Favorite Books I First Read Because of Recommendations

Hello everyone! I am back with another Top Ten Tuesday post, a fun weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is all about recommendations, so I decided to share a list of 10 of my favorite books that I first read because of recommendation. For fun, I also listed the person who recommended the book and how they ‘sold’ it to me. Not gonna lie, this list is quite easy to make because I am so easily swayed. LOL.

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Favorite villains

Hi friends, here comes another Top Ten Tuesday post from me. Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is all about villains.
Alright, so it’s Wednesday where I live, but let’s pretend it’s still Tuesday okay? Because I really want to write this post. Because I LOVE VILLAINS! I do not condone doing evil things (okay, maybe sometimes, like taking over the world), but well-written villains are complex with motive you could totally understand if not support.
Also, I somehow think I’ve written this sort of post in the past (like, one year ago), but cannot find it. Anyway, some of the ‘people’ in this list would have changed anyway.

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Books on My Fall TBR

Hi everyone, welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday post, a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is “Books on your fall TBR.” We don’t have fall season where I live, but I always enjoy making this TBR post so I’d do it anyway. 🙂
There are so many books I promised myself to read, but haven’t had time to do it. Here are books I plan to read.

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Favorite Podcasts

Helloo, welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday post, a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is an Audio Freebie. I decided to go with Favorite Podcasts because I love listening to podcast while commuting, it’s such a great way to past time while learning about something new … or entertaining.
Here I listed some of my favorites, and I apologize for the fact that some of them are not books-related 😛

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Top Ten Tuesday: All Time Favorite YA Contemporary Books

top ten tuesday

Hello friends, it’s been a while >_> I’m sorry for taking a sudden hiatus without telling anyone, but HEY I’M BACK NOW. Hopefully for good.

As I’m adjusting back to my blogging habit, I realize that it’s Tuesday which means it’s time for Top Ten Tuesday! I certainly haven’t done this for a while, but I totally recommend this weekly fun feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish to all book bloggers. It’s fun (have I mentioned that? :p) and it’s a good way to get in touch with other book bloggers.

Anyway, let’s get on to business. This week’s topic is Top Ten ALL TIME Favorite Books Of X Genre. If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’d probably know that SFF is my go-to genre. Which means it’ll be so hard for me to pick Top 10 for that genre (also, it might turn into Top Ten Brandon Sanderson Books and … well … I’ve accidentally done that so many times. LOL). I decided to go with YA contemporary instead. Truthfully, I haven’t read that many contemporary books so if anyone wants to give me recommendation based on these top 10, I’d appreciate it very much! Here they are in no particular order.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Things I Want to Do After Reading About Them in Books

Hey guys,
I’m back with another Top Ten Tuesday post, a fun weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten Things Books Have Made Me Want To Do or Learn About After Reading Them.

As much as I love reading fantasy books, I never did wish to undertake a saving the world mission nor do I ever want to take part in a heist (sorry Kaz!) There are, however, books that make me want to do or be able to do something such as:

  • Learn ballet.
    This happened when I was 10 or 11 and all I read was Japanese manga. There’s a very popular manga series called Mari-chan (by Kimiko Uehara) at that time and I believe I was not the only one who dreamed to become a ballerina.
  • Learn more about computer and the interwebs.
    I actually did this. Ha! The book in question was a 2001’s Jeffrey Deaver book called The Blue Nowhere, and it’s about a former hacker who was freed by the authorities to aid their investigation to stop a hacker who’s been killing people. Again, I have no intention to lead such a dangerous life, but the whole thing sounds really fun.
  • Read about mythology.
    Thank you Rick Riordan.
  • Researching global warming.
    As strange as it was, my interest on global warming peaked after I read one book that was claimed as anti-global warming, State of Fear by Michael Crichton.
  • Travel and see the world.
    Just about every book ever made me want to go and see the world, including the fictional ones.
  • Learning about history and culture.
    Related to the point above, I want to learn more about history after reading historical fictions. One that I got quite into was learning 19th century New York culture after reading Libba Bray’s The Diviners series.
  • Play StarCraft (or just be a rithmatist in real life).
    Out of all Brandon Sanderson’s magic systems, the one I found most enjoyable is the chalk-based real-time strategy battle in The Rithmatist. It was so fun and I wish it was a real thing so I could play it in real life.

That’s all I got for now! Feel free to tell me how strange I am in the comment below. (-:


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Top Ten Tuesday: MG/YA Books Set Outside US

Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week, we get a topic to have fun with and this week’s topic is Ten Books Set Outside The US!

For my list, I include standalone as well as series. Here we go!

  1. Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas | GOODREADS
    setting
    : Aruba
    Dangerous Girl is a rare YA psychological thriller that shows the dark side of being trapped outside your native country. Emphasis was made on the difference in legal system between the MC’s origin country and Aruba.
    My review here.

    “Any one of us could be made to look a monster, with selective readings of our history.”

  2. Shades of London series by Maureen Johnson | GOODREADS
    setting
    : England
    Shades of London, a paranormal urban fantasy from prolific author Maureen Johnson, follows an American teenager named Rory in her journey to London. She somehow became entangled in the murder cases mimicking Jack the Ripper.

    “Fear can’t hurt you,” she said. “When it washes over you, give it no power. It’s a snake with no venom. Remember that. That knowledge can save you.”

  3. The Demon’s Lexicon series by Sarah Rees Brennan | GOODREADS
    setting
    : England
    I gushed and gushed about my love for this book and its characters, and I’m about to do it again. The Demon’s Lexicon series follow a group of teenagers in their quest against evil magicians led by Black Arthur. It has demons, diverse cast, and a very peculiar sense of humor which I LOVED.

    “He only shot one person,” Nick remarked. “But the night is young.”
    “Forgive him, he has no manners.”
    “I get by on good looks,” Nick said.

  4. The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare | GOODREADS
    setting: England
    The Infernal Devices is a very popular series by Cassandra Clare. It’s about the Shadowhunters, people gifted the power by the angels to fight demons. While The Mortal Instruments – Clare’s other popular series – primarily set in modern New York, TID took place in 19th century London.

    “Must you go? I was rather hoping you’d stay and be a ministering angel, but if you must go, you must.”
    “I’ll stay,” Will said a bit crossly, and threw himself down in the armchair Tessa had just vacated. “I can minister angelically.”

  5. The Ring of Solomon by Jonathan Stroud (prequel to Bartimaeus trilogy) | GOODREADS
    setting
    : alternate Jerusalem
    The Ring of Solomon was published after the trilogy, but it was set prior to the events in The Amulet of Samarkand. As a matter of fact, it was set way before The Amulet of Samarkand, in 950 BCE. It also has different location with the original trilogy, at alternate Jerusalem instead of England. Readers familiar with Bartimaeus will soon feel at home with the djinni’s copious amount of sarcastic footnotes and narcissistic remarks, otherwise it might feel overwhelming.

    “The Evasive Cartwheel ™ © etc., Bartimaeus of Uruk, circa. 2800 B.C.E. Often imitated, never surpassed. As famously memorialized in the New Kingdom tomb paintings of Ramses III— you can just see me in the background of The Dedication of the Royal Family before Ra, wheeling out of sight behind the pharaoh.”

  6. Guardian of the Dead by Karen Healey | GOODREADS
    setting
    : New Zealand
    I’ve talked about this book in some of my recommendation posts, particularly my Diverse Books Recommendation as part of FBCYA. Guardian of the Dead is a particular favorite of mine because the setting plays a big role in the book. Healey took her time researching Māori culture and mythology and the story itself was heavily influenced by the local culture.

    “There wasn’t any food or heat, but we had light, and places to sit, and a complete lack of frightening murderers, and that turned out to be enough for now.”

  7. Leviathan series by Scott Westerfeld (alternate World War I) | GOODREADS
    setting
    : alternate Austro-Hungarian, Ottoman Empire, England, Switzerland, and some others
    Leviathan is a YA steampunk series written by Scott Westerfeld and it was set in many places in the world since it was basically an alternate World War I story. It has two great protagonists, Deryn – a British girl disguise as a boy so she could become an airman – and Alek, the heir of Austro-Hungarian throne, and a great setting. I believe it was the first YA I read that was partially set in Ottoman Empire.

    “Barking hard work, being a boy.”

  8. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins | GOODREADS
    setting
    : Paris
    This very popular book would probably end up in many Top Ten Tuesday list, and for a good reason too. Say what you want about the romance, but the setting will totally pull you in. I mean, a boarding school in Paris?! Who wouldn’t?

    “Soap?”
    “School of America in Paris” he explains. “SOAP”.
    Nice. My father sent me here to be cleansed.”

  9. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor | GOODREADS
    setting
    : Prague and Morocco
    I never did finish this series, but I really liked the first book. Karou is an art student in Prague, at least that’s what her friends think, but she hides a big secret that end up making her caught up in the middle of a war that was out of this world.

    “Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love.

    It did not end well.”

  10. The Gathering by Kelley Armstrong | GOODREADS
    setting: Canada
    Another series I didn’t get to finish. To be honest, I feel rather conflicted about this one. I liked the setting and the premise, but the execution left something to be desired.

    “Rafe didn’t just flirt-he charmed girls right up to the point where they fell for him, then he changed his mind. I called him a player with attention deficit disorder.”

That’s all for now. Have you read any of these books? What do you think about them?


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Top Ten Tuesday: 2016 Releases

Hello everyone, here comes another Top Ten Tuesday post from me. Top Ten Tuesday is a fun weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where they give you a topic each week and you make a list for said topic. This week’s topic is Top 10 Favorite 2016 Releases. However, I had to make slight modification to the original theme because I haven’t read that many 2016 releases. So, I decided to list 5 books that I have read and enjoyed plus 5 books that’s already out and I want to read soon. Only I exceeded my quota for 2016 releases I’ve read and listed six of them instead.

2016 releases that I have read and enjoyed

A Gathering of Shadows (V.E. Schwab)
Love love LOVE A Gathering of Shadows. If you enjoy fantasy but haven’t read the Shades of Magic series, do yourself a favor and pick up A Darker Shade of Magic, then this book. THIS BOOK! Great bromance (and romance) + coats + parallel universes + magic competition. What else could you want?

Kindred Spirits (Rainbow Rowell)
A short and sweet read from Rainbow Rowell to celebrate World Book Day. It celebrates fandom, diversity, and Star Wars.

The Hidden Oracle (Rick Riordan)
The book that proved that Rick Riordan still has it 10 Greek Mythology books later (not counting the companion books). Apollo is the bright spot of this book, and yes I know that’s a terrible pun seeing that he’s the sun god and all.

Front Lines (Michael Grant)
Sometimes when I mentioned a book in a TTT post, I realized that I haven’t reviewed said book properly. *shifty eyes*
What happened if they let females enlist during WW2? Front Lines went back in history to explore this question and didn’t flinch from the gore, discrimination, racism, and violence that happened throughout. It was told in multi-POV, yet each character has a very strong voice it’s impossible to mix them up.

The Serpent King (Jeff Zentner)
I cried and laughed during inappropriate times. And read while standing in the bus jostled by the evening crowd. To say I cannot put the book (aka my phone) down is an understatement.

This Savage Song (Victoria Schwab)
Sunai sunai, eyes like coal, sing you a song and steal your soul.

2016 releases that already came out and I plan to read soon

Outrun the Moon (Stacey Lee) – I’ve heard it’s good. I believe it’s good. Whether I will like it or not, now that’s a different thing.

The Rose & the Dagger (Renee Ahdieh) – I hope I love it more than I did The Wrath and the Dawn, which I liked but was not obsessed with.

Lady Midnight (Cassandra Clare) – I kept picking up this book and putting it back on the shelf. It’s too big and heavy (literally) for bedtime read is the only reason I could give you. I will conquer you, book!

Calamity (Brandon Sanderson) – The 2 and 3 stars reviews are quite alarming. Add that to the fact that I didn’t even enjoy Steelheart that much = worried me. BUT, I will read it for the sake of my 2016 Read ALL Brandon Sanderson published works goal. Who knows, it might surprise me.

City of Mirrors (Justin Cronin) – following this series has been a long journey, and quite honestly I’ve forgotten 99% what happened in the first and second book. There’s Amy, there’s Peter, there’s Alicia, and … that’s all I remember. 😛


That’s all for today! Have you read any of the books I listed above? What’s your ultimate favorite out of all the 2016 releases?


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Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year

Hello everyone, here’s my contribution to this week Top 10 Tuesday topic, Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. So many great books came out in the first half of the year, but it’s finally June. JUNE! I honestly cannot believe it’s June, where has the time gone?! Either way, it’s time to do a preview of what comes next.

Three Dark Crowns (Kendare Blake)

book cover

Release date: September 20th 2016 | GOODREADS

Three queens competing for a crown, but it’s not a magic competition like one might imagine with throwing fireballs and exploding things. It’s a game of cunning and killing because the one who gets the crown is the one who stays alive when the other two died.

I recently read an excerpt of this book, and it was soo good! I was already into it by the second page.

 

Empire of Storms (Sarah J Maas)

book cover
Release date: September 6th 2016 | GOODREADS

The fifth Throne of Glass book comes out this September! And it’s 704 pages long if the info is true (I suspect it is).

Why does she talk about number of pages you said? Because anything else and I’ll be spoiling the people who haven’t read the series.

As for the fans of the series, nothing I say would stop you from devouring this book the day it comes out so… 😀

 

Crooked Kingdom (Leigh Bardugo)

book cover

Release date: September 27th 2016 | GOODREADS

Thankfully the cover has been revealed so I don’t have to use that placeholder image. Hahaha.

Anyway, look at that beauty! And think about how Leigh left us hanging at the end of Six of Crows. I absolutely cannot wait to get my hand on Crooked Kingdom. It’ll be the last book of the duology so I’m fully expecting an explosive (literally) finale.

 

Gemina (Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff)

book cover

Release date: October 18th 2016 | GOODREADS

The second book of The Illuminae Files will center around two new characters, Nik and Hanna, although Kristoff promised there will be some familiar characters in this book too. The book will mainly set in jump station Heimdall instead of Hypatia and Alexander, but it’ll chronologically follow Illuminae.
I know that this new main characters for every book concept is not new. Kaufman herself did similar thing in her series with Spooner, Starbound. But how do you feel about getting two new leads for Gemina?

 

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (JK Rowling, Jack Thorne, John Tiffany)

book cover

Release date: July 31st 2016 | GOODREADS

I mean OF COURSE!

I am scared + worried + excited + anxious for this book. What could possibly go wrong? Nothing! And everything!

 

The Tresspasser (Tana French)

book cover

Release date: August 11th 2016 | GOODREADS

I’m slowly plowing through the Dublin Murder Squad series and so far I’m really enjoying them. French’s books have more psychological elements than your average detective story. On top of that, her prose is just beautiful. I rarely care about beauty of the prose as long as they work, but her writing is so great I found myself re-reading some parts over and over again.

 

The Hawkweed Prophecy (Irena Brignull)

book cover

Release date: September 6th 2016 | GOODREADS

The Hawkweed Prophecy is a debut novel from screenwriter Irena Brignull (The Little Prince) about two girls who were switched at birth. One is a witch and another a regular mortal. What happened when destiny brought them together? Stay tuned!

 

Arcanum Unbounded (Brandon Sanderson)

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Release date: November 8th 2016 | GOODREADS

I love bundles! They usually offer great value to your money. This upcoming short stories-novella collection is the reason why I’ve been holding back on buying every cosmere short stories available. Arcanum Unbounded supposedly contain 8 stories, 7 old ones (including the Emperor’s Soul which was my favorite novella ever) and 1 new story. The new story will center around Lift, one of the character who has interlude in Words of Radiance, and according to 17th Shard it’ll be around 40.000 words! It’s not quite the Stormlight 3 I wanted, but it’ll do… for now.

 

The Female of the Species (Mindy McGinnis)

book cover

Release date: September 20th 2016 | GOODREADS

Alex Craft turned to violence and vengeance after her sister’s murderer walked free. Along the way, her path crossed with two other teens, Jack and Peekay, who all have troubled past.

This book seems to be at darker spectrum of YA and I am intrigued on how it’ll turn out.

 

The Thousandth Floor (Katharine McGee)

book cover

Release date: August 30th 2016 | GOODREADS

 

This book has been compared to Gossip Girl. Although I never read the series, I used to binge-watch the tv show so yes please give me this book.

 

That’s all for today!
Let me know what are your most anticipated releases for the second half of 2016.


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Top Ten Tuesday: Why I Love E-Books

Welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday post, a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This week’s topic is 10 Reasons Why You Love X, be it a book, author, hobby, etc. My first instinct was to not be predictable and write something no one knows I love. I outlined that post, but then changed my mind. My second thought was to be totally predictable and… you know.. write a 10 reasons why I’m a Brandon Sanderson fan post. And I did try, only it turn out to be an essay and I need time to edit and proofread that post(s? plural??)

So I decided to dig into my old drafts and found this post.

I love prints, and frankly there’s nothing in the world that smells better than new book (except maybe freshly brewed coffee). I also love the feeling of holding a physical copy of a book. Not to mention, they look much better on real shelves than on virtual shelves.
However, I do have reasons why I have been purchasing mostly e-books since google play store made them available in my country.
Here are 10 reasons why.

1. You can read it anywhere, everywhere.
Portability is the number one reason where e-book has benefit over print. Not only you can read it anywhere, you can usually also read it in multiple gadgets or computers depend on where you are without the need of carrying the actual book.

2. It took less storage space.
E-books are, of course, stored in your device, or if you buy it through online store, in the cloud, on your virtual account. “I need more bookshelves!” have been one of the biggest issues for any book lovers (the other would be: “I need more books!”), so it’s nice that e-books solve this storage problem.

3. Easier to find, harder to lose.
I have a problem remembering where I put my old books. I misplaced them all the time. Now, with e-books, I have all of them stored in my account and google/amazon/whatever is much better at keeping things organized than me.

4. Flood-resistant (your gadget, however, is not) and mites-resistant
As someone who live in tropical country, there are only two seasons in my country, dry season and rainy season (read: flood season). As such, my house, and in consequence, my books have been flood victims multiple times. It’s heartbreaking having to throw away your books because it’s been soaked through by flood (I tried to save them, trust me). Virtual books, of course, are flood-resistant because they reside in the cloud. There’s also this little problem of mites getting into your old books which e-books are resistant against.

5. It’s (usually) cheaper
I think this one depends on the relative price you’re willing to pay to get a physical copy vs digital copy. Some people, including my sister, feels that it’s worth getting a physical copy for a couple of dollars more than e-books because you could actually hold the thing. Many people still feel that something, anything—not just books, is worth more in its physical form. Digital form was still often seen as something less valuable.
But I digress. E-book is usually cheaper than the physical copy, and some times the difference is obscene. For people with limited budget, it is nice to have the option of getting to read the same book with less expense. I’ve compiled some money-saving tips for your ebooks shopping spree in another post so I’m not going into details here.

6. You can adjust the fonts, the contrast
The ability to adjust the display is highly underrated. As a person with astigmatism, my eyes often get strained from reading. Adjustment came in handy here. Most e-books programs give you the option to adjust the font face, size, and background color. Some even let you change the margin and the spacing.

7. Highlight and take notes (annotate)
If you like to annotate your book, most e-books program let you highlight your books and some even let you write notes in your books. I never marked my physical copy (except textbook) because of its irreversibility (obviously, there’s nothing wrong with it if you prefer to do so). Now though, I could highlight my favorite passages and quotes and the e-books program will compile them so I could get back to them easily.

8. Bookmarks! Multiple bookmarks! Bookmarks everywhere!
Now, this is my favorite feature about e-books program. Question: how many bookmarks can you put in your paperback before it dents?
With e-books, you could put bookmark as much as you want (I have no idea if there’s a limit, I never found one and I’m a crazy bookmarker). Very handy.

9. It’s searchable (find passage, character, etc)
Ever read a book halfway through and think, “wait, I’ve read about this character before,” and try to flip back to find it in earlier chapters without success? I did. So many times. Fortunately, most e-books program these days have a search feature that let you search anything and backtrack conspicuous character name or irrelevant fact just because it amuses you.

10. Quicker way to get new releases
Especially for people who don’t live in big city and those who live far from major bookstores, e-book is an efficient way to get new releases. Of course, there are amazon and bookdepository (which I LOVE for its free worldwide shipping) but it usually takes bookdepository over 3 weeks to deliver my books and some times I just don’t want to wait.

There you have it, the top 10 reasons why I mostly buy e-books these days.

Personally, I love prints too, but I think e-books have their benefits. What do you think?
Print lovers and e-books fans, take your stand and voice your opinion down below!


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