Summer I Became a Nerd (Paperback)
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DescriptionOn the outside, seventeen-year-old Madelyne Summers looks like your typical blond cheerleader--perky, popular, and dating the star quarterback. But inside, Maddie spends more time agonizing over what will happen in the next issue of her favorite comic book than planning pep rallies with her squad. That she's a nerd hiding in a popular girl's body isn't just unknown, it's anti-known. And she needs to keep it that way. Summer is the only time Maddie lets her real self out to play, but when she slips up and the adorkable guy behind the local comic shop's counter uncovers her secret, she's busted. Before she can shake a pom-pom, Maddie's whisked into Logan's world of comic conventions, live-action role-playing, and first-person-shooter video games. And she loves it. But the more she denies who she really is, the deeper her lies become...and the more she risks losing Logan forever.
- Published: 05 July 2013
- Format: Paperback 258 pages
- ISBN 13: 9781620612385 ISBN 10: 1620612380
- Sales rank: 97,709
Reviews for Summer I Became a Nerd
Geektastic and Adorkable
I found myself connecting with Maddie. I know what it's like having older brothers and because of them finding a love of things others would find geeky or nerdy. But unlike Maddie - I never had a complete transformation like she did. Upon the biggest humiliation of her life, Maddie decides that popularity is the most important think to her and reinvents herself. No more Spectrum girl and the Pigments. Now it's country music and cheerleading!
But one summer, and the delay of the final issue of her favourite comic, Maddie finds herself entering the local comic book store in disguise. And within the sacred sanctum of all things geektacular, Maddie finds her true self and a boy who just might bring out her best of her secret identity.
This book is cute. And it's fun. And it's a celebration of all things geeky - there's comic books, mentions of anime and sci-fi AND LARPing (Live Action Role Playing). And I loved every moment of it. Maddie is learning to be true to herself and had a bit of difficulty finding the way but she makes it. I love the chemistry between her and Logan - bonefide nerd who has the geek chic thing going on in spade. The cheerleaders and football players for the most part are fairly stereotypical with the exception of Maddie's best friend, Terra.
I think what I liked most about this book was the message - that no matter what your interests, you should accept yourself for who you are.
The Summer I Became a Nerd is a cute book that I had a lot of fun reading. And please - don't hold my artistic stylings against what is a great summer read. by Kate @ Fictional Thoughts
- Top review
Absolutely adored it.
I was so very excited to be a part of this tour and to read this book. This book absolutely grabbed me from the moment I saw the book and couldn't wait for the chance to read the book. This book did not disappoint in a any way. The book was amazing, cute, fun, and so sweet. I loved the characters, I loved the story, and I loved all the nerdy parts.
Long Story Short:
Maddie is a closet nerd. She has been hiding the fact that she loves all things comics since she was very young. Events happen and she ends up at the local comic book store, trying to be incognito, to purchase the latest and last volume of her favorite comic. If that isn't bad enough the boy behind the counter is a boy from her school and of all boys, her long time secret nerd boy crush, Logan. Of course he recognizes her and they end up talking, end up friends, and the rest is history.... oh and of course I can't forget.... the football boyfriend, the popular best friend, the lying to the parents, and the alter secret life. Yes of course it all came crashing down on her Maddie, but before it did there is some amazing fun and nerding out.
I really don't think I can express how much I adored this book. It was amazing. First off we have the cute story, and secondly we have awesome characters, and last but not least we have all things nerd! I am a huge GEEK and loved reading about the normal parts of my life. I believe I developed a smile from page one and kept it on my face til the very last word, then I switched off my Kindle, petted the cover, and made a pouty face because it was over. Bitter sweet. I just couldn't put it down.
The story is just cute and I mean super cute. Maddie was able to bury herself deeper and deeper every moment she was awake and all of her trouble came form one simple fact, she didn't want to show off who she really was. This was so crazy to me. Being a nerd is not that big of deal, especially if you are cute too, oh and have the attention of a very cute and sweet nerd boy. I still can't figure out for the life of me why she wanted to keep all of this under wraps but she did and it led to one heck of heap of trouble.
The one thing I loved about the trouble Maddie created was the fact it never ended the way she anticipated. The people she thought wouldn't understand did and the one she thought she wouldn't hurt she did. She definitely had a lot to learn and by the end of the book she was on the right track.
Maddie was full of trouble and had some pretty lost thoughts on how she should live life, but I liked her. I liked that she loved comic books, had a secret crush on a super cute nerd boy, watched geeky show marathons with her dad, did things she hated with her best friend just because it was her best friend and she really did love everyone she loved. She had a big heart.
Logan was dreamy for sure. I love nerd boys! I would have swooned for sure over Logan in high school. He worked in a comic story, he played an elf in the local role playing games, he was completely devoted to his friends and family, and he had a wicked sense of humor. My kind of guy. I really don't think he got stupid though out the entire book either. Amazing! He was super sweet and very forgiving.
The romance was just perfect. Paced well, started as a crush to friends to something more. Nothing rushed, it built over an entire summer and there was never love mentioned just head over heels normal teen summer love. It was very sweet, very innocent, and I loved it.
The story was full of laughs, good times, and oh so many sweet moments. It was a very quick read. The writing was just right for a contemporary romance and I think its a perfect summer romance read.
In The End:
I will absolutely be reading this book again and again! by Jennifer McDaid
Cute, Fun read
I should first mention that I got this book as an ARC in return for a honest review.
Okay, I have some mixed feelings about this book.
The monetization of geek culture has been rampant in the last couple of years (Big Bang Theory being exhibit number one) but this never really bothered me. If more people got into what I was into, how would that hurt anyone? I love the fact that more people are into comics/science/etc and more people are okay with people being into comics/science/etc. Though I never had the experience of being picked on because I was a geek, I'm sure that many have.
That brings us back to this book. I loved the secret life she was living, and the whole, carefully defined boundaries she had set for herself. IN a lot of books where the main character has a "secret" it's pretty eye-rollingly silly.
In this case, due to a traumatic event that is explained in the beginning of the book and which is so relate-able it's painful, as well as heartbreaking and adorable, we totally get why Maddie is the way she is.
Though I find it hard to believe that when she leaves her comic journal somewhere random she is not FREAKING OUT.
Many books that claim to be 'nerdy' or 'geeky' don't really delve that far into the nether-regions of Geekdom, but Miller goes right for the darkest bowls with a dive into LARPing. I definitely approved.
What I didn't like, at the end, was how she had this whole confrontation with her nemesis via LARPing, but it wasn't about her, it was about a boy. Sure this girl was mean to her, but it was more because this girl was hitting on her guy and she wanted to make her pay.
I would have preferred that when she solved the game, it had been someone else, even Dan. She would have proved her place in the LARP community, and made it clear to Logan that she was a nerd through and through, without bringing this whole other element into it.
As it was, her objective was kind of muddled? And we didn't really know what she was doing. It also was a kind of bitchy thing to do, calling out this girl in front of everyone. It wasn't just about the game, it was about humiliating her a little bit. If we're going with the Maddie-is-not-a-typical-cheerleader thing then that was bit off.
Other than that I really liked the book. The chemistry between Maddie and Logan was great - though it took a while for them to get together at the end - and all the characters were believable and fun. I liked Dan, the foul-mouthed side-kick, and Terra, the pop-star obsessed cheerleader with a heart of gold.
Give it a read. by Emily Ever
Seeing the word "nerd" in the title completely drew me in. I just knew I was going to love it. I just knew.
AND I WAS RIGHT!!!
There was never a moment while reading the book where I felt like my expectations were not met. I hate it when a book is supposed to be filled with geekiness but it doesn't go all out. This book did not disappoint me; the overall geekiness was an 11 over 10! How geeky is this book? As in comic book-sniffing geeky. As in Live-Action Role Playing (LARP) geeky. Uh huh. While I had a slightly hard time trying to grasp the concept of LARP (which my brother was very happy to explain to me... I live with a geek.), it didn't bother me one bit. It's the first Young Adult book I've read that completely celebrates nerdom. All the geekiness made the story cuter and added to its charm.
I liked how Maddie, the main character, was written. She's a big nerd inside but she strives to stay popular 24/7. At times it was frustrating how Maddie would do anything to keep her status. Sometimes she just seemed shallow but when she brought out the nerd, I'd forget about it. She's just too cute! I especially loved Maddie's obsession with comic books because you can see how much of a nerd she really is with the way she described the comics she reads - how it felt in her hands, how vibrant the illustrations were and even how they smelled. I don't know if it's just the nerd in me but Maddie was a very relatable character all throughout. She may have had issues but let's face it: she was going through a common struggle in high school. And I think the author did a really great job at presenting it through the eyes of one very lovable and spunky Maddie Summers.
Aside from the insane dorkfest that went on, readers will certainly fall in love with the very adorkable Logan. Unlike most of the nerdy guys I read about in books, Logan is not wound up, he's not a loner, he's not clueless about girls. Sure he's not so smooth all the time but at least he's not too nerdy to function. He's funny, easy-going and incredibly swoon-worthy. I loved how he put on "the moves" without Maddie even realizing it. There were just these "moments" that were happening between them even before they recognized it and I think that's exactly what made me love their story even more. I got the feels I always look for in love stories and it's all because of how adorkable Logan was and even more adorkable when he's with Maddie.
This book is so fan-freaking-tastic that it gave me a hangover. Yes, a hangover!!! Deep down I know I'll always be craving for more of Mattie and Logan and all their nerdiness combined. I want more. It's been days since I've read it and I still want more. The Summer I Became a Nerd is instantly one of my favorite books this year. It has a great set of characters, lots of nerdiness, a lesson every teen should learn and a love story that made my heart jump for joy plenty of times. I don't see myself getting over this book any time soon. by Isabel Gomez
Bring up the nerd in you!
I don't remember having this much fun reading a contemporary since... well, since a very long time actually. The Summer I Became a Nerd got me into laugh mode to-the-point-my-tummy-would-hurt right from the first few pages, and that was a sensation that accompanied my until the very end. Several are the reasons why this is such an awesome, amazing book. The writing style is simple and utterly funny, the main character is one of the most adorable of young teens I've ever read, and the plot itself is quite interesting for all the little twists and turns that bump in to Maddie's way of becoming her true self. When you hide behind a popular curtain, it can never be easy to go back to what you were, right?
I, personally, am not a big fan of comic books, but somehow the author caught my full attention, even when she was using comic stories I know nothing about as references and analogies to her own story. In fact, those we some of my favourite moments mainly due to a certain hilarious and easy vibe strongly present throughout the book. The truth is that this ends up being a really funny and relaxed read, especially 'cause of the way it matches perfectly all these nerdy topics with a more social concern, seeing that Maddie is a geek of heart but does not want to be, again, a social pariah. She's this smart, incredibly popular, beautiful girl who does her best to keep the cooler side of her personality a secret instead of simply embracing it, with fear of being rejected by her peers, but her love for everything comic related and her curiosity towards this little candy-shop-like called The Phoenix are going to be her demise, and that's when the true fun begins! Plus, Logan is so adorkable! He actually is the kind of guy I would admire in High School 'cause he doesn't care about what anyone thinks of him or of what he likes, but at the same time, he has this vulnerability that makes him even cuter to the eye and to the heart. And he's really talented too, which also helps. And, together, they both make the sweetest couple ever, so of course I would be rooting for them all the way!
Ultimately, The Summer I Became a Nerd is a very cool, summery like, type of book. Perfect for all ages and all kinds of readers, this is the ideal story for a beach day or to enjoy in somewhere sunny. Full of awesomeness, with extremely nerdy activities and characters that will stick with you, us, for a long time, this book is also a must-read due to the highly recommended messages that brings up to the surface. Don't try to be someone you're not, and don't hide yourself because of what High School kids can or will do to you. Confront them and embrace your true self... being you a nerdy kid, a popular jock or cheerleader, or the one who no one ever remembers. It doesn't matter now and sure won't matter later, 'cause High School is so not the worst thing you'll face in your life. So heads-up! by Patrícia Pilar Pecegueiro
Hi, my name is Holly, and I'm a NERD!
Oh, how I adore this book!!! I happened to see a tweet a few weeks ago from Heather at Entangled Publishing offering folks the chance to read this book in ARC form in exchange for an honest review. I had heard about the book a while back when they did a cover reveal around the blogosphere, and I knew I wanted to read it, so I jumped at the chance. And I am so glad that I did! To be honest, I don't read a lot of contemporaries, or many humorous books, so this book was very refreshing and came at the perfect time.
At bottom, this is a book about being true to who you are, about not putting on a mask or creating a character for yourself to play that corresponds with who you think you "should" be or are expected to be. It is a great message, and I LOVE IT. I can't believe I'm about to say this, because I LOVE the movie GREASE (and GREASE 2!) and can recite pretty much every single line in the movie (and the soundtrack remains in my car permanently, because you never know when you just HAVE to hear "There Are Worse Things I Could Do"!!), BUT I'll just be honest: the message of this book is pretty much the antithesis of the message of GREASE, and that's a good thing. I know I'm dating myself, so bear with me if you're a young'un who (GASP) hasn't seen the movie... As we know, in GREASE Sandy wants a boy, Danny, so she completely changes her look and her behavior to get him; she becomes someone not really her, pouring herself into tight leather pants, strapping on high heels, and even smoking a cigarette. Finally, of course, Danny realizes he wants to be with her and oh, how nice, he'll no longer be mocked for falling in love with good girl Sandra Dee. Nice. As much as I love that movie, I've always been uncomfortable with the message that it sends, even as far back as when I was 10. This book, however, has the total opposite message - ie, that being true to yourself and who you are is really the only way to find TRUE happiness...and true love. With the unbelievable pressures kids face these days, the bullying and the anti-intellectualism and all that, I applaud Ms. Miller for embracing this message!!
Now, despite what I just said, you shouldn't think this book is sickeningly sappy, or that it's heavy-handed or preachy about how kids should act, because it's not. It is just a hilarious book with great characters and a fun plot that subtly reminds us that it's okay to be who we really are. There were times when I would bust out laughing while reading the book, several nights, in fact, causing a little friction in my marriage because my husband was trying to sleep or something :) (at those times I would reluctantly put it aside and pull out the dystopian I was also reading!). If Ms. Miller is half as funny in real life as she was writing this book, then I have no doubt I would love hanging out with her!
I would also love to hang out with one Madelyne Jean Summers, or Maddie as her friends and family call her. In fact, she reminded me a lot of myself during high school! (That seems to be a common thread running through many people's experience with the book; she's a very relatable character.) Okay, so I was definitely NOT a cheerleader, nor was I at (or anywhere near) the top of my school's popularity pyramid, but boy did I ever see myself in many of her actions and thoughts when she was geeking out in private! The major difference is that I never really tried to hide my nerdiness - it would've been near impossible anyway, what with my coke bottle glasses, my straight As, and my penchant for books with dragons or spaceships on the cover! I also had Maddie's sarcasm and snarkiness, although, like her, I wasn't mean when I was being snarky. Often it was a defense mechanism of sorts, which I felt was also the case for Maddie. I'd say that most of the passages I flagged while reading were Maddie's own words, whether in dialogue with another character or just talking to herself. She's a funny girl!
Ms. Miller did an excellent job with the actual writing in this book. It was so easy to read, but not because it's juvenile or unsophisticated writing; in fact, I felt it was quite the opposite. There are so many great quotes I pulled out from this book; I wrote down quite a few gems, in several cases making the notation "SO ME!!" next to them :) And not all of them were funny; Ms. Miller also wrote great serious scenes and dialogue, romantic scenes that will make your stomach flutter as if *you* are the one falling in love for the first time, and really fun action scenes. I've never been to Natchitoches, but it sure came alive for me through her writing, which I guess makes sense since she lives there! But it's still not something that every writer can pull off, even if they are writing about their own town. I made a note at one point that her imagery was excellent, that I could see what was happening in my head as if it were a movie. She also nailed what it's like to grow up in a small town in the South - the gossip, how everyone knows everyone else, the high school parties, all of it.
I also really appreciated the fact that parents were a significant part of the story; several characters' parents show up and are active throughout. In fact, it wasn't just parents but also siblings, and it was so much fun to get to see the main characters interacting with their families. Speaking of characters, I adored them! Each one was really a distinct personality, and they complemented one another so well, even when they were in conflict with each other. In other words, there was no character that seemed out of place or unnecessary in the book. Dan, Logan's best friend, was definitely a top contender for my affection ;) I think that there will be at least one character in the book that everyone can relate to, or that will remind you of someone you knew growing up. In my opinion, that ability to identify with the characters makes for a great reading experience. You will root for all of them, I promise!! (Well, except, perhaps, for a certain "dark fairy" and drama queen cheerleader....)
I had so many quotes I wanted to share with you in this review, but the more I thought about it, the more I felt it would be best to let each reader experience these in context and enjoy discovering them for the first time on their own. I will say, however, that my favorite scene is near the beginning of the book, and finds our dear Maddie in the alley next to the comic book shop in shades, her dad's ball cap, and a sweatshirt, despite the Louisiana summer heat. I promise you, you WILL laugh at her encounter with Mr. More Money! Finally, I will close with a quote from the final issue of Maddie's favorite comic series: "Be true to yourself and others will be true to you, too." Let's all do our best to instill that message in our children - and ourselves!
Thank you to Entangled Publishing and Leah Rae Miller for letting me read an ARC of this book. I had a blast reading it, and I'll be recommending it to as many people as I can! by Holly Bryan
Rain's Reading Room Review of The Summer I Became a Nerd
So if you're too school for cool
And you're treated like a fool
You could choose to let it go
We can always, we can always party on our own~Pink
So nerds, let us party on our own, and read this wonderfully cute book.
Maddie is a cheerleading, pop-music loving, boy obsessed, popular girl, or is she? Who is Madelyne Summers? Does she even like to cheerlead? Alright so I won't go spoiling THAT big question ;) but I will say this, there is more to her than meets the eye (next thing you know I'll be quoting Spider Man).
Let me set the scene, first week of summer she is absolutely and 100% percent excited! But about what? Hanging out with her boyfriend? NO. Going to the beach? No. A new comic book? Shhh! *cough...yes...cough* Madelyne Summers is a nerd, *GASP*. Alright so if you didn't catch any of the sarcasm in any of that, congratulations internet you have successfully rendered my humor obsolete. applause ensues.
Maddie is a sweetie pie when she is true to herself and when she isn't worried about appearances I really enjoyed her. But it was getting through the moment when she was ashamed of liking superheroes or thinking that the new pop singer song is crap. I am, however, biased. I went to see Avenger three times in theaters, I saw Hunger Games twice, I went to see one of my favorite authors and almost fainted, and going to Comic-con is on my Bucket List (just to give you a glimpse of my nerdiness).
So, having to go through her tug-of-war of being O.K. with her nerdiness did get a little frustrating. She did make up for it all though but I won't say too much to ruin it all.
Though the book is about Maddie and her journey, there is-of course :)- a guy. Now I won't go as far to say that he is my all time favorite book boyfriend of all time. But if I met a Logan in real life I'd be like, Marry me marry me now!
He is such a sweet, honest, and patient guy that gives everybody way more chances than they deserve. He is, in one word: adorkable, completely and utterly 100% unavoidably adorkable and OMG I love him.
So if you want to laugh your patootie off, get embarrassed, what a sweet romance unfold, and journey through a summer of self discovery then pick up one of this years perfect summer reads, The Summer I Became A Nerd by Leah Rae Miller.
~Rain by Rain Tyndale
An entertaining, well written book!
This is a great, well written book. I loved it!
"...I vowed no one would ever get the chance to hurt me like that again. And that's when my double life began."
After a junior high costume contest gone incredibly wrong, Maddie Jean Summers vows to never let anyone know her secret: She is obsessed with comic books. She has strategically and painstakingly choreographed her life so that her secret can never be found out, even by her best friend, Terra. She has spent years climbing the high school social ladder to become one of the most popular girls in school. This seems to be working perfectly for her, until she has a moment of weakness. This book follows Maddie's hilarious journey to finding her true self and being comfortable with who she really is.
"Be true to yourself and others will be true to you too" is a memorable line from one of her comic books. Unfortunately, Maddie doesn't follow this advice. Because of one bad experience when she was younger, she doesn't believe she can be her true self even around those who love her the most.
The characters are endearing, quirky, and hilarious. Several times I found myself laughing out loud during this book. And even though I have no knowledge of the comic book world, I found myself being able to relate to this story. The author does a great job of describing comic books and LARP (Live Action Role Play) in such a way that the reader can understand it but not be bored to tears by it.
There are some occasions that may seem a little farfetched. For instance, just how hard Maddie tries to hide her secret from those close to her and all the effort that goes into it is a little unrealistic in my opinion, however, it does make for some pretty funny situations.
This is a really fun book with a lot of humor. It's very well written and I would definitely read more from this author. If you're up for an entertaining read that will have you so absorbed it will be over before you know it, this is the book for you. by NicLeigh
This is the one to start off summer reading!
This book was exactly what I needed to get out of a reading slump! It was the perfect light hearted quick read that I was looking for. Even though this book touches on a serious topic like trying to be someone you are not just to "fit in" at school, it does it in such a fun way that you really don't feel like it is being shoved down your throat or anything.
At the beginning of the book we learn about the incident a few years back at school where Maddie felt that she was so embarrassed at school that she was never going to fit in again, so from that day forward she was determined to fit in and keep all of her "geeky interests" like comics, sci-fi shows etc to herself for fear of being made fun of again.
She has been ordering her comic books online for years so there is no evidence of them in her room when her friends come over, and she keeps a comic book journal that she thinks no one knows about hidden in her closet, however, she starts to run in to trouble when her favourite comic book series has decided to only offer the very last book in the series in print form, so she cannot view it online. She finds that she is forced to go in to the local comic book store called The Pheonix to pick up her copy, so she decides she is going to, but she is afraid of someone seeing her, so she goes incognito or so she thinks.
I love where the story goes from there, Maddie starts to realize that the life that she is living to keep up appearances, is not what she wants. Like having the popular football player boyfriend, and pretending to like a country music artist that she really can't stand. She starts to make small changes to have things the way that she really wants them, like hanging out with the guy in her class Logan, who's parents own The Pheonix, but she is not fooling him, and soon things come to a boiling point, and she is forced to chose to go all the way and acknowledge what she really wants, or hurt the people that have come to mean so much to her.
This is the absolute perfect book to get you started on your light contemporary reading for summer! If you like books with characters blossoming in to whom they are really supposed to be with a sprinkle of romance, this one is for you, it gets a 5/5 from me. by Holly Warner
Speaks to the nerd inside of me!
This book speaks to the nerd inside of me! Poor Maddie is hiding the part of her that she really loves, all in the name of popularity. The story of Maddie coming out of the nerd closet is a charming one that had me laughing throughout. I, of course, adored all of the nerd-culture references...yep, admittedly there was nothing I scoffed at.
The story shows a teen finding herself and what makes her happy. She learns that she shouldn't have to hide in order to be liked and loved and she certainly can't hide the love she feels for others. Logan and his best friend were my absolute favorite characters - they speak and act with no shame, no hiding their love of role-playing and comics here. These boys teach Maddie what real friends are like.
Also, very present in this book, parents! I know, right!! Yes, both Maddie and Logan have parents that make multiple appearances in the story and they are a bit nerdy as well. I love it when characters have actual families and those families aren't horrible. Whatever Leah Rae Miller writes next, I'll pick it up. I can't stop smiling just thinking about this book!
Book Received: For free from publisher in exchange for an honest review. ARC reviewed by Jessica for Book Sake. by Jessica