Sunday, June 2, 2013

Help! I'm Being Stalked - A Review of This Gorgeous Game by Donna Freitas

Goodreads Blurb
Seventeen-year-old Olivia Peters is absolutely over the moon when her literary idol, the celebrated novelist and much-adored local priest Mark D. Brendan, selects her from hundreds of other applicants as the winner of his writing contest. Not only is she invited to take his class at the local university; she also gets one-on-one sessions with him to polish her story and prepare it for publication. But the writing sessions escalate into emails, and texts, and IMs, and gifts, and social events. What was once a delightful opportunity has become a dreadful burden. What kind of game is Father Mark playing? And how on earth can she get out of it?
Seventeen year old Olivia wins an award and Scholarship given by her idol, and local priest, Mark D. Brendan.  Her story is selected as the winner from a multitude of entrants in a writing contest.  As a result, she is invited to take the priest's exclusive class at the local university.  She also gets personal attention in the form of invitations to join him for coffee, ice cream, and the priest even joins her family for dinner in their home.  

Father Mark begins helping Olivia polish her story to ready it for publishing.  As the editing sessions grow more frequent, and the texts become more urgent, Olivia begins to feel manipulated and that she is excluding her closest friends.  

When Olivia tries to renew her relationships with her friends, Father Mark becomes more insistent.  When she ignores a few texts and phone calls, Father Mark follows with a full court press of texts, IM's, secret gifts, and demanding emails leaving Olivia feeling cornered and threatened.

This is a short easy-to-read story that had my skin crawling.  The well-loved Father quickly shows obsessive and downright creepy behavior.  I often yelled 'No! Don't answer it.' to Olivia as I read.

The writing is captivating and easy.  No forced feelings or situations here.  I felt exactly what the author wanted me to feel without her having to tell me to do it.

4 out of 5 stars

Here is a photo of the paperback version which I like much better than the hardcover version that I read. (Photo Above)

The Eats:

I decided to take a little liberty here.  The book is about stalking, which had me thinking about food with stalks, which lead me to broccoli, which reminded me that I love Broccoli Slaw.  Did you follow that?  Anyway, this is the recipe I used to make broccoli slaw on Memorial Day.  It's from



cup  KRAFT Zesty Italian Dressing


pkg.  (3 oz. each) ramen noodle soup mix


pkg.  (12 oz. each) broccoli slaw


 green onions, sliced


cup  PLANTERS Dry Roasted Sunflower Kernels

cup  PLANTERS Sliced Almonds, toasted

MIX dressing with Seasoning Packet from 1 soup mix package. Discard remaining seasoning packet or reserve for another use.
BREAK Noodles apart; place in large bowl. Add slaw, onions, sunflower kernels and nuts; mix lightly.
ADD dressing mixture; toss to coat. Serve immediately.
My Alterations:
I would only use 1 packet of noodles
I didn't have any almonds, so they were left out
I added about 10 strips of chopped cooked bacon.
The color is a little odd in the photo, but you get the idea.

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