Sarina's Book Palace.

Some books make you think. Some books bring you serenity. Some books take you on THE thrilling ride of your life. Some books make you cry and laugh at the same time. Then, there are some books, that leave you devastated when they are over.


And you know what? I'd rather not choose. 'Cause each of them was with me at different points in life, just when I needed them. Each of them made me see life in new lights. Each of them taught me to appreciate life in ways I can't explain.


I love them. My books.

Did you make anyone happy today?

Reblogged from Reading After Midnight:

Once a group of 50 people was attending a seminar.
Suddenly the speaker stopped and decided to do a group activity. He started giving each one a balloon. Each one was asked to write his/her name on it using a marker pen. Then all the balloons were collected and put in another room.



Now these delegates were let in that room and asked to find the balloon which had their name written, within 5 minutes. Everyone was frantically searching for their name, colliding with each other, pushing around others and there was utter chaos.
At the end of 5 minutes no one could find their own balloon.


Now each one was asked to randomly collect a balloon and give it to the person whose name was written on it. Within minutes everyone had their own balloon.


The speaker began:

"Exactly this is happening in our lives.
Everyone is frantically looking for happiness all around, not knowing where it is.

Our happiness lies in the happiness of other people. Give them their happiness; you will get your own happiness. And this is the purpose of human life…the pursuit of happiness."


A unique reading experience

Alisiyad - Sarah R. Suleski

Link for the web novel:

Alisiyad is unlike any story I'd ever read before. It was an absolute delight to get to know this novel and its author.


This book shows mystery, fantasy, romance, angst and what not. The prose and writing style is a sign of the author's merit and passion.

The growth of the main characters- Liseli and Russell- was so life-like...They made their own mistakes, neither of them was perfect...but their story grew on me.

If you are thinking romance is the only main theme, you are wrong. The world-building and the magical elements will blow your mind.


This book is a perfect example of "Show, not tell." The author never dumps too much info after you've reached the climax. She leaves just enough breadcrumbs to leave you hungry for more.

I read this novel on the author's website, and those seeking a book that creates a perfect reading experience should at least take a peek at Alisiyad; I don't know about you, but I wouldn't miss this for the world.

Enough said. This novel deserves five stars through and through.

The only drawback would be-the readers don't get to know whether everything goes okay with Liseli and Russell, but that's life. "Happily ever after; the END" doesn't happen in reality. And there comes the sequel: "Queen of Seven", which is ongoing.
So, what are you waiting for? Go read Alisiyad right now and find yourself immersed in a world filled with magic, gates, rivers and a story worthy of every reader's dream.

Link for the web novel again:


The Pursuit of Marriage

The Pursuit of Marriage - Victoria Alexander Giving it 2, actually, 1.5 stars...What saved it from being rated 1 star... was its neatly wrapped up ending..

It had a promising start....somewhat. But then the story dragged on after 60% of the plot...I mean, I've read better romance and believable stories in 150 or 400 pages...This one could easily be finished in 150 pages... Found nothing very intriguing about either the hero or the heroine...

I'm glad it's finished. Felt excited at first...felt bored to the point of infinity during the middle; and felt relieved near the end...

I expected much, much better from the author who wrote "Love with the Proper Husband"... I'm disappointed.

The story had a few good moments, comical, then whole-body-shivering moments, but they couldn't make up for what I didn't like about the story or the characters.... Which is, they didn't...charm me enough.

Maybe my mood didn't suit with the story... There are others out there who have liked this book a lot, so don't pay heed to my words, go read this book and find out for yourselves whether this story is for you.

The Story Coaster from artist Grant Snider

Reblogged from Books2day:

Grant Snider is the enterprising creator of Incidental Comics and also does posters. This one seemed especially appropriate for BookLikes.


Click on the picture to see more of Grant's works:



19 Quirky Conundrums Only Book Lovers Understand ;)

Reblogged from Kate says:

old book

 OMG!! How come strangers know so much about me?!


via HuffPost:


1. Finding a comfortable reading position is a never-ending quest. Chair or bed? Side or back? In a box? With a fox?

2. On airplanes, you hesitantly flick on the overhead light while everyone else is napping.

3. Paper cuts may look like minor injuries, but the pain can be excruciating.

4. Walking and reading at the same time requires hand-eye coordination only professional athletes have been endowed with.

5. What on earth are you supposed to do with the jacket on a hardcover while you're reading it? Keep it on and risk damaging it? Take it off and store it in a weird nook, never to find it again?

6. Deciding what to read is a choice that presents you with an embarrassment of riches.

7. The typeface and page length of a book can seriously impact your reading experience, sometimes for the worse (sans-serif font is a huge no-no).

8. A book can be composed of the worst drivel you've ever laid eyes on, you're still afflicted with major guilt when you banish it to the "I Will Never Ever Ever Finish This. Like, Ever." shelf.

9. You lament time that you've wasted in the past; all of those hours scouring celebrity Twitters could have been put towards finally reading Moby Dick!


10. Some people count down the minutes until their lunch hour; you count down the minutes until Jeffery Eugenides or Donna Tartt releases their next book (roughly 5 million for Tartt, but who's counting?!)

11. Finishing a book you loved is like saying goodbye to a good friend. You've been through so much together! And while you may see each other again, it won't be quite the same.

12. Forget finding roommates; the most stressful thing about moving is figuring out a way to transport boxes upon boxes of heavy books.


13. You're constantly rethinking your bookshelf strategy. Should you color-coordinate, or take a more practical approach, such as publication date or alphabetization? Or, if you're feeling ambitious, should you tackle the autobiographical bookshelf, à la Rob Gordon from High Fidelity?

14. Your mood is directly impacted by the mood of the book that you're reading; your friends have learned to avoid you during Dostoyevsky months or Bret Easton Ellis weeks.

15. You take found books home like abandoned puppies, chirping, "Can we keep it?!" That'd be well and good if it didn't happen once a day.

16. One does not simply walk by a bookstore. One must poke around, at the very least, and one usually ends up filling one's tote bag with more books than one can carry.

17. "I don't read" is a relationship death knell, akin to "I loathe my mother" or "I enjoy upsetting kittens."

18. You may or may not own two (or three or four) copies of a beloved book. You can't help it, the redesigned covers are irresistible!


19. Laundry day and other important obligations get completely overlooked when you're in the middle of a great, un-put-downable book. "Same shirt Saturday"? Sorry you're not sorry. 




Salvation - Noelle  Adams Intense read.... breathtaking romance.... dark & light feel at the same time.... brilliant story.... a story woven and told in an amazing voice... real and the best hero a story could have... a broken but admirable main character....
PRAISES ARE NOT ENOUGH FOR THIS BOOK.... It needs to be experienced...from start to finish, at a stretch....

Love it. Love the hero and heroine. Love the plot's intensity. Love the execution of the plot. Love the climax points. Love every tiny details about the book.
I love that I've had the chance to read such a beautiful book... Can't thank the author enough. :D
My expectations from the author has reached sky-high... Yet, despite that, I don't think I'll ever come across a story with the same theme so amazingly told as in 'Salvation"...

A Simple Guide to Bookstore Etiquette: FUN! :D

Reblogged from Quirk Books:


(image via the awesome Blue Willow Books)


Shopping in a bookstore is a bit like shopping at a hardware store: if you’re there for something specific, you need to know a thing or two about the item you’re looking for before attempting to find it in the aisles. If you’re there to browse, the world is your oyster.


As a bookseller, I’ve often heard people ask for a book they saw several weeks ago, on that table near the café (you know the one!), that had a blue cover. But lots books go on display every week, on many tables, and some of those books were published two, five, ten years ago! Feeling helpless and apologetic, all I can do is point out general sections of the store where they might find blue book. So to correct future sadness, arm yourself with bookstore etiquette and prepare to fill your arms with all the books you could ever want!


Unknown Object

Before you leave your home . . . you must decide: 1) are you just planning to browse, or 2) are you going to look for something specific? If you’re planning to browse, you’re usually in the clear. Ask a bookseller for the genre you’d like to explore, and they’ll happily point you in the right direction—and even offer some of their favorite books for you to peruse! (This is one of the many reasons it's better to buy books from human beings). If you’re looking for something specific, write down everything you know about the book that’s searchable: author, title, ISBN (those fun numbers on the barcode that start 978-la-di-da), genre, publication date, publisher. It will help you and the bookseller narrow down that book.


You’ve entered the bookstore . . . and you’re overwhelmed with all the books and displays and sections! That’s okay. A bookseller is always nearby to help. If they’re working with another customer, wait patiently. The attention they’re giving that customer is just the sort of attention they’ll give you once they’ve finished: undivided, enthusiastic, and determined! (See? People power!)


You’ve found your book(s) . . . but you’re not sure if you really want it. Will you read it? Will you like it? Any bookworm will tell you that, if you’re wavering, and in order to make such a big decision to build a connection with a book, you need to read the first few pages (or chapters!) to know whether you’ll like it. Some say open it in the middle and start reading. Others say start at the beginning. Some employ the page 69 test. Me, I always read the first 50 pages when I’m unsure. If I’m still hooked, I buy the book.


You’ve found your book(s) . . . and you notice the price(s). The price the bookstore offers is typically the price the publisher wants for the book (unless, of course, you’re in a used bookstore). With the changing economy, booksellers know money can be tight and that books may be pricey. Never complain about the price to a bookseller, or that it’s cheaper on Amazon (we're human beings! We have feelings!) Denying a purchase in-store means the death of the bookstore and the loss of a job! Well, maybe not that day, but eventually. And who would want bookstores to disappear forever?


Not the bookworms! If the price still bothers you, ask about discount programs. Many bookstores offer discounts to customers! A bookseller will happily explain the program for you. And if you're really hard-up, try browsing a used bookstore—the books are worn, but loved!


Head on over to the cash registers . . . and purchase those lovely books!

Go home . . . and enjoy the written word! Feel free to come back to the bookstore and gush all about the book to a bookseller – they love hearing your thoughts.



(image via flickr)


But let’s say your visit doesn’t quite follow this pattern. What should you do?


You thought you knew what you came for, but forgot . . . it’s okay. You know you saw it in the New York Times, or it was on Good Morning America this morning, or that it had “Angels” in the title and you think the author’s name was “Brown.” That’s still enough for a bookseller to find what you’re looking for. If you know it’s going to be a movie this fall, or that the book belongs in History, or that it was published in paperback in January and it is a Young Adult retelling of HG Well’s The Island of Doctor Moreau, the bookseller can Google those key ideas and find it for you. Every little searchable thing helps – except the color of the cover or the location of the display.


You have something to return . . . so you know the bookseller behind the cash register is hoping against all hope you have a receipt dated within the return policy. You’ve read the fine print on the front or back of the receipt about dates and returns. Your book within the return policy and it’s in good condition. Gratefully accept whatever form of return the bookseller can offer – cash, credit return, or store credit – and find another book to take home!


But let’s say you are outside of the return policy, don’t have a receipt, or the book is damaged. No one wants to be grumpy, and nothing ever runs smoothly when the air is filled with negativity and tension. Calmly explain your scenario, and the bookseller will give you the best return policy option available.


You read some books in a comfy chair or in the café/coffee shop . . . and decide you don’t want them. You don’t remember where you found them, so you find a bookseller and ask for the books to be put away, because your grandmother always said, “Clean up after your mess!” This makes a bookseller happy and it gives an opportunity for a future customer to find the book. Piles of forgotten books throughout the store only cause anger and mayhem – two words that should never belong in such a haven.


You’re enjoying the atmosphere of the café/coffee shop . . . and you purchase a coffee, tea, scone, or cookie. That’s excellent! You would never walk into a restaurant carrying a McDonald’s bag, taking up table space and eating food from an outside menu, right?


If you’re still curious about bookstore etiquette, peek into the mind of booksellers by visiting Minions of Isidore or cracking open Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops – funny, charming, and entirely too accurate.


Make a bookseller’s day with your charm, intelligence, politeness, eagerness, and etiquette!


Laura Crockett is a graduate student, bookseller, Anglophile, tea devotee, musician, and book hoarder. Everything good in her boils down to her Midwestern upbringing. Follow her Downton Abbey obsessions on Twitter (@LECrockett) and book interests on her blog


Graffiti Moon

Graffiti Moon - Cath Crowley A very feel-good book. Funny at times and weird since the beginning; a bit gloomy, moody, and dark just before and around the climax; hopeful near and through the end. Lucy was a very likable character, others weren't so bad either. ;)
This book made me a little bit happier... :D
I'm glad to have read it.
Review to come! :D

2014 Book Adaptations Calendar, Part One - Collected

Reblogged from BookLikes:

If you love books and movies, we've got something for you. This year will bring over 30 book adaptations! But remember: Don't judge a book by its movie. Read first. We've prepared book to movie calendar for those who love reading and watching. Enjoy!


Lone Survivor - Movie release date: January 10


Sherri Loves to Read: I feel 

honored having read this book. And I feel even more honored to know there are men out there in this world who will fight for our country with this level of guts, determination and love of country.

Read more: Lone Survivor: The Eyewitness Account of Operation Redwing and the Lost Heroes of SEAL Team 10



A Most Wanted Man - Movie release date: January 19


Anton Corbijn's adaptation of John Le Carre's psychological novel.


Chechen Muslim illegally immigrates to Hamburg, where he gets caught up in the international war on terror.



Movie release date: January 17


Based on character created by Tom Clancy. Movie title: Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit


Patricia Reding, Author: I do enjoy a book that will take me away for a good while! In this case, the 800+ pages kept me occupied for a couple of days and each time I put it down, I looked forward to going back for more. What fun! Read more about Clancy's book: A Spy Thriller and Horror Story Wrapped up in One



White Bird in a Blizzard - Movie release date: January 20


White Bird in a Blizzard is an upcoming French thriller co-produced, written and directed by Gregg Araki.


A young woman's life is thrown into chaos when her mother disappears.


White Bird in a Blizzard evokes works of Kathryn Harrison and Joyce Carol Oates - and confirms Kasischke's arrival as a major literary talent.



I, Frankenstein Genesis - Movie release date: January 24


Do you know Frankenstein story?


Her Fine EyesThe modern horror genre has evolved a bit more in paying attention to world building, and in telling the story via a narrative that imparts some of the excitement of the tale. But Shelley's foray is original and thought-provoking, even two hundred years later.

Read more on Frankenstein.



Labor Day - Movie release date: January 31


Kinga's BooksThere are a few reasons why I listened to this book. 

1) It’s called ‘Labor Day’ and I listened to it on the Labor Day. This one is actually more of a coincidence than an actual reason but let’s put it there anyway.
2) It takes place in New Hampshire in early September, which is when I arrived in New Hampshire twelve years ago to spend a year there. This is the nostalgia reason.
3) I suppose I’ll come clean and say it: the audiobook is read by Wilson Bethel who looks like this...

Read more: Joyce Maynard - Labor Day


The Monuments Men - Movie release date: February 7


The Fish Place: What is it about art? Everyone has different tastes, but some art is just, well mind blowing isn't the word. We all share that gut reaction, evn if the pieces of art that evoke them are different from person to person.War has been fought for art.

Read more: The Monuments Men.



Vampire Academy - Movie release date: February 14


Ronyell (a.k.a Rabbitearsblog):

Wow and double wow, this book was a brilliant introduction to the “Vampire Academy” series and after I had read this book, I really wanted to read more about these awesome characters! Full of drama, mystery, action and hot romance, “Vampire Academy” is definitely one novel that will take the paranormal world by storm!

Read more: Vampire Academy (Vampire Academy, #1) by Richelle Mead



Winter's Tale - Movie release date: February 14


LAUREN B. DAVISOne of those rare books I read over and over. Helprin is a master of magical realism. Haunting, transporting, a magical machine. Splendid prose, a flying horse, the Short Tails roaming the rafters of Grand Central Station, a tubercular heiress on a rooftop, and Peter Lake -- master mechanic and second-story man of New York's Belle Epoque.

Read more: Winter's Tale.



Endless Love - Movie release date: February 14


KaetheI did go on to read the book which is a very compelling story of an obsessed guy, seriously, disturbingly obsessed. It is way cooler than the Brooke Shields film might suggest.Lessons learned: good books are often made into mediocre films, and one should never laugh at someone else's "good book", especially if one hasn't read it yet.

Read more: Endless Love.



 Therese Raquin - Movie release date February 21


Based on Thérèse Raquin - Émile Zola/ Movie title: In Secret


Books for Young Humans: Way back in the late 20th century when I was a teenager and the genre fiction 'industry,' with its absurdly blood-soaked TV tie ins hadn't been invented, I (and many others my age) slumped on the sofa with the novels of  DH Lawrence - yes, really- with EM Forster, Emile Zola and of course, a bit of Shakespeare. This is what was available and if you had parents who were not great readers, this was rebellion.

Read more: Returning to classics would be the greatest teen rebellion.



A Long Way Down - Movie release date: March 7 (U.K.)


TCWriter: Long Way Down is an odd book, but as is typical of Hornby's work, it's engrossing and brilliantly written. It begins on the roof of a building, where four people - intent on committing suicide by throwing themselves off - have run into each other.

Read more: A Long Way Down



Divergent - Movie release date: March 21


me reading books: This book was awesome and great fun to read. I love a writer that can be ruthless with their own creation. In the YA section I have only come across two so far – Rowling, J.K. and Suzanne Collins. Veronica Roth is now number three on that list. She created an interesting environment and put a story filled with action mystery and – yes – love into it


Read more: Veronica Roth - Divergent




Heaven in for Rental - Movie release date: April 16


TrishI needed this book at this time in my life. Extremely uplifting to me. This is a story of a young boy who experienced a trip to heaven during an emergency surgery. It describes the struggle his family went through and how they made it through many hardships.


Read more: Heaven is for Real.



 The Fault on Our Stars - Movie release date: June 6


Pavlina readmore-sleepless: Words cannot express how fantastic this book is!! 

It's one of these books which have to be experienced to be properly understood... This book left me thinking and thinking... I cried like it was personal experience...


Read more: The Fault in Our Stars 



Movie release date: June 6


Based on All You Need Is Kill - Hiroshi Sakurazaka / Movie title Edge of Tomorrow 


Gypsy Librarian on Books: This was interesting and different. The protagonist is a soldier who fights alien invaders with a suit of armor known as a "jacket." His problem is that he keeps dying and then coming back to battle again. And then he meets the supersoldier known as the Full Metal Bitch.


Read more: All You Need Is Kill


Movie release date: June 13


Sequel of Hiccup: How to Train Your Dragon - Cressida Cowell / Movie title: How to trail your dragon 2


A Lazy Bookluver: I have to admit that after seeing the movie, I wanted to read this book. Cressida Crowell writes a cute and fun story about Hiccup and his dragon Toothless. The language is written in a way that kids at a young age will enjoy it even if it isn’t at their reading level.

Read more: How To Train Your Dragon by Cressida Cowell



Wild - Movie release date not set: 2014, in post-production

meganbaxter: Cheryl Strayed loses her mother at 22, is divorced by 26, and lost. She decides, with little prep and more will than planning, to hike the Pacific Crest Trail. And she does. I admired this book for refusing to make neat little narrative bows out of her life and experience.

Read more: Wild: From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail


Serena - Movie release date not set: 2014


Mel's Reviews: I want to start out by saying this is an excellent story, and worth reading. I loved it. I really don’t want to say too much about it, because if I do, I may ruin the book for people.

Read more: Serena



Before I Go To Sleep - Release Date not set: 2014


Rayne Hall, Fantasy and Horror Author: I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Although the pace is slow and not much happens, the suspense is high, and I always had to read on to find out more.

Read more: Before I Go to Sleep



Which movies based on books can't you wait to see?


Part two to be released soon :)


Unlocked - Courtney Milan A beautiful novella. I have no complaints. Of all the books in the Turner series, this one won and warmed my heart. :D
Even Diana changed by the end! I guess everyone has it in him/her, the will and way to change for good. Courtney Milan has made me have hope again...

Brilliantly fleshed out characters, all of them. Especially the hero and the heroine.
So, in brief, I loved it, this tale of taking second chances, forgiveness, redemption, and of course love.
Well, the end came a bit too quickly... I wanted more! :D Overall, a good tale.

Unveiled (Hqn)

Unveiled - Courtney Milan I've already fallen in love with the first book in the Turner series, and I'm not even halfway through!
Why, oh why, didn't I read it sooner? Why did I get such a wrong impression from the second book?

Mark Turner is definitely more interesting in this book than in his own book(the second one: "Unclaimed")...HOW?

A little bit of spoiler....Ash never suspecting that Margaret could actually bring him down to his knees... the Bam and the Whap.... :D :D :D Ash is literally crumpled on the floor....Oh, how I admire Margaret, and how I love Mark for confounding/tricking PLUS teasing his brother this way! I am grinning right now because of that, and I need to get back to that situation, as I'm currently reading this book and am only on page 85... ^__^

After finishing the whole book, my initial love has faded... Nope, I'm still too much taken with the Brothers Sinister series, no other historical romances can match their stories, apparently.
Sigh. 2.75 stars. If I were to give a different rating to it, I would be lying. We can't help liking or less liking something, can we?
The way the conflicts were solved near the end, they were ok-ish, but nothing quite surprising as Courtney Milan delivered in her other books.
There is one character who I wanted to like so much, but he couldn't be fully redeemed: Richard. Well, I can hope he will change gradually...

Having read Ash's and Mark's stories, I'm afraid to expect more for Smite.... It's the last chance. I want to like Smite's story, I really do.

Don't get me wrong, I do adore the bond among the Turner brothers, it's just...with Unclaimed and Unveiled, what happened is this---I feel elated at the start, feel good throughout the second part of the journey, then the third portion tends to drag on, and the end comes a bit late, even though the end leaves no loose ties. I just can't connect with the romance as the story comes to the third part, they feel a bit too good and hastened to be real.
I connected with the romance initially, but then, after a point, I couldn't connect anymore. It was just too easy. Especially after both Smite and Mark found out... And the way Ash acted after finding out.

I'm sure there will be other readers who can connect with the romance till the end of the journey, but I couldn't be one of them(I tried.)
For what it's worth, I liked Ash a lot for his bond with his brothers.

Now, the only hope left is the last brother, Smite's story and the novellas. I have to reign in my expectations and see what happens.

Unclaimed (Hqn)

Unclaimed - Courtney Milan 2.65 stars. [Sorry, author of my beloved Brothers Sinister series.]

Kinda let-down for a Courtney Milan book (My expectations from this author is really, really high), but the way the conflicts were solved near the end....I must admit....were AWESOME!

EDIT. 2.85 stars. I realize, after having read the 1st book in the Turner series, that I actually liked Mark and Jessica's story a lot more than I thought I did. Especially because of the ENDING, where Mark met with Jessica's family and changed things for the better. Hmm. I do respect him. If the Mark in Unveiled was COOL, the Mark in Unclaimed is Breath-stealing.... :D

The Countess Conspiracy (The Brothers Sinister, Book 3)

The Countess Conspiracy - Courtney Milan Have started reading it just now... It's my B'day gift to me. :D


Have finished it. It's just too phenomenal and beautiful to talk about. Sebastian and Violet and the story(which is definitely infinitely much more than romance) ......they are unlike anything I've ever come across.

Hats off to the author, for such a brilliant work.

The first half of the book was dark, the last half was too bright. Violet's choice of action at the climax point near the end, her taking claim for her was outstandingly done!

This book doesn't deserve to have reviews, it deserves to be experienced by readers all around. It is a compliment to all the women who have gone unnoticed despite their brilliant works.

Surely, this book, this unparalleled fiction(it's horizons are way more vast than historical romance, so can't define genres) has been the best birthday gift I gave myself ever!

Feeling satisfied and a little sleep-deprived. :D

A Kiss for Midwinter (The Brothers Sinister)

A Kiss For Midwinter - Courtney Milan During the first 3/4th quarter of the book, I wept, or felt like weeping. There was so much sadness, primarily in Dr. Grantham's outlook of the world; then in Lydia's realization that she hadn't moved on from the past hurts.
Then they saved each other. It was beautiful.
This story was certainly an emotional tale, not a light-read I'd expect from every historical romance.
I forsook my sleep to finish this book. So it was definitely a worthy read. As for a coherent review, I'm not sure if I'm prepared to put my feelings (about what this book conveyed to me) in writing. Perhaps someday I'll revisit their story, and a proper review would come.

It was unlike any Brothers Sinister story, but I was moved to the core while reading it. It has a happy ending, so, thankfully, I didn't end up in tears, the last 1/4 quarter put my fears to rest, and made me believe in hope again. :D

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