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.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

My Soul to Take by Rachel Vincent

Title: My Soul to Take
Author: Rachel Vincent
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 279
My Rating: 2.5/5

Kaylee has a strange condition. A horrifying one. She has the urge to scream her bloody lungs out every time when someone near her is about to die. Nash, the cute boy of her grade, notices her and is seemingly curious about her condition. Then, something strange happens when local girls die without a reason and Kaylee needs to find out why.

I have to say, I was disappointed. I remembered there was a LOT of hype for this novel when it first came out. It was all over the blogosphere, especially since it was one of the first series published by Harlequin Teen. I had a feeling I wasn't going to be interested based on the premises so I never picked it up. However, I do review for Harlequin Teen and they did send me the later novels of The Soul Screamers series. I wanted to try to read them which meant I would have to start from the beginning. However, from the first novel alone, I'm not sure if I would get that far.

The beginning to the middle was flat as flat can be. Yes, there were girls dying (as said in summary) but it wasn't attention grabbing in any way. You acknowledge it, but doesn't exactly pump you up. The only thing that I liked was the suspense on why teen girls were dying out of nowhere. The reason ended being slightly bland because there was nothing building up to it.

Kaylee is one of those protagonists I cannot stand. She is the one of many that after discovering what she really is, she tries to jump in and save the day, regardless that she barely knows anything about this new world of hers. She goes against the words of those who knows what they are doing and even got someone killed trying to save her friend. Really? She is just one of those frustrating girls I see one too many of in YA novels these days.

Unless you are really into paranormal cliche novels, I wouldn't recommend this My Soul to Take.
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Monday, June 20, 2011

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 20/11)



Afterschool Charisma vol. 2 by Kumiko Suekane


Music Machine

Title: Hot Summer
Artist/Band: f(x)
Language: Korean
My Thoughts: Another fun song for the summer by f(x)! The video is honestly repetitive of Pinocchio but what Kpop band ain't these days?

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Sunday, June 19, 2011

Bakuman by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Title: Bakuman
Mangaka: Tsugumi Ohba (Story) & Takeshi Obata (Art)
Age Group: Teens
Series is: Ongoing with 13 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1-3
My Rating: 3.5/5

Mashiro is a regular junior high student with a knack for drawing. He plans to grow up and get an office job. However, his classmate, Takagi, sees that he can do so much more than that. Takagi begs Mashiro to collaborate with him to make a manga. Mashiro agrees after much thought. Will they be able to make their dreams come true before they turn 18??

For many anime/manga fans out there, you may know that the creators of this series also created Death Note. There is definitely one distinct similarity with Death Note and Bakuman: the word content. If anyone had ever read Death Note's manga, one might've realized how much talking there was, especially after a couple of volumes when L was trying to figure out Kira's actions and motives. There was so much excessive writing, one that I did not care to read for. Thus far, Bakuman is not as bad as Death Note but it is somewhat getting there. The whole point of manga is for readers to enjoy the story in picture format. If I wanted to read, I could pick up a regular novel instead. So this is definitely my pet peeve here.

There are times where the manga will be somewhat interesting. I love how it is about pursuing one's dreams and not let anything get in the way of it. If one is curious about how manga publishing works, Bakuman gives you great detail throughout each volume, from deciding what manga series to keep publishing to what an editor does. However, considering this is more of a realistic manga, the plot doesn't get too exciting and can definitely lose you.

Would I continue reading Bakuman? I may, I may not. Recommend it? I guess to those who really love Death Note or a story about pursuing a manga career.
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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Watching on Wednesday: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides

Title: Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides
Type: Movie
Age Group: Youth +
Release Year: 2011
My Rating: 5/5

Jack Sparrow (Johnny Depp) is back, with new adventures and new mates. His goal this time is to get to the Fountain of Youth. However, Barabossa (Geoffrey Rush), Blackbeard (Ian McShane) and Blackbeard's daughter, Angelica (Penelope Cruz), are after it too! Who will get their hands on this immortal fountain first?

For some reason, I wasn't that eager to watch the fourth movie, although I still wanted to see it. After hearing a couple of good reviews for it, I had to jump onto the bandwagon ASAP. (I want the Pirates of the Caribbean's OPI collection so bad!) And I LOVED it!

I was slightly disappointed (even though I already knew) that Eliza and Will did not appear even for a brief moment in the movie. I wanted to see what they were up to because it would be nice to just know. Luckily, the fifth movie is going to be coming out eventually so I am definitely excited for that.

Before I was a JackxEliza fan. Now I am a JackxAngelica fan! Haha, they had so much chemistry in this movie and I hope something will happen between them some more in the next!

I highly recommend this movie for those who have loved any of the PotC movies! This one definitely made up for the third one that made absolutely NO SENSE to me. So go watch it now!

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Monday, June 13, 2011

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 13/11)


Inspires by The Story Siren

None :o


Music Machine

Title: Get Back (ASAP)
Artist/Band: Alexandra Stan
Language: English
My Thoughts: Love the song, Mr. Saxobeat, I posted up last week so much that I looked into other Alexandra Stan's music. This one just came out this year. I absolutely love the beginning though I found the chorus to be out of place and ruins it.

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Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Watching on Wednesday: Inglourious Basterds

Title: Inglourious Basterds
Type: Movie
Age Group: Older Teens +
Release Year: 2009
My Rating: 5/5

During an alternate World War 2, there is a group of Jewish-American soldiers called "The Basterds" that dedicate themselves to killing the Nazis.

This is a brilliant movie. If you have seen Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill and loved it, you will love Inglourious Basterds as well. It is graphic but less gory than Kill Bill for sure. I simply loved the females who were in this movie, they were absolutely killer in their high heels and fabulous clothes. They made me wish I was them. After watching, I wished I was from that era because everything was so elegant and classic Hollywood, what not to love?

The languages spoken, French especially, I cannot help but love so much. It is so beautiful how they have intertwined the three languages: French, English, and German, together into this movie.

It is unfortunate, however, the number of deaths in this movie, because the chances of your favourite character dying is high. The deaths though, are significant to the plot of the movie so it made sense.

If you haven't seen this movie yet, go watch now!

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Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Happy Birthday to Me by Brian Rowe

Title: Happy Birthday to Me
Author: Brian Rowe
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 314
My Rating: 4.5/5

Cameron Martin has it all, the looks, the girlfriend, and is getting close to the basketball championship. But then, his life changes drastically when he started to age one year older each day! In the matter of weeks, he became seventy from seventeen! Will he be able to ever change back?

This is honestly the first book in months that I finished in pretty much one sitting, I was quite impressed. It started off a little superficial with the main character and the people around him, ESPECIALLY his father who is a plastic surgeon. I actually was flabbergasted at the fact that his father would try to put him under surgery in attempt to make Cameron look younger after he aged so much. They even went through surgery once and I was a little disgusted because it was only to get rid of the body fat. Unless you're morbidly obese or ill, surgery is not the answer in my opinion.

Although in the beginning it was just alright and the characters did not have that much depth, I was pleasantly surprised how everything changed towards the end. After Cameron got so old, it brought the best out of everyone when they realized that life was too short. I even cried for almost an entire chapter somewhere in the end because I was completely moved.

What I love was the fact that there was a supernatural element in the story without it actually being present from beginning to end asides from Cameron's aging. It was only till the very end it was revealed what actually happened to him, and it was pretty predictable. Nonetheless, I loved that paranormal was only a subfactor in this novel because what happened to Cameron opened up his eyes to reality.

I highly recommend this novel, especially for fans of Beastly and the movie Click.

Review copy provided by Brian Rowe.
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Monday, June 6, 2011

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (May 6/11)



Saving June by Hannah Harrington

Despite that I have already reviewed this novel, Harlequin Teen sent another copy with the new cover. Do you like this cover or the old one better? I prefer the old one.


Music Machine

Title: Mr. Saxobeat
Artist/Band: Alexandra Stan
Language: English
My Thoughts: So addicting! Been replayed so many times today!

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Sunday, June 5, 2011

LadyStar: The Dreamspeaker Announcement

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Prepare to do battle with the Greatest Fighting Team of Teenage Girls Ever Assembled!

"I really enjoyed The Dreamspeaker"-- The Neverending Shelf

"The descriptions are so vivid you start to believe you're in the book"-- Read to Read GA

"I really liked this book!" -- Outnumbered 3-1

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Jessica and her friends set sail aboard their tall ship!

One day, Jessica and her friends visit the Lakeshore Historical Society to take the Tall Ship Tour. After they get separated from the tour group, Jessica discovers a gem-encrusted Lantern and a magically locked jewelry box below decks in the ship's hold. A voice from inside the Lantern tells Jessica she is in great danger because they have discovered priceless stolen artifacts sought by ruthless and evil sorcerers known as Cryptics.

Minutes later, the vessel's lights flicker to life and the sails fill even though there isn't the slightest breeze. The great ship sails across the lake carrying Jessica and all of her friends through an astral portal to an unfamiliar land called Aventar.

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Talitha Hayashi helps Jessica read a mysterious map!

There, they meet the shadowy arcanist Reina, who tells them they must train at once to become Ajan Warriors. Unless they succeed, the treasures will be lost, and the last hopes of a betrayed people will fade forever.

These are the Adventures of Jessica Hoshi! Her Magical and Mysterious quest to discover the ancient and magnificent legend of the LadyStar begins as she encounters the powerful message of The Dreamspeaker!

LadyStar: The Dreamspeaker is only 99 cents for a limited time! Ordering is secure, fast and easy! Instant delivery for Kindle, PC, Mac, Android, iPhone, iPod Touch, iPad and Blackberry! You don't need a Kindle to enjoy this book!

You can read ten illustrated chapters for free on LadyStar: The Ajan Champions Free Adventure Stories!

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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Bookmarks Giveaway

So I have quite a bit of bookmarks and I want to get rid of them. What better way than to give them to readers? :) (Hope you guys don't mind used bookmarks!) I may or may not add other goodies. I may do this giveaway for the next couple of months to give everyone a chance, but we'll see.

Become a follower if you are not (I will check) and leave a comment with your email address. That's it! :D

Open to Canada and US only (sorry, I'm broke!) and it ends on June 30th, 2011.
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Thursday, June 2, 2011

Awakened by Ednah Walters

Title: Awakened
Author: Ednah Walters
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 272
My Rating: 4/5

Unfortunately for Lil, turning sixteen does not mean she will get an awesome Sweet 16 bash. Rather, she develops powers she never knew she would even get. Not to mention that her grandpa, the only person she lives with, has a secret beyond her imaginations. With these new powers, she must be able to fight off demons that are causing havoc on Earth.

Enter Bran, a mysterious guy who begs for her and her grandpa's help to break his family free from the clutches of an evil demoness. But, can it be done?

I actually had to re-read this novel before I could do a review. The reason was that I tried to read it during the school year but it was not going through my head. I read bits and parts of the book, but had a hard time digesting it all. So when my first year of university ended, I decided to retry Awakened one more time because the author put so much effort into delivering the ARC to me that I at least should read the entire novel with a clear mind.

I was pleasantly surprised the second time around. It was much more fluid than I originally thought and had a good set to plots going. In the beginning I was a bit iffy at the fact that Lil trusted Bran very soon after they have first met. Maybe I am just a realist but knowing that someone who can be potentially dangerous, no matter how innocent they may seem, its something I wouldn't trust easily. Especially the fact that Lil is very new to this introduction of a another world and powers she didn't know exist, that makes it much harder to trust.

That aside, reading through the novel I knew that it was going to appeal to many YA readers. It has the adventure, the romance, and the supernatural. There were a few things that seems a bit cliche so I wasn't a big fan of that.

I would definitely recommend this novel to fans of The Demon's Lexicon and Hush, Hush. Anyone who is into angels and demons, pick this one up!

Review copy provided by Ednah Walters.
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