Review: Ruin (Dark Tide, #2)

Ruin (Dark Tide, #2)
Ruin (Dark Tide, #2) by Michael A. Stackpole

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Actual rating: 4.5 stars

I regret to have been putting off this book for so long. Who can blame me when there are hundreds and thousands of books to distract me every day? Haha! I’m just so glad that I saw a physical copy of the book in our school library too since this is the type of book that I would prefer reading the physical copy of. (Is it just me or your reading speed varies depending on the “copy” of the book, whether physical, e-book or audiobook, and what genre of the book is? For example, I read faster if I read physical copies of sci-fi books while I can read fast when reading e-book copies of most Young Adult fiction.)

Anyway, in case you don’t know, I love Star Wars to death and would indulge myself to anything Star Wars-related. It has been part of my childhood ever since my dad introduced me to the franchise. I remember him having me watch the movies according to the years they were released, Episode IV, V, VI then the prequels I, II, and III and I remember loving it ever since.

Since this is the third book of the series, I already know that it’s still going to focus on defeating the Yuuzhan Vong. I expected the New Republic to finally find a way to defeat these alien oppressors. But then I remembered that there are 19 books in the series…. *bites nails nervously*

All the songs, all the stories, pointed to Jedi defending the helpless, defeating the tyrannical, and restoring order.”

The Star Wars I knew have always had two sides: the Light Side and the Dark Side. But reading this book series, New Jedi Order has opened my eyes to another realm of possibilities, a different set of enemies, and new characters to meet. I enjoyed seeing veteran characters like Luke and Leia Skywalker grow further and seeing how much they changed and how much of their past self you can still see presently. What I fear though is if the series will be dragging. Will they be fighting JUST the Yuuzhan Vong ’till the end of the 19th book? This is coming from someone who has read only 3 out of 19 books from the series so far, though, mind you. πŸ™‚ Although I know I’d still read all of them (and a few more Star Wars series, of course) since I am really loving the series and how consistent it has been to the franchise. One thing to keep in mind though is that the series is no longer canon, meaning, the series isn’t “officially” accepted, however, it is now considered as part of the Expanded Universe also called the “Legends”. πŸ™‚

Nonetheless, I highly recommend this to Star Wars fans like me who are looking to explore more in the Star Wars universe, canon or not. πŸ™‚

You can also find this review on The Girl Who Cried Bookss

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Review: Just Juliet

Just Juliet
Just Juliet by Charlotte Reagan

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

*Thank you to Inkitt for giving me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review!*

You can also find this review on The Girl Who Cried Bookss

Actual rating: 3.5

Initial expectations: *looks at cover* “Oh. Look at the colors. LGBTQ pride! I bet this book is going to be REALLY cheesy.”

About the book: Lena Newman has it “all”: Cheerleader bestfriend, jock of a boyfriend and a life kind of sorted out already. Then came Juliet James: goddess (not literally), absolutely talented, lesbian. Lena’s world goes topsy-turvy as she travels the path to a new world of possibilities.

Characters: Scott and Lakyn are my absolute favorites. They’re highly likeable. They stay true to themselves. And yes, they are totally gay. I know for a fact that they are the type of people I genuinely want to be friends with.
Mr. James is the epitome of how people should react and act around homosexuals (or LGBTQ, in general). He’s a loving, warm and understanding parent and has played a huge role in Lena’s journey to accepting her bisexuality. The world would be a way better place if everyone thinks and acts like him, really. The main character and the voice of the story, Lena, easily annoyed me but I gave her a chance since being in her shoes isn’t really easy either; she’ll grow on you as you read along.

Story: I love contemporaries. There’s just something about delving into the various realities of life that is just as beautiful and haunting as it is eye-opening. In Just Juliet, the very sensitive topic of sexuality was explored, being that the main character, Lena, is bisexual. Her bisexuality wasn’t a fact slapped to us as we first dive into the chapters. It was one of the main conflicts in the story. Lena experienced some of the common experiences that someone who isn’t heterosexual has to go through like coming out to friends and family, embracing her sexuality and accepting the fact that the future ahead of her has shifted.

As for the depth of the story, it wasn’t “too much”. Charlotte Reagan wrote it in a way that it is both light-hearted and emotional. Lena’s journey was hard but it was made easy with the help of her friends who have only been loving and supportive, which is why I deemed this book as a “light read”. But I will take this as a symbol of us, as a society, transcending to that time and place where we can all freely talk about sexuality without prejudice, without fear of being cut down and shamed. This story is just one of the many realities out there. It is just one of the many struggles that we face and witness (if not experienced first-hand) every single day. It is just one of the countless stories that needs to be heard and accepted.

If you’re looking for something light to read about sexuality and the exploration and journey towards accepting it, this may be the book for you to get started. πŸ™‚

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Review: The Universe of Us

The Universe of Us
The Universe of Us by Lang Leav

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Like always, Lang never fails to speak to my heart and weave the words as if they were from my own thoughts and experience. She is undeniably and absolutely talented, I tell you. And just like her other books, this one has a beginning, a middle and an end. Starting with hearts meeting for the first time, eruption of a thousand possibilities of love. Then lovers unleashing and relishing their love for one another, unwavering and undying. Lastly, the realization that all things, even the love they thought and felt was endless, will eventually recede. That there is nothing else left to do but move on with hopes of meeting another soul in the process.

“I believe we think more deeply about the universe when we’re falling in love. I think the mysterious pull that draws you to another person is identical to the one that moves our eyes upward to the stars.”

β€œI think love is about being your darkest, most destructive self. To be loved, not in spite of this but because of it.”

These are just a few of my favorites, by the way. It’s a must-read for fans of Lang Leav, for poetry enthusiasts like me and for those in love, stuck in love and broken by love.

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Review: MILLIE HARDIMAN AND THE RED PARROT FEVER

MILLIE HARDIMAN AND THE RED PARROT FEVER
MILLIE HARDIMAN AND THE RED PARROT FEVER by Eddie Owens

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

*Note: I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review*

Thirteen-year-old Millie Hardiman’s dream is to be one of the best writers in the world. She loves making stories to the point that it would inconvenient people, really. Reading the book kind of took me back to when I was thirteen and was none the wiser. Although, I can say that Millie, Chunk, Penny and the other tweens in the book seemed way more mature than they should be. I think that is both impressive and a tad bit unbelievable for me because these kids seem to think things through fast and logically. (Unless I was just a bloody stupid thirteen-year-old back then)

Characters : I didn’t really like Millie, at least in most parts of the book. She absolutely lacks respect which just irks me. She calls people older than her using their first names? Red flag for me. She tends to be rude which also is a red flag for me. But like most books, things happen. Lessons are learned the hard way. People change or the better. Millie finally learned which relationships and friendships matter and she should value. Chunk’s background story was a nice touch, though. Who even names their kid Chunk? Read the book then find out!

Plot : I honestly didn’t expect much upon reading that the book is really intended for readers 12 years old and above. The title was a bit misleading, though. I kind of pictured the book as something like The Adventures of Tin Tin because of how it was named. I think I would have enjoyed it more if it was also illustrated. I still enjoyed the story all in all anyway!

Recommendation : It’s a light and fast read so I’d recommend this to kids who enjoy Dear Dumb Diary, Dork Diaries or The Diary of a Wimpy Kid.

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Review: Hector and the Search for Happiness

Hector and the Search for Happiness
Hector and the Search for Happiness by François Lelord

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

“It is a mistake to think that happiness is the goal.”

I love this book so much. It’s such a feel-good/pick-me-up read especially during a time that one is feeling lost and weary. What I like the most about this book is how it presents innocence by how it is written no matter how mature and sensitive the topics are. For topics (and places) that could have been specified, FranΓ§ois wrote them in a way that would make the reader guess and think about where exactly this place is and what that activity is called; which also gave the “innocent” vibe throughout. (e.g. sex was described/used as “doing what people in love do”)

This made me think about my own search for happiness; whether I have achieved it or how do I define happiness or if I currently am in a state of happiness. It also made me grateful for what I have and what I don’t have. It made me want to DO something. I am the type to find happiness in other people’s happiness so as much as possible, I do what I can to make others happy. At the same time, I am also the kind of person to get anxious over my present life and the future. I tend to always do the mistake of comparing myself, what I don’t have and what I cannot do, to others. I feel this pressure to be “successful” like those around me, to be as talented, busy or rich as they are. Reading this book kind of helped in motivating me to do otherwise, explore happiness and view life as a journey and not a race.

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Review: Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide

Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide
Hogwarts: An Incomplete and Unreliable Guide by J.K. Rowling

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The third book from Pottermore Presents shares with us the secrets and unanswered questions from the previous Harry Potter books like β€œHow did James, Peter, Sirius and Remus lost the Marauder’s map?” or β€œWhy is Nearly Headless Nick, well, just nearly headless?” Well, we can basically access these facts and secrets anytime at Pottermore.com but it feels nice and nostalgic to read them in a book. This is making me want to read the series again. #PotterheadForever

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Review: Sex Criminals, Volume 3: Three the Hard Way

Sex Criminals, Volume 3: Three the Hard Way
Sex Criminals, Volume 3: Three the Hard Way by Matt Fraction

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This comics. This. It explores the many facets of sex and sexuality with humor and just the right amount of slaps of truth in between pages. It is a hilarious series, I’m telling you. But it’s more than that. Need Chapter 16 ASAP.

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