Review || Chasing Mindy, by Carla de Guzman


Title: Chasing Mindy
Author: Carla de Guzman
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Copy: Digital
Rating:

* More about the book.
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* Purchase via Amazon.

Jasmine “Mindy” Capras, born right in the middle of eight, equally unique siblings, has been dreaming of exploring Paris on her own. No crazy (but totally well-meaning!) family. No generic tours and boring tour guides. Unfortunately, when Mindy finally gets to go to Paris for a week, her mother insists that she meets up with Javier Tiangco, who happens to be studying in Paris for his MBA. The same Javier her mother, together with Javier’s mother as a faithful accomplice, has been trying to set her up with.

But while Mindy is dramatic and has a tendency to yell at things when her siblings are brought up, Javier is taciturn and boring. The two of them spending a week in Paris together? It doesn’t sound like the best idea.

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Review (and giveaway!) || The Bone Witch, by Rin Chupeco


Title: The Bone Witch
Author: Rin Chupeco
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Copy: Digital
Rating:

* More about the book.
* More about the author.
* Purchase via Amazon or Book Depository.

Synopsis:

The beast raged; it punctured the air with its spite. But the girl was fiercer.

Tea is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy makes her a bone witch, who are feared and ostracized in the kingdom. For theirs is a powerful, elemental magic that can reach beyond the boundaries of the living—and of the human.

Great power comes at a price, forcing Tea to leave her homeland to train under the guidance of an older, wiser bone witch. There, Tea puts all of her energy into becoming an asha, learning to control her elemental magic and those beasts who will submit by no other force. And Tea must be strong—stronger than she believes possible. Because war is brewing in the eight kingdoms, war that will threaten the sovereignty of her homeland… and threaten the very survival of those she loves.

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Review (and giveaway!) || The Poet X, by Elizabeth Acevedo


Title: The Poet X
Author: Elizabeth Acevedo
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary, Poetry
Copy: Paperback
Rating:

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Narrated in verses, The Poet X is a compelling story revolving around the life of young Afro-Latina Xiomara Batista. As Xiomara struggles with obeying the laws of the church, and negotiating between the person she wants to become and the daughter her mother demands her to change into, she writes down all her thoughts and frustrations onto the pages of her notebook like prayers. In doing so, she is eventually introduced to slam poetry, in which she discovers both her voice and the strength to finally speak up.

Before anything else, I feel the need to disclose that Dr. Seuss aside, I have never read a story told in verses before. From the get-go, my reading experience with The Poet X was definitely a strange one – and of course, I mean this as a compliment. I was worried that perhaps the unconventional narration would distract me from the events in the story or would confuse me every now and then, but I am pleased to say that it was never the case. If anything, the almost lyrical quality to the narrative made me even more engrossed by the story’s events.

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Review (and giveaway!) || Esme’s Wish, by Elizabeth Foster


Title: Esme’s Wish
Author: Elizabeth Foster
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Copy: Digital
Rating:

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Esme’s Wish follows the story of a 15-year-old girl who questions the reason behind the sudden disappearance of Ariane. Although most folks in their town have accepted this loss, Esme refuses to believe that her mother simply got ‘lost at sea’ and thus embarks on a journey to uncover the truth. Eventually, Esme accidentally stumbles upon the canal city of Esperance – the make-believe fantastical place her mother often talked about.

Here’s the thing: I prefer my fantasy stories thrillingly paced and jam-packed with action. I prefer plots that move along rather quickly and stories that involve a lot of action occurring simultaneously. Think Marvel and maybe Game of Thrones infused with tons of energy drinks. Esme’s Wish was not much of these things, if I’m being completely honest.

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Review || Start Here anthology from #romanceclass


Title: Start Here
Author: Agay Llanera, Bobbi Moran, Motzie Dapul, Danice Sison, Barbie Barbieto, H. Bentham, Ella Banta, Yeyet Soriano, Katt Briones, Brigitte Bautista, Ronald S. Lim
Genre: Romance, Contemporary, Anthology
Copy: Digital
Rating:

* More about the book.
* More about #romanceclass.
* Purchase via Amazon.
* For Philippine residents, purchase a paperback edition by filling up this form.

Synopsis:

There’s a first time for everything. Gate-crashing a K-pop concert with an oppa in a business suit. Taking shelter from the storm with the girl you’ve been meaning to shake off. That kiss that blurs the line between friendship and something more. A one-night stand (or, is it?) with your best friend from across the hallway.

Dive into these 10 stories of first encounters – unapologetically queer, happy endings required, with a smattering of that signature #romanceclass kilig. Whether you’re recalling your own firsts or out there looking for one, there’s a story in here for you.

So, go on.

Turn the page.

Start here.

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Review || Red Rising


Title: Red Rising
Author: Pierce Brown
Genre: Young Adult, Science Fiction
Copy: Digital
Rating:

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Synopsis:

Darrow is a Red, a member of the lowest caste in the color-coded society of the future. Like his fellow Reds, he works all day, believing that he and his people are making the surface of Mars livable for future generations.

Yet he spends his life willingly, knowing that his blood and sweat will one day result in a better world for his children.

But Darrow and his kind have been betrayed. Soon he discovers that humanity already reached the surface generation ago. Vast cities and sprawling parks spread across the planet. Darrow – and Reds like him – are nothing more than slaves to a decadent ruling class.

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Review || You Out of Nowhere


Title: You Out of Nowhere
Author: Jay E. Tria
Genre: New Adult, Romance, Contemporary
Copy: Digital
Rating:

* More about the book.
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* Read an interview about this book.

Real quick: I received a digital review copy of You Out of Nowhere as part of my participation in a blog tour. This neither affects my opinion nor the content of my review. Many thanks to the #romanceclass authors for this fantastic opportunity!

You Out of Nowhere is the first of many upcoming steamy, contemporary, Filipino romance novels from the #romanceclassFlair project. The story begins with 31-year-old Kris Jimenez taking notice of a gorgeous stranger on a train, who happens to be holding a copy of Pride and Prejudice. Said stranger turns out to be Ringo de Dios, a 24-year-old workaholic trying to climb up the corporate ladder. Sparks fly, but their flirtation doesn’t end in the train. Somewhere along the way, they find themselves on the same flight to Seoul, Korea.

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