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Get to know Josie!

This week, we welcome a new member to our team! Josie Deacon is the latest cub to join our pack and you'll be getting to know her well while she manages our social media! Want to know more about Josie? Keep reading!

We asked Josie a little bit about her and how she came to end up at Dancing Bear Books!

I grew up in Inverness - very close to Nessie and Loch Ness - and spent a lot of my childhood, nose in a book. My favourite kind of books were always ones taken place in either far off worlds with epic quests, or places closer to home but with more magic than we have. I’m a Pisces which basically means I’m soppy, romantic, and dreamy, which translates into my favourite type of books: ones with a strong romance. The more angst the better. Pirates have always been a favourite of mine too.

I went to uni in Northumbria (where I met Lucy) to study Drama and Scriptwriting. After uni I moved to Edinburgh (where I met my cat Twiggy) to work in administration and later on digital media management and marketing. When I’m not reading I’m probably trying to write, playing video games, or playing Dungeons and Dragons (through which I met Kristel!).

This is a small section of Josie's ever-growing bookshelf

We also asked her about her favourite book - as with all bookish people, this one took a long time to answer! THERE ARE SO MANY BOOKS!

That is really really hard. My favourite bookS are probably:

  • Classic: Emma by Jane Austen. I love how silly and clueless Emma is (hey guess that's why they named the modern re-telling of it Clueless!) and I also love the type of romance where the person was there all along right under their nose and THEY DIDN’T EVEN REALISE THEY LOVED THEM UNTIL THEY THINK ALL IS LOST BUT ACTUALLY ALL IS NOT LOST AND IT’S FINE AND HAPPILY EVER AFTER!

  • YA: A Gathering of Shadows by V E Schwab. This is the second in the Shades of Magic series and the reason I love it is because…PIRATES. I love this whole series because I absolutely love the personality of the characters, especially Lila Bard, and the relationships between them. I love the magic in these worlds (there are four) and the plot is thrilling. I couldn’t put them down.

  • Adult Fantasy: This is my favourite genre so this is hard, but I think my favourite might be The Finale Empire by Brandon Sanderson. The rules of magic in this is inspired and original. I absolutely fell in love with every single character and my heart ached for them. Also love the angsty relationship between two of the characters because, again, Pisces. These books are massive but I read them within a week.

I’ll probably kick myself later for missing out an obvious book but that’s three of my all time favourites!

More of her sensational collection!

We also wanted to know how she organised her bookshelf....

I organise it the classic way - alphabetical by author. Cause that’s how it is in a bookshop/library and I dunno…it would feel weird to me to do it any other way. Makes it easier to find a book too. Within authors I always group series together in the correct order but my boyfriend takes it a step further: within an author all books are in order of publishing date.

My to read book case is not alphabetical and is usually a mess but sometimes I do it by colour and sometimes by genre!

Here is Josie's favourite book meme!

Another important question, we asked who Josie's favourite Author is!

It’s probably V.E. Schwab. She has a wide range of books and sometimes I find them in the fantasy section and sometimes in the YA section. They seemed to always not know how to categorise her. I think she writes characters brilliantly. They are always incredibly loveable and so very real. They are the type of characters you carry with you.

Favourite Bookshop?

I always love independent bookshops. The staff seem to have more time to help you with book recommendations and they are more laidback. Edinburgh has a fantastic array of independent bookshops, The Edinburgh Bookshop, Golden Hare, Portobello Bookshop, Typewronger, Transreal (a purely sci-fi and fantasy bookshop!) and I have probably missed out many more. But my favourite is Lighthouse books - the radical bookshop. They are always hosting fantastic events and they do what they preach.

Josie let us know which bookish places she's visited and loved!

Bath! Visiting the city where Jane Austen walked and wrote was magical. It’s a beautiful city - like Edinburgh but smaller and cleaner. I visited the Jane Austen museum, lots of little bookshops, georgian houses, and the Roman baths. It was fascinating to go back in history and imagine yourself walking in the footsteps of one of the world’s greatest authors.

One last question: Josie, Why are you excited to join the DBB team?

I’ve always dreamed to work in publishing but never known how to get involved! I watched Dancing Bear Books from the beginning (without at first realising that it was my friends Lucy and Kristel behind it all!) and I know this press will go so far because of the hard work these two accomplished women put in, and because the values of this organisation is something much needed in this day and age! I am so excited to help the team spread the word about the fantastic project and help get all these fantastically talented and diverse voices out there!