Friday, February 27, 2015

TGIF- Feature & Follow Friday

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

Question of the week: Your house is burning down and you have time to select three books you own to take with you. What three books?

My answer: Why have you got to do this to me? This is AGONY.

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Can you make it ten? I can't stand the guilt of leaving some books behind. BUT, if it really happens... I guess... NO DON'T MAKE ME CHOOSE. This is way too hard. Ask any other book lover and they'll be giving you the same answer as me.

OK OK, deep breaths, Elicia. Deep breaths. I would choose... The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas.

What about you? Comment down below!!! I'd love to know what you're going to take!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

(Late) Waiting on Wednesday: Spinning Starlight by R.C. Lewis

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:


Title: Spinning Starlight
Author: R.C. Lewis
Release Date: 25th October 2015
Publisher: Disney Hyperion
Find on: Goodreads

Sixteen-year-old heiress and paparazzi darling Liddi Jantzen hates the spotlight. But as the only daughter in the most powerful tech family in the galaxy, it's hard to escape it. So when a group of men show up at her house uninvited, she assumes it's just the usual media-grubs. That is, until shots are fired.

Liddi escapes, only to be pulled into an interplanetary conspiracy more complex than she ever could have imagined. Her older brothers have been caught as well, trapped in the conduits between the planets. And when their captor implants a device in Liddi's vocal cords to monitor her speech, their lives are in her hands: One word and her brothers are dead.

Desperate to save her family from a desolate future, Liddi travels to another world, where she meets the one person who might have the skills to help her bring her eight brothers home-a handsome dignitary named Tiav. But without her voice, Liddi must use every bit of her strength and wit to convince Tiav that her mission is true. With the tenuous balance of the planets deeply intertwined with her brothers' survival, just how much is Liddi willing to sacrifice to bring them back?

Haunting and mesmerizing, this retelling of Hans Christian Andersen's The Wild Swans strings the heart of the classic with a stunning, imaginative world as a star-crossed family fights for survival in this companion to Stitching Snow

R.C.Lewis is awfully good at re-tellings. I've never seen anyone give the story such a twist as she had in Stitching Snow, but it's definitely one I'd love to see in her next book. Also, isn't that cover just mouthwatering?

Saturday, February 21, 2015

Why do we write reviews?

Are reviews actually helpful?

DUH. They're really helpful.

Or I might just be saying that because I'm a reviewer.

But let me tell you what I think from the perspective of a full-time reader.

When I see positive or negative reviews regarding a book I've wanted to read for a long time, I will try to look at what the reviewer has said about that particular book in terms of characters, plot, world-building and more.

I also look at the number of positive to negative reviews so I get the bigger picture: whether people actually liked it or not.

In the past, reviews have actually helped me with deciding what to read next, and I normally have to choose from a huge TBR pile, so it makes things easier for me. Goodreads is the best place to get reviews, as well my favourite bloggers.

Reviews are important, not just for readers, but authors too. To them, it's good publicity, especially when there are 5 star reviews of that book everywhere. (By the way, that's why there are ARC copies). Even negative ones help, because these critiques will help the author as this will give them an idea of what readers want.

Andddd when the person reviewing the book is someone from NY times, Entertainment Weekly, etc.? Or even a famous author?

BOOM. The book gets boosted to instant popularity. Trust me, that's how New York Times bestsellers are made.

Or not. It really depends. I mean, not all reviews are positive, right?

But the truth is, reviewers are important to everyone in the book community: authors, readers, publicists and even cover designers. This isn't me saying I'm great or anything. It's me saying that reviewers are such a beautiful and awesome part of the bookish community, and I love every single one of them, even the ones I haven't met, and also the ones I have met.

So if you finish a book and you love it a lot, leave a review. It doesn't matter if it's one word, or one sentence, because if it says what you really feel about this particular book you've finished, then it's something worth writing down. If you didn't like it, write it down as well, it's still a memory, even though it was a bad one.

Let me tell you another thing. Reviews are as important to reviewers as they are to authors, etc. They're something we can look at after a while, a memory of reading the book we'll never have again unless we do reread it. And sometimes, the feelings won't be the same when we read it the second time, or the third, or fourth. Think of writing reviews as writing a reading journal. Doesn't it sound fun?

I decided to write about this topic because sometimes I question myself. Do my reviews get read? Do they really help people? Why do I write reviews?

Now it's time for you to answer these questions. As a reader or a reviewer, how important are reviews to you?

Friday, February 20, 2015

TGIF- Feature & Follow Friday

FEATURE & FOLLOW FRIDAY is a blog hop that is designed to provide as much exposure towards other bloggers as well as yourself, and to expand following. It's hosted by Parajunkee and Alison Can Read, each whom feature a chosen blog for a week, it's also an interesting way to get to know one another bloggers.

Question of the Week: Do you like fantasy or realistic books?

My answer: This is a really hard question... But if I weigh them against each other, fantasy ultimately wins. It helps when you have a bad day and you are transported to another world.

Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: Shadow Study (Soulfinders #1) by Maria V. Snyder



Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine, that highlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week's pre-publication 'can't-wait-to-read' selection is:

Title: Shadow Study (Soulfinders #1)
Author: Maria V. Snyder
Release Date: 24th February 2015
Publisher: Mira
Find on: Goodreads

New York Times bestselling author Maria V. Snyder wowed readers with Poison Study, the unforgettable story of poison taster Yelena. Now she's back with a new tale of intrigue.
Once, only her own life hung in the balance.

Oddly enough, when Yelena was a poison taster, her life was simpler. But she'd survived to become a vital part of the balance of power between rival countries Ixia and Sitia. Now she uses her magic to keep the peace in both lands and protect her relationship with Valek.

Suddenly, though, they are beset on all sides by those vying for power through politics and intrigue. Valek's job - and his life - are in danger. As Yelena tries to uncover the scope of these plots, she faces a new challenge: her magic is blocked. She must keep that a secret - or her enemies will discover just how vulnerable she really is - while searching for who or what is responsible for neutralizing her powers.

Yes, the days of tasting poisons were much simpler. And certainly not as dangerous...

Monday, February 16, 2015

ARC Review: The Boy with the Hidden Name (Otherworld #2) by Skylar Dorset

Title: The Boy With The Hidden Name (Otherworld #2)
Author: Skylar Dorset
Release Date:
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Find on: Goodreads

Quick Review: This is not your average trip to Fairyland...

Selkie Stewart has just saved her quasi-boyfriend, Ben, from a fairy prison run by the Seelie Court. If they weren't the two most-wanted individuals in the Otherworld before, they definitely are now. Along with Ben and the rest of their ragtag group of allies-Selkie's ogre aunts; a wizard named Will; Ben's cousin Safford; and Kelsey, Selkie's best friend-Selkie is ready to embrace her destiny and bring the Court down. Until she hears the rest of her prophecy: Benedict le Fay will betray you, and then he will die.

Detailed Review: I received an ARC copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for my honest feedback.

If you remember, this is the sequel to the book that gave me a book hangover previously, which led to a 1 week reading slump.

It was just that good.

The sequel is even better.

I believe that there is a secret ingredient when it comes to writing good sequels.

You must keep everything the same, but something always has to change, has to seem out of place. Different.

Oh, trust me, there were many things that were different from what I expected. And yet, there were elements that still felt the same: Selkie's aunts' love for her and vice versa, Selkie's feelings for Ben, the fact that her mother was still after her (in fact, the whole Seelie court) and more.

The differences were the twists. So if you want a spoiler-free review, then I shall not list them out for you.

The characters, as usual, were filled with humour and personality that infused this book with life. Ben's mom is introduced in this book, and although I didn't like her at first, I loved her in the end. Not only was she complex, she was a good mother that Selkie's mother could never compare to. The Erlking, king of the goblins was also a mysterious character that piques my interest when the spotlight is on him.
This book isn't just about some age-old prophecy and the need to make it come true, it's about the bond between mother and child, and the strength of the friendship that ties Selkie and her friends together.

The story was unpredictable in so many ways, but entirely delectable in another. Nowadays, I seem to get pleasure from other characters' pain and confusion. It made the book more... entertaining.

I was definitely happy at the way the book turned out in the end. A happily ever after, as it turned to out to be, which means no more book hangovers!

Brief Review: What a beautiful ending to a great story! I would give whatever I could just so I could to relive the story again with these delightful and complex characters. If only I had the time! Is there a time-stopping faerie nearby that I could use?

Final Rating: 5/5 'Totally Amazing!'








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Saturday, February 14, 2015

How fast can you read?

How fast can you read?

When asked that question, my answer isn't exact. My preferred response is, 'It depends'.

I have a rule when it comes to reading: Never finish a book in a day.

My friends do it, both the ones in real life and the ones online.

I have no idea how they do it, especially when books nowadays have so many pages.

However, in the very rare occasion that I do, I find that I didn't enjoy the book at all.

The thing is, when you read too fast, it ends too fast. I don't like that feeling of finality when you finish a book, because it's hard to say goodbye after such a brief and lovely meeting.

So, 'it depends' is definitely more than one day.

But there's more to it. I don't have the time. I find myself reading less and less because TIME. And since I started college two days ago, that means my reading and blogging schedule is going to go even more out of whack.

All of you must be thinking, 'How can you not finish a book in one day when it's so good?'

I can; I just don't want to.

The fastest I've ever read was one and a half day because the book was Divergent by Veronica Roth.

If you don't get what I'm talking about, GO READ THE FREAKING BOOK.

Also, some books are incredibly thick. If you can finish it in one day, bravo!!! *applause*

Another side to 'it depends', can also mean the book was bad.

Yes, it's so bad that you just want to get it over with. You can't wait to get those boring characters' names out of your head. Basically, you just can't wait.

I can DNF it. Just give up. But I usually don't. Everyone says I have the determination of a poor man looking for food and it's true.

If you've read every one of my reviews, you would know that. But let's just assume you don't. (Who would have the time?!)

How fast can you read? Can you read a book in one day? Or does it vary?