Tuesday, 9 April 2013
Hi guys, this is just a quick post to let you know I am having some seriously annoying Internet problems and can't get online at all at the moment. This is driving me completely insane and I want to tear my hair out. Anyhoo, I'm having to write this post in an Internet café, which is fun but not ideal! Hopefully everything will get fixed soon, and I'll be able to comment on your new posts and update Booked Up! more!
Friday, 5 April 2013
Published: March 5th 2013
Number of pages: 224
Source: Gifted from the publishers
If fate sent you an email, would you answer?
When teenage movie star Graham Larkin accidentally sends small town girl Ellie O'Neill an email about his pet pig, the two seventeen-year-olds strike up a witty and unforgettable correspondence, discussing everything under the sun, except for their names or backgrounds.
Then Graham finds out that Ellie's Maine hometown is the perfect location for his latest film, and he decides to take their relationship from online to in-person. But can a star as famous as Graham really start a relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie want to avoid the media's spotlight at all costs?
Practically everyone under the sun read or heard about the incredibly popular The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, the previous novel from Smith. Even though I never actually got round to reading it, I was well aware of the massive hype surrounding the book and the author. So when I received This Is What Happy Looks Like, and recognised the name of the author, I was so excited to discover what it is about Jennifer E. Smith that took the book-lovers world by storm.
Within the first page, the reader is introduced to two very different people, Ellie O'Neil and Graham Larkin. While Ellie is living in a tiny seaside town in the middle of nowhere, struggling with her mum to keep their business afloat, Graham is a rich, famous, and very gorgeous actor surrounded by admiring fans. The pair couldn't be more opposite. But when the two teenagers get chatting anonymously over email as a result of a wrong email address, they quickly become good friends who confide in each other like they do with nobody else. However, when the pair meet in reality, the long-term result is far from fairy tale and more like a disaster.
Ellie is the type of female lead that you just love instantly. She is cute, sweet, and truly an ordinary girl enjoying her small-town life and earning extra money in an adorable ice-cream shop with her best friend, Quinn. Ellie is also the most selfless character I've met in a long time. She cares deeply for her mum, and does all she can to support her after her father left when she was a child. When Ellie gets a Scholarship in a poetry course in Harvard, she doesn't even ask her mum to lend her any money, and instead accepts that she will have to give up the dream. I can't fault Ellie in any way at all. I loved the girl! Graham was less loveable, more likeable, unfortunately. He isn't the type of guy I swoon over, but he did stand up against the people who were controlling his life. Despite Graham not being my idea of a dreamy book boyfriend, him and Ellie were definitely the perfect couple and they brought out the best in each other.
Jennifer E. Smith's writing style is absolutely beautiful. Where a lot of authors don't manage to achieve this, Smith manages to write in a romantic way full of wonderfully sweet similes, but also keeps well away from the horrible, cringy and corny style that I can't stand. This author deserves a medal for that skill alone.
This is the type of book that, after reading the final line, leaves you with that wonderfully warm feeling in your stomach. My speech then became very limited for a while, and I seemed to be incapable of saying anything but "Awwwww!" after finishing this book. This Is What Happy Looks Like promises a light, deliciously romantic YA novel. While Smith's latest book definitely reached all of my expectations, a little more depth would have been nice. Still, This Is What Happy Looks Like definitely quenched my thirst for a fluffy afternoon read!
Wednesday, 3 April 2013
At this point, I don't think it's news to anyone that Google Reader will be shutting down in July, which is absolutely awful and makes me want to cry :'(
and, to make everything 100x worse, Google Friend Connect will (I assume, going by the rumours) be going down with it *sniffles*
|My face when I found out (perhaps a tiny exaggeration)|
I stopped sobbing my heart out when I heard about Bloglovin' , a site very similar to Google Reader. I have signed up to Bloglovin', and have actually found I prefer it to GR! So, if you are a follower of Booked Up! through GFC, and would still like to keep up with the new posts at Booked Up! feel free to:
Follow my blog with Bloglovin . . . y'know, only if you want to!
|What I did when I found Bloglovin' !|
Let me know if you've registered with Bloglovin' yet, so I can follow your blogs too!
Sunday, 31 March 2013
Today on Booked Up! I have the incredibly talented author, Sarah J. Maas, here for an interview. Most of you probably know Sarah is behind the phenomenally popular Throne of Glass, a book that created a massive hype. To have Sarah J. Maas here on Booked Up! is so exciting, and I really hope you all enjoy our interview!
Where did your inspiration to write the phenomenally popular Throne of Glass come from?
I got the idea when I was sixteen, actually! I was listening to the Cinderella score one night, and found the music when Cinderella flees the ball to be SUPER intense. So I thought that the music would fit better if Cinderella had done something like steal from the Prince. Or, worse: what if she was an assassin who had just tried to kill the Prince? And from there, all the other questions arose - who was this Cinderella assassin and where had she come from? Who sent her to kill the Prince? Why did they send her? And what would happen to her now? Thus, Celaenda Sardothien was born. Asking those questions made me realise there was a massive story to be told.
Nowadays, Throne of Glass has become more of an original epic fantasy than a Cinderella retelling, but you can still find a few nods to the legend here and there. But I'd say that my inspiration and motivation to write this story, to flesh out the world, always came down to my instantaneous love for Celaena.
Do any of the characters in your books have similar traits to yourself?
I'd say that most of them have a kernel of me - whether it's a quirk, a favorite food, a fault, etc. . . . But I don't particular find myself similar to any of them in a major way!
Do you have any advice for all of the aspiring writers out there?
Wednesday, 27 March 2013
Published: February 28th 2013
Publishers: HarperCollins Children's Books
Number of pages: 356
Source: For review
Harriet Manners knows a lot of things.
She knows that a cat has 32 muscles in each ear, a "jiffy" lasts 1/100th of a second, and the average person laughs 15 times per day. What she isn't quite so sure about is why nobody at school seems to like her very much. So when she's spotted by a top model agent, Harriet grabs the chance to reinvent herself. Even if it means stealing her Best Friend's dream, incurring the wrath of her arch enemy Alexa, and repeatedly humiliating herself in front of the impossibly handsome supermodel Nick. Even if it means lying to the people she loves.
As Harriet veers from one couture disaster to the next with the help of her overly enthusiastic father and her uber-geeky stalker, Toby, she begins to realise that the world of fashion doesn't seem to like her any more than the real world did.
And as her old life starts to fall apart, the question is: will Harriet be able to transform herself before she ruins everything?
Harriet Manners is the type of girl who is bursting with knowledge, spreading random facts where ever she goes. The type of girl who gets upset when the school is closed due to snow, while everybody else is celebrating. The type of girl who, generally, gets picked on and doesn't have many (or any) friends. We all know a girl like Harriet Manners. Many of us are, or have been, the girl like Harriet Manners. In Geek Girl we get to follow the life of this brainy, but also bullied, teen, as she transforms from know-it-all-nobody to one of the most important models in the country.
Wow. Wow. Wow. I have been so pleasantly surprised by this book, I don't even know how to think straight. Geek Girl blew me away with it's sheer amazing-ness! I don't really know how to write this review in a 'professional, readable' way, minus fangirling. So I'll start with exactly why this book is so perfect.
There is a countless amount of books in this genre, and after reading a lot of them, it's hard to find one that really stands out from the crowd. With Geek Girl, however, it is so different from the rest! I opened this book expecting something cute and light-hearted, but very similar to the other chick-lits I have been reading lately. I was thrilled to discover that this book is actually incredibly unique and, more importantly, memorable. Smale has brought us a book that is in a league of its own. I also found this novel to be truly, genuinely funny! Obviously there are a lot of funny books out there, but Geek Girl is the rare kind of hilarious that actually had me laughing out loud. There is a lot of witty, sarcastic banter between the characters, which I adored.
Every character in this book was well-developed, unique and had a vital role in the story. From Harriet's dedicated stalker Toby (also very much a geek) to her embarrassing parents. Despite not thinking much of the 'impossibly handsome Nick', I found that I loved this book anyway. If anything, it was actually refreshing to have a break from the heavy romances I've been reading lately.
I actually really enjoyed learning some new Geeky facts from Harriet. Every few minutes my brother and I would have lovely conversation that would go like this: "Hey Samuel, did you know that when you sneeze, every bodily function stops, including your heart?" "I don't care..." "Also, did you know that a Hummingbird's heart beats 1,260 times per minute?" "Again, I don't care..." "Cool. But did you know that in the old days, the word 'geek' was used to describe a carnival performer who bit the head off a live chicken as part of their stage act?!" Then he would continue to play on his Xbox and just tune me out. My facts are wasted on him. But you get my point.
I'm not really the kind of reader who enjoys books packed full of 'life morals' and messages. However, Geek Girl is my exception. In this book, Smale has stressed just how important it is to be who we are, and change for absolutely no one, for no reason. I think that many readers will gain something from reading this, especially if they have been bullied or teased in the past for the kind of person they are.
Geek Girl is one of those books that you read in record time, but you also want to never finish. After devouring book one in this new series, I was desperate to start book two (which won't be out for a while yet, sadly!) If you are looking for an absolutely adorable chick-lit to cuddle up with in the evening, I couldn't recommend Geek Girl enough.
Sunday, 24 March 2013
Showcase Sunday is a very popular meme hosted by Books, Biscuits and Tea where us book bloggers can showcase the recent books we've managed to snag!
My Showcase Sunday this week is full of only ebooks. This is because I just got my new Kindle, Monty, and have been gotten a bit...ahem...friendly with NetGalley recently.