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

Hello everyone. Here I am again, saying that it’s been awhile since I’ve been active. The holiday season really sneaked up on me and my family! I haven’t done much reading since my last post, which was about wondering which book I should read.

As you can see from the above title, I chose Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I read all but about 80 pages in one sitting, finishing it yesterday. However, I don’t have a lot to say about it, so here’s my first ever miniature book review.

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Title: Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda
Author: Becky Albertalli
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, LGBT Fiction

I had some issues with Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, but they were completely personal issues. The protagonist, Simon reminded me way too much of a former friend of mine. A former friend of mine that over-dramatically flounced out of my life, complete with passive-aggressive e-mails and immature cold shoulders. The entire time I was reading this book, I almost wondered if he was actually the author but under a pen name. I know this wasn’t true, but the similarities between the two of them (families, personality, the tendency to read too far into things) were freaky.

I didn’t like how dramatic Simon was, even though he was supposed to be. I found myself saying, “…what?” at half of the things that he thought about things or how much he read into things. I didn’t understand where any of it was coming from. An example of this that really sticks out in my mind is when Simon asks a fellow male classmate, “Are we supposed to be doing something right now?” because he wasn’t paying attention. Simon is then worried about the implications of that question as if it suggested something sexual but was surprised when the boy he asked didn’t notice.

…what? I just don’t understand Simon’s reading so much into some really mundane things.

Other than the strong connection to that former friend, I enjoyed the plot of the book. I thought it was clever and written really well. I just wasn’t able to connect with Simon.

Overall, I say it was “okay,” giving it 3/5 stars on Goodreads. I’m not rating it any lower because I’m sure I would have loved it if it weren’t for the personal issues ruining it for me.

3 starsWhat did you think of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda?

Want to purchase a copy of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli for yourself? Check it out on The Book Depository by clicking HERE.

See you soon!

kacie

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TAG | The Mean Girls Book Tag

It’s taaaaaaaaaaaaaag Friday!

Mean Girls Book Tag

I absolutely love this movie and was excited to be tagged by Aria! Check out her post by clicking HERE.

Let’s get it started.

#1: “It’s pronounced like ‘Cady.'” – Which fictional characters’ names did you get completely wrong?

I mispronounced more names from Harry Potter than I can count. I started reading the series when I was eight years old and was presented with names like Hermione and Seamus and Sirius. I didn’t know that Sirius was also a constellation or I would have pronounced it correctly. It wasn’t until the third movie came out in 2004 that I learned his name wasn’t just an odd spelling of Cyrus. I was fourteen and had been saying it wrong for 5 years. It blew my mind.

#2: “She doesn’t even go here!” – Pick a fictional character that you would like to place in another fictional character’s world.

I would place ‘A’ from Every Day and Another Day by David Levithan into the world of Harry Potter. A wakes up as a new person each day and I think it would be really cool to see how the magical folk handle it.

#3: “On Wednesdays, we wear pink.” – Repetition, repetition. Which book gave you deja vu of another book while reading it?

The Divergent series reminded me too much of The Hunger Games. People divided into groups that do specific jobs, love triangle, girl has to save the city/country, etc. The third book of each also was not satisfying for me. Oh well.

#4: “You all have got to stop calling each other sluts and whores. It just makes it okay for guys to call you sluts and whores.” – Which book gave you the complete opposite of girl power feels?

Honestly, I have a love/hate relationship with Celaena Sardothien. Yes, she’s a female that can hold her own, but she’s also perfect at everything and collects pretty dresses and likes to read and everyone loves her. I wish she more difficulty with learning new things or was just plain awful at something. She’s too perfect.

#5: “You go Glen Coco!” – Name a character you felt like you wanted to cheer on whilst reading.

Neville Longbottom during the final Harry Potter book. You know which scene I’m talking about. I gave a fist pump and cheered when I read it for the first time.

#6: “Get in loser, we’re going shopping!” – How long do you typically spend at a book shop?

I could spend hours every day at a book shop. I never have enough time to actually browse in a book shop. I’m usually out shopping with my family and have a limited number of minutes to peruse the shelves. I usually know exactly what I want there.

I also can spend a lot of time in a library. I love to browse the shelves and find a book that I may not have heard of before.

#7: “It’s not my fault you’re like in love with me or something!” – Which character would have to get out a restraining order on you if they were real?

No one, really.

#8: “I can’t help it that I’m popular.” – Which over-hyped book were you cautious about reading?

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. When I picked it up, the movie had just come out and everyone everywhere was talking about it. I was worried it was going to be a stereotypical mystery novel, but I ended up loving it.

#9: “She’s a life ruiner. She ruins people’s lives.” – We all love Regina George. Name a villain you just love to hate.

Delores Umbridge. Enough said.

#10: “I’m not like a regular mom. I’m a cool mom.” – Your favorite fictional parents

Arthur and Molly Weasley! They are so different, yet they are perfect for each other. They are also the perfect parental figures for Harry, being the complete opposite of his aunt and uncle.

#11: “That is so fetch!” – Which book or series would you love to catch on?

The His Dark Materials trilogy by Phillip Pullman. These books were excellent when I was fourteen and even better now that I’m in my twenties. There’s something for everyone.

#12: “How do I even begin to explain Regina George?” – Describe your ideal character to read about.

I like to read about characters that could be real. An every day kinda person.

#13: “I just have a lot of feelings.” – What do you do when a book gives you a bad case of “the feels”?

I reach out to my friends to see if anyone else has read the book so I can talk about it with someone! I need more reader friends!

#14: “Nice wig, Janice. What’s it made of?” “Your mom’s chest hair!” – Which character’s one-liners would you love to claim for your own?

Can I just choose the entire Weasley family? Okay, great. I choose the entire Weasley family.

#15: “Boo, you whore.” – Name a character’s decision that made you roll your eyes.

Tris from the Divergent series. My eyes got tired from incessant rolling.


This one was fun! Thanks again to Aria for tagging me!

I shall tag:

  • bookstackamber
  • Ashley, the socially awkward bookworm
  • Dani from It’s a Novelty
  • Any other fellow Mean Girls lovers out there!

Thanks for reading and as always, I’ll see you soon!

kacie

Find me on:

Want to purchase any of the books that I’ve talked about? Use this link to buy books from the Book Depository and help me out!

A Quick Life Update and Some Tropes I Hate

Hey friends!

You may have noticed that I did not post a Top 5 Wednesday post yesterday or that I’ve been suspiciously absent since Friday.

It’s been a busy week for me and I’m ending it by visiting friends at the university I graduated from in May! Don’t you worry; I’ll be back next week.

On Wednesday, a multitude of bloggers and booktubers were talking about the tropes that they don’t like seeing in books! (As soon as I’m finished writing this post, I’ll be around to read everyone’s posts!)

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Here are mine. Not on a Wednesday. But a Thursday. Deal with it:

#5: Disappearing Parents

I don’t know about you guys, but it annoys me when teenagers are completely in charge of their lives. They’re running all over the place doing whatever they want. Where are your parents? Or, worse, the parents are completely okay with whatever their teenager is doing. “Oh, you’re spending the night at your boyfriend’s house while his parents aren’t home and you didn’t ask me first but figured you’d mention it to me? Okay. Sounds good. You do you.”

No.

#4: Love Triangles

I don’t need to say too much about this one. Some of them are done well and some of them aren’t. Love triangles that particularly annoy me include acts of infidelity. The one where one party can’t make up their darn mind about who they want to be with and secretly string both of them along.

But really, I’m just tired of seeing love triangles in general.

#3: “I’m not pretty and I’m not like the other girls but I am still a badass and nobody will ever love me.”

You know, the girl next door that really is an awesome person but is so incredibly insecure that she’ll repel any chance of happiness through the means of which she is unsure.

“Oh, he’ll never like me!” Actually, he does. You’re too busy having an inner emotional breakdown to notice that you might be wrong about how others perceive you.

#2: Protagonist keeping secrets from the reader

This is what bothered me about Heir of Fire. If you and I are not friends on Goodreads, I gave it a two-star. I did not like it and this was a big reason. Don’t worry; I won’t spoil you.

Let’s just say that Celaena is still keeping some things secret from everyone, including the reader. The reason I don’t like this is because when the secrets are finally revealed, it always seems too convenient, like the author didn’t actually plan for this to happen until it happened.

But that could just be me.

#1: Insta-Love

Without reading anyone else’s posts yet, I am betting that this is numero uno on many lists. If two characters meet and then are suddenly saying “I love you” and practically sacrificing themselves to save one another, my eyes are very close to rolling right out of their sockets.

They’re not in love. They’re infatuated or full of lust. Not love.


These are my most hated tropes! Now, I’m off to see if yours and mine match!

I’ll see you next week.

kacie

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TAG | The Summer Reader Book Tag

Hello, readers!

Summer as we know it is drawing to a close. While this makes me incredibly sad, I am still excited for autumn to arrive. I love the cool days, the brightly colored leaves, and sitting around the campfire.

But for now, it’s still summer and to celebrate that, I will be completing The Summer Reader Book Tag. I was tagged by Catia, the Girl Who Read Too Much. Thanks for the tag!

summereader

I normally complete tags on Fridays, but I’ve been a little absent. Here’s to make up for that absence!

#1: Lemonade – A book that started off bitter, but got better

lemonadeThrone of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

I had a really hard time getting into this book and series. The first book started off as a slow read for me and I didn’t like the main character’s focus on pretty clothes and boys. Once the plot started to thicken, however, I was hooked.

Unfortunately, this seems to be the case for each of the books. I end up liking them, but it’s hard for me to get hooked on the story.

#2: Golden Sun – A book that made you smile beyond compare

sunEverything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

I’ve talked about this book a lot. It’s a really cute contemporary read. I devoured this book and was grinning through most of the novel.

Read my review HERE.

#3: Tropical Flowers – A book set in a foreign country

flowersWatermelon by Marian Keyes

I haven’t read this book in years, but it is a cute and fluffy read that is mostly set in Dublin, Ireland. This novel is about a young woman who has a baby and is left by her husband on the same day. Feeling completely deserted and overwhelmed by being a new mother, she returns to Ireland to be with her family and to grieve the destruction of her marriage. She reconnects with people from her past, including James, who wants to work his way back into her life.

#4: Tree Shade – A book in which a mysterious or shady character is introduced

tree shadeBlack by Ted Dekker

I’ve talked about this book quite a bit as well. It’s got a Good vs. Evil theme, so there is obviously a mysterious or shady character introduced. Our main character meets and interacts with Good and Evil characters, but must decide who is telling him the truth.

#5: Beach Sand – A book that was grainy and the plot barely developed

beach sandWill Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

I’ve liked every book I’ve read by these two authors except for this one. I thought it was boring and when I finished, I found myself asking, “That’s it?” I didn’t feel like there was much of a plot at all.

#6: Green Grass – A character(s) that was full of life, making you smile

Green_GrassA from Another Day by David Levithan

I really need to read Every Day, the book with the original story. I only read its companion, Rhiannon’s point of view. I loved the idea of A and would love to read the book from A’s perspective. I loved that A never gave up and always found a way to make the best of the situation they were dealt.

#7: Watermelon – A book with juicy secrets

watermelonDark Places by Gillian Flynn

This book is full of juicy secrets. Libby Day was seven years old when her family was murdered presumably by her own brother. But did he really do it? Thirty years later, Libby is in need of money. A club devoted to researching the murders needs answers and only Libby can get them.

Oh, it was so good.

#8: Sunhat – A book with a vast, big universe or setting

sunhatBlack by Ted Dekker

Yep, there it is again. This book is set in two worlds:  our own and a fantastical land far in the future. The main character constantly travels back and forth between the two. Every time he falls asleep in one world, he wakes in the other. He can’t figure out which one is real as everything that happens in both seems very real to him.

#9: BBQ – A book in which a character was portrayed as a hunk

bbqThe Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

Chaol, Dorian, Rowan. Each one of these characters is described as attractive in their own ways.

Apparently, all the hunks are in this universe. I need to move there.

#10: Summer Fun – Pass the tag on

This tag has been floating around all summer and I’m not sure who hasn’t been tagged. So, if you haven’t been tagged, I officially tag you!


That’s it for me today. I’ve apparently injured my back without doing anything to injure my back. The doctor took some x-rays and gave me some medicine, so I’m going to go rest up. I may or may not see you before this week’s Top 5 Wednesday. But as always, I will see you soon!

kacie

Find me on:

Want to purchase any of the books that I’ve talked about? Use this link to buy books from the Book Depository, who will send me a small commission so that I can buy more books!


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Check out my July Wrap-Up post by clicking HERE!

Monthly Reading Wrap-Up | July 2015

wrapup

Hello readers! I’m back from a busy weekend in the mountains. I haven’t see you folks since Wednesday as I’ve been super busy! Unfortunately, I haven’t been able to read a whole lot, but I’ve been having fun with my family.

For me, July wasn’t a great month for reading. I was in a bit of a slump throughout the entire month. The #Cramathon read-a-thon truly helped my numbers, though. This month, I read a total of 12 books.

July 1

1. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer – Finished July 8, 4/5 stars

2. Oedipus Rex by Sophocles – Finished July 10, 3/5 stars

3. The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan – Finished July 10, 4/5 stars

July 24. The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J.K. Rowling – Finished July 10, 5/5 stars

5. Another Day by David Levithan – Finished July 11, 4/5 stars – Click HERE to see my review!

6. Fahrenheit 451:  The Authorized Adaptation by Tim Hamilton – Finished July 11, 3/5 stars

July 3

7. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – Finished July 12, 4/5 stars – Click HERE to see my review!

8. Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption by Stephen King – Finished July 12, 5/5 stars

9. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling – Finished July 12, 5/5 stars

July 4

10. Forbidden by Tabitha Suzuma – Finished July 19, 2/5 stars

11. Black by Ted Dekker – Finished July 23, 5/5 stars

12. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling – Finished July 29, 5/5 stars


It looks like a lot, but I’m definitely in a slump. I’ve been reading Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas for almost four weeks and I’m having a hard time getting into books. The above list was definitely helped by read-a-thons!

That’s it for me tonight. I will see you soon with my favorite things of July!

Have a good one, guys!

kacie

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Want to purchase any of the books that I’ve talked about? Use this link to buy books from the Book Depository, who will send me a small commission so that I can buy more books!

#BookTubeAThon Reading Update | Day 1

Hello readers! How was your weekend? Mine was fantastic. We cooked our meals over a fire and went four-wheeling around the property. I didn’t get a lot of reading done, but I’m ready to remedy that situation.

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That’s right, fellow book lovers. I’ve decided to join in the BookTube-A-Thon this week. It runs from August 3 – August 9 (in your timezone) and is one of the most participated in read-a-thons I’ve seen. There are seven reading challenges to complete, but what makes it special is that each day, the official BookTube-A-Thon channel announces video challenges. Participants then have the rest of the day to film and post a YouTube video that completes the challenge. The hosts choose their favorites and award these lucky winners with a book from The Book Depository!

Today’s video challenge was: Book Dominoes

I did not film a video entry for this challenge due to lack of books and space, but I hope to participate in future video challenges. If I do end up posting a video, I’ll post it here for you as well.

There are also Twitter sprints involved in this read-a-thon and daily Instagram challenges. Like the video counterpart, winners of the Instagram challenges win a book from The Book Depository.

Today’s Instagram challenge is:  Post a picture of a book surrounded by items related to that book.

Here’s my entry:

(The winner will be announced tonight, August 3, at 11:30 PM Eastern Standard Time if you’d like to enter as well!)

I am such a video game dork and I am loving Ready Player One.

castiel_understatement

Let’s talk about the reading challenges.

I’m not going all out with the reading challenges. I’m not even picking a TBR. I’ve got some stuff to do this week so I cannot devote the entire week to reading, so I’m just winging it. As I finish a book, I’ll pick another one that goes along with another challenge.

That being said, here are the challenges:

  1. Read a book with blue on the cover
  2. Read a book by an author who shares the same first letter of your last name
  3. Read someone else’s favorite book
  4. Read the last book you acquired
  5. Finish a book without letting go of it
  6. Read a book you really want to read
  7. Read seven books

Now, I am in no way expecting to complete all of these challenges. I’m relaxing this week. I’ll probably reread a favorite children’s picture book for challenge five (I’m a teacher; I have lots of picture books).

But guess what! I’ve already completed a challenge and am pretty darn close to finishing a second.

Last night, I started reading at midnight to kick things off! I started with We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, which has blue on the cover:

wewereliars

I finished it! It was…alright. I know this book was well loved on BookTube, but that’s all I knew about it. I gave it a 4-star rating at face value. I may analyze it more in review form and that rating could change.

This morning, I started reading Ready Player One by Ernest Cline. This will either satisfy challenge 3, 4, or 6. I have about 100 pages left and I really don’t want this book to end.

I don’t know what book I’m going to pick up next. I’m excited to read someone else’s favorite book, so here is the audience participation portion of the post (holy alliteration, batman!).

What’s your favorite book? Let me know in the comment section below!

If you are participating in BookTube-A-Thon, I wish you luck! It’s going to be a fun week.

As always, thank you for taking the time to read my posts. I super appreciate it. I will see you soon!

kacie

Find me on:

Want to purchase any of the books that I’ve talked about? Use this link to buy books from the Book Depository, who will send me a small commission so that I can buy more books!

Weekend Reads | July 31

Before you say anything, I know that today is actually the first of August and not the last day of July as the title of this post suggests. I just have two posts already on Fridays so I’m doing Weekend Reads on Saturdays.

weekend reads


Weekend Reads is a blog/YouTube vlog group in which we answer a different question every week when we let you know what we’re reading.


This weekend, I’m going back up to the mountains. I have no idea how much reading I’ll get done because this weekend will be a little different than usual. My uncle’s bandmate is coming this weekend and bringing his six year old niece and from what I’ve heard, she’s a little pistol.

I’m planning on at least finishing Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas. This was on my list last weekend, but I had a migraine for most of the weekend and just didn’t feel like reading. Since then, I’ve read one of the Harry Potter books in an attempt to get out of a reading slump, so I’m ready to catch up on some Celaena Sardothien.

I’m also taking We Were Liars by E. Lockhart with me. If I finish the book or am still slumpy while reading Heir of Fire, I’ll read this YA contemporary to mix things up.

Question of the Week

What is your favorite thing about blogging/booktubing?

SO MANY THINGS. BUT MOSTLY YOU GUYS.

Letmeloveyou

I think what I love most is being able to talk about the books I’m reading. Unless there is a new Stephen King or George R.R. Martin book out, Mom and I don’t discuss books as much as we used to. She’ll make recommendations to me, but that’s about it. Also, since my sister doesn’t live here anymore, we are not constantly swapping books and talking about them.

That’s why I love the internet. You guys read the same books as I do! You guys want to talk about the same aspects as I do!

I love you guys.


What’s your favorite part of blogging/booktubing?

Thanks for reading and I’ll see you soon for a July wrap-up post!

kacie

Find me on:

Want to purchase any of the books that I’ve talked about? Use this link to buy books from the Book Depository, who will send me a small commission so that I can buy more books!