Hearing voices on your head is not a good thing and it will surely earn you a visit to the psychologist. But if the highly praised and very famous Ms. Jane Austen talks to you through your mind, surely you’d be honored.
This exactly happens to Elizabeth Barnett, one very lucky and ironically, unlucky woman. With Jane on her side acting as the sister, the best of friends, and the mentor, Ellie goes through a lot of man hunting, high hoping, and painful break ups resulting to a very low fall back to loneliness with tears on her cheeks and a painful bum.
According To Jane had a very simple message – to listen to your heart, not to someone’s else. Finding out what you truly wants is far different from feeling that you want this because someone raised such point. It makes a difference.You could listen and follow the advice but be able to recognize when its time to use your own understanding.
Jane Austen as a character is very entertaining as well as an author, voicing out her opinion in Regency Era language and expressing her distaste in antique cursing. In every advice and warning, Jane speaks words of wisdom and truth. It must have been really convenient to have Jane Austen guiding your sense.
One highly praised positive factor in this book is how relationships evolve and grow, how people grow up.
Ellie and her sister, Diana, for instance. Siblings tend to separate first, marking the one geek and the other the bitch. Then how they seek each other out as time elapses, needing, helping, defending each other – portraying the truth in my parents’ words that in the future, it’s each other’s company you will have.
Even before Mr. Darcy arrived in Ellie’s front steps, I knew this was coming. I knew his intentions. But I have yet to know how he is going to prove himself. Brant fashioned this modern Mr. Darcy from the Regency Era Mr. Darcy – the same haughty and arrogant manner we all recognize. There was certainly a hint of Pride and Prejudice in this book (which of course satisfied Laurel Ann, hence the 5 stars) enough to make us giggle with delight as we recognize the same man, the same action, the same words…
The modern Darcy and Bennett tandem beautiful enough to feed the hearts of Austen fans. It’s a love story we recognize, recycled, and will be much appreciated as the original.
Rating: 4.5 out 5!
Emma Corrigan is faced with a very big problem. She blurted every single embarrassing secret of hers to a stranger she barely knows, sitting beside her in an airplane experiencing turbulence. So, is that a problem?
Yes, when those secrets include G-Strings and Barbie bedspreads.
Not knowing who this man is, she goes on with her life, about to move in with her boyfriend, Connor, and working for a big company until she learns that the very man she talked to was the same man who founded Panther Corporation – Jack Harper, the big boss.
Sophie Kinsella once again impressed me with such a novel.
When Jack delays his flight and stays for more than a week in London, Emma knew something was up. Jack asks her out. Not so surprising. Dating with the boss, keeping the reason as to why she broke up with Connor, and preventing herself from blurting out to the entire office where she was last night is a hard task.
But in every date, Jack always have emergency calls and meetings, cutting their time together. He can’t tell her what these calls and emergency meetings are. To Emma, a relationship is a two way lane. When Jack knows everything about her, she knows nothing about him. Plus, he exposes all of this on a TV interview! A happy tale seems to end in a sad sad ending.
Can You Keep a Secret? is the second novel I have from Sophie Kinsella. It’s a treat that had me wishing for more. I want to know more about Jack. I want a sequel. But when was this book published anyway? Long long time ago and I have read it just now. A shameful confession for such a good book. Kinsella didn’t bore me. Nor did the story dragged. Jack was in the right place and at the right time. The events that took place were ingredients that Emma needed on her lacking life.
This book makes me ponder though, is keeping a secret lying?
You and I have secrets. Sometimes, secrets are best not told. People share their secrets. You share your secrets to somebody else. Keeping a secret and controlling one’s self could be a difficult job for others. When you expose the secret which wasn’t yours to tell, you break friendships.
But in this case, secrets brought two people together, broke them apart, and brought them together again, this time stronger.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5!
Rating: 4.5 out of 5!
We value time the most when the deadline is near, when we lose it once, when we are running out of it. Time is our constant enemy, our constant wish. We apportion it with out family, work and friends but give more emphasis on work. Work, work, work. At the end of the day, you sleep with your family, or with luck, play with them, but is your heart or mind with them? We sometimes wish we could defy time and nature. To be at two places at once – literally.
God happens to allow miracles. Those who are deserving will be given a chance. He sends people that acts as instruments to act as bridges for His plan to commence. In this story, He allows one man to defy time, thus giving him a chance to fix what was left unattended.
Gabe, a homeless man, offers Lou Suffern a pill that would allow him to be at two places at once. The effect runs out in the morning. How do you think Lou uses this pill? To be at work, and at home or to be at two meetings at once? Why of all people was Lou chosen?
The Gift is a very beautiful and meaningful story by Cecilia Ahern, now one of my favorite authors, fit for the Christmas season. For people who doesn’t find time to spend a portion of their time to people who matters the most. The story teaches us that life is short, no matter how long the days are, and that time will never stop and take a pause to check on your status. It will always be running, and you’d be constantly chasing after it.
“The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgsons Burnett
Ratings: 4.5 out of 5!
Just like the dead garden, Mary Lennox was partly dead. Sour, irritable, mean, and spoiled, Mary was never liked by anybody – her mother, her governess, and her Ayah. She too never liked anything nor anybody. She was not a child who exudes that innocence and joy of the young. I could say she was blank, just like a dead garden.
When Cholera broke out of the Lennox household, leaving her orphaned, she was left under the care of her only relative, her uncle, Archibald Craven living in Misselthwaite Manor. With the vast size of the house, hundreds of locked doors, a strange cry from one of these doors, a garden locked up for 10 years, and a very curious, brave child, what else would you expect?
With her curiosity burning, Mary sets out to find the buried key and door and resolved to bring back color not only to the garden where love grew and ended but to her cheeks and to a boy named Colin.
The Secret Garden is a classic children’s literature. Having read the classic Peter Pan and Alice in Wonderland, I could say this one had more sense and deeper meaning. Burnett captivated me as she had with many other children on their beds. I expected fairies and magic and magic dusts but no, I had something more.
Mr. Craven was a hunchback and he had son named Colin. With whispers of death and negative thoughts, Colin was discouraged and grew believing that sooner or later, a hump will grow and his father will never be able to look him in the eye. With the help of Mary, he gathered his courage and managed to complete the final result of his “scientific experiment’ involving Magic – the power to believe that you will and that you can. A message that is very practical, simple yet amazing.
Some people need not only take a medicine, pray in God but also believe that he or she will heal soon. It takes this Magic for people to accomplish plans and to climb up to places that seem too impossible. God exists because I believe in Him and so does every Christian. My parents believed that my brother will live normally and so he did.
But this Magic is not wishing and believing but it is wishing and believing with action. This is something you and I have to learn. Fill your minds with negative thoughts and you’d end up failing just like Colin. But when Mary and Colin believed that they could and that they would, they succeeded.
In life, we need a little bit of Magic, a little bit of push.
Do you believe in Lucky Charms?
U.S. Marine Logan Thibault (read as T Bolt) does.
After finding a photograph of a smiling young woman during his tour in Iraq, he experiences sudden streaks of luck – winning poker games when he usually loses and ends up being the only survivor on certain deadly combats. If Victor, his superstitious friend, were to explain this surprising phenomena, it would be that the photograph was his lucky charm. Was he correct?
When Victor and Logan decided to quit and take a break from all the bullets and bombs, they took a fishing trip. Talking, reminiscing, drinking, smoking . . until Victor was hit on the head by the motor of a boat that was left by a group of careless teenagers. But before he died, he explained to Thibault that he owes this woman whatever luck he gained from the photograph. Since Victor’s death, Thibault has been seeing Victor’s ghost and getting nightmares. Since Victor’s words and the photograph kept on bugging him at, he set out his journey to find the woman who he believes, saved his life and who will be the woman he’d live with the rest of his life, with the photograph as his only guide. From then on, his walk from Colorado to Hampton started.
He meets Keith Clayton along the way, taking nude pictures of teenagers. He serves as our villain and not only that, but something more important. He is the grandson of head of the Clayton clan who, basically owns Hampton for they own almost every business franchise in the place. What would you expect? A playboy, bossy, arrogant, a person who takes advantages and uses his name to crush people with his pinky finger, and to keep other men away from Elizabeth, his ex-wife and the woman on the photograph. Yes, ironic. Could Logan, fearless and clever as he is, spark a nerve on Keith and start a fight? Would Elizabeth believe in Logan once he opens up about the photograph? Who would Elizabeth side with? What part will their son, Keith and Elizabeth’s, play?
At first read, The Lucky One didn’t catch my heart. The tone was too serious. To me, it looked like “This will all be narration, no conversations.”. But then, you can’t just put down a Nicholas Sparks without reading a few more chapters.
And so I find the book .. beautiful. The concept of finding your other half through a photograph, a lucky charm, interesting. Logan’s character is amusing. I love him. His calm demeanor, his organized ways, his fearless aura, how he handles situations and more. You would feel safe with him. He’s a talented man who could play the piano and the violin. He loved Elizabeth’s son. He knows how to play with him. He could adjust well with Ben. In other words, a good father.
On the other hand, I hate Keith. I hate him. How would he be so bossy? How could he prevent Elizabeth from starting a new life? There were not divorced. Grandfather Clayton will not consent to it. Judge Clayton would not permit it. Keith Clayton is keeping an eye on anyone who gets near Beth while he himself is sleeping with other women. Nice. Plus, he’s a bad father. He does not have the ability to sense when and when not to. And he fears dogs! Good thing Thibault keeps one, Zeus and a very intelligent dog at that. Hah.
Okay enough with the I-hate-Clayton.
The conclusion is: The book is worth reading. I had no regrets and it was not boring at all. Though the theme is centered around romance and destinies, it kept on the edge of my seat.
Nicholas Sparks made me cry as he did with his other fans. I cannot find fault except a little bit about Elizabeth’s overreaction. The Lucky One made me bring back the old me who believes in signs.. and soul mates.. and same color of shirts means you’re meant to be.. and destiny.. but hey! sometimes I still do (*blush*).
I must not stop believing though. Who knows, maybe I’d find myself making up signs and eventually finding my other half. Maybe we’d find our destined man or woman, dear readers, the same way Logan found his.
Ratings: 4.5 out of 5!
by Cecilia Ahern
How could they not gather up the courage to grab the opportunity and turn their backs on the wrong man/woman on the altar?
Rosie and Alex, best friends since childhood are separated as teenagers when Alex’ parents decided to relocate from Dublin to Boston. Even miles away they keep in touch through e-mails and letters. Each learns how to stand on their own; Rosie, with her dreams shattered to pieces due to an unexpected pregnancy had it not been for Alex who missed the debs and Alex pursuing his career as a surgeon and his second marriage with a woman he doesn’t love completely had it not been for Rosie who did not receive Alex’ letter.
You see, everyone believes that sooner or later this inseparable best friends will end up marrying each other except themselves. How their life is so full-packed with missed opportunities I cannot explain. But what I could explain is how this book made me cry and how I love Cecilia Ahern.
Love, Rosie, is the first book that made me cry. Cry. It did not just well up my eyes but made tears roll down my cheeks. It’s also the first book in my shelf that is comprised of emails and letters. It’s amusing how through this notes passed during class, emails, letters sent across miles, and chat conversations (long and no-shortcut conversations at that) can tell a story of two people who are coward and blind and how, at their 50s, they found their way to where every book always end up.
The book did not only surround around Alex and Rosie but also of their surroundings. It is clearly obvious that this book is romance so it would be safe to say that Rosie’s daughter, Katie, found her own romantic story with her best friend too,Toby. Should we expect the same events for little Katie? Or is she taking a different path and took a lesson from her Mom’s life? Ms. Big Nose Smelly Breath Casey (principal if you haven’t noticed) said she sees a Deja Vu here. Rosie and Alex exchange notes on class, chat on Computer Classes, and is always called by the principal for their behavior which goes the same for Katie and Toby. But does the similarity end here or not yet? You’ll see once you read the book.
I not only raise my glass to Alex and Rosie, Katie and Toby, but also to Ruby who was there for Rosie while Alex was away and to her over sized son, Gary, and to the Relieved Divorced Dubliners, most especially, who are the prime source of my big laughs. May Cecilia Ahern live more so she could write more (I find her number of collection quite small).
May I also find you running to the bookstore.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5!
Thanks for the Memories
by Cecilia Ahern
How is it possible to know someone you’ve never met?
When almost everything is taken away from you, expect replacements. Joyce Conway with her child and marriage gone, inexplicably speaks languages she never knew, possess knowledge about who and when this Italian Architecture was built, remembers faces she have never met, and knows about a person’s deep secret. As she tries to find out who owns this borrowed memories and knowledge and how she could possibly explain her sanity, she suspects that it could be the donor who donated blood to her when she was hospitalized. Was she right? In this, the story takes turn to Justin Hitchcock, a person who’d put donating blood as the last thing he’d ever do but was forced because.. of course, men are egoistic and he needs to impress this beautiful doctor with a black lace bra. With his marriage already broken and job that meant teaching bored and uninterested students, he receives a basket of muffins, his newspaper delivered to his front door with a hot coffee, a chauffeur driver, front seat tickets to the opera.. all from an anonymous person! Could this be the very person whom he shared his blood with?
Thanks for the Memories keeps my heart beating faster than usual, keeps my blood rushing like there’s no tomorrow at every page. It makes me appreciate every surprise my young life ever had. It takes the readers a peek to a different, deeper meaning of the word, coincidence which after taking further notice, is fate after all.
This novel gives wise words to the inexperienced ones (the young, that is) in every important statement, gives the readers the thrill and suspense at every change of scene, makes us slam the table hard at every chance the protagonists could have met but missed, humors us at every shout of th Vikings and every stupid reaction Doris makes, and melts our hearts at how everything ended in the best possible way.
If you’re looking for words to touch your heart and get into the core of your bones, you better run to the bookstore now and witness Cecilia Ahern’s genius.
Rating: 4.5 out of 5!