Precious Things

Precious Things

by Stephanie Parent

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Product Details

BN ID: 2940016649672
Publisher: Stephanie Parent
Publication date: 06/05/2013
Sold by: Barnes & Noble
Format: NOOK Book
Sales rank: 964,616
File size: 350 KB

About the Author

Stephanie Parent is a graduate of the Master of Professional Writing program at USC and attended the Baltimore School for the Arts as a piano major. She moved to Los Angeles because of Francesca Lia Block's WEETZIE BAT books, which might give you some idea of how much books mean to her. She also loves dogs, books about dogs, and sugary coffee drinks both hot and cold.

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Precious Things 4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
onlyminordetails More than 1 year ago
My Thoughts: After adoring Stephanie's debut novel, Defy The Stars, I knew I had to read Precious Things. So when she asked me if I was interested in reading it, I JUMPED at the opportunity. And let me tell you, she did not let me down with this one. Plus, I mean, "Precious" by Depeche Mode? I bought that CD when it came out because I loved that song so much. I had to see the tie in with the song. Isabelle is a person I could completely relate to: the situation she is in, the responsibility she has to undertake and the sacrifices. It's a tough place to be in and even harder to make the most of what you do have because all you can think about is where you would rather be. Isabelle somehow manages to do so with what she has been given, although there are points where she doesn't want to. She becomes friends with Lucy, who is instantly loveable. All I can say (and I know I mentioned this to you, Stephanie), is stick figures. I am still giggling. Through it all, there is Evan, the teaching assistant for the music class, who seems determined to get to her. His efforts, in person and through email, slowly gain success, although Isabelle is reluctant. The sexual tension between the two of them is noticeable, even outsiders can tell that it's there. And then, they can't hold back from the way they feel any longer. All I can say is holy sexy kiss Batman! I think I read that one a few times over again (I think I'll have to read it again after finishing this review). Despite things seeming to look up, other things dare to fall apart. It's up to Isabelle to figure out what she really wants and needs. Precious Things is a wonderful story full of growth and growing up. There was a lot of attention given to the secondary characters and the side stories that it made the story a compelling read. Stephanie Parent made the switch from YA to NA almost seamlessly. She was able to make this story about more than just romance, and I like that a lot. I have to say, I don't think I'm going to be able to NOT make the effort to read everything I can by Stephanie, it's just that good. My Rating: Very Good
FaithSullivan More than 1 year ago
It's not often that I connect with an author on such a profound level, but while reading PRECIOUS THINGS it felt like Stephanie Parent was voicing opinions I've held inside my head for quite a while. The college experience isn't all fun and games. It's about scanning an overwhelming syllabus. It's about not being able to connect with a teacher who'd rather be anywhere than in the classroom. It's about pretending life is so great when really you're feeling miserable and alone and all you want to do is curl up on the couch ... but oh yeah, that's right ... you can't because the party's in your bedroom. And to top it off, Isabelle slaved away all through high school in order to attend her dream university but is forced to attend a community college (where 'Most people just go to their classes and go home.') when her dad uses her college fund to keep his business afloat. Yikes, that hurts. Her attitude is powerfully captured, "Heck, I don't even like myself right now; I can't expect anyone else to." She's determined to make the worst of things and who can blame her? She feels trapped in a no-win situation with not much hope for the future. She even admits, "I know I'm no heroine." But things start to turn around when she meets Evan, her teaching assistant in her electronic music class. She has no clue what she's doing and it bothers her to no end. All she knows is that she likes verbally sparring with him. They drive each other crazy, the closer they get. And Parent melds the heat of a late night kiss pressed against a wall with the everyday normalcy of calming down with a McDonald's milkshake after a stressful day. It's just the right blend of fantasy and reality that I love. There's so much I want to say about this book that I don't know where to stop, but I have to mention the brilliant use of urging Isabelle out of her creative shell. She's wanted to secure a doctorate in English since she was small, not because she knew exactly what it entailed, but she wanted to be the best reader she could possibly be. When her English teacher at the community college challenges her to put herself out there and write her own work instead of simply critiquing the literary compositions of others, she terrified. She realizes she doesn't solely want to exist in that pretentious world of Ph.D. scholars. Slowly, painfully, she starts to come into her own as Evan's passion for music begins to inspire her. The beauty of this transformation is really what true love is all about - encouraging someone to become the best version of themselves. I also commend Parent for introducing a family element into her New Adult novel. When people go to college, their extended families just don't fall off the radar. Isabelle has to deal with her dad's failing coffee shop/bakery that he insists on calling 'TeaTime' despite the fact that no one takes tea in their blue collar town. Her younger brother, Corey, is fifteen and starting to get involved with a destructive group of friends. And she's still reeling from the abandonment of their mother when they were practically too little to remember her. Plus she's not alone in her struggles. Evan feels just as trapped in their small town environment by having to take care of his mother after the untimely death of his father. Life is multi-dimensional and complex. It's not just about hooking-up and taking tests. What I'm going to take with me from this novel is the message not to look too far ahead in the future. Life can change in an instant and all of your well-meaning plans can be wiped away. You have to live the life that's in front of you at the present moment, and make the best of things. Because that's when life surprises you with its 'precious things.' It's about finding new dreams when old ones are shattered and finding that they're a better fit for you than you could ever have imagined. 'Experiment, make mistakes' because 'by making something imperfect, you're actually improving it. You're making it real.' Let others see everything, the good and the bad. Waiting for your life to begin is definitely overrated.
woven More than 1 year ago
4.5 stars As soon as I started Precious Things, I knew I was going to love the characters and the story. It was such a fun and heartfelt book, and it really stood out from other books I've read in the new adult genre. It just had that extra special something I like to find in the books I read. I wish I knew how to perfectly describe it, but what I can say is that I was able to click with the story right away. It was exactly what I needed to read at the time, and I wish it never had to end. Isabelle was the main character of Precious Things. She was hilarious and had me cracking me up throughout the entire book! I loved her honesty and snarky attitude. While she might come off as a bit whiny to some, I understood why she felt the need to complain about her life and why she wanted to run away and avoid certain situations. When you worked really hard for something and find out it was all for nothing, it's not always easy to accept nor is it easy coping with the aftermath. In Isabelle's case she wasn't able to get into her dream college because of money issues and that meant she was stuck at home with the same job while attending a local community college. The way she reacted to things around her, whether it was good or bad, made her a much more genuine character in my eyes, and I couldn't help but to adore and root for her. Evan was the guy Isabelle ended up falling for, and he's actually the teacher's assistant in the electronic music class Isabelle had no choice but to take. I loved Evan as much as I did Isabelle. Not only because he was really good-looking, although that didn't hurt, but because he was patient and sweet with Isabelle and the rest of the students in their class. (Him teaching the class made him sound even hotter, by the way.) He was one of the reasons Isabelle began to not hate community college as much as she did in the beginning. I also loved that Evan could match Isabelle's snarkiness and that he challenged her. Since they had an immediate attraction to one another, plenty of fun banter and tension formed between them. Their relationship together was adorable and sexy. There were many moments where I was swooning like crazy. What I really appreciated about their relationship and them as characters, though, was that they weren't perfect. Both made mistakes and sometimes said things that they regretted. It just made them and their relationship easier to relate to. And them being mature enough to own up to their actions made it even better. Before I end this review, I would like to mention a few more aspects that made me happy. I loved that there was a pretty diverse cast of characters in this book. Isabelle is part Korean, and it was great that even though she didn't know much about her Korean side there were still moments of her thinking about it scattered throughout the book. Another thing was all the mentions of electronic music. It's my favorite type of music to listen to! I'm no expert like Evan. In fact, I probably would have been as confused as Isabelle if I had taken the class and I haven't listened to much of Depeche Mode's songs either. But at least like Evan I can appreciate awesome music, so whenever a song was brought up I went on YouTube and listened to it. 'Precious,' the song that seems to have inspired the title of the book and fits the story perfectly, was my favorite! It was a beautiful song. How could I not fall for Evan with his great taste in music? hehe Precious Things was the start of new beginnings. The author did a wonderful job showing how complicated and complex life and relationships, including family dynamics and friendships, can be. And while there's not always an easy resolution to life's problems, eventually amazing opportunities will come along that may change the course of what we thought we wanted out of life. This book was really a great read for me, and I will definitely be keeping an eye out for whatever Stephanie Parent writes next!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a piece of cr<_>ap frozen ravioli