Bookbed reviews: ‘Gitarista’ by Reev Robledo

by KB Meniado THE STORY This historical novel takes place during the rise of cosmopolitan Manila in the 70s. Buildings towered over paved roads, vehicles caused traffic jams, business districts were expanding, and the music and arts scene was a burgeoning form of entertainment and a stark representation of the country’s national identity. Raised by a single mother in the province, guitar virtuoso Alejandro Sebastian is thrust into the classical music scene when he gets accepted into The Conservatory of Music. With the National Music Competitions for Young Artists (NAMCYA) a few months away, eccentric maestro Pablo Rocca trains his gifted…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Till Death Do Us Part’ by Irene Recio

by Gaelle Ansaldo THE STORY Everything in Nikki’s life is picture perfect: her photography has taken off and is now a thriving business, she is reconnecting with old friends, and her husband is nothing but devoted to her. That is, until she discovers a shocking truth that might put her and her family in danger. Get a copy: Amazon (ebook), Bookbed Store (print) / Read reviews: Goodreads WHAT I LIKED I’m not one to read suspense novels but this one made me immediately need a sequel. I had one question after I finished it, “What happened next?!” Being that it was my first #HeistClub novel…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Love At First Run’ by Angel C. Aquino

by KB Meniado THE STORY After getting her heart broken, 23-year-old Diana Gomez is afraid to fall in love again. But when her office crush Paul invites her to join a running club with him, she goes for it.  What she doesn’t know is that to be a part of the club, she actually has to train for a half marathon—and that she’ll meet Joshua, the handsome club veteran who becomes her unofficial running buddy.  As if it isn’t hard enough to do speed work, interval training, and long runs after work and on weekends, she has to deal with her…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Down and Across’ by Arvin Ahmadi

by KB Meniado THE STORY Scott Ferdowsi has a track record of quitting. Writing the Great American Novel? Three chapters. His summer internship? One week. His best friends know exactly what they want to do with the rest of their lives, but Scott can hardly commit to a breakfast cereal, let alone a passion. With college applications looming, Scott’s parents pressure him to get serious and settle on a career path like engineering or medicine. Desperate for help, he sneaks off to Washington, DC, to seek guidance from a famous professor who specializes in grit, the psychology of success. He never…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Soul City’ by Mon D Rea

by Ian Miraflores THE STORY IT’S NOT A JOURNEY. IT’S A DESTINATION. When Nate Cuervo dies in a diving accident, he realizes he isn’t ready to leave everything behind, including his girlfriend and soulmate Samantha. He falls into an underworld prison where the only way out is through an eccentric reaper named Sephtimus Rex. As head reaper, Septhimus leads an army of supernatural Crows tasked with the cold deportation of overstaying spirits from the human realm. But the fates smile on Nate because the head reaper has problems of his own. He has fallen in love with a mortal girl; an…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Love, Hate & Other Filters’ by Samira Ahmed

by KB Meniado THE STORY American-born seventeen-year-old Maya Aziz is torn between worlds. There’s the proper one her parents expect for their good Indian daughter: attending a college close to their suburban Chicago home, and being paired off with an older Muslim boy her mom deems “suitable.” And then there is the world of her dreams: going to film school and living in New York City—and maybe (just maybe) pursuing a boy she’s known from afar since grade school, a boy who’s finally falling into her orbit at school. There’s also the real world, beyond Maya’s control. In the aftermath of…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Private Iris #1″ by Jamie Bautista and Arnold Arre

by Nitoy Gonzales THE STORY Danton Cord is one of the most popular boys in MacGuffin Elementary. His friend, Iris Able, is a loner whom people think is weird. Because she doesn’t talk to anybody, the kids in school have given her the nickname “Private Iris”. However, Iris is also the smartest and most observant person in town. When the money of a class’ cashbox is stolen, Danton sees this as a chance to make people see how special Iris really is. If he can convince her to solve the crime and get the class its money back, maybe he can…

Bookbed reviews: ‘Ghost of a Feeling’ by Celestine Trinidad

by KB Meniado With mentions of failure, bullying and suicide (not to mention, a great pretender~) on the blurb, readers might think twice adding Ghost of a Feeling to their reading list. I know I did. Because if you’ve experienced these things yourself, it’s a little scary to be going into a story that could possibly mess with your head big-time. This book did get to my head—and to my heart. THE STORY All Cris Villareal had ever dreamed of was becoming a doctor. But after the death of a patient under her care and the subsequent humiliation she suffers under a senior resident…

Bookbed reviews ‘Si Dru at ang Kwento ng Limang Kaharian’ ni Clara Ng

ni KB Meniado Ang huling nabasa kong Aklat ng Salin mula sa Adarna House ay Si Tito Libro At Ako (Book Uncle and Me) ni Uma Krishnaswami. Nagustuhan ko iyon at kaya nama’y walang pagdadalawang isip na pinulot ko ang librong ito mula sa istante noong nakaraang Manila International Book Fair. ANG KWENTO Isang palaaway na batang babae ang napadpad sa mundo ng limang malulungkot na hari. Isang makapangyarihang puno ang magsisilbing daan para siya ay makauwi. Samahan si Dru sa kaniyang pakikipagsapalaran sa limang mahiwagang kaharian. (A feisty young girl finds herself lost in a world of five sad kings. A powerful tree will…

Bookbed reviews ‘A Semi-Definitive List of Worst Nightmares’ by Krystal Sutherland

by KB Meniado I don’t want to blame my superstitious upbringing for my irrational fears but… clipping nails at night? A big NO—somebody will get sick and possibly die. Pass by a hearse? Throw coins and/or blow your horn to avoid bad luck. Woke up from a nightmare? Bite your pillow and bite wood thrice. The list goes on, but I assure you, it’s commonplace here in the Philippines to have many of these so-called weird beliefs so I’m not exactly a snowflake. A lot of us lead our lives with these strange practices. Just like Esther Solar. THE STORY Ever…