June 28, 2013

The Chocolate Thief by Laura Florand

The Chocolate Thief

Judul: The Chocolate Thief
Penulis: Laura Florand
Genre: Contemporary romance-Chicklit
Seri: Amour et Chocolat #1
Penerbit: Kensington
Tanggal terbit: 31 Juli 2012
There might be spoilers. You've been warned.
#PostingBarengBBI Juni: Romance


Paris—fashion, romantis, dan cokelat.
Namun, tidak untuk wanita Amerika sepertiku. Aku sudah tidak tahan lagi berjalan (sok) anggun dengan high heels ini. Menurutku, Paris juga bukan kota teromantis di dunia. Dan tolong catat, semua itu berawal dari Sylvain Marquis yang dengan sombongnya menolakku untuk bekerja sama.

Oh God! Apa dia tidak mengenaliku? Aku ini Cade Corey, pewaris tahta Corey Chocolate, perusahaan cokelat terbesar di Amerika. Oke, lihat saja.... Memangnya hanya dia satu-satunya pembuat cokelat terbaik di dunia ini?!

"There you go again."
"What do you mean?"
"Falling for some glamorous, rich woman who's just going to use you."

I love June! Tema baca barengnya pasti nggak jauh-jauh dari summer reading, holiday, atau sesuatu yang ringan-ringan dan berbau contemporary =D Buat baca bareng BBI dengan tema romance kali ini saya baca The Chocolate Thief-nya Laura Florand.

Cade Corey adalah wanita sukses pewaris takhta Corey Chocolate, sebuah perusahaan besar milik keluarganya yang dibangun di Maryland, Amerika. Kali ini Cade punya satu keinginan: Membuat sebuah premium-line bagi cokelat produksi Corey, yang akan dibuat eksklusif bersama seorang chocolatier terbaik dari Prancis. Target utamanya adalah Sylvain Marquis, chocolatier handal dari Paris yang tidak hanya berbakat, tapi juga tampan dan sangat passionate terhadap cokelat. Namun Cade tidak menyangka Sylvain akan menolak tawarannya ini mentah-mentah. Meskipun ia punya daftar panjang chocolatier lain yang bisa ia ajak bekerja sama, Sylvain tetaplah target utama. Cade yang geram berusaha mencari cara lain agar ia bisa mengetahui resep rahasia pembuatan cokelat dari Sylvain. Ia bertekad akan melakukan segala cara, termasuk menyamar jadi orang lain demi mengikuti workshop pembuatan cokelat oleh Sylvain maupun menyusup ke dalam tempat kerjanya. Hence the name, The Chocolate Thief.

Things that are special about The Chocolate Thief...

1. Ceritanya berlatarkan kota Paris, kota favorit semua orang saat membaca. Iya kan? Rasanya saya jarang banget nemuin buku berlatar Paris/Prancis yang nggak disukai orang-orang (Stephanie Perkins' Anna and the French Kiss, Rachmania Arunita's Eiffel I'm In Love, Gayle Forman's Just One Day, to mention a few). The Chocolate Thief nggak menggambarkan Paris secara detail, tapi suasananya tetap terasa selama membaca keseluruhan buku. There are bits of french every here and there, yang mendukung untuk menambah kesan 'Prancis' di dalam ceritanya.

2. Sudut pandang cerita menggunakan sudut pandang ketiga, baik dari sisi Cade maupun Sylvain. And Laura was good at telling the story this way. Meskipun penulisan dari POV ketiga kadang membuat cerita terasa distant dengan pembaca, tapi overall hal ini nggak jadi masalah besar saat membaca The Chocolate Thief. Not to mention the book is also very funny and entertaining! Penulisnya jelas-jelas tau apa yang ia tulis dalam ceritanya. Penggambaran maupun pendeskripsian mengenai dunia per-cokelat-an dijelaskan dengan ngalir dan enak, seolah-olah kita pembacanya sendiri lagi menikmati sebatang cokelat yang lezat.

June 25, 2013

Best Books I've Read So Far in 2013

Ugh, I hate it, hate it when my wifi is being such a snail. Grrrrr.
I'm participating back in this week's Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by the awesome people over at The Broke & The Bookish) and the topic this time is:


This year has been (and still is) a very busy year for me so I've only managed to read about 46 books *insert sad face* Sometimes it's hard to even take a peek at books that I really wanted to read, even going to a bookstore has been a rare ocassion these last months :( Okay, enough with the whining. Anyway, here is my list of favorite books that I've read this year!

Arranged Eleanor & Park Pulang Me Before You Stolen Attachments The Moon and More Origin
Tangled Golden

First row
Arranged by Katherine McKenzie: Fun, fun, fun. Desperate Anne is looking for a lifemate... by signing up herself into a dating service where she'll meet and marry Jack. Wow, complete stranger. How will the marriage be and can Jack be completely trusted? Love the whole Anne of Green Gables reference troughout the story!
Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell: Lots of people starting to recognize Rainbow Rowell's name through her works: Eleanor & Park, Attachments and (the upcoming) Fangirl. There's something special about the way Rowell writes her books... But Eleanor & Park is both painful & wonderful to read, that's for sure.
Pulang by Laila S Chudori: I rarely bought local books this year, but this one stood out. Entertaining read with a dash of history and lovely narration but definitely not boring!
Me Before You by Jojo Moyes: Cries, cries, cries! I didn't expect to meet and fall in love with Will Treynor, no. Sometimes I wish I could undo the moment when I picked this book to read... Because I'm still feeling heartbroken everytime I remember about Lou & Will's story.

Second row
Stolen by Lucy Christopher: Stolen is a letter written by Gemma to her abductor, Ty. Gemma has been stolen and brought to live with Ty in the wilderness of Australian desert. You know what's amazing about this book (beside its narration and setting description)? When you read it, you'll be able to really experience what it feels like to suffer from Stockholm Syndrome. Without even realizing it yourself!
Attachments by Rainbow Rowell: How does it feels like when your crush reads all the email you wrote to your bestfriend about him? O-M-Gee, total humiliation. But Lincoln falls in love with the Beth he reads through her emails, even when he doesn't even know how Beth looks like. Fun with minimal amount of angst and lots of swoon. Totally my kind of favorite!
The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen: Recent read. Sarah Dessen is back with her full power! A lovely coming of age story, set in summertime filled with beach, hot boys, and a pinch of family drama. Perfect read for summer! :)
Origin by Jessica Khoury: I've been to lots of places through books that I've read in 2013 but this one is totally my favorite: In the depth of amazon jungle, South America! Yay! Meet Pia, Eio and Alai, and be ready to fall in love.

Third row
Tangled by Emma Chase: Reading a story from a man's point of view can be oh so fun. Moreover it's from Drew Evans, an handsome but arrogant multibillionaire from New York. Drew is used to get anything he wants when he wants it, so what happens when he meets a woman who cannot fall upon his charms?
Golden by Jessi Kirby: My first time reading a book from Kirby and I fell in love. Golden by Jessi Kirby is another beautiful coming of age story, told in a unique way from Parker's eyes after finding Julianna Farnetti's journal. Quiet, moving, realistic, entertaining.

Do we have any of 2013's favorite books in common? Tell me what you think or share your list so I could check it out! :)

Read other awesome entries of 2013's best reads so far... here.

June 20, 2013

The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen

The Moon and More

Title: The Moon and More
Author: Sarah Dessen
Genre: Young Adult-Contemporary
Published Date: June 4th 2013
Publisher: Penguin, Viking Juvenile
Pages: 435 pg
There might be spoilers. You've been warned.


Luke is the perfect boyfriend: handsome, kind, fun. He and Emaline have been together all through high school in Colby, the beach town where they both grew up. But now, in the summer before college, Emaline wonders if perfect is good enough.

Enter Theo, a super-ambitious outsider, a New Yorker assisting on a documentary film about a reclusive local artist. Theo's sophisticated, exciting, and, best of all, he thinks Emaline is much too smart for Colby.

Emaline's mostly-absentee father, too, thinks Emaline should have a bigger life, and he's convinced that an Ivy League education is the only route to realizing her potential. Emaline is attracted to the bright future that Theo and her father promise. But she also clings to the deep roots of her loving mother, stepfather, and sisters. Can she ignore the pull of the happily familiar world of Colby?

Emaline wants the moon and more, but how can she balance where she comes from with where she's going?

Sarah Dessen's devoted fans will welcome this story of romance, yearning, and, finally, empowerment. It could only happen in the summer.

 “Welcome to Colby Realty! Name, please?”

The Moon and More is definitely a cupcake! The book is beautifully crafted. Look at that beautiful cover. I looooooove it so much! I'm always excited reading a book with beautiful covers. And it's by Sarah Dessen, anyway. You know what to expect when you read her works. But still, The Moon and More ended up as another pleasant reading experience.

Reading Emaline's story is like listening to a friend-that-you-like's experience of her lovely summer. She's just graduated from high school, working at her family's beach-realty company while waiting for college to start in August. There's a lot of things I like about Emaline: She's a small-town girl with a nice spirit who wants to do 'something big', to achieve 'something great', but also stays true to her roots. I adore the lovely dynamics she has with her family (Emaline has a dad and a father, and through this story I realized that the two titles has such different meanings). This summer she found out Luke, her long-term boyfriend since ninth grade had cheated on her, so they broke up and later Emaline's got a summer fling in the form of Theo: a NYU student who's currently working for Ivy, someone who wants to make a documentary about a painter who comes from the town Emaline lives in. As a boy who comes from a big city, Theo's not like everyone else: He's a dorky nerd who has ambitions, and is driven about the things he wants or his life's goals. He evokes this side of Emaline that exist too, the side who's yearning to get out of Colby and move somewhere new, somewhere she can live a totally different life. This different-ness of Theo is something refreshing for Emaline.

Through The Moon and More too, Emaline learns that with hope sometimes also comes disappointments, and that changes, no matter how much you're dreading it, will always be inevitable, eventhough it's in a form you did not expect before. Emaline got a chance to study at Columbia, which is a big thing for her, but unfortunately she could not accept it because his father who's been encouraging her to achieve it suddenly called off the promise of supplying the tuition fees. Their relationship has been awkward afterward, but now Emaline has to deal with him and her little 10 yo half brother, Benji (Emaline's brother from her father) who's currently spending the summer in Colby after Benji's parents decided to separate.

 “Life is long. Just because you don't get your chance right when you want or expect it doesn't mean it won't come. Fate doesn't punch a time clock or consult a schedule.”

June 09, 2013

Golden by Jessi Kirby


Title: Golden
Author: Jessi Kirby
Genre: Young Adult-Contemporary-Realistic Fiction
Published Date: May 14th 2013
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Pages: 288 pg


Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap—one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery—she decides to take a chance.

Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High—perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story—one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury.

Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live—and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.

“We're all more than the person we show to everyone else.” 

I love Golden by Jessi Kirby because I could totally relate to the main character, Parker Frost. It's always nice to find bits of ourselves in other people's story, yes?
All her life Parker has always been a good straight-A student, living the life according to the rules to live up her mother's expectations. She never dare to 'break out' or do something out of ordinary. Now in her last quarter of high school, Parker began wondering about one thing that would always cross every one's mind at least once in their life before experiencing adulthood: "Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?"

At the same time, Parker was helping his teacher, Mr Kinney, to return journals of her seniors that were written 10 years ago. She came across Julianna Farnetti's journal, a girl who was the golden couple of Parker's high school, the girl who was involved in a tragic car-crashed-into-the-river-and-the-bodies-have-never-been-found accident ten years ago with her boyfriend, Shane Cruz. Julianna is the main girl who everyone envied, the heart of the city. Her and Shane was always seen as the couple who had it all, before the accident happened right after their graduation night. Parker couldn't help but read Julianna's journal, and by revealing the mystery about that night and finding out a totally different Julianna in the journal than what everyone has always been thinking about her, this later helped Parker to change her perspective about life. As if finding the journal was the answer to Parker's life choices & questions.