Friday, January 14, 2011

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain

Published date: December 22nd 2009
Pages: 372, Paperback
Publisher: Egmont USA
My Rating: 4/5
Where to buy: Amazon

A Prodigal Son

A Dangerous Love

A Deadly Secret

Grace Divine—daughter of the local pastor—always knew something terrible happened the night Daniel Kalbi disappeared and her brother Jude came home covered in his own blood.

Now that Daniel's returned, Grace must choose between her growing attraction to him and her loyalty to her brother.

As Grace gets closer to Daniel, she learns the truth about that mysterious night and how to save the ones she loves, but it might cost her the one thing she cherishes most: her soul.

I just finished this book recently, and I'm fitting in this review among the havoc of school. Anyways, this book was an escape for me, I don't know how I managed it but I read this in a heartbeat! This book was ever so intriguing, the summary in the back was very well put out without giving too much away. Here we have Grace, who's a daughter of the local pastor, so she's someone who has to deal with staying true to herself and yet still trying to be the girl everyone expects her to be. She remembers when her brother Jude came home covered in his own blood and her friend Daniel disappearing. Suddenly he comes back into her life and Grace begins to immerse herself in danger. Questions will be asked, and people will get hurt, and Grace is determined to unravel this whole mystery.

I can say that this is another refreshing and yet dark read. The plot started a bit slow for me and I was waiting for something to happen, but as it got to the middle I wasn't disappointed! I love how Bree Despain was able to weave her own view of mythology into the story along with the modern context. She puts so much mystery and I couldn't stop flipping the pages to read more! There are some twists which sent my jaw dropping and nail biting scenes.

As far as characterization goes, it's written in Grace's point of view and I really enjoyed getting to know her. There's the typical "good girl" meets "bad boy" romance going on, but Daniel and Grace's character are well portrayed that you can see beyond that. I also loved seeing how Grace's parents are involved within the story, showing their vulnerability and effort. The ending was excellent, leaving you smiling, satisfied while leaving that possibility of a next book, and I can't wait to get my copy of The Lost Saint!

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Shelf-Worthy: Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys

Expected publication: March 22nd 2011
Publisher: Philomel Books
Pages: Hardcover, 336 pages.

Here's another totally shelf-worthy book,
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys. I know about this book from Kristi at The Story Siren, and it sounds really good and powerful. Wanna know why? Here's the synopsis (from

Lina is just like any other fifteen-year-old Lithuanian girl in 1941. She paints, she draws, she gets crushes on boys. Until one night when Soviet officers barge into her home, tearing her family from the comfortable life they've known. Separated from her father, forced onto a crowded and dirty train car, Lina, her mother, and her young brother slowly make their way north, crossing the Arctic Circle, to a work camp in the coldest reaches of Siberia. Here they are forced, under Stalin's orders, to dig for beets and fight for their lives under the cruelest of conditions.

Lina finds solace in her art, meticulously—and at great risk—documenting events by drawing, hoping these messages will make their way to her father's prison camp to let him know they are still alive. It is a long and harrowing journey, spanning years and covering 6,500 miles, but it is through incredible strength, love, and hope that Lina ultimately survives.Between Shades of Gray is a novel that will steal your breath and capture your heart.

We all know about one of the biggest events in history (a quite dreadful one), the killings of millions of Jews, led by Adolf Hitler. But here is a similar event that's hidden from our view. It's about a man just like Hitler who wanted to cleanse a specific region of the world. It's a story about a girl who became a refugee, and it tells about her struggles. But it is also a story about hope, faith and love. Ruta is a daughter of a Lithuanian refugee, and she wants to bring this story out of the shadows and to provide an awareness for other people. This is a book that I just HAVE to get. You can find out more information about the background of this book by visiting its website. There's a video for you to watch, and it was really touching. I do hope that I get the chance to get this and immerse myself in the story. This book will definitely be a memorable one, and I do love a story that will be inside my heart forever.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Shelf-Worthy: Passion by Lauren Kate

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness! The cover for Lauren Kate's third book of the Fallen series is FINALLY released, thanks to RandomBuzzers! I'm absolutely in love with it and I can't wait to have it! It's coming out on June 14th this year...Need I say more?

Wait for it... 1, 2, 3. Shebamm!

Shelf-Worthy: Sea by Heidi R. Kling

Published date: 10th June 2010
Pages: 336, Hardcover
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile

Another new thread for by blog which is Shelf-Worthy. There are usually books that I'm DYING to get my hands on. This time it's Sea by Heidi R. Kling, it's related to my beloved country, Indonesia! I found the super awesome book trailer, so that's there. And here's the synopsis:

Haunted by recurring nightmares since her mother’s disappearance over the Indian ocean three years before, fifteen-year old California girl Sienna Jones reluctantly travels with her psychiatrist father’s volunteer team to six-months post-tsunami Indonesia where she meets the scarred and soulful orphaned boy, Deni, who is more like Sea than anyone she has ever met.

She knows they can’t be together, so why can’t she stay away from him? And what about her old best friend-turned-suddenly-hot Spider who may or may not be waiting for her back home? And why won’t her dad tell her the truth about her mother’s plane crash? The farther she gets from home, the closer she comes to finding answers. And Sea’s real adventure begins.

aWhen I read the synopsis I was immediately drawn to it. I'm so interested to how my country is viewed through someone else's eyes. And the sound of this book just makes me want to sit by the pool, or go to Bali and sit in a restaurant/cafe and read it! The event of the tsunami had a huge impact on me and other countries affected and I'm excited to see how Heidi will portray that in the book. I just love the idea of being in an unfamiliar place and learning more about yourself by experiencing the different culture, the people you meet and get new perspective on things. I'm also looking forward to see the romance between Sea and Deni and how that develops.

I think I'll have to order this book from the nearest bookstore because I'm craving for it! Haha!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Paranormalcy by Kiersten White

Published date: 31st August 2010
Pages: 335
Age group: Young Adult
Publisher: Harper Teen
My Rating: 4/5
Where to buy: Amazon

Evie’s always thought of herself as a normal teenager, even though she works for the International Paranormal Containment Agency, her ex-boyfriend is a faerie, she’s falling for a shape-shifter, and she’s the only person who can see through paranormals’ glamours.

But Evie’s about to realize that she may very well be at the center of a dark faerie prophecy promising destruction to all paranormal creatures.

So much for normal.

I just finished my first book in the Wish I'd Read That Challenge, 11 more to go! Well here goes.

Wow..just wow. This was such an awesome read, it's so hard to put down. I was expecting something that's dark in the story, but boy was I wrong! This book was like a breath of fresh air for me and it's different from the usual paranormal books I read. I came across different characters that were so unique. It's fun and fascinating to know about what goes on in the agency, and how Evie deals with her job. Her job is to keep the paranormals and humans safe. But then she meets the mysterious Lend, and she tries to find out what he is. Then IPCA figured out that paranormals are being killed at an alarming rate and they have to do something about it, fast. And on top of that Evie has to deal with her relentless faerie ex-boyfriend.

Now Evie, she is such a fabulous character, and one of the strongest heroines I've ever come upon in a story. She's fun, sassy and sarcastic, she kicks butt but then she's someone whom you feel like hanging out with. She's also insecure but it's in a way that's delightful. Evie never really knew what she was but then the secrets and facts start to come through to her, and she had to face some tough situations. I was impressed on how she was willing to take risks. I was impressed by one more thing, the romantic storyline with Lend. He's just got the depth and sensitivity that felt so right. Their relationship felt genuine, and not too sudden as it progresses really well, unlike other books where the characters just fall madly in love in an instant. Their relationship builds up in a pleasant and relatable way that makes you go "aww".

This book is just different, the plot was amazing, keeps you guessing (although it drags on a little bit at some parts) and it's got a little bit of everything. It stands out in all the right ways yet it presents us the things we've come to know and love within the paranormal genre. I can't help but smile over the amount of sarcasm in this book, which makes it very memorable. Of course there is action in the story and some interesting and intriguing scenes relating to Evie's conflicts and struggles. Kiersten's way of writing is very fun and refreshing, the dialogue between the characters made the book an easy read. She has created an awesome, complex world that is described in such a natural way for us. I can't wait for the next book, Supernaturally.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Color-Coding is super fun

Hello there! I just finished color coding some of my books, and it looks awesome :D The ones on the left are some of my mom's books, magazines, my magazines and my books that are yet to be read. So they're for my Wish I'd Read That Challenge 2011!

Shelf-a-Yearning (1)

I'm starting a new blog thread which is called Shelf-a-Yearning and it consists of Young Adult books that are yet to be released/have been released. Sadly, some of the books here are not on my shelf, hence they "yearning" part of it, haha. Well, here goes!

Halo by Alexandra Ardonetto
Angels! My favorite thing to read about!
Entwined by Heather Dixon

Kissed by an Angel by Elizabeth Chandler
Looking for Alaska by John Green

The Hollow by Jessica Verday
Sea by Heidi R.Kling
It's about my beloved country, Indonesia!

Between the Sea & Sky by Jaclyn Dolamore
Mermaids. I haven't got the chance to read about them.
Pegasus by Robin McKinley

Starcrossed by Josephine Angeline
..Look at the cover
A Touch Mortal by Leah Clifford

Delirium by Lauren Oliver
CLOCKWORK PRINCE by Cassandra Clare

Tempestuous by Lesley Livingston
City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare

Unearthly by Cynthia Hand

Wish I'd Read That Challenge, 2011

My Love Affair With Books

Man, I should have done book challenges AGES ago. I've come upon this awesome challenge. I've been buying a lot of books, and I haven't got the chance to read most of them. I keep on buying and buying which has led to my TBR pile increasing. This challenge is hosted by My Love Affair with Books.

I've decided to go with Addicted, reading 12 books this year.

  • Curious – Read 3 books.
  • Fascinated – Read 6 books.
  • Addicted – Read 12 books.
  • Obsessed – Read 20 books.
So this challenge runs from January 1st until December 31st, 2011. If you want to participate, please do click the button above for the rules of the challenge. So if you have books that are just waiting to be read, you might want to challenge yourself :) We don't have to make a list of what we're going to read but I'll just make one below. And of course, I'll review them! The list of books might change as the year progresses but these are the ones I will read for now:

  1. Paranormalcy by Kiersten White (now reading)
  2. Beautiful Creatures by
  3. Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
  4. Torment by Lauren Kate
  5. Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick
  6. The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
  7. Old Magic by Marianne Curley
  8. The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong
  9. The Iron King by Julie Kagawa
  10. The Luxe by Anna Godbersen
  11. Every Soul A Star by Wendy Mass
  12. L.A Candy by Lauren Conrad

Darklight by Lesley Livingston

Published date: 22nd December, 2009
Pages: 310
Age Group: Young Adult
Publisher: Harper Teen
My Rating: 4/5
Where to buy: Amazon

Much has changed since autumn, when Kelley Winslow learned she was Faerie royalty, fell in love with changeling guard Sonny Flannery, and saved New York City from a rampaging Faerie war band. When a terrifying encounter in Central Park sends Kelley tumbling into the Otherworld, her reunion with Sonny is joyful—but cut short. For they’ve been plunged into a game of Faerie deception and wavering allegiances in which the next move could topple a kingdom...or part them forever.

I JUST finished the book, and I thought I would review it right now, while my impressions are still fresh. Darklight starts right where Wondrous Strange ends. Lesley Livingston does such a great job in this book to immerse myself into the story without it being boring, since this is right in the middle of the trilogy. But then, how can it be boring since I learnt so much about the characters that I've already met in Wondrous Strange.

The story line in this book is definitely a lot larger, Kelley's separation from Sonny has led her into having dark dreams being a plague to her mind. And she finds out what he's capable of as he's completing a task from the King Auberon. But Fennrys is in the picture to protect her while Sonny's away. From the book I saw that each of the Faerie courts have a secret lurking in the shadows, and something's out to get Kelley, Sonny and the courts.

Kelley's character really develops in this book as she's becoming tougher as the danger keeps rolling in. I enjoyed getting to know the other characters, Fennrys (hello there...), Tyff and others from the Otherworld. Getting in touch with the characters is a big reason on why I like to read, and Lesley did an excellent job with that and also writing out the components of the Faerie Realm. Where there's danger, there's action, and it's placed so brilliantly in the book, there's more deceit games, and eye-opening facts, and some heartache. Once again, Kelley has grown so much as a character, and it was great and sometimes painful to see her make some choices. She has to come into terms about her feelings toward her parents, developing and managing her powers as a Faerie, and feelings for Sonny.

I LOVE how Lesley incorporates her knowledge of Arthurian Literature (Shakespeare) into the stroy, and that just gives her books a fantastic edge and bonus points! I'm so happy to see that in her writing, and it makes me appreciate the book a lot more. I'm still waiting for Tempestuous to be added to my shelf.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Published Date: August 31st, 2010
Pages: 479
Genre: Young Adult
Publisher: Walker Books
My Rating: 5/5
Where to buy: Amazon, Barnes & Noble

Magic is dangerous--but love is more dangerous still.

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London's Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by the mysterious Dark Sisters, members of a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa soon learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform, at will, into another person. What's more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa's power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by--and torn between--two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and blue-eyed Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm's length...everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world...and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

Summary from

I just finished reading this a few days ago and I was completely blown away! 3 days of reading, and it was pure adventure. This is a prequel (The Infernal Devices) to the Mortal Instruments series (which I loved by the way!) and it is set in London, during the Victorian period of England. So, from Clockwork Angel, I was so delighted to indulge myself into the history and what lies behind the Shadow World, the lives of Shadowhunters and how they interact with other groups like the Downworlders and all that.

Everything about this book is so engaging. Cassandra Clare's writing captured me from the very start and I was amazed at how she could do that without being too overbearing with the words in the book. The beginning of the story was a little bit slow for me, especially with Tessa's time in the Dark Sister's captivity. But! I trusted in Cassandra and as the story goes on, I was not disappointed! One of my most favorite things about her books is how well she could create her characters so that we could get in touch with their feelings, and know them. I was able to understand why the characters are how they are. They were so real that they remind me of people in my life! The characters made me laugh, smile, frustrated (in a good way! if that makes sense, haha) and in the end, they were memorable. So characterization was purely excellent!

And goodness me! There was so much action in this book that I couldn't put the book down cause I was afraid of missing some kind of spectacular event. Before I knew it, I was done reading. I could gush more about this book, so I have to stop now. Great book, another masterpiece by Cassandra Clare and now that I have the history, I can't wait to know more in the upcoming book of the Mortal Instruments series, City of Fallen Angels!

Books To My Shelf (Christmas Edition!)

These are the books I got for myself, for Christmas!

Tales of the Unexpected- Roald Dahl

Interpreter of Maladies- Jhumpa Lahiri

Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins

Paranormalcy- Kiersten White

Crescendo- Becca Fitzpatrick

Darklight- Lesley Livingston

Torment- Lauren Kate

The Dark Divine- Lesley Livingston

Clockwork Angel- Cassandra Clare

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