Sunday, May 24, 2015

Book Recommendation: Short Stories

Here's a list of short stories I've read this year which I find really thought-provoking. They are definitely worth a read.

1. The Egg by Andy Weir

Image via Goodreads

This short story really made me think about life in general and how we treat people. I never expected a 4-page story to be so... deep. I would recommend everyone to give this a read. It's definitely worth it. Besides, it's super short.

You can read The Egg here.

2. Ponies by Kij Johnson

Image via Goodreads

Don't mistook the cover for a fluffy read about ponies and rainbow. This short story is actually kinda dark. It's a very interesting depiction of peer pressure and how it controls our actions.

You can read Ponies here.

3. The Ones Who Walk Away From Omelas by Ursula K. Le Guin

Image via Goodreads

This short story depicts a moral dilemma. Would you sacrifice the freedom of one child for the happiness of thousands? Or should thousands suffer in exchange of one child's freedom? It's utilitarianism versus liberalism. For me, I chose to walk away from Omelas.

You can read this short story here.

Wednesday, May 13, 2015


     One of my enemies during finals is, you guessed it: procrastination. That along with TV that decides to air all of their best programmes while I'm supposed to be studying for exams. And let's not mention all my TBR books that are lazing on my bookshelf behind me while I'm studying.

     During exam week this time (ahem, this week), I found myself doing some of the following activities that are not relevant to my tests:

  1. Doing household chores at night. Last Saturday, I was home alone because poor Grace had to stay home and study for her finals. And did she really? Well, no. At around 9 p.m., she decided to vacuum the entire house. Yes, at night. I mean, maybe she was procrastinating but at least she did something productive, eh?

  2. Writing a silly story. It's about a girl who could turn the river pink just by doing her laundry washing by the river. I seemed to be fond of anything to do with chores this week...

  3. Doing research on musical instruments. I've always wanted to learn to play at least one musical instrument in my life. Okay, so the guitar and harmonica didn't work out for me. And I'd lost interest in them after a few months. But I have a reason for that. Are you ready for this? It didn't work for me because it's just not meant to be... Anyway, I've decided on going back to basics and try learning to play the recorder.

  4. Buying a recorder. Yep, I went to the mall today and bought myself a recorder. Thank goodness that it's inexpensive!

  5. Watching YouTube tutorials on how to play the recorder. And I've made progress! I've learned how to place my fingers on the recorder for the music notes B, A and G. But I still play terribly. Gotta work on that.

  6. Watching the pros play the recorder. That is, until I discovered that one of the maestros is actually 15 years old.... What the heck am I doing with my life? That's when I awake from my fantasy of becoming a pro musician. Oh yeah, and I have two more papers to sit for this week.

Well, I guess it's time to get back with my revision and stop procrastinating by blogging about my issue with procrastination.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Angelfall by Susan Ee

Image via Goodreads
Title: Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days #1)
Author: Susan Ee
Release Date: May 23rd, 2013
Publisher: Hodder and Stoughton
Source: Borrowed
Genre: YA, Dystopia, Fantasy
Purchase Link: Book Depository


It’s been six weeks since angels of the apocalypse descended to demolish the modern world. Street gangs rule the day while fear and superstition rule the night. When warrior angels fly away with a helpless little girl, her seventeen-year-old sister, Penryn, will do anything to get her back.
Anything, including making a deal with an enemy angel.
Raffe is a warrior who lies broken and wingless on the street. After eons of fighting his own battles, he finds himself being rescued from a desperate situation by a half-starved teenage girl.
Traveling through a dark and twisted Northern California, they have only each other to rely on for survival. Together, they journey toward the angels’ stronghold in San Francisco where Penryn will risk everything to rescue her sister, and Raffe will put himself at the mercy of his greatest enemies for the chance to be made whole again.

My rating : 5 of 5 stars

This is my first reread of Angelfall. I didn't write a review on my first read last year as I know that I could never do this book justice. In my opinion, it was just that good. This time around, I  have a strong urge to recommend this book to every one. Well, here goes nothing.

I am not, and have never been, a fan of fantasy books about angels. But I make an exception for this book. It's dark, twisted and just awesome.  I enjoyed the plot, the twists and the characters.

Angelfall is one action-packed book. I was fed scenes after scenes of action that I am sucked into the story right from the very beginning.  Another thing is that there is absolutely no insta-love. I love the witty banter between Raffe and Penryn. I love how they started as enemies and slowly became friends and maybe something more. I love reading about Penryn's Mom and her crazy antics...Okay, now I'm just gushing about the book.

Anyway, I just simply have to post some of my favourite banters between Raffe and Penryn:
“Here, I’ll show you how to use it. Let me see your foot.”
“That’s a pretty intimate demand in the angel world. It usually takes dinner, some wine, and sparkling conversation for me to give up my feet.”
“I never kid about my warrior demigod status." 
"Oh. My. God." I lower my voice, having forgotten to whisper. "You are nothing but a bird with an attitude. Okay, so you have a few muscles, I’ll grant you that. But you know, a bird is nothing but a barely evolved lizard. That’s what you are.” 

Penryn might be one of  my fave heroines in YA fiction. She's badass and would do anything to keep her family safe from harm. This girl is tough. She's not some damsel waiting to be saved. Go girl power!