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Book Review: Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business

There are currently 200,000+ businesses out there using Instagram to promote their products and services.  I was hoping to get some information on just general promoting from this book but it is really geared more towards selling – but there are still some good tips that can be used in both cases.  To follow up, you can also visit  Some of the tips that I took to heart are – Don’t spam. Don’t be too chicken to post.  There is a lot of information on how to set up your account and guides to some of the photo effects you can use.  There’s also a list of popular hashtags – if yours are relevant that can help you get more traffic to your posts and account.  There’s a lot of great content on giveaways and getting interaction between your brand and your followers.  You want to build trust with your followers.  There’s also a list of apps to check out to help out with your account, some that I am going to be checking out include: fontcandy, hipstamatic, Schedulegram, facetune and Later.  Again, if you are someone trying to sell a product or a service, this book has lots of valuable information in it that you won’t want to miss out on.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book



Are you ready to tap into Instagram’s booming network of 600 million viable customers? With the Ultimate Guide to Instagram for Business, social media marketing expert Kim Walsh-Phillips gives you the tools you need to get your due return on investment out of Instagram. From cross-platform branding and marketing advice to practical blueprints for funneling followers, this guide unlocks the secrets successful entrepreneurs use to drive sales directly from Instagram, become experts in their field, and grow their business.

Learn how to:

• Set up an Instagram marketing funnel that converts followers into customers
• Run effective, lead-generating campaigns with trending hashtags, exclusive contests, and product launches
• Grow your Instagram following with The 21-Day Blueprint
• Leverage your Instagram brand to reach celebrity status and gain a competitive advantage
• Post Instagram stories and live videos to grow your follower base and drive sales
• Build content with a Quick-Start Lead Magnet Blueprint that will attract your ideal customers

Your followers are ready to take action — give them a reason! Whether you’re new to the Instagram world or you’re not sure how to get more out of your profile, this guide is the perfect tool for entrepreneurs ready to promote themselves to millions of visual shoppers. With this guide’s easy-to-use strategies, easy-to-adapt blueprints, and other great resources, you’ll be ready to take the plunge!

Book Review: Can Your Smartphone Change the World?

This is a book that helps you take action NOW via Social Media.  Girls rights to education is being taken away. Can You Tube save the world? Can subscribers change the environment? There are a lot of campaigns out there that you can help just by tweeting or instagramming your food. Be aware of what is out there and go do something!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Can Your Smartphone Change the World? is a twenty-first-century guide for anyone who has access to a smartphone. This how-to manual looks at specific ways you can create social change through the tap of a screen. Filled with examples of successful hashtag campaigns, viral videos and new socially conscious apps, the book provides practical advice for using your smartphone as a tool for social justice.

This is the first book in the PopActivism series. Can Your Outfit Change the World? comes out in spring 2018 and Can Your Conversations Change the World? in fall 2018.

Book Review: 101 Video Games to Play Before You Grow Up

101 Video Games to Play Before You Grow Up is part book, part journal.  There is a checklist where you can keep track of what games you have played already and what you haven’t, the rating of the game and a place for you to keep track of your favorite moment and notes after playing it.  I went through all the categories and kept track of how many I had played – although I suppose it could be argued I’m already “grown up” and my time has run out…

1-23 Platformer (16)
24-40 Action and Adventure (4)
41-58 Sports & Fighting (3)
59-78 Role Playing & Strategy (4)
79-91 Puzzle & Arcade (5)
92-101 Party & Rhythm (2)

Great book for that video game lover in your life who is on a quest to play all the best games!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Have you got game? 101 Video Games to Play Before You Grow Up is the unofficial, definitive guide for the best video games ever made!

Each page in this interactive handbook offers behind-the-scenes tidbits and trivia about the games that belong on your bucket list, along with parental rating guidelines, series background information, and storyline previews. Gamers can record their personal ratings of each series as they play their way through the list, making notes and critiquing the best and worst parts of each game.

All different types of video games are featured, including adventure, puzzle, platform, racing, and role-playing games. Both gaming newbies and more experienced players can learn tips and tricks about the best games out there, and discover new genres of games to explore next.

No matter what gaming system you have, this handy guide will help parents and kids alike choose the next best game to play.


Book Review: 3D Printing Projects

This book is full of amazing ideas to design and make. As I’ve probably mentioned here before, I really want a 3D printer but have yet to be able to come up with enough things that I would want to make to make buying one worth my while.  This book gave me a good starting point at some potential projects!  The book goes through how 3D printers work, what materials you need, and some tips in how to use the 3D printing software in order to make shapes. There’s also information on what to do after your item has been printed.  Some of the items I would like to try to make that are featured in this book include: a desk caddy, an impossible box, stamps!, coat hooks, frames, magnets and a troll family!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Book Review: Stan Lee

Stan Lee is the man behind Marvel.  Born Stanley Lieber he decided to create the original superhero team and risked it all by creating the Fantastic Four.  Stan was born in 1922 and started out as the assistant at Timely Comics when he was a teen.  He then enlisted in the military.  Fantastic Four #1 did not debut until Lee was 39 years old.  Some fun facts on some of Lee’s other projects: Spider-Man was a fan favorite that become a series, Thor was drawn on from Shakeapeare, when Marvel decided to create another team, The Avengers were born.  Stan Lee tried to create Stan Lee media but failed.

This book goes into detail about a lot of Lee’s works throughout the years – some much more well known than other.  Definitely a fascinating man who has led an amazing life.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

The Amazing Spider-Man. The Incredible Hulk. The Invincible Iron Man. These are just a few of the iconic superheroes to emerge from the mind of Stan Lee. From the mean streets of Depression-era New York City to recipient of the National Medal of Arts, Lee’s life has been almost as remarkable as the thrilling adventures he spun for decades. From millions of comic books fans of the 1960s through billions of moviegoers around the globe, Stan Lee has touched more people than almost any person in the history of popular culture.

In Stan Lee: The Man behind Marvel, Bob Batchelor offers an eye-opening look at this iconic visionary, a man who created (with talented artists) many of history’s most legendary characters. In this energetic and entertaining biography, Batchelor explores how Lee capitalized on natural talent and hard work to become the editor of Marvel Comics as a teenager. After toiling in the industry for decades, Lee threw caution to the wind and went for broke, co-creating the Fantastic Four, Spider-Man, Hulk, Iron Man, the X-Men, the Avengers, and others in a creative flurry that revolutionized comic books for generations of readers. Marvel superheroes became a central part of pop culture, from collecting comics to innovative merchandising, from superhero action figures to the ever-present Spider-Man lunchbox.

Batchelor examines many of Lee’s most beloved works, including the 1960s comics that transformed Marvel from a second-rate company to a legendary publisher. This book reveals the risks Lee took to bring the characters to life and Lee’s tireless efforts to make comic books and superheroes part of mainstream culture for more than fifty years.

Stan Lee: The Man behind Marvel not only reveals why Lee developed into such a central figure in American entertainment history, but brings to life the cultural significance of comic books and how the superhero genre reflects ideas central to the American experience. Candid, authoritative, and utterly absorbing, this is a biography of a man who dreamed of one day writing the Great American Novel, but ended up doing so much more—changing American culture by creating new worlds and heroes that have entertained generations of readers.



Bob Batchelor is a cultural historian who has written or edited more than two dozen books on popular culture and American literature, including books about John Updike, The Great Gatsby, and Mad Men. Batchelor lives in Oxford, Ohio and teaches at Miami University.

Book Review: It’s All A Game

It’s All A Game is a book about the history of the board game and features a lot of fun games and looks into details about why the games were created and why they have been such a staple in households for so many years. My favorite board game is Monopoly so reading more about that one and how it helped prisoners escape the Nazis was pretty interesting.  There were a lot of games I have played featured as well as some that I had never heard of mentioned in the book as well.  It goes without saying that this book was a FUN read and if you have any interest in games you might want to check it out!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Book Review: Songs About a Girl

Songs About a Girl is about Charlie Book, a photographer and Olly – band member from Fire and Lights.  The boyband was put together by TV and Charlie is not a big fan, but Olly knows her and knows that she is a photographer so he asks her to take backstage photos of the band as a favor.  Charlie’s Mom died when she was 3 and all she has left of her is a journal with songs and poems in them.  She ends up realizing that the songs in her Mom’s journal and the lyrics to Fire and Lights songs are eerily the same.  She finds out that Gabe, another member of the band is the one who writes all the songs.  In typical boyband book fashion – a love triangle erupts between Charlie, Gabe and Olly.  Charlie has to keep lying about where she is going because her father is very over protective of her and he wouldn’t want her to be hanging out with the band like she is.  She lies and says she is hanging out with her friend Melissa – who is a big fan of Fire and Lights.  When things heat up between Charlie and Gabe, a photo of them together ends up on a fan site which causes a lot of drama.  But the more Charlie gets to know Gabe, the more she finds out about her Mom.  Gabe’s Dad was in Little Boy Blue and it is their lyrics that he is re purposing for Fire and Lights songs.  Charlie’s Mom was a groupie of the band and Gabe even has a photo of himself and Charlie together as kids.  The book ends a bit abruptly but I am hoping that is because there is a sequel in the works.  Also, bonus points for there being a Hanson mention in the book.

I really enjoyed this story – I’ve read so many girl meets boyband and falls in love stories but this one had a different plot, a sort of mysterious twist to it that was refreshing and that I really enjoyed.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Book Review: The High Note

The High Note is the second book in the Girl vs Boyband series. I had previously read the first book.  Lark is hanging out with Abbey Road – British Boyband that recently had a member replaced by Lark’s crush from school.  Mimi is a budding singer and songwriter, but has stage fright so the only way her songs make it out to the world is when Lark and her friend Mimi make videos for the song under a moniker on YouTube.  Lark’s Mom gets mad when a record label shows interest in Lark, since her Mom runs a record label as well – which is the one Abbey Road is signed on to.  Abbey Road has taken off and they are being primed for fame and Lark may be finding some fame of her own as well.  Meanwhile, she has a crush on Teddy and Max says that Teddy has a crush on her as well… The book ended a bit abruptly after Lark’s first show – of course to set up the reader for the next book in the series!

I enjoy following the story of Lark (Girl) and Abbey Rd (Boyband) in this series. I am looking forward to more to see what happens now that Lark seems to be getting a career of her own!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Fans of Taylor Swift and One Direction will love the second book in this musical tween series featuring an aspiring singer-songwriter and the boy band who changes her life.

A few months after winning her school’s talent show with her original song Homesick, eighth-grader Lark’s star is on the rise. Not only did she impress her classmates, but now she’s making waves on YouTube, thanks to her friend Mimi uploading a video of Lark’s singing. A record executive is interested in signing Lark to his label, which infuriates Lark’s mom, who runs her own record label.

Meanwhile, Lark’s friends in the British boy band Abbey Road are still trying to make it big in the U. S. As they’re being primed for fame, Lark worries that she’s losing touch with her new friends . . . until they ask her to be an opening act. Can she find the courage to overcome her recurring stage fright in time to perform when it counts the most?

Harmony Jones is the author of Girl vs. Boy Band: The Right Track and many other novels for children and young adults. She splits her time between Connecticut and the Rhode Island coast, where she lives happily with her husband and their two incredibly spoiled golden retrievers. She is a lifelong fan of pop music, and even has a whole room in her house dedicated to her favorite group of all time – the Beatles!

Book Review: Paper Hearts

Paper Hearts begins with a cupcake for Rose’s birthday – she has run away and been gone for 4 years.  Felicity is at a ball in handmade masks and she meets a guy after he spills on her dress.  He tells her that his name is Aaron, but he is actually Alec and he plays bass in the band the Heartbreakers.  Felicity and Alec get photographed and end up in a gossip magazine.  She expected to never hear from him again and ends up looking around at her house and finds letters from Rose in the closet – she hadn’t run away at all and Felicity is going to try and find her.  Alec ends up showing back up and helping her out with her quest to find her sister.  The last letter is from San Francisco so they start there, but end up going up the coast and finding her in Seattle.  It turns out that Felicity’s Mom had sent Rose away and told her not to try and contact Felicity until after she had graduated.  Felicity and Alec seem to be getting closer, but all the gossip mags keep saying that he is dating an actress named Violet.  Can Felicity straighten things out with her Mom, sister, and Alec?

This book was a lot of fun to follow along with, so many twists and turns in the plot and you couldn’t help but really root for Felicity and her friends to find Rose and find out why she had run away!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

“I’m sorry,” he said, slowly untying the ribbon that held his mask in place. “It’s just—I didn’t want you to think of me any differently.”

Somehow I kept my mouth from falling open. I knew his face, but my mind couldn’t accept that he was the person looking down at me.

“My real name is Alec.”

Felicity has her entire future planned. Ever since her older sister ran away, she’s had the full weight of her mother’s expectations on her shoulders. So she works hard to get straight As and save for college.

Except sometimes the best things in life are unplanned—like when Felicity meets a handsome, masked stranger while she is volunteering at a charity masquerade ball. She never thought he’d flirt with her. And she certainly never thought he’d turn out to be a member of the world-famous Heartbreakers band, Alec.

Then Felicity uncovers a shocking family secret. Suddenly, she, Alec, and her two best friends are off on a road trip to find Felicity’s missing sister. And she’s about to discover that unexpected turns have a peculiar way of landing her right where she needs to be…

Book Review: If You Give a Man a Cookie

If You Give a Man a Cookie is a parody book and is by the same author as the “If You Give a Mouse a Cookie” book that you may be familiar with.  There is a series of events portrayed in the book between a husband and a wife – if you give a man a cookie he will ask for milk (god forbid he gets it himself) and then things just spiral completely out of control from there.  A lot of fun to read and good for a quick laugh if you’re looking for one!

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the book

#1 New York Times bestselling author Laura Numeroff, author of the hugely popular children’s book If You Give a Mouse a Cookie, offers this hilarious parody of her own book for the man in your life.

If you give a man a cookie…he’s going to want milk to go with it…God forbid he should get it himself.

If You Give a Man a Cookie is a woman’s commentary about her helpless man and the chain of events that leads him on a journey from the bed to the bathroom to the couch and back to bed at nightfall.