Archive for the ‘books’ Category

There are times when life is a cursor on a blank page, blinking in a rhythm a bit like an electronic heartbeat, tapping out a question in three little words.




Time and space and life wait for an answer. A blank page is an ocean of possibilities.

This is actually a quote from a book  I am reading at the moment by Lisa Wingate. I always look forward to reading her books.  She  is a journalist, an inspirational speaker, and the author of a host of literary works.


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It was one those lazy, lazy days. Yes I know, it’s just the start of March. Last January, I dreamed of  blogging every day but that’s not to be. There are days when  I can’t think of nothing to blog about. Ideas are hard to come by and a good content is not even in the offing.

I spent almost the whole day reading aside from an hour of loading the wash and ironing late in the afternoon.   For the last three days, I found two books that I rated five   stars and four stars  consecutively. One was entitled Summer At the Comfort Food Cafe by Debbie Johnson, my first book of the author.  It’s been sometime since I read a feel good story. Lovely characters, all of them.  It speaks about friendship, family relationships and love. It’s comfort at its best, a fantastic read. The other night I started on The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah.   I found the author some two or three years ago and I read a lot of her books.  The Great Alone is even lovelier than her famous The Nightingale.   This was set in the 1970’s. Alaska, a great and beautiful country  but has a harsh climate specially during winter. Winter lasts for six months and the sun shines for only six hours a day.  The wilderness, the beauty of it all. This is my 31st read this year.

I can’t help but write down some lovely quotes while reading it:

“Were you ever out in the Great Alone, 
when the moon was awful clear, 
And the icy mountains hemmed you in 
with a silence you most could hear; 
With only the howl of a timber wolf, and 
you camped there in the cold, 
A half-dead thing in a stark, dead world, 
clean mad for the muck called gold; 
While high overhead, green, yellow and 
red, the North Lights swept in bars?”

“Winter tightened its grip on Alaska. The vastness of the landscape dwindled down to the confines of their cabin. The sun rose at quarter past ten in the morning and set only fifteen minutes after the end of the school day. Less than six hours of light a day. Snow fell endlessly, blanketed everything. It piled up in drifts and spun its lace across windowpane, leaving them nothing to see except themselves. In the few daylight hours, the sky stretched gray overhead; some days there was merely the memory of light rather than any real glow. Wind scoured the landscape, cried out as if in pain.


I think I’ve reached another milestone in blogging.   I didn’t expect reaching more than 3,000  followers  since it is really not my number one priority. There are only a handful who regularly make comments and like my posts.  I am more into the number of visits the blog has garnered through the years.  The silent followers and visitors, those who  probably just read  one or two posts then move on. I don’t mind, what is important is  how one tries to reach out and  having  those wonderful visits  and followers is a bonus. Presently, I have  a total of 517,780  in my stats.

Blogging?  It is still a continuous fascination and joy for me. When my hands could no longer press the keyboard, when I could no longer think of something to write about, I’ll stop blogging. For now though, it’s still a GO 🙂

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Can’t believe February is almost gone. It is the shortest month of the year. This month has been an uneventful one for me.  The quiet days were spent gardening –  replanting some bulbs, trimming the grass and buying vegetable seeds for germination.

One of the mulberry cuttings that our good neighbor gave me has sprouted new green leaves and the persimmon seeds I tried to plant in a pot are doing nicely. Such rewards despite the morning heat of the sun  and the windy afternoons once in a while.

Summer is fast approaching and  contrary to what some foreign visitors  think  that it is always summer here, we  Filipinos consider the months of April and May as summer months. They are the hottest months of the year. We only have two seasons, the dry and the wet. The dry season usually  starts in late November and ends in May the following year.  The rainy season starts in June and lasts till October, sometimes we still experience typhoons by early December.

Ah yes, books of course.

According to Goodreads,  I am done with 29% of the books I committed to read this year. I am still looking for those classic books. I have about three on my TBR list but discovering new books and authors always keeps me distracted. The allure of reading!

I bookmarked a particular blog here about reading books and authors all over the world.  How I wish I could do that too. She has a list of all the books she has read  arranged alphabetically by country.  She included Philippine authors too.  I recently finished a book about Guatemala and Mexico.

I don’t want to think about our political situation here but one can’t help seeing the news and the way our government is being run. It is sad that almost all of the appointees by the president belongs to his party and most of them don’t  even have enough experience and expertise to do their job.  It seems to be a case of “utang na loob” (a sense of obligation to return a favour owed). I am getting tired of all the jokes and the fake news. Trolls are everywhere. Imagine a president saying  that the Philippines could be a province of China. My goodness, even if he says it is a joke, it is in bad taste. The Philippines is an independent nation, why would he even think of something like this? He is beholden to China, like a lap dog that just follows. Imagine even allowing China to co-own the West Philippine seas.  What is happening to my country? This  is a big question for me.

I hope the month of March would be more productive and lovelier than February.

Still hoping for the best. Welcome March 🙂


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Today’s Quote

P.S. Image from Google

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Blogging about books again.

Hooray! I found another lovely book by a Nigerian author, a first on my list.

Chimimanda Ngozi Adichie is a Nigerian author. Purple Hibiscus is her first novel which was published  in October 2003. I am still in the middle of reading it but it is just so engrossing.  This is the first time I encountered a Nigerian author.  I’ve read some famous Asian authors before the likes of Chinese-American Amy Tan, Afghan born Khaled Hosseini, our very own Miguel Syjuco, Afghan-American Nadia Hashimi, Japanese writer Haruki Murakami,  African-American writer  Zora Neale Hurston to name a few. There are less known Asian authors that I encountered before, this one though is new on my list 

Purple Hibiscus is set in postcolonial Nigeria, a country beset by economic difficulties and political unrest.  Learning about their culture, how the rich differ in a wide-angle from an average family, the concept of freedom,  coming of age, a rigidly Catholic upbringing – all the ingredients of a good novel.

Oh my gosh, the more I read, the more I am finding wonderful authors  such as Adichie. I hope I could find more of her works one of these days.  I am setting aside some of my TBR list just to read this first.


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Call me a book addict or a bookworm  or the more high-sounding word bibliophile but I just love books.  Take that to mean a new book with the dust jacket still on, a second-hand find from a Booksale store, an e-book   on my tab or just about anything that spells b-o-o-k. 

I’ve just finished my 18th book this year  (according to Goodreads where I have a virtual library) last night.  And it is a story about books and maintaining a bookshop. I had a good laugh reading it and enjoyed all the lovely and inspirational  book quotes written there.

My tab with Nate’s photo as a screen saver.

Sometimes I forget to jot them down but I go back and write them in my new journal.  It is always nice to read words that take you to another place, another time  and experiences.  My reading  genre is an eclectic mix of cook books, memoirs, poems, historical novels, classic books and fiction.  Sometimes I feel as if I am the main character in the story.  When you experience the triumphs, the fears, the disappointments and the  happy moments, it means that you are into the story.

I am into my fourth journal of quotes from most of the books I’ve read in the past. I feel energized reading these inspiring and motivational words from different authors.

Don’t you just love the smell of new books or the  excitement of finding something on your wish list?   Don’t you just love that pile of TBRs on your night table?

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Oh my, can’t believe this. I just finished my 14th book this 2018.  And I promised myself to finish a hundred books. Goodreads says I am 8 books ahead of schedule. Hooray!

The One Man by Andrew Gross.

It’s actually my first time to read an Andrew Gross book.   Back to the Holocaust and concentration camps.  Nazi persecution,  Auschwitz, gas chambers, murder of millions of Jews. It was a riveting read. Familiar story about WWII.  It is the first book I read this year with a five star.  That’s how much I enjoyed this book. Here’s a short summary  from Goodreads:

It’s 1944. Physics professor Alfred Mendel and his family are trying to flee Paris when they are caught and forced onto a train along with thousands of other Jewish families. At the other end of the long, torturous train ride, Alfred is separated from his family and sent to the men’s camp, where all of his belongings are tossed on a roaring fire. His books, his papers, his life’s work. The Nazis have no idea what they have just destroyed. And without that physical record, Alfred is one of only two people in the world with his particular knowledge. Knowledge that could start a war–or end it.

Nathan Blum works behind a desk at an intelligence office in Washington, DC, but he longs to contribute to the war effort in a more meaningful way, and he has a particular skill set the US suddenly needs. Nathan is fluent in German and Polish, and he proved his scrappiness at a young age when he escaped from the Krakow ghetto. Now the government wants him to take on the most dangerous assignment of his life: Nathan must sneak into Auschwitz on a mission to find and escape with one man.

More than 20 years ago, I discovered another writer and I read most of his books.  Leon Uris. Uris is American but his parents were Jewish  American. He writes  historical novels too, mostly about WWII and Poland.  Mila 18, QB VII and Trinity are my favorites.

Reading another Peter Mayle book at the moment.  Encore Provence, my third book of Peter Mayle.

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