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 some time before I can review it. I am now looking to review adult fiction and self-help books instead of young adult fiction because I have grown out of it. If you are to request a review for either adult fiction or self-help, I will more likely to give it a shot.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, I may post a review. Thank you for understanding.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Haruka by Tohko Mizuno

Title: Haruka - Beyond the Stream of Time
Mangaka: Tohko Mizuno
Age Group: Older Teens
# of Pages: Approx. 200
# of Volumes: 14
My Rating: 1/5

High school girl, Akane, was minding her own business when she was suddenly sucked away from her world along with her two friends Tenma and Shimon. She wakes up to find herself in ancient Japan of the Heian period! She was summoned by the Demon leader to his world and she finds out that she is the Priestess of the Dragon God.

Given the Eight Guardians, she have to protect the danger from the demon clan has planned for them.

Utterly confusing. The artist has no transition flow in her artwork and story at all. The story was all over the place and it just jumped around too quickly. I try to make sense of what is going on but my habit is to skim through manga quickly. If I don't understand it when I read it over fast, I won't do much better slowly. Originally, this story was a PlayStation game, which I guess would be so much better. I would like to try out the game but it would all be in Japanese so there would be no point. But there is one pointer, I love the male characters in it. Haha, most of them are all so pretty. Except for like Akane's friends from her time periods, they so plain...

post signature

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Likely Story by David Van Etten

Title: Likely Story
Author: David Van Etten
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 230
My Rating: 2/5

Having an over dramatic mother is bad enough. Having an over dramatic actress as a mother is worse!

Mallory teenage life is just full of real life drama alright. Especially when it comes to having a childish parent. Her mother is a character in a soap opera calls 'Good as Gold' and Mallory finds it really irritating. She decides to let out her fumes after being agitated by her mother about how fake soap operas are on her blog. She states that she is able to produce a more realistic soap opera that anyone could relate to and enjoy.

She never expected that one post could change her life forever. Then her mother's agent, Donald, calls her up. He loves her idea. Said that she should make her her own soap. Mallory is extremely surprised.

Will her first show be able to lift off very well? And could she get her inspired best friend Amelia to play the main girl? ... Even though she is not so great at it? Also being a girlfriend of a boy who has another girl, would Mallory and Keith work out behind Erika's back? What about the cutie, Dallas, who is going to be one of Mallory's characters? What will happen to them? Oh the drama!

There is one thing that strikes out to me, Mallory's mother. There are many times that she is a complete bitch (pardon my language for there will be times like this I have no choice but need to use this word) and then she seems even caring. This got me sort of annoyed. I just want her to stick to one set of personality that doesn't bounce back so much. There is also one scene that really makes me mad. (If you don't want to be spoiled, just ignore from this point on). It is where Mallory told Amelia that she did not get the main part, Sarah, at the end. Amelia completely lash out on Mallory being a total (sorry again) bitch. Worse than Mallory's mother! Amelia starts sneering at Mallory how she is just like her mom, only caring for herself! The poor girl accidentally fell into the pool and she just stomps away. What the hell? Mallory sticks up for her the whole time while they were doing the cuts and all. Amelia managed to get so far but since she she lacks the charisma and another girl played Sarah fabulously got the part, she goes berserk. Guess what? Life sucks! She was even lucky to have a chance to get on the show but hell! I can't believe Mallory wants to try and make up with her. I would be pissed if I was in Mallory's position. If someone is that ungrateful to me when I tried so hard for them, they don't deserve any sympathy or friendship.

Overall my opinion of the book, I find it okay. Aside the part ranted, there wasn't much going on. It isn't slow but it isn't fast either. Enough to have you going but enough that you know nothing exciting will show up. A bit predictable but there are surprises as well. I know, a lot of oxymorons there. But I really, really want Mallory to give Amelia a piece of her mind in the second book.

post signature

Sunday, September 21, 2008

D.Gray-Man by Katsura Hoshino

Title: D.Gray-Man
Katsura Hoshino

Age Group:
Older Teens

# of Pages:

# of Volumes: 16
My Rating:

Akuma, they are devices of the Dark Side made by the evil Millennium Earl. These Akumas are made from the souls of humans that had died and ones that mourned their death greatly. They terrorize the living world in the fictional late nineteenth century, becoming more powerful each day. But regular humans can't detect them. These creatures hide underneath human skin.

Enter Allen Walker, a British boy who is an exorcist of these Akumas. His left arm is an Anti-Akuma that destroys them. And his left eye can see through an Akuma's facade. He witnesses many miseries and sorrow through his work. But with so many Akumas that exist in the world, how would he rid them all and Millenium Earl?

The story does complicate later on so it would be a bit confusing if I tack those to the summary. I really like the overall book. It is different and I like to see what is it like for fictionous worlds in a mangaka's mind. The characters themselves are interesting because Allen meets different people each day. Definitely a good read, not something I will go extremely crazy for but enough for me to want much more. The story sort of makes you wonder, would you sacrifice yourself to bring back a loved one alive?

post signature

Friday, September 19, 2008

Dancing in Red Shoes Will Kill You by Dorian Cirrone

Title: Dancing in Red Shoes Will Kill You
Author: Dorian Cirrone
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 213
My Rating: 2/5

Kayla Callaway goes to a special arts school as a passionate ballet student. An audition for playing Cinderella parts are coming up for the school dance and she can't wait! It is for her time to shine! The audition came and went and she knows that she nailed it. The lead role is going to be given her for sure!

The list is finally put up and what does she see? She got the ugly stepsister role! How could she?? Her dance teacher pulled her aside and told her that she couldn't play the part because of her big breasts. What in the world??

Apparently Cinderella has to be thin and delicate. The lead role player should have the elegant feel, not have two huge sacs like chest bouncing up and down while dancing. In the traditional world, it will not do.

During the time period, a pair of red spray painted pointe shoes is hung outside in the school's hallway with a note, 'Dancing in red shoes will kill you'. Is this a death threat? Apparently Kayla's role might have to wear a pair of red pointe shoes!

Eeeehh, I don't like this book. It's okay but I have to group it with Twilight. The story doesn't have any... "meat". I would put it down but since I start doing reviews now, I force myself to continue to see if it gets better. It doesn't really. Kayla is very plain. I like my characters to have more varieties in personalities. If I was to write, my style would be similar... Which is NOT good.

post signature

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Yume Kira Drea Shoppe by Aqua Mizuto

Title: Yume Kira Dream Shoppe
Mangaka: Aqua Mizuto
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 185
# of Volumes: 1
My Rating: 4/5

Do you have a wish? Of course you do silly. Everyone does. Come into Yume Kira Dream Shoppe, my dear. For all of your wildest dreams come true. The price? The most dearest thing that belongs to you.

The shopkeeper Rin has many imported magical devices that comes into his (or her for real gender is unknown) store. Beings of all kind will accidentally drop by his store, having a wish. This is a one shot but has four different stories with different characters each.

The Sound That Brings Blossoms: A tree that can not blossom and contain only leaves falls in love with a human. The tree is in front of the hospital and always hear the young musician play his music, inspiring it to be strong. Rin comes by, beckoned by it. It wishes to become a human. Given the Moon Maiden's Tears potion, it can take on any form it wishes for ten days. If her dream comes true, she will be able to stay human forever. But would it?

Beyond the Red Eye: Noa Ozawa is an extremely shy girls that has a crush on the boy, Yuki. She only speaks to her stuffed rabbit plushie, Alpha, about it. Alpha longs to be able to speak and move freely so he can communicate with his owner. Rin comes and offers the Space Garnet, a gem that allows anything to move and speak as it desires. Will Alpha be able to courage his owner into confessing her feelings to the boy she likes?

A Promise to a Grain of Time: A girl suddenly appears in front of Rin's shop, not knowing who she is and why she was in the hospital earlier. Her wish is to turn back time, so she can remember who she is and what recently happened to her that made her forget about her life. Is she able to change her future using King's Hourglass?

The Labyrinth Wave of Dreams: Koyoru Hino likes the school's cute, Eito. She tries to come in contact with him but all of his other fangirls get to him before her and she doesn't have the courage to push through. Suddenly, she is in the middle of the sea and gets picked up on a pirate ship, leading to Rin's shop. She wants to enter Eito's dreams and tell him how she feels. Given the three Nightmare Candies, she has to eat one each time before bed and she can take any form she wish to enter someone's dreams. After, she is able to choose any of the three forms to be if she like. Which form will she choose? A waitress in a rollerblade cafe, a popstar, or a girl with jet black hair?

I got to say, my favourite story is the first one with the tree. I find it very touching. This manga is very adorable and so is the artwork. Though I really want to know what the real gender of Rin is!! I think I'll check out this mangaka later. Shojo fans, go look for this cute manga that is full of hope and courage!

post signature

Friday, September 12, 2008

Wild Ones by Kiyo Fujiwara + NEWS!

Title: Wild Ones
Mangaka: Kiyo Fujiwara
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: Approx. 200
# of Volumes: 6
My Rating: 2/5

Recently orphaned Sachie Wakamura has no where to go. Her mother just died and she has no other relatives. Or so she thinks. An elderly man approaches her and tells her that he is her mother's father! Why did her mother say that he was dead?

...He turns out to be the master of a notorious yakuza (Japanese mafia) clan! This is something she will never get use to. And being the precious granddaughter of the master, she is in need of a bodyguard to protect her! Thinking that she is going to be stuck with a buff and shaved head guy, she ended up with her handsome class president, Rakuto, with a twisted personality! Will she ever accept the fact that she is part of a yakuza clan? And how will her relationship with Rakuto end up like?

This manga is another very typical kind where a girl and a guy gets thrown into some sort of issue that have them end up sticking by each other's sides. The clique ideas come into place and soon after another male character comes into play who falls in love with Sachie. Something I really dislike: Love at first sight when it comes to mangas. The heroine does something and immediately she gets another boy chasing after her. I like it when it is more indepth. Preferably after the two character meet and then their relationship slowly builds up. A bit more realistic I prefer it. I will never buy this manga but I will continue to read it as long as it is provided for me.


I have some great news! Maryrose Wood, one of my favourite authors who wrote Why I Let My Hair Grow Out and How I Found the Perfect Dress, is going to have an interview with me and I shall post it on this blog! I have to conjure a list of good questions first so I have no idea when I will have it up. But look forward to it guys!

post signature

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Aishiteruze Baby by Yoko Maki

Title: Aishiteruze Baby
Mangaka: Yoko Maki
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: Approx. 200
# of Volumes: 7
My Rating: 4/5

Every single high school has that one boy who everyone seems to like. It may be the school president, the new boy, the rough baddie. Well this one is the major flirt, Kippei Katakura. He picks up one girl and then go to the next. Everyone knows that he is not serious, but most girls can't resist him. He would never think about attaching himself to any girl, especially his five years old cousin.

Yuzuyu is an adorable girl that just moved in with Kippei's family. Her mother one day left somewhere and never came back. The poor child misses her mother terribly. Oddly enough, Kippei is attracted by her youthful charm and sticks by her side. No one would expect such to happen from playboy Kippei!

An admirer from afar dislikes Kippei's cousin. How dare she brings out a side of him that no girl can?? What will this admirer have in store for young Yuzuyu?

In the second volume, Yuzuyu's mother appears. When Kippei saw her, he is indeed surprise. Why in the world would she leave her daughter behind like that? She tells him not to tell anyone that he saw her and runs off. Will she ever come back?

I find this book is absolutely adorable! So far from what I read, it's not "deep" persay. But then they are mangas right? The children the artist drew in the book is worthy of a thousand cheek pinches! (Haha, rating boost there!) I love how I can just read past it and not think too much. (Unlike the famous manga/anime Death Note... That one gives you headaches!) The one thing that bothers me though is Kokoro, Kippei's girlfriend. Her character is just there. I don't see the need to have her in the story at all. Nonetheless, something most shojo fans will enjoy!

post signature

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Witch Way Did She Go? by Paul Ruditis

Title: Sabrina the Teenage Witch - Witch Way Did She Go?
Author: Paul Ruditis
Age Group: Tweens +
# of Pages: 146
My Rating: 3.5/5

Sabrina the Teenage Witch, surely you have heard of her some way or the other at one point in your life. The series is quite long and different situations happen in each.

In this one, Sabrina is facing one of the most difficult choices of her life: What to take in college? Everyone is asking her for favours and to join different clubs. Her head is spinning with too much information. No, her head literally spins! So her wizard-turned-cat friend, Salem, suggests that she uses the Magic Cue Ball (Magic Eight Ball before until some idiot witch sold the rights of the name to a human company). The rules are to only ask three questions and the ball will transport you to the future for five minutes of how it will result if so was to happen. Sabrina asks a couple of simple question before she left to go to class. Salem, couldn't help but be greedy, took the chance at the last wish for how things would turn out if he is ruler of the world.

When the young witch came back, she went ahead with her last question. Which she went creative on that created a huge long run-on sentence. Salem on the other hand stayed much longer than five minutes, wanting to live his royal life. Both gets punished by being zapped into the Amazing Maze which is a huge test for Sabrina's undecisive skills. The time limit is three hours. And if they are not done in time? They are trapped in the maze forever.

I personally like this book and gave a higher rating than what I would usually give if I didn't like it. I can totally relate to Sabrina at this point. (I remembered not understanding a few things because I bought it when I was like 10. Dug it up just today from my old books.) I am incredibly indecisive and take ages to make a decision. Not only that but she is dealing with her schedule. Soon enough, I will have to go to university and figure out how to pick out my classes. But with so many options! How in the world will I handle it? Well, I hope I can manage. This is a fast read since there is barely 150 pages in it so pick it up if you want to fly through things. Or being an indecisive person, check it out and maybe the story will help you sort yourself out!

post signature

Monday, September 8, 2008

Ever by Gail Carson Levine

Title: Ever
Author: Gail Carson Levine
Age Group: Tweens
# of Pages: 244
My Rating: 1/5

Kezi loves to dance and knot rugs. She wants a simple life and lives with her loving family. She never expects to have her death arrive so soon because of an oath her father made to the god Admat.

Olus is seventeen, god of the winds who falls in love with Kezi from a distance. He got a job as a goat herder from Kezi's father when he didn't want to being staying up in the gods' world no more. When he realizes that Kezi will die, he tries to find a way to save her life. It is a dangerous task where both may fail and death can be the result.

This book is incredibly disappointing in my standards. I guess one of the reason is that since it is written for a much younger audience so there is little details of the surroundings and such. It is written in first person, which I don't mind for most of the time but the fact is that it is all in present tense! I can't stand books like that back I like them all in the past tense. Reading it for the most part was torture for me. I just hated this writing style Mrs. Levine wrote in. I adore Fairest so when I turned to Ever, I was expecting for some more surprises and excitement. And the fact that religion comes into play I don't like so much. Well, at least the cover is pretty.

post signature

Saturday, September 6, 2008

I · O · N by Arina Tanemura

Title: I · O · N
Mangaka: Arina Tanemura
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: Approx. 200
# of Volumes: 1
My Rating: 3/5

Ion Tsuburagi is a happy, carefree girl that loves to help others. As a habit, she always chant her name for good luck. When she is running away from Kouki Shiraishi, the class president who is madly in love with her, she ran into Mikado Horai. He is the president of the Psychic Powers Research Society, one of the clubs at the school. He spoke to her that it is his dream to research indepth on psychic powers. Mikado is trying to recreate a psychic substance that a professor was researching on from many years ago.

After Mikado showed the research lab to Ion, she touches the substance when he went back to class because the door was unlocked. Her body suddenly felt a huge wave of electricity passing by. Scared, she unconciously chants her name and then the next thing she knew she was flying above the research room! The research room is then on fire because there was some gunpowder that was inside and the electricity sparked it. Ion with her new powers, immediately took the water from the school's pool to eliminate the fire.

Mikado thinks that the substance disappeared in the fire when Ion actually has it and asks her to help him in his research because of her abilities. Later on, Ion feelings for him grew and Mikado may have too. But is he only admiring her powers or does he actually sees her as a girl?

Eh, to be honest I don't enjoy the book so much. The thing is that everyone in the school finds out that she has psychic powers and are not fazed by it at all! They go on like it's any other regular day. I would expect there to be some sort of villain that wants to use to powers but there is nothing of the sort in the manga. Since it is a oneshot, I didn't get much out of it. I guess if you are a fan of the mangaka's works, you may like it. This is her debut manga and has written many other ones that are quite popular like Full Moon. This is the first manga I've read by her and only picked it up because it is one of the new mangas my library bought.

post signature

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Dance of the Assassins by Herve Jubert

Title: Dance of the Assassins
Author: Herve Jubert
Age Group: Older Teens
# of Pages: 505
My Rating: 2/5

Jack the Ripper is back. But in this modern world. Why and how is such a murderer brought back to life? Miss Roberta Morgenstern is a witch that is sent out to check this case. Tag along with Clement Martineau who is a police assistant, new to working on the field inside of just reading behind a book. They go through London, Paris, Venice, and Tenochtitlan trying to track down the murderer. As their case advances, it starts to entangle back several centuries and the Devil himself.

I have to say, this is one heck of a confusing book. (Reason why my review for this is extremely short). I've been reading it for a month now and finally finished it today. I guess because I'm a fast reader, I didn't pick up as fast on the situation. It was half way through the book that I realized the setting is of modern world. I was so confused about some parts that I was thinking it may have taken place in the past. It is a teen book but if you ask me, someone who is older would likely have a better understanding of it than a teen. I will not recommend it unless you like complex situations and read every single word carefully, cause I still don't understand half of the things that occurred in the book.

post signature

Monday, September 1, 2008

How I Found the Perfect Dress by Maryrose Wood

Title: How I Found the Perfect Dress
Author: Maryrose Wood
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 231
My Rating: 5/5

A year after that bike tour from Ireland, Morgan is back in her old Connecticut state living her life. It has been awhile since Colin emailed her and she is freaking out. She can't really call him her boyfriend since they both live on the other side of the world but she is desperate. So she decided to email him on Groundhog Day, it is a perfect excuse to check up on him.

Soon after, he emailed her back with some great news! He is coming to the University of Connecticut for two weeks. She is absolutely thrilled!

After he came, he told her that for some reason he couldn't get enough sleep lately and have been terribly exhausted. Which is unpleasant for him because he has to make a robot for a project at the university. He has been dreaming about being at some weird parties but he can't recall what it is. Morgan on the other hand has a gut feeling that the Other World creatures are messing with him. For what reason are they bothering poor Colin? Morgan just have to find out soon enough as she will meet with old friends and new faces.

I have to say I enjoy the sequel much better than the first book. Don't get me wrong! They are both amazing! Maybe because I rushed the first to get to the second but they are nonetheless full of fun. I finished this one within three-four hours, starting at 12 AM in the morning. Not good for me but the brain got some word candies. Those who haven't read the first one yet better do so now and then pick up the second one! Won't regret either, I promise! I hope for a third installment if possible!

Won copy from In Bed With Books

post signature