Link Love: 11.23.13

Unwoven Light by Soo Sunny Park


Book Style: Samuel Johnson VS The Devil

The Gates

The Infernals

The Creeps

John Connolly's Samuel Johnson Vs. The Devil series1 has been described as Terry Pratchett meets Douglas Adams and I couldn't agree more. In each book, poor Samuel must foil the Great Malevolence2 and his right hand demon Ba'al's attempts at bringing about the end of the world. Luckily, Samuel has the help of his best friends, his loyal dachshund Boswell, a pair of hapless policemen, and a not-so-evil demon named Nurd3. The second two books also feature a band of surly, thieving, but very genuine dwarfs and the put-upon Dan the Ice Cream Man. These books are pure genius and I will not listen to any naysayers on the subject. Like Connolly's The Book of Lost Things, the first and third book in the Samuel Johnson series feature gorgeous covers. I'm not a huge fan of the weird 3D style art on the second title, but I didn't want to just leave it out entirely either4.
  1. The Gates: I wanted to capture the essence of Samuel here, mismatched sneakers and all. The dachshund bag is the perfect nod to Boswell and the hot rod shirt is my subtle nod to Samuel's father's prized car that Nurd drives back into Hell to save the day. A devil necklace seemed appropriate and I thought the PBR bracelet could stand in for some of Spiggit's highly combustible brew.
  2. The Infernals: Some ice cream heels help make this outfit a bit dressier while still keeping it playful. The moon sweater is an ode to the peculiar shape of Nurd's head and, of course, a cuff bracelet for Biddlecombe's bravest constabulary. Boswell gets blinged out on a necklace this go round.
  3. The Creeps: I figured a dressier outfit was in order to attend the grand opening of Mr. Grimly's toy store as a guest of honor. That t-shirt features Einstein's physics formulae5 and the seat belt clutch could be of some use to Nurd in his job6. Boswell is silver-plated and wrapped around your finger this time and goes nicely with those viking ship earrings. Some celestial/moon themed nails tie the whole look together. Oh, but try not to squish any nosferatu eyeballs with those killer crepe wedges.
1. I honestly didn't know this was the full title of the series until I finished the third book a couple of days ago. I just referred to it as "Connolly's Samuel Johnson series" because I didn't think it had a proper name at all.
2. He is never actually called the Devil, calling into question whoever named the series... I'm looking at you Mr. Connolly.
3. And Wormwood, Nurd's oldest friend and assistant. Even if Nurd would never admit the friend part out loud.
4. Because I'm a nice person, that's why. Don't argue. I am very nice.
5. Perhaps the scientists at CERN should have looked at a few of them before they went fiddling about with the fabric of the Universe.
6. Turns out an immortal, but reformed demon with a penchant for fast cars makes an excellent automotive safety test dummy.


Last Unicorn Tour

Last Unicorn Tour
Justus, Peter S. Beagle, + me (also the debut photo of my shorter than Mia Farrow's haircut)

Last night I had the ultimate pleasure of attending The Last Unicorn Tour when it hit Seattle. My friend (and coworker) Justus and I headed down to the Cinerama after work. I should mention that this is Justus' absolute favorite book. Ever. The evening started with a signing session that we skipped on the advice of our newfound friend, Ashley, who had attended Saturday night's event as well. She advised us to just hop out right before the credits and get in line for the post show signing. So with that reassurance we settled down to enjoy some of Cinerama's epic chocolate popcorn and chat. At 7:30 an amazing question and answer session began which lasted an hour and included some great stories from Peter, the most adorable question from a little girl, a baby signing (for real), and a surprise proposal from an audience member (not to Peter, but to her partner). It was so great. Next we got to watch the film, which is a blast from my childhood and gave me warm fuzzies all over. Finally we got to chat with Peter while he signed my book and Justus' poster and multiple books. I have completely over simplified the whole experience because it really was so grand and I am so glad I decided to go. 


Book Style: Death, Dickinson, And The Demented Life Of Frenchie Garcia

Death, Dickinson, And The Demented Life Of Frenchie Garcia

Death, Dickinson, and the Demented Life of Frenchie Garcia by Jenny Torres Sanchez is such a great, heart-breaking book that gives you so many feels and then ends up comforting you in the end. Frenchie is a recent high school grad who is in the midst of a serious, an unacknowledged depression after being rejected from the art school of her choice and witnessing her best friend become attached at the hip with his new girlfriend. Oh, and she's probably suffering from some serious issues that resulting from the suicide of her high school crush the morning after they spent a whimsical night getting their fortunes told, plunging into the ocean, attempting to steal a duck-shaped boat, and choosing ice cream at the local Walmart. Frenchie eventually works her way through her grief by talking things out with her imaginary friend, Emily Dickinson, and reliving the infamous last night with a new, flesh-and-blood, acquaintance. I wanted to put her in the outfit she would have worn that night. This had to include her spiderweb tights and a rock concert appropriate tee. Yellow combat boots are perfect for Frenchie, although her's would probably be splattered with paint. The fortune cookie necklace is meant to represent the fortune teller and the nail polish is called "Ice Cream Social". The grave ring is all about the graveyard at the end of the street where Frenchie often seeks respite and the company of Emily. And since the cover gave them to me, some great skull accessories were in order. 


Book Style: Beowulf


I couldn't put together a Beowulf outfit without going for a modern warrior princess look. Daggers on the cuff, bloody skulls on the fingers, and nordic-looking dragons through the ears are the accessories that top off an outfit featuring knee-high gladiator sandals, a drapey maxi skirt and tank, a tribal bralette, and a fierce should chain. A purse would be too dainty with something like this, but a modernized fanny pack looks utilitarian and tough and blends in like a belt would. Oh, and that nailpolish? Yeah, the color's called Boudicca. Now she would have never have encountered all the problems Beowulf did.


Link Love: 11.09.13

[image found here]


Book Style: Lunar Chronicles




I am absolutely obsessed with Marissa Meyer's Lunar Chronicles series. Every book is a retelling of a classic fairy tale, but the whole series is such a beautifully complex thing that weaves all of these wonderful characters together. And it's sci-fi! I recently finished reading the advanced copy of the third book, Cress (oh, the perks of being a bookseller) and it is just as amazing as I expected. I decided in honor of the upcoming February release date for Cress and to bide my time until Marissa writes the fourth title, Winter, I would make a Book Style for these three. I decided I would base each outfit around the main titular character and try to stay true to their essence. There might be some spoilers for Cinder and Scarlet here, but I'll try to steer clear of giving too much away for Cress.
  1. Cinder - Obviously, this one is Cinderella. Cinder is a 16 year old, cyborg mechanic in New Beijing. Her best friend is an android named Iko. She's pretty tough and isn't really the girly type. I gave her some combat boots and a handy hip bag for practicality. The kimono-inspired blouse is a nod to New Beijing's prevalent Asian styling. A wrench ring represents her mechanical inclinations, Iko gets some love with the adorable robot earrings, and a lunar-esque necklace hints at Cinder's true origins.
  2. Scarlet - Red Riding Hood is really a feisty 18 year old French girl whose grandmother has gone missing. She forms a tenuous alliance with a street fighter who goes by the name "Wolf" in order to track her down. Scarlet is a natural beauty who never bothers with fancy clothes; they would only get in the way on the farm. Comfort is key here. Of course she needed her beloved red hoodie (isn't the asymmetry on this one amazing?) and I couldn't resist tracking down a tomato tee so she could wear her love for Wolf proudly. Some French-inspired nail polish just for fun. Ditto for the Red Riding Hood necklace. The rocket ship watch will help keep her on time for her produce deliveries and amuses me since that's where she ends up. The lunar earrings were essential for my sanity here.
  3. Cress - Rapunzel needs a major haircut if she's ever going to impress the man of her dreams. She also goes by the name Crescent Moon, Cress for short, and she's been held captive performing high tech espionage for the Lunar queen on a lone satellite for most of her life. Cress is the girliest one of the bunch so she gets a dress for her petite self. She also ends up needing some decent footwear, so I provided these great strappy sandals. The bandana is to tie that notorious hair back, but it's also a nod to something I won't reveal for you yet, same for those eye earrings and military jacket. Spoilers, as River Song would say (I will never apologize for mixing my fandoms. Never!). I love the jewelry here. While the two Earthen (well sort of, in Cinder's case) girls get lunar jewelry, the Lunar girl gets a necklace to represent the swirl globe she's been gazing longingly at for years. And doesn't that ring remind you of long, silky tresses?
In conclusion, if you haven't read this series yet, stop what you're doing and go to your bookstore and grab Cinder and Scarlet now. Now, I say.


Book Style: Great Expectations

Great Expectations

I couldn't do a Great Expectations Book Style without making it a wedding dress in honor of Miss Havisham! If you're a traditionalist who believes a bridal gown must be white (or white-ish) then feel free to pretend this is a bridesmaid outfit. Playing with all of these moody blues was fun, and blue is supposed to be a traditional wedding color. I playfully added the handcuff bracelet in honor of Pip's benefactor's rather sordid past. The amazing wedding cake is another nod to the benefactor's stint as a sailor.