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


BLOG TOUR --- Love and First Sight by Josh Sunquist [Review & Giveaway]

Title: Love and First Sight
Author(s): Josh Sundquist
Edition: Hardcover, eBook, audiobook, 281 pages
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 3, 2017
Source: Rockstar Book Tours
Buy: Amazon Barnes & Noble - iBooks - Audible - Book Depository

Tour Schedule
Week One:
2/6/2017 - BookHounds YA - Interview
2/7/2017 - A Gingerly Review - Review
2/8/2017 - Actin' Up with Books - Guest Post
2/9/2017 - The Hardcover Lover - Review
2/10/2017 - A Dream Within A Dream - Guest Post

Week Two:
2/13/2017 - Eli to the nth - Review (ME!)
2/14/2017 - Literary Meanderings - Interview
2/15/2017 - Here's to Happy Endings - Review
2/16/2017 - Wandering Bark Books - Guest Post
2/17/2017 - Just Commonly - Review

The Summary

Love is more than meets the eye.

On his first day at a new school, blind sixteen-year-old Will Porter accidentally groped a girl on the stairs, sat on another student in the cafeteria, and somehow drove a classmate to tears. High school can only go up from here, right?

As Will starts to find his footing, he develops a crush on a sweet but shy girl named Cecily. And despite his fear that having a girlfriend will make him inherently dependent on someone sighted, the two of them grow closer and closer. Then an unprecedented opportunity arises: an experimental surgery that could give Will eyesight for the first time in his life. But learning to see is more difficult than Will ever imagined, and he soon discovers that the sighted world has been keeping secrets. It turns out Cecily doesn’t meet traditional definitions of beauty—in fact, everything he’d heard about her appearance was a lie engineered by their so-called friends to get the two of them together. Does it matter what Cecily looks like? No, not really. But then why does Will feel so betrayed?

My Opinion

The title of this book, Love and First Sight is a very cute play on the commonly known phrase, love at first sight.  But just a light-hearted high school romance this book is not.  While there is a total platonic "meet-cute" where, Will, the main character, accidentally sits on his soon-to-be friend, Nick, and other kerfuffles, as Will learns to navigate his first foray into mainstream school, there are some heavy emotions to deal with surrounding Will's blindness, his surgery, and the lies his friends told him in the face of his blindness.

The research put into this book is obvious, as Sundquist is not, himself, blind.  And I can only speak as a seeing person, but I felt like I could understand, to a degree, how difficult it would be to "be born" again, as Will as to re-learn all the things that seeing people take for granted, just as a child would.  The mental taxation and depression that can stem from that is clearly addressed in the book.  The surgery results aren't all happily-ever-after, which makes the book feel very realistic in it's tone.

Of course, the humor is there.  Sundquist has a knack for writing about difficult subjects with humor.  He, himself, is a cancer survivor and amputee, has written about his own struggles in life in his first two books.  And Will's journey to be a "normal" kid in high school is fraught with humorous events.  But, ultimately, this book brings to light the questions of "what is beautiful?", "does race really matter?", and "is having sight all that it's cracked up to be?".

Excellent book, with a fittingly open-ended conclusion, Love and First Sight by Josh Sundquist will make you question what you think is true and if what you "see" is real.  Pick a copy up at your local bookstore today!

Final Rating

About the Author
Josh Sundquist is a bestselling author, motivational speaker, and Paralympic ski racer. He has spoken across the world to groups ranging from Fortune 500 companies to inner city public schools to the White House.  Josh received a degree in business from the College of William and Mary and a Master's in Communications from the University of Southern California. He lives with his wife near the beach.




BLOG TOUR --- Romeo & What's Her Name by Shani Petroff [Review & Giveaway]

Title: Romeo & What's Her Name
Author(s): Shani Petroff
Edition: Paperback, eBook, 224 pages
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Publication Date: February 7, 2017
Source: Rockstar Book Tours
Buy: Amazon Barnes & Noble - iBooks - Book Depository

Tour Schedule

Week One:
1/30/2017 - BookHounds YA - Interview
1/31/2017 - YA and Wine - Review
2/1/2017 - Bookwyrming Thoughts - Guest Post
2/2/2017 - Literary Dust - Review
2/3/2017 - Owl Always Be Reading - Review

Week Two:
2/6/2017 - Tales of the Ravenous Reader - Interview
2/7/2017 - Brittany's Book Rambles - Guest Post
2/8/2017 - Eli to the nth - Review (ME!)
2/9/2017 - A Gingerly Review - Excerpt
2/10/2017 - Cutting Muse Blog Review - Review

The Summary

Understudies never get to perform

. . . which is why being Juliet's understudy in the school's yearly "Evening with Shakespeare" is the perfect role for Emily. She can earn some much-needed extra credit while pursuing her main goal of spending time with Wes, aka Romeo, aka the hottest, nicest guy in school (in her completely unbiased opinion). And she meant to learn her lines, really, it's just:

a) Shakespeare is HARD,

b) Amanda, aka the "real" Juliet, makes her run errands instead of lines, and

c) there's no point because Amanda would never miss the chance to be the star of the show. 

Then, Amanda ends up in the hospital and Emily, as the (completely unprepared!) understudy, has to star opposite the guy of her dreams. Oops?

My Opinion

Romeo & What's Her Name transported me right back to high school, where a good chunk of my daily gossip consisted of boys, boys, boys.  Emily is a cute, bubbly, klutzy protagonist that you can't to cheer for on her quest to find the courage to just speak to her major crush Wes!

I will say that unless you can take your "adult" mind out of the reading, you may not like this book; it is very much a book for teenagers.  But that is what I absolutely loved.  I have been around friends who have acted exactly like Emily, thinking up crazy ideas to get near their crushes, and that is what I really enjoyed about this book.  I love that Emily, who isn't very good at English to begin with, is like "Yes!  Becoming the understudy for Juliet, one of Shakespeare's most well-known heroines, will work perfectly!"  And, as you may have guessed, it doesn't!

Of course, this kooky plan is supported by Emily's gals.  That, over all else, is what really clinched the book for me.  I am a sucker for tight, supportive, girl-power friendships.  Emily and her gals give me a feeling of my tight knit group in high school; we were just as boy-crazy and very silly because of it.  They stick by Emily no matter what happens, proving that no matter how boy-crazy girls can be, their friends are more important.

The romance is adorable, and the leading man, Wes, has been Emily's crush since they were in grade school!  Talk about fanning a flame.  During the romance, you don't learn much about Wes individually as a person, just how Emily sees him.  This is the one area that I wished was more developed.  I love a romance, but I want more than just "He's super hot and super nice!".

A great book to pick up just in time for Valentine's Day, Romeo & What's Her Name is a quick, fun, light-hearted romance that's sure to bring a smile to your face.

Final Rating

About the Author

Shani Petroff is a writer living in New York City.  She's the author of the “Bedeviled” series, which includes Daddy’s Little Angel, The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly Dress, Careful What You Wish For, and Love Struck, and is the co-author of Ash. She also writes for television news programs and several other venues. When she’s not locked in her apartment typing away, she spends a whole lot of time on books, boys, TV, daydreaming, and shopping online.



The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon [Review + Giveaway]

Title: The Sun is Also a Star
Author(s): Nicola Yoon
Edition: Audio, 8 hours 4 minutes/7 discs
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: November 1, 2016
Source: Library
Buy: Amazon - Barnes & Noble - Book Depository


Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

My Opinion

“The thing about falling is you don't have any control on your way down.” 
― Nicola Yoon, The Sun Is Also a Star

I don't know if I am capable of expressing how much I absolutely loved this book.  The protagonists, Natasha and Daniel, were so alive I felt I could touch them.  The backdrop of New York, a gateway for so many people into the United States was perfect.  The family dynamic was realistic and crucial.  Every part of this book, from the first sentence to the last, was necessary and masterfully crafted.

Natasha and Daniel are both part of the immigrant experience that plays such a large role in the culture of the United States.  Daniel's parents immigrated from South Korea in order to give their children the "American Dream".  Daniel is a first generation Korean-American, trying to balance between being American and being Korean.  Natasha too, is struggling to find the balance between her two cultures, but in her case she is an illegal immigrant from Jamaica.  She and her family moved to the U.S. when she was around 8 years old, and it is the only country she really knows.  And, her and Daniel meet on the day that she is going to be deported.

The mix between cultures that Yoon crafts is really large part of the story and gives each character such a strong background.  Most Americans started as immigrants, either personally or within their family history.  We all have other cultural aspects of us that mix together in this country, creating a completely original experience.  This is what you see when you learn Natasha and Daniel's story.

They could not be farther apart in personality: Natasha, the logical scientist and Daniel, the daydream poet.  But as they spend the day together, falling more and more in love, they learn to see some of the world through the other's eyes.  Even the minor characters are well developed, with each person Natasha and Daniel encounter adding something to their story.

Besides the character development, the other very strong aspect to this book that I enjoyed immensely was the writing and structure of the book.  As this story takes place within one day, structure of events is so important!  Yoon did an amazing job of inserting pieces of both characters history, shedding more information without taking away from the current story.  Additionally, the chapters were told from both Natasha and Daniel's perspectives, which gave interesting insight to events happening to both of them.  Finally, important events/items/side characters also receive a chapter giving more depth to their importance to the story.  Just masterfully crafted, the poetic language Yoon scribes is phenomenal.  I mean, that quote above just explains love so well!

The Sun is Also a Star stole my heart, crushed it, then gave it a beautiful, but bittersweet, farewell. If you read ONE book this year, get a copy of this! One of my top books of all time!!!

Want a copy? Check out my giveaway below!

Final Rating


Book Trailer

Making the Book Cover

Interview with Nicola Yoon


Giveaway runs from February 06, 2017 12:00AM - February 13, 2017 12:00AM

Open to US/INT (as long as Book Depository ships to your country)!  

Must be at least 13 years old to enter.  

ONE winner will win a finished copy of _The Sun is Also a Star_

Winner will be contacted by email to inform them they won.

Winner has 48 hours to respond with mailing address or a new winner will be chosen.  

NO PO BOXES as prizes tend to be lost when sent there.

I claim no responsibility for lost prizes.

Once package arrives to recipient, personal information (i.e. address) is deleted.

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