American Association of Malaysia (AAM) Book Club: January 2015 meetup

Did you know that American Association of Malaysia (AAM) has a book club? Here are details of the first book discussion of the year:

Book: ‘Gone Girl’ by Gillian Flynn
Date:
20th of January 2015
Time: 11:00 am
Location: Ambiance Coffee Café
Ambiance Ampang, 379A 4 Jalan Ampang,
First Floor (near Ampang Grocers)
Kuala Lumpur
Cost of drinks/food: Individual
RSVP: kindly appreciated but not necessary

If you haven’t read the book nor watched the movie, here is a synopsis:

On a warm summer morning in North Carthage, Missouri, it is Nick and Amy Dunne’s fifth wedding anniversary. Presents are being wrapped and reservations are being made when Nick’s clever and beautiful wife disappears from their rented McMansion on the Mississippi River. Husband-of-the-Year Nick isn’t doing himself any favors with cringe-worthy daydreams about the slope and shape of his wife’s head, but passages from Amy’s diary reveal the alpha-girl perfectionist could have put anyone dangerously on edge. Under mounting pressure from the police and the media–as well as Amy’s fiercely doting parents–the town golden boy parades an endless series of lies, deceits, and inappropriate behavior. Nick is oddly evasive, and he’s definitely bitter–but is he really a killer?

One of the covers for ‘Gone Girl’

Please be informed that this event may be open to non-members. They are encouraged to become a member of AAM if they would like to join other activities in the future.

To get the latest information on the book club, visit their weblink or email to them.

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Top Ten Most Anticipated Debut Novels For 2015

Happy New Year, readers!

Let’s start the year with a fun post – a ‘Top Ten Tuesday’ post. ‘Top Ten Tuesday’ is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in an effort to encourage bloggers to talk about books.

The topic for the first Tuesday in 2015 is ‘ Top Ten Most Anticipated Debut Novels For 2015’. Here is a list of books that would be a great addition to SS Readers Corner:

‘Private Vegas’ by James Patterson

Expected release date: 26th of January 2015
Genre: Thriller

‘Private Vegas’ by James Patterson

‘We are Pirates’ by Daniel Handler

Expected release date: 3rd of February 2015
Genre: General fiction

‘We are Pirates’ by Daniel Handler

‘Mightier than The Sword’ by Jeffrey Archer

Expected release date: 24th of February 2015
Genre: Thriller

‘Mightier than the Sword’ by Jeffrey Archer

‘Prodigal Son’ by Danielle Steel

Expected release date: 24th of February 2015
Genre: General Fiction

‘Prodigal Son’ by Danielle Steel

‘The Buried Giant’ by Kazuo Ishiguro

Expected publication: 5th of March 2015
Genre: General Fiction

‘The Buried Giant’ by Kazuo Ishiguro

‘Memory Man’ by David Baldacci

Expected release date: 21st of April 2015
Genre: Thriller

‘Memory Man’ by David Baldacci

‘Darkest Before Dawn’ by Maya Banks

Expected release: 2nd of June 2015
Genre: Romantic suspense

‘Darkest before Dawn’ by Maya Banks

‘In The Unlikely Event’ by Judy Blume

Expected release date: 2nd of June 2015
Genre: General fiction

‘In the Unlikely Event’ by Judy Blume

‘Hard to Let Go’ by Laura Kaye

Expected release date: 30th of June 2015
Genre: Romantic Suspense

‘Hard to Let Go’ by Laura Kaye

‘Brown-Eyed Girl’ by Lisa Kleypas

Expected release date: 11th of August 2015
Genre: Contemporary romance

‘Brown-Eyed Girl’ by Lisa Kleypas


Are any of these eagerly-awaited books in your list? What other books that you cannot wait to purchase and read? Share your comments in the comment box below.

Follow Twitter #LitChat session with Josh Malerman

Litchat organises live Twitter conversations with authors every Wednesday. The one-hour session starts at 4 pm USA Eastern Time (4 am Thursday for those in Malaysia).

The guest author for the slot on 29th of October 2014 is Josh Malerman. He will talk about his novel ‘Bird Box’ (synopsis below):

Most people ignored the outrageous reports on the news. But they became too frequent, they became too real. And soon, they began happening down the street. Then the Internet died. The television and radio went silent. The phones stopped ringing. And we couldn’t look outside anymore. Malorie raises the children the only way she can; indoors. The house is quiet. The doors are locked, the curtains are closed, mattresses are nailed over the windows. They are out there. She might let them in. The children sleep in the bedroom across the hall. Soon she will have to wake them. Soon she will have to blindfold them. Today they must leave the house. Today they will risk everything.

‘Bird Box’ by Josh Malerman

There are two ways to follow the conversation:

  1. Type #litchat at Twitter search box
  2. Visit Litchat dedicated channel at http://www.nurph.com/litchat (recommended for those who prefer to read tweets in order)

To those who participate in the moderated Twitter chat, have a great time.

For latest news on LitChat, check out their official website or Twitter.

Top Ten Books That Were Hard For Me To Read

The Broke and the Bookish hosts a weekly meme called ‘Top Ten Tuesday‘. It aims to: 1) encourage people to talk about books and 2) introduce book-loving bloggers to one another. Today’s topic of discussion is ‘Top ten books that were hard for me to read’.

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

The books that I have selected are based on grouped together based on these reasons: 1) peculiar storyline, 2) disturbing content and 3) unlikeable characters. Kindly take note that this post contains spoilers so skim it if you don’t want too many details.

Peculiar storyline

Books that are difficult to read because of the peculiar plot

Tough reads due to the plot

‘One Hundred Years of Solitude’ by Gabriel García Márquez

I took up Intermediate level of Spanish Studies at university. My teacher was very passionate about Latin American culture (she’s a New Zealander) and as a student, I find that inspiring. However I wasn’t happy when we were told to analyse this book for a written examination at the end of semester. Oh, did I mention that the examination was in Spanish?

The story was long-winded and the family saga was exhausting. The names are frequently repeated in many generations; I got confused even where there was a family tree diagram in the foreword. I didn’t finish the book but I passed my exam. Despite not liking the story, I bought an English copy just in case I feel like reading it one day.

‘Kafka on the Shore’ by Haruki Murakami

I read many good reviews about this book. I’ve never read any of the author’s works so I decided to try. Personally, I’m glad the book was borrowed not purchased.

This is the most bizarre book I’ve read…ever! There were so many characters that are supposed to be connected to each other but I couldn’t understand the connections. Certain scenes seem unnecessary such as cat torture and sex scenes with a minor. It was a mess!

Disturbing content

Tough reads due to disturbing content

Tough reads due to the content

‘The Surgeon’ by Tess Gerritsen

Tess Gerritsen used to be a physician but now writes novels.  I decided to read this novel because I have never read a medical thriller before.

I had a tough time reading the book because the villain was a sadistic rapist and killer. The crimes were minutely described so readers could definitely feel the victims’ suffering. Despite the brutality of the crimes, it was an enjoyable read because the story was well-written. I will most certainly continue reading this book series.

‘Accidentally on Purpose’ by L.D. Davis

I really enjoy reading contemporary romance and I must say that this is one of my favourite books.

I don’t like it when a person cheats on his/her partner. Despite the infidelity, I was sympathetic to Emmy because of the abuse she endured from her lover. At the start of the story, Emmy was a witty, independent woman but after the abuse, those qualities vanished. She didn’t think she deserved happiness. Emmy slowly healed with the help of friends and family and got her happy ending. The next book in the series is based on the abusive lover’s point of view. I am conflicted about reading his side of the story.

‘The Coincidence of Callie and Kayden’ by Jessica Sorensen

I read this book when I was in ‘New Adult’ book binge. This is one of my favourite books in that genre.

This book was difficult to read because of the subject matter. Both main characters were abused; Callie was raped at a young age while Kayden was beaten by his own father. They are tormented by their pasts and their coping behaviours are just too troubling. Well I’m glad that they were friends first before becoming lovers because building trust takes time. They don’t live happily ever after at the end of the book. There is a cliffhanger, which I think is appropriate for such traumatising story.

‘The Lovely Bones’ by Alice Sebold

I bought this book when I found out that a movie was going to be made. Did you know that Ryan Gosling was set to play Mr Salmon until he had some creative differences with the director Peter Jackson?

Anyway ‘The Lovely Bones’ was a tough read because of the tragedy that befell Susie Salmon. She was attacked and murdered by someone she knew and that happened in the beginning of the story. Hence the novel/movie is told from Susie’s point of view in the afterlife. It is devastating to read the impact of Susie’s death on her family. Oh I had one issue with that body-swapping scene at the end. That’s just weird and unnecessary.

Unlikeable character(s)

unlikeable_characters

Tough reads due to the characters

‘Anna Karenina’ by Leo Tolstoy

I watched ‘Anna Karenina’ starring Keira Knightley, Jude Law and Aaron Johnson-Taylor and the movie confirms one thing: Keira Knightley cannot act. Her acting is appalling! I am considering reading the book.

However I think this book would be difficult to read because it is a very long book (about 800-1000 pages depending on the publisher/edition). I am afraid of losing interest once I start a few chapters. Another hesitation is due to the main character. In the movie, Anna is very unlikable. I can’t imagine myself spending so much time on such character.

‘Lolita’ by Vladimir Nabokov

I watched ‘Lolita’ the 1962 movie and I understand why the book is highly controversial even till this day.

I think this book would be difficult to read because of the subject matter. Paedophilia is not acceptable even if the minor says that it is “true” love. Humbert Humbert shows no remorse for his immoral behaviour. The movie was ambiguous about their sexual relationship but I think the book is more descriptive. I will only read this if my book club chooses the book. At least the discussion could be therapeutic.

‘New Moon’ by Stephenie Meyer

Speaking of paedophilia, would you consider Edward Cullen a paedophile? Despite the youthful appearance, he is more than 100 years old. Putting that issue aside, I actually like ‘Twilight’ (I own a copy :P) and that’s about it.

I cannot stand the second book in the series because I felt like strangling Bella majority of the time. I understand that she is afraid of growing old while her true love remains a teenager forever. But must she make a life-altering decision at such a young age? When Edward refuses to comply to her wishes, he vanishes and leaves her heartbroken. Jacob Black helps Bella recover from the breakup and during that period of recovery, Bella sees the possibility of turning the friendship into something more. Then Bella gets confused. Come on, girl…make up your mind! If you are torn between two options, then stay single!

‘We Need to Talk about Kevin’ by Lionel Shriver

I am a huge fan of Tilda Swinton ever since I watched ‘Constantine’. She is a brilliant chameleon, from acting to fashion. There are so many praises for the book and movie. Since I love book-to-movie adaptations, I decided to read the original source before watching the movie.

This book was a gruelling read. First, the main character Eva Khatchadourian uses sophisticated words because I believe she has a superiority complex. I checked my Dictionary app whenever I encountered “big” words. Half-way through the book, I stopped using the app because it disrupted my flow of reading. Secondly, I was puzzled with Eva’s lack of connection with her son, Kevin. Why didn’t she get any help/counselling when she had doubts/suspicions about Kevin? Despite all the negativity, the book was thought-provoking for example “Who is to blame for Kevin’s atrocious behaviours?” Eva, Kevin, Franklin or all three?


What do you think of my list of ‘Top Ten Tough Reads’? What books do you find strenuous to read? I’d love to read your picks so just share them (or a link to your blog) in the comment box below.

New arrivals – 28/09/2014

Dear customers,

These books are new arrivals at the store:

Title Author Genre
The Courier Andrew Britton Thriller
Blood Lies Richard Marcinko & Jim DeFelice Thriller
The October List Jeffery Deaver Thriller
Run to You Rachel Gibson Contemporary romance
What I Love about You Rachel Gibson Contemporary romance
Dangerous Refuge Elizabeth Lowell Romantic suspense
The Earl’s Mistress Liz Carlyle Historical romance

Please call Mr Sam if you would like to borrow the book(s).

Follow LitChat moderated chat with Mary Kubica

Litchat organises live Twitter conversations with authors every Wednesday. The one-hour session starts at 4 pm USA Eastern Time (4 am Thursday for those in Malaysia).

The guest author for the slot on 24th of September 2014 is Mary Kubica. She will talk about her debut novel ‘The Good Girl’. Here is a synopsis of the book:

“I’ve been following her for the past few days. I know where she buys her groceries, where she has her dry cleaning done, where she works. I don’t know the color of her eyes or what they look like when she’s scared. But I will.”

Born to a prominent Chicago judge and his stifled socialite wife, Mia Dennett moves against the grain as a young inner-city art teacher. One night, Mia enters a bar to meet her on-again, off-again boyfriend. But when he doesn’t show, she unwisely leaves with an enigmatic stranger. With his smooth moves and modest wit, at first Colin Thatcher seems like a safe one-night stand. But following Colin home will turn out to be the worst mistake of Mia’s life.

Colin’s job was to abduct Mia as part of a wild extortion plot and deliver her to his employers. But the plan takes an unexpected turn when Colin suddenly decides to hide Mia in a secluded cabin in rural Minnesota, evading the police and his deadly superiors. Mia’s mother, Eve, and detective Gabe Hoffman will stop at nothing to find them, but no one could have predicted the emotional entanglements that eventually cause this family’s world to shatter.

An addictively suspenseful and tautly written thriller, The Good Girl is a compulsive debut that reveals how even in the perfect family, nothing is as it seems….

‘The Good Girl’ by Mary Kubica

There are two ways to follow the conversation:

  1. Type #litchat at Twitter search box
  2. Visit Litchat dedicated channel at http://www.nurph.com/litchat(recommended for those who prefer to read tweets in order)

To those who participate in the moderated Twitter chat, have a great time.

For latest news on LitChat, check out their official website or Twitter.

New Arrivals – 30/08/2014

Dear Customers,

Sorry for the lack of updates on newly arrived books this month. I was only able to visit the store a few days ago.

Here is a list of new arrivals at SS Readers Corner:

Title Author Genre
Dark Lycan Christine Feehan Paranormal romance
Hotshot Julie Garwood Romantic suspense
Possession J.R. Ward Paranormal romance
The Valley of Amazement Amy Tan Historical fiction
How the Scoundrel Seduces Sabrina Jeffries Historical romance
Doctor Sleep Stephen King Horror
Tuesdays with Morrie Mitch Albom Non-fiction
Natchez Burning Greg Iles Thriller
Vixen in Velvet Loretta Chase Historical romance
Unbreakable Stephanie Tyler Romantic suspense
The Kill Order James Dashner Young adult
The Scorch Trials James Dashner Young adult
The Maze Runner James Dashner Young adult

Most of the books are on rent so I couldn’t take photos of the book except for the ones below. If you would like to rent any of the new books, please contact Mr Sam for their availability.

Have a good weekend!

James Dashner: The Kill Order (the prequel), The Scorch Trials (#2) & The Death Cure (#3)

James Dashner: The Kill Order (the prequel), The Scorch Trials (#2) & The Death Cure (#3)