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Profile for Charlene Vickers > Reviews


Charlene Vickers' Profile

Customer Reviews: 182
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Helpful Votes: 2375

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Reviews Written by
Charlene Vickers RSS Feed (Winnipeg, Manitoba)

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Tangle Teezer Hair Brush, Panther Black, 2.5 Ounce
Tangle Teezer Hair Brush, Panther Black, 2.5 Ounce
Offered by Online Beauty
Price: $9.67
27 used & new from $8.84

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Oh yeah!, November 28, 2015
I love this thing. It allows me to brush out my coarse wavy hair after a shower without ripping out strands, and is also great for distributing leave-in conditioner and heat protectant. Plus it's indestructible - I've dropped it on my stone bathroom floor dozens of times with nothing more than an irrelevant scuff on the top.

I've seen it recommended for straightening, but I haven't found it to be of any use for that; it does however remove the tangles so my hair can go into the straightener easily.

Fossil Sydney Satchel, Brown, One Size
Fossil Sydney Satchel, Brown, One Size

1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Good bag, not great, March 22, 2015
I bought mine in "smoky blue" directly from the local Fossil store.

I like the size and weight and the colour. The single compartment is roomy and the outer slide pocket holds a Fossil change purse/bus pass holder. It's well-balanced.

The strap is far too short and slightly too narrow: the bag doesn't sit properly over a winter coat and digs into the shoulder when worn over a sleeveless top. 1/4 inch extra width and 6-12 inches extra length would have made this a better choice.

Also, the inside of the bag has some poor construction - the side gores are a mess.

Fossil Erin Satchel, Black, One Size
Fossil Erin Satchel, Black, One Size
Price: $195.66

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great purse., March 22, 2015
I love this bag. The larger pouch holds quite a bit - it would hold a large wallet plus a rectangular bento box, phone, etc. - and the smaller pouch holds an iPad. The hardware is solid. The stitching is secure and everything's nicely finished.

Urban Expressions Picadilly Handbag (Tan)
Urban Expressions Picadilly Handbag (Tan)

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars "Vegan leather" = "cheap plastic", December 29, 2014
Cracked right down the side a week after I bought it. This so-called "vegan leather" is really just nasty cheap plastic, and is completely unsuited to cold climates.

The Templar Magician
The Templar Magician
by Paul Doherty
Edition: Hardcover
61 used & new from $1.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I personally did not like the writing style or the unexpected paranormal aspects, October 25, 2014
This review is from: The Templar Magician (Hardcover)
This book was marketed as a straight medieval mystery. It's really a paranormal drenched in cynicism and devoid of all other emotions. I personally did not like the writing style or the unexpected paranormal aspects. Characters are unnecessarily one-dimensional; events are likewise described flatly and without reasonable affect. It takes talent to render the massacre of innocents as boring and dull. Completely unenjoyable.

The Abbot's Agreement (Hugh De Singleton's Chronicles Book 7)
The Abbot's Agreement (Hugh De Singleton's Chronicles Book 7)
Price: $9.99

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Murder, mayhem, and.....tedium. Also, the moon doesn't work that way., September 14, 2014
I was disappointed by this book. The characters (including the protagonist) are flat, the plot is unfinished, characters' motivations are lacking or poorly fleshed out, the pacing is erratic, and clues are handled sloppily. The protagonist displays a certain amount of informed competence and has no spark of life; he describes the death of a minor recurring character with as little emotion as if he'd been describing the weather. The protagonist's sidekick has suddenly sprouted a grating funetik aksent and a betrothed - after a few short hours of interacting with her. On the plus side, there are two or three excellent turns of speech.

There are also many sloppy mistakes. For instance, on page 59 we learn that the murder took place on a moonless night. On page 220 a suspect admits having witnessed the murder by the light of a full moon! The editor should have caught that. Equally strange is the narrator describing a "new moon" rising after midnight, just a week after the murder. This mistake is especially glaring in medieval fiction, where every character should have absolutely perfect knowledge of moon phases. It's like a modern character not knowing how lamps or light switches work.

I had better hopes for this series, but the magic of the first books has disappeared. Hugh is a cypher these days; he feels no fear, senses no danger, has no life to him. He's a bore, and he turns everything around him to ashes. It's such a shame.

The Truth of the Line
The Truth of the Line
Price: $4.99

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A book worth buying, August 18, 2014
I bought this book through Here's my review from there:

I really liked this novel. The plot is plausible and well-constructed. I especially like that the main characters are well-rounded and that the protagonist, an artist, actually does art and has artistic sensibilities. Too often artists and musicians in fiction are either one-dimensional - they have nothing in their lives but art - or they switch their artistic sensibilities on and off, and are more like writers who paint or play instead of actual artists.

Dissolution: A Shardlake Novel (Matthew Shardlake series)
Dissolution: A Shardlake Novel (Matthew Shardlake series)

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An excellent protagonist and well-devised plot, but there are problems, June 28, 2014
For the most part I enjoyed this novel. It's unusual to find a novel written from the point of view of such a self-loathing yet self-righteous protagonist. Matthew Shardlake is not a deeply written character - we don't feel his anguish when he cries, or his fear when he fails - but he is three-dimensional for all that. He undergoes very realistic character growth in response to the events of the novel and is forced to confront his own inadequacies in a more believable way than the standard mystery novel "what a fool I've been for only displaying ten times the genius of any real person" that occurs far too often especially in English mystery fiction. The secondary characters are for the most part also three-dimensional, and the plot is well planned out.

I didn't enjoy everything about this, however. The biggest issue that I had was his characterization of Thomas Cromwell. I don't mind that he's Darth Cromwell here; he probably was in real life. No, my issue is that Sansom's Cromwell is careless, open-mouthed, and totally heedless of his own safety - when it suits the story. He blabs to Shardlake, a man he barely knows and does not even trust, of his deceits and lies, freely admits that his hands turned the rack, boasts of his graft and corruption. It's unrealistic: a Cromwell who committed such horrors would not confess them to the protagonist, if to anyone.

There are a few historical errors too, which are surprising to find in a novel written by a historian. Some are piddling: we have October 31 occurring two weeks after October 24 at the beginning of the story, and Cromwell's wife is still alive. Others are more serious; the plot hinges in part on a certain historical individual having been racked, when the historical record is rock-solid certain that he was not. Another character's life is spared because he is a second cousin of Jane Seymour (whom he never met); I find this care for a distant family member unlikely given how many of Jane's second cousins fared in real life (e.g. Anne Boleyn).

But I still enjoyed this novel, and will be buying the next one. So, three stars?

A King's Ransom (Plantagenets Book 5)
A King's Ransom (Plantagenets Book 5)
Offered by Penguin Group (USA) LLC
Price: $11.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars So many heartbreaking characters, so little luck, June 10, 2014
Legend has it that Richard I of England, the original "Fortunate Son", was the author of his own good luck. And that's true, at least up to his attempt to capture Jerusalem: the failure tripped a switch in Richard, and from then on everything he touched turned not to gold but to lead. Trapped in a loveless marriage, forced to return to England to prevent a coup but barred from almost every port in the Mediterranean, separated from most of his guards, shipwrecked, brought down by malaria, nearly starved, hunted down, imprisoned, forced to bankrupt his country to pay a king's ransom: even all that didn't underline his failure to the same extent as his only choices of heirs, both wholly inadequate, both certain to destroy everything he and his father had fought for.

Sharon Kay Penman brings this part of Richard's tragic history to life. Richard here is no miracle worker, no golden idol: he's the cynical, brilliant stage manager (witness his landing in Outremer as described in Lionheart) with endless charisma whose naive belief in his own publicity both saves and damns him. The other characters are as good: his squire, the German boy Arne, who grows up by Richard's side; his cousin Morgan, who finds he can't adapt to peacetime; his sister Joanna, who pays the price for her privileges; the nasty John; Eleanor, politician to the very end.

I loved this book, and would highly recommend it.

A History of Britain, Volume 1: At the Edge of the World, 3000 BC - AD 1603
A History of Britain, Volume 1: At the Edge of the World, 3000 BC - AD 1603
3 used & new from $22.74

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not impressed with Schama's accuracy, June 10, 2014
There's an old joke about how newspapers are unfailingly accurate except when they report on something you're familiar with. You could say the same thing about this book.

I'm not a professional historian, but I do know quite a bit about the Tudor era: more than Dr. Schama, I'm afraid. Mistakes - not differences in interpretation, but straightforward errors of fact - litter the text. He confuses Mary and Margaret Tudor at one point, has Anne Boleyn in the wrong country in 1524, makes Catherine of Aragon her father's sister (and calls the blue-eyed, redheaded Catherine "dark"), positively dates Mary Boleyn's secret affair with Henry to a specific year, and credits Thomas Wyatt with X-ray vision that could pierce even the stone walls of the Tower of London.

Given all the mistakes in an area I know something about, I'm not sanguine that the other sections are reliable - which is a shame, since he's an engaging writer. I can't recommend this book, though.

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