Monday, April 22, 2013


Serendipity is probably my favorite word in the English language and I so rarely get to use it.

I am always reading and always on the look out for good books. Occasionally, I just browse the shelves at Barnes and Noble, but usually I find my books by recommendations or newsletters. A Goodreads user in an online book club I joined suggested I pick up Fated. I have a horrible habit of not writing down enough information. Wasting time at the bookstore one day, the recommendation popped into my head, but I just couldn't remember the name of the book or the author, all I remembered was it was part of the Soul Seekers Series. One thing I love about bookstores, much like movie stores, is the ability to walk up to an employee and say, "Hey, do you know that book with that guy that does that one thing?" and their response is, "Oh, yeah, that one book. I love that book. It's right over here."

I allowed the sales associate to guide me to the Teen Paranormal section of Barnes and Noble, which I was not expecting. First of all, I didn't even know there was a whole section devoted to Teen Paranormal and it's about three times the size given to the Poetry section, which really makes me sad. Second, I didn't know the book was a Young Adult book when I went into the store. Don't get me wrong, there are some brilliant YA books out there. Harry Potter and Pendragon were both amazing series'. But when it comes to YA, I am skeptical that I will enjoy it or be able to relate to characters. The sales associate handed me the book and felling a little deflated, I just threw the book onto my pile. There was no standing and reading the back or looking at the picture. I checked out and headed home and kind of just forgot about it. A couple of weeks ago, I found it again and realized I had bought the second book in the series. Being a bit OCD about reading books or watching movies in order, I decided I would rectify my mistake and go buy the first book.

The next day I went to Target on my lunch hour. I was a bit distracted and rushed. This time the book was in the Best Sellers row. I located the book and got a phone call. Totally immersed in conversation, I grabbed the book and headed to the check out lane. So, after many books and a few months after the recommendation was given, I finally set down to read Fated. I opened my red and white bulls eye Target bag and pulled out...
 Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire. Oops, for the second time in a row, I bought the wrong book and I am so glad I did.

The book follows Abby Abernathy as she arrives at Eastern University and reinvents herself into the good girl stereotype in order to escape the life she left behind and mold her future into her vision of normal. As soon as she arrives, she meets Travis Maddox, an underground fighter and campus man-whore.

Even though I rarely read chick lit, once in a while I'll indulge and take a break from Sci-fi and mysteries. This one has definitely moved into my favorites bookcase. I immediately related to Abby. I found myself on an emotional roller coaster ride. Quickly falling in love with Travis, but hating him at the same time. I found myself rooting for him and then a few chapters later, wishing I could jump in the book and tell Abby to run as fast as she could and don't look back. From the moment I read the first chapter, I was hooked and didn't put it down until I had read the whole book and the next day I went back to Target and bought...

The sequel, Walking Disaster, tells the exact same story as Beautiful Disaster, but it is told from Travis' point of view. Still a good story the second time around and dammit, Jamie McGuire made me like Travis. At the end of the first book, I wished it had ended differently. It didn't distract from my enjoyment of the first book, but the relationship was dysfunctional and poisonous. The second book had me looking at the relationship from a different perspective, understanding why actions were taken and conversations never heard from the other perspective.  I couldn't put this one down either and read it in one night. Two books in two nights does not make for restful nights. By accident, I stumbled upon two amazingly written books. It truly was serendipity.

I recently picked up Fated. I haven't read it yet, but I am absolutely sure I got the correct book when I got home. But so far the road to acquiring it has been well worth the effort.

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