Books Diversity Reading Challenge

The Obvious Game by Rita Arens

It’s not obvious from the title of The Obvious Game by Rita Arens that there are deep and intense issues discussed within. In a small town in the Midwest, lives our heroine, Diana, a girl who has a tough situation at home. Diana’s mother has cancer and in this small town, everyone knows everyone else’s business, which means that well meaning townspeople ask after Diana’s mother because they care. The problem with this behavior is that Diana can’t get any rest or privacy. She needs a place where she can get a break from the stress of a sick mother at home.

Diana, for some unknown reason, thinks that she is chubby and decides to lose weight. So this is how she processes stress. Her dysmorphic view of her body causes her to stop eating, exercise too much and hide her problem. Diana is suffering from anorexia.

What’s important about this story is that Diana seemingly has everything going for her: she has a boyfriend, she’s friends with the popular girl (even though this girl is annoying) and leads a fairly normal life outside of her home. There should be no reason why she starves herself to death, right?

Wrong. I love that our author brings this disease to light. Mental illnesses can strike anyone in any socio- economic background. I’m amazed that in this day and age we still have kids who are afraid to discuss such taboo topics and are therefore not getting help. Diana cannot help the way she thinks. There’s something going on in her brain that makes her see herself differently than others see her or themselves.  As she tells a doctor when she finally gets treatment: the rules are different for me.

I hope that others will read this important book and be on the look out  for teens (boys and girls) in their lives who seem to be too thin or have strange eating habits and encourage them to get help.  I used to be a teen who had an eating problem. I needed to control things in my life and not eating was the only thing that I could control. It’s a difficult cycle to break. If you or someone you know is struggling with an eating disorder you can go to National Eating Disorders Association’s website for resources. The also have a helpline to call: (800) 931-2237.

Please get help. You can beat this. I did it.  You can too.



The Geek’s Guide to Dating by Eric Smith

The Geek’s Guide to Dating by Eric Smith



Hey friends, I’m here to talk about dating.  I can sum up dating in two words: Boys have cooties. Ok, so that’s 3 words.  But  I can equally say the same about girls:  Girls are Impossible. (I should know, I are one)


But, if you’ve decided you just HAVE to date, snag a copy of my bestie Eric Smith’s book The Geek’s Guide to Dating.  Eric (aka Pookie) is the expert on modern dating matters.  First of all, Big Pook gives it to you straight: you’re a geek so you need to accept that fact and work with what you have.  That’s just the kind of dating advice I need.  If I were X years younger.  And single. But no matter, for the purpose of this review, I’m a single geek like you.


So, inside Pook helps us identify our Geek and then we can learn to work our geek powers for good.  You’ll be surprised to know that I am an academic geek; one who loves books and is not afraid to engage in lengthy dissertations about my fave books.  Take the quiz that starts on page 21 to see what your geek superpowers are.  Remember we must use these powers for good.

There are many problems with being a geek and wanting to date.  Smith identifies these problems and offers sound advice on how to overcome them.  For example:

  • Where to meet datable people
  • What to say to datable people
  • What to wear if actually secure date with datable people

You see the pattern? Geek’s Guide to Dating covers it all. From nose hairs to bad breath to sex. Big Pook tells you what to do and how to find a wingman (wingperson) to help you coordinate your dating activities.  (SB: I always took a friend on a date in case I wanted to ditch)

You can’t go wrong with the Geek’s Guide to Dating.  Buy multiple copies and give them to your fellow Geek friends.  As Smith says “All your date are belong to us.”

I wish I’d had this book when I was a single geek girl wading in the internet dating cesspool.  But eventually, I found my own geek!

And BTW? Gotta love a dating book that references LOTR, right??


Adult Fiction Books

Bridget Jones Mad about the Boy by Helen Fielding

I’m so excited to have finished the latest Bridget Jones book! I’m one of many Helen Fielding fans who breathlessly waited for the release of her latest book. In fact, I waited on line for 30 minutes at Book Expo America to secure what I thought was a signed copy of the latest book.  It wasn’t. I did get to meet the author though, and embarrass myself thoroughly.  Second time that week I got escorted out…Just kidding.