Crazy about Books

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My passion in reading and collecting books was actually influenced by my younger sister Patty. She is actually the book worm in our family. Since she’s already working, she can afford buying the books she loves. Like me and our youngest sister Pauline, she also loves going to book sale, book bazaar and any thrift bookstore where she can find good buys. :)

She started collecting her oldest time favorite teen novels books called Sweet Dreams. We both learned to love reading Sweet Dreams when my god-sister Claire lent me her Sweet Dreams books when I was in high school. We cannot afford to buy books then. I mean books like that. Our family is not a well-to-do family. We only buy books that we really need for school. Often times, we go to the library for our assignments.

Since, Sweet Dreams is not being published anymore; she would just visit book sale or any thrift and garage sale where she might find copies of Sweet Dreams. She actually printed out the list of all Sweet Dreams Novels and cross out the titles of those she already has. I was fascinated with this that I found myself helping her collect Sweet Dreams. I also started going to book sales and thrift books. I learned to browse through the piles of books available on sale. It was actually fun! :) And, when we found a copy it was like, jackpot! :) She still has a long list of titles to complete, though.

The first sets of book I were able to acquire were the Grolier’s 24-Volume I Wonder Why and the 12-Volume 1000 Things You Should Know About. I got it when Nonet was only 2 years old. It was February 2008. It may cost a lot but it was worth it. Nonet was able to distinguish animals and the difference between a Cheetah, a Tiger and a Jaguar because of the said books. She learned about animals and parts of the body first before she learned ABC and 123, because of the said books. And now that she can read, I often find her reading those books and then she would tell me about new things she learned. :)

My childhood dream though, is to complete the volumes of Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mystery Collection. The first Hardy Boys I read was entitled While the Clock Ticks. It was volume number 11. It was my Tito Rudy’s book. Said book was actually published in 1965, if I am not mistaken. That was the first Hardy Boys book I have. I still have a long list to complete, too. But, slowly but surely I believe that I will be able to complete it.

With our fascination and love with books, it was not surprising if I would tell you that the three of us went to the National Bookstore sale at Quezon Avenue last November 2012. It was not that convenient for us to go there, considering the traffic in EDSA. The many transfers of vehicles that we need to do because we don’t own a car. It was really tiring but we had a lot of fun! I cannot imagine the number of books on sale! :) We actually spent around 4 hours checking every table for books that interest us. :)

When NBS had another book sale at Market! Market! Mall in Taguig, Pauline and I went there, too. There I found Hardy Boys and Nancy Drew Mystery Books worth Php50! Original price of the said books is Php185. I was really happy. :) Pauline was able to find copies of Judy Blume’s novels and stories as well. Being that said, I would like to share an interesting story that happened to us there.

Pauline was actually looking for a certain Judy Blume story called; The One in the Middle is the Green Kangaroo. She asked me to help her find it but we already checked all the tables and didn’t have any luck. There were a lot of people. When they check on books, it’s as if, they were in “ukay-ukay”. Most people didn’t care if they were already stepping on books or destroying it. Anyway, I told Pau to do good deed for the books. We picked up the books that fell from the table where we at, and arrange them in a way that people would easily see the titles and authors, so they would need not scramble the books. Maybe, God saw our good deed then. I was reaching out a certain book under the table, and when I turned it over, there I found, Judy Blume’s, The One in the Middle is the Green Kangaroo! :)

As of today, I have completed Twilight Saga Novel including Bree Tanner’s story and the Official Illustrated guide to Twilight Saga. We have completed Chronicles of Narnia. We also have the 7 books of Harry Potter. I have Og Mandino’s books which I got from Tito Nonoy. I have Mitch Albom’s books (Five People You Meet in Heaven, Tuesday’s with Morrie and For One More Day). I have read his novel Have a Little Faith but I have yet to get a copy of it as well as his new novel, The Time Keeper. I also have series of religious books written by different authors.

I have completed Nicholas Sparks’ 17-novels (The Lucky One is with Pau’s friend at the time of this picture). And, he actually signed my favorite novel, “The Notebook” when he visited Manila for book-signing and launching of his latest book, The Best of Me, on October 28, 2011 at The Podium. It was Nonet’s birthday so I will never forget it. :)

Thanks to Pau for introducing me to Nicholas Sparks and Mitch Albom. She has her collection of Judy Blume and Maeve Binchy. Patty has Sweet Dreams and Janet Dailey. Nonet has her own collection of books, too. :) As a family collection, we have ample of Classic Novels from various authors like the Bronte sisters and Charles Dickens.

Seeing our books really makes me happy. They are my stress reliever. Reading is a form of relaxation for me. When I read, I relax and I rest. So, I am not really fan of sci-fi or books that would actually require you to “think”. Hehehe! I just like easy-reading books. I also love reading autobiographies and anecdotes of people about their first hand experience of God’s power and love. :)

I always tell Nonet, that her mommy doesn’t own a lot of money. If there is something that I would leave her when I am gone, it would be my book collection, and the joy of reading and collecting books. :)

Ciao! :)

This Complete my Collection!

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After I finished reading the novel, The Notebook, I have become a Nicholas Sparks fan. I started collecting his 17 novels. When I have extra money, I get one or two books. When he visited the Philippines last October 28, 2011, I went there with Nonet and my sister Pau for book launching (The Best of Me) and for book signing. We were one of the lucky ones, who were able to have our book signed. I only got one signing pass and I only need to choose one book for him to sign. My favorite of all his novels is The Notebook. I have it signed. :)

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I was able to complete the 16 novels except for one, Three Weeks With My Brother. I have checked local and online bookstores to find this but I failed. One day I came across a certain bookstore in the US which offers the said book. Thanks to my paypal account, I was able to place an order for the novel. I was informed that it would take about 45 days for me to receive the book since it will be coming from the US through the regular postage. One month passed. Forty five days passed but still no book. I am really getting frustrated. I sent an email to the said store and they assured me that they already shipped the book.

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(The Lucky One is currently with Oui at the time of this picture.)

Well maybe patience is really a virtue. After almost more than two months of waiting, my book has finally arrived. It was a happy day! :) It complete my collection! :)

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Reading these novels makes me (and all the readers of Nicholas Sparks’ novel) feel that I have been to North Carolina and South Carolina. Since the settings of Nicholas novels are in the said states. Who knows one day, I get to visit his place, too. I might check for sunset beach real estate in North Carolina, too. I might get a property there, too. :) It’s not bad to dream. :)

Well, I don’t have millions to give Nonet. But, I have a lot of book collections that will worth more than millions.

Happy Reading!

Ciao! :)

Chicken Soup for the Teachers

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Nonet will be graduating from preparatory school on March 20. She took Kinder and Prep in pre-school. When she was in kindergarten, she was a shy yet studious student. :)

Like my sisters and I, her first teacher is my mother. It is my mother who taught her ABC and counting 123. :) I guess, it wasn’t hard for her teacher Ehlay to teach her ABC and I23 then. :) Yet, I am thankful for teacher Ehlay for being my daughter’s first school teacher. She is very patient.

Her teacher right now in prep is teacher Evelyn. I personally know teacher Evelyn, or Ate Evelyn as I call her. I was still a little girl when I met her. :) Her children and I were legionaries (like her). And, we were nurtured to be good Christians, being part of Legion of Mary, under my own aunt, Tabibe (Tita Evelyn).

It is the reason why I decided to send Nonet in their school. :) And, I did not regret it. Ate Evelyn is very nice and treats her students like her own children. :)

In their school there are other two teachers who cared for their students; Teacher Nene and Teacher Christy. :)

As a sign of gratitude to these beloved teachers, I decided to give them something that will remind them of Nonet. :) Since, I love books and I love to read books, I decided to give them a book. :) I chose Chicken Soup for the Soul to give to them. I guess I need not to explain why. :)

I already received the four books which I purchased online and I intend to give them the said books on graduation day.

I have finished kindergarten from NFWC about 25 years ago but I still remember my kinder teacher, Mrs. Erlinda Jimenez. I will be forever grateful to her. I believe Nonet will be thankful to her teachers too, and will never forget them.

God bless our teachers!

Ciao! :)

A Guide to Twilight Saga!

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If I am not mistaken, I have been waiting for this book to be released in the market since 2010 (or 2009). Finally it was released in April 2011. I was really excited when I saw it at National Bookstore. I told myself that I will have a copy of it. I didn’t have enough budget to buy the book when I first saw it, though.  I decided that I will buy the book in December, when I received my 13th month pay. :)

When we had exchange gifts in the office, I didn’t have any second thoughts of choosing this book. I really like it and whether or not there is an exchange gift, I still would have buy one. When we’re asked to fill out the wish list, I asked for this book. The price of the book cost twice the amount the team has agreed on. When I wrote my wish list, I added a note that I will just pay the difference. :)

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On December 23 shift, we had our team’s Christmas dinner and exchange gift. I was really happy to receive this book. Thanks to Master Weng Mosura who is really kind. He has saved me a thousand peso. :)

I really wanted to go home then and started reading this. Hehehe! :) I was able to complete the 4 novels of the Saga in 2009. I got all of them from Fully Booked! I have waited 2 years for this book to arrive and you bet, it is worth the wait! Thanks Stephenie Meyer! :)

Ciao! :)

Three Weeks With My Brother

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The first Nicholas Sparks novel I have read was The Notebook. I fell in love with the story that I got so obsessed in collecting all the novels written by Nicholas. When he visited the Philippines in October, I really find way to be present in his book signing and prayed to God that I will be lucky enough to have a signing pass. :)

Since then, I started buying different books. Going from one bookstore to another. I prefer a novel with original cover on it. Nowadays, most of the Nicholas Sparks novel covers are movie tie in. I really had a hard time finding the 16 novels. I will have them photograph when the novels are complete. I wanted a hardbound copy and good thing, I found most of the books online. Paypal is a great help paying for the books. :)

I almost got the novels complete except for one; Three Weeks with my brother. I went to nearby and even farther bookstore but didn’t find any. I checked out the local bookstores online but didn’t find any. Finally, I decided to take a chance of purchasing the said book through an online bookstore overseas. Good thing, they still have a copy of the book and it is a hardbound copy. Since, they accept paypal for payment, I used again my ever dependable paypal account. :)

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The order has been processed and the book was just shipped today, December 19. As per the email confirmation I received from the said online store, I expect to receive the package on January 9, 2012. The book will be coming from the US. :)

I am so happy that I finally found one. :)

Ciao! :)

A Day with Nicholas Sparks!

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The most awaited day for all Nicholas Sparks fans has arrived. Last October 28, he had a book launching and book signing at The Podium in Ortigas Center. In my previous post, I told you that I was able to get a copy of his new book, called The Best of Me. My friend and officemate, Babylyn and Ann decided to go to the mall even before it opens. Like what we have been thinking, they may have arrived at 9AM but there were more than 50 fans waiting already. They intend to be part of the 50 early birds but were not able to. Luckily they were able to get a “YES” from the lucky draw which gave them a signing pass.

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I sent a text message to her at 11AM and was told that the line was already up to the 5th floor of the said mall. Since, it was Nonet’s birthday, I may not be able to come early because Nonet and I will hear mass at 12Noon. We heard mass in our parish and the mass ended passed 1PM. My sister Pauline who introduced me to Nicholas novels, met us at the parish. We only have 1 chance to get a signing pass and its pass 1PM already. We both know that we may not get the chance anymore but we decided to take our chance still.

We took an FX to Podium. There were only few people on the line when we arrived. I prayed to God that He will bless me to pick a YES for a signing pass. I also told Nonet that hopefully, she will be my lucky charm. When it was my turn to pick from the box, I was really happy to find a YES on the piece of paper I picked! I was really excited and happy to get one.

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The actual program will start at 5PM and it was only around 2PM. I thought of sending Nonet home but we decided to stay instead. I bought Nonet a meal from McDonald’s. Good thing she brought a toy with her that kept her busy. I was able to get a chair as well (with Nonet’s help, too).

We patiently waited for Nicholas. When he arrived, everybody became so excited and happy. I was screaming for joy! I needed to carry Nonet so she can get a good view of Nicholas. When she saw him, she started screaming too. She became excited as well. She whispered to me, that Nicholas Sparks is good looking. :)

Our signing pass is number 532. Nonet got tired after the program and she asked me to go home. I decided to leave my signing pass to my sister Pauline. I know that she likes Nicholas as much as I do. Besides, she was the one who introduced me to the wonderful works of Nicholas. Her favorite Nicholas book is A Walk to Remember, while mine is The Notebook. Since, she will have a close encounter with Nicholas, I told her to have my favorite book be signed. Good thing, she did.

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It was really fun. Something that we will never forget for the rest of our lives. I know that Nonet will be a Nicholas Sparks fan in the making, too. My plan now is to complete all his 17 works. We only have 7 novels right now but I will be getting the 10 other novels and his novels yet to write. :)

Good luck and more power Nicholas Sparks. Please come back to the Philippines.

God bless you!

Ciao! :)

The Best of Me

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Since the time I learned that Nicholas Sparks will be visiting Manila to promote his new book entitled, The Best of Me, I have marked my calendar so I can find ways to be part of that event. Luckily, his book signing is scheduled on the same day that my daughter will celebrate her 6th birthday. I have filed for a vacation leave for that day like 2 months ago. Glad to know that it has been approved.

According to updates, the new book will come with a registration paper that will enable you to be part of a lucky draw. Yet the said paper is not a guaranteed signing pass. I told myself that I will still take a chance.

When I had my grocery last Tuesday, I asked auntie if we can drop by Bestseller to buy the said book. I told her about Nicholas Sparks and she was delighted. I told her that buying the book is not a guaranteed signing pass, but I’ll take my chance. :)

So, with the help of Auntie, I was able to buy The Best of Me. I was able to buy, Mitch Albom’s Tuesdays with Morrie as well. :)

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“Everyone wanted to believe that endless love was possible. She’d believed in it once, too, back when she was eighteen…” – Nicholas Sparks (THE BEST OF ME)

I am really excited to read the book. In one of his interviews, Nicholas said that it is pretty much like, The Notebook. I like The Notebook so much. And, so far, it is my Nicholas Sparks’ favorite book. My sister Pau has been asking me to cover the book with plastic so she can read it. I’ll tell you more about the book signing on another post. I am really excited about it. :)

Ciao! :)

The Notebook

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In the first pages of the said book, Noah Calhoun stated that some people find his story as either a love story or a tragedy. After reading the book, I can say that for me it is a love story. A very inspiring love story and I am not sure if the kind of love Noah and Allie shared can still be witnessed in our times.

The first Nicholas Sparks novel I read was Safe Haven. My youngest sister Pauline, is the one who introduced Nicholas and Mitch to me. Last May, I bought her 2 Nicholas novels as a birthday present. When I was at Powerbooks, I was able to talk to other Nicholas “fanatics” and they recommended me to read The Notebook. :)

A number of Nicholas’ novels have been made into movies already and most of the books being published these days has movie tie in covers. I prefer my book to have its original cover. It took me sometime to acquire a The Notebook with has original cover on it. I didn’t get the chance to read at the time I got it because of my busy schedule.

When I started reading the novel, I cannot get my eyes from it. I liked the part when Noah was able to acquire the old house he’s been dreaming off. The way he spent all day working on the house. He might have used abrasives for finishing touch then. I liked the way he spent the night sitting by the porch, watching the sky with his beloved dog, Clem. :)

When Allie walked down through his front door, and the two see each other after 14 years, I didn’t stop reading the book up to the end. :)

The love which Noah and Allie shared was something that many of us wanted to have. When Allie got sick with Alzheimer’s, Noah’s love for her did not change. Even if Allie tend to forget Noah most of the time, I believe that the strong love she has for Noah made it possible for her to remember him at times. It her heart and their love which made her remember him. :)

Their love story is one of a kind. I don’t know where Nicholas Sparks got the inspiration to write such a novel. Like many others, I cried after reading the story.

There are two passages in the book which I like the most;

“Miracles , no matter how inexplicable or unbelievable are real and can occur without regard to the natural order of things.”

The other one is;

“It seems only old are able to sit next to one another and not say anything and still feel content . The young, brash and impatient, must always break the silence. It is a waste, for silence is pure. Silence is holy. It draws people together because only those who are comfortable with each other can sit without speaking. This is the great paradox.”

I hope one day ney and I would be sitting on bench and would be appreciating world’s beauty in silence.

Ciao! :)

Got The Notebook!

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Got The Notebook! :)

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Last Saturday I met with Ms. Loi at SM Megamall to purchase the book, The Notebook. Ms. Loi is an Ebay reseller and one of her items on sale is the said book. When my sister Pauline introduced Nicholas Sparks to me, she also asked me to read one of the first books he’d written. She said that it’s a must to read this novel by Nicholas Sparks. Well, I have read two books already (A Walk to Rememerber and Safe Haven), I still have two books on the shelf to read which are The Lucky One and The Guardian.

My sister wanted to start a Nicholas Sparks novel collection. Since I am a bookworm as well, I wanted to help her in the said “planned collection.” Although, I wanted the book to have its original cover and not the movie tie-in. My mother once said that it would have the same content, its just that it has different covers. Well, for me, the cover matters. Hehehe! :)

Since, The Notebook is highly recommended, I decided to search for the said book with original cover on it. I went to different bookstores in big malls and those bookstores in discrete locations but wasn’t able to find any. I then, decided to search online since I bought the book, A Walk to Remember with original cover on it through Ebay. I often check Ebay for updates. There are available books but I don’t feel like getting them. ‘Til one day, I found a newly posted book for The Notebook which is a hardbound copy and has an original cover in it. :)

Luckily, it was posted again by Ms. Loi. I sent a text message right away and was glad to know that the said book is still available for sale. :) Yey! :D So, we set our meet up and there, I have the book. :)

I was really happy to have a copy of it. I may be on a tight budget but opportunities like that shouldn’t be swept away. It is really difficult to find a copy of the said book unless you order on from abroad. :)

I will just finish reading All I Need to Know I Learned from Kindergarten, then I’ll have The Notebook next. As always, I will give you my insight after reading the books. :)

Ciao! :)

A Walk to Remember

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I finished reading the book A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks. I told you before that the first novel written by Nicholas that I have read is Safe Haven. I liked the way he wrote his novels. Simple yet heartfelt. Anyway, my sister Pauline asked me to read A Walk to Remember, too. She said that it;s going to make me really cry. Well, I have seen the movie, but she said that reading the book is totally different. Alright I agreed, but we didn’t have the book. She has a pdf copy but I don’t enjoy reading a novel from a computer. This is a cliche; when I read I want to relax. :)

Anyhow, I decided to get a copy of it but I want the book with the original cover. Though I’ve seen the movie that starred Mandy Moore, I still wanted the book that I am going to buy has the original cover. Some may say that it doesn’t matter as long as they have the same contents. But for me, it matters. I went to different bookstores and I failed to find one that has original cover with it. :( I am at the point of giving up when I decided to check ebay. Finally, I found a copy! :)

It’s not a brand new book. It was pre-owned but the pages are still intact and no folds. I sent an email to the seller and we setup up a meeting at SM Megamall. I was really excited when I got book. I was so excited showing it to my sisters. They love me so much when I buy a book. Hehehe! :)

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If I am not mistaken, it took me about 2 days to finish reading the book. I enjoyed it and I loved it. The difference? Well, in the movie I thought the “walk to remember” was the scene where Jamie and Landon had a date. In the book, the walk to remember was actually when Jamie walked down with her father to marry Landon. :)

The book not only talks about love but faith as well. :)

My favorite part of the book is how Landon shared that year with Jamie. He said;

“I relive that year often in my mind, bringing it back to life, and I realize that when I do, I always feel a strange combination of sadness and joy. There are moments when I wish I could roll back the clock and take all the sadness away, but I have the feeling that if I did, the joy would be gone as well. So I take the memories as they come, accepting them all, letting them guide me whenever I can.”

Ciao! :)

Another Book to Lend

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I received a text message from Vic that he already finished reading the book I lent him. It was a novel written by Mitch Albom, Five People You Meet in Heaven. :) I was glad to hear the he loved that book as much as I do. :)

I hope he’s finished getting all his things frm his old apartment. He’s moving to another apartment in Pasig City. I don’t remember how long he has been going back and forth to Cubao to Pasig to get his things. I remember telling him to hire a pick up track or some kind of a trailer hitches for a one time “hakot”, but I guess he misses his old apartment that’s why he wants to keep going back there. Hehehe! :)

In his FB status, he quote a line from the said book; “People say they “find” love, as if it were an object hidden by a rock. But love takes many forms, and it is never the same for any man and woman. What people find then is a certain love, a grateful love, a deep but quiet love, one that he knew, above all else was irreplaceable.”

I can say that I found that love already. I am 30 now and I can identify whether I feel love or just infatuation. Like what Mitch Albom written in the novel, love takes many forms. I cannot tell yet whether that love is a romantic love, platonic love, paternal love, friendship love, brotherly love or what have you. All I know is that I care and I love the person so much that I always pray for the safety and good luck. I may get hurt because of that love but I allow it happen. I am not a masochist but I just want to myself to realize the person’s worth in my life. The person may never know about it. But I know that the love I have is something that I would keep and treasure for the rest of my life.

I will lend Vic another Mitch Albom novel, For One More Day. I hope he would find it as a wonderful novel, too! :)

Ciao! :)

Safe Haven

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How can a man say that he loves her wife if he is beating her up? How can a wife let her husband do it to her? How can a love so pure and true that someone’s spirit will come back to ensure the safety and emotional welfare of the family that he or she has left behind? How acceptance helps people moves on with their lives?

These are just few things which continue to linger on my mind. I just finished reading the Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks. It is the first novel I have read that was written by Nicholas. My youngest sister Pauline was the one who introduced me to Mitch Albom and Nicholas Sparks. I have told you in my previous post that when I read, I want to relax. That is why I do not feel like reading the novels written by Paolo Coeli and the like.

Nicholas Sparks and Mitch Albom are Pauline’s favorite authors. We already have the three novels written by Mitch Albom which are internationally released namely; Five People You Meet in Heaven, Tuesdays With Morrie and For One More Day. We have yet to get his other novel, Have a Little Faith.

I was strolling at SM Mega Mall last May 26, two days before Pauline’s birthday. I love going to different bookstore while I am at the mall. On that day, Powerbooks had a 20% off for all Nicholas Sparks’ novels. I have not read any Nicholas Sparks novels then, and there are many interesting novels available. I heard Patty and Pauline talking about the different novels of Nicholas. I know that Pau have finished reading several novels and she wanted to start a collection. As presents, I decided to get Pau two novels. My dilemma then was which one?

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Safe Haven was his latest novel, so I decided to get it. It took me a while to decide which one to get that I sent a text message to Pau asking what novel is good to read. Her reply, ALL!!! Until, we agreed upon getting The Lucky One. Her first option was The Guardian, but it is not available. So, then I went home with The Lucky One and Safe Haven. :) Of course, Pau is happy. On the other hand, I bought Mean Girls VCD for my other sister, Patty, as a birthday present, who celebrated her 27th last June 2. :)

I just finished reading Nancy Drew’s 5th Mystery and I decided to take a break from reading mystery books. I thought of getting Have a Little Faith, but we still have a lot of unread books in our shelves. I have this agreement with myself that I will not buy another book until I finished reading one. :)

Almost all the people I met at Powerbooks are Nicholas Sparks’s fans. :) I decided to read one of the books I gave Pau. She is currently reading, The Lucky One, and so I end up reading Safe Haven. :)

I am not used to reading long novels anymore. I got bored during the first few chapters but I really slept late because I just can’t my get my eyes off the book! How can that be boring if I can’t stop reading it?!? :)
I guess I finished the novel in 2 ½ days. Well, that may sound long but that’s an accomplishment for me already! :)

I enjoyed reading the novel. :) I loved the way Nicholas wrote the novel. He used simple English terms and described each scene using straightforward word and terms. It is very easy to understand. I need not to get my Meriam-Webster to check on the words. But, what is admirable in his novel is that, it captured the heart of its reader. It has affected me emotionally more than mentally. :)

Safe Haven is a story of a wife who has been experiencing domestic violence from his husband. A husband who adored her yet beats her to death. Katie or Erin is a woman of courage and cleverness who escaped from her husband. At the end of the story, her husband still found her. Justice prevailed though, when Kevin was killed as Katie protects herself.

Another touching part is the letter created by Jo, a friend whom Katie met when she first arrived in Southport. Katie didn’t have any idea that Jo was the late wife of the new man in her life, Alex. Little did she know that the Jo whom she came to know, who laughed with her, drank wine with her and watched the stars with her was an angel who led her to Alex. I was really moved after reading the Jo’s letter. I was really moved by the novel. :)

I am glad that my first attempt of reading a Nicholas Sparks novel was a great one. My next novel to read is his A Walk to Remember. I have watched the movie though, but Pauline said that there is a big difference between the book and the movie. Well, I’ll find it out. :)

Ciao! :)

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