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P. Mcconnell

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Whitley Neill Gin, 70 cl
Whitley Neill Gin, 70 cl
Price: £21.00

5.0 out of 5 stars Lovely orangey twist., 14 Jun. 2017
This review is from: Whitley Neill Gin, 70 cl (Wine)
I can't say it's necessarily deserving of the five as I've not tasted a great deal more expensive gins; but it's got a cracking orangey twist to it that stands apart from the more generic bombay sapphire, gordons, etc at a similar price point.. Reckon it'd make a great martini with a twist of orange zest, which I'll definitely try on my next bottle.


Media and Development (Development Matters)
Media and Development (Development Matters)
Price: £14.24

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A compendium of critical questions essential for overcoming contemporary challenges within the sphere of media and development, 27 Aug. 2015
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We live in an age in which every media innovation purportedly heralds a new dawn, signalling not only a transformation of our social lives in the West, but also the latest answer to the world's toughest problems, such as international poverty. Martin Scott's book serves as a sobering, grounding reminder of the importance of a critical perspective.

Scott draws together a myriad of assumptions and ostensibly accepted claims in development and, in the true spirit of academic inquiry, insists we look further.

E.g. While modern democracies may have strong media plurality, this correlation does not represent the final word before directing strong media development policies. What aspects of plurality are key? How does media plurality cause changes in governance, and in which ways? Through which of these can we effect practical interventions ethically and efficiently? How can we measure our changes? Is imposing a need for measurable results critical to transparency or an obstacle to certain kinds of interventions.

This isn't a book of answers, but a signalling of the questions we need to be answering if the sector of media and development will play a significant part in meeting the challenges of the latest sustainable development goals.


Extinction Point (Extinction Point Series)
Extinction Point (Extinction Point Series)
by Paul Antony Jones
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.64

67 of 71 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Passable but hugely over-rated, 5 Sept. 2013
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I, like many others, was impressed by the star rating of this book however it really does not reflect the quality. Amazing really that The Road is rated the same.

The book has an interesting premise, an astonishing shocking premise. But the way it is told is very mundane; aside from a few admittedly exciting, though unoriginal, moments. It's told in tedious detail, micro-explanations like how the main character tied her shoes after she put them on (obviously), or turned the handle of the door before opening it. As another reviewer says, you could probably cut the book by a third and make it better.

The main character is just not interesting or believable. I was horrified when I got towards the end and realised there wouldn't be a conclusion and it was a book one of a series. Should have looked closer, I felt robbed of even a conclusion. It even seemed a random, bizarre place to stop. Indeed it never really got going.

I don't know how people can be so enamoured with this. If you haven't read The Road, just read that instead. It's a horrifying realistic portrayal of the human consequences of an apocalypse. On finishing I spontaneously started uncontrollably crying, weirdly the only time I have cried in about five years!

This book made me want to cry for other reasons.


A Tale of Two Cities
A Tale of Two Cities
Price: £0.00

5.0 out of 5 stars The best of Dickens, 8 April 2012
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I almost resolved never to read Dickens again after reading the laborious spoon-feeding that is Hard Times. Which, good a book that it is, takes about three quarters of the book to go anywhere.

Tale of two cities is similar to hard times in that you can feel the atmosphere of Paris and London emanating out of the pages (like Coketown). The story is very powerful, and the book contains the most incredible tortured souls Sydney Carton and Alexander Manette.

I recommend this book to all, especially those who have felt Dickens to be too dry for them.


Neuromancer
Neuromancer
by William Gibson
Edition: Paperback

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A spectacular books by a visionary writer, 15 Jan. 2012
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This review is from: Neuromancer (Paperback)
After 25 years, Neuromancer's predictions about culture and technology remain largely accurate. Private militaries wage war for profit and corporations manipulate governments to their own ends. In America, the government electronically monitors citizens in the name of "homeland security," and operates secret torture facilities around the world. Wealth continues to consolidate in fewer and fewer hands, while the super rich wall themselves away in glittering palaces. Oversexed celebutantes and reality TV lobotomize a public more concerned with Idol than Iraq. Vital public services like water, electricity and health care are privatized, deregulated and shamelessly exploited by corporate interests. Global warming and big oil promise to push the world further toward militarism and totalitarianism. Scientific research in cloning, robotics and nanotech promise to prolong the lives of those that can afford them. The world we live in is actually a lot like Neuromancer, though we still have some work to do on neural implants.


The Guantanamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America's Illegal Prison
The Guantanamo Files: The Stories of the 774 Detainees in America's Illegal Prison
by Andy Worthington
Edition: Paperback
Price: £17.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A very important book, 9 Oct. 2011
A very, very important book.

Andy Worthington definitively exposes the myths and falsehoods that surround those that were and still are imprisoned in the world's most notorious prison. From teachers, to humanitarian aid workers all kinds of innocent people spent their time in legal black hole that is Guantanamo Bay; far from the "worst of the worst" and the "bad men" that senior Bush administration figures boldly stated. Andy Worthington has painstakingly researched and told their stories, the results are often heartbraking.

Essential reading for those who care about human rights, and the path of modern society.


The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism
The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism
by Naomi Klein
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.09

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An essential read for understanding international relations, 29 Aug. 2011
The title says it all. Essential and exhaustive. The Shock Doctrine opens your eyes in an astonishing way, you will never be able to watch an international crisis without being depressingly aware of the clandestine business machinations.


Flat Earth News: An Award-winning Reporter Exposes Falsehood, Distortion and Propaganda in the Global Media
Flat Earth News: An Award-winning Reporter Exposes Falsehood, Distortion and Propaganda in the Global Media
by Nick Davies
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazingly eye opening, 17 July 2011
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This is a fantastic book; a book that you need to read.

It gives an insight into how the media really works. Something we've all had an insight into after the phone hacking scandal. Read this book, and you will see that that is the least of our worries.

Buy this book and you wont regret it.


The Road
The Road
by Cormac McCarthy
Edition: Paperback

5.0 out of 5 stars Literary and prophetic brilliance, 10 Jan. 2011
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This review is from: The Road (Paperback)
As a writer, McCarthy disregards the need for emotionally manipulative language and lets the world he paints in vivid, hopeless grey tell the tale itself. And it does, spectacularly. Without specifying the disaster that must have led to The Road's world McCarthy sends out a warning.

A warning the danger of good people standing by while powerful elites make a violent mockery of the values individuals believe in.

A warning against our ambivalence to climate change.

Whether nuclear holocaust or climate disaster the warning and message are clear. We all must make serious changes, and give our time to give a little back to the world if we want a better future. Let there be no mistake. Cormac McCarthy's future is every bit as possible, if not more, than every other sci-fi story we see.

To those who say this book is so bleak what can we take from reading it. Ask yourself why you read? Should a happy book be more valuable than a sad one? If so why? Part of why we read is to understand the world better, if that understanding is sad, that is unfortunate but sadness is just as real, prevalent and legitimate as happiness.


John Pilger - The War You Don't See [2010] [DVD]
John Pilger - The War You Don't See [2010] [DVD]
Dvd ~ Julian Assange
Offered by NextDayEntertainment
Price: £6.85

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unparalleled journalism, 10 Jan. 2011
This documentary tells the big story that never gets told in the media, the one about itself.

It is, quite literally, essential reading for anyone who wants to understand the truth behind that which is portrayed through the mainstream media. To understand how our media system risks being little more than a propaganda machine in media affairs.

Those in the media claim to have learned their lesson from Iraq. They have not so we must. Right now, we need to ask why the media is NOT asking governments why Iran and it's potential nuclear programme is a dangerous threat to the world despite the fact that Iran has never invaded a country. Moreover when Israel has invaded every country it borders, holds nuclear, biological and chemical weapons and treats international law and it's perceived enemies with complete disregard, why are we focusing on Iran. Only when we have a media that asks and answers these questions will we live in a real democracy.

Anyone who is interested in the themes raised in this documentary and why the media acts in this way should read the incredibly prophetic "The manufacturing of consent: The political economy of the mass media" by Noam Chomksy and Edward Herman. It is a book that this documentary certainly draws from.


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