Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year 2014

image's taken from web

In another few hours, we will bid adieu to year 2013 and welcome year 2014 whether we like it or not.  Some might greet it with much reluctance or while others would be welcoming the new year with arms wide open.

It's a rather wonderful day to sleep in as it's raining rather heavily and with nothing much to do for the whole day and not feel like doing much for the whole day, it's rather nice and to curl up in bed with a book and a nice mug of coffee and I'm going to do just that shortly!

For now, it the right time to take stock of this year before it's over. Purple Queen Fairy Reads will end this year on a pretty happy note. :)

This blog managed a total of 70 posts for the year which is 5 posts less than last year but all things considered, I'm quite at peace with it.  Circumstances changed and I am aware that I am not able to maintain the momentum that I had two years ago.

For this year, I am rather pleased happy with my book sales which I took part in July, September and October.  I hope to be able to make this an ongoing venture and be able to expand further my love of reading.  It was from this interest that this blog was established so that I can share about what I read and now I can share the books that I enjoyed reading with you makes it even fulfilling (if I can use this word :)

Moving forward to year 2014, I hope that it will be the year to bring this blog a bit further. How? I don't really know yet. The spirit is willing so I hope my flesh will go along with it too.

That would be all for this year.

Thank you for dropping by.   I'm humbled that you choose to do so.  Wishing you a wonderful and joyful new year ahead. May God bless you abundantly and may you be extraordinary in His name.  God bless.

Friday, December 27, 2013

The Cross Gardener by Jason F. Wright

Synopsis :

Married and the father of a young daughter, John Bevan had finally found the traditional family he lacked as an orphaned child. But all that disappears when a fatal car accident steals away his wife-and the unborn child she carried.

Filled with sorrow, John withdraws from life and love. He erects a small cross at the scene of his wife's accident and visits daily, grieving. Then one morning he encounters a young man kneeling before the cross, touching it up with white paint. John's conversations and travels with this mysterious man-known to him only as the Cross Gardener-will forever change his world.

From Jason F. Wright comes a timeless tale that explores the questions we ask when our lives are touched by loss: How do we carry on? And who will show us the way? The answers John Bevan finds illuminate the hope that even in our darkest hours we are not alone.

The first thing that attracted me to this book is the colour of the cover.  I love this green and even the image above just look so fresh.  The second thing that attracted me was the title, The Cross Gardener and I remember reading an article somewhere at one time on planting of crosses at accidents sites.

Reading Jason Wright reminded me a bit of reading Mitch Albom although their approach are pretty different from one to the other.  The Cross Gardener is one book that you will need to read ad reflect on.  It would caused you to feel the loss of John and if you wonder who the Cross Gardener is, I am no telling.  It would just amazed you when you read this book. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Blessed Christmas 2013

Wishing all readers

near and far 

an extremely


Blessings be with you and your family

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Wedding Babylon by Imogen Edwards-Jones

Synopsis :

Following a week in the life of a busy wedding planner, and based entirely on true but anonymous stories, Wedding Babylon takes you to the heart of an industry where emotions run high, money flows like champagne and £3000 cakes are made of polystyrene.

Why are weddings so expensive?  What makes us spend a year's wages on one Big Day?  And just how Big does your Day actually have to be?

Hilarious, shocking and full of jaw-dropping true tales of wedding days from hell, here is definitive proof that, sadly, the course of true love never did run entirely smooth....

This is as much a fun book as a sad book.  Fun because it has lots of funny tales of weddings, brides, grooms, best men, bridesmaids and so on.  Sad because if the tales are true, some people do get their priorities wrong when it comes to getting married.

The wedding planners featured here are actually two guys and readers get a glimpse of their days as they met with clients to discuss napkins, flowers, menus, etc.  The author also allowed readers to tag along to a wedding from collecting the bridal gown, wedding cake to meeting the minister or priest, setting up the party venue which includes portable loos and swearing chefs, etc.And the big bucks that couples are willing to shell out for the most perfect day of their lives can be rather atrocious. 

Like I said, rather fun read for a good laugh.

Friday, December 13, 2013

The Devil You Know by Louise Bagshawe

Synopsis :

New York...Smart, sexy Rose Fiorello grows up poor with nothing but a blistering hatred of Rothstein Realty, the developer that crushed her father's business...and a shocking plan to get even.

Los Angeles...Pampered society princess Poppy Allen wants to escape the smothering cocoon of her parents' privileged life to embrace the excitement of becoming a rock star...or rock star maker.

London...Plump, bullied Daisy Markham devours trashy bestsellers to escape her misery at boarding school...until she discovers that writing them can bring the acceptance-and man-she secretly desires.

But as each of these gutsy women goes after her dreams, a brutal act committed long ago will suddenly explode their worlds-revealing the betrayal that stole the heritage of three baby girls... uniting them now with one common passion: revenge.

I felt a tiny bit cheated by the book.  It was rather too predictable. Triples sisters by birth, three baby girls were separated and live extremely different lives.  However, they all grew up to be incredibly famous, successful and rich in their chosen fields.  They also seems to be attracted to men who are equally successful and powerful men in their chose fields.

Almost three quarter of the books were about the sisters individually.  It wasn't until almost towards the end that they met and that's when readers found out a rather interesting traits that the sisters shared and that's when readers might get an 'aha' moment that makes the book worth the predictable plot.   Just for that, I would recommend this book to you. :)

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Book Fair in Hills Mall Extended

I went to the book fair again today thinking that tomorrow is the last day.

However, just found out that the fair has been extended till 22nd December 2013.  So, if you haven't been, you will have a second chance to go again and perhaps pick up a book or two for either yourself or your love ones.

Remember...Hills Shopping Mall from 10 am to 10 pm. See you there!

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Summer at Willow Lake by Susan Wiggs

Synopsis :

Olivia Bellamy has traded her trendy Manhattan life for a summer renovating her family's crumbling holiday resort. Tempted by the hazy, nostalgic memories of summers past - childhood innocence and the romance and rivalries of her teens - it's the perfect place to flee after her broken engagement. But what began as an escape may just be a new beginning...

As Olivia uncovers secrets buried thick with dust, one by one her family return, their lives as frayed at the edges as the resort.

Summer at Willow Lake can be classified as a romance.  Girl met boy years ago in summer camp. Something happen towards the end of camp. They left camp and never saw each other until one day girl meet up with boy again.    The author actually used this formula for two generations of campers in this book although with a slight variation.

Being a non fan of romance, the book failed to hold my interest and I was quite lost one third into the book.  However, I was also keen to know what secrets Olivia uncovered while renovating the her family camp site so I read on.  I can't decide if it was worth the time.

If you are a fan of romance, Summer at Willow Lake might be the book to zest up your day.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Have you been to the book sales?

If you are in Kuching, you might be aware that there's a sales going on in one of the malls.  It is actually a book sales and to be more specific, it is a book sales of pre-read book.   Termed 'Books Second Time Around', the books are all second hand or books that have been read that were shipped directly from the United States or Canada.  I rather called them pre-read books.

Held from 16th November to 8th December in Hills Shopping Mall, you can say the fact that it's a sales certainly added a lot of excitement to folks here whether they read or not.  From the young to the old, there's something for everyone. All you need is time to browse around. I especially love to read the inscriptions on some of the books especially inscriptions of love and well wishes in the children's books. :)

While this sales is very visible in terms of promotions and locations, there is also another book sales in town that's rather quiet and less well known in everywhere possible.  Called 'The Hunt', it is organised by a local bookstore, Smart Bookshops.

Held in Hock Lee Centre (a less well known mall in town), it will run from 1st to 30th November 2013.  While the books at Hills are second hand books, the books here are all new books.  They are also sold around the same price as the pre-read books. 

From the labels, I get to know that the bookstore must have got the books from a certain wolf based in Klang Valley that's rather well known for their annual book sales.  For this year, the sales will be next week somewhere in Klang Valley so this might be the balance from their previous sales?  Honestly, I dont' see many interesting titles and the fact that the books were not properly arranged certainly did not add any appeal to buyers.

So, I guess this would be a good time for readers in here with the many options that's available currently.

Happy book shopping. Do you want to know what I bought? :)

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Midnight Country by Michael Mullen

Synopsis :

The epic story of three sisters and their turbulent lives, tied to the destinies of Germany, Austria and Russia in the unstable years leading up to World War I.

It is midnight, New Year's Eve 1900, and three women gaze out over the rooftops of snowy Vienna, contemplating the promise of a golden future.  The dawn of a new century and the glittering Emperor's ball await them, enough to fulfill any young lady's dreams of social success..

But Sophie, Alma and Marie Schmerling have ambitions that will take them far beyond the samll intrigues af Viennese society.  The winter snows of St Petersburg, the brash cafes of prosperous Berlin, they want all the vast and thriving empire has to offer.  

I think I get what the author was trying to convey through the title - The Midnight Country after reading the book.  To keep it simple, it's story of ending of empires, of way of life and social culture and the dawn of a new era for and I guess midnight best represents all that...the ending of a day and the beginning of another.

The story centred around the three sisters, Sophie, Alma and Marie Schmerling.  We also see changes happening in the word through their stepfather, Joseph Steiner, a very rich Jew.  We also witness the political turmoil across European countries....Austria, Germany and Russia, in particular.  All sisters have quite equal start but went on different path.  Sophie's a rather savy business woman and rather industrious.  Alma decided on life of a royalty at great expense while Marie walked the life of a revolutionary.

The author draws on the great historical  happening during that era and famous figures such as the Tsar, Rasputin and Lenin were part of the storyline so it's rather a mis-mash of facts and fictions. 

It was quite a good book with plots that brings reader back to the turn of the century and the years leading up to the first world war.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Successful Sales - Sept & Oct 2013

It was yet another successful sales at the September flea market.  It wasn't as good as July but it was good enough and I am thankful in so many ways.

First to go was my favourite Angels Fall.  There seems to be a lot of Nora Robert's fans out there but then she does write good books.  I am sure Angels Fall has found a wonderful new owner.  Another lady took a liking to Echoes and Irresistable Force by Danielle Steele. Finally they are out of my hands! 

Lovers and Players, Chapatti or Chips and Man and Boy are among the books that went to new owners over the two days.  So did Memiors of A Geisha which I decided to put for sales at the market after some consideration.  I read the book many, many years ago and was thinking of re-reading it for a review but then, I don't think it will make it to my to-read list anytime soon so might as well say a quick good bye.

I also managed to sell off some of my fantasy collection like the series of Ways of The Kings, Ship of Magics, The Redemption of Athalus among others.

Came October and the mall management decided to hold another flea market and I was rather glad to be invited to take part again. :)

This time round, I sold off A Bend in Road, Mafia Princess  and Sing You Home among others.  It was a good feeling when the girl who bought Mafia Princess the day before told me that her mum read through the book the minute she brought it home and enjoyed it very much. 

Surprisingly, one lady decided to buy all my Readers Digest from the 70s. There were about 12 copies and she took all.  Have fun, lady, going down memory land. :)

A fan of James Patterson took back my Four Blind Mice and I managed to recommend Split Second to another fan of thriller.

All in all, it was another good sales.  :)  Can't wait for the next one.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Sing You Home by Jodi Picoult

Synopsis (from goodreads) :

One miscarriage too many spelled the end of Max and Zoe Baxter's marriage. Though the former couple went quite separate ways, their fates remained entangled: After veering into alcoholism, Max is saved in multiple senses by his fundamentalist conversion; Zoe, for her part, finds healing relief in music therapy and the friendship, then romantic love with Vanessa, her counselor. 

After Zoe and Vanessa, now married, decide to have a baby, they realize that they must join battle with Max, who objects on both religious and financial grounds. 

Like her House Rules and several other previous Jodi Picoult novels, Sing You Home grapples with hot button issues. The novel also includes a CD of songs, each matched with a chapter in the book. Perfect for book clubs

My impression of Jodi Picoult was rather good after Change of Heart.  Such, I have high expectation from Sing You Home.  I shouldn't have.  It was quite a let down.  I must admit that it wasn't actually that bad a book, it's actually quite enlightening but I just don't like it.

Sing You Home pitted Christianity against the gay movement and in particular against same sex parents.  Zoe and her husband divorced after a failed pregnancy.  Zoe then hooked up with Vanessa, a school counselor and decided that they are in love and decided to get 'married' and subsequently wanted to start a family using frozen embroys from the time she tried to get pregnant with ex-husband Max.  However, Max has as much right to these embroys as Zoe and has his own plans for them.

A court battle then starts and issues (in my opinion) begins to brew out of propotion.

While I applaud Jodi Picoult for daring to write about controversial issues, I didn't think she did a good job with this one.  I didn't like Zoe nor Max nor Vanessa. Everyone was just too self centered and selfish in their own ways.

Having said that you will still like the book if you are a fan of Jodi Picoult.  For non fans, do try her other books first.

Saturday, November 9, 2013

White Oleander by Janet Fitch (Semi Review)

Synopsis :

Everywhere hailed as a novel of rare beauty and power, White Oleander tells the unforgettable story of Ingrid, a brilliant poet imprisoned for murder and her daughter, Astrid, whose odyssey through a series of foster homes - each its own universe, with its own laws, its own dangers, its own hard lessons to be learned - becomes a redeeming and surprising journey of self-discovery.

I have never done a what I termed, a 'semi-review' before.  This is not a full review as in I didn't read the whole book.  I just did enough research and read part of it to get a feel of how the book would be like and to know the plot and development of the story.

The reason why I didn't want to read it is because it's another coming of age book and while I have nothing against the topic I don't think I can deal with another coming of age book as I just read one recently.

White Oleander is as much the story of a girl called Astrid (quite a beautiful name) and her mother, Ingrid.  Generally, I think it is a nicely written book but I also think that it's a rather depression subject matter and disturbing at certain point and it's just not a book that I wish to read about at this time.

There is something poingnantly  beautiful about the way the book is written.  I was captivated by the way Janet writes and I won't mind reading this book in the future or perhaps her other titles just to experience her writing style.

This book was selected by Oprah's Book Club in year 1999 and three years later, a feature film with the same title was released.  It stars Michelle Pfeiffer, Alison Lohman and Renee Zellweger.

Monday, November 4, 2013

A Bend in the Road by Nicholas Sparks

Synopsis :

Miles Ryan's life seemed to end the day his wife was killed in a hit-and-run accident two years ago.  As deputy sheriff of New Bern, North Carolina, he not only grieves for her and worries about their young son Jonah but longs to bring the unknown driver to justice.  Then Miles meets Sarah Andrews, Jonah's second-grade teacher.  A young woman recovering from a difficult divorce, Sarah moved to New Bern hoping to start over. 

Tentatively, Miles and Sarah reach out to each other...son they are falling in love. But what neither realizes is that they are also bound together by a shocking secret, one that will force them to reexamine everything they believe in - including their love.

When I posted that I am reading this book on FB, my well-read niece commented that it was a nice book.  That comment motivated me as I wasn't very sure at that time whether it would be good as I have some hit and misses with Nicholas Sparks in previous encounters.

This time round, unfortunately, it's more misses than hits,

While I don't dislike A Bend in the Road, I don't love it either.  It was a rather sweet story of two people drawn together.  However, its two people with much baggage and unfortunately one of the baggages came back and caused a rift in their relationship that might not stand the weight of it.

I don't like Miles Ryan.  He's so driven by guilt that he doesn't see the good thing that's in front of him.  He's rather a neglected dad to his cute son, Jonah who's just eight and also suffering from losing his mum.  He was quick to put the blame on one convenient person for his wife's death.

Sarah Andrew on the other hand seems to be rather weak and just let Miles stepped all over her, in quite similar fashion to her ex-husband although in a different context.  I wish she has a bit of guts in her.  Maybe you would say she did as what she did in the end to reveal the truth to Miles wasn't easy.

Having said all that, it wasn't that bad and pretty readable. Maybe I just have high expectation and if the author is someone unknown, I might say that it's a wonderful book.  Maybe I'm just in a cranky mood.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Winter Solstice by Rosamunde Pilcher

Synopsis :

Elfrida Phipps, once on the London stage and retired at 62, never anticipates going off with a man. But after a devastating tragedy, church organist Oscar Blundell asks for her companionship. 

So with her brown and white dog in tow, Elfrida begins her journey, not knowing that joining her and Oscar at a rundown Victorian house in Scotland will be a young woman nursing a broken heart, a teenager escaping an unhappy home, and a stranger arriving during a snowstorm  Now these five very different people form an unexpected circle of friends that will forever change their lives.

I am sure you have heard of the saying 'do not judge a book by it's cover'.  Well, that's exactly what I did when I saw Winter Solstice.  With it's flower theme cover, I kinda judged it as a romance book. However, having read the synopsis on the back over, it doesn't seems to be the case.  So, with much apprehension, I decided to give it a try.

Winter Solstice is a story of five people who have to spent the Christmas together due to many circumstances at a place where they would normally not spent their holiday given their stature and way of lives and geographical location.  Yet, in a old but huge house in a small village in Scotland and for a few days, you can say they became a family.

First we have Elfrida who is 62 and Oscar who is 67 years of age respectively.  You can say they are like the grandparents in the story.  Then there's Carrie who at 30 years old is nursing a broken heart and just left her job in Austria and returned to London to discover that her niece of 14 years old has no one to care for her over the Christmas holidays.  Last but not least, we have Sam who is around 36 or 38 years old and who was given the option to purchase the Victorian house by one of the owners and who is nursing his own wounds.

Winter Solstice is the story of the five of them. How they came together and be with each other and through the support of one another, hurts were healed and tragedy overcame.

I can imagine how this would be a wonderful read during Christmas and I can imagine how this can be made into a family oriented holiday movies and with the beauty of winter wonderland of rural Scotland.

So, if you like the above elements, then you will like Winter Solstice.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Les Miserables (Part 1 - A Just Man) by Victor Hugo

Bishop Myriel - image from wikipedia

I started reading Les Miserables early this year.  I'm actually reading an electronic version from my tablet and I must confess that I am progressing extremely slowly.  First, could be due to the fact that I don't really like reading from the ipad and also because the book has not being very exciting thus far.

I completed Part 1 - A Just Man a while ago and currently reading through Part 2 - The Fall.   If you must know, there's altogether 48 parts to the book and over 1800 pages.  I really do not know when I'll finish it!

Part 1 - A Just Man consists of 14 chapters and covers over 80 pages.  A Just Man is all about the bishop. M Charles-Francios-Bienveu Myriel or just known as Bishop Myriel.  If you have watched the movie and seen the musical, you would remember the bishop is an important character in the change that took place in Jean Valjean. It is through the forgiving kindness of the bishop that Jean Valjean realises the err of his way (note : Valjean's Soliloquy).

It's actually the turning point in Jean Valjean's life and to really drive across the message, Victor Hugo wanted readers to really know who this bishop is.  Just so that you are clear, the bishop has not met Valjean yet in A Just Man. It is an account and a background to the life of the bishop and how highly regarded he was by the people.  There was a chapter on how he went to visit some congregations in the mountains and he was advised by others from making the trip as there are robbers in the mountains but yet, he still went and the robbers presented him with much gold and money instead of robbing him which he in return, put to good use not for himself but for the poor people.

He gave up his home to be converted as a hospital and he converted the hospital as his home instead and although he was born rich, he gave up his wealth for his ministry and only kept the very minimum for himself and his sister and housekeeper who stayed with him.

The only luxury he allows himself are some silverware and among them 2 silver candlesticks.  That is all he has and again, if you are familiar with the musical, you would know the significant of the sliver candlesticks.

Part 2 - The Fall is about Valjean and I guess would be more interesting.  Keep an eye for my review of The Fall.

Till then, let me leave you with this encounter between Bishop Myriel and Valjean from the movie starring Hugh Jackman as Valjean and Colm Wilkinson as the Bishop.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton

Synopsis :

Lavish wealth and appalling poverty live side by side in Victorian London—and Edward Pierce easily navigates both worlds. Rich, handsome, and ingenious, he charms the city's most prominent citizens even as he plots the crime of his century, the daring theft of a fortune in gold. But even Pierce could not predict the consequences of an extraordinary robbery that targets the pride of England's industrial era: the mighty steam locomotive. 

Based on remarkable fact, and alive with the gripping suspense, surprise, and authenticity that are his trademarks, Michael Crichton's classic adventure is a breathtaking thrill-ride that races along tracks of steel at breakneck speed.

The Great Train Robbery is a rather great book and exceeded my expectation.  I actually thought that it would be rather dry and factual but it turned out to be pretty interesting and captivating.

The novel is actually based on an actual train robbery of gold that occurred in 1855.  The protagonists in the actual robbery were William Pierce and Edward Agar; in the novel their names were changed to Edward Pierce and Robert Agar.

One word of advise for those intending to read this - if you can, do not read the Introduction chapter until you have completed the whole book. The Indroduction Chapter is a bit dry and might give you a false impression about the book.  You would appreciate the intro better after devouring the whole book.

Other than that, enjoy the book :)

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

In The Company of Cheerful Ladies by Alexander McCall Smith

Synopsis :

Precious Ramotswe, the owner of No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency finds herself overly beset by problems. She is already busier than usual at the detective agency when added to her concerns are a strange intruder in her house on Zebra Drive and the baffling appearance of a pumpkin. And then there is Mma Makutsi, who decides to treat herself to dance lessons, only to be partnered with a man who seems to have two left feet. 

Things are also not running quite as smoothly as they usually do at Tlokweng Road Speedy Motors. Mma Ramotswe’s husband, the estimable Mr. J.L.B. Matekoni, is overburdened with work even before one of his apprentices runs off with a wealthy woman. But what finally rattles Mma Ramotswe’s normally unshakable composure is a visitor who forces her to confront a secret from her past. . . .

Delightful and charming would be two words I use to describe this book.  It is one of those books that makes you feel relax and comfortable after reading it.

Life is slow and steady in Precious Ramotswe's world. She finds time to appreciate a cup of bush tea and cakes too and takes time off if she felt that she has done enough for the day.  She rewards her staff immediately if an exception piece of work has been delivered.  She doesn't believe that one needs more than 1 pair of shoes at any one time and she loves her old white van to death.  She is wise and funny but gossipy at the same time but you can't help but to like her.

I always enjoy my encounters with Precious Ramotswe and this is not different. Since the first book I read till now, the culture and traditional value of respect and being kind to others really wowed me. On the frivolous side, I discover that Mma Makutsi has a thing for shoes and although I doubt her taste for shoe, I know that she loves shoes!  Hahah...I guess that doesn't change wherever you are in the world.

This is the sixth book in the No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency Series.  You can search from my "Index' page for review of the other books.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Split Second by David Baldacci

Synopsis :

Michelle Maxwell has just blown her future with the Secret Service. Against her instincts, she led a presidential candidate out of her sight to comfort a grieving widow. Then, behind closed doors, the politician whose safety was her responsibility vanished into thin air.

Living a new life on a quiet lake in central Virginia, Sean King knows how the younger agent feels. He's been there before. In an out-of-the-way hotel eight years earlier, the hard-charging Secret Service man allowed his attention to be diverted for a split second. And the presidential candidate Sean was protecting was gunned down before his eyes.

Now Michelle and Sean are about to see their destinies converge. She has become obsessed with Sean's case. And he needs a friend—especially since a series of macabre killings has brought him under suspicion and prompted the reappearance of a seductive woman he's tried hard to forget.

As the two discredited agents enter a maze of lies, secrets, and deadly coincidences, they uncover a violence that shattered their lives were really a long time in the making - and are a long way from over.

Hi....are you a fan of David Baldacci?  If you are, are you a fan of the duel, Sean King and Michelle Maxwell?   I am neither so I wasn't aware that this is the book that units and introduces these two characters of David's.  David must have liked them a lot as he went on to write another four more books which features Sean and Michelle.

This is the second book by David Baldacci that I read.  The first was Saving Faith which I read two years ago.  I will not call myself a fan of David Baldacci but I don't mind reading his book once in a while since I quite like Split Second.

Split Second is a thriller and a rather straight forward thriller.   There wasn't much bother with character development or plot development but a simple exciting story of what happened and why the events happened and what made them happened.  The story progressed on a rather nice and easy pace.  It's not a page turner but you do want to get back to the story so it is captivating in its own way.

Not highly but still recommended if you enjoys thriller.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Good bye Tom Clancy

From Wikipedia :

Thomas Leo "Tom" Clancy, Jr. (April 12, 1947 – October 1, 2013) was an American author best known for his technically detailed espionage and military science story lines that are set during and in the aftermath of the Cold War, along with video games which bear his name for licensing and promotional purposes. Seventeen of his novels were best-sellers, with over 100 million copies in print. His name was also a brand for similar movie scripts written by ghost writers and many series of non-fiction books on military subjects and merged biographies of key leaders. 

I read a lot of Tom Clancy's novels years ago.

I started with Patriot Games and then I went back to The Hunt for Red October and Red Storm Rising.  From there it's The Cardinal of the Kremlin, Clear and Present Danger, The Sum of All Fears, Without Remorse, Debt of Honor and I stopped at Executive Orders which is my favourite as that's when Jack Ryan became President of the United States.

I really do not know where those books are now and I have stopped reading Tom Clancy's book for many years now.

However, I do have two of his books with me which I bought quite a while ago with the intention of reading them but I never started.   The Bear and The Dragon is over one thousand pages long so I wasn't that keen to start it. Splinter Cell which is written with David Michaels is only three hundred pages long so I will either be reading it or putting it up for sale.  I have not decided yet on what I'm going to do.

In the meantime, good bye Mr Tom Clancy. Thank you for your wonderful legacy to the world.  Rest in peace.

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Seeds Of Time by Sharmini Flint (Preview)

I received from the post, a complimentary copy of The Seeds of Time by Sharmini Flint.

The Seeds of Time is a story for young adults on the environmental challenges from climate change to species loss facing our planets.  The book started with a foreward written by Dr Isabelle Louis, Director, Asia Pacific Region for WWF.  This is what she wrote :

There is an urgent need for humankind to respond to the rapid changes that are having a negative impact on our environment and our very future as well as the future of our children and grandchildren.

The Seeds of Time captures the spirit needed by all of us, adults and children alike, to respond across the world collectively.  It is a call for global action across all nations, all professions and all ages.  We can all be Animal Talkers and change makers!  The Seeds of Time, delightfully and wth a spirit of bold aventure, inspires us to believe that, whether young or old, we can save our beautiful planet Earth.

The Seeds of Time is available for purchase from sunbearpublishing.com.

 I must find time to read my copy Review coming right up! :)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Announcement : Flea Market Sept 2013

Green Heights Mall in Kuching will be organising a flea market this weekend, on Saturday and Sunday which is 28th and 29th September.  It will take place on the ground floor of the mall from 10 am to closing time.

I will be taking part again and here's a preview of some of the books available for sales at the market.

Last Night at Chateau Marmont by Lauren Weisberger - I have two copies of this book so one will have to go. Would you know that I bought one of the copies just last week? 

Man and Boy by Tony Parsons - I thought I lost this book and I actually read the last chapter in a bookstore as I didn't want to buy it just for one chapter.  Anyway, found the book in the most unlikely places at home recently while doing spring cleaning.

Memoirs of A Geisha by Arthur Golden - I read Memoirs many years ago. Should I read it again? I am still thinking if I should withdraw this from the sales!

Lovers & Players by Jackie Collins - I am very sure I wont be reading this ever again.  Perhaps if it's the Lucky Santangelo series then I might hold on to it.

 Angels Fall by Nora Roberts - This is my favourite book by Nora.  Maybe I should hold on to this.

The Great Train Robbery by Michael Crichton - another wonderful book, the greatest hustle ever but that's just my opinion only.

 Fans of fantasy, world of wizards and warrors, there's something for you too.  Among others, I will bring with me  The Redemption of Althalus by David and Leigh Eddings, The Wish Wong of Shannara by Terry Brooks and probably another dozen of so titles.

I am looking forward to the flea market and would be bringing about 80 titles so do come by and check them out if you're in the neighborhood.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Voice Of The Heart by Barbara Taylor Bradford

Synopsis :

Youth taught them how to love. Betrayal taught them how to forgive.

Katherine Tempest, world-famous actress and star - a dark haried beauty with a volcanic temperament.

Francesca Cunningham, blonde, cool, distance - the aristocratic writer of bestselling historical romances.

Yet, their loves were inextricably intertwined over two decades and more.  Voice of the Heart is the spellbinding story of two unique and brilliant woman - and the charismatic men whom they loved and lost, and to whom they ransomed their hearts.

I first read this books many, many years ago.  At one time, I was rather hooked on the A Woman Of Substance Series of which Barbara Taylor Bradford is known for.  To be honest, I only read the first 3 books of the series and post the 90s, I was quite tired of Barbara's heroines.  I must have read Voice of The Heart sometimes in the 90s as well.  I can't really remember as Katherine Tempest somehow wasn't as captivating as Emma Harte.  As for Francesca Cunningham, I can't even place her at all.

Classified as a romance novel, the book is 900 pages long. That itself might deter some from even starting the book.  I must admit that I was quite reluctant to start it.  Having started it and not being one to leave a book read halfway through, I have no choice but to complete it.  There's no regrets.  I quite like the ending although I find it rather cheesy.

Reading Voice of The Heart is a bit like watching a mini series.  There's so many characters in involved and so many sub-plots and if it is rather easy to be confused as well.  It can get rather draggy at times and certain discussions between characters can just go on and one.

If you find the book rather draggy, persevere on, it's actually quite nice if you are keen on romance. It's somehow quite captivating.  Spanning over 20 years, readers will follow the story and the secret behind the lives of these characters that started in the glamorous 50s and ended in the 70s. 

There is actually a made for TV show based on this book which stars Lindsay Wagner and James Brolin.  I am not sure if it's any good as I have not seen it and I have no idea how close the movie follows the plot in the actual story.  You can check it out if you're interested but if I were you, I'll just go for the book.

Monday, September 16, 2013

A Successful Sales - July 2013

Similar event but different timeline

I just realised that I forgot to blog about a weekend flea market that I took part in few months back. recently.  This happened in early July and over a weekend in Green Heights Mall, a rather small but compact suburban mall about 15 minutes from the city.

Well, you might or you might not have read there about my previous experience prior to this that I had in a past event organised by the same mall.  Anyway, I was rather concerned that the response would be similar but one consolation that motivated me along was that the flea market would be held on the ground floor instead of the first floor of the mall this time round.

With a much longer operating hour as well, the weekend market also featured a more diverse vendors this time round with vendors from online boutiques, collectors and generally a group of people having fun sharing with the public their hobbies and interest and making some bucks at the same time :).  I really had a fun time even as a vendor.

Each vendor was given 2 tables to display your ware.  It's good enough for me to display the novels for sale as well some kiddies book that the princess was rather keen to sell as she has stopped reading them already.

First to go was Night Fall, a wonderful thriller by Nelson Demillle.  Correction, the first to go was actually Lipstick Jungle by Candace Brushnell.  It's actually a brand new copy that I have not read as I have 2 copies of the same title (bought by mistaken).  So, for RM7 (about US2), it was really worth it.  I really hope Nurul enjoys the book :)

Both Life Swap and The Other Woman by Jane Green went to the same buyer. She must be a real fan of Jane's.

The Divide also found a new owner.  I sold this book based on the fact that the author, Nicholas Evans also wrote the Award Winning Horse Whisperer and really, it is a very good read.   I said good bye to A Place of Hiding and Twilight Children to two British elderly couple.  The husband seems to be rather familiar with Elizabeth George and I kinda thought the wife would like what Torey Hayden writes.  I certainly wont recommend The Gatecrasher to her which was bought by a teen who seems to know what she wants.   I didn't really like this book and it's practically brand new so it's really a good buy.

Come day two, buyers seems to be more keen on thrillers so I sold Sleepy Head by Mark Billingham, Saving Faith by David Baldacci among others.

It is indeed a much better flea market experience and I would go as far to say that it's the best so far.  I think the mall management took the right action by placing the market on the ground floor of the mall which have higher traffic.

I really enjoyed finding new homes for my books and I look forward to the next sales.

p.s. For those from my home country - I am looking into buying books from others to supplement my stock.  if you would like to sell me your books, please let me have your name and email in the comments below and I'll get in touch with you.   Thank you.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Angels Fall by Nora Roberts

Synopsis :

The sole survivor of a brutal crime back East, Reese Gilmore settles in Angel's Fist, Wyoming - temporarily, at least - and takes a job at a local diner. One day, while hiking in the mountains, she peers through her binoculars and sees a couple arguing on the bank of the churning Snake River. Suddenly, the man is on top of the woman, his hand around her throat.

No one in Angel's Fist seems to believe Reese and what she saw, except for Brody, a gruff loner.  When a series of menacing events making it clear that someone wants her out of the way, Reese must put her trust in Brody and herself to find out if there is a killer in Angel's Fist, before it's too late.

My first introduction to Angels Fall was the movie adaptation which starts Heather Locklear.  I think I watched it twice over the years.  It wasn't that bad but after reading the book, the book certainly reigns supreme.

Because I have seen the movie, it was a very easy read when I read this book as I quite know the storyline.  Even so, I was still very much captivated by it. I didn't really like any of the characters, including Reese and Bordy but I really like the way Nora weaves the story and if you have never watched the show, you would have enjoyed trying to figure out who the killer is or even if there's a killer or is it just all Reese's imagination.

The only saving grace for the movie is seeing the wonderful and majestic view which I understand was filmed on location in Canada.

I think this is one of Nora's best book ever and I won't mind reading it again in years to come.  So, if you have not read any of Nora's book, this would be a great book to start.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

One Door Away From Heaven by Dean Koontz

Synopsis :

In a dusty trailer park on the far edge of the California dream, Michelina Bellsong contemplates the choices she has made. At twenty-eight, she wants to change the direction of her troubled life but can’t find her way—until a new family settles into the rental trailer next door and she meets the young girl who will lead her on a remarkable quest that will change Micky herself and everything she knows—or thinks she knows—forever.

Despite the brace she must wear on her deformed left leg, and her withered left hand, nine-year-old Leilani Klonk radiates a buoyant and indomitable spirit that inspires Micky. Beneath Leilani’s effervescence, however, Micky comes to sense a quiet desperation that the girl dares not express.

Leilani’s mother is little more than a child herself. And the girl’s stepfather, Preston Maddoc, is educated but threatening. He has moved the family from place to place as he fanatically investigates UFO sightings, striving to make contact, claiming to have had a vision that by Leilani’s tenth birthday aliens will either heal her or take her away to a better life on their world.

Slowly, ever more troubling details emerge in Leilani’s conversations with Micky. Most chilling is Micky’s discovery that Leilani had an older brother, also disabled, who vanished after Maddoc took him into the woods one night and is now “gone to the stars.”

Leilani’s tenth birthday is approaching. Micky is convinced the girl will be dead by that day. While the child-protection bureaucracy gives Micky the runaround, the Maddoc family slips away into the night. Micky sets out across America to track and find them, alone and afraid but for the first time living for something bigger than herself.

She finds herself pitted against an adversary, Preston Maddoc, as fearsome as he is cunning. The passion and disregard for danger with which Micky pursues her quest bring to her side a burned-out detective who joins her on a journey of incredible peril and startling discoveries, a journey through terrible darkness to unexpected light.

I have to type out all the synopsis above as I don't have much else to say about this book.

I really...seriously really  wanted to like this book.  I used to love books by Dean Koontz years and years ago and I really... seriously really, wanted to like them again but the last few books that I read, I didn't like much so once again, I really, seriously really wanted to like this one.  If I have a magic potion to make me like a book, I would use it on this book  but I don't and end up not liking it much.

I must admit that the storyline is rather unique and certainly something I have not read before but yet I just wasn't sold on it.  There's actually two more characters in the book other than Micky and Leilani about.  One of them is Curtis, a little boy who's not a little boy who's on the run with a dog.  The other one is Noah, who's a PI and who's sister was a victim of mercy killing.  They were only all brought together the last few chapters of the book.

If you are looking for something different, you will certainly find it in One Door Away From Heaven.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Chapatti or Chips? by Nisha Minhas

Synopsis :

For twenty-three years, Naina has saved herself for the man her parents have chosen for her to marry.  They've chosen well; Ashok is handsome, kind and considerate.  Although she's met him only twice, Naina knows he will make a good husband.

Dave, on the other hand, would not.  Although, like Ashok, he's good looking and charming, he's also unreliable, thoughtless - and an incorrigible womaniser! Dave is Trouble with capital 'T'.  and with six months to go until her wedding day, Naina knows she should keep well away from him.  So why can't she stop herself?

I have fun reading about Naina who's so torn between two cultures and between two men. Ashok sounds like the perfect man, except he's the perfect man for her parents. He is not Naina's choice and Dave is Naina's choice but Dave is every womens' nightmare.  He's cocky and chauvinistic to the extreme degree.  He thinks highly of himself and doesn't believe in love.  That's maybe because he was never loved. 

The sidekicks in the books are also quite an amusing bunch and added some 'gravy' and 'ketchup'. Although everyone's pretty flat, it's kinda expected for a book such as this.

This is pure chic lite, Indian version.  It's quite enjoyable actually although it's rather cliche too.  Somehow, I have this naggy feeling that Naina's is the author's alter ego.  The way she made her out to be beautiful and super sexy and yet so vulnerable.  Traditional yet rebellious.  And Dave...totally an unbelievable character. Thinks with his 'other brain' and yet so super rich.  The author really went to the market with this one.  And her (author's mate) is also named Dave. Coincidence? No way.

For some fun read, Chapatti or Chips? passed the test but expect anything more, you better try another 'dish'.  Would I read another Nisha Minhas book?  Not likely in the near future but give me a some time and I might.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

A Time To Dance by Karen Kingsbury


A Story of Reconciliation

John and Abby were the perfect couple, but they are about to lose it all: On the verge of having an affair, John is no more the man Abby married than she is the long ago girl of his dreams. They make the sad decision to divorce. When they gather their three children to tell them the news, their daughter makes an announcement of her own: she's getting married that summer.

Determined not to ruin their daughter's season of happiness, Abby and John secretly agree to put their divorce plans on hold. But as the wedding nears, they wonder: Is it possible to find joy, after all these years, and perhaps the time...to dance?

Here is where I got this book.  It's such a joy to find this gem among the many books there.  Such books are not readily available in our mainstream bookstores so I really count my blessing to come across a book by one of my favourite author.
It is also a rare occurrence that the name and address of the previous owner of the book in so nicely 'sticker-ed' in the inside front page.  I really hope that A Time To Dance has been a blessing to Robin Wroten of Spring TX as it has been to me.

It's really a wonderful book. Karen Kingsbury has this incredible gift and talent in telling stories that touches the heart and soul.   She has this God given abilities to teach about God through stories (Jesus taught his disciples using parables/stories in the biblical days and it worked then.  I dont' see why it can't be a tool in today's society as well in learning about God's messages).

While A Time To Dance is the story of John and Abby, it can also be the story of any married couples in the world today.  Couples who let pride and self preservation gets into the way. Couples who do not really talk and search deep into their hearts.  Couples who are hurting alone but not willing to reach out.   Couples who feel throw away marriages too quickly. That's what John and Abby nearly did but God hate divorce and He intervene. He spoke to both John and Abby and both of them have the choice to listen or to close their ears and hearts and allow hurt, hate and bitterness to take root in their heart.  But what they didn't know is that God has impressed in the heart of Nicole, their daughter to pray and intercede for them and it's through intercession that God, who is the God of impossible and who is the author and finisher of our lives begin to intervene in the situation.

The habits of the eagles are mentioned here and the relationship between an eagle and it's mate is liken to the marriage of a husband and wife.  God also called His people to be like eagles.  Quoting from the book ' The eagle eats only life-giving food. When he eats something that makes him sick, he flies to the highest rock he can find and lays spread eagle with his wings out against the surface of the rock. He stays there until the sun draws out the poison, freeing him to fly with the other eagles.'.  Can you link that to the importance for us to let God deal with the issues that is poisoning us and making us sick?  How we need to go to the place and seek His face and let Him free us from our sins?

There's so many lessons in this book and I'm sure that if I'm to read this again, I would find more learning points to drawn from.  A Time to Dance is followed by the 2nd book entitled A Time To Embrace.  I would love to have a chance to read this.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb

Synopsis :

Meet Dolores Price. She's a thirteen, wise-mouthed but wounded, having bid her childhood good-bye. Beached like a whale in front of her bedroom TV, she spends the next few years nourishing herself with the Mallomars, potato chips and Pepsi her anxious mother supplies.  When she finally rolls into young womanhood at 257 pounds. Dolores is no stronger and life is no kinder.  But this time she's determined to rise to the occasion and give herself one more chance before really going belly up.

In his extraordinary coming-of-age odyssey, Wally Lamb invites us to hitch a wild ride on a journey of love, pain and renewal with the most heartbreakingly comical heroine to come along in years.  At once a fragile girl and a hard-edged cynic, so tough to love yet so inimitably lovable, Dolores is as poignantly real as our own imperfections.  She's Come Undone includes a promise : you will never forget Dolores Price.

There's as many negative review about this book as there are positive comments especially about the fact that the author is a male writing about the coming of age of a girl.  Most common and immediate thoughts would be what would he know about being a girl?  I guess it's the same as being a writer of magic and wizards and vampires - I mean, we don't have any authors who are actual wizards and vampires, right?

All I feel is that Wally Lamb must have done lots of research and in not wanting any of his research material to go to waste, he dumps them all in this book.  I really pity Dolores Price.  She has to shoulder the burden of all that the author inflicted on her.  Her dad left the family when she's about ten, her mum had a mental breakdown subsequently she was raped when she was thirteen, she was super fat as that's the way she deals with her life, she tried to kill herself and was sent to a mental institute, she married someone who forced her to terminate her pregnancy, stole from her and cheated on her.  Subsequently, the author decided that that's too much for one person to take and decided to give her a break and we see a light in the end of the tunnel for Dolores.

It's a pretty easy book to read as well as it's pretty comical at times but I am sure you will find yourself either rooting for the main character or wanting to shake some sense into her.

If you do come across a copy, do check it out.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Holiday Read

It's a school holiday week next week and the family will be going on a road trip.   Everyone's pretty excited as this will be a new experience for us - driving over eight hours to a small town that I have been before for work but the rest of the family have not been yet.

Naturally, I must make sure I have a good read during the long journey and while we're there too.  Most of the times, I would end up not having enough time to read as we'll be too busy doing enjoying our holidays :) but there would be pockets of down time and that's when I would lost myself in whichever book that I brought alone.  As such, it's important that I bring along the right book as a wrong choice would mean nothing to read for the whole trip.

I did mention here that I inherited heaps of new read recently.  I have started on them and the few that i read so far met my expectation.

For next week holidays, I have shortlisted my choice to these three books : 
  •  She's Come Undone by Wally Lamb - read a couple of chapters already and quite like it.
  • The Village By The Sea by Anita Desai - since I'm traveling to the town by the river.
  • Ishg and Mushg by Priya Basil -  a story of three generations of a family in India, East Africa and UK
I haven't decide yet on which so I guess the next review would reveal my choice. :)

In the meantime, if you're on a holiday, wishing you a wonderful holiday.

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Lovers & Players by Jackie Collins

Synopsis :

In Lovers & Players, the Diamonds family rules.  Red Diamond is an abusive and much loathed billionaire. His three sons, Max, Chris and Jett are summoned to New York, for a family meeting which rocks their world.

Diahann, a beautiful black ex-singer, works as Red's housekeeper - a job her daughter, Liberty, does not approve of.  A waitress who is a would-be singer herself, Liberty has dreams of her own and while she pursues them, Damon P. Donnell, married hip-hop mogul supreme, pursues her.

Young New York heiress Amy Scott-Simon in engaged to to marry Max. At her bachelorette party she runs into Jett.  Jett has no idea who Amy is.  She also doesn't realise who he is.  A one night fling leads to major complications.

As the lives of these characters intertwine, power, money, fame and love are the ties that bind - emotionally and otherwise - in this highly charged love story about family relationship and deadly choices.

I think a lot of us grew up on Jackie Collins one time or another as she was one of the top authors in the 80s and 90s.  I can't say the same for the new millennium.  Although this particular title was written in 2005, it still reaks very much of the earlier era when Jackie was at her prime.

Lovers & Players is a very typical Jackie Collins story.  The men are good looking, some rather ruthless, very few are perfect gentlemen. The ladies would either be equally good looking and some would be as ruthless as the men but one or two would be the sweet innocent beauty.

Then money, lots of money would come into play and power and position would be the name of the game.  The story would not be complete without a murder or two and not to forget the occasional blackmail to zest up the mood.

And that would be the foundation of most of Jackie Collins book and Lovers & Players's no different.

None of the characters here appeal to me.  I thought the story of Liberty was a waste of time.  Jackie should have just focused on the father, Red Diamond and the three brothers, Matt , Chris and Jett. Jackie made out to be rather chauvinistic and self centered creatures.  I thought they would have potential given more depth.

 Everything was rather predictable including the ending.  The solving of the murder was rather boring.   However, being the classic Jackie Collin's book that it is, it does make good holiday read.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Mafia Princess by Marisa Merico

Synopsis 1 (from the book) :

Marisa Merico, the daughter of one of Italy's most notorious Mafia Godfathers, was dazzled by her father, Emilio DiGiovine.  To her e was all-powerful, sophisticated and loving; to the rest of the world he was staggeringly ruthless. Marisa knew her father would do anything for her, but she hadn't expected just how much he would ask for in return.  This is the shocking true story of a small-town British girl who became a Mafia Princess.

 Synopsis 2 (from a web that hosted a photo album and better describe her than from the book) :

Drugs, guns, money—as the former boss of a powerful Italian mafia clan, Marisa Merico saw all of it. Merico was 22 when she “stepped up” to take over the family business, the ’Ndrangheta—one of the most successful and violent crime syndicates in the world. She felt it was her moral obligation to run the clan, taking direction from her father, who had just been sentenced to prison. Being boss woman was a natural fit for Merico, who grew up playing with guns and watching her family control the Milan drug market during the ’80s.

It's a bit different and strange reading the life story of someone whom you have never heard of and still enjoy reading the story.  It's even more strange when I googled the author and her images and plenty of news articles about her popped out instantly.

Marisa is currently in her 40s and living in England. Her life story is just so foreign to me.  I can't imagine growing up among all the violence and death and at the same time experiencing extreme poverty and extreme wealth during different stages of her life.

Mafia Princess is certainly an engaging read.  From the first page when Marisa tells the story of how her mum travelled to work in Italy and fallen in love and how she was born on the kitchen table, it was fourth gear all the way until the last page.

The writing wasn't very polished but very sincere in sharing her great love for her father even when she knew that she shouldn't and the grief she felt when she had to go to jail and leave behind her baby girl, among others.

I read this within a couple of days and at different situations and life experiences that she encountered I tried to imagine how it would be like to be her.  I shouldn't have done that. It just make me felt so "meh"!  It's sureal to the extreme degree.

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Change of Heart by Jodi Picoult

Synopsis (taken from goodreads.com)

One moment June Nealon was happily looking forward to years full of laughter and adventure with her family, and the next, she was staring into a future that was as empty as her heart. Now her life is a waiting game. Waiting for time to heal her wounds, waiting for justice. In short, waiting for a miracle to happen.

For Shay Bourne, life holds no more surprises. The world has given him nothing, and he has nothing to offer the world. In a heartbeat, though, something happens that changes everything for him. Now, he has one last chance for salvation, and it lies with June's eleven-year-old daughter, Claire. But between Shay and Claire stretches an ocean of bitter regrets, past crimes, and the rage of a mother who has lost her child.

Would you give up your vengeance against someone you hate if it meant saving someone you love? Would you want your dreams to come true if it meant granting your enemy's dying wish?

 I have read a few of Jodi Picoult's book over the years.  There are some that I quite enjoyed like Second Glance.  And then, there are some that I don't quite enjoyed like Vanishing Acts.  So where does this leaves Change of Heart?  Anyway, I am glad to say that I really like it.

It's a very touching story with bits and pieces of twist and turn but nothing that changes the direction of where the story goes.  Readers get to know the story through the eyes and thoughts of a few people involved. First was June Nealon - a mother and wife whose husband and daughter died in the hands of Shay Bourne and about to lose her second daughter to illness.

Then, we have Father Michael who was part of the jury that was involved in the persecution of Shay Bourne eleven years ago but who is now his spiritual adviser.  Father Michael is a rather conflicted man and carries the guilt of convicting Shay with the death sentence.  Maggie, self appointed lawyer to Shay is a rather insecure Jewish girl who is very good at her job but has low self esteem due to her size fourteen self.  Last but not least, we get to know of Shay from his jail mate, Lucius who murdered his lover and who is suffering and dying from aids.  

In the last chapter, we get to know the ending from Claire.  The only person whom we did not 'hear' from directly is Shay himself.

Although the books touches on issues like spirituality, religion, capital punishment, death sentences, etc.  it's still a book about people and that's what Jodi Picoult is rather good at and I would say to me, this is one of her better book.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Logos Hope in Kuching - July 2013

Hello again
 Hope Logos is finally in Kuching.  It arrived on Thursday, 11th July and open itself to the public the next day.  I went to pay a visit that very Saturday

Karen Kingsbury's collection

The type of books are more or less the same as per previous visit by the ship two years ago.  As expected, there were different titles and more selection of books.  There’s a whole collection of Karen Kingsbury but not her new titles.

I badly wanted this
 There’s a whole collection books by of Bodie & Brock Thoene and the AD Chronicles caught my attention.  This is a 12-book series and the ship has 11 of the titles.  I was very torn on whether to get it as to purchase 11 books will dent my coffer drastically and I wasn’t sure if I would like the series.  In the end, I decided to just get the first book and if I do like it, I guess I can wait for the ship’s next visit and pray that they stock the titles!

Happy :)
I also managed to get Summer, book #2 in the Sunrise Series.  This completes the whole series and the ball is now in my court for me to finish reading the series. The wild card in my purchase would be Prophet by Frank Peretti.  I have a book that he co-write with Ted Dekker so it was just out of curiosity that I decided to add it to my collection.

Good Night
All in all, it was a pleasant visit to Hope Logos.  I might go again before the ship sails off on 1st August but even if I don’t I’m rather happy with what I got from the ship.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

A Little Magic by Nora Roberts

Synopsis :

In 'Spellbound' a beautiful lady casts a thousand-year spell on the man of her dreams - and unleashes a nightmare only love can conquer.  'Ever After' follows an enchanting woman as she journeys to an otherworldly land - and introduces a handsome artist to the transforming power of love.  "In Dreams' links a young woman to a stranger's past - and to the curse that has trapped him forever in the eternity of his own dreams.

A Little Magic is a collection of novellas by Nora Roberts.  All three stories are rather enchanting and charming if you are a fan of romances.

My favourite would be Spellbound.  It has all the essence of Nora Roberts and the lure of forklore and mystic that Nora Rorberts is rather fond of and rather good at.  I was rather bored by Ever After and kept on expecting something but there was nothing.  Such, I was rather skeptical with In Dreams but it turned out quite ok.  I didn't like it as much as Spellbound but it was certainly better than Ever After.

And since the book is entitled A Little Magic, you can expect magic to make it's appearances in all three stories.    Not for the levelheaded but certain a book for those with whimsical soul.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Hope Logos is back!

Two representatives from Hope Logos promoting the ship's arrival and activities on board

(sorry, it's rather blur)

The last time the floating ship, Hope Logos was in town was in October 2011. Fast forward to July 2013, it’s making its way back here again.

The ship which is currently sailing from the Philippines, should be berthed at the Sim Kheng Hong Port in Pending started 11th July and will be here until early August.  From the official schedule, Kuching is the only stop for the ship in Malaysia, after which it will set sail for Phuket, Thailand.

This would certainly be excellent news for those who had enjoyed going onboard the ship about 2 years ago.  You con do so all over again!  

It would also be good news for book lovers too as there’s a huge array of books for you to choose from with some of these books unavailable in our local bookstore.  However, I wonder how many of you actually read or started reading the books you bought back then.  I, for one must confess that I have not read all the books that I bought from the ship in year 2011!

Having said that, I would keep an eye on series by my favourite Christian author, Karen Kingsbury.  I love her Redemption and Firstborn Series and also Sunrise Series.  I really hope that they would have more current titles as the titles that I saw previously were rather old titles.  What would I love to see available?  I would love to see The Bailey Flanigan Series.  I would also like the see The Chance, one of Karen’s latest title.   

Above all, I would also like the see The Trouble With Cowboys, book 3 of the Big Sky Romance by Denise Hunter.  I read  book 1, A Cowboy's Touch and really like it.  I also read book 2, The Accidental Bride and love too, so it would make my collection complete to have book 3. *fingers cross*

Anyway,  you can start saving up to buy lots and lots of books.  :)