The Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag!

Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag

I have been seeing Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag in the BookTube for quite sometime now, and recently from Anna-Reader and Proud, and so I decided to do it myself because it looks so fun and interesting. Although, to be quite honest, I have not been reading so much during the first half of 2017 hence I already apologize in advance for the limited pool of choices!

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It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? #1 || January 16, 2017

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IT’S MONDAY, WHAT ARE YOU READING

is a weekly meme hosted by The Book Date where everybody gets to share what they are and about to read during the week.


It’s Monday once more, and I’m so glad to share that I am in my second week of work 🙂 I’ve never worked before, and this is the first firm that I am officially an employee of (wow- employee huh! – sounds so mature!), so I’m really really excited about what’s to come. A tad bit nervous too, heh. 🙂


Current Read:  

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I am currently reading The Game Plan by Kristen Callihan.  This is the third book in the series Game On. I just finished the first 2 books of the series and what can I say? I. AM. SO.HOOKED. I cannot, for the life of me, go on with my life knowing that I have an unfinished Kristen Callihan series. Therefore, I instantly picked the third book up and devoured it! I’m halfway through and I things are getting well. 🙂 NA forever? NA forever.


Books for the rest of the week: 

I have two books I plan to read  for the rest of the week, but you know me, nothing is ever sure in what I do. Heh. 

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I have started The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater last month and the slow reader that I am, I still have not finished. Don’t get me wrong, I am not holding back on reading because I am not interested or anything. On the contrary, I am loving each bit of it! The Boys and Blue and the world and the mystery is just everything to me! I cannot believe how long I’ve waited to start this series but I am glad I did last month. 🙂 This is probably one of my first 5-star book of the year! I’m excited! 🙂

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I also plan to continue reading A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray since I started it last month but I’m stuck at 50+ pages 😦 Again, it’s nothing short of interesting, and the writing is superb as well. Guess I was just so consumed with my NAs that I was forced to set aside my YAs! 😦 In any case, I’m picking it up again this week and will finish it a a week’s time. 🙂


Anyway, so there’s my little update! Let’s talk about what you guys are reading this week! I can’t wait to know!

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Event Recap: The Philippine Readers & Writers Festival 2016

 

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I have to say 2016 is fast becoming my Im’ma-table-flip-everything-and-be-spontaneous year. I mean, seriously guys, I am a walking planner and I never do things not in my calendar. But things are changing these days, and change is always good 🙂

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Attending the Philippine Readers & Writers Festival 2016 hosted by National Bookstore is probably the last thing I thought I’d do in August since the November Bar Exams is fast approaching (only 2 months away!) and I knew I had to really focus on reviewing. I felt, though, that I needed (1) some sort of a reward for the past months that I have been toiling and (2) something to inspire me for the hell months ahead. So what better way to do it than be somewhere I haven’t been and do something I haven’t done 🙂

Allie from A Literary Wanderer and I planned to go to the event together. We just recently knew each other from our newly created book club (#NALitLoversPH), and decided to finally meet up in real life and go to the event together! We also got to meet up with JM from Book Freak Revelations and everything was just so fun with JM around! I have met JM  when I attended #BookwormsUnitePH 2016 and he was one of the hosts-slash-organizers. 🙂 I was so glad I got to go around Raffles with these two, and had real good fun during our lunch together! Couldn’t have asked for a better company! 🙂

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Photo grabbed from Allie 🙂


The Philippine Readers & Writers Festival is a 3-day event held at Raffles Hotel Makati. It is three days of book signings, discussions, and panels about books, literature, and culture from top Filipino writers and artists. I wanted to attend several discussions and panels but I was only able to go to one: Book Blogging 101: Growing Web and Social Media Presence to Promote Books and Literature

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Series Review: The Off-Campus Series by Elle Kennedy

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The Off-Campus series is composed of four books – The Deal, The Mistake, The Score, and the yet unpublished The Goal. It revolves around the lives of hockey player-friends Garrett, Logan, Dean, and Tucker.

P.S. Never (ever!) judge books by their covers! Ha ha! 


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She’s about to make a deal with the college bad boy…
Hannah Wells has finally found someone who turns her on. But while she might be confident in every other area of her life, she’s carting around a full set of baggage when it comes to sex and seduction. If she wants to get her crush’s attention, she’ll have to step out of her comfort zone and make him take notice…even if it means tutoring the annoying, childish, cocky captain of the hockey team in exchange for a pretend date.

…and it’s going to be oh so good

All Garrett Graham has ever wanted is to play professional hockey after graduation, but his plummeting GPA is threatening everything he’s worked so hard for. If helping a sarcastic brunette make another guy jealous will help him secure his position on the team, he’s all for it. But when one unexpected kiss leads to the wildest sex of both their lives, it doesn’t take long for Garrett to realize that pretend isn’t going to cut it. Now he just has to convince Hannah that the man she wants looks a lot like him.


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Let me start off by saying that The Deal sealed it all for me! After finishing this first installment, I knew I need to get into the rest of the series and I knew that whatever Elle Kennedy is publishing, I would get and read it. Hannah and Garrett’s story is probably the one closest to my heart. Hannah is perfect, very likeable and very smart. She’s a no-non sense person, practical, down to earth, I could go on and on saying all these positive things about her. Oh and she’s also very smart! I feel like I totally related to her because of how she’s willing to go great lengths for her crush (not Garrett, but some football guy!). Me loves my crushes too! Ha ha! Anyway, I just liked how likeable Hannah is, because with the boom of New Adult it now kinda rare to find a female lead who isn’t annoying and totally relatable.

Now Garrett. What can I say about this personification of perfection? At the beginning of the story, Garrett is almost flunking one of his subjects and he’s trapped in this dilemma. No, he’s not your typical I-don’t-study-beacuse-I-am-a-hockey-varsity kinda guy. In fact, he is acing all his subjects except for one (Philosophy! Which is totally acceptable, right?!) So he seeks the help of Hannah (because she’s acing it!) and the rest is history. 🙂 What I like most about Garrett is his sense of responsibility. He’s the captain of the team and he’ll do anything – anything! – for them. I think Garrett is the most mature out of all the guys in series and I just love how he’s got that balance of being the cool and hot guy while being the studious and responsible team captain. Again, my words escape me, but please know that The Deal is probably one of the best New Adult romances out there!

5/5!

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College junior John Logan can get any girl he wants. For this hockey star, life is a parade of parties and hook-ups, but behind his killer grins and easygoing charm, he hides growing despair about the dead-end road he’ll be forced to walk after graduation. A sexy encounter with freshman Grace Ivers is just the distraction he needs, but when a thoughtless mistake pushes her away, Logan plans to spend his final year proving to her that he’s worth a second chance.

Now he’s going to need to up his game…

After a less than stellar freshman year, Grace is back at Briar University, older, wiser, and so over the arrogant hockey player she nearly handed her V-card to. She’s not a charity case, and she’s not the quiet butterfly she was when they first hooked up. If Logan expects her to roll over and beg like all his other puck bunnies, he can think again. He wants her back? He’ll have to work for it. This time around, she’ll be the one in the driver’s seat…and she plans on driving him wild.


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The Mistake is Logan’s story – one of Garrett’s best friends. Honestly, this one is probably my least favorite in the series. It started with Logan thinking that he has feelings for Hannah (yeap, Garrett’s girlfriend!) and I was feeling so off about it since then. It was probably only after the first quarter of the book that Logan stopped thinking about her and diverted his attention to Grace. Don’t get me wrong, Logan is not a villain and he’s certainly not a bad person! Logan is very very charming himself. He’s got lots of family issues and responsibilities and the way he deals with them would just make you wanna fall for him.

Grace, on the other hand though, is probably the least likeable female character in the series. I wasn’t able to connect much with her because I thought she was too plain and doesn’t have a voice of her own. Plain is cool, don’t get me wrong, I am a plain Jane myself – but Grace was easily forgettable 😦 I also found her kind of annoying and entitled? I dunno man, some of you might find her charming and innocent and it would be cool and perfect. Guess she just didn’t work out for me.

3.5/5!

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He knows how to score, on and off the ice 

Allie Hayes is in crisis mode. With graduation looming, she still doesn’t have the first clue about what she’s going to do after college. To make matters worse, she’s nursing a broken heart thanks to the end of her longtime relationship. Wild rebound sex is definitely not the solution to her problems, but gorgeous hockey star Dean Di-Laurentis is impossible to resist. Just once, though, because even if her future is uncertain, it sure as heck won’t include the king of one-night stands. 

It’ll take more than flashy moves to win her over 

Dean always gets what he wants. Girls, grades, girls, recognition, girls…he’s a ladies man, all right, and he’s yet to meet a woman who’s immune to his charms. Until Allie. For one night, the feisty blonde rocked his entire world—and now she wants to be friends? Nope. It’s not over until he says it’s over. Dean is in full-on pursuit, but when life-rocking changes strike, he starts to wonder if maybe it’s time to stop focusing on scoring…and shoot for love.


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Oh boy, where do I even begin with this one? Dean Heyward-Di Laurentis. Just with his name, I was already sold. ie, hotel owners, business moguls from Manhattan!)  and he’s pretty much had and a problem free and perfect life since forever. Relationships are a no-no for him because of all the drama they entail – until he meets Allie.

Allie Hayes just broke up with her long time boyfriend. She’s the kind of girl who’s into long term relationships, romantic what-nots, and a believer of true and forever-lasting love. She’s a relationship kind of person and so hooking up with Dean Di Laurentis – the god of one night stands – is the last thing in her mind. I totally totally love Allie. She’s a girl who knows what she wants and does it! She’s so independent yet so vulnerable and I just totally related to her. Allie is super comparable with Hannah in the first book, if not better! I also love how this book showed how family oriented she is and how she’d do everything for her dad.

Oh and can I just say that every scene where Dean teaches public school kids hockey is just plain adorable and heart warming! I swooned every single time!

4.5/5!

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She’s good at achieving her goals…
College senior Sabrina James has her whole future planned out: graduate from college, kick butt in law school, and land a high-paying job at a cutthroat firm. Her path to escaping her shameful past certainly doesn’t include a gorgeous hockey player who believes in love at first sight. One night of sizzling heat and surprising tenderness is all she’s willing to give John Tucker, but sometimes, one night is all it takes for your entire life to change.

But the game just got a whole lot more complicated

Tucker believes being a team player is as important as being the star. On the ice, he’s fine staying out of the spotlight, but when it comes to becoming a daddy at the age of twenty-two, he refuses to be a bench warmer. It doesn’t hurt that the soon-to-be mother of his child is beautiful, whip-smart, and keeps him on his toes. The problem is, Sabrina’s heart is locked up tight, and the fiery brunette is too stubborn to accept his help. If he wants a life with the woman of his dreams, he’ll have to convince her that some goals can only be made with an assist

The Goal is Tucker’s story and is to be released on September 26th 2016! Can’t wait to read and review it because of how The Score ended! It was such a good good cliff hanger!


So that’s it, guys! I hope you liked my mini review of each book in the series 🙂 The Off-Campus series is definitely one of the best New Adult series out there! 🙂 Totally recommend it!

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Book Review: One Day Soon by A. Meredith Walters

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Before I begin this review, I would already warn you right off the bat that I wouldn’t be able to give justice to the beauty of this book. My words wouldn’t be enough and I don’t think I’d be able to fully grasp in here how life-shattering and life-changing this book is. No, I am not exaggerating. I swear to heavens I am not.

 

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He found me in blood and tears.

I stayed with him through darkness and fire.

We loved each other in the moment between innocence and bitter truth.
We were the kids easily ignored, who grew into adults we hardly knew.

We weren’t meant to last forever. And we didn’t.

He ran away.
I tried to move on.

Yet I never stopped thinking about the boy who had fought to keep me alive in a world that would have swallowed me whole. He was the past that I buried, but never forgot.

Until the day I found him again, years after believing I had lost him forever.

And in cold, resentful eyes, I saw the heart of the man who had been everything when I had nothing at all. So I vowed to hold onto the second chance that was stolen from the children we had been.

Sometimes fate is ugly. Life can be twisted.
And who we are can be ruined by who we once were.

For two people who had survived so much, we would have to learn how to hold on before we were forced to let go.

One Day Soon is one of our books of the month over at #NALitLoversPH, a fairly new group of book bloggers from the Philippines. We are composed of Pearl, Bea, Jam, Claire, Rechellyn, Allie, and yours truly. We are all kinda into new adult romance and we plan on reading at least a couple of books a month. Needless to say, everybody was just super excited to jumpstart this monthly read-alongs and so we all decided to pick One Day Soon by A.Meredith Walters as our first kill. The irony? It was the one that killed us. It wasn’t what we expected at all.

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One Day Soon shattered me.

It was a tale of love, loss, pain, and sacrifice. Imogen Conner and Yoss Frazier have been so much in love in their younger years. They were inseparable, and it seemed that not even the universe could take them away from each other. They loved, and they loved so hard. But apparently fate has different plans and life decided to interfere and take its own course. Fifteen years later, however, Imogen and Yoss met again.

This is probably the heaviest book I’ve read in the past couple of years, emotionally speaking. Lately, I have been veering away from overly emotional stories because I can’t afford to be emotionally unstable while reviewing for the bar 🙂 But I guess reading this one is sorta really meant to happen. One Day Soon does not only talk about young love and finding it again after how many years in the future. It is not your usual New Adult book, and I’m not even sure if it should be classified under that genre.

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It touches on so many social issues that are so real and so raw that you could actually feel Imi and Yoss like they’re just there, real and breathing. I know I don’t make any sense because I haven’t really discussed what happened and what real-and-raw stuff I’m talking about, it’s just I’m afraid I’m going to have to spoil you guys if I talk about all those things.

Reading One Day Soon made me realize that I could lose everything in a snap of a finger. It also made me realize that love isn’t at all happy – it is painful, it is difficult, it is so consuming to the point of destruction. But we want it, anyway. We need it.

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I have so many things to say about One Day Soon, I swear. In fact, I am writing this review 24 hours after I closed the last page just to give myself some sort of composure to talk about it properly, but I guess I need so much more than a day to recover.

Guys, I totally totally recommend this one. You are not gonna believe everything that’s happened and how it all turned out in the end. It was heartbreakingly beautiful. Sooo soo beautiful. Definitely giving it 5 stars!

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Book Review: Smut by Karina Halle

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Oh Smut! This book reminds me so much of the Tangled series by Emma Chase. And if you’re an avid NA reader like myself, you’d know that anything comparable to Tangled is close to perfection. And this one, definitely, is close to perfection.

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Title: Smut
Author: Karina Halle
Date Published: May 16th 2016
Date Read: June 19th to 24th 2016
My book format: Kindle edition 

 

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What happens when the kink between the pages leads to heat between the sheets?

All Blake Crawford wants is to pass his creative writing course, get his university degree, and take over his dad’s ailing family business. What Amanda Newland wants is to graduate at the top of her class, as well as finally finish her novel and prove to her family that writing is a respectful career.

What Blake and Amanda don’t want is to be paired up with each other for their final project, but that’s exactly what they both get when they’re forced to collaborate on a writing piece. Since Amanda thinks Blake is a pushy asshole (with a panty-melting smirk and British accent) and Blake thinks Amanda has a stick up her ass (though it’s a brilliant ass), they fight tooth and nail until they discover they write well together. They also may find each other really attractive, but that’s neither here nor there.

When their writing project turns out to be a success, the two of them decide to start up a secret partnership using a pen name, infiltrating the self-publishing market in the lucrative genre of erotica. Naturally, with so much heat and passion between the pages, it’s not long before their dirty words become a dirty reality. Sure, they still fight a lot, but at least there’s make-up sex now.

But even as they start to fall hard for each other, will their burgeoning relationship survive if their scandalous secret is exposed? Or are happily-ever-afters just a work of fiction?

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I was in dire need for a quick and happy read when I decided to pick and read Smut. I initially saw Pearl‘s review of this a couple of weeks ago and I was instantly hooked just with the blurb so I decided to give it ago 🙂  I knew beforehand that it was something I would love, the sucker for NA that I am. And I wasn’t disappointed. In fact, I loved every bit of it!


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Smut is about two university students – Amanda and Blake – finishing both their degrees and taking up this particular writing class as a requirement. Blake and Amanda are a hundred percent opposites – Blake is your typical univ jock while Amanda is the oh-so-perfect straight A student. No common ground at all, except that they are both aspiring authors and both are apparently into geeky and nerdy stuff. They then get partnered up in final writing project and that’s where the real action begins.

Although the title suggests that it’s totally going to be a smutty read, it was way more than that! It isn’t just your typical smut novel without a plot. Both Blake and Amanda has their own story to tell, plus author Karina Halle delved into what really goes in the minds of erotica authors and how they do it! It’s just that we have a twist here and that’s for you to find out if you haven’t read this!


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Amanda Newland

Amanda is such an endearing character! I was able to relate to her in so many ways. She is very determined to finish her studies, she wants to be an author and she’s working so hard for it. She’s an overachiever – and she won’t allow anything to come between her plans of graduating from univ and becoming a sci-fi published author.19110249._SX540_Definitely a no-non sense kinda girl. I feel like we can be best friends! 🙂 But despite how she appears to be all firm and stiff, I like how she was able to show her other side – her smutty side, ha! – whenever she’s around Blake. Their contrast in personality definitely added to the chemistry between the two, and everything just goes flaming hot whenever they are together.

Blake Crawford

Man, this guy is hot. And a bookstore owner! Ha! That alone won me over and that alone made me swoon over Blake! Well. It’s technically his Dad who owns Crawford Books but he’s inheriting it so yeah, he’s a bookstore owner! 🙂

Blake is anything but sweet. He’s funny, he’s sexy. He’s raw. So raw. Like everything he says makes you wanna swoon over and surrender every inch of you to this guy! Yes, that hot! He’s practically slept with every woman in school and women seemed nothing to him. He doesn’t do relationships. He doesn’t do serious. Well, until he meets Amanda, that is. Again, what else can I say, this guy is perfect.


 

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4 Stars

That’s a 4.5! 🙂 4.5 smutty stars for this one! Overall, I loved loved loved it! It was definitely what I needed during the time that I was all so stressed about school and I just needed something to pick me up, and pick me up it did! It’s definitely what an NA novel should be! 🙂

Highly recommended, guys!

Happy reading!

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Book Review: The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Milay

 

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Where do I even begin with this one? It’s been 10 days since I finished reading this gem and I’m still left speechless. Just thinking about it stirs something in me that I can’t even dare explain. It’s beautiful. The Sea of Tranquility is one beautiful piece of literature that I would even go on saying that books like this one is the reason why I read.

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Title: The Sea of Tranquility
Author: Katja Milay
Date Published: November 13th 2012
Date Read: May 27th to June 18th 2016
My book format: Kindle edition

 

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Former piano prodigy Nastya Kashnikov wants two things: to get through high school without anyone learning about her past and to make the boy who took everything from her—her identity, her spirit, her will to live—pay.

Josh Bennett’s story is no secret: every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. Now all he wants is be left alone and people allow it because when your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space.

Everyone except Nastya, the mysterious new girl at school who starts showing up and won’t go away until she’s insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But the more he gets to know her, the more of an enigma she becomes. As their relationship intensifies and the unanswered questions begin to pile up, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she’s been hiding—or if he even wants to.

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Honestly, the title wasn’t a big come on to me. I mean – The Sea of Tranquility – you don’t get a lot from it – no hint of romance, no hint of the genre it was written under, no nothing. So I wasn’t really expecting anything from it at all. Just saw it in my TBR + it was in my Kindle + I have some sort of a free time = why not get into it, so I did. Didn’t know that what I had in my hand was going to be one of my most favourite books ever. Everrr!

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