Sunday, April 17, 2016

Romancing the Nerd by Leah Rae Miller

Romancing the Nerd by Leah Rae Miller


Dan Garrett has become exactly what he hates—popular. Until recently, he was just another live-action role-playing nerd on the lowest rung of the social ladder. Cue a massive growth spurt and an uncanny skill at taking three-point shots in basketball and voilĂ ...Mr. Popular. It's definitely weird.
And the biggest drawback? Going from high school zero to basketball hero cost Dan the secret girl of his dorky dreams.
A band geek with an eclectic fashion sense, Zelda Potts's “coolness” stat is about minus forty-two. Dan turning his back on her and the rest of nerd-dom was brutal enough, but when he humiliates her at school, Zelda decides it's time for a little revenge—dork style. Never mind that she used to have a crush on him. Never mind that her plan could backfire big time.
It's time to roll the dice...and hope like freakin' hell she doesn't lose her heart in the process.

Non-Spoilery Thoughts:

First I have to say that this book is as adorkable as the cover, title, and synopsis would suggest. As a book and film lover I have to say that I have a bit of an inner nerd myself, so while I have never LARPed, I'm pretty sure I understood and was able to appreciate all of the other nerdy references. I got all warm and fuzzy while reading this nerd romance and I think many other fellow book nerd will feel the same way. Also, the plot started off as a revenge story that then morphs into a reluctant romance which is a trope that I will never get sick of in the rom-com genre. 

More Specific/Spoiler Details:

Of course in a revenge romance plot, the revenge-er must create a false identity on social media to spy and communicate with the victim. I thought it was adorable how Dan was talking to Zelda's online persona about a girl that he had blew it with and she didn't even realize he was talking about her. She thinks he is talking about some other girl and thinks she is going to get the juicy drama she needs to get revenge on him but really it just proved that he was a great guy and regretted how he had hurt her. The nerdy late night chats just kept me smiling like a goof. The cutest online chat moment had to be when Dan says he actually pets the screen of his computer because he is pretty much swooning over Zelda's nerdy opinion.

It was really frustrating how Dan would open up to Zelda in their chats and she would just try and twist his words to make him seem like a bad person. She kept wanting to think of him as the bad guy even though he wasn't. I felt bad for Dan and the situation with his dad and sports. In high school I also played basketball and enjoyed it for a while but eventually it just became too much for me and I wanted to quit. My parents were angry and opposed the idea because to them being an athlete in high school was the most  important thing I could be doing with my life. I quit and was much happier just being my bookish nerdy self. Despite feeling bad for Daniel I still found it lightly weird and funny that a guy with the nickname Taxidermy Todd cared so much about sports.

Another reason why I really liked Dan (that developed into a boom crush) was because he embraced his nerdy side so well and even had a nerd tattoo! I also really liked his humor and banter with Zelda. When he walked in on her quoting Star Wars while holding the light saber and proceeded to start a light saber fight I had to try so hard to hold back the goofy smile because I was reading in public.

All around a great book that any self proclaimed book nerd or comic lover will enjoy and relate to so well.


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Sunday, April 3, 2016

The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas

The Darkest Corners by Kara Thomas

* This book will be released on April 19, 2016.

I think there are two types of thrillers: the type that start out normal and then BAM everything goes to crap or the kind where the insanity has already happened and you are on a journey with the narrator to piece together what happened. This book was the second kind of thriller and was a tad confusing in the beginning trying to figure out names and how they fit with the man character. Even though the book started after the murder had occurred the mystery didn't really pick up for me until about three quarters through the story. The beginning of the book seemed to be a lot like what I had seen of "Making of a Murderer"; the main character was questioning the testimony she gave to put the suspected murderer in jail. Also, the little foreword made me think that this book was based off a true story but I didn't want to look it up and get spoiled. After finishing the book I tried to find out more information on whether or not the story was rooted in fact. I couldn't find anything but I did encounter Kara Thomas's website for the book. I really like how it was set up to look like a local news site that was reporting about the murders. The video-promos on the website for the book were really great and would work really well as a book trailer to encourage people to read the book. 

Despite the slow start the book took an unsuspected turn at this point in the story. I was thrown for a loop trying to figure out how all of the individual crimes fit together. I think the best aspect of this book didn't have to do with the Monster but the mystery of Tessa's missing family. I was a bit worried that the author wouldn't be able to pull it all together in the end but I felt like it was all wrapped up very well. All of the loose ends were closed and all the crimes were solved. The only loose piece that wasn't really explained was the last few lines of the epilogue. I thought that it was really neat that Kara Thomas left that little cliff hanger for the reader. It was pretty obvious how the ending fit in with the rest of the story but that tiny bit of mystery left the haunting feeling at the end of the book.

MY RATING: ***(1/2)