quotes Elisquared likes

"Saying 'I notice you're a nerd' is like saying, 'Hey, I notice that you'd rather be intelligent than be stupid, that you'd rather be thoughtful than be vapid, that you believe that there are things that matter more than the arrest record of Lindsay Lohan. Why is that?' In fact, it seems to me that most contemporary insults are pretty lame. Even 'lame' is kind of lame. Saying 'You're lame' is like saying 'You walk with a limp.' Yeah, whatever, so does 50 Cent, and he's done all right for himself."— John Green


The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (Review)

TitleThe Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Author(s)Jennifer E. Smith
Edition: ARC, 236 pages
Publication Date: January 2, 2012
Source: Received from NCTE

The Summary
Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18C. Hadley's in 18A. 

Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.

My Opinion
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is not only a mouthful of a title, but also an emotional roller coaster of a book. Highs, lows, twists, turns, and one very big loop bring you to the end panting to catch your breath. It couldn’t be more amazing!

The first thing I loved is that the book is a stand-alone. As much as I love series, I enjoy novels that are self-contained. Jennifer E. Smith makes great use of length and pacing in order to complete a fully realized love story from start to finish. The pacing is what really made the story sing. I never felt the plot becoming stagnant whether in scene or character. The development ebbed and flowed perfectly, hitting the marks of the plot line. The fact that the whole book takes place within 24 hours, but doesn’t feel like it, is awesome and a true show of Smith’s gift. 

Hadley and Oliver have the best chemistry. Which may make you say, “Well duh, they’re written that way”, but believe me some authors don’t know how to develop characters if their lives depended on it. Luckily, in Smith’s hands Hadley and Oliver come to life. They could be living and breathing in our world, and within a contemporary novel that is the most important part. I don’t want to suspend disbelief as in fantasy; I need to immediately identify and believe that these characters and this plot is plausible. Smith crafts this perfectly. 

The themes examined in the book are some big ones: divorce, forgiveness, acceptance, and love. Not light at all, but the way they’re balanced with humor really rounds out everything. I think Hadley’s reaction to her parents divorce is one the more realistic portrayals I’ve read in a while; the balance between the hardship on the parents and the hardship on the kid is felt. Then of course the stuff Oliver’s dealing with is also handled beautifully, but I’ll leave you to discover what that is exactly. 

This is a great book, one which you’ll devoured and be satisfied at the end. Not to be missed, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith made me believe in life, love, and destiny. Go out and search pick up your own copy to experience the love!

Final Rating
Book Cover: 5/5
Book Title: 4.5/5
Plot: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 9/10
Ending: 9/10
Overall: 45.5/50: A-

Rounding out the NPM Celebration with My Poetry

For the last installment of National Poetry Month here at Eli to the nth, I thought I'd share some of my own poetry.  Most of my poetry has to do with personal things, such as family, friends, and myself, so the fact that I'm sharing it here is a huge step.  Anyway, I hope you enjoy, and try not to be too harsh on me, I get enough of that from editors and my writing group!


I am from blankets made out of long worn clothes,
from televisions, CCD classes and home-cooked meals.
I'm from the suburbs, (but every house has character),
From ice cream trucks and the neighborhood watch,
And the three oaks standing tall in the front yard,
growing as my sister grows, as I grow, as my brother grows.

I am from the blessing of the baskets and midnight mass.
From Michele and David, Blanche and Raymond.
I’m from kisses on the mouth and constant teasing.
From enveloping hugs and spanks on the butt.
From Melissa’s shadow, from the middle of three.
I’m from “Don’t talk to strangers!” and “You're so sensitive.",
"Kocham Cię." and "Malutka.", and “Our Fathers”
followed by “Hail Marys”.

I am from Poland, not by blood but family;
the home my dziadkowie speak of so often.
From Gołąbki, Kiełbasa, and Placki ziemniaczane
(with the occasional pot roast and pizza.)
I'm from the struggle of indentured servants
trying to earn their freedom, but never reaching it.
Keeping their traditions alive through
a hand-written recipe book, a cast-iron mold,
and a gilt-edged Bible.

Main Interest?

It was me, but
I was being naïve,
I couldn’t keep you,
too dazed by love to see it.

I want to whisper take me back,
But I avoid you because then,
then I can pretend.
Then I can be selfish.

Illusions have a habit of breaking.

Cake Stuffing 

I want to scream until my lungs,
traveling upupup my trachea,
burst out of my mouth.

Then I’ll gulp them back down while I
Breathe deep– inhale the perfume,
like a vacuum, the smog. And
keep all my words (each fucking one)
inside, hidden in a pink, withahintofgrey,
membrane (unfortunate left over from my smoker days)


If there is one thing I’ve learned
(have I learned?) is that
re-heated spaghetti tastes terrible coming back up.

You probably think this is all a big
waste of time.
And maybe when it matters it is
(because levity is my only medicine),
but I digress, and digress, and digress, and digress, and digress, and digress, and digress

Back to hiding, eating, retreating—
My words, thoughts, feelings.
I do what any fat girl does: stuff them down 
with cake.


In My Mailbox (41)

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren and inspired by one of her friends, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie, where we get to post about the books we receive each week through publishers/authors, our own purchases, contests won, and libraries.

IMM: 4/16/12 - 4/29/12


Spell Bound (Review)

TitleSpell Bound
Author(s): Rachel Hawkins
Edition: Hardcover, 327 pages
PublisherHyperion Books CH
Publication Date: March 13, 201
Source: Bought from Barnes & Noble

The Summary
Just as Sophie Mercer has come to accept her extraordinary magical powers as a demon, the Prodigium Council strips them away. Now Sophie is defenseless, alone, and at the mercy of her sworn enemies—the Brannicks, a family of warrior women who hunt down the Prodigium. Or at least that’s what Sophie thinks, until she makes a surprising discovery. The Brannicks know an epic war is coming, and they believe Sophie is the only one powerful enough to stop the world from ending. But without her magic, Sophie isn’t as confident.

Sophie’s bound for one hell of a ride—can she get her powers back before it’s too late?
My Opinion
There has been a crazy journey with Sophie Mercer, through meeting her in Hex Hall, discovering secrets with her in Demonglass, and now fighting alongside her to save the Prodigium world in Spell Bound. The ride couldn’t have been more fantastic!

This is one of my all time favorite book series, and has guaranteed I’ll read anything Rachel Hawkins writes. The characters, the plot, and the myth building come together so perfectly that even after being so satisfied with how the books ended I want more! 

Sophie Mercer is one kick ass girl. Snarky, funny, brave, and loving, she’s definitely someone you want on your side. Not to mention she’s powerful as hell, which doesn’t hurt. Of course the part I liked best about Spell Bound was the chance to see Sophie fight and win without her magic. This helps her grow confidently into the woman we see at the end of the book. 

Speaking of how awesome Sophie is, she also has the attention of some very hot guys! Archer Cross and Alexander Callahan are both amazing in their own right and complete opposites. Archer is dark and dangerous and Cal is golden and safe. Both are drool worthy and make the all the books that much more delicious. I certainly wouldn’t want to be in Sophie’s place, having to choose between the two. Well, maybe for a little while wouldn’t be so bad…. 

Not only are the characters great, the plot is intriguing. Filled with action, revelations, and danger, the pace just pulls you all the way to the end. A lot about Sophie’s family is revealed, and no not her father’s side, but her mother’s side! I was so glad that Sophie’s mom played a bigger role in this book as we only see her in a small part in each previous book. Let’s just say that both sides of Sophie’s family are complicated! Of course, not only did this add complications to the already complicated events, the ending ripped my heart out, and I’m leaving it at that (I know I’m evil). 

On that note, Spell Bound makes the list of my favorite books in 2012. If you haven’t read the series you are seriously missing out. If the book is sitting on your shelf, what are you waiting for? Whatever the case maybe, grab a copy of Spell Bound by Rachel Hawkins and feel the magic!

Final Rating
Book Cover: 5/5
Book Title: 4/5
Plot: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 10/10
Ending: 9/10
Overall: 46/50: A-


Ruby Red (Review)

TitleRuby Red
Author(s)Kerstin Gier
Edition: Hardcover, 324 pages
PublisherHenry Holt and Co.
Publication Date: May 10, 2011
Source: Bought at NCTE 2011

The Summary

Gwyneth Shepherd's sophisticated, beautiful cousin Charlotte has been prepared her entire life for traveling through time. But unexpectedly, it is Gwyneth, who in the middle of class takes a sudden spin to a different era!
Gwyneth must now unearth the mystery of why her mother would lie about her birth date to ward off suspicion about her ability, brush up on her history, and work with Gideon--the time traveler from a similarly gifted family that passes the gene through its male line, and whose presence becomes, in time, less insufferable and more essential. Together, Gwyneth and Gideon journey through time to discover who, in the 18th century and in contemporary London, they can trust.
My Opinion

I picked up a coy of Ruby Red during NCTE.  On the last day, many publishers mark down finished copies  and I’m usually able to snap up some great books for cheap!  Of course I hadn’t heard of the book at the time, but it’s gorgeous cover (I’m such a sucker for covers) hypnotized me with it’s pretty and I had to grab it!  After reading it, I am sure as hell glad I did!

Gwyneth is your average teenage girl.  She giggles with her best friend, does alright in school, and thinks watching historical movies qualifies as studying for history tests.  And, of course, she can talk to ghosts…Okay maybe she isn’t so average.  But, if you can believe it, this isn’t the strangest part of her life.  Nope, she’s descendent from a line of time travelers.  Hooked yet?

I immediately loved Gwyneth.  She is such a relatable character because she isn’t much different from real teens.  Even while dealing with weird stuff her reaction is what I imagine mine would be in her situation.  And she does it all with a great sense of wit.  Her best feature, and what makes her really likable, is her relationship with her best friend Leslie.  As Gwyneth’s confidante, Leslie isn’t kept out of the loop about anything, be it time traveling or chatting up ghosts.  This keeps Gwyneth grounded when the weird gets weirder.  I would definitely hang out with these two any day.

In fact, each character Gier crafted was very realistic.  You could really feel their emotions and personalities.  I think this is so important because without rounded characters the story is flat.  Also, the way Gier balanced the “good”, “bad”, and “neutral” characters also helped balance the plot.  There is a mystery afoot, and you get a sense of whom may be or may not be involved by the way they act, helping the reader follow the plot more easily.  When you’re dealing with time travel, you need something to help you keep it all straight!

The only thing I felt was off in the book was the ending: it just stops.  There isn’t really a climax, and that made the plot feel like it was missing another quarter.  It was a lot of build up, albeit entertaining build up, for little pay off.  But then again there are two more books in the series, so hopefully there will be a better climax and resolution coming up.

Overall, this was a very addicting story.  I read it all in one day, and I wanted more immediately.  Sadly, I don’t know German otherwise I would order the next two books already.  I’ll have to just patiently (which is so very hard) for them to be translated into English.  But luckily, you don’t have to wait to enjoy Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier; pick up a copy and start reading now!!


Final Rating
Book Cover: 4/5
Book Title: 4/5
Plot: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 10/10
Ending: 7/10
Overall: 43/50: B

Trailer Thursday


by Veronica Roth
Release Date: 05/01/2012



Waiting on Wednesday (36)

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we seriously can’t wait for.

 Here's my pick for the week, that I seriously can't wait for:

Publication Date: October 30, 2012

Gwen’s life has been a roller coaster since she discovered she was the Ruby, the final member of the secret time-traveling Circle of Twelve. In between searching through history for the other time-travelers and asking for a bit of their blood (gross!), she’s been trying to figure out what all the mysteries and prophecies surrounding the Circle really mean.
At least Gwen has plenty of help. Her best friend Lesley follows every lead diligently on the Internet. James the Ghost teaches Gwen how to fit in at an eighteenth century party. And Xemerius, the gargoyle demon who has been following Gwen since he caught her kissing Gideon in a church, offers advice on everything. Oh, yes. And of course there is Gideon, the Diamond. One minute he’s very warm indeed; the next he’s freezing cold. Gwen’s not sure what’s going on there, but she’s pretty much destined to find out.


Oh my god!  I am so very excited for this book to come out!  I loved Ruby Red, and I want to find out what happens to Gwen and Gideon.  It's double awesome because I just read Ruby Red, so the wait for Sapphire Blue isn't going to be nearly as long!  I just love the premise; oh gosh I'm so freaking excited!


Purity (Review)

Author(s)Jackson Pearce
Edition: ARC, No Page #s Listed
PublisherLittle, Brown
Publication Date: April 24, 2012
Source: Received for Review from Publisher

The Summary
A novel about love, loss, and sex -- but not necessarily in that order.
Before her mother died, Shelby promised three things: to listen to her father, to love as much as possible, and to live without restraint. Those Promises become harder to keep when Shelby's father joins the planning committee for the Princess Ball, an annual dance that ends with a ceremonial vow to live pure lives -- in other words, no "bad behavior," no breaking the rules, and definitely no sex.

Torn between Promises One and Three, Shelby makes a decision -- to exploit a loophole and lose her virginity before taking the vow. But somewhere between failed hookup attempts and helping her dad plan the ball, Shelby starts to understand what her mother really meant, what her father really needs, and who really has the right to her purity.
My Opinion
Purity was an amazing look into what a person does to honor someone they love.  It was hilarious and heartbreaking rolled into one; just how I like my contemporary novels.  This is a first for Jackson Pearce, and based on this, I hope she has more contemporary books lying in wait!

Shelby deals with such a heart-wrenching situation the only way she knows how: following the Promises.  These Promises are the only things she feels will keep her connected to her mother, and she lives her life by them.  This idea is something that a reader can relate to, even if they've never lost someone because of the all-consuming way Pearce has written the story.  There is no Shelby without the Promises, and you really feel that through the story.

As with any contemporary, characters are crucial, and Pearce does an amazing job crafting her's.  Shelby is a great protagonist to go on this journey with, but I have to say my favorite character is Jonas.  He is Shelby's best friend and partner in the Promises.  He keeps the list for her, he supports her, and he loves her.  If there are no Shelby with the Promises, there is also no Shelby with Jonas.  My other favorite character is Shelby's dad.  In ways he reminds me of my dad, and that makes the strained relationship between Shelby and him even that more painful to read.

The themes explored within the novel are summed up in the tagline: love, loss, and sex.  No light reading here.  The issues of virginity, purity, and belief are mixed together as Shelby tries to discover what she believes and feels.  Spirituality plays an important role within the book, and I think the way this is handled is really great.  There are all aspects of belief represented: non-belief, required belief, true belief.  I just really love when authors represent religion and spirituality in a realistic and true way.  I don't think the book would be the same without this either!

The final part I have to talk about is the writing!  I knew Pearce was an amazing writer from her three previous books, but the humor she puts into all her writing made this one unforgettable.  When dealing with such heavy issues people seem to think it's all tears and torture, but in my experience there is a ton of laughter and sarcasm.  That is what she brings to the table.  I laughed so hard at certain parts, it was a much needed counter point to the intense problems going on; a balancing act not many can pull off.

Jackson Pearce yet again blows it out of the park, making Purity is a must read!  The book hits stores TODAY so go grab a copy (links to order are above).  Trust me, you'll want re-read as soon as you're done!

Check out Jackson's Youtube page for more hilarious and interesting videos!
Final Rating
Book Cover: 5/5
Book Title: 4/5
Plot: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 10/10
Ending: 9/10
Overall: 46/50: A-

Celebrate NPM with Some Great Poetry Sites

For my continued celebration of National Poetry Month, I'm bringing you some links that you could use in your own life, and the teens in your life.  

For Reading

Top Ten Tuesday (15)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This meme was created because they are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. They'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!
Each week they will post a new Top Ten list complete with one of their bloggers’ answers. Everyone is welcome to join. All they ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND post a comment on our post with a link to your Top Ten Tuesday post to share with us and all those who are participating. If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.
The topic this week is: Top Ten Favorite Book Characters

Let me know what your favorite characters are!

Teaser Tuesday (37)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be ReadingAnyone can play along! Just do the following!

  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share a few teaser sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • MAKE SURE NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (you don't want to give too much away and ruin the book for other readers)
Share the title and author too, so that other readers can add your book to their TBR list if they like your teaser!
by Bekka Black
Publication Date: October 1, 2010

Then he rattled on like always.  Indisposed?  They hauled Renfield Jr. past me screaming.  He actually bit the head off a little gray mouse he caught in the cafeteria.
(Pg. 3)

Okay, this book is awesome!  I found it at my library while browsing (one of my favorite ways to discover books).  This story is told completely in emails, texts, and web pages.  It is such a cool way to present a classic with a modern twist.  I could see so many of my students enjoying Dracula even more if it was supplemented with iDrakula.


Ways to Celebrate NPM!

Poets.org is run by the Academy of American Poets, who are responsible for National Poetry Month!  On Poets.org thay have a lot of suggestions of ways that you can help celebrate NPM! 

Below I've listed some of my favorites, and some I hope you'll enjoy as well.

Put poetry in an unexpected place 
"Books should be brought to the doorstep like electricity, or 

like milk in England: they should be considered utilities."

Celebrate Poem in Your Pocket Day
The idea is simple: select a poem you love, carry it with you, 

then share it with co-workers, family, and friends.

Read a book of poetry 
"Poetry is a response to the daily necessity of getting the world right."

Memorize a poem
"Getting a poem or prose passage truly 'by heart' implies

 getting it by mind and memory and understanding and delight."

Start a commonplace book 
"Since the Renaissance, devoted readers have been copying 

their favorite poems and quotations into notebooks to form 
their own personal anthologies called commonplace books."

Attend a poetry reading 
"Readings have been occurring for decades around the world 

in universities, bookstores, cafes, corner pubs, and coffeehouses."

Play Exquisite Corpse 
"Each participant is unaware of what the others have written, 

thus producing a surprising—sometimes absurd—yet often 
beautiful poem."

Put a poem on the pavement 
"Go one step beyond hopscotch squares and write a poem in chalk on your sidewalk."

If you follow the links, it will take you to more information on Poets.org about each option!  There's even more on the site, so I encourage you all to go out and enjoy some poetry!


Support Abnegation, Win Awesome Prizes!

Harry Potter - Twilight - The Hunger Games 

What is the next big thing?

Divergent & Insurgent by Veronica Roth!

All throughout the month of April fans of Veronica Roth's Divergent series are promoting the upcoming release of her book Insurgent through various contests, group efforts, and more!

If you have never heard of the Divergent Series you are missing out.

Learn more about the series on the Publisher's Website.

This $100 Amazon Gift Code Giveaway was organized by I Am A Reader, Not A Writer and is brought to you by a large group of Bloggers who are showing their support for the Faction Abnegation by posting this giveaway on their blog.

All entries are done via the Rafflecopter Form. (Yes I know it is ridiculously long. We had a lot of people sign up to support Team Abnegation! There is a +25 Clicking Bonus if you make it all the way through the rafflecopter and follow & like everyone). 

Open to anyone 18 or older who can legally receive and use an Amazon Gift Card Code. The Rafflecopter accepts entries from 12:01 AM on April 18th to 11:59 PM on April 30th. 

Enter daily to better your chances of winning
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Waiting on Wednesday (35)

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we seriously can’t wait for.

 Here's my pick for the week, that I seriously can't wait for:

Publication Date: January 2, 2013
There isn't a summary released yet, but I LOVED The Name of the Star, which was book 1 in the Shades of London series, so I'm sure I'll LOVE book 2.  I think what Maureen Johnson did with the first book was really original and very scary.  The cliffhanger at the end has me chomping at the bit to read the next one.  I definitely recommend you go out and pick up a copy to get ready for the release in January!!


Teaser Tuesday (36)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be ReadingAnyone can play along! Just do the following!

  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share a few teaser sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • MAKE SURE NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (you don't want to give too much away and ruin the book for other readers)
Share the title and author too, so that other readers can add your book to their TBR list if they like your teaser!
I Hunt Killers 
by Barry Lyga
Publication Date: April 3, 2012

         The evidence bag.  Jazz couldn't stop thinking about it.  About what he'd seen inside it, actually.
         A finger.
         A severed human finger.
(Pg. 10)

This is not a book I read at night.  It isn't even very gory (yet), but it is so creepy.  The way Barry Lyga gets into the mindset of a killer is spooky, but so entertaining.  Also the ARC cover of this book is like ten times worse, and I wish they would have kept it because it is perfect (check it out here).  I think the book really examines human psychology in an interesting way, and you should really check it.  If a big weenie like me can read it, then so can you!
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