Reviewed by Christine Oka, Research & Instruction Services, Snell Library, Northeastern University
Naturally, Danny Seo joins the ranks of such eponymous lifestyle magazines as Dr. Oz: The Good Life, Martha Stewart Living, and O: The Oprah Magazine, but with a difference. According to the contract he signed with Harris Publications, Danny Seo, environmental lifestyle expert, is not featured on the cover of the magazine that bears his name. In a recent interview, he declared, “I have no interest in being famous. I am interested in creating a brand.” That brand encompasses best-selling books, television programs, a syndicated column, and Danny Seo Media Ventures, a multimedia lifestyle company. The physical magazine mirrors Seo’s commitment to sustainability and living well; it is printed on archival quality paper made from 100% post-consumer recycled pulp, manufactured with eco-friendly, wind-source alternative energy.
Naturally readers have the “tactile experience of reading a magazine on fine paper,” with the option to experience enhanced content by using the paper manufacturer’s augmented reality mobile app, Mohawk Live, a merging of print and digital formats. The Welcome in the premier issue expresses the hope it “will inspire you to embrace a lifestyle that’s simpler and more real—it’s good for you, good for the planet, and just an outright fun way of living.”
Some of the fun includes decorating and entertaining, such as using inexpensive flowers to decorate in a festive, extravagant way, and upcycling junk and clutter into toys or home accessories. Healthy food choices are beautifully photographed. For example, there are eye-pleasing photos of the top 12 juices and smoothies, along with short descriptions of why they are good for you, frozen fruit treats, and “Good to the Last Drop” recipes using what’s left in the bottom of a jar to make marinades, sauces and salad dressings. That stubborn bit of peanut butter stuck in the bottom of the jar can be the base for spicy peanut sauce—just add the other ingredients to the jar and shake!
The Travel section covers the exotic: the article “Out of Africa” documents Danny Seo’s project to develop his perfume line while showcasing the natural beauty of Africa in the Nairobi and on game reserves. It was surprising to learn Sand River Camp on the reserve has tents “with plush beds, gorgeous furniture and bathrooms with hot running water thanks to solar-powered heaters.” But the issue balances the excitement with an eat + shop + relax trip to “Oooh. . . Ojai” in California.
As Founding Editor-in-Chief, Danny Seo writes the Editor’s Letter, and the regular feature, “Do Just One Thing” which includes “naturally easy” tips culled from his syndicated column. His brand keeps the focus on eco-friendliness, fun, and a healthy (food for you) lifestyle.
Recommended for public libraries. Note well -- the publisher has reported a very successful rollout—two issues were published in 2014, with plans to publish quarterly in 2015, and six times a year in 2016.