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The Last Reader

 "I read so I can live more than one life in more than one place."

- Anne Tyler

Book Review : Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stepahie Perkins

Lola and the Boy Next Door - Stephanie Perkins

Lola Nolan, who believes that "Life is too short to be the same person every day", loves wearing coloured wigs together with her own unique clothing styles. She was raised by her gay parents and has a rockstar boyfriend, Max, who is five years older than her. Lola's world turned upside down when their old neighbors, the Bell family, move back.

 

I love Anna and the French Kiss so much that's why I was so excited about the next novel, Lola and the Boy Next Door and since it's a companion book, we cannot avoid the comparison of the two and for me, I still love AanFK. Their appearance in this book made me love them even more.

 

Just like with AatFK, I couldn't stop myself reading LatBND. I fell inlove easily with the characters. As always, Stephanie Perkins' characters are relatable and likeable. And that's what I love about her.

 

I like it that Lola is being true in terms of expressing herself through clothings, like not wearing the same outfit twice, and I don't accept what Max told her about it. At first, I thought I will hate Max for being such a jerk but then I've realized that Lola did caused him to act like that and it's not because of their age difference. I'm a fan of "age doesn't matter" not because I'm two years older than my fiance but because love is a feeling and age is just a number. At first Max is like the perfect boyfriend who even attends Lola's family "Sunday brunch" even her gay parents are interrogating him and then all of the sudden he became an ahole boyfriend. I just don't like how Lola and Max's relationship ends.

 

Cricket. Is there really a guy nowadays who's like him? Got his fingernails painted Opening Night blue by a girl? He's just so perfect except of his name but it's quite appropriate for him. Though his presence is not enough (compared to St. Clair in AatFK) considering that he is one of the main characters, I still like how sweet and endearing he is. Another thing I love in the story are Lola's dads. They are so cool and so perfect for each other. I can understand why they're strict to Lola. And oh, for Filipino readers out there, Stephanie Perkins mentioned a "pudgy but muscled Filipino" guy in this book.

 

The plot is fairly simple and the ending is predictable but these things didn't affect how I felt throughout the story. Good thing I've read this at home and not in public because people might think that I'm weird for smiling at my iPad.

 

If you like quirky characters and a cute love story then this book is right for you. You may also want to read Anna and the French Kiss first.

Source: http://kathquiambao.wordpress.com/2014/11/20/book-review-lola-and-the-boy-next-door-by-stephanie-perkins

Book Review : Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami

Sputnik Sweetheart - Haruki Murakami, Philip Gabriel

The story is narrated by K who is inlove with his best friend Sumire, who is in love with Miu, a woman seventeen years older than her. Compared to Miu who is glamorous and a successful businesswoman, Sumire is an aspiring writer and dresses in an oversized second-hand coat and heavy boots like a character in a Kerouac novel. Sumire spends hours on the phone talking to K about life and her feelings for Miu.

 

Sumire’s feelings for Miu causes her to change her “lifestyle” and even stops her from writing. She accepts a job offer from Miu and fly with her to Europe. K don’t have any idea about the trip until he received a letter from Sumire describing their travels across Europe and staying in a small Greek island. One night, K got a phone call from Greece but it wasn’t Sumire. It was Miu telling him that Sumire disappeared “like a smoke” and he needs to fly to the island to help searching for her.

 

The title came from the Russian man-made satellite named Sputnik (Sputnik I and II) which also means “travel companion”. Why Sputnik Sweetheart? I’ll leave that for you to find out.

 

The three characters are all suffering from loneliness brought by their own unique experiences and despite of Sumire’s disappearance, the story is not really focusing on it. The existence of “other side” (of the world) where one can go there and go back again to the “present” world is one of the main theme in this novel.

 

Murakami writes everything in detailed but it will not bore you to death. He is also know for his metaphors and symbols. They may cause confusions to the readers that may effect for them to get bored and stop reading. But it can also make the readers think deeply and analyze about it to know how are they related to the story or the characters. In my case, i choose the latter effect. Murakami describes Sumire’s “intense love” as:

 

- a veritable tornado sweeping across the plains – flattening everything in its path, tossing things up in the air, ripping them to shreds, crushing them to bits. The tornado’s intensity doesn’t abate for a second as it blasts across the ocean, laying waste to Angkor Wat, incinireting an Indian jungle, tigers and everythingm transforming itself into a Persian desert sandstorm, burying an exotic fortress city under a sea of sand.

 

This novel has an “open-ended” ending that will make you wonder of what really happened with the characters or the whole story itself. I want to know your opinion about the ending of this book so let me know if you’ve read this so we can maybe talk about it. I really wish I can understand Japanese so I can read the original text.

 

I highly recommend this book especially for those who haven’t read any of Murakami’s work. This one is a great start.

Source: http://kathquiambao.wordpress.com/2014/11/09/book-review-sputnik-sweetheart-by-haruki-murakami

Book Review: Every You, Every Me by David Levithan

Every You, Every Me - David Levithan, Jonathan Farmer

“You know one me. Just like I know one you. But you can’t know every me. And I can’t know every you.”

 

I keep reading because I’m eager to know what will happen in the end and I tried to finish it in one sitting but I wasn’t able to. So I spent another day to find out where the story will take me.

 

Evan is on his way home from school when he found an envelope on the ground that has a photo inside. He started getting more photographs where some of which he is in and most are of his best friend Ariel. He starts to think that it’s Ariel who’s doing it in order to punish him. He then asked Jack, who is also their friend, for help. As they unravel the mystery behind the photographs, Evan discovers himself more deeper.

 

What i love about David Levithan’s way of writing is his talent to create an uniquely incredible concepts and interesting characters that can bring out all the the reader’s emotions. I like his writing style, especially in this novel where some lines are crossed out using strikethroughs when Evan is talking to Ariel in his head or when he’s talking to himself. I can somehow relate because I also do like that in some of my blog posts.

 

Evan is struggling with the loss of his best friend Ariel and he feels that he’s responsible for it. He is more than depressed and hopeless without her. We didn’t get to know more about Ariel and what exactly happened to her except she’s not with them anymore.

 

This novel is told with words and photos which made the story more intriguing and msyterious. I’ve read in the acknowledgements that Jonathan Farmer provided the photos randomly to David Levithan who continued on writing about it. Neither of the two know what the other was doing. This novel shows how brilliant their collaboration is.

 

This is one of my favorites from this author though I didn’t give a five-star rating. I felt that maybe the story could be a little longer or maybe a good twist can be added on it. But all in all, this novel is haunting and it gave me goosebumps while reading. Not to mention the photos are somehow creepy.

 

Highly recommend!

Source: http://kathquiambao.wordpress.com/2014/10/18/book-review-every-you-every-me-by-david-levithan

Went to the city with B and he bought this for me! ♥

Book Review : Allegiant (Divergent #3) by Veronica Roth

Allegiant  - Veronica Roth

I was able to avoid reading reviews and even talking about this book with my fellow bookworms that's why I had no idea on how the story would end.

 

In this third and final book of Veronica Roth's Divergent series, a secret alliance was formed against Evelyn's system and Tris, Tobias and the others were chosen to go outside the city to find out what is hidden beyond the fence.

 

It was narrated through Tris and Tobias' points of views which for me was confusing most of the time and i had to flip back some pages to check whose POV I was reading. Maybe because I got used to Tris' as the only narrator or they somehow sound similar. The good thing is we know what's going on with Tobias' head and how he feels about everything. The relationship between the two is tested and of course there are also some sweet and "intense" moments between them.

 

What is the symbol on the cover means? I thought it has something to do with Erudites but it's not. It doesn't have anything to do with the factions. (This is not a spoiler, right?) It's really advisable to read the first two books before reading this one. Here, readers will encounter (again) some new characters and some new problems or circumstances in and outside the city. I personally didn't expect that something like that was going on beyond the fence.

 

I really don't know how i feel about the ending. I'm not really disappointed (unlike the majority of people who read this book) instead, I was dreadful (after reading chapter 50) that it made me cry while reading until the last chapter. I feel so sad until now while typing this. It's not a perfect happy ending but I think it's inevitable and it makes me admire Tris, Tobias and Peter (yes! You've read it right!) more.

 

I know some people who don't want to read Allegiant anymore because they were spoiled about the ending and didn't like it. All i can say is give it a chance. If you've read the first two then why not read the last book, right? It can answer your questions and help you understand why that certain thing happens.

 

I enjoyed reading this series and I'm loking forward to read more of Ms. Roth's books.

Book Review : Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth

Insurgent  - Veronica Roth

“People I have discovered, are layers and layers of secrets. You believe you know them, that you understand them, but their motives are always hidden from you, buried in their own hearts. You will never know them, but sometimes you decide to trust them”

B noticed that I was so excited to read Insurgent after I finished reading Divergent, so he bought it for me. (#SpoiledFiancee)

 

This is the second book of Divergent trilogy by Veroncia Roth and it's advisable to read the first book before reading this one and this review.

 

Insurgent begins directly after where Divergent ended and it was cool because I don't have to remind myself again or reread the first book. (My memory sometimes let me down.) In this book, we get to learn more about the other factions including the Factionless.

 

Here, Tris is broken and deeply traumatized with her parents death and at the same time, guilty of Will's death. She became too risky and vulnerable which made her do some terrible decisions. Meanwhile, Four gets over protective most of the time to Tris which is understandable because he really cares for her. This book don't have a lot of Tris-Four moments and I know that romance is not really the main focus of this novel so it's okay. No love triangle (which is common to this kind of novel, i think) so far but they argue most of the time.

 

I have problems remembering names and this book has a lot of new minor and major characters. I'm not sure if it's good or bad but it's just too much for me. Your opinion about the characters can also change through the story like with me, I started to like Peter and hate Caleb.

 

I can say that i like Divergent more than this but don't get me wrong. Insurgent is more action packed and contains more surprises, twists and a cliffhanger ending.

Source: http://kathreads.tumblr.com/post/99554136575/insurgent-divergent-2-author-veronica-roth-my

October 5-12 is Mental Health Week and as a celebration i’m sharing the books I’ve read which deal with mental illness and social/emotional issues. I’m encouraging everyone to participate by reading or sharing any books related to mental health issues. Tag your posts with #ReadForMentalHealthWeek. Spread the awareness.

Source: http://kathreads.tumblr.com/post/99308215280/october-5-12-is-mental-health-week-and-as-a
Red books
Red books

Just posting my books in red color :)

Source: http://kathreads.tumblr.com/post/99219473370/red-is-my-second-favorite-color-and-its-obvious
October TBR
October TBR

My October TBR

 

  • The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion
  • Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  • Girlfriend in a Coma by Douglas Coupland
  • Sputnik Sweetheart by Haruki Murakami
  • Warm Bodies by Isaac Marions
  • The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith
September Wrap Up
September Wrap Up
  • The Catastrophic History of You and Me by Jess Rothenberg- BookishPinoys’ September Book of the Month. It’s my first time to join a read-along and I’m happy to do it again. My review here.
  • Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn - I totally love this book. It’s my first Gillian Flynn book and I’ll definitely read her other books. My review here.
  • Insurgent by Veronica Roth - My least favorite among the series.
  • Allegiant by Veronica Roth - I just finished reading this book. I was emotional during the last few chapters and I can say that I’m not disappointed or whatever.
Source: http://kathreads.tumblr.com
Stadtbibliothek Stuttgart
Stadtbibliothek Stuttgart

I wish I can visit this library again.

Book Review : Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler

Why We Broke Up - Daniel Handler

The title says clearly what the book is all about. The reasons why Min broke up with Ed was written (as a letter) together with the items (which are also related to both of them of course) inside the box. Min drop it in front of Ed’s house.

This book (paperback) was on my wishlist last Christmas but unfortunately it’s not available. Well, I still got the other books so it’s okay. I admit that at first I got a bit bored specially when Min talks about the movies that she likes. I love watching movies but not those kinds. I also (somehow) don’t have any idea or clue on how they will break up then I’ve realized at the end that it’s very obvious. (I’m so lame. Haha) The plot is still interesting although sometimes it’s a bit slow. I’m always excited to see the next picture (every chapter starts with an illustration) so I read a bit fast. I think those were my favorite parts. I love books with pictures :) I can say that maybe I cannot really relate myself to the story since my highschool “love-life” is not really colorful and I still have my virginity that time. But I’m still recommending this book!

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/11288655-why-we-broke-up

Book Review : The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time - Mark Haddon

Christopher, an autistic teenager, discovered their neighbor's dead dog one night and decided to make an investigation (He's a Sherlock Holmes fan) to find out who murdered it. During his investigation, he accidentally discovers the truth about his family. Siobhan, his friend, explains everything to him specially the different emotions of people. I can somehow compare Christopher to Sheldon Cooper (of The Big Bang Theory). Both of them don't understand human emotions and they both love physics and maths and I love their attitude. There are some parts of the story, I'm talking about the math formulas, that I had to read fast (didn't read at all) because it's MATH. Am i the only one? Haha! The story was unpredictable (though my second suspect was Christopher's father) and it has a great twists. All in all, the book is incredible.

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7029065-the-curious-incident-of-the-dog-in-the-night-time

Book Review : To All The Boys I've Loved Before by Janny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before - Jenny Han

I didn’t think twice before buying this. The title is catchy, i love the cover and it’s my first Jenny Han book. I was expecting to read a lot of handwritten love letters but it’s not, there are like 3 or 4 short letters. At first I thought It’s Gogo who sent the letters, but I’m wrong. Haha! I can somehow relate to Lara Jean when it comes to “costume parties”. I can only be Yoruichi (Bleach) even I want to be Fujiko. Hahaha! Back to the book, I like Josh more than Peter but I like Peter’s character more than Josh. I also want to have a little sister like Kitty. She’s so smart and adorable. I just read in Goodreads that Ms. Han is working on the sequel.

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/21028311-to-all-the-boys-i-ve-loved-before

Book Review : The Future Of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler

The Future of Us - Jay Asher, Carolyn Mackler

Knowing what you'll be, 15 years from now, is an awesome thing but somehow scary. But I'm not sure if I'll do what Emma did. I won't even maybe check it for the second time even it's tempting because I don't want to ruin my future. This book is about friendship, "friendzoning" and loyalty. And it shows how our current decisions, both big and small, can affect our future.

Source: http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/13589184-the-future-of-us
If I Stay -
""Sometimes you make choices in life and sometimes choices make you.""