Since I don't have any decent gaming shops where I live there is nowhere to ask. Which is a major part of my problem with finding these games. It is very tempting to start a videogame/anima/manga shop where I live.
I'm in the same situation as you. There's only a Tesco near me with a pitiful electronics department, and my nearest specialised game shop is a fairly long bus ride away. I love the fact that Rising Star and other publishers are bringing all these awesome games over, but it's a pain to actually find anywhere that stocks them. My Tesco takes preorders for games, but only the big name ones like Halo and whatnot. Thank God for the internet, but I don't like not being able to browse for games and chat with fellow gamers as much as I'd like to.
On the subject of reviews, I don't really pay much attention. If I like the look of a game, I'll usually buy it or play a demo and make a choice based on that. The only time I'll bother looking through reviews is if I'm really on the fence about a game, but that doesn't happen often XD