To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

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If love is like a possession, maybe my letters are like my exorcisms. My letters set me free. Or at least they’re supposed to.

When I learned about Netflix acquiring the rights to To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, I didn’t think anything of it. After all, the series has been on my e-reader for a while now and I had no intention of reading it anytime soon.

Then the teaser trailer above pops up, and Janssen from Everyday Reading got excited about the Netflix movie, and well she pretty much got me reading To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, which then led to me reading the rest of the series.

Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean has written five love letters, one for each boy she’s loved. She keeps them in a hat box her mother gave her. To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before is about what occurred after these private love letters got mailed out.

I was able to relate to Lara Jean because something similar happened to me in high school. One of my high school friends and I used to exchange diaries and read them. One day, I made the mistake of leaving my diary out with the rest of my text books under my chair. We had assigned seating back then and I was assigned a seat beside my high school crush. I don’t remember how he ended up with my diary, but I do remember him telling me he did and that he read it. My diary was mostly about him. So, yeah…

It was interesting, and entertaining (sometimes painful, and painfully embarrassing), to watch Lara Jean navigate through the aftermath of her letters being sent. She went as far as pretending to be someone else’s girlfriend to: a) keep her actual crush from thinking she likes him; and b) to get her pretend boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend’s attention. There is very little romance, but the story will induce enough butterflies in your stomach to make up for it.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before got mixed reviews over on Goodreads and that is understandable. Although somewhat relatable, our protagonist is a bit meh and it’s very easy to get tired of her. Moreover, the ending is a cliffhanger and my advise is make sure to have the second book in the series (titled P.S. I Still Love You) on hand if you do decide to read To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. You know, just in case.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before will be available on Netflix on August 17, 2018 starring Lana Condor and Noah Centineo. I hope they’re able to bring the chemistry from the book to the screen cause I’ve hyped this up so much for myself and I don’t want to get disappointed.

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Night Film by Marisha Pessl

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… Because every one of us has four box, a dark chamber stowing the thing that lanced our heart. It contains what you do everything for, strive for, would everything around you. And if it were opened, would anything be set free? No. For the impenetrable prison with the impossible lock is you own head.

The decision to read Night Film came as a whim while I was scrolling through my list in my e-reader. One chapter in an I have convinced myself I can only read this during daytime.

On a damp October night, 24-year-old Ashley Cordova is found dead in an abandoned warehouse in lower Manhattan. Though her death is ruled a suicide, veteran investigative journalist Scott McGrath suspects otherwise. As he probes the strange circumstances surrounding Ashley’s life and death, McGrath comes face-to-face with the legacy of her father: the legendary, reclusive cult-horror film director Stanislaus Cordova–a man who hasn’t been seen in public for more than thirty years.

For McGrath, another death connected to this seemingly cursed family dynasty seems more than just a coincidence. Though much has been written about Cordova’s dark and unsettling films, very little is known about the man himself.

Driven by revenge, curiosity, and a need for the truth, McGrath, with the aid of two strangers, is drawn deeper and deeper into Cordova’s eerie, hypnotic world. The last time he got close to exposing the director, McGrath lost his marriage and his career. This time he might lose even more. (Goodreads)

Ashley Cordova’s death sent McGrath into an investigation frenzy. He believes there’s more to Ashley’s alleged suicide and he wanted to get to the bottom of it. He wanted to know the truth.

This is my first Pessl novel and I didn’t expect to enjoy it, but I did. I get scared easily so reading this at 3 in the morning while I nurse my daughter was not (I guess I should say never) an option. I think the main reason I was fearful throughout this reading experience was I went in to Night Film blind. I thought, based on the cover, it’ll be about films shown at night, and their audience. I was SO wrong. However, I powered through it and as much as it frightened me, I kept pressing for the next page.

I was not too thrilled of how it dragged on. I was constantly wondering if I was getting close to the end, closer to the truth. Ultimately though, I felt the novel was a buildup to an ok ending. It didn’t give me that feeling of contempt, and relief I was hoping for. If anything, I’m left confused between versions of truths presented to me on the days I read Night Film.

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Getting Reacquainted With Narnia: The Magician’s Nephew by C. S. Lewis

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The whole adventure begins when Digory and Polly find themselves in eccentric Uncle Andrew’s secret study. But when Uncle Andrew tricks Polly into touching the magic ring, she vanishes into the Other World. Digory is aghast, and determines immediately to go in search of her, Not only does he find Polly but together they listened to Aslan’s song as he creates the enchanted world of Narnia, full of sun, trees, flowers, grass and animals.

My first finished book for 2018.

I’m not new to the land of Narnia but all I know of it was from watching The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe. It was quite interesting learning about how Narnia came to be, and the origin of the wardrobe itself.

My husband bought me the entire series for Christmas so I have a lot of C. S. Lewis ahead of me.

The Magician’s Nephew pretty much revolved around Digory who, in this story, is the magician’s nephew. This is also the first time we ever see of the evil witch, and Aslan.

It was through Digory’s uncle (and his persistence) that he and his friend Polly was able to witness, albeit accidentally, the birth of Narnia. This is one of my favorite parts of the book because of how Lewis illustrated Narnia’s beginning through words. Something came from nothing and that is mesmerizing to me.

Another thing I enjoyed about this book is the test of character Digory had to go through. Given a task and knowing certain aspects of it could help his mother get better, he went ahead and only did what he was supposed to do. He almost deviated and I was rooting for him to stay focused.

It was a great way to get reacquainted again with Narnia after a few years. A few adaptations have been released from this series and I’m looking forward to watching those again after reading the series to see the differences between them.

 

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HAUL: Books I Got For Christmas

Over Blogmas, I posted about my bookish wishlist which my husband asked me to give him. It was a hefty list for me given I don’t know if I will have the time to read half of it. My loving husband, however, came through and got me enough which would probably last for quite a while in the next year. Here are the books I got for Christmas:

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  • The Chronicles of Narnia by C. S. Lewis – My husband was worried about this already being in my read list that he asked me if I have a list of books I have already read. I didn’t hesitate on showing him my Goodreads profile for him to check. I’ve seen the movies, but I haven’t actually read the books so I’m pretty excited about this.
  • Dante’s The Divine Comedy – This is one I wasn’t expecting to get. I haven’t tried scanning it so I don’t know how the writing will be like. It will take me a while to get through this one but I’m pretty stoked about it.
  • The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer – I have read Cinder and enjoyed it a lot. I love the idea of fairytale retellings with a twist. I have the rest of the series on my TBR list for a while now but between new releases, and book-to-movie adaptations this series just kept on getting pushed back. Hopefully in the coming year, despite the number of adaptations which will be coming out, I would get to finish at least half of the series.

Those are all the books I got for Christmas. My TBR pile is growing so fast I honestly can’t keep up. Haha! Oh well. Here’s to hoping this coming year will allow me to read more amidst the new baby.

Cheers!

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