Book Review: Whatever Life Throws at You by Julie Cross


Young Adult, side effects  Romance


373 pages

Part of a Series?:

Standalone Novel

Release Date: 

October 7th, 2014

You Can Find the Book At:


Barnes and Noble

Book Depository


Author Website

GoodReads Summary: 

Seventeen-year-old Annie Lucas’s life is completely upended the moment her dad returns to the major leagues as the new pitching coach for the Kansas City Royals. Now she’s living in Missouri (too cold), attending an all-girls school (no boys), and navigating the strange world of professional sports. But Annie has dreams of her own—most of which involve placing first at every track meet…and one starring the Royals’ super-hot rookie pitcher.

But nineteen-year-old Jason Brody is completely, utterly, and totally off-limits. Besides, her dad would kill them both several times over. Not to mention Brody has something of a past, and his fan club is filled with C-cupped models, not smart-mouthed high school “brats” who can run the pants off every player on the team. Annie has enough on her plate without taking their friendship to the next level. The last thing she should be doing is falling in love.

But baseball isn’t just a game. It’s life. And sometimes, it can break your heart…

My Review:

I’ve been wanting to read this book for so so long. But I was avoiding baseball books, especially romances because I was writing my own. I’m so glad that I finally was able to read it and I’m so glad I did.

This book combines two of the things that I love the most: baseball and romance. And it makes me so happy. I also really loved that it was very different from the books I’m writing haha so I didn’t feel a despair at failing to write as well as Julie. Because she writes so well and I totally loved her story.

And I seriously loved Jason. Oh god. He’s a fictional baseball player but I love baseball players. Oh how I love baseball and baseball players and I was so in love with Jason Brody, both as the guy off the field that Annie falls in love with and the incredible pitcher on the field. He’s an incredibly complex character and I love him so much. Thank you, Julie Cross, for extending my love of baseball boys into the fictional world. Really, I didn’t need that.

I think the thing that made me love this book the most was the blend of romance and sports. There was a great balance between the two. I think that’s hugely important when it comes to sports related books. Not everyone is going to love it so you have to find a great balance. There’s a ton of romance, but great romance, a realistic beautiful friendship, leading into a believable, great romance. And there’s a lot of great baseball.

I loved every time the Royals played the Angels. I was like, ah, my babies. But, like, the Royals wouldn’t beat them ;)

Actually they probably would…

Go Angels!

Anyway, I really loved this book. Not only was it great to read a really great romance, it was great to get some baseball love too. I think Julie writes a great novel and I love all the characters in the book. Annie, Jason, Annie’s father, all of them. Great characters, great story. The story flows well and it works so great. I love it. I wish she would write more!



4 out of 5 Stars

NaNoWriMo 2014: About My Novel and Where I Write!

Welcome to NaNoWriMo 2014!

I’m so happy its finally this month. While I’m a writer 365 days a year, treatment I like NaNo because it gives me the motivation to stop procrastinating on Tumblr or Netflix and sit down and write my novel. It gets my butt in gear basically.

So I’m really happy its here and I’m really excited to be participating today.

For those of you that don’t know much about NaNoWriMo (or National Novel Writing Month), doctor you can refer to my kickoff post for the month here :) I’ll be talking about my novel, my progress, writing in general and more all month long and I have a special post coming November 8th filled with writing advice from some seriously amazing YA authors.

So let’s jump in then, shall we?

About My Novel


Last year, my novel was The Awakened. At the time, the title was The Reawakened but I’ve since changed that. You guys know a lot about this novel because I’ve talked a lot about it in the past year. I’ve since last year finished it, edited it and am now shopping around for an agent.

The plan was to write the sequel to The Awakened (which has a title but cannot be shared because spoilers!) for NaNoWriMo but…I kind of need a break from the science fiction right now. Its a lot harder to write than I ever thought it was going to be and I am focused on finding an agent for the book at the moment so I wanted to work on something different.

And that is the novel I’m writing. Its untitled! If you follow all these NaNoWriMo posts, you’ll find out more about the novel, the characters and so on, and there will be a contest at the end for titles for this novel. So I hope some of you are paying attention!

But anyway…

This novel is centered around a girl named Evie Cordova and the town of Macon, where she has lived for most of her life. See, the town of Macon is a beautiful coastal California town, complete with good food, friendly neighbors, a boardwalk on the beach, and a booming tourist economy. But the one thing the town is obsessed with more than anything is baseball. And not just baseball but the Macon Rebels, the local college’s baseball team. The entire town is decked in orange and white and worships the players like superheroes.

Evie’s dad once played for the Rebels before playing in the Major Leagues so she’s grown up on baseball. Baseball is the beginning and end of every single day. She worships the Rebels, memorizes the stats of every player, watches every single game eagerly. She anxiously awaits each batch of new freshmen and talks of nothing but baseball. Then her dad becomes the coach and recruits young Jesse Valdez, a high school phenomenon, to come pitch for the Rebels. He’s incredible, on and off the field, and Evie is determined to make him her boyfriend.

Fast forward two years. Evie’s love for baseball? Gone. She’s now at the university and she’ll do anything she can to steer clear of the baseball team, especially now that Jesse is a star pitcher for the San Francisco Giants, engaged to her twin sister Lucy and the father of her niece, Ava. Something happened two years ago, something that changed her love for baseball.

Then she mets Austin Young, a junior transfer from the University of Texas. He’s struggling to make something of himself in the baseball world but he’s determined, working every single day to make himself better and better. But he keeps failing, his batting average is terrible and he makes too many mistakes on the field. Evie knows that she can help him, she knows exactly what to do to make him better but she DOESN’T want to be involved with baseball anymore, especially when it involves a hot baseball player. Because we still don’t know what happened a few years ago…

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I understand that this is the longest synopsis ever…because I’ve only written about 3000 words and I need to hone the plot and the characters and all of that. As it comes more and more together, so will the synopsis haha. But if you have any ideas of a title, email them to whatanerdgirlsays at gmail dot com!

Where I Write

2014-11-02 01.16.29

I write in my room. I’ve tried coffee shops and libraries and I just can’t do it. I don’t like quiet. I get distracted in quiet. I need background noise. So I write on my laptop because I type infinitely faster than I write long hand, even though I kind of prefer to write longhand. I usually have the fan going, though I don’t tonight because I’m so cold. I like writing comfy, seriously, I need pjs or sweats on.

I also always always always always have a water bottle next to me. Most authors tend to be of the “I need caffeine NOW” but I don’t really go that way. I’m not a coffee person. Seriously, I feel like I’m going to have a heart attack every time I drink coffee. I do have a slight addiction to iced teas BUT water is my thing. There’s a full ice cold water bottle right next to me as I write this.

Then there’s either Netflix on or music on. Right now, its Netflix but mostly because I’m blogging and blogging doesn’t require as much concentration as writing so Netflix works better. But once I start back on the novel, it’ll be music. I need noise. I can’t work in silence, it is SO loud. (Yes, I just quoted Sarah Dessen right there). I can’t handle that. So I listen to music. I’m not going to tell you what yet because that’s a whole ‘nother post!

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Thanks for listening to me ramble on about my novel and the quirks I have when it comes to where I write and what I need to write.

If you have any suggestions about a title, remember to email them to whatanerdgirlsays at gmail dot com. If you don’t, no biggie, I will remind you throughout the month, and future posts will help even more to get a title in the works!

And share your NaNo stories! Good luck to all those participating!

Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite Baseball Movies

Okay, about it so for those of you who know me, medications you know that my biggest obsession in this world is Harry Potter. I am straight up addicted to Harry Potter.

My second obsession would be just books in general.

My third obsession is that beautiful sport, baseball.

I know, random, right? I LOVE baseball. I love everything about baseball. I love the game, I love the atmosphere, I love my team, the Los Angeles Angels. I love baseball.

And straight up, the boys are the cutest in baseball. Lets be real. Haha. I love me some Mike Trout, Peter Bourjos and Mark Trumbo. They are just so cute :) and they’re all super awesome baseball players too.


From left to right, clockwise: Mike Trout, Mark Trumbo and Peter Bourjos <3

But anyway, baseball is BACK! Its been back for two weeks and I’m so happy that its finally back, after what feels like SO long…and even though the season hasn’t quite started out the way I wish it had for my Angels, I’m still happy that baseball is back and I stick to my team and I hope for the best for the rest of the season.

But in celebration of baseball returning, I have this week’s Tuesday Top Ten:

Favorite Baseball Movies

10. The Bad News Bears


Released in 1976, The Bad News Bears follows Morris Buttermaker, a total alcholic as he coaches the newly added Little League team, the Bears…consisting of the worst players in the entire league. Buttermaker pulls in a talented girl he knows, Amanda, to come and help the team out and Mr. Harley riding man himself, Kelly. They get better, and make it to the championship game though Buttermaker got obsessed with playing the good players and not the players he’d been hired to coach in the first place. Of course, it gets all sentimental and sweet, and he realizes he’s becoming like the other coaches, and puts everyone in the game and even though they lose…they win because they’re allll better people now. All together now: awwwwww. :) I love this movie mostly because of Buttermaker and his chemistry and relationship with Amanda, and their back and forth antics. And its just funny. Its not a cutesy kid movie, Buttermaker is straight up an alcoholic with some issues and it takes the Bears to get him back :) Its sweet and awesome, and again, SUPER funny.

9. Fever Pitch


Okay, maybe people will give me crap for this one but I really like it. The story is of the relationship between Ben, an avid avid avid Red Sox fan, and Lindsay, who is kind of a workaholic. Ben has been a Red Sox fan since he was a kid and believes in the “Curse” that has been keeping the Red Sox from being a winning team in YEARS. He’s had the same season tickets for years, inherited from his uncle and goes to every game. His house is COVERED in Red Sox memorabilia. There is a literally an obsession with him and the Red Sox. And of course it gets in the way of the budding romance between Ben and Lindsay because Lindsay has to compete with the Red Sox, and blah blah. In the end, they release they can have it all! And even though, its literally my least favorite team in baseball, (blergh Red Sox), its a cute movie. Ben’s passion is baseball, he LIVES for those spring and summer months. He stands by his team, even though they lose and lose and lose, and it works out for him in the end, and its cute and romantic and I’m a girl and I love romance.

8. Major League


Come on, this movie was soo good, it was able to spawn two sequels. How many baseball movies can say they did that? Yeah, that’s right. haha. I LOVE this movie, because its just funny, and its so opposite of most baseball movies. You’ve got the new owner of the Cleveland Indians who doesn’t WANT to be the owner of the Indians, at least not in Cleveland. She wants to move Miami and if she can get the attendance for the team to go down drastically, she can move them to Miami so she gets the WORST players in baseball to play for her team. And there are some TRULY horrible players that get picked for this team. Of course they all band together, and get better, and in a typical underdog story, end up with a winning team and everyone lives happily ever after haha. I just like it because most movies, you find everyone just wishing this truly terrible team would get better but in this case, Rachel Phelps, the owner, wants them to be as HORRIBLE as possible and its just hilarious.

7. Little Big League


I’ve watched this movie about a hundred million times and it just never gets old. Billy Heywood loves the Minnesota Twins, the team owned by his grandfather, even though they just plain suck, and when his grandfather dies and leaves the franchise to him, he’s determined to fix it. When he doesn’t like the way the current manager is treating the team, he fires him and decides to be a manager himself…a kid! The team is seriously skeptical but after they start to improve, accept them as his manager. Of course, its not as easy as it seems, as Billy attempts to balance being the manager of the team, while still keeping up with kid stuff like school work and chores…and with the fact that his veteran player, Lou Collins, starts to date his mom. Billy gets the Minnesota team all the way to the game that decides the American League wild card, and tells Lou that if he hits a homerun, he’ll let him marry his mom. Sadly, the team loses, but Billy says Lou can marry his mom anyway and the entire stadium is still super happy with their team. Its a cute movie, nothing absolutely spectacular but I like it, because its a kid doing a big thing and as a kid, that’s an awesome thing to watch.

6. Pride of the Yankees


Lou Gehrig…man, what a baseball player. The movie shows Lou Gehrig as he makes his way from promising engineer student to a fan favorite to the Yankees. It shows as he makes his way through minor teams, all the way up to the New York Yankees and winning over Yankee fans and the ultimate Yankee, Babe Ruth. It shows how he meets his wife, Eleanor, and how his parents eventually accept his baseball career, when they see how GREAT he is. It shows how he never misses a game, and how he was a great bat and it shows how he eventually breaks down, how he contracts an incurable disease and how he has to retire, because he’s just too sick to play. Its both a heart warming and heart breaking movie at the same time. I love baseball and I love watching Lou Gehrig, in fictional form, becoming the great that he was but it hurts and it sucks to watch him get sick as well, and also its full of feeling when you see how much he meant to baseball, especially the Yankees organization.

5. A League of Their Own


“There’s no crying in baseball!” I love this movie mostly because I can’t even believe it was made…and because of how much it is loved, and because it doesn’t get swept aside. Women’s  baseball is not something that we think about or something that is on our televisions everyday…but this was a real thing. The movie shows Dottie and Kit, sisters, as they become part of the professional women’s baseball league, a league created to keep baseball going and to keep the nation happy while all the men were off in the war. The story mostly follows Dottie and Kit as their sister rivalry comes to a head as they play for the same team…and then Kit gets traded and they come head to head in the World Series. I love this movie because not only is it women playing baseball, which is just badass alone, it shows how HARD it was for them too. They had strict, strict rules, and they had den mothers to watch over them. I bet you Babe Ruth had no den mother to watch over him. They had to go to form school, basically, to be ladies, and to be attractive so that the men would come and watch them. They had to play ball in these skirts, which can’t have been easy. And they barely got paid, about 20 to 45 dollars a week (which is roughly about 600 bucks in today’s money…but compare that to Josh Hamilton’s 25 million dollars a year contract…). I like that it SHOWED this. It was hard…and a lot of those women had men overseas and they had to play while being worried for them. Great movie. And Tom Hanks is a genius in this movie.

4. Field of Dreams


“If you build it, he will come”. And so Ray builds a baseball field on his farm, even though his wife pretty much thinks he’s a crazy person. Nothing happens and he faces possible bankruptcy as he had to ruin crops to build the field. Then Shoeless Joe Jackson appears and brings back some old players to play. It follows as Ray tries to convince people that the players are there, especially author Terrence Mann, and in the end, the players eventually leave, but Ray is able to introduce his father to his wife and daughter, and play ball with him one last time. I really like this movie because its SO super cheesy but its good. And how seriously awesome would it be to have a baseball field just in your front yard, with ghost baseball players, great old baseball players, and you can watch them whenever you so felt like it. That’s amazing. Imagine that. If you could have any baseball players in your front yard, playing ball, alive or dead, who would you choose? Its crazy.

3. Rookie of the Year


People are probably totally NOT going to agree with these being SO high up on my list but this movie was super important in my childhood. I watched this movie a hundred million times, and it actually taught me a lot about the game of baseball. Henry Rowengartner (say that five times fast) is an okay Little League player, and then one day, he slips on a baseball and breaks his arm. Weeks later, when he gets the cast off, his arm is super tight. He goes to a Cubs game and when he goes to throw a home run ball back (which is what you do! If the opposing team hits a home run in your park, you better throw that back!), and it speeds all the way to home plate. Suddenly, Henry is a pitcher for the Cubs, even though he’s just a kid and joining the team gives the team confidence and they get better, because of course they were absolutely horrible before. They make it all the way to the game that could land them a spot in the playoffs and Henry’s arm suddenly stops working…but he’s helped the team so much, that they win anyway, but Henry says he’ll retire now so he can enjoy being a kid. I LOVE this movie. There’s so many good lines and its hilarious and I love all the different ways the coach says his last name, and yeah, its totally one of my favorites of ALL TIME.

2. Bull Durham 


So much Kevin Costner in the top five. My boyfriend is SO not going to like that. He hates Kevin Costner the way I hold a huge distaste for Keanu Reeves. Anyway, come on, I’m a girl…and this is like, the perfect movie for me. Its totally romantic AND it has baseball. And it has the original love triangle haha. Its the earliest love triangle I can think of. Crash Davis is a veteran of the minor leagues, a catcher, and is brought down to the Durham Bulls to teach pitcher, Nuke, how to be major league material. Then you have Annie, who is kind of the groupie of baseball and always chooses a player to both become her lover and her student for the year. She chooses Crash at the beginning but Crash isn’t much into that so she ends up with Nuke and her and Crash work together to make Nuke better. Eventually, its realized that Crash and Annie make the better couple and Nuke is sent to the major leagues, and after some drama in the minor leagues, Crash decides to coach a minor league team. Its a great movie, about baseball, about the politics of baseball and about love and baseball. Its a major influence in what I hope to be a third novel, about, you guessed it, love and baseball :)

1. The Sandlot


Best. Baseball. Movie. Of. All. Time. And I know there are SO many people that are SUPER going to disagree with it. But this is THE sports movie, THE summer movie of my childhood. Everyone my age knows this movie and if they don’t, they seriously were living under a rock. Do you know how often you hear “you’re killing me, Smalls”, in just normal, every day conversation. Do you know how acceptable that is? You meet Scott Small who moves somewhere new with his mom and stepdad and needs to make friends. The trouble is…well he’s kind of doesn’t know how to do that, and the only boys he’s been able to find are the guys playing baseball at the sandlot…and he knows NOTHING about baseball. Soon though, he’s joined the team and learning how to play baseball and learning how to just be a boy. Then he steals his stepdad’s autographed Babe Ruth baseball when they need a ball to play, because he doesn’t know the difference, and when it goes over the fence, where the Beast, the biggest dog ever, lives, the summer turns into a fight to get that ball back. Its a perfect baseball  movie and a perfect summer movie. I’ve seen this movie a million and trillion times and it never gets old and its just a movie that is going to stick with me forever. It may not be the most upstanding and critically acclaimed baseball movie of all time but its the first one that comes to my mind :)

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I can’t wait to hear what you guys have to say! What are some of YOUR favorite baseball movies? As always, let me know in the comments!

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One last thing before I go. Last Tuesday, the 9th, Opening Day for the Angels, was the four year anniversary of the death of Angels pitcher, Nick Adenhart. He had just pitched his first major league game, and had done wonderfully. He had a lot of promise and he was killed in a car accident caused by a drunk driver. He was only 22 years old, three years younger than I am now. I always remember him every year. One, because Jered Weaver, pitcher for the Angels, always remembers to write ’34’ on the pitchers mound when he pitches. Two, because he had SUCH promise and he could’ve been so much for us and baseball. Three, because he was so young and he died because someone stupid decided to drink and get behind the wheel of a car. Always remember him. Always always always.

R.I.P. Nick Adenhart
August 24, 1986-April 9, 2009

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Okay, one more happy picture before I go…


My goodness Mike Trout…must go splash the face with cold water…