Sunday, October 23, 2016

Book Review: Songs To Make You Stay by Jay E. Tria

Title: Songs To Make You Stay (Playlist #3)
Author: Jay E. Tria
Published: October 9, 2016
Publisher: Self publication

Love isn't supposed to be this hard.

Now that he’s finally won Jill, the girl who's always rocked his world, you’d think life would be heaven on earth for Shinta Mori. In a way, it is. But maybe he’s underestimated the fact that he’s a hunky movie star in Japan while his girl is ruling the indie music scene all the way in Manila.

When he spends a long-awaited vacation with her--through impromptu performances, frenzied flyer distribution, and unhinged radio guestings--he realizes how imperfect his seemingly perfect life is. And he begins to wonder if what they have is strong enough to survive years of being apart.

Can Shinta prove he’s worthy of the spotlight the universe shines on him? And more importantly, deserving of the devotion of a young girl in love?

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

Hi Jay! Thank you for this awesome book of yours! I love Shinta even more now. This third book is swoony enough and I can't wait to read more of your books! I promise I'll be patiently waiting *chuckles*

Songs To Make You Stay is the third book from the Playlist series, I was excited to read this since I am really curious as to what will happen to Shinta and Jill. I could personally relate on this book, long distance relationship, busy work schedule and dreams. Shinta being a Japanese actor is a busy man and he only visit his family and girlfriend. Jill on the other hand is a band member and she's been traveling with her band mates for their gigs. 

The book is simple to read, very straight forward but you'll enjoy every part of it. It gave me different emotion while reading. The story twists makes my heart aches. Especially that one scene.. I almost cry to be honest. Playlist series won't be the same without these characters. 

AND!!! readers must look out for the songs written on this book! The lyrics are lovely! 

I won't make this long now, I am trying not to spill the story. All I could say is that this book is a must read! ^_^

My Ratings

Hi! I'm a writer of contemporary Young Adult and New Adult romance. These days I'm writing paranormal/fantasy too, and it's a fun exercise. I'm often inspired by daydreams, celebrity crushes, a childhood fascination of Japanese drama and manga, and an incessant itch to travel.

Playlist #3: Songs to Make You Stay

Also by Jay:
Playlist #1: Songs of Our Breakup
Playlist #2: Songs to Get Over You
That Thing Called Closure (A Playlist Short Track on #WriteBreakupSongsAbout

Blossom Among Flowers

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Book Tour: No Holding Back by Kate Evangelista

Title: No Holding Back
Author: Kate Evangelista
Published: October 18, 2016
Publisher: Swoon Reads

A romantic European vacation is the perfect excuse to let go in this highly anticipated sequel to No Love Allowed by Kate Evangelista

Everyone knows that Nathan is in love with his best friend, Preston…Everyone except Preston. Nathan has always accepted that Preston was too focused on his swim training to worry about love. But Preston is heading off to train for the Olympics soon, so if Nathan wants his chance at love, he has to speak up now. But saying “I love you” is surprisingly difficult, even for someone as confident as Nathan. Maybe a whirlwind vacation in Europe could help? But… what if it doesn’t work out and he loses the best friend he’s ever had?

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.


First of all, thank you for giving me a chance to review this book, I am glad to be part of this book tour. I've been looking forward for this new book of Kate Evangelista since I heard about this, adding up that this book is an LGBT, it made me curious and excited at the same time.

"Be careful. Love is like acid in the veins. It eats you from the inside out until there is nothing left."

I had a great time reading the book, I felt Nathan's dilemma and endeavor during the Europe trip. Hiding his true feelings is really challenging on his side. Preston on the other hand is the typical guy, my first impression is that he's sort of a heartbreaker. But I guess I'm wrong. Nathan and Preston together is dainty. Their story gives excitement and happiness in my heart and I think this is one of the great books that I've read so far. To be honest I do read this book when I came home from work and it is very relaxing. 

"Maybe there are some things people won't understand no matter how much you explain it to them."

I hope this book will have a second book. I'm not ready yet I want more of Nathan and Preston! they are both charming. Their story is impossible to hate.

My Ratings

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.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Book Review: Ignite The Shadows by Ingrid Seymour

Title: Ignite The Shadows
Author: Ingrid Seymour
Published: October 22, 2015
Publisher: Harper Voyager 

Sixteen-year-old Marci Guerrero is one of the best teen hackers in Seattle. However, she’d give up all her talents to know she isn’t crazy.

Marci feels possessed by what she perceives as shadowy spectres that take control of her body and make her do crazy things. While spying on the clandestine group known as IgNiTe, she’s confronted by the leader, James McCray. His presence stirs the specters inside her brain into a maddening frenzy. Her symptoms and ability to control them don’t go unnoticed by James, who soon recruits her and shows her the awful truth.

Half of the world’s population is infected by sentient parasites. They bind themselves to the human brain and replace the pathways for all thoughts and actions. The creatures then morph their hosts into grotesque monsters with extraordinary strengths. Winged, clawed, fanged half-humans become living nightmares. Now Marci wishes she was crazy, because the truth is worse.

She’s infected.

Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

First of all, thank you to the author for giving me the chance to review her book. The first time I saw this one, all I could think was "I want to read this book!!!" and that was the reason why I agreed to review the book. Aside from that, I was curious and the book cover is stunning!

Reading the first few chapters of Ignite the Shadows is confusing. I kept asking myself "what shadows?!", "is this another horror type book?" but as I continue reading, I understood fully what the book was all about and I was amazed how the author did the twists and turns of the story. One more thing I love here was I could relate to the main character Marci -- that's because she's into IT, she's a programmer and I was one too! -- she's adorable in her own way but at the same time annoying because of her in denial attitude. 

"Smile when you don't want to cry"

The book isn't just sci-fi it also contains a budding romance between Marci and her best friend Xave. But like I've mentioned, Marci's in denial so the real question is, will they have a real relationship? I myself is hopeful! They look good together. What more I love about this book were the secrets behind each character. For example, James, he knew he's something? Who knew that Marci and James have something in common? Also the other people. The people in this book was like living somewhere were you don't know who the real person is. 

The ending of the book... UGGHHH!!! another revelation that makes me want to read the next book! Is it available already??? please say yes... that ending was something! I knew there's something about Marci's brother, but it still gave me goosebumps! I can't wait for the book two!!! 

Before I wrapped up... Ignite The Shadows, is a wonderful book! I was delighted and fell in love with the characters in this book. I want this book in my hands, a physical copy of it! Wish I could find one sooner. Such a great read!

"Lies are not a good foundation for any type of relationship"

My Ratings

Ingrid Seymour is the author of IGNITE THE SHADOWS (Harper Voyager). When she’s not writing books, she spends her time working as a software engineer, cooking exotic recipes, hanging out with her family and working out. She writes young adult and new adult fiction in a variety of genres, including Sci-Fi, urban fantasy, romance, paranormal and horror.

Her favorite outings involve a trip to the library or bookstore where she immediately gravitates toward the YA section. She’s an avid reader and fangirl of many amazing books. She is a dreamer and a fighter who believes perseverance and hard work can make dreams come true.

She lives in Birmingham, AL with her husband, two kids and a cat named Mimi.

Source: Goodreads

Friday, October 14, 2016

Book Tour: Something In Between by Melissa De La Cruz

Title: Something In Between
Author: Melissa De La Cruz
Published: October 04, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen

It feels like there’s no ground beneath me, like everything I’ve ever done has been a lie. Like I’m breaking apart, shattering. Who am I? Where do I belong?

Jasmine de los Santos has always done what’s expected of her. Pretty and popular, she’s studied hard, made her Filipino immigrant parents proud and is ready to reap the rewards in the form of a full college scholarship.

And then everything shatters. A national scholar award invitation compels her parents to reveal the truth: their visas expired years ago. Her entire family is illegal. That means no scholarships, maybe no college at all and the very real threat of deportation.

For the first time, Jasmine rebels, trying all those teen things she never had time for in the past. Even as she’s trying to make sense of her new world, it’s turned upside down by Royce Blakely, the charming son of a high-ranking congressman. Jasmine no longer has any idea where—or if—she fits into the American Dream. All she knows is that she’s not giving up. Because when the rules you lived by no longer apply, the only thing to do is make up your own.
--- EXCERPT ---
** book review will be up soon! **

“I could start working,” I say. “I’ll give up cheer and get a job.” If they can work with fake papers, so can I.
“No, Jasmine,” Dad says. “You have to focus on school.”
But why? I think. Why focus on school if we can’t afford to send me to college anyway? Not without a scholarship, and I can’t get one if I’m not a citizen or a legal resident.
“Absolutely not,” Mom says. She reaches across the table and grabs my hands. “You need to keep your focus on school. There must be scholarships or grants other than government ones. Maybe we can take out a private loan or something.”
But how, I want to say. She’s in denial, I think.
“We’ll figure it out. You deserve to go,” she tells me.
“And you deserve better than cleaning up other people’s messes, Mom,” I say. “You could get a different kind of job.”
Dad scoffs. “That’s not going to happen without citizenship. Or at least another set of fake papers.”
“I’m tired of lying,” Mom says. “We need to do things the right way.”
Mom tells us that she’s found several lawyers who help undocumented people, but they’re all shady. “It’s a scam. They want too much money. Isn’t there an alliance out there of lawyers who want to help people like us who are already here and have been for years?”
“Better to leave it alone,” Dad says. “Fly under the radar. These issues are debated on the news every day. Politicians never solve the problems. They just talk. Worrying about it isn’t going to fix anything.”
“What if your boss finds out you’re illegal?” Mom asks. “How do you know my supervisor won’t call your boss? How do you know they won’t send someone to the house? Is that how you want to live? Just waiting for the hammer to fall?”
“There’s no hammer,” Dad says. “We just got unlucky. Thousands of undocumented workers live in Los Angeles. What are they going to do? Deport all of us? Take a month off. You need the break.”
“No,” Mom says. “We need the money. I’ll get another job. I’ve done it before. I can do it again. It just might take time to find the right one.”
Despite our arguments, I love how my mother can be so tough. She may have a little breakdown, but then she’s back up on her feet, fighting for herself again.
I’m a fighter too.
I run to my room and pull the award letter out of my jewelry box. There’s a contact email at the top. Suzanne Roberts. Liaison for the United States Department of Education.
I immediately type out a message on my phone apologizing for being so late and wondering if I can still attend the dinner. Can they schedule a last-minute flight for me? Am I too late? Did I miss the greatest opportunity I’ve had in my whole life?

Melissa de la Cruz is the New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of many critically acclaimed and award-winning novels for teens including The Au Pairs series, the Blue Bloods series, the Ashleys series, the Angels on Sunset Boulevard series and the semi-autobiographical novel Fresh off the Boat.

Her books for adults include the novel Cat’s Meow, the anthology Girls Who Like Boys Who Like Boys and the tongue-in-chic handbooks How to Become Famous in Two Weeks or Less and The Fashionista Files: Adventures in Four-inch heels and Faux-Pas.

She has worked as a fashion and beauty editor and has written for many publications including The New York Times, Marie Claire, Harper’s Bazaar, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Allure, The San Francisco Chronicle, McSweeney’s, Teen Vogue, CosmoGirl! and Seventeen. She has also appeared as an expert on fashion, trends and fame for CNN, E! and FoxNews.

Melissa grew up in Manila and moved to San Francisco with her family, where she graduated high school salutatorian from The Convent of the Sacred Heart. She majored in art history and English at Columbia University (and minored in nightclubs and shopping!).

She now divides her time between New York and Los Angeles, where she lives in the Hollywood Hills with her husband and daughter.

Source: Goodreads

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Book Review: As I Descended by Robin Talley

Title: As I Descended
Author: Robin Talley
Published: September 06, 2016
Publisher: HarperTeen

Maria Lyon and Lily Boiten are their school’s ultimate power couple—even if no one knows it but them.

Only one thing stands between them and their perfect future: campus superstar Delilah Dufrey.

Golden child Delilah is a legend at the exclusive Acheron Academy, and the presumptive winner of the distinguished Cawdor Kingsley Prize. She runs the school, and if she chose, she could blow up Maria and Lily’s whole world with a pointed look, or a carefully placed word.

But what Delilah doesn’t know is that Lily and Maria are willing to do anything—absolutely anything—to make their dreams come true. And the first step is unseating Delilah for the Kingsley Prize. The full scholarship, awarded to Maria, will lock in her attendance at Stanford―and four more years in a shared dorm room with Lily.

Maria and Lily will stop at nothing to ensure their victory—including harnessing the dark power long rumored to be present on the former plantation that houses their school.

But when feuds turn to fatalities, and madness begins to blur the distinction between what’s real and what is imagined, the girls must decide where they draw the line.

From acclaimed author Robin Talley comes a Shakespeare-inspired story of revenge and redemption, where fair is foul, and foul is fair.

*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of an honest review. No payments made between me and the publisher.

This book was a retelling of Macbeth, and if you will ask me if I already read that book? No. I don't know anything about it and that won't affect my review. With all honesty this book actually made me want to read Macbeth, I'm just curious what made the author retell this piece of book. I guess somehow this book pushed me to something I don't do before and reading a Shakespeare book is one. I'm nervous and excited at the same time because I'm not sure if I will enjoy that book or not.

As I Descended scared the hell out of me!!! Told you I did't read Macbeth so I didn't expect the ghosts part, and I didn't read the blurb too! LOL. pardon me. I love it when books surprise me so I don't read the blurb much.

"That was the thing about fate. It was bigger than anyone of them."

I really enjoyed reading this book and it was a bit challenging on my side since I don't want to read it at night in the fear of dreaming the scenes in the book. I could imagine the scary parts and it was like I'm watching a horror movie, so I decided to read it only in the morning. It is challenging because it is not my usual forte as much as possible I avoid reading creepy books but this one is an exception. I enjoyed reading because of my curiosity too, aside from that, I'm so eager to know what will happen at the end of the book, I had a guess but... of course I won't give any spoilers on this review.

Aside from the creepy part which is challenging, the LGBT theme of this book somehow surprised me. It wasn't bad or anything negative, I'm just not used to reading lesbians stories, gay stories, I've read many times, but I think this was the first time for me to read anything lesbian involved. That challenge added more eagerness to continue reading. And like I've said from my first paragraph, this made me want to read Macbeth. Not sure, maybe sometimes it is good to shift genres right?

For people who loves to read this kind of stories I bet you'll enjoy it. The book itself is amazing! and the cover is so catchy! as far as I remember, this is also the first book I've read from Robin Talley and just... wow! I liked the book. It does have hidden lessons in between the pages, which I've been thinking for a while now. I guess reading books will really change the way you think.

"Everybody wants to win, but you don't just turn around and destroy somebody's entire life to get there."

My Ratings

I live in Washington, D.C., with my wife, our baby daughter, an antisocial cat and a goofy hound dog. Whenever the baby's sleeping, I'm probably busy writing young adult fiction about queer characters, reading books, and having in-depth conversations with friends and family about things like whether Jasmine's character motivation was sufficiently established in Aladdin.

AUTHOR LINKS: | Twitter | Tumblr

Source: Goodreads

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