Category Archives: Contemporary

Review: Every Day by David Levithan

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Title: Every Day
Author: David Levithan
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Reader
Publication Date: August 28th 2012
Series or Standalone: Every Day #1
Format: Paperback, 322 pages

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Every day a different body. Every day a different life. Every day in love with the same girl.

There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere. It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day.

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“I am a monster for doing this to him. But I have my reason.”

Yeah. You and you’re self-centered reason. Get lost, A.

Okay. I don’t think I can come up with a proper review for this book but it’s gonna be more of a rant. So bear with me.

I was quite skeptical reading this book actually. Sure, Levithan’s probably has the most popular lgbt books out there, pairing up with different great authors and all. It’s just that his works never appealed to me that I didn’t bother checking them out at all. Just reading this book’s blurb it screams: Don’t read me!!!!

Nay, I’ll read you. My mistake, I know.

The idea of A waking up in different bodies everyday and all is promising and really interesting because it’s not everyday you see books like this in any contemporary. I’m no expert but I think, it felt like Levithan had this great concept of his but wasn’t able to do justice about it. It’s like your mother gave you this beautiful dress for the prom that could get the spotlights all to you but you’re silly enough to pair it with a clown-like make-up.

And I’ve never felt this so annoyed before that I had to put my phone down and calmed myself before I could slam it on the wall. A and Rhiannon are both so freaking annoying characters. That they had just pissed me off from start to finish. And I really don’t care about them that they gained no sympathy over me.

Why would I sympathize A for messing up most the lives of people he inhabited by forcing them to do things they never usually do and sometimes endangering them just for him to see Rhiannon? Yeah that girl. That girl who acts like the victim of the story because Justin doesn’t treat her well and blah, blah, blah. But she’s the one who eventually ends up cheating him (more of this later).

I’m going to prove it to you,” I tell her. “I’m going to show you what it really means.”

“What?”

“Love.”

Bite me.

Making Justin to look so bad and convincing Rhiannon that she deserves someone better, someone like him. *vomit*

You’re disgusting, A. You’re so freaking desperate to make Justin and Rhiannon split up so you could have her. You’re so full of crap, full of love’s methapor but you can’t even handle your love for her right.

Want to see more?

A inside Kelsea’s body who’s in the verge of suicide.

I love you Rhiannon…

A inside Dana’s body who is seriously in trouble and in need to talk with her parents.

I need to get out of here… Rhiannon needs me… Rhiannon… Rhiannon…

Freaking Rhiannon.

Can’t A just stop thinking Rhiannon even just for a day? And pay some respect to the people he inhabited?

Rhiannon who doesn’t mind she has a boyfriend at all. A kisses her and she kisses him back. A flirts her and she flirts back. They go on in a date. And almost had a sex with A using someone’s innocent body.

“It feels wrong.”

She looks hurt by this answer.

“Let me worry about Justin,” she says. “This is you and me. It’s different.”

I have more than 70 reviews now and had never ever swore in any of them. But you Rhiannon. You deserve my very first.

You’re a f*cking slut. If I ever happen to see Rhiannon walking down along the street, I won’t hesitate punching her right on her freaking face.

But I won’t end this without expressing my gratitude. I really appreciated it that David Levithan included lgbt in this book and I know it did something big to the story itself. Your thoughts about it were heartfelt and honestly, it made me want to give this 2 stars but everytime your characters come to mind, it falls down back to 1.

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Review: Lending Light by Rose Christo

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Title: Lending Light
Author: Rose Christo
Publisher: Amazon
Publication Date: August 2012
Series or Standalone: Gives Light #5
Format: Ebook, 306 pages

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“Sometimes my imagination bleeds into reality.”

Eleven years ago a serial killer menaced the Nettlebush Indian Reservation. Rafael Gives Light is his son. A loner, Rafael relies on his startlingly overactive imagination to escape the distrust and vitriol of his peers.

In the summer of 2000 an exceptionally blond boy moves to Nettlebush. Rafael learns that the boy is his father’s last living victim. The boy wants to be friends.

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I had the idea that maybe kissing Sky was my natural, default state, and the reason I’d been such a disagreeable person all my life was because I hadn’t been kissing him all my life.

This review almost goes the same with book one. Because this story is in fact based on the first book and the only difference is that Rafael narrated this. Oh, how I loved that guy. It’s very heartwarming to see Sky through Rafael’s eye. How Sky changed Rafael’s life and how Rafael tried to be that person.

So let me just tell you why I freaking loved this series. Let’s start with the characters. Probably this series has one of the best set of characters in young adult contemporary. Everyone has depth. Everyone is remarkable. Every single main or secondary ones tugs your heart. Rose Christo doesn’t need to make her characters to be too perfect to gain a strong connection with them. You’ll love them just the way they are.

And for the romance, it just so happened that we’re introduced to a society where a boy who likes a boy is not a crime by law, a disease, a sin, or whatever ridiculous name they call it. So this is not me-and-you-against-the-world or i-love-you-you-love-me-but stuff. This is a fresh take for us to the mm genre where no one give a damn who you love.

“I have a boyfriend,” I said

Meredith smiled warmly at me. “That’s wonderful! What’s his name?”

“Not telling” I said

“You made him up,” Holly accused

“Bite me,” I said again

Why so adorable, Rafael?

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Review: First Kiss by J. Tomas

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Title: First Kiss
Author: J. Tomas
Publisher: JMS Books
Publication Date: August 29th 2011
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Format: eBook, 11 pages
Source: Free Read via Smashwords

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Download it HERE!

Noah Lipinski has a fierce crush on Doug Hathaway, a hot jock on the high school football team whose locker is fifteen down from Noah’s in the hall. When Melissa Bradshaw, only the most popular girl in school, suddenly shows an interest in Noah, he suspects he’s being set up for a cruel joke. She asks him to Homecoming and he refuses to go.

After school, the doorbell rings and Noah’s sure she’s back to pester him about the dance. But when he opens the door, he finds Doug there instead, with an explanation and a much better offer than Melissa’s.

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I don’t know what’s wrong with me. Everyone seems to enjoy this but me. I may not in the right mood when I read it but this is not really as impressive as to my first J. Tomas read which is the My Online Secret Admirer. I came across this on Smashwords as a free read, downloaded it and finished it in just a few minutes because the story is short with only 10 pages. Rating a short story is hard but I think the reason why I’m giving this a low rating, is not because of its shortness. It is never will be an issue, I have read plenty of short stories online and also way back in high school for our both English and Filipino subject, and they’re all good.

Looking back, the problem here is,  I didn’t see any link to connect me to the characters or even to the plot. And had this poker face throughout finishing the story. I didn’t smile or whatever that emotion I am supposed to feel. And  the storyline is quite shallow, just two good boys in the closet who both shared their first kiss. *sigh* I need a chocolate right now.

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Review: This Charming Man by Ajax Bell

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Title: This Charming Man
Author: Ajax Bell
Publisher: Jugum Press
Publication Date: November 1st 2014
Series or Standalone: A Queen City Boys #1
Format: Paperback, 358 pages
Source: eCopy from the Publisher via NetGalley

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WILL SEATTLE MAKE A MAN OF HIM YET?

It’s 1991 and Steven Frazier has danced away half a decade in the Seattle club scene with his beautiful-but-poisonous best friend, Adrian. Two glittering princes against the world, too high above life to care about what they might be missing. But everything changes when a chance meeting with older—not to mention handsome— businessman John Pieters, reveals a cosmopolitan world and possible futures Steven’s never considered.

Flashy club clothes won’t impress John, this charming man who knows so much about many things. Motivated by fantasies inspired by his crush on John, can Steven finally fight Adrian’s sick hold? As he steps out into the larger world, supported by new friends, Steven must prove to John—and to himself—that he’s not a hedonistic rhinestone club kid, but a true diamond in the rough.

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I just can’t. Honestly, I already wanted to put this down at 15% and go on with another book. But since I requested this title on netgalley and the publisher approved it. I don’t wanna be rude by not finishing it and I can’t just review it as it is. Because I never rate and review DNFed books.

“Do you believe in love at first sight?”

“Why? Did you fall in love with John when you first saw him? Or did you wait until you heard him speak French?”

“What? No. Ridiculous. I’m wondering if he fell in love with me. At first sight.”

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Our hero, Steven Frazier is a 25-year-old college student who acts like a 9-year-old girl whenever his crush is around. His infatuation over John throughout the book is seriously killing me. This may seem harsh but it made me want to punch him right in his face just to make him stop. I can’t stand seeing this adult character does teenage stuff. Fantasizing John all day and night long and having this freaking huge crush problem which is I’m-just-me-and-he’s-perfect thing. Please, stop doing that. It’s not helping.

The slow burn romance is poorly handled. It is very unrealistic with the characters; John who is 44 and obviously old enough not to make the flirting and teasing long and of course, Steven who loves to hook up even with his friends. That it takes 259 pages, that’s 81%, for them to confess their feelings and share their first kisses. Urgh.

Everything is almost voice out, with them always talking that no one will seem to care about. Especially if there’s no development to the conversation. And the other characters giving Steven the same advice all over again. That’s tiresome, actually.

Lastly, it bothers me that being high or hooking up with your friends in the story delivered in a manner that it is okay and acceptable. I’m badly waiting for their realization that the things they did in the past were mistakes. But the story ends with them just laughing it off. What? No, I can’t accept that.

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Review: ABNKKBSNPLAKo?! (Mga Kwentong Chalk ni Bob Ong) by Bob Ong

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Title: ABNKKBSNPLAKo?! (Mga Kwentong Chalk ni Bob Ong)
Author: Bob Ong
Publisher: Visprint
Publication Date: February 2001
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Format: Paperback, 181 pages

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Bakit namamalo si Miss Uyehara?
May mga notebook bang lumilipad?
Bakit masakit sa ulo ang Mafhemafics?
Ano ang sikreto sa pagkakaibigan nila Pepe at Tagpi?
Bakit may mga taong nakapikit sa litrato?
Masarap ba ang Africhado?
Sino si Tigang?
Bakit may mga classroom na kulang ang upuan?
Masama bang mag-isip nang malalim habang naglalakad?
Saan ang Ganges River sa Pilipinas?
Bakit may mga umaakyat ng overpass pero hindi tumatawid?
Sino ang webmaster ng bobongpinoy sa Internet?

No calculators.
No dictionaries.
No erasures.
No cheating.
Oops, time’s up!

Pass your papers.

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ABNKKBSNPLAKo?! (Mga Kwentong Chalk ni Bob Ong) is one of the most popular filipino book ever written. If you’re a filipino and haven’t heard about this. Gods, where have you been??

Matutuwa ka sa libro na ‘to kasi lahat ng nagawa mong kalokohan noong elementary at high school maaalala mo rito:

1. Yung terror teacher mo na kapag tinawag ka eh kulang nalang maihi ka sa upuan mo.
2. Si crush mong famous.
3. Si best friend na crush din yung crush mo.
4. Yung tropa mong hindi ka iiwan.
5. Mga kaklase mong nagbigay kulay sa buhay estudyante mo.
6. Si Ma’am na cool.
7. Yung kakopyahan mo tuwing may test.
8. Si mokong umasar at inasar mo din.
9. Yung pesteng haircut policy na hindi ka tuloy maka-porma.
10. Yung late ka tuwing cleaner ka.
11. Yung teacher mong kwela.
12. Yung upuan at silya mong mala-World War II.
13. Si crush ulet.
14. Yung mga nasa Top 15 na hindi naman deserving! Anyone?
15. Yung canteen niyong nagiging mala-sardinas tuwing recess.
16. Yung pogi/maganda mong ST (student teacher).
17. Tuwing report na mukha kang tanga.
18. Si teacher na grabe magpakopya ng notes eh kulang na lang punuin na yung blackboard ng manila paper.
19. etc. etc.

Lahat yun maaalala mo kapag binasa mo yung libro. At syempre maiiyak ka kapag tapos mo na basahin yung libro. Kasi sobrang nakakamiss pala maging estudyante sa kabila ng mga bagsak na test.

Isa itong librong ginawa para sa mga estudyante at mga dating estudayante na magpapaala-ala sa atin kung gaano tayo kaloko noon. XD

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Review: Maybe With a Chance of Certainty by John Goode

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Title: Maybe With a Chance of
Certainty
Author: John Goode
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Publication Date: October 19th 2011
Series or Standalone: Tales from Foster High #1
Format: eBook, 2nd Edition: Expanded Version, 98 pages

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Kyle has worked hard at being the invisible student, toiling through high school in the middle of Nowhere, Texas. Brad is the baseball star at Foster High. Both boys are damaged in ways that the rest of the world can’t see. When they bond over a night of history tutoring, Kyle thinks that maybe his life has taken a turn for the not-so-lonely.

He finds out quickly that the promise of fairy-tale love is a lie when you’re gay and falling for one of the most popular boys in school, and if being different is a sin in high school, then being gay is the biggest sin of all. Now Kyle and Brad need to come to an understanding amidst the scrutiny of their peers or their fledgling relationship will crash and burn before it ever gets off the ground.

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I feel bad about myself for not liking the book because everyone seems to enjoy it. But the whole review is based on my opinion.

First, the story lacks maturity. Why? The whole plot is terrible. It’s a cliché story in its highest level like those annoying children books in a poor-pretty-girl-meets-young-handsome-prince-way. But this one is more likely to look like in a poor-smart-boy-meets-handsome-popular-guy-way.

The story follows two different teenagers. Kyle was the poor yet smart boy who lived with his dumbass mom. And he was the unpopular one who made himself distant from everyone else. And there was Brad. A popular baseball player who adored by everyone and lived with his wealthy family..But despite of the good image, no one knew he was broken inside.

That kind of concept is very familiar and overly used and juvenile.

Second, superbly annoying characters. Yeah. I know the fact that Kyle was deeply in love with Brad. But when Brad approached Kyle to talk something, it caused Kyle into erection. The heck was that?? Was that even ‘love’? or ‘lust’? or is that even normal, that seeing or talking to your crush causes you into erection?? oh God, can someone help me, please? And for Brad, what the hell he was doing asking someone he barely knew to help him to study history? Where were his friends? oh I knew it! he liked Kyle too! You nailed it Perco! You nailed it!  (-_-)

And this so-called love story between the two was just as rapid as a bullet. If we do the math, it took only few hours of their relationship for them to kiss each other, for Brad to share his feelings to a stranger. And it took only a day and half for them to messed up one another. My God. Were they kind in a hurry? And that annoying part when Kyle and Brad argued, their conversation was very emotional like they’ve been together for years. Excuse me? You guys just been together for 2 days. Are they for real?

And the most ridiculous part is, when Brad tried to introduce his girlfriend to Kyle. And that was the time Kyle that acted differently that pissed off Brad. The hell?? Did Brad even forget that he had something with Kyle? That he and Kyle kissed each other, argued like they were married for years, and they even jerked off one another. Were those things as easy as clapping your hands to be easily forgotten? Maybe Brad was an superbly insensitive moron.

Lastly, the endless car metaphor. Im sorry but it was very tiring and boring. Dont know how to feel about that.

I dont know if i can recommend this to you but I heard the second book is better than this. I think its worth a shot.

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Review: Blind Faith by N.R. Walker

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Title: Blind Faith
Author: N.R. Walker
Publisher: N.R. Walker
Publication Date: February 28th 2013 (first published January 26th 2013)
Series or Standalone: Blind Faith #1
Format: Ebook, Second Edition, 144 pages

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This is a re-release edition

Starting a new job in a new town, veterinarian Carter Reece, makes a house call to a very special client. Arrogant, moody and totally gorgeous, Isaac Brannigan has been blind since he was eight. After the death of his guide dog and best friend, Rosie, his partnership with his new guide dog, Brady, isn’t going well. Carter tries to help both man and canine through this initiation phase, but just who is leading who?

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It was a fun and cute read. A fairy tale-like story with a happily ever after conclusion. Every characters, major or minor, was likeable. No antagonist. Even Mark, the badass friend of Carter, was interesting and funny sometimes. I did also appreciate the man and dog relationship shown in here. It was beautiful. And the dogs were so cute and adorable. I loved the overflowing cheessiness in here that really made me smile throughout the story. And the ending was satisfying. I’ll definitely continue with this series.

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Review: Polar Nights by T.T. Kove

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Title: Polar Nights
Author: T.T. Kove
Publisher: Less Than Three Press
Publication Date: July 13th 2012
Series or Standalone: Arctic Love #1
Format: Ebook,
Source: eCopy from the Publisher via NetGalley

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Andreas has been in love with
Christian for as long as he can
remember, but he’s also always
known it would remain one-sided. When he travels to Svalbard to take the last years of his Masters, spending time with Christian again brings back those feelings and makes life more than a little awkward.

The very last thing Christian needs is to have a very grown, very stunning Andreas living with him for a few weeks. Even the awkwardness between them is not enough to stop his attraction. Neither is the fact that Andreas is his sister’s stepson.

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This is actually a good story but not that enough to catch few reader’s attention. There were quite a lot of characters thrown out in here for a short story. But T.T. Kove still managed to give them short appearances. But the problem was, I coudn’t decide where to place my focus. Maybe the minor characters needed more of those appearances and since this is in a series, I’m hoping to see more of them in the next installment.

I liked the awkward moments between Andreas and Christian. They didn’t know what to do with each other’s company. And Andreas being tongue tied every time he talked to him. I thought it was cute. Though they were too old to do those kind of teen stuff. And I took notice the redundancy of describing the place. Yeah, I got the point that Svalbard is such a beautiful place, but stating it all over again was tiring. All in all, this still a good story to read.

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Review: In Plain Sight by Josh Lanyon

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Title: In Plain Sight
Author: Josh Lanyon
Publisher: JustJoshin
Publication Date: August 22nd 2013
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Format: Ebook, 37 pages

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Nash didn’t believe in love until it was too late. Now he’s looking for reasons, for answers, for meaning. Sometimes the truth is right in front of you the whole time.

Previously released in print edition of short stories collection, In Sunshine Or in Shadow.

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A short and simple love story that moves my heart. It’s not typical for me reading books with middle-aged protagonists. But this really is a good book.

Same with the other mm story, In Plain Sight also shows how being gay affects the entire life of a person and those people who surround him. How it affects your carrer. How people think of you. How they treat you. Almost everything. And that’s what makes me feel so sad. That every time I read mm books, there’s always this kind of negative atmosphere that being gay is such a big deal like an atomic bomb soon to explode.

Anyway, I like the story between Nash and Glen. It was overwhelming. I wish it was not that short because their chemistry was heartwarming. I just want more of them.

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Review: Suicide Watch by Kelley York

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Title: Suicide Watch
Author: Kelley York
Publisher: CreateSpace
Publication Date: December 20th 2012
Series or Standalone: Standalone
Format: Paperback, 220 pages

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18-year-old Vincent Hazelwood has spent his entire life being shuffled from one foster home to the next. His grades sucked. Making friends? Out of the question thanks to his nervous breakdowns and unpredictable moods. Still, Vince thought when Maggie Atkins took him in, he might’ve finally found a place to get his life—and his issues— in order. But then Maggie keels over from a heart attack. Vince is homeless, alone, and the inheritance money isn’t going to last long. A year ago, Vince watched a girl leap to her death off a bridge, and now he’s starting to think she had the right idea.

Vince stumbles across a website forum geared toward people
considering suicide. There, he
meets others with the same debate regarding the pros and cons of death: Casper, battling cancer,’would rather off herself than slowly waste away. And there’s quiet, withdrawn Adam, who suspects if he died, his mom wouldn’t even notice. As they gravitate toward each other, Vince searches for a reason to live while coping without Maggie’s guidance, coming to terms with Casper’s imminent death, and falling in love with a boy who doesn’t plan on sticking around.

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Don’t ask me if I liked the book, because i loved it!

First things first. The cover caught my attention. I liked it. It reminds me of one of my favorites anime character, ‘L’ from Death Note.

Anyway, Suicide Watch. That book. That book breaks my heart. God, I’m being emotional again. Don’t do this to me.

Peraonally, the story really touched my heart. Its very heartwarming. Like i want to spend the whole day crying in my room and reminisce. The book has great characters. Casper. Adam. Vincent.  They are this kind of characters that would leave marks in your heart. And you are definitely gonna love and miss them.

And when I already finished the book, the feelings were overwhelming. I didn’t know what to feel. Whether to be sad or happy. Nevertheless, it was a good ending.

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