The Mansion Twins: A Book Review

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Author: Rose M. Channing

Publisher: Createspace

Published on: July 23rd 2014

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Synopsis (via Goodreads):

Ellie and Savannah Senka, fourteen year old twins, ran away from their unhappy homes, thinking they’d return after a brief adventure. Together, they journey to another world. The new world is full of magic, but though it was once beautiful, it is damaged, unbalanced, and dangerous after a terrible storm. Ellie and Savannah may be the only ones with the power to restore the world to its original state, for the magic of twins is rare and powerful. The girls are welcomed into a grand mansion, the safest place in the aftermath of the storm. There, they learn who they are, and what they have to do. To restore the world, they must travel through the mansion to the center of magic and reset the balance. They discover their own magical abilities, find joy and friendship in the mansion’s family, and face the dangers of the storm’s left-behind magic. The journey to the center of magic is full of twists and turns, magic and excitement. Ellie and Savannah support each other to overcome obstacles along the way, knowing the whole world is depending on them.

Note: I received a copy from the author in exchange for an honest review.

Review:

A different world? Storm-created beings? Monsters? Quests? Totally up my alley! I have to say that I enjoyed reading this novel. I got totally hooked into this other world that I instinctively switch off from reality for a while. This book is engaging along with the characters who are just lovable and fun to read.

Speaking of the characters, the protagonists in this novel are twins—Ellie and Savannah Senka.  So we’re having the chosen two! Because why not?

So, they once live in a world of magic but then a storm ravaged that world, brought chaos into the whole kingdom and now there is no balance. During the storm, the Senka twins escaped and then they grew up into this world with no magic. But a prophecy about twins resetting the balance back in the center of magic brought the Senka twins home. Personally I think that the premise is interestingly unique. First we have a storm so strong it destroyed the balance of the magical world, disrupted the current of magic and created magical beings. The storm-created beings got me intrigued. I mean it is so freakishly awesome yet disturbing at the same time. Although I was just looking for more details about the storm. Everything about it and the events right after was still unclear and I get that its part of the storytelling. So maybe on the sequel. Right?

Also can I just mention how fascinated I am with the so-called “Glow” which serves as the kind of magic people are all capable of having aside from special gifts such as levitation or healing. The Glow is something that is natural for the magic folks, it can be used for fighting, illumination and even for dancing! How awesome and fancy is that?

Like any other fantasy novels, of course we have an adventure for the protagonists and here, it is to go to the center of magic to reset the balance. The events that transpired before finding the center of magic is so exhilarating. To give you a heads up, everything occurs inside an enormous mansion, which I guess is obvious from the title alone so I don’t know why I’m giving a heads up. Anyways, OH. MY. GOSH. The mansion is yet another fictional world I’d like to take a tour on. Every time they get into yet another part of the mansion, it just makes me read even more. Every opened doors, every transporter mirrors and every fighting scene with some storm-created beings were all enthralling I forgot the reason for needing sleep. So I guess I’m making it clear how fascinating this book is.

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Now aside from the premise, I also admire the characters in this book. Though there might be a lot of names to actually take account of, those who are of need in the story got the right exposure. I like the idea of having a queen in a child form because it makes it even more magical. What I like about the queen is her relationship with the twins, it was all pure love, care and guidance.  And the twins see her as a friend and at the same time a queen who would face the enemy herself to protect her people. And not just that, the relationship that exist between everyone inside the mansion is what I admired the most. It’s a familial love that I find as comforting and magical as it should be.

But of course, we should always have a villain. As witty and anger-driven as any other villain in any other fictional worlds. However, I find his background story still lacking. And in my honest opinion, I just think that his character as a villain doesn’t have much of an impact. I mean, he is powerful, deceptive and brutal (that last thing he did broke my heart) but I think that maybe those traits still needs development. And there was a twist to his character and which I guessed but it was well played. That part, I just have to commend.

So in totality, I really enjoyed this book a lot. I have sacrificed sleep just so I could get to the end of the Senka Twins’ journey. I hope there is more to this world.

My Rating:

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Check Author (Rose M. Channing)

Website: https://www.mycrossworldsjourney.com

Email: chickadee24@comcast.net

Twitter: RoseMChanning

Add book on: Goodreads

Available on: Amazon

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April TBR (2016)

Hello there reader, I know it’s been ages since I posted something about book reading. To be honest I’ve been on a reading slump for the past few months. Just recently I finished reading The Book Thief (book review to come!) and I think I’m finally gonna get over this reading slump soon. And I believe it’s not yet late to share to you my TBR for this month so enough of this babble and here you go:

1. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

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 As I’ve said earlier, I just finished this book and the review will be coming up soon!

2. The Diviners by Libba Bray

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Historical fiction is one of my favorite genres and I’ve decided that this year I’m gonna be reading more on this genre. Last year was mostly classics and coming-of-age and I must say I dived deep into it. So I’m picking up this book for this month.

3. Chaos Company by Christopher Slayton

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I received an ARC of this book from the author in exchange for an honest review. Just a preview (I’m still half-way in this book), it’s an action-packed science fiction novel revolving on genetic mutations, army men, FBI, and politicians! I strongly suggest that you go over this book without reading the synopsis in Goodreads. 😉

4. Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

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So I’m finally part of a book club called The Revolving Bookshelf! Emily of The Diary of a Bibliophile (go check her blog!) invited me in and I’ve been ecstatic ever since! YAAAAY 🙂 So this book has been selected to be our first read and I haven’t contributed to the discussions unfortunately :/ but I’m half-way into it.

5. The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

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Ronan is my favorite character and I love how dark and mysterious this second book is. I’m almost done reading it so await my verdict! 🙂

6. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

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And yes, I am finally gonna get this series done this year. If you still remember, The Raven boys trilogy is part of my Series TBR for 2015 and it’s 2016 yeah I know. I failed. Life happened, what can i say? HAHA

Note: Click on the title if you want to read the synopsis of the book via Goodreads.


So those are the books I’m planning to finish reading this month of April! I should probably get off the grid to completely cure this reading slump of mine. 😀 Also, I’d be reading one ARC every month since I’ve been way off the schedule for the review requests. Apologies to those authors.

And that’s it. I hope you’re having a fine day wherever you are and comment down below if you have any suggestions for both my reading slump and to-be read list or just any random questions. God bless you dear! :*

Fave Fifteen of 2015

Hi Reader! Is your holiday good so far? 2015 is almost over in a matter of days and I think it has been a great year for me. Two things in particular, first, I got into blogging and I’ve met such amazing people who love the things I love to do 😉 . Second and definitely the best thing that has ever happened to me in my entire existence here on earth is finally getting into med school. So YAY to 2015, thank you Daddy God for this year and with fingers crossed Hi 2016!

Now contrary to those wonderful things, I have read a total of 40 books out of 80 this year which means (if you know me in goodreads) that I haven’t completed my reading challenge. *hides in shame.

Why you ask? LIFE HAPPENED.

But even though I didn’t make it, I believe I’ve read more than a handful of great books this year and so I present to you a list of my fave fifteen books of 2015. TA-DA!

15. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Genre: Science Fiction

I believe I’ve said enough about how cool this book is in my past posts but if it’s your first time hearing it, you can check out my review here. Also, this one’s going into a movie directed by Steven Spielberg.

14. Still Alice by Lisa Genova

Genre: Adult Fiction

This book talks about a story of a woman, a wife and a mother who tries to live her life the way it used to be even after being diagnosed of a  neurodegenerative disease.

13. Where Rainbows End by Cecilia Ahern

I think everyone have heard of this book of course since it was adapted into a movie entitled Love, Rosie with stars Lily Collins and Sam Claflin (omg ❤ ) . Now I don’t think I can fully express how frustrating yet beautiful this story was unfold. Grab it and see for yourself. Full review here.

12. A Dance of Dragons by George R.R. Martin

Genre: Epic Fantasy

It’s the latest book from the series A Song of Ice and Fire. I know that a lot of people have seen the TV show but have not read the book yet because well, it is a big book. There is just so much that this book has given and oh Jon Snow.

11. Everday by David Levithan

Genre: Young Adult, Romance

This is one helluva of a book. The premise is totally unique and it taught me so much. Gosh, I love David Levithan. A genius he is.

10. Vicious by V.E. Schwab

Genre: Science Fiction

This book reminded me of X-men which is not bad. It’s totally wicked and I really love the conflict between the two protagonists.

9. All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

Genre: Young-Adult

A book that talks about serious subjects such as depression and suicide. It opens up a more realistic view of people suffering from such mental issues. Full review here.

8. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro

Genre: Science Fiction, Dystopian

I’m so glad I picked this up before the year ends. It’s one of those books that reveals its secret in the most perfect way.

7. It’s Kind of A Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

Genre: Young Adult

Another book that talks about mental health issues. You know when a book has authenticity in it because it manages to touch your soul. I believe that this book realistically depicted what a person suffering from depression is actually going through. My respect to Mr. Ned Vizzini. Full review here.

6. Norwegian Wood by Haruki Murakami

Genre: Romance, Coming-of-Age

I’ve recently known this author through a friend and now Haruki Murakami is one of my all-time favorite author. This is the first book I’ve read from him and I can’t stop recommending it to friends. Full review here.

5. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Genre: Coming-of-age

Everything about this book is thought-provoking and reading it was like a journey of a lifetime in the eyes of girl. Woah right? So yeah, this one isn’t just my favorite for 2015, it for a lifetime as well.

4. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Genre: Romance

Oh yeah, every girl (probably) have swooned over Mr. Darcy and why not? Really this is a classic I will forever love.

3. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire-Saenz

Genre: coming-of-age

I’ve said this before and I’m saying it again. I am in love with Ari and Dante. They’re probably one of the best characters I’ve read so far. This book could teach a lot of people into what a person’s identity and individuality really is. Full review here.

2.  A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

Genre: Contemporary, coming-of-age

I could just talk about this book for hours but of course I cannot. But in just a few words let me tell you that reading it has been an eye-opener. The story of the kid with a nightmare and a monster may seem simple but in its simplicity it has shown the truth about life.

1. The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer

Genre: Coming-of-age

It’s a debut novel and I think this book is responsible for why I am into blogging right now. After reading it, it was like WOAH! I’ve recommended it to almost every one I know and I couldn’t stop talking about it. I only read it this year but I’ve reread it twice already. So you see, saying I LIKE this book is an understatement. The protagonist here has a mental disorder and the whole experience of reading it was different. Full review here.


 

Thank you for reading that long list of mine. You may have noticed that I’ve read a couple of coming-of-age and science fiction genres this year because well I love those genre. And If you may recall, I’ve posted a list of the series I should get into this year here but unfortunately, I only started a few and never completed any.

Why you ask? LIFE HAPPENED.

So that is the reason why I only have one book in a series in this list. And hey, ’twas an epic book. 😉


 

How about you? Do you have any book in this list that also belongs in your top reads this 2015? Let me know down below and share it with everyone else too. Cheers to 2015. Bye for now, readers.

May Wrap-up and June TBR!

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Maybe you’ve noticed the silence so let me tell you that its because I’ve been away from home lately. I actually got a surprise detox from the internet while I was away because I’ve been really busy processing my application for medicine. I barely even got time to read and write reviews or even check social media. But now, lets get back on track with the things I love ❤


So I have read a total of eight books for the month of May, four of it was from my May TBR Challenge! If you happen to read my post about it, there was a total of 5 books right? But then I realized that the readalong for Gone With The Wind runs from May until August so I kind of took a pause from it and picked up other books. So without further ado here’s the list of books I finished in May:

1. Hopeless by Colleen Hoover

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Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

I think by now you guys know that I’m not into romance novels but that does not mean they completely go unnoticed by me. So I pick this book as a part of my 2015 Reading Challenge and I think I will talk further about it there.

2. Everyday by David Levithan

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Now this one was recommended to me by a friend and it was amazing! I like the premise, the writing and the characters. It was simple yet thought-provoking indeed.

3. Cinder by Marissa Meyer

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

It took me days to finish this book but don’t get me wrong, I actually liked it. I love the premise of this book– the disease (got me hooked), the cyborgs, androids and lunars (WOW) and the touch of fairytale in it. it was kind of badass in its own little way and the romance was something I adored because the book does not dwell on it entirely. It was definitely my cup of tea and I will be writing a full review on it soon.

4. Hitchiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

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Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Oh gooooooosh! Everything was so ridiculously amazing! Its not my kind of sci-fi but it was definitely my kind of humor. I’d pick this book up anytime I’m feeling sad, bored or alone or whatever emotional negativity I will have HAHA Seriously this book is a work of a genius 😉

5. The 100 by Kass Morgan

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Rating: 1 out of 5 stars

Ugh it pains me to rate a book this low but I have to be honest right? I just didn’t like it, I was disappointed by how it turned out with such an amazing premise. If you have read my review on it then you’d know what my thoughts are exactly but if you haven’t go check it out if you’re interested Click HERE!

6. Day 21 by Kass Morgan

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Rating: 2 or 2.5 out of 5 stars

Yes, I picked up the next book in The 100 series and this one was actually getting there. I know that I have made a point like I’d rather watch the show instead of reading this book. But that would be unfair and horrible to say to a book and I felt like I should read the entire series just so my thoughts about it is reliable and credible (HAHA) Again, ugh! my thoughts did not waver a bit. but actually I think I prefer this book than the first one because at least here something did happen. Not that big but at least there was a progress in their journey to earth.

7. A Fox’s Love by Brandon Varnell

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Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

This book was provided to me by the author in exchange for an honest review. I don’t really know much about animes or mangas and so I don’t get much of the references in this book. So ecchi? nope, didn’t get than until I was halfway through and felt like it meant something that tells me more about this book. Glad to have a friend who know so much about animes, he explained it to me. I’m kind of familiar with kitsunes as I have watch and love a Korean TV show about it. This book was hilariously satisfying but I was kind of looking for more on its urban fantasy genre. I will be writing a full review on it soon so I hope you check it out by that time 😉

8. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

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Rating: 4 or 4.5 out of 5 stars

WOW that was brilliant! Like wow it was so perfectly planned that its freaking me out. It was disturbingly amazing and completely engrossing. So yeah, I finished this book and finally I can get to watch the movie! I will be writing a full review on it probably soon.

So that was it! I believe I did great for the month of May although not much on the blogging part. I’ll get into the reviews soon so I hope you check them out too 🙂

I HAVE AN ANNOUNCEMENT!! I won’t be continuing with the “TBR challenge thing” because as I have mentioned above, I will be studying medicine and classes starts this month. I won’t of course give up entirely on reading and blogging, its just that I will have to do it during my free time only, like when I need to get off the stress of med school maybe. So enough with the talking lets get on with my TBR list for the month of June!

1. The Ocean at The End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman

I recently bought this book and I am so excited to get into it. Also, its not a really big book so I think I’ll get it done quickly 🙂

2. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

So yeah, after reading Gone Girl I was sure as hell that I will be reading the rest of Gillian Flynn’s novels. The synopsis of this book really got me so curious too.

3. P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

As you know I am a fan of Jenny Han and I have been anticipating this sequel to her To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before for ages. Actually, I’m done reading so await for my review! ❤

4. Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

YES! another from Ms. Austen. I think it is about time to pick up one of her books now.

5. The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

I told you how I got hooked with The Raven Boys and how I so much wanted to pick up the next book in the series right? Also as a part of my series TBR for 2015, I am finally getting into this book.

6. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

Of course, after The Dream Thieves I have to pick up Blue Lily, Lily Blue

7. Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell

This one is part of the readalong from May to August so yeah I really hope to finish it on time! 😀

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So that’s my JUNE TBR and I do hope I get to read most of the books I’ve listed above if I don’t get to read all of it. I hope June will be an awesome month for me

The 100: A Book Review

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Author: Kass Morgan

Publisher: Little Brown and Company

Published on: January 2013

Genre: Science Fiction, Post-apocalyptic, Romance

Synopsis (via Goodreads) :

NO ONE HAS SET FOOT ON EARTH IN CENTURIES – UNTIL NOW.

Ever since a devastating nuclear war, humanity has lived on spaceships far above Earth’s radioactive surface. Now, one hundred juvenile delinquents – considered expendable by society – are being sent on a dangerous mission: to recolonize the planet. It could be their second chance at life… or it could be a suicide mission.

Clark was arrested for treason, though she’s haunted by the memory of what she really did. Wells, the chancellor’s son, came to Earth for the girl he loves – but will she ever forgive him? Reckless Bellamy fought his way onto the transport pod to protect his sister, the other half of the only pair of siblings in the universe. And Glass managed to escape back onto the ship, only to find that life there is just as dangerous as she feared it would be on Earth.

Confronted with a savage land and haunted by secrets from their pasts, the hundred must fight to survive. They were never meant to be heroes, but they may be mankind’s last hope.


“The show was much better than the book!” – I never thought I’d ever say these words but yes guys, this is my verdict! But for now, let’s focus on why I said those words regarding this book instead of comparing it with the show (I promise to try!).

Actually, the premise of the book is interesting and has so much potential. Earth was destroyed by a nuclear explosion and mankind was bound to oblivion. But there was hope after all, there were lucky survivors who managed to escape earth and has been living in space for 97 years. Unfortunately, luck runs out and they’re facing yet again an impending doom– the stronghold that they have in space is damaged,  oxygen supply is running low and mankind is once again threatened to be eradicated. In order for the human race to survive, they have to get back to earth. Unsure if radiation levels are already survivable they send 100 juvenile delinquents to test it, blind to the probability that Earth could be holding other dangers. It is the kind of science fiction/post-apocalyptic-themed novels that is destined for greatness. However, the book seemed not able to utilize that “scientific greatness” but instead focuses on the impending “romantic developments” of almost ever character!

Okay now let’s talk about the characters! The story was told from four POV’s of young adult characters so prepare to expect stupid decisions that are based on things like love. To be honest, there wasn’t much character development and most of the time they are annoying. From the four characters, I think I can only stand that of Bellamy’s point of view. He has devoted his life in making sure his sister is protected, well-fed and alive even if it means getting himself killed, which by the way is kind of stupid because how could he go on protecting his sister if he gets himself killed right? Anyways, I think it’s also because his character is coming from someone who has suffered so much and so different from the other three.

Then we have Clarke and Glass, two privileged girls who has struggles of their own. Clarke being a daughter of the two best scientists who were punished by death because of an “experiment”. She got into prison because she was said to be an accessory to the crime her parents did. She blames her boyfriend for the death of her parents because he was the only one who knew about the experiment and since he is the good son of the Chancellor, it is only rational for him to tell it to his dad. She felt betrayed and so he hated Wells for all eternity. Glass on the other hand was acting like one of those rich girls until she met Luke and voila her perspective in life has changed. She began breaking the rules and got herself into prison and did something so horrible to save the love of her life from confinement and death.

And of course, Wells, the ex-boyfriend/son of the chancellor who basically decided to harm the entire human race to save Clarke, the girl he loves so much he’s willing to kill the rest of humanity!

And that kids, is what a selfish bastard is like. Straight to the heart please Katniss!

To sum it all up, this book has the potential but I’m afraid it’s losing it! As a reader, the way the story was told lacks so much. There was just too much attention in the romance thing and I think that did the damage for me. There wasn’t much adrenaline-pumping action in it nor much of the scientific stuff that I really look forward into most sci-fi themed books. Also, if its aim was to focus on the fight for survival of the human species then I think it has more to improve on that part. It is slow-paced in which if you have seen the TV show, this entire first book of the series is like the pilot episode only. But actually, the TV show and the book attacked this idea in entirely different way. Most of the characters in the show isn’t in the book, the background stories of the characters and the situations are so different. Rest assured, you won’t get spoiled if you read it or watch it first. But in my honest opinion, I believe that the show gave more justice to the premise of the story. I have read the second book and I must say that it was much better than this first one but it wasn’t enough to change my thoughts about this series.

If it is possible try not to compare (I know I did a poor job :/ ) the way everything was dealt with the book and the show. After all its too different mediums and in this case, they literally dealt with idea in an entirely different way! But I just hate it when the romance gets in the way in stories that aren’t meant to be a romance genre so that is why I liked the TV show adaptation more than this book.

I’m sorry I just didn’t like it