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Matt_85

Matt_85
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Member since: 03.06.2010

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      29.10.2012 14:36
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      A great BBQ for those who entertain larger numbers

      I recently got this BBQ after I got sick of using a gas BBQ; after all, it's only a BBQ if it's cooked on charcoal! This was on special offer when I bought mine, but that wasn't the only consideration.

      This BBQ is pretty big. It's called the 'Party Barrell' and it could easily handle a party of 50 without waiting around for more food to cook! OK, I may be exaggrating slightly; the most I've cooked for is 15 and I didn't even use all 3 cooking sections!

      As you can see from the picture, there are three seperate cooking sections. Each section is about 35cm wide and about 60cm deep. These are very generous proportions, and allow you to cook a lot of food at once. Each section's height can be varied by 3 stages, depending on how close to the coals you want to cook. Special tongs are provided to enable you to make adjustments whilst cooking.You'll need to line the base of the barrell with tin foil (also helps with cleaning) and you light the charcoal on another grill placed in the barrell itself (all supplied).

      The best thing about the three section set-up is that you can choose how many to use. When I cooked for 15 people, I left one section 'unlit'. This not only gave me a place to 'rest' the freshly cooked meat, but also meant that I didn't waste charcoal lighting and heating unnecessary sections. Basically, each section is sectioned off right through the barrell. So you only use enough charcoal to light the sections you'll need. This means heat can be more concentrated and the food will cook more evenly.

      Another great thing with this BBQ is that I found that the heat distribution is perfect, and you don't end up with 'cool' areas where food doesn't cook very well. There are vents which can be opened and closed during cooking to aid heat distribution and circulation. You also have some handy 'hangers' for hanging your utensils on. Plus, the tray below the barrell can be used for storage.

      There are only two downsides to this BBQ. Firstly, it is fairly big. If you don't regularly have BBQs with more than 3/4 people, it's probably not worth the effort. Buy a smaller one. Secondly, there's no lid. I do like a lid to get a really smoky flavour on the meat, and also the speed up cooking a little. However, this isn't a major concern. Overall, it's a pretty decent BBQ; albeit a little pricy.

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    • Kenco Millicano / Coffee / 13 Readings / 12 Ratings
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      26.10.2012 14:48
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      Great for those who love coffee, but are constantly disappointed by instants.

      OK, I decided to give this a go because I'm the kind of person that loves coffee but am too lazy to make proper coffee whenever I want a cup. Instant is fine, but it's a poor substitute for the real thing. From what I gathered, this Millicano stuff is supposed to be better than regular instant. So I bought some.

      The first thing you'll notice is that the 'grains' are finer than regular instant coffee. It's not quite a powder, but looks fairly fine. The aroma you get off of it when you open the pot promises that this will taste better than your usual instant.

      It's of about the same strength as regular instant, so you just add your usual amount and pour over boiling water. You'll notice a sort of coffee 'residue' just above the waterline of your mug. Strange as it sounds, it makes it look like coffee made in a cafetiere. It has a deep colour, and a very rich aroma.

      As for the taste, it is superb. For an instant coffee to taste this good, Kenco have done themselves proud! It has a rich flavour. I wouldn't say it is an overly strong coffee, but it is sufficiently strong to appeal to all coffee drinkers. I never ruin coffee by adding milk, so I can only comment on the taste of it 'black'. It has a slightly bitter flavour, with a hint of dark chocolate hiding in there. It really is like 'proper' coffee.

      The only drawback in my view is the price. For a standard pot in Sainsbury's (100g), it costs £3.99. There are a number of instants that you can get cheaper, especially when purchasing the larger jars (Milicano is limited to 100g pots it seems). For someone who drinks coffee every day, Kenco have priced this too high. But I think this is put across as more of a 'premium' item. As such, it's worth having some in the cupboard for when you have visitor, or for the occasional cup for youself.

      Overall, I would say that Millicano is the best instant coffee out there when it comes to taste and flavour. On price, however, it loses a few marks. But for coffee lovers, it's a real winner in the dreaded 'instant' catagory.

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    • Daybreakers (DVD) / DVD / 9 Readings / 9 Ratings
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      13.07.2010 16:58
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      Don't bother; you'll wish a vampire would take your bloody to put you out of your misery!

      OK, I thought this film would be good, what with all the big names involved, but it's a let down. It could have been so much more, but fell woefully short of a decent film.

      The film is about the world after it has been tacken over by vampires. Human blood supplies are running dangerously low, and blood substitues fall short of expectation. Vampires are mutating due to blood starvation, and are being burned in the daylight to save the vampires. But, there is a way of reversing the effect of a vampire bite; a short burst of exposure to sunlight, followed by a dowsing in water. But as to why this works, I couldn't really say; it's the flimsyest plot I've come across in a long while!

      This all sounds like it could be a good film. But it doesn't live up to expectations. It's a pretty bloody film. Maybe not over-the-top, but for some it's a bit much (at least, my girlfriend thought it was). But it's the story that gets me. The concept is promising, and the story has potential. It's just not realised. When the film ended, I genuinely did not believe it. I had to wait to be asked to leave the cinema after the credits! Theres certainly a start to it, then there's the beginnings of a middle, but it's missing the rest of the middle and the ending. The ending is such a let down! It's almost as though they were setting it up for a sequel, but it would have been nice to get some closure. It ends with them setting off on a mission.... but that's it. Seriously, if you write a movie, at least have the decency to finish it! Acting wise, the level is mediocre. Nothing that'll win any awards! It's filmed well though, but in in a pretty standard way. You may find yourself jumping at points. If you have a weak bladder, don't worry about leaving to use the toilets.... you won't miss much!

      Overall, does not live up to expectations, and not particularly well executed. Leaves a lot to be desired, and doesn't finish the story off in any way. Nothing to set your world on fire, and I certainly wouldn't bother rushing out to get this on DVD. Poorly done I'm afraid.

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      13.07.2010 15:25
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      You won't say it's your favourite, but its a good story nonetheless.

      Thunderball. Sounds like an big, explosive story; and it is. This is one of the longer novels in the collection, but not necessarily the best of the bunch.

      SPECTRE, led by Number 1 Emilio Largo, has embarked on a mission of extortion. They have hijacked an RAF aircraft, loaded with two of the latest nuclear bombs on board. And now they are holding the world to ransom. The threat of this ransom is to pay £100,000,000 to SPECTRE or they will destroy a major city (but they won't say which one, so as to avoid any attempt to stop them).

      Bond is in Shrublands; a health clinic in Sussex. He is there on M's orders, to detox and get into shape. Bond is subsisting on orange juice and carrots, when he comes across Count Lippe. Bond notices the Chinese-tong tattoo on his arm, and puts a call in for Miss Moneypenny to sort it out. Lippe overhears and ends up almost killing Bond (on one of the spine-stretching machines). Bond gets his revenge though. Lippe is there sorting out arrangements for the hijacking; but Bond is blissfully unaware.

      When M informs Bond, he is eager to enter the fray; and convinced this is a Soviet backed enterprise and wants to go into the Iron Curtain. But M sends him off to the Bahamas. Bond isn't happy; he see's it as the place least likely to yield results. But, as we could expect, it all kicks off! Bond is launched against the formidable Emilio Largo, and attempts to get to him though his mistress, 'Domino' Vitali. And, in pure Bond style, he meets Largo at the card table. A welcome addition to the story is the arrival of Felix Leiter. He joins Bond on his race against the clock, and when the chase hots up, the suspense dripping from the pages gets you hooked. Plus, the underwater excitement (and the classic inclusion of shark and barracuda) makes the action in this story well worth the read.

      But this isn't the best novel of the collection. Fleming's brilliant writing style and amazing knowledge shine through as usual. But it's a bit too long, and to be honest, the amount of 'action' is disproportionate to the length of the book. It's nonetheless a good read, just not the best available. I'd still recommend it though. The actual plot is solid, and it's one you won't regret reading.

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      13.07.2010 11:37
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      Another cracking novel from Ian Fleming; a must read!

      This is yet another cracking novel from the great mind of Ian Fleming. This is probably my third favourite book (after Moonraker and On Her Majesty's Secret Service), but not by much. But be warned: this is not for Bond film fans! I was a big fan of the films until I read the books; and now I appreciate how great the books are compared to the films.

      You Only Live Twice fires Bond off to Japan. Bond goe without his double-0 prefix, as he will be on a diplomatic mission to negotiate with the Japanese secret service. Whilst there, he is priveledged to be hosted by the head of the Japanese secret service; Tiger Tanaka. Bond's diplomatic mission takes a hit when Tiger explains that the British offer of access to their secret network in China, Blue Route, has already been 'tapped into' by the Japanese. However, Tiger explains a problem he has; one Dr Shatterhand, a Swiss botanist, has purchased a castle in Fukuoka. He has imported a vast array of rare species of plant; all deadly. His castle is guarded by armed guards (basically ninjas), and has a huge wall with danger signs and warning balloons. All this to keep people out of the 'Garden of Death' as it has been called. But, as Tiger explains to Bond, suicide rates in Japan are very high. It is an honourable death for those e who have been involved in wrong-doings and have dishonoured their families. But committing suicide, honour is restored; and the most spectacular the better. And the 'Garden of Death' offers boiling alive in geysers, being eaten by pirahna fish, being brushed by poisonous leaves or being bitten by snakes. This has a particular appeal to the Japanese. And Bond is asked to kill Shatterhand and his wife. In return, Tiger has promised the MI6 access to 'Magic 44', the system for listening in to secret Soviet radio signals.

      In order to do this, Bond must 'become' Japanese. He is given a the treatment by Tiger to alter his skin tone, and make him look facially Japanese. Armed with a card reading 'deaf and dumb', Bond travels to a small island off the coast from the castle. Here, he meets Kissy Suzuki, and they build up a relationship; until he leaves. He travels to the castle and infiltrates the 'Garden of Death'. After spending the night there, and witnessing the various suicides, he infiltrates the castle. But he is captured. And Dr Shatterhand turns out to be more than just a bontanist...

      I won't ruin the end for you, but it's a pretty dark climax. This is another tight spot for Bond, and the reader is left wanting more. Fleming's usual level of detail and description is ever present, as his level of knowledge seems to be pretty spot on here. The book has dark undertones, and I would highly recommend reading On Her Majesty's Secret Service before reading this. It's a fantastic adventure that Fleming presents the reader with, full of suspense, drama, intrigue and action! This isn't the usual drinking, gambling, womanising Bond adventure; this is something different. It's a story that grips you with it's dark nature, and holds you in with the tension and suspense of Bond's fate. There are certainly times where the reader will actually fear that Bond won't make it! In the end, there is a fairly big twist. It is somewhat unexpected, but the more astute reader may take a guess at it. It's nonetheless entertaining!

      For me, this is another cracking Bond adventure. As I said earlier, it's my third favourite book, but it's a close call. I'm sure any reader will find this a riveting read, and will thoroughly enjoy it! Would recommend reading On Her Majesty's Scret Service first, but I would highly recommend this book anyway!

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        12.07.2010 16:56
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        Sure, it's not a true Bond car, but it's a pretty neat model!

        This is another fun little addition to the Corgi 'Bond' collection. The BMW Z3 was used in the film 'Goldeneye'. It didn't have too much of a role in all honesty (Bond was driving it for a very short while) and it's not a true Bond car (it's not laden with gadgets to help Bond escape). But it's still pretty decent.

        But what about the model? Well, Corgi have a reutation to keep, and they certainly do with this model. This has a quality feel to it, and is well made. The lights on the front may not look perfect, but they house a couple of missile, which can be fired out from the car by pressing down the headrests. A nice novel idea; but not one the car actually had in the film. Which gives this the feel of being a 'toy' rather than a model. By feel, I don't mean that it feels cheap quality wise, just that it feels like it was aimed at kids to play with. And at about £14 (depending on where you buy it), it really isn't badly priced. The model feel solid, and will certainly last a long time. I just wouldn't advise letting the kids play with it and bash it around!

        But on the whole, this is a neat, well made, nicely finished model. It's maybe not a must for Bond fans, as it isn't a true replica of a true Bond car. But, as a model, it's pretty good.

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        12.07.2010 16:39
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        A must for all Bond fans!

        This is the most iconic figure in the world of James Bond, and is certainly the most recogiseable in film history. This is a car packed with gadgets in true James Bond (or at least, Q) style. Bond puts the car and gadgets to good use in the film Goldfinger, and now Corgi have replicated that in this scale model.

        This is a die-cast, 1:36 scale model of the DB5 from the film. As with everything Corgi make, the quality is superb.... well, mostly. The only problem I have is with the ejector seat. The roof is cut out, and hinged at the rear. By pressing a button on the side of the car, the roof flicks up and the spring-loaded seat flies up (but not out of the car). The little man generally flies out though. However, it's not a neat finish, and detracts from the look of the car. But a way around this is to have it in an 'action pose' all the time, with the roof open. Apart from that, the other working features are fine; the battering rams at the front work well, as does the bullet-proof shield for the rear windscreen. But, to be fair, this issue would be avoided in a larger scale model. For a small model, it's acceptable. And with a price tag of aorund the £14 mark (depending where you go), you can't really complain.

        However, Corgi have managed faithfully reproduced the orginal car, right down to the correct number plate. This is a great little piece, and a must for Bond fans. Just don't be too picky about the working features.

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        12.07.2010 14:26
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        The ideal model for Bond enthusiasts!

        This is a scale model of the autogyro that Q bring to Bond in Japan in the film, You Only Live Twice. Bond is on a mission searching for a spacecraft, operated by SPECTRE, which has been hijacking US and Soviet spacecraft. Bond needs something that will allow him to scan the terrain of some small islands quickly. The autogyro does the job. Nicknamed 'Little Nellie', this little bag of tricks fends off attack from three SPECTRE helicopters.

        The Corgi model faithfully recreates the autogyro. Corgi have a reputation for high quality die-cast replicas, and this is no exception. The whole things look 'right'. It has been accurately modeled and correctly scaled. This is a 1:36 scale model, with a rotor diameter of 210mm. The whole model weighs just shy of 400g. Corgi quality is maintained with this model, and there is nothing that will detract from the look of this wonderful machine. The rotors will rotate, along with the 'pusher' propellor on the back. It also actually fires rockets out of the side pods. But this isn't really a toy. This is a collectors models, to be looked at and appreciated. I bought mine for about £12, so it's really not that expensive either!

        Overall, this is a cracking little model. You won't find any modelling or paintwork faults, and all the moving parts work correctly; mind you, this is what you'd expect from Corgi. I think this scale model of 'Little Nellie' is great, without fault and ideal for the Bond enthusiast.

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        12.07.2010 12:51
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        This is a great inrto into the world of Bond, and sets you up to read the rest!

        Casino Royale is the first book in the series written by Ian Fleming, and introduces us to the character of Bond. And it's a very good book indeed.

        This book is set around a casino (yes, the title is a bit of a give away!) in France. Bond is set the task of gambling, with government money, to try and financially ruin a man called Le Chiffre. Le Chiffre is a Soviet agent, mainly involved in the financial dealing of the party. But he has used party money to his own ends, and takes control of a number of brothels in western Europe. This has serious implications, and the Russians put SMERSH onto him. Le Chiffre basically has to make the money back at the baccarat table, or SMERSH will kill him.

        For Bond, ruining Le Chiffre will rid the would of an important Soviet agent. However, Bond is considering resigning from his line of work. He seems bored of it all. But this mission plays out in such a way that he resolves to carry on.

        Vesper Lynd is put at Bond's disposal; an atractive woman to assist in his mission. But she is not all that she seems..... but you'll have to read the book to find out why. The Russians are monitoring Bond, and even try to blow him up, to make sure he does not ruin Le Chiffre. Not because they value Le Chiffre that much, more that they want their money back. Bond is engaged in a tense battle at the baccarat table with Le Chiffre. He is helped along the way by a CIA agent, who crops up in many of Bond's adventures; Felix Leiter. Bond has one more attempt made on his life at the table.... very discreetly. But I won't spoil the story.

        I won't say any more about the plot, as it would give too much away. But all the elements are here for a classics Bond novel. Suspense, mystery, girls, classy cocktails and gambling! Really, this is a fairly simple story, with a fairly simple plot, but it's a great introduction to Bond. Fleming's style of writing, with his amazing eye for detail and his seemingly endless knowledge of all things, makes this a very readable and enjoyable book. It's not as good as some of the other novels, but it's still great.

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        08.07.2010 16:17
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        This is a must read as an interestingly unique Bond novel, if not necessarily the best one.

        Right, be warned: this is not your usual Bond novel! It's a very unique addition to the collection, which is certainly quite intriguing. However, it doesn't deliver the same impact as the other novels.

        First off, this isn't necessarily about Bond. It's about a young French-Canadian woman called Vivienne (Viv). It is written from her perspective, and describes her life pretty much up to the moment situation she finds herself in at present; looking after the Cosy Pines Motel in the Adirondacks while the managers leave, waiting for the owner to arrive and pick up the keys. However, she finds herself in a deadly situation....

        The book is split into three parts; 'Me', 'Them and 'Him'.

        'Me' tells Viv's story. It talks of her life so far; education, work, love, travel etc. It's pretty mundane to be quite honest. Actually, it becomes a bit of a drag after a while. Although Fleming's wonderfully descriptive style comes through well, the subject matter just isn't really of interest to the usual reader of a Bond novel.

        'Them' tells of the developements at the Cosy Pines Motel. During the evening, with rain lashing at the little reception hut, two gangsters - Sluggsy Morant and Sol Horror - turn up 'from the owner'. It turns out they are there to pull an insurance job on the place; Viv would be the inevitable cause of a fire, giving the owner a large insurance payout. Viv is mis-treated and abused while being held captive by these two hoodlums. The story hots up a little bit here, and we start to move to the real plot behind the novel.

        'Him' is Bond's entrance into the novel. He stops by because the vacany sign is still lit, and he needs somewhere to stop off. The hoodlums try to usher him away, but he catches sight of Viv and gets an instictive understanding of her situation. After being shown to a room - the gangsters can't get rid of Bond - they plot to let him burn as well. But Bond is wise to their game, and plots his escape with Viv. It all ends in a shoot out, with Bond killing the hoodlums. He makes his escape in the morning, and carries on his journey.

        This is another well written example of Fleming's work, and I quite enjoyed the different spin on the usual novels. Although it is fairly mundane to begin with, it really picks up. It's the kind of 'hero-sweeping -in-in-the-nick-of-time' novel that you can really appreciate as a great peice of literature. I would recommend this, if only for it's uniqueness. The story does lack a little substance, but it's nontheless a good read.

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          08.07.2010 15:41
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          Another excellent Fleming read, with Bond on the edge in a do or die mission.

          Now, this may not be the best Bond book written, but it's nonehtless a good book.

          The story starts with Bond re-establishing contact with MI6 after a year posted as missing after 'You Only Live Twice'. After getting through to M, it turns out the Russians have brainwashed him as he attempts to assassinate his boss. After having him 'un-brainwashed', M gives him a do or die mission; to finish off Fancisco Scaramanga, aka 'The Man with the Golden Gun'.

          Bond is thrown into a world of gang-land crooks, all trying to make easy money on a new hotel development. After being taken into Scaramanga's confidence, Bond tries to get close enough to him to get the opportunity to finish him. Bond is on a simple assassination mission. And with Bond's dislike of killing in cold blood, he finds it won't be easy to finish the job. The story ends with a shootout on a small scale railway, with Bond assisted by Felix Leiter of the CIA.

          This has a darker starting, and reeks of Bond being on the edge. In the last installment of the series (except for the last book of short stories), it leaves us wondering what will happen to Bond; will he continue or will the pressures of the job finally lead to his demise.

          Again, Fleming writes with great local knowledge and in a brilliantly descriptive style. It has all the readability you would expect, and this is most certainly a book you won't be able to put down. Suspense fills this novel, and danger literally oozes from it's pages. This is Bond, but maybe not as you know him. A great read, highly recommended.

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        • Moonraker - Ian Fleming / Fiction Book / 7 Readings / 7 Ratings
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          08.07.2010 13:10
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          Moonraker is the jewel of the Bond novels; unique amongst them, yet the thrilling and best one!

          Now this is what I call a proper novel! This is my favourite Bond novel, and Fleming is at his literary best!

          Right, first off, if you've ever seen the film, forget it. I watched all the films before reading the books. When I was younger, I was completely hooked on them when I mail-ordered the entire collection on VHS! But as I got older, I began reading the books. And I haven't looked back since. But I won't go into the details of the film, seeing as I'm reviewing the book.

          Moonraker is unique in the Bond series. Bond, and MI6 agent, is sanctioned to operate in the UK for this mission. Which is to investigate goings on around the construction of Moonraker, and make sure it's first launch goes off without a hitch.

          Moonraker is the brain-child of Sir Hugo Drax. This colourful character has an intriguing history. Found horibly disficured in a joint US-British HQ in Germany during the Second World War, Drax is shipped home. After losing his memory, he is quized and shown pictures to try and establish his identity. He shows interest in the file of Hugo Drax, and when he is well enough is released from hospital. He goes on to become a mutli-millionaire, dealing in columbite (a metal used in the manufacture of jet engines). Eventually, he decides to make a gift to the UK; an intercontinental missile capable of delivering a nuclear warhead to all major threats in Europe.

          But he only employs German scientists at his construction sight near Dover. And, after one German shoot the British security officer assigned to Drax in a local pub, with a cry of 'Heil Hitler', Bond is put on the case. And what he discovers sets off a race against the clock to avert a major catastrophe. But, I won't spoil the ending for you....

          Drax is a classic Bond villain; unusual and flawed. He has shocking red hair, and a garish dress sense. He is a very brash and abbrasive person; yet commands the awe and respect of the nation. And, as M quite simply puts it, "Sir Hugo Drax cheats at cards." Why? The traditional Bond villain's greed and quest to be the best there is? The thrill of winning? All will become clear though....

          As usual, Fleming's writing style shines through in this novel. His knack of using great detail and an expert knowledge of the subject matter of his story really do bring this novel to life. You feel you are living the adventure with Bond. And you won't want to put this marvellous story down! It's well structured, and leaves you wanting to know more at every turn of the page. Fleming builds up suspense and doubt in the readers mind, bring the story to it's thrilling climax.

          Oh, and there is a big twist to this story. One that you won't see coming until you move further through the book. Fleming's literary genious is so apparent in the way he twists the story. It starts out innocently enough, and looks like it could be a pretty boring mission for Bond. But as you read on, you question the 'facts' already presented, and the mystery unfold infront of your very eyes with alarming consequences! Thrilling just doesn't do it justice!

          Overall, this is a cracking book, full of the usual elements of Bond; adventure, mystery, suspense, girls and an element of the unknown. Once you start reading this book, you'll be hooked! This is an absolute must read!

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          08.07.2010 12:18
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          For using your mountain bike on the road, Schwalbe City Jets are the best value tyres you can get!

          I was taking part in the London to Brighton ride, and my road bike was out of action. Therefore, it was down to my trusty mountain bike to get me there. But completing the ride on knobbly tyres would prove a lot of effort, and wear out my perfectly good tyres. So, it was time to invest in some slicks....

          A friend recommended these to me. Schwalbe are most certainly a name you can trust when it comes to tyres. In fact, after having numerous problems on my road bike with Continental tyres (constant punctures everytime I rode it), I fitted a set of Schwalbes and had no problems. I think they may even be bullet proof! (OK, maybe an exaggeration, so don't try dodging bullets with them!)

          Schwalbe usually means quality, and that certainly what you get. But where there's quality, there's a price tag. Schwalbe certainly are extortionate with their costs though, and they have something for every budget. Now, looking for tyres for London to Brighton, I didn't want anything too expensive. Especially as I would use them for commuting, and having to replace them every so often would add to the expense. I actually picked these up for £13.49 each from Wiggle. Generally speaking, they cost around £15. I consider this to be a reasonable price. In fact, it represents great value for money.

          So, you've now purchased a reasonably priced set of tyres. Thats all well and good, but what about performance? Well, these bad boys don't dissappoint! I opted for the 26x1.90 option, but they also come in 26x1.5. I would go for the 1.5's, as these would have a little less contact with the road surface. However, these give a lovely ride. The road handling is excellent; they really give you confidence in the corners and never feel like they'll slip away from you. But just because they're grippy, doesn't mean they're not fast rolling. These are a dream. It was easy for me to zip along at a good, steady 15mph. They actually make this rather satisfying zip noise at about 20mph! In fact, you'll find you don't have enough gears on your mountain bike for these tyres!

          These are a nice, robust tyre. They are wire beaded and have puncture protection. And when Schwalbe say puncture proection, they mean it! I've started using these tyres for commuting and road training while my road bike is out of action. They've seen about 900 miles since I bought them, and not once have I had a puncture. Surely this is divine intervention! Me using the same tubes for 900 miles?! But it's true. Nothing will get through these awesome tyres. Plus, using them in the slightly wet conditions is not a problem. The groove pattern gives a decent amount of grip in the wet.... well, not super wet conditions, but fine for moderately wet roads. They're also OK on slightly loose stuff and hard-packed canal paths. Just be more careful on these surfaces in the wet.

          I have read reviews where people say that these are a pain to fit. Take it from me, the man who is useless at changing tyres, they are so simple a three year old could do it! I flick between these and my knobblies weekly, and they just don't present any problems.

          As for availablility, you'll have no problems getting your hands on these tyres. All the major cycling retailers will stock these, or at least be able to order them in. My advice is look online; most internet only retailers will do these at a discount rate.

          Overall verdict... Awesome! These tyres are reasonably priced, and represent great value for money. They are long lasting and puncture resistant. They are fast rolling and very grippy. An absolute essential tyre for commuting. Would recommend the 26x1.5 over the 26x1.90f, purely for the extra speed, but that's rider preference. Seriously though, don't look elsewhere, buy Schwalbe City Jets for your mountain bike, and you'll be communting with confidence and ease!

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          • Bonjela / Pain Relief / 2 Readings / 2 Ratings
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            07.07.2010 12:51

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            This is a product you'll always keep in stock; it works wonders!

            What can I say except that this really works quite well!

            Whenever I have had the inconvenience of mouth ulcers, I've reached for the Bonjela immediately. It's not a very pleasant thing to put this gel in your mouth, but it doesn't exectly taste of anything.... plus your not eating it! You'll need to reapply a few times during the day, but that's not a problem. It covers the ulcer and protects it from pretty much everything. Once, I wasn't able to drink because an ulcer was so painful, but with Bonjela I could do what I wanted. And the ulcer was gone in good time. Only about 3 days from the first application to it going away. And due to the fact that you won't use much, and it's not expensive anyway, it's great value for money.

            In conclusion, if you ever get a mouth ulcer, go straight out and buy some Bonjela. It'll become a product you always keep in the cupboard, just in case. It works wonders!

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          • More +
            07.07.2010 12:35

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            I'd stick to the Lemsip hot drinks if I were you....

            Lemsip Cold & Flu is the first thing I turn to when I start to feel a cold coming on. But I question whether I should bother.

            At about £4 for 8, they're not exactly cheap. And 8 probably won't even last you the day. Having said that, they aren't terrible. I think all things like this are, to a certain degree, placebos. Yet I still take them.

            These are good in the sense that they don't make you drowsy. Always handy when you have to drive and work. But they aren't exactly Max Strength. Sure, they soothe, and you nose does noticably stop running. But if you have a bad headache, it won't have much of an effect. It certainly doesn't help with a sore throat. And as for aches and pains.... to a degree it get rid of some of them, like a sore neck, but not that horrible all-over feeling. Don't get me wrong, these aren't terrible. But my advice is to use the hot drink sachets rather than the tablets. That way, you get that soothing feeling from a lemony hot drink, with the vapours unblocking your nose. The drink actually helps your sore throat as well. They're also cheaper.

            On the whole, these are useful, but, like me, I'm sure you'll get into the habit of reaching for them when you have a cold. Think they're more effective being taken before you go to bed. Seriously, they aren't brilliant, and the drinks are better, if only psychologically.

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