Quick Review: The Waste Lands by Stephen King

The Waste LandsThe Waste Lands by Stephen King

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have issues reading this book:
1) Violence against women (Suze’s rape scene)
2) Violence against children (Jake’s bruises)
3) Violence against animals (Oy’s demise)
You’d think I enjoyed violence against men but what can I do when the 3 out of 4 of the main characters are male? lol

Stephen King himself said that he was sorry there had been so many loopholes in the book but I was just wondering if Eddie’s carving skills would be of use in the next books (yep, I’m hitting my own head against the wall). Perhaps it had been necessary that it was one of his hidden talents but it later on didn’t do anything to the story, did it… Perhaps it was just an excuse to bring Jake into mid-world and have his wife be raped by a demon…

Saving Jake from the Tick-Tock Man and confronting air-head (if he had any head) Blaine were among my favorite Gunslinger parts.


View all my reviews


Quick Review: The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower #1), Stephen King

The Gunslinger (The Dark Tower, #1)The Gunslinger by Stephen King

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I was supposed to say a number of things about the book but Mr Stephen King himself preempted me with the accompanying ‘Afterword’ so there is nothing left for me to do but read the remaining books to know more. It’s a fast-paced work– for a novel that took twelve years to complete, that says something about his talent in storytelling. Every paragraph matters; every character is connected to the main story and it makes me wonder what had happened to Cuthbert and Jamie. Then again, that is a different story.

My favorite line?
The face was that of a starving idiot.

View all my reviews

Quick Review: Dream Psychology, Sigmund Freud

Dream PsychologyDream Psychology by Sigmund Freud

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It certainly is an eye-opener. Considering the amount of time I trundled to finish the book, I can say it is not for those who are in search for a light-read psychology book. I only endeavored to finish this because of my inability to endure people who can only quote Sigmund Freud without bothering to read his works. It always pays to go back to the original context whence his famous sexual symbols originated.

Albeit I can’t consider myself a psychologist, a Freud expert, and a dream interpreter, at least, for now, I can pay more attention to my dreams and try to discover my repressed wishes through them.

There is still too much to learn from him and ‘things are always lost in translation’ so, perhaps, after finishing a couple of Jung’s and Rand’s works, I might go back to reading his other books.

View all my reviews

Quick review: A Modern Cinderella by Louisa May Alcott

A Modern CinderellaA Modern Cinderella by Louisa May Alcott

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

It was a good book, don’t get me wrong and Alcott still managed to capture my heart with her literary wit. Is it as memorable as Little Women , or Jo’s Boys ? No. The stories in the book reminded me of the characters in the aforementioned texts but that was it. Perhaps it was because there were a number of stories compiled in one book, but those didn’t move me nor care about the characters as much as when the kids and the teachers were together. All I realized was to be a Modern Cinderella, one has to be as loyal and hardworking as Nan, as bright and witty as Debbie, and as caring and pure as Nelly.

I also have to admit that Dora’s story was cute.

View all my reviews

Quick Review: American Gods by Neil Gaiman

American GodsAmerican Gods by Neil Gaiman

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Actual Rating 4.5
I’m still praying to gods and waiting for them to accept my sacrifice before I can make a substantial review. All I know is Shadow’s character has been developed quite well and how it ends does not justify it… or probably because I have missed something.
It is, however, a book I definitely will read again. There is something about Mr. Wednesday I love.

View all my reviews

REVIEW: The Secret Lives of INTJS by Anna Moss

The Secret Lives of INTJsThe Secret Lives of INTJs by Anna Moss

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I admit the secrecy of it all initially captured my attention. I’m still astounded by the fact that the secrets included within are not secrets at all.

The organization also needs to be improved and some parts of the work need to be hacked for consistency. The chapter about the difference between INTJs and INTPs should be put in the appendices (because the author has another book about INTPs) because her personal recount of somebody she cannot remember the name of but can recall features is hilarious to me. -_-

More importantly, I find that a secret shared to everyone defies the very definition of secret.

I will try to come up with a more substantial review when I feel the need to do so.

View all my reviews

Review: The Last Ever After

 Presidential Rating: awardsawardsawardsawards

Date Read: 19 August 2016

Favorite character: Hester, Anadil, Dot (the conven basically) and Lady Lesso… Can you see a pattern here?


In the epic next chapter of Soman Chainani’s New York Times bestselling series, The School for Good and Evil, everything old is new again as Sophie and Agatha fight the past as well as the present to find the perfect end to their story.

As A World Without Princes closed, the end was written and former best friends Sophie and Agatha went their separate ways. Agatha was whisked back to Gavaldon with Tedros and Sophie stayed behind with the beautiful young School Master.

But as they settle into their new lives, their story begs to be re-written, and this time, theirs isn’t the only one. With the girls apart, Evil has taken over and the villains of the past have come back to change their tales and turn the world of Good and Evil upside down.

Readers around the world are eagerly awaiting the third book in The School for Good and Evil series, The Last Ever After. This extraordinary new journey delivers more action, adventure, laughter, romance and fairy tale twists and turns than you could ever dream of!

Summary from Goodreads.


The concept for the Last Ever After is superb, make no doubt about it. Sophie and Agatha’s friendship once again has a different twist to it and this time, something deeper than what has been shown in the first book and established in the second book. Still however, I felt overwhelmed reading new information shoved into my head in the third book. It seemed to me as if all these notes and ideas were crammed in the last part instead of being evenly distributed in the entire series. Take for example, it is revealed (spoiler alert!) that Stephan actually has better affection toward Agatha but I could not recall it being mentioned in the first two books. Probably I have to read the books again and find hints here and there but as it is, I can’t afford to do that anymore (given my clamoring TBR list).

At last, Agatha and Tedro’s affection for each other has been justified in this book. It turns out it is not just the hormones of adolescence affecting them but something much deeper. I always need to remember that the series is all about 15-year-old kids trying their hands on friendship and love that last for ever after.

Goodbye Cinderella. To every sense of the word. For those who have read the novel, you know what I mean. For those who haven’t, prepare yourself for a completely different Cinderella, someone who’s too Good she is willing to trade places with her step-sisters, the kind you’ll hate so much you don’t want to read her name on a page but you’ll end up loving and missing at the end of a chapter.

I do like the little scenes between Lancelot and Guinevere. And although I will never love Merlin-and I might be the only one who doesn’t – I have learned to love his taciturnity and how he has managed to boost everyone’s confidence, not the Dumbledore kind but let’s not start talking about amazing wizards because I am certainly going to lose.

My biggest concern in this book is Sophie’s inconsistent language. There are times when she gives hifalutin speeches to the point I consider her a philosopher but there are also countless moments when I see her as a complete dunderhead.

Nonetheless, despite certain issues regarding consistency of characters, I have to say the series has been an easy read for me and the fact that it has given a different take on fairy tales is a plus.



Review: A World without Princes

Presidential Rating:  awardsawardsawards

Date Read: 12 August 2016

President’s Favorite Characters: Hester, Anadil


 After saving themselves and their fellow students from a life pitched against one another, Sophie and Agatha are back home again, living happily ever after. But life isn’t exactly a fairytale. When Agatha secretly wishes she’d chosen a different happy ending with Prince Tedros, the gates to the School for Good and Evil open once again. But Good and Evil are no longer enemies and Princes and Princesses may not be what they seem, as new bonds form and old ones shatter.

Summary from Goodreads


I am the kind of person who usually likes the second novel more than the first and it honestly sucks that I didn’t enjoy reading A World without Princes as much as The School for Good and Evil.

In this installment, I finally understand why Agatha has to choose Sophie and why it has been so important to leave Tedros behind as this serves as the foundation of the second book.

I still don’t believe that it is true love between Tedros and Agatha though. Probably it is just their hormones that kept them looking for each other in the first chapters of the story (teenagers!). Tedros has the maturity of an ant and I couldn’t believe that other hero students follow him, only to shove him aside in the middle of the book. Not against homosexual relationship of any sort, I am quite open to Tedros kissing ‘Philip’ in the novel but there is something about the boy, Tedros, that irritates me. Is it his innocence, the tendency of loving anybody who shows ultimate trust and sincerity to him? Or is it his stubbornness? What can I say about having too much expectation on a 15-year-old successor of King Arthur’s court?

What I don’t understand is the need for Tristan to be a girl. I’m not convinced that he has just decided to turn into the girl so he/she can return to the comforts of the Good castle. He somehow confesses his admiration for Tedros which for others may look like a love confession implying that Tristan might have been gay all along but then again it has not been established– or it may have been and I just missed it.

The reason behind Miss Sader’s blue butterflies and her distaste for men have been revealed. Still, I thought, disliking men must not be shown by looking like men, i.e. Beatrix cutting her hair short and other girls taking personal care for granted. I do understand Sophie honorable idea that embracing femininity means women must take good care of their appearance and appreciate what they have.

The saving glory of the book is the ending. A part of a trilogy, I understand that the book has to have a cliffhanger, in this case, Sophie ending with the Schoolmaster himself (sorry for the spoiler). This goes back to the characters’ consistency as I have mentioned here. I only ask myself whether it is age appropriate for a mother to ask her 15-year-old daughter to kiss her on the lips and her daughter falling for that trap. However, in a world where a kiss is the most powerful magic, it is better not to ask.

As regards my choice of characters, I’m particularly amazed by how Hester’s and Anadil’s personalities manage to be consistent- working for Good by remaining incredible selfish which is an Evil trait.

Review: The School for Good and Evil

Presidential Rating:awardsawardsawardsawards

Date Read: 8 August 2016

President’s Favorite Character: Hester

Summary :

The first kidnappings happened two hundred years before. Some years it was two boys taken, some years two girls, sometimes one of each. But if at first the choices seemed random, soon the pattern became clear. One was always beautiful and good, the child every parent wanted as their own. The other was homely and odd, an outcast from birth. An opposing pair, plucked from youth and spirited away.

This year, best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to discover where all the lost children go: the fabled School for Good & Evil, where ordinary boys and girls are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. As the most beautiful girl in Gavaldon, Sophie has dreamed of being kidnapped into an enchanted world her whole life. With her pink dresses, glass slippers, and devotion to good deeds, she knows she’ll earn top marks at the School for Good and graduate a storybook princess. Meanwhile Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone, seems a natural fit for the School for Evil.

But when the two girls are swept into the Endless Woods, they find their fortunes reversed—Sophie’s dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School For Good, thrust amongst handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are…?

The School for Good & Evil is an epic journey into a dazzling new world, where the only way out of a fairy tale is to live through one.


It’s a different kind of fairy tale, a series that breaks every notion of happy-ever-afters we have gotten accustomed to reading. Anything is possible: girl kissing another girl, a boy kissing another boy, princess making friends with a witch. Just when you thought you have an idea of who’s going with who, the novel dives into a whole new twist, encouraging you to turn to the next page until you finish it. Yes, the series is gripping.

In the first installment of the series, the prince does not get the chance to kiss his princess and friendship evidently overpowers the distinction between Good and Evil. There is charm, humor, and wit in the story that can send anybody to fits of laughter–or giggles– wherever they are reading and this happened to me when I was in a public transportation, earning myself curious and even scandalized stares from other passengers.

What I like about this first book is how realistic the personalities of the main characters are. I can relate to Agatha when she gets frustrated with a self-absorbed and self-professed-epitome-of-goodness Sophie. Then again, I understand how Sophie gets too involved in what is happening in her own life to care about her friend. Hester, on the other hand, although is not a main character in the story, is my favorite owing to the consistency of her character.

Apart from the characters, I have immensely enjoyed my ‘stay’ in The School of Good and Evil, not that similar to living in Middle Earth nor getting educated in Hogwarts, but still a great experience. I can imagine staying in the library with the good old tortoise or having a friendly banter with my reflection on the bridge. I can also see myself seeing the deans of Good and Evil, Professor Dovey and Lady Lasso in their office. Truth be told, I want to see Augustus Sader’s paintings and see the Master himself.

The first novel of a series should be able to set the standards and encourage readers to continue to the installments and I’m quite happy that this book has delivered to my expectations.

Re: Book Reviews- still relevant?

Disclaimer: I came upon a well written rant blog about book reviews becoming irrelevant – which was actually a great discussion question posted by TheDayDreamingBookworm. Visit it here.


I do read reviews from time to time BUT I often read them AFTER I finish reviewing a book. Let’s just say, I don’t want to let other reviewers influence how I react on a novel –this on the other hand is considered a cliche by many but then that doesn’t stop them from reading other blogs, does it? In my case, just as much as I hate it when people speak and interpret things in the movie theater, I detest the buzzing — and sometimes annoying– commentaries of book reviewers in my head, blocking the author’s [and the book’s] voice which after all IS what I have to review.


Continue reading