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[Book Review] For One More Day by Mitch Albom

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Judul: For One More Day (Satu Hari Bersamamu)
Penulis: Mitch Albom
Penerbit: Gramedia Pustaka Utama
Terbit: Desember 2007
Tebal: 248 halaman
ISBN: 978-979-22-3433-6
Kategori: Novel Fiksi
Genre: Family, Death, Sports
Beli di: Lotte Mart Bintaro
Harga: Rp. 15,000
Kalimat Pembuka:
“Biar kutebak. Kau ingin tahu kenapa aku mencoba bunuh diri.”

book_blurbFor One More Day adalah kisah tentang seorang ibu dan anak laki-lakinya, kasih sayang abadi seorang ibu, dan pertanyaan berikut ini: Apa yang akan kaulakukan seandainya kau diberi satu hari lagi bersama orang yang kausayangi, yang telah tiada? Ketika masih kecil, Charley Benetto diminta untuk memilih oleh ayahnya, hendak menjadi “anak mama atau anak papa, tapi tidak bisa dua-duanya.” Maka dia memilih ayahnya, memujanya—namun sang ayah pergi begitu saja ketika Charley menjelang remaja. Dan Charley dibesarkan oleh ibunya, seorang diri, meski sering kali dia merasa malu akan keadaan ibunya serta merindukan keluarga yang utuh. Bertahun-tahun kemudian, ketika hidupnya hancur oleh minuman keras dan penyesalan, Charley berniat bunuh diri. Tapi gagal. Dia justru dibawa kembali ke rumahnya yang lama dan menemukan hal yang mengejutkan. Ibunya—yang meninggal delapan tahun silam masih tinggal di sana, dan menyambut kepulangannya seolah tak pernah terjadi apa-apa.

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For One More Day adalah buku ketiga karya Mitch Albom yang saya baca, dan buku fiksi pertama karya beliau yang saya baca. Beruntung saya berhasil menemukan buku ini di boks obralan Gramedia Lotte Mart, Bintaro. Ternyata, buku ini diobral karena penerbit merilis ulang dengan cover baru yang lebih cantik.

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For One More Day bercerita tentang Chick Benetto yang menghabiskan satu hari bersama almarhum ibunya, Posey. Chick adalah mantan atlet bisbol pro yang pernah masuk World Series. Hidupnya hancur setelah ia cedera dan tidak bisa lagi bermain bisbol. Lalu, hubungannya dengan istrinya, Catherine, dan putrinya, Maria, juga tidak baik. Ia bahkan tidak diundang untuk menghadiri pernikahan Maria. Chick mencoba untuk mematikan rasa sakit dengan minum-minuman keras, dan ia bertekad untuk mengakhiri hidupnya karena ia sudah merasa tidak berguna lagi. Sebuah kecelakaan membuatnya kembali ke rumah masa kecilnya, dan ia menghabiskan satu hari bersama ibunya.

Setelah membaca tiga buku, saya berkesimpulan bahwa Mitch Albom suka mengangkat tema kematian dalam buku-bukunya. Mitch seolah ingin menekankan bahwa hidup sangat singkat, jadi jangan sia-siakan kesempatan untuk melakukan sesuatu sehingga jika orang tersebut/kita pergi meninggalkan dunia, tidak ada penyesalan yang tertinggal.

Sama seperti buku-buku terdahulunya, buku ini ditulis dengan apik dan membuat pembaca berkaca-kaca. Setelah melahap buku ini, saya jadi ingin memeluk orangtua saya dan mengucapkan terima kasih kepada mereka.

Bacaan yang recommended jika kamu ingin berderai-derai dan memboroskan tisu.

quotes

“Aku melakukan apa yang penting bagiku,” katanya. “Aku menjadi seorang ibu.” (hal. 165)

Percaya, kerja keras,cinta—kalau kau punya hal-hal ini, kau bisa melakukan apa pun. (hal. 202)

 

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Until next time ^^

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[Book Review] Heartbeat by Elizabeth Scott @HarlequinTeen

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Title: Heartbeat
Author: Elizabeth Scott
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Date of Published: 1 January 2014
Format: Ebook
No. of Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780373210961
Category: Fiction
Genre: Contemporary, Romance, Family, Young Adult, Realistic Fiction
Received from: Harlequin Teen via Netgalley
Link: here
Opening sentences:
I sit down with my mother. My smile is shaky as I tell her about my day.

book_blurb

Life. Death. And…Love?

Emma would give anything to talk to her mother one last time. Tell her about her slipping grades, her anger with her stepfather, and the boy with the bad reputation who might be the only one Emma can be herself with.

But Emma can’t tell her mother anything. Because her mother is brain-dead and being kept alive by machines for the baby growing inside her.

Meeting bad-boy Caleb Harrison wouldn’t have interested Old Emma. But New Emma-the one who exists in a fog of grief, who no longer cares about school, whose only social outlet is her best friend Olivia-New Emma is startled by the connection she and Caleb forge.

Feeling her own heart beat again wakes Emma from the grief that has grayed her existence. Is there hope for life after death-and maybe, for love?

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I received this ARC from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Heartbeat is a heart-wrenching story. It tells about Emma, a seventeen year-old girl who lost her mother but had to see her everyday because she’s pregnant.

Lisa met Dan and they fell in love. Soon, they started a family. Emma was happy because she felt that Dan loved her and her mother.

Until her mother’s pregnant and died, things changed unexpectedly. Every single day, Emma visited her mother in the hospital. Her body was kept alive by machines – pumping her heartbeat to incubate the baby in her womb.

Emma thought Dan just wanted to keep the baby and was devastated knowing that she wasn’t involved when Dan decided to keep Lisa alive. Emma thought everything he had done was for the sake of the baby.

A former straight A’s student, Emma’s grades were failing and she’s on a downward spiral. Until she met Caleb, a troubled teen who was also grieving for his sister, Minnie.
Their relationship developed gradually, since they had things in common.

Olivia, Emma’s best friend, was shocked learning about this ‘odd’ couple. Caleb was in a lot of troubles. He stole cars, did drugs, and hit a stranger with a car.

Dan tried to be a good father, but Emma refused the warm gesture. She was so stubborn, shutting herself out and pretending that Dan didn’t exist. Dan was hurt, Emma was too.

What I like about Heartbeat is that there’s no perfect family. I believe in that too. Every family is dysfunctional, everybody has problems, but it depends on you how to work things out.

I like this quote from the book;

A family is more than one person.

Heartbeat touches about grief, friendship, making the right decision, how to put yourself in a family, and romance. The romance is not too much, unlike any other HQ lines.

My rant is when Emma repeats her thoughts about Dan’s decision. I kept reading about this over and over again.

I love how the characters develop and the ending is very sweet.

quotes

Under the idea that we can all make our fates, that we have choices, is the reminder that sometimes we don’t. That sometimes life is bigger than our plans. Bigger than us.

I knew grief could destroy you, but I didn’t know it could turn you into a walking dead.

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Until next time ^^

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[Book Review] Reasons by Aditia Yudis @NouraBooks

book_info18271929Judul: Reasons: Untuk Sebuah Impian

Penulis: Aditia Yudis

Penerbit: Teen Noura

Terbit: Juli 2013

Tebal: 332 halaman

ISBN: 9786027816411

Kategori: Novel Fiksi

Genre: Fiksi Remaja, Romance, Drama

Bisa dibeli di: [Bukabuku] [Bukukita] [Yes24]

Kalimat pertama: Kalau saja si Mbak penjaga kost-nya ada di sini sekarang, situasi yang dialami Adeline ini pasti akan dijabarkannya dengan analisi logika ala sinetron yang akurat.

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Adeline

“Aku bisa saja meminta bantuan Sigit, Tapi aku takut semua jadi rumit.”

Sigit

“Baru kali ini ada yang mengajakku makan malam, Amber memang menarik, tapi ….”

Amber

“Jadi, Abi akan pergi? Kenapa dia bisa tega meninggalkanku?”

Abi

“Aku hanya ingin Adeline tahu. Bahwa dia lebih baik dari yang orang kira.”

Adeline dan Amber bertemu dalam satu titik kehidupan. Mereka punya impian yang sama, tapi hanya satu yang bisa mencapainya. Awalnya, mereka pikir persaingan itu hanya sementara, tapi ternyata masa depan mereka pun saling bertautan, karena beberapa alasan ….

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Saya pertama kali kenal Adit karena sama-sama mengikuti lomba cerpen yang diadakan oleh Nulisbuku.com. Setelah itu, kita sering interaksi, bahkan beberapa kali bergabung dalam proyek antologi. And now she’s part of our book club, Reight.
Jujur aja, buku ini adalah buku pertama karya Adit yang baru saya baca. Sebelumnya, saya sering membaca karyanya berupa cerpen atau FF yang sering diposting di blognya.
Novel ini berkisah tentang persaingan. Simpel aja. Dua remaja perempuan, two bitches from different background, the have and the not, bersaing mendapatkan beasiswa di UI. And just like other bitches, they did their bitchy way to consume each other.
Adeline yang agak tertutup dan berasal dari keluarga pas-pasan, berjuang keras untuk meraih beasiswa agar ia bisa melanjutkan kuliah. Ibunya tidak menghendaki ia kuliah karena alasan biaya. Ia menghendaki Adeline untuk bekerja saja sehabis lulus SMA.
Ada lagi Amber, anak orang berada, yang jengah dibanding-bandingkan dengan kakaknya yang sangat berprestasi, Abi. IA mati-matian meraih beasiswa agar ‘dianggap’ oleh kedua orangtuanya.
Ketika nama Adeline yang terpampang di papan pengumuman sebagai peraih beasiswa, Amber berang. Sebagai cewek populer di sekolah, ia memanfaatkan kekuatannya untuk menekan Adeline.
Ada lagi Sigit, mahasiswa UI yang bekerja di warnet tempat nongkrong Adeline. Terjalin hubungan yang agak rumit antara Amber-Sigit-Adeline-Abi.
Adit piawai dalam menuliskan narasi secara detil. Hal-hal kecil tak luput dan dimasukannya dalam tulisan.Adeline itu sepertinya alter-nya Adit, karena kegilaannya akan Star Trek dan Tolkien. Tapi jujur aja, dalam buku ini kesukaan Adeline akan karya Tolkien (baik buku maupun adaptasi film) agak terlalu banyak. It’s too much.

Lalu ada adegan ketika Abi memandang Adeline seperti hendak memakannya. Langsung inget Twilight.
Lalu, karakter utamanya, Adeline, asli bikin gemes. Saya nggak suka dengan Adeline yang menurut saya lebih menyebalkan daripada Amber. Adeline itu memanfaatkan kepolosan dan kenaifannya untuk minta tolong sama Sigit dan Abi.
Dalam kata lain, Adeline punya kemiripan dengan Amber, terutama dalam hal suka pouting, manja dan egois. Tapi setidaknya, Amber tidak pernah memanfaatkan cowok untuk kepentingannya.
Sekarang bahas points of discussion:
1. First Impression:
Yes, buku ini bercerita tentang rivalry, jelas banget di covernya. Tapi entah kenapa janggal banget liat cover lapis keduanya. Seperti nggak nyambung dengan cover pink di depannya yang sudah bagus. Ilustrasi dalamnya keren, suka banget.
2. How did you experience the book:
Harus menghela napas saking sebelnya sama Adeline, heheheh.
3. Characters:
Sudah dijabarkan di atas. I have no sympathy for the main character.
4. Plot:
Plotnya menarik kok, menggunakan alur maju.
5. POV
Menggunakan POV ketiga.
6. Main Idea/Theme:
Rivalry, two bitches (back)stabbing each other (the other one stabs in the front, whereas the other doing some dirty tricks in the back.
7. Quotes:
(I lost my notes)
8. Ending
Cukup memuaskan
9. Question:
Memangnya beneran ada ya lomba karya ilmiah yang hadiahnya beasiswa masuk UI?
10. Benefits:
Jadi tau pernak-pernik Tolkien dan Star Trek
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Submitted for:
New Author Challenge
IRRC
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[Book Review] Serving Crazy with Curry by Amulya Malladi

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Title: Serving Crazy With Curry
Author: Amulya Malladi
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: October 25th, 2004
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0345466128
Format: Ebook
Category: Fiction/Indian Lit/ Family/Cultural/Food Lit

Book blurb:

Between the pressures to marry and become a traditional Indian wife and the humiliation of losing her job in Silicon Valley, Devi is on the edge-where the only way out seems to be to jump. . . .

Yet Devi’s plans to “end it all” fall short when she is saved by the last person she wants to see: her mother. Forced to move in with her parents until she recovers, Devi refuses to speak. Instead, she cooks . . . nonstop. And not the usual fare, but off the wall twists on Indian classics, like blueberry curry chicken or Cajun prawn biryani. Now family meals are no longer obligations. Devi’s parents, her sister, and her brother-in-law can’t get enough-and they suddenly find their lives taking turns as surprising as the impromptu creations Devi whips up in the kitchen each night. Then a stranger appears out of the blue. Devi, it appears, had a secret-one that touches many a nerve in her tightly wound family. Though exposing some shattering truths, the secret will also gather them back together in ways they never dreamed possible.

Interspersed with mouthwatering recipes, this story mixes humor, warmth, and leap-off-the-page characters into a rich stew of a novel that reveals a woman’s struggle for acceptance from her family and herself.

This book is about Devi and her dysfunctional family. Unlike any other Indian Lit that I read, this one is blunt and digs about the taboo subjects among Indians: pre-marital sex, divorce, suicide, and atheism.

It started with Devi who tried to kill herself, but failed. Then The narrator told about Devi’s grandfather who committed suicide. It touches the psychological aspect. I read somewhere that suicidal tendencies run in the family. Britney Spears, who was in turbulance (we don’t know what she did to herself during that phase), was in the tabloids. One article mentioned about her grandmother who hanged herself (if I’m not mistaken). It makes sense to me.

After the fail suicide attempt, Devi shut her mouth and being muted for four months. One by one, the secrets in the family revealed. Sobha’s unhappy marriage with Girish, his husband through arranged marriage. Saroj and Avi’s marriage was also in trouble (Saroj and Avi are Devi and Sobha’s parents). And Vasu, Saroj’s mother who has health issues. She was gloomy after the love of her life died of cancer.

Devi discovered her passion in the kitchen. During her mute phase, she tried to cook Indian food, and the result was surprisingly great. She’s become the best chef in the house.

Out of the blue, Jay, Devi’s ex-lover-turned-best friend, came to her house to spill the shocking news, the secret that Devi buried. That’s the main reason of her mental breakdown.

It’s the best family fiction I’ve ever read. Every character has its flaw. The family is traditional but less religious. Even Sobha said she’s an atheist. And, of course, the mouth watering recipes are appealing.

The last part is also my favorite, when Amulya talked to the characters. A unique approach in writing.

If you love family drama, don’t miss this one.

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