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March 21, 2012

Until we meet again...

Dear all my newly-made friends and beloved readers of this little baby book blog,

Due to educational circumstances at the moment, I have decided to completely focus on my studies for the time being.Therefore, I am extremely sad to announce that I will be laying my dear little book blog to sleep for a while. From this moment on, I want to be able to give 110% to this important and life-changing battle in front of me.

I am very sorry for the abrupt news, and I apologize if I'm seeming very flighty and uncommitted during this time. That is not at all my intentions, I promise you all that. For this period of time up until now (a little over a month), I made so many new friends and ended up entering into one of the most fascination and enchanting online realms ever, and I am truly grateful for that. 

To all my new friends, thank you so much for your support up until now. I am so sorry that I will not be able to support you for the next 3 months or so, and I will be missing reading all your lovely posts very much! Please excuse me for the time being, but please do not forget Vivian either. I promise you all (and this blog) that I will be back. When I get back, I will definitely have many reviews to share and many more comments from visiting all your blogs! Please wait for me, thank you.

All the best,
Vivian Li

P.S. I am deciding whether or not I should leave this blog visible. Should you have read this post until this point (thank you!), please leave a suggestion for me in the comments. I really appreciate it!

RELEASE DAY PARTY!!! "Truly, Madly, Deeply You" by Cecilia Robert

I'm participating in the Release Day Party for this Adult, Contemporary romance by Cecilia Robert! Normally, I don't read many adult books, but I've read a couple. Besides, since I'm a growing 16-year-old, this blog will be one of those changeable cribs that morph into beds as the baby grows ^_^ -awkward silence-

Anyway! This one's super sweet, though! I've already marked it as my next "Adult" category read! I've also got an eBook copy up for grabs, teehee! Do check it out, though, for any of you romance fans out there! (I spy a couple of you, don't be shy!)

Title: Truly, Madly, Deeply You
Author: Cecilia Robert
Genre: Adult Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Inkspell Publishing
Formats: eBook, Kindle, Paperback
Purchase this book!

Summary: Four days before Valentine’s Day, Liese Hansfeld is determined to shut the door to her house, as well as her heart, for her annual four days of mourning her one true love. Little does she know her best friend Freytag Meier is just as determined to keep her from her ritual. He’s ready to pick the lock to her apartment door and camp in her living room if that’s what it takes.

What Freytag isn’t prepared for is the surge of deep-rooted emotions he feels for Liese, but two things stand in his way: the grief and guilt she still clutches close to her heart, and a man who threatens to snatch Liese from under Frey’s watchful eye. Frey is determined to distract her into forgetting her pain. But is that enough to ease her grief, or help her see he can be more than her best friend?

About the Author!

Cecilia Robert enjoys the play and weave of words that make up a good story. She enjoys creating fantastical worlds and getting lost in them. She often meets a prince, a princess, a pirate, ordinary and badass boy or girl who take her through the wonderful world of dreaming and fantasy.

 She doesn't have particular leanings to any kind of story as long as it captures her attention She reads and enjoys urban/dark fantasy romance,  paranormal, contemporary, sci-fi, mystery or horror as much as her children's school books. Some nights, you can find her reading Puss in Boots for her daughter, or trying to understand how to read Manga comics from her son.
 And of course...a giveaway!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

March 17, 2012

In My Mailbox ● #5

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme created by Kristi @ The Story Siren where you share your books haul, whether the books be bought, received for review, or from the library!

The "Break" in my March Break is officially starting now. That leaves me just a bit over a day before returning back to class on Monday. Go figure. Anyhow, I'm hoping you guys had a better week than I did! Did you all get some nice books? A Temptation of Angels is coming out soon!! Eeee!!! Oh, as well as The Hunger Games movie for you THG fans!

Here's Vivi's IMM for this week! Any mutual reads?

Title: Surrender (Haunting Emma #3)
Author: Lee Nichols
From Public Library; Goodreads

I waited an entire TWO MONTHS for this hold to arrive. To be honest, I was going to buy my own copy, but I was out of allowance (like almost 90% of the time). Also, I've bought "Betrayal", the second book already. This is an AWESOME trilogy! My "Deception" review here, and now that I have the 3rd book in my hands, I should probably post that 2nd book review...

Title: Bright Young Things (Bright Young Things #1)
Author: Anna Godbersen
From Public Library; Goodreads

Let me be honest with you guys. I'm not a huge fan of this author. Her writing, obviously going for the sophisticated, detailed, socialite-style of the olden days, does not come across as well-pulled-off for me. I can be extremely picky when it comes to that sort of writing style purely because I've read some seriously well-written books in that style. Which is also why I returned this book after reading a couple of chapters last year. Anyhow, I found the Luxe to be pretty entertaining (although not spectacular), and since I didn't write a review for Ms. Godbersen yet, I went back to check this one out again. Sorry to you guys who are bigger fans of her. I don't mean to hurt any feelings...

I have so many books stacked up I'm surprised I managed to have 2 new books in my mailbox at all! Not much to share here, you guys most likely have more exciting mailboxes, haha! Please leave a comment and a link, and I'll drop by sometime!

Vivian's Reading List (March-April):
1. "Blood Red Road" by Moira Young (currently reading)
2. "Secrets & Shadows" by Shannon Delaney
3. "Vampire Academy" by Richelle Mead
4. "Another Pan" by Daniel & Dina Nayeri
5. "Clockwork Angel" by Cassandra Clare
6. "Fallen" by Lauren Kate
7. "Surrender" by Lee Nichols


March 15, 2012

"Sphinx's Queen" by Esther Friesnar

I'm so glad a lot of you were interested in this series by Ms. Friesnar, so if you were one on the maybe line, perhaps my review of the sequel would convince you that both books are worthwhile reads.

Also, I've gotten some comments regarding my rating for "Sphinx's Princess", so I want to apologize for the misunderstanding I may have caused. It was not my intention to label the book as mediocre in any way. My personal ratings are actually a tad different from most bloggers' standards, and I have seen for myself, so please don't believe my 3.5/5s to mean "average read". Instead, read it as "Above average and highly enjoyable with competitive diction, yet with a slight bit of room for improvement." Obviously, there's always room for improvement, and to be truthful, I originally rated "Sphinx's Princess" as a 4/5, but after reading the sequel (which was clearly stronger), it would go against my rating system to give "Sphinx's Queen" 5/5, because honestly, I just don't do that.(No, not even with Shannon Hale).

Sorry for going on and on~ about my ratings, if you'd like to read more, please visit my Review Policy page!
Once again, I'm very sorry for the misinterpretations and misunderstandings of my rating. 'Kay! On to the review! (Yet another stunning cover, isn't it? *o*)

 Title: Sphinx's Queen
Author: Esther Friesnar
Publication: 2010, Random House Books for Young Readers

Summary: Ancient Egypt springs to life in this enthralling sequel to Sphinx’s Princess. As she did in Nobody’s Princess and Nobody’s Prize, author Esther Friesner offers readers a fresh look at an iconic figure, blending historical fiction and mythology in a heady concoction.

Hunted . . . Overnight, every aspect of Nefertiti’s life has changed. She is no longer living at the royal...read more

Review: The sequel to "Sphinx's Princess", this wonderfully thirst-quenching continuation of the valiant Nefertiti's adventures charges on. With an ending that invoked my tears, this book made me feel as a close friend of Nefertiti's. By the conclusion of her wonderfully refreshing, yet also painfully heart-wrenching tale, one would feel the huge longing to always hold this inspiring, young female protagonist at heart. 

Through Friesnar's expert story-telling, Nefertiti guides us bravely through unbelievably torturing turmoils as she defends justice, peace, and the safety of her beloved ones. Each character in this remarkably gallant saga shines to great extents as individuals and scarily realistic people. With poise, grace, and enduring bravery and heroism, the Nefertiti Friesnar brings us will be one that deserves to be recognized and remembered. Along with the similar dignity that the author used to open this magical story, she gently closes it with amazing emotional power and courage.

I will now send Nefertiti off in the distance with her beloved, with tears and an overpowering sense of pride for her life accomplishments, as the sun slowly retires down the mountains. In ancient Egypt. 

Rating: ✿✿✿✿ 4.5 Blossoms 
(Current Rating Average: 3.07)
Final Notes: I may have mentioned before that the first book was a very nicely laid-out foundation. This second book is the absolutely astonishing pyramid itself! The build was really great without the first book falling flat, and due to the strong base, this sequel reached great heights. Honestly, I was gasping all the way through because just when you thought Nefertiti's situation couldn't get any worse... Oh boy, it does. The schemes and plots inside the plot (haha) were so sly and well sorted out, that it was quite shocking, really. The best thing? How strong Nefertiti is. She will definitely be a heroine I will not forget, just because through whatever crisis she is thrown in, she never loses her wisdom and own strong sense of justice. She is brilliantly admirable.


March 12, 2012

"Sphinx's Princess" by Esther Friesnar

Title: Sphinx's Princess
Author: Esther Friesnar
Publication: 2009, Random House Books for Young Readers

Summary: Nefertiti was far more than just a pretty face.

Nefertiti may be the dutiful daughter of a commoner, but her inquisitive mind often gets her into situations that are far from ordinary, like receiving secret lessons from a scribe. And she’s the kind of girl who acts first, and apologizes later whenever she witnesses injustice or cruelty. But she is also extraordinarily beautiful. And news of her striking beauty and impulsive behavior attracts the attention of her aunt, the manipulative Queen Tiye, who sees Nefertiti as an ideal pawn in her desire for power....read more

Review: The 3rd of the Princesses of Myth collection and the 1st depicting a dignified rendition of Nefertiti's story, Friesnar weaves a gorgeous and exotic historical treat. The characters, including Nefertiti, were carved in exquisite and vivid details. Tugging at your imagination, this brave story will keep you hooked. There are adorably amusing moments, as well as ones that draw out tears. Although the book closes with an open end, it was still a propelling and wonderfully entertaining read.

Rating: ✿✿✿ 3.5 Blossoms 
(Current Rating Average: 3.25)

Final Notes: A wonderful piece of historical fiction here, dear readers! I apologize for this short review, this one actually dates to a while back. Anyhow, I still remember how admirable this young character was, and the book itself was very well written. Wait for the review of the next book, and it will get better! Anyone aching for a bit of tasteful historical fiction, here's a good one for you!


Top Ten Tuesday ● #2

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish where you share a top ten list!

This week's Top Ten Tuesday edition is ~drum roll~ A top ten list of (x) genre books. The (x) unknown factor is up to the blogger to decide! Of course, my genre choice will be Paranormal/Fantasy!!! Ehh...is that two genres? Ah well. I'm combining them. They are pretty close to each other anyway ;)

1. "River Secrets" by Shannon Hale : There's no putting into words how much I love Shannon Hale's "The Books of Bayern", and this one with Razo as the main character is definitely one of my absolute favourites!
2. "Deception" by Lee Nichols : The ultimate ghost-battling story! This trilogy is SUCH a thrill!
3. "Prophecy of the Sisters" by Michelle Zink : Quite self-explanatory! Subtle in its fantasy and magic factor, making it all the more realistic and and amazingly believable!
4. "Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone" by J.K.Rowling : My classic pick. First one will always hold the most memories for me!
5. "Blue Bloods" by Melissa de la Cruz : This is Vivi's vampire pick! I'm not a Twilight fanatic, but if you ask for vampires, this one's quite a good and juicy one too!
6. "13 to Life" by Shannon Delaney : I'm actually starting to really like this series! Great fast and enjoyable read, awaiting my copy of the second book right now!
7. "Halo" by Alexandra Adornetto : Oh, here we go again... my absolute no. 1 angels pick for you!
8. "The Gathering" by Kelley Armstrong : This one actually made it on the list! It's growing on me too, even though I find it similar to "13 to Life", it's still a great read!
9. "Rampant" by Diana Peterfreund : Bloody, killer unicorns! Now that's something you don't read most days! Quite a good and unique world created here, full of exciting action!
10. "Another Faust" by Daniel & Dina Nayeri : And definitely an "Another" series book, because points for sophistication and story-telling, mixed in with the paranormal and spin-offs!

That's it for Vivian's Top 10 Paranormal/Fantasy list! For now. Actually, those top 4 would always be on the list, but the rest...hmmm, they may pass and go. What's your Tuesday top ten? Post a link in the comments! I'd love to hear what you think of my picks too, especially if you've read any of these!!!


March 11, 2012

In My Mailbox ● #4

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme created by Kristi @ The Story Siren where you share your books haul, whether the books be bought, received for review, or from the library!

A bit late for my IMM this week, but here we are ~ MARCH BREAK!!! Hourray!!!
It's not as nice a mailbox as some of yours that I've seen, but still one that I hope I'll get through and enjoy during my Spring break. A complete school library haul this week. My copy of "Surrender" by Lee Nichols is STIL "in-transit", it is SO infuriating! If any of you are also on break, Vivi wishes you a fantastic holiday and happy reading!

Title: Eat, Shoots & Leaves 
Author: Lynne Truss
From School Library

First off, my mandatory for-school read. We're doing non-fiction in English class, and this was my pick! After reading, I'll be creating a webpage for my book report, so when I have it up, I'll post a link ^_^ (well, if anyone's interested in reading Vivian's-English-book-report-for-school, that is, haha! I'd be really happy if you guys told me your thoughts, though!). This is quite a famous book, and I've always wanted to read it, ever since I was 10.  I'm very happy that I'm now able to read this!

Title: Blood Red Road
Author: Moira Young
From School Library

My next White Pine read, I'm actually reading this right now! I'll leave all opinions to my review, then. I-It's...interesting.... I'm still trying to make up my mind about what I think of it, though I've read some nice and positive reviews from some of you!

Title: Vampire Academy
Author: Richelle Mead
From School Library

Finally getting on to this one. It's been mediocre so far, though I'm waiting to see how it'll be by the end of the book. Really, I picked this up from my school because the school library had EVERY.SINGLE.ONE. in the series. O_O and I'm a sucker for books that are from complete collections in a library because then, if I like it, I know that there's a next book waiting! Anyone else know that feeling?

Author: Lauren Kate
From School Library

"Torment" has caught my eye so many times, but I didn't want to read it because I haven't read the first book yet. Lucky for me, I found it! So I'm quite excited to read this series! I saw the Story Siren's quote in it too ^_^

There! Not too shabby, though I really need to make sure I finish my school-read before going on to enjoy these other ones :( If any of you dear readers have opinions on these books, I'd love to hear what you have to say!

What's in your mailbox this week? Link me up!


March 10, 2012

Awards for Vivi! Thank you!

Today, March 10th, is my first one-month anniversary for book-blogging! Haha, a pretty small feat., really, but nonetheless quite memorable for me because as I look back, I've made so many new friends and encountered many wonderful blogs and authors and of course, books!

To all my blog-friends who take the time to comment on my reviews and other posts, thank you! To all those kind people who generously followed me, thank you too! I do not take one follower for granted, although I do hope you'll all understand that I'm not blogging just for followers. I really love reading and writing quality, honest-opinion reviews, which is why I've decided to keep this blog alive. It is through that mutual love for books and reviewing that I hope my readers will feel a connection with me and my little blog.

From late February to March, I've also received 2 lovely awards! Thank you to the super nice Angie at Angels are Kids and Furkids for the Kreativ Blogger Award and also to dear Mel from Life of a bookworm for the One Lovely Blog Award! Do give them a visit! :)

I'm going to be doing some combining. Sadly, I don't know 7+15=22 blogs to pass these lovely awards on, so I will just pass BOTH these awards to 7 of my favourite blogs! Also, due to the fact that I recently did a tag, and answering so many more questions would most definitely bore all of you, I will answer 5 questions, and add 5 random facts about myself ^_^

Thank you, Mel!!!

One Lovely Blog Award - Rules
1. link back to the person that sent the award. 
2. Follow the person that sent the award to you. 
3. Pass along to 15 Lovely blogs.
Thank you, Angie!

Kreativ Blogger Award - Rules
1. Thank & link back to the person who gave you the award.
2. Answer the form questions below.
3. Share ten random facts / thoughts about yourself.
4. Nominate (at least) 7 other blogs for the Kreativ Blogger Award.

For BOTH these lovely awards, I nominate ~

My answers and facts after the jump >

March 9, 2012

"Circle of Fire" by Michelle Zink

This review is not even close to all that I really want to say about this final book in the Prophecy of the Sisters trilogy. The impact of this finale is just so overwhelming and tear-inducing, I am at a loss of further words to say for it. I apologize to Michelle for not being able to conjure up a more original review, but this was by far the hardest review for a book I have ever written.

♪ Listening to Soundtracks from here. I am perfectly in sync with the tracklist's musical taste.

Title: Circle of Fire (Prophecy of the Sisters #3 - Final)
Author: Michelle Zink
Publication: 2011, Little Brown

Summary: With time dwindling but her will to end the Prophecy stronger than ever, Lia sets out on a journey to find the remaining keys, locate the missing pages of the Prophecy, and convince her sister Alice to help--or risk her life trying. Lia has her beloved Dimitri by her side, but Alice has James, the man who once loved her sister--and maybe still does. James doesn't know the truth about either sister, or the prophecy that divides them. And Alice intends to keep it that way. There are some secrets sisters aren't meant to share. Because when they do, it destroys them. This stunning conclusion to Michelle Zink's Prophecy of the Sisters trilogy will make saying good-bye bittersweet for readers. ...Goodreads

Review: As the stunning and triumphant peak of this compelling and addicting trilogy's triumphant finale, this book engulfed me in its flames. Lia and fellow characters grow, heightened to unimaginably complex and beautifully created levels. From dark depths of nightmares to fascinating adventures of the day and still to rich and exquisitely woven mysteries of the prophecy, "Circle of Fire" touches upon nuances from cold, earthy soil to whirling, diaphanous clouds in the eternal sky. Everything about this book, from the elegant yet strong-willed prose of Michelle Zink, to the heart-warming (or chilling) interactions between the characters, was absolutely perfectThe pacing was a tense yet fully delightful climb to a breath-taking climax, and this time, Ms. Zink draws the stage curtain close for the final time. With all ends skillfully and satisfyingly tied, the emotionally provoking conclusion of this powerful story will deeply touch the hearts of all readers.

I, for one, could not have wished for a better ending.

Rating: ✿✿✿✿ 4.5 Blossoms
Final Notes: . . . . I'm completely out of what to say. In a good way, of course, Michelle has completely paralyzed me with this mesmerizing final book. I cannot even bring myself to read another book, even after I've finished reading this yesterday. All through this finale, I was hanging onto each and every word, grasping on with all my might, and when I reached the end, it was the most beautifully drawn conclusion of a YA book I have ever read. And I can say that quite confidently, accompanied by my tissue box here.

Yes, I guess if you do analyze the end, it isn't the most original, but the way it was written made it just perfect. It was so....right, that after reading it, there's no other good ending that you'd want. I must say, however, that this trilogy as a whole is an incredibly successful and amazing one. The build, not just in this last book alone, but also in all 3 books, was expertly done, and due to that, the final impact was just so immense. I loved it.

Read another awesome review on this book by my friend Mel HERE!!!


Feature & Follow Friday ● #1

 *The spacing is being all weird :/
Feature & Follow Friday is a blog hop hosted by Allison Can Read and Parajunkee's View.

This week's question is ~

Q: Have you ever looked at book's cover and thought, This is going to horrible? But, was instead pleasantly surprised? Show us the cover and tell us about the book.

My goodness, what a perfect opportunity to nicely "insult" the cover of one of my favourite books of 2012! We've all had that slightly negative ". . . . " impressions on our share of covers now, right? ^_^ Anyway, here's Vivi's pick for this week! I was actually going to make a separate post about this, so this was just perfectly timed!

 "The Way It Is" by Donalda Reid is my favourite White Pine 2012 book...so far, anyway, and I'm quite convinced it will be the one I'll be placing my vote for. (By the way, anyone out there also participating in White Pine? I'm more than happy to have a chat about this year's selection ^_^).

Now. This cover... looks like a usual contemporary cover, just a bit, don't you think? The plot summary was what brought me to want to read this one, but even then after checking it out, I was frowning down on that poor cover. Perhaps it was mainly due to my bad timing. It was lunch time and I had just checked out the book, settled down with it with my sandwich. Took one look at the feet and completely lost my appetite.

After reading the book (It was amazing, absolutely astounding for a White Pine book), I took a second, less biased look at the cover. The characters should be Paul with the long jeans, and Ellen with the rolled up jeans. First off, the book was set in a different time, but the girls were definitely NOT wearing jeans. Second, Paul is Aboriginal. Judging from the feet, the cover boy has light skin. Third...i-it's just sadly not so appealing for me.

What made it worse was just how good the book was itself. I felt like this cover was just quite a pity because I think the writing itself deserves so much more than this. What do you guys think of this cover? Link me up!

Read my review on "The Way It Is"



March 7, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday ● #3

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill @ Breaking the Spine. It features books that you are currently anticipating releases of. 

Title: A Temptation of Angels
Author: Michelle Zink
Publication: March 20, 2012, by Dial Books for Young Readers

Summary: When her parents are murdered before her eyes, sixteen-year-old Helen Cartwright finds herself launched into an underground London where a mysterious organization called the Dictata controls the balance of good and evil. Helen learns that she is one of three remaining angelic descendants charged with protecting the world's past, present, and future. Unbeknownst to her, she has been trained her whole life to accept this responsibility. Now, as she finds herself torn between the angelic brothers protecting her and the devastatingly handsome childhood friend who wants to destroy her, she must prepare to be brave, to be hunted, and above all to be strong, because temptation will be hard to resist, even for an angel. Michelle Zink masterfully weaves historical fantasy with paranormal romance to create a gripping tale of love and betrayal

Vivi Talks: I'm completely immersed in "Circle of Fire" right now, and I am really dreading the end of such a wonderful trilogy. So! Of course I'm very, very excited about the release of Michelle's latest book. I wonder if it'll be a stand-alone... or if Michelle might add to this first book with others... Anyhow, really looking forward to the release of this one!

What are YOU waiting on this Wednesday? Leave a comment and I'll get back to ya!

March 5, 2012

"13 to Life" by Shannon Delany

Title: 13 to Life
Author: Shannon Delaney
Publication: 2010, St. Martin's Griffin

Summary: Everything about Jessie Gillmansen’s life changed when her mother died. Now even her hometown of Junction is changing.  Mysterious dark things are happening. All Jessie wants is to avoid more change. But showing a hot new guy around Junction High, she’s about to discover a whole new type of change. Pietr Rusakova is more than good looks and a fascinating accent—he’s a guy...read more

Review: A satisfying and crunchy read, with attractive and believable characters and a fairly well-driven and addicting plot. Delaney does some great spins in creating a normal-turned-unusual world that is easy for readers to fall into. Not too subtle hints on the mythical theme were plunked for a while down the storyline. Delicious characters and juicy, interconnecting relationships make up for the mediocre plot. However, though not epic-ly outstanding, "13 to life" packs in effective frustrated moments for just the right amount of time before rewarding with another  hooking piece to the constant mystery being uncovered. Yet another alternative to your favourite werewolves read, but nonetheless thoroughly enjoyable.

Ratings: ✿✿✿ 3 Blossoms
Final Notes: This was a really great read, actually! Don't let the rating faze you, an average read for me would get a 2, so 3's more than decent! Honestly, the story was not original at all, but Shannon Delaney still makes it oh-so-satisfying with the right degree and balance of everything, so, yes, it was great. I thought I was getting my taste of Twilight, but no appearances of vampires, just team werewolves here.


March 3, 2012

"Guardian of the Gate" by Michelle Zink

The second book in the stunningly well written Prophecy of the Sisters series! I absolutely loved this one, if not more than the first, actually!

Title: Guardian of the Gate (Prophecy of the Sisters #2)
Author: Michelle Zink
Publication: 2010, Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Summary: The ultimate battle between sisters is nearing, and its outcome could have catastrophic consequences. As 16-year-old Lia Milthorpe searches for a way to end the prophecy, her twin sister Alice hones the skills she'll need to defeat Lia. ...Goodreads

Review: The chilling and mesmerizing tale of the Prophecy rages on, this time even more deliciously compelling and dangerous than before. Ms. Zink spins gorgeous and vehement scenes with her fervent yet beautifully sophisticated diction. Readers are lured to a much more contiguous level to Zink's stoic and admirable protagonist, as well as many other carefully characterized players. As one is swept off on this captivating journey, Zink expertly propels the plot into tempestuous regions that are absolutely breath-taking in the darkness and depth of the nuances. Many a shocking surprise is planted in this restlessly moving sequel and readers will find them to be perfectly and satisfyingly unexpected. As the tumult of a brilliantly drawn out voyage thunders on, the characters develop complex and close relationships with each other, bringing yet another tasteful tier to this stunning piece of work. Much like the preceding book in this exquisitely written series, the pace quickens near the end, and once more, Zink cuts the rope at yet another unbearable moment, although still with unfaltering poise for a nice, conclusive feel.

Rating: ✿✿✿✿ 4 Blossoms
Final Notes: I loved love loved loved this one! I fell in love with all the characters and they were truly brilliant! This one has much more of a heated plot line, and it is fascinating, the scenes that it conjures up in the readers' minds! Already awaiting the arrival of "Circle of Fire". 

Read Mel's awesome review on this epic second installment here!  



I've been tagged by Lauren @ Epilogue!!! My first tag in this awesome book-blogging community, I'm actually very, very excited! Thanks, Lauren! Thank goodness for weekends, I can now answer all those fun questions! Here are the stated rules:

The Rules:
1. Answer the questions that the tagger set for in their post.
2. Create 11 questions for the people you tag to answer.
3. Tag 11 people and link them to your post.
4. Let them know you tagged them.
5. Include these rules and the person who tagged you in your post.
I'm altering the 3rd rule because unfortunately, I just don't know that many people yet to tag, and I'd rather not go to a stranger...
The Questions from Lauren: 
1. How long have you been blogging? Do you remember why you started?
My very first blog post on Vivaciously, Vivian was on Feb. 10, so nearing a month! I'm such a baby still! However, I've been blogging on my personal blog for a couple of years now, even though it's a blog that hardly anyone ever treads upon, haha!

2. Choose one of your favorite books. Then, give it a new title and explain your choice.
Hard!! One of my favourite books would definitely be "Anne of Green Gables", and if I had to rename it...Lauren, this is HARD!! "Journey Through the Way of Delight"- I'm terrible, please forgive me!

3. What got you interested in books?
In my Chinese name (李曼书), that last character there is "shu", which literally translates as "book". So..it's in my name -smile- I hope that's a relevant answer O_O But, from a very, very young age, I have been around books. I don't quite remember where or how that all started.

4. Will you read eBooks? Why or why not.
No, I do not read them. Mainly because I am very near-sighted, and sitting in front of a computer or laptop would really hurt my eyes even more. I just really prefer books the good ol' fashioned way!

Saturday Shelf Candy ● #1

Saturday Shelf Candy is a weekly meme hosted by Steph @ Five Alarm Book Reviews. It features a favourite book cover that is worth mentioning and showcasing!

My first SSC post! Goodness, I've been over-blogging about this certain book. (I can imagine my friend Stephanie here rolling her eyes, haha!) but yes. Here is "Halo", by Alexandra Adornetto. Again.

The reason why I chose this cover for my very first SSC is...well...it's just plain gorgeous. There is really nothing else that I can say besides the fact that it is a rare cover that had me stunned and gaping in admiration at it for a very long time! From the beautiful ray of light to Bethany's angel wings, to the handsome profile of Xavier, AHH!! It's a simple cover. Yet it is so heart-warming in its simplicity so really, the impact is quite huge on me. -blush-

And of course, on the back side of my bought copy, are the credits to this beautiful and oh-so-romantic cover!

Cover illustration (c) 2010 by Nico Jonker
Cover design by Rich Deas

Mr. Jonker is an amazing freelance illustrator, and CG artist! You can visit his site here! His works are stunning, though Halo is still my personal favourite, haha!

Rich Deas is actually a design studio! Here's the site!

What do you guys think of the cover of "Halo"? Anyone else read it? This book is seriously over-exposed on my blog; you can find "Halo" featured in the following posts:

"Halo" by Alexandra Adornetto - The Book Review
"Halo" by Alexandra Adornetto - Top Ten Tuesday


March 2, 2012

In My Mailbox ● #3

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme created by Kristi @ The Story Siren where you share your books haul, whether the books be bought, received for review, or from the library!

Now, my IMM's on a Friday.. oh dear, not very consistent here, Vivian...
Anyhow, HAPPY FRIDAY, EVERYONE! Hope you all had a good week, and it is officially March!
I am participating in Shelf Candy Saturdays from this week on, which is why I pushed my IMM forward one day.  This week has been slow, but I still grabbed a couple of good reads to add to my growing line-up.

"Another Pan" by Daniel & Dina Nayeri
From Public Library; Goodreads

The next book in the wonderfully clever and witty "Another" series by brother-and-sister team Nayeri! I'm looking forward to this supposed, different interpretation of Peter Pan and am really excited to see what the authors have come up with this time! Have you guys read "Another Faust"? How did you like it? You can drop by my review of it here!

"Clockwork Angel" by Cassandra Clare
From Public Library; Goodreads

Unfortunately, I have not read The Mortal Instruments series, but I can see from many reviews all over the place that it is a very enjoyable series. I remember reading a raving review on The Infernal Devices, something also about how the readers enjoyed it more than The Mortal Instruments... Hmmm...

Anyhow, stunning cover, I was SO excited after spotting this on the shelf because I've been wanting to read something by this author in quite a while now! Anyone a fan of this series?

"Something Wicked" by Lesley Anne Cowan
White Pine Awards Reading Program 2012 Nomination
From School Library; Goodreads

My next White Pine book! I'm trying to remember why this author's name seems SO familiar...no apparent reason yet. This one is a bit of a wild card in the selection, with much discussion of teen issues like sex and drug abuse, etc. Mildly curious.

Well, this was a super early Mailbox, but since this week is coming to a close, here's Vivi's haul for the following week! And next week's March Break too!! Eeeeeehh!! Have you read any of these books? If you did, I'd love to hear what you thought of them!!! Feel free to link me to your IMM when you have one posted, and I'll give it a visit!