Thursday, September 30, 2010

♠October Romance Giveaways♠

The winner is SHENG! Congratulations!

The October giveaway has ended.

To readers out there who are "carrying a torch" for romance novels are all welcome to enter  this giveaway! Please carefully read the instructions below to have a valid entry!
October Romance Giveaways
OPEN TO PHILIPPINE RESIDENTS ONLY!
Four Romantic Novels. Get them for free!
1.Desert Fire by Karen Whiddon
2. Special Delivery Judith Hershner
3. Masquerade by Kathryn Hockett
4. Veteran's Day by GeorgeAnn Jansson


Instructions to get an entry:
1.  Leave a MESSAGE on this page and tell something about yourself and your favorite books to qualify for the book prize giveaway. Don't forget your name.
2. These two instructions should be done correctly to have a valid entry. Also, it wouldn't hurt to leave comment/s on my post/s to gain favorable points from me! Thanks and good luck!

Note: The winner will be notified by email on October 31, 2010 and the book/s will be shipped by courier as soon as possible. I will not be responsible for lost package/s.

Other Giveaway Winner/s:
September Prize Giveaway Winner will be found here.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Evergreen is the Place to Be!

I've just recently lost a book giveaway hosted by a fellow blogger here in the Philippines. I joined because I really wanted to have those books. But it's okay, c'est la vie...you win and then you lose. But there's a saying that when a door closes, another one opens. And that's what happened to me a few days ago... 


I've been reading Debbie Macomber's Cedar Cove Series for quite sometime now. And believe me when I say that all of her books are just exceptional and immensely entertaining. I'm nothing new when it comes to on-going series, having read the Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Shannara Series, The Sword of Truth and A Song of Ice and Fire. Characters with evolving and fascinating storylines will hook readers more and more and as a result, the author will be encouraged to write more about those books.  


For me, the Cedar Cove Series of Debbie Macomber is one of the most enduring and marvelous series today. Having read the 9 books (16 Lighthouse Road, 204 Rosewood Lane, 311 Pelican Court, 44 Cranberry Point, 50 Harbor Street, 6 Rainier Drive, 74 Seaside Avenue, 8 Sandpiper Way and 92 Pacific Boulevard. Whew!) I wanted more from the characters, questions that needed answering arises and eventually fans all over the world are asking for more books from the series. And Debbie granted our requests and now the latest book from the series is here!


1022 Evergreen Place is the tenth book from this groundbreaking series. I've been waiting for this book to come out, the problem was I really have no idea if the book will be available here in the Philippines once it was released in the States. And that was the main reason that emboldened me to email Debbie Macomber and ask for an ARC of the book. I wasn't expecting anything from this request, I figured that loads of people wanted to have copies in advance. But to my astonishment, someone answered my email!!! And the most crazy thing was that person agreed on sending me a copy!


We immediately traded contact details, it was surreal and I can't believe it was happening. And then after several days, I received the parcel by FedEx and I was in cloud nine the entire day! I want to thank Debbie Macomber and  Alana Signor for the trouble they went through for this book to get to me. I really appreciate that you chose to give me a copy of the book. You don't know how much this means to me. Thanks a million!!!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

♠ Love is LaVyrle ♠

LaVyrle Spencer (b. July 17, 1943 in Browerville, Minnesota) is an American best-selling author of contemporary and historical romance novels. She has successfully published a number of books, with several of them made into movies. Twelve of her books have been New York Times bestsellers, and Spencer was inducted into the Romance Writers of America Hall of Fame in 1988. She retired from writing in 1997.  LaVyrle Spencer was born on July 17, 1943 in Browerville, Minnesota, where she was raised. Shortly after her high school graduation Spencer married her high school sweetheart Dan Spencer. The two had two daughters, Amy and Beth (who died in 1990), and are grandparents. They live in a Victorian house in Stillwater, Minnesota, where Spencer enjoys gardening, cooking, playing bass guitar and electric piano, and photography.

Books by LaVyrle Spencer that I've read:
  1. Hummingbird 
  2. The Hellion 
  3. Twice Loved 
  4. Spring Fancy 
  5. The Gamble 
  6. Morning Glory                 **Highly recommended by me!**
  7. Bitter Sweet 
  8. Forgiving 
  9. Bygones 
  10. November of the Heart   **Highly recommended by me!**
  11. Family Blessings 
  12. Home Song
  13. That Camden Summer     **Highly recommended by me!**
  14. Then Came Heaven 
  15. Small Town Girl
can't remember the year that I've read the other books, but one thing is for sure, they are all unique and great reads. I rarely read love stories but LaVyrle's wonderful writing is a testimony that she can change the minds of readers everywhere once they've opened a book that she wrote. Well, that's what had happened to me. It's sad she retired from writing many years ago...I hope she'll make a comeback!  


      Friday, September 24, 2010

      ♠Reading Book #178: Breathing Lessons by Anne Tyler♠


      I'm now reading Breathing Lessons by Anne Tyler. This is my first time to read this author and again, I don't know what to expect. I bought this book, in view of the fact, that it was a Pulitzer Prize Winning novel for fiction way back in 1989. 

      I know, it was ages ago! But it was on sale so I told myself, might as well read a Pulitzer novel. It couldn't hurt to read it , right? Cheerz!

      ♠311 Pelican Court♠


      New Cover | Old Cover








      I'm now on the third Cedar Cove re-issue book covers. I'm doing this in celebration of the newest book installment in the series entitled 1022 Evergreen Place. 311 Pelican Court is the home of Zachary and Rosie Cox, in this book their marriage had fallen apart because of misunderstandings and lack of open communication. They got divorced and went into court battle for child custody. I totally enjoyed reading this book. This is where the series took a turn for the better, all the characters stories are shaping up and conflicts and trials are abundant in this book. I think for me, the lesson in this book is to trust your partner. I know it's a cliche, but if you don't trust your husband/wife, it can easily put an end to your relationship. 

      The new cover of the book is really artistic. I primarily like the attic of the house. When I was a kid, I used to picture myself having my own room and I wanted it to be the attic. It's nice to have a bed close to the open windows and read a book while the cool breeze touches your skin...Cheerz!

       

      Thursday, September 23, 2010

      In My Mailbox #13: Anita, Anita and Return to Fantasy

      In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by  The Story Siren.
      Here are my newest book purchases! Every time that I have a chance to go out, I always, always visit the bookstore. I just have to be inside it! It's a mixed emotions for me, you know, seeing all those "new book releases" displayed on the shelves, knowing I can't possibly afford them, it makes me want to wish I was like a rich guy and just buy all those books and be the happiest man on Earth. I'm such a geek. Hehe.



      I purchased Resistance by Anita Shreve when I was at National Bookstore Cubao, where I usually do my "bookhunts" as I call it. The story reminds me of the movie entitled IN LOVE AND WAR starring Sandra Bullock and Chris O' Donnell, I love this film. Resistance is a story about a married woman who fell in love with a soldier amidst the war that threatens to destroy them all.




      I also purchased Shadowmarch at National Bookstore Cubao, I've been seeing Shadowmarch by Tad Williams for quite sometime now and my love for fantasy prompted me to give this book a try. This is volume one of the series of books that will be published by Tad. Another series! Agh! Hehehe. Don't get me wrong, I love on-going series. I hope these two books will be good reads!  By the way, these books are just P50 each! What a great bargain, right? Cheerz! 



      Wednesday, September 22, 2010

      Review: Chill Factor by Sandra Brown


       SYNOPSIS:
      Cleary, North Carolina, is a sleepy mountain town -- the kind of place where criminal activity is usually limited to parking violations. Not so, lately. Four women have disappeared from Cleary over the past two years. And there's always a blue ribbon left near the spot where each of the women was last seen. There are no bodies, no other clues, and no suspicion as to who their abductor might be. And now, another woman has disappeared without a trace.

      MY REVIEW:

      Good day to all! It's now time for my review on Sandra Brown's Chill Factor. I'm expecting a lot from this author coz this is my very first book from her that I've read. It's also a risk if I'll get disappointed in the end if it turned out that the book is a total bore. What attracted me first with this book is the plot.  It's an unusual story, that's why I was eager to read it. 
       
      Imagine yourself being trapped with a total stranger inside a cabin that is located up in the mountains, just the two of you, and you are isolated from the rest of the world. And that stranger turned out to be a suspected murderer on the loose. Creepy huh? Well, that's what happened to Lilly Martin, she and her husband Dutch was closing a deal on the sale of their cabin when a snowstorm descended upon them. Now that's really unfortunate. ( Don't want this to happen to me...)  After a brief quarrel between the two of them regarding their love problems, Dutch went down the mountain first and Lilly stayed behind to finish tidying up the cabin. 

      And this is where the story begins...As Lilly was driving down the mountain road, her car skids on the slippery ground and delivered a blow to a man who manifested in the middle of nowhere. It turned out the man wasn't badly injured. Together they find refuge inside the cabin and decided to wait for the storm to recede. Inside, they examined for food and water, anything to eat and keep them nourished. Eventually, due to startling discoveries by Lilly, she somehow learned that the stranger was a possible suspect for the murders that had transpired in Cleary, North Carolina. Imagine her fear of knowing this...Loads of twist and turns happened inside the cabin and the author manages to confused me of the true identity of the killer. 

      A great deal of characters are added up to make the story more stimulating. Throughout the book, I wasn't able to wait patiently, I wanted to know who the real killer was! I was in a state of agitation and was tempted to read the last page, but I didn't do it. Sandra Brown skillfully balances the plot and the readers will be happy and satisfied with the ending.

      To wrap it all up, it was a mind-blowing and sensational read for me. All the components of what an unputdownable thriller should have is in Chill Factor. Cheerz!  

      My Rating: 4 ½ Stars

      Tuesday, September 21, 2010

      ♠204 Rosewood Lane♠


      New Cover | Old Cover

      The 2nd book from the Cedar Cove Series. This post is in regard to the celebration of the newest release on the series entitled 1022 Evergreen Place. I want to post the new covers of the 9 books which for me are just delightful.

      The cover for 204 Rosewood Lane is really different from 16 Lighthouse Road, the porch in this picture is my favorite part of the house, it would be nice if it has a swing or a comfortable chair especially if you're reading a good book and sipping iced tea. Hehehe. Well, that's my notion of relaxation. Cheerz!

      ♠Book Releases: 9/21/2010♠




      Monday, September 20, 2010

      ♠Book of the Week: Melody♠


      Book of the Week: September
       Sept20-Sept26
      Title: Melody
      Author: V.C. Andrews
      Release Date: Published September 1st 1996 
      Pages: Mass Market Paperback, 373 pages   
      Perennial bestselling author V.C. Andrews introduces her leagues of fans to the Logan family. After losing her beloved father, Melody Logan is abruptly abandoned by her mother at the home of her paternal grandparents. Lost in a sea of grief and confusion, Melody soon learns the true story of her parents' courtship and marriage--a sad, shocking tale that only puzzles her more.

      This is the first book in the Logan Family series that was well received by V.C. Andrews fans around the world. I've read this book a couple of years ago and I can still remember that this book was a top notch fiction for me.  

      The story was very well written and this book was a promising opening for a series that will  accumulate to four more books, I've read all of them and I recommend it to readers who are looking for engrossing characters  and unpredictable storylines.  

       

      Sunday, September 19, 2010

      ♠Possible Book Giveaways♠

      Possible book giveaways


      Yesterday, I was not in the mood to read, was not in the mood to watch TV. So if I'm not doing anything, there's always books to turn to. What I did was take out all of my books and did some inventory. While doing this, I can't help but remember each book that I've purchased in the last couple of years. I can still remember each and everyone of them. Each one has their own story to tell. Hehehe. 

      I know that it's a bit early for another book prize giveaway, but after rearranging my books, I've selected and decided a few that I want to give away. I was a bit reluctant to give them up but I want to share them to other readers as well. My September prize giveaway is not really doing much. Having two valid entries only. Maybe because the books that I'm giving out are not that appealing...Anyways, I'm just glad that I still have two people to choose from. The giveaway ends on September 30th so if any of you are interested just make an entry! Cheerz!

      Saturday, September 18, 2010

      A Book To Cherish

      Tess Gerritsen
      Tess Gerritsen has become one of my favorite authors ever since I've read her book entitled The Surgeon. Having read all her novels (except the  novels of romantic suspense she wrote during her earlier days as a writer, which by the way are very hard to find!) I can truly say that I'm a fan. Today she is one of the most celebrated author in the book industry. Her Rizzoli and Isles TV series is doing great in the ratings and I'm so happy that the books finally made it on television. As a reader, I want to see the characters that I'm reading being portrayed by actors and actresses of top caliber. I think it's also every author's dream to see their characters brought to life on TV or in the big screen. Her latest book is another Rizzoli and Isles thriller entitled ICE COLD, which I was sure a couple of months ago, that I won't be able to read and can't possibly afford...All that change with the help of a friend across many leagues of oceans away...


      Books Out Of The Bookshelves
      When I started blogging last March of this year. I wasn't quite sure if I can manage a blog full time. I mean, I was really busy way back then looking for a job. But in the end, I kinda enjoyed blogging and before I knew it, I was posting book reviews and articles and I was really loving it! I can share my thoughts about a book to others! But most importantly, I'm doing this for myself... I also learned that there are loads of other bloggers around the world! And I've seen lots of blog sites that are really cool! I was very interested in one particular blogger from Brazil. Her name is Raila Soares and her books are very different from what I'm reading, I find her books refreshing and invigorating. Maybe because she's still young and she prefers YA books. (Of course!) Hehehe. But the funny thing for me is that I like the books that she's reading. The stories are really engaging. 


      Me with the book
      After sometime, I decided to contact her and introduce myself. I immediately wanted to be friends with her. Her book reviews are just amazing! She is not hesitant when it comes to her views regarding a particular book and that's what I really admire about her. I think it's of prime importance that readers like us, to be honest and fair in terms of our book reviews. I mean, that's what separate each and every one of us. We exchange a couple of messages to get to know each other and I learned one thing that can connect us through reading...Tess Gerritsen. We now share the same enthusiasm regarding this remarkable author. I told her that I've been reading Tess's books when I was still in college and that I've been a fan for many years now. During our messages, I kinda told her that I won't be able to buy the newest book because I can't afford it, I told her I can wait after a year for the paperback to be released, it's much cheaper you see...

      Little did I know that she emailed Tess and told my story! I was really shocked she would do anything for me, a total stranger at that time. And then I've learned that she requested a copy of Ice Cold especially for me! I can't believe it!!! I just really can't! And then one day, I received a mail notice that I need to claim a package at the post office. After retrieving the package, I immediately opened it and there in my hands, was a brand new hardbound copy of Ice Cold, with a dedication from Tess Gerritsen herself. Her personal hand writing! I was speechless for a minute, and after the shock wore off I called my sister, my favorite cousin and my parents and told them what has transpired. I was elated during those moments of disbelief. It's always been a dream of mine to receive a book from any of my favorite authors. And it came true... This post is especially dedicated to Tess Gerritsen and Raila Soares. I want you to know how grateful I am for this gift. I appreciate the time you spent for this book to reach me. GOD bless and thanks so much!


      Thursday, September 16, 2010

      ♠Reading Book #177: The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan♠

      Reading Book #177


      Title: The Red Pyramid
      Author:
      Rick Riordan
      Release Date: May 4th 2010
      Pages: Paperback, 516 pages
      Characters:
      Carter, Sadie
      Since their mother’s death, Carter and Sadie have become near strangers. While Sadie has lived with her grandparents in London, her brother has traveled the world with their father, the brilliant Egyptologist, Dr. Julius Kane. One night, Dr. Kane brings the siblings together for a "research experiment" at the British Museum, where he hopes to set things right for his family. Instead, he unleashes the Egyptian god Set, who banishes him to oblivion and forces the children to flee for their lives. Soon, Sadie and Carter discover that the gods of Egypt are waking, and the worst of them--Set--has his sights on the Kanes. To stop him, the siblings embark on a dangerous journey across the globe--a quest that brings them ever closer to the truth about their family, and their links to a secret order that has existed since the time of the Pharaohs.

      At last, I'm now reading The Red Pyramid! It's been in my bookshelf for quite sometime now. Ever since, I've been fascinated with the culture of Egypt. I think their history is very rich and complex. I've seen all the Mummy movies (Brendan Fraser) and their cinematic take on ancient Egypt is very real to me. 

      I have high expectations on The Red Pyramid. I haven't read the Percy Jackson series. If I'm going to have a positive reading experience with the Red Pyramid, I guess I'll seek out the Percy Jackson books! Cheerz!

       

      Wednesday, September 15, 2010

      ♠Working Mom♠

      Jemellie and Jacob



      Today, my sister arrived in Roxas City. She needs to be in a new place for her work. She will be assigned there for a month, and a possible one week extension if necessary.  It's a bit far that's why she can't visit us every week. She have to finish her one month stay in Roxas before she can go home. The hardest thing for her was to leave her son, Jacob, but she has to work right?

      I'm going to miss her terribly, I tried to lend her some of my books for her to read but that is just it, we don't share my passion and love for books. Well, I did try to encourage her to read before, I gave her the Harry Potter books to start things off easy...but it was a futile attempt on my part. There's not a single "reading bone" in her body. Hehehe. Cheerz!


      Monday, September 13, 2010

      ♠Book of the Week: Then Came Heaven♠


      Book of the Week: September
       Sept13-Sept19


      Title: Then Came Heaven
      Author: La Vyrle Spencer
      Release Date: Published April 1st 2002 by Jove 
      (first published December 8th 1997)
      Pages: Mass Market Paperback, 347 pages   


      "Can love survive a shattering loss? Browerville, Minnesota, 1950: Life is just about perfect for Eddie Olczak. A man of unshakable faith, he derives intense pleasure from the life he's built. He cherishes his wife, Krystyna, their daughters, Anne and Lucy, and his job as handyman for St. Joseph's, the Catholic church that is the cornerstone of Browerville life. But when a tragic accident cuts Krystyna's life short, Eddie is sure his heart is broken forever. The love she lavished on her family, the way she combed the girls' hair, the way she greeted Eddie at the end of the day-all the precious gifts she gave are gone. The town rallies to provide support, but there is one member of the community who is unable to express what Krystyna's loss has meant to her. Sister Regina, the girls' teacher at St. Joseph's, has always felt a special affinity for the Olczaks. But her vows prevent her from becoming too close--even in their time of need .Sister Regina has always tried to reaffirm her commitment when the strict rules of the sisterhood chafe at her. But with time, as she and Eddie grow to know each other better--and find a connection that goes beyond their shared love of Krystyna and the girls--she faces a difficult challenge. And both of them must summon the courage to look within their own hearts and make their own choices ..."


      I only read few romance novels, maybe because I've outgrown them (having read Tagalog pocketbooks before). I don't find romance books dense and dull, it's just that, I'm more into crime-solving and devilish page turners these days. Books with upbeat endings.

      But when it comes to LaVyrle Spencer, I make an exception. Her novels are just unique and endearing. Her characters dialogue always ring true. Then Came Heaven is a very complicated story. A servant of the Lord falls in love with a man who's still recovering from a wound that's very hard to heal. This particular book really captured my interest, as well as LaVyrle's other works. I think it's safe to say that I've read almost all of them, and each book has their own remarkable quality. LaVyrle is a grand storyteller and when there is love...There is LaVyrle...Cheerz!

      Friday, September 10, 2010

      ♠Table for One♠



      Hi there! I decided to post a picture of my personal table...I don't know.. I just want to share it with you guys. Actually, this table is  from my friend. He gave it to me to use it for a while.  Hehehe.

      This is where I usually do all my "book related stuff". This is the place where I cover my books, where I write my book reviews and where I sometimes read...

      This table opens upward, so I can store pencils, writing paper, books, and other stuff underneath it. It's very handy, a table/storage in one. I also have a small cabinet beside my table for extra storage.

      I've seen a lot of cool tables, and it would really be great to have one with a built-in lamp on it. Loads of drawers and a tiny bookshelf to boot. Hehehe. That's like my "fantasy table". Cheerz!

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