Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Book Giveaway #3 - An Amazing Story by Carlo Gabbi

Hello there, it's been a little quiet here lately but at least I'm doing some reading now. I'm currently enjoying I, Coriander by Sally Gardner. I think I can finish it tomorrow so do look out for my review of it soon! :)

Anyway....................I'm going to hold my 3rd book giveaway! This time, I'm going to give one lucky reader a copy of An Amazing Story by Carlo Gabbi. Click on the title to read my review of the book. Mr. Carlo has kindly sent me a copy to review and now I'm going to pass the book to someone else.

To enter this giveaway and how you can get extra entries, see below:
  1. Simply leave a comment and your e-mail add saying you want to participate - 1 entry
  2. Blog about this giveaway in your blog and tell me about it - 2 entries
  3. Adding me to your blogroll - 5 entries

Pretty easy, right? What's more, it's open to anyone on this planet, provided that you have a valid mailing address so this book can reach you later. :)

Contest ends on 19 November, 2008. Good luck!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Things People Sell Online

In order to earn some extra pocket money, people would try absolutely anything including delving themselves in selling stuff online. Recently I’ve been slightly obsessed with visiting online stores and forums where people sell off all sorts of things even second-hand clothes! And people actually buy them! That’s even more surprising.

The other kinds of stuff that people sell are like used books, CDs, DVDs, jewellery, mobile phones, laptops, radios, cars, and many more things. It’s quite fun to browse through their items for sale and also observing what sells the most. Although some people sell off their used clothing at cheap prices, I’m still kind of wary about buying them.

Some people also take advantage of their own creativity and make things to sell like handmade bookmarks, greeting cards, cakes, and jewellery such as earrings and necklaces.

I Won The Graveyard Book!

Actually, I forgot that I entered this book giveaway held at The Novel World. But when I checked through my feeds and visited Nari's blog, there it was. My name and blog name stated boldly on the page. I'm so happy to win The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman! Another book to add to my stack.

By the way, I had better go through all the books that I and my sister own before setting out to buy anymore books. Sometimes I forget what I or my sister already had that I will buy the same book by mistake. This is why I've started haunting Library Thing again! :D

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Went To Watch Id Today

This should be the second theatrical play that I've watched in all my life. Id. You can find out more about it from their blog. There are only six actors in the play. It lasted for less than two hours but boy, was it entertaining! I was totally immersed in the play the whole time it lasted. It was also held at The Actors Studio at Greenhall, Penang.

The actors are really talented. They were flawless, extremely expressive, had clear pronunciation of words, energetic, full of chemistry with one another, and the list just goes on. It was worth my RM15.00 (student price)! I want to watch more plays after this!

I noticed that the audience was quite small. I think there were around 20++ people there. But they had shows at other times too. Perhaps the crowd's less on a Sunday afternoon.

Here's a description of what the play's about!

­­'­Id' tells a very simple story on the basis of a very ‘complex’ theory.

It is simply a tale of human behaviour and how one’s desires are coupled with one’s sense of moral judgment, which finally leads to an individual’s decision.

The play is a potpourri of sociological studies summarised and portrayed through the lives of six people who encounter the values of friendship, family, social choice, religion, etc.

Perhaps understanding Freud isn’t as difficult as it has always seemed.

The story of the play had something to do with Sigmund Freud's theories.

They even had bits of Mean Girls and White Chicks in it. For example, when the girls were talking with each other. They talked like how the girls in White Chicks did. Also, they used 'Oh my God!' a lot of times. Too many times actually till it got irritating.

The ending was a little bit confusing too. Why was the 'Angel of Death' wearing a white bathrobe? I thought the girl character had ended up in a hotel room with some strange guy or something. Didn't realize that she's Death itself! Maybe that's another character she plays.

But overall, it was a great show. Wonderful exposure for me since I'm planning to minor in Drama and Theatre. I love stories. I love movies. And now, I love theatre!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

How's Your Online Shopping Experience?

There was a feature article last week in one of the daily newspapers on online stores that sell clothes, accessories, shoes, and other stuff that can be sold online! Well, I didn’t realize that there were so many local online stores selling ladies’ clothes. I was, like, where did they all spring out from? How come I have never came across them in my long days of spending online?

Have you purchased clothes or shoes or bags from online stores before? So far, I have only bought books and DVDs, never clothes. My sister once remarked that maybe the clothes might have been worn before or they could be some dead person’s clothes! Yeah, she’s pretty skeptical about most things. =D

What I’m worried about is the size of clothing and shoes. What if they don’t fit me and what if I can’t return them? I noticed on some online store blogs that items sold are not refundable and exchangeable, whatever that means. It’ll be kind of risky, won’t it? But some stuff I saw in these online stores look darn good. They are even hinting at me to buy them! It’s just too bad actually since I’m kind of broke right now.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Why Am I In University?

I only began asking this question at the beginning of this semester! I should have thought of it way back before entering university. But better to have thought of it now than when it’s much too late.

Do other students ponder over this question? Do they know why they go to university? Are they like me who just went to uni because it was the next step in completing our education? Will education be ever complete? I thought we learn throughout our lives because we always learn something new each day.

This morning during a tutorial, my lecturer reminded us why we are in university. We were asked to define some communications concepts which we answered pathetically but still understandable. She said that we needed to learn to express our ideas in words in order for other people to understand us clearly. It’ll also be useful when answering exam questions if we knew how to form our ideas properly.

Anyway, she said that we come to university to learn how to think. I don’t know how she got to that part but that’s what she said. That comment of hers got me thinking all about it all over again.

So that brings us back to the first question, which is why am I or why are we in university? I’ve just searched via Google and found some insightful articles on why students are in university in the first place even if they don't know it themselves.

I realized a few things earlier. One of them was learning in university is completely different from learning in school. Yeah, the hours spent in classes were less but scattered throughout the day. Still, it is less if compared to normal school hours. That gives us the chance to pursue our other interests so we join societies, clubs, etc.

Spending less time in class should give us more time to study, right? Well, that isn’t the case since students take advantage of their extra free time doing other things unrelated to school work. We students should be using the free time to read our required readings or get started on assignments. Sadly, we like to procrastinate!

Besides that, we are in university to form ideas and ask questions, aren’t we? It’s usually known as the time when shy students learn to speak up in class and during discussions. However, in class, it’s normally quiet when the lecturer asks for questions. Why is that so? Nowadays, lecturers expect this to happen because it’s been happening for quite a while now where students don’t like to ask questions anymore. I’m not sure about ten years ago but this is true for now.

During tutorials, the students and the tutor or lecturer are supposed to be discussing, aren’t they? That’s what I’ve been told but tutorials are becoming like lectures where the tutor/lecturer still talk the most. Sometimes, only a few brave souls will ask something or just give their opinion on an issue. As usual, students will be holding a pen and some paper on the table. It's the copying notes syndrome again.

I’m also amazed at some people in university. When I ask them a simple question, they give me answers which are not related to my question. This shows that they haven’t understood my question in the first place! They also plagiarize in assignments and presentations. They don’t put forth any ideas or opinions of their own. But I’m amazed that they can still do fairly well in exams.

Questions, questions, and more questions. It’s all a mystery to me. But at least I have an inkling of why I’m in university and what I should do to survive there. I think.

This has been a messy post, I know but I just had to get this out. And for those planning to enter university or are already in university, you’ve gotta read this!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Tomes On My Shelf

It's Booking Through Thursday on a Wednesday! I thought I'd gotten my days mixed up but nope, it's true. BTT on a Wednesday and frankly, who cares??? Anyway, the question for the week is:

What tomes are waiting patiently on your shelves?

1. Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
2. The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
3. The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien
4. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
5. Queen Camilla by Sue Townsend

Tomes, tomes, tomes. Oh dear, if only I had more than 24 hours in a day! Since I'm a slow reader, it'll usually take me a few days to finish a normal paperback book. Imagine if I had to read thicker books! I don't have the time now to read for pleasure so my story books will have to wait. My exams are looming round the coner, therefore it's common sense that I hit the right books! :D

Happy BTT everybody!

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Booking Through Thursday: Another Book Meme

This week's BTT has got to be one of the easiest! Just answer some simple questions about.....yeah, books again! Isn't that fun???

What was the last book you bought?

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle. I bought it from Acmamall and it only arrived yesterday. I'm at Chapter Two now.

Name a book you have read MORE than once.

The True Story of Lilli Stubeck by James Aldridge.

Has a book ever fundamentally changed the way you see life? If yes, what was it?

I think so....every book is different. But some books have left me thinking quite a lot, like 1984 by George Orwell.

How do you choose a book? eg. by cover design and summary, recommendations or reviews

It's not very hard for me to choose a book. But I usually go more for the story. I love a good story. So I'll say that I'll read what the book's about and if I want to know more about the book, I'll just buy it.

Do you prefer Fiction or Non-Fiction?


What’s more important in a novel - beautiful writing or a gripping plot?

Gripping plot. Who cares about the writing if there's no good story to get lost into?

Most loved/memorable character (character/book)

Christopher from The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time.

Which book or books can be found on your nightstand at the moment?

I don't have a nightstand but I do have a 'TBR pile'. Eclipse, Where Rainbows End, Tweak, The Devil Wears Prada, A Countess Below Stairs, Queen Camilla, A Northern Light and lots more!

What was the last book you’ve read, and when was it?

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling. Exactly one week ago.

Have you ever given up on a book half way in?

Yes. Diary of a Girl in Changi. It was terribly boring.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Friday Finds (Oct 10, 2008)

This was what I bought in August but only received it yesterday! I'm at Chapter Two right now. Hope to finish it tonight though. Also, this book is in the list of banned books! Have you read it before? If yes, please leave the links to your review and I'll add them when I've reviewed it later. Thanks!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Teen Read Week 2008

Since Teen Read Week is next week and this is the first time I've heard about it, I might just as well write something about it. I'm not a teen anymore, just got out of it, but nevertheless, I still enjoy reading teen and young adult books. Well, I am a young adult anyway, so it's right that I should be reading YA books. But then, YA books are being read by everyone now of all ages. It definitely appeals to a lot of people.

So how are you going to celebrate Teen Read Week? This year's TRW will be from Oct 12, 2008 until Oct 18, 2008. How did you celebrate it last year?

I won't be celebrating but I hope to read a book or two. No more assignments to do but I still have one presentation to prepare for. Hopefully, I can read something this weekend!

Anyway, you can vote for your favourite teen books for 2008 Teens' Top Ten next week. Readers from the ages 12 till 18 are eligible to vote over here.

26 books are being nominated and here they are:

  1. Before I Die by Jenny Downham
  2. Betrayed by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast
  3. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
  4. Daemon Hall by Andrew Nance & Colin Polhemus, illus
  5. Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney
  6. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
  7. Extras by Scott Westerfeld
  8. Evil Genius by Catherine Jinks
  9. Genesis Alpha by Rune Michaels
  10. Glass by Ellen Hopkins
  11. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
  12. Ironside: A Modern Faery's Tale by Holly Black
  13. Jango by William Nicholson
  14. Jinx by Meg Cabot
  15. The Luxe by Anna Godberson
  16. Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports by James Patterson
  17. Penelope by Marilyn Kaye
  18. Saving Zoe by Alison Noel
  19. Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George
  20. The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray
  21. Tamar by Mal Peet
  22. Twisted by Laurie Halse Anderson
  23. Unwind by Neal Shusterman
  24. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead
  25. Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr
  26. Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier

Sadly, I've only read one book from the list above, which is Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. I have Eclipse and The Sweet Far Thing in my TBR stack though. I also have the movie version of Penelope but I haven't watched it yet. I didn't know that there was a book version of it! Which ones have you already read?

Curious to know about 2007 Teens' Top Ten? I was curious too and found the list! Here it is:

  1. New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
  2. Just Listen by Sarah Dessen
  3. How to Ruin a Summer Vacation by Simone Elkeles
  4. Maximum Ride: School’s Out – Forever by James Patterson
  5. Firegirl by Tony Abbott
  6. All Hallows Eve (13 Stories)by Vivian Vande Velde
  7. Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
  8. River Secrets by Shannon Hale
  9. Bad Kitty by Michele Jaffe
  10. Road of the Dead by Kevin Brooks

For years before 2007, just head on over to the ALA site and check them out.
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