Book Review

Now or Never: 5 Steps to an Epic Life| Book Review

Now or NeverAuthor: Alexi Panos & Preston Smiles

Pages:  240

Format Devoured: Audio Book

Synopsis: Alexi Panos and Preston Smiles, the internationally recognized next generation thought leaders, redefine what’s possible in relationships, career, and life.

Alexi and Preston went through periods in each of their lives where they felt like they were doing all the right things, but never got the desired results. They read all the best books in self-empowerment and positive thinking, took classes, and sought advice, but there was always something missing. After all of their soul-searching and personal development, they realized that they were missing a connection between mind, body, and soul.

Based on their 12-week successful online program The Bridge Method, Now or Never combines the couple’s years of training into five principles that can help you navigate the real world, learn how to overcome your inner obstacles, and become your best self. Filled with narratives and stories from the duo’s own lives as well as from those they have helped along the way, Now or Never shares exercises, insights, and challenges to help you attain the personal freedom you have always been seeking.

If you want to lead an ideal life, you must become the best version of yourself. Alexi and Preston can be your guides. Choose your life. It’s now or never.

Bookish Thoughts:

This was good. It had a lot of great information and easy to follow prompts to get you thinking about the ideas that were presented in this book. I would love to own the physical copy of this book to mark up all my favorite lines and go back to reference information.

This was a book that was realistic in terms of how you can use the information in this book in your day to day life and it got you thinking about the things you would like to change while prompting you with how you can make those things a reality. I really enjoyed the little prompt questions at the end of each chapter because as a reader you are able to physically use the information rather than just absorb it.

The audiobook was enjoyable and read like a light radio show.

Lifestyle

Life Changes & Rebranding| 2018

Knights and Ladies,

I think there is something in the air, something wonderful.

I want to start this post by saying thank you, thank you for every single person that is subscribed whether by  e-mail, or wordpress. Thank you to every single person who has ever read any of my posts. I have been so blessed to have this space as a creative outlet.

However, you may have noticed there have been a few slight changes being made to the site. You will still be getting book content if you subscribed to me for that, that is not going away. However, I want to add more lifestyle and fitness journey entries here as well. I have contemplated starting a completely different site for all my fitness updates however that just sounded silly to me as I am not a one-dimensional person and have a lot of different things that I am curious about and interested in. I want this to be a safe space.

When I started this website, it was with the intention to inspire people to read more and read more diversely and although that is one of my purposes in running this site. I am finding that I am human and I use my time not only reading but taking a bunch of classes, working out, cooking, traveling, etc.

Which brings me to the following- I haven’t been reading as much as I used too. I have been traveling and going to events. Especially, this current summer I feel like I have an event almost every weekend. So, I would like to create more vlogs- event and travel vlogs and add some reading vlogs in the mix of things. I don’t want to have to limit the things that I can talk about on this platform just because this started as a book blog.

If you are here for book content only there is a tab at the top of the page for book content, this also goes along for fitness and lifestyle. I think that we all have a lot more in common than we think and by merging all my interest together, I feel like I will have a better space to share my adventures.

Thank you for all your support and love,

With warms cups of tea and just a few more  chapters  adventures,

Rina

 

#booktube · currently reading · weekly goals

Weekly Goals and Currently Reading #1 | June 2018

Hey Bibliomanics,

I went to vidcon and came home extremely inspired. Since my 3-month hiatus, I have created a new video and I am excited to start creating more content. Thank you to everyone that has stuck with me through this crazy wonderful journey. I love editing videos and being creative while sharing my creativity with the world. I am still learning my elements but I am blessed to have this outlet.

Today’s video is a weekly goal’s and a currently reading, where I share with you what my goals are for this week and what I am currently reading as getting a lot of reading in is always a goal for me.

With Warm cups of tea and just a few more chapters,

Rina

 

Book Review

Matilda by Roald Dahl | Book Review

MatildaPages: 240

Published: June 1, 1998

Publisher: Puffin Books

Synopsis: Matilda is a little girl who is far too good to be true. At age five-and-a-half she’s knocking off double-digit multiplication problems and blitz-reading Dickens. Even more remarkably, her classmates love her even though she’s a super-nerd and the teacher’s pet. But everything is not perfect in Matilda’s world. For starters she has two of the most idiotic, self-centered parents who ever lived. Then there’s the large, busty nightmare of a school principal, Miss (“The”) Trunchbull, a former hammer-throwing champion who flings children at will and is approximately as sympathetic as a bulldozer. Fortunately for Matilda, she has the inner resources to deal with such annoyances: astonishing intelligence, saintly patience, and an innate predilection for revenge.

She warms up with some practical jokes aimed at her hapless parents, but the true test comes when she rallies in defense of her teacher, the sweet Miss Honey, against the diabolical Trunchbull. There is never any doubt that Matilda will carry the day. Even so, this wonderful story is far from predictable. Roald Dahl, while keeping the plot moving imaginatively, also has an unerring ear for emotional truth. The reader cares about Matilda because in addition to all her other gifts, she has real feelings. (Goodreads)

My Bookish Thoughts: 

This is one of my rereads for this year. I have always loved this book, and it is so near and dear to my heart. I have read it several times in my life. This book tells a story of a young girl named Matilda who is a lot wiser than her age.

I feel like this particular book is very much character driven. I initially connected with Matilda through her love of books. I visually can picture the first few chapters of the book so vividly in my mind and how Matilda goes to the library while her mom is out playing bingo. This book has stuck with me from the first time that I have read it back in elementary school until now.

I love how whimsical characters are. Matilda plays a lot of pranks on the evil Trunchbull. Matilda likes justice and throughout the book whenever the Trunchbull does something that seems to be unfair Matilda is the one to try to get revenge on the Trunchbull.

I really enjoyed the magical element in this book it really ties everything nicely together and gives the book a satisfying conclusion. I really enjoyed having Kate Winslet narrate the audiobook. She is such a fabulous narrator for this particular book. She brought all the characters and situations to life and it was very enjoyable.  If you have not read this, what are you doing? You are literally missing out on a childhood favorite. Go check it out. Right now!!!

With Warm Cups of Tea and Just a Few More Chapters,

Rina

 

Book Review

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald | Book Review

great gatsby

Pages: 180

 

Date Published:  Originally published April 1925- republished September 2004

Publisher: Scribner

Synopsis: On its first publication in 1925, The Great Gatsby was largely dismissed as a light satire on Jazz Age follies. Today, it is acknowledged as a masterpiece: a love story, an exploration of the American dream and arguably the greatest American novel of the 20th century. Narrator Nick Carraway tells the story of his neighbor Jay Gatsby, whose parties at his Long Island mansion are as lavish as his past is mysterious. Yet Gatsby cares only for one of his guests: his lost love Daisy Buchanan, now married and living across the bay. In Fitzgerald’s hands, this deceptively simple story becomes a near-perfect work of art, told in hauntingly beautiful prose.

Michael Dirda, a Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist for The Washington Post, has written a new introduction for this edition. He writes, ‘While a great novel should possess many qualities, the most essential is certainly the ability to enchant, to cast a spell over the reader’ – an ability possessed in full by ‘this ever-fresh, this ceaselessly magical novel’. Our edition also features a two-page note by the director and screenwriter Francis Ford Coppola recalling his work on the 1974 film adaptation, in particular, his ingenious solution to the lack of dialogue between Daisy and Gatsby in the original novel. Sam Wolfe Connelly, a young artist based in New York, has created a series of color illustrations and the striking binding design. The metallic endpapers and slipcase are printed with a 1920s-inspired design by the artist. (Goodreads)

Review:

Hey Bibliomanics,

Welcome Back to another review. Today’s review is my thoughts on rereading “The Great Gatsby”. I remember when I first read this book back in highschool, I remember thinking that it was so thin for it to be a classic. And as one may assume, I didn’t enjoy it when I read it the first time. It still holds true that anything that has ever been assigned for school reading, I just don’t enjoy very much.

Fast forward to this year, I decided to reread it…

With the book only containing 180 pages, one may assume this book doesn’t get deep. But, thats were you are wrong. This is one of the most rawest books I have yet read. There is so much going on. I noticed that there was a common theme in the book of wealth and love.  Rereading, this novel made me realize that this is one tragic love story. But, although it is tragic, it is so beautiful.

The story takes place in the 1920’s. This is a time in American History were flappers were around, prohibition of alchol was happening, and the parties were wild. This book is set after WWI when the soldiers are coming home and everyone is basing the amount of wealth that they have on how much materal objects they own. In the novel, money is being thrown left in right. An example of this would be Gatsby, throwing huge parties in his manision. This is first evident in chapter 3, when Fitzgerald talks how most people that attended Gatsby’s gathering came without invitiation and that there were very few actually invited guests ( Fitzgerald, 45). Which, can send the message that Gatsby had enough money to accomodate anyone who stopped by his party.

My Thoughts:

This novel is enjoyable. I think that there is a lot of things that a person can connect with in this book. I really enjoyed seeing that all the characters in the book although they functioned together as a unit, they were all so flawed. Each of them was battling a personal demon. I think that a lot of the time they used money as an escapism. Essentially that was evident with Gatsby, he would throw extravagant parties in hopes of attracting Daisy in to coming to one of them on accident.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It was a really long time since I read it. I think that the experience was even better because I marked up all my favorite qoutes and scenes that stood out to me.

This story is full of tragedy. And it really makes you value the things that you do have. I felt for Gatsby, as he explained how he tried to improve his life status in hopes of one day being reunited with Daisy and being able to impress her. I also think this novel is important to show that poeple are imperfect. The whole book has flawed characters as they are trying to survive but never truly living.

The characters in books are usually my favorite part, but these characters are so shallow. I loved Nick Carraway, whom I think is the only decent character in this book. Everyone else is obsessed with status and money that they put their most important relationships in jeopardy. Gatsby, does everything that he can in order to up his status in order to finally get a chance to be with Daisy. Yet, Daisy, is one of the most superficial characters I have ever read about. But, Gatsby’s love for her is so pure. Everything that Gatsby ever does is in hopes to win Daisy back.

This book is coated in symbolism. I came to really appreciate this. I loved how everything in this story tied up really nicely. There was no lose ends.  Which for a 180 page book, I really do appreciate.

If you have not read this book, I feel like you have to a least try it. If you read it in highschool, I encouarage you to read it again with a new persepctive. This story is tragic, honest and yet beautiful.

Contains Spoilers

I think that reading this as an adult, it makes a lot more sense to me and I can really make connections with the book that I wasn’t able to make as a sophmore. Some things that stood out to me, was the relationship between Tom and Daisy. I thought that it was one of those relationships that people are in because they don’t want to be alone. Tom is cheating on Daisy the entire time and he still gets angry at Daisy when she is being flirtaous in front of him with Gatsby. However, I honestly could not figure her out because she was claiming to love Gatsby and Tom at the same but yet she didn’t care if Tom saw her being affectionate toward Gatsby.

Another thing that stood out to me was the topic of wealth, how everyone in the book either wanted to be wealthy and tried to fit in with the wealthy crowd or they were wealthy and had no problem throwing their money around. Daisy and Tom, make it very apparent that they are wealthy and have money to throw around.

I found Daisy to be kind of a coward. She expresses how much she loves Gatsby and the book goes into an extensive story of how they first met. Yet, when she is asked to chose between Gatsby and Tom she doesn’t want to lose either of them and explains that she loves them both. This was one of the parts of the story that really made me upset because  the reader and Daisy both knows that Tom has been cheating on Daisy throughout the entire novel.

As one can tell I had an issue with Daisy!!!

If you read “The Great Gatsby” and you want to chat about it, leave a comment.

As per usual, with warm cups of tea and just a few more chapters, happy reading!!

Rina

Book Review

Hopeless By Colleen Hoover|Book Review


HopelessPages: 410

Published: December 19th 2012 (first published December 17th 2012)
Original Title:Hopeless
ISBN 1301949825 (ISBN13: 9781301949823)

Synopsis:Sometimes discovering the truth can leave you more hopeless than believing the lies…

That’s what seventeen-year-old Sky realizes after she meets Dean Holder. A guy with a reputation that rivals her own and an uncanny ability to invoke feelings in her she’s never had before. He terrifies her and captivates her all in the span of just one encounter, and something about the way he makes her feel sparks buried memories from a past that she wishes could just stay buried.

Sky struggles to keep him at a distance knowing he’s nothing but trouble, but Holder insists on learning everything about her. After finally caving to his unwavering pursuit, Sky soon finds that Holder isn’t at all who he’s been claiming to be. When the secrets he’s been keeping are finally revealed, every single facet of Sky’s life will change forever.(Goodreads)


Reviewstarsstars/5

I originally read this because I was trying to get out of a reading slump. Colleen Hoover has always been one of those authors that has always pulled me out of reading slumps. Her writing is addicting and her storyline make a reader invested in the story.

However, I didn’t find this to be the case with Hopeless. At times it was enjoyable, because it had a lot of different themes in it. I liked that there was a mystery plot that developed along with a romance contemporary that Colleen Hoover is known for.

I really liked the relationship development that occurred between Sky and Holder. I thought that their romance wasn’t as instalove as romances can tend to be. I enjoyed that they shared a strong friendship. I also like that at a one point in the story, there was a scene were the main characters were about to have sex and the female protagonist said she wasn’t ready, I felt like the male character did not pressure her to continue and supported her throughout her trying to piece together her past.

Holder wasn’t one of those book crushes that I usually get all the feels for from reading Colleen Hoover books. However, I did like how intense he was portrayed and his whole bad boy persona really made the book more interesting as he was a very big part of the novel. Sky, at parts was a really interesting character to watch because you can see her go through so many emotions. As a reader you can see her fall in love, and figuring out her place in Holder’s secret. Looking back on my reading, and thinking about Holder’s character. I feel like he was written to be to simple, as he is a character that was dealing with holding on too a lot of information and it didn’t seem like he was a very grieving character.

I didn’t like that the resolution of this story was so anticlimactic. The entire book build up the storyline and I felt like it resolved just too easily.  The story also had a lot of triggers, such a rape and suicide. I think that one of the main things that really made me give this book  2 stars is that it wasn’t very memorable. After I finished reading it I only really remembered some main points but not anything that made the story super enjoyable to sit through and read. Also, this isn’t a book I plain on rereading anytime soon.

Overall, this story just fell flat for me. I just didn’t find it to be memorable at all.  The entire book was just okay for me. I hope to enjoy “Losing Hope”, a little bit more.

Until Next Time With Warms Cups of Tea and Just a Few More Chapters,

Rina

 

Book Review

The Lovely Reckless By Kami Garcia|Review

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Title: The Lovely Reckless

Author: Kami Garcia

Pages: 384

Publisher: Imprint

Synopsis:

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia, a contemporary romance full of loss, love and redemption…

Seventeen year-old Frankie Devereux would do anything to forget the past. Haunted by the memory of her boyfriend’s death, she lives her life by one dangerous rule: nothing matters. At least, that’s what Frankie tells herself after a reckless mistake forces her to leave her privileged life in the Heights to move in with her dad–an undercover cop. She transfers to public school in the Downs, where fistfights in the halls don’t faze anyone and illegal street racing is more popular than football.

Marco Leone is the fastest street racer in the Downs. Tough, sexy, and hypnotic, he makes it impossible for Frankie to ignore him…and how he makes her feel. But the risks Marco takes for his family could have devastating consequences for them both. When Frankie discovers his secret, she has to make a choice. Will she let the pain of the past determine her future? Or will she risk what little she has left to follow her heart?

Your own heart will race with each page turn of this heart-stopping star-crossed love story. (Goodreads)

REVIEW:starsstarsstarsstars.5 /5

I  enjoyed this book so very much. It was literally everything that I wanted in a story. It had an element of love, and adventure. I love the fact that this book was so descriptive about the car races and the how it showed the police investigation. You can really tell that the other knew what she was talking about.

I loved the main two characters. I thought Marco, was just perfect. Although, he was meant to be portrayed as a bad boy, he had a very tender side to him. I really enjoyed how the relationship between him and Frankie played out. I liked that there was no element of instant love, which is often used in young adult novels.  I also liked that this book had a lot of other elements that it focused on, and didn’t just zone in on the love story element.

This story was fast paced, and richly written with characters that were hard to resist. I couldn’t put this book down. I was extremely engaged with the relationship building in this book. I also felt that the plot was creatively written with the reader constantly wondering what is going to happen next and keeping them on the edge of the seat. The characters are so good, that it is very difficult not to get attached to them. I would highly recommend this book to fans of young adult and romance.

With Warm Cups of Tea and Just A Few More Chapters,

Rina


 

 

Monthly TBR

October TBR 2017 : ALL THE SPOOKS

Hello Bibliomaniacs,

Its been a minute. Life has been soo busy but soo good all at the same time. But, I wanted to share with you my TBR (TO BE READ) for the month of October 2017.

ITIT By Stephen King: The first thing that I am focusing on is the book IT by Stephen King. So, far I am enjoying it but its very long and I feel like I have not been devoting enough time to it.

Where the Road Takes Me By Jay McLean: I am currently reading this asWhere the road takes me an E-book during my cardio at the gym. I have been really enjoying it. It is a young adult romance novel. There seems to be a mix of mystery too this book.

talking as fast as I can Talking As Fast as I Can By Lauren Graham: I already finished this book. I listened to this as an audiobook and it was fabulous. It was like being back in Stars Hollow. Lauren Graham does a great  job narrating her novel. I think it really gives an inside glimpse into the filming life of Gilmore Girls.

The Girl with the dragon tatoo

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo By Stieg Larson: This is reread for me. I would love to finish this series. But, it has been a few years since I have read this book. I am listening to this as an audiobook. This is one of my favorite thrillers, and I recommend this book to everyone I meet. I can’t wait to continue on with this series.

 

Bird Box By Josh Malarian: Honestly, I don’t know much about this book other than it is Bird Boxsupposed to be really creepy and perfect for Halloween. I have been really into thrillers and horror stories.

Walking Dead VOl 4The Walking Dead Vol 4: The Hearts Desire: Slowlybut surely I am making my way through ” The Walking Dead”, series. I have been really enjoying these graphic novels because they read like the TV show.

 

YOU By Caroline Kepnes: I know very little about this book. I put it on hold from the library so

YOU we will see when it comes in. This is if I’m not mistaken a story told from a male point of view who stalks a girl.I heard a lot of good things about this book. I’m very excited to read this one and add to my creepy feels this month.Dracula

Dracula: Lastly, I would love to listen to the audiobook of Dracula. This book is narrated by Tim Curry who played the clown in the original IT movie. This is a dark gothic read and I can’t wait to get into it.

This month is overly ambitious. I don’t think I will be able to get through everything that I want to read but, the top priorities are IT, YOU and The Girl with the Dragon Tatoo. What creepy, scary books are you reading this month? Or have you skipped October and already are ready for Harry X-mas to you?

With Warm Cups of Tea and Just a Few More Chapters,

RINA

#booktube · #BTAT'17 · Booktube-a-thon '17 · currently reading · Read-a-Thon's · Summer Reading List

Booktube-a-thon Day 5-7: Reflection

Hello Bibliomaniacs,

I meant to post this on Friday but things got kinda of hectic. On Friday my roommates and I did a movie night were we watched “Hidden Figures”.  If you haven’t seen this movie, I highly recommend it. It was such a smart, quirky, informative and interesting movie. There were times that I was sitting one the edge of the couch worrying about how a situation would end. That night lets just say my pizza diet was going strong and I included some color into it by adding cupcakes. Colorful neon frosting, is totally part of a whole foods diet.  As you probably can tell I didn’t read much of anything on Friday.

Newmooncover

Saturday was another very much eventful day, my roommate invited me to a picnic and of course I was like “Yes, I would love to go.” Anything that involves food, you know I’m there. Although, the food was amazing, I have to say the people I met really warmed my heart and it was just a very warm, fun filled time. So, as you may have guessed not much reading was done.

 

 

Sunday was yet another busy day, I ended up going to help my grandma around her house, and lets not forget that there was food involved.

It’s been a minute since I had home cooked soup. I did get some reading done, I am currently on page 202 of “New Moon”, by Stephanie Meyer. And I am enjoying my time reading this so much. I loved the Twilight Saga when I read them the first time and I still am enjoying them now. They are just super fun light reads. Is anyone else TEAM EMMET???

 

STATS:

 

Books Finished: 2

Total Page Count for day 5-7: 40

Total Page Count for Booktube-a-Thon: 483

Classics: 1

Graphic Novels: 0

Poetry Collection: 0

Movie Review

La La Land |Movie Review

Happy Monday Wonderlanders,

Yesterday, I got to spend a few hours with my mom. And let me tell you I felt like a 5 year old again but, the time spent with her was priceless. We ended up going to watch La La Land, which is brand new musical playing in theaters. Initially, when I chose the movie I knew very little about it, only that it had Emma Stone was in it and I like her as an actress. la-la-land

Synopsis:
Mia, an aspiring actress, serves lattes to movie stars in between auditions and Sebastian, a jazz musician, scrapes by playing cocktail party gigs in dingy bars, but as success mounts they are faced with decisions that begin to fray the fragile fabric of their love affair, and the dreams they worked so hard to maintain in each other threaten to rip them apart.(IMBD)

Movie Rambles:

I wanted to see this movie the moment that I saw a trailer of this movie on youtube. I really enjoyed this film. It had a very independent film vibe to it and it was designed as a video collage. I was surprised that this movie was a musical because I wasn’t expecting it at all. Looking back, it does remind me a little of “Across the Universe.”  I thought that  the movie was very well designed to showcase both of the lives of jazz musician Sebastian and an actress named Mia.

I really enjoyed the story between Mia and Sebestian. I thought that the relationships were complicated yet well developed. The characters were put into difficult situation as they tried to find their own dreams while trying to be supporting of each other. This movie portrayed how one supports someone that they really care about however, it also portrays the hardships of having dreams and putting another’s dream before your own.

I loved how Hollywood was portrayed and that a lot of the movie was done in a coffee shop on a filming set. It was very easy to put yourself in the shoes of the main character, if you have visited “Universal Studios”. I was really able to get a feel of actually being in the coffee shop that Mia worked at  and being surrounded by the celebrities and the set life.

Although, I was really satisfied with the movie as a whole. I was disappointed with the ending, as I had my own hopes for how it would have ended. I definitely recommend this movie to anyone who likes a good love story that revolves around dreams.

The most important thing I got out of this movie, was that dreams are just as important as love and that to love is to dream. But, it also got me thinking that maybe you can have it all an epic love and reaching all of your dreams.

ONE LOVE,

Rina