Review: Adorkable

I received this book for free from Purchased in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: AdorkableAdorkable by Sarra Manning
Published by Atom on May 24, 2012
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
Pages: 391
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased

Welcome to the dorkside. It's going to be a bumpy ride...

Jeane Smith's a blogger, a dreamer, a dare-to-dreamer, a jumble sale queen, CEO of her own lifestyle brand and has half a million followers on twitter.

Michael Lee's a star of school, stage and playing field. A golden boy in a Jack Wills hoodie.

They have nothing in common but a pair of cheating exes. So why can't they stop snogging?

First Sentence: “‘We need to talk,’ Michael Lee told me firmly when I stepped out of the makeshift changing room at the St. Jude’s jumble sale, which was actually four curtained rails arranged in a square, to have a good preen in front of a clouded mirror.”

Here’s a fact about me: if a title has the word dork in it, I’m going to read it. The same goes for nerd, geek, and librarian. I see these words and I just assume that the people within those pages will be my people, because, hello, I know what I am. Well, actually, it turns out I’m not so much a dork, according to this definition anyway, but, hey, the book was still totally fun, so I’m not really regretting my interest. Holla for all the dorks, geeks and nerds out there!

I think of myself as a fairly sarcastic, judgmental, bossy, intractable, and difficult to deal with person, but Jeane Smith is eight billion times more so. This girl does not ever go along with other people. She’s making her own way all of the time, marching to the beat of her own crazily dressed drummer and convinced that there’s no other drumbeat, so the rest of the people in the world look like assholes moving along out of tempo. Jeane is really hard to like, or she was for me. I empathized with her on some things: the difficulty of finding kindred spirits and the fact that many such spirits live on Twitter. On the whole, though, Jeane’s biting personality proved a bit much even for me.

Thankfully, I got used to Jeane’s way of being, so that, even if I don’t like her especially, I am super entertained by her, which I think she would be totally okay with. I sort of think of Jeane as a combination of The Bloggess and Dorothy Parker. She blogs all the time, and has made herself into a lifestyle brand, tweeting pictures of things she enjoys and her daily crazy outfits. Being on her blog can make a brand or a band. Plus, she is totes brilliant at coming up with cutting comebacks, and she’s rather snarly.

The overarching plot line deals with Jeane’s romance, which conflicts with her values because she somehow finds herself kissing a *gasp* normal boy. In fact, the king of the normals, Michael Lee, sporty and wearing clothes from Hollister. Bleh, right? But he also happens to be a good kisser and fighting with him is really fun, and no one has to know, so why not? Honestly, I was super into this relationship, because you know how I love a good hate to love relationship and fangirl over good banter.

Michael and Jeane are also awesome because they don’t act like teens in every other book ever. They actually agree to have no strings attached, or at least all of the strings are totally voluntary strings. Jeane encourages Michael to move their relationship to a sexual level, even though they’re not in a relationship, because she’s totally okay with herself and her sexuality. Even better, there’s some awkwardness involved in their first couple of sexual encounters, and it’s not all expert sex immediately, even though neither one was a virgin their first time. Their romantic arc is super cute and believable, and I rooted for those crazy kids, even if I’m not entirely convinced they could be a forever couple, but, honestly, who cares when they’re so great right now.

For those who are like, ugh, romance, there are also some other plots involving Jeane’s home situation. Her parents are the standard neglectful variety, both living in other countries, as is her older sister. Jeane has an apartment where she lives alone and eats nothing but Haribo, and lives in an utter mess that makes my house look perfectly pristine. To be entirely frank, though, I was super not in the book for these parts and I got a bit bored. Plus, I don’t feel like her family life had any sort of plot resolution, other than that she sort of ended up adopting Michael’s family, so I don’t think this was what Manning super cared about in the long run.

Though Adorkable took a bit of time to grow on me, we totally ended up being friends, and I was really excited all week to read this in bits of free time, since I was reading this on my iPod touches Kindle app whenever I had downtime and no book. Adorkable is really funny and has some great romance. I’ve not really heard anything about Sarra Manning’s other books, but I will definitely be looking into them. Peace out, dorkfaces!

Favorite Quote:

“He didn’t say anything and I thought I’d shocked him, because I tend to do that. Not just with Michael but with pretty much anyone who can’t deal with being honest and admitting that you have wants and needs and desires and all those other fun things.”

27 responses to “Review: Adorkable”

  1. It’s funny that the title is what grabbed you, because the title is what’s keeping me from reading. It seemed like too much of a gimmick because that suddenly became a word thrown around last year (curse you, Deschanel!).

    I’m glad to hear that it ended up being a fun read, though. Not enough of the books that promise to be fun wind up actually doing so.

    • Christina says:

      That does make sense. Popular subject matter can get abused to the point that you want nothing to do with it anymore, since it’s so often a gimmick. I’m pretty terrified of dystopian novels right now. Ha, I like Zooey Deschanel though. New Girl is hilarious!

      It was super fun. I debated a 4, but there were enough moments I didn’t care much about with her family that I went 3.5.

  2. Nori says:

    I seriously need to read this one! I love these kinds of books. It sounds cute and awkward in all the right places.

  3. Audra says:

    This is why I like you so much — you know who you are and you are so my people!

  4. KM says:

    Okay, this book sounds hysterical. And since we know that you and I tend to like the same funny contemps, I’m adding this to my TBR list. Also, I totally thought of Jenny “The Bloggess” when you were talking about this character too. And you never know about these two types of people staying together – Jenny’s husband seems pretty normal, based on how she talks about him on her blog; I don’t think two crazy people like this could be in a longterm relationship together or else they’d kill each other. lol

    • Christina says:

      Ha, our one area of agreement! I think you’ll be entertained, though I suspect you’ll also be a bit overwhelmed by Jeane. If she’s too bitchy for me…

      True. If they can make it, good for them. Then again, they’re fictional, so they’re probably not going to make it further than they did in the book.

  5. Aly says:

    This is not my favorite Sarra Manning book (her Diary of a Crush series is just the best), but I still like it. I read it when it first came out in the UK and not available in the US yet (and I was dying to read it), and because it I couldn’t have it, I wanted it that much more, but I like their opposite attracts relationship, but I also liked that it was more than that…or that at least Manning tried to make it more.

    • Christina says:

      I do want to read some more of her books after this one, but I’m not sure how likely that is, since I doubt they’re at the library. Still, one never knows. I enjoy opposites attract scenarios, so long as the time is put in to make them convincing.

  6. I was sort of suspicious of this book (unlike you, the dork/nerd thing is somewhat of a flag to me), but this one ended up growing on me, too! It was a bit uneven in the middle, but I really liked the narrative voice and I thought she did the “dork” thing well. I liked Jeane’s snarliness and the romance was pretty cute, too. I’m glad you enjoyed overall!

    Wendy @ The Midnight Garden

    • Christina says:

      Awww, glad you liked it overall. I should be suspicious of the dork/nerd thing, but I haven’t actually encountered too many of them thus far. I’m sure if I read more of them, I would be.

  7. Hah! All those adjectives you used to describe yourself (although I took some of that with a grain of salt) and then Jeane made me sort of hesitant to read this. I don’t know that I’d get used to Jeane like you did, not even with enough time, and for me, character is king. I don’t know how well that would work at all.
    This is not my usual type of read anyway so I won’t lose too much sleep over it, but I’m glad you mostly had fun reading it.

    • Christina says:

      Uhhh, actually, I do think of myself that way, though definitely not to the extent that Jeane is. I’ll always be more those things than the average duck though. Jeane’s a little bit like Dash from Dash & Lily’s, only smarter. I liked her a bit better than him eventually, because she at least learns something over the course of the book. I think the characters are well done, but not necessarily the most likable in the world.

      If it’s not your type of thing anyway, though, *shrugs*

  8. Flies dork flag proudly!!!

  9. Glad you were entertained by Jeane. The title caught my attention too I am self proclaimed nerd

  10. thebookwurrm says:

    Have you heard of Rookie? Cuz I swear Jeane is modeled on its creator Tavi. In fact, I am totally certain its her because everything Jeane says at the conference she attends in New York, Tavi also said in one of the conference she attended. I just don’t know which came first. But yeah, Manning writes rambling books, epic, huge. Don’t ever read Nine Excuses for an Ex-Boyfriend, it seriously drove me nuts. On the other hand, Unsticky and You Don’t Have to Say You Love Me are both good reads. She does romance really well. Her male characters are actual people than love interests and they’re always about as messed up as the female protags so its super fun seeing them come together!

    • Christina says:

      Huh, no I totally have not heard of Rookie, but it wouldn’t surprise me for it to be based on a real person! That would be weird to be turned into a fictional character. O_o

      Adorkable did run a bit long for a romance, which again plays into some of those plots I wasn’t as into, which, interestingly enough, includes that conference you referenced. I did NOT need to read that WHOLE speech. The cliff’s notes version would have been good enough. I do want to read more, but I suspect I would have to buy the ebooks, and I really don’t like buying ebooks. Oh hey, they do actually have three, but not the ones you mentioned, so those might happen!

    • thebookwurrm says:

      Book Depository has all of hers for pretty cheap!

    • Christina says:

      I might look into that eventually, but I try to limit my buying of new books to ones I think I’ll want to reread in the future. Who knows, though? I’ll probably start with the library options.

  11. I have the same compulsion as you. As soon as I see dorky/nerdy/geeky tittle I want to read it. I’m not sure if I will be able to keep up with Jeane’s ‘biting personality’ but I am willing to give it a try.
    Holla from another dork. 😉

  12. I like the title Adorkable and I’ve heard good things about Manning (Unsticky is on my physical shelf). Can I just say that Jeane sounds like a total hipster and I sort of dislike those. This aside, I like snark a lot. And books about bloggers. AND OMG AWKWARD SEXYTIMES.

    I am sold on this.

    • Christina says:

      I think you will like this, April, even though Jeane does read a lot like a hipster, though I imagine she judges hipsters, too, because she judges everyone. lol. BUT she’s at least like smart, unlike Dash. Also, there are MANY kissing scenes. MANY.

  13. Yes! I’ve got it on my shelves! :)) I have a weakness for books about nerdy girls, librarians and anyone who owns bookshops too. Can’t walk past them. It’s terrible! 🙂 Thanks for a lovely review, Christina!

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