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Showing posts from February, 2011

The Dragonfly Effect by Aaker & Smith

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Title:The Dragonfly Effect: Quick, Effective, and Powerful Ways To Use Social Media to Drive Social Change
Author: Jennifer Aaker and Andy Smith

Genre: Non-Fiction (Communications / Business / Social Media)

Rating: Liked
Did I finish?: Yes -- really enjoyable.
One-sentence summary: Readable explanation of social media and how non-profits and movements can get the most out of this new technology.

Why did I get this book?: Work!
Source: Bought it.
Do I like the cover?: Yes -- business books can be deadly boring

Review: Confession -- I actually finished this in January but never got around to reviewing it even though we've discussed it at work.  Unlike fiction, I don't think the distance matters in a review and in some ways, it's probably more telling what I do recall -- if I've learned the lessons this book offered!

The subtitle -- Quick, Effective, and Powerful Ways To Use Social Media to Drive Social Change -- effectively explains the purpose of this book.  The dr…

Winners of Delilah Marvelle giveaway

I apologize for the lack of updates this week -- I've been felled by a horrible, malingering cold that I can't shake!  (Makes for lots of time to read, however!)

I'm thrilled to announce the winners of my Delilah Marvelle giveaway!

Blodeuedd has won a copy of Prelude to a Scandal and Jena Lang has won Once Upon a Scandal.  Congrats to both!  (Winners have been emailed and have 48 hours to respond.)

I'm having a giveaway of The Oracle of Stamboul beginning March 1st -- there will be two opportunities to enter.  Just comment on my review and my interview with the author, Michael David Lukas.  (It's a marvelous book and you will want a copy for yourself!!)

In My Mailbox Monday, Feb 21

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Seen both at The Printed Page (hosted in Feb at Library of Clean Reads) and The Story Siren, my Mailbox Monday/In My Mailbox for the second part of Feb.  Read anything I got?  What did you get?


For Review!



Angelology by Danielle Trussoni
The Beauty of Humanity Movement by Camilla Gibb

Won!



Dust (Jacob's Ladder #1) by Elizabeth Bear, thanks to vvb32 ReadsKiss of the Rose (Tudor Vampire Chronicles #1) by Kate Pearce with some very awesome swag, thanks to Book Lovers, Inc.Madame Tussaud: A Novel of the French Revolution by Michelle Moran, thanks to Read It ForwardMr. Bishop and the Actress by Janet Mullany, thanks to Risky Regencies

Acquired!



There was a book swap/giveaway at work. In reality, I walked away with an obscene haul but these were the particular gems I'm excited about!

The Muse of the Revolution: The Secret Pen of Mercy Otis Warren and the Founding of a Nation by Nancy Rubin Stuart
Sex and the Eighteenth-Century Man: Massachusetts and the History of Sexuality in America b…

Book Beginnings, Feb 18

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Book Beginnings is a meme by A Few More Pages.  The meme is simple: share the first line of the book you're currently reading and what your impression was after reading it!

This week's book is The King's Daughter by Christie Dickason.  Great start -- I'm already hooked -- and I promise, in the last sentence, I've typed exactly what is there, including 'wilful' (which looks wrong to me and spell check keeps flagging!). 

Today, I learned what I am for.  I think that the information has always been there, but I've chosen to ignore it.  Then, this morning, when the Duc de Bouillon looked me up and down and allowed that I was indeed 'handsome enough', my grip on wilful ignorance began to slip.

Interview with Sadie Jones

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Late in January, I read and lovedSmall Wars by Sadie Jones.  It's an intense, beautiful, understated book that moved me.  I can't recommend it enough!  I'm thrilled to share my interview with Sadie Jones.

You said in interviews that your novel was inspired by the current conflict in Afghanistan and Iraq. What sparked the connection between the those conflicts and the historical one in Cyprus?

At first, with no thought of making a fiction of it, I became preoccupied by the inner lives of soldiers; how they reconcile the person they have to be in action with the person they must be with their wives and families. There were a lot of reports at the time of psychological damage, and broken families, that often ran alongside all reports of wrongdoing in the military or dissent about the reasons for war in the first place. It struck me that PTSD – often seen in isolation – is not indivisible from the conscience, and that this was not being discussed. It is easy to see, looking d…

Teaser Tues, Feb 15

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

- Grab your current read
- Open to a random page
- Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
- BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!
- Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!


This week's teaser is from The Oracle of Stamboul by Michael David Lukas.  Gorgeous book, effortless to read, like eating a spoonful of whipped cream.  I'm loving it, obviously!

This scene features the heroine, about age 8, waking up after making an ethically right but emotionally challenging decision.

Eleonora awoke that next morning to the click of the door and the soft music of Mrs. Damakan humming a familiar melody.  Her dreams scurried into the far corners of the room, under furniture and into the cracks between the floorboards.  Rubbing her eyes, she slipped out of bed and follow…

Muslim Women Reformers by Ida Lichter

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Title: Muslim Women Reformers: Inspiring Voices Against Oppression
Author: Ida Lichter

Genre: Non-Fiction (Islamic Studies / Current Events / Women's History)

Rating: Loved it!
Did I finish?: Yes -- it's esp easy to dip into and browse.
One-sentence summary: Brief, readable profiles of nearly one hundred Muslim women reformers, representing 27 countries.

Why did I get this book?: I've always been interested in religion, especially the role of women, and given that Islam is such a
Source: OnlinePublicist

Do I like the cover?: Yes -- quite striking!

Review: The size of the book or the scope might seem overwhelming, but this is a wholly readable, easy-to-understand piece of non-fiction that lifts up the work of Muslim women reformers around the world.  Living in the US, there's a great deal of misinformation about Islam and Muslims, and while this isn't an intro to Islam, it is a fabulous book for those unfamiliar with or curious about the work of women in Islam.

Book Beginnings, Feb 11

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A new meme which seems very fun - Book Beginnings by A Few More Pages.  The meme is simple: share the first line of the book you're currently reading and what your impression was after reading it!

This week's book beginning is from Bound Darkly by Tarrant Smith.  There's no easing into the story with this one, just bam!, action!
As soon as his brother Hueil decided to quit the unseelie banquet table, Neb took the opportunity to shift to Calcus's great hall, where he was greeted with the ringing of swordplay as it echoed off the marble walls.

Winner of Small Wars

I'm pleased to announce that KatieF is the winner of my Small Wars giveaway!  Congrats -- the publisher will ship your book!

Those who didn't win, sorry -- check out my Delilah Marvelle giveaway for US and international readers!

Interview with Delilah Marvelle (and a giveaway!)

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I'm thrilled to share my interview with the hilarious, interesting, and fabulous Delilah Marvelle.  I was completely charmed by Prelude to a Scandal and ended up in conversation with Ms Marvelle about it and the romance genre.  It was so fascinating (and fun), I asked for an interview -- not only did she agree, but she offered a giveaway as well!  Read on to learn a bit about Delilah Marvelle and see the giveaway. 

What was the plot of your very first first piece of fiction?

Heh. Am I supposed to answer honestly? My very first piece of fiction was written when I was about 8. I wrote about how Peter Pan ditched the lost boys and went home with Wendy instead. The movie HOOK totally swiped my idea, lol.

Any rituals or routines for when you write?

I must have three things when I write:
1.) A Vanilla Starbucks Frappunico. I usually drink 2-3 in a day while I'm writing.
2.) My research books have to be within reach so I don't have to get up.
3.) Complete and utter silence.

O…

In My Mailbox Monday, Feb 7

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Seen both at The Printed Page (hosted in Feb at Library of Clean Reads) and The Story Siren, my Mailbox Monday/In My Mailbox for the first part of Feb.  Read anything I got?  What did you get?

Won!




Lily of the Nile by Stephanie Dray, thanks to the author -- with a Cleopatra action figure!

The Secret of Chanel No. 5: The Intimate History of the World's Most Famous Perfume by Tilar J. Mazzeo, thanks to Wonders and Marvels

Book Beginnings on Friday, Feb 4

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A new meme which seems very fun - Book Beginnings by A Few More Pages.  The meme is simple: share the first line of the book you're currently reading and what your impression was after reading it!

My selection today comes from the wildly good Thomas Hardy Far from the Madding Crowd.  It's my first Hardy and I'm totally in love.  As always with these memes, I can't limit myself, so I'm sharing the first three sentences because that's what hooked me.  I pretty much had a crush on Gabriel Oak by page five, and then a crush on Bathsheba Everdene pretty quick after that.  There's a metric ton of drama and romance in this book and I feel a Hardy reading jag coming on!
When Farmer Oak smiled, the corners of his mouth spread till they were within an unimportant distance of his ears, his eyes were reduced to mere chinks, and the diverging wrinkles appeared round them, extending upon his countenance like the rays in a rudimentary sketch of the rising sun.

His Christia…

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand by Helen Simonson

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Title:Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Author: Helen Simonson

Genre: Fiction (British / Contemporary)

Rating: Loved -- I've been gushing to everyone about it.
Did I finish?: Finished -- and I'm rereading sections I loved.

One-sentence summary: A widow and widower find their growing romance a problem to their friends, family, and community because of their differing backgrounds -- one is an Anglo officer and the other a Pakistani Muslim.

Why did I get this book?: I love cross-cultural romances and was particular eager to see some positive representations of Muslims in contemporary fiction.
Reading Challenges:  British Books, South Asian
Source: TLC Book Tours

Do I like the cover?: I love the cover. It's from J. Grenard's 1924 Life magazine cover.  It's tender and restrained, much like the hero and heroine of this book.

I'm reminded of...: Margaret Oliphant, Anthony Trollope, Persephone Books

First line: Major Pettigrew was still upset about the phone call from h…

Teaser Tuesday, Feb 1

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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

- Grab your current read
- Open to a random page
- Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
- BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS!
- Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week's teaser is from the absolutely fantastic Major Pettigrew's Last Stand (which is unrelated to Winifred Watson's Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, which is equally fanstic, fyi).  My review is coming on the 3rd.

This teaser comes from one of the first handful of pages in which the 68-year old Major, a widower, learns his younger brother has died of a heart attack.  Mrs. Ali, the local shopkeeper and a widow, is giving the Major a ride to the funeral when he found himself unable to drive by himself.  Their conversation turned unexpectedly persona.

"I have produced no chi…