REVIEW: Women, Work & the Art of Savoir Faire by Mireille Guiliano

REVIEW: Women, Work & the Art of Savoir Faire by Mireille GuilianoWomen, Work & the Art of Savoir Faire: Business Sense & Sensibility by Mireille Guiliano
Published by Atria Books (2009), eBook, 272pg
Filed under: Business, Memoir, Non-Fiction
Got my copy from: Scribd
Buy your own copy at Amazon or BookDepository (affiliate links | info) or add it to your Goodreads shelf.

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When Mireille Guiliano became a senior executive and spokesperson for Veuve Clicquot, she took the Champagne to the top of the luxury market, using her distinctive French woman's philosophy and style. Now she uses those same talents and savoir faire to help readers pop their own corks and get the mostout of life. Drawing on her experiences at the front lines and highest echelons of the business world, she gives women (and a few men, peut-être) the practical advice they need to make the most of work without skimping on all the other good things in life.

With lively lessons, stories, and helpful hints, Mireille teaches every reader how to identify her own passions and talents, improve her communication skills, balance work and life, cope with everyday stress, turn herself into a winning brand, and so much more. From acing a job interview or performance review to hosting a simple but elegant dinner party, Mireille tells it like it is as she shares her secrets for achieving happiness and success at any stage in business and life.

I choose to read this book mostly because of the cute cover, but also because I am becoming more and more interested in business-y books lately. I’m not sure why? I’m not usually a reader of self-help/advice books, but I suppose I must be starting my Grown Up life and that means I must read books that’ll help guide me down unknown paths. Or something.

So actually this is not that good of a book for work advice. Nope! Maybe if I were interested in becoming a CEO of an international corporation, and/or maybe if I had a full-time job with benefits and higher pay and could thus actually DO some of the advice. But for where I am right now and where I want to be in the future, this book and I are not a match. And then…

REVIEW: The Magicians’ Guild by Trudi Canavan

REVIEW: The Magicians’ Guild by Trudi CanavanThe Magicians' Guild (The Black Magician Trilogy #1) by Trudi Canavan
Published by Harper Collins (2001), eBook, 384pg
Filed under: Fantasy, Fiction
Got my copy from: Scribd
Buy your own copy at Amazon or BookDepository (affiliate links | info) or add it to your Goodreads shelf.

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This year, like every other, the magicians of Imardin gather to purge the city of undesirables. Cloaked in the protection of their sorcery, they move with no fear of the vagrants and miscreants who despise them and their work--until one enraged girl, barely more than a child, hurls a stone at the hated invaders . . . and effortlessly penetrates their magical shield.

What the "Magicians' Guild "has long dreaded has finally come to pass. There is someone outside their ranks who possesses a raw power beyond imagining, an untrained mage who must be found and schooled before she destroys herself and her city with a force she cannot yet control.

While reading The Magicians’ Guild I kept comparing it to The Naming, which is basically the same story of a young girl with enormous powers being taken in by an older male wizard who has to fight to have her recognized by the ruling body of wizards. However, The Naming is a much better written book, style-wise, and it feels like a larger story with more consequences and whatnot. It’s expansive. It’s a real epic fantasy, one you can sink into.

The Magicians’ Guild feels smaller (no saving-the-world plotlines), and also less dangerous overall. The conflict comes more from class prejudice than anything else. And since we see both the magicians’ POV and the heroine’s, we know that they don’t mean each other harm (really) and that once they finally get together it’ll work out okay. And then…

REVIEW: El Deafo by Cece Bell

REVIEW: El Deafo by Cece BellEl Deafo by Cece Bell
Published by Amulet Books (2014), ARC, 248pg
Filed under: Graphic Novel, Memoir, Non-Fiction
Got my copy from: ALA 2014
Buy your own copy at Amazon or BookDepository (affiliate links | info) or add it to your Goodreads shelf.

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Going to school and making new friends can be tough. But going to school and making new friends while wearing a bulky hearing aid strapped to your chest? That requires superpowers! In this funny, poignant graphic novel memoir, author/illustrator Cece Bell chronicles her hearing loss at a young age and her subsequent experiences with the Phonic Ear, a very powerful—and very awkward—hearing aid. The Phonic Ear gives Cece the ability to hear—sometimes things she shouldn't—but also isolates her from her classmates. She really just wants to fit in and find a true friend, someone who appreciates her as she is. After some trouble, she is finally able to harness the power of the Phonic Ear and become “El Deafo, Listener for All.” And more importantly, declare a place for herself in the world and find the friend she's longed for.

Super adorable comic about being deaf while growing up in the 1970s, told through bunnies! Adorable bunnies!

Personal stories told though graphic novels are always going to be interesting to me, especially if they’re illustrated by the author. (See: Perseoplis, Fun Home.) I think it’s because the author is in control of the art as well as the story. And then…