Book Review: Adorkable by Sarra Manning

Posted September 19, 2013 by Debby in Reviews / 19 Comments

Book Review: Adorkable by Sarra ManningAdorkable by Sarra Manning
Published by Atom Books on May 24th, 2013
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Pages: 387
Format: Paperback
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?

5 Stars

I’m pretty sure we all know the quote, “We read to know we are not alone,” by C.S. Lewis. That sums up what this book means to me. This book is the closest that has ever come to being a reflection of me and my life up to now. It is so relatable, and when I find books like that, I start crying. Needless to say, this book is an all-time favorite for me – one of the most special books I have ever read. However, not everyone will have that reaction to this book. So I’m going to try to point out the merits aside from how this is such a great reflection of me, and then I’ll get to the validation-of-my-life-story parts after that.

Adorkable is adorable. HA. I thought I might as well get that out of the way first of all. If you’re a blogger, you will have an instant connection to Jeane, because I feel like all of us are to a certain extent outsiders in our real life worlds. But at the same time, through blogging and through Twitter and such, we’ve found like minded people who are spread far and wide but who definitely mean something. If you’ve felt that discrepancy between online life and real life, between your online personality and your real life personality, between how people see you in real life and how they see you online – you need to read Adorkable, because it hits the nail on the head.

Both main characters I absolutely loved. Jeane, I already mentioned, the blogger, is eccentric and at times horribly stuck up and conceited. But at the same time, you can feel that there’s much more to her than that. When she’s defensive and closed off, you know there’s something else to the story. I related to that part a lot, and I’ll get to that later. But Jeane does send a great message about owning who you are and not apologizing for that, about finding your own voice and making it loud and clear, and about standing for something and being independent. Michael, the popular boy who “hates” her, is just a winner. He comes off as quite abrasive at first, in his ignorance, but he really quickly grows from that. He’s just a truly caring, golden boy. His devotion and attentiveness to others really made me swoon. To be honest though, I swooned from his first mention.


Adorkable is told from the alternating perspectives of Jeane and Michael. Usually I don’t like alternating perspectives at all, but this is probably my favorite book that’s done that so far. The two personalities are extremely distinctive, and due to their circumstances (the love-hate thing) you need that look into their inner thoughts. It’s hilarious when they’re oblivious to each other’s feelings and intentions. They also contradict themselves in their narrations every once in a while, which becomes clear when it switches perspectives again. It’s a very unique writing style that is absolutely absorbing. You really get to know two fleshed out characters very well and see development on both sides, as they learn from each other. Authors, if you want to do alternating perspectives, read this book. This is how you make it convincing.

So I know you’re wondering about that romance. This may be my favorite written romance ever. I’m thinking now if I have a bookish (canon) couple that tops it, and I’m not sure I do. You’ll probably know I’m a huge fan of love-hate relationships, and this one hit all the right notes. The chemistry was astounding. There will be involuntary flailing and squealing – you have been warned. Sarra uses all the right tropes, like the kiss-you-to-shut-you-up thing, and seriously, that’s one device that will definitely make me like your book. Then the transitions in and development of the relationship, the ups and downs, it was all very real, absorbing, and addictive. AND HOT. VERY HOT. I just loved every minute of it, and I don’t know how to make that more clear. A GIF? Sure. As a matter of fact, I have the perfect one.

But let’s wrap this up so it’s not entirely a novel of a review. If you read my extremely long and personal post of last week and related to it or had massive feels because of it, read this book. Because we’re now to the part about how this book relates to me. It’s my life story. All of the feelings I poured into that post last week were also in this book, along with more things. How Jeane is as a person is extremely close to how I am – except that I’m a little less abrasive (I hope) and I don’t dress quite as crazily. I won’t rehash last week’s post, because I’m trying to keep this short, but I’ve felt like an outsider all of my life, I’ve been shunned and looked down on by my mother, of course I am also a blogger, and I’m extremely defensive. I don’t really let people close to me too easily for fear of getting hurt. I keep myself busy so that I don’t have to think about complicated feelings. I avoid confrontation like it’s the end of the world. So I understood a lot of Jeane’s behavior that other readers might not.

Honestly though, the kicker was this scene towards the end of the book, View Spoiler » If I wasn’t in the car, reading this, with a colleague next to me, I would have been bawling. If I had been at home reading this, I would have just laid down on the floor and curled up into a ball. (Yeah, I do that sometimes, no judging.) Why? I’ve had that exact experience. I know exactly how that feels. And that all just came rushing back. I’m honestly almost in tears as I’m typing this. Experiences like that suck and hopefully most people don’t know how that feels. You may not relate to it as well as I did, but know that that scene and the underlying emotions were right on the mark.

Summing Up:

I didn’t know anything about this book when I picked it up. I had never heard of it, but it was at Boekenfestijn, a Dutch book fair, for, I think, 2 euros. I quickly read the back and instantly knew this was for me. As such it was the first of the 9 books I bought at Boekenfestijn that I read. I expected it to be enjoyable and that I would have a few laughs, but I never expected it to be a book that would be so dear to my heart. It’s by far the best spent 2 euros of my life.

I loved everything about this book. I have an everything-I-wanted shelf on Goodreads, and this definitely has a spot on there. From the two awesome main characters, their depth, growth, witty banter, and awesome romance, to the great British humor and pop culture references, to the themes of finding your own voice and celebrating your uniqueness, to the relatable scenes that had me crying, to the perfect ending… I honestly don’t have a single complaint. I mean, look at this massive review, and I still feel like I’m not doing this book justice. (I barely even talked about the plot, EEP.) asdfjkl; If it were up to me, everyone in the world would be required to read this.

Anyone who wants to have an understanding of who I am as a person needs to read this book. It covers all the pain and insecurities I had in high school and college, and it aptly had me tearing up at those parts. However, it’s also an inspiration to me. An inspiration in that I need to just be me and feel confident and reassured in that. It’s also a reaffirmation of the love in this blogging community, and it has motivated me to keep blogging and expanding my life here. I’m going to own the fact that I’m a blogger, and I’m never going to be ashamed of that or hide that from others. To top it all off, it’s given me a lot more ideas and goals that I want to accomplish as a blogger – so look forward to that!

This is not just a Debby Book. This is the Debby Book.

GIF it to me straight!

Recommended To:

Anyone who related to my very long and personal post, all bloggers, and basically everyone. …Yeah.

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19 responses to “Book Review: Adorkable by Sarra Manning

  1. annieding07

    I love it when you fangirl over a book! I am totally SOLD on this book now. And romance! Squeeee. I'm so happy you liked the romance! How disappointing would it be for a bad romance in a romance novel? And did I read that Jeane is a blogger? Oh my goodness, this book and I are going to have a rocking time! 😀
    My recent post The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney

  2. I should probably clarify, that she is NOT a book blogger – just a blogger. ^^; either way this book is fantastic though, so yessssss go buy it NOW.

  3. Evie

    I bought this book two days ago after reading this review and finished it yesterday. I loved it. I was honestly considering changing my night plans just so that I could sit and read the witty humour. I love love/hate relationships too and Sarra Manning did such a fantastic job! And it was British! So very British! I can definitely relate to Jeane in some ways but others were just insanely interesting and fun to read! I want a Michael Lee so bad… Thanks for another great recommendation!

  4. I need to get myself a copy of this book now! I've been eyeing it up for quite a while, but I definitely have to get a hold of it now. I adored love/hate relationships and this one sounds like it's fantastic! I'm excited to read it now! I think I'll be off to my library tomorrow to get a copy 🙂
    Great review Debby!

  5. Yes yes yes! I can't wait for you (and the rest) to read this one asdfjkl; I will be sitting on pins and needles for all of your opinions, haha. Hope you get to it soon! 🙂

  6. HEEEE I'm happy I got you so excited. 😀 The romance here was AMAZING but I feel like there's also so much more to the book than that. I'm not usually a fan of pure romance novels, so that's evident here as well. This book is just one big ball of perfection. And YES Jeane is a blogger! Though not a book blogger, but still that connection to the internet world and blogging communities? It was perfect! 🙂 HOPE YOU ENJOY!

  7. Oh my gosh, I'm so flattered this review got you to buy it and YAY YOU LOVED IT :') That makes me so super happy. The humor was so great – I was like you, when I started reading, I only stopped for work, pretty much.

    I WANT A MICHAEL TOO. Someone who stalks my tweets and knows just how to cheer me up like that. <3 Perfect!

    You're definitely welcome! 🙂

  8. YAYYY! I hope your library has it and that you looooooove it like I did 🙂 It's definitely a fun and heartfelt read. 😀 Let me know what you think!

  9. Great review! And some great news: the book will be out in Dutch next week! I work for the Dutch publiser and purchased the book to translate and publish it. At first I wasn't sure about the book, as I didn't like Jeane at all when I first started reading (she can be quite a bitch, to be honest). But slowly but surely you start to love her, Micheal and their story!

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