June Most Anticipated New Releases

This month’s new releases post comes a little bit late into June but here it is!

I only have three books in my June most anticipated releases, but I am open to any recommendation outside these three.

Release Date: June 7 2016

You Know Me Well by Nina LaCour and David Levithan | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: stand-alone

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Contemporary, Romance

I have a good history with books co-authored by David Levithan (Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist; Will Grayson, Will Grayson) so it comes as no surprise that this one is in my TBR. You Know Me Well is told in alternating POV of two LGBT teens, Kate and Mark. They never spoke despite sitting next to each other in class, but when they stumbled upon one another in the wild, they form friendship bond (that’s what goodreads tell me anyway).

Release Date: June 14 2016

League of Dragons (Temeraire #9) by Naomi Novik | GOODREADS PAGE

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Stand-alone or series: #9 in Temeraire

Category | Genre: Adult | Fantasy, Historical Fiction

It’s no secret that I adored Novik’s Uprooted. Because of this very reason, I recently hauled His Majesty’s Dragon, the first book in Temeraire series. I am only 80 pages in or something, but so far it seems like a fun series I could get on board with. League of Dragons is the 9th book in the series so I still have a long long way to go to get to it. LOL.

Release Date: June 21 2016

White Sand Volume 1 by Brandon Sanderson, Rik Hoskin, Julius M Gopez (Illustrations) | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: the first volume of a series

Category | Genre: Adult | Fantasy, Graphic Novel

Oh hey, will you look at that! The first graphic novel ever made appearance in my blog. I have to admit I am not much of a graphic novel reader, this is more of a supply problem as most of the time I’m reading ebooks and I found reading graphic novel in mobile phone to be very exhausting because of all the zooming and panning.

BUT, what are the odds I’m going to miss Brandon Sanderson’s work?!  Plus, it’s part of the cosmere. And the magic system sounds interesting too, although I am probably biased. You can see a preview of the first few pages here.

That’s all for now. Let me know, what books are your most anticipated releases for June?

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Top Ten Tuesday: Beach Reads Recommendation

Welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday post, a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is Top 10 beach reads or books you want to read on the beach. I don’t go to beach that often, but there are books that remind me of beach and some that I think will be great to read there. So I’m giving you 10 books I recommend to read on the beach. Here they are in no particular order.

Hex Hall (Rachel Hawkins)

I recommend this if you:
prefer magic and loads of humor mixed in a super fluffy beach read.

Along for the Ride (Sarah Dessen)
Keeping the Moon (Sarah Dessen)

I recommend these two if you:
want to spend some time thinking of your life choices (I’m not even joking). Also if you LOVE beach and summer. And Sarah Dessen.

The Summer I Turned Pretty (Jenny Han)

I recommend this if you:
want something light and sweet, but have patience to deal with sometimes annoying MC.

Boy-crazed Stacey (Ann M Martin)

I recommend this if you:
used to be or is a fan of Babysitters Club series. Also if you like kids. :))

Kindred spirits (Rainbow Rowell)

I recommend this if you:
are waiting for your friends to get there and only have only 15 minutes to read. Also, if you are part of a fandom (any fandom – not necessarily Star Wars)

The Name of the Wind (Patrick Rothfuss)

I recommend this if you:
have hours, preferably days, to kill and want to immerse yourself in a book. Also work if you have soft spot for worldbuilding and intricate magic system that works.

The Girl on the Train (Paula Hawkins)

I recommend this if you:
want to read this book because HYPE, but finds it too suffocating or claustrophobic to read indoors.Well, now that you’re out in the sun surrounded by people, there’s no reason not to read it, right? …But why is that person keeps staring at me?

Beauty Queens (Libba Bray)

I recommend this if you:
enjoy satire and absurdities

Guardian of the Dead (Karen Healey)

I recommend this if you:
prefer fantasy book, but wants diversity in your beach read. This unique book blends urban fantasy with Māori mythology, and explore diverse themes.

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How to get the most out of your money when buying ebooks

This post is sort of a continuation of my books I bought because of bargain price post. I am actually a relative newbie in ebook world, been reading them since 2014. But since that time, I have purchased more ebooks than physical books and based on my rough calculation, I’ve purchased no less than 90 ebooks. Obviously, ebooks are currently dominating my reading materials. There are many posts weighing the pros and cons of reading ebooks, and I won’t get into that here. If you’re not into ebooks, that’s totally fine and you could safely skip this post. However, if you’re new to the ebook buying and reading world, I’d like to share 7 tips to get the most out of your money.

  1. Subscribe to ebook deal newsletter or update

    You might have heard of the site bookbub that sends mailing list containing ebooks deals daily. While it’s true that many of the deals they send are of self-published books, I’ve struck gold a couple of times. All you need to do is sign up for the mailing list, then choose which categories/genres you want and the ebook retailers you’re using. And if you’re interested to get email when there are deals on certain authors’ work, there’s an option for that too.
    If you’re not US-based, don’t worry, even though some of the deals they send are US-specific, there are many that also work internationally.
    Several platforms also offers a daily deal newsletter, you might want to subscribe to it too.

  2. Check the price on multiple retailers

    This might not be possible if you’re locked in with a retailer, but if you’re not I highly recommend to always compare prices from multiple sellers before purchasing. You’d think that the same book will be sold at the same price throughout many retailers, but this is not always true. In fact, most of the times the price is quite different. Why? One is because there might be retailer-specific deal. The other reason is because ebooks have many versions, which is especially true for a bestseller book that could go into dozens of printing. Sometimes there’ll be a price drop after the paperback got released, sometimes they will release an anniversary edition and the original one got significant cut. Then there’s also country-specific price. Then there are so many other reasons that could be its own post and I am in no way an expert on this so I’ll stop here.
    Whatever the reason, it’s usually a good idea to compare prices before buying an ebook.

  3. Check the ‘other editions’ on the same retailer

    This sounds complicated, but it’s really not. For the same reasons why an ebook might have different prices on different retailers, ebook with the same title might have different editions listed on a single retailer. If you’re a google play user, it’s always a good idea to use the search box and you might just find that the book you want is on sale for $12.99 as well as $7.99. For Kindle users, there’ll be a box saying ‘other editions’ if there are more than one version of the same ebook. There might be a glaringly obvious price difference. Seriously, I’ve found an ebook priced at $11.99 and $1.99 for different editions.

  4. When in doubt, get the ebook bundle

    Popular authors or popular series might have books sold as a bundle, and getting this bundle is usually cheaper than if you buy the books individually.

  5. Follow your favorite authors’ update, newsletter, and blogs

    This one is a no brainer and by now many people follow their favorite authors on twitter and tumblr. However, if the author offers a mailing list, you might want to subscribe to it because usually if there’s a time-limited deals, this is the only way to find out about it ON TIME.

  6. Use the wishlist feature and keep checking back for price updates

    I’ve mentioned months ago that I use google wishlist feature as my TBR pile. Not only it made it easier for me to carry my TBR everywhere, it also enables me to monitor all the price updates for books I want in one go.

  7. Be patient

    Us readers, we’re both passionate and patient aren’t we? I mean, how else would you explain that we keep our calm for a year (A YEAR) after that cliffhanger.
    Fortunately, patience is also a virtue for an ebook shopper. As I mention above, ebooks sometimes received a price cut as its paperback cousins gets released. Sometimes it could take months, years even, for an ebook to get to a reasonable price (by reasonable I mean reasonably cheaper than the hardcover format) so one needs to exercise self-control and be aware of the 1-click purchase button at all times.

One last thing. If you like to switch around between formats, such as ebook and audiobook, it’s often cheaper (at least on Kindle) to get the ebook first and buy the audio as add-on rather than buying them separately. Not always, but usually.

That’s all for today, folks. This post is not sponsored by any of the platforms or websites mentioned above. I’m just writing it for my fellow readers. If you have any other tip, please drop me a comment or email so I could add it here (and credit you, of course).

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Books on which my opinion has changed

Welcome to yet another Top Ten Tuesday post, a weekly fun feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic is: Ten Books I Feel Differently About After Time Has Passed (less love, more love, complicated feelings, indifference, thought it was great in a genre until you became more well read in that genre etc.)

I decided to do five each, five books or series I love more now and five books/series I love less as time passed.

More Love

  1. The Infernal Devices (Cassandra Clare)
    I used to read The Infernal Devices books as filler in between The Mortal Instruments books because that was how Cassie released them. Now, however, I feel that I didn’t give TID credits for being a great historical fantasy AND for Will and Jem, the very definition of bromance.
  2. Anna Dressed in Blood (Kendare Blake)
    When I read it I gave it 3 star, but as time passed I realized that this book lingered on my mind. There are times when I see a YA book about ghost and I immediately compared it (the ghost) to Anna Korlov, who was a total badass.
  3. Gone series (Michael Grant)
    Gone was a six-book series and my ratings of the books ranged from 3 to 4 stars. However, as a whole I have grown to love this series more because I think Gone deserved credits for not being your typical kids without adults trying to save the world series. It was seriously dark and didn’t avoid the gore and the horribleness that might come with superpowers.
  4. The Diviners (Libba Bray)
    I didn’t appreciate it enough back in the day. Now that I’ve read Lair of Dreams, I realized that The Diviners, albeit a little slow, is a great setup book for the series. The romance in this book still annoy me though so no rating increased from me. LOL.
  5. The Heroes of Olympus series (Rick Riordan)
    I owe an apology to Jason and Reyna and Piper and Hazel and Leo and Frank and all the new kids (kids not in PJO) for not giving them enough love. HERE, group hugs.


Less Love

  1. Divergent series (Veronica Roth)
    I read Divergent back when I haven’t read that much of dystopian books (and apparently Divergent series are not even that dystopian?). I still enjoy the books, but no longer think of them as special.
  2. BZRK (Michael Grant)
    Came from my days when Michael Grant could do no wrong.
  3. Paper Towns (John Green)
    I read all of John Green’s books and out of all of them, I retain my ratings for The Fault in Our Stars (never really liked it), Looking for Alaska (liked it, but not loved it), and An Abundane of Katherines (my favorite of his). This one though. As time passed, I fell out of love with Q and Margo.
  4. Caster Chronicles series (Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl)
    It promised me great things, but at the end of the day I don’t even care that much about the characters to continue with the series.
  5. Team Human (Sarah Rees Brennan and Justine Larbalestier)
    This was the case of 5* rating that never should have been. You see, I was so excited when this book was announced and when it was released I felt that this book was perfect because I wanted it so bad to be perfect.

Let me know:

  • Have you ever re-read a favorite book to find it was not that great after all?
  • Have you ever avoid re-reading a childhood favorite because you’re afraid you’ll love it less?

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Review: The Hidden Oracle

Book Review: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
hidden_orc Book title The Hidden Oracle
Series/standalone The Trials of Apollo #1
Author Rick Riordan
Pages 384
Year published 2016
Category | Genre Middle Grade | Fantasy, Mythology
Rating 4 star

Official Summary

How do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favour.

But Apollo has many enemies – gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go . . . an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.



Rick Riordan has been criticized for making all of his leading male characters Percy Jackson clones. I love Percy, he’s one of my favorite character ever but I have to agree with the sentiment. I’m really tired of seeing a sarcastic goofy guy with laid back charm trying to save the world and I believe many will agree with me, we’re ready for something different.

I am happy to report that Apollo is the guy (err the god) who finally break Riordan’s nearly perfected checklist of a male lead. The funny thing is Apollo IS sarcastic and he makes everything into a joke. So in a way, he IS Percy. But there’s something really unique about Apollo’s POV and that is his status as ex-god. Percy, Magnus, Carter, Jason all are brave guys but deep down they are all clueless teens trying to discover themselves while trying to save the world (or filling the prophecy and whatnot). Now Apollo, he is OLD. Like thousands of years old. Yes he was being turned into a teenager, but unlike those kids Apollo has experience and in those thousands of years he is guilty of many many things – whether he admitted them or not. He was, after all, a god, who can turn a guy into a snail or destroy a city just by snapping his fingers. He is also super arrogant, in an almost endearing way that make you want to crush hug him (in that order). This is how his POV is unique. And it’s about darn time too!

My son Asclepius had become the god of medicine by the time he was fifteen, and I couldn’t have been happier for him. It left me time for my other interests. Besides, it’s every god’s dream to have a child who grows up to be a doctor.

Then there are the secondary characters, who I totally loved. The new sidekick is a little girl named Meg. She fulfilled all criteria for sidekick, she is a total badass who can take care of herself, she has mysterious past, and secret weapon. Her dynamics with Apollo, however, was a breath of fresh air because for once this was definitely not a romantic relationships. There was a line in a book who described their relationship perfectly, but I cannot quote it here because it’ll reveal major spoiler.

Plot and narrative

Apollo was punished by his dad and got turned into a 16 year old boy. The series, The Trials of Apollo, is exactly what the title said, Apollo trying to get Zeus to turn him back into his fabulous self, the sun god, the god of music and poetry, the patron god of the oracle, etc. To win Zeus’ favor, he has to undergo a series of trials (bad pun, sorry) and fix his mistake. Along the way, he tried to get some demigods to help him get to the only safe place for Greek gods (or so he thought), the Camp Half Blood. The problem was the camp itself was in trouble. A couple of demigods have gone missing, the communication with outside world was not working. Basically, they were alone and not able to call for help. Being a kind person god that he is, Apollo trying to help solve the problem. Actually no, he was just doing that to get on Zeus’ good side. But that’s okay. What’s important is he’s trying to help.

“I raised my face to the heavens. “Please, Father, I get the point. Please, I can’t do this!”
Zeus did not answer. He was probably too busy recording my humiliation to share on Snapchat.”

Remember when I said that Riordan got criticized for keep writing the same character over and over again? Well, he was also being criticized for reusing the same prophecy-based “let’s go on a quest” storyline, at least for his Greek mythology books. The Hidden Oracle is Riordan proving he could write a great Greek demigod story  without the help of a prophecy. The story itself was quite simple but there were some twists there that caught me by surprise. It was near unputdownable, I had to finish the book in one day. Fortunately, it was not a huge book.

Adding to the awesomeness is the humor and banters. By now, Rick has somewhat become a master of blending jokes and actions, and The Hidden Oracle was Rick Riordan writing at his best.

This book also tries to tackle many issues most MGs shied away from. I won’t mention what they are, but don’t worry they are totally MG-appropriate and being written in the story in a totally inoffensive ways. Riordan is a proponent of diversity and I love how he’s now willing to take more risks of parents or schools possibly not allowing kids to read his books because of it. Some heavier themes that many kids have to deal with are also introduced in the story. And believe it or not, at one point I was nearly in tears. Nearly in tears. From reading a book about a sarcastic god. Who turned into a 16 year old boy with zits. Well, there’s a first for everything.


Should you give this book a try?
Fresh storyline + well-written POV  + hilarious banters + support for diversity = YES

I thought I am done with Rick Riordan Greek myth stories, but The Hidden Oracle makes me excited for the sequels. I am way outside this book demographic but I still enjoy it a lot, and the messages it sent were universal.

To understand the story in The Hidden Oracle, you don’t need to have read the Percy Jackson series or the Heroes of Olympus series. However, I must warn you that this book contains many spoilers, including major ones, from the two previous series. So, otherwise you plan to never read those two, I would recommend to read PJO and HOO first.

Final score

4 star
4 stars (out of 5 stars)

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Books I bought on a whim… (becauseofbargainprice)

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is Ten Books I Picked Up On A Whim.

Now, I’m going to explain why I modify the topic, but feel free to skip ahead to the list.

The original topic is quite impossible for me to complete because being the thrifty person that I am, most of my book purchases are well-thought of and well-researched. Except for those times when I accidentally hit 1-click purchase button… However, there’s another thing that plays into my book buying habit and that is the price. I am that person who is forever lured into buying a book if you put a 1.99 tag on it. Hence, I modified the topic just a little to “ten books I bought without doing extensive research and weeks of deliberation” but that is too long for a title so I had to settle for the above, even if I’m not satisfied with said title. The main difference between the books I listed below and my usual purchases are on the “extensive research and weeks of deliberation” but these are definitely books I’ve heard before buying even though I had no idea what they’re about at the time of purchase. LOL. I suppose you can say these ten are ‘hyped books I bought without knowing what they’re about just because they were sold at bargain prices’.

Right, the list… :p

1. The wrath and the dawn (Renee Ahdieh)

I liked this book and there are some elements I really liked, but I have problems with other parts (such as the MC’s motivation, everyone’s motivations tbh) so it’s a 3-star from me. Will definitely read the second book, though.
Verdict: good (3 star)

2. The serpent king (Jeff Zentner)

Haven’t read this one and had no idea what it’s about. I think it involved snakes?
Waitt, don’t tell me.
Verdict: TBD

3. Poison study (Maria V Snyder)

I saw this book on Kindle daily deals and I asked on twitter whether I should buy it. I think it was Sara who said YES and so I bought it. 😀 I’m glad I did because I really liked this book, although I feel it was quite unevenly paced.
Verdict: very good (4 star)

4. The winner’s curse (Marie Rutkoski)

I’ve read 60 pages or so but got distracted by work. I’m thinking to get back to it soon.
Verdict: TBD

5. Angelfall (Susan Ee)

I REALLY LIKED THIS BOOK, can’t you tell? I think Angelfall has been constantly on my top ten lists of everything. The second and third are not as good as Angelfall, but you can read this one and not read the sequels because the story is pretty much self-contained.
Verdict: excellent (5 star)

pastry picture to distract you from what’s about to come

6. The rithmatist (Brandon Sanderson)

I know right? Hahahahaha.
If you’ve been following this blog for some time, you would notice that I am obsessed with Brandon Sanderson’s writing to the point that I made “reading all Sanderson published works” my 2016 goal (progress: hopeless). But I really didn’t plan to buy it at that time because I want to read Reckoners first, and probably the second Mistborn series. Lame excuse, I know. Well, what do I know? I posi-tute-ly loved Rithmatist, more than Steelheart and Firefight and Alloy of Law. Hopefully he’ll get around to write the sequel soon (AFTER stormlight 3 obviously).
Verdict: very good (4.5 star)

7 & 8. Dark places & sharp objects (Gillian Flynn)

I only wanted to read Gone Girl, but I cannot resist good bundling price so I bought all three in one bundle. It turned out that Gone Girl is not the only great Flynn’s book. Honestly, I liked Sharp Objects more than Gone Girl, but maybe that’s just me. What I really liked about her books is all of her characters are flawed, sometimes to the point of slightly disturbing, yet you cannot help but root for them. And those twists, GOSH.
Verdict: good (3st) & very good (4 star)

9. Magonia (Maria Dahvana Headley)

I’m sorry I just can’t. I tried, I really did. I managed to read 100 pages or so, but I couldn’t get into it.
Verdict: DNF

10. Under the never sky (Veronica Rossi)

What’s really disappointing for me is that Under the Never Sky started really strong, but then it gets progressively boring and it becomes difficult to keep my interest in the story. This book, however, gets an average 4-star rating on goodreads so obviously I am the odd one out in this.
Verdict: okay (2.5 star)

Let me know:

  • Are you an impulsive buyer when it comes to book?
  • What are the factors that influence your book buying habits?
  • Based on your experience, does buying books on a whim usually end up well or disappointing?

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May Most Anticipated New Releases

Are you thinking to read some new releases this month?

If your answer is yes, great! Check out the list I compiled below.

If your answer is no, then hear me out. Ready? The sequel to A Court of Thorns & Roses, a Queen of Hearts origin story, a psychological thriller about a girl who thinks she murdered someone, a historical fiction of 1906 San Fransisco earthquake. Oh and new Rick Riordan’s series guest-starring Percy Jackson. Are you on board now?

Release Date: May 3 2016

A Court of Mist and Fury (#2 in Court of Thorns and Roses) by Sarah J Maas | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: the second book in a series.

Category | Genre: Young Adult | High Fantasy

Arguably one of the most anticipated book this year, A Court of Mist and Fury is the sequel to the super popular A Court of Thorns and Roses, Sarah J Maas’ more mature fantasy series. By the way, if you cannot get enough of Feyre, Tamlin, or Rhysand (I haven’t read the first book, but I know the name of the main characters – go figure) this book is supposedly 640 pages thick! That’s like 200 pages thicker than the first one. :p

The Crown (#5 in The Selection) by Kiera Cass | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: the last book in the series

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Romance, Fantasy

The Crown is supposedly the last book in The Selection series. For those who have been following the journey of America and then Eadlyn since the first book, you definitely would want to read the finale.

Queen of Hearts (#1 in Queen of Hearts Saga) by Colleen Oakes | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: the first book in the series

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy, Retellings, Fairy Tales

Goodreads told me that this book was originally published in 2014, and if you go to its goodreads page (link above) you could see the reviews to the original publication. I have to say that the reviews for the original one were quite mixed. However, I’m curious to see if this time the book will fare better and besides, I always have soft spot for villains.

The Hidden Oracle (#1 in The Trials of Apollo) by Rick Riordan | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: the first book in the series

Category | Genre: Middle Grade | Fantasy, Mythology

Oh hey Rick Riordan’s new series featuring Percy Jackson. You know I can’t quit you and I never want to. Here’s hoping Nico DiAngelo will also make an appearance just because he’s my fave.

Release Date: May 17 2016

The Crown’s Game (#1 in The Crown’s Game) by Evelyn Skye | GOODREADS PAGE


Stand-alone or series: The first book in a series

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Fantasy, Historical Fiction

The Crown’s Game is Evelyn Skye’s debut novel and if it’s as good as the hype surrounding it, then we’re all in for a treat. It’s a historical fantasy sets in Russia about a magic competition held to win the spot as Imperial Enchanter. Now, magic and historical are usually the magic words to make me pick up a book on its release date, and I’ve got a feeling this book will be no exception. Don’t fail us, hype!

Release Date: May 24 2016

The Last Star (#3 in The 5th Wave) by Rick Yancey | GOODREADS PAGE

book cover

Stand-alone or series: The last book in a series

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Science Fiction, Post Apocalyptic

Finally! The last installment in The 5th Wave series will be here soon. If you’ve been dying to know what other cruel things Yancey will do to his characters (and his readers), then get this book. If you’ve been holding off reading the series for the sake of binge-reading it, get this book. Or, if you’re me and you haven’t read the second book because you plan to spoil yourself on the series’ ending before deciding whether it’s worth it to go through with it or not, then check out this book too.

Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee | GOODREADS PAGE


Stand-alone or series: stand-alone

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Historical Fiction


Outrun the moon is a story of a girl trying to break out of poverty in Chinatown by using her wits. She bribes her way into private school, makes friends, and has to fend off spoiled kids. But that’s not all. Outrun the moon is also a historical fiction about the 1906 San Fransisco earthquake so it’s definitely not your usual contemporary fiction.

Please Don’t Tell by Laura Tims | GOODREADS PAGE


Stand-alone or series: stand-alone

Category | Genre: Young Adult | Contemporary, Thriller, Psychological

This one is a story about Joy who thinks she killed a boy at a party. When someone blackmail her, Joy has to uncover the blackmailer’s identity. But it’s more than who did what, Please Don’t Tell is a book exploring the complicated relationship between two sisters. Lately, I’ve been in the mood for thrillers so I might get this one soon.

That’s all for now. Let me know, which books are your most anticipated releases for May?

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Top Ten Tuesday: Bookworm Delights

top ten tuesday

I haven’t done a Top Ten Tuesday in like three weeks, but this week’s topic is definitely a must for me. This week’s topic is Top Ten Bookworm Delights, it could be things or experiences related to books that makes me delightful. Let’s do this!

  1. Seeing that new release I’ve been waiting for at the bookstore

    We’ve all been there, haven’t we? There’s this new book that everyone’s been buzzing about and you’re just dying to get your hand on it. You visited to bookstore every other day and still no sign of said book. 🙁 Then one day, you walked pass the store and WHOA WHAT IS THAT ON THE DISPLAY? ASDJKHK.

  2. Book bargain

    That $1.99 offer on Kindle ALWAYS gets me. Always. I’d hit the one-click purchase button before my brain could process what’s happening. Kudos to you Amazon. That button is my undoing.

  3. When I find my soulmate aka a person who loves that lesser known book or author as much as I do

    This is one of the reasons why I enjoy blog hopping (although I haven’t done it for some time now…). Finding another person who share similar taste with you, especially for that lesser known book nobody else ever heard about is totally a wonderful feeling.

  4. Be in a bookstore (physically)

    Nearly all book lovers know what I’m talking about. That smell, that atmosphere of being surrounded by books is unbeatable. I used to go to the bookstores (yep, plural) everyday when I worked near a shopping mall. I didn’t even buy anything most of the time, just looking at the beautiful covers and breathing in the smell of new books.

  5. Participating in a book chat

    I’m a newbie in this and I haven’t joined that many chat, but for those who haven’t participated before but thinking to join one, go for it! It’s really fun and although it could be overwhelming at the beginning, the joy of meeting new people and reading other people’s responses really worth it.

  6. When a friend actually read a book I recommend

    Bonus delight if he/she likes it, but it’s not a requirement. I am terrible at pitching books at my friends so it truly feels like an accomplishment. Hahaha.

  7. When my favorite authors announce new books/series


  8. Got approved for ARC

    This has very rarely ever happened considering I live outside of North America and my blog is still very new and has small number of followers. But when it happened, I totally jumped out of my seat because YOU GUYS I GET TO READ THIS BOOK NOW.

  9. Book mail aka Happy mail

    I’m that person who keeps forgetting that I order or pre-order a book. So when said book arrived at my porch, I usually get even happier because of the surprise factor.

  10. Finding new bookstore, be it physical or online store

    Do you know that I had no idea that Kindle has been made available in my country until like 4 months ago? Yes, it happened. To this day, I am not sure whether it’s a good thing or bad thing I discover it because since that day I’ve been doing most of my ebook shopping there. And of course there’s the joy of finding Book Depository’s worldwide free shipping policy.

Let me know if any of these items is also on your list!

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Review: More Happy than Not

Book Review: More Happy than Not by Adam Silvera
more_happy_cover Book title More Happy than Not
Series No
Author Adam Silvera
Pages 293
Year published 2015
Category | Genre Young Adult | Contemporary
Rating 4 stars

Official Summary

In the months after his father’s suicide, it’s been tough for 16-year-old Aaron Soto to find happiness again–but he’s still gunning for it. With the support of his girlfriend Genevieve and his overworked mom, he’s slowly remembering what that might feel like. But grief and the smile-shaped scar on his wrist prevent him from forgetting completely.

When Genevieve leaves for a couple of weeks, Aaron spends all his time hanging out with this new guy, Thomas. Aaron’s crew notices, and they’re not exactly thrilled. But Aaron can’t deny the happiness Thomas brings or how Thomas makes him feel safe from himself, despite the tensions their friendship is stirring with his girlfriend and friends. Since Aaron can’t stay away from Thomas or turn off his newfound feelings for him, he considers turning to the Leteo Institute’s revolutionary memory-alteration procedure to straighten himself out, even if it means forgetting who he truly is.

Why does happiness have to be so hard?

“Adam Silvera’s More Happy than Not is a realistic portrayal of a teenager’s life with just enough twist to keep you on your toe and huge emphasis of finding yourself in the crowd.”

I read this book because it was #FBCYA March book of the month. Actually, I’ve been planning to read it since forever but me being me it didn’t quite happen until I had the incentive to. I am so glad I read it when I did because the timing couldn’t even be more right. At that time, there was an LGBT issue (which shouldn’t have been an issue at all) that gained a lot of momentum in my country and I lost a little faith in humanity throughout the process. Thankfully reading this book somehow restored it quite a bit, although I believe we still have a long long way to go. SO thank you #FBCYA and Adam Silvera for this book.

This is a non-spoiler review apart from those mentioned in the official summary, but there will be a lot of feels mentioned throughout the review so be ready for that.



Character-wise, More Happy than Not is a total win. Silvera made his characters flawed and realistic. The teens act like teens, the parents act like the parents, but they all very distinct that even now, a month after I read this book (it took me that long to collect my thought-feel free to judge), I still remember each and every character. And yes even the minor ones were given enough personality to stand out. The point is they felt like real people.

The narrator, Aaron Soto, is a compelling character in the sense he made you actually care about what’s going to happen to him. You will worry about him, you will smile for him, you might sometimes want to yell at him, but most of all you will feel for him.

Plot and narrative

More Happy than Not is about journey to find happiness, among others. We follow Aaron’s quest to get back on track and find happiness after a traumatic incident. He had the most amazing girlfriend, his friends whom he could hang out with, and his family. In short, he seemed to be just your regular teenager. The thing was, there is no such thing as being a regular teenager, isn’t there? Everyone has their own issues, and Aaron’s came in the form of Thomas, the boy from the neighborhood who made Aaron questions things about himself. Thomas made him happier, but the feelings he discovered about the new boy was mostly unwelcome considering his circumstances.

There are a lot of issues touched on in More Happy than Not, issues of sexuality, mental health, friendship, racial, and many others. So many that More Happy than Not should have felt overly cramped with messages, but thankfully it didn’t.

There are a lot of things happening in the book, and some very nice surprises I didn’t know will be there. Then there are the twists. You think you figured them out, but then Silvera threw another one at you. Some books are only as good as their twists, but More Happy than Not is that good, it’ll still work without them. However, the twists were added bonus because they did evoke very strong emotional responses from the readers.


At its core, More Happy than Not is a book about being human. It worked wonderfully well because the masterful execution made you truly care about the characters. So, make sure to prepare a box of tissues prior to reading this book. Oh, and try not to read it in public if you can.

Final score

4 stars
4 stars (out of 5 stars)

Let me know, have you read More Happy than Not or is it on your TBR? If you have read it, what do you think about the book?

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Review: Tell the Wind and Fire

Book Review: Tell the Wind and Fire by Sarah Rees Brennan
book cover Book title Tell the Wind and Fire
Series/standalone Standalone
Author Sarah Rees Brennan
Pages 386
Year published 2016
Category | Genre Young Adult | Urban Fantasy
Rating 2.5star

Gorgeous cover, competent writing, boring characters.

I received an eARC of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange of an honest review.

First of all, a disclaimer. This was my #1 most anticipated release of 2016. I mean, there’s no way it’s not going to work, right? I mean, that cover! That promising synopsis! That preview chapter that gives off The Demon’s Lexicon (the author’s debut novel which I LOVE) vibe! They all promised me something extraordinarily enjoyable… and it just wasn’t.

Official Summary

In a city divided between opulent luxury in the Light and fierce privations in the Dark, a determined young woman survives by guarding her secrets.

Lucie Manette was born in the Dark half of the city, but careful manipulations won her a home in the Light, celebrity status, and a rich, loving boyfriend. Now she just wants to keep her head down, but her boyfriend has a dark secret of his own—one involving an apparent stranger who is destitute and despised. Lucie alone knows the young men’s deadly connection, and even as the knowledge leads her to make a grave mistake, she can trust no one with the truth.

Blood and secrets alike spill out when revolution erupts. With both halves of the city burning, and mercy nowhere to be found, can Lucie save either boy—or herself?


Setting & World-building

Tell the Wind & Fire is a retelling of A Tale of Two Cities, a book I haven’t read so I couldn’t tell you how similar they are. What I can tell you is that TTWAF was set on alternate New York City. This version of New York was split into two parts, the Light city and the Dark city. The Light magicians ruled the whole city, condemning the Dark magicians to live in a separate, terrible part of the city. It was set in the middle of a revolution to overthrow the city’s rulers, led by a group called sans-merci.

The world-building was okay, it wasn’t extraordinary. TTWAF was sort of an urban fantasy, but in alternate city so I was hoping to see more differences between our world and this alternate world, but everything, other than the separation into two cities and the existence of magic, exudes a similar vibe to our modern world. Even the magic wasn’t really ‘there’ in the sense of it didn’t affect the people and their way of living that much. I mean you don’t need to make teleportation as a default mode of transportation or make people live in the cloud just because there’s magic, but I was expecting something less… normal.


I don’t get them. Lucie, the main character, was boring. Her love interest was even more plain and there’s the doppelganger who was just not interesting. Even the promise of diversity by adding a character wearing a hijab felt like an afterthought. There’s very little character development throughout the story, basically just Lucie feeling tired of being bullied to act like a good girl.

I was hoping the doppelganger would offer some much needed humor, but nope. He was not even that witty.

It’s really disappointing for me because I knew what Rees Brennan capable of. This is the author who made me laugh and cry within the same pages in her two previous series. Seriously, I quoted The Demon’s Lexicon and the Lynburn’s Legacy all the time. I even have an Alan Ryves t-shirt.

Plot & narrative

If there’s one thing going for TTWAF, it is its pace. The book never linger too long at one single scene. It didn’t waste time telling you things most people wouldn’t care about. It just kept going. Some people might think it’s too fast-paced, but honestly there were times when the pace was the only thing that made me keep reading.

At the beginning, the story was not that interesting. You got Lucie, a girl who just wanted to keep her loved ones safe and doesn’t really care about saving the world. You also got an infodump through Lucie’s monologue. Nothing really new. It picks up in the last third of the book when the twists revealed and the revolution reached its peak. Unfortunately, at that point, it was a little too late to prevent some people from DNF’ing this book.

The ending was alright. I still have some unanswered questions about characters motive, but the story was wrapped up neat enough as sort-of open ending.


I was promised a beautiful heartbreaking story. It might be heartbreaking if only I care about the characters. The problem is I didn’t.

The most heartbreaking part about reading this book is the ‘after’ part, when I have to rate it on goodreads and write a review and confess that although Sarah Rees Brennan is my hero and I believe her intention is good, Tell the Wind and Fire doesn’t work for me.

Final score

2.5 stars (out of 5 stars)

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