Posted in Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

꧁The Book Blogger Memory Challenge ꧂

I love fun challenges and madamewriterblog recently posted a really good one based only on total recall! For this challenge, I can’t look at my bookshelf or use the internet which is fine for I’m currently at work listening to the sound of rain. 

Name a book written by an author named Michael

I am yet to read this book, but Moonwalk by Michael Jackson. I hope to read it soon for it’s been sitting in my TBR for way too long.

Image result for michael jackson book moonwalk

Name a book with a dragon on the cover

I am not a fan of anything dragons for the devilish symbolism is not lost on me, but there were a few popular books a few years ago that I kept seeing EVERYWHERE and now that I need my memory the most, it fails me! This is unaccepta… wait, wait, wait! Yu-Gi-Oh! mangas have a few covers with the – I can’t believe I’m about to say this – Blue Eyes White Dragon on them. Other dragons from the series were also featured on later covers including the golden glorious Winged Dragon of Ra.

Image result for gif yami and dragons

Name a book about a character named George

George… George… ah ha! George of the Jungle by Justine Korman! I only know this George and the curious one. Wait, Curious George is also a book! If I recall correctly, my youngest sister had a CG book. I can’t recall the author’s name, but I’ve locked in my final answer, Eddie: Curious George

Image result for gif curious george

I love this monkey! Also, late afternoon memories are assaulting me
so hard right now. I used to marathon CM when I got home from work
only a few years ago.
😔 I know what I’m going to do when I get home!

Name a book with an author with the surname of Smith

Ooh, Nighty Night and Good Night by Michael W. Smith (Yes, the Gospel crooner). It’s a children’s book that I’ve been meaning to get my hands on for a while now.

Image result for michael w smith nighty night and good night

Name a book set in Australia

The only book that comes to mind is Private Down Under by James Patterson and I disliked that book big time! As a matter of fact, I dislike what I’ve read of the Private series (2-3 books in) and called it quits because I can’t stand the main protagonist Jack.  

Image result for Private Down Under

Name a book with the name of a month in the title

This book is either in my TBR or I’m yet to get it: April in Paris. I love that the title contains my birth month and dream destination. 😄

Image result for Michael Wallner paris in april

Name a book with a knife on the cover

This is easy because it’s in my TBR: The Chef by James Patterson.

Image result for james patterson the chef

Name a book with the word ‘one’ in the title

This one is also in my TBR: The One Year Bible

Image result for the one year bible

Name a book with an eponymous title

I’ll name two books that I loved when I was young and plan to read sometime during the classic reading challenge: Oliver Twist by Charles Dickens and The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. Fingers crossed that I feel the same about these books after all these years.

Image result for oliver twist charles dickens Image result for the picture of dorian gray oscar wilde

Name a book turned into a movie

My favorite book to movie adaptation was The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas. The 1993 version was the only one I accepted as a pass.

Image result for gif the three musketeers

This was actually quite fun! However, doing this challenge made me realize that I’ve gone slack in reading. I’ll have to fix that soon. If you’re up to do this challenge, feel free to and don’t forget to check out Madame Writer’s entry here:

The Book Blogger Memory Challenge

***Images and GIFs via Google Search

 

 

Posted in Teaser Tuesday!

Teaser Tuesday: blog revamp and currently…

Yes, La Petit Muse is getting a facelift. 😁

Happy May Day!

Image result for gif will and grace

Hello, and welcome back to my blog. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking and reflecting lately when it comes to many aspects of my life including this blog. I don’t want to go into a lot of details, but I am thinking of revamping La Petit Muse as early as 2019 be it God’s willing. I’ll be adding new categories and neglecting some of the old ones. I won’t say which ones at the moment. 

No, but I can divulge a few details at the moment. 

Related image

Oh, alright! At the beginning of the year, I contemplated on bringing back Song Sunday (this month is a year since I haven’t updated it), but some of these songs these so-call Christian artists out here are singing do not entirely praise and focus on God. But I’ve made the decision to bring it back. I’ll be sharing songs that I love, discussing the intentions/meanings behind some songs and I used to write songs so I’ll be sharing some of mine as well. Also, the Origins series that I wanted to start at the beginning of this year is a go.

And that’s all I’ll be sharing for now. Now, to a small life update. 

Image result for gif life

Currently, I’m…

Watching… Criminal Minds! The 14th season kicked off with a bang although it feels like the finality of the show. 

Image result for gif criminal minds

Reading… The Women’s Murder Club series by James Patterson. I’m on the 12th book. I have no intention to write full reviews for the books, but I may talk about them at some point. I’m currently not in a book reviewing book mood anyway. 

Image result for james patterson women's murder club

Listening… to ‘Peace’ by Depeche Mode and ‘In Christ Alone’ by Brian Littrell. I have these songs on repeat always. 

Image result for gif listening to music

Making… graphics for my short stories and a display banner. 

Image result for gif canva

Feeling… the need for speed! Kidding! I’m feeling great! 

Image result for gif good mood jim carrey

Planning… future blog posts that involve blasts from the past! This is going to be good!

Image result for gif yugioh

Loving… a Web Toon call True Beauty. I accidentally came across it while searching for comics templates and I love it thus far! I’ll certainly talk about this story soon!

Image result for true beauty webtoon

Grateful for all of you! 💙💙

Image result for gif will and grace

***GIFs & images via Google Search

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚

Book #138: When Dimple Met Rishi

People: This book sucks socks!
Also other people: This book was the best book of the year!
Also, also other people: I was torn between giving it a 5 or a 3.
Me: I’ll make my own decision.

I read this book two months or so ago and I have to say that I am pretty disappointed with one Dimple and the plot. I’ll never stop writing honest reviews for I don’t believe in changing my opinion for anyone. I have so much to say that this might get a little lengthy.

Oohkay, let me warm up first.

Flex my fingers, adjust my computer screen, grab my coffee… Ready!

Purple and Orange Flower Girl Wedding Card

I went into this book neutral because YA rarely lives up to the hype no matter how many Book-tubers swear by the book (I’ve unsubscribed to all of their channels for they almost always have the same boring and repetitive content). I came out hating this book. Dimple was just an awful character although I liked her for the first few pages. She was a nerd and she wanted to pursue her dreams, but then she met Rishi, and in the blink of an eye, her entire character changed quicker than a chameleon changes its skin. 

She was irritating and annoying that I wanted to reach into the book and slap her silly. 

Image result for me reality gif

As for Rishi, he comes from money, but he doesn’t act like it. He’s humble and obedient to his parents even when they set him up to attend Insomnia Con (kind of a party name for a tech convention don’t you think!) to court Dimple. As a matter of fact, Dimple and Rishi’s parents tricked their kids into attending the convention (although Dimple really wanted to go) so they can meet. 

Rishi draws comics and he’s great at it, but he’s keen on following his parents’ dream of him having a great future in business (I think). I love the fact that Rishi was so comfortable with his uncoolness, he was the coolest person in the room. 

Image result for gif so cool

Now, let’s rant in notes as I tear the book apart.

^ I did not get a sense of San Francisco besides the fog named Karl. Yes, the fog in San Fran is called Karl and the author did a great job of reminding us. However, I did not feel transported to San Fran as I did when I read James Patterson’s Women’s Murder Club series. 

Image result for karl the fog

^ I think the author should’ve translated Hindi phrases for non-Hindi readers. I understood some of it for I used to learn Hindi at one point. 

^ An obnoxious group of well-manicured people – a white girl and boy, and an Indian boy – were already trying to take pictures of one another. (Page 65) What? You mean to tell me that black people don’t live and study in San Fran?  I thought it was unnecessary to point out the color of people’s skin for it did nothing here. I would’ve gotten it had Rishi never seen white people in his life, but for some reason, it just doesn’t work here.

^ “This is how it works in the US: In the spring we’re constantly subjected to bunnies and eggs wherever we go, signifying Christ’s resurrection. Then right around October we begin to see pine trees and nativity scenes and laughing fat white men everywhere.” (Page 142). Now, this does not offend me in any way for Easter is a pagan festival and Christmas does not signify Christ’s true birth. However, I think this paragraph was meant to be religiously controversial as Rishi said at the end that he gets to explain Hinduism. Author, stop being so foolish. If a Christian were to go to India now, they’ll be assaulted with Hinduism iconography. If the so-call Christian images are assaulting your senses, pack your bags and leave America for good. 

Image result for gif leaving usa

^ So Dimple attends a party and drags Goody Two Shoes Rishi along with her. I can’t believe that the author wants me to believe that someone like Dimple who scorns people and social life like the plague attends parties. Just no! It doesn’t work. On the other hand, I can believe that Rishi has never been to a party before besides Diwali ones. 

^ Cue unnecessary dramatic exit: He turned and walked away, the fog swallowing him whole. (Page 353). 

Image result for gif fog covering someone

^ Where is the coding talk? The tech talk? The app talk? The whole point of Dimple attending Insomnia Con was to create a health app to help people and there was hardly any talk of it. This book was pure drivel. 

^ I am going to sound stereotypical, but this scene calls for it: Which respectful Indian boy or girl would be making out in a dark alley and when things get heated, the girl asks, “What? You mean here? We can’t do it here?” and “If you’re doing this because of some old-school concern for my ‘honor’, you don’t need to.” (Page 287). Nice going, Dimple. Really nice going. I can think of all the names in the book to call you, but then, that wouldn’t honor you, would it now?

Image result for gif indian

^ Insomnia Con is having a talent contest and Dimple wants to do a Bollywood dance. They started off with ‘Dil Na Diya’, but ended up dancing to ‘Dance Pe Chance’ from Rab Ne Bana Di Jodi

I was relieved when I came to the last page of this garbage. It would’ve been interesting to know more about the app and Dimple’s competitors’ apps as well. This story went from its focus on creating an app to a pointless talent show. With all of the ‘careful’ preparations leading up to the show, you’ll think the author would dedicate more than just a paragraph to it (Page 308). I wanted Dimple and Rishi to lose the talent show, but of course, they won for they danced to a SRK song after all. 

Image result for gif dance pe chance

This book was a total mess and you know what else is? Jab Harry Met Sejal and I am contemplating on doing a review soon. The author said that she was inspired by Bollywood movies and she passed for most Bollywood movies are a mess. This writing was cringe to the max.

The author forgot to thank Shah Rukh Khan in the acknowledgments and this book put me off so much that I don’t think From Twinkle, With Love would be redeeming… but I’mma read it anyway.

Image result for Twinkle sandhya menon

COVER

Probably one of the most natural covers I’ve ever seen! I love that the model isn’t airbrushed and you can see all the hairs on her face. 5/5.

VERDICT:

love coffee

*** GIFs and photos used are not mine unless stated otherwise. Credit goes to Google Search. 

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚

Books #135-#137: meh!

I’m beginning to understand why some people prefer to download books online rather than buy or even borrow them from the library. Some books are a total waste of time for they don’t live up to the hype that you sometimes expect. I’m on a book buying ban until my TBR goes down, but I bought two books recently: true crime stories written by James Patterson and John Grisham. I can’t wait to get started on them, but first, these books that I’m about to pass judgment on. 

Image result for gif spencer reid reading

Book #135: All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Image result for all the light we cannot see

This book was ten years in the writing and the author won the coveted Pulitzer Price. Although well written and polished, I didn’t feel anything. It felt too long at times and it dragged. I couldn’t wait to finish and I started speed reading at some point.

The book was beautifully envisioned but it fell short.

Main themes in this book:

  • The Sea of Flames diamond
  • A French Professor’s voice over the airways. Turned out to be Marie-Laure’s deceased grandfather.
  • 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne
  • Uncle Etienne

Doerr wrote the passages wonderfully. They were so descriptive that I saw the poverty and heard the bombings, but I think he spent more time developing the settings than the characters thus making them unmemorable. I couldn’t identify with them. love coffeelove coffeelove coffee And why in the world are Pulitzer Prize-winning books so depressing? Thank goodness I did not buy this book. 

Book #136: Murder in the South of France by Susan Kiernan-Lewis

Image result for Murder in the South of France

I was left disappointed after reading this book. I only finished it because of Laurent and to confirm my suspicions. The title is misleading and should’ve been Murder in Atlanta because there was nothing to solve in the south of France given that we have to wait until Book 2 to see whose body was passed off as Elise’s. I think it’s Laurent’s common-law wife & I think Nicole is Laurent’s daughter. The author tried to throw readers off with who the actual murderer was with all signs pointing to a Frenchman, but I knew it was not Gerard nor his conman brother, Laurent. I couldn’t buy the real murderer’s motive, though. It felt off.

Although I haven’t been to France (as yet), the French felt forced and the grammar was atrocious. I didn’t feel transported to France. I didn’t get a sense of the local people and I couldn’t feel the atmosphere.

Every single character (except Laurent) was stupid especially Maggie, the main protagonist. Laurent danced back into her life after nearly six months of no contact and she readily accepted him without being an ounce suspicious.

Image result for gif frenchman

BAD FRENCH GRAMMAR & DIALOGUE

^ This book was not properly formatted.

^ I did not like the stereotypical American-French references. Every time I read a story where these two cultures clash, the American always act like the saint. Take this example on page 35:

“And having babies out of wedlock? Maybe y’all do that sort of thing over here and it’s no big deal, but it’s a definite faux pas where I come from.”

I actually rolled my eyes when Maggie said this. Who does she think she is? Americans are not so saintly when it comes to having children outside of marriage. Laurent gave her a typical French sarcasm reply:

“Perhaps that is why your sister come to France, non? It is, for her, a world that understands her better.”

^ I am not fluent in French, but I don’t think s’il tu plâit is the correct term. And the accent above the ‘a’ is wrong. The correct form is s’il te plaît. For the second person singular the subject pronoun is “tu” and the object pronoun is “te”. To make matters worse, it was a Frenchman (Laurent) using this wrong term.

This too, coming from an author who spent part of her childhood in the glorious Alsace-Lorraine, France.

Image result for gif eye roll

^ This retarded remark:

“Oh, I miss you so much, Laurent. I’m so used to possessing everything through you, it’s hard to have an independent thought.”

And Maggie Newbury is supposed to be the star of this series? Yeah right! If she cannot think on her own and has to rely on Laurent for even much as breathing, I am not going to follow Maggie anywhere else.

^ Stereotypically playing the culture card:

“Lying is bad, Laurent! I know there’s a culture difference here, but I would’ve thought even the French were on board with that. You lied. To me.”

DEAR STUPID WOMAN, WHAT DOES CULTURE HAVE TO DO WITH LYING? EVERYONE LIES! IT DOESN’T MATTER WHERE ONE IS FROM! GET OVER IT!

^ There is no chemistry between Maggie and Laurent.

^ I wish Patti had murdered Maggie and her parents and Brownie and the ever jittery Gary.

FAVE CHARACTER

Laurent Dernier. He is not your typical slender sexy fictional Frenchman, but still quite handsome. I didn’t buy his charms when I first met him and I’m glad I was right about him being Gerard’s brother. He was the only character who wasn’t a bore and he has an actual interesting background story. I think the author spent too much time on this one. love coffee

Book #137: Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Image result for Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

One of the best debut novels I’ve read in years!

Do you think you know EVERYTHING about your daughter?

From the get-go, you feel the characters speaking to you. James Lee is Chinese American and he feels like he has never fit in anywhere in life until he met and married the pretty blue-eyed American Marilyn. The children: Nath, the eldest, Hannah the youngest, and the middle child aka Parents’ Favorite, Lydia, who inherited her mother’s blue eyes.

Marilyn was supposed to be a doctor, but those dreams were dashed when she met and fell in love with Professor Lee. Motherhood definitely was not in her cards, but she saw redemption of accomplishing her dreams through Lydia. James was never popular. As an Oriental, he never fit in and he was the subject of bullying. He saw redemption through Lydia’s beauty. The Lee family had no friends. Marilyn and James never hosted dinners or parties and the children never had real friends either.

Image result for gif sad

It left me questioning life and love. Parents need to cherish their children. They didn’t ask to come here. Parents also shouldn’t play favoritism with their children.

I think this was a brilliant debut novel from Ng, but I have to point out the race issue. I know it was the 70s, but Ng made it seem as if every single person the Lees encountered has never seen an Oriental person before, and almost everyone was prejudiced against them. I think the author could’ve dealt with this differently. The book felt unfinished as I was not satisfied with the ending. I don’t mind authors abruptly ending their stories, but this was not the end. It just…ends! But I like it. It was about a family dealing with the loss of a child and Ng captures the pain and hurt beautifully.

I like this author’s writing and I am open to reading more of her books. love coffeelove coffeelove coffee

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚

Books #132-#134: Bonjour Luc Moncrief 😍

Meet dashing French Detective Luc Moncrief:

Image result for olivier giroud in a suit

Now, let’s see how he rates.

You know that question book lovers always seem to get asked: Who is your book boyfriend? Well, I can finally answer that age-old book question: his name is Moncrief. Luc Moncrief. He is debonair, has impeccable instincts, a gentleman, witty, the King of one-liners, and he handles tragedy well. He’s French. So very French, that I would’ve forgiven him had his introduction went like this…

Image result for gif french

I was not even going to pick up another Bookshot for I don’t think they’re the best thing since vanilla shakes, but I spied a French detective as the protagonist and being the good Francophile that I am, I picked it up and I’m glad I did. Okay, enough chit-chat. Meet Luc.

Book #132: French Kiss (Detective Luc Moncrief #1)

Image result for French Kiss james patterson

Luc Moncrief. Mercy! Luc is rich. Like, stinking rich and he puts to test my argument that wealthy characters aren’t boring (if used right, of course). His father is not pleased that he has chosen to become a detective. Anyway, Luc is on loan to the NYPD from Paris. In the French capital, he’s renown for uncovering major drug crimes and chasing down murderers, but in the Big Apple, he’s given clean-up work. But when his partner Maria is killed while working undercover, he is tasked with solving the murder and he gets a new partner Katherine Burke, whom he dubs ‘K. Burke’

Luc receives some more ugly news when his girlfriend and the love of his life Dalia is killed (I LOVE how Luc loves Dalia, but since she’s hardly mentioned, I didn’t care much for her). It’s personal, Luc realizes, and he returns to Paris with K. Burke to get to the bottom of the crimes.

Luc is your stereotypical (and then somewhat not) handsome rugged fashionable French male… with flaws. Lots of flaws. He solves crimes differently (goes with pure instinct) and food is always on his mind. He reminds me of my character Marcus a lot especially for their mutual dislike for the color pink (If Tammy reads this, she can confirm it). But there are some heartbreaking moments involved. When his girlfriend was killed, we get to see his human side and it was moving. 

I devoured this book in one sitting and begged, ‘Please, can I have some more’ so of course, it’s only natural that it gets lots of coffee. love coffeelove coffeelove coffeelove coffeelove coffee Luc is so likable it’s criminal!

Image result for olivier giroud in a suit gif

Book #133: The Christmas Mystery (Detective Luc Moncrief #2)

Image result for the christmas mystery james patterson

Luc is still heartbroken over the death of his girlfriend, but he loves being a detective so he has work to do. In this one, he and K. Burke are called in to investigate when two priceless paintings disappear from a murder scene. Of course, Luc realizes that some paintings are forgeries and sets out to find the culprit behind it. 

He ends up spending Thanksgiving with K. Burke toasting to the new friendship. I love that Luc doesn’t change who he is for anyone and how he owns his Frenchness: I am so obviously French that I might as well have a statue of the Eiffel Tower on my head (page 28).

Image result for olivier giroud in a suit gif

And I also love that he doesn’t care about money despite being a Billionaire: “..a great big pot full of money does not make a person happy…” (page 114). He teaches K. Burke that, “The French never fill themselves. They eat. They think. They enjoy.” (page 132).

I feel as if there is something developing slowly but surely between Luc and Katherine, but there’s no rushing to unload feelings on their part. For now, they enjoy the friendship for Luc is in no way ready for a new interest. 

This installment gets love coffeelove coffeelove coffeelove coffee

Book #134: French Twist (Detective Luc Moncrief #3)

Image result for french twist james patterson

Alas! I’ve come to the end of this lovely trilogy. 😢😢Healthy rich women are suddenly dropping dead where they stand. Luc and K. Burke have to figure out what these bimbos have in common and prevent future deaths. Meanwhile, across the country, Luc’s friends received a threatening note after their horse Gaston won the Kentucky Derby. Luc makes it his business to figure out who is threatening his elderly friends.

A few gripes: In The Christmas Mystery Luc gifts K. Burke a ring, but it becomes a necklace at the beginning of this book. On page 101, Luc sets an appointment at 5 for K. Burke, but the next day, she arrives at 4. I thought the hour discrepancy would’ve been explained, but the editing didn’t mention anything. 

I love the fact that Luc did not jump into a relationship or bed for that matter with another woman after Dalia’s death. It was refreshing to see him care deeply for one lady and not having mistresses on the side as other writers tend to portray French Cassanovas to be.

Luc Moncrief is a loveable riot in flashy designer clothes and a fast car and very French minus the smoking and although I have enough French characters in my arsenal, I wished I had written him. He is the perfect amount of everything. Luc deserves a full-length novel.

Final rating: love coffeelove coffeelove coffee

Image result for olivier giroud in a suit

But wait, it doesn’t stop there!

I read that ABC bought the rights to this series and they’re calling it The French Detective. France’s finest Jean Dujardin is said to be attached to the project. He’ll be portraying Luc Moncrief. 

Related image

His Frenchness is riveting, but I don’t see Moncrief. Should’ve gotten France’s other finest Stanley Weber.

Image result for Stanley Weber french actors

Bonjour Luc! 

And if they want to go for tall, dark, and brooding, Gilles Marini can get the job done.

Image result for gilles marini suit

Because let’s face it, they won’t be able to get Olivier Giroud to portray Luc.

Image result for olivier giroud in a suit gif

***Photos and GIFs via Google Images

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚, Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

Twenty Questions Book Tag📚

Image result for gif hi everyone

And welcome back to another book tag segment! I know I just currently did one, but I’ve had this one bookmarked as well (found it via thricereadand figured that now is a good time to give it a try. You know what to do: get your bestie a coffee…

Image result for 25 Times Morgan and Reid Bromance on Criminal Minds Was the Best

…and savor the irresistible sips as you read along.

1. How many books are too many books in a book series?

I could only speak for the Alex Cross series. It’s on the 26th book and it’s still going strong. I remember trying to get into the Pretty Little Liars series before it became a thing, but I found it boring after the 3rd book or so and quit. 

2. How do you feel about cliffhangers?

I can handle it once it’s done well. 

Image result for gif jack sparrow

3. Hardcopy or paperback?

Definitely paperback! 

4. Favorite book?

The Holy Bible. 💙

5. Your least favorite book?

Anything fantastical. I can’t handle fantasy, magic, and things of those nature.

Image result for gif jack sparrow

6. Love triangles, yes or no?

Image result for gif jack sparrow

7. The most recent book you just couldn’t finish?

At the moment it’s Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It’s literally boring!

8. A book you’re currently reading?

I just started reading the first book of The Women’s Murder Club series by James Patterson (1st To Die) and I’m not overly impressed. I’ll discuss the book at a later time.

9. Last book you recommended to someone?

Well, someone recently wanted a quick and exciting read so I recommended Invisible by James Patterson. 

Image result for gif jack sparrow

10. The oldest book you’ve read? (Publication date) 

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas (1844).

11. The newest book you’ve read? (Publication date)

The President Is Missing by James Patterson and Bill Clinton (2018).

12. Favorite author?

God. Mortals include Alexandre Dumas, Jules Verne, and James Patterson. 

13. Buying books or borrowing books?

I prefer to buy my own books, but I sometimes borrow books from fellow bookworms if I’m interested in it.

14. A book you dislike that everyone else seems to love?

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson. Too-long chapters, overwritten garbage, too slow… more like I’ll Give You Death. I tried being nice, but it didn’t work out.

Related image

15. Bookmarks or dog-ears?

Definitely bookmarks!

16. A book you can always reread?

It’ll always be the Holy Bible. I’m on my 5th or so reread. 

17. Can you read while hearing music?

I don’t listen to music while reading, but if someone is blasting music (which is the norm where I live) I can definitely read through it. 

Image result for gif jack sparrow

18. One POV or multiple POV? (POV = Points of view)

I don’t mind the multiple POV once the author knows what he or she is doing. 

19. Do you read a book in one sitting or over multiple days?

Now that I don’t have the time to sit and enjoy reading, it usually takes multiple days… even weeks. However, if the book is a page-turner, I read it in one sitting. 

Image result for gif jack sparrow

20. One book you read because of the cover. 

I haven’t read it as yet, but I brought Glitter by Aprilynne Pike because I thought the cover was lovely.

*** Jack Sparrow GIFs via Google Images

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚, Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

Coffee Book Tag! ☕

I am working on new contents for the blog which I’ll be sharing soon. Oh, right, wrong post. 😁That randomness out of the way, I am here with another tag. I have about 4 more tags to go, but we’ll see how that goes before the month comes to an end. I can’t pass up an opportunity to talk about books so when I saw Madame Writer complete this tag a few months ago, I bookmarked it to complete it at a later date. She always has the best tags around! Okay, grab your coffee…

Image result for gif spencer reid coffee

…and let’s dive in.

Image result for Black CoffeeBlack Coffee: Name a Series That’s Tough to Get Into But Has Diehard Fans 

Haha! This question reminds me of that time when everyone was into Friends and I just couldn’t get into it for I find Rachel to be extremely boring and annoying. I’d rather watch Will & Grace back then… oh, right, this is about books! 😆I’ll have to go with Harry Potter. It’s not that it’s tough to get into I just don’t like magic and demonic spell casting.

Image result for gif don't believe in magic

Image result for Peppermint Mocha CoffeePeppermint Mocha Coffee: Name a Book That Gets More Popular During the Winter of a Festive Time of the Year 

I don’t care for festive books. I’m not big on Christmas, but I’ll have to go with How the Grinch Stole ChristmasWished he could’ve stolen it and kept it forever. >.< I know. I know. What a Dickens thing to say! 😒

Image result for gif how the grinch stole christmas

Image result for Hot ChocolateHot Chocolate: What is Your Favorite Children’s Book

Back then when I didn’t know better it was The Little Mermaid and Aladdin

Image result for gif aladdin

Kudos to HirokoChu18 for this GIF!

Heck yes, I shipped them! They would’ve made the most beautiful Disney couple ever simply because interracial is a beautiful thing and there isn’t enough interracial goodness out there! Eh, I know nobody can replace Jasmine but she can have Eric. Had I still cared about Disney, I would’ve definitely written a FanFic featuring Arieladin.

Image result for Double Shot of EspressoDouble Shot of Espresso: Name a Book that Kept You on the Edge of Your Seat from Start to Finish

Most recently it was French Kiss by James Patterson. I’ll be writing a review about the mini Luc Moncrief trilogy soon. It was really good despite being a BookShot.

Image result for gif french

Image result for StarbucksStarbucks: Name a Book You See Everywhere

The Holy Bible. 💙It’s so refreshing to see God’s Word in every bookstore I visit. Some stores even have a special display for the Bibles.

Image result for gif bible

Image result for Coffee Shop parisThat Hipster Coffee Shop: Give a Book by an Indie Author a Shoutout

I haven’t read a lot of Indie books, but I recently read one and that was How Roland Rolls so what’s up Jim Carrey? I recently read the book, liked it, and rated it 3 cups of steaming coffee.

Image result for gif how roland rolls

Image result for DecafOops! I Accidentally Got Decaf: Name a Book You Were Expecting More From

Hmm… you really want to know? I finish read it a few weeks ago and I want to write a review on it, but I am disappointed with how it actually turned out, so I put it aside for to review at a later date when I don’t feel like setting it on fire. None other than When Dimple Met Rishi.

Image result for gif disappointed

Image result for Perfect Blend coffeeThe Perfect Blend: Name a Book or Series That Was Both Bitter and Sweet, But Ultimately Satisfying

When was the last time I ever had a perfect blend? I honestly can’t think of one right now and I guess I have to pass. 

Image result for gif i'll pass ace ventura

Image result for Green TeaGreen Tea: Name a Book or Series that is Quietly Beautiful

The Story of Beautiful Girl by Rachel Simon. It tells the story of Lynnie and Homan. They’re in love and tries to run away from the Pennsylvania State School for the Incurable and Feebleminded in 1968. Homan is a deaf African American and Lynnie is a young white woman with a developmental disability. I love how Simon portrays these characters showing that despite the young couple’s disabilities, they have the same human needs as every one of us. Maybe I’ll reread it one day and write a full review for when I read it 5 years ago, I thought it was beautiful. Plus, #yayforinterracialgoodness

Image result for gif tom cruise thandie newton

Image result for Chai TeaChai Tea: A Book or Series That Makes You Dream of Far Off Places

The first book that made me wanderlust was Around the World in Eighty Days. I love Jean Passepartout! His surname literally translates to “goes everywhere” in English and in the book he was a well-traveled man. I know Phileas Fogg was the main protagonist, but I never cared for him. 

Image result for gif around the world in eighty days

Image result for Earl GreyEarl Grey: Name Your Favourite Classic

Certainly not Earl Grey tea. Yuck! I adore Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne and of course, the book that started my love for reading, The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas. I look forward to rereading those books soon! 

Image result for gif the three musketeers

***Images & GIFs via Google Images

Posted in Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

The last ten books tag!

I saw this tag going around BookTube last month and decided to have a crack at it. 

Image result for gif tom cruise dancing

1) The last book you didn’t finish?

I recently DNF’ed Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts for it was not engaging. I’ll probably return to it after reading some better books. At one point a movie was in the works reportedly starring Johnny Depp *yawns* but now a TV series has been proposed with Depp in the production seat *yawns*.

Image result for shantaram

2) The last book you re-read?

Besides the Bible, it was Violets Are Blue by James Patterson in April. I hardly do rereads apart from the Bible, but I plan to reread some of my favorite childhood books at some point.

Image result for gif spencer reid reading

3) The last book you bought?

A few I mentioned here: A mini book haul. I look forward to reading them for the Classic Challenge I plan on doing sometime early next year God’s willing. 

4) The last book you said you read but didn’t?

I don’t ever lie about not reading a book for it doesn’t make sense to lie if I can’t explain what’s it really about from my point of view.

Image result for gif spencer reid reading

5) The last book you wrote in the margins of?

I was probably ten or so. Yes, I used to write in my books when I was really young especially the ones I know I would be disposing of after reading. I recall one of those books being Fearless by Francine Pascal. I found Gaia awesome at first, but as the series wore on I got bored with her perfect human antics. I can’t recall much of the series for I stopped reading somewhere around the 3rd one, but this book is like an ode to 90s culture. When it comes to spy stuff I’ll stick with Ethan Hunt.

Image result for fearless francine pascal

6) The last book you had signed?

I don’t care for authors’ signatures.

7) The last book you lost?

I can’t recall losing a book, but I do recall lending books and never seeing them again so I labeled them as lost. Quite surprisingly, I hardly got my James Patterson books back so I stopped lending them out to the ‘suspects’.

Image result for james patterson toys

8) The last book you had to replace?

The Mutiny on Board HMS Bounty by William Bligh and Around the World in 80 Days by Jules Verne. While cleaning out I found tattered copies and had to replace those epic books immediately.

Image result for gif spencer reid reading

9) The last book you had an argument over?

I don’t argue over books for everyone is entitled to their opinions whether I like a book or not.

10) The last book you couldn’t get hold of?

What even is this question? I hold my books close to my heart all the time.

Related image

Joking aside, I’ve been trying to get a hold of Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray. I read this book twice and liked it each time, but I don’t have a copy anymore and it’s hard to come by in Trinidad so I’ll eventually have to order it through Amazon. 

Image result for the picture of dorian gray oscar wilde

And that’s the end of this awesome tag!

***Photos (except the 2nd one which belongs to me) and Spencer Reid GIFs via Google Search

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚, Trinidad & Tobago 💙

Books #122-#124: Patterson, history and something cozy

Trying to read around the World Cup is proving to be doable. Also, I’ve acquired tons of new books and I am itching to read them, but I must finish at least another third of my TBR. I know I said that I was going to get around to doing some tags, but it’s highly unlikely at the moment. When the tournament winds down a little, I’ll get to them. 

Image result for gif spencer reid coffee

But I’m immune to coffee so let’s do some reviews. 😄

Book #122: The Murder House by James Patterson

Image result for The Murder House by James Patterson

I am skeptical of characters called Noah. This one got a pass for his Matthew McConaughey hair. Wait, does Mc C even have nice hair? However, there was no need for the crucifixion reference on page 158 so I took away a coffee for that.

This book was peppered with too many F-bombs and Detective Jenna Murphy got her Irish up too many times.  I don’t think the book was particularly great. David Ellis could’ve done better and JP could’ve looked at the work before slapping his name on the cover. 1/5.

Book #123: Historic Landmarks of Port of Spain by Michael Anthony

Image result for Historic Landmarks of Port of Spain michael anthony

Although Spanish, POS has more of a French touch.

Imagine a Port of Spain in which trams ran and where horses were ridden into town. This is the POS that I wished I had known! Trinidad became an independent nation in 1962 and over the years, they’ve grown into their independence. 

This book covers the Great Fire of POS, however, POS was gutted by lots of fire over the years. It covers famous landmarks such as Woodford Square, the beautiful Magnificent Seven buildings, Globe Cinema and the Treasury Building. My utmost favorite part of POS is the Maraval area given that it’s rich in French history.

The book is divided into 10 parts so it is easy to navigate and the pictures are beautiful! 

A FEW HISTORICAL NOTES:

^ The 31-metre (103-foot) Colonial Life building on lower St Vincent Street was our first ‘skyscraper’. It was opened in 1954.

^ Fort Picton was built in 1803 on the Laventille Hill, but it was never used to defend POS.

^ The Church of the Holy Rosary is POS’s most outstanding example of late Victorian Gothic architecture. 

^ The Lapeyrouse Cemetery is on part of an old sugar estate established by Picot de Lapeyrouse after arriving from Grenada to Trinidad.

Matt-Damon-Good-Will-Hunting-Cheering-Happy

#Yay4History

The book was a 6/5 for me. 

Book #124: Meet Your Baker by Ellie Alexander

Image result for Meet Your Baker

Okay, first, I want to look at this bit in the plot summary:

The silver lining? Jules’s high school sweetheart, Thomas, is the investigator on the case. His flirtations are as delicious as ever, and Jules can’t help but want to have her cake and eat it too. But will she have her just desserts? Murder might be bad for business, but love is the sweetest treat of all…

This was one big lie. Although one can tell that he is indeed smitten with his ex, Thomas did not flirt deliciously with Juliet and Juliet did not want to have any type of cake and eat it too because she was married to Carlos. These two characters have no sort of chemistry. Thomas is her ex-high school sweetheart and she is married. It doesn’t matter if she left her job on the ship because she had some problems with her Catalan husband, but she is married and she does nothing to state otherwise. She does not have any fantasy thoughts about Thomas and he doesn’t try to kiss her or touch her at any point during my speed reading.

That out of the way, this story is a tribute to Shakespeare *rolls eyes* and I think authors need to stop riding on the backs of old authors for attention. I am no fan of Shakespeare, but I read it anyway. To write a cozy mystery, you’ll need a small town (fictional if possible) where everyone knows your name.

Image result for gif say my name

The town is Ashland, Oregan and everyone knows Juliet Capshaw’s name. 

The story starts off slow and eventually builds, but then it was back to slow again bordering on boring because most of the book was spent cooking. You know? Adding an ingredient to this, mixing things, pouring things, baking things! And when Jules isn’t baking, she is accusing EVERYONE of murder when she could’ve asked me for when I read the very first chapter I knew exactly who the murderer was no matter how hard the author tried to throw me off the train. So let us recap shall we?:

* Everyone in this story moonlights as a theatre actor even Thomas!

* Too much talking and showing how to bake or cook fancy dishes; less mystery.

* This line: The man in black had to be a man. (Page 170) I don’t like it. ‘Person’ would’ve been a better fit. I laughed out loud because like I said, Ellie tried her hardest to throw me off the train. 

* This fool (Juliet) never locks the door to the bakeshop.

* The “Romeo & Juliet” reference. Know what? One day, I’m going to sit down and read some of this man call Shakespeare’s work and see what the hype was all about. Solomon was a better writer, of this, I am certain.

* It was annoying whenever Jules asked her mom about Torte (the name of the bakeshop) financially, someone/thing cut in avoiding the reply. This went on for about a million or so chapters. Also, Jules teased about why she left her husband Carlos for the entire book. Of course, it’s only natural for the reader to think that cheating was involved when she talked about letters she found and declined to elaborate further until the dying chapters. It turns out that Carlos had a son who was writing to him and he didn’t tell her and when she found the letters, she left him. I could understand why she left, but I thought it was selfish. As his wife, she should’ve stayed and listened to what his reason was behind in not telling her about his son. 

2/5. I am beginning to think that maybe Cozy Mystery is not for me. 

Image result for gif baking

Posted in Books & Reviews 📚

Books #110-#112

I’m currently reading Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. It’s a 900+ page book, but it’s slow and boring thus far and I’m thinking of temporarily abandoning it. I love huge books and I’ll read a 2000+ page book, but it must be exciting and able to keep my focus. Anyway, let’s get the latest reviews.

Related image

Book #110: Yes, Chef: A Memoir by Marcus Samuelsson

Image result for Yes, Chef a Memoir

How often does one hear a story about an Ethiopian child adopted by Swedish parents? Well, this is Marcus Samuelsson’s story and although the first part of his childhood was nice to read, as the story drag on, it became about the self and it turned me off to the point where I started to skim pages.

This book is not a memoir. It is a self-serving PR machine that serves to give more publicity to a man who has catered for the Obamas at the White House and has appeared on many television shows. 

Before I get dirty, Samuelsson was raised by wonderful Swedish parents after he was orphaned in Ethiopia. [His biological father is another story by itself.] This man missed his father’s funeral because of some visa paperwork that prevented him from traveling. This man also missed his grandmother’s funeral and this woman was a huge source of inspiration for him becoming the chef that he is today. This man couldn’t fathom why Christina (a wonderful girl he’d been dating for years) was still hanging onto him after he left Sweden to pursue his dream of working in a Swiss restaurant. He thought when he left home, he would’ve been leaving everything behind including the girl. Yet, he goes to Austria on an internship and knocks up another girl during a one-night stand thus producing a daughter whom he refused to meet until she was 14.

No, really. He paid the child support (this was all down to his mother for he wanted to skip out of paying it. The bastard!) but refused to meet his own flesh and blood because he was busy crafting a career in New York and marrying a model, some Ethiopian woman. How does he make up for lost time with his daughter? He took her to meet Kanye West at a party because he wanted to be seen as the world’s coolest dad.

This man treats the most important people – his adopted parents, his daughter, women in general – like hand me downs. Yet, YET, this very same man has the utmost gall to turn around and talk about sending monthly financial support to his biological family in Ethiopia. I was turned off by all the FOOD, FOOD, FOOD! Yes, I know that he’s a chef, but this is supposed to be a memoir and I found the f-bombs off-putting as well.

At one point I grew frustrated with the book and started skimming. If Marcus was likable before reading this rubbish he calls a memoir, he is certainly unlikable now after coming across as a narcissistic jerk. I mean, he is such a hypocrite. He ponders how his birth father never looked for him, yet he had a daughter he never saw until she was 14. Dude, you were ADOPTED. You should know what’s it like to miss parents.

At the end of the day, we all make mistakes and we hate to admit it, but Marcus came across as ungrateful and self-serving. Maybe he should’ve kept those things to himself instead of revealing them to the world. We have our plates to clean too. He also overplayed the race card and his dislike of French gastronomy was so personal that it felt as if he was holding a grudge against the French. And he was too repetitive for my liking.

I am thankful that my money was not part of this marketing scheme. No, chef, please pass the plate. 1/5.

Book #111: Cross Justice by James Patterson

Image result for cross justice james patterson

“And in this life, a man is only as good as his word.”

After 3 and a half decades, Alex Cross is finally coming home. Home to Starksville, North Carolina, where a cousin of his has been accused of a murder. He reconnects with distant relatives and learns that some events of his past are wrong where it concerns his parents. Many readers complain that too much goes on within an Alex Cross story, so here’s a breakdown of what to expect:

^ Cross’s cousin is on trial for an unthinkable murder. 

^ In Florida, a cross-dressing killer name Coco is causing havoc. 

^ A subplot about Cross’s daughter Janine and her athletic career. Pretty soon we’ll see her in Olympics!

Patterson surprises with his shocking twists, but I must say, I already knew who was Alex Cross’s father even before we crossed that bridge. I would’ve given this book four stars (heck, even five!) had it not been for the ending. That part where said Jason Cross burst into the courtroom with his hostage at gunpoint. 3/5

Book #112: Dept. of Speculation by Jenny Offill

Image result for dept. of speculation jenny offill

I devoured this book in one sitting. Although some parts were hilarious, some parts dragged and I found myself skimming through some chapters. Offill has written a book about marriage and motherhood and I admire her writing style. It was kind of refreshing to read. 

The main protagonist is known as ‘the wife’ throughout the story. The husband and baby also didn’t get names. At one time, the wife wanted a life in art (hello, ‘art monster’!), but she ended up teaching in a college after having a child. The book revolves around the mindset of the wife who is trying to figure out her place in this world. 

Depicting the rise and fall of a marriage, the book is easy to read and it has its moments, but with the characters having no names, it underscores their lack of identity. At the end of the book, I was still wondering who were these people. 

I especially found this bit hilarious:

And that phrase – “sleeping like a baby.” Some blonde said it blithely on the subway the other day. I wanted to lie down next to her and scream for five hours in her ear. (Page 26)

🤣🤣🤣🤣This brought back pleasant memories of the prank war that never was between Dr. Spencer Reid and Derek Morgan on Criminal Minds. I was all #TeamReid! Morgan had it coming for him!

This book is a 3/5.

I know it’s still early in May, but I DNF’ed 3 books and carted them off to the library. It’s been a fantastic reading month! I love watching my TBR go down. 😄