Friday, January 18, 2013

Book Reviews

Recently, I picked up two of the books from the Northridge Publishing Signature Series.
Kelly Purkey...
and Elizabeth Kartchner's books. I may pick up Amy Tan's eventually, but that will probably be it out of the seven authors. Luckily I have a connection that was able to get me the books for $8 each as opposed the the $18 price tag. A huge bargain!

For starters, I love Kelly's book! Really beautiful projects inside, as there are inside Elizabeth's book. But there are two things that made me enjoy Kelly's book just a bit more.

1. She shares a little bit of her thought process and fun details about each project. I love to hear  more about how pages come together, and she does that quite frequently in her book along with a short "how to" section. Liz Kartchner does do a step by step tutorial for each project, but it lacks the background information that makes reading the book much more interesting.

2. I also love the chapter topics in Kelly's book. She covers mini books, stamps, sketches, all About You, finding inspiration, favorite things and techniques, plus project life. And each chapter is really well done in my opinion.

The one thing that did set Elizabeth's book apart, is that she had a section in the back with projects from other scrapbookers. That was fun to see.

So if you have been eying either of these books, my vote goes for Kelly Purkey's book. I just found more inspiration for possible future projects in that one.

Have you bought or read any of the books in the series?

Also, for all of you mamas out there. I just started reading this book...
She also has a blog that you can see here. I am only one chapter in, but am enjoying it so far. Lots of fun memories resurfacing for me about the "good old days". When I was younger and life seemed simpler. The author makes a lot of good points. And truthfully, as with most "parenting books", I take it all in with a grain of salt. I don't think there is one right, perfect way to parent. But I will take all the help I can get :)

Funny story though. I had the book sitting on the bathroom counter because I like to read a few pages of a book while I brush my teeth. I was laying down with Erin reading her a bedtime story when I heard Evan's voice from the bathroom. "Mom! I can't believe you are reading a book called "Mean Moms Rule". He was just so shocked by the title it was hilarious. I told him that it was a mom being funny, but also giving good advice about being a parent. He seemed to accept that and moved on. :)

I hope you all have a great weekend! See you next week :)


  1. Thank you for the reviews, Mary Jo! Kelly's book sounds great and I may try to track it down. Is there a specific place to buy books in this series? Have a great weekend!

    1. I actually got my copies through my friend who has a Facebook group scrapbook store called Scrap Happy Deals. Her name is Kim Holmes.
      But I know you can get them on the Northridge Publishing website through this link

      They have a digital version as well which is significantly cheaper. I am not sure if Hobby Lobby or Michael's is carrying them in which case you could use a coupon.

  2. I haven't read these books but been wanting to check out Kelly's book! And hehehehehe... I have to laugh at the title of the last one ... I call myself a 'mean mom' all the time ... I am really strict with my kids though :) lol :)

  3. I got the Kelly Purkey digital version. I did get the paper version of Amy Tan's ordered.

    Sounds like a great book! So funny about your son!

  4. Thanks for mentioning these books, I didn't know about either one! I'll have to look into the series. I'm cracking up about Evan, too funny!

    PS, hope both kiddos get to feeling better. This is Abie's second day home, fever, cough, etc. It's going around :)

  5. Thanks for the reviews I really enjoyed both books and love seeing how other people put their,projects together :)

  6. I hadn't heard about either one of these books before! They both look great, but now I am really excited to pick up the Kelly Purkey one!

    That is too funny about the Mean Moms book and Evan's reaction!

    Have a great weekend :)

  7. say the best things. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on each of these! :)

  8. Northridge puts together some great idea books. I have the online sub but haven't gotten around to these yet. Maybe this weekend???? :) Thanks for the review!

  9. These books are so expensive, do you think you are getting true value compared to what they already post in their blog and galleries that we see for free?

    1. Honestly, not with Elizabeth's book at all. And I would never pay full price. I would use a coupon or go through someone who could get me a discount. I love the work of both women, and so didn't mind taking a chance at the cheaper price. Now for Kelly's book, there is a lot packed inside. And it seems that she is not posting layouts as much on her blog or in galleries since leaving Studio Calico. So for me it was worth it. I am actually thinking of selling elizabeth's book, but keeping Kelly's. We will see.

  10. I have been thinking of buying these two books. Thanks so much for your review. x

  11. Thanks for the review on those books.
    I have never bought these types of books before, just magazines, but may keep an eye out to take a gander through ;)
    So cute what your son said, teehee.

  12. WOW!! Looks like some fun books thanks for the info on the two! I might need to get the kelly Purky one!
    I have not bought any in this series I have been buying Mixed Media and MM for magazines too.
    Have a wonderful weekend!

  13. Thanks for sharing your reviews on the books, really helpful!

  14. Thanks for the reviews! I was already planning to buy Kelly Purkey's book, but now I'm even more motivated to purchase it.