Happy Diana Wynne Jones month!

It’s March, which means it’s time to celebrate Diana Wynne Jones! DWJ was a children’s/YA speculative fiction author beloved by many people, including myself. She wrote a buttload of books about magic and adventure and family and friendship. They’re funny and sad and full of endless details to pick out and wonder over, and I can’t recommend her books enough.

#dwjmarch is a time for all CWJ fans, old and new, to get together and read a bunch of her books at the same time. Kristen of We Be Reading is very graciously hosting it for the fourth time, and this year’s focus is on the women of DWJ’s books. Woohoo!

I’m planning on reading books I haven’t reread lately–or at least ones I can’t remember reading in the last year, which turns out to be:


Hexwood, Fire and Hemlock, The Dalemark quartet, and Dogsbody.

And of course I will also be doing the readalongs, the first of which is for Aunt Maria! I’ve only read Aunt Maria once, so I’m looking forward to reading it again and seeing what happens. Will I like it more? Less? Who knows!

What’re you reading for Diana Wynne Jones month? If you need somewhere to start, I recommend either Charmed Life (if you like fantasy), A Tale of Time City (if you like scifi) or The Time of the Ghost (if you like horror).

REVIEW: The Art of Social Media by Guy Kawasaki and Peg Fitzpatrick

REVIEW: The Art of Social Media by Guy Kawasaki and Peg FitzpatrickThe Art of Social Media: Power Tips for Power Users by Guy Kawasaki, Peg Fitzpatrick
Pub: Portfolio (2014), Hardcover, 208pg
Filed under: Business, Non-Fiction
Source: Library
Buy it: Amazon (affiliate info) | Shelve it: Goodreads

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By now it’s clear that whether you’re promoting a business, a product, or yourself, social media is near the top of what will determine your success or failure. And there are countless pundits, authors, and consultants eager to advise you.

But there’s no one quite like Guy Kawasaki, the legendary former chief evangelist for Apple and one of the pioneers of business blogging, tweeting, facebooking, tumbling, and much, much more. Now Guy has teamed up with his Canva colleague Peg Fitzpatrick to offer The Art of Social Media – the one essential guide you need to get the most bang for your time, effort, and money.

With more than 100 practical tips, tricks, and insights, Guy and Peg present a ground-up strategy to produce a focused, thorough, and compelling presence on the most popular social-media platforms. They guide you through the steps of building your foundation, amassing your digital assets, going to market, optimizing your profile, attracting more followers, and effectively integrating social media and blogging.

For beginners overwhelmed by too many choices, as well as seasoned professionals eager to improve their game, The Art of Social Media is full of tactics that have been proven to work in the real world. Or as Guy puts it, “Great Stuff, No Fluff.”

Okay, so a) this is not a book for social media newbies. It says it right on the cover: this is for people who’re already pretty familiar with Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, etc.

And b) it’s also geared more towards business owners/social media interns, aka people doing it for money or for getting more traffic so they can get more money.

If you’re a business owner with a Twitter account, you’re set! The Art of Social Media is perfect for you. Go get it. And then…

REVIEW: A Posse of Princesses by Sherwood Smith

REVIEW: A Posse of Princesses by Sherwood SmithA Posse of Princesses by Sherwood Smith
Pub: Book View Cafe (2008), eBook, 258pg
Filed under: Fantasy, Fiction, Romance
Source: Scribd
Buy it: Amazon (affiliate info) | Shelve it: Goodreads

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Rhis, princess of a small kingdom, is invited along with all the other princesses in her part of the world to the coming of age party of the Crown Prince of Vesarja, which is the central and most important kingdom. When Iardith, the prettiest and most perfect of all the princesses, is abducted, Rhis and her friends go to the rescue.

What happens to Rhis and her posse has unexpected results not only for the princesses, but for the princes who chase after them. Everyone learns a lot about friendship and hate, politics and laughter, romantic ballads and sleeping in the dirt with nothing but a sword for company. But most of all they learn about the many meanings of love.

Give me a book about princesses and I will give you MY HEART. Holy crap was this book fun. It’s fluffy and funny with just enough trope-twisting to keep me happy. It is literally about a group of princesses setting out to rescue one of their own and maybe save the world in the process.

Yes, I totally called all the major plot points miles before they happened. And I knew all the character development stuff and the ending was completely obvious in an almost-trite sort of way.

But! BUT!!!

That is not the point. The point is that there are so many amazing characters in here, diverse characters with fully fleshed-out backgrounds and lives. The point is that they go on adventures and they have different personality types and the Mean Princess even has motivation beyond being just mean and being a froofy princess is no better or worse than being a warrior princess and the protagonist is so NICE if somewhat naive and I had SUCH a good time reading it.

It’s a fun book! It doesn’t take itself too seriously but it takes the CHARACTERS seriously, and I can totally get behind that.

Read: February 5-6, 2015

27 books on my wishlist

27 books on my wishlist
It’s my birthday today! Birthdays makes me think of books1 which makes me think of my meticulously kept wishlist. Any time I spot a book I think I might be interested in reading, I write down the title and then add it to my list.

According to Goodreads, my wishlist currently has 417 books. Here’s 27 of them, sorted from added earliest (2012) to added latest (2015). I’m gonna make it a goal to read at least ten of these books before my next birthday– I don’t have to buy them, but I do at least want to try them out.

This is kind of a companion post to this one about my TBR pile. These are books I don’t own, but I still want to read them. And then…

March’s book for #SFFWomen book club is…

spellcoats The Spellcoats by Diana Wynne Jones!

March is Diana Wynne Jones Month, a time for celebration of all things DWJ and reading (and rereading) as many of her books as one wants. All month long there will be readalongs and lots of posts and discussions and fun stuff! It’s a great time to try out a DWJ book if you haven’t before, or to reread favorite DWJ books if you have! I usually end up rereading my entire DWJ collection during March, myself.

The Spellcoats is the third book in the Dalemark quartet, though it’s totally okay to read it first if you haven’t read the other books. (The only important part is to read the fourth book last, because it ties up everything from the previous three.) Here’s what it’s about:

Tanqui discovers she has the only means to conquer the evil Kankredin who threatens her own people and the Heathens who have invaded prehistoric Dalemark.

which is actually not all that helpful BUT it has siblings and a Big Evil and a unique sort of magic system that involves embroidery. It’s great!

We’re going to be doing a special collaboration with the #dwjmarch participants for the Twitter and blog discussions! The Twitter discussion will be on March 29th at a TBD time, and the blog discussion will go up the week prior to that.

Huzzah!

#SFFWomen Second Discussion: Daughter of the Forest

Hello, fellow sff lovers! This week is the blog discussion for February’s #SFFWomen book club book, Daughter of the Forest by Juliet Marillier. Daughter of the forest

I really loved this book and can’t wait to get my review posted later this week. For now, here’s some questions to get the ball rolling on your own posts:

    Were you already familiar with the story of the Six Swans before reading Daughter of the Forest? If so, how did knowing the story affect your experience of the book?

    Each of Sorcha’s siblings (and Sorcha herself) have a distinct personality. Who was your favorite sibling?

    Sorcha says that she should’ve been the seventh son of a seventh son, but that fate was playing tricks the day she was born. How do fate and destiny tie into the story and the characters’ lives?

    What was your MOST favorite thing about the book? Least favorite?

If you’ve written up a review or discussion post on your own blog, please leave a link in the comments! We can all visit each other and talk about the book and it’ll be awesome. Or if you don’t have a blog, go ahead and leave a comment here with your thoughts about the book. Yay!

March’s book will be Diana Wynne Jones’ The Spellcoats, as part of Diana Wynne Jones Month! I’ll have an info post about it up tomorrow.