wordless wednesday: wanderlust

Bucket List, Lifestyle, Travel, Wordless Wednesday

Hello my lovely friends!

It’s week two of Wordless Wednesday, and this week, we’re looking at places we want to go/places we’ve been to. Anyone can participate, and the main focus is to share aspects of our lives that may not be completely related to books. Each week, I will post a topic for a Wordless Wednesday that you may answer in whatever fashion you may like. All you need to do is link back to kimmiegg in your post so that I can also read your content! (Feel free to use the banner as well.)


The topic for this week is: Wanderlust – Whats on your travel bucket lists? Or tell of your last travel adventure.

To view a list of topics for the rest of the month, click here

Traveling has always been something I’ve always wanted to do more of. I greatly dislike the huge tours people go on, in which they visit many places in a short period of time. Instead, I enjoy staying in one place and being totally immersed in a new culture so that I can really learn as much as possible about a certain place and get a feel for the atmosphere for wherever I’m staying.

Feel free to go anywhere you’d like with this prompt, and I can’t wait to visit your blogs and see what creative things you come up with 🙂


Greece
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Romantic Sunset in Santorini

I know I should be more specific, but I honestly just want to explore this whole country. We all know of Greece due to their economic crises, but I’ve been in love with this country due to their history, geography and LOOK AT HOW BEAUTIFUL THIS IS! From the architecture to all the various islands, I’d be fine with spending the rest of my life exploring this country. I’d love to study the language if I ever get the chance to have an extended stay in this amazing country. Also, I loveeee Greek food. We have a small restaurant in the town I live in, but I can imagine that it doesn’t do justice to the authentic thing.


Cancun
Cancun Strand Luftbild

Luftbildaufnahmen von Cancun.

For some of you, this picture may be jarring with the juxtaposition of natural beauty and the modernity of humans. Although I’d much rather stay in a more humble abode that isn’t dominated by ulterior motives, I thought this picture was sure thought worthy. My dad has been to many business trips in this area, and my friends have often visited. They always come back with great stories! I love beaches, and I’ve heard that as soon as you go in, you pay a flat fee and then are able to eat whatever you’d like. Thus, the food quality is always great. The only downside, is that locals are unable to share this goodness..


Sydney, Australia
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Sydney, Australia

I know many of the book bloggers that I have met are from Australia, and thus I began some research about the area. I love it. This city is surrounded by the world’s largest natural harbor and I want to go to both the opera and the bridge there. The architecture is just stunning, and if this picture is not screaming at you to come visit, I don’t know what will ever convince you to travel.


Puerto Rico
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El Yunque National Forest

Lastly, a place to appreciate mother nature and the beauty of natural, untouched land, I present to you El Yunque National Forest. I love national parks, and love visiting, but each time I leave, I feel as if I was unable to fully grasp and appreciate the beauty of it all. Exploring and adventuring is always fun, but I believe more time needs to be spent discovering all the amazing secrets to that place.


Did you enjoy this post? Please consider taking part next week, as I’d love to learn about your art interests. Feel free to use the topics in any way/order you’d like, and I can’t wait to learn more about your non-bookish sides:)

anonymous bookaholics

Books, Bucket List, Novel, Tag

Hi, my name is Grace, and I’m addicted to books.

Hello my lovely friends! I was recently tagged by the wonderful Beth @ Reading Every Night to take part in this fun tag. If you guys haven’t already, go check out her amazing blog that is constantly a source of inspiration for me!

I don’t see any rules for this tag, so lets go ahead and get started.


What do you like about buying new books?

Everything! I love cracking open a new spine, and delving into a new book. Also, the anticipation of reading the pages, and trying to guess what is in the book. It’s incredible to realize how many countless books have been written utilizing twenty-six letters. I also get to feel the weight of the authors/publisher’s sweat, blood and tears that went into writing this book. I believe that there is a sense of pride in knowing you own such an amazing book. You know? That feeling you get when you put a book on your bookshelf and think to yourself, this is mine!


How often do you buy new books?

I don’t have a particular schedule or time that I buy books. Just whenever I walk into a store and see something I’ve wanted for forever, or when I just can’t wait for a book, and I buy on Amazon. I always try to force myself to go to the library first, and I’ll more than often buy a book I’ve already read and want in my collection.


Bookstore or online book shopping – Which do you prefer?

Personally, I love the vibe of bookstores, so I’ll always visit just to walk around and sit down at the cafe. I hardly buy books that way though, and much prefer to buy books online where they appear at my doorstop a couple of days later.


Do you have a favourite bookshop?

I don’t have any bookshops near me (I really hope this changes as soon as I get to college), but there was a quaint bookshop in Korea that I enjoyed. There was a nice cafe as well that faced the window where many people were reading and enjoying their pastries.


Do you pre-order books?

I’ve never pre-ordered books, mainly because I’m afraid I’ll dislike the book. I tend to buy books from authors I’ve loved, or classics because they are truly timeless. However, as I’m discovering more and more books I want to read that haven’t been released, pre-ordering books may become more common for me.


Do you have a monthly book buying limit?

No, I know I’ll never follow it, and in the end just feel guilty. Instead, I always force myself to look for a book at the library, go through their free book section, and then have buying books as my last resort. Sometimes that doesn’t happen, and that’s ok too.


Book buying bans – Are they something for you?

NOPE! Doesn’t faze me at all. (I really need to work on my self control) but until that day comes…


How big is your wishlist?

I can’t tell you the exact number, and the list just continues to grow. I feel no guilt though, because I feel like books are really invaluable, and their should never be an end to my wishlist.


Which three books from your wishlist do you wish to own NOW?

 

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Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed

I’m in love with this cover, which is half the reason why I want it on my bookshelf, but also the storyline sounds interesting, and I really want to see how this book ends!

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

There have been such wonderful reviews about this series, that I can’t wait to get my hands on one of these books and read. Mia sounds like such a badass, and I want to learn more about her character and how she lives down her past.

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

This sounds like a book I’d want to pass down to future daughters/girls. It deals with a lot of things girls struggle with, and although I haven’t read, the premise and content sounds incredible.


I tag:

Madeline @ The SFF Bookshelf

Whitney @ Brown Books and Green Tea

Emma @ Llady Literary

And anyone else! Just make sure to link back, and post a comment so I can see you answers 🙂


What do  you find addicting about books? If there was an Anonymous Bookaholics session near you, would you attend? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

 

Wordless Wednesday: 7.6.16 Korean Street Food

Bucket List, Food, Travel, Uncategorized, Wordless Wednesday

know korea

Hello my lovely friends! First off I’d like to mention that I am in Korea right now (this is a scheduled post) and I will not be able to reply to your comments as frequently as I’d like. I’ll still be checking up on my blog often, so don’t forget to say hello!

This week, for my Wordless Wednesday – when I post about anything unrelated to books – I’ve decided to show you the wonderful array of street food in Korea. This is part of my “Know Korea” series that I decided to start because of the time I’ll be spending there, and my insatiable need for me to share everything with you guys. Honestly, there’s nothing better than the outdoor markets, and delicious smells wafting from outdoor vendors as you walk down the streets.


떡볶이 (tteokbokki )
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This delicious spicy rice cake is perfect for any season and occasion. A quick eat, or a side dish for an elaborate meal, this dish is sure to fulfill your sweet and spicy cravings. The sauce is actually a combination of gochuchang (Korean chili paste), dried chili power and sugar. There are many variations to this dish, such as adding slices of boiled eggs or ramen. It is not uncommon to see students congregated outside a vendor giggling away.


호떡 (hoddeok)
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This savory Korean sweet pancake can is normally filled with a brown sugar syrup. However, many variations can be found including ones filled with vegetables. This warm snack is sure to keep you grinning as you sight see.


 오뎅  (odeng)
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Odeng is one of the cheapest street foods you’ll find, and are simply fish cakes drowned in a delicious broth. This is a filling snack, and is usually served as a eat first, pay later basis. For those of you who dislike spicy foods, go ahead and check out this snack as it is a variation of tteobokki.


만두 (dumplings)
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There are many variations of this delicious dish, including a deep fried version. This savory snack is classic favorite, and it is common to see many locals munching away on this soft, delicious snack.


계란빵 (gyrenppang)
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The toppings for this protein packed bread are endless! From shrimp, to octopus, ham green onion and various herbs this snack is sure to leave you satisfied, and begging for more.


붕어빵 (Boong Uh Bbang)
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This bread is stuffed with a sweet red bean paste that has recently been on the news for its adaptation into five star restaurants. Not only is the shape cute and fun, but the bread is crunchy and very savory.


I hope you enjoyed exploring various Korean street foods with me today! What are some street foods that are famous in your area? Let me know in the comments below 🙂

Wordless Wednesday: 6.15.16

Bucket List, Know Korea, Travel, Wordless Wednesday

know korea

Hello my lovelies!

Wordless Wednesday is when I post about anything unrelated to books.  I have recently begun a series called “Know Korea” where I post things related to Korea. Today, I want to share with you five places I want to visit during my stay in Korea this coming month. (Yes, you heard me correctly, I’ll be visiting Korea in the month of July!)

경주 보문정 (Bomun Pavilion, Gyeongju)
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Gyeongju was the ancient capital of the Shilla Dynasty and is known as “a museum with no walls.” This spot is clearly aesthetic in all seasons with abundant leaves in the summer, a beautiful scarlet and mustard foliage in the fall and the pure gentle snow in the winter.

경복궁 (Gyeongbokgung)
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No trip is complete without a trip down the historical lane. Gyeongbokgung Palace, also known as the Northern Palace, is the most grandest of the five palaces. Although the premises were destroyed by fire during the Japanese occupation, the rooms were restored under the reign of King Gojong. There are around 7,700 rooms.

보성 녹차밭 (Boseong Green Tea Field)
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I love green tea, so the rolling hills of Boseong where 40 percent of Korea’s tea is produced is a must see. Unfortunately, I’d be missing the green tea festival held every May, but the spectacular view that is the backdrop of multiple Korean dramas is sufficient for me.

파주 심학산 꽃밭 (Poppy Garden, Simhak Mountain)
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The poppy garden is a scenic backdrop that is sure to intrigue any aspiring painter or photographer. The local town hosts a Poppy Festival in June.

롯데월드 (Lotte World)
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And because no trip is ever complete without a visit to a theme park, Lotte world is the world’s largest indoor theme park and is open all year long. From amusement rides to shopping malls, luxury hotels, skating rink and a lake, this place is full of amazing fun.

I’m so very excited to be going back to Korea this coming month, and looking through tourist sites and pictures has definitely been causing me even more excitement! I hope you enjoyed the few snapshots I have shown of such a beautiful country.

for more information, visit:

http://travel.cnn.com/seoul/visit/50-beautiful-places-visit-korea-873093/

http://www.tommyooi.com/seoul-attractions/

June To Be Read

Books, Bucket List, To Be Read

Hello my lovely friends! I know this is a little late, but better late than never right? Here are a couple of books that I hope to read this month and that I thought I would share with you. You can checkout my goodreads “To Read” list here and my June TBR list here. Enjoy!

(These are in no particular order, just by published date from new to old)

:: book: The Way I Used to Be :: author: Amber Smith :: published: 2016 :: genre: novel :: goodreads

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Synopsis from goodreads:

Eden was always good at being good. Starting high school didn’t change who she was. But the night her brother’s best friend rapes her, Eden’s world capsizes.

What was once simple, is now complex. What Eden once loved—who she once loved—she now hates. What she thought she knew to be true, is now lies. Nothing makes sense anymore, and she knows she’s supposed to tell someone what happened but she can’t. So she buries it instead. And she buries the way she used to be.

Told in four parts—freshman, sophomore, junior, and senior year.

I believe the timing of the book is perfect in light of the Stanford Rape case.The victim’s statement in the Stanford Rape case was recently published, and I encourage everyone to read her raw thoughts and insight to what she had to endure. Here is a short excerpt:

“A life, one life, yours, you forgot about mine. Let me rephrase for you, I want to show people that one night of drinking can ruin two lives. You and me. You are the cause, I am the effect. You have dragged me through this hell with you, dipped me back into that night again and again. You knocked down both our towers, I collapsed at the same time you did.”

:: book: The Art of Healing Voices :: author: Jan-Philipp Sendker :: published: 2014:: genre: novel :: mystery ::  goodreads

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Synopsis from goodreads:

A poignant and inspirational love story set in Burma, The Art of Hearing Heartbeats spans the decades between the 1950s and the present.  When a successful New York lawyer suddenly disappears without a trace, neither his wife nor his daughter Julia has any idea where he might be…until they find a love letter he wrote many years ago, to a Burmese woman they have never heard of. Intent on solving the mystery and coming to terms with her father’s past, Julia decides to travel to the village where the woman lived. There she uncovers a tale of unimaginable hardship, resilience, and passion that will reaffirm the reader’s belief in the power of love to move mountains.

Originally written in German and translated into English by Kevin Wiliarty, this book is a part of a two part series was a huge hit in Europe. It is said to deal with the moral obligation and dilemma of following your heart or listening to your head.

:: book: Vicious :: author: V.E. Schwab :: published: 2013:: genre: novel :: fantasy :: young adult :: goodreads

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Synopsis from goodreads:

Victor and Eli started out as college roommates—brilliant, arrogant, lonely boys who recognized the same sharpness and ambition in each other. In their senior year, a shared research interest in adrenaline, near-death experiences, and seemingly supernatural events reveals an intriguing possibility: that under the right conditions, someone could develop extraordinary abilities. But when their thesis moves from the academic to the experimental, things go horribly wrong. Ten years later, Victor breaks out of prison, determined to catch up to his old friend (now foe), aided by a young girl whose reserved nature obscures a stunning ability. Meanwhile, Eli is on a mission to eradicate every other super-powered person that he can find—aside from his sidekick, an enigmatic woman with an unbreakable will. Armed with terrible power on both sides, driven by the memory of betrayal and loss, the archnemeses have set a course for revenge—but who will be left alive at the end?

BUM BUM BUUUUUUUM, this book was originally mentioned by @clockworkbibliophile in her Review  in which she raved about how much she loved the book. I can’t wait to start reading!

:: book: The End of Everything :: author: Megan Abbott :: published: 2011 :: genre: novel :: nonfiction ::  goodreads

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Synopsis from goodreads:

Thirteen-year-old Lizzie Hood and her next-door neighbor, Evie Verver, are inseparable, best friends who swap clothes, bathing suits, and field-hockey sticks and between whom, presumably, there are no secrets. Then one afternoon, Evie disappears, and as a rabid, giddy panic spreads through the balmy suburban community, everyone turns to Lizzie for answers. Was Evie unhappy, troubled, or upset? Had she mentioned being followed? Would she have gotten into the car of a stranger?
Compelled by curiosity, Lizzie takes up her own furtive pursuit of the truth. Haunted by dreams of her lost friend and titillated by her own new power as the center of the disappearance, Lizzie uncovers secret after secret and begins to wonder if she knew anything at all about her best friend.

To be honest, the girl in a bathing suit on the cover reminded me of summer which is the main reason why I picked it up. The synopsis sounded pretty interesting as well.

:: book: While I Was Gone :: author: Sue Miller :: published: 2000 :: genre: novel ::  goodreads

5176Synopsis from goodreads:

Jo Becker has every reason to be content. She has three dynamic daughters, a loving marriage, and a rewarding career. But she feels a sense of unease. Then an old housemate reappears, sending Jo back to a distant past when she lived in a communal house in Cambridge, Massachusetts. Drawn deeper into her memories of that fateful summer in 1968, Jo begins to obsess about the person she once was. As she is pulled farther from her present life, her husband, and her world, Jo struggles against becoming enveloped by her past and its dark secret.

This book I found in the free section of the library, and it looked intriguing so of course I brought it home with me.

:: book: In the Time of the Butterflies :: author: Julia Alvarez :: published: 1995:: genre: novel :: nonfiction ::  goodreads

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Synopsis (shortened) from goodreads:

Set during the waning days of the Trujillo dictatorship in the Dominican Republic in 1960, this extraordinary novel tells the story the Mirabal sisters, three young wives and mothers who are assassinated after visiting their jailed husbands.
Alvarez’s controlled writing perfectly captures the mounting tension as “the butterflies” near their horrific end. The novel begins with the recollections of Dede, the fourth and surviving sister, who fears abandoning her routines and her husband to join the movement. Alvarez also offers the perspectives of the other sisters: brave and outspoken Minerva, the family’s political ringleader; pious Patria, who forsakes her faith to join her sisters after witnessing the atrocities of the tyranny; and the baby sister, sensitive Maria Teresa, who, in a series of diaries, chronicles her allegiance to Minerva and the physical and spiritual anguish of prison life.

Wordless Wednesday: 6.8.16

Bucket List, Food, Recipes, Wordless Wednesday

bucketHello my beautiful friends, here are a two recipes that I have tried and loved, along with one that I will be trying in the coming week and uploading a review on. Enjoy!

roasted carrots with parsley and thyme // snack // prep: 10m // cook: 30m // rating: 5/5 //  recipe

For those of you in need of a healthy snack to munch on while reading a book, look no farther. Ditch the potato chips and indulge yourself with a sweet and savory snack that will sate your hungry cravings while giving you a boost of vitamin A. Carotenoids are known to help combat free radicals due to their  strong antioxidant powers.

I have never enjoyed eating carrots, and you will never see me eating them raw. I have found, that roasting the carrots produces a snack that is sweet and delectable. I tend to hold back on the parsley and thyme, and add honey to this recipe to create a more pleasant flavor. For those of you who like a more bittersweet taste, make sure to load up on the parsley and thyme.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds carrots, peeled quartered or cut into sixths lengthwise depending on the size, then into 2-inch lengths
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • freshly ground pepper
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon oregano
  • 3 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley

Preparation

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Oil a sheet pan or a baking dish large enough to fit all of the carrots in a single layer. Place the carrots in a large bowl, and toss with the olive oil, salt, pepper, thyme and oregano. (My alteration: add some honey for a more sweet flavor)
  2. Spread in an even layer in the prepared pan or baking dish. Cover with foil, and place in the oven for 30 minutes. Uncover, and if the carrots are not yet tender, turn the heat down to 375 degrees and return to the oven for 10 to 15 more minutes until tender. Add the parsley, stir gently, and taste and adjust salt and pepper. Serve hot, warm or at room temperature.

This delicious snack should be stored in a refrigerator and can be kept for 4 days.

 hoisin pork with rice noodles // meal // prep: 15m // cook: 15m / serving: 4 // rating: _/5 // recipe

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This is a dish I have yet to try, but am dying to taste. The spicy asian pork and noodle combination has me drooling at the pictures, and surprisingly the dish only totals to about 391 calories per meal!

Ingredients:

  • ⅓ cup soy sauce
  • ¼ cup water
  • 3.5 tablespoons sesame oil or canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey + 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 dash fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons vinegar + a squeeze of lime if you have it
  • 5 cloves finely minced garlic
  • 1 piece fresh grated ginger (1-2 tablespoons)
  • 1 minced hot pepper (i.e. jalapeno, chili pepper, etc)
  • 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 3 tablespoons peanut butter (optional)
  • 1½ lbs. pork cut into thin strips (mine was called “pork stroganoff”)
  • 9 oz. rice noodles
  • grated carrots, chopped scallions, chopped peanuts, cilantro

Preparations:

  • Whisk all the sauce ingredients together (soy sauce, water, oil, honey, sugar, fish sauce, vinegar, garlic, ginger, peppers, hoisin, and peanut butter). You could also puree the sauce in a food processor to get the garlic, peppers, and ginger smooth.
  • Marinate the pork in the sauce overnight or for at least a few hours. I did mine overnight and then some, about 15 hours.
  • Heat a nonstick skillet over medium high heat and stir-fry the pork until browned on the outside. I found that there wasn’t a whole lot of extra sauce after marinating, but I discarded the little bit that was left.
  • Cook your rice noodles according to package directions. Keep a little bit of liquid with the noodles to make sure it doesn’t dry out. Top with pork, carrots, scallions, peanuts, cilantro, and extra sauce of choice (more hoisin sauce, soy sauce, sweet chili garlic sauce, sesame oil, etc). This is definitely a build-your-own kind of thing – just throw whatever you like in there with the noodles.

chocolate panini // dessert // prep: 10m // serving: 4 // rating: 4/5 // recipe

For a nice, warm, toasty dessert, that is easy and fun to make, try the chocolate panini. The first time I made this was at the home of the family I babysit for. I was unable to find their panini press, and ended up making it at the stove with two pans! (I tell you this to show you that it is indeed possible…)

This delectable flavor will have you craving for more, and is best served with some fruit to offset the overwhelming sweetness. Substitute nutella or any other chocolate to your liking, as I have found that using a chocolate bar also works! Also, feel free to deviate from the recipe and use less butter and chocolate, and even add marshmallows. I found this to be extremely sweet, and although loved by the boys, it is intense

Ingredients:

  • 8 3/4-inch thick slices challah bread or Hawaiian sweet bread (my alteration: I used regular bread of any sort, whole wheat or white, to reduce calories and sweetness)
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 4 – 6 ounces semisweet chocolate, finely chopped
    (my alteration: I also added marshmallows to add a s’more like quality)
  • Powdered sugar

Preparation

  • Heat a panini press or a large heavy nonstick skillet over medium-low heat. Meanwhile, brush one side of each bread slice with some of the melted butter. Place half of the bread slices on a work surface, buttered side down; sprinkle with chocolate, covering the bread to within 1/4-inch of the crust. Top with remaining slices, buttered sides up. Place sandwiches, 2 at a time, in grill pan; weigh down top of sandwiches with a large heavy skillet.
  • Grill the sandwiches over medium-low heat for 6 to 8 minutes or until the chocolate is melted and bread is golden brown, turning once halfway through grilling time. Repeat with remaining sandwiches. (Or preheat a covered indoor grill. Place sandwiches, two at a time, in preheated grill, cover, and grill 4 minutes or until chocolate melts and bread is golden.)
  • To serve, cut each sandwich into quarters. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve warm.

 

Wordless Wednesday: 6.1.16

Bucket List, Movies, Wordless Wednesday

bucket

Hello my beautiful friends, here are a couple of released movies I am excited for and am planning on watching in the very near future. Personal reviews will be added accordingly under “my thoughts”.

The Jungle Book (2016)

Rated: PG // Rating: 7.9/10 // Time: 106 min // Directed by: Jon Favreau // IMDB

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The Jungle Book was originally a collection of stories by renowned English author, Rudyard Kipling. Originally comprised of fourteen short stories, many have been published as short books and their titles, “Rikki Tikki Tavi” are well known. These stories were meant to teach moral lessons, and were followed by a verse. Original drawings were done by Kipling’s father. There have been numerous adaptions to this childhood classic, the newest one being released April 15, and is still playing in select theaters.

my thoughts:

Alice Through the Looking Glass (2016)

Rated: PG // Rating: 6.4/10 // Time: 113 min // Directed by: James Bobin // IMDB

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A sequel to Alice in Wonderland that was released in 2010, this movie is said to take great liberty in the plot and follows Alice as she returns to Underland only to find the Mad Hatter in a terrible state. With stunning visuals, the last movie didn’t follow the plot and was bone dry. This sequel is loosely based on “Through the Looking Glass” by Lewis Carrol, and once again it has been said that the visuals are phenomenal, but the plot dry and characters not developed.

my thoughts:

 The Book Thief (2013)

Rated: PG-13 // Rating: 7.6/10 // Time: 131 min // Directed by: Brian Percival // IMDB

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my thoughts:

My Fair Lady (1964)

Rated: approved // Rating: 7.9/10 // Time: 170 min // Directed by: George Cukor // IMDB

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The archetype for many classics and modern literature, this movie is about a professor attempting to take a young woman and make her presentable. “The Awakening”, a classic by Kate Chopin follows this plot and is the reason this movie piqued my interest. Along with the fact that Audrey Hepburn is starring.

my thoughts: