Okay, everyone. So it turns out that TODAY is actually my stop in the blog hop. I got confused, and I posted on the wrong day! I've been so busy (and I've been excited waiting for this day) that I got ahead of myself.
So....since I've already posted my review of Underworld, as well as the giveaway of my ARC, I thought I would dedicate this post to Meg herself.
First, let me start with the question.........HOW did I find Meg Cabot?
As a younger child, I was very sick. I really couldn't do much. I could barely walk. I spent my time studying and reading, since I couldn't do many physical activities. I grew up being treated in a children's hospital for physical therapy (and so many other treatments).
Since I couldn't do much else, I was ALWAYS reading. However, I had never really found a single author that I enjoyed. I would read books here and there, but that was about it.
As I grew up, I enjoyed reading. After all, it was the only haven I had. Still, though, I never felt like I had found something that really, really caused me to LOVE reading.
Finally, in junior high, I found the first book in the series Sweet Valley Junior High, and I devoured the book. After that, I found myself reading novel after novel in this series by Francine Pascal. It was AMAZING.
However, as I grew, the series was coming to an end, and I had lost interest. It was a great series, but it just wasn't enough for me.
Still, that was the first series I had ever read. I remember thinking how different of an experience it was to read books in a series. You grow so much more attached to the characters than you do with single standalone novels. I wanted another series, one that would peak my interest. I also wanted one that would keep me reading it all the way until the end.
As I was wandering through the aisle of Borders (which I know miss sooo much. Why did you have to close down?!), I remember spotting a book called Princess Diaries. I was curious. Wasn't that a Disney movie?! One that I had enjoyed and probably watched at least 10 times? I could probably quote half of the lines in the movie, and I hadn't even known that it was a novel.
So I looked at the shelf and saw that a few stories had already been released. I squealed with excitement! I KNEW this was going to be good!
I made one mistake though. This was at a point in my life where I had no idea that movie adaptations did not follow the books. So what did I do? I bought book # 2, Princess in the Spotlight.
Imagine my surprise as I opened the novel! I had so many thoughts running through my head. What? Mia's father is ALIVE?! And she and Michael are not together?!!!!! and Who is Boris? and Lars?! And why is Grandmere so MEAN?!!
Even without these answers, the book was still amazing. I just HAD to finish it. I caught on right away, and instead of buying book 3, I went back and bought the first book. Then, after reading that, I went and grabbed the third. It was definitely a fun experience, trying to piece together the story. I mean, I wouldn't recommend reading out of order intentionally, but it was definitely exciting!
After opening the first cover alone, I was hooked. I read every book that was out at the time, which I believe was up to the fourth novel. You can imagine my impatience, when I realized that I had to wait for the next amazing piece in this series! And since that day, I pre-ordered EVERY book in the entire series. I would go pick it up the DAY it came out and finish it in one sitting. It was just THAT good!
I read the series throughout highschool and even into college. I fell in love with Mia and Michael (and Lars! hehe). I devoured these novels. I can honestly say that I never once got tired of this story. It moved at a perfect pace, and it was so realistic. Things were perfect, just like they aren't in real life. You lose friends, break up, make new friends, get used by other people, experience loss and hardship. This series really helped me through life.
I remember one particular time in my life when I actually went through a depression. It was very similar to Mia's, except I never received therapy. Instead, my physician gave me antidepressant medication to take. It was a very dark time in my life. Thankfully, I had God to help me through it. Finally, after treatment, I recovered and I felt brand new. However, I can still remember reading Mia's story and crying along with her. The descriptions of her feelings and that bottomless pit were feelings I knew all too well! I was touched to see them written out so clearly in a novel. I knew that anyone who is experiencing those feelings can read this novel and feel supported. They can see the light at the end of the tunnel.
Meg used Mia's story to not only bring entertainment into my life, but she really connected with the difficulties that I faced (and many others face) in every day life.
Mia's story is my own story in a way. I don't have to be a princess to have a happy ending! That's what Mia taught me! :)
Since that time, I have read almost EVERY Meg Cabot book that exists. I have a whole bookshelf dedicated only to Meg's books. I have read EVERY single one of the young adult novels, and I am currently working on reading the adult series and then the Allie Finkle series. I have also bought most of her anthologies and joint works and even some old novels written by Patricia Cabot. I adore Meg's work, and I cannot wait to get through every last one of them!
One important moment of my life that I remember was reading the 1-800 series.
By this time, I had read all of the Princess Diaries series (that was released at the time) and all of the standalones that had been released (ie: American Girl, Avalon High, How to be popular, etc.) So I knew that I had to read another one of her series. I decided to read the 1-800 series. Since I knew that I loved Meg, I didn't even bother buying only one book. Instead, I purchased the entire series at once, knowing I would love every minute of it!
The day I began to read the first novel, my sister became very ill, and she was taken to the emergency room. I remembering throwing together a bag of emergency stuff (novels, an ipod, snacks, a blanket), knowing a long night in the waiting room was ahead of me. I remember grabbing the first two novels of the 1-800 series, knowing that I would be there a long time. As I sat there, waiting for news, the stress and worry began to eat away at me. So, instead of focusing on that, I picked up When Lightning Strikes and began to read. Finally, after I was halfway finished, I was able to go and see my sister. Luckily, she was okay. They needed to run more tests, but they thought everything would be fine. Sighing with relief, and heading back out into the waiting room, I began to read again. I actually finished the ENTIRE first novel in that one sitting and I moved on to the next, Code Name Cassandra.
The novels really helped keep my mind off of everything that was going on. It calmed me and gave me a distraction from all of the worry.
Luckily, the healthcare team was able to care for my sister, and everything was fixed and taken care of.
But I will never forget the relief that I felt knowing that I could drift away from my troubles into Jess' world.
Meg is not only a talented author, she is also an incredible person. I have met Meg twice, and both times, she was funny and sweet and caring. Plus, she signed like 25 of my books (which was super sweet!)
(This is also my profile picture, since it was one of the best days ever!)
(All of my Meg Cabot books at the time that she signed. And don't worry, I had 5 people go with me, so the line moved fairly and she didn't sign this many for each person.)
I even won a contest on her page before, revolving around Airhead. She asked a question about who's life we would like to have for a day, and I chose Gisele (the model). It was a long story as to why I chose her, but Meg sent me this AMAZING Airhead shirt (which I still own to this day!)
(Modeling my Airhead shirt with the AMAZING book!)
Thank you, Meg, for creating your novels to help individuals like me. You've helped bring me joy and entertainment, you've brought me comfort in my times of stress, and you brought understanding to me in a time when I felt alone.
You are truly an exceptional author. You are my FAVORITE author. You have inspired me and brought life to reading in a way that I have never experienced before. and I thank you so much for all that you have done!
So, now I just want to say that I hope all of you will check out the other stops on the Meg-A Readers Blog Hop. They're also giving away a copy of Underworld and some awesome swag from Meg!
and, you can read my review of Underworld and win my copy HERE!
Thanks so much for stopping by! I'd love it if you left me a comment letting me know what YOU love about
author, Meg! :)