~chasing after a fleeting dream~


I haven't posted in awhile. Here are 2 books I read recently. Interestingly, they're both on captivity.

A House in the Sky by Amanda Lindhout and Sara Corbett.
Powerfully written, the story starts with Amanda's childhood, leading up to her adolescent life and then to the moment she was captured. We learn about Amanda's drive to explore the world without limitations. She wasn't afraid, in fact, she was fueled by the unknown and risks. The story flowed easily and it had alot of life. I particularly liked the parts where Amanda mentioned she misses chocolate and the cold wintery Calgary days. It pulls us back to reality - for those who haven't traveled to those places or had the same adventurous drive as Amanda, we could relate to things we know - chocolate, winter, home. Amanda expresses her feelings and thoughts candidly, with no reservations. She is very human; although one may think that it was foolish to go to Somalia in the first place, Amanda openly tells us why she went, and we're allowed to connect the dots back to her childhood, her love for National Geographic, and her drive to explore.

A Stolen Life by Jaycee Dugard.
Jaycee starts the novel by telling us that the story may be confusing because it was a very confusing part of her life. Written very simply, Jaycee guides us through the 18 years of captivity. A child's innocence isn't lost, Jaycee demonstrates that she can move on and be strong for her daughters.


current music
love alt nation on sirius xm radio.

The Alt-18 Countdown

Week of November 24

18. The Arcade Fire – “Afterlife”
17. Magic Man – “Paris”
16. Nonono – “Pumpin’ Blood”
15. Sir Sly – “Gold”
14. Haim – “The Wire”
13. The 1975 – “The City”
12. The Colourist – “Little Games”
11. Broken Bells – “Holding On For Life”
10. Kings Of Leon – “Temple”
9. Cage The Elephant – “Come A Little Closer”
8. Fitz & The Tantrums – “The Walker”
7. Vampire Weekend – “Unbelievers”
6. Young The Giant – “It’s About Time”
5. Bastille – “Bad Blood”
4. Arctic Monkeys – “Do I Wanna Know”
3. Chvrches – “The Mother We Share”
2. Wild Cub – “Thunder Clatter”
1. Lorde – “Team”


more novels!
Oh my goodness, I'm so behind on posting about my reads.

I recall reading these since my last book post:
  • Sarah's Key - De Rosnay, Tatiana (provoked interesting discussion during our book club)
  • The Lover's Dictionary - David Levithan (recommended!)
  • The Raising - Laura Kasischke (meh)
  • The Hunger Games Book 1 - Suzanne Collins (simple writing style but immensely well written in terms of using simple words while providing enough details for characterization and make the story alive - much better than the movie, that's when I realized the book was much better)
  • All of the Southern Vampire Mysteries
-short description/comments to follow to keep myself on track (I tend to forget things easily and I would like to remember what I've what and what the stories are about)

Currently reading:
  • Trylle Trilogy 01 - Switched
  • World War Z - Max Brooks
  • Divergent - Veronica Roth
  • Before I go to sleep - S.J. Watson
  • A Song of Ice and Fire - Book 1 - A Game of Thrones
In between all the reading, I'm juggling so many other things... I need to devote more reading time!! And stop reading so many different books at the same time :P

somebody i used to know
"Somebody That I Used To Know"
(feat. Kimbra)

Now and then I think of when we were together
Like when you said you felt so happy you could die
Told myself that you were right for me
But felt so lonely in your company
But that was love and it's an ache I still remember

You can get addicted to a certain kind of sadness
Like resignation to the end, always the end
So when we found that we could not make sense
Well you said that we would still be friends
But I'll admit that I was glad it was over

But you didn't have to cut me off
Make out like it never happened and that we were nothing
And I don't even need your love
But you treat me like a stranger and that feels so rough
No you didn't have to stoop so low
Have your friends collect your records and then change your number
I guess that I don't need that though
Now you're just somebody that I used to know

Now and then I think of all the times you screwed me over
But had me believing it was always something that I'd done
But I don't wanna live that way
Reading into every word you say
You said that you could let it go
And I wouldn't catch you hung up on somebody that you used to know

the first
There are many songs to describe it, but the best is probably this.

First love



Your always gonna be my love
I remember to love
You taught me how

Your always gonna be the one
今はまだ悲しいlove song
新しい歌 うたえるまで



You will always be inside my heart
I hope that I have a place in your heart too
Now and forever you are still the one

今はまだ悲しいlove song
新しい歌 うたえるまで

Your always gonna be the one
まだ悲しいlove song
Now & forever...

 Ok so more books.

Shanghai Girls by Lisa See.
I didn't enjoy the way the story was told. Majority of the sentences were simple (partly because the author is trying to portray a Chinese speaking/thinking in English) and thus, made it awkward. It focuses on traditional (and superstition) thinking... e.g., because you are born in the year of the dragon, you are stubborn. Yes, it touched on many traditional aspects... but too much. In a way, it was a very stereotypical book... not every Chinese families are like that. Anyways, I didn't finish reading the book... I did skip to a part in the end (my sister told me to read that part)...

The Disappeared by Kim Echlin.
Our book club book; an easier read (as in, story is not thought provoking). A very interesting way of writing; Kim Echlin delivers a story without any "speech". Since I haven't read any novels similar to this, sometimes I find it hard to comprehend. It talks about the war in Cambodia... I have to say, I never did enjoy reading about wars; although it's reality, it's harsh.  ... And it is also a love story... Anne travels to Cambodia to find her lover but loses him in the end.

winter readings.
I didn't finish Dreaming in Hindi [by Katherine Russell Rich] for the book club. One, I couldn't make it to the book club; second, the book is highly unattractive. It serves as a memoir of immersing yourself in a new language: for the author, it's Hindi. In some ways, I could relate to her experience in learning a new language (me & Japanese)... but really, to write a book about it and in such an un-fascinating way... *ZZzzzZZzzzzzzZ*

The Time Traveler's Wife [by Audrey Niffenegger]. Interesting. I didn't engross myself in this novel until past the mid-way point. I have to say that I was very touched upon reading the ending. The buildup of their relationship was slow but it added to the "awwwwww" effect. I never understood time travelling well; in fact, it's so impossible that it never makes sense. Nonetheless, this time travelling story is more enjoyable than most. It's always hard for me to wrap my head around "time travelling". References:  Hermione in Harry Potter, The Time Machine, Boku no Kanojo wa Cyborg, etc.

Twenties Girl [by Sophie Kinsella]. The typical Sophie Kinsella Click-lit novel. A painting can definitely relay many messages, expressing more than 1000 words. The name of painting in the novel (Girl with a neckless) reminds me of Girl with a Pearl Earring. Lara Lington uncovers the truth behind her great-aunt Sadie Lancaster's life... ummm.. yeah... and along the way she gets a man and career! Like I said, typical, happy endings.

more novels
Brightest Star in the Sky - Marian Keyes
Great light read. Marian never ceases to amaze me. The story was very touching and quite unpredictable at times (booyah!). Her stories usually contain a large cast of characters and she always wove them together nicely. Definitely recommended if you want a light novel!

The Heart Specialist - Claire Holden Rothman
An amazing find - I read this during my trip to CUBA (will be posted separately later when I have time) and enjoyed it all the way through. It's about a girl, Agnes White, in the early 1900s who struggles against prejudice (females attending med school). She was also so absorbed in chasing after a shadow that she neglected what was in front of her. Highly highly recommended. Such a beautiful story - Very nicely written and smooth transitions =D

The House at Riverton - Kate Morton
A page turner; this story flips the present and past back and forth. The story is told by Grace Bradley, a servant for the Hartford at Riverton House. It keeps its suspense up until the very end. In some ways, Grace is similar to Agnes White; both independent and determined to do their best in their career. However, both lacked the department in romance until much later in life.

Now onto the next novel!

The Host
Okay, so Stephanie Meyer isn't the most critically acclaimed writer. Despite that I read the complete Twilight series and also The Host. Of course, being out of my teenage years, Twilight and its subsequent books were lacking substance. I only completed reading the series for the sake of it -- it being extremely popular. I prefer The Host ; somehow, it had more meaningful perspectives that you can learn than the Twilight series. Humans could be monsters - with wars and hostility - however, they can also show compassion to their love ones. They have high survival instinct and it'll take a lot for "aliens" to take complete control.

In Europe, I picked up Marian Keyes' A Charming Man. An extremely fun light read - definitely recommended. Previously, I wrote about Anybody Out There, also by Marian, and again, I was not left disappointed by this new read. Her stories are surprisingly warm and fuzzy... hahaha. I plan to read her other works such as Sushi for Beginners.

I have yet to get my hands on My Sister's Keeper and The Time Traveler's Wife.


choo choo is cool
Choo Choo is the chinchilla we got from a friend. We never had a chinchilla before but I've always wanted one =)
Anyways, he is so cool. Put some sand in a bin and he'll roll around and around to wash itself. Interesting. Too bad he can't interact with ChiChi (guinea pig)... ChiChi is so lonely now... since the departure of the three other guinea pigs =(.

On another note, I started playing Dissidia.

Work will start next week...



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