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Confessions of a Part-time Sorceress: A…

Confessions of a Part-time Sorceress: A Girl's Guide to the D&D Game…

by Shelly Mazzanoble

Other authors: Craig Phillips (Cover artist)

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As my husband and I are jumping into the D&D games (accompanied by my best friend and her boyfriend), I figured this would be an excellent intro for me to the game. Mostly, it was. Mazzanoble does a fine job of explaining D&D vernacular and slang, giving advice on weapons, class, fighting and interactions with team members. The writing was humorous at points, even earning an out-loud chuckle a few times. My qualm with the book is two fold, however. 1. The endless pop-culture reference got old. fast. The constant barrage of girly-girl nonsense (Prada-this, Oprah-that, Pedicure-this, High Heels-that) was funny the first few times, but by the second and third chapter, I was done. I wanted more information about the game and less omg-my-magic-boots-are-jimmy-choos! 2. While she breaks the stereotypes for D&D players, she simultaneously builds them for girls! Not every girl is going to interrupt the DM to ask about shopping or bring low-fat granola or whatever. I felt this book had a very narrow target audience, and wasn't for all girls or ever most girls, but a small sliver of girls - the ones who wear Jimmy Choo shoes. For my part, I will recommend it to new girl D&D players, but I will give it a disclaimer due to these 2 facts. ( )
  empress8411 | Apr 2, 2014 |
Those of us already in the hobby, having dealt with the scorn of our peers, rarely think about how those outside gaming view our obsession. So it's refreshing to have a complete outsider, someone who never considered playing an RPG, being brought into our fold. We get to see the viewpoint someone very different from most gamers. Not as funny as intended, but certainly informative. ( )
  BruceCoulson | Mar 25, 2014 |
I just picked up D&D (Well, to be specific, I picked up Pathfinder which is equivalent to 3.5 rules blah blah blah) after years of wanting to. My boyfriend bought this book for me, since I am also a part-time Sorceress, and I haven't laughed so hard in awhile.

While I am significantly less girly than Miss Mazzanoble, I could relate to a lot of what she was saying. I was blessed to grow up without thinking that D&D was a boys' club that met in basements, but I know the stereotypes that still linger about. Luckily, I found the only DM in existence than hates Doritos are much as I do.

I think this is an excellent way to break the ice about RPGs, especially to those girls who do think that D&D (and the like) would be a "boys only" sort of thing. I've already given this to the girl that introduced me to Pathfinder, but the rest of our all-girl group (minus our lovely DM, who has the unfortunate job of trying to keep us focused), and so far, it's been a hit.

Definitely keeping an eye out for anything else Miss Mazzanoble writes. ( )
  SlySionnach | Jul 5, 2011 |
Summary: Shelly Mazzanoble's only knowledge of the role-playing game Dungeons & Dragons were the pervasive stereotypes: D&D is only played by overweight, pimply, Cheeto-dust-encrusted adolescent boys that live in their mother's basements. So imagine her surprise when she was invited to play by a co-worker... and her shock when she found herself enjoying it. In this book, Shelly relives her fledgling days as a gamer as a means of introducing newcomers to the basics of D&D: everything from creating a character, supplying your character with weapons and magic, going on adventures, and engaging in battles with the baddies.

Review: I am, without question, a nerd. (Or a geek; I'm not going to argue the distinction here.) I like nerdy things. I hang out with other nerdy people, and we spend our time doing nerdy things and making nerdy jokes. However, one of the gaping holes in my nerd-dom is role-playing games. I have been aware of their existence at least since high school, but never in all of that time have I gotten into an RPG... nor have I even been tempted to do so, despite the fact that many of my friends are avid gamers. And, while Mazzanoble's book didn't immediately make me run out to buy my own set of dice, I am now at least entertaining the notion of joining a game.

Which is pretty impressive, given that I'm about as far from the target audience of this book as I think you can be and still have two X chromosomes. While I am without question a nerd, I am also without question NOT a girly-girl. I dislike shopping (unless it's for books), my daily makeup routine consists of Chapstick, and I wouldn't be able to identify a pair of Jimmy Choos if one of them kicked me in the face. So, all of Mazzanoble's efforts to convince girly-girls that D&D is really all about teamwork and gossip and shopping was wasted effort, and a lot of her jokes really fell flat with me. (Also, her character Astrid struck me as kind of obnoxious, and I'm a little surprised only one of her fellow players was tempted to abandon her in a dungeon somewhere.)

On the other hand, the descriptions of her gaming group's sessions seemed like a lot of fun, and something I could see myself participating in. Since I've never actually played, I can't say how effective or complete it is as a guide to D&D, but now I at least have a basic sense of the way the game is structured and played. All in all, it was a quick and light read, and funny when it wasn't trying too hard. 3.5 out of 5 stars.

Recommendation: I think I would recommend this most for experienced gamers... to give to women they want to introduce to gaming. ( )
2 vote fyrefly98 | Jul 15, 2010 |
As a girl who had never played D&D, I found this a very informitive and helpful book. I feel confident that I would be able to join a game and keep up. This book follows Shelly's journey of learning the game, making a character, and trying to find her place within her D&D group. I found her maternial instinct towards her character Astrid humorous, even though I have the same feelings towards my character Caelynna :) For any girl who wants to try and learn the game for her boyfriend, husband, or just for herself, I would recommend giving this book a try. ( )
  jhughes84 | Jun 3, 2010 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Shelly Mazzanobleprimary authorall editionscalculated
Phillips, CraigCover artistsecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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Let me just lay it out here: I am a girly girl.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0786947268, Paperback)

Most Dungeons & Dragons game players are men, yet storytelling and roleplaying come so naturally to women. So where are all the female gamers? The answer is - everywhere!

Confessions of a Part-time Sorceress is a smart, humorous examination of the Dungeons & Dragons roleplaying game from a female gamer's point of view. The book delves into the myths and realities of gamer stereotypes. It explains how to build a character for a D&D game, how to shop for gear, how to play, and how to find the perfect gaming group, all the while exploring the things that make the D&D game a rewarding and recurring social experience for both men and women.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:00:18 -0400)

Delves into the basics of the popular role-playing game, explaining how to create a character and how to play, in a book that takes a light-hearted look at the myths and realities of gamer stereotypes.

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