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Saturday, August 30, 2014

Book Review: How to Make It In Hollywood by Rick Friedberg

How to Make It in Hollywood: The Inside StoryHow To Make It in Hollywood: The Inside Story
by Rick Friedberg
Release Date: June 15th, 2013
Paperback, 191 pages
Genre: Business
Grab a Copy: 
      Amazon | B&N

Goodreads Summary: HOW TO MAKE IT IN HOLLYWOOD: The Inside Story is an often funny, enlightening insider's view on how to break into the world of show biz and navigate its shark-infested waters. Award winning writer/director Rick Friedberg's "war stories," collected while working with Academy Award-winning talent, embody a set of rules on how to make it in Hollywood and survive, like "Humility is a Highly Over-rated Virtue," "It's All About Passion," "If You Write it Well, They Will Come," and much more.

Cindy's Review:
At a Glance:
The behind the scene view of something is WAY WAY different from the front. Sometimes, being BTS gives you a unique, special feeling, like you know more information. But sometimes, it can get overwhelming. In How to Make It in Hollywood, Rick Friedberg writes about many of his personal stories and opinions about Hollywood: Behind the Glamour, Behind the Stage.

The Characters/My Opinion:
Well, obviously, since this isn't a normal plotline book about specific characters, so no characters. There are many mentions of famous people and movies and also the not famous people. The crew who helps produce the movies or writes them, but isn't widely mentioned. 

Being in Hollywood doesn't always equal FAMOUS. Not everyone is always on spotlight and you might not always see celebrities, but there are certainly more jobs available than you can imagine.

In How to Make It In Hollywood, Friedberg created 32 rules for you to follow to be successful. It's about passion, love, and yourself. An example includes "The moment you trust people you don't know, be prepared for the worst." Each of these rules have a story behind it, the author's own personal experience throughout the years. 

In this fabulous book, you'll get to see clips of the views of Hollywood: BTS. You'll get to see the business works, the harshness, the happy moments, the rejections....the list goes on. Be prepared to see what the big screen covers. It's like Hollywood's dirty little secrets. 

Overall Thoughts:
So, yep. Hollywood. Hmm. What do I think of it now? Well, I probably won't survive in there. Probably not. But I'm still happy to go watch the movies and see the shows. :) 

The Rating: (1-10): 7.5~

Happy Reading~

Friday, August 22, 2014

Book Review: The Amaranth Enchantment by Julie Berry

The Amaranth EnchantmentThe Amaranth Enchantment
by Julie Berry
Release Date: March 3rd, 2009
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing
Genre: YA Fantasy, Middle Grade
Hardcover, 320 pages
Get a Copy: 
      Amazon | B&N | Audible

Goodreads Summary: When Lucinda Chapdelaine was a small child, her parents left for the royal ball and never returned. Ever since, Lucinda has been stuck in perpetual servitude at her evil aunt’s jewelry store. Then, on the very same day, a mysterious visitor and an even more bizarre piece of jewelry both enter the shop, setting in motion a string of twists and turns that will forever alter Lucinda’s path. In this magical story filled with delightful surprises, Lucinda will dance at the royal ball, fall under the Amaranth Witch’s spell, avenge her parents’ death, and maybe—just maybe—capture the heart of a prince.

Cindy's Review:
At a Glance/The Cover:
Does this count as a retelling? It's a bit of a fairy tale twist up, but I'm not sure if this is a specific fairy tale retelling. It seems kind of close to Cinderella, considering the ball and the prince thing. But the witch? Ummm...either way, lemme just introduce how I met this book. :D

My friend told me about it a while ago. Like two years? I know, awhile back. I just never got to reading it, but this summer, I needed some books to read. SOOOO....yep. I mean, what else could have happened. 

I REALLY LOVE RETELLINGS. Cuz they're amazing! Well, most of them~ If you have any recommendations, TELL ME! That's not a threat. Or an order. :) A friendly request

Of course, I'm glad I read this retelling because The Amaranth Enchantment is full of twist and turns and guys.

The Characters/My Opinion:
Before I introduce the characters, I must say, some part really reminds me of The Lost Prince by Jennifer Neilson. The Amaranth Enchantment is like a series of fairy tales combined. With a fairy godmother of some sort. And a royal ball. And a lost prince. But also a worthy stone. And thieves. VERY ENTERTAINING. 

Lucinda Chapdelaine - That last name though. :) LOL. Let me inform you that Lucinda is not a princess. YEP. How's that for a twist. UMMM. Not very amazing. But she does come from a high end family. Of course, until her parents died. Then, you know the rest. The mean aunt. The witch. 

The thief - Since I did read this awhile back, I don't remember anyone's name except Lucinda's. Mainly because her name is in the summary. He actually plays quite an important role in this book. Because of him, Lucinda met the prince. I have to admit the thief was getting on my nerves in the beginning. After that.....well, he tried to be helpful. 

The Prince - The love interest. The one that's engaged and all. But he kind of fell for Lucinda at first sight. Which I'm not quite fond of. So I must say, the romance was okay. Not super good. A bit juvenile. It could have been better. The Prince didn't really have a big input in this book. Or a big personality. He was just there to make the plot move on. 

The Witch - I have no idea where she came from. Oh. Actually, she explained her story. So I am supposed to have an idea. She's actually a good person, but people know her as "the _____ witch". I don't remember the blank. :/ Either way, the witch somewhat saved Lucinda from her misery at her aunt's. The witch holds the conflict that Lucinda needs to resolve. And it all centers on that stone thing that represents the witch's soul. 

I think this whole book really revolved around Lucinda. And the thief? Kind of. Lucinda is actually a brave girl. She's totally the heroine. Not a perfect one. She got tricked, scammed, yelled at, but she still braved on. 

Overall Thoughts:
Because I really can't remember what happened, I end my super boring, mumbling, opinionated/horribly explained review about the plot and characters. 

Overall? It was a great fairy tale retelling! I enjoyed it because of the fantasy and the fairy tales. And the girl's courage. Her personality is quite alright, but it just doesn't connect with me. I definitely didn't read it for the romance though. Sooo....looking for some cute love? Nope. Not here. 

The Rating: (1-10): 8

Happy Reading!

Monday, August 18, 2014

Astounding August Releases~

So many amazing new releases for August! 
:D Especially excited for Isla and the Happily Ever After~

Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss, #3)Isla and the Happily Ever After (Anna and the French Kiss #3)
by Stephanie Perkins
Release Date: August 14th, 2014

My Thoughts: OMG! It's finally here! Stephanie Perkins creates the cutest characters ever. Every time I reread Anna and the French Kiss, I refall in love with Etienne St. Clair. But I heard Josh was even better!! So really can't wait to read about Isla and Josh's lovely romance in PARIS. :D

Tagline: From the glittering streets of Manhattan to the moonlit rooftops of Paris, falling in love is easy for hopeless dreamer Isla and introspective artist Josh. 

Opposition (Lux, #5)Opposition (Lux #5)
by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Release Date: August 5th, 2014

My Thoughts: I haven't been keeping up with this series, but the first book was an entertaining, fun read. :) Book 5's synopsis sounds good. A lover's betrayal. Hmm. :) Hope the fans are excited! I wonder how this series is though. 

Tagline: Katy knows the world changed the night the Luxen came.

The Rule of Thoughts (The Mortality Doctrine, #2)The Rule of Thoughts (The Mortality Doctrine #2)
by James Dashner
Release Date: August 26th, 2014

My Thoughts: The Maze Runner anyone? Well, this isn't the Maze Runner, but the movie is coming out NEXT MONTH!! DYLAN O'BRIEN! AND THE MAZE LOOKS AWESOME. Okay. I actually haven't been reading James Dashner's new series, but it's worth mentioning the second book is coming out soon!! :D 

Tagline: Michael completed the Path. What he found at the end turned everything he’d ever known about his life—and the world—completely upside down.

by Collen Hoover
Release Date: August 5th, 2014

My Thoughts: This is definitely either new adult or adult. But since it's was a popular new release on Goodreads, I'm going to feature it too. :) I don't remember reading any of Colleen Hoover's books, so no idea how her writing style works.

Tagline: When Tate Collins meets airline pilot Miles Archer, she knows it isn’t love at first sight. 

by Michael Grant
Release Date: August 26th, 2014

My Thoughts: 
I mean, it's Michael Grant. What can I say? Not that much. Because I haven't read much of his books. I read Gone, I thought it was pretty good. And Eve and Adam. But yannoe, just featuring the new releases. 

Tagline:  I remembered my name – Mara. But, standing in that ghostly place, faced with the solemn young man in the black coat with silver skulls for buttons, I could recall nothing else about myself.

by Rick Riordan
Release Date: August 19th, 2014

My Thoughts: I love Percy Jackson's sarcastic remarks. Totally entertaining. And those Greek gods also happen to be hilarious. Love Greek myth. More importantly, love me some more Percy Jackson. :D <33

Tagline: Who could tell the origin stories of the gods of Olympus better than a modern-day demigod? 

The Girl of Fire and Thorns Stories (Fire and Thorns, #0.5-0.7)The Girl of Fire and Thorns Stories: The Shadow Cats, The Shattered Mountain, & The King's Guard
by Rae Carson
Release Date: August 26th, 2014

My Thoughts: The novellas are out~ Or they've been out. They're just together now. :) #0.5 - 0.7. I haven't read book two and three yet thought, much less novellas. But :) You know the drill. 

Tagline:  Ummm. Too lazy to type them all. Or copy and paste them all. SOO....

by Lori M. Lee
Release Date: August 5th, 2014

My Thoughts: The cover looks similar to Clockwork Princess. :) And the "brother" part. I love high fantasy books, so I'll definitely love this book if it also has a fabulous writing style, plot, and character. Which is totally hard to ask for. I'm definitely willing to give it a try though. :D

Tagline: In the Labyrinth, we had a saying: keep silent, keep still, keep safe.

So that's it for my post for August. 
Be sure to leave a comment if there is another August release you are excited about! :)
Happy Reading~

Friday, August 15, 2014

The Selection is No Longer a Trilogy!

You know what that means right? 
BOOK #4 and BOOK #5!!
Nope. I'm not lying. 

Check out this website: for extra Selection sneak peeks and material. :) 

And that's not even it!

There are two more novellas coming!

The Queen (The Selection #0.4)
by Kiera Cass
Release Date: December 2nd, 2014

Goodreads Summary: 
Before America Singer’s story began, another girl came to the palace to compete for the hand of a different prince….

This prequel story takes place before the events of The Selection and is told from the point of view of Prince Maxon’s mother, Amberly. Discover a whole new Selection with this inside look at how Maxon’s parents met—and how an ordinary girl named Amberly became a beloved queen.

Comments: This one is coming out real soon. Already knew about this one though. Onto the next! :) 

The Selection Stories: The Queen and The FavoriteThe Favorite (The Selection #2.6)
by Kiera Cass
Release Date: March 3rd, 2015

Book Summary: Marlee Tames came to the palace to win Prince Maxon's heart—but her own heart had other ideas. The Favorite goes behind the scenes of Marlee and Carter's life together, from the fateful night their secret was discovered to the events at the end of The One.

Comments: Well. The Favorite cover isn't out yet, but The Selection Stories for The Queen and the Favorite is there. The release date is for The Selection stories, because I'm not sure if The Favorite will come out sooner. Yee. Marlee's point of view! We'll get to know more about her private life. :)

But in the end, I'm still more excited for the novels!!
Because they are longer!
And I hope they talk more about Maxon and America, who always seem to get interrupted by something. :) 

Plus, we get to meet some new people!
I wonder who "the heir" is.

*Cover is from Lite-Rate-Ture

Of course. There's no cover. And no synopsis. :( 
Expected Release Date: May 5th, 2015

Lots of fives. BUT at least we're getting more information!! :D

And since we barely have news about the fourth book, there's nothing we know about the fifth book. YET.

Here's Kiera Cass' announcement video:
Totally hilarious and entertaining.
Love her.

Got this wonderful news from
Visit her for more thoughts on this wonderful additions to The Selection!

And of course, we have to continue visiting for more updated information! 

What do you think about all these wonderful news?

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Book Review: Of Beast and Beauty

Of Beast and BeautyOf Beast and Beauty
by Stacey Jay
Release Date: July 23rd, 2013
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Arc, 385 pages
Genre: YA Fantasy
Get a Copy:
      Amazon | B&N

Goodreads Summary: In the beginning was the darkness, and in the darkness was a girl, and in the girl was a secret...

In the domed city of Yuan, the blind Princess Isra, a Smooth Skin, is raised to be a human sacrifice whose death will ensure her city’s vitality. In the desert outside Yuan, Gem, a mutant beast, fights to save his people, the Monstrous, from starvation. Neither dreams that together, they could return balance to both their worlds.

Isra wants to help the city’s Banished people, second-class citizens despised for possessing Monstrous traits. But after she enlists the aid of her prisoner, Gem, who has been captured while trying to steal Yuan’s enchanted roses, she begins to care for him, and to question everything she has been brought up to believe.

As secrets are revealed and Isra’s sight, which vanished during her childhood, returned, Isra will have to choose between duty to her people and the beast she has come to love.

Cindy's Review:
At a Glance/The Cover:
When I first saw the ARC in the pile, I didn't exactly want it. That trail of blood on the cover.....and a scaly man with claws certainly doesn't sound very appealing. Plus, I didn't really like the plot of Jay's Juliet Immortal and Romeo Redeemed. BUT, I got it in the end. I mean, duhh. Because I love retellings. So much. :) And Beauty and the Beast was a very cute story. 

And Beast turning out to be a handsome prince in the end of the Disney story was definitely more encouraging. But who knows what twists Of Beast and Beauty has.

The Characters/My Opinions:
Princess Isra - A princess about to become a  queen. Since she was young, she became blind in a fire accident. And now, at age seventeen (I believe?) her father, the King of Yuan, has passed of away. She is of age to become queen. But before she rules, Princess Isra must marry. 

Being blind is certainly a big disadvantage. Those sly and whiskery nobles are definitely trying to gain access to the throne. Not steal her throne. Because being a queen is not as good as you think. 

The roses in this book are enchanted. It seems they have their own mind, their own soul. They seem a bit evil. Or maybe just a bit blood-thirsty. Either way, kind of scary. 

Gem - Let's move on to the "love interest" or shall I say, the other main character. Gem also has a point of view so you'll be able to hear his thoughts. Gem has an okay personality. He's not arrogantly handsome with cocky attitudes. But that's alright cuz Princess Isra is blind. She can still hear though. He's likable. 

Needle - I'm pretty sure that's her name. Needle is the princess' lady-in-waiting. True to the lady. Reliable. Smart. Has the wits. Love her. What would Isra do without her? She's a dear. 

Lover of Isra - Okay. There's this other guy. But I forgot his name. Cuz he's very annoying and controlling. Throughout the book, I just wished him gone. He's the one betrothed to Isra. The one who gains the throne. But in the end, he turned out to be a better person than I thought. 

I think the plot of Of Beast and Beauty is wicked. I loved it! The twist of the characters. Although obviously, beast is still the Beast. And beauty is still the Beauty, roles are switched. Beauty is the princess. While Beast is the commoner. The outcast. Though Beast was saved in the beginning, Beauty was the one who truly need saving. 

Overall Thoughts:
The characters were mediocre to me, but the plot, the storyline, the setting, was perfect! The romance. It's like watching a show on TV. BUT EVEN BETTER. Because you know what they're thinking. And just swoon over their romance. 

The ending was like a fairy tale. Haha. Get it? That was lame. It ended perfectly. Like a fairy tale in heaven. 

The Rating: (1-10): 8.5~

Happy Reading~

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Book Tour + GIVEAWAY: Gayle Forman, Nina LaCour, and Jandy Nelson

They're coming to San Francisco
ON AUGUST 6th, 2014 
@ 7:00PM!

Gayle FormanNina LaCourJandy Nelson

Books Inc. at Opera Plaza
601 Van Ness
San Francisco, CA 94102
(415) 776-1111

If I Stay (If I Stay, #1)
If I Stay 
by Gayle Forman

In the blink of an eye everything changes. Seventeen -year-old Mia has no memory of the accident; she can only recall what happened afterwards, watching her own damaged body being taken from the wreck. Little by little she struggles to put together the pieces- to figure out what she has lost, what she has left, and the very difficult choice she must make. Heartwrenchingly beautiful, this will change the way you look at life, love, and family. Now a major motion picture starring Chloe Grace Moretz, Mia's story will stay with you for a long, long time.

Gayle Forman is an award-winning author and journalist whose articles have appeared in numerous publications, including Seventeen, Cosmopolitan and Elle in the US. Her New York Times bestselling novel, If I Stay, has been 
adapted into a film starring Chloe Moretz, Jamie Blackley, and Mireille Enos, and slated for release on August 22, 2014. Forman lives in Brooklyn with her family.

Everything Leads to YouEverything Leads to You
by Nina LaCour
Release Date: May 15th, 2014

A wunderkind young set designer, Emi has already started to find her way in the competitive Hollywood film world.
Emi is a film buff and a true romantic, but her real-life relationships are a mess. She has desperately gone back to the same girl too many times to mention. But then a mysterious letter from a silver screen legend leads Emi to Ava. Ava is unlike anyone Emi has ever met. She has a tumultuous, not-so-glamorous past, and lives an unconventional life. She’s enigmatic…. She’s beautiful. And she is about to expand Emi’s understanding of family, acceptance, and true romance.

Nina LaCour ( is the author of the award-winning Hold Still and widely acclaimed The Disenchantments. Formerly a bookseller and high school English teacher, she now writes and parents full time. A San Francisco Bay Area native, Nina lives with her family in Oakland, California.

The Sky is EverywhereThe Sky is Everywhere
by Jandy Nelson
Release Date: June 2nd, 2011

Seventeen-year-old Lennie Walker, bookworm and band geek, plays second clarinet and spends her time tucked safely and happily in the shadow of her fiery older sister, Bailey. But when Bailey dies abruptly, Lennie is catapulted to center stage of her own life—and, despite her nonexistent history with boys, suddenly finds herself struggling to balance two. Toby was Bailey's boyfriend; his grief mirrors Lennie's own. Joe is the new boy in town, a transplant from Paris whose nearly magical grin is matched only by his musical talent. For Lennie, they're the sun and the moon; one boy takes her out of her sorrow, the other comforts her in it. But just like their celestial counterparts, they can't collide without the whole wide world exploding.

This remarkable debut is perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen, Deb Caletti, and Francesca Lia Block. Just as much a celebration of love as it is a portrait of loss, Lennie's struggle to sort her own melody out of the noise around her is always honest, often hilarious, and ultimately unforgettable.

Jandy Nelson is the critically-acclaimed author of The Sky is Everywhere, and the highly-anticipated novel I’ll Give You the Sun. A former literary agent, she holds a BA from Cornell, an MFA in poetry from Brown, and an MFA from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in San Francisco, California—not far from the settings of her books.


One lucky winner will receive If I Stay movie tie-in edition and Where She Went by Gayle Forman.

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