A trip around Europe. [L Reviews: 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson]

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About the book

We join Virginia Blackstone,a 17- year-oldย  who recently lost her aunt due to Cancer. Sheย  found out that her aunt passed away because of a letter addressed to her, it had instructions that at first she herself did not understand. Later on, she received 13 blue envelopes that assigned her to different tasks to be done at different countries in Europe. Her aunt also wanted her to go on this journey by herself and without any form of communication with anyone back home. Despite her doubts, she had the courage to follow her deceased aunt’s instructions and in the end she made friends and even family.

Twist of fate

Rarely do I have this attraction to a book,it was like it was screaming my name every time I entered the bookstore. (Or maybe I am getting sick!O_O) I think bibliophiles get my drift?

What caught my attention was the plot of the novel itself. It was a round-trip ticket to Europe without applying for a Schengen visa. I can instantly go back to the Philippines whenever I want and fly to London or be in Copenhagen the next hour. It was a thrill having Ginny and her Aunt Peg as my tour guide through Europe via this book.

A Special Bond

This book also shows the special relationship of an aunt to her niece and how it is important to love every single family member you have in your life because you will never know when will be the last time you will talk to them. Unless you are like Ginny who has a cool aunt who made 13 letters that would take her with her in spirit.

Where are they?

Fiction is a work of the mind, but as I read through this book I couldn’t help but think: Can a 17 years old girl do all these things by herself?ย  Maybe it is just one of the cultural differences Filipinos have from Americans. I mean who would allow their daughter to go around Europe by herself without proper updates on her whereabouts? I don’t think such parents exists! But come to think of it, it’s fiction so anything can happen.

I think reality can hit the sidelines when writing a novel but sometimes it can also be a way for people to think that you did not work on your writings well enough.

The YA version of the movie Eurotrip

Like I said earlier, the book will take readers on a journey around Europe with it’s main character Ginny. If you are a travel junkie and a YA lover, I do suggest you read this book. This is a good read with a stress-free plot.

 

โ™ฅL

 

 

 

Reading Challenges, anyone? {Updated: January 24,2017}

Reading has been part of my life since I was taught to read when I was in kindergarten. My mother purchased a whole set of children’s picture book to encourage me and my sister to read aloud and read as many as possible. It is probably due to my mom being a wide reader herself. She wanted to pass her hobby to her two little girls and she did not fail on that life goal.

I am not a person who has those new year’s resolution but I do set one year-long goal for myself every year.This year my goal is to read more than the past few years.

Ever since I focused on finishing Dentistry I had to set aside this hobby of mine. I still read a book or two every year but I know that it is not enough.

With that long overdue goal done, (I am patiently waiting for the DLE results as I write this) I have all the time to focus on myself and my pastimes. It also help lessen the stress and the anxiety of waiting for the results. It’s like my brain’s stress ball.

Research her and research there

So I was looking around the inter webs and on facebook for tips and what to put on my to-be-read book pile, when I encountered an article about reading challenges.

Reading Challenges, what’s that?

Basically, a reading challenge can be classified into two (based on my observation.)

One form has reading prompts and the other tracks down how many books you have read throughout the year.

I have tried the latter challenge last year but did not hit my goal of reading 24 books in a year because “dentistry is calling” .

This year I want to try out the reading challenges with prompts. I think it will help me in making up my mind on what book to read next.

Reading Challenges I will participate in

Bookbed’s Reading Challenge

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I told myself to read more local books this year and I know this will help me in my mini goal leading to my year long goal of reading more. ๐Ÿ™‚

I hope you can join us as well and use #BookbedReadsPHLit so that we know you are participating.

Currently reading:—-

Finished:

[x] Any book by a Filipino author: Smaller and Smaller Circles by F.H. Batacan

 

PopSugar Reading Challenge

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Finished reading:

——-

Currently Reading:

A book involving travel: The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson

So with all of these challenges, I think I can reach my reading goal. ๐Ÿ™‚ Will you join me in facing this challenges?

Comment down below if you will and what you think about reading challenges.ย  If you have book suggestions, don’t be shy to tell me. ๐Ÿ™‚

’til next post!

โ™ฅL

 

 

 

Bring it on, 2017!

Hello anyone out there!

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I am so sorry to be MIA these past few weeks after my last post.

Did you enjoy reading that review? I hope I made you consider reading that book for this new year. ๐Ÿ™‚

Thankful for a blessed 2016

I have read so many post on facebook about what everybody is thankful for last 2016 and I also do a similar way of thanking everyone every year on my tumblr and my previous blog. This year is not an exception, so brace yourself because this might be a really long blog post.

First and foremost, I would like to thank God for giving me another year to live on earth. For guiding me to the right path and for giving me strength to conquer all of life’s challenges. I know I will not be in this position in my life without Him.

I thank my family for encouraging me to fight and finish what I started. I couldn’t have done it without all their pushing and cheering for me to pass the written board exam and up until this moment they are rooting for me and my success for the practical phase. My success is and will be their success as well.

To my friends and new found friends, I thank you for giving a little space in your heart for little ‘ol me. I know I have a whole lot of mistakes to some of you but I am still thankful that you choose me to be part of your lives.

I will specifically mention these people…

Marj.ย  My high school best friend and my laotong. Thank you for keeping up with me and my dramas and emotional instabilities. You truly deserve all the blessings you have received during the past year. Thank you for supporting me in whatever the hell I put myself into with my life. I wish that you will have more blessings and success this 2017. Never forget that your laotong, Lucille will always be here for you through thick or thin, ups and downs and in any situation you also get yourself into. See you soon! ๐Ÿ™‚

To my dear boyfriend, Thank you for staying despite all the unlucky events that bombarded you last year. I know it is not easy to keep up with personal problems together with a very moody and sensitive girlfriend. Thank you for trying your best to lift my spirits up whenever I feel down. I know I sometimes forget that you need me more than I needed you last year. I will do my best to be a better girlfriend for you this 2017.

Bookbed , KB , Allana and my booktungan batch 1 groupmates,ย  I know I may be too enthusiastic (borderline annoying) but you all tried your best to make me feel like I belong to your group. Thank you for the opportunity to share what I write through your website. I feel very blessed to have met all of you. Without this little confidence that this organization and booktungan gave me, I do not know if I would be able to express myself through writing. Thank you for opening up a new section in my life that I sincerely enjoy being part of.ย  I owe a whole lot to Bookbed and I hope to work and help you more in spreading your #ReadingNation campaign this 2017. ๐Ÿ˜€

Challenging Start for a new year

This first week of January will be a big turning point in my career as a budding dentist. It will be my practical exams and I am anxious already. These past few days, my dominant hand is showing signs of an early manifestation of Carpal Tunnel syndrome (this is what my sister told me). I am currently taking pain relievers whenever I feel pain and I was also prescribed an ointment to soothe the pain and stiffness that I feel.

I am still awaiting my next move in the #YAI2017 project and I am eager to start my story once it is approved and all set to go. I hope what I submitted is worth reading.

My best friend started her new year by trying her writing prowess on a flash fiction activity that she has on her IG account. I actually want to do a similar project of writing everyday. I might start it after I am done with my board exam and it will either be posted on this blog or kept privately until I feel it is all good to show all of you.

They say to become a better writer one must write more, and I do think that is correct. I hope to share more stories with all of you this year.

Okay, enough blabbing! I want to wish you all a Happy, blessed and prosperous new year. Thank you for sticking around and reading this long post.

โ™ฅL

 

Engaging but “Dying Hope”. (L reviews#12)

For my first review after months of hiatus, I was challenged by my fellow writer in #YAI2017 to review her award winning piece. The title of this novel is “Dying Hope”.

As many of you know, I feel slightly indifferent when it comes to reading Filipino/ Tagalog books. I know that I should blame myself for this lack of interest in Filipiniana books. I am trying my best to change my preference and open up to reading more from local authors next year.

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About the book:

Dying Hope is a Tagalog novel by Rhisa A. Rey or thesoullessvampire on Wattpad. It follows the story of a writer named Hope.

Hope is the opposite of her given name, she was already giving up on herself and everything that she loves. That is until she met a boy named Luke who will change the way she looks at her life.

Enticing plot

I could say, this book is one of those masterpieces that make me lean to reading more Filipino novels. For someone who is just starting to appreciate and read Tagalog books, I didn’t find myself lost in the middle of this book because of how deep the Filipino words were.

From the first line of the epilogue I knew it was going to be a great reading journey, and it was.

What I like the most in it is the way the author was able to take me with Hope and Luke. The way she wrote about how the characters felt in all given situations is excellent.

Another plus on my list is the way thesoullessvampire was able to establish God into her story without it spoiling the plot and making it into a bible-ish story rather than a novel.

Confounding Taglish

I am a little disturbed by the way some of the sentences are constructed in what we Filipinos call Taglish ( a mixture of both english and tagalog words in one sentence). I am not a fan of it.

Another issue that I want to point out is the sudden shift of point of view from Hope to Luke. There are instances where the POV shifts from one person to the other in the middle of the chapter and that for me is slightly confusing as a reader.

A well-deserve win

I mentioned earlier that this literary treasure won awards. It won second place on ProjectNY Battle/ Nayink’s Novel writing contest 2016 and it also won on Watty Awards 2016.

I must say, this book truly deserve the recognition. It will surely win more hearts when the book launches on December 17, 2016.

I am honored to write a review for this book by Rhisa A. Rey and I hope to read more from her soon. I know I will, when her #YAI2017 story comes out.;P

Best of luck, my YAI batchmate! ๐Ÿ˜€

And to you my readers, I hope you grab a copy of her book because sometimes we need a little read that would help us realize that life is worth living.

โ™ฅL

 

National Novel Writing Month (WOLM? #4)

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I regularly check my twitter feed and saw this tweet about National Novel Writing Month. It has been around since I had DSL connection and I really wanted to join but I felt that I would not be able to write that much for a month. Being a ‘slacker’ that I am but I think this year might be a good time to join it.

What do you guys think? Should I accept the challenge?

if you are also interested in joining as well. sign-up here.

and if you decide to join me go and add me as a buddy. Here is my own NANOWRIMO author page.We can share ideas and motivate each other to finish and win this challenge. ๐Ÿ˜€

hope to see you there!

โ™ฅL