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~~ Take A Break's Fate & Fortune ~~
I have recently stopped buying all my weekly magazines and I just keep to my regular monthly ones, mainly because I was just not getting the time to read them all. I chose this one because I love spooky stories and reading about anything spiritual. So, enough of my waffle lets get down to business of the magazine. The one I have in front of me is the July 2006 issue; the majority of the format is the same on a monthly basis, just changing the stories and the finer details.
~~ The Cover ~~
Why is it they always have to have a pretty girl on the front to try and attract your attention? Anyway, we have a pretty girl who is surrounded by banners advertising the stories inside to draw you eyes to. I won't go through them all here, as I will be mentioning them throughout the review. You can also find the price on the front which is £1.60, which is not bad for a monthly issue containing a full 60 pages.
~~ Your Letters ~~
We have skipped the contents page on pg 2 and gone straight for page 3, the top half to be exact. It is as it says your letters; they give £25 for each letter printed and the prize letter gets a £50 new age gift set, comprising of CD's, Oracle cards and more. The stories are broken down with little titles, Luckiest, Warmest, Nicest and Loveliest.
My Opinion: I really enjoy reading these letters, they are sent by ordinary people wishing to share their 'spooky' experiences.
The other half of this page is where people have sent there 'eerie' photos in to be analysed by Craig Hamilton-Parker, he will tell you if he feels you have captured a 'ghost' or is it a little bit of dust or a flash reflection.
My thoughts: Again I find this interesting especially the pictures, sometimes it is very obvious on the picture and other times I have had to really look to see what they are trying to show us.
~~ Mystic Mix ~~
Our next couple of pages are designated to Mystic Mix - short snippets of information and pictures, where you are bound to find something that will capture you interest. In this months issue we learn about Limelight Flower Essences that have a 21st Century twist, where you can get things like a teenage blend to help with anxious adolescents, or even one to help against the bully's.
We learn about a Channel 4 program that showed Robbie Williams being hypnotised, an Indian man who was shunned by his family as they thought he was a ghost, plus a few more other snippets.
My View: These are briefings of which some you will find you just skimp over, some you just won't believe as they sound so far fetched, but overall they will amuse you and interest you so well worth a read.
~~ Voices From Beyond ~~
The next three pages are dedicated to this section Voices from beyond where Mandy Masters demonstrates her "amazing psychic powers". On these pages she answers your letters and helps you make contact with your loved ones in the spirit world. There are usually three main readings, where Mandy makes a contact and all the information she gets is written down, then the respondent gets to put across their message to their loved one and say what they understand from Mandy's message.
There is also a tiny little section for people out there, so if you know Alf from London or John from Leeds, then get yourself a copy as there is a little message for you in it. Finally on Mandy's section you have a little problem letter section, it only covers three problems, but Mandy briefly offers some advice.
My feelings: This is a nice section I always enjoy reading about evidence of life everlasting. It is nice as well to read the feedback from the recipients and from what is put down in the magazine; Mandy comes across as an exceptional Medium.
~~ Competition ~~
Each month scattered about the magazine are competitions and freebies for you to try for, we are now at page 9, so lets take a look on this pages competition.
This month you can win a Butlin's family holiday and Spa experience with some spending money thrown in as well. All you need to do is read the advertising feature (oops sorry competition), locate the answer to a very simple question and bobs your uncle, pop it on a postcard, keep your fingers, toes, legs and anything else you can cross in the hope that you are that lucky winner.
You have to be in it, to win it, lol.
~~ Ask us anything ~~
Yes you guessed right your intriguing questions are answered here, but not just a Q & A section, no they spice your questions up with colourful pictures and they only cover around 6 questions across two pages. One of these is a Feng Shui Question, which has its' own regular monthly corner of the magazine.
This month's Feng Shui Corner is about what we wear is it good or is it bad Feng Shui.
Do you know the difference between a life coach and a counsellor? Do your plants pick up on bad vibes? Learn a little about Pyramids and Palm readings and finally how to spice up your sex life.
What do I think: You can usually find something in this section that catches your eye, it covers a variety of items and alternatives, it is an area where you can ask questions and find out about subjects you have little or no knowledge of.
~~ True Life ~~
This is where your stories are told, plus you get paid the princely sum of £200 if it is your story published. So if you have a genuine spooky story you want to share and have you photograph in the magazine then go for it, send it in they are always on the look out for more.
This month's story is about a Ghostly Airman that is now finally at peace. It tells us the story of a family that were 'haunted' regularly by this airman over a period of time; they also had objects thrown about across the room. Then in 1996 long after the family had moved away from the house they were watching the local news when they saw a story on there old street. It was telling them that a World War II Hurricane bomber was discovered buried underneath the street, with the pilot skeleton still in the cockpit.
My Opinion: This was quite a moving story and it was sad to here that he had been covered up and left where he landed by the local authorities at that time. It was nice to know that finally he could be at peace. I really do enjoy the true life stories they put here.
~~ Real Magic ~~
We have reached pages 14 & 15 for this section which belongs to Leanna Greenaway a 'white witch' that works for the magazine.
It usually carries a feature story of someone that has used a spell and how it has worked for them, followed by a couple of questions from members of the public asking for help. Leanna will give advice and a simple spell to get desired results.
My thoughts: I do read this but it is not one of my favourite sections as I don't like the idea of tampering with magic spells. I can say though, the spells they mention do appear easy to follow and it is not all about toads legs and puppy dog tails, also there is no mention of snakes or spiders either, lol.
~~ True Life (Readers' spooky reality!) ~~
Again here is a chance to read some eerie stories that have been sent in and selected for publication. There are three stories spread over the three pages, comprising of one main story which is slightly longer and two shorter tales. In this months copy the main story is an endearing story from Birmingham and messages from beyond the grave. A short story from Ohio, USA where a couple meet and believe they were once married 2000 years ago and finally a story about EVP (Electronic Voice Phenomena) where a lady tells us how she heard her dog speak to her from the other side.
What I think: I enjoy these real life stories; they are normally stories that have good endings not like a lot of true stories/ real life tragedies other magazines portray. I don't necessarily take on board everything I read, but it is nice to read of the upliftment these people get and their experiences.
~~ The Psychic Detective ~~
A former policeman and now a top TV psychic Kevin Wade investigates' famous unsolved crimes. There is a picture of Kevin Wade posing in a trilby and a trench coat, very prohibition, lol. Well, back to the article, it starts off with the story of the family and the crime. This months' investigation is the true story of 'The Fugitive' (the one starring Harrison Ford), about Dr. Sam Sheppherd and the murder of his wife Marilyn. After reading the initial details Kevin Wade looks at all the possibilities and the suspects from all the evidence provided at the time of the crime and summarizes in his conclusion by asking his spirit guides. This takes up three whole pages of the magazine so you can see how deep it goes.
My Opinion: I have found I really do enjoy this article, and yes I know that it can't be proved whether or not Kevin's spirit guides have told him right or wrong, as each murder still remains unsolved. But I have learnt a fair bit about unsolved famous murders that I didn't know before. It is really an interesting read.
Oh and by the way, you can send in a suggestion of an unsolved mystery that you would like him to investigate. Get those thinking caps on.
~~ The Oracle ~~
The next four pages are covered by the Oracle this is different each month but it usually has something to do with your star signs and compatibilities, personalities etc. This month's issue covers Fire, Earth, Air and Water signs, holiday ideas and compatibilities. For instance I am Sagittarius (Fire) and my hubby is Libra (Air), so put us together and let's see what Great Holiday would suit us both.
Fire & Air = A sailing holiday in the Isle of Wight (we both love the Isle of Wight, but we both get sea sick, ahh could be a problem), A day skiing at the Tamworth Snowdome in Staffordshire (NO,NO, NO I can't even roller-skate, I'M A WIMP!!), A dancing holiday (I love it, hubby hates it, oh dear), Exploring St Lucia, A trip to Mexico (we wouldn't mind either of these two).
Well two out of five ain't bad. Anyway give it a go and have a laugh!!
~~ Texas: The Psychic Horse ~~
Yes believe it or not Texas is a horse and he is the magazines only four legged agony uncle and yes people do write in with their problems.
Texas is a 14 yr old Appaloosa horse, he communicates (telepathically, no he does not open his mouth and have a conversation, now behave) with his owner Holly (not Mrs Dolittle). He communicates messages through Holly and back to the reader, so this page is your letters and answers from Texas.
What do you think???
I will say I do like the way they do the layout with each letter starting with your question, then what Texas has to say followed by your feedback and from what is printed it appears to be very positive feedback.
~~ Navel gazing ~~
This is this month's topic of conversation, it does change monthly and it did cause quite a stir in my office the other day (but that's another story). So what is Navel gazing, well it shows you how to read your navel, by looking at its position on your belly and how your navel looks.
Does your stick out or is it a deep concave, whatever it is can describe your personality. You could have fun with this getting everyone to flash their belly button for you to analyze
My thoughts: I think this is a bit of fun and can be quite surprising how accurate the results are. It is nice trying out the monthly experiments with your friends and family.
~~More Comps ~~
A couple more competitions for you to rack your brains on, you have a chance of winning a one to one reading with their tarot expert Jayne Wallace (who also has her own section later on in the magazine). Or you could try your hand at the Su-doku competition to win a one to one reading with psychic medium Pat Putt.
~~ The Dream Diva ~~
Joan Hanger was Princess Diana's personal dream coach (well that's what it says in the magazine). She is here to help you interpret your dreams. She usually answers two readers' letters about their dreams. Also there is normally a small message relating to dreaming. In this months issue it mentions inspirational dreaming and how you can use your dreams to inspire you in life.
This is not an area that gains my attention, but saying that I won't totally dismiss it, it is a very interesting section if you want to learn more about your dreams.
~~ Giveaways ~~
I have mentioned earlier that doted about are the freebies and comps and you will see the odd little advertisement for a giveaway, where you either phone a number or send in a postcard. This page is dedicated to a mixture of giveaways, a competition and a reader offer, five of them in all.
1. A chance to win a reading 2. Send in a postcard for a chance to win a ruby beaded necklace 3. A chance to win a DVD player and a copy of Stay DVD on a postcard entry, with runner up prizes as well. 4. Want to see the Shamania festival nr. Pendle in Lancs, 3 pairs of camping tickets up for grabs.
Finally a chance for a the giveaway prize of a set of White Eagle Medicine Wheel Cards, or alternatively you could take up the reader offer of saving £3.00 and buying yourself a set for just £14.99.
~~ Your Horoscopes for the coming month ~~
A page is designated for each star sign and your horoscope is broken down into Love and Relationships, Fun and Friendship, Family, Cash, Career, Inner You and finally important dates throughout that month.
~~ Psychic Roadshow ~~
The roadshow goes to a different town each month and puts three local talents to the test, each psychic gives a reading to two members of the public they have met walking around the town.
My Opinion: What I like about his piece is once again the magazine tries to put across an unbiased opinion, there is a brief description of each medium, followed by the details of the reading for each participant, then you are given the respondents opinion of the reading even if they do not understand what the medium has given. I think this is a brilliant section.
~~ Notice board ~~
These two pages give you an idea of what's on in and around the country. They need your input to advertise your event here. I always take a look for anything near to my area. There is also a section where other readers who are looking for penpals with similar interests.
~~ And Now the End is Near ~~
We are now coming towards the end of the magazine, we have lost around 4-5 pages with advertising and classified ads, but before we leave the magazine we still have more to enjoy.
The Psychic Love Coach: where people write about the 'love' problems and their 'love' expert Alison Chan Lung offers her words of wisdom. It is not a big section only two letters are covered a month, so if you send in your problem you may have a long wait for a public answer, it may be best to talk to each other.
A final competition for you to test your own psychic abilities, there is a picture with five objects and something is hidden under one of them, it is up to you to say which one it is and if you are right you could have the chance of winning £50.00.
Jayne's Tarot Workshop - this is another regular article where Jayne takes you through some of the tarot cards and there meanings, she also does a tarot reading for last month's lucky competition winner.
Finally (whew yes we've got there at last), we end the magazine with Uri Geller's Mystic Masterclass. Each month Uri Geller talks about a different subject and he also gives you a little exercise to try (No not spoon bending). This month he talked about Animal instincts, talking mainly about birds and how tests have proven how intelligent they are and how they recognise different bird songs. The exercise in this issue talks you through practicing telepathy, its fun you should give it a go.
~~ Overall Opinion ~~
I love the magazine that's why I subscribe to it, I like the way it back's up what readings are given with constructive feedback from the recipients. I enjoy the stories, I do love spooky stories, and I find there are lots of things that can be of interest. I don't always read every article, but I do read the majority of them, plus you get all this for the fairly reasonable price of £1.60 per month, which is not bad if you consider how much weekly magazines cost these days.
If you have an interest in psychics, mediums, new age theories, anything different then this will be of interest to you, they have even had stories on aliens in previous issues. I would recommend it to you.
But if all this does not spike your interest I would give it a miss.
Well if you have got this far, I sincerely hope I did not bore you to death and I thank you very much for reading it.