I’ve figured out the secret. (Or, more accurately, I’ve been let in on a secret.)
Friends, if you ever experience a book slump, read short stories. They’re bite-sized, more often than not they’re truly incredible, and they will probably get you out of that book slump. I’ve managed to weather some book slumps by binging on short stories, so today, I’ll be sharing with you mini-reviews of short stories that I’ve read! (Note, I will not be doing mini-reviews for The Terracotta Bride and The Paper Menagerie – two short stories I loved, so I want to write more about them!)
I also want to take this opportunity to give a shoutout to Aentee from Read at Midnight, who recommends a lot of the short stories that I read. Thank you so much, Aentee! ❤
Happy Lunar New Year, friends!
Today, on the 28th of January, is the first day of the lunar calendar, else known as the Lunar New Year. For a lot of us, Lunar New Year is a very important day – one that is filled with celebration, spending time with family and the ones we love, and eating a lot of delicious food. For those of us with Chinese heritage, we call Lunar New Year Chinese New Year — and it’s the Year of the Rooster too! However, today is also Korean New Year, Mongolian New Year, Tibetan New Year, and Vietnamese New Year. (And a happy new year to you too, my friends!)
I am super honoured and delighted to have three book bloggers contribute to today’s Festive Book Recs – Lili, Jeann, and Alex – and share with you what Chinese New Year means to them and what they do to celebrate! In the end, Lili, Jeann, Alex will also be recommending two books each that relate to Chinese New Year.
Welcome to my sixth Diversity Spotlight Thursday! This wonderful weekly blog meme was created and is hosted by Aimal at Bookshelves and Paperbacks! For more information about the meme, please read the announcement post here.
My participation in this meme is to help me with one of my reading goals: to read books with a variety of perspectives, especially ones different from my own. Every two weeks I will share with you:
- A diverse book you have read and enjoyed
- A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read
- A diverse book that has not yet been released
I wanted to do a theme for this week’s Diversity Spotlight – so this week’s theme is: books with Indian characters or based on Indian mythology.
One of my goals for this blog is to make some truly fantastic book recommendations. To work in line with this goal, I want to start recommending more diverse books. Something I have noticed as of late is that the same books are recommended over and over again. And whilst that’s not necessarily a bad thing because it is probably a fantastic book, I feel like I can do my part and shine a light on diverse books that are just as brilliant, if not better.
Fantasy is one of my favourite genres; I love the feeling of transcending reality and being teleported to an author’s imagination-scape. Give me magical worlds, awesome powers and magic systems, and inspiring adventure narratives.
For this month’s book recommendation post, I am going to share with you four wonderful fantasies written by Asian authors.
Seventeen-year-old Ruby is a fireblood who must hide her powers of heat and flame from the cruel frostblood ruling class that wants to destroy all that are left of her kind. So when her mother is killed for protecting her and rebel frostbloods demand her help to kill their rampaging king, she agrees. But Ruby’s powers are unpredictable, and she’s not sure she’s willing to let the rebels and an infuriating (yet irresistible) young man called Arcus use her as their weapon.
All she wants is revenge, but before they can take action, Ruby is captured and forced to take part in the king’s tournaments that pit fireblood prisoners against frostblood champions. Now she has only one chance to destroy the maniacal ruler who has taken everything from her and from the icy young man she has come to love.
My sincerest thanks to Hachette New Zealand, for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Reading this book confirmed something for me: I have a big, big weakness for young-adult fantasy romances. There is something about them that I love – powerful heroines armed with magic, the sweeping and predictable (thus comforting) romances, and imaginative lands and kingdoms. My weakness is so weak that, even if the story is terribly unoriginal, more often than not I will love them.
When Aladdin discovers Zahra’s jinni lamp, Zahra is thrust back into a world she hasn’t seen in hundreds of years—a world where magic is forbidden and Zahra’s very existence is illegal. She must disguise herself to stay alive, using ancient shape-shifting magic, until her new master has selected his three wishes.
But when the King of the Jinn offers Zahra a chance to be free of her lamp forever, she seizes the opportunity—only to discover she is falling in love with Aladdin. When saving herself means betraying him, Zahra must decide once and for all: is winning her freedom worth losing her heart?
I remember finishing this book in the wee hours of the morning, and I rolled over in my bed and I just… happy sighed.
The Forbidden Wish made my heart swell; swell from its romance, its enchanting world, and the feeling of absolute wonder that this book evoked. It is a gorgeous retelling of Aladdin, but with a twist: the genie/jinni is a girl. Although the story is based on another, The Forbidden Wish manages to be an entirely different and unique story that is captivating from start to finish.
I owe my love of reading to magic. Not only the kind where we are pulled into imaginative worlds and are capable of experiencing a spectrum of emotion and feeling, but the literal kind. At age eight, I refused to read — until my primary school teacher read a chapter of Harry Potter. Thereafter, I developed an insatiable love for reading, and haven’t looked back since.