Monthly Wrap Up: June 2016

Books, Monthly Wrap Up

month

Hello my lovely book-loving friends!

HOLY COW IT’S ALREADY BEEN A MONTH SINCE I’VE STARTED BLOGGING!

It’s hard to believe that the month of June is finally ending and to realize that I have officially been blogging for one month! Thank you to all those who have provided unending support and love. It’s hard to believe how far this blog has advanced along with how much I’ve learned not only about books, but about blogging.

I’ve made a whole lot more progress on this blog than expected, I’ve gained 30+ wonderful followers along with discovering more blogs that have expanded the world of books for me. I’m so excited to see where this blog will go!


Reviews:

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Tuesday’s With Morrie by Mitch Albom

My first review ever, was of Tuesday’s With Morrie. This book was such a blessing to me as it dealt with many philosophical topics that are commonly pondered about in this day and age. If you want to see a couple of things I learned from this book, make sure to check out this review (since I wasn’t really sure what I was doing with my first post, this is mainly more what I garnered from the book.)

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The Memory Keeper’s Daughter by Kim Edwards

This book was definitely an interesting read that dealt with a subject of autism, and the stigma attached to it. Although there were many aspects I loved, there were things that I wished this book had. I’m glad I was able to read this book though, as I learned about the intense burden that accompanies secrets.

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The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Philipp Sendker

I really enjoyed the juxtaposing of two cultures that Julia experiences. I was pleasantly shocked by the simplicity and peaceful nature of the Burmese culture, and enjoyed following Julia in her journey of learning of her father’s past, while trying to root her identity in the Burmese culture.

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Vicious by V.E Schwab

This book has become a favorite of mine, and I enjoyed reading the entire thing. From start to finish, I was engaged and excited. I was able to stumble upon this book on another book lover blog, and was able to realize how amazing the blogging community really is. I have been able discover amazing books, and new wonderful authors.

Although I only posted four book reviews, I did read three other books. Although this seems like a small number, it’s a big jump from the amount I was reading before school ended. I’m so glad that lately I’ve been making reading a priority, and hopefully the number of reviews also increase!


Wordless Wednesday:

This month, I posted three times for my Wordless Wednesday post in which I write about non-bookish things. These were just fun posts that were meant to provide some insight into what I enjoy!

Movies

Recipes

Travel


Thursday Quotables:

These were some of my favorite posts, when I picked a book and extracted some of my favorite quotes from them, along with adding a fun explanation. Maybe I’ll try making this into a tag one day!

This Side of Paradise

The Kite Runner

The Joy Luck Club

Stargirl


Misc bookish things:

June TBR

#SaveTheClassics

What I’m Reading Right Now

Monday Update

Book Fangirling Blog Award

Bookish Booklover Tag


I’ve also decided to begin accepting books for review! You can see my new review policy here. I’m so thankful to see how far this blog has gone, and can’t wait to see where it goes in the future!

What are some things you accomplished this month? Are you excited for July?

The Bookish Booklover Tag

Books, Tag

Hello my lovely friends! I was tagged by Sammie over at Bookshelves and Biros to do the Bookish Book Lover tag, and I had so much fun participating. Sammie is quite lovely, so please go check out her amazing blog. 🙂 This tag was originally created by Shantelle.

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The Rules

  • Use the original banner
  • Answer the questions!
  • Use lots of book covers
  • Tag your friends

Questions

What book are you currently reading?

I am currently reading The Time Travelers Wife  which I’ve desperately been attempting to finish. I’m only on page 114, and can’t wait to find time to finish!

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What’s the last book you finished?

The last book I finished is A Well-Tempered Heart which is the second book in a two part series written by Jan-Philipp Sendke. This book was actually translated from German, and I’d have to say had very cliche but unique ending.

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Favourite book you read this year?

Ooooh, for this one I’ll have to go classical and say Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Although it was hard to get through, the discussions and amount of thought that this book engendered was definitely important to me. This is a book that I believe has forced me to think the most.

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What genre have you read most this year?

Because of the literature class I was in this year, I’d have to say so far the genre I have read the most is classical. Although I have no complaints about this, (I love classics), it was difficult to squeeze in any other reading.

What genre have you read least this year?

Sci-fi, I’ve never been that intrigued or interested until recently. I truly want to dive in and read some books from this genre.

What genre do you want to read more of?

Fantasy and young adult. Both are two of my favorite, and it saddens me to realize how little time I’ve spent devoted to both.

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How many books have you read this year, and what’s your goal?

So far, I’ve read around fourteen books (that I can remember off the top of my head) According to goodreads (which I’ll shamefully admit, I haven’t made a habit of updating regularly), I’ve only read eleven. My goal is to read as much as possible, but if I had to put a number, 50.

What’s the last book you bought?

The last book I bought was Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstres by Dai Sijie. Which I actually bought a couple of weeks ago. I did a huge book haul recently of free books (which I promise to post about) but I’m not sure that really counts.

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What book are you saving up to buy next?

I really want to read The Way I Used To Be by Amber Smith, but honestly there are so many books I’d love to read that I’m not sure which book I’m saving up for next. To be honest, I normally pick a book that is on my radar the day I have any spending money.

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How many books did you check out last library visit?

I didn’t bring a bag with me, and that visit was a very impromptu visit that I only checked out seven.

What’s a book you can’t wait to read?

I really want to begin the Raven Cycle series, so The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater would be my answer. I feel so busy trying to keep up with already released books I want to read, that I feel as if I can’t keep up with books that are to be released.

What’s a series you’d recommend to everyone?

I can’t say that I’ve read lots of series lately (if I have time, I’ll devour a book at a time), but the Percy Jackson series has always been a favorite of mine, and one that everyone should read!

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Who’s an author you’re hoping writes more?

Lately I’ve been obsessed with Victoria Schwab. She really writes in a manner that is engaging and intense, and I can’t wait to read her books, and all the books that are to come!

A few books your heart adores?

Books that engender the best memories include The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brain Selznick, The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein, and Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. (I know, an odd selection of books.)

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What series’ coming conclusion makes you sad?

Once again, I haven’t been invested in a series for a while… So I’ll just leave this one blank. I’d have to say, any good book I have to finish makes me sad! While I’m reading, I want to get to the end, but by the end, I want the book to keep going!

What books are on your wish-list?

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han. Cinder by Marissa Meyer, and I could go on and on and on and on, but for your sakes, I’ll end it here.

 

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I Nominate

Holly @ Nut Free Nerd

Beth @ Reading Every Night

Shannon @ Clockwork Bibliophile

Nazahet @ Read Diverse Books

Book Fangirling Blog Award

Blog Award, Books, Tag

Hello my lovely friends! I’m so excited to share with you that I have been tagged by Beth (check out her delightful blog at Reading Every Night) for the Book Fangirling Blog Award. Thank you Beth for this wonderful nomination! Although I fangirl over certain books, it’s more common to find me in a sort of daze after a really good book. Once that period of time is over, however, you’ll find me talking nonstop about the amazing book I just read!

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Rules:

  • Create a post to accept your award.
  • Add the blog award button into your post and put it on the side of your blog as a widget. Visit fangirling for the award button.
  • Answer the questions I have below.
  • Nominate between 5-10 book bloggers who you think also deserve this award.
  • Come up with your own 5 questions for your nominees.

Beth’s Questions

1. The three main characters from the last three books you read are your partners in the zombie apocalypse. Who are they and do you think you’d survive the outbreak?

The last three books I’ve read are Vicious by V.E Schwab (my review here), The Art of Hearing Heartbeats by Jan-Phillipp Sendker (review here) and The End of Everything by Megan Abbott. Honestly, if Victor from Vicious were by my side, I wouldn’t have any qualms about a zombie apocalypse. But the remaining two characters leave something to be desired. Julia in The Art of Hearing Heartbeats is a bit weak, and is the average young adult that lives in New York. If Julia’s father, Tin Win, on the other hand were to join, I’d be more than happy to let him in my posse. Tin Win has the ability to hear the heartbeats of others, and is constantly very poised, calm and confident. Lizzie from The End of Everything is the typical teen who doesn’t do much within the book action-wise. I’d have to say, I’d probably be the first to perish in the zombie apocalypse.

2. If you could take one thing, be it a place, an event, a character, an object, out of any book and make it real what would you pick?

Narnia, this series was a childhood favorite, and to imagine another world I could escape to just in my wardrobe, would be amazing. Plus all the characters within that world seem magical and beautiful, and even till today, that place has such a strong hold on me!

3. The world is ending and you have just enough time to read one book, what would you choose and why?

 This is definitely a hard one. I feel as if at that point, I’d frantically be finding my friends and families how much I love them, not reading a book… But I’d definitely want to reread Love You Forever by Robert Munsch. I know this is a children’s picture book, but it was read to me as a child, and I cherish the memories that follow.

4. What is one thing you wish there was more of in the world?

Forgiveness, so many of the world’s problems seems to hinge on grudges, bitterness and unresolved problems. I believe that it is possible for us to live with more love, happiness and joy when everyone is able to put down their differences, forgive and move on with life. Imagine how many world problems would be solved when disputes are resolved and everyone is able to make decisions without bitterness and resentment.

5. If you could have any superpower what would you choose, and what would be your origin story?

The superpower I would choose would be mind-manipulation. This way I can convince others to do things for me, although I do believe this to be the most dangerous superpower out there.Although I’m not sure what my origin story would be, I’d definitely want to not know about my power until one day when I realize something’s wrong with me. Almost like a coming of age story, and then I have to battle with the moral implications of using my power.


I nominate

Holly @ Nut Free Nerd

Reg @ She Latitude

Shealea @ That Bookshelf Bitch

Orang-utan Librarian

Trang @ Bookidote


My Questions

  1. What is your favorite color? And what character embodies that character best?
  2. Is there a book that embodies who you are? What book is it and why?
  3. Who is your last book crush and why?
  4. Where do you enjoy reading the most?
  5. What does your dream library look like?

Monday Update: 6.27.16

Monday Update, Uncategorized

Hello my lovely friends! First off, my apologies for not posting as regularly as I’d hope, the past week/weekend has just been a flurry of rehearsals, practice, *insert breakdown*, rehearsals and more practice.

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I wanted to share with all of you a couple of things I’ve been up to, just to provide more insight into who I am, and to maybe excuse how I’ve been slacking. Here are a couple of things that I’ve been occupied with.

My Senior Recital

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I’ve been playing piano since the age of five, and began violin at the age of ten. In lieu of having a senior party (I just graduated from high school this year), I decided to have a recital to commemorate the many hours I’ve devoted being a slave to my violin. My twin, will be performing the piano, while I focus on playing the violin. Here is the list of pieces I will be performing-I’ve linked a youtube video for each:

Beethoven’s Romanze in F

Handel-Halvorsen’s Passacaglia

B Rossette (this is an OST for an amazing Korean drama)

Elgar’s Salut d’ Amour

My brother will be accompanying me in the Salut d’Amour, and will be performing two pieces himself. Luckily, this recital is tomorrow, so I will soon be finished with the busy flurry of planning rehearsals, practicing and convincing people to come!

My Brother

Yes, the same brother who is playing at my senior recital, is also leaving the next day to begin his summer training at the Naval Academy. He will be heading out to Maryland and will begin attending a the very prestigious and renowned institution in Annapolis. No, this is not just a military base, but an academy on the same boat (haha get it?) as Westpoint.

My Trip to Korea

As I talked about in my Wordless Wednesday post, I will be flying out to Korea next week for about a month. During this time, I have scheduled a couple of posts (including tags that I have been nominated for… Yes, I do promise to post those soon!). Preparations have been frantic, as I’ve been balancing scheduling this recital and making sure everything is ready for this trip! I’ve also been trying to brush up on the Korean language lately. I am able to speak fluently, but writing and reading are still a bit shaky.

Fortunately, I’ll be able to catch up on a lot of reading during my plane ride, and I’m hoping to find some time and a computer to continue blogging, but please forgive me if I’m not as regular as before!

Work life

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Normally summer means a time to read loads of books, and relax, but this year I have begun working XXXX. Because of my eight hour work days, it’s been quite the transition to balance work and play this summer. My coworkers are amazing, and I surprisingly enjoy working in a very spacious cubicle with a nice chair, heater, and green tea. Lately, things have been hectic here at work as well, and I’ve barely had time to sit down and take a short break with a book!

YOU!

I truly enjoy reading your posts, commenting and discovering what books to read next! Sometimes, I get too carried away by all the amazing things everyone rights to actually post anything of my own. Fear not! I promise that as soon as everything settles down, I will be devoting as much time as possible to making sure this blog is continues to pique your interest.

In terms of books…

I am currently still reading The Time Traveler’s Wife whenever I have any down time. Even though I love to read before falling asleep, I’ve been finding myself jumping in bed, and immediately hitting the hay without the leisure of finishing a book. I cannot wait until this season of stress is over! Thank you for your patience.

Happy Readings!

 

Thursday Quotables: 6.23.16

Books, Novel, Thursday Quotables, Young Adult

//book: Stargirl // author: Jerry Spinelli // genre: novel // young adult //  goodreads

Hello my lovely friends! Today, I will be taking quotes from one of my childhood favorite books. This book was my go to read, and I remember reading it over, and over, and over again, without ever getting bored! I loved the free spirit the girl possessed, and was enchanted by her personality. ALSO, THIS BOOK IS ABOUT TO BE TURNED INTO A MOVIE! It is yet to be announced when it will be in theaters. (I’m super excited… can you tell?)

Synopsis from goodreads:

From the day she arrives at quiet Mica High in a burst of color and sound, hallways hum “Stargirl.” She captures Leo Borlock’s heart with one smile. She sparks a school-spirit revolution with one cheer. The students of Mica High are enchanted. Until they are not. Leo urges her to become the very thing that can destroy her – normal.

More than a love story, this novel deals with the pains of being “normal” and the suppressing power of trying to fit in. Stargirl possesses the magic of being unique, kind and grateful. Her quirky personality, captures the interest of the entire school, until the school discovers that her spirit is “too different”. Leo, is then forced to choose between a girl he loves and the in-crowd.

The most beautiful part about Stargirl, is her ability to appreciate and connect with others. She memorizes birthdays, names and small things that others would probably ignore. She is willing to do most anything for anyone. Stargirl is comfortable with being an outcast, and only attempts to change in order to appease the boy she likes (Leo).

She was elusive. She was today. She was tomorrow. She was the faintest scent of a cactus flower, the flitting shadow of an elf owl. We did not know what to make of her. In our minds we tried to pin her to corkboard like a butterfly, but the pin merely went through and away she flew.

This is such an accurate description of the essence of Stargirl. She was truly a girl that no one could understand, nor pin down. In their attempts to mold her into something “normal” she would simply slip away, and continue to be who she wanted to be. Of course, the school’s inability to understand who she was, ended up causing her downfall.

He stared at me. “She liked you, boy.” The intensity of his voice and eyes made me blink.
“Yes,” I said.
“She did it for you, you know.”
“What?”
“Gave up her self, for a while there. She loved you that much. What an incredibly lucky kid you were.”

Not only was Stargirl genuine and true to herself, she was able to understand the true meaning of love and the sacrifice that accompanies it. Instead of worrying about what others thought, Stargirl placed a higher importance in those that she loved, and those that loved her. In an attempt to please Leo, Stargirl gave up herself. This is the biggest sacrifice that one can make. I believe that Stargirl not only showed the importance of being unique, but of giving love.

I’m erased. I’m gone. I’m nothing. And then the world is free to flow into me like water into an empty bowl…. And… I see. I hear. But not with eyes and ears. I’m not outside my world anymore, and I’m not really inside it either. The thing is, there’s no difference between me and the universe. The boundary is gone. I am it and it is me. I am a stone, a cactus thorn. I am rain. I like that most of all, being rain.

When Stargirl demonstrated to Leo the power of meditation, I was amazed by her tranquility and tried it again and again and again. I must say, I never succeeded in becoming nothing, but I was able to understand the power Stargirl possessed to hold such power over herself. She was able to become nothing, one with nature and the universe. Her connection with nature is very apparent and beautiful throughout this book. And I think we all need a glimmer of that in our lives.

“She taught me to revel. She taught me to wonder. She taught me to laugh.

I hope we all meet someone like Stargirl one day. Someone who teaches us that it’s ok to stand out, to be different, to love, to laugh. The impact she made on Leo’s life is amazing, and to realize how easily he gave her up cautions us to be mindful and more understanding of the people around us. Sometimes the one we push away, is the one who has shaped our identity the most.

This book truly helped me to realize the detriments of conformity and convinced me to be kind, even if it may be unconventional. The power of peer pressure, and the scary truth behind conformity was also brought to my attention, and each time I put down the book, I was reminded to always be kind, thoughtful and genuine to each and every person I met. This is a must read for anyone of any age, as it deals with important topics in a manner that is engaging and thought-provoking.

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What I’m Reading Right Now: 6.22.16

Books, Novel, Romance, What I'm Reading Right Now

Hello my lovely friends!

Today, instead of following my normal routine of posting a “Wordless Wednesday”, I’d like to share with you what I have been reading for the past few days. I recently had a huge book haul (and as soon as the post goes up, I will link it here), and was able to pick up this book that I had been meaning to read for a long time. The Time Traveler’s Wife, has been on my radar for a while, and after finishing up a short, summery novel-which I know, I haven’t posted a review yet-I thought this was a perfect pick to read next.

Synopsis from goodreads:

Audrey Niffenegger’s dazzling debut is the story of Clare, a beautiful, strong-minded art student, and Henry, an adventuresome librarian, who have known each other since Clare was six and Henry was thirty-six, and were married when Clare was twenty-three and Henry thirty-one. Impossible but true, because Henry is one of the first people diagnosed with Chrono-Displacement Disorder: his genetic clock randomly resets and he finds himself misplaced in time, pulled to moments of emotional gravity from his life, past and future. His disappearances are spontaneous and unpredictable, and lend a spectacular urgency to Clare and Henry’s unconventional love story. That their attempt to live normal lives together is threatened by something they can neither prevent nor control makes their story intensely moving and entirely unforgettable.

This novel can be seen as treacherously confusing with the constant switching from past to present, Henry’s point of view, to Clare’s. However, so far I have found that it adds dimension to the novel as each character’s development and personality can better be elaborated on. Although I am only in the rising action segment of the novel, and have only reached the point in which the characters are falling deeply in love with each other, the conflict is clearly present. Being a time traveler means that Clare is often lonely, left alone and yearning for a normal relationship.

The reason that I haven’t devoured this novel so quickly, is that it is constantly dragged down by mundane details and the over-detailing of seemingly useless information. Although this could be foreshadowing for upcoming events, I find it difficult to follow the story when there are too many specifics. So far, the topic that has been most touched on is the interfering with destiny, and whether or not fate is real. Questions about God, and identity have also been addressed, and it has been interesting seeing how each character copes with the burdensome knowledge of  something that most would fail to believe. This secret, however, brings both characters closer together as it becomes a bond that may soon destruct itself.

Hopefully this book becomes more engaging as the plot thickens, and I look forward to seeing what sort of love story has drawn so many readers into falling in love with this book!

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Review: Vicious

Books, Novel, Young Adult

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:: author: V.E. Schwab :: published: 2013 :: my rating: 5/5 :: genre: novel :: fantasy :: young adult :: goodreads

Hello my lovely friends! Today, I want to share with you a book that I couldn’t put down. This novel was part of my June TBR list, and I cannot wait to add more books by V.E Schwab. Vicious demonstrates the fragility of friendship, destructive  nature of power, and the influential detriments of knowledge.


Synopsis from goodreads:

Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?


My Review (No spoilers, I promise..):

From the beginning to finish, I COULD NOT PUT THIS BOOK DOWN!

Filled with extraordinary humans, superheroes and suspense, this is not your typical young adult novel. The plot developed beautifully, and the ending was amazing. (Now I normally hate the endings of books because something is always missing.. But Schwab tied up loose ends, and did it with flair!) This book touches on friendship, betrayal, ambition and jealousy in such a realistic manner. Although the individuals in this book are far from normal, their down to earth personality and emotion makes this book more relateable.

Victor, the main character in this book, is seeking revenge towards a friend he feel has betrayed him. Initially, Victor’s motive for revenge seems amiss, and it is not hard to believe that this guy has some problems in the social realm. Luckily for him, during his university years, Victor is able to meet a young man, Eli. Eli is different from those around him, and soon a friendship ensues. This relationship is obviously very fragile as it is built on a sense of admiration and bitter jealousy. It is particularly interesting to see how Victor is drawn to the potential of evil Eli holds. When Eli discovers the mechanism to turn humans into EO’s (extra-ordinary). This opportunity for power eventually tears the relationship apart as each try to understand their newfound powers.

Schwab does a wonderful job in painting a fine line between good guys and bad guys. My personal favorite aspect of this book, was the portrayal of how ambition to be a hero, can ultimately make you a villain. It helped me to realize that often the worst of humans believe they are working towards the benefit of society, when in reality, they may be doing the opposite. The contrast Schwab creates by traveling back and forth in the lifetimes of each character, gifts the reader assist with the character development, and allows a greater understanding between each character and reader.

The characters are well developed, and each has a dark side that is hidden beneath their calm facades. Each had a vulnerable side as well that made their faults more forgivable. Definitely a twist on the normal hero-villain story, this book is a must read for anyone in need of a good book.


Favorite quotes:

“Plenty of humans were monstrous, and plenty of monsters knew how to play at being human.”

One of the main ideas in this book is the creation of monsters.Once humans are able to function outside of the “normal” realm and are handed immense power, they can easily become monsters. The idea that as humans, we are able to become monstrous, and how easy it is to create a facade for ourselves is not only true in this book, but in real life.

“You’re the hero…,” she said, finding his eyes,”…of your own story anyway.”

Eli works so hard to achieve what he believes is necessary in preserving the human race. He understands the destructive power of the abilities they have created, and wants to shield the world from the danger. The saying that “two wrongs don’t make a right” is proven by Eli’s actions. Ultimately, everyone is the hero in their own stories.

PLEASE PLEEAASEEE READ! You will not regret picking up this novel!


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Thursday Quotables: 6.16.16

Books, Novel, Thursday Quotables

//book: The Joy Luck Club // author: Amy Tan // genre: novel // goodreads

Hello my lovely friends. Today I will be presenting a selection of quotes from the Joy Luck Club by Amy Tan. I love the say each saying offers a unique perspective to many topics that are near and dear to all of us. I especially like the way Amy Tan is able to portray the Asian culture, and to shed light on the contrasting Asian and American culture. Furthermore, the mother daughter relationship that Tan paints, is one that anyone can relate to, although it is deeply entrenched in Asian culture.

Being able to empathize with the characters, and to explore their relationships has been genuinely exciting for me as I have been able to empathize with them and find similarities in my life.  From the child’s perspective on the pressures that are exerted on her, to the desperation each mother feels to raise their child to be successfully, is beautifully portrayed. Enjoy!

“Isn’t hate merely the result of wounded love?”

It is impossible to hate others without a sense of broken trust. To hate another race, religion or person is merely the offspring of a failed relationship that has spread to encompass others. Hatred and fear go hand in hand, and often it is the fear of being hurt that brings about hatred. I believe that this line clearly juxtaposed two opposing themes that many view as mutually exclusive. However, love and hate go hand in hand.

“Your tears do not wash away your sorrows. They feed someone else’s joy. And that is why you must learn to swallow your own tears.”
This piece of advice struck home in the competition culture that many live by. They believe that vulnerability is the greatest weakness, and to exude any sort of emotion is to be the weaker person. Thus, many times, we are taught to swallow our fears, humiliations and failures, only to find ourselves isolated and at a loss. Although I find this to be  a lyrical line that captures the culture, I believe that at times, it is essential to cry and to share that moment with someone.
“And I think now that fate is shaped half by expectation, half by inattention. But somehow, when you lose something you love, faith takes over..
As many believe, you create your own fate. Yet often, it is created by your own carelessness. If we were to intuned with our lives, we would never realize what fate could do for us. The second sentence resonates clearly, and is universally true. When something you love is taken from you, you no longer have an anchor. It is during that time, that it becomes essential to turn to faith. And to allow your hopes and dreams to carry you.
“Your life is what you see in front of you.
How you see the glass as half empty, or half full, is how you see your life. Don’t look to the past, but to the future. What you have in store for you, what is awaiting you, is your life. Furthermore, what you see in your life, becomes your life. If only bad awaits, your life is bad. This quote is a startling reminder of the simplicity of a good life that many fail to grasp.
This book was truly a great read, and I had trouble putting it down. Amy Tan never ceases to amaze me with her insight into mother-daughter relationships and her experience as an Asian in America. Read this book to gain a new perspective on how immigrants create/maintain relationships and try to succeed as a stranger in a foreign land.
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Wordless Wednesday: 6.15.16

Bucket List, Know Korea, Travel, Wordless Wednesday

know korea

Hello my lovelies!

Wordless Wednesday is when I post about anything unrelated to books.  I have recently begun a series called “Know Korea” where I post things related to Korea. Today, I want to share with you five places I want to visit during my stay in Korea this coming month. (Yes, you heard me correctly, I’ll be visiting Korea in the month of July!)

경주 보문정 (Bomun Pavilion, Gyeongju)
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Gyeongju was the ancient capital of the Shilla Dynasty and is known as “a museum with no walls.” This spot is clearly aesthetic in all seasons with abundant leaves in the summer, a beautiful scarlet and mustard foliage in the fall and the pure gentle snow in the winter.

경복궁 (Gyeongbokgung)
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No trip is complete without a trip down the historical lane. Gyeongbokgung Palace, also known as the Northern Palace, is the most grandest of the five palaces. Although the premises were destroyed by fire during the Japanese occupation, the rooms were restored under the reign of King Gojong. There are around 7,700 rooms.

보성 녹차밭 (Boseong Green Tea Field)
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I love green tea, so the rolling hills of Boseong where 40 percent of Korea’s tea is produced is a must see. Unfortunately, I’d be missing the green tea festival held every May, but the spectacular view that is the backdrop of multiple Korean dramas is sufficient for me.

파주 심학산 꽃밭 (Poppy Garden, Simhak Mountain)
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The poppy garden is a scenic backdrop that is sure to intrigue any aspiring painter or photographer. The local town hosts a Poppy Festival in June.

롯데월드 (Lotte World)
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And because no trip is ever complete without a visit to a theme park, Lotte world is the world’s largest indoor theme park and is open all year long. From amusement rides to shopping malls, luxury hotels, skating rink and a lake, this place is full of amazing fun.

I’m so very excited to be going back to Korea this coming month, and looking through tourist sites and pictures has definitely been causing me even more excitement! I hope you enjoyed the few snapshots I have shown of such a beautiful country.

for more information, visit:

http://travel.cnn.com/seoul/visit/50-beautiful-places-visit-korea-873093/

http://www.tommyooi.com/seoul-attractions/

#SaveTheClassics

Books, Classic, Tag

Hello my lovely friends!

I stumbled up on the #SaveTheClassics tag on Captivated by Fantasy blog, and decided to take a part of it as my very first tag on this blog! I love classics, and believe that they provide invaluable wisdom and insight. Although I was not directly tagged, I am taking the liberty in doing this tag anyways, and hope you all enjoy! Feel free to take a part in this tag, even if you are not tagged.

The premise of this tag is also to promote a new project called iClassics. This project creates interactive apps in order to prompt the reading of literary classics for all ages. In this day and age, I find this to not only be a remarkable idea, but a much needed one. The link to the project is here.

Here are the rules:

  • Answer the questions
  • Link the project (ABOVE)
  • Tag three bloggers that might like the challenge
  • use the hashtag #SaveTheClassics

What is your favourite classic book?

Very disappointed that there isn’t a “s” at the end of favourite. Currently, The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is my favorite, but Pride and Prejudice comes at a close second.

“So we drove on toward death through the cooling twilight.” –The Great Gatsby

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If your life was a classic what would it be?

For this one, I’d have to say Alice In Wonderland. It seems like my life is just a series of falling into rabbit holes and trying to figure out how to fit in with my surroundings. I’m always either too tall, too small or there’s something on the table screaming at me “eat me”.

“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.” –Alice in Wonderland

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Which writer from the past would you like to have dinner with? 

Fyodor Dostoyevsky. Although I’ve only read his Crime and Punishment, I have read and reread this phenomenal book. His characters are so realistic and lovable as well, and I think he does a magnificent job in showing not only the evil, but the best sides in the protagonists to create a  multi-dimensional relateable character. I’d love to discuss his ideas and thoughts that went into each book. To be honest though, I’d probably just end up staring at him with reverence and awe. I think it requires a true genius in order to produce anything like the books he has written.

“I did not bow down to you, I bowed down to all the suffering of humanity.” –Crime and Punishment

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Which classic literary character best describes you?

Anne Shirley! To be honest, I took a quiz on buzzfeed to figure this one out, because I honestly couldn’t think of who to choose. But upon learning my answer, I believe this is the correct fit for me. Here’s what they told me:

“You are good-hearted, charming, and enthusiastic. You also have a lively imagination and you love to express your creative side through storytelling. You are outspoken and that can sometimes get you in trouble. But most people find your honesty refreshing. You have a zest for life that is unmatched by many. You can sometimes get caught up in your fantasies. You always remain true to who you are and are unapologetic about it.”

“When you’ve learned to laugh at the things that should be laughed at, and not to laugh at those that shouldn’t, you’ve got wisdom and understanding.”-Anne of Green Gables

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What’s the first classic that you read?

I’ve read many abridged classics when I was young (I had a shelf full of them!) but the first classic I ever read would probably be The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. Tom was definitely my childhood crush, and in an elementary school play I got to play Amy and steal a kiss from him!

“Right is right, and wrong is wrong, and a body ain’t got no business doing wrong when he ain’t ignorant and knows better.” –The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn

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Which classic book could be the best gift?

I believe classics in and of themselves are a gift to humanity, and I’d have to know who I was giving the gift to in order to choose an appropriate book. One I think anyone could enjoy is Frankenstein. Who doesn’t love a monster who shows a bit of humanity?

“Thus strangely are our souls constructed, and by slight ligaments are we bound to prosperity and ruin.” –Frankenstein

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I tag :

Katherine@Fabled Haven

Erin@Quillable

The Bloggers@Bookidote