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Edain "Edain" (UK)
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A Practical Guide to Data Mining for Business and Industry: Case Studies and Methodology
A Practical Guide to Data Mining for Business and Industry: Case Studies and Methodology
by Andrea Ahlemeyer-Stubbe
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £50.00

1.0 out of 5 stars Underwhelming, 16 May 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
This book focuses on sales and marketing applications of statistical modelling, with a small amount of material on other techniques such as machine learning. Examples are frequently screen shots of obscure spreadsheet-like software with column values untranslated into English or SAS code so failing to be particularly illustrative. Examples using a more widely available analysis tools, such as R or python toolkits, would have been considerably more useful, particularly if such examples had been made available as online material.

It rather surprising as very little to say on more holistic 'big data' techniques or the area of data visualization. Better as a general orientation rather than a recipe book, it left me rather underwhelmed and do not consider it particularly good value.


The Gracekeepers
The Gracekeepers
by Kirsty Logan
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £9.09

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For fans of..., 11 May 2015
This review is from: The Gracekeepers (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I'm never a fan of the "For fans of X book..." tagline, because it usually means Book X was a success and so publishers rush to churn out similar books at great speed, destined for supermarket bargain bins. With this being sold as 'for fans of The Night Circus' I was even less impressed, as I didn't rate TNC at all. I liked The Snow Child more but could still have complained about it, if need be. I was expecting this to be Yet Another Fairytale with a bit of blood, well-trodden Atwood/Carter ground, with the post-apocalyptic dystopia angle that it seems no novel these days can do without.

But The Gracekeepers succeeds where I felt TNC failed. TNC painted a picture but I felt it had no depth; Gracekeepers is also a very visual novel, at times making you wonder if it may have made a better graphic novel, a painting or even a movie. The rhythm and beauty of the prose, though, goes a long way to painting the picture and I feel elevates it above similar novels. It has the darkness of modern fairytale retellings but also the beauty of folk stories. I felt both Callanish and North were well-written and well-rounded, which is refreshing as it seems contemporary titles can rely on a bland Everyman character who simply wanders through events. At times it can feel like being bombarded with metaphor after metaphor - the different groups, the islands, the conflicts and so forth - but the overall experience of the story makes it a genuinely worthwhile and enjoyable read.

For fans of all the aforementioned books but especially for those who weren't that keen on them and thought 'if only someone would tackle this strong-visual fairytale/folklore theme a bit better'.


The Porcelain Thief
The Porcelain Thief
by Huan Hsu
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £13.59

5.0 out of 5 stars More than just a family fable, 5 May 2015
This review is from: The Porcelain Thief (Hardcover)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I enjoyed this a lot more than I expected to. It begins as a simple quest to unravel a family rumour and a history of the porcelain industry, but quickly becomes an exploration into modern Chinese culture, not the sanitised versions in documentaries that talk too much about Maoism and politics, but the complexity of the man on the street, Chinese one-upmanship and face-saving, the culture of imitation and what this means for innovation and how this has been a pattern not just in recent times but throughout history. For anyone who has visited China or experiences these cultural quirks first-hand it is a really refreshing and honest read. The author's style and humour keep the story flowing through slightly slower periods, trekking from village to village, and the occasional flashbacks to his family's wartime experiences blend the historical with the modern, bringing it all full circle.

Very enjoyable and I'll be recommending it a lot!


byteStor Pro 32GB USB 3.0 High Speed Flash Drive - Black
byteStor Pro 32GB USB 3.0 High Speed Flash Drive - Black
Price: £9.22

2.0 out of 5 stars Cheap, but why?, 18 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I was concerned about the quality of this as the plastic feels very thin and I'd be worried about its ability to withstand being kept in a pocket or bag. It seems like it could be easily crushed.

It comes formatted as a single VFAT partition and is 28.86 GiB[30.99 GB] in size. Is this common with USB sticks, to pay for 32GB but get a smaller amount?

Write speeds measured were around 16-17 MB/s for writes on USB3. Read speeds measured were around 75-76 MB/s for reads on USB3.

It seems to exist as a kind of low budget option, but when USB sticks are already so cheap and there are better products for the same money, does it really have a place in the market?


Creature Teacher
Creature Teacher
by Sam Watkins
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

4.0 out of 5 stars No surprises, 15 April 2015
This review is from: Creature Teacher (Paperback)
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
My son (6) enjoyed this. He liked Jake, a sort of everyman character who takes the lead to care for the creature. Mr Hyde is a great character, and my son agreed he'd like a teacher like him. Personally I thought the other kids in the class were a bit one-dimensional - smart one, sporty one, artsy one, bullying one, although the inclusion of 'totally weird one who allies with nice kids and bullies as it suits him' was a refreshingly realistic addition! - but then I'm not the target audience and children probably prefer the simplicity at that age. The plot isn't particularly twisty, just the usual plod through simple near-misses of discovery, but again I may just be tired of the trope having read a lot of similar books lately. It's a fun school yarn.


Nivea Cellular Anti-Age Skin Rejuvenation Concentrated Serum 40 ml
Nivea Cellular Anti-Age Skin Rejuvenation Concentrated Serum 40 ml
Price: £14.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Good, substantial serum., 8 April 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I was on the lookout for a new serum - I've been using the Boots one, but I find it a bit thin and watery. The first thing I noticed about the Nivea one is it's thicker and more substantial, and your skin feels a lot smoother and plumper after use. It creates a nice base for makeup, though I do think a separate day cream/moisturiser is needed, and I think it does a much better job than rival products at toning down redness and easing discolouration.

It is rather heavily scented with that traditional Nivea scent, reminding me of high school, but that's the only real downside. A really good serum.

Can't say much about it anti-aging properties, as I don't believe in those.


Hatley Girls OVL Forest Animals Pyjama Set, Red, 5 Years
Hatley Girls OVL Forest Animals Pyjama Set, Red, 5 Years

5.0 out of 5 stars These are brilliant. Soft, 11 Mar. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
These are brilliant. Soft, great quality, bold print. Wash very well. Daughter loves them. Like others suggested, go up a few sizes - my daughter is 2, takes a 4-5 size, got her a 5 and they should be OK.


Nespresso Pixie Clips Coffee Capsule Coffee Machine with Aeroccino by KRUPS, Black/Yellow Neon
Nespresso Pixie Clips Coffee Capsule Coffee Machine with Aeroccino by KRUPS, Black/Yellow Neon
Price: £145.78

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Great if you like pod-coffee-taste. If you don't..., 11 Mar. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
It's a difficult product to review because I guess it really depends what you think of the whole Nespresso concept as a whole. If you're a coffee lover who loves beans, grinding beans, choosing beans and believes in proper coffee quality and all that stuff, then no type of pod machine will probably thrill you. It's a pod, after all. But if all you want is a quick, easy shot, this is a great little thing. Little, first of all, which in my tiny kitchen is a huge bonus. We have no space for fancy gadgets or countertop clutter, but this really is small, sleek and looks stylish. It takes up barely any room at all and looks great whilst it's out. It is incredibly easy to use - pod in, lever down, coffee out.

For me it then falls down a little, because I then have to fix my coffee. It is very small and I need more. I need to add things to it to make a real drink. And then, the taste. I found it bitter. I am no coffee-expert or great lover of various bean types, but I have a vague sense of what coffee I think is nice tastes like, yet this was just bitter. Not much coffee flavour. Perhaps that's what you lose in pods. Maybe that doesn't matter when all you want is a wake-up call. I used a few more pods - despite 12 'flavours' and intensities they all tasted the same to me - and really, still just bitter.

I think if you're a fan of pods and pod-coffee and you already know you like Nespresso, this is a great machine. If you want something small, fast and stylish, this is for you. If you're new to it all, I'd suggest going around tasting Aeropress coffee and Nespresso coffee and seeing what you think. You might find pods are a convenience too far.


Revlon ColorStay Eyeliner - 5 g, N1 Black
Revlon ColorStay Eyeliner - 5 g, N1 Black

5.0 out of 5 stars My new favourite., 10 Feb. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
I'm not very good at eyeliner. I always find them very hard to draw on, like you have to press incredbly hard and scratch over and over again until it feels like you're carving words into stone. I recently gave away a nice Boots one for that reason - my eyes were redraw before the colour came off!

But this is simple and easy. You draw a line. Done. No need to go over it again, no need to redo, it's just on in one swoop. It has a screw tip and the smudgey thing on the other end, which I've admittedly not used. I'm not quite that skilled yet.

It does a brilliant job of lasting all day, which is everything I want in an eyeliner. Smudgeproof? That I'm not so sure about. It doesn't drop off by itself, that much is true, but if you do touch and smudge your eye it will come off. Maybe that's what smudgeproof means? It doesn't come off by itself just because you blinked, but it still will if you rub. Also, unlike many other waterproof/smudgeproof products, you don't need to scour it off. It comes off pretty easily just with your usual cleanser.

My new favourite. I'm very impressed by this, it does everything you need.


Ricco 320 W 2 Channel Bluetooth Soundbar Hi-Fi Speaker with Home Cinema Music System
Ricco 320 W 2 Channel Bluetooth Soundbar Hi-Fi Speaker with Home Cinema Music System
Price: £69.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars So large!, 23 Jan. 2015
Customer review from the Amazon Vine Programme (What's this?)
My first worry about the product was its enormous size. It's massive! There are much smaller and sleeker bars out there, but then obviously the point of this product is its low cost. It is wall mountable but personally I'd be worried about the weight.

It is easy to set up, and we had no problem linking it up with Bluetooth products. It comes with radio which seems a bit odd these days, and I didn't find the sound quality or reception for it very good at all. For the other inputs, though, it does sound pretty good and clear.

If you have an enormous room and lots of space for this thing, then spend a little, but realistically this is one area most people are going to spend a little more for the best and smallest they can get. I'm not sure there's a niche in the market for cheap and huge.


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