Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Kdrama Review: City Hunter

Drama: City Hunter
Genre: Drama/Suspense/Adventure
Starring: Lee Min Ho and Park Min Young (who also starred in Healer for those of you familiar!)
Rating:  ❤ ❤ ❤

In my quest to see everything Lee Min Ho has done, this one ended up next in the long line up of dramas to watch. And can I just say first off, it really isn't going to matter to me what the drama is... just watching him is pretty much heaven.

So that being said, here's the story of the drama: An incident happened in 1983 right about the time our hero boy was born. In this incident, a bunch of guys were doing this mission to North Korea.. which was successful... but on the way back home... their own guys (South Korea yes) killed them all. Except one. The one guy who survived has lived all these 28 years to seek out and destroy every single one of the five men who were involved in this fiasco and betrayal.

Our hero... Lee Yoon Sung (aka Lee Min Ho) was kidnapped by this one survivor when he was a baby and raised pretty much as the weapon he planned to use to accomplish this revenge. When Yoon Sung comes of age, he sets out to find and kill all these guys and do whatever his dad (because he calls this guy who raised him his father) wants him to do.

Along the way, things change and he realizes that his way of taking revenge differs completely from his dad's. And so he becomes this vigilante type dude, that everyone calls City Hunter, and he catches the guys so that they can suffer the justice, but he does not kill them.

But more importantly for him, he finds out what happened with his kidnapping as a baby..... he finds out the truth surrounding the whole mixed up business. And he is MAD.

An almost kiss.

Meanwhile, he falls in love of course, but he has decided he can't love anyone because of the mess his life is turning out to be. And of course the girl he loves is all mixed up in this mess too!

Here's the smile/laugh I'm talking about.

I loved this one for the fact that LMH has so many smiling scenes! In the other two dramas I've watched with him he is one serious dude... sheesh. And if he cracks a smile it a rare rare thing. And you must know that when LMH smiles, it is the best thing ever. BEST THING! And so to have him so smilely in this one, I was dying.

But then, when things start getting rough and sad and shall we say.. dramatic.. those smiles stop again. And then he made me crazy with his sob story.. the whole "I can't love you because I'm so terrible thing" MAKES ME CRAZY!  And then, he was too sad to smile any more.

A very popular Lee Min Ho gif comes from this drama. 
And another one. :)

So the first half of this drama was great. The second half sort of dragged for me and I was just wanting to get to the happy ending. And I must say, the ending was a massive let down. But I was glued. And I was weepy. And I was very very into it! But there was just something missing from the overall satisfaction, dang it!

Still... if you are a LMH fan like I am... you have to watch it despite that frustrating ending!

Oh, P.S. let me just also say... I could watch LMH doing fight scenes, like, all day. His grace for such things is amazing.

Here's a trailer:
(this one narrated by the dad who raised to be a revenge machine)

And of course some mushy scenes and some more fight scenes all set to the lovely songs from this drama:

Next LMH drama I plan to watch... Heirs. Stay tuned!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Book Review Thoughts: P.S. I Like You by Kasie West

Book: P.S. I Like You by Kasie West
Genre: YA contemporary

This sort of book is exactly the sort of book that I'm in the mood for these days. Just a fun simple romance, with a bit of drama thrown in. In this story, we have Lily who is bored during Chemistry. She doodles on the desk, some random song lyrics from an obscure band. The next day, someone has doodled more of those song lyrics. She is blown away that someone else knows of this band! She is so excited. She reponds and before she knows it, she has an on going communication with some unknown person.

At first, she doesn't want to find out who it is but then she gets more and  more curious. Meanwhile, she is trying to be brave and go out with the mysterious cool looking kid she's had a crush on her whole life. And her friend is trying to set her up with some other dude that she thinks will be perfect. (Her friend thinks not Lily... Lily is all... whatever.) And she keeps wondering if one of them is the writer of the notes.

But when she finally finds out who IS the writer, she pretty much goes crazy.

And all that crazy turns out to be quite fun.

Yes. I so enjoy these sorts of books. Bring them on.

Bottom Line: Read for fun and fluffiness.

Other Reviews:

Kasie West writes the most adorable light teen romance ever. Her books are drop-everything-and-read-NOW books for me. From Sarah Reads Too Much

As with all Kasie West books, this also had great friendships and family relationships. From YA Romantics

YA gets a bad rap for dead or absent parents, and you will definitely not find that here! From The Fake Steph

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Utah Book Week Day Six: FIVE

Here are five books by Utah authors that I would recommend you read ASAP:

Well, that's just a start, but the prompt is only FIVE after all!

Friday, August 26, 2016

Utah Book Week Day Five: 2016

The past couple of years I've posted a list of all the Utah authors I've read that year. My list is smaller this year, but I've still been reading them!

So... here's my list for this year, 2016, the Utah authors I've read since August last year at Utah Book Month:

Fires of Invention by J. Scott Savage: A girl and a boy follow clues left by the girl's father and discover the mystery of their underground village.

Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis: Essie is surviving just fine and then a ship crash lands on her planet and she realizes that she needs to make some changes and stop running away from her past.

Year of Origin (beta read for Maren T.): Blue finds herself Displaced into the future and all she wants to do is find her family.

Heir to Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson: Philip's brother dies, he has to take over the estate even though he'd rather not, and now everyone wants to marry him!

Eleanor and the Iron King by Julie Daines: Eleanor is sent to marry the king of the rival kingdom but when she gets there, she gets confused as to who's the good guys and who's the bad.

Endure by Sara B. Larson: The final installment of this fantasy trilogy where there is an epic showdown between the kingdoms.

The Pages Between Us by Lindsey Leavitt: A fun middle grade book about two friends who write stuff to each other in a notebook they pass back and forth between them. Cute!

Summerlost by Ally Condie: A sweet story about how a young girls deals with grief during a summer stay in her grandparents home town.

Burning Glass by Kathryn Purdie: Sometimes when you can feel the emotions of everyone around it can get awfully confusing!

Have you read any books by Utah authors this year? If so, let me know which ones and if you liked them!

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Utah Book Week Day Four: FAVORITE

Ah, today's prompt is favorite! How open ended is that? I'm going with a random list. Enjoy!

Favorite Utah book: Edenbrooke and Blackmore both by Julieanne Donaldson
Favorite Utah author: Brandon Sanderson
Favorite Utah library: Orem of course!
Favorite Utah restaurant: Bombay House (this is only in Utah, right?)
Favorite Utah saying: Oh my heck!
Favorite Utah mountain: Timpanogos
Favorite Utah band: VanLadyLove... no wait... Imagine Dragons! BOTH!
Favorite Utah drive: Alpine Loop
Favorite Utah lake: Mirror Lake
Favorite Utah resort spot: Moab
Favorite Utah National Park: Arches
Favorite Utah Korean store: Pink Kokiri
Favorite Utah grocery store: Macys
Favorite Utah book store: The King's English
Favorite Utah ski resort: Sundance
Favorite Utah event: Salt Lake Comic Con
Favorite Famous Utah person: Donny Osmond
Favorite Utah college: BYU
Favorite Utah hike: Stewart Falls
Favorite movie filmed in Utah: The Sandlot... oh and Savannah Smiles
Favorite TV show filmed in Utah: That one Dr. Who episode... you know the one?
Favorite Utah food: Funeral potatoes
Favorite Utah concert place: SCERA Shell
Favorite Utah theater: Capitol Theater

Okay... well... I could probably go on and on. What favorite Utah thing do you want to know about that I didn't list here?

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Utah Book Week Day Three: PEOPLE

Today for Utah Book Week we're talking about people. The first people that come to mind are these:

Most of my favorite book people all in one place taken on the occasion of our book club's tenth anniversary.

Speaking of book club, here's a couple other memorable book club pictures from our two author visits these past two years:

With Josh Hanagarne

With Amy Finnegan

We've had some great parties with our bloggin' buddies over the years too:

2008 or so

Summer 2008
when authors were small enough to come to our parties!
More of the crowd in 2009
Summer 2011 or so 
And last year, 2015

Ah, what memories! I miss the blogging hey day we had back then. But from it all, I've made some great life long friends! Bookish people. They are the best.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Utah Book Week Day Two: PLACE

Today's prompt... place. It can be interpreted many ways. I thoughts of several ways, but have ended up with this one:

One of my favorite Utah places is Mirror Lake. And it's a place where I love to curl up and read to the sounds of the breeze swaying in the pine trees, and the squirrels chirping and the fire crackling. I love the feel of the cool air after being in a stuffy hot city. And the best is being able to read without any responsibilities calling to me.

(Which actually, that rarely happens even on a camp out, but I like to think it's at least less.)

Where's your favorite outside place to read?

Monday, August 22, 2016

Utah Book Week Day One: STACK

Utah Book Week starts today! My plan is to post each day on a theme that corresponds with the Instagram Challenge themes:

Here's the thing about my Utah Books stack. It grows by a HUGE amount every year and there is no way that I can keep up. It's insane really, the amount of books authors here in Utah are writing. What's up with that? We've discussed it a bit before, but something is going on here. It would be nice if whatever it is I could figure out how to tap into it!!

Anyway, in another post I will list all the Utah books I've read this year, but in this post (and for my instagram picture) I have gathered just a few books that happen to be in the nearby vicinity:

I plan to work on at  least one of these this week, but the rest... I'm afraid they'll still be waiting. And seriously, these are just the ones that happen to be within arms reach for a quick picture. Don't you think that's crazy?

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Currently: Feeling Exhausted

I've gone a whole week without blogging.

Guys. I'm not sure this has ever happened in my whole nearly ten years of blogging.

Is the world ending?

Anyway, here's a recap of the past week in pictures:

Here's the silly and blurry selfie at the airport when we picked up Sangi on Thursday.

We immediately took her to get French Fries. 

Here's her welcome sign that we LEFT AT HOME!!!

She brought us a ton of fun things from Korea
including the traditional hanbok dress.

A car full of crazies.

Eating at In and Out

Our Josh Groban selfie.
(Yes, we remembered our pre kpop love for Josh!)

Sangi brought me Lee Min Ho socks!
(Who's Lee Min Ho? The boy with the gun in the previous post of course!)

The cool monkey bar pyramid at the park.
Teaching Sangi the "heavy heavy hangover"
song for birthday present giving.

And finally, a cat picture.
The not so helpful bed making helper.

And now... tomorrow... school starts. Goodbye summer.

But I'm hoping that means a nice normal-ish week and getting back to routine. Until the weekend. And then it all breaks loose again. 

Sunday, August 14, 2016

Currently: Feeling the Calm before the Storm

Listening:   Um... do you really want to know? I don't think you do. But just in case. You can click that link.  LOL! :) My favorite kpop song right now is this one. It's a ballad with some really awesome intense singing.. .and a bit of soft-ish rapping:

Did you listen? What do you think? (P.S You can click the CC button to see the lyrics if you want.)

Watching: A kdrama called City Hunter featuring this boy:

And that's really all I have to say about that.

Reading: I just finished a lovely book by my favorite Kasie West called P.S. I Like You. I love these fun contemporary romance books that she writes! Perfect for me right now!

Blogging: Next week we'll be celebrating Utah Authors. I have started two books by Utah authors. One a well established graphic novelist... and one a brand new author! Woot!  Stay tuned for more Utah bookish-ness fun.

Writing: Um.

YouTubing: Guys. Our channel exploded in the past couple of weeks. It's been awesome. People are actually watching us now. Which is both cool and freaky at the same time. We have haters too! So you know that's ligit, right? But, wow. This is being a fun ride.

Big Announcement: A few weeks ago I mentioned that life is going to change around here in a big way. And that happens this week when we welcome to our home an exchange student for the WHOLE SCHOOL YEAR! And guess where she is from? As my mom says.... you have three guesses and the first two don't count. Korea! Yep. We are so excited it's not even funny. We have talked about doing this for years. And I've always resisted, but this time, it feels so right and like it was meant to be. And it's not just about the Korea thing. I just... I don't know... I think it's going to be an awesome thing. So I have spent many days cleaning and organizing and throwing away junk so there will be a room ready for her. Anyway, stay tuned for much more about this adventure!

So this weekend things have been fairly calm. And then it will all break loose. I'm hanging on tight.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Sing Along Saturday: Rockin'

Music for your Saturday! The prompt today over at Bookish Things and More is:

Songs (because I can never do just one) 
that make you rock and roll

The one that fits this most recently for me (before the kpop take over) is My Songs Know What You Did in the Dark by Fall Out Boy:

One of the best head banging songs ever!

A rocking out song from the way past is Don't Fear the Reaper from Blue Oyster Cult. Gah, I love this song:

And then there's Muse of course:

While that's not a true "song"... it's a concert jam and I can never get enough of Chris on that bass. Sigh.

Oh man. Rocking out songs. I could go on and on.

What are some of your favorites?

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Book Review Thoughts: Wish You Were Italian by Kristin Rae

Book: Wish You Were Italian by Kristin Rae
Genre: YA Contemporary
Rating: ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆

This one is that same line up books that Not in the Script is in... remember that fun book from last year's reading?  It's about a girl who goes to Italy for the summer. She's supposed to go to Florence for an art program, but she decides to bag that and do her own thing... and not tell her parents. Turns out she befriends a local Italian girl working at a bakery and ends up going to Cinque Terre with her to live with her family and help in their restaurant.

The Italian girl has a beautiful cousin who sweeps our girl off her feet with his playboy ways. Our girl is all, wow, he's beautiful, but he's bad news. She tries to resist. It's hard.

But, it's made easier when an American guy, one she bumped into on her first day, shows up and invites her to go to Pompeii with him. Yeah. This boy is a much nicer choice.

So, all in all, it's a fun summer romance story, which is exactly what I expected. Very fun. But not too thought provoking or anything. The best thing about this book is having been to all the places mentioned (except Pompeii sadly) and able to picture everything, from the trails between the villages of Cinque Terre, to the train tunnels, to the gelato shops and trattorias, and finally the Colosseum and Pantheon in Rome. And when she said it was hot, I knew what that meant! Hot like no other hot I've ever experienced!

Bottom Line: Cute fluffy romance story. I enjoyed it!

Other Reviews:

It was a really good summer read that simultaneously cured and riled up the travel bug in me. From The Perpetual Page Turner

Fun, fanciful, and cute, Kristin Rae’s debut novel Wish You Were Italian is a story of self discovery, friendship and romance that would make the perfect addition to your beach bag this summer. From Pop Goes the Reader

It's one of those stories that wiill entertain; it's also a story that will proceed to make your wanderlust and desire to visit Italy grow in gigantic proportions. From Alexa Loves Books

It was a fun read for the description of Italy and gelato alone. From Book. Blog. Bake.

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Utah Book Week 2016

In the past, some of us Utah Bloggers have set aside August to celebrate all things bookish in Utah. This year we've been feeling a bit overwhelmed with life and yet we didn't want to NOT celebrate, so we've decided to have a Utah Book Week, instead of month.

That week will be celebrated August 22 to 28! I plan to post a bunch of Utah bookish things here then including what Utah authors I've read this year... some reviews on Utah books I'm reading this month, and... I don't know what else yet. We'll see!

Anyway, if you want to help us celebrate, head on over to the main page and sign up with a linky to your blog. We'd love to have you. The more the merrier!

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Sing Along Saturday: CORNY STUFF!

I've missed a few prompts for this fun meme and am quite behind with this one, but you know... I feel the need to share music regardless of rules!

This week's prompt over at Bookish Things and More is: A Corny Song!

I haven't shared kpop for a while so it's time again... and the first corny kpop song that came into my head is this one called Can You Feel It by Super Junior boys: Donghae and Eunhyuk also known as Super Junior D and E:

Just a bit of watching that you will have learned a new dance! And who cares if it's corny! So much fun!

Here's one you should all know. Corny but so good:

'Till  next week then! Enjoy music. Blast it loud. Dance. It's good for you.

Monday, August 8, 2016

The Latest Adventure in Pictures

Home from the latest adventure! This time a quick trip to California. Here's a recap in pictures in case you missed it:

The first selfie of the trip. We decided to embrace the selfie this time!
At one of our favorite places....we like to call it
The Crack.

A really cool tree at Balboa Park.

Selfie at Balboa Park

Took a bunch of plane pictures as they flew over our heads.
This was my favorite.

Balboa Park
I love how this one turned out.

Selfie at Coronado
It was cloudy and hazy.

We found our favorite greek place where
we eat every time we go to San Diego.

We drove to the observatory to see the Hollywood sign.
It wasn't too impressive in the end.

Found Korea town and truly felt like we'd stepped into another country.

Trying out Korean dumplings.

Too bad these boys weren't real, but we still enjoyed
seeing them!

Sitting on the beach with the Santa Monica pier in the background.
It was cold!

Some actually got in.
I wasn't one of them.

The sunset was pretty awesome that night.

Pony Express ride
at Knottsberry Farm.

One of the purchases at the kpop store in Korea Town.

And the back shows off her bias in this group!
Yay for Suga!

Our brave souls sitting in the front
of the scary roller coaster.
Two hour wait for a ten second ride!

And that's it for the latest craziness! Home for a while now. But the adventures are not over!!!


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