The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

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I would have easily read this in a few hours if I had had the time to read this over the weekend. At a short 213 pages, The Perks of Being a Wallflower grabs your attention from the first page as main character Charlie writes letters to his unnamed friend.  Each letter, Charlie pours his heart out about his family, his friends, and the observations and tribulations of growing up.

Losing his best friend and his favorite aunt prior to his freshman year, Charlie enters high school as a bit of a spectacle. Anyone who knew him knew he was friends with the boy who committed suicide, isolating him, and those who didn’t know him didn’t acknowledge him. It was easy for Charlie to slip into the background, but his therapist recommended that he try to “participate”. So he decided to attend a football game, and there he befriends Patrick, a funny guy from his shop class, and Sam, Patrick’s half sister and the prettiest girl Charlie has ever met. The three become fast friends, and Charlie’s recount of their friendship is the saddest, sweetest thing I’ve ever read.

Chbosky creates such a charming, sweet, smart, etc etc character in Charlie, and yet allows Charlie’s voice to haunt and seep into the reader. The stories told in the letters from Charlie hold nothing back about friendship, deep admiration, depression, utter sadness, struggles with personal and sexual identity, relationships, and family bonds. It surprised me how much Chbosky packed into such a short novel. Each letter is told with so much emotion, and nearly each part of the novel made me want to hug Charlie more and more.  Of course, addressing the perks to being a wallflower- Charlie has this amazing ability to silently observe a situation, and think about it in both an emotional and analytical way. It’s why he’s able to connection certain songs to his friends and situations, and why he’s able to read a book and understand the story and the context behind the written work.

Reading The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a must. I know you could just skip the book and watch the movie, but I’ve seen the movie and the book is even more amazing. You’ll need to hug someone at the end, and you’ll feel all the feels, but I promise you’ll love it. It’ll be like hearing a sad, beautiful song on the radio exactly when you need to hear one.

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Currently Reading Tag!

Danielle @ the Introverted Book Nerd posted this tag and had some great answers. I’ve been super busy this month (November tends to be chaotic for me for many reasons) and since I haven’t had much reading time, I thought I would do this tag today, in the hopes that I’ll get to catch up this week. So here we go- another #booktag!

1. How many books do you usually read at once?

One at a time, most times. Sometimes I’ll read a nonfiction and fiction book at the same time, but that’s my max- over two, I lose focus.

2. If you’re reading more than one book at a time, how do you decide when to switch books?

If I am reading more than one, I’ll read the fiction novel when I have a lot of time to read. I can skim through the nonfiction and read it in small chunks- easier for me to absorb the information that way anyways.

3. Do you ever switch bookmarks while you’re partway through a book?

Hahaha… I lose bookmarks all the time, so yeah I do. A paper napkin to a sticky note or a spare bit of paper… just a long as I don’t lose my place, I don’t care what holds the page!

4. Where do you keep the book(s) you’re currently reading?

On my nightstand, in my purse, on my desk, or the side table next to the couch.

5. What time of day do you spend the most time reading?

I almost always read on my lunch break, so that’s the most consistent reading time, but I also read for hours before bed. It helps me unwind and sometimes helps me fall asleep… although I’m entirely guilty of reading way past my bedtime because I couldn’t put a book down.

6. How long do you typically read in one sitting? 

I can read for hours, but I usually need a break after a 2 or so hours.

7. Do you read hardbacks with the dust jacket on or off?

Off, haha. They slip when I keep them on and I can’t deal with it, haha.

8. What position do you mainly use to read?

Sitting with the book resting on the desk or the arm of the couch. But the next most is laying on the bed, on my back, book in hands.

9. Do you take the book you’re currently reading with you everywhere you go?

Yes. And I also tote the next book on the TBR pile with me too, for when I finish the current read.

10. How often do you update your Goodreads progress on the book you’re currently reading?

I just joined Goodreads last week, so I’m still getting the hang of things… so I guess I’ll plead the fifth on this one!

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Anyone who wants to do this tag is more than welcome!! I hope you all enjoy 🙂

 

 

The Book Lover’s Tag!

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Another book tag today, folks! Brigid at Watching the Daisies  posted the Book Lover’s tag not too long ago and said that anyone who wanted could give it a shot, so I’m taking mine! Also, feel free to have at it yourselves 🙂

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1. Do you have a specific place for writing?

If it’s handwritten, I’m probably on my bed or the couch, somewhere comfy. If I’m typing, I’m at my desk… or sometimes on the couch, if I’m feeling lazy, haha.

2. Book mark or random pieces of paper?

Hahaha… random pieces of paper. I LOSE EVERYTHING. I think bookmarks are gorgeous and I’d totally use them more, but I tend to leave them in books or they get crumpled in my purse or I set them somewhere while I’m reading and then walk away with the book in my hand only to remember I forgot the bookmark. *facepalm* I know.

3. Can you stop anywhere or must it be at the end of a chapter?

I can stop anywhere, but I prefer it be the end of something- like the end of a paragraph or a chapter or the end of a section of dialogue.

4. Do you eat or drink whilst reading?

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Coffee coffee coffeee. So yes. Also I eat and read on my lunch breaks pretty much every day.

5. Music or TV whilst reading?

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Music- yes, the earbuds go in if I’m in a room/car full of people and want to drown them out while I’m reading (haha introvert much?). TV- sometimes. Sometimes I want the background noise, so I’ll turn it on something I’ve seen before so I don’t lose focus on the book.

6. One book at a time or several?

One at a time, most of the time. Of course I’m reading two right now. But that’s my max.

7. Do you prefer to read at home or elsewhere?

I can read for longer periods of uninterrupted time at the house, so I prefer that, but I can read anywhere, except in the car on winding roads.

8. Read out loud or silently?

Silently. It slows me down to read outloud, which drives me crazy.

9. Do you read ahead or skip pages?

If I can’t get into a book, I’ll read the last few pages. If I’m blown away- like, how did that happen?!- then I’ll go back and read the whole book. If not, and I can guess exactly what happened, then I’ll DNF that book and move on to the next. Life is too short to read something you don’t enjoy on your own time.

10. Break the spine or keep it like new?

I try to keep my books in new condition, really I do… but my track record points me to breaking the spine. Also, I buy a ton of used books, so many times they come to me well-loved anyways.

11. Do you write in your book?

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If it’s a gift to someone, I may write in the front cover a note, but most of the time I won’t write in a fiction novel. Textbooks are different- I highlight like nobody’s business.

12. What books are you reading now?

I’m about to devour The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chobosky. I’m also reading Smart Women Finish Rich by David Bach, trying to help figure out my financials.

13. Favourite childhood book?

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I made my dad read “The Three Little Kittens” and “If You Give a Moose a Muffin” about a million times each. He can still recite them, I bet!

14. All time favourite book? 

How can you choose favorites when you’ve read so many amazing books?!

 

 

 

The Host by Stephanie Meyer

Not quite back to back Meyer action this month! I’ve had this on my TBR for two months now, and I’m pretty sure I’ve read it before but it’s been a long time.

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In a futuristic, dystopian type setting, we are introduced to Wanderer, a soul that has been implanted into the body of a young woman named Melanie, a captured human host. This is all considered perfectly normal to the Healer and Seeker whom matched the two together, but things aren’t going to plan post-surgery. Often, according to the Healer, it is easy for the soul to overtake control of the mind and body of the host- but Wanderer is having  a very difficult time keeping Melanie submissive, and this doesn’t bode well with her assigned Seeker, who is trying to gain information from Melanie’s human experiences to capture the remaining humans in hiding.

Wanderer doesn’t know what to do. As a soul, she never lies and doesn’t believe in violence or conflict, yet this Seeker is determined to get answers from her. Melanie, on the other hand, is desperately trying to conceal all the information she can from Wanderer in regards to her brother, Jamie, and the man she loves, Jared. She wants to keep them safe from the Seeker, and her emotions and memories that are unveiled are stronger than anything Wanderer has ever felt. Soon, Wanderer starts to share the same feelings with Melanie, and realizes that she loves Jamie and Jared just as much as Melanie. This puts them all in danger- since the Seeker isn’t getting the information from Wanderer, she’s volunteered to take over Melanie’s body instead, which would essentially kill Melanie, once the Seeker has gotten the information she needs. Melanie gives Wanderer the push she needs, and before they know it, they are off the beaten path, trying to find their way back to Jamie and Jared, and ensuring their safety before they are either caught or killed.

Little did they know, they would not only find the boys again, but a colony of humans and new motivation to keep them all alive.

It took me a while to get into the story- I think I have a hard time with the dystopian, futuristic fantasy books because it’s completely unknown, and my imagination has to actually work! However, once I got into the story, it was hard to put down. I loved the imagery the Meyer created, and the dialogue between Wanderer and Melanie. I did remember a few things as I was rereading, but not enough to spoil any of Meyer’s plot twists. It took me over a week to finish it because I’ve been preoccupied with a bunch of work-related and family-related stuff, but it provided a nice mental break from everything when I did have the chance read.

Overall, I would definitely recommend, especially for those who love the dystopian settings.

 

 

 

 

The Shuffle Tag!

This has nothing to do with books, but my second favorite hobby is music. I’m not musically talented WHATSOEVER, but I love building my playlists and singing in the car and learning about rock n’ roll history. ( I even took a class, it was awesome!) So when Julie (check out her blog here!) posted the Shuffle Tag, I just had to do it!! Also, fair warning- the stuff on my playlists are all over the place.

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Here are the rules: Put your music on shuffle and list the first 15 songs to play (no cheating)! Also, it says to tag 10 others as well, but I won’t tag anyone- just know that you are all welcome to join in the fun! Just tag me so I can scope your answers, and maybe add to my music collection.

  1. Sugar by Maroon 5
  2. B*tch Don’t Kill My Vibe by Kendrick Lamar
  3. Bicycle Race by Queen
  4. One and Only by Adele
  5. Wouldn’t It Be Nice by the Beach Boys
  6. Ramble On by Led Zeppelin
  7. Yonce by Beyonce
  8. Drink You Away by Justin Timberlake
  9. Highway Vagabond by Miranda Lambert
  10. (If You’re Wondering If I Want You To) I Want You To by Weezer
  11. White Room by Cream
  12. Photosynthesis by Frank Turner
  13. Had Some Drinks by Two Feet
  14. Grillz by Nelly ft. Paul Wall, Ali & Gipp
  15. Traveling Alone by Jason Isbell

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Okay everyone! I hope you enjoyed my “playlist”, and remember you are more than welcome to join in on the fun!! Also, while you’re here, don’t forget to follow me on WordPress and on my social media platforms (Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ and Twitter!) to keep in the loop! I’m working towards a goal of 250 followers on my blog and trying to bump up my traffic, in the hopes that soon I’ll be able to do more fun things like giveaways and challenges! If you’re already following me- YOU ROCK!! And thanks for all the support y’all!!

The Reader Problems Tag!

Hi everyone! I’m back with another book tag, on account of the fact that my work schedule is crazy (in a good way!) right now, and I won’t have a lot of time to read this week. I follow Sarah at Book Hooked Nook , and the Reader Problems Tag sounded like a fun one to try (check out her blog an answers via the link!). I think you’ll be surprised by my answers! Also, feel free to have a go at it too 🙂
1. You have 20,000 books on your TBR. How in the world do you decide what to read next?

I actually can’t imagine having that many books on my TBR- totally overwhelming. I enjoy reading too much to put that kind of pressure on myself! But as far as deciding what to read next- that’s all in my mood and what I know I’ll have time for. If I’m going on vacation, a short, lightweight, fluff book will travel, etc.

2. You’re halfway through a book and you’re just not loving it. Do you quit or are you committed?


Oh I quit. Life is too short to force yourself to read what you don’t enjoy. And there are so many books in the world! I not of the “no page left unturned” club, haha.

3. The end of the year is coming and you’re so close, but so far away on your Goodreads reading challenge. Do you try and catch up and how?


I haven’t gotten that serious about Goodreads (pause for effect), because again, I don’t put that much pressure on myself. Reading is my hobby, my escape from the real pressures of my life! So no, even if I did participate in a GR reading challenge, I wouldn’t try to catch up.

4. The covers of a series do. not. match. How do you cope?

Hahaha… well, part of me doesn’t care because I’m all about the content of the book and not the cover, but the OCD part of me is cringing and all I can do is just look away.

5. Everyone and their mother loves a book you don’t really like. Who do you bond with over shared feelings?

Well if I really need to complain about why this book is bad and how I’m the only one who thinks so, then I’ll just complain to one of my awesome friends or family members, just to get it out of my system. If they commiserate, cool, but most of the time they’ll pull me out of my grump and remind me that there are worse problems, haha. But I also love when I post via my blog or social media that I don’t like the book despite the hype, and someone actually agrees with me! Haha such a thrill!

6. You’re reading a book and you are about to start crying in public. How do you deal?


Close the book, closethebook, closethebookclosethebook. Now think inappropriate jokes, insider jokes, anything funny…. for example (gold star if you LOL):

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7. A sequel of a book you loved just came out, but you’ve forgotten a lot from the prior novel. Will you re-read the book? Skip the sequel? Try to find a synopsis on Goodreads?

Probably re-read. That way everything is fresh in my mind.

8. You do not want anyone. ANYONE. borrowing your books. How do you politely tell people nope when they ask?


I’m actually the complete opposite. I’m like Oprah with my books…

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9. Reading ADD. You’ve picked up and put down 5 books in the last month. How do you get over your reading slump?

Oh I’m too OCD to be ADD with my books. I hate starting two books at the same time, let alone five. But in general if I’m in a reading slump, I just try to match my mood with the book choice. Do I need something funny to pick me up? Or something more thrilling? etc.

10. There are so many new books coming out that you’re dying to read! How many do you actually buy?


Haha wellllll, I’m forever on a budget, so if the library gets them, I’ll read them that way first. But if it’s part of a series and I’m dying to read it, then I’ll buy it right off. Most of the time, I make myself wait to check it out from the library or buy it on sale after a while, even if I’m dying to read the book. #adultprobs

11. After you’ve bought the books you can’t wait to get to, how long do they sit on your shelf before you get to them?

It depends. If I’ve been dying to get a copy of the book and I haven’t read it, then I’ll read it immediately or as soon as I’ve finished my current read. If I have read the book and just really wanted a personal copy, I’ll reread when I’m ready to, which could be months or years, haha.

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Okay everyone! I hope you enjoyed my answers, and remember you are more than welcome to join in on the fun!! Also, while you’re here, don’t forget to follow me on WordPress and on my social media platforms (Pinterest, Instagram, Google+ and Twitter!) to keep in the loop! I’m working towards a goal of 250 followers on my blog and trying to bump up my traffic, in the hopes that soon I’ll be able to do more fun things like giveaways and challenges! If you’re already following me- YOU ROCK!! And thanks for all the support y’all!!

 

 

The Fault in our Stars by John Green

Another novel that I’m totally behind the curve on, but absolutely lived up to the hype. I knew it was going to be good- I’d seen parts of the movie (but not the whole thing in it’s entirety) and had heard so many good reviews on it, but it was even better than everyone said.

Here’s why: it’s so brutally honest. I don’t know a single person who hasn’t had a friend or family member diagnosed with cancer. I personally have had family members battle, die, or both from cancer. And it sucks. It sucks because you watch the person you know and love become cancer. Everyone around them just talks about treatments, wants to know how they’re feeling, or what they can do for them. And that sucks because you know they’re more than cancer. They’re the guy who can do the Sunday crossword in pen; the woman who can cook better than a five star chef; the friend who can make friends with anyone in three seconds. Green shares what it’s like to be a teenager experiencing their first love first, and a cancer patient second.

If you are like me and hadn’t read the book or seen the movie, the story is about sixteen year old Hazel Grace who is living with terminal thyroid / lung cancer, and Augustus, a recovering bone cancer survivor. The two meet at a cancer support group as mutual friends of a boy named Isaac. They are immediately fast friends, and then quickly fall in love. As the two grow closer, Augustus makes a grand gesture for Hazel that would give her the answers to her most burning questions.

It’s a beautiful adventure in love for the both of them, and heart-wrenching for the reader. Definitely a novel that you’ll need a box of tissues for, but absolutely worth the read.