Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Book Review: Sad Girls by Lang Leav + LangLeavInPH

Title: Sad Girls
Author: Lang Leav
Publisher: Andrews McMeel Publishing
Release Date: May 30, 2017
PLOT: 
(Goodreads)


“Your first love isn’t the first person you give your heart to—it’s the first one who breaks it.”

Sad Girls is the much anticipated debut novel from international best-selling author Lang Leav. A beautifully written and emotionally charged coming of age story, where young love, dark secrets, and tragedy collide.

School is almost out for Audrey, but the panic attacks are just beginning. Because Audrey told a lie and now her classmate, Ana, is dead. Just as her world begins to spin out of control, Audrey meets the enigmatic Rad—the boy who could turn it all around. But will their ill-timed romance drive her closer to the edge?

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 
Lang Leav is an international bestselling author and social media sensation. She is the winner of a Qantas Spirit of Youth Award and coveted Churchill Fellowship. Her books continue to top bestseller charts in bookstores worldwide and Lullabies, was the 2014 winner of the Goodreads Choice award for poetry.

Lang has been featured in various publications including the Sydney Morning Herald, the Straits Times, the Guardian and the New York Times. She currently resides in New Zealand with her partner and fellow author Michael Faudet.

Follow Her On:



REVIEW: 

                  I always wonder why people can cheat in a relationship easily and Lang Leav has amazingly written how it could happen. Reading this book helped me understand the scenario more. How love, this powerful and strong emotion, could cloud your judgement and your thinking in a way that you don't know what is right from wrong. Basically you can forget your conscience because of love. Take Romeo and Juliet, they were two teenagers who fell in love, which then led to a tragedy. People gives them a lot of cr*p for it but they fail to realize the cliché but true saying that "Love can make you do crazy things". And in addition, because of Juliet and Romeo's action two families ended their families fued with one another. I am not justifying cheating. It is just that I understand how some can do it. 

                   Going back to Sad Girls, Audrey is filled with guilt as her relationship with Rad progresses but still she cannot help herself. She is so addicted and drawn to him but she cannot let go of Duck because she feels like she is indebted to him and she does not want to disappoint their families if she broke of their relationship. Also, Duck is familiar and safe while a relationship with Rad is unpredictable and the passion they have for one another might burn out in the long run. And Despite the shocking ending, I understand why Audrey stayed with Rad. She feels like she is the reason why Rad did the "unthinkable". Her lie is what caused Rad to do that. Rad and Audrey both made mistakes and they believe that those mistakes bind them with one another; knowing each other's secret is the glue to their relationship. That is why I believe that their relationship is flawed and it too will end up in a tragedy. The knowledge they both have of one another's secret will drive them mad and sooner or later will drive them apart. 

                            Furthermore, I commend Lang Leav for her outstanding presentation in regards with Mental Disorder more specifically, Anxiety and Panic Attacks. This discourse will help people understand Anxiety and the people affected by such disorder. My only problem with this book is the characterization of Audrey. Her development was going great especially when she went to Colorado, got to know herself better, and met Gabe but it went totally downhill when she went back. I was so frustrated because she went back to zero. But maybe it is the author's way of saying that life is full of ups and downs and that you have to be strong when the downs hit you. Moreover, I like how Lang Leav showed how different people deal with grief, some will be sad, others will be angry, or guilty. To assert, I highly recommend this to people who enjoyed The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. It has the same take on mental disorders wherein you never really know when the bad days are going to hit and like the whether it can be unpredictable. 


Lang Leav in PH 

Join acclaimed poet and bestselling author Lang Leav for her Sad Girls Tour, happening at SM City Cebu on June 24 and Glorietta 1 on June 25.

Mechanics:
1. There will be two book signings with limited number of signing slots:
- June 24, 12 p.m. | The Northwing Atrium, SM City Cebu (500 slots)
- June 25, 12 p.m. | Glorietta 2 Activity Center Palm Drive (1,000 slots)
2. Registration will start at 10:00 a.m. First come, first served.
3. Each guest will only be allowed to have one (1) copy of Sad Girls by Lang Leav signed.
4. The book must be presented upon registration. Only copies of Sad Girls bought at any National Book Store, NBS Express, and Powerbooks branches will be allowed for the signing. The book must have its official receipt or price tag.
5. Other merchandise like t-shirts, posters, journals, notes etc. will not be allowed.
6. Guests can register only once. Each guest will be given the following:
- Numbered Signing Pass
- Stamp mark on the hand to indicate your registration
7. NBS will take every effort to get as many books signed as possible. However, should there be an excessive number of guests, NBS reserves the right to limit the number of copies per guest or limit the number of guests in line.
8. There will be an official photographer from NBS who will take your photo with the author. However, we strictly allow only one photo per guest.

XOXO,
Isabel

Friday, June 16, 2017

*ARC* Book Review: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

Title: The Upside of Unrequited
Author: Becky Albertalli
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Release Date: April 11, 2017 
PLOT: 
Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly's totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie's new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she'll get her first kiss and she'll get her twin back.

There's only one problem: Molly's coworker, Reid. He's a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there's absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

Right? 


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: 
Becky Albertalli is the author of the acclaimed novel Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda. She is a clinical psychologist who has had the privilege of conducting therapy with dozens of smart, weird, irresistible teenagers. She also served for seven years as the coleader of a support group for gender-nonconforming children in Washington, DC. Becky now lives with her family in Atlanta, where she spends her days writing fiction for young adults. 

You can visit her online at www.beckyalbetalli.com
or follow her on twitter @beckyalbertalli







REVIEW: 
         I was so excited to read this book because I know that I would truly relate to the main character, Molly Peskin-Suso. Due to the fact that I am very insecure, especially when it comes to my body image. I like this book but I am not totally in love with it. I definitely have some problems with it. I like how diverse the characters are in this book and how the author truly provided a discourse for the LGBT community and plus size people, such as myself. This book also features; religion and mental health illness, more specifically anxiety. Furthermore, the author showed themes such as first love, sexuality, and coming of age, which I believe are important subjects to discuss especially to young adults so that they have an idea in regards to those issues.

        What I did not like about this book is one of the messages that it gives of, which is that you need a male (or someone) for you to feel that you are beautiful. I just hope that the Molly's realization of her beauty was more of her self discovery and not because of affirmation from other people. I also have a problem with how Molly was characterized. She is obsessing about boys and crushes most of the time that we don't get to know more about her. I know that she like Pinterest and baking but that is it. I want to know more about her and I want to connect with her, to feel like I am her but that is not that case. There were times wherein I just could not connect with her. 

       Nevertheless, I like the family dynamics in this book. Molly's relationship with her sister, Cassie, is so interesting to read. I like their conversation with one another. I want that kind of relationship with my sister but I am just not that open with other people. You can really tell that they love each other very much. I do recommend this book. It is a funny and quick read, with a dash of fluffy romance. I believe the author did well on the topic of diversity and I cannot wait to read more of her books, especially Simon vs  The Homo Sapiens Agenda, since I have heard so many great things about it and with the movie coming up real soon; I definitely need to read it as soon as possible. 


XOXO,
Isabel 

Monday, June 12, 2017

May 2017 Book Haul


1. A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3) by Sarah J. Maas


A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places









2. Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices #2) by Cassandra Clare 


Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?

A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.

Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?

Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.

When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.


3. The Shadowhunter Chronicles by Cassandra Clare and Joshua Lewis 


The Clave is pleased to announce the newest edition of the Nephilim’s oldest and most famous training manual: the Shadowhunter’s Codex. Since the thirteenth century, the Codex has been the young Shadowhunter’s best friend. When you’re being swarmed by demons it can be easy to forget the finer points of obscure demon languages or the fastest way to stop an attack of Raum demons. With the Codex by your side, you never have to worry.

Now in its twenty-seventh edition, the Codex covers it all: the history and the laws of our world; how to identify, interact with, and if necessary, kill that world’s many colorful denizens; which end of the stele is the end you write with. No more will your attempt to fight off rogue vampires and warlocks be slowed by the need to answer endless questions from your new recruits: What is a Pyxis? Why don’t we use guns? If I can’t see a warlock’s mark, is there a polite way to ask him where it is? Where do we get all our holy water? Geography, History, Magic, and Zoology textbook all rolled into one, the Codex is here to help new Shadowhunters navigate the beautiful, often brutal world that we inhabit.

Do not let it be said that the Clave is outdated or, as the younger Shadowhunters say, “uncool”: this new edition of the Codex will be available not only in the usual magically-sealed demonskin binding, but also in a smart, modern edition using all of today’s most exciting printing techniques, including such new features as a sturdy clothbound cover, a protective dust jacket, and information about title, author, publisher, and so on conveniently available right on the cover. You’ll be pleased to know that it fits neatly into most satchels, and unlike previous editions, it rarely sets off alarm wards.

The old woodcuts and engravings have been replaced as well: instead, you’ll find lavish modern illustrations by some of the brightest luminaries of the fantastic. Creatures, weapons, people, and places have been carefully and accurately rendered by the likes of Rebecca Guay, Charles Vess, Jim Nelson, Theo Black, Elisabeth Alba, and Cassandra Jean. Chapters are beautifully introduced by the drawings of Michael Kaluta, and along with our condensation of the classic 2,450-page tome, A History of the Nephilim, you will find a selection of the best of the lovely illustrations of that volume by John Dollar.

4. Sad Girls by Lang Leav

“Your first love isn’t the first person you give your heart to—it’s the first one who breaks it.”

Sad Girls is the much anticipated debut novel from international best-selling author Lang Leav. A beautifully written and emotionally charged coming of age story, where young love, dark secrets, and tragedy collide.

School is almost out for Audrey, but the panic attacks are just beginning. Because Audrey told a lie and now her classmate, Ana, is dead. Just as her world begins to spin out of control, Audrey meets the enigmatic Rad—the boy who could turn it all around. But will their ill-timed romance drive her closer to the edge?





XOXO,
Isabel 

Friday, June 9, 2017

May 2017 Wrap Up




1. No Second Chances (Doge Cove # 3) by Kate Evangelista


Natasha was DEVASTATED when Jackson, her first love, disappeared without a word only to pop up months later as a famous DJ. But now she's over it―over him!―and ready to move on with her life! Isn't she?

Jackson thought he was leaving Dodge Cove behind forever when he set off to LA to start his career as a DJ. But the one thing he had never been able to leave behind was the memory of his first love, Natasha, and now that he's proven his success, he's coming home to win her back...

Get ready to stop time, defy gravity and bring down the stars in this final book in Kate Evangelista's Dodge Cove Trilogy!


2. A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses # 3) by Sarah J. Maas

A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.


3. Happily Ever After (The Selection 0.4, 0.5, 2.5, 2.6) by Kiera Cass

The contents of Happily Ever After are as follows:

-The Prince (with the two bonus chapters), Maxon’s novella
-The Guard, Aspen’s novella
-The Queen, Amberly’s novella
-The Favorite, Marlee’s novella
-Three scenes from Celeste’s POV
-Lucy’s scene (bonus scene from The One)
-The bonus epilogue
-Where are they now?
-A map
-Various illustrations

4. To All The Boys I've Loved Before (To All The Boys I've Loved Before #1) by Jenny Han

Lara Jean’s love life gets complicated in this New York Times bestselling “lovely, lighthearted
romance” from the New York Times bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series.

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once?

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

5. P.S I Still Love You (To All The Boys I've Loved Before #2) by Jenny Han



Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I've Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.


6. Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All The Boys I've Loved Before #3) by by Jenny Han



Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times
bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.

But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?


7. City of Fallen Angels (The Mortal Instrument # 4) by Cassandra Clare


The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She’s training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And—most importantly of all—she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.

But nothing comes without a price.

Someone is murdering Shadowhunters, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second, bloody war. Clary’s best friend, Simon, can’t help her—his mother just found out that he’s a vampire, and now he’s homeless. When Jace begins to pull away from her without explaining why, Clary is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: she herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.


8. City of Lost Souls (The Mortal Instrument # 5) by Cassandra Clare



The New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments continues—and so do the thrills and danger for
Jace, Clary, and Simon.

What price is too high to pay, even for love? When Jace and Clary meet again, Clary is horrified to discover that the demon Lilith’s magic has bound her beloved Jace together with her evil brother Sebastian, and that Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is out to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. As Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle wheedle and bargain with Seelies, demons, and the merciless Iron Sisters to try to save Jace, Clary plays a dangerous game of her own. The price of losing is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost?

Love. Blood. Betrayal. Revenge. Darkness threatens to claim the Shadowhunters in the harrowing fifth book of the Mortal Instruments series.

9. City of Heavenly Fire (The Mortal Instrument # 6) by Cassandra Clare
In this dazzling and long-awaited conclusion to the acclaimed Mortal Instruments series, Clary and her friends fight the greatest evil they have ever faced: Clary's own brother.

Sebastian Morgenstern is on the move, systematically turning Shadowhunter against Shadowhunter. Bearing the Infernal Cup, he transforms Shadowhunters into creatures out of nightmare, tearing apart families and lovers as the ranks of his Endarkened army swell.

The embattled Shadowhunters withdraw to Idris - but not even the famed demon towers of Alicante can keep Sebastian at bay. And with the Nephilim trapped in Idris, who will guard the world against demons?

When one of the greatest betrayals the Nephilim have ever known is revealed, Clary, Jace, Isabelle, Simon, and Alec must flee - even if their journey takes them deep into the demon realms, where no Shadowhunter has set foot before, and from which no human being has ever returned...

Love will be sacrificed and lives lost in the terrible battle for the fate of the word in the thrilling final installment of the classic urban fantasy series The Mortal Instruments!
XOXO,
ISABEL. 


Thursday, May 18, 2017

*ARC* Book Review: No Second Chances by Kate Evangelista (Doge Cove #3) + Giveaway

Title: No Holding Back
Author: Kate Evangelista
Release Date: May 16, 2017
Published by: Swoon Read
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
PLOT: 
Natasha was DEVASTATED when Jackson, her first love, disappeared without a word only to pop up months later as a famous DJ. But now she's over it―over him!―and ready to move on with her life! Isn't she?

Jackson thought he was leaving Dodge Cove behind forever when he set off to LA to start his career as a DJ. But the one thing he had never been able to leave behind was the memory of his first love, Natasha, and now that he's proven his success, he's coming home to win her back...

Get ready to stop time, defy gravity and bring down the stars in this final book in Kate Evangelista's Dodge Cove Trilogy!


Purchase 'No Second Chances' on:
 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
When Kate Evangelista was told she had a knack for writing stories, she did the next best thing: entered medical school. After realizing she wasn't going to be the next Doogie Howser, M.D., Kate wandered into the Literature department and never looked back. Today, she is a graduate of De La Salle University - Manila with a Bachelor of Arts in Literature. She taught high school English for three years and was an essay consultant for two. Currently she writes full-time and is based in the Philippines.




Learn more about Kate Evangelista on:

REVIEW:
Disclaimer: I receive a copy of this book in exchange for an HONEST review.


          This is probably my favorite book from the Dove Cove trilogy. I know I also said that with the other two books but I just love this trilogy so much and I am so sad to see it end. You can read this book as a stand-alone but I do recommend reading the first two books first because I love seeing the development of the characters from the beginning to the end of the series. I also like seeing old characters. I am the kind of reader that thinks about the characters I've read and the possible things that happened to them after the ending, which makes this trilogy perfect for me because I get to see glimpse of past main characters, such as Caleb and Didi, in this book despite them not being the center of the story. 

          Furthermore, I like how the main characters, Natasha and Caleb, were so relatable and fascinating to read. By reading Natasha's point of view, I felt her heartache and sorrows despite me having no experience of what she have gone through. She is also very strong woman but can be vulnerable at time, which makes her relatable. While Jackson is a very complex character. He is this cool DJ and a Harry Potter geek at the same time, which is attractive for me. I also get why he had to leave without telling anybody. In a way that he had to chase his dream and he was afraid of telling Natasha because she might ask him to stay, which he would do willingly because of his love to her. He avoided the confrontation and left instead, which is a fatal flaw shown throughout the book not just with Jackson but also Natasha. Natasha did not want to talk or see or talk to Jackson after he left her. I guess the value that I have learned from this book is the importance of conversation in a relationship. Whether it might be towards your parents, friends, or your boyfriend/girlfriend; it is important that you talk to one another to avoid confusions that could dampen your relationship with one another.  

                I also like the dynamics of the characters with one another. I like how Caleb, Didi, Nathan, and Preston were there for Natasha and how they are protective of her. In addition, Nathan never fails to make smile with his little antics throughout the book and I am glad that he has found happiness in the past book. To assert, I do recommend this book and the rest of the Dove Cove trilogy. It is a light and fast paced read; perfect if you are in a reading slump. 


XOXO,
Isabel 
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Sunday, May 7, 2017

Singapore Haul (Make up and School Supplies)

I went to Singapore last month (April 25-29, 2017) for a vacation. I had a great time exploring the city because I haven't been there since 2008. I also did a bit of shopping but not too much because I books are expensive there and I do not want to spend too much money since May is coming up and there are a lot of new releases that I want to purchase and read. 



Moving on, the first items that I bought are from Guardian, which is like a health and beauty store there. I got a lot of Essence Beauty make up because I've heard this brand before but I have not tried there stuff because it is not available in the Philippines.... and it's cheap so why not. 


2 in 1 eye shadow & liner (Waterproof) 
Shades: 01 Go Bronze and 02 Peach Perfect ($4.90 each)

Mascara 

Top to Bottom: The False Lashes Mascara ($4.90), Get Big Lashes ($4.50), Rock 'n' Doll($4.90), & I ❤Extreme ($4.90)

 Concealer
Camouflage Cream Concealer ($4.50) & Stay Natural Concealer ($3.90) 
Long Lasting Lip Liner
Shades (Top to Bottom): 06 A Girl's Dream and 02 Sweetheart ($2.90 each)

 Foundation and Blush 
Pure Nude Make Up in 3 Pure Honey ($6.90) and Mosaic Blush in 40 The Berry Connection ($5.50)

The I got two earring from TYPO. They were having a promo; two earring for $10. Instead of $7.99 each.
Wonder Woman and Donuts Earring


I also went to a stationary and gifts store called NBC and saw the Stabilo pastel highlighters my sister wants so I got her and me a set. They were $10.25 a set ($1.75 for 1 highlighter).

I also got school supplies in MUJI. I never really buy from there but after seeing how cheap it is compare to the Muji here in the Philippines I went crazy.


A5 Clear Binder ($3.90) and 200 pcs Loose Leaf Paper ($3.90)
Black B5 binder ($6.90)

B5 30 pcs Loose Leaf Paper ($1.60 each) and Brown Paper Divider ($2.90) 

10 pcs Ballpoint  Pen Set 0.7mm ($13.00)

(L to R) 0.5mm Mechanical Pencil, Pink Highlighter, & Gel Pen in Red and Black ($1.70 - $2.50each)
Small Pencil Case ($2.90) 



So that is it for my Singapore haul. Let me know if you want me to do a review of the Essence Beauty Make up that I bought.

 XOXO, 
Isabel