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The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 Book: The Complete Guide for Photographers
The Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 5 Book: The Complete Guide for Photographers
by Martin Evening
Edition: Paperback
Price: £28.19

28 of 29 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Not a collection of workflows but it is the "Complete Guide", 17 Nov. 2013
This book does what it says on the tin. The title is "The Complete Guide " so difficult to justify criticism of the author for being "completist" as one of the reviews does. If you want a book to tell you how to quickly achieve particular effects then go for Scott Kelby (which I also own) or to web tutorials but if you want a reference guide to lightroom that goes well beyond the manual and help's you to understand what each control does "under the hood" and the potential that each has, then this is the book. Put another way if you want to create standard effects in a routine workflow without particularly caring how you are achieving them (nothing wrong with that) then this isn't the book but if you want a "complete guide" rather than set of workflows then this is the best book out there.
As to there being no point to this book because lightroom is a simple application, that just show a lack of understanding of lightroom which has evolved over the years into a complex piece of software capable of myriad effects. I have both LR and PS and back in the days of LR1 and 2 I used to find I would make a least some edits in PS on about 90% of images but as LR has evolved that number has steadily fallen and now I probably open less than 10% of images in PS. Is LR as complex as photoshop? Of course not but that doesn't mean there is no need for the book. If you want to exploit the full potential of LR rather than just slavishly follow effects created by others like Kelby or Kost then this book is what you want.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Dec 30, 2013 1:40 PM GMT

A Delicate Truth
A Delicate Truth
by John Le Carré
Edition: Hardcover

22 of 31 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Would this have been published if produced by an unknown author?, 19 May 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: A Delicate Truth (Hardcover)
I must begin by saying that I am a huge Le Carre fan having read the entire output. This book in mho falls far below the normal standard. I have always found one of J. Le Carre's strengths to be how he deals with the internal conflicts that motivate many of his characters - how flawed people deal with the human condition in ambiguous moral situations. His characters are normally so well developed. think of Jerry Westerby (one of my favourites). The characters in this book are very two dimensional by contrast and the book seems populated by obvious "goodies" and "baddies". In fact the overall impression I had was that the plot or even the book as a whole was merely an excuse for a rather patronising rant/lecture by JLC about Tony Blair, New Labour, the war in Iraq and the use of private security firms. Ironically I agree with the points that JLC was rather crudely making so my criticism is not based on any political disagreement its just that the points are made extremely heavy handily and do not need a whole book to make. Also I do not buy a John Le Carre novel to be lectured like an idiot but to read a novel which broadly falls into the "espionage" genre but written with an intelligence and subtlety far above the norm.
There is no subtlety or sophistication about this plot, the storyline and likely conclusion are evident from a very early stage (if not from reading the flyleaf) and there are no surprises or moments when "all becomes clear" (because nothing is unclear). The characters are almost (but not quite) caricatures and the apparent conclusion that all govt. servants over 50/55 are "good chaps" wanting nothing more than to do their duty to the Queen while their juniors are all careerist self promoters (with one exception) is just pathetic.
Most of all though I missed that peeling of the onion that normally happens in a JLC novel as what is going on gradually becomes clear and which makes re-reading a JLC novel such a pleasure.
I did stagger to the end of a Delicate Truth (which btw arrives with the air of JLC having run up against some sort of page limit) but can't imagine ever re-reading it.
I understand that JLC has a poster which says "Just Le Carre On!" my advice on the evidence of this book is that he should think seriously before following that advice.
I would however like to thank Mr Le Carre for the huge number of hours of pleasure many of his earlier books have given me.
Comment Comments (4) | Permalink | Most recent comment: May 3, 2017 8:43 AM BST

40 Most Beautiful Arias [International Version]
40 Most Beautiful Arias [International Version]
Price: £5.99

2 of 5 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Excellent BUT, 27 Nov. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
The music choice on these CDs and the quality of the chosen recordings is superb. My problem is that none of my players or computers will play CD1. I returned the discs to Amazon when cd1 would not play and received a very prompt replacement but have the same problem with the replacement. CD2 is perfect but CD1 will either not be read by any of my players or plays faintly and with horrendous interference sounds. Has anyone else had this problem I wonder if there is a "bad" batch of pressings of CD1?

The Summervale Volunteers
The Summervale Volunteers
by Alan McQueen
Edition: Paperback
Price: £12.95

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, 16 Aug. 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Based on the other reviews I was looking forward to this book. What a disappointment. I was expecting something both clever and humourous and this isn't either. I know nothing of the author but based on this book he appears to be a very bitter man raging against the world and most people in it (esp. anyone under 50). This bitterness seeps through into every page. If you share this outlook then you will like the book, if not give it a miss. The characters appear almost as cliches specifically designed to act as mouthpieces for the author's rants. It is all very predictable; all salesmen are "slimey", the aristocrat character is a parody of an evil Victorian baronet, all of the heroes are salt of the earth types that have been "wronged by the world" even though it was usually their own stupidity that got them where they are etc etc. There isn't an original or interesting character in the book.
Having decided that this wasn't going to be a humourous book with interesting characters I at least thought it would have a clever plot with a lot of twists and turns. Forget it! The plot is as full of holes as a Swiss cheese. Even the basic premise of the story about ill gotten gains being shipped abroad in the manner described is absurd. The plot just proceeds in a straight line and even when things "go wrong" the solution always appears instantly and so there is never any sense of danger or excitement from the first page to the last.
Although it is a small thing in itself I feel that the following point gives a good indication of the calibre of this book and the sloppiness of the plot (and of the quality of the editing). The lead character H is supposed to be a criminal barrister. He is being turfed out by his "firm" in favour of younger more aggressive fee generators etc. I would have thought that the author would have at least known or discovered by research the basic "101" point that barristers are not employed by "firms" they are self employed and work in chambers. Coming at the start of the book this doesn't give a lot of confidence for the rest and with hindsight I wished I had stopped then, unfortunately I was brought up to finish a book once started and so I followed this limp tale to its dismal, predictable conclusion.....As for the irritating habit of having to be told what the hero listens to on his stereo every time he gets in his car arrrggggggggg. Is this just a feeble attempt by the author to try and bond with readers who share his musical taste or the limit of the author's ability to develop a character?

Olympus OM-D EM-5 Micro Four Thirds Interchangeable Lens Camera - Black (Body Only) 
Olympus OM-D EM-5 Micro Four Thirds Interchangeable Lens Camera - Black (Body Only) 

55 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Product, 27 Jun. 2012
Have to say I am tremendously impressed by this camera. I am a long time Nikon DSLR user and have been somewhat sceptical of the m4/3s format but the release of this camera gave me 2nd thoughts. The camera is a joy to use and the EVF is excellent, but ultimately the most important thing with any camera is the quality of the pictures. I think I have pretty high standards when it comes to image quality and so far the Om-d and the selection of lenses that I use have met that standard. Without really quite detailed examination the images are indistinguishable in quality from shots taken on my Nikon D90 with Nikon lenses. The OM-D images are fantastic up to ISO 800 while 1600 and 3200 are fine for almost all uses although maybe not to A3+ size. Although if you dial back the in camera noise reduction and spend time in lightroom/aperture etc even this would be fine unless you were incredibly picky. The camera in body image stabilisation system is great and can be set to work in live view as well as when shooting (a first for the Olympus m4/3rd cameras I think) and this makes hand holding lenses like the 75-300mm at its long end much easier. The degree of customisation that is available with the camera is also extremely impressive. One interesting result of using this camera is that due to the hugely impressive Olympus JPEG engine I have actually, for the first time, switched from shooting raw to JPEG. I found I was having to spend a lot of time in post processing working on raw images just to get them to look as good as 95% of the camera JPEGs. Obviously there are times when JPEG will let you down but a lot of those are predictable (tricky white balance etc) and then you can switch to raw but IMHO shooting raw all the time with this camera will result in the user wasting a lot of time on unnecessary pp work.
There is also a huge "less is more" factor with this camera. I can carry the camera and lenses to cover 24mm-600mm (35mm equiv.) in a small rucksack all day without a thought, something I wouldn't even contemplate doing with my Nikons, the end result of which is that you take it with you more often and take more pictures and have more fun.
Overall I heartily recommend this camera. To me the OM-D marks the "coming of age" of the m4/3s format and I can see the APS-C DSLR's being increasingly squeezed between the m4/3s on the one side and the full frame DSLR's on the other......
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jan 10, 2013 10:18 PM GMT

Deadly Waters (DI Andy Horton Mystery 2): A Marine Mystery Crime Novel Featuring DI Horton (DI Horton Marine Mystery)
Deadly Waters (DI Andy Horton Mystery 2): A Marine Mystery Crime Novel Featuring DI Horton (DI Horton Marine Mystery)
by Pauline Rowson
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.99

8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Utter tripe, 9 Sept. 2009
Near the end of this book the hero detective's slower side kick (what a cliche) says of the solution revealed by our hero "it beggars belief". Well with that I would have to agree. This is possibly the worst detective story / thriller I have ever read. There aren't holes in the plot so much as yawning chasms. The earlier reviewer is correct in that you are very unlikely to predict the solution but unfortunately that is because of the absurd improbability of the whole thing.

The plot inadequacies are not even compensated for by good characterisations almost all of the characters are cliches.
1. The hero detective with marriage problems
2. The loyal deputy
3. The superior officer who dislikes our hero and who is a less good policeman and only interested in self promotion and a "quick result".
4. Minor criminals who confess to all sorts of things when our hero implausibly threatens to charge them with murder...
etc etc

Usually when you read a book, even one you don't like or don't enjoy you can find something +ve to take away. But not this one. Reading this book was a complete and utter waste of time and energy and I am really angry with myself for finishing it. My only excuse is that there was something hypnotic about how bad it was.

Thor 28577T 2 Way Automatic HDMI Selector
Thor 28577T 2 Way Automatic HDMI Selector

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointed, 25 Jun. 2009
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Thought I would buy a "top quality" item and this seemed to fit the bill. Certainly not cheap. Worked fine for about 4 months switching between a Playstation and a Sky HD box. Now suddenly and for no apparent reason the switch refuses to carry signal from either. Both PS and Sky work if plugged to TV directly, but nothing from either via the switch.

JBL On Stage IIIP Portable Loudspeaker Dock for iPod and iPhone 3G (Remote Control - Battery or A/C )
JBL On Stage IIIP Portable Loudspeaker Dock for iPod and iPhone 3G (Remote Control - Battery or A/C )

6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars JBL Onstage 111p, 1 May 2009
Does a simple task very well. A physically small speaker system that produces good quality sound and charges the iphone/ipod. It is small enough to be unobtrusive, the sound is excellent and the TDMA shielding for the iphone is effective. The unit has the added bonus of a battery power option. I would see this as being useful for using the unit in a garden for example rather than taking the unit travelling, if you want a portable unit look at the smaller Micro Onstage products (currently not Iphone compatible). All in all quality product - you get what you pay for.

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