Notice for Review Requests

I receive review requests weekly. However, my personal schedule is hectic and I no longer review actively. (I also manage another blog called The Toronto Cafe and Food Blog). I do read every request sent but I apologize in advance that I do not reply to them all.

If I do take on a request, I will forewarn that it may take some time before I can review it. I am now looking to review adult fiction and self-help books instead of young adult fiction because I have grown out of it. If you are to request a review for either adult fiction or self-help, I will more likely to give it a shot.

In the meantime, Stop, Drop, and Read! serves as an archive book review blog. When I have the time, I may post a review. Thank you for understanding.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Watching on Wednesday: 28 Days Later

Title: 28 Days Later
Type: Movie
Age Group: Older Teens +
Release Year: 2002
Rating: 3.5/5

Waking up in an empty hospital, Jim (Alex Palmer) tries to figure out the reason why everyone has disappeared from the city. Due to infected chimpanzees that were released 28 days earlier, a disease rapidly spread throughout London. If bitten by an infected person, one would crave for human flesh and be reduced to what is called a zombie.

I attempted to watch this movie several times. The beginning of the movie is so slow. The protagonist basically walks around in London, trying to understand what is going on for the ten minutes of the movie. To be honest, it was hard for me to stay and watch because even though when it had action afterwards, it was still a bore.

However, I found it extremely realistic in terms of a zombie movie. It's no where near the Resident Evil kind of level, but it is one that you could relate to. I think the actors did a very good job. Their acting was well done and their emotions could be felt.

28 Days Later is not a movie I would recommend right away but if you have patience and prefer zombie movies that are more realistic rather than having fight scenes everywhere, than you should give it a try.

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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Trailer Tuesday: Little Black Lies by Tish Cohen

Title: Little Black Lies
Author: Tish Cohen
Description: Sara and her father are moving to Boston from small-town Lundun, Massachusetts. She is going to attend the very elite Anton High School-- crowned "North America's Most Elite and Most Bizarre" by Time magazine, harder to get into than Harvard. As the new girl, Sara doesn't know anyone--better yet, no one knows her. And that means she can escape her family's checkered past and her father can be a surgeon instead of "Crazy Charlie" the school janitor.

What's the harm of a few little black lies? Especially if it transforms Sara into Anton's newest popular girl. But then one of the It girls at school starts looking into Sara's past, and her father's obsessive compulsive disorder takes a turn for the worse. Soon, the whole charade just might come crashing down...

Not a bad book, one I would recommend. You can see my review of it here.

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Monday, June 28, 2010

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 28/10)


None :(


Music Machine

Title: Cooler Than Me
Artist/Band: Mike Posner
Language: English
My Thoughts: This is such an awesome song. I love the coolness of it so much. It's the perfect tune to stroll downtown with. Don't believe me? Try it!

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Saturday, June 26, 2010

One Lonely Degree by C.K. Kelly Martin

Title: One Lonely Degree
Author: C.K. Kelly Martin
Age Group: Older Teens
# of Pages: 243
My Rating: 4.5/5

Finn's parents are starting to argue more and more. She fears for their separation but she can't do anything about it. At school, she meets a new student named Jersy, who ends up being an old friend back in the days.

Her best friend, Audrey, starts dating Jersy shortly after. Except when Audrey's parents found out, she got in trouble and is sent away for two months during the summer break. Unexpectedly as Finn hangs around Jersy more and more, she starts to like him herself. How can she possibly hide this from Audrey?

In the beginning, I found Finn to be one of the most pessimistic people ever. Maybe not to the extreme, but enough that I did not like her personality for quite a few chapters. After awhile she did manage to drift away from her pessimism, which made it a better read. I did find her to be realistic though, especially towards her parents' relationship and her feelings for both Audrey and Jersy. She is quite relatable and her situation does suck for she must choose between her friend and the guy she likes.

Martin kept the plot simple and used the curiosity of the audience's to continue reading. I found myself picking up the novel shortly after putting it down often. I just love the flow of the novel and you don't really notice the length because it sucks you in.

Like in her first novel, I Know It's Over, One Lonely Degree also ends off in a very realistic note. What I love about Martin's stories is that she doesn't sugarcoat things by giving a happily ever after ending. There's some happy parts and some some parts, just like in real life. It's another reason why you can't help but enjoy her novels. Her writing is also most addicting!

I definitely recommend One Lonely Degree, especially for the summer season!

Won copy from C.K. Kelly Martin.

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Friday, June 25, 2010

Dramacon: Ultimate Edition by Svetlana Chmokava

Title: Dramacon
Mangaka: Svetlana Chmokava
Age Group: Teens
Series is: Completed with 3 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1-3
My Rating: 5/5

Christie Leroux is an aspiring writer who is collaborating with her boyfriend in a comic book that they made together. She gets to visit her first anime convention with her friends and sell her comic there. First time as a newbie, she discovers another world as fangirls, anime, and love come rushing all at once!

This is my favourite non-Japanese graphic novel!

[A bit of spoilers ahead!]

In the first volume, it introduces the characters. Christie who wants to enjoy her first convention gets her mood ruined as her boyfriend, Derek, flirts with other girls. She ends up bumping into a good-looking cosplayer named Matt and then goes crying into his arms. This volume focuses upon Christie and her relationship between Derek and her new found feelings for a guy she just met.

The second volume, Christie comes back with a new artist for her comic, Bethany. Here, she gets to meet Matt again after a year. Except... he has a girlfriend now?!! Bethany on the other hand has her work interested in but not Christie's. This volume takes Christie's and Matt's relationship further as they try to work out their situation.

The third volume, the whole gang is back. Although barely in contact with each other the past year, Christie and Matt are closer than ever. Especially after he broke up with his previous girlfriend. Except for some reason...she is still there! Now Bethany is debating on if she should take the offer from the manga publisher. Her mother comes to visit and she freaks out, knowing that she will disapprove! This volume shifts towards Bethany and the expectations that are placed upon her.

[Spoilers end]

Dramacon is filled with adorable chibi fun and romance! Those who have gone to anime conventions would be familiar with the events that happen throughout. And if you haven't, you would want to go to one right after! Every time I finish reading a volume, I just want to have a run-in-romance happening to me every time I go to an anime convention. A cute thing that you would see is referencing towards all celebrities and brand names are altered (I think in case of copyright issues and all) but it just adds more charm to the series!

Readers would notice subtle changes within Chmakova's artwork as volumes go by. They get more defined. I think the mood, especially when it comes to intensity, is depicted quite well through the artwork. You honestly can not help but love Chmakova's own unique style.

I highly, highly recommend this series for all manga and anime fans! I also recommend it to non-manga fans too! It might be an eye opener towards the world of anime and manga! I always try read Dramacon before going to an anime convention, just to set the mood!

Review copy provided by HarperCollins Canada.

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Monday, June 21, 2010

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 21/10)



Zoey Zeta and the Sisters of Power: Family Secrets by Robert Simon and Tomomi Sarafov
Middleworld by J&P Voelkel


Music Machine

Title: Merry Christmas, Mr. Lawrence
Artist/Band: Koto and Shakuhachi (Maybe? Not completely sure)
Language: N/A but originated from Japan
My Thoughts: This is such a beautiful melody. It makes me want to go back to Ancient China or Japan and live the life of royalty.

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Sunday, June 20, 2010

Q4U: What is your opinion on sex in YA novels?

Q4U (Question 4 U) is a feature on Stop, Drop, and Read! that appears on random days. A question is asked for you to answer, where it could range from getting feedbacks for the blog to a start of a fun topic!

Sex. Yes, a topic that could stimulate conversations easily among teens. Nowadays, they are seen more often in YA novels than ever. Some hints around it, while others give you all the details. So...

What is your opinion on sex in YA novels?

I don't mind them at all, but I generally prefer my YA novels without. I rather read them in adult novels because for some reason, I always felt that the sex scenes are placed in a way that disrupts the flow of the novel. Maybe once in awhile it's well incorporated into the plot, but I rather just read about teens living life without the sex stuff for now. Because I find it that teenagers have so much ahead of them, therefore I want to see them do other things other than sleeping with each other.

So what are your opinions on it?

Watch these videos, hilarious and she gives great tips on how to add sex into a story properly.

Part 1

Part 2

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Greek: Double Date by Marsha Warner

Title: Greek: Double Date
Author: Marsha Warner
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 192
My Rating: 4/5

Casey Cartwright can't wait to go to the all-Greek formal! However, she promised her brother, Rusty, to go as geeky Dale's date to the Honors Engineering Award...which is on the same day as the formal! But a promise is a promise.

When new transfer student, Rob, becomes her date for formal, things get difficult as frenemy Rebecca seems to have some sort of grudge against him. Not to mention Casey still has to get over her ex-boyfriend, Cappie.

What to do when a girl has two dates in one night?

Surprisingly, I liked this novel a bit more than I expected. I generally avoid reading books that are adaptations of TV shows. I always thought that they lacked that quality since making a book series based off a show is purely a marketing strategy.

In the beginning, it took awhile for me to get use to the characters because there were so many! I thought I would never get them down because I assumed they would all be generic. After a few chapters, I got the hang of it as their personality or relationship with the protagonist is revealed, making it easier for me to figure out who was who.

In terms of personality, the characters weren't exactly drawn out to be in-depth. What made me like the novel though was the relationships that they had with each other, especially in Casey's situation. The side characters weren't exactly focused upon so I did find it pointless to have them there since they didn't interact with the protagonist so much.

I doubt I would pick up another volume in the series but I found it to be a good read while it lasted. It's not easy to get into in the beginning, but after awhile it's not so bad. I wouldn't recommend this for everyone, but fans of the show should check it out. It's better to borrow a copy from the library rather than investing in it.

Review copy provided by HarlequinTeen.

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Thursday, June 17, 2010

Plagiarism in the YA blogverse

So I recently discovered through Twitter that a very popular YA blogger was plagiarizing her reviews. I remembered when she first started out as I believe my blog were one of the firsts she visited. She asked to have one of my review novels and I couldn't help but felt that was a little bit rude, making her stand out in my mind till today. Shortly after her blog was established, her popularity as a blogger sky-rocketed when she started having a lot of big contests. I have to admit, I was a little jealous.

Sharon from Sharon Loves Books and Cats saw that there was something suspicious and cross-referenced the reviews she wrote and the blogger's. It turned out that she did plagiarized and from several bloggers as well! I was surprised. I never really followed her so I wasn't familiar with the reviews, but this is absolutely shameful. As a blogger myself, I work very hard on my reviews. Lately I do admit my blog is lacking because it is the end of high school for me and I have things to do. However when I do review, I always try my best and edit it over a couple of times before uploading. To find out if someone has stolen my work, I would be very angry. If I put my time and effort into something I love and someone else takes credit for it, that's not right at all!

If you truly love blogging and reviewing, please don't steal someone else's content and tweak it to claim as your own. At that point, why blog or review if you are not putting your own effort into it? I'm sure in school everyone learned about plagiarizing. So please, don't do it, no matter how tempting.

If you find out someone is plagiarizing, alert the person who wrote the original post and kindly tell the plagiarizer to remove it. It will be greatly appreciated.

Edit: Everyone wants to know who the person is. I don't want to directly say, but check Twitter under the hashtag LiteraryPirate.

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Portrait of M & N by Tachibana Higuchi

Title: Portrait of M & N
Mangaka: Tachibana Higuchi
Age Group: Teens
Series is: Completed with 6 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 1
My Rating: 4/5

Mitsuru Abe and Natsuhiko Amakusa are two different students who have the same goal: to lead a normal school life. Due to past "incidents", they are trying to bring as little attention to themselves as possible. Too bad their appearances attract rumours from all over!

Bound to meet, the two teens learn about each other's secrets and their lives get more complicated than ever.

There are stories where the main girl and guy have some sort of secret. But they don't exactly compare to the oddness of Mitsuru's and Natsuhiko's secret. One is a masochist while the other is a narcissist. To the extreme end.

I like the uniqueness of this plot. As you can tell, it is unlike other shojo mangas. Both characters are in a complicated situation, unable to get out of their habit due to their past. I like Mitsuru because she is a nice girl who is misunderstood. When she found out that Natsuhiko has a similar problem, she grows to attach herself to him because she wants to have a friend who understands her. I also think Natsuhiko to be a great counterpart to Mitsuru. He is quiet and unlike her, he prefers to be by himself rather than being forced into that position of friend unwillingly. I like their interaction and I will continue reading the series to see where their relationship goes (even though it is obvious). Another character comes into play towards the end which gives the reader more insight on the characters, especially for Natsuhiko.

Readers who are familiar with Gakuen Alice could tell there is a difference in her art comparing her current style to before. Even though her art not may be appealing in the beginning (current or before), readers will adjust quickly and get into the storyline.

For those who would like a different kind of shojo read, I recommend Portrait of M & N for sure.

Review copy provided by HarperCollins Canada.

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Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Trailer Tuesday: Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard

Title: Pretty Little Liars
Author: Sara Shepard
Description: Four friends, all with secrets. An anonymous person threatens to reveal them all. Does it relate to the disappearance of one of their friends four years ago?

I have read the first two novels and I loved them! I'm slowly reading through the series so hopefully I will finish it. I haven't seen the show so I can't really comment on it but the novel should be checked out for sure!

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Monday, June 14, 2010

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 14/10)



The Bad Queen by Carolyn Meyer
Manifest by Artist Arthur

I love the covers for these two novels! Can't wait to read them!

Oh, and for those who are wondering where my YA novel reviews are, hopefully I will have one up this week since I just finished two books. Look out for those!


Music Machine

Title: Beautiful Things
Artist/Band: Andain
Language: English
My Thoughts: When I move away from my usual Kpop obsession, I like quite a variety of English music. I recently discovered Andain and I absolutely love her song Beautiful Things! Listen and enjoy! (If you know any other similar songs, let me know!)

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Saturday, June 12, 2010

Short and Simple (4)

Title: Rosario + Vampire
Mangaka: Akihisa Ikeda
Age Group: Older Teens
Series is: Completed with 10 volumes
Volume(s) Reviewing: 3
My Rating: 4/5

Sentence Summary: An old enemy comes back; a troll wants to test Tsukune's strength; and the math teacher seems to be doing a little more than tutoring her students!

Speaking Straightly: I'm starting to slowly dislike Tsukune at this point. He is just weak; I get so annoyed with the cheesy parts where he jumps in and tries to save everyone and all when he clearly isn't going to win. However, I really love him when he transforms. Yes, he transforms in this volume and I find this part to be the coolest of all. Too bad his character usually isn't so great.

The stories weren't as good as the last two volumes but still readable.


Title: A Streetcar Named Desire
Author: Tennessee Williams
Age Group: Adults
# of Pages: 142
My Rating: 4/5

Sentence Summary: Blanche DuBois arrives to stay with her sister, Stella, and her husband, Stanley, for unknown circumstances back home.

Speaking Straightly: I've watched the Hollywood version in English class, which I received the play afterwards to read.

I enjoyed the movie itself because of the overly-done acting and Marlon Brando's attractive, manlier, and younger self. Which made the read to be good too since I already knew what happened before.

The Streetcar Named Desire reveals the darker side of human nature and the consequences of past actions. A quick read that could be enjoyed. (However I think watching the movie makes the play better).


Title: All Families Are Psychotic
Author: Douglas Coupland
Age Group: Adults
# of Pages: 288
My Rating: 4/5

Sentence Summary: A crazy life of the dysfunctional Drummond family.

Speaking Straightly: If you want to read a wacky novel, this book is it. At first I liked it because it is very different compared to most adult novels. But after awhile as the story progressed, it just got too weird for me. It is unrealistic in terms of the things that happened to the characters. However, internal conflicts could easily be related to.
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Thursday, June 10, 2010

Alison Dare Blog Tour

Welcome to Stop, Drop, and Read! from I Heart Monster! We are on day 4 of the Double Blog Dare Tour!

Alison happened to stop by my room to see what's up. She saw the mountain of my pretty characters against the wall and decided she must top them all as the best character!

I must get to the top!!

Muahaha, I am number one!

If you guys would like a chance to win the Alison Dare Prize Pack from Tundra Books, you can by submitting your own photos of Alison! Please click here for more details! Good luck if you join!


Title: Alison Dare: The Heart of the Maiden & Alison Dare: Little Miss Adventures
Author: J. Torres & J. Bones
Age Group: Youth
# of Pages: 99
My Rating: 3/5

Alison Dare lives an exciting life. Her mother is an archaeologist and her father is a librarian (who is secretly a superhero), where they have the things they do daily affect Alison in great ways. From evil villains to genies, Alison welcomes them all as everyday is an adventure!

I am going to do a review for both volumes because they are quite similar.

Alison Dare has multiple short stories combined together in a volume rather than it being a continuous series. This makes it easier for the readers because you don't have to go out and read other volumes in order to finish the story. However, while reading I did find myself confused at some parts. Since it combines a sort of magical theme to it, it does go all over the place and are not clearly explained.

There aren't many enticing elements that would grab an older audience's attention asides the targeted readers. Alison Dare is readable, but is one that could easily be forgotten. The stories do fly by quick and that doesn't give the plot a chance to fully develop. However I do like the art because it is suited very well in terms of it being a children's read. The style is very simple and easy to look at.

I would recommend this series for young readers who would like to try out some comics.


To continue the Alison Dare Blog Tour, please check out
Michelle and Leslie's Book Picks! Thanks for dropping by!

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Trailer Tuesday: Beastly by Alex Finn

Title: Beastly
Author: Alex Finn
Description: I am a beast.

A beast. Not quite wolf or bear, gorilla or dog but a horrible new creature who walks upright—a creature with fangs and claws and hair springing from every pore. I am a monster.

You think I'm talking fairy tales? No way. The place is New York City. The time is now. It's no deformity, no disease. And I'll stay this way forever—ruined—unless I can break the spell.

Yes, the spell, the one the witch in my English class cast on me. Why did she turn me into a beast who hides by day and prowls by night? I'll tell you. I'll tell you how I used to be Kyle Kingsbury, the guy you wished you were, with money, perfect looks, and the perfect life. And then, I'll tell you how I became perfectly . . . beastly.

I decided to do something different and do a movie trailer rather than a book trailer. Beastly is originally a novel anyway so I guess it doesn't make much of a difference.

I have to admit, I don't like how they portrayed Mary-Kate as the witch. (Just personal opinion. I used to be a huge Mary-Kate and Ashley fan when I was in elementary. I sort of miss them thinking about it now.) I don't know how to perceive this movie nor novel because I heard good and bad things about it.

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Monday, June 7, 2010

My Monday Mailbox & Music Machine (June 7/10)



Unraveled by Gena Showalter

Lol, I have received another sequel to a series I have not yet read once again. I have to start picking up on the HarlequinTeen series! For those who have read Intertwined, opinions?


Music Machine

Title: Y
Artist/Band: MBLAQ
Language: Korean
My Thoughts: If you guys were around for my first MMM&MM post, I had MBLAQ's debut video, Oh Yeah, featured. This time, it's their latest hit Y, which I also grew to love.

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Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin by Josh Berk

Title: The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin
Author: Josh Berk
Age Group: Teens
# of Pages: 250
My Rating: 4/5

Will Halpin is an overweight deaf teen who finally gets to go to a normal high school. Unpopular the moment he stepped in he occupies himself by reading the lips of people around him.

On a class trip to a local coal mine, the star quarterback fell down into a ditch and died. However, it seems like it may be a homicide instead. With new friend/class weirdo, Devon Smiley, Will is determined to figure out who is the murderer.

This is a very enjoyable novel. It is unlike most mystery novels and it is kept at a light and fun voice rather than something suspenseful. Will has a great sense of humour and generally jokes a lot about himself and others throughout the novel. Compared to other overweight protagonists, Will doesn't try to fit in or lose weight. Sure he wouldn't mind being liked(who wouldn't?), but it is not his main goal (although he tries not to become the school loser).

The one thing that did irk me was the fact that the story, with the murder and all, did not happen until 100 pages later. I think the author should've went right into it instead of having Will idling his days away. But it was entertaining to see Will's perspective on things nonetheless.

I recommend The Dark Days of Hamburger Halpin to readers who would like something light and different. For guy readers, this is a read for you!

Review copy provided by Book Divas.

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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Q4U: What themes do you want to see in novels?

Q4U (Question 4 U) is a feature on Stop, Drop, and Read! that appears on random days. A question is asked for you to answer, where it could range from getting feedbacks for the blog to a start of a fun topic!

In literature, there is a vast majority of themes and stories presented. There are so many that you will notice many repeats with the popular ones but all different with each author's own writing style (ex. vampires, family, etc.). However, there are many themes that aren't seen too often. So I'm curious...

What themes do you want to see in novels?

For some reason, I want to read a novel about time-travelling. Surprisingly, there not a lot of stories about the protagonist going back in time or to the future. That would be awesome! (Recommend if you guys know any good ones?) I want to read about reincarnation but at the same time I don't want to. I don't know, that topic does interest me but I fear that it will be some depressing magical story or so.

What about you guys?

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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Trailer Tuesday: Claire de Lune by Christine Johnson

Title: Claire de Lune
Author: Christine Johnson
Description: Torn between two destinies?

Claire is having the perfect sixteenth birthday. Her pool party is a big success, and gorgeous Matthew keeps chatting and flirting with her as if she's the only girl there. But that night, she discovers something that takes away all sense of normalcy: she's a werewolf.

As Claire is initiated into the pack of female werewolves, she must deal not only with her changing identity, but also with a rogue werewolf who is putting everyone she knows in danger. Claire's new life threatens her blossoming romance with Matthew, whose father is leading the werewolf hunt. Now burdened with a dark secret and pushing the boundaries of forbidden love, Claire is struggling to feel comfortable in either skin. With her lupine loyalty at odds with her human heart, she will make a choice that will change her forever?

For some reason, I thought this novel was about witches before seeing the trailer. Lol, the novel does throw off that witchy feeling, doesn't it? Or is it just me?

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