Typhoon + Earthquake and Life

I cannot think of a more valid excuse for me not being able to post than life got in the way. Lame. I know.

I finished, very quickly, a short story sent to me by a very kind author who saw one of my reviews and I will definitely be letting everyone know about it as soon as I get a hold of my desk which will maybe be in 2 days tops?

There has been a typhoon and internet has been crap so I can’t really upload anything. Also, I am busy worrying about relatives who live in the places which were hit severely by the storm. Plus an earthquake just hit our town. Thank God it wasn’t massive!

I really really hope to talk to all of you soon!

Toodles..

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Is It Christmas Yet?

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I was supposed to write a different post but then as I sat here staring at this screen sipping my coffee, I heard on of our neighbors blasting Christmas music. Yup, with the chimes and bells and happy words. For most people, preparations are geared towards Halloween, however, here where I live, we don’t celebrate it like how the west does. From the moment the calendar hits the first of September, it’s Christmas all the way.

I always look forward to Christmas, even more than my birthday to be honest. This is really, really random. Kind of diary-ish. Anyway, I look forward to a lot of things this season and it makes me think of positive things. God knows how much I need those right now. The moment I notice the weather cooling down, and the breeze changes, I know it is going to be a wonderful season. It just seems to me that come the holidays, everyone is happier, and livelier, and more cheerful. I for one am. Christmas is when I am most happy, the rest of the year can just fly by.

Which brings me to the topic of books (duh!). I am wondering which books I should read this time of year. You know, the kinds that you want to read snuggled on the couch or your bed with a blanket and hot coffee. I want to know which books people will recommend for Halloween reading, and for Christmas reading (besides Harry Potter of course). So, any book recommendations you think I should try?

Toodles…

Creating a Better World 17 Goals at a Time

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This is a slightly different type of post for me (for this blog at least) but one that is really close to my heart. The world today faces a ton of problems, most of which, though it hurts to admit, are man-made. It is also worth saying that some of these concerns are denied of their existence and therefore denied of solutions as well. I believe that humans have advanced in all aspects of our existence except one, and that is caring for our own. The world is in decline, slowly, gradually, but it is happening unless we make an effort to stop it. These problems like poverty, war, inequality, starvation, and many others have been steadily increasing and raising concerns for all throughout the decades. It is heartbreaking to watch the news nowadays. And people need to make a stand, now.

I have always been vocal about supporting the right to quality education for everyone, just as much as I advocate (almost violently) the habit of reading to EVERYONE especially young people. And so when I saw this video by Tanya Burr , and this video telling people about an amazing project, I vowed to help spread the word and help make a change.

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The Global Goals is a project where world leaders have committed to 17 goals to end extreme poverty, fight injustice and inequality, and fix climate change. This is a 15 year project wherein the Global Goals can achieve sustainable development for all people. And so, in order for these goals to be achieved, EVERYONE has to know about them and support them. So let us help spread the word and be parts of this wonderful movement. In a world where communication is at the push of a button, and worldwide awareness can be achieved in seconds, let us use this power for the greater good, help those in need, and save this place we call home.

THE GOALS:

1 – No Poverty
2 – Zero Hunger
3 – Good Health and Well-Being
4 – Quality Education
5 – Gender Equality
6 – Clean Water and Sanitation
7 – Affordable and Clean Energy
8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth
9 – Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
10 – Reduced Inequalities
11 – Sustainable Cities and Communities
12 – Responsible Consumption and Production
13 – Climate Action
14 – Life Below Water
15 – Life On Land
16 – Peace and Justice Strong Institutions
17 – Partnerships for the Goals

Of these 17 goals, I have chosen 5 which are very close to my heart.

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I am assuming that all of you are new to this little speck of internet I call my blog, so I know that none of you know that I am a registered nurse (unless of course you read my About page). Since I was young, I knew that my calling as a professional would be in health care, and I was not wrong. I learned to love being a nurse more and more as I practiced my craft. I cannot tell you how many heartbreaking moments I have witnessed, from families losing a loved one, to an individual losing the fight to an illness. Even more heartbreaking was witnessing, and hearing stories of people unable to avail of quality medical services, of treatments to ailments, and of humanitarian health care. I live in a developing country, and though we are not a super power, the health care policy of our government covers everyone and I am thankful for that. However, that is not the case for other countries in similar or worse situations. A lot of people do not have access to even basic health care. Let us all help spread the word to help stop people from dying of accidents, of preventable diseases, of sexually transmitted diseases, or women and children dying of childbirth.

E_SDG_Icons-04I don’t think there are words to describe how strongly I feel about this. The right to education is universal, that is a fact, and deliberately denying a person from availing it is a crime against humanity. The capacity to progress and bring forth positive change to the status quo can never be achieved without proper education being afforded to everyone, even to those who live in the most desolate areas. The right to education does not stop at your gender or your ethnic background. Children across the globe deserve to learn about the endless possibilities the world can offer them. Honing talents, even at a young age, to help in nation-building. I have been very lucky, luckier than most, to have had the kind of education I’ve received. I went to good schools, outstanding schools, and was even afforded the chance to pursue graduate studies. Realizing how fortunate I was about my life and my education is not a recent thing. I’ve always believed that if only everyone is given the chance to quality education, then the world’s problems will be resolved. There will be no discrimination, or violence, or injustice or war. No one will take advantage of anyone. The world will be such a wonderful place to live in.

E_SDG_Icons-05Why? WHY? I could not for the life of me think of a solid, acceptable reason why someone is treated less of a human as another. Male or female, no one deserves to be treated as less than what he or she deserves. No one, NO ONE, deserves to be maligned, judged, mistreated, or stereotyped based on gender. A person is a person, what is so difficult with that? Have we become too intelligent for this simple idea? A woman must not be judged weak or incapable, just because she IS a woman. Just as much as a man should not be branded as brute, or careless, or unfeeling, just because he is a man. How many times has a woman led an organization to huge success? How many men have raised kids with gentle care and love, and respect? The beautiful Emma Watson talked about this, together with the HeforShe Movement. Do yourself a favor and read her speech. You’re welcome. No woman should ever be subjected to violence or be seen as sexual objects for sale. Women deserve equal economic and political rights because they are humans as well, not some special kind of species. Let us help empower women, and make them realize how independent and talented women can help shape future.

E_SDG_Icons-10The issue of inequality, I think, is a global concern and we see proofs of it everyday. Life as we know it has been a constant struggle with economic stifles, and unsafe job environments, and forced labor, and racism to only name a few. The gaps between economic growths of countries have never been bigger, and the distance between the poor and affluent is constantly growing wider. Inside this issue are vast domestic and international concerns that we are all facing as citizens. We must all fight for equal rights, and the social, and economic inclusion of all people regardless of age, sex, race, economic status, ethnic background, etc.

E_SDG_Icons-13Earth is a beautiful place to live in. Let’s protect it. It has provided everything man needed to sustain life comfortably. However, as we progress as a race, the planet has received huge blows and we have not given it enough time to replenish and recover. We are taking too much, too fast. We started, as a matter of fact, taking our home for granted, and now, it has started to make us pay. Disaster after disaster, we see how our actions has affected nature and how it rebounds on our daily lives. Climate change exists, and we should all take accountability for it. Our daily lives are consumed with bright ideas of ensuring maximum comfort but at what cost. I know I will not be able to make a big impact on how we can address climate change. But every little thing helps. Small steps. Let’s talk about it, discuss it, see where we stand and what we can do to help. That’s all it takes really. Let’s not wait for more to perish before we act.

” If the goals are going to work, everyone needs to know about them. You can’t fight for your rights if you don’t know what they are. You can’t convince world leaders to do what needs to be done if you don’t know what you’re convincing them to do. It’s the same wherever you are in the world.”

I hope that you guys join this cause and let me know down in the comments which of these goals you are passionate about, closest to your heart, or wish to support. You know what let’s make this a tag shall we?

I tag all of you…

to write about, or post a picture, or create an artwork, or however you want to express your support on this awesome project.

Please, please, please link your creations in the comments below, or in the my social media accounts. I am sooooo curious to see all your works! Also, I urge everyone to tell everyone you know about this movement. It’s not really that hard you know 🙂

Here are some of the links to help you decide 🙂

http://www.globalgoals.org/

http://www.un.org/sustainabledevelopment/sustainable-development-goals/

http://www.heforshe.org/

Instagram – @globalgoals

Twitter – @TheGlobalGoals / @GlobalGoalsUN

#globalgoals

BOOK REVIEW: Prince Lestat by Anne Rice

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I think I’ve said it in some posts how much I loooove the works of Anne Rice. I remember vividly reading The Witching Hour, feeling the strange need to check my windows, and scaring the hell out of myself but I just. can’t. stop. reading. I felt the same with every single book and I have since started collecting the Vampire Chronicles series with a very few missing links which I intend to fill soonest.

Prince Lestat follows well, of course, the vampire Lestat de Lioncourt, the most famous and most swoon-worthy of the Blood Drinkers in the Vampire Chronicles. If I remember correctly, there is only one installment from the whole series where Lestat wasn’t the narrator. This was a long awaited novel, having been released 11 years after the Blood Canticle which was thought to be the last. I almost fainted when I saw the news about the release of PL and wanted to just grab it as soon as it was released, but then life got in the way, and so I was able to grab a copy during the first quarter of this year. I devoured this book let me tell you. I am now flailing about this, because, you guessed it, I looooved it! Now, no book is absolutely perfect, so let me get into the nitty-gritty.

I remember writing in my goodreads review that it was the culmination you knew was coming but one from which you still want more. And I think I saw something on the internet that had my hopes up for another book coming.

There were a lot of characters. I mean A LOT. I mean I wouldn’t mind that, except you have to memorize all their weirdly beautiful names and every now and then you’d have to stop and think, who was he again? There is a sort of index on all the characters at the end of the book which was really helpful, but then it was a lot of going back to that index for me.

BUT, they were introduced, explained, and immersed into story beautifully. I couldn’t think of one that didn’t make any sense. They had their plays to part, and they played them well. Rice is a wonderful story-teller, being able to describe emotions, and power, and things beyond the physical world like a dream. You get sucked into this world of wonderful human emotions told in the eyes of those who call themselves damned.

Now this novel is long, which usually I don’t mind. I appreciate a good long read any time. BUT I think some of the chapters were a little bit of a drag.  There were whole chapters about certain characters I honestly couldn’t care less about. I saw how they made sense to the story, but really? a whole chapter? At some points I wanted to just skip them altogether, but I am a bit patient about these things so I carried on.  

In my opinion, it could be a stand-alone novel. With each character or event, there are bit and pieces of references to the other novels, keeping the reader somehow knowledgeable about what was going on and why was it happening.  Also, I loved how the characters developed throughout the book. But like I said, so much characters! The character development of Lestat has been apparent through all the books of the series, and that may be the reason why it has a cult following. He was a vampire, but he was emotionally vulnerable like the rest of us.

With this book, you kind of have an idea what the ending will be, but you are so looking forward to how that will happen. And that, was what really shocked me. There are gory details here so if you are not a fan of blood and skulls being turned to mush then look away and just keep distance.

A wee bit of a disclaimer, this is my cup of tea people. I love this genre and I would pick it up any time of the year. I have adored Anne Rice for years. But, I try to be as objective as I can manage. So, if you didn’t like this book, or this is not the genre for you, then I can’t see why you would want to pick it up. But if you want a really good, rich, epic vampire story, then Anne Rice is your queen.  I personally think she writes the best vampire stories period.

4 and a half stars plus all my love.

Let’s chat 🙂

Do you like vampire stories? NO? Why not?  If yes, which ones? Recommendations? Have you read Prince Lestat? Share your thoughts and let’s be friends!

BOOK REVIEW: Forbidden Surrender Trilogy by Priscilla West

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It’s gonna get racy guys. To be completely honest, I was contemplating on not doing this review at all. I moved back and forth with the decision but then again I promised myself even before I started that I would make a review as soon as I finished it. So, how do I start.

Fair warning, THIS IS A STEAMY TRILOGY. Kind of 50 Shades of Gray-ish or the Beauty Series by Anne Rice (hail to the queen!). Although truth be told, I haven’t read any of those books, and I don’t plan on ever reading them. I admit that when I decided to read this trilogy I didn’t really know what I was getting into. So when the first steamy scene came my eyes almost popped out of their sockets! But you know, I mustered all my courage and carried on…

The Forbidden Surrender trilogy is a contemporary-erotica which follows the love and lust  story of Vincent, a thrill-seeking, self-made, surfer-billionaire and Kristen, a wealth manager.

Gosh I don’t even know where to begin. Maybe with the few bits I did like about it? Sounds like a plan? Yah?

A psychologically challenged ex is not one I am used to encountering in the few romance novels I have convinced myself to read. Like hello, a smart, hot, volatile almost deranged ex-boyfriend who wears glasses is not something you read every time. I also like how his character has been introduced, and how the character has developed and interwoven into the story. I looked forward to the big reveal on who he was, what he did, and how hate-able he is.

Kristen is not pathetic. Now before you throw stuff at me, let me get this straight. What I can’t stand are books that portray the ladies as helpless and stupid, you know, the kinds you want to yank out of the book and shake the living lights out of them so they could wake up and grow up. She is strong, confident, smart, and independent, and can actually hold herself up, if not for her inexplicable enchantment to the supposedly irresistible Vincent. I actually appreciated that she had brains, and will to carry herself well and get out of a situation she doesn’t feel safe in. *clap* *clap*

The chapters were short, really short. You may be wondering why I placed this in the kind-of-advantages-section. But I believe for this book it really worked. The book didn’t have to create such an intricate world. It is set on how we are today and having long chapters will just have been a drag in my opinion. For the first 1 and a half books it worked for me, wanting to read more, and dreading the end of each chapter which I knew were really short. It kept you interested and wanting more. Sexy right?

The steamy scenes, were, well, STEAMY. Whew, those were racy scenes in there. I can’t and don’t even want to describe them, because obviously I am not physically and mentally able to do that. But West writes these moments between the characters with such passion and such height of emotions. She is a good passionate-story teller.

Shall we get to the rather unpleasant ones?

The twists were giveaways. Gosh it was like raining obvious clues. Like when I read about the guys moving in the other apartment and when Kristen was experiencing symptoms, ugh, I could have stopped reading and told you what happened. I had to literally drag myself to finish the last book. The story line was strangely too familiar for the third book. I didn’t think it was written cleverly at all. I mean why? WHY?

There was no character development for Kristen. I mean, her ex got some, why not the freakin’ lead girl? She remained the same all through out the three books and I got tired and a bit irritated with her towards the end. Her best friend was waaaay better! I must say though that I liked how Vincent’s character developed through the course of the three books. I saw a depth of character, something I wished Kristen had.

All in all, I didn’t think it was a horrible book. It’s was okay, let’s just put it like that. I certainly finished it, but God knows I almost did not. If you like these types of books and this genre, I think you will find the book’s descriptions of the scenes you look for *wink* very crisp and clear. It would definitely stir things up. But sadly it wasn’t for me, and the love story didn’t really catch me.

Two stars for me.

Life Update + Fairies, Cough, and a bunch of randomness

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Alright. I am doing this. I have been thinking of writing something for about two weeks but never got around to doing it because I was sick like a dog. *cough* *cough* I am still trying to nurse myself back to health, but anyway, gosh I have missed doing this. It feels like forever!

So for today, I have planned the next few posts which will be seen in my blog. I have committed myself to making 2 book reviews (whew, God help me!), a post about romance novels, and a post about a good cause…

The last time I felt this sick was 4 years ago when I acquired (for he second time) Dengue Hemorrhagic Fever and it felt HORRIBLE. But I am slowly feeling better so that’s good. I have been reading A TON of blogs and watching loads of anime (sexy I know) to pass my time while I simmer in my own body heat, cough incessantly, and blow my nose like nobody’s around.

I’ve also been doing a lot of thinking on life and career and love and other important stuff like fairies and flying ships. I feel like I might be near that time when I have to leave home, for a very very long time. I don;t know, I just have that feeling. So yeah… Hope to be back on track ASAP…

How has your life been lately?