Monday, February 18, 2019

Kdrama Review: Where Stars Land

Drama: Where Stars Land

Genre: romantic drama
Starring: Lee Je Hoon, Chae Soo Bin, Rowoon
Rating: ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

So this whole drama basically takes place at Incheon Airport, on the of the busiest airports in the world. Our two main leads work there and on the girl's first day, she bumps into the guy and is instantly intrigued.

The guy has a secret which our girl slowly figures out, bit by bit. There's another guy that works with them, who it seems was a sort of brother figure to our guy, but they are estranged now, and he seems determined to reveal the secret and ruin our guy. Ah, that was frustrating!

The secret is coming out....

The drama is filled with the daily incidences that an airport might and often has to deal with. Little tiny mini stories scattered throughout. This was new to me for a drama. Usually it's one big huge story arc (which this also had) but not usually little stories that get wrapped up in an episode or two. So that was interesting.

Adorable security guards trying not to fall for each other.

I loved our side characters as usual. There was a very cute security guard who, interestingly enough, was played by the same guy that was scary and mean in a the hammer bashing drama I watched a bit ago! LOL! So, that just goes to show how great an actor his is! From really scary, to really cute. Ah, he was adorable in this!

Also, the second male lead was played by a cutie pie from the kpop bad SF9 named Rowoon and man. He did great too making you feel all the feels for him getting rejected by the girl! Way to go Rowoon! I had to go back and watch our KCON footage from two years ago to see what I captured of him and to remember I've seen him in real life! LOL!

Adorable Rowoon

The last couple of episodes of this drama were pretty intense for me. I forgot to breathe a few times. But then the very very end (we're talking the the last 15 min) was so disappointing. Sometimes I just don't know what these drama writers are thinking when it comes to endings! The whole show is always so good and beautiful and etc and then the end is just... blah. Or weird. Or confusing. Anyway.

But despite that, I enjoyed this one a lot. Very fun to have a drama all swirling around the workings of an airport!

Here's a trailer:




And my favorite song from this one:


Sunday, February 17, 2019

Currently: Feeling Sad-ish



Listening: Someone has taken over the Spotify and there is some weird rap going on. But mostly, what I'm listening to these days are these guys:



Watching: And those guys I will get to WATCH in real life in a few weeks. I am beyond excited. Other watching habits are simply an episode of a kdrama every night. I just finished one last night and will review shortly. It takes me about two weeks to finish a drama. Some people I follow over on Twitter watch a drama a day a swear. I don't know how they fit in life between that. I haven't managed to find any English speaking shows that sound interesting and I haven't seen a movie in a long time. Life is weird. Does a new Survivor start up again soon? I think that's the only show that my husband and I enjoy together so...

Reading: I've been reading pretty well lately. Knocking those books out one by one! But nothing very amazing. I mean Kafka on the Shore was fascinating. And then I finished Geekerella (review to come soon). Sheesh, talk about two different kinds of books. LOL. Trying to finish up this week's book club book, The Marriage Bureau. It's fun and so full of so many interesting stories.

Blogging: Well, I must admit, I don't even know why I'm still doing this. I like the personal record of it for sure. I have maybe what... 3 readers still? Anyway, thank you if you are still reading. I'm a terrible reader of blogs myself these days. I skim some still though. Man I miss the heyday of blogging from a few years ago. Good times.

Writing: I still think about it every day. This past weekend was LTUE, the awesome local very cheap conference that I went to faithfully for about ten years, but have missed the past two years. Another sad thing from the past, eh? Maybe next year I'll be ready to pick it up again.

YouTubing: We crossed over yet ANOTHER 1000 subscriber mark since the last Currently I posted. Wow. It's mostly because we put up a compilation of Monsta X being cute with kids which a ton of people see and then automatically subscribe to us. I think. Yay for that video! Now if only they'd watch a couple other videos of ours! It's just like blogging though, we have a few stalwarts that seem to enjoy what we are doing and comment and interact. So for now... the channel continues.

Picture Taking:
All books on the SHELF!

Pretty winter

The mountain I love

The day it snowed for real

We got a package

Kpop party dancing!

Bed making helper

My grandma's bell collection was dispersed among family. I ended up with 4.

Kpop Christmas



Looking Forward To and Being Nervous About:

  • seeing a Japanese rock band called One Ok Rock in SL on Tuesday.
  • taking Toto to CA next week to send her to Korea. 
  • going to CA in March to see ATEEZ (see above)
  • hopefully going to CA in May to see Stray Kids
  • hopefully going to Korea in June to travel around after Toto is done with her semester

Misc:

  • organized my book mess in the basement. That feels good to finally have under control, for a few days anyway.
  • having fun with the book challenge from the local bookstore.
  • continuously craving chocolate chip cookies. I fight it nearly daily. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose.
  • am addicted to kpop stan Twitter and need to figure out how to detox. 

If you are a friend/fan of Toto, you should follow her new Youtube channel where she will be posting creative artsy videos (not vlogging necessarily, though a vlog or two might make an appearance) about her adventures in Korea. This channel is her  EDGE project for school. 

She also has a new companion Instagram for Korean adventures channel. If you want to see pictures there. I'm hoping she updates often!  You can find her at @totally_there

And that's pretty much what's been going on around here! What's new with you all?

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Book Review: Dear Rachel Maddow by Adrienne Kisner

Book: Dear Rachel Maddow by Adrienne Kisner
Genre: YA Contemporary
Rating: ★ 

It looked like it would be a cute fun quick read written in email form. But...

It wasn't at all cute or fun. It was a stressful hard painful story. It's about a girl who suffers from all sorts of things, mostly that her brother ODed and died and her mom and step dad are monsters and she is in "remedial" studies at school after once upon a time being an honors student.

For an assignment, she writes to her celebrity idol, Rachel Maddow, and pours out her heart. Which becomes so cathartic to her that she continues to do it but  never sends them. So instead of feeling like emails, it's more like a journal.

And this girl is very angry about life and her language is very harsh... this book had f bombs filling every page... along with all the other cuss words you can think of. It got old I must say.

I wanted to feel bad for this girl, but it was hard for me to muster that up. I'm so so sorry!!!

She ends up running for a position on the school government that will help select the school superintendent or something. And then later she actually runs for student body president. Against a guy that gives her all sorts of grief, and her former girlfriend which also causes her all sorts of grief.

And so she struggles. A lot. And life is really crappy for her. But in the end, things do look a little better, and it ends on a note of hope. I almost didn't finish it but since it's such a small book, I just pushed through and wanted to see if there was hope in the end. Thankfully, there was a little.

But it was stressful reading.  And will not be a favorite for this year!


Tuesday, February 12, 2019

Book Review: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Book: Kafka on the Shore by Haruki Murakami

Genre: Magic Realism
Rating: ★ ★ ★ 

This is the second book we chose as part of our endeavor to have a kpop book club! Yes! A book club in which we read books that the kpop idols have loved and recommended... or books about Korea... or books that are like a kdrama, etc. We have quite the list to choose from.














This particular book (and it's author specifically) is listed on several favorite lists from the idols. For instance:

RM from BTS













JB from Got7









Jonghyun from SHINee




As I said when I announced this book, how fun would it be to discuss this book with these guys and see what it is about it that speaks (spoke...sob) to them. Gah. If only we could have a book club where they are included. Unless they are Goodreads members and have already found us using an alias or something. I mean, it's possible....

I was scared of this book and this author. I've heard lots of praise for him, but have always assumed it would be "too hard" to read. I am happy to report that was not the case. In fact this book was very very easy reading, except for a few scenes that had subject matters that were hard. But the readability and the engagement and the page turning was great! So now that encourages me to even perhaps try another of his books one of these days!

Anyway, this story is basically about a 15 year old kid who runs away from home and heads out on a bus to a new city and has no idea what he plans to do. He ends up hanging out a cool and tiny little library where he makes friends with the guy manning the front desk. On alternate chapters, we are following a 60 year old mentally disabled guy who had a trauma happen to him when he was a kid that caused his disability. He is minding his own business, living his simple life when suddenly he feels compelled to go on a sort of quest... he has stuff to do but he doesn't know what it is, but he will know when it happens.

The stories and back stories of these two and also the librarian who we meet eventually, all sort of tie together, and it's quite fascinating. But also, very confusing and bottom line, while I enjoyed the journey, in the end... I didn't get it! I don't understand the point! WHAT WAS THAT ALL FOR????

But I think it's one of those books where it's just... figure it out and whatever you come up with... that works!

I read that some  people figure everything is a sort of a dream state, and all the crazy and weird things that happen could happen in our dreams, and it's bordering on conscious and unconsciousness. Or, it's that the characters are coming and going in and out their bodies, and inhabiting each others' bodies. Yeah?

I don't know. But it's crazy some of the stuff that happens. But I enjoyed it, despite a few scenes that were a bit graphic for my taste.

There is a big emphasis on books, music and art. I loved that. There was also many profound things that were said where I was like... yeah man. I googled the quotes.. here are a few:




So anyway, in the end, I would say I enjoyed reading this one, but I truly have no idea what it's trying to say! If you've read it and have a theory, do share! Enlighten my small brain! And if you've read others by this author and enjoyed them, let me know which one should be next on my list!

Emily has announced our next read! Click below!!


And if you want to see me SAY all the above things I just WROTE, but with lost more stuttering (no, hopefully those are edited out) then you can:



Friday, February 8, 2019

Random Kpop Gifs!

These gifs need to be released to the wild! Here's a few fun things I've made or saved to my phone recently:


Defining swagger
Bang Chan from Stray Kids

Leo from VIXX
His not so stingy with his smiles these days.

Han from Stray Kids feeling pretty proud after
an awesome cover of Bang Bang Bang by Big Bang

Woojin from Stray Kids during a performance of District 9

Wei from UP10TION from the Blue Rose MV

San from ATEEZ
saying Purple and Hello in English :)

Thursday, February 7, 2019

January 2019 Reading Recap


My January Snow Picture straight from the backyard!



In an attempt to keep up with my monthly recaps this year (and hopefully have something to show for each month's reading!) here's what I read in January:


1. The Other side of Lost by Jessi Kirby: Our girl is sad that she is been spending her life building an Instagram following instead of being close to her cousin who used to be her best friend. So after the cousin dies, our girl decides to fulfill the dream she (the cousin) had to hike the John Muir trail.

2. Orphan Island by Laurel Snyder: There's a magical island where nine kids live and every year a new kid comes and the oldest kid leaves. But what if next time, the oldest kid doesn't want to leave?

3. Sweet Black Waves by Kristina Perez: A fantasy take on the Tristan legend.

All three of these books were just okay for me. If I had to pick a favorite... hmmm....maybe the Sweet Black waves one? :)

All three of these books fulfill a category in the book challenge I'm doing:

  • First book in series: Sweet Black Waves
  • Book by a female author: Orphan Island
  • Book by an author you've never heard of : The Other Side of Lost

Goals this month:
  • Book club book: The Marriage Bureau
  • Read some for fun books I just acquired
  • Finish Kafka for the kpop book club (DONE!)
  • Read something else for the book challenge

What's up on your reading lists?



Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Kdrama Review: Encounter

Drama: Encounter (aka. Boyfriend)

Genre: romance
Starring: Park Bo Gum, Song Hye Kyo
Rating: ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤ ❤

After Come and Hug Me (all the hammer murdering remember?) I needed something a little more chill, and this ended up being the perfect one! Like, probably the most refreshing drama ever.

It's a simple story, which in kdramas is quite rare, about a guy and girl falling in love. Yes. That's pretty much it. The girl has a family that is giving her grief, so the whole conflict is.... is she strong enough to stand up to them and finally, once and for all, be happy? Oh, and there's the little conflict that she is much older than him. We call that a noona romance and it's awesome.

She is a CEO of hotel chain and is planing on opening up a new hotel in Cuba. So she is there on a business trip. He is "just and ordinary guy" traveling around, spending the last few days of his 20s on a trip. They have a chance encounter, and spend a lovely (very tame) evening together. Eating, dancing, talking. She has been pic-pocketed and has no money, so he is scraping his pennies together to pay for their fun things. He has no idea who she is. At the end, they plan to meet for breakfast, but of course it doesn't work out and they go back to Korea thinking that's it.

Well, and so he is getting a job and is hired on... at the big hotel in Korea where she is the CEO. She is doing the welcome to the employees speech and their eyes meet across the crowded room. She freezes and he breaks into his beautiful smile.

So it goes from there. Her family and her ex in law family are holding all sorts of things over her head. But at this point, she is beyond caring. Mostly. And she just rolls with it and a beautiful romance happens

I kept expecting all the normal problems to happen, but since these guys were older, they didn't play games. They just talked things through. It's so refreshing. And the guy is so freaking honest and open, he just says what he's thinking and feeling. It's the best. I loved this character so much, and Park Bo Gum with his beautiful smile and clean look was perfect for the role.

The cinematography is great too. They make Cuba look like the most romantic place to go! Who knew? CUBA!!! There was no silly stuff like sometimes happens in kdramas, no over the top acting, no crazy antics, no sad backstories (except for her marriage and life, which was not really a back story as it was still currently happening). But we still had the quirky and fun side characters, which completes the whole picture.

I loved it.

Okay, the trailer:




And my favorite song from the drama sung by a favorite, Eric Nam:




I'm not wanting to figure out what to watch next after this one. I guess I'll read for a bit! LOL!

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