Soul Ripping Romance Tag!

Hello, everyone! Here comes another Tag time!
Thank you Jo-Ann@Inspiration Pie for tagging me for this fun tag created by Nel@Reactionary Tales. You guys know how much I love heart-shattering books, so this tag is right up my alley,  I know it’ll be so much fun doing this.
If you haven’t already, go hurry check out Nel’s and Jo-Ann’s blogs. They are both amazing bloggers and have great, inspiring, fun content, too!

Without further ado, let’s dive right in! 🙂

The Guide:

  • Thank the person who tagged you and create a pingback to the original author Nel@Reactionary Tales.
  • Share at least 5 (but more are welcome) romances that tugged your heart strings. They can be from books, movies, TV shows, manga; anything you can think of! They can be examples of sad tears, angry tears, happy tears or a combination of all three.
  • Nominate 5 (or more) people to share their emotional traumas.
  • (Note: Try not to spoil the story for your readers in case they would like to check out these romances on their own)

 

My Take on Soul-Ripping Romances:

 

Neal and Georgie from Landline

landline

Let me say this out loud – I LOVE Neal in Landline. He’s quiet, reticent yet once he speaks, whatever word comes from him just rocks my soul to the core.  I don’t know exactly what it is, I just can’t put my finger on it, but something about Neal enthralled me.  What broke my heart while reading Landline was Georgie’s angst and desperate want to get a hold of Neal. Her desperate craving for his voice and reassurance that they’ll be OK tugged at my heartstrings and I couldn’t help but root for Georgie. I love them.

 

Marie-Laure and Werner from All the Light We Cannot See

All the Light we Cannot See

I know I keep bringing up this book over and over again, and Marie-Laure and Werner might not fall into the category of ‘romance,’ yet I swore I felt something beautiful and special sprang between them and I simply adored it. This is the reason why THE FOUNTAIN OF THE EARTH thing shattered my heart to bits and rendered me momentarily dysfunctional. I cannot gush enough about how shocked and broken I was. Oh, man. Anthony Doerr… 😦

 

Ben and Felicity from Felicity (TV show)

I love this couple. This might date me (who cares, anyway?), but when I first watched this show long time a go, I fell in love with the budding romance between them and literally gritted my teeth with frustration every time a third character gets in the way and splits them apart.
I haven’t watched the final episode yet, but I bought the complete DVD box series last summer so I could always indulge myself whenever I’m in the mood for a healthy dose of heart-tingling romance 🙂

 

Cinder and Kai from the Lunar Chronicle Series

cress-cover

I know all too well (yes, ‘WELL,’ thank you) I’m a bit too old for having my heart flutter over a YA series, but this couple had me in their clutches and filled me with happiness when they finally get reunited in Cress. Their mutual attraction is nothing but the obvious right from the beginning, so it was almost agonizing that I had to read how emotionally conflicted they are in Cinder and Scarlet. Kai is still a teenager but his demeanor and maturity embody what I look for in a man and I absolutely adore Cinder for being mentally strong and a kick-butt heroine, not being reduced down to be a saccharine cutey-girly type I personally don’t like.

 

Elinor Dashwood and Edward Ferrars from Sense and Sensibility (Film)

I haven’t read the book yet I’ve watched this adaptation so many times, and the last scene (shown in the Gif) never fails to get me all welled up. Emma Thompson’s performance is simply stunning; she beautifully expresses the moment when Elinor’s bottled up feelings and emotions toward Edward finally gush out. It’s simply breathtaking and rewarding. I love this film. I cannot get enough of it.

 

I tag…

I’m sorry if you’ve already done this tag. If you haven’t been tagged, feel free to participate and keep this chain going. Let’s be real; we could always use a little romance in our lives 🙂

Thank you so much for reading and your support! It’s been fun!
I’ll talk to you again soon 😀

Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag

Hello, everyone! Here comes another tag time; I’ve recently been tagged by mojoreb @Book Mojo for this Mid Year Book Freak Out tag and I’m definitely all game for the challenge!

If you haven’t already, go check out his blog. His in-depth reviews are simply impressive.

Without further ado, let’s get on with the tag 🙂

 

Questions:

1. Best book you’ve read so far in 2017:

This is a tough one! These two books are actually almost on the same level so I would pick The Kite Runner by  Khaled Hosseini and All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr.  They are both stunningly beautiful, haunting books. They literally broke my heart and I love them.

2. Best sequel of 2017 so far:

winter

Winter by Marissa Meyer. It would probably have been a toss-up between ‘The Crooked Kingdom’ and ‘Winter’ if I had read the latter, but I still haven’t, so ‘Winter’ got the first prize on this one. It’s such a tome with whopping 800 page count but there was never a dull moment. I actually felt so sad as I got close to the end. This is such an epic book.

3. New release you haven’t read yet, but want to:

Goodbye Days

Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner. I’ve heard only good things about this and mojoreb’s review actually sold me on this one. His whirling emotions were heartfelt. You can read his stunning review here.

4. Most anticipated release of the second half of 2017:

Sleeping Beauties

Big confession time – I have NEVER read a single book by Stephen King.
I HAVE read two books by his son, Joe Hill last year and I enjoyed them both, but I haven’t gotten around to reading any Stephen King books yet and know almost nothing about him; his writing style, his delivery…  literally NOTHING. I’m totally in the dark.
That said though, there is absolutely NO way to miss this father-son collaboration that’s coming out on September 26. I’m on it.

5. Biggest disappointment of 2017:

The Jane Austen Book Club

I basically try to find redeeming elements and good things in every book I read. That said, no books that I read this year could top The Jane Austen Book Club in the ‘disappoint’ department. This book is definitely not my thing; it was painful to read at times.

6. Biggest surprise:

chasing-echoes

Chasing Echoes by Jodi Perkins.  I received an e-book copy in exchange for an honest review and I started this book with lower expectations as a matter of fact. But this book genuinely surprised me in a lot of ways; the plot with ‘shrinking time loop’ is well-crafted and refreshing, and the latter part is such a page-turner. I really enjoyed reading this.

7. Favorite new author (debut or new to you):
Celeste Ng.  Everything I Never Told You enthralled me and I even pre-ordered her next novel, Little Fires Everywhere that’s coming out this September. I cannot wait to read it.

8. Newest fictional crush:
I don’t usually fall for fictional characters and it’s kind of embrassing to confess, but Prince (Emperor) Kai from The Lunar Chronicles series stole my heart. While I was reading the series, I even skipped ahead to the end to make absolutely sure that he’s still safe and sound. What does this say about me? I don’t know…

9. Newest favorite character: 

● Werner from All the Light We Cannot See
● Death from The Book Thief
● Olivia from Wonder
● Nina from Six of Crows

10. Book that made you cry:

21570571

Little known fact about me – I cry A LOT.  I cry over books, movies… I seem to be really impressionable and I tend to cry over whatever I find moving/touching/sad. There are actually a lot of books that made me cry this year, but Will You Remember Me? by Amanda Prowse definitely takes the cake; it left me in a sobbing mess and I kept crying over an hour even after closing the book. I’m not even joking.

11. Book that made you happy:

7824322

If you look at the books that I have read so far, you’ll find there aren’t many that will make you happy. But I would pick Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys.
It’s a World War Ⅱ novel and you wouldn’t think it’s a type of book that makes you feel happy, YET the ending is simply brilliant and beautiful. It did make me feel happy.

12. Favorite book to movie adaptation of 2017 you’ve seen:

everything everything

I’ve only watched the trailer (does that count?), but I have high hopes for Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon.  It seems like a pretty truthful reflection of the book!

13. Favorite review you’ve written this year:

The Book Thief.  Writing reviews has always been quite a challenge for me and I need to put a lot of time and effort into writing them, but my favorite one would be The Book Thief.  I don’t think none of my subsequent reviews has exceeded this one…

14. Most beautiful book you bought or received this year:

It’s hard to choose only one book, so these two are what I found most beautiful.

15. Books you need to read by the end of this year:

Hard to choose, because I have so many!! But I would say the Classic books that I bought last April…

 

I tag…

Books Teacup and Reviews
Always Trust In Books
Carissa Reads It All
Maxxesbooktopia
Book Reviews by Shalini
Confessions of a Readaholic

If you don’t do tags or have done this tag already, please feel free to skip it and don’t feel obliged to do this twice!
If any of you are interested in doing this tag, consider yourself being tagged and go right ahead!

Thank you so much for reading as always and I’ll see you guys again soon! 😀

Blogger Recognition Award

I still can’t believe this is actually happening to  me; I was nominated for this award by Lauren @MyPaperInfinity!
As a non-native and a fledgling book blogger, this award nomination came as a complete surprise to me; little did I imagine such a day would come my way… I’m feeling an overwhelming sense of gratitude right now.

If you haven’t already, please hurry over to check out Lauren’s blog – her blog is jam-packed with amazing contents and great discussions not to mention the design is so pretty; it’s almost soothing to visit her blog.
Thank you so much for the tag, Lauren. I can’t thank you enough!

The Rules

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.
  • Give a brief story of how your blog started.
  • Give two pieces of advice to new bloggers.
  • Select 10 other bloggers you want to give this award to.
  • Comment on each blog and let them know you have nominated them and provide the link to the post you created.

How I Started This Blog

It was three years ago that I launched my very first blog here at WordPress. I think it was the summer of 2014 or around that time.
Writing something in English has always been a delight for me and I wanted to hone my writing skills even more by making posts on a regular basis.

However, with very little drama in my life, combined with me being a person of NO CREATIVITY, it didn’t take long for me to run out of topics to blog about. I didn’t have a specific vision nor did I know to what direction I should take my blog. Stumped, I stopped blogging altogether and let it lie dormant for about two years. It never crossed my mind to revamp and relaunch my blog during that time.

Until, I got bitten by a bookworm bug last summer. 

As I read books back to back, I started to be itching to gush and share my thoughts on books with like-minded people. Although I had already had a bunch of online friends (they are all Japanese) with whom I could chat about books, I wanted something MORE – it wasn’t like I was being ambitious and aspired to leave my mark, but I just wanted to write something and express my thoughts in English once again.

So I decided to launch this book blog on August 25th, 2016. It was in fact a decision that I made totally on a whim. It wasn’t like I thought long and hard about it, I decided to create my book blog first thing in the morning and then I published my very first post that afternoon. I just started it.

And here I am – still keep blogging after 9 months since its launch.
That’s how this fledgling book blog came into being 🙂

My Advice

I still consider myself as a newbie in this blogging community; there are still tons of things I don’t know about blogging or making reviews.
That said, if I were to offer two pieces of advice, I would say:

  1. Do your homework and have a specific vision for your blog: I think this sounds like a cliche, but this is what I learned from my own experience. Like I briefly mentioned earlier, if you don’t know what you’re doing or where you’re heading, your blog will end up disoriented with your thoughts running off in all directions.
    I’m actually speaking for myself here – there are tons of things that I need to learn. So, I make it a point of setting aside larger chunks of time to take a look at other bloggers’s posts to take in their blog styles and designs. That will definitely help.
  2. Just dive in, do the thing – and interact!: writing itself is a solitary act, but blogging is actually a social act. So the larger the audience the better, not to mention, it’s so much fun to interact with other bloggers! When I started out with this blog, I didn’t even know how to use tags to draw an audience. I just wrote up posts, published them and that was it; I had hardly anyone to give me likes or comments. I knew many of my Japanese bookish friends had been reading my posts, but I didn’t try to engage in a conversation with them back then. In retrospect, I now see it as a huge mistake. If you don’t open up and try to have conversations with other bloggers or your followers, your blogging will end up a solitary act. Once you have a solid idea for your blog, just dive in. This community is so welcoming and so kind, they even support a blogger like me; someone who’s still struggling with language issues. But I can at least say this; I am so glad that I started this blog. I’ve now made friends with a lot of wonderful, super-experienced bloggers here on WordPress and I’m enjoying every single interaction that I have with them; it definitely enriches my life and I’m so happy about that.
    So please, don’t hesitate. Just dive in. You’ll be amazed by how simple a thing can change your world.

I Tag…

I nominate these bloggers for this award. They are all experienced and amazing bloggers!

If you’ve already done this or you don’t like doing tags, please don’t feel obligated to do it!

Thank you so much for reading and I’ll talk to you all again soon! 😀

Rapid Fire Book Tag!

Hello, everybody! It’s time for another tag.

Although I wasn’t tagged by anybody (quite natural), I think it’s going to be a lot of fun to do this quick and easy tag!
This post is inspired by Jessica Marie 493’s post, so if you haven’t already, please go check that out 🙂

All right then, let’s jump right in!

 

E-books or Physical Books?
Physical books hands down. I used to read mainly on my kindle, but I’ve come to develop a distaste for the blandness which e-books (in my case, Kindle books) exude. The spacing between words seems unnatural and weird at times, and it feels like punctuating the sentence at the wrong place and disturbs my rhythm. And I HATE that.

Paperback or Hardback?
Paperbacks. unless I absolutely HATE the cover, I would pick paperback editions. It’s space-friendly, too 🙂

Online or In-store book shopping?
I do close to 99.99% of book shopping online; being in the middle of nowhere, there’s not a single bookstore that handle foreign books around here. I have no choice.
Plus, I can get the edition I really want online.

Trilogies or series?
Trilogies. Long series seems kind of intimidating…

Heroes or Villains?
Good villains any day. I’m not a picture-perfect-masculine-drop-dead-gorgeous-heroes type of reader. Plus, good villains are what makes stories more engaging and fun to read!

A book you want everyone to read?
Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë.  It’s dark, heavy, haunting but hysterically funny for some reason. Incredibly gripping and I absolutely LOVE it!

Recommend an underrated book.
I’ll skip this question because I have no idea what book is actually underrated…

The Last book you finished?
The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón. I finished reading it the night before yesterday! It was so, so goood!

Weirdest thing you used as a bookmark?
A post-it note. I rarely forget to carry around a bookmark with me wherever I go, but I totally forgot to bring one yesterday 😦

Used book, yes or no?
As long as the condition is pretty good, I don’t mind. So the answer will be YES.

Top three favorite genres?
Crime (Psychological) thrillers, YA or adult fantasy (maybe) and Classics!

Borrow or buy?
Buy. Once I find a book interesting, I’ll get hit by a strong urge to OWN it.

Characters or plot?
Maybe plot. As long as the story was well-written and intriguing, I wouldn’t mind the character being unrelatable or weakly drawn.

Long or short book?
Actually both. I don’t want to sound like a broken record, but as long as the story is gripping, the length doesn’t matter to me.

Long or short chapters?
Short chapters! It makes it easy to pick up and put down. 

Name the first three books you think of.
Six of Crows, Middlemarch, Kane and Able.

Books that make you laugh or cry?
I adore books that make me laugh and feel happy. But I’m not so into books all about cloying romance and love-triangles.

Our world or fictional worlds?
Fictional worlds Any day. I think it’s so intriguing to see what the life in the 19th Century was like!

Audiobooks: yes or no?
Audiobooks are not for me; I once tried, but once I find the narration annoying, it completely messes up my reading pace and experience. So the answer is no with a capital N.

Do you ever judge a book by its cover?
Always. Even if I found a book interesting and wanted to read, I wouldn’t pick it up if the cover was ugly or not for my liking.

Book to movie or book to TV adaptation?
Providing that the producers or the script writers don’t mess up the original story and add unnecessary scenes, both will be fine.

Series or standalone?
Preferably standalones. That said, I also love cliff-hangers.

 

Whew! What a blast answering those questions! It’s been so much fun 🙂
If any of you haven’t done this tag already, please give this a try: I will tag anyone who’s willing to try.  If I can do this, so can YOU.

Thanks so much for reading!

The Reading Habits Tag

Books and Tea

Although I have never done a tag nor have I never been tagged before, I thought it would be a lot of fun to do this tag so I decided to give it a go.
Without further ado, here we go 🙂

Questions:

1.  Do you have a certain place at home for reading? 
Yes, I do. I predominantly read on my couch and that’s actually the only place that I have for reading. I sometimes read in bed using Kindle, but reading in bed always, without fail, results in me drifting off to sleep without making much progress.

2.  Bookmark or random piece of paper?
Bookmarks any day. I always make sure that I have a bookmark whenever I carry my book around with me.

3. Can you just stop reading or do you have to stop after a chapter/ a certain amount of pages?
Preferably after a chapter or a paragraph, but basically I can stop reading wherever because life tends to get in the way.

4. Do you eat or drink while reading?
At night on weekdays, I drink coffee or cocoa to keep me awake. And I often have snacks like finger foods while reading at weekends (especially in the afternoon).

5. Multitasking: Music or TV while reading?
At home, never. Even instrumental music can be quite a distraction for me. At cafes or restaurants, it is fine unless I have someone around who keeps talking to me or talking loudly. (Basically, I’m a don’t-mess-with-me-while-reading kind of person.)

6. One book at a time or several at once?
I used to be a one-book-at-a-time kind of reader, but ever since I started buddyreading with my Twitter friend, I’ve learned to have multiple books going at once. But I would say I can only handle two books at the most.

7. Reading at home or everywhere?
Basically, everywhere. I always carry my book around and try to squeeze as much reading as I can into my spare time. So I read in hospital waiting rooms, at work, at beauty salons, literally everywhere.

8. Reading out loud or silently in your head?
Silently in my head. But I do read out loud when I feel a bit drowsy because keeping my mouth moving somehow helps to stay awake.

9. Do you read ahead or even skip pages?
Generally speaking, NO. I want the suspense of not knowing anything about the plot, so I don’t read ahead let alone skip pages.
The only exception to this is when I was reading Cress by Marissa Meyer; I was so invested in Thorne’s character thus I just couldn’t resist reading ahead to make sure if he would be OK.
Oh, and I did the same when I was reading ‘Winter’ to make sure Emperor Kai would be safe and sound.
But basically, no. I wouldn’t read ahead.

10. Breaking the spine or keeping it like new?
What really irks me is the broken spine; I JUST CAN’T STAND HAVING A STRAIGHT LINE RUNNING IN THE SPINE. Absolutely not. I want my books to be in pristine condition. My default posture when reading is holding the spine firmly with my right hand and (gently) placing my left hand to spread it open so as not to break the spine. Some may say I’m almost paranoid, but I just can’t help it.

11. Do you write in your books?
Again, ABSOLUTELY NOT. I want my books to be as beautiful as new and want them to last.
So, I would definitely avoid anything that could damage my books. If I need to, I would write on post-it notes instead.

 

There you have it – it’s been so much fun answering those questions!
I hope now you got to know me a little bit better as a reader, please let me know if you do this tag so that I can read your answers!

Thanks for reading and I’ll talk to you again soon! 😀