International Book Giving Day 2015 in Pictures


International Book Giving Day 2017

So many wonderful stories from International Book Giving Day 2015 have been pouring in throughout the weekend.

I’m overwhelmed with the generosity of so many people, and of the huge reach that IBGD has.

14th February, and in fact the whole weekend, was one dedicated to getting books into the hands of as many children as possible far and wide. Books were given in UK, South Africa, Canada, Cambodia, Nepal, Brazil, Australia, France, Hungary, Cambodia, oh and so many more!

Whilst I will bring you more details on Wednesday, I simply must share these photos with you today …

UGANDA: MCox Foundation presenting this student with her FIRST book. UGANDA: MCox Foundation presenting this student with her FIRST book.

Pictures and Pages AUSTRALIA: Pictures and Pages in Coburg, Victoria

CANADA: The Annapolis Valley Regional Library does a fantastic job of celebrating International Book Giving Day each year by hiding wrapped books around their communities! CANADA: The Annapolis Valley Regional Library does a fantastic job of celebrating International Book Giving Day each year by hiding wrapped books around their communities!

Chris Monroe USA: 1,000+ books to kids at a local elementary…

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24 things to do before turning 24: Review!


Source: Google images.

It’s time, again! Well, it’s been a messy year; though I had no exams to worry about, I haven’t crossed so many items off my list. They said medical interns have all the time in the world, but it turned out being the exact opposite! So anyway, of the 24 things I had to do before my 24th birthday (that’s today!), here’s what I’ve done.

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1. Finish my novel(s): I’m almost done of my novel’s first draft, but still, it’s not 100% finished.

2. Win NaNoWriMo: Yay! I won! 😀

3. Scrub-in, preferably in an eye surgery: Scrubbed in Ob/Gyn, just for 5 minutes! Turns out surgery isn’t my thing after all.

4. Reach my ideal weight: Not yet, I’m ridiculously fluctuating.

5. Finish “Insanity” workouts without twisting any joints: I did twist many joints, so…

6. Learn to dance: No time!

7. Earn drivers’ license: Still procrastinating!

8. Read 20 100 books at least, including the Qur’an: Could barely read a few!

9. Speak French: Such a luxury!

10. Play guitar: LOL! I have the guitar, but that doesn’t count, does it? 😛

11. Volunteer in a cause:  I did volunteer at the hospital, but I’m not sure it counts, because it wasn’t charity, I was there to learn.

12. Fall in love.. or not: Not. *Sighs*

13. Pick a specialty: I’m 90% positive that I want to be a psychiatrist, so that’s something.

14. Prepare for a fellowship in the picked speciality: It’s not that easy, but I have a few plans.

15. Save a life: It wasn’t directly me, but I helped resuscitate many patients, some recovered, others died. But I like to believe I did save a life.

16. Run regularly for at least 3 months: I tried to make it regular, but shifts always happened! :/

17. Run half a marathon: Coming next April, so…

18. Buy a heart rate monitor/fitness tracker: Couldn’t yet afford.

19. Eat clean for at least a month without cheating: Hahaha! Epic fail!

20. Build abs: In progress, I like to believe.

21. Earn a belt in judo: I earned THREE BELTS! Yellow, Orange, and Green! (Yeah, I’m awesome!)

22. Go sky diving: Wasn’t that fortunate.

23. Attend a live concert: Not yet.

24. Inspire more people: It appears so. 🙂

25 things before turning 25 is coming soon! 🙂

iRead: (13) Eleanor and Park.


Source: Goodreads.

 

Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell.
My rating: 4 of 5 stars.

That was sweet, and heart-breaking; my favourite kind of romance. I couldn’t fully relate to the eighties, but I certainly did relate to Eleanor; mostly her insecurities,and how her life is a mess.

“In your life, things happen for reasons. People make sense. But that’s not my life. Nobody in my life makes sense.”

The author wanted you to know that no matter who you are, or how you look like, you can always find love, and I liked that. She was also right, because love shouldn’t be a fairytale, it’s never like fairy tales. This book pretty much reminds me of Paper Towns; precisely the gasp I let out when I realized I hit the last page.

P. S. This book, however, promotes racism, and is full of cussing and F words. (Hence the 4 stars).

View all my reviews.

iRead: (12) Unwind.


Source: Goodreads.

This books isn’t the best-written; the present tense and the overly variable points of view don’t make the writing so neat. I would generally put down such a book, but the pace (at least in the beginning) made up for the poor style.

The plot is too cliché and at some points, predictable. Like any piece of dystopian fiction, protagonists try to escape an inevitable unpleasant fate, and their characters develop along the way, until they end up escaping that horrible fate. The story has some twists and turns, but still, is too typical.

The theme, however, is powerful. Though I refuse to believe that unwinding would ever have a place in reality, the author makes you ponder.

To be fair, this book deserves 3.5 stars. I would certainly want to read the sequels, but should they be on the top of my to-read pile, I’m not so sure.

The Girl In Orange: Chapter 2.


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Here comes a new chapter of my latest short story, The Girl In Orange.

Any feedback you’re kind enough to offer would be appreciated.

iRead: (11) A Game Of Thrones.


Source: Goodreads.

I did not hate the book, however, I did also not love it. When I started formatting this review inside my head, I realized that I was trying too hard to like the novel.

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I haven’t read any Medieval fantasies before this one, but I do know what they’re all about, and George R. R. Martin hasn’t gotten out of the cliché zone of high fantasies. Dragons and zombies? Really?! :/

It could’ve been written way better. “A Game of Thrones” obviously portrays many “high lords” in dispute, that’s fine. But the historical background of the characters and settings were crammed in a dull, monotonous narrative. The author ignored the “common people”; I believe the story would’ve been much deeper and richer if he paid as much attention their cultures and how they lived.

There were points though, where I honestly loved the way he demonstrated and vividly painted the scenes. Sadly, he kept repeating himself, and at some point, I started noticing the abuse of adverbs and some adjectives. I have to admit that I felt attached at some parts to characters and engaged to the story, yet these were transient moments. Martin failed to keep me immersed.

Despite all the flaws, I would’ve been looking forward to the second book, if it wasn’t for misogyny and graphic scenes.

How often have words like “whores”, “wenches”, “sluts” been addressed to women? How many vulgar referrals to women’s body parts? And the undue descriptions, those I refrain from mentioning! This ugly reduction of women into mere tools of pleasure is sick. I did feel offended, and angry.

Now to the graphic content. Well, I’m totally against demonstrating intimate sexual details, I see no point of it whatsoever, and Martin writes like dirty-minded teenager, really. I always skip such paragraphs, but still, you don’t need to read to know they were very graphic, disgustingly graphic. I felt distressed (and threatened) so often throughout this book.

As an aspiring writer, I love to study popular works of fiction, and I did hope to learn anything there, but to my disappointment, there was nothing to learn.

 

The Girl In Orange: A short story.


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It’s been a while since my latest piece of fiction. Here’s a new horror story, the first chapter is on wattpad in the following link.

http://w.tt/16ilnUT

I would very much appreciate your feedback. 🙂

iCook: (5) Flourless oatmeal cookies.


Original recipe is from foodnetwork.com. I improvised a lighter version; this makes around 70 cookies, 60 calories per each.

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Copyrights: The accidental Blog. 2014.

Ingredients:

– 450 grams oat flakes.
– 2 large eggs.
– 175 grams unsalted butter.
– Around 1/4 cup flaxseed oil. (I think you may omit this one to save calories).
– 1/2 cup sugar (better be brown).
– 2 scoops whey protein.
– Skim milk to soften the dough (because I used half the butter in the original recipe).
– 1 tsp baking powder.
– 2 tsp vanilla extract.
– 1 tsp ground cinnamon.
– 1/8 tsp salt.

Directions:

1. Spread the oats in a baking tray and roast in the oven until golden.

2. Grind about 3/4 the oats together with the baking powder, salt and cinnamon.

3. In a bowl, mix the butter and oil with sugar and whey until smooth in consistency.

4. In another bowl whip the eggs and vanilla.

5. Add the eggs to the butter mixture and mix until smooth.

6. Gradually add the ground oats and mix until smooth.

7. Add the 1/4 of oats you didn’t grind and mix.

8. You will see the dough is getting tough, add few drops of skim milk until you get the right consistency.

9. Shape the dough into medium-sized cookies, and align them on an oven tray or whatever and bake in 200°C for about 12 minutes or until they become golden.

10. Enjoy the yumminess! 😉

iRead: (10) Great Expectations.


N oSource: Google images.

I’m happy that my first encounter with this book was years after high school, for most of the teens I know seem to have tossed the book away, unaware of the literary treasures lying in underneath its words.

Although its narrative, by shallow inspection, isn’t the most engaging, the plot structure is probably one of the richest and the deepest I have ever explored. I can never say the story was boring, because I often was driven to consider different possibilities. And though some twists were solemnly based on mere coincidences, Dickens succeeded in keeping me guessing until the very end.

The themes are timeless; you don’t need to live in the Victorian era to conclude that everybody has a little Pip lingering inside them in varying degrees, longing for a more fortunate life and seeking affection, and a better social class. When it comes to symbols, I find using the “misty marshes” and the “Satis House” very brilliant. You can easily find that each character, symbolized something crucial as well.

Worthy to mention, I felt at many points how pathetic Pip’s fondness of Estella was, for instance when he says:

“Whatever her tone with me happened to be, I could put no trust in it, and build no hope on it; and yet I went on against trust and against hope.”
Also:
“Estella, to the last hour of my life, you cannot choose but remain part of my character, part of the little good in me, part of the evil. But, in this separation, I associate you only with the good; and I will faithfully hold you to that always, for you must have done me far more good than harm, let me feel now what sharp distress I may. O God bless you, God forgive you!”
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And finally, as a personal criterion of how touching a story is, I spent the last four chapters weeping. Yes, this is how I know a book deserves 5 stars.
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Attention, book lovers!


Earlier this year, I created a book club group on Facebook.  However, only my friends joined and we all were too busy to commit. Now using my cousin’s help, we have revived and expanded our deserted book club into a full, running blog.
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