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Profile for R. A. Mansfield > Reviews

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Content by R. A. Mansfield
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Reviews Written by
R. A. Mansfield "bertieronbob" (Brighton)
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Zyliss Easy Spin Salad Spinner, Green, Large
Zyliss Easy Spin Salad Spinner, Green, Large
Price: £29.49

3.0 out of 5 stars Satisfactory bit of kit, 22 Jun. 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It's a salad spinner. You put salad in and then hoick the green cord.

It spins round and dries the salad. That's all there it is to it.

It's a solid piece of kit and does the job. Nothing fancy.


Garnier Ambre Solaire Kids Coloured Protection Spray SPF50 200ml
Garnier Ambre Solaire Kids Coloured Protection Spray SPF50 200ml
Price: £4.79

4.0 out of 5 stars Very good, 18 Jun. 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Excellent product - my daughter's always a little dubious of the green liquid but once she realised it rubs in pretty easily, she got over that.

It's not too greasy and protects you from the sun. The one downside is applying to your face. Not too keen on spraying faces, so you have to spray your hands and then rub in which is a bit of a pain in the butt.

Overall, great product.


A Divided Spy (Thomas Kell Spy Thriller, Book 3)
A Divided Spy (Thomas Kell Spy Thriller, Book 3)
by Charles Cumming
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.09

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly decent, 8 Jun. 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I read Charles Cumming's first Thomas Kell thriller a few years ago and wasn't that taken with it, if memory serves me well.

Even so, I decided to give his new one a go. And, boy, was I glad I did!?

It's a fairly simple plot: Former government spy Kell discovers some information that could potentially lead to the person he believes killed his girlfriend (this took place in a previous book, but isn't important for the purposes of this story).

Kell takes steps to try and engineer a showdown with this man - Alexander Minasian - and manages to get himself back in the good books of his former boss (and spy chief) Amelia.

However, things don't quite go to plan and Kell has to think on the hoof, in order to ensure that everyone ends up happy. Oh and there's a potential terror attack going down, too.

Obviously, there's more to it than that, but without giving away too many plot spoilers it's fair summary. It really doesn't do Cumming's tightly-woven plot justice, though. It's carefully thought out and easy to follow, yet also gripping in spite of minimal action.

This is a spy thriller more in the Le Carré mould, rather than the Jason Bourne genre, so be warned if you're expecting a kick-ass romp.

It's written sparingly, but with enough intrigue, guile and description to keep the average reader turning its pages and draws you into Kell's world so that you're completely on his side and rooting for him.

Personally, I found the terror element of the yarn the least engaging, but that's not because it was badly written - just how I felt about the character.

I'd definitely recommend Charles Cumming, though, in spite of my previous reservations. Thoroughly decent


The End of the World Running Club
The End of the World Running Club
by Adrian J Walker
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Thoroughly enjoyable, 21 May 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Apparently this was self-published before being picked up by a bigger publisher - in which case, all hail self publishing.

The story starts in Scotland as mysterious asteroids start raining down from the sky, causing panic and a rush for safety. The aftermath of this event informs the rest of the novel.

I don't want to give too much away of the plot, as that's an integral part of why this book works so well. However, the writing and interplay between characters is brilliantly done. The apocalyptic situation brings out the best and worst in people and there's no shortage of that in the book.

Even with the great description I did find it difficult some of the landscapes and the plot is a tiny bit far-fetched, but for the most part I loved this.


Stop Talking, Start Doing Action Book: Practical Tools and Exercises to Give You a Kick in the Pants
Stop Talking, Start Doing Action Book: Practical Tools and Exercises to Give You a Kick in the Pants
by Shaa Wasmund
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.98

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars but the practical exercises she gives you to do here are really useful. They help you to visualise what to do ..., 16 May 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Apparently, the original incarnation of this book (the non-action version) was a huge hit first time around. I'd never heard of it before.

It's a fairly obvious concept - lots of us spend our lives talking about how we could do something different. Write a novel, start a business, learn a language, travel the world... you get the drift?

What Shaa Wesmund's book aims to do is galvanise you into move past the talking and onto the practical nature of achieving something.

As I said, I've never seen the original, but the practical exercises she gives you to do here are really useful. They help you to visualise what to do next, where to focus, what your motivation(s) is/are, and what sort of person you are.

Another excellent part of the book is that it's not dense heavy text - that's a surefire way of putting people off - there are lots of little anecdotes, examples of scientific research and one-page quotes to inspire and motivate.

One thing this book won't do is actually make the change happen physically. That's up to you - but it gives you every possible help to get you on the road.

I can see myself coming back to this book again and again for inspiration.


Tastes Like Fear (D.I. Marnie Rome 3)
Tastes Like Fear (D.I. Marnie Rome 3)
by Sarah Hilary
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £14.88

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Compelling page-turner, 10 May 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I misjudged this book. At the start I wasn't convinced it was for me. It felt too formulaic, too 'been there, read that'.

But I persisted. And something changed. Something imperceptible. It drew me in with its descriptions of South London poverty, decaying estates and a killer who didn't seem like a killer.

I like the main character Marnie Rome - vulnerable and damaged, as so many fictional cops are, but with a heart and something that drives her.

Her relationship with her colleague DC Jake also rang true. Mates, but not quite.

All in all - thumbs up. A properly enjoyable read.


Mosaic Deceptions
Mosaic Deceptions
by Patrick Gooch
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Complex, unengaging and pedestrian, 3 May 2016
This review is from: Mosaic Deceptions (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Bit of a curate's egg this one. The central figure of Matt Clements, the professor, was credible enough. And I bought the interest in his dead mentor's work. So far, so good. That he then undertook multiple journeys into a region that is known to be unstable, started to stretch the bounds of credibility.

The second main character is Bal'Ashtu, a female Muslim preacher, who is determined to change the attitude towards and standing of women within Islam. That sounds fair enough - but she seems to possess some hypnotic, magical abilities that can render even the most aggressive immediately compliant. More than a little far-fetched.

The underlying plot strand of religious artefacts and their place in the modern world and religious belief system is a fiendishly involved topic, which also made the book hard to follow.

Then the oddest part of the book was the cutaways to the US and British intelligence networks and art dealer Schengen. All three were very sketchily drawn and not at all engaging. They merely acted as plot device and served only to break up the Matt and Bal'Ashtu storyline.

Unfortunately, the description 'fast-paced' doesn't chime with me at all. Not an experience I'd be keen to repeat.


Murad Anti-Aging Moisturiser SPF 30 50 ml
Murad Anti-Aging Moisturiser SPF 30 50 ml
Price: £42.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Nice smell and not drying, 20 April 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I passed this to my partner to try out and here's her verdict:

"It's really nice. I use it quite generously as otherwise it's quite matte but it's not drying.

In addition, it smells really nice and not overly strong.

After a few weeks of using it, I would say my skin is pretty clear."

Overall a success.


The 1000 Dot-to-Dot Book: Wonders of the World: Twenty amazing sights to complete yourself (1000 Dot to Dot Book 5)
The 1000 Dot-to-Dot Book: Wonders of the World: Twenty amazing sights to complete yourself (1000 Dot to Dot Book 5)
by Thomas Pavitte
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.98

5.0 out of 5 stars Huge fun and keeps you busy, 15 April 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
Wow, this is great and, boy, are these big?!

I've got a smaller 'adult' dot-to-dot book featuring animals which - perversely - is actually more difficult. The great thing about this is that each 'set' of 100 is in a different colour which makes it easier to complete.

Most of the time you can guess what the picture will be - Sydney Opera House for example is pretty easy - but some are still a surprise.

They keep you busy for a good amount of time. Possibly the one downside is the enormous size of the book (A3 size) but not enough to lose a star. Buy it!


Brabantia Portable Laundry Basket and Bag - Grey
Brabantia Portable Laundry Basket and Bag - Grey
Price: £27.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Neat and functional, 9 April 2016
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This is a neat laundry basket. It folds flat, but with a couple of short dowelling rods it becomes an upright basket.

It's spacious and the two handles make it easy to carry to and from the washing machine.

The handles then fold over to make the hole through which the dirty laundry can be 'posted'.

The grey isn't particularly inspiring and the hole is quite small, especially if you're putting in towels or sheets.

However, all in all, it's a really clever, well designed laundry basket.


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