My now all-time favorite Rami Malek video

srsly dat voice i cannot /dead /repeat

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Love and Music (and Missing Ted Callahan) by Amy Spalding

I honestly love all these novella sequels Poppy releases for obsessed fans like me. My first foray was in Happy Again for Jennifer E. Smith’s This is What Happy Looks Like, and now, THIS.

Love and Music (and Missing Ted Callahan): A Novella Sequel
Title: Love and Music (and Missing Ted Callahan)
Author: Amy Spalding
Publisher: Poppy
Date of Publication: June 14, 2016
Source: purchased (Kindle)

A hilarious and romantic novella sequel to Kissing Ted Callahan (and Other Guys).

This is it. This is the day Riley Jean Crowe-Ellerman officially becomes a ROCK STAR.

It’s summer, school’s out, and Riley’s band The Gold Diggers is playing their first music festival halfway across the country. It’s the most exciting day ever, except for one small detail: Riley’s boyfriend Ted is away at a Young Leaders summer program and can’t be there to witness this momentous occasion.

Riley hasn’t seen Ted in three whole weeks–she misses his perfectly floppy hair, his kissable lips–and when he sends her a cryptic text that just says, “I’m so sorry,” Riley starts to get nervous. TED! WHAT ARE YOU SORRY FOR?! But there’s no response.

Suddenly the best day of Riley’s life might become the worst. Is this the end of Riley and Ted Callahan? Or can love and music keep them together?

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My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

A year ago, I spazzed to mighty heavens about Kissing Ted Callahan (and Other Guys) and I took it as my personal mandate to rave about it all the time and make everyone read it. Which I kind of succeeded, methinks. Or at least I got the book into people’s radars. Like our protagonist Riley, I ended up liking Ted Callahan so hard it wasn’t healthy anymore.

So imagine my glee when it was announced that there will be a novella sequel! I wanted more Ted Callahan and I’ve honestly re-read Kissing Ted Callahan  in the past just to get some dose of him. AND NOW I’LL GET IT.

Right from the start, I was once again cackling and relating to Riley. She just has no chill and while I might look like I’m chill outside, I am definitely not inside. Of course, it’s HEA and fans of the book will definitely enjoy this one because we get to see more of our lovable and favorite characters. Ted Callahan is as awkward and timid as before but he’s also as sweet and adorable as before. I really just had a happy time reading this novella because MY PRECIOUS MY BABIES I’VE MISSED YOU SO MUCH THANK YOU FOR MAKING ME FEEL THIS WAY AGAIN. Once again, I’ve had so much fun!

But it was not all fun. Because it’s Amy Spalding, she still was able to include some topics to mull upon via Riley’s thought process. Of how it’s still nice to feel wanted by other guys even if she’s already taken, how love is not all grand gestures but usually it’s just wanting to make someone laugh, and being a teen, and all sorts of things. Amy is wonderful at that, packing in a lot without it seeming like a lot.

While this novella made me oh-so-happy, I think it was too short! Now that I spent time with these characters once again, all I want is more more MOAR MOAR MOAAAARRR! Amy, can there be more? Huhuhu. When they short story ended, I felt myself deflate too while grinning so hard. Because NO MORE.

Riley isn’t the only one who misses Ted in here. ME TOO! Love and Music (and Missing Ted Callahan) was what I expected it to be. It delivered all the swoons and sweets and the laughs. *sighs* I want more of the gang and of Ted Callahan being adorkably cutely awkward!

I miss blogging in here

I’ve been through too much in the days that I haven’t been blogging here and all thanks to friends, I haven’t exploded yet. But I could have. So I remembered why I made this blog in the first place and that was to rant here and share my stories and thoughts. And I haven’t been doing that.

Today, I realized that I had internalized misogyny. It reminded me that you really learn something new every day. It made me realize that I really have to look deep inside of me and assess myself about all the misogyny or racism I do unawares. I want to be as free of prejudice and judgment as I can be.

So maybe we should chronicle that. And you know, share about my life more. I guess it doesn’t help that I’ve gotten really good at sharing them first to friends and talking my issues out. And I’ve gotten better at escaping said issues too.

SO MUCH TO DO HEH

Beginner’s Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions by Six de los Reyes

Full disclosure: Six asked me to beta this novel to get my comments on the science-y parts because I’m a ~scientist~. Having beta-read this did not affect or change my opinions about this novel that IT IS AWESOME GO GET IT.


Title: Beginner’s Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions (Talking Nerdy #1)
Author: Six de los Reyes
Date of Publication: April 17, 2016
Source: purchased from author (paperback)

Falling in love is a chemical reaction.

Just ask Kaya Rubio, twenty-five year-old Molecular Genetics graduate student and research assistant. Fed up with her spinster aunts’ relentless reminders and unsolicited advice regarding her Single Since Birth status, she designs a scientific, evidence-based methodology to find her a suitable partner in time for her cousin’s wedding. As any good scientist knows, any valid experimental design requires a negative control. Enter the most unsuitable candidate for a potential boyfriend: the messy, easygoing, café owner Nero Sison. Her null hypothesis? Going out with Nero would establish her baseline data without catalyzing the chemical reaction she seeks.

But when Kaya’s recorded results refuse to make sense, she is forced to come to the conclusion that there are some things in life that are simply, by nature, irrational and illogical. And that sometimes, chemistry doesn’t always happen inside a lab.

Purchase from Amazon | Buqo

Purchase the paperback! (For Philippine residents)

My Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

This review is so late (over two months) because when faced with such amazing as this one, one should have blogged about it right away. But when faced with such amazing as this one, my usual involves not being able to write a single thing about it because words evade me. I can probably squeal forever about this book but when asked to coherently explain why I love it so much? I’ll probably just squeal again. But lemme try! With a list review because let’s face it, my mind needs all the help it could get in extracting this out of the recesses of my brain.


STEM girl as MC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1111111


You don’t know how much joy this sole aspect has brought me. I’ve read of science nerds in YA but I haven’t read an NA book with not only a science nerd but an actual science researcher. Not an undergraduate student but a graduate student. WHO’S WORKING INSIDE THE LABORATORY. Slaving away, going home late or not going home at all. If you read Beginner’s Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions, you’ll actually understand or at least have a grasp of what my life is at work and how stressful it is and how weird our hours are. We’re governed by our experiments and I always dread when people I made plans with ask me what time I’ll arrive for dinner because I can never answer because I also don’t know how my experiments will unfold. While reading this novel, I kept on nodding my head because I AGREE!!! I CONCUR!!! I FEEL YOU, KAYA!!! THIS IS MY LIFE! (except the romance huhuhu)


There was this part when Kaya started an experiment at 8:37 PM, an experiment that’d finish in at least 4 hours. Hahahuhu my life


Basically, I just want to hug Six so much for sharing to the world our lives. To that physician character who judged basic research? *scoffs* You deserve to be strangled. WAHAHA


Voiciest of them all~


Y’all! This is probably the voiciest NA book I’ve ever read. It’s definitely one of the voiciest books I have ever read. In fact, some people might be put off by how intensely scientific and logical and a bit snobby Kaya is. I told Six that I think most of the science parts will just fly through the readers’ eyes/ears but that she must not remove any single bit because it makes Kaya’s voice authentic. Sorry but I really do use science metaphors and analogies in real life so ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. HAHAHA #itsallaboutme


NERO


Nero, the love interest, is just so perfect for Kaya. He’s super sweet and understanding of Kaya’s lack of experience in everything. But really, the most important thing is he makes the effort to understand Kaya. He’s so understanding in general, especially with what she’s doing in the lab. He lets her rant and is so invested in Kaya’s passion. Basically, he’s a guy who only wants Kaya’s happiness SO DUH THEY’RE PERFECT FOR EACH OTHER


Romance


Hihihi those kissing scenes and making out scenes and HELLOOOOOOOOOOO I NEED AIR

The romance is a slow-burn one as well as we know that Kaya’s a bit dense and clueless but oh lord, the burn, I looooove it.

Characters!


I love everyone! Eugene (Kaya’s best friend), Phylle, Francis, Thomas (OMG THE THIRD BOOK IN THE SERIES IS ABOUT THOMAS WHO I’M IN LOVE WITH GOOD LORD), Kaya’s big family, and everyone Kaya dated. They’re all so amusing and funny. They just love Kaya so much and I loved the loving environment the MC had.


Cover


HELLO GORGEOUS COVER THAT IS SO SIMPLE YET SO PERFECT AND ATTRACTIVE I LOVE YOU


HIT ME RIGHT IN THE FEELS


Love and Other Chemical Reactions speaks to me on a deeper level. If you’ve read the book, you will understand a part of me as a person. The part that sleeps in the lab for an experiment and goes home at 7AM just to take a bath and comes back by 10AM ready to do it all over again, the part that is underpaid but cannot leave science research, and the part that finds so much glee and awesome in science. But aside from that, this book strikes too close to home about my am-I-gonna-be-forever-alone fear/woe, my am-I-actually-normal fear/woe, and a whole lot more. So Six has written so much of my unsaid thoughts, my experience of being in STEM, among other things. It’s as if it was for me. And for that, I thank Six. Also, I’m in the acknowledgments HAHAHA


Swoony and sexy with heart, sooooo much heart. Please please please do check out BEGINNER’S GUIDE: LOVE AND OTHER CHEMICAL REACTIONS and join me in this fandom! Six definitely ranks as one of my favorite authors. ❤

The Education of Alice Wells by Sara Wolf

I’ve pretty much declared that I’m a big fan of Sara Wolf, having worshipped her Lovely Vicious series. But then, how can I declare myself such a fan if that’s all I’ve read? So I’ve been reading her other books too and nothing has changed, I’m still a big fan.

Title: The Education of Alice Wells
Author: Sara Wolf
Date of Publication: December 3, 2014
Source: purchased (Kindle)

At Mountford University, Ranik Mason is the king of bad boys. He’s got every cheerleader dying to be in his bed, and the underage booze-circuit under his thumb. He’s a lone wolf who takes what he wants, but never takes anything seriously.

At Mountford University, Alice Wells is the queen of nerds – studious, strict, and smart as a whip, she’s never had a boyfriend, let alone gotten drunk or partied. She’s an ice-cold teacher’s pet, determined to stick to rules and regulations if it kills her. Her one weakness is her massive crush on Theo, the mature, gorgeous campus DJ, and she’s determined to transform into the girl he wants.

If anyone on campus knows how to seduce, it’s Ranik Mason. Alice approaches him with a contract – teach her how to win Theo, and she’ll do his coursework for a year. Ranik agrees, but as his lessons for Alice heat up, both of them start to realize love isn’t something you can teach.

There’s a price. And both Alice and Ranik have to pay.

Purchase from Amazon

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I think it would be impossible to remove my bias when it comes to Sara Wolf. I think having her name plastered on the cover of the novel immediately makes me love the novel. Well, I didn’t love this book (as much as I do with her Lovely Vicious series) but good lord did I adore and dig it.

By now, I think I know what are Sara Wolf’s favorite tropes and plot devices/conflicts. But you know what? Even if I’ve seen it before, I didn’t care. Sara just writes such addicting and readable novels. In The Education of Alice Wells, we have Alice who’s the ultimate nerd and who knows nothing about boys and dating. She falls in love with Theo, the university’s golden boy, but Theo seems to be smitten to Grace. Alice now wants Theo to notice her and who better to help her than the university’s token playboy, Ranik Mason? In exchange, Alice does his homework for her.

So right from the get-go, HELLO ONE OF MY FAVORITE TROPES. I just can’t say no to everything that involves someone teaching seduction to a clueless person and the two of them falling in love. NEVER GETS OLD. All the handholding as lessons, the kisses, EVERYTHING. So yeah.

And this being NA, do expect that it’s sexy and steamy and oh boy, Ranik. Ranik tries so much not to fall for Alice but duh, he’s so a done deal right from the start. Alice, being in love with Theo, takes more time to notice that the one she needs and actually truly loves is Ranik. Oh, glorious set-up, I welcome thee.

And being a Sara Wolf book, it also deals with sexual harassment and I like the treatment she did in this book, which is kind of same to the one in the Lovely Vicous series but whatever.

Anyway, I can’t say much about the novel because it just reduced me to feels! It’s not particularly well-written and the characters aren’t really that original but I can’t help but feel these feelings so I really swooned and squealed and hello, heat factor. Well, sometimes I can’t believe how naive Alice seems but I do think there are people like her and people so nice so it’s okay.

I definitely recommend this to anyone needing a light, quick contemporary new adult read! And especially if you love said trope.