Book Review: What I Didn't Say


Title: What I Didn't Say
Author: Keary Taylor
Published: April 30, 2012
Publisher: Createspace
Format: PDF, from Netgalley
Pages: 184
Type: Stand-alone
Bookshelves: YA Books, Contemporary, Inspirational
Read: July 20-22, 2012

What can I say?

What I Didn't Say is a heart-warming and very inspiring story.

It's written in the POV of Jake Hayes, a graduating high school student who lost his ability to speak after a car accident. Jake lives with his parents and six siblings in the very peaceful island of Orcas. It's a small island where everyone lives together as one big family. There, nobody is stranger.

Jake is a football player who flies airplanes. Cool, isn't he? He plans to join the air force shortly after graduation. However, this cool football player pilot loses his senses every time he's with Samantha, the love of his life. Four years had passed, yet he still hasn't confessed his love for her. One night, Jake willfully disobeys his mother and get drunk with his friends. With all the adrenaline, Jake gets the courage to confess his love for Sam. Without second thoughts, Jake and his friends rush to Sam's house. They aren't any near when they almost ran into a deer. The truck swerves off the road until it crashes into a T-post that breaks right into Jake's neck. 

The accident leaves him mute and broken. He can no longer speak, fly planes, and worst of all, he can no longer "say" how much he loves Samantha. Jake is emotionally devastated until Sam came and helps him get back to his feet. Sam's life makes him realize that happiness isn't about how much he has or what he has, but it's all about perspective. He may have lost his voice, but he didn't lose the people who loves him--his family, Samantha, and the rest of the island. 

Sam, on the other hand, also faces the hurdles of her life, but she faces it with full courage and determination to overcome. 

I may have given it a rating of 3, but it's definitely worth the read. I guess it's my fault since I expected too much, but I believe this book will capture your heart. Taylor manages to expose different grave situations in life and yet skillfully reveals to us that despite hardships and difficulties, life is still beautiful. 

Enjoy reading! :) God bless you! :)

"I didn’t think I’d ever met a person who had so little, but was so happy at the same time. I had never heard him complain; never saw his face without the hints of a smile." -Jake Hayes

Read review on Goodreads! :) 

No@blogger NO MORE! :D

Hi guys! :D I'm happy to the infinite power! =) Guess what?

Party! Party! Party! Party! Party! Party! Party!

BEFORE, my blog looks like this:

But THANKS to my good friends,
my blog is now no@blogger free! :D

H. A. P. P. Y. : )
Thank You Lord Jesus :)

No@blogger Test.

Please please please. I hope it works.

UPDATE! What Kills Me Sequel

Surprise! Surprise! XD

I just got a confirmation from Ms. Wynne Channing this morning. Guess what! It's confirmed!!! She's now writing a sequel for What Kills Me! :D Yeeepee!

To those who haven't read Book 1, go ahead and log in to Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or Smashwords! You're missing a lot of action men.

If you're still not convinced, please read my book review for What Kills Me (click me). :)

Enjoy reading! God bless you!

Please help me: no@blogger issue

Hi guys! :) Can I ask you a huge favor? I'm having trouble with my blog. :( Please help me fix the no@blogger issue. :(

I've read a lot of blog posts on how to fix the no@blogger-comment issue. The solution is actually easy! I tried it a gazillion times, but it's still not working. :'( Sob. Sob. :'( This is how my blog looks like before:


After reading some solutions about it, I checked the box in the "Edit Profile" section and saved it.

After a couple of days, I was hoping that it'll be okay so I published another post and I found out that I'm still a no@blogger. :( I checked my mail and it says the same. :( 

Can you help me fix it? :) Pleeeeaaaase? :D I tried asking help from Blogger Help Forum, but no one replies. I'm sorry for disturbing you all. But thanks a lot for helping me! :) You're the best! :D God bless us all! :)

Book Review: What Kills Me


Title: What Kills Me
Author: Wynne Channing
Published: June 6, 2012
Publisher: Jet & Jack Press
Format: Ebook
Pages: 254
Type: Stand-alone
Bookshelves: YA Books, Paranormal Romance
Read: July 16-17, 2012

What can I say?

Brilliant! Thrilling! Breathtaking!

Honestly, these are understatements. They don't at all give justice to this noteworthy piece of literature! Let's use them nonetheless, for lack of a better term. 

When I was reading through its first chapters, I was surprised that it was Twilight-ish. To tell you frankly, I was disappointed--not that I didn't like Twilight (I actually did), but c'mon, we're looking for originality here. 

As with Twilight vampires, vampires here also drink blood (What was I thinking? Of course they do); their senses are intensified; they are completely destroyed through decapitation; and they are also affected by the sunlight, but that's where all the similarities end. It turns out Wynne Channing has a whole lot of BOLD, BRILLIANT, and BREATHTAKING ideas for us! 

One is Axelia (a.k.a. Zee). She's a seventeen-year-old Canadian who went to study in Rome only to never return home again. Poor Zee. The first time she violates a command she encounters death. She falls into a deep sacred well filled with the Ancients' blood--the first and the most powerful vampires--and dies. But Zee's existence doesn't stop there. When she wakes up, she's a beautiful, flawless, and powerful VAMPIRE. She's probably even more powerful than expected because the Ancients' blood runs through her veins. Her rebirth is unacceptable and unwanted, causing the Empress to summon the best of her army to go after her and all those who try to help her. They believe that she's the one in the prophecy: a vampire, born from unconventional means, will restore order by killing the entire vampire race. Seriously? The Monarchy fears this and wants Zee dead before she causes harm to the vampire race. Those who loved The Faeriewalker Series will love this just as much because it'll remind you of the Seelie and Unseelie Queens.

Zee escapes the Monarchy and finds refuge in the family of Noel, Lucas, and Jerome. Noel is such a lovely father, rich with love and virtue. The same virtues are passed on to his son, Lucas, who'll do everything he can to protect Zee. Others like Samira, Kinman, Nuwa, Uther, Lettie, and other more will also try to protect her against the wrath of the Monarchy, but they all have to pay the price. Will they stand against the strength and skill of the Monarchy's army? Will they survive? If the prophecy is true, will Zee exterminate the entire vampire race?

This slashing-beheading-burning-action-filled fiction will keep your hands and eyes gripped on your e-readers because you'll never want to miss what'll happen next! :) Is there a sequel? No news so far, but there should definitely be one! :]

Major Lessons Learned:

1. Don't let apathy destroy a country. 
Have you noticed that nowadays people become more and more apathetic towards the surroundings? A lady's picking up her fallen groceries and other people will simply pass through her as if she doesn't need help. There are times when an old lady or a pregnant woman enters a train, but no one stands and offer their sit. Other people tend to be blind about the crime they see. There are also instances that people throw their garbage on the streets because it's not their street. In every circumstance, people grow more and more apathetic and it's scary. 

I learned this from Zee and Noel. They risk their lives for people they hardly know not because they'll get any benefit from it, but they know that it is right and it is good. Remember that as long as we're able to help, let's go out and make a difference! :)

2. "Courage, my child, is not the absence of fear. It’s the triumph over fear. It’s how you handle yourself in these times, and these times are not for the weak of heart." -Nuwa
The quotation is self-explanatory. Whenever you face a mountain of problems, take heart. Muster all the courage and strength that you have and believe that God makes everything beautiful in His time. The world won't offer "sugar, spice, and everything nice." You have to be brave to face the world, but you can't do it alone. Surrender your fears to God and He will lead you every step of your journey in life. :)

3. You don't have to be dead (or a vampire) in order to see the beauty of God's Creation. God has given us the senses and intellect to behold the beauty before us. Appreciate everything around you before it's too late.
"wished I had my camera; there was so much life to capture. I wanted to touch everything."
"At least I had a life. I had a family. I was going to go to university and get married."

When Zee becomes a vampire, she admires everything she sees--people, nature, life--and hopes that she might experience them again. Don't wait until it's too late. Love your family. Love your friends. Love yourself. That's right. God has given us 365 days a year, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to marvel upon the beauty of God's Creation. Have you thank God for your life? your family? your friends? Thank God for every little or big blessing you have right now. Cherish them. Treasure them.

Enjoy reading! :) God bless you! ;)

laurice-with-love <3

Find this review on Goodreads!:)

LIT101: Notes on Canto IV (Inferno)

Do you still remember our Inferno Discussion? I'll now post the thoughts and notes I have regarding Canto IV from Dante Alighieri's Inferno. Please Click Here to refer you to the first thread of this discussion. :)

"For these defects, and for no other evil, we now are lost and punished just with this: we have no hope and yet we live in longing." IV, 40-42
Are these people to be blamed if they lived in a society that believes in a heaven that is made up of earthly glory? 

Canto IV*

The kindly master said: "Do you not ask
who are these spirits whom you see before you?
I'd have you know, before you go ahead,
they did not sin; and yet, though they have merits,
that's not enough, because they lacked baptism,
the portal of the faith that you embrace.
And if they lived before Christianity,
they did not worship God in fitting ways;
and of such spirits I myself am one.
For these defects, and for no other evil,
we now are lost and punished just with this:
we have no hope and yet we live in longing."

*This version of the text is taken from Allen Mandelbaum's translation (2004) of Dante Alighieri's Inferno.


These spirits in Limbo did not sin. They even received great honor and merits when they were alive, yet their achievements on earth are not enough. Because of that, they are now being punished in hell with no hope and with longing. You may ask:
  • How could they be in hell if they didn't sin? 
  • Could they be faulted for the culture they had--a pagan culture? (Remember: these spirits were born before Christianity
  • And what did Dante mean by "we have no hope and yet we live in longing?" 
  • Is that even a punishment?

Okay guys, let's go through this together! :) Let's take it little by little :)

Have you ever experienced feeling empty? That there's something within you that longs for something, though you don't what it is? I bet you know I what I mean. That was the same experience the spirits had when they still alive. They felt there was no contentment; that there was something missing in their lives. If you have that kind of longing and you are faced before a breathtaking beauty, what would you do? I guess you'll grab that beautiful object before you and marvel at it for who knows until when. Let me give a concrete example. Let's say you are sitting on the most expensive couch and then you realize that you are not happy. You begin to reflect that you are not satisfied. Can you believe that? You are sitting on the most expensive couch in the world and you are not satisfied? It's true. It happens. Then your friend invites you to a party. You go to the party and have the time of your life! After dancing from night till morning, you are exhausted. Then all the excitement and adrenaline begin to subside and you're left unsatisfied once again. Have you had the same experience? I believe all of us had. That constant feeling of being unsatisfied is what we can call "Sehnsucht.It's a German term that doesn't have an English counterpart, but it's near "constant longing, ardent yearning, or intense craving." These English terms do not, however, grasp the true meaning of Sehnsucht. But it's close. That's what we and the spirits experience. Whatever beauty, achievement, or honor we get, there's always a feeling of dissatisfaction. There's always a desire to want more because what we have in our hands don't satisfy us. That's what Dante meant by "we live in longing."

But what did he mean by "we have no hope?"

The spirits in hell at Canto IV experienced the same Sehnsucht that we all are experiencing now, but they lost hope. They settled for what they had and believed that their longing could never be satisfied. If we'll look into their culture before Christianity, honor is everything they desired. They believed that it could give them a sense of fulfillment and satisfaction. That's why they captured cities, collected booties, and overthrew kingdoms. But in every victory and honor they got, they knew they weren't still fulfilled. However, they chose to get rid of whatever hope they had and simply settled to the kind of living that they knew won't ever satisfy their longings. That's what Dante meant by "we have no hope."

Is it a punishment?

Oh yes. Try believing that there's nothing that could ever give you peace, fulfillment, and satisfaction. I'm sure it'll torment you because Sehnsucht will never leave you until it is satisfied. Dante is trying to tell his readers that human beings are capable of desiring more, but he also makes a point that earthly glory nor material things can fulfill this intense desire. 

Don't settle for these things. Don't do the same mistakes that the spirits in hell did. Don't settle for the things that the world gives. Nourish your spiritual life.

Please feel free to share your thoughts and comments! :D

Book Review: The Moon Dwellers


Title: The Moon Dwellers
Author: David Estes
Published: June 30, 2012
Publisher: Smashwords Edition, License Note
Format: Ebook
Pages: 391
Type: Series, Dwellers Saga #1
Bookshelves: YA Books, Dystopia
Read: July 7-8, 2012

What can I say?

An epic experience for a surprisingly epic book! 

Remember my epic experience with Barnes & Noble? Yeah, totally epic fail! Anyway, I was beyond excited when I got a chance to review this book for free! Unfortunately, I don't have the credit card that Barnes&Noble requires so I wasn't able to redeem this interesting free dystopian e-book. :( But then, God's little blessing came! :) Thanks to David Estes--who did everything in his power to fix things up--I now have a copy of this awesome dystopian book!

I read this book for two days and I ended up fighting my closing eyelids at four in the morning to finish this action-packed novel! It is that good! The varying tones of the characters are also entertaining! I mean, seldom will you encounter a really good book with characters of distinct voices! I bet you'll enjoy that in The Moon Dwellers! And that joy wouldn't be complete without the not-just-likable-but-looovable charactersAdele. Tristan. Roc. (Oh, you'll love Tristan and Roc! Such a funny tandem!) Tawni. Cole. El. <3 <3 <3 
Each of them carry a story. Each story, a lesson. 

Okay, enough of the babbling. Let's move on to the story. Well, you pretty much read the summary on Goodreads, but let me give my own version ;)

Adele (BTW her name suits her) is not your ordinary heroine. She's gorgeous, tough, courageous, wise, family-oriented, and character-driven! When her parents are taken by the Enforcers and her younger sister is sent out to the orphanage, Adele is thrown in jail for the rest of her life. As part of her daily routine at the Pen (the jail), she sits across the fence that overlooks her hometown. One time, everything seems to fall in its place when her eyes lock with Tristan's, the President's eldest son. Soon they'll have this ineffable yearning to be with each other and to fulfill what they're called to do; such a strong yearning that outdares even the harshest of all sufferings and the most horrid of deaths in the Tri-Realms.

As soon as Adele and her friends, Tawni and Cole, escape the Pen to save Adele's family, Tristan, together with his bestfriend Roc, leaves the comfort of his father's palace to look for Adele and to carry out the noble task they have yet to understand.

Will Adele be able to save her family? Are they still alive? Will Tristan and Adele ever meet? What will happen to the Tri-Realms if the President learns that three prisoners escaped and that his son defied him?
Answer: Ha! :) Check it out. ;)

Major Lessons Learned:

1. Value your family because they will never leave you even at your darkest times. 

I got this from Adele. She really was brought up well even with their family's condition. We'll see that though her family is taken by the Enforcers, she'll do everything that she can to save them. She'll do everything even if it costs her life and personal joy. We'll also see that the same thing applies to her family. Though they're in pain and suffering, they never lost their hope and trust for each other. Their support and love remain intact despite the catastrophes that try to break them apart.

2. Each one of us has the will to resist the evil that is being imposed upon us.

This is very true to Tristan and Tawni. They both have parents who are agents of evil, yet they try to step up and resist the evil. It doesn't mean that because one person pushes you to do evil things, you have to do it. NO! You have the free will to overthrow this temptation and fight for the good!

The Moon Dwellers will surely captivate you even in the early few chapters! I also find the use of two POVs very effective because each POV ends with a cliffhanger and it'll make you crave for more! =) My only problem was the ending. Seriously, they just met and it'll end like that way? I'm torn. But I guess, that makes me even more desperate to read Book 2! :) I'm just hoping it isn't infected with the second book syndrome!!! Heehee. I'll watch for Book 2 this September! :) Oh! Before I forget, it has such beautiful writing! It's well crafted and is really funny! =))

Enjoy reading! Godbless you!

laurice-with-love <3

Check this review at Goodreads!

LIT 101: Inferno

Below is a short excerpt from Canto IV (lines 25-42) to give you an overview of where we are, but I just want you to focus on the lines in bold. 

In this excerpt, Dante and Virgil (the master) are in the First Circle of Hell, Limbo. As said in the text, Limbo  is the place where virtuous souls that pre-existed Christianity and baptism are settled. It is also mentioned in lines 28-30 that there is an incomprehensible grief in Limbo that is manifested through the sighs of souls that echo through the depths of Limbo. If these souls, as mentioned in the text, had done nothing wrong in their earthly life and had even earned honor in their earthly existence, why are they in Limbo? What does these lines mean? 
"For these defects, and for no other evil,we now are lost and punished just with this:we have no hope and yet we live in longing." IV, 40-42
Are these people to be blamed if they lived in a society that believes in a heaven that is made up of earthly glory? What do you think guys? I'll just leave this post hanging for a while. Please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions. If you want to clarify something, feel free to ask. :)

Canto IV*

So he set out, and so he had me enter
on that first circle girdling the abyss.
Here, for as much as hearing could discover,
there was no outcry louder than the sighs
that caused the everlasting air to tremble.
The sighs arose from sorrow without torments,
out of the crowds--the many multitudes--
of the infants and of women and of men.

The kindly master said: "Do you not ask
who are these spirits whom you see before you?
I'd have you know, before you go ahead,
they did not sin; and yet, though they have merits,
that's not enough, because they lacked baptism,
the portal of the faith that you embrace.
And if they lived before Christianity,
they did not worship God in fitting ways;
and of such spirits I myself am one.
For these defects, and for no other evil,
we now are lost and punished just with this:
we have no hope and yet we live in longing."

*This version of the text is taken from Allen Mandelbaum's translation (2004) of Dante Alighieri's Inferno.

Who's up for some Book Challenge?

Hi guys! It's a rainy Tuesday here in our place, which means CLASSES ARE CANCELLED! Yey! =)) Please don't get me wrong. I'm still praying for those who are affected by the flood. Kindly pray for them as well! :) Thanks!

Let's Discuss Books! :)

(Click the Photos to link you to Goodreads)


Anyway, here's what I did on my way home. I wanted to improve my blog and make it useful and meaningful for you guys. :) So I was wondering if you would be interested if I share my Literature lessons with you! ;) At school, I'm supposed to take up 12 units of Literature (from Classical, Renaissance, Medieval, to Modern Literature) and I'm now on my 9th unit, which is Medieval Literature. Sweet. <3 One more to go! =) I love my Literature classes! Here we are taught how to read based on the text and its context. By understanding the context and words that the author chose, we try to unravel the meaning beneath the lines. It's an overwhelming experience! Cool, isn't it? ;) Plus my professor is amazing! :) He wants us to experience the same beauty that he sees along the lines of the text and believe me, it is life-changing! I would like to share the same experience with you! :) 

I was thinking if I'll start with Iliad (Classical Literature) and Macbeth (Renaissance Literature) since I finished taking them up before, but I'm up for a little challenge and adventure! :) Who's up for a little book adventure? I know I have the coolest followers, so I trust you guys! :) I'm taking up Medieval Literature this semester and we're discussing Inferno by Dante Alighieri. We just recently started, so I'm inviting you to jump in my journey with Dante and his Divine Comedy! :)

From time to time, I'll be posting excerpts of Inferno and other books. I'll be posting books that are open for discussion under "LIT 101" titles. I'll then add the notes I get from our lecture. Then, please let me know what you think! :) Just comment back and let's discuss the book together! :)

Btw, if you want to discuss other books, feel free to suggest! ;) Thanks! Enjoy reading! :) God bless us all! :)

Epic Fail @ Barnes&Noble

Yep. You read it right! >.< It's truly epic. =D 

Since April 2012, I've been trying to win some book giveaways and other promos. :) Anyway, it never hurts to try. Well, I haven't won anything.....until this weekend. :) I couldn't believe it!  I ACTUALLY WON A FREE E-BOOK COPY OF The Moon Dwellers by David Estes! :D 

I couldn't wait for his e-mail because I'm extremely excited to review his book! Imagine, it's the first e-book I got from an author and I get to review it for freeeeee! :D Who wouldn't shout for joy to that? Anyway, I managed to sleep that night and I checked my e-mail first thing in the morning. :D Here's what I got, an e-mail from Barnes & Noble!!!

Oh yeah! Wheeeeee. >.< I couldn't help myself but to jump, to shout, and to scream! Yeeepeee! :D I immediately clicked the link and poof, here's what they said:

Whaaaaaat???!!! I nearly dropped my laptop when I saw this! Huhuhuhu! Why, oh, why!!! I thought it's my first free book to review, but then I guess it's not. I can't retrieve it because I DON'T HAVE A CREDIT CARD. Isn't that painful? Sob. Sob. :'( 
Well, that's my epic Barnes & Noble experience. X(

Giveaway: Struck

Who wants to win a signed copy of Struck by Jennifer Bosworth? :)

Well...Well...Well... This is your day! :)
Just visit this link and get a chance to win:

Summary from Goodreads:

Mia Price is a lightning addict. She’s survived countless strikes, but her craving to connect to the energy in storms endangers her life and the lives of those around her.

Los Angeles, where lightning rarely strikes, is one of the few places Mia feels safe from her addiction. But when an earthquake devastates the city, her haven is transformed into a minefield of chaos and danger. The beaches become massive tent cities. Downtown is a crumbling wasteland, where a traveling party moves to a different empty building each night, the revelers drawn to the destruction by a force they cannot deny. Two warring cults rise to power, and both see Mia as the key to their opposing doomsday prophecies. They believe she has a connection to the freak electrical storm that caused the quake, and to the far more devastating storm that is yet to come.

Mia wants to trust the enigmatic and alluring Jeremy when he promises to protect her, but she fears he isn’t who he claims to be. In the end, the passion and power that brought them together could be their downfall. When the final disaster strikes, Mia must risk unleashing the full horror of her strength to save the people she loves, or lose everything
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