Monday, May 15, 2017

REVIEW: RULES OF NON-ATTRACTION BY ANDREA SOTO-PIONILLA.

Title: Rules Of Non-Attraction
Author: Andrea Soto-Pionilla
Series: Standalone
Edition: Paperback
Publication: February 2017 by Spark Books
Source: Bought from National Bookstore
Pages: 80
Genre: Romance, New Adult

Synopsis:
It wasn’t love at first sight. It wasn’t even lust at first, or second, or third. Alexa and Ivan are just friends—roommates, at that. For him, she’s a scheming, social-climbing she-devil. For her, he’s a stiff, boring know-it-all. Should be fun, right?

Of course, things don’t ever go as planned.

Quitting the high-paying dream job, squandering rent money, and getting unceremoniously dumped pale in comparison to the bigger problem of falling in love with the most unexpected person.

PURCHASE THE BOOK HERE:

Social climbers are old news. You can easily spot them in action every day, everywhere. I don't mind though. So when I read Rules of Non-Attraction and it highlighted how Alexa do it, I couldn't help of course, think about those people who try so hard to live a life they couldn't afford. It was so risky but impressive if I may say.

Alexa's personality is strong, loud and she's brutally straight to the point. She says literally what she thinks and it comes off as a problem, in my opinion. There's nothing wrong with sticking to the truth but calling people names and hating people for how the look are things that are just simply wrong in so many levels. I cannot justify her hurtful words with her immature/bitchy personality because hurtful words are hurtful words, period. The synopsis says "scheming, social-climbing she-devil" as a head's up for readers but I cannot and will not approve of her attitude. I know there's a possibility of character redemption if given the right amount of time to develop but right now, that knocked off two stars from my rating.

The story is a little bit predictable due the tropes but I felt like it was executed amazingly. The writing style is smooth and believe me when I say this, it was such a huge relief that I didn't see any typos at all! Alexa was so in denial about her feelings from page 1 but the romance was given ample time to mature. As I have said above, her character is redeemable but in this short story, I didn't appreciate how she treated Ive. It felt abusive to me. There's this thin line between a character whose personality is strong and an abusive one and Alexa definitely is the latter.

A romance that is admirable with a redeemable character, Rules of Non-Attaction is an enjoyable and swoony read that is worth your moment.

"But Alexa flet her pulse slow and her head begin to clear. She slowly felt the courage she had been praying so hard for fill her body. It spread through her torso and settled in her chest.
Past that, she detected something else she didn't completely recodnize. It was wild and fiery, but happy. It overpowered the nagging doubts and anxious questions scratching at her heart. It was wonderful.
And that was the bright neon sign saying that it was the time to get carried away.
"It's more like... more like I love you," Alexa said quietly."

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

REVIEW: DON'T TELL MY MOTHER BY BRIGITTE BAUTISTA.

Title: Don't Tell My Mother
Author: Brigitte Bautista
Series: Standalone
Edition: Paperback
Publication: April 23rd 2017 by Spark Books
Source: Bought from National Bookstore
Pages: 94
Genre: Romance, New Adult, LGBTQIA+, F/F

Synopsis:
With an overly zealous mother as her guide, 19-year-old Sam has never had problems navigating through Christian suburbia before. But, all that changes when she befriends and becomes intrigued with Clara, her widowed neighbor and the village’s social outcast. When their friendship grows into the “unnatural”, Sam is forced to examine her upbringing and come to terms with who she really is.

PURCHASE THE BOOK HERE:

Don't Tell My Mother is an exquisite story about a girl coming to terms with her sexuality. It was a rough road Ava had to go through but that didn't stop her from being true to herself. Growing up in an all girl's catholic school and being in a hardcore self-righteous "christian" community, Ava fought hard and endured so much just to be with her first love, Carla. It wasn't the "boy+girl" relationship so her surroundings made it too difficult for her. But you see? LOVE FUCKING WINS.

I was a first hand witness to these kinds of homophobic/self-righteous people. It was and is sickening. God did tell us to love one another but these people are just so extremely close-minded and selfish I couldn't help but feel this fiery rage that they have to be so stupid like that. But I gotta respect people and be gentle in making them realize how wrong they perceive my LGBTQIA+ friends. I wasn't around anymore to know if they'd eventually come to their senses but my friends are happy and that's what matters to me most.

The writing for Don't Tell My Mother is superb but also slow. I hate slow-paced stories in general but this book felt like it needed the slowness. It has to have time to develop and I could say I am satisfied with how events turned out and how it ended. The backstory of Ava's dad gave the entirety of it all a huge and strong kick and I loved how heart-wrenching it was. I wish though that Ava kept in touch with her dad. I just feel like it would mean the world to him if she did.

I also wish that some goodness in the Christian Community could have graced the pages, even just a little bit. To balance it out.

Don't Tell My Mother is a journey to acceptance and self-love. It is another story that champions how love wins. It feels heavy in the heart but surely puts bright lights in the mind.

"I mean, what do you do when you don't have to be you?"

Sunday, May 7, 2017

FEBRUARY 2017 BOOK HAUL!

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews that showcases newly acquired books or goodies we bought, received or borrowed during the week.
Took me a while to take decent photos for my monthly haul that's why it also took me forever to write post. Without further ado, here are the books I got for the month of February!


BOUGHT FROM BOOKSALE STORE:
When We Wuz Famous by Greg Takoudes
Bystander by James Preller
Without Tess by Marcella Pixley
The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters
Nightshade (Nightshade #1) by Andrea Cremer
Alice in Wonderland (Ladybird Book 1986)

BOUGHT FROM ONLINE STORE:
Delirium Stories: Hana, Annabel, and Raven (Delirium 0.5, 1.5, 2.5) by Lauren Oliver

BOUGHT FROM #NBSFEELSCAFE EVENT:
Bucket List To Love by C.P. Santi *signed
Rules Of Non-Attraction by Andrea Soto-Pionilla (My 3-star review will be up soon!)
Don't Tell my Mother by Brigitte Bautista

FOR REVIEW:
History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera (My 5-star review)
Empress of a Thousand Skies (Empress of a Thousand Skies #1) by Rhoda Belleza
The Wonder of Us by Kim Culbertson
Whenever I'm with You by Lydia Sharp
Chasing Mr. Prefect by Katt Briones (5-star review will be up soon!) *signed


THANK YOU TO THE FOLLOWING:
BOOKSALE STORE, DIANNE, #ROMANCECLASS AUTHORS AND NATIONAL BOOKSTORE, KATT BRIONES, SCHOLASTIC PHILIPPINES AND
PENGUIN RANDOM HOUSE GLOBAL! 

Have you read anything from the stack above? Did you like it? And what titles did you currently haul?

Friday, May 5, 2017

#APRILFEELDAYS2017 EVENT RECAP!


*Drafted April 30*
Just got home from UP Town Center in Quezon City where the #AprilFeelsDay2017 event was held. It was quite far from me but I love it there. The mall has this cozy ambiance and it's so clean and refreshing to look at. Since it was just my first time there, it took me a while to find the venue but when I found it, I went directly to Biblio (I will make a separate post about that) and bought three preloved books from there. Then my ever favorite JM from the Book Freak Revelations found me so I went to the venue with him.

THE MALL!
The event was packed with lovely readers and amazing authors. It was everything I hoped it would be and more. This is the second Live Reading event (first here) I have attended and let me tell you this, there's this unlimited feels in the air! Gio is my favorite and OMG, I couldn't just stop swooning! I also bought a lot of books and yes yes yes, I finally met Jay, Six and Ana. I also met Brij, Janus, Inah and Gavin! Woohooo!!

The wall!
Display table!
BOOOOKKKKKKKKKKKSSS!
I wasn't able to take much polaroid shots with the authors because I have limited film so I'll make sure I have enough next event. But this event legit rocked my weekend because gaaaaad, I went home fully loaded with feels and fully loaded with books!

LOOT! GOOD BYE MONEEEYYYYY!
BOUGHT:


AND MY FAVE PART IN THE LIVE READINGS! OH, GOD!! GIO, GIO, GIO!!
ENJOYYYYYYY!

This is my favorite live reading of all because this is the first time I have watched Gio read and OMG MY OVARIES EXPLODED! AND I IMMEDIATELY BOUGHT KATE, FINALLY! HAHA! (video from Romance Class' YT channel! Thanks, Ana!


You also may want to check out JM's recap!

Thank you so much to all the organizers of this event! To you readers who I was able to fangirl with, blogger friends (nice to have hugged and met and seen you again!) and to all authors for doing what you do best! Keep writing!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

REVIEW: SPINDLE FIRE BY LEXA HILLYER.

Title: Spindle Fire
Author: Lexa Hillyer
Series: Spindle Fire #1
Edition: Paperback
Publication: April 11th 2017 by Harper Teen
Source: ARC provided by the publisher
Pages: 368
Genre: Retellings, Romance, Fantasy

Synopsis:
A kingdom burns. A princess sleeps. This is no fairy tale.

It all started with the burning of the spindles.

No.

It all started with a curse…

Half sisters Isabelle and Aurora are polar opposites: Isabelle is the king’s headstrong illegitimate daughter, whose sight was tithed by faeries; Aurora, beautiful and sheltered, was tithed her sense of touch and her voice on the same day. Despite their differences, the sisters have always been extremely close.

And then everything changes, with a single drop of Aurora’s blood—and a sleep so deep it cannot be broken.

As the faerie queen and her army of Vultures prepare to march, Isabelle must race to find a prince who can awaken her sister with the kiss of true love and seal their two kingdoms in an alliance against the queen.

Isabelle crosses land and sea; unearthly, thorny vines rise up the palace walls; and whispers of revolt travel in the ashes on the wind. The kingdom falls to ruin under layers of snow. Meanwhile, Aurora wakes up in a strange and enchanted world, where a mysterious hunter may be the secret to her escape…or the reason for her to stay.

PURCHASE THE BOOK HERE:

Spindle Fire is more like a Sleeping Beauty and Alice in Wonderland crossover retelling. You can get the Alice feel in the world building which is absolutely stunning. I appreciated how Hillyer took over Sleeping Beauty story and put her own surprising twists in it that are all still original. The story kept me devouring the pages until the very cliffhanger-y (but perfect) end.

Aurora is alluring but she has no sense of touch and cannot speak for these senses are tithed to the faeries. Aurora have given enough of her senses already so her sister Isbe's eyesight was tithed instead of Aurora's youth. Malfleur cursed the child but Violette tried reversing the curse. Instead of death, Aurora would be in a deep sleep and only a true love's kiss could awaken her. Isbe's blindness made her senses hightened. The siblings loved each other and have compensated the disability by being there for each other and by communicating using finger taps. On the day when Prince Philip and his brother would visit Aurora (to plan for their wedding), the princes were murdered. Aurora and Isbe then overheard the council that they will move Isbe to a convent because Isbe is no longer needed. Isbe ran away and Aurora tried to search for her. But she got lost and only seeked refuge in a cottage in the middle of the forest. Here, she saw a golden spinning wheel and accidentally pricked her finger. She was overwhelmed by the pain and woke up screaming. She realized she had her senses back and she was rescued by Heath. Apparently, she's in a dream-like place called Someil. While one the other side, Isbe learned everything about the curse and convinced Gil to rescue her sister. But the sleeping sickness is spreading fast. She has to convince the youngest brother of Prince Philip to marry Aurora and she's confident he's the one who could save her. After traveling to land and sea, they failed. Aurora didn't wake up when the prince kissed her. Isbe was so broken hearted about it and.... (LOL)

Okay, it's a little bit challenging to write a summary for Spindle Fire haha because it was like two parallel universes. Universe A is where Isbe is and Univers B is where Aurora is. Their stories are being narrated at the same time so while Isbe is trying to save her sister, Aurora is trying to unlock Belcoeur's history and trying to save people trapped in a dream world called Someil. The curse put her there. That alone is kind of mind blowing. But what I truly adored here are the sibling's relationship, the back story and THAT FREAKING ENDING.

Malfleur and Belcoeur's story would be something I'd be thrilled to read. I wish Hillyer would right like a separate novel for these two. They have so much difference as siblings but deep in my heart, I know, they still love each other. And OMG really, I cannot fathom the pain they went through because of that Blackthorn guy.

I loved the familiarity of Sleeping Beauty and I also absolutely loved Hillyer's take on it. But there were times (a lot) I got confused, like, whose head I am in right now? There were a ton of POVs that I truly got confused especially along the middle part. The back story and the plot twists were squeezed and forced to happen in 368 pages? I don't mind reading 400 pages especially if the story asks for it and Spindle Fire felt like it had to be longer. And I wish though that Hillyer focused MORE on the siblings up and down relationship instead of the romance? It could have developed at the second book. I mean, there's so much info dump in here but the development lacked and execution was rushed.

Spindle Fire is surely a refreshing take on Sleeping Beauty! Enchantingly dangerous, Spindle Fire is packed with loyalty and courage you wouldn't find anywhere else but in your family. Fans of retellings would definitely enjoy this!

Thank you, HarperCollins International Sales for the galley!

"Light too can be a curse. It can illuminate things no one should ever have to witness."

Monday, May 1, 2017

MAY 2017 BOOKISH BABIES!


Hello, guys! So I have a ton of titles I'm super excited about this month and ughhhhhh money, where art thou? HAHA! We have such amazing titles hitting shelves this month and I am so so grateful to have been provided review galleys for some of the titles below!









These books sound super amazing and I heard nothing but fantastic things about them! I cannot wait to dive in to be honest and I'm forever gratefult to publishers for sending galleys my way! I am most stoked for ACOWAR and I cannot wait to get it tomorrow!

WHAT BOOK/S ARE YOU MOST LOOKING FORWARD TO READING?