friday finds // historical fiction is the best


this meme is hosted by the lovely jenn at a daily rhythm

it’s time for a friday finds.

i have SO MUCH more books to show you since i updated my to-read shelf in Goodreads but for now, i’ll only be showing three books. let us do this.

I Shall Be Near You
Erin McCabe
Historical Fiction

long story short: it’s the civil war and rosetta doesn’t want her husband to join the military, but he does. so she dresses up as a man and goes with him.

Goodreads Summary:

An extraordinary novel about a strong-willed woman who disguises herself as a man in order to fight beside her husband in the Civil War, inspired by a real female soldier’s letters home.

Rosetta doesn’t want her new husband Jeremiah to enlist, but he joins up, hoping to make enough money that they’ll be able to afford their own farm someday. Though she’s always worked by her father’s side as the son he never had, now that Rosetta is a wife she’s told her place is inside with the other women. But Rosetta decides her true place is with Jeremiah, no matter what that means, and to be with him she cuts off her hair, hems an old pair of his pants, and signs up as a Union soldier.

Rosetta drills with the men, prepares herself for battle, and faces the tension as her husband comes to grips with having a fighting wife. Fearing discovery of her secret, Rosetta’s strong will clashes with Jeremiah’s as their marriage is tested by war. Inspired by over two hundred and fifty documented accounts of the women who fought in the Civil War while disguised as men, I Shall Be Near To You is the intimate story, in Rosetta’s powerful and gorgeous voice, of the drama of marriage, one woman’s amazing exploits, and the tender love story that can unfold when two partners face life’s challenges side by side.

The Last Pilot
Benjamin Johncock
Historical Fiction, Space

long story short: SPACE

Goodreads Summary:

“Harrison sat very still. On the screen was the surface of the moon.”

Jim Harrison is a test pilot in the United States Air Force, one of the exalted few. He spends his days cheating death in the skies above the Mojave Desert and his nights at his friend Pancho’s bar, often with his wife, Grace. She and Harrison are secretly desperate for a child-and when, against all odds, Grace learns that she is pregnant, the two are overcome with joy.

While America becomes swept up in the fervor of the Space Race, Harrison turns his attention home, passing up the chance to become an astronaut to welcome his daughter, Florence, into the world. Together, he and Grace confront the thrills and challenges of raising a child head-on. Fatherhood is different than flying planes-less controlled, more anxious-however the pleasures of watching Florence grow are incomparable. But when his family is faced with a sudden and inexplicable tragedy, Harrison’s instincts as a father and a pilot are put to test. As a pilot, he feels compelled to lead them through it-and as a father, he fears that he has fallen short.

The aftermath will haunt the Harrisons and strain their marriage as Jim struggles under the weight of his decisions. Beginning when the dust of the Second World War has only just begun to settle and rushing onward into the Sixties, Benjamin Johncock traces the path of this young couple as they are uprooted by events much larger than themselves. The turns the Harrisons take together are at once astonishing and recognizable; their journey, both frightening and full of hope. Set against the backdrop of one of the most emotionally charged periods in American history, The Last Pilot is a mesmerizing debut novel of loss and finding courage in the face of it from an extraordinary new talent. 

anywayi’m a huge space person, if that’s what we’re called. i love space, the solar system, exoplanets, BASICALLY ASTRONOMY. i’m so fascinated by planets and stars and dark matter and whatever. Interstellar is one of my favourite movies, i hope this becomes one of my favourite books.

Lost in Translation: An Illustrated Compendium of Untranslatable Words from Around the World
Ella Sanders

long story short: a bunch of words from other languages that don’t have a counterpart in the English language.

Goodreads Summary:

An artistic collection of more than 50 drawings featuring unique, funny, and poignant foreign words that have no direct translation into English. 

Did you know that the Japanese language has a word to express the way sunlight filters through the leaves of trees? Or that there’s a Finnish word for the distance a reindeer can travel before needing to rest?

Lost in Translation brings to life more than fifty words that don’t have direct English translations with charming illustrations of their tender, poignant, and humorous definitions. Often these words provide insight into the cultures they come from, such as the Brazilian Portuguese word for running your fingers through a lover’s hair, the Italian word for being moved to tears by a story, or the Swedish word for a third cup of coffee.

In this clever and beautifully rendered exploration of the subtleties of communication, you’ll find new ways to express yourself while getting lost in the artistry of imperfect translation.

i’m a Filipino which means i’m bilingual. there are tons of words in our language that can’t be translated in English. gigil, kilig and more. fellow filipinos, u know what im talking ’bout.

 anyway, i hope you enjoyed my posts! be sure to check out these books too! thank you for reading and um, bye!

goodreads // bloglovin // tumblr

goodbye 2014

goodbye2014design by Odelia of The Random Book Blogger
background image source


So, 2014 has ended. I don’t really know what to say. To be honest, I loved 2014. I had done so much and saying goodbye to this year feels like saying goodbye to an old friend.

Not to mention I’m getting older. *groan*

top 10 reads of 2014

This is in no particular order. 
*my review in this book is bad and weird and plain ugh

by the numbers:

  • 72 Books. 
    • I finished 72 books this year! I’m ignoring the fact that I read less books this year than the previous one. I will continue to pat myself on the back. Thank you very much

Screen Shot 2014-12-31 at 4.40.53 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-31 at 4.40.59 PM Screen Shot 2014-12-31 at 4.41.05 PMBE PROUD

  • 18 Stories.
    • I wrote 18 stories this year! AND IM ALSO GOING TO IGNORE THE FACT THAT I DIDNT FINISH MOST OF THEM. Still patting.
  • 75 Blog posts.
    • *cracks knuckles* Nothing to ignore here.


  • Pictures.
    • (These are all taken by me. Please credit when you want to use it.)


 first things first:

No, I’m not the realest.

  • First time to attend a bookish event.
  • First year of blogging.
  • First year of reviewing books.
  • First year to take writing seriously.
  • First year of BookTubeAThon.
  • First year of Christmas BookTubeAThon.
  • First year to actually study hard.
  • First year to become productive in blogging, writing and reading.
  • First year to broaden my knowledge of songs. Yes, I know. Odelia, WTF? Well, I wasn’t much of a music person before this year. Then came Spotify and my life just changed.

things i’m proud of:

  • Balancing writing, school and blogging.
  • Learned how to become productive in my hobbies.
  • Learned how to write to do lists and schedules.
  • Found websites and listened to advice on how to make my lifestyle healthier.
  • Became closer to my God, my family and my self.

2014 was a great year. I loved it.

Thank you SO MUCH for going through this blogging journey with me for 2014. Thank YOU for liking, commenting or just giving me a stat. Thank you so much.

Here we go, my last outro for this year. *deep breath*

Thank you for reading and um, bye!

goodreads // bloglovin // tumblr

5 books that have mind-blowing plots |odelia lists


Yeah, I don’t know.

Before you ask, yes, I did run out of ideas. My blog was getting to full of memes lately. Solution?

List some books. Let’s get started.


I mean those plots that you wished you thought of. Or plots that make you extremely jealous of an author’s mind. Or plots that make you feel inferior with their creativity. Like that. 

School for Good and Evil
by Soman Chainani

Goodreads Summary
This year, best friends Sophie and Agatha are about to discover where all the lost children go: the fabled School for Good & Evil, where ordinary boys and girls are trained to be fairy tale heroes and villains. As the most beautiful girl in Gavaldon, Sophie has dreamed of being kidnapped into an enchanted world her whole life. With her pink dresses, glass slippers, and devotion to good deeds, she knows she’ll earn top marks at the School for Good and graduate a storybook princess. Meanwhile Agatha, with her shapeless black frocks, wicked pet cat, and dislike of nearly everyone, seems a natural fit for the School for Evil.

But when the two girls are swept into the Endless Woods, they find their fortunes reversed—Sophie’s dumped in the School for Evil to take Uglification, Death Curses, and Henchmen Training, while Agatha finds herself in the School For Good, thrust amongst handsome princes and fair maidens for classes in Princess Etiquette and Animal Communication.. But what if the mistake is actually the first clue to discovering who Sophie and Agatha really are…?

Odelia’s Summary
2 girls. One Nico di Angelo perfect for Evil and one Bianca di Angelo perfect for Good. But then they get interchanged. Nico goes to the School of Pink Dresses and Bianca goes to the School of Teaching Kids How to Kill People.

But seriously. This book is good.

The Light Between Oceans
by M.L. Stedman

Goodreads Summary
After four harrowing years on the Western Front, Tom Sherbourne returns to Australia and takes a job as the lighthouse keeper on Janus Rock, nearly half a day’s journey from the coast. To this isolated island, where the supply boat comes once a season and shore leaves are granted every other year at best, Tom brings a young, bold, and loving wife, Isabel. Years later, after two miscarriages and one stillbirth, the grieving Isabel hears a baby’s cries on the wind. A boat has washed up onshore carrying a dead man and a living baby.

Odelia’s Summary
This couple try to have a baby multiple times. But after so many failed attempts, they stop. Then a baby washes up on the beach. Will they keep it? 

It’s beautiful. Read it. I cried. More reasons for you to read it.

by R.J. Palacio

Goodreads Summary
August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances?

Odelia’s Summary
A kid names Auggie was born with a facial deformity. Then he goes to school.

Fudge guys, this book is also good.

David Levithan

Goodreads Summary
There’s never any warning about where it will be or who it will be. A has made peace with that, even established guidelines by which to live: Never get too attached. Avoid being noticed. Do not interfere.

It’s all fine until the morning that A wakes up in the body of Justin and meets Justin’s girlfriend, Rhiannon. From that moment, the rules by which A has been living no longer apply. Because finally A has found someone he wants to be with—day in, day out, day after day

Odelia’s Summary
A guy named “A” wakes up in a different body EVERYDAY. Enough said.

The Martian
by Andy Weir

Goodreads Summary
Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first men to walk on the surface of Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first man to die there.

It started with the dust storm that holed his suit and nearly killed him, and that forced his crew to leave him behind, sure he was already dead. Now he’s stranded millions of miles from the nearest human being, with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive–and even if he could get word out, his food would be gone years before a rescue mission could arrive. Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to get him first.

Odelia’s Summary
A guy is stuck in Mars. Ta-freaking-da.

I haven’t read this BUT I BADLY WANT TO.

This was fun! Anyway, those are the books that blew my mind.

Thanks for watching and um, bye!

ocean at the end of the lane | thursday quotables

thursdayquotablesnew1Hosted by Bookshelf Fantasies

The Ocean at the End of the Lane
by Neil Gaiman
June 18th 2013 by William Morrow Books

Hi new meme! *waves*

Today, I chose Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman. I read this book around October, I think. And I loved it! Seriously, Neil Gaiman. Don’t even remind me of him unless you want some serious fangirling. I honestly get excited over his writing style. Is that weird? Oh well.

The Ocean at the End of the Lane can be also called The Ocean of Quotes. It’s filled with them. So let’s get started.

“Grown-ups don’t look like grown-ups on the inside either. Outside, they’re big and thoughtless and they always know what they’re doing. Inside, they look just like they always have. Like they did when they were your age. Truth is, there aren’t any grown-ups. Not one, in the whole wide world.” 
“I do not miss childhood, but I miss the way I took pleasure in small things, even as greater things crumbled. I could not control the world I was in, could not walk away from things or people or moments that hurt, but I took joy in the things that made me happy.”
“Monsters come in all shapes and sizes. Some of them are things people are scared of. Some of them are things that look like things people used to be scared of a long time ago. Sometimes monsters are things people should be scared of, but they aren’t.”

By just reading those snippets, you could already see how simple and beautiful this book is. 

Those are my Quotables! 

Thanks for reading and um, bye!

odelia reviews: where she went by gayle forman

Where She Went
by Gayle Forman
2/2 If I Stay
YA Contemporary
★★ (2.28)

(from my rating system: i’m sorry if i offended you but i just really hate this book.)

Hello misleading title and even more misleading synopsis!

“It’s been three years since the devastating accident… three years since Mia walked out of Adam’s life forever.”

Oh yeah, hiiiiii typical YA cover. Glad to meet you. (not)

Oh I completely forgot you, unnecessary sequel!

First things first, no, this was not as good as If I Stay. (And I didn’t even love If I Stay.)

Second things second (?), this is Adam’s POV. And I did not know that. That beginning sounds like Mia. It screams Mia. The synopsis doesn’t say anything about it being Adam’s POV. Aaaaand let’s not mention the cover which is Mia. How was I supposed to know that this is Adam’s POV?

“I find the need to remind myself of the temporariness of a day, to reassure myself that I got through yesterday, I’ll get through today.”

Sounds like a depressed person who – from reading the first book – will be Mia. Sounds like a coma patient who woke up even if her whole family died. Sounds like a girl who has been through tough times. What it doesn’t sound like is a guy who is heartbroken celebrity.

Okay maybe I’m being too harsh. (I am.) Let me give a plus point:

One of my favorite things about reading books is getting a different perspective. I start learning and understanding what a character feels like without actually being in their shoes. To me, that is incredible. So, it was definitely fascinating to read about a celebrity’s POV. To be honest, I did not consider thinking how hard a famous person’s life is. I know it might be way easier than living in poverty but when I read this book, I learned that a celebrity’s life isn’t just some fancy wardrobes and red carpets. How would you feel if you’re just walking down the street, just wanting to buy ice cream sandwiches and suddenly you hear fangirls screaming? People surround you and started taking pictures without your permission. And then everybody’s talking all at once, asking you some very personal questions. How would you feel if you live like that every single day? I loved the fact that I get to experience a superstar’s life instead of reading another book about a normal person’s point of view. 

Let’s get back to the part that irritated me.

Why wouldn’t Mia just tell Adam the reason she went away? And the thing that made me dislike this book so much: If you woke up for this person, this person you really love, why would you push him away? Why would you leave him without a trace? Why?

I read some reviews and found this particular one that has all the things I want to say. It was written by Kat and I quote:

I just can’t get over the fact that if Mia had just said what she was feeling, none of this shit would have happened.”

Another thing Kat pointed out in her review: Yes, Mia is very strange too but how about Adam?

I look at her there in the shadows of the shut down city, her hair falling onto her face and I can see her trying to figure out if I’ve lost it. And I have to fight the urge to take her by the shoulders and slam her against the shuttered building until we feel the vibrations ringing through both of us. Because I suddenly want to hear her bones rattle. I want to feel the softness of her flesh give, to hear her gasp as my hip bone jams into her. I want to yank her head back until her neck is exposed. I want to rip my hands through her hair until her breath is labored. I want to make her cry and then lick up the tears. And then I want to take my mouth to hers, to devour her alive, to transmit all the things she can’t understand

But all in all, I haven’t lost my parents. I’ve heard that “You won’t know grief unless you experienced it.” And I haven’t. So I can’t get too mad at Mia but pushing people away? that’s not a good solution

odelia reviews: deadly sins by kori miller

Deadly Sins
by Kori Miller
Mini Series
Adult Crime

(from my rating system: the events/characters/writing just bothered me. ranting side might be on. but still liked it enough.) 

This book was given to me by the author in exchange for a honest review.

I don’t read a lot of flash fiction. Actually, let me rephrase that: I haven’t read a flash fiction book before. And I’m glad that this is my first.

I went into this book knowing that its mystery and crime. That’s it. But as I read the first 3 pages or so, I was immediately intrigued.

I wished this wasn’t flash fiction because I am genuinely curious about Dez and her history. I mean, I love Dez. By page 19, I was already taking note on how much she makes me laugh.

Why 3 stars? Well, I wished that this book would be lengthened into a novel, and if that’s not possible, a novella. I was engrossed in every scene (especially the last one) and when it ended – usually abruptly – I would be disappointed and longed for more.

I really liked this book. The writing was – I can’t place any other word – intriguing. It basically beckoned me to keep reading (and so I did). I can’t really talk about the characters because Dez is the only one with character development and I already explained how much I like her.

Over all, I enjoyed this book. But I just wished for more.