the martian.

I was minding my own business a few weeks ago when this trailer happened into my life:

Looks pretty interesting, right? I thought so, too. (Plus Matt Damon, hello handsome). After a little investigation, I discovered it is a book by Andy Weir.  Luckily, I happened to put myself on the waiting list at the Wake County Library before it got out of control, and checked it out last weekend.

I was  a little skeptical at first because it was a sci-fi novel about Mars. It had the potential to be incredibly boring, so with that in mind, I took it with me Wednesday morning while I waited for my roommate to have blood work done. I figured, hey, if I was going to sit in a boring doctor’s office, I might as well start on a potentially boring book.

Seven chapters later, I was disappointed I had to put my little sci-fi book away and go to work. It was mesmerizing. It probably helped that the majority of the book was in the form of journal logs from the main character. I couldn’t help but turn the pages with bated breath as I read what was happening on Mars.

I’ll stop while I’m ahead so I don’t give away the ending. I’m terrible about spoiling shows, movies, and books. Needless to say, I can’t wait until November when the movie comes out. Who’s with me?!


what i’m reading

I love to read. It’s always been a hobby of mine. Is reading considered a hobby? I’m going to go with yes. I was that kid who waited at midnight for the release of the next installment of the Harry Potter series, then I would devour the book in days. Well – except for Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire – that one scared me for a solid 2 weeks before I picked it up again.

Anyway, I thought I would write a short post on what I’m reading currently or planning to read in the next few weeks. As you can see here, my dresser has turned into a make-shift bookshelf. That’s mainly due to the lack of space on my nightstand. I do, in fact, own a bookshelf, but I’ve gotten into a habit of picking up (or ordering off Amazon, let’s be real) books and starting them all at once. It’s my intention to finish at least 2 of these by the end of February.

Make it Happen – Lara Casey
My friend, Carly, and I went on a trek to Barnes & Nobles a few weekends ago for this book and I didn’t really know much about it. She was intent on reading it and told me she would let me know how it was. Then I met the author the very next day at a bridal show I was working. It’s a small world, after all.

One Plus One – Jojo Moyes
Ever since I finished Me Before You by Jojo Moyes, I’ve been entranced by her writing and the way she tells a story. I would also recommend The Girl You Left Behind – so good.

The Empathy Exams – Leslie Jamison
It’s rare that I pick up a book that’s non-fiction, but the description of this one grabbed my attention. It’s a collection of essays about the human experience and how we express empathy towards others.

Tiny, Beautiful Things – Cheryl Strayed
This one stays on my current rotation. It’s a collection of advice columns (questions and answers) from Dear Sugar, also known as the best-selling author of Wild. Every time I have something frustrating in my life happen or my heart breaks, I reach for this one.

A Book of Sunshine
My Meme gave me this book in September of 1998 (it says so on the inside cover). I just came across it a few months ago while moving, and it made me immensely happy.


Not shown here is the book I’m actually reading at the moment. I’m currently working my way through The Ship of Brides by Jojo Moyes. It’s on my kindle and I’m enjoying it so far. Now if only I could read all day instead of work… 🙂


glittering eyes.

“& above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.” – Roald Dahl


I’m about to start this novel by Ron Rash. It’s set in North Carolina and has been turned into a movie that is to be released on October 31. The movie stars Jennifer Lawrence and Bradley Cooper, and we all know how much I loved them together in SLP. Yay library books!Serena

The “Meh, It was Alright” Gatsby.

Have you ever been so excited for something only to be letdown? That’s my experience with Baz Luhrmann’s The Great Gatsby. I was so excited to see it the moment I saw rumors that a Gatsby film was being made a couple of years ago. I began searching for little bits and pieces of information about it – Leo was playing Gatsby. Great! There’s no one else better suited for that role. It was being released Christmas 2012 – awesome! It’s getting pushed back to Summer 2013 – finnneeee. I even purchased a fresh copy of the book to carry around with me/display on my coffee table. But all of that was in vain – The Great Gatsby left me feeling like something was missing. Don’t get me wrong – it was a good movie – but something just felt off  about it. Maybe it was the crazy party scenes that felt too modern for the time period. Maybe it was that I had put too much stock into a movie version of this classic.  Or maybe I just didn’t need to see the despicable Daisy Buchanan brought to life. Either way, I give it 3 out of 5 stars. It didn’t live up to my expectations, but it didn’t sway me from wanting this sweatshirt from ModCloth either. gatsby

The Fault in Our Stars = Making Leah Sob Like a Baby

Disclaimer: I ruin any and all endings to books, movies, and tv shows because I cannot for the life of me keep things to myself. This has happened most recently with Downton Abbey which I will not discuss because I ruined season 3 for two co-workers and one of their daughters. This is my life, and this is the risk you take by being my friend. Proceed with caution.

On my list of 23 things and resolutions, I mentioned how I was going to embark on reading a million books. Okay, not really, just a hundred but I’m a sucker for hyperbole. I said I was going to read 75 as my 2012 resolution and 100 while I’m 23. Yeah – those are lofty goals and my goodreads account quietly reminds me every day that I’m 7 books behind schedule. Whatever, goodreads, I’ve got a life to live, YOLO. 

“You are so busy being you that you have no idea how utterly unprecedented you are.” -John Green, TFiOS

As we all know, the only way out is through, so I’ve been picking up the slack on my reading list. Most recently (and by “most recently” I mean last night), I finished John Green’s “The Fault in Our Stars” and I must say I couldn’t put it down. That pains me to say because I so badly want to be a book snob and make everyone believe I don’t indulge in young adult fiction, but the truth of the matter is I loved that book. I thought it would be one of those easy to put down and pick back up books that I could knock out in a week or so at bedtime. How wrong was I! I started it Monday night (after a four hour lecture) and finished it last night. The writing was brilliant and the characters were so likable. I mean I laughed out loud at this book, I cried with this book, I almost threw it off my balcony. Seriously, you could have filmed my life for the past three days and made a top grossing rom-com out of it. It will definitely be one of those books I re-read (just not within the next year because it won’t count!).

So that puts be at having 7 books down for my 75 count and 3 down for my 100 count. Slow and steady wins the race, guys. I mean the tortoise beats the hare every time.

If you have any book suggestions, throw them out there. I think it’s taking me more time to find books I want to read than it takes me to read them.