[Manga Review] Dreamin’ Sun Vol. #02 – #04 by Ichigo Takano (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(7)
Dreamin’ Sun #02 – #04 | Shoujo Manga

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Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 02 

35482238. sx318 When Shimana fails to work up the courage to ask Asashi out on a date, she decides it’s time to get a makeover as part of her self-improvement plan. But when she calls Asashi to come check out her new look, she’s too preoccupied with his own crush to pick up the phone. Is her transformation all for nothing? And what are those weird heart palpitations Zen’s getting every time he looks at Shimana? It’s a full house of unrequited love and self-discovery in volume 2 of this slice-of-life romance

Screenshot_2019-06-30-00-15-27-662Don’t be turned off by my rating for this one… Let me explain.  The first volume I gave a 3.5/5, I added the .5 for artwork, so the everything else was 3/5.  However, this volume I didn’t enjoy the plot as much, therefore, I dropped a star.  It was definitely personal preference though, it’s not a bad volume, but for me I didn’t enjoy the Shimana and Asahi plot, neither did I much enjoy Shimana’s makeover, or the ending tbh with you.  It was entertaining to read, but out of all the volumes I have currently read (4) I don’t ever see myself rereading this volume.  I’m kinda sad because I really love the cover, Tai, the Landlord is one of my favourite characters in this series.  Saying that, I’m a bit confused why he is featured on the cover when this volume isn’t really about him.  Although, he did again give Shimana some sound advice… “It’s fine to get rejected, as long as you give it your all.” 

🌟🌟(.5)

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Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 03

36266618. sx318 When Shimana runs off into a rainstorm, the last person she expects comes to her rescue: Zen! When he gets a fever the next day, Shimana feels responsible and offers to nurse him back to health. While caring for him, she learns that he’s been hiding something from her — but that’s not the only surprise he has in store for her. Zen’s got a confession to make and it’s getting harder and harder for him to keep it under wraps.

I feel like the series is really going to pick up starting from this volume.  You learn a lot more about Zen and his dream to draw manga.  Dreams are a big part of this manga, it’s a reoccurring theme, along with unrequited love.  You also get to meet Zen’s big brother, Ken. I really enjoyed Ken’s character, I found myself chuckling at his scenes, especially when he says “I only ship Fujiwara/Shimana chan”, he also winds Fujiwara up a lot which is hilarious.  The manga starts out with Zen going to rescue Shimana, who at the end of vol. 2 is outside in the rain too proud to go home.  Zen as a result of this ends up getting ill, leading Shimana to look after him, which is how she learns about Zen’s dream.  This volume is definitely one where people decide their ship Screenshot_2019-06-29-23-55-36-301(Shimana and Zen, or Shimana and Tai), or if you’re like me and you’re indecisive, you don’t mind which way it goes. Don’t get me wrong, Zen is absolutely precious, but I am intrigued by the Landlord and I do want to see where it goes, I do think Shimana needs to grow up a bit first though.  However, Zen should definitely be protected at all costs he’s too cute, whichever way the story goes, I do hope he isn’t left sad in the end because I swear his speech was the cutest thing I have ever read.    Continue reading “[Manga Review] Dreamin’ Sun Vol. #02 – #04 by Ichigo Takano (SPOILER FREE)”

[Book Review] What a Disappointment – Legendary (Caraval, #2) by Stephanie Garber (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(8)
Caraval #2 | 451 pages | YA Fantasy

🌟🌟🌟

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A heart to protect. A debt to repay. A game to win.

IMG_20190629_033132_058After being swept up in the magical world of Caraval, Donatella Dragna has finally escaped her father and saved her sister, Scarlett, from a disastrous arranged marriage. The girls should be celebrating, but Tella isn’t yet free. She made a desperate bargain with a mysterious criminal, and what Tella owes him no one has ever been able to deliver: Caraval Master Legend’s true name.

The only chance of uncovering Legend’s identity is to win Caraval, so Tella throws herself into the legendary competition once more—and into the path of the murderous heir to the throne, a doomed love story, and a web of secrets…including her sister’s. Caraval has always demanded bravery, cunning, and sacrifice, but now the game is asking for more. If Tella can’t fulfill her bargain and deliver Legend’s name, she’ll lose everything she cares about—maybe even her life. But if she wins, Legend and Caraval will be destroyed forever…

Welcome, welcome to Caraval . . . the games have only just begun.

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Ah, so it’s time for this review.  I have been putting it off for a week now because I really have no idea what to rate it.  I enjoyed it don’t get me wrong, but it was so underwhelming, my most disappointing book of the year so far.  Not only that but I found it super predictable, majority of the twists and turns didn’t even surprise me.  Not only was the plot predictable, the writing was super repetitive, you were constantly being told over and over again things you had just read in the previous chapter.  Moreover, I was really looking forward to reading from Tella’s point of view, but the majority of the time you were in her inner monologue and she is constantly arguing with herself over which boy she likes.  I mean, I like romance in books, but even I was getting frustrated.  Maybe I’m just being biased because I didn’t really like the love plot surrounding Dante.  I’m open to seeing where Stephanie will take it in Finale, but as of now I’m not really on board fully.  Besides, I’ve become enamored with Jacks, it’s like The Darkling all over again so god help me.  I find him a very interesting character; I feel as if there is more to him than meets the eye.  I found myself routing for Jacks a hell of a lot more than Dante.  He is probably one of the main reasons, other than being invested that I’m even going to read Finale to be honest.    Continue reading “[Book Review] What a Disappointment – Legendary (Caraval, #2) by Stephanie Garber (SPOILER FREE)”

[Manga Review] A Cute, Comedic, Fluffy Read – Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 1 by Ichigo Takano (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(7)
Dreamin’ Sun #01 | 180 pages | Shoujo Manga

🌟🌟🌟(.5)

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Dreamin’ Sun is an all-new shoujo manga series, by the creator of New York Times bestseller orange, about a girl’s struggle to find a place where she truly belongs. Fans of orange and other classic shoujo stories will be delighted by this charming tale of bittersweet romance. Dreamin’ Sun is a ten-volume manga series.. Shimana Kameko lives in a home where she feels she doesn’t belong. Her mother is dead, her father has remarried, and her six-month-old baby brother takes up everyone’s attention. Kameko skips school and runs away to a nearby park where she literally stumbles over a mysterious man in a kimono. The stranger, Fujiwara Taiga, offers Kameko a place to stay–on three conditions. The first condition is that Kameko tell him why she ran away from home. The second is that she fetch the stranger’s lost apartment key (he is locked out!). The third condition is …to have a dream. Kameko meets the conditions, moves in, and begins a journey of romance and self- discovery.

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IMG_20190629_162634_914Dreamin’ Sun is a very quick, light-hearted read.  It’s written by Ichigo Takano, the author of Orange (which I haven’t read), it’s a cute, romantic comedy, shoujo manga.  I really enjoyed reading this manga, I usually tend to gravitate towards more serious manga such as Death Note, but I’m definitely going to be checking out more shoujo manga in the future.  As I’ve said all ready, this is a very fluffy manga, some of the events that occur in volume one do sometimes seem to fit together quite conveniently, such as how Shimana even finds a place to live/the easy way she completed all of the tasks.  However, I find that this kind of adds to the quirkiness of the manga, moreover, I expected it to be quite cliché at times so I really didn’t mind.   

Volume one flies by very quickly, it sets everything up and introduces you to the characters.  My favourite character so far is Taiga (the Landlord), I’m super interested to learn more about him in the following volumes.  I find the main character, Shimana, to be slightly whiny, I do hope she grows up and matures a bit in the latter volumes, however, I did find I could empathize with some of her problems.  Asahi is cute but too perfect for me to properly like him, and Zen I’m also interested in learning more about.    Continue reading “[Manga Review] A Cute, Comedic, Fluffy Read – Dreamin’ Sun Vol. 1 by Ichigo Takano (SPOILER FREE)”

[Reread Review] The Book That Blurs Fantasy and Reality – Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(6)
Caraval #1 | 405 Pages | YA Fantasy

🌟🌟🌟🌟(.5)

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First Read: May 2018 
Second Read: June 2019 

I decided to reread Caraval in preparation to finally finish the trilogy.  When I first read this book last year, I rated it 4.5 out of 5.  Upon reflection, I’m not going to be changing my rating, I don’t think it would be an accurate and fair rating.  Reading Caraval for the first time is a very mysterious, who-the-hell-can-I-trust experience, reading it for a second time not so much due to obviously knowing what happens.

20190618_181525_editedReading Caraval will always be an enchanting, atmospheric experience.  The imagery, the romantic language used, the smells and colours, all these things make you long for Caraval to actually exist.  It’s easy to get swept up in the story, before you know it, you’re 150 pages down and it’s dark outside.  It’s safe to say, I absolutely adore the world of Caraval, it’s definitely a book to read for the world and the plot.  Rereading it was definitely a wonderful experience in terms of drinking in all of the scenery, all of the magic and little details I missed the first time around.  Furthermore, I’m a bit of a sucker for romance, so again I was rooting for Scarlett and Julian all the way to the end.  The only difference I really noticed was Continue reading “[Reread Review] The Book That Blurs Fantasy and Reality – Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber (SPOILER FREE)”

[Book Review] The One Where I Read The First Book Second – The Kiss Quotient (The Kiss Quotient #1) by Helen Hoang (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(5)
The Kiss Quotient #1| 336 pages | Adult Romance

🌟🌟🌟🌟(.5)

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TKQStella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases — a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice — with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan — from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…

Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…

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As you know if you’ve read my review of The Bride Test by Helen Hoang, I read these books out of order.  Reading the two books this way didn’t necessarily dampen my enjoyment, however, there is a minor spoiler in The Bride Test about the outcome of Stella and Micheal’s relationship.  Ignoring this, I do as you can tell from my rating, prefer The Bride TestThe Kiss Quotient features a lot of miss communication between the characters, I know this happens in a lot of romance books to build tension and I guess further the plot, just to me atleast, it really stuck out to me when reading The Kiss Quotient.

HOWEVER, that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it because I did.  Micheal and Stella’s relationship is adorable and Micheal is so pure. I enjoyed the trope, is that right?  this book featured — Stella hires Micheal as an escort to teach her how to be in a relationship, but ultimately the two of them fall in love.  The romance in isn’t as slow-burn as Esme and Khai’s, to be honest, I did find it happened quite quickly.  The relationship itself made up this because oh my, it was so precious. Continue reading “[Book Review] The One Where I Read The First Book Second – The Kiss Quotient (The Kiss Quotient #1) by Helen Hoang (SPOILER FREE)”

Forgetting What You Read, Is It Common?

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Forgetting what I read is a big problem for me. No matter how much I enjoy the book, in around 2 months I can tell you character names, basic plot points and that’s about it. I don’t speed read and I don’t skim read, yet I still forget large chunks of what I read. I can tell you how I feel about the book, how I felt when I read and when I finished the book, but give me 2 months or so and I can’t tell you large amounts of information about the book. Quotes are another ordeal entirely, why is my memory so bad?! I mean it makes re-reading great, but it’s also super annoying and kinda disheartening as I don’t want to forget all these wonderful stories. I understand that reading is a form of escapism, it’s about how it makes you feel in the here and now, how it makes you forget everything around you and sucks you into this fictional time and place where all your worries don’t matter. However, it’d still be nice to remember more than the bare basics and a few character names a few months later.

Continue reading “Forgetting What You Read, Is It Common?”

[Mini Book Review] Who Knew Husband Hunting Could Be So Fun – Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa Kleypas (SPOILER FREE)

TO ALL THE BOYS I'VE LOVED BEFORE(4)
Wallflowers #1 | 384 Pages | Historical Romance

🌟🌟🌟🌟 (.5)

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Four young ladies at the side of the ballroom make a pact to help each other find husbands . . . no matter what it takes

Proud and beautiful Annabelle Peyton could have her pick of suitors—if only she had a dowry. Her family is on the brink of disaster, and the only way Annabelle can save them is to marry a wealthy man. Unfortunately her most persistent admirer is the brash Simon Hunt, a handsome and ambitious entrepreneur who wants her as his mistress.

Annabelle is determined to resist Simon’s wicked propositions, but she can’t deny her attraction to the boldly seductive rogue, any more than he can resist the challenge she presents. As they try to outmaneuver each other, they find themselves surrendering to a love more powerful than they could have ever imagined. But fate may have other plans—and it will take all of Annabelle’s courage to face a peril that could destroy everything she holds dear

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Secrets of a Summer Night

Secrets of a Summer Night is the first romance and first historical romance I ever read.  I do not regret my decision.  I loved the hate-to-love trope featured in this book between the main protagonists Annabelle and Simon.  The plot in this book was simple, yet it did contain meaningful layers which was lovely.  I don’t know much about romance authors, but Lisa Kleypas writes historical romance extremely well.  The friendship group, the Wallflowers, are now one of my all time favourite friendship groups!  Annabelle, Lillian, Daisy and Evie provided many hilarious moments throughout this novel, if you’ve read this you’ll know what I mean when I say, the rounders game. Continue reading “[Mini Book Review] Who Knew Husband Hunting Could Be So Fun – Secrets of a Summer Night by Lisa Kleypas (SPOILER FREE)”