October Book Wrap Up!

Books Pledged to Read in 2014:

150 Books

Am I On Track: 

No. 11 Books Behind

Books Read So Far: 

114

Total Books For October: 

8 (seriously what is WRONG with me)

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The Beginning of Everything 

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The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things (ARC)

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Unmade

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The Blood of Olympus 

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Eve

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Dream a Little Dream (ARC)

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The Jewel 

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Anomaly (ARC) 

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How was your October? Share in the comments!

Meeting Josie Angelini, Stephanie Perkins, Natalie Whipple, Kiersten White, Sarah J Maas, Gretchen McNeil and Anna Carey!

Also, prostate an appropriate title for this blog post would be “I’ve Neglected my Blog and I’ve Done a TON of Author Events in the Past Week…”

September has been quite a busy month for me, cost personal stuff aside. It feels like EVERYONE has released a book this month and decided to come to California. Which I’m not complaining about at all. I love when authors come here, patient especially ones that I’ve seen before, like a lot of the ones you see in the title above. Authors make me happy!

First, last week, I met Josie Angelini again. She’s SUCH a sweetheart and she totally remembered me from ALA and Fierce Reads in Vegas back in July. Her newest release, Trial By Fire, is out now and its absolutely incredible. It blew me away and I loved being able to finally tell her that! When I saw her at ALA, I had just started it so I didn’t have much to say. She brought us cupcakes (OMG Sprinkles…) and signed our books and looked so absolutely adorable with her preggers belly.

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Josie Angelini!

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Mini cupcakes from Sprinkles!

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SO fun.

Then a few days later, I headed down with my friends Alex and Cassie to Oceanside, about an hour drive away, to see Kiersten White at her book launch for Illusions of Fate with special guests, Stephanie Perkins and Natalie Whipple. We headed down early, grabbed some lunch and spent WAY too much money on books.

All of the authors were incredible. I haven’t read anything by Kiersten or Natalie but they just blew me away. They had great advice and they talked a lot about writing. I had actually just gotten a rejection from one of the agents I had queried and was feeling kind of crappy. But they talked so much about writing, the struggle, the up and down emotions that come with it, and all of that. It meant a lot to hear all of that.

I got my books signed, chatted up the authors, talked about writing and books and we headed home. I fangirled just a *little* bit when Stephanie asked about my book and what it was about. Maybe, just maybe, one day she’ll read it!

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Stephanie Perkins

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Natalie Whipple

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Kiersten White

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Oh yeah, and I got carried away and bought two other books. Not that I needed them but pssh, I’ve been dying to buy lots of books lately. Book shopping is fantastic therapy. I’m just saying.

Then this past Saturday, I met Sarah J Maas for the third or fourth time. I’ve honestly forgotten how many times I’ve met her. Probably because we always laugh and joke about our names because they’re the same except for one small letter. She was doing a signing at a Costco nearby and also at the Barnes and Noble, the Americana. I’ve been avoiding the Americana since the Gayle Forman event, because they’re just so massively unorganized so I decided getting my Heir of Fire signed at Costco was the best way to go.

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Probably laughing at how much crap we give each other for our names haha. I love this picture so much.

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Then last night, I headed down to the Last Bookstore in Los Angeles for a launch party. If you’ve never been to the Last Bookstore, its a must when you hit LA. Its such an incredible indie bookstore and its just straight up beautiful. I love it. Gretchen McNeil and Anna Carey were having a launch party for their new releases, Get Even and Blackbird, respectively.

There were free drinks, cupcakes, and laughs to be had. I chatted with lots of authors that I know and love like Jessica Brody, Leigh Bardugo, Morgan Matson, Jennifer Bosworth, Ann Stampler and more. I adore them all. I love how many author friends I’ve made and I love that I see them so often, supporting each other.

I’ve already read Gretchen’s new book and I grabbed a couple books by Anna, including her new release, because I’ve heard she’s great.

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Anna Carey and Gretchen McNeil :D

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Me and Anna Carey

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Me and the absolutely adorable, wonderful and unforgettable Gretchen McNeil :)

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My books PLUS a sneak peek of Get Dirty, the sequel to Get Even. After stalking Gretchen at WonderCon to get my hands on an ARC of Get Even, I am anxiously awaiting the sequel with much impatience.

So that was the craziness of my last week and a half! LOTS of authors and it only gets more exciting in the next couple weeks, including RJ Palacio, Kami Garcia, and more. Check back soon for more and thanks, as always, for reading, and supporting me!

Hope to see some of you at some events soon!

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Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite Romance Movies

Happy Tuesday everyone! Hope you all are having great weeks so far. I know that there are many of you gearing up for San Diego Comic Con this weekend (so jealous!) and I am so excited for you guys. My best friend is getting MARRIED this Friday, sale which is just too crazy to even believe, doctor and I am so excited! I am in the wedding too, doctor along with my boyfriend, so it should be a seriously fun time!

And since there is so much romance in the air this week, at least for me, I decided to make this week’s Tuesday Top Ten with a little bit of romance. That and my dad said he’s tired of all the book top tens haha!

So here it is: my ten personal favorite movies with the best romances in them!

10. Dirty Dancing

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Come on! “Nobody puts Baby in the Corner”! One of my absolute favorite lines EVER. Francis, also known as “Baby”, goes to a swanky little country club type resort, where she runs into the bad boy with a heart of gold, Johnny. When Johnny’s dancing partner is under the weather (an illegal abortion), Baby steps in to take her place and summer love ensues, despite the differences in social classes. Its so cheesy, and ridiculous and one of those movies that gets over played over the years but I can’t…I love the dancing and the silliness of Jennifer Grey and the sexiness of Patrick Swayze, and the whole story of it. I am addicted to those kind of movies with music and dancing, and this has both of them. You really don’t get better than that.

9. Pride and Prejudice

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Pride and Prejudice is one of the BEST romantic books ever to exist in the history of literature so it would only make sense that it would be one of my favorite movies. I know most people would mention the Colin Firth adaptation of the movie, and while I definitely enjoy that one, I was thoroughly impressed by the Keira Knightley one. I have watched that one so much, I could probably quote it, and I really enjoyed that they quote the book quite often at times. I think Keira makes a really good Elizabeth Bennet and the guy who plays Mr. Darcy whose name escapes me at this time is so hot and believable as Mr. Darcy. The story of two people who absolutely loathe each other falling in love is just so addicting and you’re cheering and blushing and jumping up and down when they both finally realize and they have that moment where you just know they are going to live happily ever after. The character of Mr. Darcy is especially my favorite too because he accepts his attractive WAY before Lizzie and you just watch him struggle with it, and agh, its just so GOOD.

8. Titanic

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I don’t care what anyone says, I know this movie is cheesy and dramatic but it has been one of my favorite movies since I first saw it when I was 9 years old. One, I’ve always been ridiculously obsessed with the Titanic. I know, that’s kind of a morbid obsession to have but its true. I read every book, every article, watched movies and documentaries and all of that. I was obsessed with it. I wanted to write a novel set on the Titanic for a long time but I felt like I was just writing a rewrite of this movie. Granted I was thirteen when I was attempting this. I really wanted to try again but we’ll see. I do love the love story of the movie, rich and unattainable Rose, wanting to break out of her restrictive world, falling in love with the exciting but poor, Jack. You don’t get any cheesier than that. But I love the background of the Titanic and the history that they weaved into it. Of course, a lot of the history is exaggerated and embellished but still. I love this movie. I will watch it every time it comes on TV, even if it takes me five hours.

7. Sixteen Candles

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You know what I remember every time I think of this movie? I think of me and my parents getting in trouble because we watched this movie at my very first sleepover, when I was ten years old, and apparently it was rated R and yeah, my friends’ parents were all so pissed off. I don’t even know; apparently its Rated R because whats-her-face is naked in the beginning of the movie, in the locker room. Whatever. Anyway, this is the best teen movie ever made, and I loved that Jake Ryan (oh Jake Ryan) is totally smitten with dorky but super pretty Samantha Baker. The hilarity that ensues and the amount of actors in that movie that go on to do bigger things like Joan and John Cusack and Anthony Michael Hall, its just all great. I love that they are so many one-liners in that movie. I quoted this movie on a daily basis when I was about sixteen years old and it still remains one of my favorites :)

6. The Princess Bride

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The funniest, romantic movie that I have ever watched in my life. I watched this movie when I was a kid and it still remains a favorite. I finally got it on Blu-Ray this past Christmas (thanks dad!) and I’ve watched it so many times. This is actually, also, one of those few instances where I’ll say that the movie was better than book. I know, I know. The book WAS great, I’m not going to lie but this movie is just such a classic. I love the ridiculous fantasy element of it, and the hilarity of it, and all the actors that are in it. I like it because its a beautiful romance story but with the added awesome of humor, and action and all of that. Its a great movie for kids. Its got that fairy tale, the one we are all so familiar with because of Cinderella and Snow White or whatever, but with a twist. This is also a movie I tend to quote a ridiculous amount of times.

5. The Apartment

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I LOVE this movie. I watched this movie for the first time with Jon and it took us MONTHS to do it. We would always start watching it really late at night, and its a fairly long movie, and we’d always fall asleep. Not to say that its a boring movie, because it DEFINITELY is not. Its sweet, funny, and one of those romances that’s all about the build up. You don’t need overly sweet lines and over-the-top make out scenes to create a romance. The simple exchanges between John Lemmon as Baxter and Shirley MacClaine as Fran creates the brilliant romance between them, especially when Fran is staying in Baxter’s infamous apartment. The ridiculousness of all the managers taking their mistresses to Baxter’s apartment, and the way he really wins in the end, its so beautiful. Its such a classic and awesome movie. It won five Oscars for a reason, for many reasons. And Shirley MacClaine was such a beautiful woman, and a talented actress and John Lemmon was a comedic genius. Sigh.

4. Wall.E

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This is one of the most beautiful love stories that I have ever seen in a movie and its between two robots that barely say anything else besides their own names. Wall.E and EVE are ROBOTS for goodness sake, and yeah the movie is ultimately about the earth, and not abandoning it and taking care of it, and it does get a little preachy but I love that. But in between all that, is the beautiful love story of two robots, two very different robots who band together on a single mission and as this goes on, they fall in love. Its just such a beautiful thing. I think the simplicity of it is what makes me love it so much. And sure, the fact that its a movie my boyfriend and I both enjoy thoroughly does have something to do with it. We had been together…five months and he had come home from a tour with his band, and he was so incredibly tired, but he really wanted to see this movie with me. And we’ve seen every Pixar movie (excluding Cars 2) on the day its come out, as a tradition. So it sort of has an outside romantic connection as well.

3. Howl’s Moving Castle

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Before Howl’s Moving Castle, my experience with anime was very limited to basically Pokemon. My sister loved it, and I kind of scoffed at it. But for my sister’s 8th grade graduation, I believe, in 2005, I went with her and my mom to go see this movie in the theaters and I was blown away by this truly amazing movie. I basically went home and ate up all of the Studio Ghibli movies, which are all so fantastic. And my quiet love for anime grew from there. But Howl’s Moving Castle…its not just one of my favorite romance movies, or my favorite animated movies, its one of my favorite MOVIES, period, of all time. I love the fantasy aspect of it, with the moving castle and the wizards and different airships and all that. I love the simple romance of it, between Howl and Sophie, the build up of it, to the moment when they finally can admit it to each other and to themselves. Its such a beautiful story, and such a beautiful movie. Hayao Miyazaki makes amazing movies. When I first showed this to my boyfriend, I was so afraid of him not liking it but he loves it and it is another movie that I am so happy we get to enjoy together. Also Christian Bale as Howl? Josh Hutcherson as Markl? My nerd heart loves it.

2. Up

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I know, technically this is NOT a romance movie, since most of the movie is about the adventure that Carl and Russell have together to get the house to Paradise Falls. But I consider it in my top ten because this movie told one of the most beautiful, most heartwarming and heartbreaking love stories in a matter of minutes. The “Married Life” scene in the beginning of the movie, where you see Carl and Ellie meet for the first time, and become friends, and then marry and live their life together? I’m getting teary eyed just THINKING about it. Its exactly what a love story SHOULD be. Its exactly how a life with someone you love should be. It should be about this lasting love, a friendship that is strong, where you’re able to go on adventures, but also do simple things like clean the house and read together and still be so incredibly happy. Carl spends so much time in regret for not giving Ellie the adventures that she’s always wanted but in the end, her life with him was the best adventure she could have. How does that not make you tear up? That is just too beautiful for words and its the reason its one of my favorite movies, the reason that Jon and I have seen it so many times that we could quote it on a daily basis (and do!) and why its so high on this list.

1. Gone with the Wind

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I can’t even remember how old I was when I first watched this movie but it is such an important part of my childhood. My mom is a huge fan of the book and the movie, as well as her two sisters, and it was a huge part of my life. I first read the book when I was thirteen years old, all 1000+ pages, which was a hefty read for a girl that young. But I remember this movie, and continue to as one of the best love stories ever told because it is a love story that goes so terribly wrong, and gets so insanely messed up and isn’t that the truth? Scarlett O’Hara knows what she wants but what she wants is what is so precisely wrong for her. The man that was made for her, that will love her for her strengths and her flaws, for her attitude and her selfishness and her ambition and determination is Rhett Butler and she screws it up so badly. She makes all the wrong decisions and all the wrong moves and in the end, she is left alone, without the man she loves, because she has realized it way too late. She is heartbroken and you are heartbroken and you’re grabbing a pint of Cherry Garcia and you want to hand it through the television to Scarlett with a box of tissues while you yell at her, through your sobbing, for being so incredibly stupid and blind. It is also one of the most amazing movies ever made and remains the highest grossing movie of all time, when adjusted for inflation.

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I hope you all enjoyed this week’s edition of the Tuesday Top Ten and don’t forget to check out previous lists!

Don’t forget to enter my Tammara Webber giveaway!

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I’d also like to say a HUGE congratulations to my best friend, Allison Holley, and her husband (on Friday!) Aaron Lane. I am so incredibly happy for you guys. Its been an up and down journey, a long journey but you guys have made it this far and you will continue to make it because you guys love each other, and you are best friends, and you have a wonderful relationship. I can’t wait to stand next to you two on Friday when you say your vows :) I love you guys!

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