Hey guys, how are you doing? It’s been over a year since I started my book blog and I must say that it’s been fruitful. I started this blog solely for the reason that I enjoy reading and I want to share it to the world. I never expected that I will gain much support and followers. I want to thank you guys for sticking around even if I am not always posting regularly. I can’t promise anything by next year but I will do my best to improve the content of this blog. I hope you continue sticking around. 🙂
In another news, I hope you’re already feeling that holiday vibe. As for me, I am excited for the coming Christmas. I will be going home in the province today, yes today, and I’ll be staying there until New Year. I’m planning to take a book with me but I won’t be that ambitious and believe that I’ll be able to finish it, considering that it’s holidays and I won’t have that much time with all the events and activities that’s coming. I have some books there that I haven’t read yet but I am not feeling to read any of them so I’ll be taking another book instead. I’ll post a reading update once I’m there. 🙂
As a form of celebrating with my blog turning one year and the year 2015 ending, here are my top 15 books that I read and reviewed in this blog with little snippets from my original reviews as to why I enjoyed each. For the complete review just click the tile of the book and you’ll be directed to my full reviews.
15. The Five People You Meet in Heaven by Mitch Albom
“This is a great and engaging book that describes the meaning of life, what really matters as we live and how we should not struggle to make peace with the past.”
“This book invites us to look at the meaning of life differently. It tells us that we all of the potential to change the lives of others even through our simple actions.”
“…we, even if we don’t know each other, are connected at some point in our lives and how our acts affect other without us knowing. He learns how we all share a special connection, and how that connection can often go unrealized and unappreciated.”
14. Maus, I: A Survivor’s Tale: My Father Bleeds History (Maus #1) by Art Spiegelman
“I like how the book came with no pretenses of being a feel good book. The book became true to itself by portraying the scenes in a very raw and realistic way. How life is always a struggle for survival and how we must always, to the best of our abilities, understand things even if it is hard.”
“Despite discussing a very broad topic, this novel delivered its message well to its readers. It is very neat and to the point. This book also showed the power of graphic novels in telling a serious story in depth.”
“…reading a Holocaust book is a form of respect to the people who suffered and died during those times, a form of saying that we remember them, and a reminder to us that those things happened, we should learn from it and avoid that kind of thing from happening again.”
13. Hollow City (Miss Peregrine’s Peculiar Children #2) by Ransom Riggs
“His writing has this flow that makes readers want to know more about the story. And same as the first book, Hollow City also incorporates in its pages bizarre and queer vintage photos that added excitement to my reading experience.”
“Living with your identity means accepting who you are and who other’s are. We live in this world to coexist and to question the existence of each other. We were created as one and there shouldn’t be any classification that distinguishes us from others.”
12. Si Janus Sílang at ang Tiyanak ng Tábon (Janus Sílang #1) by Edgar Calabia Samar
“If British people have Harry Potter and Americans have Percy Jackson, we Filipinos have Janus Silang.”
“The author writes cohesively. I like how the backstory created the subplots then they were all connected to make the major plot without at all being too confusing.”
“…this book transcends ages. The book is written in Filipino and gives a fresh take on Philippine folklore and mythology connected with history. It’s a great way to introduce young readers to the Philippine’s rich culture.”
11. A Game of Thrones (A Song of Ice and Fire #1) by George R.R. Martin
“There are alot of things that happened here and there and it’s just amazing how the author was able to piece them all together.”
“The author didn’t shy away with descriptions. That helped as it totally made me picture the world the author wants me to see, not limiting my self to how the TV series shown it for me….He presented a straightforward narrative and well-rendered scenes.”
“…the book for me talks about how the choices that we can make or break us. Learn how and whom to trust. Learn how to play your cards well. Learn to bend rules if possible. Learn to use your senses more than how they are intended to be used.”
10. Love & Misadventure by Lang Leav
“…this book changed how I looked into poems. This is a gem. I like how the author made her connection to the readers. How she made the poems very simple. How with simple words he made readers reflect into them.”
“I know that poetry is not for all. And I know that it’s not for me but the poems on the book spoke to me. The words spoke to me.”
“And for sure I’ll reread this again many times in the future.”
9. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Harry Potter #1) by J.K. Rowling
“….the author was able to breathe life to a fictional character. She created a genuine and unique magical world for the readers to enjoy.”
“The book talks about finding hope and courage from your friends when all seems to failing. It talks about how courage should not solely depend on how you’re strong physically but also how strong you are inside.”
8. Wonder (Wonder #1) by R.J. Palacio
“There are books that really touches the heart, there are books that pinches the heart, then there are books that stabs the heart. Literally. And this book is one of those.”
“The author used simple but powerful words. Words that cut through feelings and emotion and will surely linger in the reader’s mind for quite some time.”
“…the book is genuinely heartwarming with a deep message about unconditional love.”
7. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
“The author showed the unlikely friendship …. Friendship against all the odds and boundaries. Friendship tested through time. Friendship between two person with two different background and character.”
“All the characters are not all likeable but that’s the strength of the book because it will make you think otherwise and it’ll serve it’s purpose midway reading it.”
“I like the books genuine and honest storytelling. The author is very effective in providing powerful and painful illustration using words.”
…this is a love story. The love that binds fathers and sons, friends connected by heart and strangers connected by purpose. Their story depicts the reality of what love is and the complexities that comes with it.
6. Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
“The author….hands down. I can’t describe how masterfully this book was written…….The characters were just insanely perfect on the book. They were so diverse yet so perfect that made the story even more compelling. The story was to the point making the characterization felt just like real.”
“It was like a privilege reading this book.
It is a story of strength and love.
It is a story of hope.
It is a story of mankind.”
5. Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck
“I like how the author was able to masterfully create a plot without making the story very complex and by just using simple words he was able to create vivid descriptions of the setting and the characters.”
“The author was also able to portray numerous themes like the sacrifices that we do for friendship and the limitations of our dreams and hopes. The book also talks about the sturdiness and frailty of humankind in the choices that we make.”
4. Para Kay B by Ricky Lee
“The book is about love. It’s about the many faces of love and the strength of love. This book gave me a better understanding as to what love really is, that having our own unique definitions and experiences about love makes it something that is indispensable.”
“Some may not have a happy ending but what’s important is they are not losing hope and continue to be optimistic. Loving makes us more appreciate and understand the life that that we live. Like what many people say, it’s not about the destination but about the journey.”
3. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
“I can say that reading the book is like riding a roller coaster of emotions. Splendid it is!”
“What I like most about the book is its sincerity and truthfulness in telling a story…..I like how to the point the statements are and how the author was able to provide characters that really personified what the book and theme is asking.”
“The book’s premise is primarily about acceptance. Accepting things that one can no longer change, accepting people that have wronged you and accepting and believing that the future will always be bright.”
“This book is just one of those books that you’ll unknowingly hug after you finished reading it. That’s how authentic and flawless the writing is.”
2. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
“Does “best” still have a superlative because that’s how I would describe this book.”
“It’s about acceptance.
It’s about living and embracing your life.
It’s about loving your identity.
It’s a celebration of life.
This book is epic.”
1. Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami
“I don’t know how to put it, but I believe it is on how he writes and delivers his message to the readers. He works in a quirky kind of way that tickles the imagination and the thoughts that you have after reading his book will stay on your mind for a very long time…He’s the only author, for me, where confusion seems to be a treat. The way he play with words is so addicting for me.”
“The story tackled the complexities of the afterlife and of responsibility. I liked how Murakami made those topics work together. He discussed in the book that each one of us has innate responsibilities. Each of us is delivered to this world with a role to play. Each of us needs to live to the responsibilities that our families, community and even ourselves has given us. He discussed that those responsibilities comes with either a price but it all depends on how you see and how will you take it.”
“The book gave me a unique literary experience. It challenged me intellectually. This is book of magic realism at its best. Murakami really does wonder with his words.”
It’s hard to choose just 15 books out of all the books that I’ve read and reviewed. Here are 3 more books that almost made it to my list that are also worth mentioning.
Teen Angst? Naaah… by Ned Vizzini
Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher
Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage by Haruki Murakami
The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho
The whole Trese Comic Book series by Budjette Tan (Author), Kajo Baldisimo (Illustrator)
– Murder on Balete Drive (Trese, #1)
– Unreported Murders (Trese, #2)
– Mass Murders (Trese, #3)
– Last Seen After Midnight (Trese, #4)
– Midnight Tribunal (Trese, # 5)
– High Tide at Midnight (Trese, # 6)
So that’s it, I do hope you enjoy your holidays guys. I’ll be posting my “16 Books that I Am Excited to Read in 2016” and my “Reading Resolutions and Reading Goals for 2016” soon and I hope you check that one out.
Let me know what books from above have you read and also enjoyed? What are your reading plans during the holiday? What books are you taking for vacation to read? Let me know your thoughts. 🙂