Somewhere in the middle of the book, the author states that she sees herself more as a motivational speaker than an organizational guru. It shows in tSomewhere in the middle of the book, the author states that she sees herself more as a motivational speaker than an organizational guru. It shows in the book, which is actually more about decluttering any personal beliefs that are holding you back from personal success than about decluttering your home. The author is very big on encouraging readers to remake themselves, and not just by getting a new haircut or changing jobs. At one point she suggests readers make up interesting stories to tell people about themselves (also known as "lying") and even go so far as to invent an interesting accent. You know, I just wanted to get a handle on the stuff that keeps piling up on my flat surfaces; I wasn't planning to go deep undercover for the CIA.
The short section of the book that actually is about decluttering the home has the same very basic advice that everyone gives (if it's broken, doesn't fit, or makes you unhappy, get rid of it). The problem comes when the author tries to illustrate each concept with a story from her personal life, at which point I discovered we lead very different lives. I don't have an attic, but if I did, I am 100% certain that I wouldn't have a couple of spare chandeliers in it that needed to be disposed of.
The part I most objected to was in the decluttering the bathroom section. The author advocated disposing of expired medication (always a good idea), not because the medication was no longer safe to use, but because keeping medication around the house gives readers the idea that they're the kind of people who could get sick, and that belief will somehow hold them back from personal success. The author then goes on to illustrate this point by throwing away her expired migraine medication, again not because it was no longer safe to use, but because she didn't intend to have another migraine. Has anybody on earth ever intended to have a migraine? I'm pretty sure the author didn't intend to need a double bypass, but it happened anyway.
If you like motivational self-help books, this may be for you, but if you were looking for organizational help in decluttering your home, this book is not useful....more
Very repetitive with very little insight into the creation of the movie. About 85% of the book consisted of Elwes going on and on (and on and on) abouVery repetitive with very little insight into the creation of the movie. About 85% of the book consisted of Elwes going on and on (and on and on) about how funny and talented and amazing everyone involved was, with the addition of nearly endless gushing about how lovely and attractive and talented Robin Wright was. There was one section of the book where the gushing about Robin Wright went on for several consecutive pages. If the redundant parts had been edited out, the book would only have been about 1/3 as long....more
This book has a lot of interesting fill patterns, but no instructions on how to navigate paths through them. The instructions it does have vary widelyThis book has a lot of interesting fill patterns, but no instructions on how to navigate paths through them. The instructions it does have vary widely between overly simplistic (how to backstitch a straight line) and overly complicated (how to sew your fabric into a wooden slate frame prior to stitching)....more
This book contains no primary sources. The author has done no original interviews, gathered no unique photos, nor included an original thought of hisThis book contains no primary sources. The author has done no original interviews, gathered no unique photos, nor included an original thought of his own. He appears to have plugged Martin Freeman's name into Google and regurgitated what he found there. The author doesn't even seem to have watched anything Freeman has ever appeared in, because each mention of one of Freeman's works is followed by a quote about his performance from an entertainment magazine, rather than the author's own analysis.
Also, if you're interested in this book because you loved Martin Freeman in Sherlock or The Hobbit, you'll be very disappointed. They receive approximately 5-6 pages of coverage combined and barely do more than mention he appeared in them.
If you have access to a computer and can type Martin Freeman's name into Google, you will find more (and more in-depth) information than is presented in this book....more
The patterns aren't bad, but they're not as detailed as I expected. Most of them are silhouettes done in only one color. None of the patterns use moreThe patterns aren't bad, but they're not as detailed as I expected. Most of them are silhouettes done in only one color. None of the patterns use more than three colors....more
The patterns all consist entirely of whole stitches (no backstitching, french knots, or other specialty stitches), so they're suitable for beginners.The patterns all consist entirely of whole stitches (no backstitching, french knots, or other specialty stitches), so they're suitable for beginners. The difficulty rating of each piece is based on how it's finished (framed vs. made into ornaments or pillows or whatever). I don't recommend that beginning stitchers follow the tips on how to cross stitch provided here, though. They're pretty poor, and you can see in some of the included photos of completed projects how sloppy the end result can look if you don't put much effort into how you stitch. Either check out a book from the library, or search for some online tutorials to get yourself started if you don't already know how to cross stitch.
The patterns themselves aren't very well presented. There are no arrows marking the vertical and horizontal center lines, so it's hard to find the center of some of the more oddly shaped patterns. Also, each pattern is confined to one page. The smaller patterns are very clear, but the larger the pattern, the more it's been shrunk down to fit on the page, making the larger patterns very difficult to read because each square is so tiny....more