Friday, August 30, 2013

Reflect & Renew: August 2013

Hello readers! Say hi to Reflect and Renew which you will be seeing around here at the end of each month. Inspired by Monthly Rewind at the Perpetual Page Turner. Enjoy! :)


Somebody Up There Hates You by Hollis Seamon
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
Winger by Andrew Smith
Criminal by Terra Elan McVoy
Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
Seven Deadlies by Gigi Levangie Grazer

Attending a live taping of a show!
Zooming down a 310 foot high roller coaster at the amusement park
Having a baking day with my friends
Watching Simon Schama's Power of Art back to back to back
Getting free razors on the street
Finding an amazing Mexican restaurant
High school orientation!
Chowing down on some delish Middle Eastern food
Getting my nails painted at Sephora
Seeing Victoria Duffield in concert (!!!)
Watching CATS
Watching the movie, Once
Eating some great fro-yo (Menchies and The Red Bench)
Wandering around Honest Ed's before it closes!


Roar - Katy Perry

The first day of school - duh!

Reem talks about the different types of readers. Which one are you?
This post inspired me to take 'must-read' out of my vocabulary. Find out why.
Chrys is officially the queen of infographics with this super cool one about bullying in the blogosphere.
Meredith at Lit Up Review shares five GREAT tips on how to balance school and blogging.
If there's anyone who understands what little book bloggers go through, it's Shanelle. Here's proof.
Carrie shares tips on how to speed-read! With school kicking in full mode, I definitely need to learn how to do this!
Claire cracks down on some of the things book snobs say. Incredibly entertaining!
View great fan made covers for classics here!
I have no clue how to use Google Analytics but now I know how to use it to check pageviews for items on my sidebar. Thanks Tanya!

That's all, see you next month! :)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Random Reads is One Year Old!

I nearly forgot about my blogoversary amidst all the high school excitement this week. Today was orientation - something I've been waiting for the entire summer. And because my mind can't handle more than one thing at a time, news of Random Reads being one year old completely shot out of my head. Thank goodness I had it written down on a post-it note! I found it on my desk today and promptly plopped myself in front of my computer to start typing this up.

Honestly, I'm still trying to wrap my head around the fact that I have been blogging for one year. When I made Random Reads, I had just got back from my summer vacation. I spent a LOT of time during those two months staring at books on the screen, waiting to get home so I could read all those books I had been missing. And then after a few days coming back, I stumbled on a book blog. The Book Alley, I believe it was. And from there, I found Frenetic Reader and after a quick Google, tons of other blogs revealed themselves to me. It was a bit like a 'kid in a candy store' moment and before you could say that, I made up my mind to start my OWN blog.

It's so weird to think now that this ENTIRE community has existed without my knowing for so many years. Because it seems like I've been doing this for ages. To be fair, one year is a pretty long time and never did I expect my blog to do so well! I'm not great with updating them at all so it's nothing short of amazing that Random Reads has held my attention this long!

And now onto the thank you's. Thank you to EVERYONE who has ever commented on this blog, ever taken the time to read one of my posts. Thank you to everyone who has ever followed me and talked to me. Thank you to everyone who has ever helped me with something, replied to me in a comment. And thank you to every blog I follow. You all inspire me so much with your brilliance and not a day goes by where I don't look at your blog and think about how I can make Random Reads more like yours.

Every single one of you have helped make blogging such a great experience for me and I'm incredibly lucky to have met such wonderful people.

I wish I could hug you guys. But I can't, so virtual hug instead?

I also wish I could get you guys something that you can win but I don't have money, unfortunately. So you can have a virtual gift too!

Much love, Annie

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
Published by Simon Pulse; July 16, 2013
Hardcover, 388 pages
Borrowed from library

Paradise quickly gets gruesome in this thrilling page-turner with a plot that’s ripped from the headlines and a twist that defies the imagination.

It’s Spring Break of senior year. Anna, her boyfriend Tate, her best friend Elise, and a few other close friends are off to a debaucherous trip to Aruba that promises to be the time of their lives.

But when Elise is found brutally murdered, Anna finds herself trapped in a country not her own, fighting against vile and contemptuous accusations. As Anna sets out to find her friend’s killer, she discovers harsh revelations about her friendships, the slippery nature of truth, and the ache of young love.

Awaiting the judge’s decree, it becomes clear to Anna that everyone around her thinks she is not only guilty, but also dangerous. And when the whole story comes out, reality is more shocking than anyone ever imagined...

- Description from

A week has passed since I finished Dangerous Girls and I still can't wrap my head around it. It's too amazing and here's why:

Ms. Haas is an incredibly strong storyteller. She skillfully weaves stories from the past and the present in a way that doesn't feel...blocky. Everything flows smoothly together and everything serves a purpose. 

The more you read, the more jumbled the case is. With each new tale, you learn more about the crime which somehow, makes you even more confused. I wasn't sure whether the information I was presented with was meant as a clue to who the killer was or a distraction. 

And that bugged me a lot because I hate not being in the know with books. I don't want to be surprised, I want to anticipate and especially with the intensity of this book, NOT peeking at the end was extremely hard. But I promise you, it's worth it. Because there's this HUGE twist at the end that totally knocked all sense out of me. I was speechless for a good fifteen minutes. And if you knew me outside the computer, you'll know how hard it is to get me to shut up for a second, let alone fifteen minutes. 

This book is FRUSTRATING because it's so grounded in reality. Court trials are really that intense. Through the ups and downs of the case, you really hurt for Anna because you want her to win! And her narration makes it clear that not everything is fair and sometimes, you can't do anything about it. 

But now, I also have to say Abigail Haas is evil. You put me through all that and dare to throw my feelings back at my face at the end? I felt stupid for being so invested into the story when the answer was RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. 

To sum everything up, you have to pick up this book. It's intense, confusing, passionate, twisty but all over brilliant. And I'll leave you with that. I'm kind of running out of words to describe this book anyway.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
Published by Speak; June 16, 2009
Paperback, 383 pages
Borrowed from library

Up all night.

Nights have always been Auden's time, her chance to escape everything that's going on around her.

Then she meets Eli, a fellow insomniac, and he becomes her nocturnal tour guide.

Now, with an endless supply of summer nights between them, almost anything can happen...

- Description from

Sarah Dessen seems to have stumbled upon the magic formula. Because here is yet another story about a girl and a boy, family issues, and friendships. Same old, same old right? Wrong. Ms. Dessen knows her audience and whips up a new story different enough to mask the underlying similarities. 

It's Auden's summer before college and her father and his new wife have invited her over to their home in Colby. Tired of her life with her mother, Auden agrees. 

The story itself is pretty unspectacular. Just another tale of the budding romance between a boy and a girl. So what sets Along for the Ride apart is not the romance, but the interesting family dynamic. Auden's family is certainly complicated and I enjoyed reading about Auden's interactions with her family. 

On the subject of family, my favourite character in this book by far was Heidi, Auden's stepmother. She was nurturing and hard-working and geez, if there's any female character in a Dessen you should idolize, it's Heidi. I absolutely loved her.

The rest of the characters did not shine for me as much. It almost felt like they were one and the same. And Eli especially. He came off a bit one-dimensional unfortunately. As for Auden, I think it's fair to say she isn't my favourite Dessen protagonist.

The story moved along rather slowly as well and a lot of bits and pieces didn't seem to be at all significant to the overall plot. In the end, it got very confusing and muddled. I'm not sure whether I'm supposed to zoom in on Eli and Auden or her family or Auden's character development.

Along for the Ride is nowhere near my favourite Dessen but the familiar writing makes me feel warm and cozy in a way that makes me want to keep on reading. As usual.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Top Ten Things That Make My Life As A Blogger & Reader Easier/Better

Guys, I'm back! I haven't a Top Ten Tuesday in soo long and it feels great to be part of the daily influx of Top Ten Tuesday posts again. I've been wanting to do one for a while but honestly, haven't been feeling the topics. But as soon as I saw this on the schedule for Top Ten Tuesdays, I knew I would be participating! So gather around as I list the ten things that make my bloggy/bookish life MUCH easier.

1. Disqus
So it's a little slow to load but you don't understand how big of a help Disqus is. It has built-in filters which means I can moderate comments without having to manually approve them. And as a reader of blogs, THANK YOU for sending me emails when bloggers reply. I'm very bad with checking for replies which makes me feel super guilty. Tell me I'm not alone?

2. Bloglovin'
Now, my relationship with Bloglovin' is pretty tumultuous. I hate it and love it at the same time. It's great at organizing my blogs and I love how I can like posts in case I want to go back to them later. However, it sucks at keeping my feed updated and accounting for ALL blog posts. And because of this, I'm thinking of switching to Feedly. But for now, Bloglovin' is a great help.

3. Goodreads
Beneficial to both the blogger and the reader in me. I love that I can create a TBR list without exerting a lot of energy. And what would I do if Goodreads wasn't there to supply me blurbs for books? I would cry if I had to type out the ones from the books.

4. PicMonkey/Pixlr
I've only recently discovered Pixlr but PicMonkey has been helping me with graphics for my blog for ages. I love that it has cute overlays I can add to jazz up my graphics. It's the first program I open when I need new graphics. If, by the end of the PicMonkey session, I need to do more advanced editing, I run straight to Pixlr. It's amazing and I love it to bits even though it was a nightmare figuring things out at first. But honestly, without these two, my blog would be incredibly bland.

5. The library
No words are needed for this. Self-explanatory for every book lover and blogger alike.

6. My Kobo
I never knew I would love an eReader so much until I got one. I treat this like my baby and even though mine is a first edition and NOWHERE as good as the Kobos now, I love it to bits. Also, those awards they hand out are pretty darn cool.

7. Twitter
I didn't get why bloggers used Twitter so religiously at first but now, I get it. It's a great way to get your posts out there and also, meeting new bloggers. I love everyone on this site, okay? And I wish I could be best friends with all y'all. 

8. OneNote
I've never been great with scheduling but with OneNote by my side, I want to schedule and be as efficient as all the other bloggers. There are still some things I need to figure out before my blog becomes a well-oiled machine churning out posts right on time but I'm almost there. Just need a little more time is all. But besides loving OneNote for its great scheduling potential, I love that I can stash my post ideas and drafts all in one place. And that auto-save? Man, we need to have that for EVERYTHING.

9. Book blogs
Book blogs are the best. Really. Without all of the amazing blogs out there, none of this would have ever happened. So THANK YOU. I love you all.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling

Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling
Published by Crown Archetype; November 1, 2011
Hardcover, 222 pages
Borrowed from library

Mindy Kaling has lived many lives: the obedient child of immigrant professionals, a timid chubster afraid of her own bike, a Ben Affleck–impersonating Off-Broadway performer and playwright, and, finally, a comedy writer and actress prone to starting fights with her friends and coworkers with the sentence “Can I just say one last thing about this, and then I swear I’ll shut up about it?”

Perhaps you want to know what Mindy thinks makes a great best friend (someone who will fill your prescription in the middle of the night), or what makes a great guy (one who is aware of all elderly people in any room at any time and acts accordingly), or what is the perfect amount of fame (so famous you can never get convicted of murder in a court of law), or how to maintain a trim figure (you will not find that information in these pages). If so, you’ve come to the right book, mostly!

In Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?, Mindy invites readers on a tour of her life and her unscientific observations on romance, friendship, and Hollywood, with several conveniently placed stopping points for you to run errands and make phone calls. Mindy Kaling really is just a Girl Next Door—not so much literally anywhere in the continental United States, but definitely if you live in India or Sri Lanka.

- Description from

I'm never sure how to review a memoir so I tend to not do them but this book was just too funny not to share with you!

I've loved Mindy ever since I found her on Twitter. She's a bit cynical, a bit sarcastic but overall, just a very funny, very lovable person. I watched a few episodes of The Mindy Project and remember laughing so hard by stomach ached like crazy. And that's what happened again with this book! Mindy is hilarious and her voice is distinct. So even though she lives in Hollywood and is basically Twitter royalty, Mindy is able to allow herself to connect to the reader. 

I think I'm going to have to do a Quote Madness for this book. There are too many great quotes that it would be a shame for me to not to make note of them.

One last thing, Mindy, will you be my best friend? Please? 

Friday, August 16, 2013

A to Z Survey

I'm a bit late to the game but here's my A to Z Survey! Jamie, the awesome blogger behind The Perpetual Page-Turner has returned with yet another uber fun survey. Check out hers here! Let's get this party started!

Author you've read the most books from:

Sara Shepard with a whopping eleven books, thanks to the never-ending Pretty Little Liars series

Best sequel ever:
Hmm, I don't tend to remember sequels very well so this is a tough one. And that ever at the end? Whew, Jamie's making it hard.

Maybe Shopaholic Takes Manhattan because I remember it being really funny. Or maybe Harry Potter & the Chamber of Secrets? Look, I'm not really getting anywhere with this so why don't we just move on?

Currently reading:
Is Everybody Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling
The Curse of the Wendigo by Rick Yancey
Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen
Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas

Drink of choice while reading:
I usually go for an iced water because that's the only thing I have in my house but in a perfect world, it would be a vanilla latte or a hot cocoa.

E-reader or physical book?
I actually really love my E-reader and while I love the feel of a physical book, I'm going to go with E-reader. Reading for me is just so much more comfortable with my Kobo. I can't live without it!

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated date in high school:
I was talking about my 'type' the other day with my friend and I think we decided on this: nerd/hipster/rocker with a touch of athlete. I don't know what that means exactly but I think Dexter from This Lullaby fits this mold best. He's the only character of late that I remember 'falling in love' with. Going into high school this September, I will be sure to keep an eye out for any Dexters.

Glad you gave this book a chance:
Anatomy of a Boyfriend.

Hidden gem book:
I'll Be There by Holly Goldberg Sloan. Why aren't more people talking about this book?

Important moment in your reading life:
By far the most important moment in my reading life was starting Random Reads! I've always loved reading but I don't think my love would have grew so much if it weren't for blogging!

Just finished:
Swede Dreams by Eva Apelqvist

Kinds of books you won't read:

Erotica. It's easy for me to say this now as a teenager but honestly, I don't think I will ever be interested in erotica. Just not my style. I also don't like fiction that has a strong focus on religion. Or angels.

Longest book you've read:
Harry Potter & the Order of the Phoenix (870 pages)

Major book hangover because of:
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher.

Number of bookcases you own:
I own two bookshelves that are in my room and one box thing in the den which is mostly for storing old children's books.

One book you've read multiple times:
I'm not keen on rereading so the most times I've ever reread a book is twice. The four books that hold the honor of being reread are as follows: Rissa Bartholomew's Declaration of Independence by Lynda B. Comerford; Message in a Bottle by Nicholas Sparks; Angus, Thongs and Full Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison and Dear John by Nicholas Sparks.

Preferred place to read:

On the couch!

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you've read:
I don't mark down quotes so I had to go through my Goodreads to find one I liked. And here it is: We accept the love we think we deserve. From The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky.

Reading regret:
Not reading Judy Blume as a child. I'm working on it, okay?

Series you started and need to finish:
I'm not even going to mention the Pretty Little Liars series because I think that's assumed. Who has time to catch up on the books when they're coming out faster than you can read? Also I'm not too sure if they're all out yet. Sara tends to pull out surprises when you're least expecting them. So I'm going to go with the Cherub series. I remember reading them in sixth grade because all the guys were. It was actually really good though the writing was ish. But yeah, I definitely need to finish those books!

Three of your all-time favourite books:

The Book Thief by Markus Zusack, A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks (I actually cried when I started rereading it last week! Woo hoo!), and the Harry Potter series. Duh.

Unapologetic fangirl for:
The first thing that pops into my mind is Dylan O'Brien (shout out to fellow Teen Wolf fans!) but obviously, this is supposed to be book-related. I guess Harry Potter? I have nothing else...

Very excited for this release more than all the others:
Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins because she is the bomb diggity. And damn, do I want more of Josh!

Worst bookish habit:
I usually read entire parts of books in advance. I read in the tub and get my books all wet (sometimes, they're borrowed books! Eep!). I get food on my books and I dog-ear my pages. I throw my books all over my house and I constantly trip/ step on them. JUST DON'T LEND ME BOOKS OKAY?

X marks the spot - start at the top left of your shelf and pick the 27th book:
A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard

Your latest book purchase:
Winger by Andrew Smith

Zzz-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):
All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill. Too intense. TOO INTENSE.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Swede Dreams by Eva Apelqvist

Swede Dreams by Eva Apelqvist
Students Across the Seven Seas
Published by Speak; February 15, 2007
Paperback, 224 pages
Borrowed from library

Swede escape! Calista Swanson has begun her study abroad semester in Stockholm, Sweden, and she couldn’t be happier! There’s finally some distance between her and the constant piano-playing of her annoying sister Suzanne. Calista and Suzanne are twins, but the only thing they have in common is their birth date. Suzanne is a focused and gifted pianist, but a social dud. Calista isn’t at all focused, but she always has her friends, and a boyfriend, by her side. And that goes for her time in Sweden, as well. Jonas, who’d been an exchange student at her high school in Wisconsin, lives in Stockholm. He’s the main reason Calista is studying in Sweden, and she knows he’ll be in tow as she explores everything Sweden has to offer, from visiting Swedish castles to learning more about the Viking era, to sampling treats from a smörgåsbord, to strolling the cobblestone streets of Stockholm’s Gamla Stan. Calista loves Sweden from the moment she arrives, but . . . why hasn’t Jonas called?

- Description from

Ever since stumbling upon a S.A.S.S. novel in my school library, I've been hooked. I love travelling and I love books so you can imagine how awesome the two of them combined would be for me. And after reading five or six, I can confidently say that Swede Dreams is the most culture-centric. None of the other S.A.S.S. novels I've read have put such a large emphasis on the country where the girl was visiting and that's fantastic! I mean, the entire series is about studying abroad so why don't you show us more of the 'abroad' and less of the 'boy'. So I really appreciated the change in this book.

The only thing is that we didn't get to know much about Jonas. And from the blurb, it seems like Jonas is a very integral character to the story. If it weren't for him, Calista wouldn't be in Sweden! So even though he may not be a part of Calista's Sweden trip, I would have still liked to have had some more information on him. 

Other than that though, this book was great! I loved the characters and the boy and the setting was especially amazing. 

Monday, August 12, 2013

All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill

All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill
Cassandra Chronicles #1
Published by Disney Hyperion; September 3, 2013 (expected release date)
Hardcover, 368 pages
Received from publisher through NetGalley -- thanks!

"You have to kill him." Imprisoned in the heart of a secret military base, Em has nothing except the voice of the boy in the cell next door and the list of instructions she finds taped inside the drain.

Only Em can complete the final instruction. She’s tried everything to prevent the creation of a time machine that will tear the world apart. She holds the proof: a list she has never seen before, written in her own hand. Each failed attempt in the past has led her to the same terrible present—imprisoned and tortured by a sadistic man called the doctor while war rages outside.

Marina has loved her best friend James since the day he moved next door when they were children. A gorgeous, introverted science prodigy from one of America’s most famous families, James finally seems to be seeing Marina in a new way, too. But on one disastrous night, James’s life crumbles apart, and with it, Marina’s hopes for their future. Now someone is trying to kill him. Marina will protect James, no matter what. Even if it means opening her eyes to a truth so terrible that she may not survive it. At least not as the girl she once was.

All Our Yesterdays is a wrenching, brilliantly plotted story of fierce love, unthinkable sacrifice, and the infinite implications of our every choice.

- Description from

When I write a review five days after I've finished a book, you know something's up. And in this case that's a good something.

Even though it's a month before All Our Yesterdays makes it debut in North America, there has been a lot of buzz surrounding this book. It seems to be every blogger's new favourite book and well, it deserves it. There's no denying that All Our Yesterdays is a great read, all blood-racing and heart-pumping action. Just what you need in a book about a race against time. Literally.

The characters are great and the plot was amazing…so why am I not screaming for All Our Yesterdays to come to me? Okay, well I already did that but truth is, the ending had me disappointed. The shooting was a major cop-out and after that, things seem to have wrapped themselves rather quickly. And the fact that I had to get someone explain to me how the ending worked out (thanks Nara!) wasn't so great either. I don't want to have to dig out the information at the end when I need it, I want it to be ingrained in my brain so that whatever happens, I can always apply it to point A.

But until I reached the last bit of the book, All Our Yesterdays had me hooked hard and if it weren't for the fact that it was midnight, I wouldn't have let go. I seriously recommend everyone to go out and buy themselves a copy because a book as extraordinary as this deserves a home! And thus begins an excruciatingly long wait for the sequel.

But if anyone would like to pass the time by talking about how fantabulous Finn is with me, I'm down.

Friday, August 9, 2013

In Which I Talk About How I Choose My Next Read | Day 10

Five more days left! I'm getting a bit teary-eyed, guys!

I thought it would be easiest to demonstrate how I choose which books to read next in a few different scenarios.

Scenario 1
It's after school/after the orthodontist appointment/the afternoon and Annie decides to stop by at a library. Walking in, she smiles at the familiarity of being in a library once again. She makes a beeline for the teen section and quickly scans all the titles twice, picking out a few books here and there that interest her. And then it's straight to the magazine section for Annie. She especially likes Teen Vogue and Seventeen but if the occasional Girl's Life pops up, she'll pick it up too. After she's gotten her books and magazines, Annie does a round in the library looking for other books that she might want to check out. Once she's pretty sure she's covered most of the library and if there are more than three books in her hands, Annie sits down and starts methodically weeding out her books depending on level of interest. But she keeps all the magazines. And then she goes home and reads all her new books (and mags).

Scenario 2
Annie is venturing back to her favourite place in the world, the Canadian version of Times-Square and as always, stops by one of the three book stores there. The first stop she makes inside the store is the Electronics section where she scopes out amazing but cheap e-Readers she can maybe convince her parents to buy. And then it's up to the teen/middle grade/humor section! Annie spends quite a while in there, keeping an eye out for books she's seen reviewed or featured. Sometimes, she'll notice a book that she remembers was a hit amongst the bloggers and scream because now that she's seen it, she HAS to get it. Can she take it home already? It's so shiny and beautiful. So Annie hugs it to her chest as she looks around but to be honest, her business is done for the day. As she makes her way back to the stairs, she stops by at some of the displays the workers have organized and then of course, at the Starbucks tucked cozily in the corner of the store. But usually if she's not with someone, she refrains from buying anything there so reluctantly, Annie makes her way back down the stairs. Downstairs, she checks the magazine aisle so she can flip through some of the spreads that interest her (usually the ones that Taylor Swift, Emma Watson et al are in). Annie doesn't buy magazines from bookstores because she already gets subscriptions to the ones she's interested in. And hey, why would she want to read Cosmopolitan if Taylor Swift isn't on the cover? Once she feels she's done with the magazines, Annie starts to make her way to the awesome home décor items they have in the bookstore and then to the notebooks and finally to the cute trinkets by the checkout where she waits to pay for her NEW BOOK! And once she's done so, she goes home and reads.

Scenario 3
Annie's flipping through Goodreads as she does often. Today though, she sees a book that screams at her to get it. Annie thinks back and remembers how long she's wanted to read that book…and that's all it takes before she's putting it on hold at her library. And then it arrives at the library and Annie runs home to read it.

Scenario 4
Ahhh. There's nothing like cracking open a new book that gets Annie excited. But…darn! She has a book for review that she REALLY needs to get started on. So unfortunately, it's bye-bye to Twilight until Annie sorts out her responsibilities. And then of course, Annie gets started on the book for review.

And that is how I choose which book to read next. Hopefully, this helped! :)

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Why I'm a Book Blogger | Day 9

Day 9 - though not exactly because I took a long break. I wasn't really looking to finish this challenge but something about that doesn't feel right. So I will trudge on! There are only six days left after all, I might as well!

The question today is why do you blog about books. Now, that's easy. I blog about books because I love reading! And blogging. I don't know if you've heard but I've had three blogs before Random Reads - all of which subsequently failed. But after finding some book blogs through Google, it made sense to me to combine two of my interests and can I say that it's worked out really well? I'll never not want to talk about the books I've read so even if I'm bored of writing up discussion posts or memes, I know I will always love reviewing books. And it's become so that I can't NOT write a review after I've finished a book. It comes naturally now and so even if I didn't like blogging any more, I think writing reviews will always remain. 

But of course I have to add this because this is so true too: the community is what keeps me going too. I love all the book bloggers I've talked to and they're all so friendly. I hear of a lot of drama in the blogosphere but honestly, I haven't seen a bit of it. And it's hard to believe sometimes because all my encounters have been so nice. I've been lucky, I guess? 

It's not just the people I love, it's reading blogs that I love too. With all the great insightful posts and competitions and giveaways and memes and EVERYTHING. 

And I guess it's because of everything I've mentioned so far that I've been blogging for as long as I have. And I hope I continue to do so for many more months. So keep up the awesomeness, blogosphere! :)

Thursday, August 1, 2013

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green
Published by Speak; October 16, 2008
Paperback, 228 pages
Borrowed from library

When it comes to relationships, Colin Singleton's type is girls named Katherine. And when it comes to girls named Katherine, Colin is always getting dumped. Nineteen times, to be exact. On a road trip miles from home, this anagram-happy, washedup child prodigy has ten thousand dollars in his pocket, a bloodthirsty feral hog on his trail, and an overweight, Judge Judy-loving best friend riding shotgun–but no Katherines. Colin is on a mission to prove The Theorem of Underlying Katherine Predictability, which he hopes will predict the future of any relationship, avenge Dumpees everywhere, and finally win him the girl.

-Description from

Finally, after a year-long dry spell, I have picked up another John Green book. And it was great jumping back. Mr. Green is hilarious and it shines through with his writing. Since reading The Fault in Our Stars, I've loved the way he incorporates the reader with little inside jokes sprinkled here and there. And let me tell you, An Abundance of Katherines certainly had an abundance of inside jokes (fug, kafir, TOC, JATT, and SOCT - just to name a few).

But An Abundance of Katherines never really excited me the way - and I know I shouldn't be comparing - The Fault in Our Stars did. I liked the math theme and I loved the footnotes but the Theorem seemed like it was put together randomly and I would say that was due to the lack of information we were given. Of course I understand that not everyone wants to know how the hell Colin comes up with the equation to age, popularity, etc. but I do. And while I totally appreciated the Appendix, I would have liked it to have dug even deeper into the Theorem. 

One thing I did love was Gutshot, Tennessee. The place was full of personality and with each interview Colin, Hassan, and Lindsey set out to do, my love for Gutshot grew. But because I loved it so much, a bigger emphasis on the setting would definitely have been nice.

When it comes down to it though, there were just two things that really made the book fall flat for me. 

1. The way Colin appeared in narration and the way he actually talked were wildly different.
2. A lot of things in this book appeared to be put in randomly, either without any explanation or without any real purpose.

And unfortuantely, I couldn't get much into the book because of the above. But I did love the stories about the Katherines and the inside jokes and Colin, believe it or not! He appeared to be a really cool kid in both the narration and the dialogue. And hey, who doesn't love lengthy algebraic equations?