Monday, November 11, 2013

Book: It Had To Be You (Gossip Girl #0.5) by Cecily von Ziegesar

This is my first book review after a very long time... and since I'm on vacation mode right now (not for long), I've been concentrating my attention to light reads only for I don't really want to burden my mind with complicated feelings and whatever. This book, I happen to find at BookSale at an affordable price considering it was hard bound and looked quite new. So instinctively, I bought it. And after moments of sitting in the corner, most probably due to boredom, I finished it. So here are my thoughts:

Welcome to New York City's Upper East Side, where my friends and I live in luxe Fifth Avenue apartments and attend Manhattan's most exclusive private schools. We're smart, we've inherited classic good looks, we wear fantastic clothes, and we know how to party. We can't help it-we were born this way.
Our story begins with three inseparable, completely gorgeous fifteen-year-olds, Serena van der Woodsen, Blair Waldorf, and Nate Archibald. Blair's loved Nate and his glittering green eyes since she was in Bonpoint onesies. Too bad Nate wishes Blair's beautiful best friend, Serena, was the one with the crush. And Serena has a secret she's keeping from them both. Hmmm, something tells me these best friends may not be as close as we thought. . . .
How do I know all this? Because I know everything-and lucky for you, I can't keep a secret. So sit back while I untangle this messy little tale and tell you how it all began.
Admit it, you're already falling for me.
You know you love me.
Gossip Girl (
via Goodreads)
I've been too corrupted by the Gossip Girl TV series to even imagine a somehow different back story than what was put on air. I mean... I was so obsessed with the series that for me, Serena would always be Blake and Blair would always be Leighton, same with all the other characters. They were all etched to me so deeply that it was really confusing when the descriptions with the book don't match what I actually have in mind.

I know that it was a bad way to start, and definitely a bad way to read a literary piece. The book should come first before the TV series, not the product before the source material. But I just wanted you to know that I operated under that condition and so this review-of-sorts would probably be really influenced by an existing idea of things and happenings.

First off...this is a prequel, supposedly the happening before the first book, Gossip Girl, right before Serena left for boarding school. I love back stories, so I admit that was one of the reasons that made me buy this one. It was pretty thick for a GG book, so I immediately wondered what's the deal with this and wasn't really expecting to be disappointed.

Maybe disappointed was not the exact word...but I just get this feeling that I wasted my time reading this one hell of hard back book when I should've used my time reading something else. And take note, books don't get that a lot from me.

I mean, every page seems dragging and the events are too shallow for my taste to even care about. Like there's one character, Jenny (if you're familiar with her)...spent almost all of her screentime (if that ever make sense) caring and talking too much about her boobs. Did you hear that? Her freakin' boobs. It gets on my nerves. It was really hard imagining them to be 15 or 14 and all.

And how each label and brand of each detail of whatever a character is wearing was somehow required to be mentioned irks me off -- but I guess that's necessary.

I also hate how almost all character seemed too easy to hate on. Vanessa, Blair (can you believe that?).... and don't even get me started on Nate. I swear, this book almost obliterated any turn-on characteristic of Nate in my head, except of course his perfect face. That part sucks almost as much as the plot do.

"He was becoming a poet and Serena was becoming his muse."
And when I encountered Dan... I thought there's still a glimmer of hope.. because you know, he was a writer and all...but he just ended up like a creepy stalker obsessed with Serena and all that. His poems are great tho.

But above all that... you know what's the best part of this whole book is? It's Serena. Flat out Serena, alone. I love how she's all layered. And I love how she has read these novels. And how carefree  and effortlessly beautiful she is. Plus the way that she always puts the happiness of others above hers. She was the center of the whole thing, and with her the story progresses and it made sense. And the fact that I can somehow relate to her made her grew on me more. 

I hate how some of the characters never really grew out of their shells. They're just that. Maybe it's just because it was a prequel...and it came out way after the first book was published, so I guess people never really expected much, they just wanted to know the story, and how it all started.

I've read Gossip Girl (#1), and then I've read this. Maybe that wasn't a great idea after all. This book was never meant to be a stand alone read. I've read the first book, and I never really liked it that much. Maybe this is not really my cup of tea. Or maybe I'm just not really in the mood.

I rated it 2 stars at Goodreads. I would've given it a 1.....if not for Serena. (I absolutely loved the TV show, though.)

Quotable Quote:
“Who has time to make up stories when the truth is so much more interesting? ~ Gossip Girl 
"You parted my Red Sea!" ~ Serena van der Woodsen *don't even get me started on this totally inappropriate remark. >.<*

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