Chachic's Book Nook


Queen’s Thief News: Thick as Thieves by Megan Whalen Turner

What kind of Megan Whalen Turner fan would I be if I didn’t write a post about the latest news that we’ve been receiving about the Queen’s Thief series? It’s just that real life has been keeping me super busy lately (I’m in Manila in the weekend for my mom’s birthday) and I haven’t had a chance to blog until now. Anyway! During the past week, Greenwillow has released the repackaged covers for the earlier books in the series AND FINALLY made an announcement about book five: Thick as Thieves, which will be released May 2017. Behold, the cover from Publisher’s Weekly and the synopsis from Amazon:


Kamet, a secretary and slave to his Mede master, has the ambition and the means to become one of the most powerful people in the Empire. But with a whispered warning the future he envisioned is wrenched away, and he is forced onto a very different path. Set in the world of the Queen’s Thief, this epic adventure sees an ordinary hero take on an extraordinary mission.

We’ve only waited SIX LONG YEARS for this installment. You can imagine the explosion on Twitter when all the MWT fans found out about this. Mostly all of us speaking in all caps and !!! and general squeeing. Absolutely cannot wait for this! I’m super excited.

Here are the redesigned covers for the earlier books:

the-thief-repackaged queen-of-attolia-repackages the-king-of-attolia-repackaged a-conspiracy-of-kings-repackaged

I must admit that I’m not such a big fan of these new designs. I’ve always thought that the earlier covers designed by Vince Natale were creatively and thoughtfully drawn. I loved that they were relevant to the stories, and that there was a theme of featuring hands and partial faces in all of them. But it’s understandable that redesigns happen in the publishing world and if these new covers manage to attract new readers, well and good!

The Queen’s Thief series is one of my all-time favorite series and I think MWT is a brilliant author. I even organized a Queen’s Thief Week a few years ago to celebrate my love for these books. If you’ve been following my blog and you think we have the same taste in books, then I highly recommend that you read these books if you haven’t had a chance to do so. This series means so much to me, not just because of how much I love the books, but also because I met some of my best bookish friends through this series. I first started being active in the book community when I joined Sounis on LiveJournal, and kept in touch with fellow Sounisians even after moving to WordPress. It’s also one of those series where once I find out that someone is a fan, I immediately want to be friends with them. And I tend to trust book recommendations from fellow MWT fans more. This is how I discovered more favorite authors like Elizabeth Wein. If I find out an author is an MWT fan, I’m also more likely to read their books. Or if I’ve already read their books (like in Melina Marchetta’s case), my view of them goes up even higher. So, so, so. All of that just means that 2017 will be a good year because Thick of Thieves will finally be released!


Litsy on Android

The bookish app Litsy is now available on Android. I found out about it thanks to a heads up from my good friend Brandy. I downloaded it and signed up as chachic over there. It’s described as a combination of Instagram and Goodreads, and I’m trying to see if it would be fun to be an active member over there. I like that it’s more book-focused that Instagram and more visual than Goodreads. I think my main problem with it is that there aren’t a lot of my friends on it (no surprise there given that they just started with Android) but it might get better if more people sign up.

Litsy screenshot

Are you on it? What’s your username? Also, what do you think of it so far?


Sense of Belonging

My smoked duck salad dinner while working one evening

My smoked duck salad dinner while working one evening

It has been a couple of months since I made major changes in real life and I’ve been doing a lot of thinking since then. When I first moved to Singapore back in 2012, I had a very hard time adjusting to living in a different country for the first time in my life and being away from family and friends. It was one of the most difficult experiences that I’ve been through but I have no regrets because I’ve learned a lot, and hopefully, I’ve also grown both on a personal and professional level. When I made the transition to a new job a few months ago, I thought it would be easy to settle into this role. I figured that I’ve adjusted well enough to living in Singapore, and my new job is in the same industry as my previous one. I should have expected that in life, anything new would required an adjustment period! I have been trying to understand why it hasn’t been easy, and I don’t think it’s because of the company, the role, or even my co-workers (everyone has been as polite and professional as they can be). I realized that I can’t really say that I’m happy or comfortable in my current role (yet) because I don’t feel like I belong. Kind of like my presence doesn’t matter because I’m not making a relevant contribution (yet), which leads to feeling insignificant and lonely. This reminded me of a passage from a book that I loved, Nowhere But Home by Liza Palmer:

“I can’t be the only one faking it. I’m not the only lonely small-town girl drowning in this big city. I’m not the only refugee feeling invisible and alone. I’m not the only one who wants to scream, “NOTICE ME! I MATTER!” Maybe everyone is faking it. Maybe they’re just better at it than I am.”

I know I matter! And I hope that I would start feeling like I do matter professionally in a few more months. I’d like to think that every newbie feels weird and awkward in the first few months, and that will change as time passes. A physical place where I would always feel like I matter is back home in Manila because that is where I’m the most comfortable and where I always feel like I belong. Virtually, I definitely feel a sense of belonging in the book blogging community. I feel like I’ve carved out a niche for myself, and I’ve found people who not only enjoy reading as much as I do but also read the same type of books that I love. I’m definitely not a famous or big time book blogger but it makes me happy to know that there are people who enjoy having bookish discussions with me and there are people who ask me what I think about books before they decide whether to read it. I have way more posts than followers on Instagram but I have a lot of fun taking bookish pictures, and friends have mentioned that they like seeing what I come up with. I’ve had authors respond to tweets or blog posts or emails, and that’s something that never gets old. I find myself lucky that I can even consider some of them friends, because we’ve had enough interaction to get to know each other. I’ve met so many lovely people in this community, and I still keep meeting more! With everything that’s happened in real life, it hasn’t been easy to keep blogging, tweeting or bookstagramming but I will keep doing all of those for as long as I can because I would miss it too much if I stop. I would miss the sense of belonging, the camaraderie, the blog comments, and the book recommendations. While I’m a firm believer of keeping blogging fun and not forcing myself to write a review or a blog post if I don’t feel like doing so, I will do my best to make more of a conscious effort to be an active blogger. For now, I’m here to stay because this is where I matter.


#BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy – Week 2 Round Up

Second week of posting about Filipino books! I’m glad I was able to keep this up for another week. Week 1 round up can be found here. All posts are from Instagram. Again, I hope this will encourage other readers to become interested in featuring or reading Filipino books… there’s still more than half a month for everyone to join #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy.

Day 8:

"I looked at his plate. The chocolate cake crumbs looked so forlorn, scattered and stark on the white porcelain. If it were me eating, I'd scrape the plate clean. I wouldn't want food to feel the way I was feeling now: forlorn and undesirable." – Choco Chip Hips by Agay Llanera . . . Really enjoyed reading this Filipino YA novel, which is also available internationally through Amazon. Included in this shot are Gryphon Tea's Pearl of the Orient and Martin's Marvelous cookies. . . . #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy #ChocoChipHips #AgayLlanera #romanceclass #youngadult #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #indie #bookandtea #tea #teatime #teacup #cookies #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 9:

Happy Birthday, Singapore! For today's #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy post, I had to choose a book that has (loose) ties to SG. @minavesguerra's Welcome to Envy Park has a main character who worked in SG for several years before moving back to Manila. I have gifted this book to most of my girlfriends who have worked in SG. . . . I chose to take this pic in front of the historic Fullerton Hotel because it's one of my favorite structures in SG, the old central post office that got converted into a hotel. Also, this shot can be called buwis Kindle at smartphone shot. Medyo katakot malaglag sa river. . . . #WelcometoEnvyPark #MinaVEsguerra #ChicManila #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #indie #Kindle #ebook #TheFullertonHotel #SingaporeRiver #ExploreSingapore #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 10:


Day 11:

"When I first developed a love for this kind of storytelling, cameras were much larger. Today I was wrapping my palm around a digital video camera so small that I kept it on a chain around my neck so it wouldn't accidentally get knocked out of my hand by a gentle breeze." – Falling Hard by @minavesguerra . . . I don't have a video cam so I had to make do with my (barely used) point and shoot. Falling Hard was previously published as The Harder We Fall and is a fun new adult romance between a film major and a rugby player. . . . #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy #FallingHard #TheHarderWeFall #MinaVEsguerra #AddisonHill #newadult #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #Kindle #ebook #camera #Canon #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 12:

"She liked air. The very idea of it. Of something ever present, always needed, but virtually invisible. Now, one could LIKE something, on a philosophical level, that much, without having to put herself through an evinronmental science degree, do internships, move to New York City to take a job as an air quality consultant, but that was Lindsay Kresta. Admittedly she took things too far sometimes." 🌬🌬🌬 – Fallen Again by @minavesguerra . . . I forgot to do a #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy post yesterday so I have two for today! "Air" is a little difficult to take a pic of so I went with this shot. . . . #FallenAgain #NeverJustFriends #MinaVEsguerra #AddisonHill #newadult #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #Kindle #ebook #air #trees #window #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 13:

You know you're a book nerd when you bring three paperbacks to brunch, not because you're reading them but because you want to take a nice pic for #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy. I'm probably not the only one who does that, right? 😅📚💐 Thanks to my good friend @dementedchris for copies of these Visprint pretties. I've only read Cover Story Girl but definitely planning to read the other two! . . . #SavetheCake #StellaTorres #VintageLove #AgayLlanera #CoverStoryGirl #ChrisMariano #Visprint #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #paperbacks #TWGcafe #TWGtea #cafehoppingSG #IonOrchard #flowers #bouquet #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 14:

The book that started it all! I was introduced to @minavesguerra's writing through Fairy Tale Fail. I bought it based on a rec by @storiestotell, read it in one sitting and kept recommending it to all my friends after.💖📖 I remember my kabarkada @chuchayed read it on my Kindle while we were hanging out in Starbucks one time. I could TOTALLY relate to Ellie, more so because I was the same age as she was when I read the book. And Lucas is an awesome hero. Ellie's thing is traveling and planning hypothetical trips so I included bits of stuff from my own travels in this shot. No major trip for me this year though. Sad. 😔 . . . #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy #FairyTaleFail #MinaVEsguerra #ChicManila #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #indie #Kindle #ebook #travel #passport #postcards #stamps #bookmarks #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


#BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy – Week 1 Round Up

It’s been a week since #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy started (find out more about the event here) and I wanted to do a round up of the posts I’ve made on Instagram. I have been posting a pic of a book written by a Filipino author everyday, and so far, I think I’ve done a good job of finding a background or object that goes well with the story. It’s been fun to come up with these shots but I have no idea if I’ll be able to keep up with a post a day. Let’s see how it goes.

I’ve realized that I can embed Instagram posts on WordPress so I’m trying it out now, instead of uploading the pics from my phone like I used to.

Day 1:

Truffle ramen and a Filipino romance set in Japan. Perfect combination, right? While truffle fries are pretty common in SG, this is the first time I've tried truffle ramen and it was delicious. Thanks to @jambitzz for the heads up. August is #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy so I will be reading and posting about books written by Filipino authors during this month. Anyone can join and use the hashtag. If you've been planning to read Filipino books, then now is the perfect time to do so! 💖📖 some titles can even be requested on Overdrive. . . . #BeCarefulWhatYouWishFor #CPSanti #romanceclass #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #romance #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #Kindle #ebook #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotography #reading #KanshokuRamen #truffleramen #ramen #truffle #SGfood #SGeats #SGfoodie #IGSG #foodstagram #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 2:

My second #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy post features my most recent read, Beginner's Guide: Love and Other Chemical Reactions by Six de los Reyes. This Filipino romance came highly recommended by Courtney Milan. While I didn't love it as much as she did, I found it to be sweet and cute in a really nerdy way. Full review up on my blog (link in my bio). Kaya, the main character in the book, loves matcha lattes. My go-to place for matcha is St. Marc's Cafe. . . . #BeginnersGuideLoveandOtherChemicalReactions #TalkingNerdy #SixdelosReyes #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #Kindle #ebook #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotography #StMarcCafe #matcha #matchalatte #cafehoppingSG #cafe #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 3:


Day 4:


Day 5:

Today's #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy post is @minavesguerra's Wedding Night Stand, a novella set during a wedding just outside Manila. I really enjoyed this and liked the MCs, Andrea and Damon. I was happy with where this book ended, but the couple's story is continued in a longer book called What You Wanted. . . Thanks to my SG BFF @nj_reyes for the assist in this shot. You know you have a true friend when she willingly looks for a bridal shop with you, just for the sake of a bookstagram. . . . #MinaVEsguerra #WeddingNightStand #ChicManila #newadult #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #Kindle #ebook #wedding #bridalgown #fashion #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 6:

Mocha, lemon tart and @minavesguerra's What You Wanted, the book that continues Andrea and Damon's story from Wedding Night Stand. This is probably the foodie-est out of all of Mina's books, and I approve!☕🍽 Check out this snippet about Damon, which was why I chose to take a pic of the book with coffee: "Damon's mealtimes where freakishly long, but he always ended them with coffee… Coffee meant he had digested, exhausted all topics of conversation, and was ready to go do something else." . . . #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy #MinaVEsguerra #WhatYouWanted #ChicManila #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #indie #cafehoppingSG #SGfood #SGdesserts #ExploreSingapore #TiongBahruBakery #coffee #mocha #latteart #lemontart #bookandcoffee #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


Day 7:

"We talk about how Paris is a city built for both lovers and loners; about how it can be both familiar and new, how she can feel like home but never get old. We talk about museums and the gardens, the bridges and the streets, and wonder how every corner can be so darn pretty. I love how the conversation is growing. It's full of twists and turns that we have no problem following – and it's been so long since I talked to a man this way, in a coffee shop, while wearing nice clothes. I feel so full, and I know it's not because I had way too many cookies."📚📖🗼 – Loveless. Childlesss. Clueless by @mirenbflores . . . I know the Kindle cover in this shot is a little too light, but it's so difficult to get a clearer pic. Sometimes, it can be frustrating when the book cover on Kindle isn't as nice as it is on a physical copy. Makes bookstagramming more challenging! . . . #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy #LovelessChildlessClueless #MirenBFlores #romanceclass #romance #Filipinoromance #Filipinoauthor #SupportFilipinoauthors #WeNeedDiverseBooks #bookstagram #instabooks #IGreads #bibliophile #booknerd #bookblogger #bookworm #bookphotograph #bookquote #indie #postcards #Paris #ChachicsBookNook

A photo posted by Chachic (@chachickenpie) on


These pictures are bigger than what I’m used to posting on the blog, but I like that it’s linked to my original Instagram post. I also couldn’t find a way to center the pics so they’re all on the left.

If you’re interested in featuring or reading Filipino books, there’s still lots of time for you to join #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy.🙂 I would love for more readers (both Filipino and non-Filipino) to read books written by Filipino authors.


#BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy 2016 – time to read Filipino books!

It’s that time of the year again! Today marks the start of #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy, a campaign that was launched last year and will be celebrated again this year. August is Buwan ng Wika in the Philippines, which is the month dedicated to celebrating the Filipino language. To coincide with this, a campaign is being hosted by Edgar Calabia Samar (Twitter, Facebook), author of the Janus Silang series, to encourage people to read Filipino books. #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy can be roughly translated as “Month of Filipino Authors” or even “Month of Filipino Books”. Anyone can participate by using this hashtag on various social media platforms – Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. So if you’ve been meaning to try reading a Filipino book, this is the perfect time to do so!

There’s an overview of the campaign, which you can read over here (it’s written in Filipino). And interestingly, I was briefly mentioned in there:

BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy - Chachic's Book Nook

The caption can be translated to “observe Chachic’s Book Nook’s elaborate preparation for pictures”. Hahaha! I think it’s awesome that I got a shout out. I did a round up of my #BuwanNgMgaAkdangPinoy posts last year, which you can view here. I will mostly be posting on Instagram with links shared on Twitter and Facebook, but I’m planning to do a round up on the blog as well.


Since the title of the campaign is in Filipino, I believe the main goal is to encourage Filipino readers to pick up titles by Filipino authors. But I am also hoping that non-Filipino readers would be interested in picking up Filipino books. There are loads of books by Filipino authors that are written in English. In fact, those are the type of books that I’m planning to read this month. Some of them can even be requested from Overdrive. So come and join the fun.🙂


#romanceclass books on Overdrive

If you have a public library that can request titles from Overdrive, you might want to check out this list of #romanceclass titles that are available there. These books are indie published romance books by Filipino authors, and I think it’s awesome that they can be requested from libraries in other countries. I haven’t even read all of the books in that list yet! But I have read and reviewed some of them, which you can see on this tag.

romanceclass overdrive