Tag: 3 Days, 3 Quotes (Take 4) | Day 3

I was tagged by Raya for another round of 3 Days, 3 Quotes! I always love sharing my favorite quotes, so I’m really excited to do this tag again!


If you’re interested, you can see the previous quotes I’ve shared here:

Take 1: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3
Take 2: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3
Take 3: Day 1 | Day 2 | Day 3
Take 4: Day 1 | Day 2


I believe in love at first sight. Fate, the universe, all of it. But not how you’re thinking. I don’t mean it in the our souls were split and you’re my other half forever and ever sort of way. I just think you’re meant to meet some people. I think the universe nudges them into your path.

What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera


Since this is my fourth time doing this tag, I’m not going to nominate anyone, but if you’d like to share some quotes, please consider yourself tagged and link back to me so I can see your choices! ❤

Book review: What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera

What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera
Rating: ★★★★★
Links: AmazonTBD • Goodreads
Publication Date: October 9, 2018
Source: Purchased

Arthur is only in New York for the summer, but if Broadway has taught him anything, it’s that the universe can deliver a showstopping romance when you least expect it.

Ben thinks the universe needs to mind its business. If the universe had his back, he wouldn’t be on his way to the post office carrying a box of his ex-boyfriend’s things.

But when Arthur and Ben meet-cute at the post office, what exactly does the universe have in store for them?

Maybe nothing. After all, they get separated.

Maybe everything. After all, they get reunited.

But what if they can’t quite nail a first date . . . or a second first date . . . or a third?

What if Arthur tries too hard to make it work . . . and Ben doesn’t try hard enough?

What if life really isn’t like a Broadway play?

But what if it is?

It means it’s seven thirty on a Saturday night, and I’m four stops away from the first act of my love story.

In case you hadn’t noticed, I have been screaming about this book for the last… year, maybe? As soon as it was announced, I knew I would love it. I was even more convinced when I read the synopsis and saw the cover. It showed up at my house and I immediately locked myself in my bedroom and started reading. I wish I could’ve just read straight through, but ugh, work. 🙄

I don’t even know where to start because I just loved this book so much.

  • I loved Arthur. I want him to be my best friend and go to musicals with me.
  • I loved Ben. I want him to be my other best friend and go to Lorde concerts with me.
  • I loved Arthur and Ben together. They were so cute. SO CUTE. I am almost crying right now thinking about how much I love them.

There were so many things that happened in this book that I related to.

  • “Who is he? Name. Address. Social security number. Twitter and Instagram handles.” ACTUALLY ME WHEN MY FRIEND MEETS SOMEONE, OKAY? ACTUALLY ME. (Also my friends when I’m hanging out with someone new.)
  • “Just write a post that describes the moment, like, Hey, we met at the post office and made out inside a mailbox, so on and so forth.” ALSO ACTUALLY ME WITH THE EXAGGERATIONS, I CAN’T HANDLE IT.
  • ARTHUR’S DAD’S POP CULTURE REFERENCES!! MY SO-CALLED LIFE! THE BREAKFAST CLUB! ACTUALLY ME!!!
  • He flings his arms around me before I can say hello, and now he’s just standing here hugging me like a cobra. THE MOST ME SENTENCE I HAVE EVER READ IN MY LIFE, THIS IS ME IN ONE LINE

Honestly, I have 29 quotes flagged in this book and I could keep going, but I’m going to stop now. Well, almost. Can I also say that I really want to read Ben’s book? I need it in my life. Can Becky and Adam publish that next, please??

Anyway, in summary:
Five stars 🌟🌟🌟🌟🌟
Five hearts ❤❤❤❤❤
Five sobbing emojis 😭😭😭😭😭

I loved this book so much.

#mm18: new or old

Have you read What If It’s Us?
What am I supposed to do with my life now that I’ve finally read it?
Let’s talk in the comments!


Find me all over the internet: Goodreads | Twitter | Bloglovin’

Book review: Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli

Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli
Series: Creekwood #2
Rating: ★★★★☆
Links: Amazon • Goodreads • TBD
Publication Date: April 24, 2018
Source: Purchased

Leah Burke—girl-band drummer, master of deadpan, and Simon Spier’s best friend from the award-winning Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda—takes center stage in this novel of first love and senior-year angst.

When it comes to drumming, Leah Burke is usually on beat—but real life isn’t always so rhythmic. An anomaly in her friend group, she’s the only child of a young, single mom, and her life is decidedly less privileged. She loves to draw but is too self-conscious to show it. And even though her mom knows she’s bisexual, she hasn’t mustered the courage to tell her friends—not even her openly gay BFF, Simon.

So Leah really doesn’t know what to do when her rock-solid friend group starts to fracture in unexpected ways. With prom and college on the horizon, tensions are running high. It’s hard for Leah to strike the right note while the people she loves are fighting—especially when she realizes she might love one of them more than she ever intended.

This isn’t the book I was planning to read for my final #killingthetbr selection this month. I was going to do yet another borderline erotic novel, but then I thought… I have been hating those books lately. I’d much rather read a fluffy YA contemporary. I searched through my shelves for something that I’d purchased more than three months ago that seemed like it would fit and came up with Leah on the Offbeat. I actually bought this book way more than five months ago because of a preorder incentive, but it’s been on my physical shelf since April.

I don’t know why I waited so long to read this.

I was a little nervous that I would dislike Leah. After all, I’ve read countless reviews that talked about how awful she is. And is she awful? I mean, sometimes. But what high school senior isn’t awful sometimes? Isn’t that kind of a trademark of being a teenager? It’s not like I’m going to be breaking down any doors to be Leah’s best friend, but I understood her.

The characters from Simon are all present and accounted for in Leah. I still love Simon and wish that I could have been best friends with him when I was in high school. I was so happy to see that his relationship is still as adorable as ever. Aside from Leah and Simon, we see a lot of Abby (who I liked more in Leah than I did in Simon), Nick (who is actually awful??), and Nora (who is the best). The thing that disappointed me was that Simon has to be the cutest, fluffiest, most adorable YA novel I’ve ever read that still manages to tackle some tough subjects and that’s what I was expecting from Leah. Unfortunately, that’s not what I got.

Leah is a good book in its own way. I liked that Leah’s mom was a fairly big part of the book, because absent parents in YA drive me crazy. I really related to Leah’s struggles with her mom starting to date someone new since that’s something I went through when I was in high school. I’m a little freaked out by the fact that Leah’s mom is only seven years older than me, but I suppose there are people I went to school with who have ten-year-olds, so it’s not actually unbelievable.

Aside from the single parent aspect, Leah also tackles bisexuality and racism. Now, I can’t really tell you if the bisexual representation is accurate or not, but I did appreciate Leah’s rant about someone who referred to themselves as “lowkey bi.” I also appreciated Leah not backing down when one of her friends made a horribly racist comment. That was such a great message to send and I don’t think I’ve actually seen a review that addressed it yet.

But despite all of those positives, I just felt like something that made Simon amazing was missing from Leah. What specifically that was, I have no idea. I still think this was a great book and I would absolutely recommend it if you’re in a YA contemporary mood.

You can really never go wrong with Becky Albertalli.

#killingthetbr: 5 months on shelf


Have you read Leah on the Offbeat? What did you think?
Let’s talk in the comments!


Find me all over the internet: Goodreads | Twitter | Bloglovin’

Book review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli [re-read]

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Rating: ★★★★☆
Links: AmazonGoodreads
Publication Date: April 7, 2015
Source: Purchased

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

 

I hate (and I mean hate) re-reading books, but it’s something I used to do a lot when I was younger.

In elementary school, I think I re-read the same three or four Royal Diaries until my school’s librarian was like, “Sara, maybe check out something else for a change.”  In middle school, I switched over to Tamora Pierce and honestly, I probably read each of her books at least five times.  For the most part, I stopped re-reading by the time I was in high school.  I think it was around that time that I realized just how many books there were that I hadn’t read yet. I realized that the books I could read weren’t just limited to what I could find in my library or in the tiny bookshop downtown.  I also got my first debit card and realized I could buy totally new books online with my babysitting money.  The only books I re-read these days are my nephew’s storybooks. I’ll never stop appeasing him by reading it “just one more time.”

But sometimes, my yearly reading challenge will insist that I re-read a book.  Unfortunately, I don’t think reading the same board book sixteen times in one night counts.  If I’m being perfectly honest, I don’t understand the point of this prompt.  I think this is the third year that I’ve been asked to re-read a book, and I always leave it until the very end of the year because there are just so many other books that I could be reading.

Obviously, it would be better to re-read a book that I loved.  The problem with that is that most of the books I’ve loved are part of a series, and what, I’m just going to re-read one of the books?  No, once I get going, I’ll be in a ten-book rabbit hole and there goes a month of my life.  I’d initially chosen a cute, summery book that I planned to read in August, but then life got in the way.  So, in honor of Love, Simon, I decided to re-read Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda.  You can see my first review here.

I liked Simon vs. the first time around. The second time around?  I loved it.  Has Simon always been this goofy kid who stumbles through life not really knowing what to do with himself?  I mean, I suppose so, but he’s just so much more endearing than I remembered.

Another thing that was just more than I remembered was the whole blackmail aspect. In the two years since I first read this book, I had almost completely forgotten about it.  Talk about a conflict.  And Simon’s reaction!  And the eventual way that it all turns out.

And the romance.  First of all, it’s even more adorable than I remembered, and – I can’t believe I’m admitting this – I’m glad I re-read this book so that I could see all the little hints about Blue’s identity.  I’m so curious about how this is all going to play out on the big screen, and I couldn’t help but picture the actors as I was reading.

I never thought I’d say it, but this is one book that I could see myself reading over and over again.

As a side note, don’t you think everyone should have to come out? Why is straight the default? Everyone should have to declare one way or another, and it should be this big awkward thing whether you’re straight, gay, bi, or whatever. I’m just saying.

Final rating: ★★★★★

#mmdreading: a book you’ve already read

Book review: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

Goodreads   Amazon

When Molly Peskin-Suso crushes, she crushes hard, and she never ever makes the first move.  It doesn’t matter how many times her twin sister Cassie tells her to put herself out there, Molly keeps her crushes firmly under wraps.  It doesn’t matter that she’s had twenty-six official crushes.  That’s twenty-six chances at rejection, and Molly’s not up for that.

When Cassie starts dating a cute new girl named Mina, Molly’s world changes.  She’s no longer the most important person in Cassie’s life.  Maybe if she starts hanging out with Mina’s cute, hipster friend Will, she’ll be able to see Cassie more often.  Even though Will is the perfect boy to crush on, Molly finds herself thinking more about her awkward, nerdy co-worker, Reid.  But Reid doesn’t get her closer to Cassie, and would her friends approve?

I was a little nervous going into The Upside of Unrequited, mostly because I just really, really loved Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda. And when I really, really love an author’s first book, sometimes I set my hopes too high for the second one. But I needn’t have worried because this book was great.  It was so relatable and took me right back to my teenage years when I was something of a Molly Peskin-Suso.

This is also how you do representation.  There are no token characters.  Every character has their place and their plotline and their own personality.  They just so happen to very diverse.  Molly has two moms, her sister Cassie is gay, and Cassie’s love interest, Mina, is self-described as pansexual. Molly and Reid are both Jewish. One of Molly’s moms is black and Mina is Korean. Molly also has anxiety, is on Zoloft, and talks about how going to parties can be difficult since she can’t mix alcohol with her meds. Oh, and Molly is also overweight and struggles with self-esteem, and actually talks about how the concept of dating is different for her than it is for Cassie, who is thin and confident.

Now, it’s not like this book is perfect.  I had my fair share of issues with it, mostly in the form of characters who refused to communicate.  Let’s all just passive-aggressively text each other with strategically placed periods and not have an actual conversation! Let’s go hang out with other people to make our crushes jealous!  I may not have liked it, but it’s sure realistic.  Anybody who says they’ve never sent a passive aggressive text is lying.

I wish I could have read a book like this when I was Cassie’s age.  YA has come so far in the last decade and I am so happy that the next generation gets to see characters that look familiar and sound familiar and have familiar struggles.  I’ve seen reviews bashing this book for its anti-feminist message, but I think those people are ignoring an important point: that even if you’re a feminist, you can still feel like the last single person alive when all of your friends have paired off and you’re just sitting in the corner with your cookie dough and your Pinterest.  There is nothing anti-feminist about wanting to feel loved and appreciated and attractive, and when your friends are going around having sex and you’ve yet to be kissed, it’s very hard to feel those things. This book is honest, and the honest truth is that we can’t all be perfect all the time.  Sometimes, we wallow in the fact that we’re single, and that’s okay.  It doesn’t mean that we need a man to complete us, it just means that we’re feeling lonely.

I would highly recommend The Upside of Unrequited to anybody who has struggled with their weight or their self-esteem or anxiety.  This is an amazing book that I’m so happy to have had the chance to read.

Final rating: ★★★★☆

Book review: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Rating: ★★★★☆
Links: AmazonGoodreads
Publication Date: April 7, 2015
Source: Purchased

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

I read this book, in its entirety, on November 28, 2015. As of January 2016, I have still not reviewed it. I think this is because I want to do this book justice in my review, but I’m not really sure how. I really, really enjoyed this book. I’m glad that I read it, and I think that most people would enjoy it, too. But how to articulate what’s great about this book? That’s just stumping me.

Because what’s great is Simon, and how so many people can relate to him.

What’s great is the friendships in this book, because they’re real.

What’s great is how nobody’s perfect, and all the characters accept that.

What’s great is the romance, which builds mostly through anonymous emails.

What’s great is that this book is so honest and realistic.

In this book, you’re not going to find boys who look like they just stepped off a runway. You’re not going to get characters who, as teenagers, have the kind of eloquent conversations that most adults can only dream of. You’re not going to find perfect, angelic characters who always know the right thing to do and say at the exact right moment.

You’re going to get teenagers. Normal teenagers, who fight with their friends and overreact and do stupid things. But teenagers who also learn to accept things outside of their norm, and learn great life lessons.

This book is fun to read, that’s for sure. But it’s also an important book, because it deals with issues of sexuality and race without shoving it in the reader’s face. I’ve added Becky Albertalli to my list of authors to watch.