Summer Days and Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories by Various Authors

So I was so SO excited to get my hands on this anthology only to find out when I did get it and started to read it that I was only interested to read the stories by Leigh Bardugo, Jennifer E. Smith, and Stephanie Perkins. Oops? So I’ve been stalling with this one and delaying on reading them all because I just don’t care enough? But now I’m kinda irate on myself for that because I actually enjoyed this anthology! Although it did take me more than two months to read it (and review it). I blame you, reading slump (and blogging slump). (And unmet expectations but let’s get to that later.)



Title: Summer Days and Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories
Authors: Various Authors
Editor: Stephanie Perkins
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Date of Publication: May 17, 2016
Source: purchased from Powerbooks (hardback)
Maybe it’s the long, lazy days, or maybe it’s the heat making everyone a little bit crazy. Whatever the reason, summer is the perfect time for love to bloom. Summer Days & Summer Nights: Twelve Love Stories, written by twelve bestselling young adult writers and edited by the international bestselling author Stephanie Perkins, will have you dreaming of sunset strolls by the lake. So set out your beach chair and grab your sunglasses. You have twelve reasons this summer to soak up the sun and fall in love.

Featuring stories by Leigh Bardugo, Francesca Lia Block, Libba Bray, Cassandra Clare, Brandy Colbert, Tim Federle, Lev Grossman, Nina LaCour, Stephanie Perkins, Veronica Roth, Jon Skovron, and Jennifer E. Smith.

Purchase from Amazon | B&N | The Book Depository

My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Let’s deal with the unmet expectation. Having read My True Love Gave to Me, I knew not to expect everything to be contemporary romances, especially that most of the authors in this anthology aren’t primarily contemporary authors. So I was ready for that. But knowing that this is a summer anthology, I was looking forward to fluffy romances because summer! Alas, that was not the case. Although it wasn’t a big disappointment because I still enjoyed the entirety of the collection, it was still a wee bit disappointing. Anyway, like with my review for My True Love Gave to Me, I’ll be reviewing each story in this anthology in 3… 2… 1!

Head, Scales, Tongue Tail by Leigh Bardugo (5/5): Definitely my favorite among everything. This was the second story I read and I knew that nothing would top it. I read it again immediately after finishing it and my feelings for it never abated. If asked who I’d elope with in fantasy/paranormal YA amidst all odds, I’d definitely answer Eli from this story. SERIOUSLY, YOU GUYS, THIS STORY IS HANDS DOWN SO GOOD AND FEELSSSS. This story gave me similar feelings to what Laini Taylor’s story in the previous anthology elicited in me. It’s so hard to explain why I just love this one but the characters just got me. And I have a weakness for mermaids and anything and everything water. After I read this story, I knew that I wouldn’t ever let go of my copy of this book and that even if every story sucked, I wouldn’t care because this anthology gave me this.

The End of Love by Nina LaCour (3/5): This is the lone F/F romance in here (oh, although there’s a supporting F/F romance in Good Luck and Farewell) and I’m a bit sad (sad face) that I didn’t love it. It is also the first work of Nina LaCour I have read although I have all of her books. #bookhoarder I still found the story compelling as our main character was also dealing with the divorce of her parents, hence, the title of the story. Divorce is usually nasty but in here, we see her parents to be somewhat happier and not fighting, choosing to let go of everything they own. Which understandably upsets her because she’s losing her home too. The characters were diverse although aside from our protagonist, the other characters (and even the love interest) were not as dimensional as I’d like although I guess that’s not surprising because this is only a short story.

Last Stand at the Cinegore by Libba Bray (4/5): Give me a pining guy as a main character who can’t tell his dream girl that she’s the love of his life and I will surely love him. And the story. This has one and I just enjoyed it all throughout, especially the plot and the main character. I mean, a haunted movie which turn its watchers into the undead? Set in a theater that only shows horror films endearingly called the Cinegore? Our brand of misfits working at the Cinegore battling the undead with vats and vats of popcorn butter? GOLD GOLD GOLD. Can this be an actual film? PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE

Sick Pleasure by Francesca Lia Block (2/5): So obviously, I found this meh. It isn’t exactly a romance so there’s that. Calling the characters by initials also distanced them from me and the general voice and tone of the narrating main character distanced me as well. Overall, I just felt no connection with any of the characters or cared enough for the plot. This is my first from Francesca Lia Block and although I have heard great things about her books, I don’t think I’ll be checking out her other works.

In Ninety Minutes, Turn North by Stephanie Perkins (4/5): This is the sequel to Stephanie’s short story in her previous anthology. HELLO AGAIN MARIGOLD MOON LING AND NORTH DRUMMOND! While It’s a Yuletide Miracle, Charlie Brown was made up of so much fluff and kissy-kiss scenes, this story dealt with fallout of a relationship as Marigold and North broke up. In this short, Marigold meets North again after their break-up as ~friends~ and they end up talking out whatever happened that led to their break-up and OF COURSE, they get together in the end. HIHIHI. This short didn’t give me ultra-shippy feels like the previous one but I loved how it delved on realistic issues couples in a long-distance relationship face.

Souvenirs by Tim Federle (4/5): Oh, this was different in that our protagonist and his love interest (M/M romance ftw!) were already together at the start of the story and are actually planning to break up on this date they have initially decided on. While we already know that they’re breaking up in the end, this story ended up in a hopeful and light note. I love how this one featured a break-up and that break-ups are part of getting into relationships. Of romance. Still, the romance was so cute (LIKE IT IS SUPER CUTE, YOU GUYS) and it’s set in an amusement park!

Inertia by Veronica Roth (2/5): The world-building and the science in this story were clunky and I couldn’t get into it because of that. Moreover, I also didn’t care for the protagonist because I couldn’t connect with her. I really slugged through this one. While reading it, I just wanted it to end. For once, I also didn’t appreciate the happy ending HAHAHA

Love is the Last Resort by Jon Skovron (4/5): LOVELY LOVELY LOVELY. DELIGHTFUL DELIGHTFUL DELIGHTFUL. I just had so much fun and glee in reading this one. It was a tad bit over-the-top but that was the point as it was written like Shakespearean comedy and I just adored it so much!

Good Luck and Farewell by Brandy Colbert (3/5): Diverse! Although I didn’t have as much feelings while reading this but the ship was cuuuuuuuuuuute, you guys. It was a bit hate-to-love so YAS YAS YAS. I liked the characters and the growth of the protagonist and the overall story but it wasn’t just that memorable for me, hence the 3 stars.

Brand New Attraction by Cassandra Clare (4/5): This is the first work of Cassandra Clare so I was pretty nervous. On one hand, I still want to read her The Infernal Devices trilogy so I want to like this one but on the other hand, a small part of me wanted to not like this one so I won’t have to ever try her books ever. But look what happened! I love how the story had dark elements to it (I mean, they are just casually talking about demons and whatnot) but it was actually light and shippy too. More than the characters, it was actually the plot that hooked me with this one. I mean, I enjoyed the characters so much but I just found the taking-over-the-circus plot so much interesting because of the demons HIHIHI

A Thousand Ways This Could All Go Wrong by Jennifer E. Smith (4/5): This is the first story I read and Jen can never write anything wrong for me. It features a love interest with Asperger’s syndrome and a kid who’s on the spectrum as well. My brother has mild autism and I think I am predisposed to loving anything featuring a character on the spectrum. I love how there’s no pity involved in here, just understanding. That everyone deserves love and will be loved, no matter if you find it difficult to look someone in the eye or interrupt almost always. I love the Annie’s emotional arc as well, about having always putting on a strong front and knowing that she doesn’t have to do that. I just love Jennifer E. Smith and her works. She never goes wrong. 🙂

The Map of Tiny Perfect Things by Lev Grossman (5/5): What a tiny perfect thing this story was. I loved Mark’s voice and the plot was A+ too. I love all the science dropped just so casually in there, with references to Flatland and Littlewood’s law and I ended up being obsessed with hypercubes for two days after reading this one. But honestly? It was just magical. And the perfect story to end this anthology. I had a big smile on my face while and after reading this one. It’s the kind of story that will make you believe in all the small things and how cheesy is this, that love is there for you. HAHAHA

And I have verged into the land of cheesiness so lets end this review right about now. I recommend this anthology but I’d just like to tell you that do not expect a lot! I think you’d enjoy reading one story a day or something and not binge it all at once.

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I felt ugly today so I wore a dress

…should have been my blog URL, dammit. HAHAHA

I mean, this governs my life. It doesn’t mean that I only wear dresses when I feel ugly but when I do feel ugly, you bet I’m wearing a dress. Like the second day of my period last week where I also incidentally had a zit. I felt so ugly I didn’t want to go to work. Of course it was the hormones talking but if I can’t feel it inside, I gotta harness the confidence from outside, right?

So I wore a dress.

I had a photo of my dress that day because my friend asked for one after I ranted about how ugly I felt and how I wore a dress to combat it.

Ten Shows I Love

I posted this in my other blog so might as well post about it here! The prompt was anything about TV but I chose to write about shows I love. Not included are Asian dramas because that’s gonna be so difficult to do HAHA This is in no particular order but I will dividing them into two categories: the 20-minute shows and the 40-minute shows. And I suck at categorizing into genres so I just put what Wikipedia says.

For My Short Attention Span

Scrotal Recall (genre: rom-com)

This gem is only six episodes long so if you have three hours to spare, please PLEASE get on it. It’s on Netflix! Anyway, I discovered this show from Elena‘s newsletter (I will always miss her blog Novel Sounds) and THIS. SHOW. It’s just so full of heart and some crude jokes as well, I mean, look at the title. But I promise, despite the title, it’s not that kind of comedy (although I do dig that kind of comedy as well). So plot! Dylan gets chlamydia and now he has to contact all his previous sexual partners to get them to test as well and we recall one girl in every episode. THE FEELINGS THIS SHOW EXTRACTED OUT OF ME, YOU GUYS. THE FEELS. I rewatch it a great amount and still, FEELINGS. It’s just so sad it looks like it’s not gonna be renewed.

OH MY GOD IT’S GONNA BE RENEWED THERE’S GONNA BE A SECOND SEASON THIS NOVEMBER OHMYGOD THANK YOU, NETFLIX!!!!!!!!!!!1111 And the title was changed to Lovesick so be sure to check that one out. OHMYGOD I’M SO HAPPY AFTER TWO YEARS

 

You’re the Worst (genre: comedy-drama)

There was no way You’re the Worst wasn’t gonna make this list. Sure, it’s a rom-com and we’ve seen that way too many times (but I can watch it forever) but one with such horrible and mean characters as the protagonists? I’ve never seen that yet and that’s why I’m all aboard this one. These characters lie constantly and are brutally honest to the point of assholery but who doesn’t want to be like them, being able to say what you’re really thinking? And despite them being horrible people, you root for them because they’re very human and vulnerable too. JUST WATCH THIS ONE, PEOPLE.

Silicon Valley (genre: comedy)

To the show that saved me from being depressed earlier this year, I love you. You might be repetitive plotwise but I love your characters and your crude jokes and how you make me laugh I sometimes cry. Thank you for being there. I mean, I always love a misfits-get-together-to-achieve-a-goal-while-shenanigans-happen kind of show but make these misfits programmers and geeks and nerds and I’m all aboard. Jared bb, you’ll always be my favorite and the one that makes me laugh the most. I mean, just watch “tip-to-tip efficiency” on Youtube. If you like it, you’ll like this show. HAHAHA

I Just Want My Pants Back (genre: comedy-drama)

This show was cancelled and it’s such a shame. It was an MTV sitcom back in 2011 that completely got me: music tastes, crude humor, quarter life crisis, hipsters in Brooklyn being broke and making bad decisions. It was MY show. I watched this show with my guy BFF and another friend and it felt like we were the only people watching this show. It’s the reason why I love Peter Vack so much despite him being my least favorite character in here. I’m loyal. So if this is something you think you might like, please give it a chance! Then talk to me so I can have someone to talk to about this show. HAHA

Modern Family / The Office / Broad City / Brooklyn Nine-Nine / Happy Endings

I can’t choose for my fifth 20-minute show sorry HAHAHAHA What? I love my sitcoms!

Shows I Can Sit through for More than 20 Minutes

 

Suits (genre: legal drama)

I’ve once proclaimed Suits to be my favorite show, to which my friend judged me. Hahaha! I know it’s cheesy as heck but I love the characters and even though I’ve found myself almost quitting it a lot of times, I can’t. I just love the characters so much that I’m still here until Season 6, binging it every time the midseason/season ends. This show just makes me smile and chuckle and panic and also hurt.

Mr. Robot (genre: drama-thriller)

Uhm, hello, I AM OBSESSED WITH THIS SHOW. It’s like I spend most of my time on its subreddit and just thinking about it and watching it and rewatching. I’ve never been as obsessed with ANY show as I have with this one. It is so fucking great I do not know how to pitch it. I mean, everyone’s saying it’s great and that you should watch it. I know that sounds like hype and hype is scary but the hype is real, man. It is real. Rami Malek is such a great actor, along with everyone else in this show. Good lord, the oodles and loads of talent on this show, not just from the actors but from the writers, directors, cinematographer, and of course its creator, Sam Esmail. GOOD LORD.

Homeland (genre: political thriller)

Before I got obsessed with Mr. Robot, Homeland was my top show. I was so addicted to this one. Not to the point that I was always on reddit but I discuss it with a lot of friends and just have so much feelings and thoughts about it. I read recaps and reviews though (which I don’t do with Mr. Robot) and I participate on Twitter discussions. It’s such a great thriller and the acting is so great. Hello, it has won all these awards and it is well-deserved. I can’t even explain why and how great it is because it just deserves to be seen. It is soooooooo good. Like I said, I find it hard to sit through more than 20 minutes for a show but I binged the first three seasons of Homeland and have been following it ever since Season 4. GOOD LORD THIS SHOW I NEED IT. I hate that it’s usually a fall show which starts on September and now it’s pushed back for January 2017 for its sixth season. 2016 HAS NO HOMELAND AT ALL HOW CAN THIS BE

Pushing Daisies (genre: fantasy comedy-drama)

So if you know me, I’m quite not into fantasy but boy was this a delight. That’s how I’d describe it: delightful. I love the whimsy, the colors, the characters, the narrator, and its heart. Oh, I remember binging all seasons of this one with the small TV I had in my room. My TV’s screen was so small but I had fond memories of it and this show. Now I wanna watch this again! So plot: Ned the Piemaker can bring back things to life but he can’t touch them again. If he touches them again, they die. Now, he brings back from the dead Charlotte, who he loves. But now they can’t touch because Charlotte AKA Chuck will die again! Oh glorious, glorious trope. Also, if he revives a thing/person for more than a minute, another thing/person dies in the vicinity. So he uses this power to help solve cases. Anyway, from the same creator, I also loved Wonderfalls and Dead Like Me! I should really watch Hannibal. Just you wait, Bryan Fuller.

White Collar (genre: police procedural drama)

Okay, it seems like I do love USA Network shows even though they get flack for being cheesy but WHATEVER MATT BOMER. I religiously watched this one back then and enjoyed every moment of it. Confession: I haven’t watched the last season because I didn’t want it to end yet. 😦 I initially watched this for Matt Bomer because HELLO GLORIOUS but I ended up loving the characters and their chemistry. Basically like what happened with Suits as well. Sigh, I just love banter. AND HELLO MATT BOMER

What are your favorite shows?

Reunited (with WordPress app) and it feels so good

So I think I finally figured out why I’ve been MIA here. Even before I lost my phone, I uninstalled the WordPress app, thinking it was a source of unproductivity because I was always at it. But then even though I uninstalled it, productivity was still low and I just ended up not blogging. Sometimes I get ideas for blog topics and it vanishes into the ether because I wasn’t able to write it away or even note it down. And I had a lot to say in the months I was away but always no energy or drive to open my laptop and type.

But with my new phone, I hope I end up blogging more. I just installed the app and I’m typing this post with the app. We’ll see how many posts I actually end up writing from here.

Hoping I’ll see myself around a lot on this space! Haha!

P.S. A LITTLE LIFE as the photo because I bought it last night because I was sad and what better way to be sad than reading a sad book, right? Also, I just found an edition within my price range. Hahaha! I’ve wanted to read this book for so long!