Read It: The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Gabrielle Zevin

A.J. Fikry’s life is at a total loss. He lost his wife from a car accident, book sales from their bookstore is at its lowest and he discovers that his most prized possession, a rare copy of Tamerlane by E.A.Poe, is stolen. He has lost all hope and would rather live in total isolation because of the pain and grief of a love lost.

When an unexpected package is left in his bookstore, he rediscovers himself and his capability to love and care again. Slowly, he regains his lost self through Maya and shares his passion for books at the small town of Alice.

  1. The transition from A.J. solitary life to sudden fatherhood was touching. It shows that people can change from bad to good. Having Maya helped him regain his life, his business and his relationship with other people. He got back on his feet and became a better.
  2. Throughout the story, you can feel how much he loved his daughter. Everything was about raising Maya and being a great parent to her.
  3. I love that the characters loved books. Everything revolved around books and stories. Every now and then, excerpts from famous books are introduced which is awesome.
  4. Even though this is a very heartfelt story, I can’t help but think that something is lacking. Maybe the story was too short or the transition of events became to fast for me. It was hard to cherish every moment since after every chapter Maya grows and then we were pushed to the end where A.J. is old and sickly. It was written so it can end right away. Bam, he’s dead.
  5. It was also important that the author did not fail to input side stories about the other characters in the story. It helped a lot in building the storied life of A.J. Fikry.
  6. If anything, I would have wanted to know what happened to Maya and Amelia after moving out of Alice Island.

The story is a very short read, enjoyable and very heartfelt. The pace was (too) fast that you will realize it was over just when it was beginning to get good.

Read It: Hollow City

Hollow City (Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children, #2)

Hollow City

Ransom Riggs

Before I even start with this review I am thanking my sister for giving me this book as a belated birthday gift. I felt really happy waking up in the morning and seeing a copy of this on my table. It really made my day. I love sweet surprises.

Anyway, back to the book.

Hollow City is the continuation of Ms. Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. It starts with the Jacob with the peculiar children riding on a boat, looking back to the destroyed island they have called home for centuries. Without a loop and an injured ymbryne, they go on a journey to look for Ms. Wren, the only ymbryne left uncaptured, and ask help to cure Ms. Peregrine who is stuck in her bird form. They travel from loop to loop, time zones and unknown places while evading hollowghasts and wights.

  1. What I love most about this book is the collection of vintage photographs used to describe peculiars and timezones. It looks very eerie although the plot was never about horrors. It is a nice touch.
  2. The pace of the book was quite slow and dragging. There were moments that I wanted to skip parts but I think this is forgivable because the ending killed it.
  3. I am not really sure about the Jacob-Emma romance. If you ask me, I don’t want this to continue in the next books. Emma was Jacob’s grandfather’s love interest. To think that Emma is an old lady trapped in a child’s body is creepy and a teenager falling in love with her does not sound right in a young adult book.
  4. It was very interesting that a lot of peculiars have been introduced in the book. It shows that peculiardom is a vast concept and makes you look forward to what else is out there.
  5. The climax of the book came too late and was very short. Just when things were getting real good, the author slapped me with an open-story. Damn.
  6. Jacob’s discovery about his ability to talk to hollows sounded like Harry Potter discovering he has a parseltongue.

Read It: London Belongs To The Alchemist

London Belongs to the Alchemist (Class Heroes, #4)

London Belongs to The Alchemist

Stephen Henning

James and Samantha Blake are back in London after an adventurous stay at their grandparents. They are now trying to go back to the life they left in London and are also excited to meet with old friends. Everything seems to be normal until they were invited to an underground party and learned that Super D is being given away by the mysterious DJ Alchemy. Add to that, Lolly Rosewood appears on their doorstep and seeks refuge in their home and proposes a truce. There are a lot going on at once and the twins’ trust for each other are tested as they are forced to defend their new found relationships.

  • Since I love Lolly, it really interested me when she appeared and became part of the Blake’s home. I was beginning to think that she might have turned over a new leaf but am happy that she did not change as much.
  • DJ Alchemy’s character was quite annoying. He has this self-righteous attitude and dreams too big but just cannot handle it. He is still a boy trying too hard to change the corrupt society.
  • With the inclusion of gangs/mafia, the plot just stepped into a new level. Besides Rosewood and the MI5 , they now have to deal with Mr Smith and others.
  • Its nice including love interests for the twins, makes you think that this really is a young adult fiction after all.
  • I loved the ending since it makes you hope for what is coming up next. Where is Samantha Blake?

Thanks to Stephen for letting me read his work. :)

You’re Not a “Plan B” Kind of Girl


Something nice to read and ponder on. :)

Originally posted on The Messy Life:

DeathtoStock_Spring7You deserve better than someone who is afraid to commit to you. It may seem like enough for now. You’re just taking things slow. Oh, how I know those little phrases of “one day” and we just need time.

You believe them.
And I’ve believed them.

But you’re not a plan B kind of girl.

You need to know that you’re not the invisible one standing in the back who gets chosen last.

You’re the girl who the team captain will be frantically hoping doesn’t get picked by someone else before he gets a turn. You’re a first-pick kind of girl. And no one worth having sits back and lets those girls wait around.

‘Cause every good man knows that the good ones get gone fast.

He should be jumping out of his skin in anticipation to call out your name and say “I pick you.”

“But he’s…

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Read It: The First Phone Call From Heaven


The First Phone Call From Heaven

Mitch Albom

In Coldwater, Michigan, seven people have claimed to be receiving phone calls from their departed loved ones giving them reassuring messages about the the after life and giving them words of encouragement to go on living their lives. It is penned to be one of the greatest miracles that has happened in their town or perhaps the world. Is it real or is it a hoax? While everyone in town believes to have witnessed a rare miracle in town, Sully Harding, a grieving husband fresh out from jail for a crime he did not commit, thinks so otherwise. He believes that these miracles are just a fraud played by someone in town and tries to prove to his son (and more to himself) that miracles are not true and these phone calls from heaven are just man-made.

  1. The book has an interesting premise. Just like any other novel by Mitch Albom, it stirs one’s curiosity and touches one’s faith on bigger things that wait us in the after life. Mostly, it is an easy read to inspire you about the value of life and keeping faith.
  2. More than just an inspirational story. This time, the author introduces a character,Sully Harding, who is not a firm believer, someone who defies the cult and tries to prove that there is no such thing as a miracle. I think Sully is an interesting character because he embodies people who are ‘to see it to believe’ types.
  3. It would have been a better story if it were not for the multiple POVs (point of view) from the different characters. The shifting of POVs was too much that at times it gets confusing which thoughts I was reading about. There were no cues when the POV is about to shift and you get surprised that the setting has now shifted to another character’s environment. You will only realize this when the character’s name is mentioned.
  4. There were seven phone call receivers, and out of seven, only three were developed throughout the story (Jack, Katherine and Tess) with a few snippets about Elias and Doreen. The others? Their names were only mentioned but no background story at all. If the story were to revolve around the phone call receivers, it would have been great to be consistent with it. Why concentrate on three? You have others as well. I looks to me that they were neglected. Unimportant in the development of the story.
  5. The story was dragging. The supposed progress of events doesn’t take you up, it stops and remains on a plateau. It was disappointing how the climax became anticlimactic (at least to me). There was just too much nothingness going on and you just wanted everything to end.
  6. The only saving grace I believe was how Sully uncovered everything. I was actually rooting that he prove nothing of his hunch only to discover otherwise.

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