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Tris’s Book


I could hardly put down Tris’s Book, Tamora Pierce’s second volume in her “Circle of Magic” series. Although I suspected I’d like it, I picked it up as a more light-hearted reprieve to a different novel I’m reading, and wound up being completely swept away.

My main concern with Sandry’s Book was its very slow start; the introduction to the various characters seemed disjointed and a little confusing, and the descriptions of Winding Circle a little burdensome. Tris’s Book had none of these issues. Instead, it began at a brisk pace and finished with me turning the pages, reading as quickly as possible.

I’m really enjoying the way Pierce spins magic into her world; learning about how each of the characters can use it differently is fascinating. This time, the children learn more about what they are capable of, and must use their magic together in a new way. The story reaches each of the four but focuses (you guessed it) on Tris.

This time, the foe takes the form of a real enemy, rather than a natural disaster: pirates are attempting to invade Winding Circle. Although their training has progressed since the start of the summer some months before, Tris, Daja, Briar, and Sandry are once again called to do more than they knew they could: first with their teachers and then together as a group. They learn more about magic on principle it is starting to become apparent that they have more power than anyone realized.

An easy read that makes it no less engaging, and I am definitely looking forward to the next one.


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Positive psychology for children

I learned about Amy Blankson’s work through her brother, Shawn Achor. Last year I attended a conference Shawn was speaking at, and WOW, was I ever an instant fan! I truly believe we can change the world by putting his work into practice (plus, he has the evidence to prove it).

Amy’s work focuses on “how to cultivate happiness in a digital era.” (More about Amy here.) This has some crossover with her brother’s work, so now of course I’m a fan of them both.

I found out from Amy’s newsletter that the pair collaborated on a children’s book called Ripple’s Effect, which was written to teach positive psychology to children.

I’m not a parent yet (and maybe won’t ever be), but this seems like such an important skill to teach kids that I’m leaving this note here on my blog for future reference. That’s right, I now have a category tag for parenting.


Someone to read: Cal Newport

I happened upon the name Cal Newport in a thread on Twitter yesterday morning. He was listed as a positive exception among those who revert to hacks rather than quality.

Sounded like a good exception (and the name sounded a little familiar) so I turned to good ole Google with “Cal Newport writer.”

After poking around his website a little, I requested one of his books from the library. I also like his about page.

Thought you might enjoy as well!