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 --- City of Beasts by Corrie Wang [Review + Giveaway]

Title: City of Beasts
Authors(s): Corrie Wang
Publication Date: September 17, 2019
Edition: Hardcover, ebook; 384 pgs
Publisher: Freeform
Source: Rockstar Book Tours
Buy: Amazon - Kindle - Barnes & Noble  - iBooks - Kobo The Book Depository
Disclaimer: I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Tour Schedule

Week One:
9/2/2019- Country Road ReviewsExcerpt
9/3/2019- Two Chicks on BooksExcerpt
9/4/2019- Character Madness and MusingsExcerpt
9/5/2019- Shelf-RatedReview
9/6/2019- BookHounds YAReview

Week Two:
9/9/2019- Lifestyle of MeReview
9/10/2019- Daily Waffle - Excerpt
9/11/2019- A Dream Within A DreamReview
9/12/2019- Life of a Simple ReaderExcerpt
9/13/2019- Here's to Happy EndingsReview

Week Three:
9/16/2019- Jena Brown WritesReview
9/17/2019- Kati's Bookaholic Rambling ReviewsExcerpt
9/18/2019- Wishful EndingsExcerpt
9/19/2019- Book-KeepingReview
9/20/2019- Jade Writes BooksReview

Week Four:
9/23/2019- Eli to the nthReview
9/24/2019- two points of interestReview
9/25/2019- The Layaway DragonReview
9/26/2019- Smada's Book SmackReview
9/27/2019- PopTheButterfly ReadsReview

Week Five:
lori's house of reviewsReview

The Summary
"If you see a beast, and you have the shot, don't hesitate. Kill it."

For seventeen years, fees have lived separate from beasts. The division of the sexes has kept their world peaceful. Glori Rhodes is like most other fees her age. She adores her neighborhood's abandoned Costco, can bench her body weight, and she knew twenty-seven beast counter attack moves by the time she was seven. She has never questioned the separation of the sexes or the rules that keep her post-nuclear hometown safe. But when her mother secretly gives birth to a baby beast, Glori grows to love the child and can't help wondering: What really is the difference between us and them?

When her brother, at the age of five, is snatched in a vicious raid, Glori and her best friend, Su, do the unthinkable - covertly infiltrate the City of Beasts to get him back. What's meant to be a smash-and-grab job quickly becomes the adventure of a lifetime as the fees team up with a fast-talking, T-shirt cannon wielding beast named Sway, and Glori starts to see that there's more to males, and her own history, than she's been taught. Glori, Sway, and a motley cohort of friends will go to the ends of the earth to find her little brother. And maybe save their divided world while they're at it.
My Review

This book is as timely as they come.  A dystopian set after a horrific nuclear disaster, where global warming has made the oceans rise that most Americans fled to the north, and where males and females live divided as enemies.  I don't know how far off this book will be if nothing changes in our world currently, not to start out too heavy here.

But the realism is what makes this such a page-turner. Oh, that and the characters, the setting, the dialogue...oh the whole book!  I absolutely adored it.  I couldn't put it down until the end (the end that's not quite an end, but any more would be spoilers).  Glori and Sway are my faves, hands down, no argument.  They're dynamic is killer, and both learn something from the other.  This is important in a book that could easily be all about hating the other.

The dialogue is very sharp, sprinkled with recognizable and purposeful slang, just different enough to feel like it developed organically within this world.  The use of the terms for female and male (always female and male -- not man and women, which is an important distinction because of sex vs. gender, which is blurred in this book) --- fees and nags and beasts and norms --- clearly show the opinion of each side of the divide.  And because they're are people alive from before the disaster struck, so there are references from our present mixed in.  This makes the book timely and timeless.

The two society's created are distinct and are a commentary on the two "perfect" societies, or at least desired societies that may be influenced by females and males; while it is clear that Wang leans toward the female camp, she does not paint a picture that males are the absolute worst.  There is balance in each, highlighting both the good and the bad of the two communities.

There is science galore; you can tell that Wang did her homework while writing to make the result of climate change and a nuclear holocaust as accurate as possible.  But the science doesn't detract, only enhances the story-telling.  This is ultimately a character piece, reflecting on what makes us human.  And I absolutely loved it.

City of Beasts by Corrie Wang is out in stores now!  Check out an excerpt from the book, and enter to win a copy below.  This is a must-read, and will go on your shelf right with The Hunger Games and Divergent when you're finished!

Final Rating


About the Author

Corrie Wang is passionate about libraries, recycling, and eating all the food, everywhere. Corrie grew up in Buffalo but spent her formative years in Brooklyn, where one of her last paying gigs was managing a three-story nightclub on the Lower East Side.

Writing to fix things that make her angry and explore things that frighten her, Corrie’s novels are about girls unapologetically conquering scenarios they should have little control over. Tired of seeing women and girls lose in this culture - spoiler - they never do in her stories.

Her debut novel, The Takedown was chosen as one of the best books of 2017 by the New York Public Library and a 2018 YALSA selection for Best Fiction for Young Adults. City of Beasts is her second novel.

Seeing, as Corrie wrote an entire novel about the freakiness and perils of socializing too much on the internets her existence there is haphazard at best. Now, more than ever, she feels it is time for everyone to look up. (Also, stand up, step up, and eat up. Woot!) That being said, you may follow her poor photography skillz on Instagram. AND P.S. Wang rhymes with 'song' y'all.

3 winners will receive finished copies of CITY OF BEASTS, US Only.


BLOG TOUR --- Who Put This Song On? by Morgan Parker [Excerpt + Giveaway]

I'm so excited to be able to share an excerpt from this book.  Who Put This Song On? by  Morgan Parker is a powerful exploration of depression, faith, and blackness -- how do they all intertwine when it comes to our main character, Morgan.  Based loosely on the author's own diaries and experiences, this is a book not to be missed!

Title: Who Put This Song On?
Authors(s): Morgan Parker
Edition: Hardcover, ebook, audiobook; 336 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: September 24, 2019
Source: Rockstar Book Tours
Buy: Amazon - Kindle - Audible - Barnes & 
Noble - iBooks - KoboThe Book Depository
Disclaimer: I received a finished copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. My thoughts and opinions are my own.

Tour Schedule

Week One:
9/2/2019- Becky on BooksExcerpt
9/3/2019- A Dream Within A DreamExcerpt
9/4/2019- Lifestyle Of MeReview
9/5/2019- Life of a Simple ReaderExcerpt
9/6/2019- jade writes booksReview

Week Two:
9/9/2019- Kait Plus BooksExcerpt
9/10/2019- Here's to Happy EndingsReview
9/11/2019- Jena Brown WritesReview
9/12/2019- Country Road ReviewsExcerpt
9/13/2019- Paper ReaderReview

Week Three:
9/16/2019- Eli to the nthReview
9/17/2019- Book-KeepingReview
9/18/2019- The Layaway DragonReview
9/19/2019- Wishful EndingsExcerpt
9/20/2019- Kati's Bookaholic Rambling ReviewsExcerpt

Week Four:
9/23/2019- BookHounds YAReview
9/24/2019- Confessions of a YA ReaderExcerpt
9/25/2019- dwantstoreadExcerpt
9/26/2019- Two Chicks on BooksExcerpt
9/27/2019- two points of interestReview

Week Five:
9/30/2019- Bookish Rantings

The Summary

In the vein of powerful reads like The Hate U Give and Girl in Pieces, comes poet Morgan Parker's pitch-perfect novel about a black teenage girl searching for her identity when the world around her views her depression as a lack of faith and blackness as something to be politely ignored.

Trapped in sunny, stifling, small-town suburbia, seventeen-year-old Morgan knows why she's in therapy. She can't count the number of times she's been the only non-white person at the sleepover, been teased for her "weird" outfits, and been told she's not "really" black. Also, she's spent most of her summer crying in bed. So there's that, too.

Lately, it feels like the whole world is listening to the same terrible track on repeat--and it's telling them how to feel, who to vote for, what to believe. Morgan wonders, when can she turn this song off and begin living for herself?

Life may be a never-ending hamster wheel of agony, but Morgan finds her crew of fellow outcasts, blasts music like there's no tomorrow, discovers what being black means to her, and finally puts her mental health first. She decides that, no matter what, she will always be intense, ridiculous, passionate, and sometimes hilarious. After all, darkness doesn't have to be a bad thing. Darkness is just real.

Loosely based on her own teenage life and diaries, this incredible debut by award-winning poet Morgan Parker will make readers stand up and cheer for a girl brave enough to live life on her own terms--and for themselves.



This is a story about Susan. Draped permanently on the back of Susan’s chair is a sweater embroidered with birds—­that type of lady. She has this thing I hate, where she’s just always medium, room temperature. Susan looks like a preschool teacher with no emotions. She smiles, she nods, but she almost never laughs or speaks. That might be the number one thing I hate about coming here. She won’t even laugh at my jokes! I know that life with me is a ridiculous hamster wheel of agony, but I’m kind of hilarious, and I’m just trying to make this whole situation less awkward.

I’m the one who begged for my first session, but I was desperate, and it was almost my only choice. Now that I’m actually doing this, I hate it. I just want Susan to buy my usual pitch: I am okay. I am smart and good. I am regular, and I believe in God, and that means I am happy.

By the way, of course my therapist’s name is Susan. It seems like everyone I meet, everyone telling me how to be, is a Susan.

I don’t trust a Susan, and I don’t think they trust me either.

I don’t like Susan, but I want to impress her—­I’m usually so good at it.

But this is what I mean about the bird sweater. I know the bird sweater is awful, and just uncool and unappealing in every way—­it doesn’t even look comfortable. But other Susans like it, and generally all Susans do. It is a sensible piece of clothing; it is normal, and it makes sense. Wouldn’t it be so much easier if I liked the sweater, if I just wore the fucking sweater and didn’t make such a big deal out of everything?

This Is a Story About Me

This is a story about me, and I am the hero of it. It opens with a super-­emo shot of a five-­foot-­nothing seventeen-­year-­old black girl—­me—­in the waiting room at my therapist’s office, a place that I hate. It’s so bright outside it’s neon, and of course the soundtrack is Yankee Hotel Foxtrot by Wilco, because I have more feelings than anyone knows what to do with.

The smell in here is unlike any other smell in the world, some rare concoction of pumpkin pie–­scented candles and every single perfume sample from the first floor of Macy’s. I bet Susan Brady LCSW decorates her house with Thomas Kinkade paintings and those little figurines, cherubs dressed up for various occupations, I don’t know. The other thing I hate about coming here is the random framed photo of, I believe, Bon Jovi on the coffee table, which also features a wide assortment of the corniest magazines of all time.

(White people love Bon Jovi. When Marissa and I went to Lake Havasu with Kelly Kline, because that’s what white people do here in the summer, Bon Jovi was the only thing her family listened to—­that freaking scratched-­up CD was actually stuck inside the thing on their boat. I had a moderate time at “the Lake,” except for when I had to explain my summer braids to Kelly and Marissa, for probably the eight hundredth time, to justify why I didn’t have a hairbrush to sing into. They made me sing into a chicken leg because of course. I was also shamed for not knowing any Bon Jovi lyrics. That was around this time last summer, but it feels like a past life.)

(Another thing I hate about coming here is how I have to think about everything I’ve lost, everything I’ve done wrong, and everything I hate about being alive.)

The thing I like about it here is that there’s Werther’s.

Susan opens the door and spreads her arms to me in a weird Jesus way, the sleeves of her flowy paisley peasant top billowing at her sides. She has kind of a White Auntie thing going on, or a lady-­who-­sells-­birdhouses-­at-­the-­church-­craft-­fair thing: a sad squinty smile, a dull brown bob, a gentle cadence to her voice. I can tell she’s used to talking to children—­probably rich white children—­and as I stiffly arrange myself on the couch in her office, I’m suddenly self-­conscious about my largeness, my badness. I just feel so obvious all the time.

It’s like that song “Too Alive” by the Breeders. I feel every little thing, way more than regular people do.

“So, how are you doing today?” Susan asks too cheerily, like a hostess at Olive Garden or something. “Where are you on the scale we’ve been using?”

(I feel so deeply it agonizes me.)

“I’m okay. I guess on the scale I’m probably ‘pretty dang bad,’ but better than yesterday and still not ‘scary bad.’ ”

(Now, probably to the soundtrack of Belle and Sebastian’s “Get Me Away from Here, I’m Dying,” there’s a longish montage of me zoning out, imagining the lives of everyone I know. Even in my dreams, it’s so easy and fun for them to exist.)

“Are you still taking the art class?”

“Yeah. Every Tuesday.”

“That’s wonderful. And how are you liking it?”

“It’s fine. Sort of boring, but . . . I guess it takes my mind off things.”

“Do you want to talk about what’s on your mind the other times?”

“Um, not really,” I chuckle, in my best joking-­with-­adults voice. The AC churns menacingly, like it always does, taunting me. Susan, with her wrinkled white cleavage, unmoving and unrelenting. Susan doesn’t play.

I think about grabbing a Werther’s from the crystal bowl but don’t, even though I want one. (Will Susan write Loudly sucks on Werther’s in my file as soon as I leave, right next to Is probably fine; just being dramatic?)

“I guess just people at school. Why I’m so different.”

“Can you say a little more about that? What are the things that make you feel so different?”

“I don’t know.” My chest is welling up with everything I’ve been trying to stuff into my mind’s closet. “I can’t get happy.”

It happened only three weeks ago, but since my “episode,” no one in my family has uttered the word suicidal. It’s easier not to.

I glance down at my Chucks, trying to divert my eyes from Susan. Stare at a lamp, the books stacked on her shelves. I spot a spine that reads Healing, Recovery, and Growth, and immediately feel ridiculous. Sweat pools in my bra. This isn’t gonna work.

“Morgan, why are you so angry with yourself?”

I clench my jaw. “I’m not!” This is a lie, but it hasn’t always been. “I’m annoyed,” I admit, sighing, “and embarrassed.”

“Why are you embarrassed?”

“Just—­I don’t know . . . ,” I whine. Words begin to spill and spew from my lungs like a power ballad. “Like, why am I the only one I know who has to go to a shrink? How did I become the crazy one? I have to be the first one in the history of our family and our school to go to therapy?” I bristle. “I’m pissed I can’t just get over stuff the way everyone else seems to.”

I purse my lips resolutely and fold my arms tight against my boobs. Your ball, Susan. She just nods and squints like she has no clue what to do with me.

I’ve asked God and Jesus and all their other relatives to “wash away my sins,” but it doesn’t feel like Jesus is living inside me—­I can’t even imagine what that would feel like. I’m so full up with me, me, stupid me.

“Mmm . . . ,” she finally grunts. “I see.”

Fighting the near-­constant urge to roll my eyes all the way to the back of my skull, I snatch up and devour a Werther’s.

Copyright © 2019 by Morgan Parker

About the Author

Morgan Parker is the author of the poetry collections Magical Negro (Tin House 2019), There Are More Beautiful Things Than Beyoncé (Tin House 2017), and Other People’s Comfort Keeps Me Up At Night (Switchback Books 2015). Her debut young adult novel Who Put This Song On? will be released by Delacorte Press on September 24, 2019. A debut book of nonfiction is forthcoming from One World/ Random House. Parker received her Bachelors in Anthropology and Creative Writing from Columbia University and her MFA in Poetry from NYU. She is the recipient of a 2017 National Endowment for the Arts Literature Fellowship, winner of a 2016 Pushcart Prize, and a Cave Canem graduate fellow. Parker is the creator and host of Reparations, Live! at the Ace Hotel. With Tommy Pico, she co-curates the Poets With Attitude (PWA) reading series, and with Angel Nafis, she is The Other Black Girl Collective. Morgan is a Sagittarius, and she lives in Los Angeles.

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3 winners will receive finished copies of WHO PUT THIS SONG ON?, US Only.


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