Notice for Review Requests

I receive review requests weekly. However, my personal schedule is hectic and I no longer review actively. (I also manage another blog called The Toronto Cafe and Food Blog). I do read every request sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take sometime before I can review it. However, requests for author guest posts are more than welcomed.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, a review may be posted.

Saturday, March 28, 2015

Unfinished Reading: Alice in Zombieland by Gena Showalter

Title: Alice in Zombieland
Author: Gena Showalter
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 416
My Rating: 1/5

Alice survived a tragic car accident, but her family did not. Up until then, she always thought her father's paranoia about monsters was rubbish. Except after the accident, she thinks he may have been right after all and they are the ones responsible for her family's death. 

In attempt to diminish my unread YA collection, I picked up Alice in Zombieland from the pile. I recognized the author and have heard much hype around her previous series, Intertwined (which I also have, unread). I thought I'd give Alice in Zombieland a shot because I love a good zombie novel (they are harder to pull off in book form in my opinion). 

As you can tell from the post title, I did not finish the book, I have about 100 pages left but I don't think I will be picking it back up. I thought that I should give my opinion on what I have read so far regardless and give this blog a little boost after much neglect. 

Alice's character is tolerable. She's more or less an average girl (aren't they all?) in a less-than-happy state after the death of her family. She then met bad boy Cole. Cole's character bothered me because while I was reading, all I could think of is Katy Perry's song Hot N Cold. One minute, he's there and helping her out. Next minute, he pretty much tells her to stay away from him. His Edward Cullen's hot-and-cold persona was not winning him any points with me. 

What bothered me the most about the plot is the fact that the "zombies" aren't really zombies. When you think zombies, you think infected people that feeds off of humans. Not these ones though. They are apparently invisible and only certain people can see them. In order to fight them, your essence or soul or whatever has to be separated from your body because the "zombies" were spirits and their physical forms do not exist. Anyway, the whole premise of this alone flabbergasted me. This would have been better off if it was a whole new supernatural species the author created. Not to mention, the novel is not based off of Alice in Wonderland at all. There are just very few references to it. 

I didn't like the writing style either because of the lack of detail. I feel that in order for me to enjoy a novel now is for the author to have a writing style that creates an atmosphere and immerse you into the world (similar to J.K. Rowling). It's unfortunate but a lot of the novels nowadays have that straight forward action and sentence structure. No details, nothing to give you a proper feel of the world in the book. This is pretty much why I have a hard time getting back into reading YA novels. After reading hundreds and hundreds of books, I've seen a lot of books go through the same cliches with plot, characters, writing style, etc. Which is why now I am very selective when it comes to reading nowadays. 

So I would skip this novel if you are looking for a traditional zombie novel. Maybe try it out if you are a fan of Gena Showlater. If you just want to pick up any YA novel, I would say to avoid this one. 

Review copy from Harlequin Teen.
post signature

Monday, March 23, 2015

Author Post: Jay Stritch

Title: The Man of a Thousand Faces
Author: Jay Stritch
Description: Nineteen year old Achill has never left his training camp on Mars. With the revelation that his mother was exiled from the strict system after he was born he feels even more pressure to prove his loyalty and status as a fearless warrior who doesn't think before he kills. That is until he, who has never been taught of love or freedom, is sent on a secret mission for which he must travel through the other seven planets and fight for survival. As his journey unfolds he will discover unknown truths, potential love and face the strangeness of the lives and culture of those raised so differently to him. He may even uncover the timeless mystery of the man of a thousand faces. As tensions rise and the stakes are higher than ever Achill must decide who he is actually fighting for as he tries to understand both conflicts between the planets and also within himself.


Hey guys! I am bringing a new author post today. Jay Stritch is the author of an upcoming sci-fi series, The Eight World Chronicles. The first novel, The Man of a Thousand Faces, is now out. Check her post below about what makes us love the anti-hero and details on where to get her novel!


Thank you for having me on your blog today. I am thrilled to be able to talk about ‘The Man of a Thousand Faces.’ Today I thought I’d talk about a topic that makes up a large portion of the book and that is the power of the anti-hero.

I don’t know what it is but the characters I always wind up falling in love with the most are those who I hated to start with. To my mind it has always been far more appealing to have a character that is flawed but capable of redemption than a ready-made hero who you are supposed to fall in love with. Maybe I'm just a little dysfunctional (certainly a possibility) but it definitely makes for more interesting reading when a character undergoes such a transformation.

I think the reasons this is so powerful centre around hope, identifiability, and environment.

Hope: This is often what we live for, what makes us thrive, keeps us happy and I think that when reading about a character’s ability to change their ways it gives us hope for our own lives and for the world in general which so often feels stuck in ways of prejudice.

Identifiability: I think it is a lot easier to identify with a flawed character than a hero. In the presence of a hero I tend to shrink away, to feel inferior but I can root for someone who is a damaged product of the life they have lead so far having to turn it around and become a hero. We like to be able to relate to what we read, to see our lives reflected back at us in all their gritty realism, horror and delight and that is what you get when you read of someone’s struggle and not only of their success. 

Environment: I think that it is impossible to get to a certain age and not feel like the world has messed you up a little. Like you have to hold it accountable for some of your darker moments. Also looking around the world or opening a news paper we see many environments people have had to endure which seem unbearable. War, hardship, poverty, indoctrination, I think it’s always a wonderful reminder when you can separate a person from their environment and allow them to think for themselves. It gives us inspiration not to be defined by circumstance but to live by our own standards and beliefs.

These three things are the key to why an anti hero can be so powerful, likeable and readable in my humble opinion.

When writing ‘The Man of a Thousand Faces,’ I really wanted to explore the psyche of someone who had been raised in a very all consuming system and knew nothing but a certain way of life. And then I endeavored to take him out of that system and confront the other possibilities of life. It was interesting seeing how these beliefs unravelled and how difficult it can be to try and start from scratch again and discover who you are when who you've been told you are no longer holds true.

I hope this doesn't make the book sound too serious, it is actually a fun should buy it, it’s available on Amazon now:


Author Bio: Jay Stritch is a published author, Cambridge student and part time occupant of the real world. (They’re trying to convince her to go full time but she’s having none of it.)

Born and raised a country girl and more accustom to cows than cars she is an avid reader, writer and adrenaline junkie. Jay wears big glasses for her short shortsightedness, both literally and figuratively. She has just published the first installment of the eight worlds chronicles - 'The Man of a Thousand Faces.'

post signature

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Watching on Wednesday: The Adventures of Tintin

Title: The Adventures of Tintin
Type: Movie
Age Group: Youth +
Release Year: 2011
My Rating: 5/5

The Adventures of Tintin is a beloved comic series from the 20th century. In this full featured 3-D film, Tintin and his trusty dog, Snowy, sets out a grand adventure after an innocent purchase of a ship model caused some big problems!

Prior to this movie, I never watched and read anything related to Tintin. Though I was familiar with Tintin and Snowy because they are iconic characters. When I started the film, my mom knew right away what the movie was about from the opening credits.

The first thing that I noticed was the incredibly detailed and realistic 3-D design of the entire movie. I enjoyed the fast pace action and despite it being an animated movie, it is slightly geared towards an older audience due to the violence and drunken stupor moments. I thought the characters were exceptionally well-done, from their personalities to their roles. Though I still have no idea how old Tintin really is.

This is one of those movies that an adult could thoroughly enjoy. It brings back that nostalgia of a beloved series that many people grew up with over the years. Couple it with modern 3-D technology, it's a great movie to watch!

post signature

Monday, October 27, 2014

Honey Blood Vol. 1 by Miko Mitsuki

Title: Honey Blood
Mangaka: Miko Mitsuki
Age Group: Teens
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1
My Rating: 3/5

Hinata Sorazono doesn't believe in vampires, despite the recent "vampire attacks" where young girls have been found dead with bite marks on their necks. Vampires are fictional after all, right?

One day she meets her new neighbour, Junya Tokinaga, a popular novelist who writes about vampire romance. As she gets to know him, she starts to realize that he's not all that he seems...

When I saw the cover of this manga, I knew I wanted to give it a shot. The pose reminded me of Black Bird. Right off the bat, I knew I was in love with Mitsuki's art. I loved the character design for Junya because he's quite the bishounen. His personality on the other hand, I wasn't a fan of. He is arrogant and intrusive, although he is supposed to be charming as well.

Hinata isn't a weak character, but she couldn't stop herself from being drawn to Junya. Towards the end of the volume, she was already smitten by him. I don't think their personalities fit each other that well. One of the questions I had while reading was why Junya was attracted and wanted to protect Hinata from the beginning. Hopefully, this is something that would be explained later on in the series.

The attacker's identity is not yet resolved in this volume. However, a new character is likely to be introduced in the second volume. So far, the only thing I truly enjoyed from Honey Blood is the art and chibi work, hence the 3/5 rating.

Review copy provided by Viz.

post signature

Friday, October 10, 2014

Short & Simple (11)

Title: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Author: J.K. Rowling
Age Group: Children
# of Pages: 766
My Rating: 5/5

Quick Summary: It's Harry Potter's fifth year at Hogwarts. He and the rest of the school have to deal with the horrible new Defense Against the Dark Arts professor. Dumbledore also has been avoiding him lately. Why is that? And what will Harry expect next from Voldemort?

Quick Thoughts: I managed to pick up the fifth novel for free from one of the public outdoor libraries in Montreal. It was perfect because this was where I left off in the Harry Potter series back in high school. It got me hooked on again instantly! I admit, some parts weren't that exciting and Harry had tons of teen angst. Overall though, it was enough for me to continuing the series!


Title: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
Author: J.K. Rowling
Age Group: Children
# of Pages: 759
My Rating: 5/5

Quick Summary: The finale of Harry Potter! 

Quick Thoughts: The. Best. Finale. Ever.

J.K. Rowling writes beautifully and interlocks all of the details from every book together so well. By the end of the series, all the questions you ever had will be answered! So I highly recommend picking up Harry Potter because everyone of all ages can enjoy the series!


Title: My Love Story!!
Mangaka: Kazune Kawahara & Aruko
Age Group: Teens
Series is: Ongoing with 7 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1
My Rating: 5/5

Quick Summary: Takeo Gouda looks like a scary guy and is not your typical male protagonist. When he starts developing feelings for pretty Rinko Yamato, a girl he saved from a molester on a train, he thinks she is interested in his handsome friend instead! He does everything in his power to get them together!

Quick Thoughts: I absolutely adored the first volume! It's unlike most shojo manga series I am used to because of non-typical male lead. The volume is funny and light-hearted and it works well as a stand-alone. It makes me wonder how the plot will continue as a series.

post signature

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Watching on Wednesday: Guardians of the Galaxy

Movie: Guardians of the Galaxy
Release Year: 2014
My Rating: 5/5

A movie review? Oh my, I haven't done this in ages! Alas, I thought I quickly share my thoughts on this movie and give this blog a little life.

About a month ago, I thought I got into a free prescreening of Guardians of the Galaxy. Silly me, it turned out to be a 17 minute sneak peek to generate hype. So you can understand my shock and confusion when it stopped so suddenly! However, the marketing team did well and I really wanted to watch the full movie afterwards. After hearing much rave from friends and the internet, I finally got to watch it!

Peter Quill (a.k.a. Star-Lord) was kidnapped from Earth by aliens as a young kid. He is now an outlaw in space many years later. He retrieves an orb for a mission, but has no idea that powerful people were after it. Next thing he knows, he is stuck with a group of bandits and all fighting to survive. Like any other Marvel movie, Guardians of the Galaxy did not disappoint. It has that humour that keeps the audience laughing, but it does not to deter from the actual movie. You will have your favourite moments and favourite characters. I am very eager for the second movie, which should be coming out in 2017.

I am now tempted to go buy a Guardians of the Galaxy related t-shirt, just to show off my fandom!

post signature

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Book Sale for Toronto/GTA! Almost 200 Books for Sale!

Hello lovely people! I decided to go through 7 hours of sorting my book collection and listing a bunch I want to sell. I will be travelling this upcoming winter and am in need of funds! I would like to do meetups, personally close to my home if possible since shipping is expensive and a bit of a hassle.

The Rules:

- Purchases under $30 will only be meeting near Hwy 7 and Weston Rd (Vaughan) or Torbram and Queen St. E (Brampton). Toronto only according to what works with my schedule.
- Purchases over $30, I will be more flexible to meet in Toronto
- I do not do meets in other areas like Mississauga, Richmond Hill, etc. 
- If you buy 4 or more books, you can get a free ARC or any book $5 and under

If anyone really wants to buy but is elsewhere, let me know and I might consider shipping it to you. Though you will have to pay for shipping as well.

Happy shopping!
post signature