Top Ten Favorite Heroines From Books

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are mine and do not necessarily reflect those of SS Readers Corner.

I haven’t had much time to blog these days due to work commitments. Nevertheless I always makes some time for #TopTenTuesday particularly when the topics are something I am familiar with. The topic for today is ‘Top Ten Favorite Heroines From Books’. Since the books that I read tend to be romantic in nature, it’s hard to shortlist my list of favourite heroines. After giving it much thought, I decided to write my ten favourite heroines as well as some snippets from their books or fans’ reviews that describe their characteristics/personality:

Louise Downe in ‘Silver Lining’ by Maggie Osbourne

‘Silver Lining’ by Maggie Osborne

I love this scene (refer below) where Mother McCord told her son Max about Louise’s character. It perfectly describes one of Louise’s characteristics.

“I’ve always known what you were thinking. You’re squeezing that marble in your pocket and you’re thinking your cattle wouldn’t be at risk if it weren’t for Louise. And maybe you’re right. But take a hard look, son. When you see that woman working up a sweat pitching hay like a hired hand … you’re looking at character.”

“And if we ever have another family dinner that goes like the last one did, you pay attention. I have an idea that your Louise doesn’t sit still for too many insults, and I imagine she could cut someone down to size in about three sentences if she wanted to. But she sat silent while Philadelphia ridiculed and belittled her. Louise did this out of respect for you and this family. That is also character.”

Katherine James in ‘Naked Edge’ by Pamela Clare

Katherine James is proud of her Native American heritage and wants to be a voice for the Navajo community. She is a modern woman who lives in a big city but she still practices the traditional values. She isn’t easily offended when people questioned about her old-fashioned beliefs. She educates those who are unaware of Navajo customs.

If you’d like to read about the inspiration for Naked Edge, click here.

‘Naked Edge’ by Pamela Clare

Alyssa Locke in Suzanne Brockmann‘s Troubleshooters series

‘Gone Too Far’ by Suzanne Brockmann

Alyssa Locke is a kickass FBI agent. Her story is told in several books in the Troubleshooter series. This blog post perfectly summarises the characteristics of Alyssa Locke.

Marguerite Perruquet in Joey W. Hill‘s ‘Nature of Desire’ series

Marguerite was prominently featured in ‘Ice Queen’ & Mirror of My Soul’

Forget Fifty Shades of Grey trilogy. If you want to read emotionally-gripping BDSM romance book(s), read Joey W. Hill’s Nature of Desire series. Marguerite is my favourite character because of her vulnerability. Plus she owns a tea shop and teaches tea drinking ceremony!

Laurel Wilkins in ‘Mouth to Mouth’ by Erin McCarthy

‘Mouth to Mouth’ by Erin McCarthy

This book is refreshing because it features a heroine who has hearing impairment. Laurel is caught between the deaf and hearing worlds. Laurel is able to live a pretty normal life because she doesn’t allow her disability to define her.

Risa Clay in ‘Sweet Southern Betrayal’ by Robin Covington

‘Sweet Southern Betrayal’ by Robin Covington

I ❤ Risa because of her sassiness and confidence. She also one of the toughest, kindest and most affectionate heroines I have encountered. Another reason I like Risa: her vulnerability. She wasn’t afraid to tell about her misfortunes.

“You deserve to have someone take care of you once in a while.”

Risa stiffened at his words, her back rigid and tight. “That kind of thinking is for princesses who grew up in castles, not for girls who’d gone from one crappy foster home to another.”

“You don’t think you deserve that?

“You learn not to want stuff like that when…” She cleared her throat, unable to explain her life to someone with his background. “You just don’t.”

Liberty Jones in ‘Sugar Daddy’ by Lisa Kleypas

‘Sugar Daddy’ by Lisa Kleypas

What I love about Liberty Jones is that she takes her responsibilities very seriously. She could have placed her younger sister in foster care when their mother died but she took the guardianship of her sister. She forgives Carrington even when she throws tantrum (as seen in this scene):

I went to the far end of the kitchen where my sister was standing. Her small face was tense and anxious, her hair comically wild like a troll doll’s. She looked as if she were going to cry. “Liberty…”

When you love a child, you forgive her before she can even ask. Basically you’ve already forgiven her for things she hasn’t even done yet. “It’s okay,” I murmured, reaching for her. “It’s okay, baby.”

Carrington rushed forward, her skinny arms closing tight around me. “I’m sorry,” she said tearfully. “I didn’t mean the stuff I said, any of it—.”

“I know.”

Clare Abshire in ‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’ by Audrey Niffenegger

‘The Time Traveler’s Wife’ by Audrey Niffenegger

Although this story has a science fiction element (time-travelling) in its plot, in essence it is a love story that is relatable. I love Clare’s strength in dealing with Henry’s curse – she’s so patient and loyal. She believes in fate and doesn’t want to change its course even though she could (by choosing another man).

Penelope Featherington in ‘Romancing Mister Bridgerton’ by Julia Quinn

‘Romancing Mister Bridgerton’ by Julia Quinn

Penelope is intelligent and independent unlike other women in that era. She is unfazed by what society thinks of her and does not mind poking fun at herself. I love it when Colin realised that Penelope is a truly wonderful woman:

She was amazing. He didn’t know how he hadn’t realized it before, when he’d already known that she was smart and lovely and witty and resourceful. But all those adjectives, and a whole host more he hadn’t yet thought of, did not add up to the true measure of her.

She was amazing.

Rionna McDonald in ‘Never Love a Highlander’ by Maya Banks

‘Never Love a Highlander’ by Maya Banks

Rionna is not a dainty lass; she knows how to wield a sword. She is willing to sacrifice her life to ensure the safety of her beloved. One of my favourite lines from the book indicates her humbleness:

“I wish I could say I thought of all that just before I thrust my sword through Cameron’s back, but ’tis the truth, my only aim was to prevent him from killing my husband,” she said ruefully.

Forgive me for not including Jane Eyre (‘Jane Eyre’), Emma Woodhoouse (‘Emma’), Daisy Devreaux (‘Kiss an Angel’), Evangeline “Evie” Jenner (‘A Devil in Winter’), Meredith Bancroft (‘Paradise’) and Danika (‘Bad Things’, ‘Rock Bottom’ & ‘Lovely Trigger’). They were already heavily featured in my previous Top Ten Tuesday posts.

What have you selected for today’s topic? Share your list of favourite heroines in the comment box below.

The Paperback Book Club: February 2015 meetup

Are you a bibliophile who enjoys intense book discussions? If you live in Kuala Lumpur or Selangor, check out The Paperback Book Club.

The book chosen for December is ‘The Casual Vacancy’ by J.K. Rowling. A summary of the story is written below:

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.

Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.

Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils … Pagford is not what it first seems.

And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?

‘The Casual Vacancy’ by J.K. Rowling

Here are details of the next book discussion:

Date:  28th of February 2015 (Saturday)
Time: 3 – 5 pm
Location: Nook Aloft Kuala Lumpur Sentral
Who is invited? Any readers aged 18 years and older
What will be discussed? Themes, characters, plot, style, takeaway points from the book, etc.

RSVP at the website or Facebook page if you are keen to join the discussion.

For latest news on the meetups, check out their official website and Facebook page.

Top Ten Things I Like & Dislike When It Comes to Romances in Books

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are mine and do not necessarily reflect those of SS Readers Corner.

Tuesday is my favourite day to blog because of #TopTenTuesday. Valentine’s Day is just around the corner so this week’s topic is all about ❤ – ‘Top Ten Things I Like & Dislike When It Comes to Romances in Books’.

Things I Like When It Comes to Romances in Books

  • Great character growth

A great example of a romance novel that features this point is ‘Kiss An Angel’ by Susan Elizabeth Phillips. At the start of the book, Daisy Devreaux was a flighty socialite who had money problems. To solve the problem, her father coerced her into marrying a brooding circus worker named Alex Markov. As the story progressed, her views on hard work & money changed:

“I found all kinds of thrift stores and second-hand shops in the towns we’ve visited. Do you know I’d never been in a Wal-Mart until two weeks ago? It’s amazing how far you can stretch a dollar if you’re careful, and-“

Alex too changed over the course of the book. The no-nonsense and uptight hero started to lighten up and became affectionate as he spent more time with his wife.

“It figures,” she grumbled through her own smile. “Alex Markov finally laughs, and it’s at my expense.”

I cannot stop raving about this book so I collect relevant pins. If I’m in mood for a familiar love story, this is my go-to book.

One of the many covers for ‘Kiss an Angel’

  • Tender/intimate gestures

When there are many intimate gestures in a love story, it makes the romance more believable. I was pleasantly surprised by Cora Reilly’s ‘Bound by Honor’ because of emotional intensity of Aria’s and Luca’s love. There was a sexual tension between them but they took time to develop their relationship. Ms Reilly used many non-sexual gestures to build up their romance, for example:

I wasn’t sure why but I reached out and put my hand on his leg. His eyes snapped toward me briefly, then he covered my hand with his until he needed it to shift gears again.

He traced my lips with his thumb, then brushed my cheek.

I just swoon whenever these gestures are present. I try to find relevant pins for my Pinterest board about this novel.

‘Bound by Honor’ by Cora Reilly

  • Successful heroines

I grew up listening to Destiny’s Child and one of my favourite songs is ‘Independent Women, Pt. 1.’ I love a romance book or movie that features a successful career woman. One of my favourite established heroines is Anne Calhoun‘s Lacey in ‘Liberating Lacey’.

“I take care of me, Hunter.” Now she sounded as flat as he did. “I make my own money. There are very few men in this city who out-earn me and I have a very large trust fund, leaving me with a very small pool from which to choose if my goal were a man who could support me. I married for love the first time and if I marry again, it will be for the same reason. Never for money.”

I feel empowered just by reading that paragraph.

‘Liberating Lacey’ by Anne Calhoun

Continue reading

‘Casual Vacancy’ is now a BBC mini series

Fans of J.K. Rowling’s ‘Casual Vacancy’, beware! The book is being adapted into a tv series by BBC One, in association with HBO.

The cast includes Michael Gambon, Keeley Hawes, Rory Kinnear, Monica Dolan, Julia McKenzie, and introduces Abigail Lawrie.

The miniseries comprises three one-hour episodes. It is scheduled to debut on HBO on 29th of April with two back-to-back episodes. The third episode will be screened on 30th of April.

Watch the trailer here:

When Barry Fairbrother dies in his early forties, the town of Pagford is left in shock.

Pagford is, seemingly, an English idyll, with a cobbled market square and an ancient abbey, but what lies behind the pretty façade is a town at war.

Rich at war with poor, teenagers at war with their parents, wives at war with their husbands, teachers at war with their pupils … Pagford is not what it first seems.

And the empty seat left by Barry on the parish council soon becomes the catalyst for the biggest war the town has yet seen. Who will triumph in an election fraught with passion, duplicity and unexpected revelations?

‘The Casual Vacancy’ by J.K. Rowling

It’s @boroughpress’s turn to host #bookadayuk this month

Hashtag #bookadayuk is back on Twitter after a month of absence. In case you have forgotten, #bookadayuk is a Twitter campaign to discuss about books. There is a different topic of to talk about every day.

In February 2015, the hashtag is hosted by The Borough Press. If you would like to tweet your book suggestions, don’t forget to include hashtag #bookadayuk and @BoroughPress. Here is a list of topics:

#bookadayuk topics for February 2015p

Check out my tweet for today. 🙂 Which author would you like to meet? Tell me in the comment box below!

How you can get involved in the Romance Festival

If you are a fan of romance novels, be sure to check out Romance Festival. I participated in last year’s events and it was really fun to chat with authors & fellow bloggers.

Starts: 7th February 2015 at 2 pm GMT
Ends: 8th February 2015 at 8 pm GMT

Sign up for the free event here

For more details, read this reblogged post!

romance festival

We are very excited to announce our next virtual festival and we’d love you to be involved. For those who took part last time, you will know that we have a program of events on Twitter, Facebook and a few Google Hangouts.

Again we plan for the Saturday to be a professional development day for authors (last time we had Script Doctor sessions with editors, Goodreads, tips on getting reviews and much more.)

On the Sunday, we will focus the programme for romance fans which last time included author interviews, romance in YA, discussion around romantic places, steampunk, the men of romance etc.

This event is open and inclusive; everyone is welcome.

If you are an aspiring or established author and you’d like to get involved in a live event, then do let us know. Or if you aren’t around that weekend, we also have a Q&A you can complete…

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Top Ten Books I Can’t Believe I Haven’t Read From Romance Genre

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are mine and do not necessarily reflect those of SS Readers Corner. This post contains spoilers so kindly skim it to avoid too much information.

Top Ten Tuesday is an original meme started by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week there is a specific bookish topic, which will be discussed and shared among bloggers.

Today’s topic is about books that a blogger cannot believe s/he has not read in a particular genre. Since I am an avid fan of romance novels, here are my top ten romances books that I cannot believe I haven’t read.

‘Pride & Prejudice’ by Jane Austen

I have seen so many adaptations (movies, BBC tv series & even webseries) but somehow I just don’t feel the urge to read its original source. Any tips?

One of the many book covers for ‘Pride and Prejudice’

‘Wuthering Heights’ by Emily Brontë

I have not read the book nor watched any adaptations. I would be more willing to read the book if I had watched a good movie adaptation. What’s the best adaptation of ‘Wuthering Heights’?

One of the many covers for ‘Wuthering Heights’

‘Romeo & Juliet’ by William Shakespeare

I enjoy Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo & Juliet but I think the suicidal pact is silly. Juliet was too young to sacrifice her life to be with her ‘true’ love.

‘One of the many book covers for ‘Romeo & Juliet’

‘Fifty Shades’ trilogy by E.L. James

I don’t mind reading erotic romance but I steer away from bad writing. I manage to avoid these books since the trilogy went mainstream in 2012. However I wouldn’t mind watching the movie though I wish Charlie Hunnam had stayed on to play Christian Grey.

Perhaps the most talked about book in romance genre

‘Tangled’ by Emma Chase

I’ve had this book in my ‘To be read’ list ever since it won Goodreads Choice for Debut Author in 2013. I bought a cheaper copy online last month – I couldn’t wait to read it. I have high expectations!

‘Tangled’ by Emma Chase

‘The Edge of Always’ by J.A. Redmerski

I couldn’t wait for the sequel after reading ‘The Edge of Never’. It’s been almost two years since ‘The Edge of Always’ was published but I always contemplate buying a copy. I’m afraid of disappointment.

‘The Edge of Always’ by J.A. Redmerski

‘Breakable’ by Tammara Webber

I purchased a copy last August but I still haven’t read it. New adult books tend to focus a lot on angst. I’m waiting for the right mood to strike.

‘Breakable’ by Tammara Webber

‘Entice’ by Ella Frank

I simply love ‘Exquisite’, the first book in a trilogy by Ella Frank. Her writing is so brilliant that I was hooked from the start till the end of the novel. What delays me from reading book #2? The price of a paperback copy – it’s twice the cost of a mass-market paperback novel. Fret not, I will read once I the trilogy!

Newer cover for ‘Entice’ by Ella Frank

‘Gone Too Far’ by Suzanne Brockmann

I love reading Sam Starrett and Alyssa Locke’s interactions in books 2, 3 & 4 of Ms Brockmann’s Troubleshooter series. I’ve read reviews of ‘Gone Too Far’ (yay for happy ending) but haven’t had time to read books 1 & 5.

‘Gone too far’ by Suzanne Brockmann

‘Mine Till Midnight’ by Lisa Kleypas

I bought this copy because of the cameos by Sebastian St. Vincent and Evie Jenner (they are one of my favourite book couples). Will pick up this book when I feel like reading meatier romance.

‘Mine Till Midnight’ by Lisa Kleypas

What do you think of my selection? Which books make into your list of books you couldn’t believe you haven’t read? Share your link below and I’ll visit your entry.

Ten Books I’d Love to Read With My Book Club

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are mine and do not necessarily reflect those of SS Readers Corner. This post contains spoilers so kindly skim it to avoid too much information.

Top Ten Tuesday is an original meme started by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week there is a specific bookish topic, which will be discussed and shared among bloggers. Today’s topic excites me because my friends & I initiated a book club for a youth organisation close to our hearts. We have wonderful discussion on a particular book every month. I always look forward to our book discussion.

My choice of Ten Books I’d Love to Read with My Book Club are…

‘The Rosie Project’ by Graeme Simsion

Cover by Simon & Schuster; published in 2013

I noticed this novel a couple of months ago when Sony Pictures bought the rights to adapt the novel. My interest piqued when Bill Gates posted about the book on his Facebook. I got a copy at a book sale and am looking forward to reading it next year.

Possible topics of discussion:

  • Is there any difference of writing styles between male and female romance author?
  • Can true love be found using a formula? What about matchmaking websites?
  • Don Tillman’s peculiarity



‘The Hunger Games’ trilogy by Suzanne Collins

Cover by Scholastic; published in 2011

I enjoy reading novels with dystopia theme and ‘The Hunger Games’ trilogy is one of my favourites. I believe the books need to be discussed individually. ‘Mockingjay’ is my favourite book because of its darker themes. Therefore I would love to hear other people’s views on:

  • Reality tv shows – compare them to ‘The Hunger Games’
  • Propaganda & tokenism – Katniss as a “symbol” to unite other districts
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder after winning the Hunger Games – I’d love to read more about Haymitch’s point of view


‘Animal Farm’ by George Orwell

Cover by Penguin; published in 2008


George Orwell’s books are popular for book club discussions and some consider this as a children’s book. So why not use this book to lure more members to come to a book discussion?

Possible topics of discussion:

  • Propaganda against communism / Russia
  • If George Orwell had used human characters instead of animals, would the novel still be influential?
  • How do young readers comprehend the political aspects of the novel? (I’m intrigued that this novel is marketed as a children’s book)



‘My Sister’s Keeper’ by Jodi Picoult

Cover by Washington Square Press; published in 2005

This novel provokes a lot of after-thoughts, such as:

  • The novel is told from many different viewpoints. What do you think if it was written in just single (Anna’s) or double viewpoints (Anna’s & Sarah’s)?
  • What do you think of designer baby? In this case, a baby was conceived to save an older sibling.
  • What do you think of the parenting style?




Cover by Harper Perennial, published in 2006


‘We Need to Talk about Kevin’ by Lionel Shriver

I was emotionally exhausted when I finished reading this book. Nevertheless, I would love to spend 1-2 hours talking about this book. Questions that still linger in my mind:

  • Did Kevin respect and love Eva at all?
  • Who do you blame for Kevin’s atrocious behaviour? Himself or the parents?
  • Contrast the parenting styles of Franklin and those of Eva.



‘Looking for Alaska’ by John Green

Cover by Speak; published in 2006

I have only read ‘Looking for Alaska’ and ‘The Fault in Our Stars’. I really enjoyed the former than the latter even though ‘Looking for Alaska’ is a much older work and less popular work (this might change once the movie goes into production). I like how human existence is dealt in this book. Some questions I would ask in a book discussion are:

  • John Green divided the story into two parts: ‘before’ and ‘after’. What do you think of this structure of storytelling?
  • What happened the night Alaska died? Did she kill herself or was it an accident?
  • What is the most important question human beings must answer? Choose your question wisely, and then examine how Islam, Buddhism and Christianity attempt to answer it.


‘In Cold Blood’ by Truman Capote

Cover by Penguin; published in 2012

I watched ‘Breakfast at Tiffany’s’ a couple of years ago when I was in a ‘Hepburn’ phase. After watching the movie, I assumed he wrote fluff pieces. Whoa, I was so wrong. This book was compelling – I couldn’t believe that ‘In Cold Blood’ is a true crime! There are many questions that I’d like to explore:

  • What kind of men were Richard Hickock and Perry Smith? Compare and contrast their backgrounds.
  • Do you think Mr Capote give a just/unbiased representation of Richard Hickock and Perry Smith?
  • If the murder victims weren’t as white, prosperous, or well-liked as the Clutter family, do you think this book would be well-received and adapted into a movie?


‘The Ocean at the End of the Lane’ by Neil Gaiman

Cover by Headline Publishing Group; published in 2014


I have only read one of the author’s work – ‘Neverwhere’. I enjoyed the depictions of London but I dislike Richard Mayhew and the pacing of the story. Nevertheless, I am keen to give Mr Gaiman another go.











‘A Monster Calls’ by Patrick Ness 

Cover by Candlewick Press; published in 2013


This is another book in my ‘to-be-read’ list. I have never read Patrick Ness’s work before but I purchased this novel after reading about its book-to-movie adaptation. I’d like to recommend this book to my reading group because of (1) the adaptation and (2) the genre – we don’t have a horror book in our list!








‘The Little Prince’ by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry

Cover by Harcourt, Inc. Published in 2000


My former housemate gave me a Spanish copy of ‘The Little Prince’ as a parting gift (hablo un poco español :)). I was curious about the book so I searched for it via Google. The book seems to be a favourite choice amongst book lovers. By adding this book to my book club’s reading list, I hope more members will attend the monthly discussions.







Are you part of a book club/reading group? What questions should I ask during a discussion? I would love to read your book suggestions as well as discussion questions. Please share them in the comment box below.

The Mortdecai Trilogy: In cinemas starting 23rd January 2015

Mortdecai is adapted from ‘The Mortdecai Trilogy’ by Kyril Bonfiglioli. Charlie Mortdecai is an art dealer with some distinctly dubious friends in the London underworld and some great connections to the British upper classes.

The trilogy is a collection of his misadventures. ‘Don’t Point that Thing at Me’ finds Charlie momentarily distracted by a police charge accusing him of stealing a priceless Goya; a nuisance that he overcomes without passing up a single glass of fine wine or plate of foie gras. In ‘After You with a Pistol’ Mortdecai is roped into a marriage with a beautiful Viennese heiress, who is willing to blissfully accompany him on his life of taste and intrigue as long as he can help her with one little errand: assassinate the Queen of England. ‘Something Nasty in the Woodshed’ features Charlie, exiled in London due to his growing unpopularity fueled by the aforementioned shady art deal, taking refuge on the island of Jersey. What begins as a epicurean interlude morphs into a macabre manhunt as Charlie seeks to expose a local rapist.

The movie version stars Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Ewan McGregor. ‘Mortdecai’ will be released today in the United States of America. Malaysia cinema-goers get an earlier release date, 22nd of January 2015.

Watch this trailer here:

KL Book Exchange: Special Event on 25th of January 2015

Are you looking to give away old-but-in-good-condition books?

Check out this book exchange event organised by KL Book Exchange:

Date: 25th of January 2015
Time: 9 am – 6 pm
Location: SS Two Mall
Event is part of The Mustard Seed charity day

Bring your books for a one-to-one exchange. You could also buy their books at RM5 each. All proceeds go to the Mustard Seed charity.

For more details, visit the Facebook page.