It’s Monday! What are you reading? [1]

It’s Monday!  What Are You Reading is where we share what we read this past week, what we hope to read this week…. and anything in between!  D  This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from!




It’s already Tuesday here in the Philippines but I still want to participate in this weekly meme. So here it goes!


gosh, this sequel is exhilirating! I am now a certified Maria V. Snyder fan. 😀 Read my review here.








I’ve been having good experiences with reading Debut YA Authors recently. After reading The Goddest Test by Aimee Carter, I knew i have to read Starcrossed too. Why? Well, i’m a Greek mythology lover!








i haven’t read any ghost-themed books in a while, so i hope this one’s good. i got my copy from NetGalley. 🙂








There are so many rave reviews about Perfect Chemistry. I guess it’s time to know what the ruckus is all about, right?

Not a bad lineup for  my TBR pile this week, huh? 😉






.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”


In My Mailbox [1]

Hosted by The Story Siren

Every week I’d share the books I received that week… ones I’d bought, or gotten at the library, and ones that I’d receive to review on the blog. That way I could mention titles that might not otherwise get some face-time on The Story Siren.

In My Mailbox is a great way for bloggers to socialize and network their blogs, it’s also a great way for bloggers to share upcoming releases! – excerpt from The Story Siren website


This is my first post under IMM so i’m excited! I don’t care that IMM of Story Siren will only be back this coming Sunday, I just need to share my loots for the past week. 😛

HB/PB Grabs

The Neighbor by Lisa Gardner – i’ve been collecting all of her books. and i got this HB copy for just P99!

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher – i’m intrigued with the story.

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead – about time i join the VA craze! i read the Kindle sample and i liked it.

The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner – sad to say that i’m yet to buy The Queen of Attolia this week (had it transferred to the Fully Booked branch nearest to my office)

A Perfect Spy by John Le Carre and The Unlikely Spy by Daniel Silva – time to catch up with my espionage novels!

NetGalley Grabs









Ebook Grabs










So who’s excited to read all these books, huh? Ooh, i am! i am!

Have you read some of them? Which do you recommend i read first? 🙂



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

Book Review: Insider #2: Outside In by Maria V. Snyder

Rating: StarStarStarStarStar

Me? A Leader? Okay, I did prove that there’s more to Inside than we knew. That a whole world exists beyond this cube we live in. And finding that led to a major rebellion – between worker scrubs like me and the snobby uppers who rule our world. Make that ruled. Because of me, we’re free. I thought that meant I was off the hook, and could go off on my own again – while still touching base with Riley, of course. He’s the one upper I think I can trust. But then we learned that there’s outside and then there is Outside. And something from Outside wants In.

(Insider #2)

Check out my review of Inside Out (Insider#1) here.

Holy sh*t! Excuse my french.

i never thought this series can’t get any better! i was sucked in and became a citizen of Inside. although i loved Inside Out more, Outside In is still commendable for a dystopian/sci-fi read.

Trella never wanted to be leader in the first place. When she led the rebellion again the Travas, she only wanted out of the Lowers. That and the promise he made to Cogon. But refusing the responsibility led to more troubles and dire consequences. Not to mention someone from Outside wants In.

Trella’s world is addicting. from quadrants to sectors, from scrubs to uppers, from barracks to the Expanse. not once did it fail to wow me. The story is still solid, fast-paced, but with all the going around in the Inside, i sometimes felt lost in it. my imagination literally ran away from me before i comprehend what the scenes were like.

In the beginning, Trella lost her mojo as Queen of the Pipes. She’s still a tough heroine, but her fear of rejection (with the consequences of decisions made by a leader) and fear of commitment (with Riley) kinda chink her armor a bit. I liked that Riley is helping her see Lamont in a motherly light. I liked that when Riley hang her out to dry, she realized her mistakes immediately. I liked the most is her cunning and her brilliance to plot an attack.

I wish she did some damage to Sloan (ugh. i hate that guy.) and send him out to Outer Space.

Riley gets sexy by the minute! I forgot how he is efficient with knives so i was amazed how protective he was of Trella. He can kill and i love that!

The Outsiders – man, they freak me out. Not with their appearances, but with their ideals and actions. i don’t want to mess with them! i’m a coward so yes, i will side with them (if ever they are the winning side lol).

All the time that i was reading this book, i don’t know who to trust. Bubba Boom? Jacy? Anne-Jade (i think you got what you deserve in the end, but i mourned for you)? Hank? Crap, who should I (and Trella) side with?

I was frustratingly mystified! i guess that made the author an excellent writer to illicit such reaction from me. 😛



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

Book Review: Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

Rating: StarStarStar

In the shadows of the night in Caldwell, New York, there’s a deadly turf war going war going on between vampires and their slayers. There exists a secret band of brothers like no other-six vampire warriors, defenders of their race. Yet none of them relishes killing their enemies more than Wrath, the leader of the Black Dagger Brotherhood…

The only purebred vampire left on the planet, Wrath has a score to settle with the slayers who murdered his parents centuries ago. But when one of his most trusted fighters is killed – orphaning a half-breed daughter unaware of her heritage or her fate – Wrath must usher the beautiful female into the world of the undead…

Racked by a restlessness in her body that wasn’t there, Beth Randall is helpless against the dangerously sexy man who comes at night with shadows in his eyes. His tales of brotherhood and blood frighten her. But his touch ignites a dawning hunger that threatens to consume them both….

(Black Dagger Brotherhood #1)

I’m not crazy over Dark Lover but i liked it enough to continue the series.

The idea of male vampires feeding off female vampires (and vice versa) is new to me, but very effective for my taste. i had enough of those bloodsucking vamps whose only intent are to hunt humans.

Wrath is considered the King of Vampires, having the pure blood of a true vamp. Beth is a half-human, half-vamp who unknowingly is nearing her transition to vampirism. Wrath doesn’t want to help Darius (Beth’s vamp dad) because of reasons of his own but he felt guilty over Darius’ death so he had no choice but to take Beth in. From there, Beth was thrown into the middle of a world that she never would’ve imagined exists.

The 2nd time Wrath and Beth met was almost laughable. well, a person visits you in the middle of the night, then suddenly you have this urge to have sex with him?!?! i don’t blame Beth, maybe Rhage is that gorgeous? or maybe it’s the vamp thing in her that made their relationship that charged with lust.

After Beth transitioned, the story kinda scattered. What happens now that she has successfully embraced her vamp heritage? and she transitioned in the middle of the book. that left me hanging, the story was almost finished, but what could the author possibly fill in the next half of the book?… i dunno. i just felt lost after the conflict of the story was resolved (Beth’s transition).

Still, i love the concept of the Black Dagger Brotherhood. Their names were fancy derivatives of negative emotions: Wrath, Rhage, Vishous, Phury, Zhadist. it was fun. and then there’s the coined terms shellan (feed/fuck buddy), leelan (beloved wife), hellan (beloved husband). These things made me liked the book.

My fave part: the bonding (marriage) rites of Wrath and Beth. The ceremony includes an affliction of pain to Wrath over and over again to remind him of his commitment and love to Beth. i kinda love it!

but Wrath’s and Beth’s love story is simple, nothing new there.

i wanna know about Rhage and Zhadist! they are far more interesting (i think) than Wrath.

that’s why i will add the Black Dagger Brotherhood series on my TBR series pile. 😀



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

Book Review: Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist by Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

Rating: StarStarStarStarStar

So you’re a guy; you’re at a band show and your ex, the girl who dumped you, walks in with the new guy. Looking for a safe exit, you ask the girl you happen to sitting with to be your girlfriend for five minutes . You’re a girl; you’re at a get-together and your least favorite female strolls in. The stranger sitting next to you asks you to be his five-minute date. So what do you? You lock lips . Nick and Norah’s instant connect begins a roller-coaster “first date” that takes them through Manhattan and into themselves.


Nick & Norah made me want to fall in love. *sigh*

The fact that i finished it in less than 4 hours is proof that i cannot, could not, would not put it down. Just like that, i went from late-20’s mom to a 17-year-old girl who squealed and mushed over Norah’s predicaments in just one night!

So Nick & Norah hooked up in the most inconvenient (yet realistic) circumstances. What is supposed to be another night of sulking over his ex (for Nick) and another night of dragging a drunken best friend going home (for Norah) turned out to be one of the funniest, most romantic and unforgettable one-night-stands of their lives. And i’m not talking about sex (well, almost). *wink*

i didn’t mind the constant profanity. in fact, it fit right into the concept of bands, drinks and nightlife.

i love nick. i love norah. they are two opposites that really got lucky into meeting someone that just might be the right one for him/her.

ok, i’m rambling. but before i cut this short, lemme say that the Marriott scene is one of the hottest and funniest ones i’ve ever read. 😀

simply put, if you want a quick read that has a MAJOR swoon factor, read this.



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

Elated: Going gaga over Dystopian Domination’s Inside Out Giveaway


This giveaway is hosted by Kai of Amaterasu Reads.

Inside Out by Maria V. Snyder is one of my favorite dystopian books. and it’s only book 1 in the Insider Series.

want to know why? Read my review here.

I ony have an ebook copy so i’m dying to have a printed one, and signed no less!

Here’s to praying that the dystopian goddess will grant my wish. 😉

Back me up, Trella, why don’t you?



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

Book Review: Ultraviolet by R.J. Anderson

Rating: StarStarStarStar

Once upon a time there was a girl who was special.

This is not her story.

Unless you count the part where I killed her.

Sixteen-year-old Alison has been sectioned in a mental institute for teens, having murdered the most perfect and popular girl at school. But the case is a mystery: no body has been found, and Alison’s condition is proving difficult to diagnose. Alison herself can’t explain what happened: one minute she was fighting with Tori — the next she disintegrated. Into nothing. But that’s impossible. Right?

***** ***** *****

This is SO FAR OUT!

I was sure i won’t like this book, what with the negative reviews i’ve read and the setting is a mental institution (creepy place, i’m constantly reminded of the movie Shutter Island). but the synopsis is intriguing and even though i don’t want to take a chance, i did.

and i’m so glad i read it! because this is more than just a murder mystery. it’s like i’m running in a tunnel with the light fading out. i need to follow the light because i don’t wanna be stuck in the dark. i don’t care where the little light will take me, i just know i have to follow it!

The story is a little strange here and there, a mash-up of medical conditions and out-of-this-world collisions, a bombardment of scare, despair, and yes, hope. 🙂 I like strange every now and then.

Alison tries very hard not to be insane but it is difficult when your own mother enters you to a mental facility for treatment. when your own actions doesn’t make sense. when your senses doesn’t not fit normal. What started out as a confusion over Tori’s disappearance turned out to be the clarity and calm for Alison’s mind and body.

I neither liked nor disliked Alison. It’s jsut that she’s crazy, and i’m not. haha! ok, scratch that. she’s just an ok character. i felt no affiliation with her.

Now Tori i admire! A gorgeous girl who tinkers on things? A picture-perfect girl who doesn’t give up no matter how a bleak a situation is? yes, that’s Tori. the only think i didn’t like was how she acted after she and Alison returned to their homes. it seems she’s not strong enough to face everything that’s happened and everyone who welcomed her back.

Faraday – i feel for you, man. just like Alison, i really hope i’ll see you again. He’s a nice guy, too perfect but still likeable.

Reading Ultraviolet is one nerve-wracking experience, reality-wise and otherworldly-wise. It is just a surprising book that regardless of how much i liked it, i will not read it again. *goosebumps* Yes, i’m a coward.

Are you ready to take on Alison and her world? well then, be ready to step in the twilight zone. 😉



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

ArmchairBEA: Interview with Tina of One More Page

Networking, Armchair BEA style!

After thinking a lot if i want to join this discussion, I finally found the courage to ask fellow Filipino book blogger for an interview. Shy that I am (i know, that’s hard to believe), i just posed five questions for her to answer.

See Tina‘s responses below:





1. if are not book blogging, what do you do?

My day job consists of updating websites for a certain multinational company. It sounds boring, but I’ve been playing with websites since high school, so it’s almost like breathing already. Wait, that kind of sounds boring. LOL. Anyway, I have a very good day job, so that pretty much pays for my book hoarding. Other than that, I go and update my personal blog every now and then (, and also write fiction when I can. When I’m not in front of a computer or a book, I like going out with my friends, running and dancing (even if I am very doubtful if dancing likes me back :P).

2. if there’s an author you love, which book of his/hers would you have love to have written yourself?
Oh hm. I would love to claim onwership to Frank E. Peretti’s THIS PRESENT DARKNESS. It’s one of my favorite books and I love how vivid it was in portraying angels and devils and prayers and such. Another one I’d love to claim is JELLICOE ROAD by Melina Marchetta. Such an amazing book that I can’t help but bow down to her writing powers.

3. define a perfect moment for reading.
Me, a good book, a cold drink, sunshine and the beach. Or, I wouldn’t mind curling up on my bed with light rain in the background and a cup of coffee. 😀

4. what is the most romantic book you have ever read (it doesn’t have to a romance novel)?
Because I recently reread it, THE TRUTH ABOUT FOREVER by Sarah Dessen. I loved how the author built the romance there — the conversations, the relationships, the tension, and it all led to a very satisfying ending. 🙂 That, and Wes Baker is my favorite Dessen boy.

5. what book represents your life right now?
Hmm, this is hard. But I think I’ll go for HAVAH: THE STORY OF EVE by Tosca Lee. This is a retelling of Eve’s story based on the book of Genesis and other accounts. It’s not an easy book to read, but it’s one book I read this year that really spoke to my heart and I was able to identify a lot with the author’s reflection of Eve in the book. 🙂

Want to learn more about Tina? Then, read on!

Tina is 25, and she’s been reading ever since she borrowed her first Sweet Valley Kids book. She’s a geek, a striving writer, a programmer/debugger who likes to dance and run and eat. She squees over nice pens, notebooks, stars, (giant) sunflowers, cats, dogs and sunny days. Tina loves reading all kinds of books, but she is partial to contemporary YA, chick lit and fantasy. She owns a personal blog at, and a book blog (because she talks about books a bit too much) at One More Page (

I admit this is fun! Thank you Tina, for this brief but revealing (if not for you, then for me!) interview. Here’s to Filipino book bloggers… cheers!



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”

ArmchairBEA: I’m Maria and I’m an addict

I know this Armchair BEA introduction is too late, but i want to do it anyway.

I started reading books during my sophomore year in high school. I frequently visits the library for studying but one day i glimpsed a shelf of Nancy Drew Hardcover series. i borrowed one overnight. that’t where my addiciton began. i borrowed all those books and finished it one night at a time.

my first favorite genre: Mystery & Suspense (in Nancy’s case, Espionage)

I moved on to reading Sweet Valley books (from middle grade, high school and college settings), Love Stories series and started my book collection.

I barely had time (and money) during college to read. that is when i promised myself: when i begin to work and earn some cash, i will buy a book every payday.

and i did. pure bliss. until my room was cramped with books. on the floor. on the closet. on the shelf. they are everywhere. and for a country that is prone to typhoons and floods, i need to stack them up high or sell those that are not worth collecting.

books are my sleeping pills. most of the time my parents found me sleeping with a book in my hand. or in my face, covering it.

my reading habit is this: i can read anywhere. anyhow. anytime.

waiting for the bus to leave. waiting for the elevator to open. if i’m early for work. lunch time. while riding the MRT train. waiting for the van to fill up with passengers. while the van is moving on the highway. and yes, while i’m in the john, i read. so what? i simply don’t want to waste my time just by being idle.

reading The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa while lounging at Shangri-la Mactan

my affair with my Kindle is no secret. it is my most beloved gadget of all time. i ignored my digicam. i gave away my ipod. Kindle is that one thing i never left home without.

bits and pieces:

> i’m into YA Fiction, particularly dystopian genre.

> with Kindle, i now read ebooks more than prints. but i still buy hardcover and paperback books that are worth collecting.

> i’m a completist. no matter how terrible a book series turned out to be, i still read it. that is the OC in me.

> my favorite authors are Lloyd Alexander, Lisa Gardner, Suzanne Collins, Susan Elizabeth Phillips, Rick Riordan and Jude Deveraux, to name a few.

so, do i love books? 😉



.: maria :.

“giving up is the ultimate tragedy.”