Books & Reviews 📚, Challenges/Tags/Fun Stuff

The Entertainer Book Tag 📚

I haven’t done a book tag in a while, but when I saw The Entertainer Book Tag on Jade’s blog, I thought I’ll give it a try. It’s a short one, but you know the drill: grab your coffee and let’s go!

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1) Your favorite form of reading (ebook, audiobook, etc.)?

This question pops up in almost every book tag I come across. My answer is always the same no matter how many years I age: physical books. I tried ebook, but we were not compatible. I’m yet to try an audiobook, so maybe I’ll give that a chance one day.

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2) If you could trade places with any other MC in their fictional world facing the same problems as them, who would you trade places with?

Haha! This is funny, for although I’ve read hundreds of books, it’s always the male characters that resonate with me the most. Like, I can name five of my all-time favorite male characters at the snap of a finger (d’Artagnan, Spencer Reid, Luc Moncrief, Alex Cross, and Ethan Hunt!), but I can’t do the same when it comes to female MCs.

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Eh, guess I adore male MCs more than their female counterparts. Oh, wait, I didn’t answer the question. Well, to be honest, when I was into mangas and the then anime for Yu-Gi-Oh! I wanted to trade places with Yami Yugi for at least one episode. He was the coolest dude around and perhaps in the world of anime, still is. No one has spiky hair like him, the deep baritone or can even dream of wearing a jacket like him. Not even one Seto Kaiba. 

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3) Favorite Movie?

I don’t watch movies anymore. The only ones I’m currently attempting to watch are the ones that I’m doing for the TC Challenge which I may not complete, but that’s okay. Anyway, my favorite movie is the Mission: Impossible franchise. If I have to choose one, Ghost Protocol.

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Only in my dreams, I am this free to fly off buildings like this!

4) What do you wish you could see more of in books?

Characters that aren’t reduced to stereotypes such as Frenchmen. Almost every book I read, Frenchmen are reduced to the same great looking, adorable, lovable, philandering, smothering, delicious heartthrobs! Why can’t we have Frenchmen who aren’t dreamboats and hair that aren’t the best? The Frenchmen who have flaws like their other fictional male counterparts. Why can’t we have that?

5) Favorite first line from a book?

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.

Genesis 1:1

(The Holy Bible)

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6) A book that isn’t your favorite all-time read, but one that you could read over and over again?

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*** GIFs via Google Images

Books & Reviews 📚

Books #132-#134: Bonjour Luc Moncrief 😍

Meet dashing French Detective Luc Moncrief:

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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…

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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)

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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!

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

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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).

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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)

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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

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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. 

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

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Bonjour Luc! 

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

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

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***Photos and GIFs via Google Images

Books & Reviews 📚

A mini book haul and reading update

*shrugging* You know this was coming. 

My TBR is going down, down, down! I had to celebrate that feat by buying a few books. 

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Who just got more books? This girl!

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Okay, it’s not that huge. It’s a few books I’ve accumulated and nothing to scream about.

I haven’t posted a book review in a long time. It’s not that I am tired of it, I just didn’t find the time to write it up. I’ve been reading non-stop and although I won’t do a review for all of the books, I’ll try my best to write a few. The few books I accumulated are:

The Recordsetter Book of World Records by Corey Henderson and Dan Rollman

I saw this at my favorite local bookstore on sale for only $10 and I had to get it. Looks interesting enough.

The Three Musketeers a retelling

This version is for kids, but this is the author and book that kickstarted my love for reading and all things French so I had to get it.

Look at the pretty cover and the contrast of the blues! 💙💙

Around the World in Eighty Days by Jules Verne

Another favorite French author I love! I read and love this book when I was a child and the time has come for revisiting this epic classic. 

The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

My wonderful colleague told me that this was her favorite book when she was younger, so I bought it for the classic challenge I plan on doing early next year God’s willing. I’ll talk more about it when the time comes.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

A gift from a wonderful woman who I refer to as a second mother! 💙

This summer, reading is going down!

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Currently trying to read…

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This book is soooo boring! It’s 800+ pages and I love long books, but this book might be DNFing soon. I love reading books with India set as the backdrop, but I can’t get into this one at the moment.

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I picked this one up last month, but can’t seem to get past the first few pages. Maybe it’s Bill Clinton’s fault, but I’ll try to pick it back up before the summer kisses us goodbye. 

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I’ve been reading this book on and off the past 2 years or so for every time I pick it up, I read a few chapters, put it down and move on to the next book. I’ll try to finish it by next month God’s willing so I can finally get rid of it. 

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This short trilogy needs to be a full-length book for Luc Moncrief can give Alex Cross a run for his money! I’ll be writing a proper review soon.

Books I want to read soon

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What are you reading or looking forward to reading?

Books & Reviews 📚

Book Haul part trois (and predictions)

Here I go again buying books, but I have no shame, so eh! I’ll just add them to my ever-growing pile and whine about not having time to read all of them. 

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I’m kidding! I’ll eventually get to all of them and besides, this small book haul might just be my last haul of the year.

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Okay! Okay! This is definitely not the last book haul of the year, but it’ll be for the while being. Nevertheless, I got new books (most of them for my birthday) and you know what that means! Happy dance time!

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Let’s get to the books!

Love and Louis XIV by Antonia Fraser

I don’t trust British writers when it comes to writing about French history (I’ve had some bias run-ins over the years and had to abandon the book), but I’ll give this woman the benefit of the doubt. I got this book because I’ll read anything on the greatest European monarch who ever lived. I think this might be a 4/5 stars read for it looks really good.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

I’ve been wanting to read this book since last year because I simply love Indian stories! This story has many mixed reviews, but I’ll be going into it neutral for the simple fact that it’s YA. Rishi sounds like a dream, though. I’ll say 3/5.

You’re Welcome, Universe by Whitney Gardner

I am in love with the cover! Inside contains some drawings and graffiti although I don’t find all of them pretty. I got this book because I wanted to read up on more deaf characters given that I have one of my own. Given that this is a YA, I’ll say a 2-3/5. I really hope I can be proved wrong, though and it’ll be at least a 4 in the end, but I’m not holding my breath because it can easily be a 1. 

Glitter by Aprilynne Pike

I saw the cover, fell in love, read the synopsis and fell in love even more because it revolves around the Palace of Versailles when King Louis XVI was King. Then I was disappointed when I realized that it’s actually a series and I dislike series unless it’s Alex Cross. In order for me to buy Shatter the sequel, this book must be a 4/5.

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

  

Earlier this year, I thought about doing a Classic Challenge and I just had to get my all-time favorite. This is the first time that I’ve received a stained book from Amazon, but I forgive them for the vinegar stain. It’s been a while since I’ve read this book. When I read it a couple of times back in primary school, it was a five every single time. But I’m not the same reader anymore so I’ll settle for 4/5.

Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

Bruce Wayne as a teen? Count me in! However, to set the record straight, I could care less about Batman. I just like the fact that Brucie is a wealthy techie freak and he doesn’t need superpowers to be a superhero. Someone once said that wealthy characters are boring, but I have super awesome wealthy characters who aren’t boring and Brucie also proves that theory wrong. This YA is no Clark Kent, but I’ll say 3/5.

Love, Life, and the List by Kasie West

I’ve always wanted to read material by Kasie West and when I saw this overhyped book at my favorite bookstore, I knew that this was the chance to read her. This is a summer read and the synopsis sounds really good. It also looks like a cute story so I’ll say 3/5.

The Christmas Mystery by James Patterson

The trilogy of Monsieur Luc Moncrief is finally complete! I can now read these book shots in one sitting! Base on the back cover, I’ll say this is a 4/5 read! I hope James Patterson can prove me right because I’m not a big fan of the book shot series, but I couldn’t pass up this French detective. I hope he can have his own full-length novel series at some point… assuming that he’s good!

Hidden Order by Brad Thor

I got this book on sale for only $15. Now compare that price to the original price of $78.70! This is the first time I’ve come across this author, but the story sounds good and I look forward to reading it at some point this year. I’ll say this is a 3/5 rating.

And that’s a wrap for now. Whenever I read these books, I’ll come back to the so-call predictions and see if I was right. By the way, did any of you guys happen to read books from this haul? How was your reading experience like?

Books & Reviews 📚

Book Haul part un

I’ve never done a book haul for the blog before so I am excited to do this. My TBR list is only growing, but I am determined to read many of them this year God’s willing. I try not to buy books every month, but the struggle is real whenever I see a book that I want.

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I also have many books in PDF, but nothing beats holding a physical book in your hands and flipping the pages. Okay, let’s get into it and please ignore the quality of the photos; I’ve had better days.

Girl Online On Tour by Zoe Sugg

I’ll be doing a YouTuber reading challenge sometime this year if time permits me. Zoe Sugg is a YouTuber who also vlogs beauty and fashion. This is #2 in the Girl Online series although I’m yet to read Girl Online. What happened is that when I visited the bookstore that day, I had a dentist appointment and I was in a hurry to get out of town afterward, so I saw the words ‘Girl Online’ and just picked the book up without thinking twice.

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This was a random buy. 🙂

French Kiss and French Twist by James Patterson

I dislike James Patterson’s Book Shots, but when I read that the new detective is French, I couldn’t pass this one up. I’m ready to get my Luc Moncrief on.

Treasure Hunters by James Patterson

I’ve never read the Treasure Hunters series, but this book looks interesting. Also, it’s rated for kids 8-12 years, but it looks like a really great adventure. 

Almost Home by Ted N.C. Wilson

My sister bought this book for me. It’s basically a collection of sermons of how we as Christians expecting Christ’s return should be living. I can’t wait to get into this.

Crossing the Line by Frédérique Molay

This author is known as the “French Michael Connelly” and I hope she lives up to the name. I am eager to read about the Parisian justice system as well.

The Two-Witness Rule by William Eleazer

Set in Savannah Georgia, a defense attorney is accused of paying witnesses to commit perjury in a criminal trial. I love legal fiction, so I hope this book hits the spot. 

Almost French by Sarah Turnbull

I love reading about people’s experiences with the French culture whether good or bad and I can’t wait to read Sarah’s account.

Yu-Gi-Oh! by Kazuki Takahashi

I’ve had this book for a while now and it’s been on my TBR list ever since I got it, but I see it more like a collectible. 

Courtroom 302 by Steve Bogira

For the love of all things law!

Ordinary Justice: How America Holds Court by Amy Bach

Another American law book.

The Franklin Scandal by Nick Bryant

This book is an account of child-trafficking and pedophilia ring in the United States and how the government covers up corruption. I recall the Omaha Franklin Federal Credit Union scandal in 1988 and I had to get this book.

The Gordian Knot by Bernhard Schlink

I only got this book because the south of France is featured.