Non-Fiction Review: The Bullet Journal Method

The Bullet Journal Method by Ryder Carroll
The Bullet Journal Method: Track the Past, Order the Present, Design the Future 
by Ryder Carroll

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


I guess I was expecting something… different from this.

This book spends very little time actually outlining HOW to set up a bullet journal. There are a few good ideas about lists, calendars, tasks, goals, and habit trackers, but not many.

The book is almost completely enveloped in a philosophical message about being your best self, and staying true to your real goals, with a ton of cutesy sayings and quotes from Ghandi and Benjamin Franklin.

I wanted a much more practical guide to using my BuJo, but instead this is a lengthy treatise on how to change your life and motivate yourself to reach your goals. I mean, that’s fine. But it’s written so condescendingly, that I was rolling my eyes through half the book. Continue reading

Non-Fiction Review: The Fellowship

The Fellowship by Philip Zaleski
The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings: J.R.R. Tolkien, C. S. Lewis, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams 
by Philip Zaleski , Carol Zaleski 

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


I read this book by listening to the audiobook, and really enjoyed the voice of the narrator and the structure of the book. Following a chronological and sometimes topical format, this book covers the lives of four of the most famous members of the Inklings. Starting from their childhoods and following them through both World Wars, their academic careers, and their writing, this book also includes details of their family lives and personal friendships right up until their deaths.

I already know a lot about these men, because Tolkien and Lewis are my two favorite authors, and I’ve already read other biographies about the Inklings. But I was really impressed with the depth of information and careful research in this book. There are some really wonderful details and anecdotes that bring these historical figures close to the reader. Continue reading

Non-Fiction Book Review: The Rabbit Effect

The Rabbit Effect by Kelli Harding
The Rabbit Effect: Live Longer, Happier, and Healthier with the Groundbreaking Science of Kindness 
by Kelli Harding

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This book explains many of the hidden factors to health and disease that modern medicine doesn’t routinely cover: social environment, easy access to nutritious food, work satisfaction and safety, family bonds, and environmental trauma. Kindness really can heal disease and prevent infections.

I liked how the information in this book was organized. The chapters have some good examples of real-life cases and scientific studies that prove how each component in a person’s life strongly affects their health.

However, the author has a very leftist viewpoint, and holds up government-controlled health care as a desirable and efficient situation, even hinting that it apparently worked out so well for the British. And yet Britain is well-known for having a terrible health-care system.
Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart by James Buckley Jr.
Amelia Earhart: Pioneer of the Sky! 
by James Buckley Jr.Kelly Tindall(Illustrations), John Roshell (Illustrations)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads

This graphic novel gives an overview of the life and disappearance of Amelia Earhart, focusing on her courage and daring as a pilot, but also honoring her generous spirit and kindness to the poor.

I liked the cartoony artwork, but it sort of looked hastily drawn. It could have been a little more polished. But I liked the bright colors and energetic panels!

This is a good synopsis of Amelia Earhart’s life, from her childhood when she constructed her own roller coaster in her backyard, then through her education and early adulthood, through her growing fame as a pilot and many accomplishments, and following her final record-breaking flight until her disappearance. It does a wonderful job of capturing the spirit and enthusiasm of Amelia, and inspiring the reader to do amazing things! Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Abraham Lincoln

Abraham Lincoln by Mark Shulman
Abraham Lincoln: Defender of the Union! 
by Mark Shulman ,Tom Martin (Illustrations)

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This graphic novel tells the history of Abraham Lincoln, from his childhood to his death, how he became president, his tragic family grief, and how he guided the American nation through the Civil War, and was ultimately assassinated.

I loved this overview of Lincoln’s life! The cartoony artwork is colorful and bright, with lots of funny details in the background that bring the story to life.

I think the writers did a wonderful job of condensing such a rich life story into so few pages, but still highlighting the most important and memorable aspects of Lincoln’s presidency and personal life. There were many details that I found interesting and engaging, as well as some cute jokes and anecdotes that were entertaining to read. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: Alexander Hamilton

Alexander Hamilton by Mark Shulman
Alexander Hamilton: The Fighting Founding Father! (Show Me History!) 
by Mark Shulman ,Kelly Tindall (Illustrator)John Roshell (Illustrator)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This graphic novel follows an overview of Hamilton’s life, his service in the Revolutionary War, and his involvement in constructing the financial laws of the new American government.

It’s difficult to squeeze an entire life into 96 pages, and I thought the balance of story-telling could have been better. Interesting parts of Hamilton’s military career were skimmed over, and a lot more time was dedicated to his political battles to establish a federal government with a national currency, etc… I thought the book would have been more engaging if they had spent slightly less time on the politics, since it doesn’t have as much action.

The art style is cartoony and bright, with a lot of funny details in the background. The art is unpolished, and I think it could have been a little more refined. But still, it’s cute, and the panels have lots of energy. Continue reading

Book Review: One-Stitch Baby Knits

One-Stitch Baby Knits by Val Pierce
One-Stitch Baby Knits: 22 Easy Patterns for Adorable Garments and Accessories Using Garter Stitch 
by Val Pierce

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This knitting book would be perfect for a beginner, with simple patterns that only require one type of stitch. From easy patterns like a baby bib up to intermediate and more experienced patterns like a baby cardigan, this book has a variety of cute projects both small and large. If you only have a few hours, you could knit up some sweet baby booties in a flash! Or if you have time for a larger project, you could try one of the adorable sweater and hat combinations.

With clear instructions and photos to illustrate the stitches, this book is easy to follow and full of information.
I really like the beautiful colors and sweet details on each knitting project!

Disclaimer: I received an ecopy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review. All the opinions stated here are my own true thoughts, and are not influenced by anyone.

Book Review: From an Idea to Nike

From an Idea to Nike by Lowey Bundy Sichol
From an Idea to Nike: How Marketing Made Nike a Global Success 
by Lowey Bundy Sichol (Goodreads Author)

3 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This book tells how Phil Knight began his business with a simple idea for a better running shoe and how it developed into the massive global company it is today. Focusing on the marketing and the innovative concepts that built the Nike empire, this story explains how a business can use good branding, endorsements, and an understanding of the needs of their customers in order to succeed.

I really enjoyed reading this book! It is written for young children, so many business concepts that a child wouldn’t know like “Revenue,” Investments,” or “Board of Directors” are explained with definitions for the bigger words. There are also “Fun Fact” boxes within the text that give extra tidbits of information about how the Nike company was built.

There are funny anecdotes about how the company received its name, designed the classic Swoosh logo, and developed its rapport with athletes, then began reaching out to pros for endorsement deals. Continue reading

Book Review: From an Idea to Disney

From an Idea to Disney by Lowey Bundy Sichol
From an Idea to Disney: How Branding Made Disney a Household Name 
by Lowey Bundy Sichol 

4 out of 5 stars on GoodReads


This book is a wonderful overview of how Walt Disney began his business with a simple cartoon mouse and how it developed into the massive global company it is today. Focusing on the business savvy and the innovative concepts that built the Disney empire, this story explains how a business needs investors, branding, and loyal customers to succeed, but that it is the magic in the details that builds a heritage of excellence.

I really enjoyed reading this book! It is written for young children, so many business concepts that a child wouldn’t know like “Revenue,” Mortgage,” or “Board of Directors” are explained with definitions for the bigger words. There are also “Fun Fact” boxes within the text that give extra tidbits of information about Walt Disney and his company.
Continue reading