I think we all know by now that I tend to exaggerate quite a lot, and my mom will certainly attest to this… seeing how I made her out to be a closet alcoholic and all when I was 5. Yeah. Maybe not mini-Chinie’s finest moment. My poor mom. I saw her have ONE drink…
And for some bizarre reason my five year old brain processed this scene and filed it as SUPER COOL. So cool, in fact, that I felt the need to brag about it to a bunch of her friends when she least expected it.
Mortifying. Well, for her, of course. Hilarious for me! Even ‘til today, almost 40 years later! It’s like my favorite family joke.
It’s extra funny because my mom really doesn’t drink much at all. I mean she’ll have wine with a meal and stuff like that, but I’m pretty sure she can finger-count the number of times she actually got drunk in her life.
So Mom = Alcoholic (and sometimes even Bootlegger) never gets old, as far as I’m concerned. She doesn’t even have to actually be drinking, it’s enough that she’s photographed near some form of alcohol.
Hilarious, I tell you. (Again, for me. For her, probably not so much).
Anyway my friend DJ posted this link today to a Bored Panda article showing the 40 worst book covers and titles ever, and OMG. I found my mom’s revenge.
Here you go, Mom. Feel free to hit me with this every time I try to out you again. :)
Oh, and relax — it’s not a real book. Cheers! :)
Woohoo! Weekend! I have so many exciting things planned! Okay, I’m totally lying. I think we all know what I’ll be up to.
Well, I’ll probably be doing some other stuff because my husband will likely drag me somewhere, but the bulk of my weekend is really reserved for reading. Because I have a challenge to win…
..and really - whether you’re a Kindleworm like me or one of those hardcore, old school paper book people, nothing beats a good book.
I must say for the record, though, that despite this infographic, I really don’t get people who prefer paper books to e-readers.
What’s the thrill? They’re so bulky and heavy! And what is this “book smell” paper-book-readers always speak of so dreamily? That’s just dust and DEAD TREES, man. :)
But well, to each his/her own, I guess. Anyhoo, if you’re looking for something to read this weekend, here are some pretty good picks from my recent reads.
Note: Please bear in mind that I don’t read anything that is too complicated. Neither do I read SAD or war-type or overly violent or soul-crushing books. Because I read to relax, and I find reading to be a great escape, and I just don’t think it makes any sense to escape into a world that is MORE STRESSFUL AND/OR MISERABLE than your own. So there. If you want more highbrow reading, please look elsewhere. :)
Non- Fiction: Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh
I’m pretty sure I’ve mentioned Allie’s blog a couple of times before, because I ADORE HER. I think she’s one of the funniest people on the Internet. So it was pretty much a given that I’d snatch this up ASAP and love it to pieces. It’s just like the blog — in fact some of the chapters are directly lifted from the blog - so if the blog makes you LOL, then the book will too.
I’ll admit I could’ve done without a couple of the chapters, but it’s more hit than miss, and I like that you can put it down and pick it up again whenever you have time or want a good giggle. So yeah, go grab it. It’s a keeper.
I almost abandoned this book early on despite the fact that I’m a pretty creepy Neil Gaiman fan…
.. because GAH! It seemed kind of sad! Come on!! It starts with the kid hero’s birthday party — which NO ONE ATTENDS?? Crap, man. I hate that kind of shiz. If you read my post about Bob and the Tide commercial, you’ll know this. Sad kids kill me!
But I read on anyway because Neil Gaiman’s writing is just so… delicious and lyrical and mind-bending, and I immediately got sucked into the story. It’s fascinating and somewhat terrifying, and yes, a little sad but also heroic and hopeful and omg… just read it already.
New Adult: On Dublin Street series by Samantha Young
I’ve already mentioned my love-hate relationship with new adult novels before. They’re like the bad boys they usually feature — I can’t stand most of them, but I can’t for the life of me stay away from them.
This particular series by Samantha Young is pretty good though, with all the elements that make NA so gripping (hot alpha male/man-ho, steamy sexytimes, gut-wrenching angst, etc) but just the right amounts without going over the top.
I also like that all the books are connected, but can easily stand alone. I actually read the 3rd one (Before Jamaica Lane) first, then just went backwards to read the others because I wanted to find out how everyone else in the gang got together.
Aaand that’s it for now. As always, if you have any good book recommendations, bring ‘em on! I’m particularly interested in funny and/or squee-worthy stories.
Happy reading and resting, friends!
I spent the entire weekend in bed, which probably sounds disgusting, but I’m not even a little bit ashamed. I was pretty sick, so I have an excuse, but even if I hadn’t been sick I would’ve probably done the same. Because I’m a SLOTH like that.
Anyway I read 6 or 7 books, all of them pretty good…
But I think my fave of the weekend was Frigid by J. Lynn.
And not just because I like anything Jennifer Armentrout (a.k.a. J. Lynn) writes, but also because I JUST LOVE IT when best friends fall in love with each other. It’s so my new favorite storyline. (Yes, I’m kind of over the whole rock star thing.)
So okay, you can read the synopsis over at Amazon, but here’s the gist of the story:
Totally enjoyed it, I must say, so go read it. (Well, unless you’re like, under 18 because it’s another of those New Adult books with supersteamy scenes.)
And then this morning I read about this new blog called Forty Days of Dating. (Here’s the video. Tbh I don’t get it — but maybe that’s because I stopped watching when the RATS came out. Because RATS!! Gross. How they weren’t flailing their arms around and shrieking in terror, I have no idea.)
Two good friends with opposite relationship problems found themselves single at the same time. Tim is afraid of commitment, often dating many girls at once, and he’s losing sight of what a healthy relationship means. Jessica is a hopeless romantic, jumping into relationships too quickly, always looking to find “the one.”
It’s been said that it takes 40 days to change a bad habit. In an attempt to explore and hopefully overcome their fears and inadequacies, Tim and Jessica will go through the motions of a relationship for the next 40 days: the commitment, time, companionship, joys and frustrations. Can they help each other, or will they fall into their same habits? Will they damage their friendship? What if they fall in love?
OMG. Doesn’t it just sound like a real-life rom-com? I’m so reading that blog tonight. And given my “BFFs in love are the bestest thing EVAR!" gushing earlier in this post, I think we all know where I want this experiment to go.
Will they? Only time will tell, I guess… but COME ON. Don’t tell me they didn’t already like each other a little bit when they decided to date for forty days, right?
Anyway it got me wondering — is it even possible for a guy and a girl to be just BFFs and NOT get together? Or at the very least not seriously wonder and want to explore the possibility of being together?
Honestly, I don’t think so.
Please note, it’s highly possible that I just think this way because I’ve been there and done that in the past. Aaaand kind of ruined a perfectly wonderful opposite-sex best friendship in the process..
So yeah, I could be biased.
What do YOU think? I’m really curious.
The thing is, I think that when you’re best friends with someone of the opposite sex, it becomes way too easy to progress into something more. You already love each other. You’re exclusive, in a way. You’re committed to your relationship. You support each other. You’re pretty intimate with each other, if not physically then at least mentally and spiritually.
If you think about it, it’s almost like a marriage… minus the sexytimes. Which is why I think the romantic and/or physical elements (or thoughts of them — and the emotions that come along with that) inevitably become a question mark or confusion-causer at some point.
Am I wrong here? Has anyone ever had an opposite-sex BFF that they just NEVER thought of that way?
If you just raised your hand and said “ME! ME!” - here’s my response…
… but like I said, I’m biased, so don’t mind me. :)
I’ll be the first to admit that having friends of the opposite sex is great (and necessary!). But when you elevate one to Best Friend status, I just wonder if it really is possible to keep it purely platonic.
What are your thoughts? Agree? Disagree? Let’s discuss. The comments are open. :)
I think I’m finally over my crazy New Adult novel phase, because really — there’s only so much sex and stress a reader can take.
And I wasn’t really in the mood to read any of the books I’m reviewing for Netgalley, so I opted for The Avery Shaw Experiment - a light, easy teen-romance-type read - thinking I could just put it down and fall asleep whenever I wanted.
Okay, SO NOT THE CASE. It was just too adorable.
Here’s the blurb from Amazon.
When Avery Shaw’s heart is shattered by her life-long best friend, she chooses to deal with it the only way she knows how—scientifically.
The state science fair is coming up and Avery decides to use her broken heart as the topic of her experiment. She’s going to find the cure. By forcing herself to experience the seven stages of grief through a series of social tests, she believes she will be able to get over Aiden Kennedy and make herself ready to love again. But she can’t do this experiment alone, and her partner (ex partner!) is the one who broke her heart.
Avery finds the solution to her troubles in the form of Aiden’s older brother Grayson. The gorgeous womanizer is about to be kicked off the school basketball team for failing physics. He’s in need of a good tutor and some serious extra credit. But when Avery recruits the lovable Grayson to be her “objective outside observer,” she gets a whole lot more than she bargained for, because Grayson has a theory of his own: Avery doesn’t need to grieve. She needs to live. And if there’s one thing Grayson Kennedy is good at, it’s living life to the fullest.
Hee! So kilig. I was like this until 2am.
Also, like this, because her characters are pretty hilarious.
I know, I know, I’m WAY too old for this type of teen romance shiz, but I don’t care. After reading The Avery Shaw Experiment, I’m totally grabbing all of Kelly Oram’s other books.
(Photo c/o http://glitterintheairamm.blogspot.com)
So yeah, if you’re looking for a light, funny, squee-filled read, go check Kelly Oram out. Or whatever, get your daughter to check her out, if your tastes are little more mature than mine. :)
What are YOU reading right now? Let me know!
p.s. I actually already read Serial Hottie. In fact that’s how I discovered Kelly Oram in the first place. My friend Ledz had given it a 2-star rating, and since we never like the same books, I was all “AHA!!”
And true enough, I did. :) Enjoy!
I’m really behind on my book reviews for Netgalley, so I decided that yesterday would be totally dedicated to reading. Because Saturday is “Cycle of Sloth” day after all.
That plan was a bit of a bust, though, because for some reason I just couldn’t tear myself away from the Internet. I spent a good part of the morning wondering WTH is up with Amanda Bynes.
Seriously, she used to be so adorable. I want someone to fix her.
And then from there I just kind of went a little crazy online shopping. Because American holiday sales are like CRACK, and I’m a sucker for promos and coupon codes.
This was just the beginning of the spree. One link led to another, and soon I was not only shopping-crazed, but also delusional. I’m pretty sure I’ll kick myself when some of those deliveries arrive.
I don’t know why the hell it took me so long to read it, but some new NA novels got in the way — and when you’re on New Adult novel mode, it’s a little difficult to get into the groove for YA Vampire-Dystopia.
So don’t let the fact that it took me a month to finish this book put you off. It’s not Julie, it’s me. I actually really liked this sequel to The Immortal Rules. In fact I liked it even better than the first book. Well, except for that MOFO of a cliffhanger ending.
Seriously, you’re evil, Julie Kagawa.
Anyway, you can read the synopsis on Amazon or whatever, but basically the story is about Allie the reluctant teenage vamp, who has to find her sire Kanin (LOL.You have to be Filipino to find this name funny.) — because the batshit-crazy vamp who took him prisoner has the cure to a deadly disease that’s killing both vamps and humans.
So she goes off on this quest, joined by her sarcastic and slightly evil vamp brother Jackal (also sired by Kanin, and hands down the most amusing character in the story) and her human love interest Zeke.
Now I won’t tell you what happens, of course, but I will tell you why I Iiked the book so much.
It doesn’t romanticize vampires, like other vamp books do.
As entertaining as paranormal romance can sometimes be, I can never really be fully on board because I’m always like “WTH? He’s a thousand years old! You’re a teenager! Plus he’s dead! Eeew!”
In Julie’s Blood of Eden series, vamps are monsters, and everyone knows it. It’s a problem — as it should be, you crazy Twilight-lovers.
All throughout the book, Allie has to struggle to control her inner demon, and I like how the book shows that this can be done when you’re with the right people, and that it’s the human qualities - and not the supernatural powers or badass fighting skills - that make the characters strong and admirable.
Because if you really think about it, we all have inner demons. They might not involve wanting to rip people’s throats and drink their blood, but they can make monsters out of us nevertheless. For some people, the demon is fear. For others, pride or anger or envy. For some, an addiction to online shopping…
Whatevs. We all have a beast within. And it’s good to be reminded once in a while that it doesn’t have to consume us. Given the right motivation, and the willingness and determination to fight it, we can overcome whatever makes us less than human.
So thanks, Julie Kagawa. Now hurry up and finish the next book in the series, or I may have to kill you. :)
I’m off to Subic for the weekend, because my cousins Tina and Uey are celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary there.
(They actually used this drawing for their invitation. :))
So… sorry, no blogging this weekend. I’ll be busy. And quite possibly drunk. Heehee!
Anyway, while I’m gone I’ll also be reading some new advance-copy books I got from Netgalley, that I’m kind of excited about because they’re by authors I really like. Hee! Netgalley really is the best website ever.
Here’s what I’ll be reading this weekend (if I am sober enough to concentrate):
The Eternity Cure is the sequel to The Immortal Rules, so if you haven’t read that yet, go ahead and get it first. To be honest, I like Julie Kagawa’s Iron Fey Series better, but this vampire-dystopian series (IKR? Sounds really off :)) is pretty good too. Julie Kagawa is a gem.
I bought Touch - the first book in this series - on Amazon because it was on sale or something (can’t remember), and I liked it so much more than I expected to. I’m looking forward to seeing how the rest of the story unfolds. Although I wish I could un-see that girl on the cover, because she looks kind of annoying, and the girl in the book sounds so much better.
I read everything Richelle Mead writes, so this is a no-brainer. This is a standalone, so no need to read anything else first, but if you’ve never read her other books - go grab ‘em. All very enjoyable.
Reviews to follow, either here or on Goodreads. ;)
Okay that’s it, gotta fly. Have a great weekend, everyone!
Award-winning author and illustrator, Gemini Adams, inspires us to examine the health of our high-tech habits in this entertaining gift book with a tongue-in-cheek look at our love of social media.
Featuring a series of 50 hilarious cartoons that complete the question, “You Know You’re a Facebook Addict When…?” Adams cleverly illustrates the more idiotic, embarrassing and cringe-worthy behaviors of our social networking excess. - Amazon
Luckily I was able to score a copy on Netgalley (because Netgalley is the best website EVER) and I finally read it a while ago while scarfing down a really sad diet lunch.
I finished in like 10 minutes — both the sad food AND the book.
I have to say, the book was pretty adorable (the food, not so much). I loved all the “You know you’re a Facebook addict when…” cartoons — even though some were a little too exagg, and others I just really couldn’t relate to. Like all the ones about poking. (Honestly, WHO STILL POKES THESE DAYS? Shame on you. That’s so 2009.) Anyway, here’s a sample cartoon c/o HuffPo. Too cute. ;)
I also have to say, however, that I was a little disappointed when I finished it, because it really didn’t teach me anything new. If you’re looking to find insights and useful suggestions to address Facebook addiction and other related issues (like Facebook envy, etc), this is not the book you want. You may prefer to just read this article on Psychology Today instead.
Some of the “unplugging”/Facebook detox suggestions in the book were fine, but some were just plain weird.
There was also another one about training to be a private detective so you can just stalk people in real life - which was pretty funny, but again… not very helpful.
Now it really bugs me to death when I handle a topic humorously on my blog and then people with no sense of humor start hatin’ on it…
…so I’ll quit with the nega-talk and just say that if you do get this book, bear in mind that it’s meant to amuse, and that’s it. Manage your expectations and just enjoy the illustrations. Because they’re adorable.
I personally think this book would make a great gift for anyone who spends a little too much time on Facebook, and it’s pretty cheap (less than $6 on Amazon for the paperback copy, which comes out on April 25th) — so go for it, and enjoy!
Note: The Kindle version is available now, but I wouldn’t really recommend it. It displayed okay on my Kindle Touch (no color though) but when I tried to view it in the Kindle app on my iPad so I could view in full color, the formatting was a little weird.
I just discovered Netgalley.com the other day, and I swear I’m in love.
Basically Netgalley is a book site where you can request advance copies of books that are soon to be published, so you can review or recommend them on your blog, or on social media, or whatever.
So once you sign up, you can browse through the book catalog (which has a pretty good selection across a wide range of genres btw), pick the ones you like and click the Request button to ask publishers for a free copy.
And then you wait. Kind of like a girl waiting for that next-day call after a great first date.
(Umm, the publishers will email you, they won’t actually call you on an ancient rotary dial phone, but you know what I mean.)
If you’re approved, then TA-DAAAH! You get an email, and the book magically appears in your Netgalley account and you can either send it to your Kindle, or download the file to read on some other device.
And just a few hours after I made my first bunch of requests, I got my very first book from Penguin Books Australia!
HEE! I was thrilled! Even if I had no idea what a WAG was.
Oh well, I figured I’d find out eventually. Except I really didn’t.
Whatevs. Anyway I wasn’t sure if my ignorance was due to being Filipino or sports-deficient (probably both) so I Googled it (though honestly, I feel I shouldn’t have had to, Ms. Costello) and apparently WAGs are “Wives and Girlfriends” of pro football players. Huh. Who knew.
Anyhoo — going back to the book. I REALLY wanted to like it and write a rockin’ review, since it was my first and all — plus it was about a football star (which is close enough to a rock star, and we all know rock stars are my weakness).
But NO. I just couldn’t. Here’s the story in a nutshell.
Merise the model sounded more like a naive 16-year old than someone in her twenties, and the story, their issues, and their “love” seemed pretty shallow, to be honest. I hate it when people think they’re in love when they barely know each other. Geez, they spent like a combined total of less than 20 hours together and 3/4 of that was spent bickering and/or misunderstanding each other — and suddenly they’re IN LOVE??
So MEH. With a side order of ho hum. I’m sorry, Penguin. This one’s not for me.
Luckily I got a few more approvals in my inbox today, so WHEE! More books to read and review. Here’s a sneak peek:
Apparently you can only release a review a week max before publication, and a couple of these will come out June & August, so I guess those’ll have to wait.
In the meantime, I’m off to check out and request more books… because NetGalley is the best website EVER, if you’re a rabid book fiend like me. Go check it out.
Happy Friday, folks! What are you reading this weekend? Let me know in the comments.
So umm, I’m rather embarrassed to report that I’m still pretty fixated on those New Adult novels I was talking about the other day. They’re just so friggin’ addictive!
Anyway, it turns out that I’m not the only one. I think I have enough co-addicts to start a support group, and everyone in my NAA (New Adultaholics Anonymous) group suggested that I read Slammed by Colleen Hoover.
So I read it last night, and I have to say, it’s lovely. But I didn’t love it as much as I though I would. Part of the reason is that it made me cry and I don’t really like books or movies that make me sad. (Oh relax, there’s a happy ending, just sad parts, you should still read it even if you’re like me.)
But the MAIN reason was the poetry slams - which are a pretty big part of the book. If you don’t know what a poetry slam is, then welcome to the club, I didn’t either until last night. Basically it’s a competition where poets read or recite original work. (Thanks, Wikipedia)
And for some reason, I just found the whole concept of poetry slamming super duper AWKWARD. People who know me will find this really weird, because I actually used to be quite the poetess. But while I have no problem whatsoever WRITING poetry (or speaking in public, for that matter), for some reason reading poetry out loud just embarrasses me to death. Seriously.
I was once invited to be one of several women to record a spoken word album called Romancing Venus, and this was me the entire time.
I didn’t even have an audience, just a sound technician and Kooky, the poet whose work I was reciting, and I seriously just wanted to curl up into a fetal position in some corner somewhere and cry for my mama.
So yeah, that didn’t go very well. Good thing the poem was about some breakup or lost love or something because I sounded really lame and quivery, which I guess could pass off as lovelorn and wistful. But GAH! Nightmare. SO awkward.
Anyway I guess this explains why the whole poetry slam thing didn’t go over very well with me, but there is one part of the book that really made me glad I read it, and it’s the part where the heroine’s mom tells her to ask herself 3 questions before she commits. And the questions were so great, I thought I’d make another cheat sheet. Here it is.
3 Things to Ask Yourself Before You Commit
As Lake’s mom said in the book “If you can’t answer yes to these three questions, don’t even waste your time on a relationship.”
And I completely agree. You go, Lake’s Mom. *high five*
It’s something worth thinking about, whether you’re about to embark on a new relationship, or you’re already in one. So think, and ASK. This stuff matters.
Here’s hoping your answer to all 3 is a resounding YES. Happy Friday, folks!
For some bizarre reason, I’ve been devouring all these New Adult novels involving girls falling in love with rock stars. I’m really quite ashamed. Also, angsty. Because OMG the angst level in NA novels is just off the charts.
Anyway, don’t even ask me why I’m so fixated on the whole rock star romance thing right now, because I really have no good reason to give you. Well, except maybe that I think every woman is secretly a sucker for a talented musician. At the very least, for a few minutes while he’s performing on stage.
That’s why this doodle on svff.tumblr.com really cracked me up.
Hilarious. It’s relatable though, right? Because musicians are just… HAWT.
But oh wait, I almost forgot. I’m middle aged and married. Hehe. Oops. So let’s move on, shall we?
Anyway, I’ve only recently discovered that the New Adult fiction genre even existed, so I was a little surprised to discover that these were not in fact Adult-Adult novels. Because lemme tell ya, they’re pretty steamy. Like Adult movies steamy. Except with more plot. And angst.
This would be okay with me normally, except that the heroines are pretty young - usually college-age - so they kind of make me really glad I don’t have a daughter in college. Or a daughter in high school that reads this stuff and thinks that that’s how love and life and coming of age in college should be.
Now I think generalizations are the product of lazy minds, and I haven’t read enough NA books to make an intelligent judgment, so I won’t make any sweeping statements about NA fiction. Yet. Neither will I verbally bitchslap the angsty, indecisive college-age heroines I’ve been reading about, because frankly, we’re all pretty dumb and emotional at that age.
But I have to say there is one thing that really bugs me about the NA books that I have read so far (even the non-rock star-themed ones) —and it’s that the guy is always a major man-whore. (With bedroom hair and rock-hard abs, but that part I don’t mind so much.. er.. at all)
I mean, I get the appeal. (I was, after all, sucked into this stuff all weekend.) No one wants to read a romance about some average semi-flabby dude no one looks at, who’s majoring in Accounting or something. Because YAWN.
I’ll admit, bad boys are pretty irresistible. There’s a definite lure to the seemingly unattainable. Every girl wants to be “The One” to turn the resident man-ho hottie into a committed one-woman man, and kick all his attendant floozies to the curb. I get it.
But if you really think about it… YUCK. How icky is it to be with someone who’s been with everyone? And believe me, no matter how cool and civilized we may have become about these things, it’s always a little bit “Urgh. Gah. Don’t wanna think about it! Blarg!" when you interact with people whom you know have had intimate relations in the past with the person you love.
So just imagine being the girlfriend of someone like Kellan Kyle in S.C. Stephens’ Thoughtless series — who has slept with over 1000 girls?? WTH?? EW!! I have no idea why everyone on Goodreads is like “Kellan Kyle is the BEST BOYFRIEND EVERRR!” I mean okay fine, he’s a sweetie - and gorgeous as all get out - and but OMG! He’s a freaking menace! Public Enemy #1 of Peace of Mind, if you ask me.
So there’s that. But more disturbing, I think, is the way that the former man-hos suddenly do this major turnaround once they’re with “The One” —and all of a sudden they’re these choir boys who never even look at other women anymore, and can’t breathe or sleep at night when “The One” isn’t there.
Yeah, that doesn’t always happen, new adults.
When people fall in love and want their relationship to work out, they will make some changes to their lifestyle and behavior, true. But it’s terribly unwise to think they will change completely.
So when you enter a relationship, I don’t think it should be with the expectation of total transformation. You need to be able to accept that person as he is right now — and be okay with the assumption that he might not change at all. If you can, then good. Please proceed. If you can’t be with a person UNLESS he changes, you may want to rethink this whole relationship thing.
That’s what I think, anyway. What do YOU think? Agree or disagree? Let me know in the comments.
Cheers, people! Happy Holy Week!