PH BLOG TOUR: Wildcard by Marie Lu


Happy Thursday, everyone! Today, I’m opening the sign-up form for the PH Blog Tour of Wildcard by Marie Lu! One of my anticipated reads of 2018! Huge thanks to Penguin Random House International for allowing me to host not just the first book of the duology, Warcross, but also the sequel – Wildcard. Thank you, guys!

Wildcard by Marie LuTitle: Wildcard by Marie Lu

Publication Date: September 18th 2018 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 9780399548017

Return to the immersive, action-packed world of Warcross in this thrilling sequel from #1 New York Times bestselling author Marie Lu

Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo’s new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she’s always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.

Determined to put a stop to Hideo’s grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone’s put a bounty on Emika’s head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn’t all that he seems–and his protection comes at a price.

Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves?

In this explosive sequel to the New York Times bestselling Warcross, Marie Lu delivers an addictive finale that will hold you captive till the very last page.

Read More »


Book Review: The Boyfriend Bracket by Kate Evangelista

35796027Stella has had a hopeless crush on Will, her older brother’s best friend FOREVER, but now that Cam and Will have graduated and are going off to college, this year is her chance to really strike out on her own. Without her overprotective brother and his sidekick around to distract her, she can focus on having all the typical high school experiences that she’s always dreamed of—starting with finding a boyfriend! With the help of her best friend Franklin, she comes up with the perfect plan to have a boyfriend by Christmas: The Boyfriend Bracket.

Or it seems like the perfect plan…right up until Will starts showing up again. How is she supposed to find the perfect boyfriend when none of her dates measure up to the one boy she can never have?

Thank you to Ms. Kate Evangelista for sending a review copy of The Boyfriend Bracket in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book.

Book Review:

I feel attacked the moment I read the first page. Stella hated his brother for being overprotective of her when it comes to dating and relationship. Together with his brother’s best friend, Will, they always drive away her suitors. I could definitely relate to this book because I have a younger sister when I’m also overprotective of. But I’m not like Cam where his overprotectiveness is way beyond the borderline.

Stella is a beauty – A Filipina protagonist where Kate Evangelista write from her origin. The Philippines. I don’t know what to feel when I was reading this book since I was so familiar with some words that I just immersed in the novel and completely fell in love with the characters. Our protagonist yearns for fashion – it is her dream goal to be a fashion designer, to be accepted on her dream school, Parsons. There are a lot of things that this book presented. It was a diverse set of characters that boost up the morale of the Filipinos and introduce some bits of information to the readers to understand what kind of culture we had.

The Boyfriend Bracket is that one book that I didn’t expect to love. I completely fell in love with this book without knowing that I was going to finish the whole novel for 5 hours straight! Hello, insomnia. With its fast-paced writing style, this book displays so much compassion, patience, perseverance, friendship, drive, and inspiration to the readers. This book is not about pulling the close people away, it is pushing them to become stronger. Kate Evangelista pointed out in this book that whatever success your family, your friends have – don’t envy them – instead, make it an inspiration to reach your goal.

This book made me proud. From the diverse culture that has been implied [Filipino] to the lessons that Evangelista incorporated on the book to our traditions to the introduction of our foods like adobo and sinigang. I never knew that I would be this happy – how a simple representation could make a reader seen.

Also, I would like to applaud how Ms. Kate wrote Will’s character. It was amazing and so much understanding. Full of empathy and positivity.

Even though I’m not a fan of the title, The Boyfriend Bracket by Kate Evangelista is a powerful book that represents a lot of Filipina today. I know a lot of teenagers that will relate to Stella in some ways and hopefully, they would realize the teachings that Ms. Kate included in the storyline of the defying novel. It is a wonderful book, truly. If you want some light read, you won’t regret picking up this book.


Barnes and Noble | Amazon | Kobo | Google Play | Book Depository


5752810When Kate Evangelista, author of No Love Allowed and No Holding Back, was told she had a knack for writing stories, she did the next best thing: entered medical school. After realizing she wasn’t going to be the next Doogie Howser, M.D., Kate wandered into the Literature department and never looked back. Today, she is a graduate of De La Salle University – Manila with a Bachelor of Arts in Literature. She taught high school English for three years and was an essay consultant for two. Currently, she writes full-time and is based in the Philippines.

Book Review: A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir

30809786Title: A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir

ISBN: 9780448494500

Beyond the Empire and within it, the threat of war looms ever larger.

The Blood Shrike, Helene Aquilla, is assailed on all sides. Emperor Marcus, haunted by his past, grows increasingly unstable, while the Commandant capitalizes on his madness to bolster her own power. As Helene searches for a way to hold back the approaching darkness, her sister’s life and the lives of all those in the Empire hang in the balance.

Far to the east, Laia of Serra knows the fate of the world lies not in the machinations of the Martial court, but in stopping the Nightbringer. But while hunting for a way to bring him down, Laia faces unexpected threats from those she hoped would aid her, and is drawn into a battle she never thought she’d have to fight.

And in the land between the living and the dead, Elias Veturius has given up his freedom to serve as Soul Catcher. But in doing so, he has vowed himself to an ancient power that will stop at nothing to ensure Elias’s devotion–even at the cost of his humanity.

Book Review:

I was caught off guard by this book – TOO OFF GUARD. In all expectations and predictions I have, Sabaa Tahir’s books are the ones were difficult to make assumptions. After reading An Ember in the Ashes where Tahir manipulated my feelings and A Torch Against the Night where she betrayed me. Here she is, betraying, controlling, and manipulating our feelings again with her third book.

I’ve never felt so much pain in a book that I just wanted to hug the characters. It inflicted so much lies, lies, lies, and all the lies. I hated it when a character is so close-minded. Like Laia who I wanted to dislike but couldn’t. Because for all we know, she’s only being selfless and courageous. While Helene – our Blood Shrike stands to fight the politics within this book while protecting the Empire and her vow, it hurts me so much knowing what she went through and has to go through on A Reaper at the Gates. It felt like everything is inevitable.

With so many revelations, I don’t know what will happen next. Sabaa Tahir wouldn’t give us what the future will hold or what should we expect us in the next book instead she is always giving us the mystery, the unexpected, and the impact that we don’t know that is always there when it comes on reading her book.

For everyone who is planning to dive into this book right away, prepare your heart. You will mourn with Helene. You will mourn for Laia. Might as well mourn with Elias too. Sabaa Tahir knows how to make a reader happy and sad on the same chapter. She doesn’t let happiness last longer than we could savor it.

A Reaper at the Gates is truly a brilliant, magnificent book that will drive you mad and crazy. I shouted at this book more than I know. I had so much burst and I don’t know if its a good thing. Is it a good thing? Maybe. But what I know right now is that I WANT THE NEXT BOOK.



7770873Sabaa Tahir grew up in California’s Mojave Desert at her family’s 18-room motel. There, she spent her time devouring fantasy novels, raiding her brother’s comic book stash and playing guitar badly. She began writing An Ember in the Ashes while working nights as a newspaper editor. She likes thunderous indie rock, garish socks and all things nerd. Sabaa currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family.

Book Review: LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff

LIFEL1K3 Terminal

29456569From the coauthor of the New York Times bestselling Illuminae Files comes the first book in a new series that’s part Romeo and Juliet, part Terminator, and all adrenaline.

On an island junkyard beneath a sky that glows with radiation, a deadly secret lies buried in the scrap. Seventeen-year-old Eve isn’t looking for trouble–she’s too busy looking over her shoulder. The robot gladiator she spent months building has been reduced to a smoking wreck, she’s on the local gangster’s wanted list, and the only thing keeping her grandpa alive is the money she just lost to the bookies. Worst of all, she’s discovered she can somehow destroy machines with the power of her mind, and a bunch of puritanical fanatics are building a coffin her size because of it. If she’s ever had a worse day, Eve can’t remember it. The problem is, Eve has had a worse day–one that lingers in her nightmares and the cybernetic implant where her memories used to be. Her discovery of a handsome android named Ezekiel–called a “Lifelike” because they resemble humans–will bring her world crashing down and make her question whether her entire life is a lie. With her best friend Lemon Fresh and her robotic sidekick Cricket in tow, Eve will trek across deserts of glass, battle unkillable bots, and infiltrate towering megacities to save the ones she loves…and learn the truth about the bloody secrets of her past.

Title: LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff

Publication Date: May 29th 2018 by Knopf Books for Young Readers

ISBN: 9781524713928

Genre: Young Adult and Science-Fiction

Thank you to Penguin Random House International for sending a review copies to the participants of the PH Blog Tour for LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book.

Robots. The Artificial Intelligence that the humans are trying to discover – to make progress of – to venture out on the possibility of future that these things, machines, that can help the humanity in one way or another. Lifel1ke is a fascinating book, weird rather and yet Jay Kristoff knows how to pull the strings of a well-written novel.

I had a difficulty in immersing with this book in the first few chapters however I never knew that it is so easy to connect with the novel when you are laughing with Lemon Fresh and Cricket. Before I knew, I was enjoying reading Evie’s adventure to search for her lost memory, the past that has been hidden to her and the funny, witty and remarkable robot companion that she has. Lifelike provides a huge impact on the society that asks a lot of thought-provoking questions. What if the robots went into a new level of understanding to the point that they wanted to be human? It feels so weird. The thought alone is terrifying and here’s Kristoff manipulating words and executing a compelling novel where robots could feel, sense, and show empathy.

Although, started with a lot of challenges and brutal and violent scenes from the first chapter of the book. Lifelike provides wonderful perspective where the world is being dominated by robots (lifelike) that humans are on the verge of survival. Even though the book is made with full of lies, I enjoyed reading this book because of how Jay Kristoff make the developments of the characters – Evie’s realization, Ezekiel’s deep understanding and patience, Cricket’s wittiness, and Lemon’s stubbornness. This is my first Jay Kristoff and I’m sure that this won’t be the last.

This book terrifies me. It asks me a lot of questions that a potential possibility that a future can hold to the humanity. Although LIFEL1K3 is a fictional novel – it still stands true to some facts and shapes through the reality that can be a mesmerizing and a the same time, horrifying.

I never knew. I never knew that this is how Jay Kristoff would write a book – full of lies and surprises. Shocking revelation with full of twist while incorporating such humor. It made me laugh, hooked and feel – mostly betrayed. I feel like I’m being controlled like how everyone hides the truth to Evie. Despite all that, I’m still looking forward to Jay Kristoff’s books – it made me want more and I would definitely read his other novels.

LIFEL1K3 by Jay Kristoff is an intricate, fast-paced novel that will hunt you with its remarkable ending. I was stunned and amazed how Jay Kristoff displays such plot and made his readers go crazy with the realizations on the book. I commend him for making me fell in love with science-fiction again like the first time.





June 11:
June 12:
Jennilyn – Rurouni Jenni Reads 
Bianca – Stay Bookish
June 13: 
Carmel – Bookablereads
June 14:  
June 15:  
Myrth – Cliste Bella 
Jon –  Wander with Jon


4735144Jay Kristoff is the #1 international, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of THE NEVERNIGHT CHRONICLE, THE ILLUMINAE FILES and THE LOTUS WAR. He is the winner of five Aurealis Awards, an ABIA, has over half a million books in print and is published in over thirty-five countries, most of which he has never visited. He is as surprised about all of this as you are. He is 6’7 and has approximately 12,000 days to live.

He does not believe in happy endings.

Book Review: Dear Universe by Pierra Calasanz-Labrador

Dear Universe cover front 021318Dear Universe . . . Can You Hear Us?

Pierra Calasanz-Labrador Releases Second Poetry Collection; Joyce Pring Narrates First Local Audio Book

Manila, Philippines — Anvil Publishing’s Spark Books announces the release of Pierra Calasanz-Labrador’s poetry collection entitled Dear Universe: Poems on Love, Longing, and Finding your Place in the Cosmos in print on April 27, 2018 and audio book on June 2, 2018. The book is the second poetry collection from the former magazine editor-turned-freelance writer and stylist and is the first to get an audio treatment by a local publisher.

Anvil marks a milestone with the release of their first audio book under the imprint Anvil Audio, narrated by well-loved TV host and content creator Joyce Pring.

Calasanz-Labrador’s second poetry collection is an introspective journey, a quiet voice longing to be heard. Like stumbling upon an introvert’s secret diary, the poems chronicle fervent wishes, hidden fears, and everyday acts of bravery that may sound uncannily familiar. Dear Universe is a reminder that you are not alone.

“The poems in Dear Universe are meditations on loneliness, desire, and love, and thisDear Universe cover back 021318 book is Pierra Calasanz-Labrador’s letter to the extra-terrestrial in all of us,” says Kris Lacaba, Palanca Award-winning poet.

Pierra Calasanz-Labrador is the author of The Heartbreak Diaries and pens the column Fifi’s Finds for Manila Bulletin. Two decades after attending the National Writers Workshop in Siliman, Dumaguete, Calasanz-Labrador is finally finding the courage to throw her poetry out onto the universe, but won’t hesitate to talk your ear off about cats, cosmic connections, pretty Filipino finds, and the healing power of J- and K-dramas.

Joyce Pring is a TV host and content creator who initially made a name for herself on the Internet and on radio. This bookworm and life-long learner was a scholar throughout her academic years, studying in Quezon City Science High School and the University of the Philippines – Diliman, before she won a nationwide VJ hunt that sparked her career in media. Joyce continues her work as a broadcaster, performer, and digital creative, while giving back to children in need through World Vision, her chosen charity.

Dear Universe: Poems on Love, Longing, and Finding your Place in the Cosmos is available for P395 at National Book Store and Powerbooks Store branches and online at The digital audiobook and audio CD editions are available at Amazon, Audible, Kobo, iTunes, and other major e-retailers.

Thank you to Anvil Publishing and Spark Books for sending a review copy of Dear Universe: Poems on love, longing, and finding your place in the cosmos by Pierra Calasanz-Labrador in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinion of the book.

Book Review:

Every day, we feel emotions that we don’t know we are capable of feeling. There are days that make us angry, there are times that can make us sad, then, there are seconds that we feel loved, we also have those moments that we feel contented – satisfied on what the universe has given unto us; on that scene where you feel like you just conquered the world. And those are the things that I felt while reading Dear Universe: Poems on love, longing, and finding your place in the cosmos by Pierra Calasanz-Labrador.

This poetry book started with Chapter 1: Hide & Seek that inflicted with a pinch of pain. With that given, I am not particularly sure what will the book unfolds. It left me shocked because there are a lot. Like a lot of prose that I could relate to, such as; Recovery Food as one of the first poems that make me look back from the past, feel the pain, and somewhere between nostalgic and forgetting. Then there’s BLINDSIDED that punched me in the gut. As well as SHUT-IN, KILLJOY, EARPHONES, TORPE, INTENSITY, and UNDERCURRENTS that I could definitely, completely, truly, relate and belong to.

Pierra gave us a poetry that where we can lose ourselves into while reading and where we can find ourselves along the way. It was a striking poetry book that can make you feel and realize that it is not wrong to love someone as long as you know the importance of yourself first. It is a valid voice that empowers not just women as well as men who lost sight of their self. It inspires that even if you make mistakes from the past, this book shouts that it doesn’t define you as a person.

This poetry is vulnerable, transparent and reserve but despite those truthful aspects of the book – Labrador implies that love, hope, and optimism will lighten your world once more because like the weather, there is rainbow after the storm.


You can purchase the book at National Bookstore or here.

About Pierra Calasanz-Labrador and Joyce Pring

Pierra Calasanz-Labrador once again shares her second poetry collection with the world. These poems speak to the world with the intimacy only an introvert can evoke, like “a quiet voice longing to be heard.” With fifty poems on love, longing, and self-discovery, Dear Universe is like going through an introspective journey where you may discover yourself as the persona discovers her own.

Also available as an audiobook (read by Joyce Pring).


About Anvil Audio

Anvil Audio publishes the best Filipino fiction and non-fiction audiobooks in digital format. The first of its kind in the Philippines, it introduces a groundbreaking way on how books are enjoyed by Filipino readers—listening.


About Spark Books

Celebrate contemporary love and romances that will certainly give readers a colorful range of “feels.”


About Anvil Publishing

Anvil Publishing, Inc. is an eleven-time Publisher of the Year awardee by the Manila Critics Circle, and one of the country’s biggest general trade book publisher with titles spanning the broad rays of Filipino life: business, cookery, leisure, lifestyle, fiction, self-help, reference, and children’s.

Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus



TWO CAN KEEP A SECRET to be released on January 8, 2019, with 250,000-copy first printing


New York, NY (June 7, 2018)—A new stand-alone novel from Karen M. McManus, author of the breakout teen thriller of 2017 and New York Times bestseller One of Us Is Lying, will be published on January 8, 2019, with a first printing of 250,000 copies, it was announced today by Beverly Horowitz, Senior Vice President, Publisher, Delacorte Press.

McManus’s debut novel, One of Us Is Lying, has spent 46 weeks and counting on the New York Times bestseller list, has been sold in 37 foreign territories, and is currently being developed into a TV series by E! Network.

With TWO CAN KEEP A SECRET, McManus has penned a murder mystery set in Echo Ridge, a small New England town that’s hiding secrets. Seventeen-year-old Ellery’s aunt went missing there as a teenager, and recently, a popular homecoming queen was killed in a widely publicized murder. When Ellery and her twin brother, Ezra, move to Echo Ridge to live with a grandmother they barely know, things quickly take a dark turn. Another girl goes missing, and it becomes clear that mysterious threats are deadly serious. Ellery soon learns that everyone in Echo Ridge is hiding something, and some secrets have dangerous consequences.

One of Us Is Lying was named one of the best YA books of 2017 by BuzzFeed, Entertainment Weekly, and PopCrush, and was a New York Public Library Stuff for the Teen Age selection, a CBC Teen Choice Book Award nominee, a Goodreads Best Young Adult Book of the Year nominee, an ALA-YALSA Best Fiction for Young Adults nominee, and an ALA-YALSA Quick Pick.

“We were so excited about the success of One of Us Is Lying and to see how that book resonated with readers,” says Senior Executive Editor Krista Marino. “TWO CAN KEEP A SECRET further showcases Karen’s incredible talent for crafting thrilling mysteries with unexpected twists and compelling and relatable teen characters.”

Marino acquired North American rights from Rosemary Stimola with Allison Remcheck at Stimola Literary Studio. McManus is represented by Jason Dravis at the Dravis Agency for the TV series.

Karen M. McManus earned her BA in English from the College of the Holy Cross and her MA in journalism from Northeastern University. When she isn’t working or writing in Cambridge, Massachusetts, McManus loves to travel with her son. To learn more about her, visit, or follow @writerkmc on Twitter or Instagram.

Join the conversation via #OneOfUsIsLying and #TwoCanKeepASecretBook




New York, NY (May 22, 2018)—Edited by Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (MSD) journalism and broadcasting teachers Melissa Falkowski and Eric Garner, WE SAY #NEVERAGAIN: Reporting from the School That Inspired the Nation, a collection of first-person accounts, richly researched and reported articles, and photographs by and about the students at MSD will be published by Crown Books for Young Readers on October 2, 2018.

The book will be divided into three parts: Activism, MSD Strong, and What Comes Next, with chapters within each part that include hard-hitting, passionate, and topical writing on activism, recovery, the national response, and most important, the way forward. Through their reporting, essays, and documentary photography and filmmaking, the students detail their thoughts, fears, dreams, and strategies for a better future.

Student contributors include Ryan Deitsch, David Hogg, Christy Ma, Nikhita Nikoola, Delaney Tarr, and MSD students from the school newspaper, The Eagle Eye, and the school TV station, WMSD.

“Writing this book is empowering the journalism students at MSD to capture their experiences, both positive and negative, since the tragic events that unfolded at our school on February 14,” says Falkowski. “We hope that writing these stories will inspire others to take up issues that are important to them and work toward positive change.”

The book will show what it has been like to be in the middle of a swirling controversy that is driving a major public debate—all while recovering from trauma and tragedy. Students will share what they’ve learned about how to articulate their message, mobilize, energize, rally, and make themselves heard so that others can do the same with the issues that they care about.

With this publication, Random House Children’s Books will make a donation to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Proceeds will be donated by the contributors to the school journalism programs at MSD.

An audio edition will be published simultaneously by Listening Library.

Emily Easton, VP, Publisher, Crown, negotiated the deal for North American rights with Rachel Horowitz of The Bent Agency, and will edit.

WE SAY #NEVERAGAIN: Reporting from the School That Inspired the Nation

Edited by Melissa Falkowski and Eric Garner

Written and photographed by Parkland student journalists

HC: 978-1-9848-4996-0 / GLB: 978-1-9848-4997-7 / EBK: 978-1-9848-4998-4 / Ages 14+