Wednesday, 25 February 2015

Quotes from Hector and the Search for Happiness

  1. Making comparisons can spoil your happiness
  2. Happiness often comes when least expected
  3. Many people only see happiness in their future
  4. Many people think happiness comes from having more power or more money
  5. Sometimes happiness is not knowing the whole story
  6. Happiness is a long walk in beautiful, unfamiliar mountains
  7. It’s a mistake to think that happiness is the goal
  8. Happiness is being with the people you love; unhappiness is being separated from the people you love
  9. Happiness is knowing that your family lacks for nothing
  10. Happiness is doing a job you love
  11. Happiness is having a home and a garden of your own
  12. It’s harder to be happy in a country run by bad people
  13. Happiness is feeling useful to others
  14. Happiness is to be loved for exactly who you are (People are kinder to a child who smiles)
  15. Happiness comes when you feel truly alive
  16. Happiness is knowing how to celebrate
  17. Happiness is caring about the happiness of those you love
  18. Happiness is not attaching too much importance to what other people think
  19. The sun and the sea make everybody happy
  20. Happiness is a certain way of seeing things
  21. Rivalry poisons happiness
  22. Women care more than men about making others happy
  23. Happiness means making sure that those around you are happy


Saturday, 21 February 2015

Food Republic at Hollywood Plaza Hong Kong

If you are planning on visiting the beautiful Nan Lian Gardens and  Chi Lin  Nunnery and are looking for a place to eat,  the shopping centre Hollywood Plaza offers several restaurants including a very nice food court with many local and foreign specialities .

I am a fan of food courts when I travel abroad, I think that most of them have really good standards for the price you pay and you can taste dishes from many countries at the same time, besides I love being surrounded by local people .

The Dim Sum was the best I ate in a food court while I was in Hong Kong.

By Foodie.

Wednesday, 18 February 2015

The Here and Now by Ann Brashares: Review .

The Here and Now
I am NOT a fan of The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, I haven't even read any of the books and I am not going to. I watched a film based of the first book a long time ago, it was OK and that's it.So I was more than reluctant when I started reading my first book by Ann Brashares,but since it seemed to be a dystopian novel about time travellers I thought it was worth a try.

This review is full of SPOILERS:

Prenna lives in a dystopian community inside a regular American city and there are so many rules to keep that it is  just like living in a cult with no hope for a better life or an afterlife for that matter. All the members of this claustrophobic society are gradually becoming parasites, they know that the future is horrible ,because that is where they come from, but they do nothing to make it better, they are too complacent with their simple lives and don't want to risk them.

 Prenna has enough guts to take a step forward and I liked that about the character.However, I thought that all the adults in the book were depicted as idiots  capable of the worst cruelties but unable to stop a teen girl.Prenna's mother, for example, is so blinded by pain that she can't   see through all the lies she's been told and puts her own daughter's life at risk just to keep her one more day.Although she seems to react and pull herself together just in time for the end of the book .I just don't understand how on earth she used those wicked glasses without a second thought.
Will we all be wearing weird (and sometimes useful) glasses in the future?

I liked the letters in which Prenna, the leading character, writes to her unborn brother; full of hope and amazement. They made me think about all the important things we take for granted everyday and the silly things that prevent us from enjoying a wonderful sunny day.

Ethan, the lover-boy is just like most male characters in YA novels: adorable!. He's perfect from head to toes , brave, funny , a gentleman and a hero. I like these characters, no matter how unrealistic they may seem, I never find them too good to be true,wishful thinking, I guess!.I don't even mind the fact that he fell instantly in love with Prenna, I think that the relationship was properly developed by the author later in the book and it seemed plausible and romantic.

The future described in the book in which mosquitoes carry deadly diseases that almost wipe out humanity is not so unbelievable, unfortunately.Pollution, global warming , bizarre weather changes and  lack of food are things that are already happening, there is nothing new about them, and we still hope  that things will get better if we recycle ,we use public transport ,we consume less and use environmentally friendly products or if we turn off the lights for an hour on that day.(Which by the way, will be on the 28 of March 2015 , you can find out the time here).

One of the modern advances described in the book as a memory bank used to store all you memories reminded me of this tiny so-called  lifelogging camera which may mean the end of privacy for people who are inadvertently photographed and the beginning of a huge life album that your grandchildren may find hilarious and touching at the same time.

All in all and despite the stupidity of the adult characters,  I didn't expect to like the book so much and I would very much enjoy a sequel .

Thursday, 12 February 2015

Vietnam: Hoi An

The most beautiful town in Vietnam is in my opinion Hoi An. Its  charm is definitely due to the fact that the buildings and the streets are incredibly well preserved . It is a pleasure walking down the streets and visiting the old shops, temples and the famous Japanese bridge.It is a Unesco Heritage Sight

By P.B.

Friday, 6 February 2015

The Body Electric by Beth Revis : Review

The Body Electric

 For a person who really finds insects horrifying the fact that at the beginning of each chapter a huge bee is drawn in detail can be a serious reason not to read a novel .However, the bookworm in me won and although I missed some of the first lines of each chapter I read the novel.

This is a dystopian book in which the feelings of  Ella , the main character , are vividly described . The reader can feel her grief over her lost father and her fear for her mother's life. It is deeply moving and there were times when I thought it was too overwhelming.

I loved the first part of the book , the descriptions of the city and they way the story unfolded to reveal a shocking truth that left me literally out of breath. In the second part , the characters fight to survive and  to save each other in spite of  their unusual circumstances.

I recommend this book to fans of A.I. and to readers who wonder about the things that make us human and inhuman.

Sunday, 1 February 2015

Into the Woods: To Grandmother's House

This chubby  little red ridding hood won't save a single pastry for her grandmother but sings wonderfully.

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