14 October 2017

YA short reviews [Collection 1]

It's been a long time since I posted any update and sorry, because I'm not sorry. Life, just threw me to hell and I'm still crawling out. This is not what I want to talk about though.

August I signed up to be a part of #RomanceclassYA, which required the writers to read and share their opinion of the books read. August is also #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy so I collected books written by Filipino author. Unfortunately, I never felt the urge to share my review until now.

So here is the first set of Philippines YA stories.


Number 1:

Prom Queen Perfect

by 

There are characters that you love to hate and hate to love. A combo of both is rare and for me that's Alex dela cruz. I hated her, I love her, love to hate her, hate to love her all in one. A strong character and very three dimensional. I love how it end but I wish I get to see more of Alex and her mother's relationship. Still Prom Queen Perfect is a short refreshing read.

PS: Someplace in the middle of the book I fell in love with the butterflies in Alex stomach. Hahaha! :D



Number 2:

Only A Kiss

by 

It began sweet and funny. I rooted for the main character and the love interest right of the bat, but when they started seriously dating other people, for the first time in my book reading history, I pray for the characters not to realized the truth. Their long painful road hurt me deeply and even if the story ended happily, it leave a bittersweet taste in my heart.



and the last one:

Let's Call It Love

by 

Let's call it love gripped me from the start and somehow reminded me of my favorite music video "You had a Bad day". It would have jump to my favorite if the ending didn't left me somewhat hanging.


~ ~ ~

And that's it for my first short reviews collection. You might notice that I have not put any stars rating and that's not because of the short reviews. Starting today I won't be rating books in my blog (I will in GR and Amazon) because I feel lazy -_-
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22 April 2017

[Book Review] Better at Weddings Than You



Rating: ✮✮✮✮✮彡

I haven’t read all of Mina’s Chic Manila Series, but out of those I’ve read Better At Weddings Than You is one of the best narration and character building.

Let me start with Aaron because I can’t find anything to hate about him (which is bit irritating). I feel in love with him from the first introduction and totally like him after he gasped for having his notebook tore away. I can sympathize. If I was him, I might never get over it because notebooks is the best ever products that’s why I collect them.

I’m unable to relate with Daphne (which is ironically same age as me,) but I enjoyed her strong character and loved her liberal attitude and quips.

This line is probably her best line:

I know it was you when we had sex against a window.

That line made laugh out loud. My happiness didn’t last so long though because of Helen. Oh. My. God! I have a feeling that I will dislike her from the moment she was introduced. And I did. More than dislike actually. For the first time after being her reader for many years, Mina made me hate a character so much I want to grab her out of my Kindle and shake her so hard. It’s not Daphne’s fault you feel miserable you bitch.

Argh! I feel to keep going about Helen but I’m afraid that this will turn into a rant review, which is really bad because this was a great read.


Blurb

  Daphne Cardenas is the best wedding planner around, and everyone knows it. That's why her friend Greg hired her as an emergency replacement one month before his wedding—because he fears his fiancée Helen is falling for the guy they first hired for the job.

Aaron Trinidad is new to the wedding industry but years of conference planning and loads of charm make him good at it. Really good at it. Planning the wedding of his friend Helen should be easy, and it is. To be unceremoniously fired isn't good for his new career, but the chance to learn from the best might be the silver lining.

Aaron and Daphne have chemistry, but there’s history with Helen that at least one other person considers a threat. Who's the planner who can fix this impending disaster?

(Part of the Chic Manila series, but can be read as a standalone.)

Buy on Amazon: bit.ly/chicmanila9


____________________
About The Author

Mina V. Esguerra writes contemporary romance and young adult novellas. She has a bachelor's degree in Communication and a master's degree in Development Communication, put to good use in her work as trainer and content management consultant. Mina lives in Metro Manila, Philippines, with her husband and daughter.

She finds inspiration in the lives and experiences of other people, so the answer to "Is this story based on you?" is always, always "No."

http://minavesguerra.com

 
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14 April 2017

[FilmFriday] Suddenly Seventeen


28-year-old Liang Xia is unhappy in love. She had given up her dreams of becoming a painter just to stay with Mao, her boyfriend for 10 years, and live-in partner for 5 years.Her friend suggests to Liang that she should force Mao to marry her on her wedding day by proposing to him in public. However, this backfires and Mao ends up breaking up with Liang. As Liang follows Mao to beg him to stay with her she eats some magical chocolates that she had bought earlier through an advertisement on television. These chocolates turn Liang into a 17-year-old in a 28-year-old's body for exactly 5 hours every time she consumes the chocolate, creating conflict and drama.

~~~~~

I love Asian dramas but I leaned more toward Korean’s because they’re acting is great. Occasionally, I go for Japanese, Chinese even less. I watch Suddenly Seventeen because of its title, and I'm pleasantly surprised that it’s not a remake of the movie 17 again in English.

17 again Chinese Edition was great to watch. I love every minute of it. It kept me on the edge of my seat from the first minute. I adored 17-year-old Liang as much I dislike the 28-year-old her. Her love story with Yan really got me. Super romantic. Sure Mao had his time when they were younger but I hated the way he treated her 10 years later, and personally running around naked doesn’t make up for it.

I want to say so much more, but I’m afraid that I’ll spoil the movie for those who wanted to watch it. But I have to say that Yan is still the best and 17-year-old should be with him.

Tsk. It could have been my favorite film if it weren’t for that ending. Tsk.
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31 March 2017

Better at Weddings Than You [Cover reveal/teaser]


Yay, it's here! The beautiful cover of the ARC I'm currently reading! >< 



Blurb:
Daphne Cardenas is the best wedding planner around, and everyone knows it. That's why her friend Greg hired her as an emergency replacement one month before his wedding—because he fears his fiancée Helen is falling for the guy they first hired for the job.

Aaron Trinidad is new to the wedding industry but years of conference planning and loads of charm make him good at it. Really good at it. Planning the wedding of his friend Helen should be easy, and it is. To be unceremoniously fired isn't good for his new career, but the chance to learn from the best might be the silver lining.

Aaron and Daphne have chemistry, but there’s history with Helen that at least one other person considers a threat. Who's the planner who can fix this impending disaster?

(Part of the Chic Manila series, but can be read as a standalone.)

Buy on Amazon: bit.ly/chicmanila9
$1.99 pre-order price until April 30
$2.99 starting May 1
Free on Kindle Unlimited

Goodreads page: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/34629572-better-at-weddings-than-you
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07 March 2017

[Book review] 33 Ermine Street



Blurb:

“Religion is a human invention – love isn’t. It lives inside every person, no matter who they are, or what they do or do not believe in. Love is the only thing a person truly needs to believe in to receive love in return.”

Being an only child growing up in a Chinese immigrant family, Shen lives a relatively quiet and sheltered life in comparison to most other British teenagers. His parents, who ended up running a small Chinese restaurant, work tirelessly to make sure their only child is given the opportunities that they missed out on in life.

It's a day like any other, when Shen becomes witness to a traumatic incident on his usual route to school. From that moment on, his peaceful and uneventful teenage life takes a drastic turn as he struggles to cope with the grim memories of that fateful morning.

Shen embarks on a very personal journey in an attempt to understand what happened. In the weeks and months that follow, he finds himself hurled into a turbulent world driven by fear, prejudice and social injustice.



Rating: ✮✮✮✮

My reviews vary on what mood the book gave me, and this is one of those books that I have to review a bit differently.

I always save the best stuff for last so let me start with my review with the thing that annoyed me in this book.

1: TEA! I love drinking tea, but this book pushed it to a higher level. That was a lot of TEA! By 70% I'm praying not to read another "tea." Gosh, do they drink anything else?

2: I find Shen's interaction with his parent a bit formal, he rebelled a bit but still, the way their actions and way to speak with each other just seem stiff most of the time (but maybe it's just me)

3: I wish it the book is a bit longer... huhuhu :'(

Moving on. Funny details.

1: I was prepared to read the Philippine names after reading one of the reviews on Goodreads but reading Bayani just cracked me up. It's a very old name (in my opinion) for someone so young in the modern time. Besides, the only person I know with this name is Bayani Agbayani, my favorite Filipino comedian.
- EDIT NOTES March 18, 2017: Author has updated the book so this part feels different now.


2: Malik lines hilarious I wish I could quote all of it here, but I'll give his best line ever:


The man is just so cool. It's a bit sad that the author didn't show more after the last incident with Amihan :( He's a good person. He deserves a happy ending.

Now for the overall review. Three words. I love it!
Shen annoyed me at first. He appeared spoiled and very sheltered, and I just can't connect with him, but he quickly captured my attention especially after he met Amihan.

The story seems a bit dull at first, but after passing a quarter of the book, I could hardly wait to read it again. (Except for the constant offer of tea. Sorry, I just can't get over it.)

33 Ermine Street is quite exciting. The hidden hideousness behind what seem to be perfectly normal society will grip your heart and never let go. This is a memorable read.

*I received a copy in exchange for an honest review

Links:

Website:
http://www.33erminestreet.com

Amazon link:
https://www.amazon.com/33-Ermine-Street-Harvey-Lincoln-ebook/dp/B01HJRQERO/

Goodreads link:
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/30748022-33-ermine-street

~~~

About the Author

Harvey Lincoln was born and raised in the south of The Netherlands. He lived there for many years before moving to the UK in 2002 where he studied for both a Bachelors and Masters Degree in Graphic Design. He has since returned to The Netherlands where he lives together with his English wife.

33 Ermine Street is his first novel.
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21 February 2017

[Book Review] Letters to Cora


Blurb:

Finding one letter was inspiring to her story. Finding a second was exciting. But when Nell finds the third letter in the rock wall of her newly acquired estate, she’s a little more than curious as to what really happened to Joshua and his beloved Cora.

For this detached author who is starting her life over, Nell finds herself sucked into the idea of the intrigue, yearning and hoping that the lovers found a way to be together.

After asking a couple of new acquaintances in the nearby village about the estate’s history, she meets Reid, a historian and descendant of Joshua himself. They start to put together the pieces of the puzzle that seem to be a Romeo and Juliet style romance in the 1800’s.

Doubts, fears and suspicions threaten to interfere. But what they do learn is that Love sometimes crosses boundaries and time to happen, even in some of the most unexpected ways.



Rating: ✮✮✮✮


Romance overload!

When I first read the blurb, I immediately know that I wanted to read this book. The heroine or more correctly put one of the heroines is a writer, therefore, I was curious how the author would make me (a writer ) excited about the story. I tried to guess various scenarios and got most of them wrong, and I love that.

At first, I couldn't care less about Nell and Reid. All I wanted was to read more of Joshua's letters to Cora. Somewhere along the way, however, I started to get hook with Nell's romance, maybe not as much as Cora but yeah...

A lot of heartbreaking situation was revealed especially with Clive (Joshua's son) but the drama in this book isn't tiresome.

I enjoyed reading this book and recommends it any paranormal readers.

***PS: I was given an ebook copy in exchange for an honest review


~~~~

Author Bio

Colleen Nye started writing as a teen. Through her school days, she won awards for her poetry and short stories including a Sarah Endres Award for Young Writers. As an adult, she now has short stories in Writing at the Ledges’ second and third anthologies, Seasons of Life and Voices from the Ledges, as well as various publications.

In 2012, she published first solo novel, the romantic comedy series, The Unattainable Series: When in Maui. In 2015, When in Maui moved to Blue Deco Publishing with her second novel, Immersion, a dystopian thriller. January 2016, the first book in an anthology series that’s truly unique, designed by Colleen Nye, was released. The series is named The Lunch Time Anthologies. They are full length novels with a variety of authors writing pieces that are embedded into the over-arching storyline written by Colleen. The first book is Gable Heights, and it is a crime drama.

Also in 2016, she released several projects including The Unattainable Series: Book Two, When in Doubt and a coming of age drama called The Long Summer. She co-lead and appeared in each of the 5 books in an anthology series release called The Debut Collective. In Sept 2016, From Pen To Page: A Biographical Poetry Collection was released that is the poetry of biker Alonzo “Chacho” Gomez that is chronologically arranged within his biography, written by Colleen Nye.

For 2017, Colleen is working on a paranormal romance, Letters To Cora, slated to release February 2017, sci-fi and fantasy books yet to be titled, and book three in The Unattainable Series: When in Love. Colleen also writes press releases and content for newspapers, magazines and online blogs, web sites and more, makes book covers and book trailers and formats novels and anthologies. Oh, and she is the proud owner of Blue Deco Publishing.

You can contact her online or at author.colleennye@gmail.com
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13 February 2017

[Book Blitz] Letters to Cora


Title: Letters to Cora    Author: Colleen Nye  Genre: Paranormal Romance

Tagline:

…With all my heart.

Blurb:

Finding one letter was inspiring to her story. Finding a second was exciting. But when Nell finds the third letter in the rock wall of her newly acquired estate, she’s a little more than curious as to what really happened to Joshua and his beloved Cora.

For this detached author who is starting her life over, Nell finds herself sucked into the idea of the intrigue, yearning and hoping that the lovers found a way to be together.

After asking a couple of new acquaintances in the nearby village about the estate’s history, she meets Reid, a historian and descendant of Joshua himself. They start to put together the pieces of the puzzle that seem to be a Romeo and Juliet style romance in the 1800’s.

Doubts, fears and suspicions threaten to interfere. But what they do learn is that Love sometimes crosses boundaries and time to happen, even in some of the most unexpected ways.

-Teaser-


Links



~~~~

Author Bio

Colleen Nye started writing as a teen. Through her school days, she won awards for her poetry and short stories including a Sarah Endres Award for Young Writers. As an adult, she now has short stories in Writing at the Ledges’ second and third anthologies, Seasons of Life and Voices from the Ledges, as well as various publications.

In 2012, she published first solo novel, the romantic comedy series, The Unattainable Series: When in Maui. In 2015, When in Maui moved to Blue Deco Publishing with her second novel, Immersion, a dystopian thriller. January 2016, the first book in an anthology series that’s truly unique, designed by Colleen Nye, was released. The series is named The Lunch Time Anthologies. They are full length novels with a variety of authors writing pieces that are embedded into the over-arching storyline written by Colleen. The first book is Gable Heights, and it is a crime drama.

Also in 2016, she released several projects including The Unattainable Series: Book Two, When in Doubt and a coming of age drama called The Long Summer. She co-lead and appeared in each of the 5 books in an anthology series release called The Debut Collective. In Sept 2016, From Pen To Page: A Biographical Poetry Collection was released that is the poetry of biker Alonzo “Chacho” Gomez that is chronologically arranged within his biography, written by Colleen Nye.

For 2017, Colleen is working on a paranormal romance, Letters To Cora, slated to release February 2017, sci-fi and fantasy books yet to be titled, and book three in The Unattainable Series: When in Love. Colleen also writes press releases and content for newspapers, magazines and online blogs, web sites and more, makes book covers and book trailers and formats novels and anthologies. Oh, and she is the proud owner of Blue Deco Publishing.

You can contact her online or at author.colleennye@gmail.com
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