NEW BOOK: Between My Bleeding Lines Extended Edition

I was gone for quite a long time, now I’m back with a big big big news about my second poetry collection: Between My Bleeding Lines Extended Edition!

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From last year’s first edition with 100 poems, this new collection contains over 160 pieces and more are now in the hopeful part of the book, which is the third chapter, Forbearer (one who endures).

Between My Bleeding Lines Extended Edition is also now published in the Philippines via my publisher, Yamada Publishing owned by Kota Yamada.

Interested to order? See the book price and the shipping cost here: goo.gl/forms/hMzkOwVz8YaeImxq1

I’m back with more poems, poets and friends! 🙂

5 Quotes Why I Love A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove

A 59-year old widower. Grumpy. Trying and failing to kill himself, many times. Here’s an odd, funny, yet utterly moving story.

A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Rating: ❤❤❤❤

The first novel by the Swedish author Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove is a balance between heart wrenching and thought provoking lines as well as chuckle-inducing dialogues.

Backman has successfully created an old character who’s relatable to all ages. He eloquently presented Ove as the sad and odd man that he is, yet he successfully and ever so gently laid down his main character’s back story. His love. His grief. The reason why a man called Ove is the man called Ove.

Here are five (05) of my (many) favorite lines from this worth-reading novel.

  1. “He was a man of black and white. And she was color. All the color he had.”

  2. “One of the most painful moments in a person’s life probably comes with the insight that an age has been reached when there is more to look back on than ahead. And when time no longer lies ahead of one, other things have to be lived for. memories, perhaps.”
  3. “But sorrow is unreliable in that way. When people don’t share it there’s a good chance that it will drive them apart instead.”

  4. “All people at root are time optimists. We always think there’s enough time to do things with other people. Time to say things to them. And then something happens and then we stand there holding on to words like ‘if’.”
  5. “It is difficult to admit that one is wrong. Particularly when one has ben wrong for a very long time.”

  6. “Loving someone is like moving into a house,” Sonja used to say. “At first you fall in love with all the new things, amazed every morning that all this belongs to you, as if fearing that someone would suddenly come rushing in through the door to explain that a terrible mistake had been made, you weren’t actually supposed to live in a wonderful place like this. Then over the years the walls become weathered, the wood splinters here and there, and you start to love that house not so much because of all its perfection, but rather for its imperfections. You get to know all the nooks and crannies. How to avoid getting the key caught in the lock when it’s cold outside. Which of the floorboards flex slightly when one steps on them or exactly how to open the wardrobe doors without them creaking. These are the little secrets that make it your home.”

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos via Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Quotes: Rain in the Mountains

Rain in the Mountains: Notes from the Himalayas

Rain in the Mountains: Notes from the Himalayas by Ruskin Bond

      Rating: ❤❤❤❤


As I remember that this blog is A Reading Writer, and as I want to fuel my reading pace again, I’ll start to post quotations and wise words I loved from my recent reads, starting with Rain in the Mountains by India’s very own Wordsworth in prose, Mr. Ruskin Bond.

This book holds a special place in my heart as it is a gift from my beloved. He gave it to me on our first trip in the majestic Himalayas. The first few pages were read during our 12-hour night-shift train ride going back to Kolkata.

It made me laugh, cry, grimace, scared, blush, think, laugh, and think some more. Here are the best words, the top five quotes that I would like to share with you:

  1. “A Quiet Mind Lord, give me a quiet mind, That I might listen; A gentle tone of voice, That I might comfort others; A sound and healthy body, That I might share In the joy of walking And leaping and running; And a good sense of direction So I might know just where I’m going!”
  2. Some people become an integral part of our lives; others are ships that pass in the night. Short stories, in fact.

    Image result for forest gif

  3. “When the earth gave birth to this tree, There came no sound: A green shoot thrust In silence from the ground. Our births don’t come so quiet— Most lives run riot— But the bud opens silently, And flower gives way to fruit. So must we search For the stillness within the tree, The silence within the root.”
  4. “I am still on my zigzag way, pursuing the diagonal between reason and heart.”

  5. “Little one, don’t be afraid of this big river. Be safe in these warm arms for ever. Grow tall, my child, be wise and strong. But do not take from any man his song. Little one, don’t be afraid of this dark night. Walk boldly as you see the truth and light. Love well, my child, laugh all day long, But do not take from any man his song.

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo via Unsplash & Giphy.com

Book Review: When Breath Becomes Air

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi
Rating: ❤❤❤❤

What is it about: At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decade’s worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithi’s transformation from a naïve medical student “possessed,” as he wrote, “by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life” into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality. 

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir. 

Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. “I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything,” he wrote. “Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: ‘I can’t go on. I’ll go on.'” When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.

What I Love: Die with dignity.

It’s the clarion call of Paul Kalanithi’s words carried in his posthumously published book, When Breath Becomes Air.

I ended up sobbing, with eyes swollen but it is a worth it less-than 200-page journey.

Travelling inside the mind and heart and soul of a dying doctor, who had always searched for life’s meaning is enlightening and moving.

Reading about death has always woke up the mortal in me. This is maybe why I am so fond of Mitch Albom’s books. Books about dying breathe life back to my purpose. My life’s meaning.

Why am I here?
What am I doing?
What makes life worth living?

What I Don’t Love Much: While the ending made me cry, it’s moving. So I have nothing to not like about this book.

Wise Words:

“I can’t go on. I’ll go on.” 

“You can’t ever reach perfection, but you can believe in an asymptote toward which you are ceaselessly striving.” 

“Life wasn’t about avoiding suffering.” 

“Human knowledge is never contained in one person. It grows from the relationships we create between each other and the world, and still it is never complete.” 

“The main message of Jesus, I believed, is that mercy trumps justice every time.”

©2018 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photos and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

 

 

history and poetry

“Among other things,
you’ll find that
you’re not the first person who
was ever confused and
frightened and
even sickened by
human behavior.

You’re by no means alone on
that score, you’ll be excited and
stimulated to know.

Many, many men have been
just as troubled morally and
spiritually as you are right now.

Happily, some of them kept
records of their troubles.
You’ll learn from them—if
you want to.

Just as someday, if
you have something to offer,
someone will learn
something from you.

It’s a beautiful
reciprocal arrangement.
And it isn’t education.
It’s history.
It’s poetry.”

—  J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the Rye


This is originally a quote from this infamous classic book (which I am ashamed I haven’t got my hands on yet). I chopped it into some phrases and lines to make it look like poetry. It is a technique (I forgot the name, unfortunately) I learned from an online poetry course which is about the use of a quote / paragraph from a book and breaking it down into lines to transform it into a poem.

This quote spoke to me. Isn’t it nice and true? 🙂

Happy weekend my dear friends!

FLYLēF turns 2!

And the baby of my darling Lonna named FLYLēF just turned 2! To celebrate, an amazing group of bloggers and I have planned posts for you to enjoy, all centered around the theme…

FRIENDSHIP

Please make sure to visit them, and perhaps make a new friend along the way.

 FRIENDSHIP 

I am delighted when I learned the theme of Lonna’s anniversary blog tour is about friendship. Why? Because I value friendships a lot. 

In as much as I want to think, I am not so good in making friends, but I am good in maintaining them. I have kept some friends from my elementary, high school and college days. I can also say I am still friends with my co-workers from my two previous jobs. And I intend to keep them.

I know there is strength in living alone. In doing things on your own, but I find it comforting to have souls to share, experience and learn with. 

My upcoming book, Between My Bleeding Lines, is a product of friendship. If not for the great writers here whom I become friends with, I would never be the writer that I am today. I would never be able to be brave and be courageous and write my own book. Got to give some shout out for them:

Between My Bleeding Lines and this blog exists because of them my faraway best friends.  That I think is enough proof of how valuable friendships are for me. 

 TESTIMONIAL  

And of course, Lonna is part of the WordPress community who showered me with love and fueled me to write and write some more. 

I remember seeing her blog for the first time and falling in love with her graphics and her book reviews. She writes so well that she can make you run to a bookstore and go check out a book. She balances the good and the not so good part of the book in between beautifully crafted yet truthful lines. 

But aside from that, I adore her bubbly personality and kind heart. ❤ She never fails to make me smile and warm my heart. Cheers, darling, for more years! ❤ 

  TOUR SCHEDULE  

❖ May 15th – Bookfever: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 15th – A Reader Writer: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 16th – Milky Way of Books: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 16th – Lisa Loves Literature: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 20th – A Kernel of Nonsense: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 21th – SUSANLOVESBOOKS: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 23th – fallxnrobins: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 27th – Utopia State of Mind: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 28th – Book Briefs: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ May 30th – Foxes & Fairy Tales: Spotlight / Giveaway

❖ June 1st – The Caramel Files: Spotlight / Giveaway

  ABOUT FLYLēF  

Lonna Yen the creative mind behind FLYLēF (pronounced like flyleaf) who enjoys reading late into the night to satisfy her insatiable addiction to mostly young adult and adult novels: romance (contemporary and historical), fantasy, and paranormal (especially vampires). She believes in the magic of spellbinding words coming together to build breathtaking worlds in our minds’ eyes. Happiness is just a book away, find it at FLYLēF.

Lonna also the host of FLYTIP and Book of Choice Giveaway Hop, and co-host of The Comment Challenge.

Book Review: My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

My Heart and Other Black Holes

46th – My Heart and Other Black Holes by Jasmine Warga

Rating: ❤❤❤❤ (Good read, definitely!)

What is it about: Sixteen-year-old physics nerd Aysel is obsessed with plotting her own death. With a mother who can barely look at her without wincing, classmates who whisper behind her back, and a father whose violent crime rocked her small town, Aysel is ready to turn her potential energy into nothingness.

There’s only one problem: she’s not sure she has the courage to do it alone. But once she discovers a website with a section called Suicide Partners, Aysel’s convinced she’s found her solution: a teen boy with the username FrozenRobot (aka Roman) who’s haunted by a family tragedy is looking for a partner.

Even though Aysel and Roman have nothing in common, they slowly start to fill in each other’s broken lives. But as their suicide pact becomes more concrete, Aysel begins to question whether she really wants to go through with it. Ultimately, she must choose between wanting to die or trying to convince Roman to live so they can discover the potential of their energy together. Except that Roman may not be so easy to convince.

What I Love: I love the characters because the writer was able to make them both relatable. You feel them, their pain, their hopelessness and even as they fall in love.

The struggles of the two main characters are revealed in a heart tugging way.

This book will make you smile, it will make you laugh, and it will make you feel for more sensitive for teenagers who may be depressed.

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing.

Wise Words:

“Depression is like a heaviness that you can’t ever escape.”

“Sometimes I wonder if gravity is the problem. It keeps us all grounded, gives us this false sense of stability when really we’re all just bodies in motion. Gravity keeps us from floating up into space, it keeps us from involuntarily crashing into one another. It saves the human race from being a big hot mess.”

“Maybe that’s what love really boils down to-having someone who cares enough to pay attention so that you’re encouraged to travel and transfer, to make your potential energy spark into kinetic energy. Maybe all anyone ever needs is for someone to notice them, to observe them.”

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Review: A Murder Is Announced by Agatha Christie

A Murder is Announced

“It’s what’s in yourself that makes you happy or unhappy.”

45th – A Murder Is Announced (Miss Marple, #5) by Agatha Christie

Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤ (BEST, GREAT read!)

What is it about: Villagers expect a fun game after a Gazette announcement of murder, but when lights flash off, shots ring out, and a masked burglar falls dead, the Inspector and vicar’s wife Bunch call in expert Miss Jane Marple. Was Swiss hotel clerk Rudi framed? Miss Letitia Blackstone houses scatty Dora, cousins Julia and Patrick, gardener widow Phillipa, and paranoid cook Mitzi.

What I Love: Madame Agatha Christie is one beautifully twisted writer. You can never ever know who kills who. She is the best example why I love mystery and crimes. The tension, the suspense, the revelation! Geez!!

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing!

Wise Words: “…what people do see at a moment of intense excitement and nervous strain. What they do see and, even more interesting, what they don’t see.”

“…if you have pain, you know how to enjoy the exquisite pleasure of the times when pain stops.”

“One is alone when the last one who remembers is gone.”

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Review: The Silence Between Moonbeams by Sarah Doughty

The Silence Between Moonbeams

44th – The Silence Between Moonbeams by Sarah Doughty

Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤ (BEST, GREAT read!)

What is it about: The Silence Between Moonbeams is about life — not always romantic, and not always easy, but often beautiful.

Everything is a product of the universe, the one thing about life we all share. It binds us together not only on a cellular level, but it’s also quintessential to the human condition. Thoughts, feelings, triumphs, love, loss, and much more are covered throughout these pages.

Discover what it feels like to live.

What I Love: Raw. Honest. Brutal. Beautiful.

This poetry book shows how darkness can create something so beautiful. This is a living proof that writing can heal, and it can make one feel alive again.

Prepare for goosebumps, prepare for heartbreaking lines, prepare to be struck straight from the heart under the silence between moonbeams.

What I Don’t Love Much: Nothing!!!

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash

Book Review: Inside the O’Briens by Lisa Genova

Inside the O'Briens

“Reality depends on perspective, on what is paid attention to.”

43rd – Inside the O’Briens by Lisa Genova

 Rating: ❤❤❤❤ (Good read, definitely)

What is it about: Joe O’Brien is a forty-four-year-old police officer from the Irish Catholic neighborhood of Charlestown, Massachusetts. A devoted husband, proud father of four children in their twenties, and respected officer, Joe begins experiencing bouts of disorganized thinking, uncharacteristic temper outbursts, and strange, involuntary movements. He initially attributes these episodes to the stress of his job, but as these symptoms worsen, he agrees to see a neurologist and is handed a diagnosis that will change his and his family’s lives forever: Huntington’s Disease.

Huntington’s is a lethal neurodegenerative disease with no treatment and no cure. Each of Joe’s four children has a 50 percent chance of inheriting their father’s disease, and a simple blood test can reveal their genetic fate. While watching her potential future in her father’s escalating symptoms, twenty-one-year-old daughter Katie struggles with the questions this test imposes on her young adult life. Does she want to know? What if she’s gene positive? Can she live with the constant anxiety of not knowing?

As Joe’s symptoms worsen and he’s eventually stripped of his badge and more, Joe struggles to maintain hope and a sense of purpose, while Katie and her siblings must find the courage to either live a life “at risk” or learn their fate.

What I Love: How the story unfolds.

The explanatory prelude.

The suspense.

The rawness of the characters and their individuality.

The lovely picture of a family battling a hard disease with strength, love and hope.

What I Don’t Love Much: None. 4 stars rating is because I love Lisa Genova’s Love Anthony and Still Alice more. 🙂

Wise Words: “Once you can imagine these things, you can’t unimagine them.”

“Every breath is a risk. Love is why we breathe.” –Katie

©2016 Rosemawrites@A Reading Writer. All Rights Reserved.
Photo and Story Summary: Goodreads and Unsplash