Saturday, January 31, 2009

The Bomb That Followed Me Home by Cevin Soling

image The Bomb That Followed Me Home by Cevin Soling


This little book by Cevin Soling, the third book in the Rumpleville Chronicles of Fairly Twisted Fairy Tales, isn't meant for children, any more than the original Brothers Grimm's fairy tales were meant for children.


The Bomb That Followed Me Home is a short story, effective, definitely twisted, and horribly amusing. Emphasis on 'horribly'. Not because it was a horrible story, but because it was so amusing, in such a horrible way.


It tells the story about a bomb who followed a little boy home, the same way a stray cat or puppy might follow a child home. The boy wants to keep the bomb, but his parents are against it.


They didn't want to be responsible for the care of the bomb; having to polish it, change its fuse, or stand guard over it at night, so they put up signs to find the owner of the bomb, and then they tried looking for people who might want to adopt it, all without luck, and they have to figure out what to do with it.


Although twisted, I found the book surprisingly charming, and I really loved the wonderful illustrations by Steve Kille. It made me want to get all the books in the Rumpleville Chronicles, not least because I'm a huge fan of twisted fairy tales, but also because I thought Soling's story was very creative and hilarious!


Grimm fans will love this, and all the other books in the Rumpleville Chronicles. There are seven more due out in the future, and I'm sure they'll all be as enjoyable to read as this one was. I can't wait!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Life of Pi by Yann Martel

Life of Pi by Yann Martel


I finished reading this book for the second time, in the first week of January, but I didn't want to review it yet because I was waiting for my book club meeting, and I thought it would be great if I could post what the group thought about the book.


It was supposed to be our first book and our first meeting, and I was so excited because *finally* I found a real-life book club.


Unfortunately, the meeting kept getting postponed, one week after another, and at this moment, I'm not sure if we will ever meet, in fact.


imageSo I've decided that I'm just gonna go ahead with my review, and offer this book up for discussion on my online real-time book chats.


As I've said, this is the second time I've read this book, and surprisingly, I loved it more the second time!


For those who don't know what the book is about, Pi Patel is an Indian boy whose family have decided to migrate to Canada for a fresh start.


The ship they were on capsized, however, and Pi found himself on a lifeboat. With a zebra, a hyena, an orang-utan, and a Royal Bengal tiger.


The book tells the amazing story of how Pi survives living in close quarters with a tiger for the many months he was lost at sea.


The first part of the book covers Pi Patel's background in India. His father's a zookeeper, and we learn many things about the nature of animals. It also covers Pi's spiritual quest, and about how he learns and embraces all different religions. Some people find this part a little boring, but I thought it was a perfect set-up for what was to come in the second part of the story.


The second part of the book is where things get interesting. The ship has capsized, Pi is on a boat with wild animals, and he needs to find a way to survive against the dangers of the sea *and* of the animals.


I can't say much more without giving away spoilers, except that while I'd expected the whole story to be really far-fetched (c'mon, surviving on a boat with a tiger in the middle of the sea?), the author actually made the whole story *very* believable!

There were a lot of research, a lot of logic explanations, and while I'm not sure it could actually happen in real life, I completely believe that it could happen in the circumstances that the author gave us.


There's much more to the book, of course, on topics about the animals, religion, and survival. And of course these are the reasons we chose the book for our book club, because there's so much to discuss. I'm really disappointed that didn't work out, but I'd be thrilled to discuss it on the online book chats, if anyone's interested.


Find out more about the book chats here. Sign up on this page, if you want to discuss the book with me.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Happy Chinese New Year : Thursday 13 #9


Happy Chinese New Year to all the Chinese around the world!

13 things about the Chinese New Year 2009:

1. It starts on January 26th this year, and lasts for 15 days, ending on February 8th.

2. This year is the year of the Ox!

3. I always tend to do last minute shopping for new year clothes a week before CNY!

4. That's one reason why I haven't been around online much these couple of weeks.

5. Or visiting many blogs either. Sorry!

6. I went to three different relatives' houses on the first day of CNY, the first was 20 minutes drive away, the second was 45 minutes (from the first house), and the third was more than an hour's drive away (from the second house)!

7. On the second day, I went to my grandmother's house, which was 2 and a half hours' drive away, stayed five hours, and drove 3 hours in a slight traffic jam to get home!

8. These are other reasons why I haven't been around online! Or visiting many blogs! Sorry!

9. The night before Chinese New Year, we always have a family reunion dinner with whoever's around.

10. This year, my aunt from Canada surprised us!

11. She'd been here for two weeks already, and my parents knew, but didn't tell us!

12. There are many things going on these next two weeks during CNY, and we're going to be very busy but having so much fun!

13. I'll try to come online and visit online on your blogs as much as I can, but if I can't as much as I want to, please know that I'm thinking of everyone and that I'll be back soon!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

The Reader by Bernhard Schlink


The Reader by Bernhard Schlink


This book has been forgotten on my shelves for quite a while. I only just remembered about it after the Golden Globes where Kate Winslet won a Globe for Best Actress for her role in The Reader.


I got curious, and I checked out the trailers for the videos, and then I dug this book out from behind the shelves and finally read it.


It's about a fifteen-year-old boy, Michael Berg, who got sick on the way home from school and Hanna, a woman much older than him, who helped him.


They became lovers eventually, and one day she disappears from his life without a word.


Much later, as a law student, he sees her again at court where she's on trial for a horrible crime, but she refuses to defend herself. Michael realizes that she's trying to protect a secret.


I guessed Hanna's secret early on in the book, because I felt the hints were pretty obvious, and I haven't decided if she was 'right' or 'wrong' in trying to hide it. I don't think I would continue to keep it a secret if I was on trial for murder, but on the other hand, I could not imagine how much shame I would feel if it was my own secret.


I also wonder why the ending was the way it is. I don't understand the need for Hanna's actions in the end.


It's hard to tell what I think of certain things in the novel without giving away spoilers. I did enjoy the book very much, however, and I found it a very easy read.


This book is available for discussion on Betty's Book Chats.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Friday Finds : January 23 2009

Romantic Novel of the Year 2009 Shortlist

A few posts ago I mentioned that one of the things I loved about reading and book blogging was that they allowed me to be a part of the wonderful online community of readers and writers.

One person whom I'm very pleased to have 'met' this last week, is author Linda Gillard, whom I got to know from the Bookcrossing forums.

As an aspiring writer myself, I love meeting authors, partly because I hope - quite unrealistically - that some of their talent might rub off on me, but mostly because I have such a huge amount of respect for them, knowing how hard it is for myself to write anything worth reading.


So you can probably understand my awe when I visited her site and found out that not only has she written and published three novels - all with very impressive reviews, her third book, Star Gazing, has also been shortlisted for Romantic Novel of the Year 2009!

The shortlist of 6 books has only been recently announced on the 13th of January 2009. The 6 books were chosen by 15 members of the Romantic Novelists' Association, and 3 judges will chose a final winner after reading the 6 shortlisted books.

The six shortlisted authors are:

1. Cecelia Ahern, for Thanks for the Memories

2. Lesley Downer, for The Last Concubine

3. Linda Gillard, for Star Gazing

4. Julia Gregson, for East of the Sun

5. Susanna Kearsley, for Sophia’s Secret

6. Judith Lennox, for Before the Storm

I'm quite excited to have found this list, and I've added some of the books to my ever-growing wishlist and Mount TBR!

My Friday Finds:image

Cecilia Ahern's Thanks for the Memories is about a woman who receives somebody else's memories along with his blood in a blood transfusion after a terrible accident. How can I resist a storyline like this?!


Sophia's Secret by Susanna Kearsley is another very interesting book. It is about a bestselling author who visits a place in Scotland where her ancestor, Sophia, lived years ago. She starts writing the fictional life of Sophia but finds that she's writing more fact than fiction when she realizes she has Sophia's memories. What can I say? I enjoy books where someone can get into someone else's head?


And of course, Linda Gillard's Star Gazing, which is about a blind woman, a strange man who shows up on her doorstep one winter's night, and the love that they share.

In her site (you gotta scroll down a little), Linda talks about how she went about writing the book and what a challenge it was to describe landscape from a non-visual point of view. Especially challenging was describing the hero by the way he sounded, felt, and smelt!

I am positively intrigued! And very happy because I've been looking for some good romances to read! I think I'm going to love these.

The winner will be announced on the 10th of February! I'm so excited!

For more information about the Romantic Novel of the Year 2009, you can visit the official site.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Google Meme : Thursday Thirteen #8


This week's T13 idea was stolen from Bumbles! What Google thinks it knows about us (inspired by the Google Search Meme going around).

This is fun! =)

1. Type in "[your name] needs" in Google Search:
Betty needs a real sanctuary

2. Type in "[your name] looks like" in Google Search:
Betty looks like my yearbook photo

3. Type in "[your name] says" in Google Search:
Betty says Hi on Flickr, because

4. Type in "[your name] wants" in Google Search:
Betty wants to sell you some shirts on Flickr

5. Type in "[your name] does" in Google Search:
Betty does Veronica this Friday! (I don't know what they mean by that!)

6. Type in "[your name] hates" in Google Search:
Betty hates the strange dog inside the cafe

7. Type in "[your name] asks" in Google Search:
Betty asks Madonna for an autographed "Hard Candy"

8. Type in "[your name] likes" in Google Search:
Betty likes worms at the Washington Public Library

9. Type in "[your name] eats" in Google Search:
Betty eats a Pasty Lunch Keds shoe from! (a shoe!)

10. Type in "[your name] wears" in Google Search:
Betty wears the irrelevant compound instead (instead of what, I don't know)

11. Type in "[your name] was arrested for" in Google Search:
Betty was arrested for assault with deadly breasts (LOL!)

12. Type in "[your name] loves" in Google Search:
Betty loves blogging (Aww...)

13. Type in "[your nickname] hope" in Google Search:
Betty hopes bootcamp will go with a bang!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays : January 20 2009

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:

I've just finished reading this book by Michael Ende, the author of the more widely known The Neverending Story. And I loved it!

It is one of the best books I've ever read, possibly in the top 10 list of my favorite books! I must admit that I'm guilty for judging this book by the cover, I would've read it much sooner if it wasn't because of that, but I'm so glad I finally did. =)


"Human beings have no conception of the value of their time, but we do. We suck them dry, and we need more and more time every day, because there are more and more of us." ~p. 89, Michael Ende's Momo

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Casual Classics Challenge 2009

The Casual Classics Challenge starts on Jan 1, 2009 to Dec 31, 2009. The challenge is to read four(4) classics in 2009. Easy enough, I guess. Sign-ups here.

Here are the classics I've read:

Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster (1/16/09)
Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov (2/15/09)
The Old Man and The Sea by Ernest Hemingway (4/5/09)
The Good Earth by Pearl S. Buck (4/21/09)


Additional classics:


Love in the Time of Cholera by Gabriel García Márquez


Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster


Daddy-Long-Legs by Jean Webster


This book is a re-read, and one of my all-time favorite books. I read it when I was a little girl, and I loved it.


I've re-read it many times since, and I still love it. The ending can still move me and bring me to tears, no matter how many times I read it, and even though I almost know the story by heart.


The last time I read it was a couple of years ago, and I guess I was feeling a little bit nostalgic and thought I'd read it again.


This book is my first introduction to the epistemology style of telling a story, and I think it's still the best.


Judy Abbott is an orphan who is sent to college by a rich, anonymous trustee from the orphanage she was brought up in. The only request he makes is that she writes him letters to tell of her progress in college every month.


Judy is hilarious, charming, and lovable, and the letters she writes are simply delightful reading. She tells funny stories about the friends she makes at college, the lessons she learns, and the boys she meets. You really feel that you get to know her well, and you can't help but fall in love with her.


The ending is wonderful, and of course, it's a surprise for those who don't know the story, but although I already know what happens, it still gets me every time.


Although this is written for young girls, I think I will always love this book no matter how old I am. I'm sure I'll enjoy it again when I'm 98 and have lots of grandchildren, and I'm sure they'll love it as much as I do too.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

13 Authors : Thursday Thirteen #7



This week I'm doing 13 authors whose books I buy simply because the books have these authors' names on them. This list only applies to authors who have written more than one novel, and by no means show the only authors I love. How could I choose only 13 favorites? =)


Here are the 13 authors:


1. Christopher Pike - I read my first Pike novel when I was 11, and was hooked from then on. I've read *all* (as far as I know) his books, and I try to collect as many of them as I can.

2. L. J. Smith - Another favorite author from my teen years. I still enjoy re-reading her books.

3. Neil Gaiman - I love his stories, I love his humor, I love his style.

4. Sheri S. Tepper - I think she's a genius at plotting and storylines, her books are really creative and detailed, and they give you food for thought.

5. George R. R. Martin - I am in love with his A Song of Ice and Fire series. In fact, if you asked me what book I'd choose if I could only read one book in my whole entire life, it is this series. (I know that's cheating because it's a series, but it really shows how well I think about these books! And it doesn't mean I'd enjoy only having one book to read either, I'd probably die! But if I *had* to choose, it would be this series!)

6. Margaret Atwood - If you've read her books, you'd understand why. She's amazing, and her stories are extremely thought-provoking and sometimes scary too!

7. Tanith Lee - A little bit dark and slightly depressing, but she brings you to a whole different world and gives you such a different perspective.

8. Jodi Picoult - Books with stories that put you in 'what if' situations. She tackles many controversial subjects and hard-to-talk-about things and makes you confront many of your preconceived ideas.

9. Paulo Coelho - Wonderfully simple stories with so much meaning and wisdom in them. I could read them over and over again and find more gems every time!

10. Stephen King - I read his books on dark and stormy days, warm and cozy in my bed with the lights turned low. Of course, I also make sure I'm not alone in the house!

11. Robin McKinley - I love her fairy-tale retellings, and I love seeing them in a completely new light.

12. Ellen Datlow and 13. Terri Windling - Ok, I may be cheating with these two authors, because they don't *write* all the books I have with their names on the cover (they edit them), but they *are* authors in their own right, and I *do* buy any book with their names on it, so they count! =)


That's my Thursday 13 today, what's yours?



Monday, January 12, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays: January 13 2009

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:








"Could it be that the very funeral on Greene and Fayette...No! That little funeral, that unceremonious ceremony, that entombment in the narrow burial yard?" ~p. 9, Matthew Pearl's The Poe Shadow


PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

The Summer Before by Patricia Windsor


The Summer Before by Patricia Windsor


This book is about a young girl, Sandy, who is going through a very tough and emotionally-wrecking time as she tries to get over the death of her best friend, Bradley.


The author doesn't tell exactly what happens until much later in the book, but she drops hints every few chapters until I almost died of curiosity.


Everyone knows I'm more curious than a cat, and mysteries like these always make me want to read the book faster so that I can find out what happens.


The truth is, what happened really isn't all that mysterious, and the mystery really isn't what makes me love this book. The beauty of this book is in the way it is written and in the way the author sees inside the heart and mind of a young girl who is suffering from so much pain and guilt over the loss of her best friend and then finally finds the strength to move on and live again.


Another thing I liked about the book is the strange and beautiful relationship between Sandy and Bradley. Although we get an idea of who Bradley was and how interesting and wonderful he was from Sandy's thoughts and recollections about him, and even fall in love with the person we think he was, later on we wonder if we really knew him at all.


I think ultimately, what I love most about this book, is the way it subtly forces us to see things in perspective. Does it really matter what other people think about us? Or if we're wearing clothes that are out of fashion and don't fit in at school? Or if you're doing things that people disapprove of and getting into trouble for it?


In the light of death, all these doesn't matter. We should be living for ourselves, not for the approval of other people. Bradley teaches us that early on, and Sandy finally learns this lesson at the end.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

My First Award!


Jo-Jo from Jo-Jo Loves to Read has given me my first award!


I'm so honored and excited because this is the first award I'd ever gotten and I never thought my blog was good enough to ever get one!


Thank you so much, Jo-Jo! =)


This is a “meme” award, so it gets passed on.


The rules for passing it on are:

1. Put the logo on your blog.

2. Add a link to the person who awarded the blog to you.

3. Award up to ten other blogs.

4. Add links to the blogs you award onto your blog.

5. Leave a message for your awardees on their blogs.


My awardees are:


Ms. Ulat Buku from Ulat Buku in the City


Nicholas from A Gentleman's Domain


and I was going to award it to J. Kaye from J. Kaye's Book Blog too, but I see she's already received it from a whole list of people!! Well, add me to the list of people who love her blog!


ETA: February 4th, avisannschild from She Reads and Reads has also given me this award! Thank you so much, avisannschild! I am honored!

Yesterday's Book Chat


We had a great book chat yesterday for Sara Gruen's Water for Elephants! 


Yesterday was the first book chat ever! And also supposedly the first time my real-life book group would be meeting too, but unfortunately, a couple of people couldn't make it and it was postponed to next week.


The book chat was ON, and although only three people turned up, we had a great discussion about the book! You can check out some of the transcripts on the Book Chat site.


I had a lot of fun with the online discussion! The next book chat is for Emma by Jane Austen, please do sign up for it if you're reading the book, I'd love to have more participants join in!

Friday, January 09, 2009

World Citizen Challenge

Ah well, you only live once. I may as well read all the books I can while I'm alive. =)


Here's the link to the official page and the rules.


I'm doing the Majors, which is:


The Major Level Despite the occasional, impertinent “And what are you going to do with a degree in that?!” question, you’ve realized that World Citizenship is where your passion really lies, so you declare your major. For this level, you need to commit to five books, from at least three different categories.


And here's the suggested reading list.


So...let the fun begin! =)




1. Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser


Date read: 2/27/09


Category: Worldwide issues


2. Quirkology by Richard Wiseman


Date read: 5/12/09


Category: Culture/Anthropology/Sociology


3. The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan


Date read: 6/26/09


Category: Worldwide issues


4. Harvest for Hope by Jane Goodall


Date read: 7/12/09


Category: Worldwide issues


Chunkster Challenge 2009


Why do I do this to myself?!


This challenge is to read fat books! For more info, go here.


The thing is, I'd probably be reading fat books anyway, because I love fat books, with small fonts, and lots and lots of pages. *bliss*


So, I might as well join the challenge. =)


I'm taking the 3rd option:


Mor-book-ly Obese - This is for the truly out of control chunkster. For this level of challenge you must commit to 6 or more chunksters OR three tomes of 750 pages or more. You know you want to.....go on and give in to your cravings.


Yes, yes! I want to! I can't help it! 2009 is gonna be a fat, fat, fat year! =)


I’ve got more than 6, and I’ve got 2 books that exceed 750 pages, so I think I’ve completed this challenge with flying colors! Though I’ve finished this challenge, I’ll keep on listing the chunksters I read, just to keep track. =)


Here are the books I've read:


1. Wicked by Gregory Maguire - 519 pages

2. Scarlett by Alexandra Ripley - 884 pages

3. The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson – 465 pages

4. The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan  – 464 pages

5. The Book Thief by Markus Zusak – 576 pages

6. The Host by Stephenie Meyer – 528 pages

7. The Stand by Stephen King – 1142 pages

Thursday, January 08, 2009

Thursday Thirteen #6 Reasons for Reading



Today's Thursday Thirteen is going to be a simple one because I've been really busy this last week and hadn't had the time to come up with better ideas for T13! LOL! =)


So here are 13 reasons why I love reading:


1. I learn more about human nature and psychology from reading fiction than I ever did from all the psychology textbooks I studied in college.

2. I have become a better person because I learn how to put myself in the other person's shoes when I read books that feature multiple points of view.

3. Waiting in line for anything can become enjoyable when you have a good book with you.

4. A book keeps you company whenever you have to eat alone too.

5. I learn many useful information from reading fiction that most people can never find anywhere else. (eg. How to survive on a lifeboat with a Bengal tiger -from Life of Pi! LOL!)

6. Ok, jokes aside, there really are many *really* useful information you can find from reading fiction that you won't find from textbooks.

7. Non-fiction also teaches me a lot, and there are many interesting, helpful, amazing, life-changing, etc, things I have discovered from these books.

8. My life is richer, more exciting, more adventurous, and I have become more creative, more imaginative, more daring, and more motivated to live life to the fullest and bring myself to my fullest potential.

9. Although reading is usually a solitary activity, I have met so many great, wonderful, generous, amazing friends and readers whom I can relate to with our love of books and reading.

10. Ah yes, they help me escape reality once in a while, like a nice long vacation, but cheaper and without all the hassle of packing and getting plane tickets and accommodations and checking in and out and unpacking and etc.

11. They also let me enjoy my vacations better when I do go for them! How much more enjoyable visiting China is after reading Pearl S. Buck's The Dragon Empress, or Paris' Louvre after reading The Da Vinci Code! (Not that I've been any of these places, but I know I'd enjoy them more 'cause of the books I read!)

12. I get it when somebody uses literary references! Like "That bast*rd boss of mine is a true Machiavellian!" or "That poor woman had to make a real-life Sophie's Choice!" (Ok, I'm not good at making these references myself, but you get what I mean!)

13. It's such a big part of me! I couldn't stop reading any more than I could stop breathing. Honestly, I wouldn't be the person I am now if it weren't for all the books I read, and I love who I am today!



Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Teaser Tuesdays: January 6 2009

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:


I've not finished The Lucifer Effect, but I'm taking a break from it. It's been really heavy reading, and I just needed to get my mind off it for a while. Here's a teaser from a book I'm reading for my reading group:






"From nearer in the blackness I began hearing loud expirations and groans and grunts and various wet mouth sounds. The idea of Orange Juice stirring was too much for my nerves to bear, so I did not consider it." ~p.119, Yann Martel's Life of Pi




PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Sunday, January 04, 2009

2008 Reflections Meme

I found this meme on Grace's blog at Sandier Pastures, and I thought it would be fun to do here. =)

1. What did you do in 2008 that you hadn’t done before?
Performed on the stage of Planet Hollywood with the amazing band, Redemption!

2. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes, she used to be one of my best friends in high school, but although we keep in touch once in a while, we're not that close anymore.

3. Did anyone close to you die?
No, and let's hope I give the same answer every year. =)

4. Did you travel? Where did you go?
Yes, only within Malaysia, but it was a fun trip, to Ipoh, Penang, and Kedah.

5. Best thing you bought?
I can't help it, I always think books are the best things anyone could ever buy! And the best books I bought this year was my fiance's birthday presents! =)
6. Where did most of your money go?
Books. (Really? You need to ask?) And food.

7. What do you wish you had done more of?
Wrote, I wish I had written more.

8. What do you wish you had done less of?
Spend money on books. I'm happy I've got my books, but I still wish I didn't have to spend so much on them!

9. What kept you sane?
My fiance, books, and blogging about them.

10. What drove you mad?
My family, for various reasons. LOL!

11. What made you celebrate?
I had a lot to celebrate this year! But mostly, getting engaged with my fiance. =)

12. What made you sad?
Not much, really. I was pretty much almost constantly happy in 2008, except for little things that got resolved quickly most of the time.

13. How was your birthday this year?
My fiance brought me out for a really romantic, delicious and expensive dinner! And that was great, but I did feel a little bit weird about growing older. Ah well...

14. What political issue stirred you the most this year?
Well, in Malaysia, we had some really great election results in that the opposition won some of the states government, and while BN is still throwing hissy fits and making trouble for the opposition, they're fighting the good fight, and I'm sure we'll be seeing a lot of change for the better coming soon!

15. Were you in love in 2008?
LOL! Am I ever!

16. What would you like to have in 2009 that you didn’t have this year?
A home of our own.

17. What date from 2008 will be etched in your memory and why?
I'm not really a person who remembers dates, unfortunately. My fiance's the one who keeps tracks of anniversaries and birthdays in fact! So while there were a lot of great things that happened, I can't remember the dates!

18. What song will remind you of 2008?
Jason Mraz's I'm Yours, because it was one of the most catchy and most played songs in 2008! (Although I'm pretty sure it came out before 2008, I've had the mp3 on my computer for quite a while, I think, and I remember listening to it a long time before it started playing on the radio...)

19. Compared to this time last year are you happier?
So so so sooooo much!

20. Biggest achievement this year?
Um...I can't decide! I really can't, I'm really proud of a LOT of things I did this year!

21. Biggest disappointment this year?
Not getting the house we initially wanted. =(

22. What is the one thing that would have made you more satisfied?
If our band could've gotten started much earlier.

23. Best new person you met this year?
Our new band mates! Three of them!

24. A valuable life lesson you learned this year?
You need to live your life the way you would if you were the person you want to be, and then you will be the person you want to be.

25. How was your health in 2008?
Good, except for some minor infections and some coughs which were annoying as hell, but I try to be as healthy as I can, especially with my diet.

26. Did you keep your new years’ resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
Not resolutions, exactly, more like goals.

27. What countries did you visit?
None in 2008!

28. What would you like to have in 2009 that you lacked in 2008?
Didn't you ask this just now? I want a home of our own.

29. Did you suffer hardship in 2008?
Not hardship, but challenges.

30. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Lone's, what I love about him is that although he may make many mistakes or get some setbacks, he always pick himself up straight after a fall, and makes sure he learns from them.

31. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
I don't want to say, they may be reading my blog. =P

32. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

Avril's concert in Malaysia last year. And books in the mail! must really think I have a boring life. LOL!

33. Compared to this time last year, are you:
i. happier or sadder? Happier.
ii. thinner or fatter? Same
iii. richer or poorer? Richer

34. How did you spend the New Year’s?
With Lone in the car, on the way back from a performance.

35. How many one-night stands?
Shhh.... I can't tell you, Lone may be reading this! LOL! None!

36. What was your favorite TV program?
Actually, I had a lot of fun watching Gossip Girl and Desperate Housewives!

37. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
No, hate the same people as last year. =P Kidding! I don't hate anyone. Much.

38. What was the best book you read?
Grass by Sheri S. Tepper

39. What was your greatest musical (re)discovery?
Taylor Swift, Radiohead, Smashing Pumpkins, Alisha's Attic...

40. What did you want and get?
Tickets to Avril Lavigne's concert!

41. What did you want and not get?
A house. =(

42. What was your favorite film that you watched this year?
Across the Universe, no question! It's a musical featuring The Beatles' music, and it is wayyyy wayyyyyy better than Mamma Mia. I was really disappointed with Mamma Mia because it looked like such a cheap and amateurish production with terrible renditions of Abba's greatest hits, and it felt like they were only relying on the casts' fame and popularity. Across the Universe, on the other hand, was beautifully done, the storyline and plot were great, and the cast were too, and their interpretation of The Beatles' songs were absolutely amazing!

43. What one experience do you never want to repeat from this year?
Working with a childish, tantrum-throwing diva.

44. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2008?
Simple and comfortable.

45. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
Johnny Depp, I think he's amazing.

46. Who did you miss?
My friends in Philippines, Australia, and Canada...

47. Quote that sums up your year:
Follow your dream.

48. Was 2008 a good year for you?

49. What was your favorite moment of the year?
So many! How do I choose?!


50. What was your least favorite moment of the year?
The middle part.

51. Where were you when 2008 began?
In a cafe.

52. Who were you with?

53. Do you have a new year’s resolution for 2009?
No resolutions, just goals.

54. What was your favorite month of 2008?
Most of them. =P

55. What was your favorite song in 2008?
Love Story by Taylor Swift

56. What was your favorite record from 2008?
Barcelona, most probably.


57. How many concerts did you see in 2008?
One, Avril's!

58. Did you drink a lot of alcohol in 2008?
None at all. =D

59. Did you do a lot of drugs in 2008?

60. How many people did you sleep with in 2008?
I'm not quite sure, we had a huge slumber party... oh wait, that was 2007... hmm... I don't remember.

61. Did you do anything you are ashamed of this year?
None that I remember.

62. What was the worst lie someone told you in 2008?
None, unless it was such a good lie that I still don't know it's a lie.


63. Did you treat somebody badly in 2008?
Some people, a little bit. Not very badly, but I didn't go out of my way to be nice.

64. Did somebody treat you badly in 2008?
Not intentionally, I'm sure.

65. What was your most embarrassing moment of 2008?
Probably many, but I tend to block these kind of memories out, so I don't remember. LOL!


66. If you could go back in time to any moment of 2008 and change something, what would it be?
Nothing... I enjoy every minute of my life, both good and bad, and I learn from all experiences, so I wouldn't change anything because if I did, I probably might not have learnt something valuable.

67. What are you most looking forward to in 2009?
Getting married! And everything else!

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