A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks

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The truth is we will meet the person that will change our lives in God’s time.

Every April, when the wind blows from the sea and mingles with the scent of lilacs, Landon Carter remembers his last year at Beaufort High. It was 1958, and Landon had already dated a girl or two. He even swore that he had once been in love. Certainly the last person in town he thought he’d fall for was Jamie Sullivan, the daughter of the town’s Baptist minister.
A quiet girl who always carried a Bible with her schoolbooks, Jamie seemed content living in a world apart from the other teens. She took care of her widowed father, rescued hurt animals, and helped out at the local orphanage. No boy had ever asked her out. Landon would never have dreamed of it. Then a twist of fate made Jamie his partner for the homecoming dance, and Landon Carter’s life would never be the same. Being with Jamie would show him the depths of the human heart and lead him to a decision so stunning it would send him irrevocably on the road to manhood…

A Walk to Remember is one of those rare books that I’ve seen the movie of before I’ve read the book. I try and avoid this as much as possible as usually I love the book far more than the movie, and I’d rather be let down by a movie than by a book. (The truth, the movie made me cry. Even if I want to control it, the tears just falling down on my face). This story is of course about love, loss, grief and change. But while you read it, you also get this breeze of a wind that blows your face and says: it’s ok, this has to happen, but it’s gonna be alright. Anyway, as with every love story, this one too reaches a peak beyond which you just know that something bad is gonna happen. It’s the feeling you get when you know there is a price to pay. It is at that point that Nicholas Sparks has really penetrated your defences and leaves you reading in a very vulnerable state because you just don’t want nothing bad to happen to these characters. When he serves you with the tragic facts that have been kept hidden halfway through, he does so in a way that is acceptable. As I said, that wind in your face really does its job in telling you: yes, you and the characters have to go through this to come out stronger. The greatest thing I liked about this book is the profound messages of the story beyond what are written, though some are already given. I liked how faith works at Jamie, that even though everything has been taken from her, she dignifies how her faith still remains. I was also touched at how simply a very kind person could turn the people oppositely to what they were. There is even presence of the true effects of love, which it leads the in love human to think either sane or insane. And the story, in a way, emphasizes how humans should give attention, importance and deeper understanding on the things that surround them not until it’s too late. And the best of all is how faith can bring out the miracle to the surface out of the deepest pit. Nicholas Sparks draws the reader in with emotions, descriptions, love, and death. For those who enjoy novels that touch your heart and make you think about real life, A Walk to Remember is perfect for you.
The book is an easy read. It’s not like you won’t be able to put it down because at times you may find yourself putting the book down to reflect on what you have read. This is a book to remember.

I dont think that we’re meant to understand it all the time. I think that sometimes we just have to have faith.

5 out of 5 stars

The Notebook by Nicholas Sparks

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Allie and Noah..

Noah and Allie..

A love story begins in the 1931, set along a small beach town in North Carolina. The Notebook tells a story of young love. Two teenagers in New Bern North Carolina meet. Noah Calhoun and Allie Nelson catch a little southern summer magic and fall in love. Unfortunately, they are doomed to be parted, and at the end of the summer, Allie’s disapproving parents take her away from Noah.
After 14 years of separation, Allie’s father shows her a newspaper article with Noah, standing in front of the restored home he’d promised for her. About to be married something inside her needs to see him. Needs to confirm that all that’s been in her heart all these years is real, was real. After they spend a couple days together, their feelings emerge and they must make some difficult decisions.
A trademark of Nicholas Sparks, his novels are jam-packed with emotions (this is not an ordinary for a man to write an emotional novel – it’s always been a woman who are emotional when it comes in their novel isn’t it?). But Nicholas, he is the kind of man who put his heart in his every novels. And this one, is the best, The Notebook is a tear-jerker, a heartwarming, and yet a heartbreaking story. The characters are authentic, the plot is fantastic yet not unbelievable, and each scene flows smoothly together so we are able to understand a story told in pieces. Sparks writes in a way that brings out the love, pain, and uncertainty that fuel his characters. When it rains in the book, the reader feels the chill and excitement of the downpour (and me looking up in the sky hoping that it will rain, so that I can go outside while the rain is pouring), and understands just how two people can fall in love as Allie and Noah do.
The Notebook is a classic tale of love lost and regained after many years, and is a truly romantic and touching story (Indeed, there is a forever). This is an amazing book that captures your attention and keeps you guessing what will happen next. You will never want to put it down.

We fell in love, despite our differences, and once we did, something rare and beautiful was created. For me, love like that has only happened once, and that’s why every minute we spent together has been seared in my memory. I’ll never forget a single moment of it.

5 out of 5 stars

The Pursuit of Happyness by Chris Gardner

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Meet Chris Gardner, and this is his story.

Chris Gardner grew up without a father. He has a stepfather who was degrading, unpredictable and constantly reminded him that he was not his daddy. At a young age, Chris vowed to never be like his stepfather. He vowed that if he ever had a child, he would constantly be by his side and in his life. Growing up in a variety of places and with a variety of people, Chris had a challenging childhood. He joined the Navy as an adult, went into medical training, and got married and has a kid. His wife left him with financial issues and he become homeless at one point. His wife left Chris with their son because of money and relationship issues. I was amazed at how passionately he wanted to be with his son in the meantime. And later on his wife returned their son because he could support him better. After seeing a red Ferrari, he wanted to be a stockbroker. He worked towards that, homeless and all. That shows determination and motivation; to work towards a goal when it seems almost impossible. After being hired by Bearstone’s stock company, Chris gradually succeeded as a stockbroker. He later went on to open his own brokerage firm.
The Pursuit of Happyness, is a brutally true, remarkably honest, foul mouthed account of a rags to riches story. Chris Gardner shares the episode of his life that full of beliefs, perseverance and courage. Despite of being an Afro American, he proved to us that no matter what life throws infront of us , no matter how hard it is, we have to believe in ourselves and in our goal that everything is possible. Keep moving forward to achieve success in life. It also has excellent messages about the importance of keeping your cool in the face of incredible disappointment and provocation. I’ve seen the movie and it’s really a heart wrenching film most especially the scene of Will Smith with his son, a great relationship of father and son. The unusual spelling of the book and film’s title comes from a mural that Chris Gardner sees on the wall outside the daycare facility his son attends. He complains to the owner of the daycare that “happiness” is incorrectly spelled as “happyness” and needs to be changed. Great Book and great movie, very inspiring story.

Others may question your credentials, your papers, your degrees. Others may look for all kinds of ways to diminish your worth. But what is inside you no one can take from you or tarnish. This is your worth, who you really are, your degree that can go with you wherever you go, that you bring with you the moment you come into a room, that can’t be manipulated or shaken. Without that sense of self, no amount of paper, no pedigree, and no credentials can make you legit. No matter what, you have to feel legit inside first.

4 out of 5 stars

To My Forever Date

“What’s on your mind?”

Every time , when we are together and I’m unusually quiet, you’ll look at me and ask, “What’s on your mind?” I’ll always give you an answer, “Wala lang. (Nothing.)”. You are not satisfied with that kind of answer because for you there’s always a reason. So I will say that I’m thinking about you, but you ‘ll never believe in that. And then, we’d talk about something else. The truth is, I wasn’t thinking about nothing. I was REALLY thinking about you. Have you ever wondered why I would always stare at you when you were sleeping, when you were busy playing games with my phone or with your phone.. looking at you as if I am studying and memorizing your face? That’s because I love looking at you while you’re in dreamland, playing games, and just doing nothing. I would look at you, just look at you. And then I’d just find myself praying, “God, what good did I do to deserve him?”

I believe that God loves me unconditionally, and here He is sending you just to make me happy. And I believe in you. You are real. Your love for me is real. Nothing is more real than this. What good did I do to deserve this? I’d look for reasons. I would consider the moment I looked for the student who dropped her school ID when I was in a shopping mall with Mama. Or being a good daughter with my parents. Or helping those people who are in needs. But no, they are not good enough. You are bigger than all of them combined. I got scared sometimes. I’d think, maybe the question I should be asking was “What bad did you do to deserve me?” Or maybe this happiness actually came with misery that I was yet to feel. Worst, “What if I don’t deserve you at all?” That’s what ran through my head every day when we were together or when I am all by myself. I couldn’t figure it out. I was looking for a reason you’re mine.

Not anymore…

I woke up today with a smile. Last night I had an epiphany. Screw karma; screw it. Who cares if I deserve you or not? Who cares if you deserve me? Who cares why you’re here? What matter is you ARE here, you are mine, I am yours and I’ll be the biggest idiot if I ever let you go. When you see me looking at you like that again, there’s no need to ask me what I’m thinking and why I’m not saying anything. I’ll say it now. When you’re looking at the best thing that ever happened to you, the most beautiful man, your one and only source of inspiration, there really isn’t much to say but this..

“Thank you.”

God-Shaped Hole by Tiffanie DeBartolo

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It hurts..

My heart really hurts…

It break my heart into pieces..

aaarrrggghhhh!!!…

Tired of the usual dating politics, Beatrice “Trixie” Jordan follows an impulse and replies to a personal ad: “If your intentions are pure, I’m seeking a friend for the end of the world”. In doing so, she meets Jacob Grace, a charming young writer, a passionate seeker of life. Despite their jaded views of the world, they fall immediately in love. Trixie and Jacob begin an emotionally charged and tumultuous affair, one they tried desperately to keep sacred. As they struggle to carve out a future beyond the Los Angeles hills, Trixie and Jacob face family secrets that threaten to keep the two close to home… or atleast apart from one another.
With brash humor and a bit of heartbreak, wry and vulnerable Trixie leads us through the joys and furies of her wrenching romance, leaving behind a raw vision of love and loss of a lifetime.

I can’t count how many times did I put this book down, just to paused for a while, to internalized every word of this book. I don’t know how I am going to get over this book. I don’t think I can. It has left it’s imprint in my heart and soul. Its the type of book that leave its mark and I will keep thinking about it over and over for next…forever…. I am seriously getting teary eye just reading this book and looking through my clippings for quotes I want to use. This book is full of poetic words.. words that I really enjoyed. Enjoying the words that flowing into something so beautiful that it will grow and make you think there is nothing better then this right now. Its a wonderful feeling and I thank this author for creating something so perfect. I sigh a lot of times because I felt every emotions of Trixie, I want to scream at the top of my lungs, because I find myself putting myself into Trixie’s character and it really break my heart.
God-Shaped Hole, is something that is so unexpected, its so hard to come up with the right words to describe this book, its beautiful, amazing, awesome, heartwrenching, painful, heartwarming – its all in one. Tiffanie DeBartolo, You are perfect, you really made my day and thank you for this great book and you really made me fall in love with this one.

We’re all searching for something to fill up what I like to call that big, God-shaped hole in our souls. Some people use alcohol, or sex, or their children, or food, or money, or music, or heroin. A lot of people even use the concept of God itself. I could go on and on. I used to know a girl who used shoes. She had over two-hundred pairs. But it’s all the same thing, really. People, for some stupid reason, think they can escape their sorrows.

5 out of 5 stars (more than 5, I mean!!)

Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty by Christine Heppermann

POISONED_APPLES_Heppermann

Poetry can be difficult to read.
A poem often has multiple layers of meaning that will unfold over a few readings–and it’s important to give a poem that opportunity. It’s a good idea to read a poem more than once in a sitting or go back and reread it over the course of a few weeks or even a lifetime. Remember that the process of exploring a great poem should be part of the reward. And at the end of the day, you will just see yourself loving to read more of it.
Poisoned Apples: Poems for You, My Pretty  is written by Christine Heppermann, it’s collection of fifty poems puts the ideals of fairy tales right beside the life of the modern teenage girl. It talks about modern issues, from anorexia, abuse, social pressure and women’s sexualization. It’s a seamless transition from fantasy to reality. The poems accompanied by the weird and wonderful photograph that made the book absolutely georgeous. The author does a wonderful job by touching female issues in such a unique and interesting way. The book is very light, slim and small and easy to handle but full of surprises. This collection of Poetry is great for a woman finding herself in a modern world, and for every female who wants poetry and those who wants to try reading a poetry.

If you find the dividing line between fairy tales and reality, let me know. In my mind, the two run together, even though the intersections aren’t always obvious. The girl sitting quietly in class or waiting for the bus or roaming the mall doesn’t want anyone to know, or doesn’t know how to tell anyone, that she is locked in a tower. Maybe she’s a prisoner of a story she’s heard all her life- that fairest means best, or that bruises prove she is worthy of love.

4 out of 5 stars.

MACARTHUR ni Bob Ong

MCARTR

Paano ko ba uumpisahan itong pagsusuri ko sa aklat na ito, kapag kasi nakikita ko itong librong ito sa bookstore lage ako napapatingin dito na para bang nagsasabing basahin mo ako, saka ang cute din talaga ng kulay – pula, eh wala pa akong ideya na si Bob Ong ang sumulat nito – ulit, eh kasi nga nakakalimutan ko nang lapitan itong libro na ito pagkatapos kong maglibot sa bookstore at magbayad sa cashier. Tapos si Goodreads lang pala yung mas makakapagyugyog sa akin na basahin si MACARTHUR na isinulat pala talaga ni Bob Ong. Na wala akong kaalam-alam na maloloka pala ako sa librong ito. As in Naloka ako na bonggang bongga.

Ang librong ito ay Rated SPG. Striktong patnubay at gabay ng magulang ay Kailangan. May maseselang tema, eksenang karahasan, droga, lenggwahe, at katatakutang maaring hindi angkop para sa mga batang magbabasa 

huh??bakit??…
MACARTHUR, ay ang librong naglalaman ng napakaraming mura, mga bisyong katulad ng droga at alak, idagdag ko pa po ang korapsyon ng isang pulis, at ang pagnanakaw ng isang estudyante sa kanya mismong pamilya. Ngunit, subalit, datapwat, ang librong ito na isinulat ni Bob Ong ay may aral na tatagos sa puso ng isang mambabasa – may kapupulutang aral – at naglalaman ng tungkol sa pagkakaibigan. Dito ko nakilala ang ibat-ibang uri ng karakter, ang apat na magkakaibigan na my ibat-ibang pinagdadaanan sa buhay, ibat-ibang hamon sa buhay na pilit nilang hinaharap sa ibat-ibang paraan, at napansin ko na lang na ang mga nararanasan o ginagawa ng bawat karakter sa istoryang ito ay siyang nararanasan at ginagawa din ng ilang mga tao hindi lang sa ating bansa kung hindi pati na rin sa ibang mga bansa. Si Bob Ong ay muling gumawa ng isang libro na hango sa tunay na buhay – sa pagkakataong ito hindi lang sa buhay ng mga Pilipino kungdi pati na rin sa buhay ng bawat tao sa mundo, tinalakay niya ang ibat-ibang aspeto ng buhay (ng mga nalululong sa droga, buhay ng mga kabataan, at ng kahirapan sa buhay ng mga mamamayan). MACARTHUR – hindi ba siya yung nagsabi ng katagang “I Shall Return”?.., opo siya nga, pero hindi po niya ito istorya, talambuhay o kasaysayan. Bagkus ito po ay tungkol sa sinabi niya. Ang buhay po ng ating bida ay may kinalaman dito, ang ating bida ay hindi perpekto, siya ay gumawa ng mga mali sa buhay, naligaw ng landas na ikinalungkot ng kanyang pamilya, at sa bandang huli siya ay nagdesisyong bumalik sa kanyang pamilya, at sa kabila ng lahat ng ginawa niya ay buong pusong tinanggap siya ng mga ito – at yan po ay tumutukoy sa salitang “I Shall Return” .
Sa isang banda, ang librong ito ay pagiisipin ang kanyang mga mambabasa, at muli mapapasambit ka ng tama nga naman, ang ating pamilya lang talaga yung kaya tayong tanggapin kahit pa ikaw ang pinakamasamang tao sa buong mundo, yung talagang ibang iba silang magmahal, grabe no. Ang galing talaga nitong si Bob Ong, matapang niyang isinulat itong napakasensitibong librong ito. Para sa lahat maliban sa mga bata.

Dalawang dekada ka lang mag-aaral. Kung di mo pagtitiyagaan, anak, limang dekada ng kahirapan ang kapalit. Sobrang lugi. Kung alam lang iyon ng mga kabataan, sa pananaw ko e walang gugustuhing umiwas sa eskwela.

5 bituin sa librong ito.

Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella

ACOS

I picked up this novel because I already see its movie, so its my turn to read the book.
Confessions of a Shopaholic is a story of Rebecca Bloomwood, a financial journalist who happened to be a shopaholic – she cannot stop herself to her spending habits using her different credit cards, until she exceeds the credit limits and she’s been chased by dismal letters from Visa and the Endwich Bank – letters with large red sums she can’t bear to read -and they’re getting even harder to ignore. She tries spending less and she even tries in making more money but none of her efforts succeeds. Her only comfort is to buy herself something – just a little something …until a story opens up that could change her life and her finances.
The book is written from Rebecca’s point of view which lets me get right inside Becky’s head so I get to see all of that hilarious logic at work first hand, but the thing that I liked most about Becky is that she is very real. An exaggerated version of real. She’s warm, she’s funny and although I do sometimes want to slap her due to her debt-related blind ignorance – justifies her purchases in a rather insane way.
Although I myself is not a shopaholic, I can control my spending habits most specially I cannot buy something that is not important for me (but when it comes to food – I think that’s exempted – I am a foodaholic). Sophie Kinsella made me understand those people who loves shopping, people who cannot control themselves to buy those expensive signature products (using the credit card without control – until the end the person will regret spending so much when the credit card bills arrives) such as: dresses, cosmetic products, perfumes, shoes accessories and bags – well mostly women. Confessions of a Shopaholic also provides us with a really alarming view of modern consumerism. Stores offer us sales, incentives, double points, and 0% down options daily – and every consumers are tempted to grab the offer until finding themselves purchasing more than what they need until finding themselves being trapped into debts. Society has become accustomed to having luxuries and the latest and greatest items to the detriment of their finances. I think Becky teaches us that it’s okay to have those luxury items as long as you can afford them but you have to make your moves to save for your future too.
Confessions of a Shopaholic is certainly a book I would say all Chick Lit fans should read because it is so enjoyable. It’s not one of the deep chick lit books, it’s light, it’s airy, It’s a simple and fun book to read.

Life would be a lot easier if conversations were rewindable and erasable, like videos. Or if you could instruct people to disregard what you just said, like in a courtroom.

4 out of 5 stars

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

The Secret Life of Bees Book.

Life is beautiful especially if you are surrounded by the books with a such a beautiful story.

The Secret Life of Bees is the story of Lily Owens a fourteen year old girl, who has been tormented by the same memory since she was four (the events of the afternoon her mother died). Lily has always had this deep longing and admiration for her mother because she knows that her mother adored her. After running away from her miserable father with her black nursemaid Rosaleen. With nowhere else to go, Lily and Rosaleen are taken in by three eccentric sisters (August, May and June – and they are free of any restriction during their own Month – awesome!!). They were a black beekeepers who provide such delightful company and eventually helps Lily get answers to the questions with which she arrived there.
Sue Monk Kidd completely made me change my tune. While this book isn’t perfect, I was completely enchanted by the writing, the pacing, and the careful observation. Each chapter opens with an interesting fact about bees, and the appeal of honey in the novel, I can say, is definitely strong and tempting. The black beekeeping sisters use honey for everything — it even help them to wake up in the morning and to sleep at night. In her story she used the feminist undertones, that these women were strong and capable, and by adding an interesting touch of spiritualism. The major strength of this book is its power to make readers remember things about their own lives. It is also different in many ways, using some unusual additions to the novel and its rich storyline such as the introduction of beekeeping and the black sisters’ unconventional worship of the Black Madonna. Plus, the author made me see that Lily’s mindset is captured perfectly throughout the entire novel, with each detail, you explore her world perfectly. It explores life’s negatives, and reveals the meaning of simply separating what matters from what does not. In the end, though she does not find the mother she once had, she finds a hive of new ones.
The Secret Life of Bees will surely make every reader the importance of their mother and will love their mother even more. It is a story about love and acceptance and forgiveness and bravery with a unique twist on the traditional coming of age tale and keeps the reader greatly intrigued the entire read.

Knowing can be a curse on a person’s life. I’d traded in a pack of lies for a pack of truth, and I didn’t know which one was heavier. Which one took the most strength to carry around? It was a ridiculous question, though, because once you know the truth, you can’t ever go back and pick up your suitcase of lies. Heavier or not, the truth is yours now.

4 out of 5 stars

By My Side by Alice Peterson

by-my-side

I just find myself loving the books more than anything else. Wanting to read more, and as far as I have more time to do it, here I am grabbing the opportunity, shutting my door for a window shopping. All I wanted right now is to be inside of every books. And now. I just got back from this very inspiring story and yet very beautiful life of Cassandra Brooks, a twenty three year old medical student with an exciting career, a wonderful boyfriend, and a carefree life – a life that was heading exactly at the direction she’d always hoped it would. Until one unexpected morning, she was distracted and having a hangover, she stepped into the path of a truck. The next thing she knew, she woke up with a cord spinal injury. And then there’s this douchebag she dated for years named Sean, leaving a letter on her hospital desk. He bailed just like that. Witnessing that kind of scene broke my heart into pieces (I want to hug Cass that time.). She had so much to take in. To the point that her life was over – being left in a wheelchair and with her life no longer structured in the same way that it had been before. Then, one afternoon with her mother, they came across into Canine Partners, a charity that specialized in training dogs to become assistants to people with disabilities. And here comes Ticket, a loyal partner to Cass. Having Ticket in her life, she suddenly starts to feel more independent. She slowly turns her life around, one day at a time. She starts interacting more and soon meets up with Dom and Guy, friends she had made while at the hospital. Cass, finally starts to live again. Having Ticket in her life, gives her the push that she needed. She starts to feel independent and even ends up traveling to Colorado to ski, And on a flight to Colorado, she sat next to Charlie, who led her believe that he could show her a life full of possibilities, if only she would let him. This is my first time to meet Alice Peterson through reading her novel By My Side, and this book it literally blown me away. From the start of the story I find myself being immediately absorbed by her novel without knowing that I will fall in love with Cass and with this amazing labrador, Ticket. Alice Peterson really managed to engage the reader in the storyline. It was so detailed and realistic that it could almost have been someone’s diary I was reading. I love all the characters. It feels like they’re all real. I love Charlie (seriously, I was this suspicious of Charlie when I first met him, I felt sure that he was going to hurt Cass) he wasn’t just some hero character who loved a disabled heroine like they were perfect, because Cass wasn’t. He couldn’t deny that it would be easier if he could love a normal girl. But the problem was, he couldn’t even feel anything for the girls other than Cass. In the other side Cass felt so inadequate, she thought why would Charlie choose her over any normal girl. It’s not logical. But that’s love. You can’t help whom you’re in love with. I am impressed with Alice Peterson in regards to writing this kind of novel which is brave enough to tackle this kind of disability issues. Alice Peterson you open my eyes and see things differently, you made me understand that God really bless us in some different ways, He can use everything and everyone as His instrument in order to help us and change our lives for the better. Your novel is Beautiful, Amazing, Brilliant, Inspiring, Heart-Wrenching, Magical and with a gift of Emotions.

Sometimes I want oblivion. I want to shut my eyes and never wake up… Never feel alone.

out of 5 stars