polluted Thai capital.
We get hints of Harry's background, and his demons, but as in `the Bat', set in Australia, I felt as if he was far more superficial a character than in the Oslo novels.
If you are coming anew to Jo Nesbo's Harry Hole novels, by all means read them in order, starting with `the Bat', then Cockroaches.
But I would suggest that you would probably find starting at `the Redbreast' just as fulfilling, and you would not miss any information about Harry that you don't find out later.
And once you have read `the Redbreast' you will have to read the rest of the books, they are addictive!
Comment Comments (3) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 27, 2014 8:09 PM GMT

Breaking Bad: The Complete Series [DVD]
Breaking Bad: The Complete Series [DVD]
Dvd ~ Bryan Cranston
Price: £39.99

124 of 145 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A TV series without equal., 11 Nov. 2013
This is without doubt the most compelling series I have ever watched, after reaching the end of one episode I could not wait to see the next. The transformation of Walter White from chemistry teacher and mild family man to drug kingpin is a triumph of acting from Bryan Cranston. He seems not only to change physically, in bearing and stance, but you can almost feel the evil beginning to take him over. As the seasons progress the episodes do get darker, and towards the end of the fifth series I found some hard to watch, so involved did I become with the beautifully drawn and believable characters.
But the end is worth waiting for, and all in all, I cannot praise this series too highly.
Comment Comments (2) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Feb 12, 2015 12:31 AM GMT

My Outdoor Life
My Outdoor Life
Price: £5.99

21 of 22 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent book by a true inspiration., 17 Sept. 2013
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This review is from: My Outdoor Life (Kindle Edition)
I have followed Ray Mears career since he first appeared on 'Tracks' in the mid nineties, and avidly watched each of his TV series and read his books as they came out. He always struck me as a man who has lived life to the full, and I always hoped he would write an autobiography.
And here it is, and I was not disappointed, this is a superb read. Coming up to his fiftieth birthday, he has crammed as much into these years as most would in ten lifetimes.
It follows his school years, judo, and his friendship with the man and mentor who helped to spark his obsession with the outdoors.
His determination and drive, even at an early age, were admirable, and he seemed to possess a maturity, determination and intelligence that few people have.
His career has been fascinating, and left me with a feeling of huge admiration for the man.
His life has not all been sunsets and exotic places, like everyone he has had set backs and tragedies in his life, and he deals with these honestly and unflinchingly.
Overall, this was the book I always hoped he would write, and it is an inspiration to anyone interested in the outdoors, bushcraft , conservation, or the future of the natural world.
I cannot recommend it enough.

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