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Audrey and Joel marry in kind of a whirl wind rush and commit their lives to protests and fighting the injustices of the world. Joel is a lawyer and Audrey supports all his causes.
One day Joel has a stroke and ends up in a coma and the family are left rethinking their lives and what it all means.
Audrey discovers Joel had a secret life and she is forced to re-examine her ideas about their forty-year marriage. This forces her into a kind of angry depression.
Their children all have their own issues that they are living through and then their father's coma also forces them to think about their lives as well as their relationship with their rather unpleasant and angry mother.
Rosa has found some solace in hunting for her Jewish roots and finding out about Judaism. She is mocked by her mother but pressured by her Jewish friends to be more committed.
Karla found her comfort in food and is rather overweight. She is married but they cannot have children and her husband Mike wants them. They are going along the adoption route and Karla is not quite so sure. She also becomes involved with the owner of a newspaper concession at her work.
Lenny the adopted son who Audrey feels closest too and Joel didn't get along with is back on drugs and enabled by Audrey handing him money as she feels that is showing her caring for him
Jean, Audrey' long suffering a very supportive friend is constantly there for her despite Audrey's anger and rudeness.
Hannah, Joel's mother feels resentful and upset that her son should be dying while she is still around.
Such is the story, not a lot happens and we are really just joining a rather odd family in their time of crisis as they look back over their lives and question their relationships.
I found the characters a little too extreme but that is part of the humour I think. The Litvinoff tribe or family set their stall out as being hard line socialists who have proudly and loudly rejected their Jewish heritage. They are anti establishment ans unorthodox in every way.
I found it very hard to warm to Audrey who was not a great mother and an angry bed tempered person, lazy, slovenly and not really appealing at all. I did wonder why her friend, Jean was so good to her and why her daughters still came round and also tried to support her as she was like a prickly bad tempered cactus.
I particularly liked the story when Hannah was struggling with her fancy massage and adjustable chair. She couldn't work the chair using the control yet would not allow any of her granddaughters to help. She almost ended up being ejected after her efforts.
I found it a very different book, a strange story but somehow compelling and I certainly didn't find it hard going.
ALL WRAPPED UP
This is not a flashy unusual bottle like some posh perfumes. This is sleek and simple but still quite classy looking. The bottle is clear so the contents can be seen. That is good in that you get to see what is left but it does mean that you should keep it in its box or in the dark as light makes the perfume deteriorate. The bottle the n has a pink typical Prada coloured trim and a black lid. The lid comes off and under that you have a spray nozzle.
ONLY THREE SIMPLE NOTES
Top Notes : Musks- which is unusual to have as a top note and this is a deeper scent with a rather powdery note in this
Middle notes: Benzoin- This is a lovely creamy vanillary aroma and it does come through in the perfume.
Base notes: Caramel- this perfume seems back to front to me as you usually get this as a top note but this is the toffee aroma which mixes with the benzoin to give the caramel toffee sweetness.
This would never be a perfume I would have chosen just from the name alone. I am not drawn to sugary sweet. I prefer musky heavier earthy perfumes myself.
It doesn't really do anything , it goes on sweet and vanillary and stay as that throughout. I didn't find it had much sillage as when I put some on my daughter I couldn't smell it on her even though that day I had not worn it myself.
I could still smell it on me about three hours later and in fact faintly even another few hours though if I wanted to go out and smell of this I would have refreshed it. It stayed on my clothes as the next day I could still smell it on them.
This is a perfume that I feel would appeal to those who like sweet perfumes and probably the younger market rather than a sophisticated perfume.
This is in no way a unisex perfume, it is pretty in pink, girly, frilly and sweet in my view. It certainly isn't subtle as it whacks a big sweet hit with a slightly floral note to me. I don't know where the floral comes from but it does remind me of honeysuckle .
PRICES AND SIZES
The perfume fragrance is widely available.
You can buy the 30ml size for around £40, the 50ml size for around £53 and the 80ml one for about £71.
I cannot see me buying this perfume as it just is not my taste. I am not girly and sweet craving enough. I am happy to have had the sample to play around with but it has told me that this one is not for me.
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I don’t wear a lot of make up but I always wear mascara as my eyes need a bit of help. My eye lashes are pathetic, thin and short so I need to add both length and colour to make them at least noticeable.
I like No 7 products as I feel they are good quality and usually deliver on their promises. I also often buy them when Boots give their £5 off No7 products vouchers. I always make sure I stock up on No 7 products when I have these.
The mascara comes in quite a good sized mascara package or tube container which is tapered and quite sleek in shape. It feels solid in your hand and is long enough that I feel in control of this when using it. The brush has a pretty long wand to it which I like as my hand is not in the way when I use a long wanded brush.
The brush is not only a decent length but it has a good sized brush part too which means that all lashes are able to be covered easily with the brush without having to move it from one side of my eye to the other.
When I load the brush enough mascara comes out to coat the lashes. I find that for day to day use one coat is sufficient but for going out I do layer a couple of layers to get a decent depth of thickness, colour and a bit of added length. You can add several layers if you want and it still does not get clumpy and lumpy.
I find that this gives a good even coverage with no blotches and it separates my lashes too so I don’t end up with clumps of lashes stuck together.
I also like the fact that this mascara doesn’t weep on me. Some leave me with panda eyes after a few hours which I hate,
This comes in black and brown/black and I usually choose the brown/ black as I am quite fair and find this looks a bit more natural.
This mascara costs £12.95 for the pack which holds 7ml. I find that lasts for a good long time certainly as long as I am supposed to keep a mascara which is three months in case of harbouring bacteria and applying this close to your eyes could cause infection.
This mascara has jojoba oil in it which helps to keep the lashes conditioned and also means that the mascara has a nice shiny and smooth look to it.
The mascara is NOT waterproof so if you plan on going swimming or having a good cry at a soppy film then I suggest you don’t wear this mascara.
I find that if I apply my make up remover on a cotton pad onto my closed eyes and let it soak in then gently wipe my lashes then this comes off pretty easily. I don’t have to rub and pull at my lashes which is good as I have few enough of them.
I would recommend this mascara especially if you buy it with a No7 £5 off voucher. It is a good quality mascara that goes on evenly and clump free and is easy to remove with a make up remover.
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I like No 7 as I think they are good quality and not stupidly expensive like some brands. I do use their eye pencil liners sometimes but if I want something to stay put this is what I choose.
The colour I have is Bohemian which is a kind of deep mauve. I find black a bit too dark for daily use and this is a subtle colour yet does show.
The thing I like about this liner is that it lasts the day through and doesn’t smudge and fade. I apply a thin line along the top of my eye lashes nearest the base of the lash. I then keep my eyes closed for a while then pat it dry with a tissue. If I don’t do that I get a smudge higher up on my eye lip that seems to stick like glue and is hard to get rid of.
Once I have applied and dried the top eye lids I then pop a very thin line under my eyes. It is applied with the thin brush applicator and goes on like a wet paint line. It doesn’t take long to dry and once dry it is there till you wipe it off with make up remover.
I love the fact that I can get such a thin line, that it dries quite quickly and that it really lasts so well and doesn’t smudge as I hate looking like a panda.
There are several colours available in this range, Bohemian which I have, Chain mail, Mermaid, Metallic Mocha, Metallic Moss, Metallic Royal, Sea, and Sky High so you have a good range from blues and turquoises through to greys, greens and metallic muddy colours and I think there is a black as well. I think the range is pretty good and gives a good choice for most people.
All of these have not been tested on animals but they are not natural and have colours and dyes as well as parabens in them so if you want a natural product then this may not be for you.
To remove this eye liner I do have a couple of methods. One is to use Lush’s Ultra balm and apply that then use a hot flannel/face cloth and gently wipe my eyes and this gets the liner and mascara off leaving my eyes moisturised too.
I have also found that the Dermalogica liquid make up remover that looks like water does a great job too.
You do have to ensure you apply whatever remover you are using to your eyes rather than just doing a quick wipe over.
Most face wipes also do the job okay as well.
These sell in Boots only as it is a No 7 product and they are around £7.50 each.
The price is reasonable and the quality good. I have never had a reaction from using this liner or indeed any from the No 7 range.
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This is very different from a normal lipstick in that the stain end of the pen had a felt tip for applying the colour. The one I have is the lip stain and balm pen so at one end you have the stain which is the colour and at the other you have the balm which is like a clear lip salve really.
I do find it gives a great lasting base colour which doesn't fade fast at all. It is a stain. I suppose the nearest thing I have used to this in Benefit's Benetint but this I find lasts even longer that that does.
I love the fact that you really can get an accurate application because of the pen being a felt tip.
After I apply this stain to get a good base colour I then choose a colour of something like Soap & Glory Mother plucker and apply that over the stain. This means my kips have a great strong base colour and the lip plumping effect from the other product. I find the lip plumpers don't have very string lasting colours so this combination suits me well.
The end with the balm is not a wind up and down balm so the stick of lipsalve is exposed. Mine very quickly broke off and I have kind of mended it but you can't put any pressure on it at all otherwise it will break. It would have been much more useful if they had had a winding mechanism so that you only exposed the small amount of the lipsalve to apply to your lips.
You certainly need something to put on top of the stain as it is far too drying to use alone so they could with sorting the balm end out to be more useful or you can do as I do and mix the stain with a more moisturising lip product for the top coat.
This lip stain and balm is available in six different colours.
When you use this your lips need to be clean and dry so don't put anything on them before the stain. If you want a deeper colour you can apply a second and third coat of the stain. Let the stain dry before applying the balm or other lip gloss product.
If you don't suffer from dry lips you can just use the stain and the advantage of this is that it feels like you have nothing on your lips. I hate the sticky glosses that feel tacky so if you find products that you can feel on your lips annoying then the stain may suit you and you can then apply whatever moisturiser you find works on the lips after the stain has dried.
Sadly despite their advertisments to say they are against animal testing Avon, Estee Lauder, and Revlon appear to have gone along with the painful animal tests in China without objection. So a huge black mark against the company from me.
I bought this thinking it would solve my husband' camera bag issue. He usually wraps a T shirt around the camera and puts it in a back pack which I didn't think was a great idea.
This bag is quite big but will still fit inside the back pack so he carries it inside his backpack.
Initially he said it was rubbish as the spaces didn't fit his camera and lenses. he then discovered that they were movable and fixed with velcro so you can make the spaces what ever size you need.
I don't think this is the perfect solution but it does hold my husband's SLR plus lens and our other cameras as well so they are all in one place, protected and safe from other stupid people putting their over sized hand baggage on top of our small back packs in the plane.
The inside pockets are made from a soft fabric and slightly padded for extra protection. There is a separate section at the top of the bag for what ever you want to put there and this opens with a different zip.
The main bag opens fully with the zip so you don't have to fiddle around getting things in and out.
Th bag is a bit big and fiddly to open to use as daily bag to carry around out and about. My husband tends to just carry the camera as it is with the lens in a small bag in his day pack. If we are in a city then we just take the small point and shoot so we don't look too much like tourists and also saves lugging a heavy camera around.
So it has pluses and minuses and I would think it depends on how much you are prepared to carry around with you and how patient you are with changing lenses etc.
This is a pretty basic scrub available in most stores selling toiletries and many bargain shops. It is pretty cheap and usually costs around a pound.
It comes in a plastic screw top tub which is handy if you keep it on the bath or in the shower as the product does not end up getting wet inside.
I find it scrubs well but I prefer scrubs which are more natural and have shea butter or similar that moisturise as well. I also prefer scrubs that have dissolving scrubby bits like salt or sugar so that they don't harm the environment not leave bits in my bath. These are apricot stones ground so will decompose but they feel like sand in the bath or shower and I hate that.
It smells pleasant enough but not that great, it is not offensive but it isn't something I would say I like particularly.
So it does the job and is a good price but far from being a favourite of mine.
The house of Agent Provocateur is mainly a luxury lingerie fashion house but this scent is their signature fragrance. This scent was created in 2000 by Christian Provenzano for Agent provocateur.
PACKING IT UP
The bottle is the shape of a tear drop or hand grenade rounded at the base and is sort of china not glass so not clear. It is a pink colour and pretty plain but feels nice to hold. The only problem with bottles like this is you can't see what you have left.
Top notes are magnolia and India saffron
Middle notes are gardenia, vetivert from Haitti, Moroccan rose and Egyptian jasmine
The base notes are Amber, musk and cedar
Initially I could not detect anything floral but I got a bit whiff of the saffron, not sweet at all but rather earthy.
After about half an hour the floral notes developed and I could smell the jasmine and gardenia which are both very strongly heady perfumed flowers. I loved this stage, it was also quite soapy and quite strong. It carried well around me.
After an hour or so the scent was still very evident and the woodier, musky notes are hanging in there and really lingering nicely with a lovely cedar and musky scent.
I just love this one me as it has the notes I love I in the right mix. I love rose when combined with woody cedar or vetivert or patchouli as it gives depth to the rose and this does just that. This doesn't actually have patchouli but almost smells like it has.
Many people hate this perfume but it works on me but I also do like original and unusual scents. This is rose but so much more, it isn't light and pretty and feminine . It is more dark, sexy and heady with depth from the base notes coming through.
I loved it from the rose and amber saffron herby opening through to lovely warm woody and rose almost incense rose dry down. I find it quite exotic, a but sexy and one for the ladies who want a darker, deeper perfume as opposed to the light flirty feminine florals.
It costs around £30 for the 30 ml bottle so not bad value for an eau de parfam and this does last quite well on me and does also have pretty good sillage and carries well so not bad I feel.
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This was unashamedly chick lit. I read it in two nights so a very quick easy read. I actually quite enjoyed it as it was a bit different. You had to totally suspend belief at times but let''''s face it you often have to in books and films.
Anna was employed by the Callaghan family to tutor TJ on an island in the Maldives. The family were already at their villa and Anna and TJ were flying over a few days later.
Their seaplane crashed as the pilot suffered a heart attack. They were the only passengers and somehow they survived any shark attacks and arrived on an uninhabited island. They survived by eating breadfruit until miraculously things began to float onto the island from the crashed plane. These things included seats, the life raft and a few supplies in the life raft as well as Anna''''s suitcase, yes it apparently floated despite being full of clothes and basics like shampoo etc.
They survived many horrors and also swam with friendly dolphins who saved them from a shark. They became very close over the years, yes years, they were on the island. The Tsunami that devastated the Maldives was actually their saviour.
Life back in society and with families brought other problems which took the story in a different direction.
As I said, it is chick lit so everything was tidied up nicely in the end but I won''''t spoil it for you.
I did find the characters believable and well developed and their emotions and feelings were shown well. the writing was simple and a very quick easy read .
This is no prize winning novel but it was a fun, easy read and one that will be enjoyed by fans of chick lit. I can''''t see my husband wanting to read it.
If you take it for what it is, a pleasant yarn and not anything deep and meaningful then you might also quite enjoy it. There are totally unbelievable elements but provided you suspend belief at times and as I said take it as a good yarn set on a beautiful Maldives island.
You can''''t question anything too much such as why did no one look for these people on the islands around. How come the useful items from their crashed plane floated handily to their island? So many huge plot inconsistencies and impossibilities.
From the Blurb:
?The Poisonwood Bible is a story told by the wife and four daughters of Nathan Price, a fierce, evangelical Baptist who takes his family and mission to the Belgian Congo in 1959. They carry with them everything they believe they will need from home, but soon find that all of it -- from garden seeds to Scripture -- is calamitously transformed on African soil. What follows is a suspenseful epic of one family''s tragic undoing and remarkable reconstruction over the course of three decades in postcolonial Africa.?
This is a brilliantly written book. the author cleverly uses different characters to tell each chapter and each character has her own voice and style.
An American Baptist minister takes his wife and four daughters to the Belgian Congo. They take with them lots of things from the USA that they think will be useful or special treats. This included cake mixes which went solid before the birthday that the mother had taken them to bake in celebration.
They are stuck out in a village in the middle of nowhere in a mud hot and left to cope. The father is a cruel controlling selfish man and it certainly backed up my feelings about missionaries and their need to convert the ''heathen''.
The young girls'' observations of the local villagers were so perfect and told in such an honest and open way. I particularly enjoyed the older girl, Rachel''s chapters as she hated the place and was a typical blond teenage girl more interested in make up than culture.
Adah was also excellent as her chapters were written in palindromes at times which really made you have to think.She hated her father and wrote everything down as she didn''t ever actually speak as a child. Adah learned French and the local language to an extent but only written down
Leah was the twin of Adah and as a child she would work alongside her father and was the most influenced by his ideas as a child. She also befriended the local children and talked to them about the ways of the local people and their beliefs and learned their language too.
The youngest child Ruth May was the first to play with the local children and taught them ''Mother May I''. She also explored the surrounding area and went into the forest with her local friends , learning a lot about the ways of the people and telling the reader in her chapters.
Some pretty horrendous things happen to the family and every one of the women is affected by this time in Africa. When they had the opportunity to leave when the political situation became unwise for Europeans to stay the controlling father refused to let them leave.
The writing style is great, you do have to concentrate at time, especially in Adah''s chapters.The story takes us from when the family first go to the Belgian Congo through to when the girls are grown and Mother is an old lady.
I did find I was starting to lose interest a little towards the end and it could maybe have been a touch shorter. Although it was nice to have everything tidied up as so many novels kind of leave things up in the air.
I would certainly recommend this as a thought provoking and cleverly written work of fiction. The author had lived in Africa and has done extensive research and it was obvious that she was an informed writer as you were reading the book.
About twenty odd years ago this was one of my favourite body lotions. I loved the smell and Body Shop was also one of my favourite shops. Now I am less excited by Body Shop since they sold out to L''Oreal. I know they state that they do not test on animals and are in favour of Fairtrrade and eco friendly products but somehow I don''t feel as confident as I used to. This small bottle of Body Shop White Musk was on sale a while back and one sniff too me right back to the 80s so I bought it. The smell is sweetly musky and subtle, really lovely and a smell of the 80s for me. The lotion is not a thick one, quite thin in fact but it does moisturise my skin nicely and leaves it with the lovely sweet musk aroma.The musk I am happy to read is not animal musk but rather a synthetic one created by mixing a blend of jasmine, rose, amber and wood. The bottle states it is Community Fair trade and it comes in a recyclable plastic bottle.The bottle is fairly plain clear but cloudy plastic in the same shape as all Body Shop lotions and gels come in. The lotion does however have parabens in it, more than one which I am less happy about.In fact it has a number of less than natural sounding ingredients so I am struggling to find which ingredients are the fair trade ones. I did like using this lotion as the smell was a real love;y blast from the past. It is a scent that you can wear day or night and is not too strong. It would blend with most perfumes I would think and not fight with this scent. This is a lovely body lotion and one I would buy again in the future but not just yet as I have had my fix for a year or so.
THE SCENT I can''t believe the number of perfume reviews I have read recently which neglect to give this information. They say it smells ''nice'' and no detail about its longevity or anything ! This is a lovely light summery EDT ( not a perfume so it is lighter) . It is classed as a chypre type of EDT. Chypre is a class of scents which have citrus top notes while the middle notes are usually based on cistus labdanum, and finishing with heart notes of oak moss and/or musk . This doesn''t mean they all smell the same as the other ingredients vary and of course the ingredients can be added in different amounts. So you can get floral chypres, fruity chypres and even the heavier more sultry leather and amber chypres. This is a lighter floral chypre which is perfect for summer , day wear I would say The notes in this one are: Top notes: pear and freesia Middle notes: pink pepper, ginger and rose Base notes: patchouli, amber and balsam MY VIEWS I found this quite a pleasant light EDT. It is not too sweet and a light floral fragrance. The freesia is tempered by the freshness of the pear. The middle notes are not obvious but do once again make it a less cloying EDT because ginger and pink pepper add a slight spiciness and the rose again adds a different floral note to the heady freesia. The base notes are again not evident in themselves but give a warmth to the scent I think. As for how it lasts, the longevity well not that long I found. I could smell it on my wrist four hours alter but very subtle. The box id ordinary and so it the simple glass bottle with clear ''cut glass'' plastic stopper.
I bought these as they were so much cheaper than the branded bags for my Bosch. I bought these are the branded ones to do a comparison These non Bosch one do fit ans they are made of a similar cloth type fabric which filters as well as holds the dust.It is slightly different fabric but similar feel but with an embossed pattern on the outside. They seem to be sealed at the edges with a grip sealer so that the edges are crisp and crinkle fixed not sewn. My big issue is that out of every five bags one split and filled the vacuum with the contents of the bag. This meant I had to clean the entire machine out with a damp cloth and change the filters etc before starting again with a new bag. I would say that they are a lot cheaper but you do have to be prepared to do quite a bit of cleaning up and maintenance if and when one bursts in the vacuum. I am not sure I would buy them again despite being so much cheaper as the aggravation when one bursts is not worth the saving. it could also lead to damaging your vacuum which makes the saving in bags rather redundant.If you them have to pay to have your vacuum repaired or worse buy anew one it is not a saving!! My advice is weigh up the costs of using Bosch which are 100% reliable and have never burst on me compared with these which initially appear to be a bargain but can and do bust when in use which is messy at best and at worst could leave you with expensive repairs.
This is aimed at a younger market. PACKAGING This is pretty important for any perfume as it is a bit like the front cover of a book. This is what grabs people''s attention. The novelty bottles and pretty packaging. After that of course you have to try the scent but packaging is important. The EDP comes in a pretty pink shiny coloured plain box and the bottle inside is not that exciting either. It is quite plain stubby clear glass with a silver lid. I can''t say it is the most exiting perfume packaging I have ever come across, far from it. THE PERFUME This is, as I said aimed at the younger market and is a light sweet floral perfume with deeper woody base notes. Top notes : Italian lemon, bergamot, Tunisian neroli, green pear and aquatic plum Heart notes: violet, gardenia and pink pepper Base notes; Texas cedar, incense, vetivert and musk MY VIEWS This is indeed a light sweet floral and on initial spray I was instantly aware of the fresh light lemony aroma which is lovely fresh and summery. After about half an hour the more sweet floral notes developed and I could smell the gardenia which I do love as it reminds me of tropical gardens. I have a lovely gardenia in my garden and it gives me a lot of pleasure when it flowers. Now a few hours later as I have been interrupted by various things while writing this, I can smell still the sweet floral notes but they are now tempered with the smooth musk and woody vetivert. It is a really pleasant, not too sweetly floral perfume and Ideal for the summer or spring. I would be happy to wear this in the day time and have put it away with my stash of miniatures that I have already reviewed and I take them away when we are on holiday as they give my variety without having to carry heavy bottles. I can even sneak them in my handbag and get through airport security as they are so small and it allows me to freshen up in the plane.
PACKAGING This is always important in a perfume as often that is what initially grabs you attention when browsing. It won''t make or break a sale if you love the scent but it certainly is a factor. This comes in a dusky pink box with the image of a black and gold bow near the top as though it is a gift wrapped with a ribbon bow. Other than that the box is plain apart from the name of the perfume and the brand. The bottle is also fairly plain glass with the spray and stopper again looking like a bow at the top which is quite clever but the bottle is not fancy or unusual in any way in my opinion. WHY MODERN MUSE? This perfume was released in 2013 and was the first one to be released by Estee Lauder since 2003 and that was ''Beyond Paradise''. This scent was created by the perfumier Harry Fremont for Estee Lauder and the aim was to create a perfume that ? symbolizes what it means to be an independent and self-confident woman today, sure of herself and her style. It is a confidence that inspires.? He has created a perfume with ?a two accord composition of sparkling jasmine (which symbolizes femininity) and sleek woods (representing strength).? PRICE AND SIZES This perfume is available as 30 ml, 50ml and 100 ml in the Eau de Parfum. The prices as always may very so shop around is my advice. It seems to be available quite widely in places like Boots and on line shops as well as Ebay of course. MY OPINION I am not sure this is one I would buy as it is rather similar to Beautiful. It is very feminine floral and creamy sweet and rather too sweet for me personally. The top note is mandarin The middle notes are tuberose, lily, honeysuckle, Chinese jasmine, flower petals and jasmine Sambac The base or heart motes are patchouli, vanilla. Amber, musk and woody notes Now to me the first hit is not really mandarin it if jasmine and honeysuckle and then it dries down and the musky notes with heavy on the vanilla begin to come through. I cannot detect any patchouli at all and the amber is very subtle. The musk sort of reminds me of Body Shop white musk but mixed with heady floral notes. I find this far too floral the jasmine and lily really stay around and are sweet, strong and rather overpowering. The sillage is good if you want to share you perfume with others around you. I have seen a number of people complain that this did not last on them. I found it did last on me and by the end of the evening I was actually getting a bit sick of the smell. This is not a perfume to wear of your partner or friends that you are with do not like the scent as it is quite obvious to me. When I wore this the other day I found that the next day my clothes still smelled of the perfume. I popped some on to write this review as I always do as it helps me with my writing and reminds me of the scent as I write.