Books + Coffee = Happiness

Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Bio 101, you screwed me over

Listening to: La La La - Secret
Feeling: Pissed off
Didn't take bio 101 in the first semester of university because I wanted to take only 3 courses to allow me to slowly assimilate into post-secondary life. In the second semester, to my dismay, bio 101 wasn't available at my campus and required me to go to the main campus, which needed a longer transit time. Not to mention that when it snows, the busses don't run, so I decided that I would take it in the summer. I can't prolong taking it since I'm a science major and if I want to get into my upper level courses, then yes, I'd need bio 101. Unfortunately, since we don't get to know the times of our courses in the upcoming semester until it's time for course selection, I found out that a lot of my classes (that I wanted to take, so I can qualify as a second year student by the start of fall), clash with it. Not only does bio have a lecture, and a tutorial, but it also has a lab and thus taking up a lot of my time. It also doesn't help that since it's the summer, a lot of the courses are limited with only one professor teaching it. I originally had this really awesome schedule planned out, but a course that I had wanted filled up and thus, I am unable to take it. Any other alternative will make me sacrifice bio 101 for that time slot. Gr...

EDIT: Wow. I am an idiot. I double checked my school's year equivalents, thinking that First Years qualify as 30 credits and under. But no, it's 27 credits and under. So, by the time I finish my summer semester, I will have accumulated 28 credits meaning that I'll be considered a Second Year student by the time fall begins. All that stressing out for nothing!

Monday, 26 March 2012

Art/Craft update II

Listening to: The Way You Are - DBSK
Feeling: Tired
 Well, it's been a long day. Nothing interesting happened, but energy draining nevertheless. It's been a while since I last posted anything that had to do with art or crafts, but I did do a few, so I'll post them here:

Staring off with my clay cellphone straps:

1. Mameshiba~~~ I love making these! They're really cute and simple to make. :3
2. My current cellphone strap (this picture doesn't have the strap attached since I took it off)
3. My gift to my friend, LW since she loves Doctor Who. It's supposed to be a Tardis (you can look up the actual thing if you're interested to see what it's supposed to be). Made this the night before the party and I'm pleased that I was able to do a fairly decent job in 3 hours (mainly waiting for it to bake, for paint to dry and for glaze to dry).

Onto my art club drawings/doodling:

1. I'm actually quite proud of my naked man. He actually looks pretty good. I can't draw back views to save my life. It looks like he has no butt. These two grid drawings were to get us familiar with their proportions, so we wouldn't butcher them like we've done so in the past.
2. Not so proud of my naked woman. Too many damn curves. I prefer drawing angles and lines rather than curves.
3. Warmup drawing of Doraemon. The first one was where I didn't exactly remember what Doraemon looked like, so I googled him and afterwards, kind of half-hearted did some warmup exercises.
4. More warmup exercises where we were told to draw game controllers. Drew an xbox controller and a really old joystick.

Friday, 23 March 2012


Listening to: Kun Shou (Caged Beast) - Zhou Ding Wei
Feeling: Shocked speechless
Well, after a long day, I'm glad that it has pretty much come to an end. I had originally planned on reading a book on the ride home, but the book annoyed me and I found it unworthy of my time, so I decided to play minesweeper on my phone instead. About halfway home, I looked up to see someone sit in the seat that faced me and to my surprise, it was a guy who's a year older than me who went to my high school. I'll call him ZB. As soon as I saw him, I had a unsettled feeling with great reason because he seriously creeped me out like 5 years ago during the co-ed square dancing session that took place during gym period.

Back then, although I didn't know him, I originally thought that he was merely intense, but dude, after that one dance, that opinion totally changed. During that 5 minute dance, he flirted enough to put me in a very uncomfortable position and wished that I was elsewhere. It didn't help that my friends, KF and SW were laughing their butts off on the bleachers while watching my discomfort. From that moment on, I was extremely wary of him.

Back to the present: Anyway, after realizing that I still had like 10 minutes before I got to my bus stop, I decided to stare in wonder at minesweeper with such intensity as though I couldn't believe that such an amazing game was invented. To avoid facing him, I also shifted so that I faced the front in an uncomfortable position, but at least, I didn't have to look at him look at me. To my dismay, it didn't save me from a conversation with him. And to top it off, he tapped me with his foot to get my attention. It went kind of like this:

Him: "I have a question for you"
Me: -OMG. He. Is. Talking. To. Me.- "Y-yes?"
Him: "Did you used to go to (insert school's name here)?"
Me: "Uh yeah..."
Him: "No wonder. I thought that you looked familiar."
Me: -looks out the front window. Crap.. another like 12 bus stops- "Uh... you graduated a year before me, right?"
Him: -looks very proud of himself- "Yup. 2010."
Me: "Right. I graduated in 2011. You're.... (insert name here) right?"
Him: -nods proudly- "Yes, but I have another name. People call me 'Tank'." -flexes arms to show me his biceps-
Me: -swallow painfully and attempt to smile- "Right."
Him: "I'm going to go work out. I can't lift as much as I used to be able to. But I can still lift quite a lot. Not to mention that I'm now working in (forgot the field because I kept sneaking glances out the window to see whether or not we've arrived yet) and I am living on my own." -puffs out chest and looks even prouder of himself if possible-
Me: -Un-freaking-believable. The dude hasn't changed in the last 5 years since I last danced (unwillingly) with him!- "Cool."
Him: "I also take martial arts. Hapkido, to be exact. (Then goes on to give me the definition of hapkido) And although I'm an orange belt, they say I fight as well as a red belt. That's one belt under a black belt."
Me: -Get me out of here please- "Wow."
Him: "And I'm quite good. Let me show you." -stands up in the middle of the bus and (I'm seriously NOT KIDDING) decides to do a series of punches and kicks- "The world is a dangerous place nowadays and you have to be prepared for what's out there."
Me: -looks out the window and thank the gods that we have arrived- "Nice. This is my stop." -gets up to leave-
Him: -also gets up to leave- "Same here, since I'm going to work out and all."
Me: "Right. Well, I'm going that way. Bye." -points in the opposite direction of where he's going-

And that's pretty much how it went. Oh my god. Those ten minutes felt like forever.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Book Review: Shatter Me - Tahereh Mafi

Published November 15 2011 by Harper Collins

Goodreads Description:
Juliette hasn't touched anyone in exactly 264 days.

The last time she did, it was an accident, but The Reestablishment locked her up for murder. No one knows why Juliette's touch is fatal. As long as she doesn't hurt anyone else, no one really cares. The world is too busy crumbling to pieces to pay attention to a 17-year-old girl. Diseases are destroying the population, food is hard to find, birds don't fly anymore, and the clouds are the wrong color.

The Reestablishment said their way was the only way to fix things, so they threw Juliette in a cell. Now so many people are dead that the survivors are whispering war-- and The Reestablishment has changed its mind. Maybe Juliette is more than a tortured soul stuffed into a poisonous body. Maybe she's exactly what they need right now.

Juliette has to make a choice: Be a weapon. Or be a warrior.

In this electrifying debut, Tahereh Mafi presents a world as riveting as The Hunger Games and a superhero story as thrilling as The X-Men. Full of pulse-pounding romance, intoxicating villainy, and high-stakes choices, Shatter Me is a fresh and original dystopian novel—with a paranormal twist—that will leave readers anxiously awaiting its sequel.

When this book first came out, there was a huge hype for it. Every book blog that I visited had something amongst the lines of: "Oh my god! Shatter Me was freaking AMAZING! Y U NO READ?" After what seemed to be like the 100th post with glowing reviews about this book, I figured that I should probably pick it up and see what the fuss was about. However, the wait for my turn in Holds list at my local library took forever longer than I would have liked, so I didn't get a chance to read it until today. And wow. It's been a really long time since I last read something so good that I wanted to stop everything else and just read it. Unfortunately, I had school, so that wasn't possible. So to my unending agony, I had to make do with reading while on public transit and in between classes. That ruined the effect of the book a little, but nevertheless, I still loved it and finished it within half a day (and regrettably but unavoidable several sittings).

Upon hearing about this book for the first time, I was intrigued by her mysterious power to kill with her bare hands just by skin contact. I originally thought that she reminded me of Rogue (from X-Men... yes, I'm a geek 8D) and I was pleased to see that I wasn't wrong there. Like Rogue, Juliette Ferrars (I keep thinking Ferrari... ) has the ability to absorb someone's life force and feed off it. However, if they hold on to the other person for too long, it could kill the unfortunate soul. Which does happen to Juliette, explaining why she ended up at an asylum. Unlike Rogue, Juliette doesn't absorb the talents or abilities of others (so far in the series, anyway).

As stated in the summary, Juliette hasn't had contact with anyone for 264 days. Not even with her jailers. She is isolated alone in her own cell until one day, they bring in Adam, a boy with striking blue eyes that remind her of someone that she used to know. However, even with a jail mate, Juliette is hesitant with being near him because she initially thought that he was also insane, but we find out that he's quite normal and the two strike up a tentative friendship. Despite Adam's normalcy, it makes you wonder what he did exactly to end up in a place where people lose their minds and the endless screams that fill the night. Soon enough, we find out.

Shatter Me takes place in a dystopian world, where poverty consumes most of the world that Juliette grew up in. Anyone who was different was an outcast, and with her odd abilities, she was definitely considered one. Even her family was terrified of her. No one cared for her except for one boy. And that boy has a huge impact on Juliette's decisions  in the present.

Like I said earlier, I really enjoyed this book and I fell in love with the writing right off the bat. Juliette's initial behavior was odd enough that somehow it drew you in and made you want to keep reading. Tahereh Mafi had a marvelous way of describing the detail in this book and I enjoyed the characters that she created. I could say that Juliette was definitely a brave heroine. She had faced so many terrible events in her life, but somehow, she is still able to find a way to live. Even when she was thrown into a life of misery and isolation, Juliette was still able to keep her mind intact and her spirit. When she was taken out of that life and thrown into another, Juliette resisted the tempting offers that were thrown at her because she refused to be used like a weapon to torture others. Although she wasn't the easiest character to relate to, I could still feel pain that she endured during her hardships after her life in the asylum. And that took a great amount of courage.

And Adam? He has faced his equal share of hardships. Should he be ruled by his emotions or should he follow his duties? To my surprise, he didn't have as much difficulty as I had expected of him. Adam's super caring and very very sweet. Not to mention the amazingly beautiful blue eyes that Juliette has mentioned on more than one occasion. In other words, the perfect love interest.

However, as much as I liked Adam, I couldn't help but have a spark of curiosity for Warner, the book's apparent antagonist. He is the young general that rules a sector of The Reestablishment. Not only is Warner's first name not revealed, but he has no shortages of mystery behind him. Despite his young age (19 in fact), he has spilled a fair amount of blood. Cunning, possessive and cruel, Warner doesn't hesitate to use his men like pawns in a chess game. He would use them on suicide missions, knowing clearly the end result. But he does it to show the influence he has over his sector. In my opinion, he was pretty much a psychopath, but it was oddly intriguing to read about him. He had this sexy, dark, mysterious air about him that made you want to know more about him, despite everything that he had done.

The only part that I didn't enjoy as much as the other parts of the book was in the last quarter. While I had expected tragedy, it somehow turned into a perfect world for Juliette, Adam and the rest of their group. To make it even more unbelievable was the fact that Juliette discovered that she wasn't alone. As a result, I knocked off a few points from a perfect 5. But yes, like everyone else, I would definitely recommend to read it.

Source: Borrowed
My Rating: 4 and a half coffee cups (Loved it)

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Book Review: My Soul to Keep - Rachel Vincent

Published on June 1st 2010 by Harlequin

Goodreads Description:
Kaylee has one addiction: her very hot, very popular boyfriend, Nash. A banshee like Kaylee, Nash understands her like no one else. Nothing can come between them.Until something does.Demon breath. No, not the toothpaste-challenged kind. The Netherworld kind. The kind that really can kill you. Somehow the super-addictive substance has made its way to the human world. But how? Kaylee and Nash have to cut off the source and protect their friends—one of whom is already hooked.And so is someone else…

Like with the rest of the books in the series, it's been a little over a year since I last read this one. But despite that fact, the emotion that I felt with the book haven't changed in the slightest.

It starts off pretty normal; Kaylee, Nash and Emma are at a party hosted by one of Nash's jock friends. But a few pages later, all of that innocence changes because Kaylee discovers that one of their friends was taking Demon Breath, a dangerous, addictive substance that originated in the Netherworld from a hellion, which could result in the loss of the taker's sanity. As horrifying as it is, Kaylee decides to step in once again to put a stop to this.

However, it's not as easy as it seems, because they also have to find out who's selling Demon Breath (AKA "frost" as they call it), what demon it came from and how it crossed over into their world. To make matters worse, the popularity of Demon Breath is quickly spreading throughout the teen population and is becoming an epidemic crisis. And to add to their trouble, Kaylee has to keep all of this away from her father's ears or else he would put an end to his daughter's involvement.

I can say that definitely, this is one of my favorites in the series, since the theme suddenly got a lot darker than the previous two books. The deaths and a huge character plot revealed made my heart ache for everything that Kaylee had to go through. Life for her used to be a lot simpler than it was now, but she can't go back to the way it was. And it's certainly not like she could just turn a blind eye on everything that's happening, especially when it's this close to home, endangering everyone that she knows.

Kaylee never fails to impress me with her courage and intelligence, and in MStK, there's no exception. This is probably why I love her so much as a character. Sure, she does have a few insecurities and weaknesses, but it only makes her character realistic and easier to relate to. Kaylee is not afraid of backing down no matter what the circumstances are and I admire that aspect of her. As for Nash, I have to admit that even though I knew what was going to happen, I couldn't help but be annoyed and frustrated with Nash throughout the book. It wasn't until more than halfway through was the reason revealed for his actions. Lastly, Tod... oh my reaper. Although I hated the fact that he was absent for the first half of the book, his screen time in the second half made up for it. While Nash was away, Tod was there as a beam of support for Kaylee. He helped her when she needed it and stood by her, supporting her all the way. And when we found out what he was doing during his absence in the first half? All the love for Tod. I think it was here (when I first read this) that I fell in love with Tod's character. Especially what he did in the end for Kaylee.

Once again, Rachel Vincent did an AMAZING job with this book. If you haven't read the series (and is a YA paranormal fan), I would highly recommend that you do.

Source: Borrowed
My Rating:  4 and a half coffee cups (Loved it)

Monday, 19 March 2012

Today sucked

Listening to: Get Out - JYJ
Feeling: Grumpy
Instead of waking up at 8am (for monday mornings), somehow, I slept through two alarm clocks and when I finally felt rested enough to open my eyes a peek to glance at the clock, I was horrified to realize that it was 9:35am. Normally, I would have been at school by then! I had class at 10:30am, but if I hurried, I could still make it on time since there would be a bus in like 15 minutes. And so, in record speed, I changed, packed my school stuff, got a book, my cell and made breakfast to go. And I still had extra time before the bus arrived.

I thought that everything would be okay, since if I made this bus, I would just make it in time for the start of class, which was fine. However, to my never ending dismay, the bus didn't show up. Nor did the next one. A girl who was waiting alongside me had phoned the transit company to discover to our great annoyance that there had been a huge accident somewhere down the road, which is why there wasn't any buses in either direction. By this time, there was no way I was going to be on time anyway, so I resignedly sat down and finished by book by the time the next bus came (I was out standing in the frigid cold for at least an hour).

So yeah, my spotless record of never being late to class has been tarnished and I think I've lost some participation marks in the first half of the lecture that I had missed. Luckily, it was a two hour lecture, so I was still able to attend the second half, though I got laughed at by my friends and ended up with a bruised ego. The rest of the day was alright, just really long. At least there's no school tomorrow, which I'll be using to study math. Ick.

Sunday, 18 March 2012

Novella Review: Reaper - Rachel Vincent

Published December 1, 2010 by Harlequin Teen

Goodreads Description:
Tod Hudson was a typical teenager. He liked girls, sports, food and tolerated his younger brother, Nash. In fact, he had his whole life in front of him--and due to his bean sidhe heritage, it was going to be a very long life indeed. And then the car accident occurred.

Suddenly Tod's future wasn't so sure, and he had to make a choice. Life... Death... or something Between....

This is my second time reading Reaper for the Soul Screamers Reading Challenge set by Fiktshun and I anticipated every moment of it, as though I was reading it for the first time.

We first met Tod as a minor character in My Soul to Take (Soul Screamers #1) and he piqued my curiosity since he was a quirky, sarcastic character that you couldn't help but like. I thought that he would remain a minor character, but I was SO wrong.

Anyway, moving onto the review:
When I first found out that Tod had his very own short story, I dropped everything and had to read this. And I wasn't disappointed. To my delight, he is also the narrator. This novella was set a few years prior to the beginning of the first book, where Tod was still alive.

The novella started off with a brief conversation between Tod and his mom, Harmony. She had requested that Tod kept an eye out for his younger brother since he was grounded but she couldn't stay to look after him due to work. Like you could expect of Tod, there was quite a few complaints following this request, but true to his character, he agreed because he noticed how tired his mom looked.

From here, things started to pick up. Nash, wanting to break his criminal girlfriend out of the group home, asked Tod for a favor. But the latter shot him down by pointing out the flaws in his plan and told his younger brother that it wouldn't work. While Nash thought with his heart, Tod was the rational one who thought things through. Angered by his brother's lack of will to help him, it resulted in a near-fight which left Nash storming back to his room.

Although Nash later snuck out and then demanded a ride home, instead of ignoring him, Tod ended his date early to get him. Then like any true brother, he chewed Nash out for his stupid actions, which only enraged Nash all the more. And unfortunately, here was where the tragedy struck.

We all knew that Tod had died, but in this novella, we were given the specifics about his death. The truth surrounding his death left me shocked and in disbelief at what had occurred. It wasn't exactly what I had expected, but it was much more. All the emotion that every character experienced blew my mind over. The hurt, the guilt and most of all: the grief. How Tod's mom and Nash dealt with the fact that their son and brother was gone was heart-breaking. And when Tod told his mom the truth? It was suffocating, but in a beautifully-tragic way.

Although I loved Tod before I read Reaper, I have to admit that knowing how he saw things and what he felt during such an important event in his life... er, death, I loved him even more. And I love Rachel Vincent for creating such an amazing character!

Source: Owned
My Rating: 4 and a half coffee cups (Loved it)

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Everything Hurts

Listening to: Balloons - DBSK
Feeling: Pained

Went to the gym with friends yesterday like usual and had a pretty good workout for 2 hours. What was different was that I decided to do some pushups and vigorous situps that I haven't done for about half a year since I stopped taking karate lessons (due to school). As well, I also went all out on the muscle machines... especially the abdominal crunch, which I did like 70 reps alternating between 10lbs and 20lbs. And what can I say, the morning after? Well, everything hurts. Maybe not everything, but even sitting in a neutral position, I can definitely feel it in my arms and abdominal muscles. Even laughing hurts. Working out is fun, dealing with the pain? Not so much.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Coffee break

Listening to: Somebody Else - Se7en
Feeling: Content
Ah, I really love having school-free days that aren't the weekend. It makes me feel productive when I actually do something. Well, spent all morning and a bit of the afternoon chilling, but afterwards, I progressed a little more in my book and did some of my math assignment that's due tomorrow. Still got like 7 questions to go though. It shouldn't be too bad though.

For drawing club, we're starting character designs where we're all coming up with a character. After much discussion, we decided on the steampunk-war-renaissance era. How does that work? No idea. I can see steampunk-renaissance or steampunk war, but not really a combination of the three. But anyway, it was be interesting. We chose careers the other day for our characters and the ones that we decided upon were: general, royalty, butler, alchemist, paladin and for me, I chose assassin. Why? I love mysterious characters. Would I be able to draw one? We'll see, but it'll be fun. However, as my luck would have it, the club members didn't have any references for assassin/assailant types, so I'm left with trying to find some on the internet. Should be easy enough right? But when I typed 'assassin' into google, I was bombarded with pictures of, you guessed it: Assassin's Creed's Altair, which is always cool, but not exactly what I was looking for. Eventually, I found some that weren't from the game, so I'll use those for references. I can't wait to draw the weapons though.. that'll be super fun. 

Anyway, something that I saw today was pretty cool in my opinion, so I'll share it here. Apparently, on, they were holding a Se7en Comeback Cover contest and the winners were posted today. Some of my favorites included:

And of course, the original music video of Somebody Else by Se7en:

Personally, I think the english cover in the first video was pretty well done. However, since this is probably the first time I listened to someone do a cover for this song, I never realized that the pitch was pretty high for this song.  Se7en~~~

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Fanfic updated X_X

Listening to: Hiding Place - Hedley
Feeling: Out of it

Well, I spent the last 2 hours writing the other half of my latest chapter. It was extremely energy draining. Especially since nothing really special happened. It was kind of like another one of those filler chapters where I'm dying to get to the next chapter, which should prove to be very interesting. I'm really really grateful that everyone's stuck with me up to now, since I know that the story's romance is taking its sweet time. Usually by chapter 18, I'd be wrapping things up, but that's definitely not the case here. There's still a long way to go. I have some ideas for the next DP story, but of course, that will be put on hold until this one is finished.

Anyway, like I said earlier, I finally got my drawing club "skeleton" sketches scanned and uploaded. We're currently doing character sketches, which I'm eager to learn. :) Just click on the images to see them more clearly.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

My Birthday!

Listening to: Stand by U - DBSK
Feeling: Happy
Today was my 19th birthday! Other than being a year older, not much else happened today. I went to the gym to work out for about an hour and a half before heading to Michaels so I could buy my sketchbook:

Originally, it would have been quite expensive but thankfully it was on sale, so that cut the price by nearly a half. I'm in the drawing club, so our club president told me that it'd be a good idea to get a sketchbook rather than sheets of paper, so I can refer back to my drawings. I'll post up some of my human "skeletons" later when I get my sketches scanned. 

I also headed to Chapters for plans to buy my friends gifts. I originally planned to get one friend The Book Thief and The Book of Awesome for my other friend. However, I got the feeling that they either own these books or have read them already, so I gave up and eventually got them gift cards. I'll add a journal and a handmade phone strap to each present, so it'll feel somewhat customized. :)

I told my fanfic readers that I'd most likely update today as a present to all of them, but sadly, my creative ideas just stopped flowing midway. :( Currently, I have half the chapter written, but I don't want to post a chapter with only like 2000 words, since that's not much of an update. So I guess I'm going to start praying for another miracle to pull through tonight and hopefully post the chapter sometime tomorrow with the apology. This is probably why I can't become an author even if I wanted to; I'd most likely miss my deadlines.


Saturday, 10 March 2012

Food for the soul

Listening to: Stormy - Hedley
Feeling: Happy
 With the weather looking rather icky outside, I didn't feel like going outside to eat, so instead, I dug through my food cabinet and was delighted to find the last remaining package of Indonesian instant noodles. My favorite of all the other instant noodles: Mi Goreng!! Here's the said package:

This stuff is amazing. Why eat gourmet food when you have this in your house? Just the sight of the package makes my mouth water. Haha. Well, anyway, these noodles are the dry type where you add all of their seasonings into a plate/bowl while you wait for the water to boil. 

(To my delight, I was really happy to discover that I had an extra packet of fried onions and seasoning. However, since it was normally salty enough, I only added the extra onion and didn't use the second packet of seasoning)

Then you dump your noodles in for a few minutes. Once your noodles are soggy enough to your taste, take a strainer and dump out all of your water. Then dump your noodles onto the bowl with the seasonings/fried onions/soy sauce/oil and presto! Here's the finished product:

Just look at that perfection! These make my tastebuds cry with joy. It's not very healthy, but oh well, somethings are worth sacrificing for... especially since I don't eat these on a regular basis (my mom usually doesn't buy them since she knows that my dad and I inhale these really fast). Personally, I find that it's seasoned enough with one packet, but if you like something spicier, you could add the given packet of chili sauce. I once tried a little and it ended up really spicy (given that it's indonesian food).. so I've learned my lesson and left them like this.

Novella Review: Niederwald - Rachel Vincent

Published September 20, 2011 by Harper Collins

This is my second time re-reading Niederwald, but my feelings haven't changed since the first time I read it. After reading Soul Screamers #4, My Soul to Steal, the first time around, I wasn't Sabine's biggest fan. But I had to admit that it was refreshing to get such a different character to Kaylee. And here in Niederwald, we got a chance to see into Sabine's mind after being reunited with Nash.

I don't remember every detail of My Soul to Steal, since it has been a little over a year since I last read it, but I didn't remember much detail about how Sabine found Nash, and here we found out how. I think it's very admirable of Sabine to go to such depth for the guy that she genuinely loved. Sabine's feisty and rather flamboyant, but it must have taken a lot of courage to go into a nest of harpies and expect to exit unharmed. Especially after knowing what they liked to do in their spare time. Although I highly doubt that Sabine and Emma would be painting each others nails anytime soon, but I could definitely see some sort of relationship forming between them. I wouldn't say “friends” exactly, but at least it was the type of bond where you could count on the other person to have your back when you're in danger. Trust is the first step to any relationship.

My favorite part of this novella besides getting to know Sabine a little better is to find out a delicious secret that was revealed to Kaylee in If I Die. For those who've read the series, you guys will definitely know what I mean. ;)

Source: Owned
My Rating: 4 coffee cups (Enjoyed it immensely)

Friday, 9 March 2012

Novella Review: Fearless - Rachel Vincent

Published August 3, 2012 by Running Press Teens

Kiss Me Deadly is an anthology of various short stories regarding YA paranormal romance by many different authors. However, this review will be focused on one novella in particular: Fearless by Rachel Vincent.

Fearless is a short story that takes place in the same world as her Soul Screamers series and includes a few characters that we've already seen/to be seen (depending on when you've read this). This story features Sabine Campbell, a character that will be introduced in Soul Screamers #4, My Soul to Steal. So I guess if people were planning to read this in chronological order, I would say that this would probably be the first book chronologically, given the time frame and the events that take place. Then it'd be Reaper and then My Soul to Lose.

This is my second time re-reading this for the Soul Screamers Reading Challenge held by Fiktshun, but I'm really happy that I got a chance to re-read this because I've forgotten so many details. Anyway, moving onto my review:
Originally, I had read Fearless because I wanted a bigger insight on Sabine's character and I wasn't disappointed at all. In this novella, we discovered what made Sabine, well.. Sabine. Her past, her motivations and her reasons are all explained here and even if you didn't like Sabine in My Soul to Steal, it's very likely that you'll come to sympathize for her. She has definitely been through a lot. When I compare her to Kaylee, the protagonist and narrator for the Soul Screamers series, I would say with certainty that Sabine had a harder life. Sure, Kaylee's father wasn't present for most of her life, but at least she still had a family in her relatives. However, Sabine was abandoned as a baby and was passed from foster family to foster family, no one ever wanting to take her in permanently. There's a reason for that; Sabine is a mara. She is literally a nightmare. Just being around her will give you the creeps and when you're alone in your bed, thinking that you're safe from harm, she would come and stir up your darkest and deepest nightmares in order to collect her energy. As a result, she wasn't close to anyone. Until she met Nash, that is.

Here, in Fearless, I could see that she really loved Nash. More than anything else in this world. He was her anchor, her savior and she needed him like anyone needed air. When I first read this, I had to keep in mind that this was in the past, while he was presently together with Kaylee, but I couldn't deny the bond between Nash and Sabine. He also loved her very much. Enough to protect her from anything that would dare harm her. He also loved her enough that he would willingly let her taste his fear and teach her how to resist his Influence. Originally, I didn't enjoy the idea of Nash being with Sabine, but now that I look back at everything that I've forgotten, I would have to say now that they paired together well.

All in all, Sabine is a beautifully crafted character that you'll either love or love to hate.

Source: Borrowed
My Rating: 4 coffee cups (Enjoyed it immensely)

Monday, 5 March 2012


Listening to: Turkish March - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Feeling: Happy
Currently waiting for my mom to get off of work so I can hitch a ride home with her instead of public transit. Today was a pretty good day for a monday. I got the results of my kin and chem midterms back. For kin, it was definitely the best mark that I've received for midterms in uni while my chem midterm grade was alright. It was above average, but not by a whole lot. Gotta bring that up. But yeah, I'm fairly happy. Even math class wasn't as dreadful as it usually was. Not looking forward to that midterm though.

At the moment, I'm listening to classical music (I usually know the tune, but never the names or who wrote them) and writing the next chapter of my fanfic. Hopefully will get that done soon, so I can post it up quickly. :)


Sunday, 4 March 2012

Art supplies are expensive

Listening to: The Barber of Seville - Gioachino Rossini
Feeling: Content
Had a pretty good day today. Somewhat productive, I guess. Cleaned hamster cage (was unable to clean it last week since I was sick and was afraid of my hamsters falling ill), went to the gym to work out, went to Michaels and did some chores while taking the rest of the day off.

I joined my school's drawing club recently and we've been practicing drawing figures and gestures. I've also learned that it was better to use a softer lead pencil for the drawing since the texture was different, so I went out to get some today. I ended up getting some 4B pencils since those were the types that the others used in the club. Unfortunately, like most art supplies, it wasn't cheap. I got two pencils for $4, which I guess really isn't THAT bad, considering I had a coupon and a few weeks ago, I had gotten a Faber Castell black ultra-thin fine liner for $6 (but I had a coupon for that too). 

I guess getting stuff for your hobbies can get quite expensive, since my craft supplies take their toll on my wallet. Clays, paints, brushes and glaze for my clay projects while I also get coloured string, hot glue guns and felts for my felt projects. Haven't done either of them for a while and I definitely miss doing them. Hopefully when I'll have some more free time after the semester is over, I'll get a chance to work on those projects. 

PS. Took the photo with my phone, so the quality is pretty crappy, but it's the most convenient way of taking a photo. :)

Friday, 2 March 2012

Book Review: Anna Dressed in Blood - Kendare Blake

Published August 30, 2011 by Tor Teen

Goodreads Description:
"Just your average boy-meets-girl, girl-kills-people story. . .

Cas Lowood has inherited an unusual vocation: He kills the dead.

So did his father before him, until his gruesome murder by a ghost he sought to kill. Now, armed with his father's mysterious and deadly athame, Cas travels the country with his kitchen-witch mother and their spirit-sniffing cat. Together they follow legends and local lore, trying to keep up with the murderous dead—keeping pesky things like the future and friends at bay.

When they arrive in a new town in search of a ghost the locals call Anna Dressed in Blood, Cas doesn't expect anything outside of the ordinary: move, hunt, kill. What he finds instead is a girl entangled in curses and rage, a ghost like he's never faced before. She still wears the dress she wore on the day of her brutal murder in 1958: once white, but now stained red and dripping blood. Since her death, Anna has killed any and every person who has dared to step into the deserted Victorian she used to call home.

And she, for whatever reason, spares his life."
Ever since the release (and even before it), I've heard/read from many blogs out there that this was an amazing read with a plot that was bound to keep you glued to the book. Well, luckily, after waiting for what seemed like forever, I finally got my hands on a copy on this book. And I must say that what is being said about this book is definitely true.

Though I'm not a horror-genre fan, I do enjoy the aspects of a suspenseful thriller. Anna Dressed in Blood didn't quite fulfill my expectations of the genre, but I still must say that it was a very interesting read.

The story starts out with Thesus Cassio Lowood (AKA "Cas"), our hero, on a trip to hunt down a hitchhiker, but soon enough, we learn that this hitchhiker is no average wayfarer. In fact, this person is already dead. However, after dying a tragic death, the hitchhiker's ghost makes it his mission to murder everyone in the same manner that he died in. As a result, Cas, the so-called "ghost buster" comes in and kills the ghost.

It wasn't thoroughly explained in the book, but Cas' bloodline contains a rare ability to see and kill the dead. And after having lost his father to one, Cas has sworn to get even and is training in every possible way to take down his father's killer. In the meantime, as ironic as it sounds, he kills the dead for a living.

When I first read the summary of the book, I was really excited to learn about Anna, the vengeful ghost who haunts her house and forbids anyone to leave alive, with the exception of Cas. Why was she different compared to the other ghosts that Cas had hunted? What made her unable to move on? So many questions, which piqued my curiosity and made me pick up the book. Well, that and the hundred or so reviews putting a good word for this book. What I enjoyed most about this book was the fact that those who died a gruesome death came back to take more victims in the same manner that they kicked off. As wrong as it sounds, I found it to be a very interesting plot.

While there wasn't a whole lot of character development, I did enjoy seeing Cas make some friends instead of being the loner that he was. Since he was always on the move, he didn't think it was important to make connections with others, other than getting the information about the ghosts that he needed to know. It was also nice to see him get his butt kicked around by Anna, to show that he still had a long way to go before tackling the one who killed his dad.

I found the book to be pretty unpredictable as I had previously guessed that Cas would spend the entire book trying to figure out what to do with Anna, but I was pleasantly surprised to see that I was wrong. There was a lot more that went on and gave the book more depth.

Source: Borrowed
My rating: 4 Coffee Cups (Enjoyed it immensely)