Saturday, 1 January 2022

End of Year 2021

 Satu tahun berlalu lagi. 

Bagi saya, 2021 adalah titik balik hidup saya yang terbesar. Saya kehilangan Mama saya di awal tahun dan itu membuat saya terpukul berat hingga tidak tahu harus ngapain. Saya kehilangan pegangan dan support yang selama ini saya anggap akan selalu ada sampai waktu yang entah kapan. Namun tampaknya Tuhan punya maksud lain saat memanggil Mama saya secepat itu.

Satu hal yang pasti. Life is fleeting, full of brief encounters and passing memories. 

Perubahan terbesar saya di tahun 2021 ini adalah kebiasaan membaca saya yang berkurang. Entah kenapa saya tidak menemukan kedamaian dalam aktivitas favorit saya tersebut setelah Mama saya tidak ada. Seakan saya tidak bisa berkonsentrasi dan selalu kembali ingin menjauhkan diri dari hal-hal yang dulu saya sukai. Semacam distraksi. 

Lalu apa yang saya lakukan selama setahun ini? Tidak ada. Duka membuat saya tidak ingin melakukan apa-apa, termasuk membaca dan menulis cerita. Tapi saya banyak mempelajari tentang mental health dan mencoba tetap berpikir untuk terus maju walaupun apapun yang saya lakukan nanti tidak akan bisa saya bagi dengan Mama lagi. 

Dan tentu saja bagian diri saya yang menyukai cerita dalam bentuk apapun tidak hilang begitu saja. Saya berlari ke gim sekadar untuk menenggelamkan diri dalam dunia lain. Saya tidak jago main gim sebenarnya. Tapi itu sebabnya belajar menaklukkan gim satu ini adalah sebuah reward tersendiri buat saya.

Gim tersebut adalah Final Fantasy IV online. Saya tidak pernah main gim dalam seri ini sama sekali sebelumnya. Tapi saya tahu kalau seri gim ini terkenal dengan ceritanya yang bagus. Kebetulan gim ini baru mengeluarkan expansion baru 3 Desember lalu. Well... dari semua hal yang random, saya menemukan penyembuhan dari cerita yang disampaikan oleh gim ini. Saya yang sudah tidak punya semangat hidup, nihilistik, negatif, dan pasrah kembali diberikan harapan, diberikan jalan untuk bangkit lagi. Siapa yang nyangka? Cerita sebuah gim bisa mengubah hidup saya seperti ini. Thank God.

Di awal tahun 2021, saya sempat menargetkan diri membaca 53 buku. Sayangnya, itu tidak tercapai. Beberapa bulan lalu, saya langsung mengubah target menjadi 15 buku saja. Untungnya sih tercapai ya, berkat salah satu seri yang memang bagus banget ceritanya: The Conqueror's Saga. Itu bikin saya menyelesaikan 2 buku dalam 3 hari. Padahal selama berbulan-bulan sebelumnya, saya bahkan tidak menyelesaikan satu buku pun. 

Jadi, berikut adalah daftar 15 buku yang dibaca tahun 2021, dikelompokkan ke dalam genre masing-masing. 

A. Science Fiction & Fantasy

1. And I Darken (The Conqueror's Saga #1) - Kiersten White

2. Now I Rise (The Conqueror's Saga #2) - Kiersten White

3. Bright We Burn (The Conqueror's Saga #3) - Kiersten White

4. Assassin's Apprentice (The Farseer Trilogy #1) - Robin Hobb

5. The Broken Eye (Lightbringer #3) - Brent Weeks

6. Firefight (Reckoners #2) - Brandon Sanderson

7. Calamity (Reckoners #3) - Brandon Sanderson

8. Warcross (Warcross #1) - Marie Lu

9. Wildcard (Warcross #2) - Marie Lu

B. General Fiction

1. Little Fires Everywhere - Celeste Ng

2. Still Alice - Lisa Genova

C. Romance

1. With or Without You - Prisca Primasari

2. Call from an Angel - Guillaume Musso

3. Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels #6) - Lisa Kleypas

4. Made You Up - Francesca Zappia

Masih seperti biasa dengan genre fantasi yang mendominasi. Dan kalau saya bikin top 10 books tahun ini, The Conqueror's Saga pasti masuk daftar sih saking bagusnya. Tapi nggak lucu bikin top 10 books saat jumlah buku yang dibaca cuma 15 biji. Mungkin tahun depan saya bisa kembali normal. Tepatnya, saya sudah bikin resolusi untuk membaca kembali di tahun 2022. Saya tidak mau  hobi saya menghilang begitu saja hanya karena saya ingin menghindar dari segala hal di masa lalu.

Target 50 buku seperti rencana awal tahun 2021. Can I do it?

Friday, 31 December 2021

Bright We Burn


Judul: Bright We Burn (The Conqueror's Saga #3)

Penulis: Kiersten White

Tebal: 416 halaman

Penerbit: Delacorte

Haunted by the sacrifices he made in Constantinople, Radu is called back to the new capital. Mehmed is building an empire, becoming the sultan his people need. But Mehmed has a secret: as emperor, he is more powerful than ever . . . and desperately lonely. Does this mean Radu can finally have more with Mehmed . . . and would he even want it?

Lada's rule of absolute justice has created a Wallachia free of crime. But Lada won't rest until everyone knows that her country's borders are inviolable. Determined to send a message of defiance, she has the bodies of Mehmed's peace envoy delivered to him, leaving Radu and Mehmed with no choice. If Lada is allowed to continue, only death will prosper. They must go to war against the girl prince.

But Mehmed knows that he loves her. He understands her. She must lose to him so he can keep her safe. Radu alone fears that they are underestimating his sister's indomitable will. Only by destroying everything that came before--including her relationships--can Lada truly build the country she wants.

Claim the throne. Demand the crown. Rule the world.

Tuesday, 28 December 2021

Now I Rise

 Judul: Now I Rise (The Conqueror's Saga #2)
Penulis: Kiersten White
Tebal: 471 halaman
Penerbit: Delacorte Press

Lada Dracul has no allies. No throne. All she has is what she s always had: herself. After failing to secure the Wallachian throne, Lada is out to punish anyone who dares to cross her blood-strewn path. Filled with a white-hot rage, she storms the countryside with her men, accompanied by her childhood friend Bogdan, terrorizing the land. But brute force isn t getting Lada what she wants. And thinking of Mehmed brings little comfort to her thorny heart. There s no time to wonder whether he still thinks about her, even loves her. She left him before he could leave her.

What Lada needs is her younger brother Radu s subtlety and skill. But Mehmed has sent him to Constantinople and it s no diplomatic mission. Mehmed wants control of the city, and Radu has earned an unwanted place as a double-crossing spy behind enemy lines Radu longs for his sister s fierce confidence but for the first time in his life, he rejects her unexpected plea for help. Torn between loyalties to faith, to the Ottomans, and to Mehmed, he knows he owes Lada nothing. If she dies, he could never forgive himself but if he fails in Constantinople, will Mehmed ever forgive him?

As nations fall around them, the Dracul siblings must decide: what will they sacrifice to fulfill their destinies? Empires will topple, thrones will be won . . . and souls will be lost.

Made You Up

 Title: Made You Up
Author: Francesca Zappia
Number of Page: 445
Publisher: Greenwillow Books

Reality, it turns out, is often not what you perceive it to be—sometimes, there really is someone out to get you. For fans of Silver Linings Playbook and Liar, this thought-provoking debut tells the story of Alex, a high school senior—and the ultimate unreliable narrator—unable to tell the difference between real life and delusion.

Alex fights a daily battle to figure out what is real and what is not. Armed with a take-no-prisoners attitude, her camera, a Magic 8 Ball, and her only ally (her little sister), Alex wages a war against her schizophrenia, determined to stay sane long enough to get into college. She's pretty optimistic about her chances until she runs into Miles. Didn't she imagine him? Before she knows it, Alex is making friends, going to parties, falling in love, and experiencing all the usual rites of passage for teenagers. But Alex is used to being crazy. She's not prepared for normal. Can she trust herself? Can we trust her?


 Title: Wildcard (Warcross #2)
Author: Marie Lu
Number of Page: 341
Publisher: Penguin

For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn't just a game - it's a way of life. And teenage hacker Emika Chen has found herself caught up in a conflict that could change the world.

Warcross creator, Hideo Tanaka, wants to use to the game to control peoples' thoughts and feelings, effectively ending free will - Zero, a mysterious (and dangerous) hacker, wants to stop him.

Now Emika must decide who she will fight for. The game is on . . .

Chasing Cassandra

 Judul: Chasing Cassandra (The Ravenels #6)
Penulis: Lisa Kleypas
Tebal: 374 halaman
Penerbit: Avon

Everything has a price.

Railway magnate Tom Severin is wealthy and powerful enough to satisfy any desire as soon as it arises. Anything—or anyone—is his for the asking. It should be simple to find the perfect wife—and from his first glimpse of Lady Cassandra Ravenel, he’s determined to have her. But the beautiful and quick-witted Cassandra is equally determined to marry for love—the one thing he can’t give.

Everything except her.

Severin is the most compelling and attractive man Cassandra has ever met, even if his heart is frozen. But she has no interest in living in the fast-paced world of a ruthless man who always plays to win. When a newfound enemy nearly destroys Cassandra’s reputation, Severin seizes the opportunity he’s been waiting for. As always, he gets what he wants—or does he? There’s one lesson Tom Severin has yet to learn from his new bride: never underestimate a Ravenel.

The chase for Cassandra’s hand may be over. But the chase for her heart has only just begun . . .

Saturday, 18 December 2021


 Title: Warcross (Warcross #1)
Author: Marie Lu
Number of Page: 353
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd

When a game called Warcross takes the world by storm, one girl hacks her way into its dangerous depths. For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn't just a game—it's a way of life. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. When Emika hacks into the game illegally, she's convinced she'll be arrested, and is shocked when she gets a call from the game's creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year's tournament in order to uncover a security problem ... and he wants Emika for the job.