What I’ve Been Watching #5: Shadow and Bone, Vincenzo, Crazy Rich Asians and more

Hi everyone! Before getting into the post there’s something I need to talk about. As I mentioned in my last post my country, Colombia, is going through a very difficult situation. Protests over rising poverty, unemployment and inequality have been met with police brutality, there has been 3405 cases of police brutality, 43 people killed by the police, 1445 arbitrary arrest, 22 victims of sexual assault by the police, and there are hundreds of missing protestors. This has all happened since April 28th when the protests started and things are getting worse since the president ordered a full military deployment in the major cities. Please pay attention to what’s happening in Colombia, citizens are being mudered and terrorized by the police, the army and the government, human rights are being violated and there’s no end in sight.

Here’s more information about what’s going on: video and article – article – article – article – video – video

Now let’s talk about some of the things I have watched lately. Honestly, I’m really behind with the “what I’ve been watching” posts, because I haven’t been blogging or reading with everything that has been going on in Colombia, and watching things has become my main escape, so you can expect a few of these posts in the future.

Without further ado, let’s talk about some tv shows and movies:

Shadow and Bone

I really enjoyed this show, the beginning was a bit slow for me, but the second part was SO GOOD. I really liked Alina in the show, which surprised me since I never felt any particular attachment to her while reading the books, she is strong and captivating in the show. But the biggest surprise of all is that Mal was actually one of my favorite characters (if not my favorite) in the show even tho I always disliked him in the books. Also, I really like him with Alina in the show, so far they are my favorite ship. I was expecting The Darkling to be more mysterious and scarier, but they humanized him a bit too much, especially when it came to his relationship with the other Grisha. Nonetheless, I liked Ben Barnes performance. Overall I liked the crows, and Jasper was fantastic. I felt like something was missing from the portrait of Kaz, some of the depth of the character was missing, but I recognize that he is a hard character to adapt since his internal monologue is lost from books to screen. In terms of plot, I found the beginning with all the setup to be a tiny bit boring, but it does pick up and by the second half of the show I could stop watching. The two things that didn’t really work are the Nina/Matthias storyline, which didn’t feel integrated with the rest of the story, and the half-assed attempt of including diversity in the story by making Alina Asian and handling badly. (rating: 4 stars)

Vincenzo

This show is fantastic, it has great writing, it’s very well shot and it has an engaging storyline of taking justice into your own hands and a villanous character fighting this big evil corporation with the help of a lawyer and a big assortment of random side characters. The characters in this show are all well developed, there are so many side characters and you feel like you get to know them and all the actors did an amazing job. The two leads in particular are brilliant in their roles, Song Joong-Ki was captivating in his role as Vincenzo, he managed to be dark and charming at the same time, and Jeon Yeo-Been is incredible playing a character that is cool and badass at times and other times is goofy and funny and she does both things so well. The chemistry between the two leads is amazing and the tension between them just builds and builds throughout the show until it pays off. The way that relationship slowly progresses is amazing.(rating: 5 stars)

Crazy Rich Asians

This was a rewatch for me and I found this movie as fun and as entertaining the second time around. I love getting to see the world of the rich and famous with the unique twist that they are not white Americans. The way this movie shows the different social and cultural dynamics and the way it shows Singapore was fantastic. The acting in this movie is amazing, everyone does an amazing job. I liked the main storyline revolving around the romance between Nick and Rachel and all the conflicts because of their different backgrounds, but it was definitely the weakest part of the film. Singapore as a setting and the storyline revolving around Astrid and her failing marriage definitely stole the show and made the film more enjoyable. (Rating 4,5 stars)

The Spy Who Dumped Me

I love Mila Kunis and this movie was on Netflix, so I decided to watch this fully believing it was going to be terrible, but surprisingly it wasn’t. This is really funny, it mocks a lot of common spy movie tropes, and don’t get me wrong, it was absolutely ridiculous, but it worked because it doesn’t take itself too seriously. Mila and Kate Mckinnon are fantastic in their roles, their chemistry is great and they are hilarious together. Sam Heughan in this is good too and Gillian Anderson was the cherry on top of the whole movie. (rating: 3,5 stars)

Off Course

This is a Spanish movie and I watched it because my favorite Spanish actress, Blanca Suárez, plays the main character in it. I went into this movie with the wrong expectations, I thought this was going to be a great romactic movie and it was not. The two characters are barely together at all throughout the film, but by the end, thee movie treated their relationship like a big love affair. Also, it’s kind of boring, the characters are unlikable and do a lot of stupid things, and the plot goes nowhere. The only good thing about this movie is its portrait of one type of immigrant experience lived by this egocentric Spanish man that needs to learn some hard lessons. Through the movie he struggles for money in another country, without speaking the language and having people depending on him financially back home, it does a good job of showing some of the humilliations and hardships of the immigrant experience, and it’s self aware enough to recognize that the way the main character is being treated as a Spanish man in Germany, it’s how Spanish people hve always treated Latinx people who immigrate to Spain. (rating: 1.5 stars)

What have you watched lately? What’t the best show or movie you have watched so far in 2021?

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On My Radar #3: Book I never thought I would want to read

Hi everyone! Before starting this blog post, I need to talk about the reason why I have been gone for the last month. My country Colombia is going through a very difficult situation and I didn’t want to post without talking about it and for a long time I didn’t have the strength to write anything about it but today I will.

In Colombia, protests over rising poverty, unemployment and inequality have been met with police brutality, there has been 2155 cases of police brutality, 43 people killed by the police, 955 victims of physical violence by the police, 1388 arbitrary arrest, 22 victims of sexual assault by the police, and there are around 400 missing protestors. This has all happened since April 28th when the protests started. Please pay attention to what’s happening in Colombia, citizens are being mudered and terrorized by the police, the army and the government, human rights are being violated and there’s no end in sight.

Here’s more information about what’s going on: video and articlearticlearticlearticlevideovideo

Today, I’m back with another edition of On My Radar, which is a feature where I talk about books that I have heard a lot about and I’m curious about, but I’m not sure if I should give them a chance, whether it is because they are outside my comfort zone, they got mixed reviews or any other reason. My idea is that hopefully, you all can help me decide which books are worth reading.

In the past On My Radar posts, I talk about books other people loved and books that other people hated. This time, I’m going to talk about books that when I first heard about them, I never thought I would actually consider reading them because they didn’t sound like something I would like, but since then, they have stayed on my radar and I have heard a lot of good things, so I’m intrigued enough to consider reading them.

Ice Planet Barbarians by Ruby Dixon: the first time I heard about this book and this series I thought it sounded absolutely ridiculous, I only knew that it was about women falling in love with blue aliens and that it was really steamy but it didn’t sound like my thing. But since then most of my favorite romance booktubers have read and loved this and now I’m so intrigued about it.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott: This book is huge, it’s a classic and it’s historical, and none of that sounded interesting to me when I first heard about this book, it didn’t sounds like something that I would ever want to read. But when the movie came out in 2019 it seemed like everyone was reading this book and loving it and that made me really intrigued. Tho I don’t know if I’m intrigued enough to read a 900 pages book.

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden: I have been hearing about this book for years and it never sounded even remotely appealing to me, it sounded boring and I was sure that I was never going to read this. But it stayed in my radar since so many people talk about it and then recently someone described it in a way that made it sound really interesting and like a completely different book than the one I had heard described before and that’s what it’s making me consider reading it.

Elatsoe by Darcie Little Badger: Another book that didn’t sound that interesting to me when I first heard about it and it didn’t help that so many people kept saying that it was more like a middle grade than YA. Nonetheless, since then people I trust have talked about how amazing this is and someone in particular described this book in a way that intrigued me. But I’m still on the fence about it because I’m not great with lower YA books.

Which of these books do you think I should read? Are there any books that you never thought you would want to read but ended up loving?

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April 2021 Wrap Up: a lot of books that I really enjoyed

Hi everyone! I’m super excited for this wrap up because I read a lot of books that I enjoyed, I have been having a very good reading year in 2021 and I’m happy about it and happy to be able to share my thoughts about these books with all of you:

Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse (4 stars): This is a fun adventure full of Navajo mythology and lovable characters. This was really action-packed and easy to read. I really enjoyed that each one of the characters had different strengths and got to use them to help in their quest.

The Shadow Crosser by J.C. Cervantes (3,5 stars): The disbaility rep in this series left a lot to be desired (for more thoughts, here’s my full review). I still loved the characters, they were so fun to read about, always ready for adventure, funny, and easy to root for. The writing is really good, Cervantes manages to give Zane such a captivating and real voice. I also loved all the Mayan mythology and the adventure in this book was really fun. There were some pacng issues especially at the end.

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan (4 stars): at the beginning of this book this is slow but it still interesting since there’s so much to learn about the world. Then close to the end, the action picks up and it doesn’t let up. This book introduces new bad guys, who are so much more interesting and easy to hate than the nebulous big bad guy of the series. My one complaint about this book, besides the uneven pacing, is that something happened right at the end in terms of the relationship between some of the characters that I didn’t understand and I think it points to a direction that I don’t like.

The Time of Contempt by Andrzej Sapkowski (3,5 stars): This starts slow and there’s not enough Geralt. I love Yennefer and Ciri, so I enjoyed their parts of the story. But the author changed perspectives in a way that didn’t work for me, it felt clumsy and it felt like the characters I know and love weren’t in the book as much. After the slow first half, things picked up so much speed and I enjoyed the action-packed part of this book. The political intrigued, the different players, the different factions was really interesting. The main thing I didn’t like about this was the ending, this handled sexual assault badly.

Moon Called by Patricia Briggs (4 stars): This was a fun, quick read. Mercy is an amazing main character, strong, compassionate, a bit too reckless, flawed, she was captivating and easy to root for. The other characters and the dynamics between them are interesting and compelling. The plot was entertaining and fast-paced, and the writing was good.

Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs (4 stars): I liked this one even more than the first one because the plot and the villain are more interesting, darker, and more twisted. I still love Mercy as the main character, she is just very likable, and all the other characters are pretty great too. I usually don’t like love triangles but I’m not disliking the relationships in this one, because I like both guys and their relationships with Mercy and also because it’s very clear who she is going to end up with.

Iron Kissed by Patricia Briggs (4 stars): I loved most of this book, it was fun getting to see more of the fae and finding out some of their secrets. As always all the characters were great and I enjoyed the way this resolves the love triangle storyline. Now, that ending was fucking brutal. I wish I had seen content warnings before reading, because what happened shocked me, left me reeling and absolutely devastated me. CW: rape

Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle (4,5 stars): This is such a sweet slow burn, sunshine/grumpy romance with a good dose of forced proximity. It has great character and very low angst. (Full review)

The Intimacy Experiment by Rosie Danan (4 stars): the main characters are very compelling, likable and easy to root for, and their relationship is so sweet. It talks about religion in an intersting way. It’s a bit longer than it needs to be (full review).

To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters (4 stars): the main characters have a lot of chemistry, the banter is great and the whole “teach me how to be good in bed” part of the story allows some great representation of communication during sex. The one thing I didn’t like about this book is that there’s a sapphic side character in this book and the portrayal is not great, also the main character outs her to her friends, which sucks.

Meet Me in Paradise by Libby Hubscher (4 stars): this is women’s fiction and not romance. It does a great job of ecploring the main character’s personal growth and her relationship with her sister. There’s a romance and it sweet, but I wish they had a bit more chemistry. The ending is heartbreaking and made me cry. (Full review)

Damaged Goods by Talia Hibbert (4 stars): Samir was so sweet!!! I loved him and Laura together. And Laura’s character development was incredible for such a short novella. this is a story about healing after an abusive relationship and it depicted that in a beautiful, painful, and very honest way.

Blind Date with a Book Boyfriend by Lucy Eden (4 stars): This was a quick, fun and sweet novella. I usually don’t like romances that take place in one day because they feel unrealistic, but this one I didn’t mind. The characters were great, their chemistry and connection worked really well. 

Dance All Night by Alexis Daria (3,5 stars): This was fun, but a bit too insta love-y for my taste. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the plot, which revolved around a deal they made to have three dates that will make her fall in love with him and with Christmas and both of the main characters (especially the hero) were likable and captivating, particularly when they were together.

Well Played by Jen DeLuca (3 stars): This is a weird book because it was easy to read, entertaining and I loved seeing more about the ren faire (even if I wish there was more of it). But I had big issues with it: The catfishing goes on for way too long and it’s treated like it’s not a big deal, the main characters get zero character development, the hero doesn’t grovel enough (or at all) at any point).

Much Ado About You by Samantha Young (4 stars): This was a sweet, low-angst romance. I really enjoyed the way the relationship slowly develops, how the main characters become friends but from the first moments, there’s this attraction and tension between them that they can’t deny. I loved the small English rural town setting and all the side characters were great. Once the characters get together, their relationship was sweet and there are quite a few steamy moments between them throughout the book. My one complaint is that the conflict at the end felt forced, even if it was foreshadowed.

One by One by Ruth Ware (4 stars): This was a very fun and satisfying read. I love how atmospheric it is, how the mystery slowly unravels, and the tension increases. The last part was very intense and I was very invested, but I do think it that the last chase took a bit too long.

What is your favorite and least favorite book of May? Was May a good reading month for you?

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Reasons Why I Often Avoid Reading Sequels (ft 10 sequels I’ve been avoiding)

Hi everyone! I was going through my goodreads shelves recently and I noticed that I had a bunch of sequels that I haven’t read yet, and then I realized that all of them fitted in one of three groups depending on the reason why I haven’t read them yet. Today I decided to share the three main reasons why I avoid sequels and include some sequels I’ve been avoiding. Most of these sequels are still on my tbr, but there’s a couple that I no longer want to read.

without further ado, let’s talk about sequels:

I loved the first book but everyone says the sequel isn’t good

This is the main reason why I not only aviod a lot of sequel but it also the reason why I may decide not to read a sequel at all.

Children of Virtue and Vengance by Tomi Adeyemi: I LOVED the first book in this series, but I have heard terrible things about this sequel from bad writing and no plot, to characters that suddenly are the opposite of who they were in book one. I won’t be reading this one.

Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan: I think the first book could have been a great standalone, but I was still looking forward to giving the sequel a chance. Unfortunely, most people seem to agree that this is boring and I think I rather just keep my memory of how much I enjoyed the first book.

Court of Lions by Somaiya Daud: ok, maybe not everyone says that this one is bad, but there’s a lot of people that loved the first book (like I did) and think this missed the mark and also erased some of the things that made the first book so special. But I still want to give this a chance.

The first book broke my heart and now I’m scared of reading the sequel

These are the sequels that I’m usually really excited about but fear of having my heart broken again keeps me far away, until finally I managed to convince myself to stop being a baby and read a book that I knwo I’m going to love exactly because it’s going to make me feel powerful emotions.

Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor: I LOVED the first book so much, but that ending was a) so shocking and unexpected b) really heartbreaking and I don’t know how the author is going to fix what she did but she needs to fix it.

The Heart Forger by Rin Chupeco: with this series it’s not so much that the first broke broke my heart and more that , since part of the first book is set in the future, I know that bad things are going to happen and it going to break my heart at some point,

The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin: the first book in this series is one of the hardest and sadest books I have ever read and I seriously thought about not continuing with this series, but I want to see if there’s some hope at the end of the story.

A House of Rage and Sorrow by Sangu Mandanna: another book that I loved but had an ending that shocked me and broke my heart. I feel like things are going to get a lot darker in book 2 and I’m not ready.

Too much time has passed and I don’t want to re read book one

This happnes to me all the time. I read so many books that it’s impossible to remember all the details from the different stroylines, characters, and worldbuilding and when too much time has passed between book one and the sequel, it’s hard to continue without re-reading and I’m not the biggest fan of re-reading, so I end up not contuning with series.

A Torch Against the Night by Sabba Tahir: With this sequel, I don’t feel like I need a reread even if I read the first book a long time ago, it’s more that so much time has passed that my excitement for this series has decrease a little bit, but I think I could love it and I still want to give this sequel a chance.

Windwitch by Susan Dennard: I loved the first book in this series so much and I’m still really interested in this book, but I’m not that excited to re-read book one and this story is very complex so I’m not sure I can continue reading when I don’t remember it that well.

Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel: Another really complex story, with multiple pov characters and lots of power dynamics, I read this more recently so I haven’t forgotten as much, but I’m not sure I remember enough to continue without rereading.

Do you avoid reading sequels? what are some sequel that you need to read?

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May 2021 TBR: Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month + new releases

Hi everyone! I’m so excited to share my may tbr, I chose most of these books to celebrate Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month and the other 4 books are my most anticipated May releases.

Here are the books I’m planning to read:

We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal: I had fun reading the first book in this series even if I had issues with it (here’s my full review) and I have heard that this sequel is so much better than the first book, so I can’t wait to see how this duology ends.

Jade War by Fonda Lee: I’m so scared of reading this book because I know it’s going to make me suffer, but I know I’m goign to love it and I want to read it before the last book comes out at the end of the year.

The Burning God by R.F. Kuang: another book that I’m scared of reading because I know it’s going to break my heart but I also know I’m going to love it.

Murder in Old Bombay by Nev March: as an Agatha Christie fan and in general a fan of cozy mysteries, I’m looking for more diverse books in this subgenre and I have heard nothing but great things about this one.

Rich People Problems by Kevin Kwan: I rewatched the Crazy Rich Asian movie this month and I’m even more excited to read the final book in this series.

Tha Dating Plan by Sara Desai: I thought the first book in this series of companion novels was just ok, but this one has two of my favorite tropes: fake dating and marriage of convenience, so off course I’m going to give it a chance.

A Sweet Mess by Jayci Lee: This ounds like a really sweet, fun romance, which is exactly what I’m looking for.

A Match Made for Thanksgiving by Jackie Lau: I have read and enjoyed a couple of Jackie Lau’s books and this is a short novella, which is great since this is an overly ambitious tbr.

Illusionary by Zoraida Cordova: I loved the first book in this duology and I can’t wait to know how it all ends

People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry I loved Beach Read, so I was looking forward to Emily Henry’s next romance and then I heard it was a friends to lovers romance and my excitement multiplied.

Hang the Moon by Alexandria Bellefleur: I really enjoyed the first book in this series of companion novels and I can’t wait for this best friend’s little brother romance.

How to Find a Princess by Alyssa Cole: Alyssa Cole’s books are great, I loved the first book in this series and I can’t wait to read another f/f romance written by her because I know I’m going to love it.

What books do you want to read in May? Have you read any of the books on my tbr?

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Reviewing 2021 Releases: Twice Shy, The Intimacy Experiment and Meet Me in Paradise

Hi everyone! Today’s post is very exciting, because I’m having a lucky streak in April with all the amazing new releases that I have been reading, and I want to share some of my thoughts about these books:

Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle

Maybell Parish has always been a dreamer and a hopeless romantic. But living in her own world has long been preferable to dealing with the disappointments of real life. So when Maybell inherits a charming house in the Smokies from her Great-Aunt Violet, she seizes the opportunity to make a fresh start.Yet when she arrives, it seems her troubles have only just begun. Not only is the house falling apart around her, but she isn’t the only inheritor: she has to share everything with Wesley Koehler, the groundskeeper who’s as grouchy as he is gorgeous—and it turns out he has very different vision for the property’s future.

Convincing the taciturn Wesley to stop avoiding her and compromise is a task more formidable than the other dying wishes Great-Aunt Violet left behind. But when Maybell uncovers something unexpectedly sweet beneath Wesley’s scowls, and as the two slowly begin to let their guard down, they might learn that sometimes the smallest steps outside one’s comfort zone can lead to the greatest rewards.

4.5 stars

This is such a sweet, wonderful slow burn, sunshine/grumpy romance with a good dose of forced proximity.

When each of the main characters was introduced I had a brief moment of thinking I wasn’t going to like them, but it was a false alarm, I ended up loving both of them. And the same happens to them, they have a bad impression of each other at first, but then slowly that changes and it was beautiful to see. Wesley was so precious, once he got over his extreme shyness and grumpiness, he was still shy and grumpy but he was also kind, sweet and charming. And Maybell was such a genuinely nice, caring character, she was easy to root for.

I do think the shift from antagonism to liking each other was a bit abrupt, but I got over it because Wesley and Maybell were wonderful together and once they were together, they approached every situation and misunderstanding with so much compassion and care, which was very refreshing, because there wasn’t some dramatic conflict, they faced obstacles together and got through them. This is not an angsty romance at all, it’s just a sweet, lovely romance and I loved it for it.

The Intimacy Experiment by Rosie Danan

Naomi Grant has built her life around going against the grain. After the sex-positive start-up she cofounded becomes an international sensation, she wants to extend her educational platform to live lecturing. Unfortunately, despite her long list of qualifications, higher ed won’t hire her.

Ethan Cohen has recently received two honors: LA Mag named him one of the city’s hottest bachelors and he became rabbi of his own synagogue. Taking a gamble in an effort to attract more millennials to the faith, the executive board hired Ethan because of his nontraditional background. Unfortunately, his shul is low on both funds and congregants. The board gives him three months to turn things around or else they’ll close the doors of his synagogue for good.

Naomi and Ethan join forces to host a buzzy seminar series on Modern Intimacy, the perfect solution to their problems–until they discover a new one–their growing attraction to each other. They’ve built the syllabus for love’s latest experiment, but neither of them expected they’d be the ones putting it to the test.

4 stars

My favorite part of this book are the main characters, both of them are very compelling, likable and easy to root for. The heroine is badass and prickly and the hero is a complete cinnamon roll and they are so cute together. They slowly become close and it was entertaining to witness their encounters, Ethan got really flustered when Naomi was around , and Naomi was so surprised by how much she liked him, which was kind of funny.

This is a very sex positive book, from the modern intimacy classes to the steamy scenes between the main characters, which was great and especially the classes added an interesting element to the story. And while I’m not someone who enjoys books that deal with religion, the way this book talks about religion and faith and the interception with romanctic relationships in modern times was very smart and thought-provoking.

My main issues with this book are that it was a bit longer than it needed to be, so there were some parts that were a bit too slow. Also, Naomi let go of her defense mechanisms when it came to relationships really easily, which seemed a bit out of character. And finally, the last part didn’t work so well, Naomi was completely unprofessional which was so out of character, and both of the main characters get to give speeches about their feeling at the end, which felt a bit forced.

Meet Me in Paradise by Libby Hubscher

Ever since her journalist mother died on assignment, Marin has played it safe, refusing to set foot outside the state of Tennessee. Her wild-child younger sister, Sadie, has trotted the globe as a photographer, living off of art and adrenaline.

When Sadie returns from a tough assignment abroad and looks a little worse for wear, Marin reluctantly agrees to a sisters’ spa weekend on the tropical island of Saba. But her lifelong fear of travel is affirmed when Sadie misses the flight, Marin’s luggage gets mixed up with another passenger’s, and an episode of turbulence sends her hurtling into the lap of Lucas Tsai, the handsome stranger who stole her sister’s seat.

For the first time in a long time, Marin has to step outside of her comfort zone as she explores the island with Lucas and learns what she’s been missing out on. With each breathtaking new experience, Marin gets closer to her real self, the man she’s falling for, and the heart-wrenching truth about why she’s there in the first place.

4 stars

This book destroyed me, I cried so much reading it, which doesn’t happen often. I thought this was a romance book, and while there is a romance in the book, this is definitely women’s fiction. The focus is on the main character’s personal growth and her relationship with her sister, and it was such a gripping story.

Most of this book is spent seeing the main character basically coming back to life: learning to face her fears, reigniting her passions, and connecting with others. The journey she goes through is captivating. The romance is also a significant part of the book and while I liked both main characters and liked them together, I wish they had a bit more chemistry. Still, it was fun seeing this two very different people go in adventures together, get to know each other and fall in love.

The final part of this book is so heartbreaking, the reader knows early on that something devastating is going to happen, but the main character doesn’t know and seeing her come to the realization and deal with the consequences is really sad.

Have you read these books? Did you like them? What 2021 releases have you loved?
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Quarterly Favorites #1 (Books, Movies, TV Shows and Songs)

Hi everyone! This is a new thing that I’m doing this year, where at the end of each quarter I will talk about all my favorite things of the last three months. I read a lot of good books, watched so many good shows and discovered some great songs in the first three months of 2021, so it was hard to pick my favorites. The only easy pick was my favorite movie, because I watched just two really good movies and the rest were very meh.

Without futher ado, here are my favorites:

BOOKS

Adult Fiction: The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix

This was so captivating, I was completely invested and it made me feel so many different emotions. This book did a good job of including important conversations about feminism, race and privilege. Also, it’s a grusome and disgusting type of horror, which I hadn’t read before, but it was very well done. (Full review)

YA Fiction: These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong

This book does a great job of exploring political struggles and colonialism. The main characters of the book, Roma and Juliette, felt so real and I really enjoyed their complicated, angsty relationship. Also, the side characters were pretty interesting (full review).

Nonfiction: So You Want to Talk about Race by Ijeoma Oluo

Ijeoma Oluo covers so many topics related to race like police brutality, white priviledge, cultural appropiation and so much more in a concise, clear and very smart way. I learned a lot, especially when it came to ways to reframe conversations and actions that can help in uncomfortable situations when discussing race.

Romance: Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert

I loved reading about Eve and seeing her grow throughout the book. The tension between Eve and Jacob gave me life, their chemistry was so evident and their bickering, especially at the beginning, was so entertaining. The way they both accepted and made space for the needs of the other person was incredibly sweet. Also, this book has some really steamy scenes.

An Introduction to the World of Kate Daniels for New Readers | Den of Geek

Book series : Kate Daniels Series by Ilona Andrews

I read the 10 books and 3 novellas in a period of 2 weeks and absolutely loved them. The series has an amazing main character, who is strong, smart and compassioante but also very flawed, and it also has so many lovable side characters, I was so invested in all of their stories. The main relationship was a slow burn, dislike to love romance and it was so good. Also, the world and magic system were so intricate and interesting, this series included mythologies from all over the world and it was really fast paced, easy to read, full of action.

MOVIE

Amazon.com: Train To Busan: Gong Yoo: Cine y TV

Train to Busan: This was a fantastic zombie movie, exciting and action-packed, but also with emotional moments that hit you in the feels. The acting was really good and the characters felt so real, which made me care about them and that in turn made the whole movie more tense and intense because I was invested in everything that was happening.

TV SHOWS

Romance is a Bonus Book: THIS IS A MASTERPIECE. The main character is wonderful and so easy to root for and, while the hero didn’t make the best first impression, he ended up being the sweetest guy. The romance in this is the slow burn friends to lovers romance of my dreams, they were so cute together!! I liked all the side characters and I was invested in all their storylines. Also, the fact that this was set in a publishing house and everyone loved books and talked about books with so much passion made me love this even more.

Bridgerton: this is a fun, fluffy, entertaining show. Daphne and Simon have good chemistry, there’s lovable side characters and Lady Whistledown adds sassy commentary in Regency era style, which makes the show fun to watch. The locations and clothing are beautiful and very distinctive. My main issues with this series is the scene where Daphne takes advantage of Simon and the way that storyline was handdle. Also, the way it handled race left a lot to be desired. (my full thoughts)

Derry Girls (2017) - ¡¡Ábrete libro!! - Foro sobre libros y autores

Derry Girls: This show is SO FUNNY. The characters in this show are not entirely likable but they are easy to root for and all the messes they get themselves into are so entertaining. I really like the way this show includes the political conflict of Northern Ireland in the 1990s, while the show is not about that, it’s interesting to see how growing up in that political climate affects the lives of the characters.

SONGS

This is my top 6 songs that I discovered in the first 3 months of 2021:

I would love to hear about your favorites from the last few months, let me know in the comments!

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What I’ve Been Watching #4: Train to Busan, Godzilla vs Kong, Love and Monsters and more

Hi everyone! Today I’m talking about the movies I watched in March and April, I watched all of these movies on Netflix except for Godzilla vs Kong. I’m really happy because I watched 2 movies that I have been meaning to watch for years: Train to Busan and No, and I enjoyed both of them a lot, they are my two favorite movies of 2021 so far.

Without further ado, let’s talk about movies

Train to Busan

This was a fantastic zombie movie, exciting and action-packed, but also with emotional moments that hit you in the feels. The acting was really good and the characters felt so real, which made me care about them and that in turn made the whole movie more tense and intense because I was invested in everything that was happening. This movie does a great job of showing, in the midst of this zombie outbreak, how the main characters grow, how they realtionship between them change and develop, and how they learn to get over differences and fight together. Also, beyond the zombies, there was a human bad guy who was the worst and the kind of character that’s easy to hate, which added a good element of the story. The last half hour of the movie is intense and also really sad. (Rating: 4,5 stars)

No

This movie doesn’t feel like a movie, it feels more like a documentary, the blend between real historical footage and the movie footage works so well that it ends up feeling like everything is real. It also feels real because it captures the chaotic feeling of seeing things play out in real-time, and at the end, it still feels real because not everything gets wrapped up nicely. 

The performances were fantastic and the way this depicted the conflict at the heard of the No campaign in the Chilean plebiscite of 1988 is extraordinary, it’s easy to see both sides: wanting to win even if it means doing a more lighthearted campaign and not wanting to leave out from the campaign the real and heartbreaking reality of the years lived under the dictatorship just to win. (Rating: 4 stars)

Love and Monsters

In the beginning, I thought this wasn’t going to work for me. I kept thinking that Dylan O’Brien’s character had made the stupidest decision ever and I was scared that they were going to go the cheesy route with that storyline, but they kind of didn’t. I ended up really enjoying this, it’s entertaining and fun, there’s action and monsters but also heartfelt moments. The main characters, Joel, grows a lot throughout the movie and rhere are also a few compelling characters besides Joel. (Rating: 3,5 stars)

Godzilla vs Kong

Let’s be honest, this was a Kong movie. He stole the show. Godzilla spent most of the movie being the bad guy and even the characters from previous Godzilla movies had a really silly storyline centering around conspiracy theories,which did not worked well with the rest of the film. Not that I’m complaining, I loved Kong in this movie, I loved his sweet storyline about communicating with the little girl through sign language and also it was interesting getting to explore the hollow earth. (Rating: 3,5 stars)

Yes Day

This was a cute and entertaining movie. It’s nothing special but it has it’s funny moments and it kept me engaged the entire time. It pains me to say this but the one thing that didn’t really work for me was Edgar Ramirez’s performance (which sometimes felt a bit too over the top and forced) and his character (who took about 16 years to realize that he left all the hard work to his wife). Jennifer Garner and Jenny Ortega did a good job with their roles as well as the other two kids. (Rating: 3,5 stars)

Geostorm

This movie was dull. I was hoping for one of those good old terrible disaster movies that were entertaining and had some emotional moments thrown in there, but this was no it, there were about two or three scenes of end-of-the-earth type destruction and nothing more, and none of the emotional bits landed well. Also, the acting wasn’t great and the script left a lot to be desired. Honestly, there was nothing in this movie that was gripping or interesting, the closest they get is a small romance between side characters that didn’t suck entirely. (Rating: 1,5 stars)

Just Say Yes

I think this is my first Dutch movie and it seems like I liked this movie more than most people. I mean, it wasn’t good exactly but it was entertaining and I actually think the two main characters had good chemistry. My main issue with this is that there were some really shitty characters and they got away with it, like one of her bosses is a misogynistic piece of shit and nothing happens with that, and at then there’s even a reference to him casually dating one of her friends. (Rating: 2,5 stars)

What have you watched lately? What’t the best show or movie you have watched so far in 2021?

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ARC Review: Anchored Hearts by Priscilla Oliveras

Title: Anchored Hearts

Author: Priscilla Oliveras

Publishing date:   April 27th 2021

Publisher:  Zebra Books

Genre: Romance

Pages: 352

Award-winning photographer Alejandro Miranda hasn’t been home to Key West in years–not since he left to explore broader horizons with his papi’s warning echoing in his ears. He wouldn’t be heading there now if it wasn’t for an injury requiring months of recuperation. The drama of a prodigal son returning to his familia is bad enough, but coming home to the island paradise also means coming face to face with the girl he left behind–the one who was supposed to be by his side all along…

Anamaría Navarro was shattered when Alejandro took off without her. Traveling the world was their plan, not just his. But after her father’s heart attack, there was no way she could leave–not even for the man she loved. Now ensconced in the family trade as a firefighter and paramedic, with a side hustle as a personal trainer, Anamaría is dismayed that just the sight of Alejandro is enough to rekindle the flame she’s worked years to put out. And as motherly meddling pushes them together, the heat of their attraction only climbs higher. Can they learn to trust again, before the Key West sun sets on their chance at happiness?

Goodreads | Amazon | IndieBound

*I received an arc of this book in exchange for an honest review*

This is a slow burn, second chance romance between two high school sweethearts who ended their relationship really angry with each other, but meet again after twelve years and their Cuban-American families keep trying to meddle and get them back together. My favorite aspect of this book is that it does a good job of showing the tension between the main characters because both of them are really angry and resentful, but they are still attracted to and have feelings for each other. There are a few scenes where the sexual tension and chemistry between the characters are palpable, even if this book is not that steamy.

Anamaria is an amazing heroine, she is strong, driven and compassionate. While I had my issues with Alejandro, he was talented, passionate, hardworking and he really loved Anamaria. The setup of this book allows Oliveras to include a lot of the main character’s families and their culture, which adds a lot to the story. There are family conflicts and drama but also love, support, and community. Their families are very entertaining. Also, the setting is gorgeous, Key West really shines in this book.

I had two main issues with this book: the first one is that I couldn’t believe that after twelve years, the hero hadn’t realized that the heroine had valid reasons to not go with him when he left Key West, that he was mad without a good reason and that he was the one that really messed up. The second issue is that the writing isn’t the best, it can feel a little stilted at times, and also, the word familia was used all the time and SO MANY TIMES, like multiple times on the same page, and it kept pulling me out of the story.

Rating: 3,5 stars

Are you planning on reading this book? What romance books have you enjoyed lately?

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April 2021 TBR: new releases, accidentally in love book club and fantasy books

Hi everyone! I haven’t making tbrs for the last few months becayse I was in a reading slump and mood reading seem like the best option, but I’m not in areading slump anymore and it’s time to catch up on some of my goals and some of the series that I put aside because of the slump. So that’s why the tbrs are starting again.

Here are some of the books I’m planning to read in April:

The Great Hunt by Robert Jordan: It’s been over a year since I read the first book in this series, so it was time to continue with it. I’m almost done with this and I’m really enjoying it.

The Burning God by R.F. Kuang: I’m so intimidated by this book, Im pretty sure its going to hurt me. I read the first two books in the series in 2020 and I dont want to let too much time pass before finishing it, so it’s time to get to this book.

The Time of Contempt by Andrzej Sapkowski: I have tried to read this before but I wans’t in the mood for it, hopefully now I can finish it and continue with the series.

Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse: One of my goals for this year is to read more books by Indigenous authors and I have been failing that goal, so it’s time to start working towards accomplishing it. I have heard great things about all of Roanhorse books and this was the first one to be available from my library..

Oculta by Maya Motayne: I loved the first book in this series, Nocturna, and I have been waiting for this sequel for such a long time, I’m so glad I’m finally going to be able to continue with this story. Release date: April 6th.

Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle: I really liked Sarah Hogle’s debut novel You Deserve Each Other, so I’m excited to pick up her new release especially since the premise sounds amazing. Release date: April 6th.

To Love and to Loath by Martha Waters: I loved the first book in this series and I’m really intrigued about the relationship between the characters that are the protagonists of the book. Release date: April 6th.

Damaged Goods by Talia Hibbert: I’m one of the co-host for the Accidentally in Love book club this month and this is the book that we are going to read . I’mreally excited since I have read two of the books in this series and I enjoyed them.

What books do you want to read in April? Have you read any of the books on my tbr?

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