#T5W | I like these authors. A lot.

This week, we are talking about Authors You Want to Read More From.

I am at a loss at how to kick off this post so I’ll just go straight to the list. I’m having a bad day at work today and I need a distraction. Wish.com, AliExpress, and several online book shops aren’t helping much. (LOL.)

  1. Roshani Chokshi. I met her last February and had my copy of The Star-Touched Queen signed and personalized. Then I read it. It’s quite purple prose-y but I truly enjoyed it. Instead of it being annoying and tiring with all the flowery words and metaphors, it set up the mood nicely and it made imagining the world she wrote so easy and enjoyable. I do have A Crown of Wishes which I will get to very soon. And she recently announced that she is releasing a middle grade book next year. Yaaasss!
  2. Marie Lu. I also met her at the same event that I mentioned above. Ever since reading the Legend trilogy last year, Marie Lu has become an auto-buy author. I just love how well she writes action and her characters are so simple yet rich. I have The Young Elites trilogy (signed and) waiting for me. And I cannot wait to get my hands on Warcross. And I also hope to have all of my copies of her books signed… eventually.
  3. Ryan Graudin. I read her Wolf by Wolf duology and instantly fell in love. So much that I plan to try her All that Glows duology even though I’m not a fan of fae. There’s something about her writing that feels so strong and solid. Both Wolf by Wolf and Blood for Blood blew me away. Yes, they are YA books but it had none of that shallowness that even dystopian YA has, whether intentional or not. Invictus is going to be released this year and I will surely read that.
  4. Brandon Sanderson. My 2017 project is to finish the Mistborn trilogy. I’ve read and absolutely loved The Final Empire. I might read the next one in the coming months and the last one by the end of the year. And this author has a LOT of other books. So many of them are well-loved by the book community, not just by the SFF readers. The Final Empire was so easy to read and follow despite the large cast of characters and rather complicated magic system.
  5. Keigo Higashino. I debated whether to mention him or another Japanese author here but I decided with Keigo Higashino. I own six of his translated works but have only read one. Which is strange because I enjoyed the one that I read, The Devotion of Suspect X. I don’t know what I’m waiting for. I love how he puts a spin on a detective story. What I love about Japanese fiction is that it has its own mood that is so distinct from Western mysteries. I really should pick up the other books by this author because all of them sound so interesting.

I have other picks. But looking at my list, I am most excited about these five authors.

#T5W | I’m (a) Game(r)

This week, we are talking about Books That Would Make Good Games.

One thing you may not know about me is that I’m a gamer. Sure, I spectate more than I actually play but I’ve always had a controller in my hand since the classic Nintendo Famicom. I had three PSX consoles, 2 PS One, 2 PS2, a PS3, 3 PSPs, a PS Vita, and a PS4 Pro. My brother and I are actually planning to buy another PS Vita because the one we have now is rooted in the Japanese PlayStation store. And if it’s not yet obvious, we’re Playstation fans. I’ve never even held a GameBoy or a Nintendo DS in my life. No joke. 😄

My favorite genres are Japanese RPG, survival horror, and fighting games. Tekken 3 is like the national video game in the Philippines. Final Fantasy VIII was my top favorite JRPG until recently. And while kids spend the day with their dads in parks, malls, or fixing cars… I was helping him beat Silent Hill. Today, I still love Tekken and have grown to love Street Fighter. Legend of Heroes: Trails of Cold Steel has dethroned FF8 as my favorite JRPG so much that I am seriously contemplating on buying a Windows system so I can play the game’s re-release with 5000 extra voice over clips. And I think Resident Evil: Biohazard is one of the scariest video games ever! I can talk you to the ground about video games like I can with books and anime.

Anyway, I figure this is going to be a long post. I will not only name 5 (or more) books that would make great video games but I will try to mention games that can be good books too. And I will be categorizing them into genres/modes instead of the book’s genres. This is going to be fun!

Continue reading

MUSING MAILBOX MONDAYS (#11) | Watching or Reading?

It’s been a while since my last Musing Monday post. The first one since it changed hosts for sure. I missed it. Also, I finally got my Book Outlet Boxing Day sale order in so you know what that means… Mailbox Mondays!

But it’s Wednesday. I know. I fail at this. 😄

musing

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

I finally am getting to A Gathering of Shadows by VE Schwab. The 3rd and final book, Conjuring of Light, is coming out very soon so I should be done with this one by the end of this week. My first read of 2017 is The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson and it was amazing. I cannot wait to get to the next books in the Mistborn trilogy. I also just finished listening to Subterranean by James Rollins, narrated by John Meagher. I realized that my audiobook genre of choice is mystery/thriller/sci-fi. I’m loving it.

For this week’s random question: What do you think about books being made into movies or tv shows and do you always read the book first?

Hollywood seems like it is running out of original ideas. A good chunk of movies nowadays are adapted from books. TV is the same thing. At this point, it’s no longer a new thing. The question now is “Did these film people do it justice?” Then it comes down to the viewer’s personal taste.

When I hear that a book is going to be made into a movie or TV show, I have one hope. I hope they do it right. It boggles the mind how some adaptations turn out so wrong that it’s like a completely different story. The Scorch Trials, anyone? The casting was great but what the hell was that movie? Then there are times when they get it right like The Hunger Games trilogy. And the Outlander TV show. The recent Miss Peregrine’s Home For Peculiar Children was a little hard to swallow. I mean, it was okay but it took away everything that I liked in the books. Why change the children’s peculiarities? That is what makes them unique and recognizable jumping from the book to the screen. Idgi.

And no, I’ve given up on that. I used to make it a point to read the book first before watching the movie but that’s just not feasible anymore to me. What if your friends want to watch Me Before You but you haven’t read that yet? I found that for some movies, reading the book before watching is only setting yourself up for disappointment. But hey, you do you. I’m just saying that I’ve let it go. I’ve done it both ways – watched then read, vice-versa – and I enjoyed one or the other or both in their own ways.

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MAILBOX MONDAYS #11 | Book Outlet Boxing Day Sale

Here is my first haul. Technically, I bought these at the tail end of 2016 on Book Outlet’s Boxing Day sale and one from Kinokuniya Los Angeles last week. I’m running out of Japanese fiction to purchase from that heavenly store. I might need to start on that Haruki Murakami collection after all.

I got another bookmark coupon from this package. It reminds me that I have to use the previous one that I got. Hey, I know that I don’t have to use it but I’m that person who feels like I should use a coupon rather than it going to waste. Counter intuitive, I know. 😉

I guess I can say that all of these books are legit in my wishlist. Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor and The Winner’s Kiss by Marie Rutkoski finish off two trilogies on my shelf. I’m the kind of person who wants to acquire whole series in the hopes that I could binge read them… which, never happens. Or will it?

Every time I go to Target, I see The Book of Speculation by Erika Swyler. I need more books about books. I’ve heard this is good. I hope this is good. After reading and falling in love with the Wolf by Wolf duology by Ryan Graudin, I went ahead and picked up The Walled City in a pretty cover (that you can’t see in this photo). I still like historical fiction after all. Everyone on booktube was talking about Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein and around Halloween time, The Creeping by Alexandra Sirowy. You gotta be picky when it comes to booktube recommendations so I hope I made the right choice with these.

The books on the bottom, The Death’s Head Chess Club by John Donoghue and Love in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction by Judd Trichter are both blurb buys. I’ve never heard of them prior to seeing them on Book Outlet but their blurbs completely sold me. I’m actually pretty excited to get to them.

And finally, Honeymoon to Nowhere by Akimitsu Takagi. This was acquired at full price. I saw this the week before at Kinokuniya Los Angeles, read the blurb and was intrigued yet passed on it. But I couldn’t get it out of my head. So the next week, I hoped it was still there. It was so I picked it up. The last copy in the store.

So here’s to another year of book-buying. And hopefully, a good year of reading as well!

TOP TEN TUESDAYS | Best of 2016

… according to yours truly. I’m hoping to read 80 books this year. I have a few days left to read 3 more; I’m on 77 as of right now.

TopTenTues

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, we’re listing down the Top Ten Best Books Of 2016 (you choose — best books overall of what you read regardless of pub date, of a particular genre, 2016 debuts, 2016 releases, etc)

This will be in no particular order. I more than doubled my reading this year compared to 2015 but choosing 10 of my very best reads this year wasn’t easy. I do have clear favorites and some, I had to think long and hard to justify them being on this list. As you know, I’m generous with my 5- and 4-star ratings. It doesn’t take much to make me like a book. I could say that I like a handful of my reads quite equally.

So, in an equal opportunity environment, how does one create a TOP ten list? I tried, you guys. Tried. Needless to say, this is in no particular order:

  1. Morning Star by Pierce Brown. Oh, man. This is everything I ever wanted from a series ender. I dropped everything the day this book came out. I had a signed copy on pre-order but still bought an e-book just so I can read it right away. I didn’t have the best beginnings with this trilogy but by the end of the 2nd book, Pierce Brown joined my list of auto-buy authors.
  2. Ring by Koji Suzuki. I literally just finished this book last night in between episodes of Sweetness and Lightning. While events vary a bit from the movie, the mood and premise remain as creepy as ever. As with a lot of Japanese fiction, it’s told in the most nonchalant, straightforward way. It never makes huge deals out of rape, abuse, death, etc. And that is what makes it so creepy. I knew I was going to like this going in and I was right. I can’t wait to tackle the rest of the series next year.
  3. The Legend trilogy by Marie Lu. I started the year off with Legend and ended it with Champion. I also read the two graphic novels as catch up. I cannot wait for the 3rd graphic novel. That ended made me sob. I need more angst like that. I don’t get very much angst from novels; not the way I get them from fan fiction. I know this is an older trilogy but I still liked it. Yes, it’s trope-y but mind you, I didn’t jump on that YA train until it started to die down. I loved Day and everything he stood for. It wasn’t a 100% happy ending. Everyone lost, everyone is flawed… it was just so beautiful.
  4.  A Darker Shade of Magic by VE Schwab. I was going to WonderCon 2016 and I saw that she has several panels scheduled. I honestly never read anything from her before but I was compelled to pick up this book. I inhale-read it just in time for her panel. I then bought Vicious at the convention and A Gathering of Shadows (which I haven’t read yet) signed. I also have some of her YA books but I think I prefer her adult ones.
  5. Vicious  by VE Schwab. While we’re on the subject. If I had to choose, I like Vicious more than ADSOM. I like me some dark anti-hero, anti-villain action. It’s about revenge and the characters are so rich… it’s almost a noir. Think a season of American Horror Story. It’s a book where all of them are villains but they’re not on the same side. I love it. It totally works as a standalone but I do hope that there’s at least one more book in the works.

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  6. Audition by Ryu Murakami. I read a couple of Murakami-san’s works this year and I think this is my favorite. Piercing is a close second but Audition, man. And I thought the movie was disgustingly creepy. Again with that Japanese way of telling a story in a straightforward way. Topics of gore seem more disgusting when told in such an emotionless way. And it just ends.
  7. Eon duology by Alison Goodman. I liked Eon more than Eona but as a duology, this was amazing. It kept me on the edge of my seat most of the time. The world-building was superb. There was a lot of Asian themes and it was done really well even though the author is not Asian. The magic system was unique and quite frankly, empowering to women. Not to mention there’s a strong trans character and her love interest.
  8. Confessions by Kanae Minato. I’ve sung praises for this book since I read this. If you’re to read only one Japanese fiction, read this. You won’t regret it. You’ll want more. It is about a teacher whose child was murdered by one of her students. Told in several perspectives, each one more terrifying than the previous POV. I’ve yet to watch the live action adaptation but for now, this book… wow.
  9. Gekkan Shoujo, Nozaki-kun by Izumi Tsubaki. I’ve read a couple of manga and graphic novels this year but this takes the cake. I loved the anime adaptation and I loved the manga even more. It’s still on-going so I hope I can keep up with it.
  10. Wolf by Wolf duology by Ryan Graudin. I can’t decide which one I like more, Wolf by Wolf or Blood For Blood. This duology touched all my feelz. I got so attached to a character and it broke my heart. And I hated one character so hard that I actually put the book down for a bit. I’m so glad I decided to pick this up. It got me in the mood for alternate history, historical fiction.

If you check out my Goodreads, there’s a lot of 5-star reads that are not here. I might have rated them highly but that doesn’t mean they’re my favorites. I could rate something a 3-star and still end up a fave. This was not an easy list to make. My list of least favorites was easier… 😉

TOP TEN TUESDAYS | Nice To Meet You

It’s time to roll out the year-end tags, memes, and prompts. I’m loving it!

TopTenTues

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, we’re listing down the Top Ten New-To-Me Authors I Read For The First Time In 2016.

I’ve read 70 books as of yesterday. More than 50% of that list are from authors who are new to me. Some of them, I’ve read multiple titles. I’ve heard of them before but 2016 was the year when I finally checked them out. I mean, if they’re hyped, there’s got to be a reason why, right? While I’ve not jumped to every bandwagon out there – I’ve yet to read Sarah J. Maas, Laini Taylor, Rainbow Rowell, and so many more – I discovered a good number of new-to-me authors this year. It was kind of tough narrowing it down to just ten so maybe there are honorable mentions later? We’ll see.

(I got a Book Outlet box yesterday so I decided to make use out of the brown paper. Yeah, here I am trying to be artsy LOL.)

  • Kristin Cashore – I chanced on a copy of Graceling at my local thrift store and decided to pick it up. I liked it and then the next thing I know, I own the whole trilogy. I’ve yet to read Bitterblue and I found Fire rather lacking but I enjoy her writing style so much. It is fantasy but it is easy to follow and it’s very creative.
  • Jonathan Maberry – This started out as a cover-buy but now, I have all 4 in the Rot & Ruin series (missing the short story collection but that’s fine). And oh man, I enjoyed this more than I would ever The Walking Dead. I love how he writes horror and gore without it being disgusting. I mean, disgusting is okay too but Rot & Ruin came across as a story of “people in a zombie book” rather than a “zombie book with people in it”.
  • Marie Lu – I see her Instagram feed and I realize that I always miss the opportunity of meeting her on the street by a day. I was at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Little Tokyo a day before she posts that she’s there too. That aside, I only have to read Champion to finish that trilogy. I loved Legend; I thought it was straight to the point action. I pulled this out of my double stacked shelves so that I could read it before the month/year ends.
  • Graeme Simsion – I instantly fell in love with The Rosie Project from the moment I saw the Australian edition cover. Then I inhale-read it. While I see the US cover of The Rosie Effect a lot, I want a cover that matches. Book Depository has my back, for sure. I love how the author writes the main character’s voice. It’s so unassuming and quite funny. It’s very subtle and flowing. His writing made me so happy.
  • Keigo Higashino – I have six of this man’s books. SIX. I don’t know what it is but when I read that Song Minho was talking about him, I looked him up and bought one book, The Devotion of Suspect X. It’s a mystery thriller but you know the Japanese does things their way, right? And I like that way. I’ve since read other Japanese mystery thrillers but I like Higashino-san the most.
  • V.E. Schwab –  I’m sure she’s on a lot of people’s lists. She easily shot up my favorite authors and auto-buy list. Really. Right now, I prefer her adult novels than the YA. I love Vicious so much. Hopefully, I can squeeze in A Gathering of Shadows by the end of the year but if not, January 2017. Her world building is so rich and solid. Her characters are so well-thought out. I loved listening to her thought process when writing and how she updates her twitter followers with her progress. If there’s one thing I’m thankful for this 2016, it’s being introduced to her works.
  • Ryan Graudin – I inhaled Wolf by Wolf. And Blood for Blood. I actually stopped myself from reading that for two days because I was so scared of what was going to happen in the end. The vibe reminded me of how I loved The Book Thief. That’s the kind of YA historical fiction that I can get behind. More, please.
  • Alison Goodman – Oh goodness, Eon is one of the best things I’ve ever read this year. Eona too. I don’t know what possessed me to buy this before knowing what it is about but whatever that is… thank you. Alison Goodman knows how to incorporate other cultures without appropriation. I thank her for Lady Dela forever.
  • Otsuichi – I read Zoo and it traumatized me. Even translated it had that effect on me. I think that’s reason enough to put him on this list.
  • Ryu Murakami – Yep, I like this Murakami. He writes such twisted and fucked up stories and I love every single one of them that I read. They are so addicting. And he wrote the source material of one of my favorite horror movies, Audition. I dare you to read that.

Surely, I’ve read more books from new to me authors this year. While I do love Confessions by Kanae Minato, I do hope there are more of her books translated to English. Amie Kaufman also comes to mind but then again, she co-wrote Illuminae and Gemina with Jay Kristoff. I have to read something that she wrote on her own. Recommendations?

2016 has been a year of new things. I hope to continue reading more from these authors and discover new names next year.

TOP TEN TUESDAYS | Booktube Made Me

… buy it.

… read it.

TopTenTues

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday , we’re listing down All About Books You Read Because of Recommendation.

I’ve always wanted to do this topic. But every time a Freebie week comes around, I forget all about it. 😄 I put it down on my journal last night as a future blog topic and then I checked TTT. Yes, the time has come.

I haven’t been watching booktube in a while. I’m more of the beauty community member. But I’ve been watching more and more book-related videos and channels. I love watching hauls and wrap-ups. Bookish discussions are way deeper than I expected. The booktube community definitely inspired me to broaden my horizons and explore more genres. Basically, just read more. I love reading blogs too but I can put a booktube video in the background and the next thing I know, I have 14 books in my Book Outlet cart.

Speaking of Book Outlet, I wouldn’t have discovered this site if not for booktube. The same with Brandon Sanderson books. I’ve been out of touch with the Fantasy genre for some time but now I think I have… 10 of his books? 😉 Yup. My TBR pile grew because of booktube and Book Outlet. And I’ve read more physical books because of it. So, thank yous all around.

These first five books are the ones that I’ve READ because of booktube. Then the next five (6-10) will be books that I BOUGHT because of booktube but haven’t read them yet. I have physical copies of them though.

  1. Saga graphic novels by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples. I’m fairly new to graphic novels and I’m glad that my reintroduction to the genre is through Saga. I first heard about this at length from Problems of a Book Nerd. The I started seeing it on other videos, all praises. So I decided to check it out. I had to physically stop myself from speeding through all published collections.
  2. Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes. I ended up not liking this book but I first heard about it on booktube. I forgot which one but I remember being super intrigued upon hearing the premise. I took a chance but alas, it wasn’t what I thought it would be.
  3. Lexicon by Max Barry. Thanks to Rincey Reads for this recommendation. Well, not really a recommendation. I saw her unbox this and I immediately checked it out. It’s an amazing, suspenseful read.
  4. Liesl and Po by Lauren Oliver. And every middle-grade book on my Goodreads TBR. Richard Denney of Books and Bullshit is one awesome booktuber. Don’t let the curse word in his channel name deter you; he has a ton of middle-great recommendations.
  5. Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin. I clearly remember getting this recommendation from Peruse Project. When she mentioned something about the Nazis winning the war and there’s a motorcycle race, I was sold. In fact, I’m reading this right now.
  6. Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman. This is another Nazi-era book. I love these. I first heard about this from Hails Hearts NYC. Actually, I’ve only heard it from her channel.
  7. The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes. I’ve been seeing this book a lot on Book Outlet but it was alliesugar‘s video that finally pushed me to buy it.
  8. Lock In by John Scalzi. I cannot remember who it was specifically but I know it’s a guy on booktube. Heh.
  9. And I Darken by Kiersten White. There’s no shortage of YA-centric booktubers. It could be any one of them. But when I heard that premise, I so wanted to read this book.
  10. You by Caroline Kepnes. It was a mystery/thriller recommendation video. And then I started seeing it everywhere lol.

I’m sure there’s more. But these stood out to me the most. Do check out the booktubers that I linked on this post. Who is your favorite? What kind of booktube video is your favorite?