Diversity Spotlight #2

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Hey guys, welcome to another installment of Diversity Spotlight Thursday created by Bookshelves & Paperbacks ! To see the first installment of this series in my blog, click here. I’ve decided to alter a bit the original post. Initially we had to answer 3 questions:

  1. Diverse book you enjoyed reading
  2. Diverse book that has been released and you want to read
  3. Diverse book yet to be released and you want to read

And because I suck in being up to date with upcoming releases, I shall do my diversity posts answering the first 2 questions only ๐Ÿ™‚

Here are my picks for this week!

1. A diverse book you have read and enjoyed

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I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

This is the first Maya Angelou book I ever read and I found it beautifully written. Set in pre-WWI era, Angelou describes in detail the trials and tribulations of the Negro community in America. Said to be an autobiography of the author herself, this poignant story-telling of a life way back then will strike a chord in you and fall in love with Angelou’s amazing writing.

I was just sad that I picked this up after she died.

2. A diverse book that has already been released but you have not read

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I never knew Nigeria had such great literature! I have been eyeing this author for a while now and have seen the great reviews her books have received. One day, I’ll pluck the courage and read this book!

Have you read any of these books and what did you think of them?

10 Independent Bookstores in London You Don’t Wanna Miss!

My London adventure is coming to an end, sadly. As much as the whole Masters process was torture and exhausting, I truly did enjoy living in this beautiful city with its wonderful public transportation, friendly people from so many different backgrounds, and not to the mention the amazing, amazing bookshops!

Hence, this post is a tribute to the small number of independent bookshops I’ve visited in the past year. There are over a 100+ independent bookstores in London alone, but with my busy schedule, I could only manage around 10+. If you want to see the full list, I recommend visiting London Bookshop Map for more suggestions!

I hope if you ever visit London, then you consider visiting these beautiful bookshop! All photos here are taken by me ๐Ÿ™‚

1. Daunt Books

Website | Twitter | Instagram

Daunt Books in Marylebone is a very well-known independent bookstore specialising in every genre you could think of: fiction, classic, geography, history. Located in an Edwardian building with unique structure, this bookstore consists of a ground floor with a small balcony above and a basement downstairs filled with books! The interior is just gorgeous and I went there solely to browse inside ๐Ÿ™‚

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Interview with Laura L. Fox, Author of Initiate

Hey guys! I am so excited to share you Book Loves_ first Author Interview with you ! ๐Ÿ˜€ Laura L. Fox’s debut sci-fi, Initiate, comes out November 15 which is published by OfTomes Publishing. You can read my review of Initiate here and pre-order the paperback at Amazon/Barnes & Noble. For my Malaysian readers, you can pre-rder the e-book copy from any major e-book websites ๐Ÿ™‚

A quick summary of Initiate before we get on with the interview:

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The only home Riga Garrison has ever known is the Tunnel, a subterranean research facility buried deep beneath Antarcticaโ€™s ice and snow.

Yet, while a safe haven for the last outpost of humanity governed by the Initiate, it is also home to a secret so dark that they will risk anything to protect it.

Surrounded by deceit and faced with exile to a frozen wasteland, Riga must defy not only the Initiate’s top biologists and loyalists but also her own mother, in an attempt to unearth the truth.

 

Interview

About the author…

Thank you for taking the time to answer some questions for me! Can you tell us a bit of yourself and what can you tell your readers about your new book?

Hello, Shahirah!ย  I am so pleased to be joining you on your blog today!ย  Thank you for having me!

Who I amโ€ฆReader.ย  Writer.ย  Knitter.ย  Crocheter.ย  Cat-lover and lover of coffee, shoes, tacos, and chocolate.ย  I also day-light as an administrative assistant.ย  And, most recently, author of Initiate, my debut young adult science fiction novel releasing November 15, 2016 from Oftomes Publishing!

Initiate is the story of 17-year-old Riga Garrison, who lives with her biologist mother in a near-future subterranean scientific research community (the Tunnel) buried deep beneath Antarcticaโ€™s surface.ย  While originally built as a safe haven for the last outpost of humanity, it also contains secrets that will upend Rigaโ€™s notions of both hers and the earthโ€™s pastโ€ฆand future.

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Book Blogger Inside Tag

I saw this book tag done by Girl Who Reads and thought it’d be fun to do it too! It’s a series of questions about the blogger him/herself and what they think of the world of blogging. This lovely tag was created by Jamie from AlittleSliceofJamie!

Question One: Where do you typically write your blog posts?

At my desk or on my bed.

Question Two: How long does it generally take you to write a book review?

If I write it directly after finishing a book, it usually takes up to an hour to get it right. Longer if I’ve left the book a while.

Question Three: When did you start your book blog?

September 2016!

Question Four: What is the worst thing in your opinion about having a book blog?

The lack of interaction with the readers. Blogs tend to be a quick stop by for some people and there’s not much of discussion going on unlike in Twitter. That’s the experience I have, so far!

Question Five: What is the best thing about having a book blog in your opinion?

The templates! Haha, I’m a sucker for aesthetics and having a good layout for a blog keeps me motivated to keep posting!

Question Six: What blog post have you had the most fun writing so far?

I’d say it’s my V E Schwab’s This Savage Song review! I had so much fun attending the signing event that was held for her in London to celebrate the release of This Savage Song. I got to know the idea behind the book directly from the author’s perspective. And when I finally read the book, it blew my mind to see what Schwab intended us to read. And I was so happy to blog about the book afterwards, because it brought so much great memories of that day with her!

Question Seven: What is your favourite type of blog to write?

Definitely reviews! It’s like ensuring the process of reading is truly complete when you’ve written a decent review for the book. I feel like doing a public service too when I write reviews! Haha.

Question Eight: When do you typically write?

I write best at night.

Question Nine: Do you review every book you read?

I try to! If I’m too busy with work/studies at the moment, I will skip reviewing books.

Question Ten: How do you write your book reviews? With a cup of tea or coffee? With Netflix?

Having music in the background is enough. Currently I have the soundtrack from Wicked musical on loop in my Youtube.

Question Eleven: When do you write your book reviews? Right after finishing the book? Two weeks after?

Right after if possible!

Question Twelve: How often do you post?

Currently, every other day. But once I return home, I’m aiming for once a week ๐Ÿ™‚

I tag:

  1. Kevin
  2. Satthiya
  3. Sofea
  4. Atikah
  5. Malie
  6. Anyone who wants to do this (just tag me!)

Thanks for reading!

Diversity Spotlight #1

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Hey guys! So lately we’ve been seeing a lot of issues being discussed surrounding diverse books. Whilst I appreciate the book community taking notice of more ethnicity, backgrounds, faith and sexuality, I still think we’re far from appreciating people who are not from Caucasian background.

Finding this great tag initiated by Bookshelves & Paperbacks is great because we get to introduce more diverse reads to the book community. I admit, I’m not the most diversed reader there is. I tend to gravitate more towards European/British/American authors because of the quality in writing. But I am all for diversity if it were to be included. That said, I think people need to also stop expecting all authors to write about diversity. It’s totally fine for them to write what they want. We just need to equally support those that do write about diversity. ๐Ÿ™‚

Hope you enjoy this tag! Here is my first diversity spotlight post (despite it being a Friday)!

1. A diverse book you have read and enjoyed

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Haruki Murakami’s Sputnik Sweetheart

Whilst I am an amateur in Asian Literature, this is one of the few reads I actually enjoyed by Haruki Murakami. It is his earlier works when he used to write general fiction before transitioning to magical realism (which is where I stopped reading his works).

It is the story of a girl in love with a woman 17 years her senior. And she faces the struggle of accepting this affair or arrangement of some sort while battling her own depression. I was surprised I liked this, the writing was great and the plot simple and interesting enough for me to hang on to.

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Book Sacrifice Tag!

So I’ve seen this book tag being done by Regan on booktube and found the blogger version from Into The Bookcase. Thought it’d be fun to do this and highlight some books I didn’t particularly enjoy reading.

1) An Over-Hyped Book: Letโ€™s start this off with a Zombie Apocalypse! Letโ€™s say youโ€™re in a book store, just browsing, when BAM! ZOMBIE ATTACK. An announcement comes over the PA System saying that the military has discovered that the zombiesโ€™ only weakness is over-hyped books. What book that everyone else says is amazing but you really hated so you start chucking at the zombies knowing that it will count as an over-hyped book and successfully wipe them out?!

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HAHAHA am not even sorry to sacrifice this book. I think it’s no secret how much I dislike this book (which actually is responsible for me disliking the genre YA contemporary) with its bimbo-ish character Lara-Jean and her attempts in dating the right guy by dating a different guy (?)

Yeah, I’m not for this at all…

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