Friday Things: 02/02 - Monday Edition, feat. Cinderella, Mos Eisley, and Tokyo

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[Welcome to another week of... winter! And links! And stuff! Yeah, I know, I'm late. Here they are!]

On Movies:

Have another look at Cinderella. The bells are grating, but it looks pretty cool overall:

In case you're curious about what's canon and not in the Star Wars universe, and a reminder that even when things are taken off the canon, they still exist and you can still love them.

Over on Star Wars (dot com): 7 Things You Might Not Know About the Mos Eisley Cantina.

From/On Japan:

As it turns out, Tokyo is the safest city in the world. Osaka is in the top 5 along with it, and NYC is the only US city on the list.

Waaay too expensive, but these fruit-shaped note pads look so great.

Great little guide by my pal Lauren Orsini on writing anime reviews.

Stuff I Wrote:

At Panels: Comics Fetish: Volume 16 (weekly comics merch column)

At Panels: Art Roundup: Spotlight on Quackerjack (weekly art column)


Some tips for getting great photos in/of snow or when it's snowing, whether with a regular camera or a phone.

This might be my favorite Let It Go parody yet:

[Have a wonderful week!]

Friday Things: 12/1 - Learn to Draw Baymax, and Check Out Some Dorky Astronauts

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[This week was kind of rainy and stuff - I hope yours was sunnier than mine!]

On Books and Comics:

There's a YA comic out called El Deafo about growing up deaf, and this review by Cory Doctorow has convinced me I need to read it. It looks and sounds fantastic.

If you have a pal who's into comics, this newly-released hard cover edition of Saga collecting issues 1-18 might make a great gift this holiday season.

Dorky astronauts being dorky (Douglas Adams fans, do click)

On Disney:

Draw Baymax!

Anyone else looking forward to the costumes in Cinderella as much as I am? Droooooling.

Stuff I wrote:

My latest art column is a spotlight on Naruto's Hinata Hyuuga.


The amazingly talented Sonya Belousova has some great work up at the Player Piano YouTube channel. I was originally going to drop the video of her improvising Nintendo song arrangements on the spot, but I actually fell in love with her rendition of David Arnold's untitled waltz and went for that instead. You should really see everything on that channel, though - she's also done an arrangement of the Tetris theme that is not to be missed.

Super cute stop motion animation video filmed with wooden toys for Hello Kitty's 40th anniversary.

When I watched Mean Girls, I was fascinated by the realization that there are people who grow up the way Cady did - with wild animals and local tribes as friends and family, and then transferred to some Western city and a public school system. Well, Tippi's parents are wildlife photographers and raised her in Namibia, Africa for her first 10 years. I'm shocked I haven't heard about her until now, considering she's written a book and participated in 6 documentaries. More on her here.

[Have a great week!]

Friday Things: 11/22 - Wizarding Tourism, DIY Sorcerer Mickey Ears, and Some Science

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[Another Saturday Edition~ well, it's better than Monday. Tomorrow, Sunday, there's a potato festival at my village, so I'll probably be updating Instagram and/or Twitter with pictures and stuff.]

On Disney (and theirs):

New Cinderella Trailer!

Neat little tutorial on making your own sorcerer Mickey ears.

I am Groot in 15 different languages is glorious.

Finally, here's a look at some more Inside Out teasers. Yes - plural.

On Science:

If you're interested in some tidbits about brains and stuff, read about languages that are "lost" in infancy.

Women's and men's bodies are affected by space flight in different ways - here's a look at that.

On Movies:

Do you like secrets and/or Princess Bride? This list is for you.

New Peanuts Trailer!

Stuff I Wrote:

At Book Riot: Wizarding Tourism: Harry Potter Experiences Around the World.

At PANELS: Comics Fetish: Volume 8 (weekly dose of awesome comics merch)

I vlogged! Here's what I'm reading this week.


Wonderful: An Open Letter to Men Who Still Don't Understand Street Harassment.

A pal of mine wrote this article about late night food spots in Miami - I've only been to one of those spots, myself, so I'm looking forward to trying the rest.

[have a great weekend! Monday is a public holiday, so lunch posts will resume Tuesday!]

Link Bits: 05/19 - JUST IMAGINE...

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[It's Monday again....!]

Just Imagine...has been revealed as the 4th book in the Hello Kitty graphic novels series, but its release is all the way in August. What a long wait! Ahh! Anyway, this book will feature contributions from its regulars: Ian McGinty, Jacob Chabot, and Jorge Monlongo; plus some new people: Sarah Goodreau and Giovanni Castro.

Jen Campbell has finished writing The Bookshop Book and it's slated for release October 9th. Read more about it at her blog.

A teaser trailer was released for Disney's upcoming live action Cinderella film, and it leaves much to be desired. Not giving an inch!

Listen to a bestseller for $7.49 at!

Friday Things: 01/11

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[First link dump of the new year  - yay! Finally, right? I hope everyone had a great holiday~

If you're curious, I've been reading! I'll write soon about The Fault In Our Stars by John Green and I've got, as always, a huge pile of books that I want to read next. I'm currently reading Lemony Snicket's Unauthorized Autobiography, but I'm not sure I'll write about it!]

On Books:

Today Jo Pincushion is on the front of Quirk Books with an article titled 10 Excellent Reasons to Date a Bookworm. I must say, they are indeed excellent reasons and I feel like I do resemble all of these (if I do say so myself!). ::fans self, glamorously::

Comics Alliance talks with Reginald Hudlin about Django Unchained's adaptation into comics, and there's even mention of Kill Bill making the transition, too.

Book Riot's Peter Damien writes up an opinion post on Grumpy Old White Dudes and why they need to lay off all the folks that read the trendy books, explaining they create a hostile, bullying environment instead of a nurturing one. Really though, this applies to a lot of things and not just books. It's equally true of  comics nerds, gamers, and any group in which snooty people turn up their noses at anyone who dares to enjoy something they don't like.

Why yes, I would like a charm bracelet just like this with all the Harry Potter books as charms. Or just any books that are awesome in general. Or how about just any set of nondescript books so I could pretend they're all my favorites. (via Geek Crafts)

On Music:

David Bowie. New song. Enough said!

There's this guy, Peter Hollens, who sung Misty Mountains a Capella (The Hobbit), and then he teamed up with violinist Jun Sung Ahn and made something extra awesome. I can't keep count of how many times I've listened to this in the past few days.

On Photography:

Ronan Goldman has strange dreams every now and then. He decided that he wants to visually interpret them through photography and started this project called Surrealistic Pillow. The images are absolutely stunning. (via PetaPixel)

I'm a huge advocate of mobile photography, and it makes me happy to see a photographer spotlit for his work using just an iPhone. There's a great video here in which photographer Kevin Russ talks about his experiences traveling with just his iPhone to record the memories and how he deals with the limited dynamic range of its camera.

Now this is how you do a baby shoot. You make it fairy tale style. Wendi Riggens has loads of patience and creativity, clearly. (via Neatorama)





Thanks to SCIENCE, we now have a more concrete idea as to why our hands and feet get all pruny when we're wet.

Disney's upcoming live-action Cinderella movie isn't canned, per se, but they are seeking a new director because Mark Romanek's was too dark for them. I'm slightly disappointed to learn that, so I guess we'll see what happens from here out.

Need nerdy cocktails for your next party? Of course you do. Have 13 of them.

[I think that one's good for this week. Enjoy the time-wasting!]



Book Review: 'Through The Mirror And Into Snow' by Ann T. Bugg

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Through The Mirror And Into Snow introduces Valerie and Samantha, two young girls who are best friends, but only get to see each other once a year for one week. When Sam is over at Val's farm, they discover that the mirror in the barn is actually of the magical variety. They are transferred into fairy tale land, right into the forest where Snow White is wandering around after escaping the Evil Queen.

Though the main storyline of Through The Mirror and Into Snow focuses on Snow White's tale (she's called Snolindra in this book, by the way), there are plenty of "cameos" and appearances by other denizens of the world of fairy tales. Some of them will probably come back in later books, too, which I find absolutely charming.

One sort of big thing to note is I love puns, bad jokes, and random trivia about popular cartoon characters and whatever else. One of the characters (Val's mom) is an endless well of such jokes and pointless trivia, and I have to admit here I was laughing out loud. The jokes and puns don't necessarily make or break the book, but they're a nice touch I fully appreciate.

The atmosphere at Val's home, especially when Sam is visiting, is very much like any home with young girls residing that are princesses of their castle. And not in a bad way, as with spoiled brats. In a fun, magical way.  Also of note, and this is important, is that there is no conflict at Val's home between herself and her parents. Actually, this is the first book for young adults or mid-grade readers I've read in a while that doesn't have a focus on mean, irresponsible, or neglectful adults being the source of conflict for the child protagonist. I see this as a major positive.

If you're familiar with fairy tales, then you'll know what happens for Snow White and any other fairy tale characters that Val and Sam encounter. This doesn't necessarily make the book predictable though, as the whole reason they were whisked away to begin with is because something went wrong and the story needed pushing along. Val and Sam, thankfully, have the will and strength to not steer the characters away from their intended paths -- and they even have the mind to know they shouldn't tell them their stories are written about in our fairy tale books, either.

Finally, what I liked about this first book is the stories are rather open-ended. Yes, the girls met Snolindra and her story played out to its intended path. Her story isn't over yet though, so she'll probably come back to a future book. The girls met other characters as well whose stories are only just begun or partially fulfilled. I love the idea of being transferred to another world and the stuff of books is just all unfolding around you -- everything at its own pace.

Ann T. Bugg's Through The Mirror And Into Snow is a fabulous introduction to her Before Happily Ever After Series and I recommend it to any and all fans of magic, princesses and fairy tales. Boys included - there's nothing anywhere that says you've got to be a girl to like these things.

Thanks to Ann T. Bugg and her team for providing me review copies of these books! The next title in the series is Into The Forest And Down The Tower. Check back soon for that review, and look forward to an interview with the author along with the review of the third book on December 6th!

Buy it on Amazon: