I Read 500 Books!

Image result for anime celebration gif
Tantei Opera Milky Holmes via Giphy

I’ve made a Goodreads goal of reading 500 books this year and completed it right on time! Reading three hours (sometimes more) a day, reading manga volume after volume, and avoiding distractions (like Minecraft and watching Downton Abbey) truly helped.

Last year, I tried to 500 books, but I knew I wouldn’t make it on time so I changed my 2015 Goodreads goal of 500 t0 400 (boo).

Want to know what I read this year? Feel free to add your Goodreads profile down below and I’ll add you.

By the way, happy new year! ^_^

Manga Monday #15: “Ajin: Demi-Human” by Gamon Sakurai

an Ajin via We Heart It

An average high school student is on the run from the government after they discover he’s immortal. Kei Nagai never thought his life would end up like this. One moment, he’s going to school studying to become a prestigious doctor then a truck runs him over! Kei’s friends witness their friend coming back to life after the gruesome accident.

Kei coming back to life via  We Heart It

Kei is an Ajin, an immortal being with super strength and highly accelerated healing. The government wants to take Kei in not to protect him, but to use him for a serious of unspeakable experiments.

Now, Kei is stuck in a fierce battle between the government and the Ajin. His normal high school life is long gone.

Ajin: Demi-Human is an action packed, fast-paced manga I thoroughly enjoyed for its perspective of human nature. Are humans the real monsters or the Ajin? The government capture any Ajin they can find only to kill them repeatedly in the name of science to search for the source of their immortality. Meanwhile, the Ajin defend themselves so they can continue their lives as regular human beings. However, there are a few Ajin bent on revenge, no mercy for humans at all.

So far, there are eight volumes of Ajin: Demi-Human.  An anime adaptation has been made and a live action movie is coming out next fall.

Have you read this manga series? 

Did you watch the anime?

Three Books for Christmas 2016

There are dozens of books I want for Christmas (every Christmas really). I mean, there are a few selected books I would absolutely keep in my bookshelves FOREVER.

If I had to choose only three books for Christmas this year, it would be:

1. The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey (Amazon) (Goodreads)

I know Stephen Covey through his inspiring Youtube videos. I’ve decided to finally read his book after I’ve discovered an infographic based on one of his ideas called the “circle of concern vs. circle of control”:

via James Clear

Basically, highly effective people are those who are entirely concerned with what they can control opposed to what they don’t like the crazy news on TV or the salty, judgmental neighbors next door.

2. The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manly P. Hall

The Secret Teachings of All Ages by Manly P. Hall (Amazon) (Goodreads)

An extensive encyclopedia on everything esoteric I love to explore? Heck yes!

Mystic writer Manly Hall wrote this encyclopedia when he was only 25 years old. Quite impressive!

3. The Lost Continent of Mu by James Churchward

The Lost Continent of Mu by James Churchward (Amazon) (Goodreads)

Yaassss, more Lemuria stories!

Explorer James Churchward reportedly deciphered a collection of ancient documents revealing Mu, a lost continent once residing over the Pacific Ocean.

Scientists at that time shook their heads furiously over this “discovery” but Churchward clearly didn’t give a hoot and continued to write as much about Mu he knew from his ancient sources.

*~*~*

If I don’t get these books, there’s always the wonderful Amazon gift cards. If I don’t get those, well, I’m getting them one way or another. I know for sure I can get at least one of them asap from my local library. 😉

Happy Holidays!

Hope you receive many books this holiday season!

via Best Animations

Over 400 Books!

One Punch Man via Know Your Meme

YAAASSS!

I’ve finally crossed over the 400 book mark in my Goodreads goal of 500 books! Thankfully, I have a couple days off from work for the holiday break to do all of the reading I want.

Yesterday, I’ve gathered all of the books I could before the library officially closed for the holidays including a grand collection of children’s books. It’s great to take a break from reading massive adult books once in a while (even though I read manga most of the time anyway lol).

Feel free to enter your Goodreads profile in the comments section below. I’ll follow you! ^_^

Book Tour + Book Review: “Occult Paris” by Tobias Churton

Tobias Churton

on Tour

December 15-21

with

occult-paris-cover

Occult Paris:
The Lost Magic of the Belle Époque

(nonfiction – history – occult)

Release date: October 30, 2016
at Inner Traditions • Bear & Company

ISBN: 978-1620555453
528 pages

SYNOPSIS

Historian Tobias Churton explores the magical, artistic, and intellectual world of the Belle Époque Paris. He brings into full perspective the personalities, and forces that made Paris a global magnet and which allowed later cultural movements, such as the “psychedelic 60s,” to rise from the ashes of post-war Europe.

MY REVIEW

Writer and educator Tobias Churton presents an original piece of arcane history in the Occult Paris.

He has certainly brought this world to life! You’ll be introduced to the mysterious side of Paris and its unique characters involved like Stanislas De GuaitaJoséphin Péladan, and Papus.

I was satisfied with the new information I’ve gained from Occult Paris, but some chapters simply weren’t engaging to me.The esoteric philosophies and groups were more intriguing than the trivial conflicts between some artists/philosophers. Churton is a precise, academic writer. He’ll carry out all he can muster so his readers are well-informed.  He has done an excellent job doing so.

A couple of subjects from Occult Paris have captured my interests including:

  • Mysticism in Symbolist Art
  • The seeress Anna Kingsford (1846 – 1888)
  • The perspective of God as an androgynous being
  • The revival of Cathar history
  • The influence of Madame Blatvatsky upon Paris
  • Composer Claude Debussy’s connection to the occult

Fun fact: There is more meaning involved behind the Symbolist art of Baphomet (much more than a spooky devil figure).

Churton’s inspiration for Occult Paris came from his discovery of Péladan, a writer
and critic of the arts. Péladan published a few books sparking the interest of the occult within the Parisian community. He hosted art exhibits, the Salon de la Rose + Croix, for Symbolist artists.

Another fun fact: Péladan influenced artist Salvador Dali’s works.

Overall, despite a few tedious chapters, Churton has written a lively portrayal of the secretive, late 19th-century Paris.  I highly recommend being familiar with the western European occult and key figures before taking a dive into this book.

Occult Paris isn’t an easy read but you’ll be rewarded with the knowledge of its veiled history after you’re done.

Rating: 3/5 stars

Format: Hardcover

Source: “Freebie” – I’ve received this book free of charge from the author/publisher.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

occult-paris-tobias-churton

Tobias Churton
is Britain’s leading scholar
of Western Esotericism,
a world authority on Gnosticism,
Hermeticism, and Rosicrucianism.
An Honorary Fellow of Exeter University,
where he is a faculty lecturer,
he holds a master’s degree in Theology
from Brasenose College, Oxford,
and is the author of many books,
including Gnostic Philosophy and
Aleister Crowley: The Beast in Berlin.
He lives in England.

VIRTUAL BOOK TOUR SCHEDULE

Thursday, December 15

Friday, December 16

Review + Giveaway at Words And Peace

Monday, December 19
Review + Excerpt + Giveaway at
Musings of a Writer & Unabashed Francophile

Tuesday, December 20

Review at Svetlana’s reads and views

Wednesday, December 21
Review + Giveaway at Turning the Pages

***

You can enter the global giveaway here
or on any other book blogs participating in this tour.
Be sure to follow each participant on Twitter/Facebook,
they are listed in the entry form below
.

Enter here

Visit each blogger on the tour:
tweeting about the giveaway everyday
of the Tour will give you 5 extra entries each time!
[just follow the directions on the entry-form]

Global giveaway open to all:
3 winners will receive a print copy of the book

***

CLICK ON THE BANNER
TO READ REVIEWS AND AN EXCERPT

occult-paris-banner

Manga Monday #14: “Black Clover” by Yuki Tabata

Image result for the black clover
Asta joins the Black Bull knights (via Black Clover wiki)

Teenage orphan Asta dreams of being the next Wizard King, the most powerful magician in the Clover kingdom. However, Asta is born without of drop of magic in his blood. That all changes when a mysterious, five-leafed clover grimoire chooses him as his owner. Grimoires only approach magical people. Asta’s newly-discovered ability: anti-magic. He has the power to cancel out any magic thrown against him.

Meanwhile, Asta’s foster brother Yuno is a magical genius. He possesses wind magic and can summon spirits. He plans to be the next Wizard King too.

Together, these brothers sharpen their skills as magical knights. The more they battle, the more they discover their mystical abilities. The most difficult battle yet to come for the two is the seat of the Wizard King. There can be only one.

I’ve noticed The Black Clover is basically Naruto in  a different dimension. Asta is Naruto. They’re both social outcasts with dreams of being powerful, respected leaders. Yuno is Sasuke because they’re both ultra talented dudes society favors over the outcasts.

If you enjoy fantasy manga and the thematic element of competitive brothers/best friends, read The Black Clover. The first volume launched me into a fun-filled adventure! I only hope it doesn’t become too much like Naruto. I freaking loved that series! The story can’t be replicated.

Or can it?