Sunday, August 19, 2018

Top 5 New Movie Recommendations to Watch on Netflix

Rainy days make me want to just stay at home every night after work and beg off on going out with friends on weekends. But while I still go out almost every night of the week to workout or to meet friends, it's somehow become a habit of mine to watch a movie on Netflix just before I call it a night. 

If you find yourself feeling like you just want to stay home to relax after work or school, here are some of the recent films I've watched on the streaming giant:

1. To All the Boys I've Loved Before

This is the most recent film I watched on Netflix and it's another original. If you love reading and browsing books at your nearest bookstore, then I'm sure you've seen the book by Jenny Han of the same title. I haven't read the novel to be honest because well there's just so many books I want to read! But when I did read online that Netflix was making this into a movie, I made a mental note to check it out for myself. I even saw on Twitter once that the author of the book offered to write love letters for her followers' crushes - they just needed to provide her the details about the crush. I thought that was a pretty cute way of promoting the film.

Anyway, so the story is about Laura Jean Covey, an introvert American-Korean teenager who writes love letters to all her big crushes but never sends them out. When the love letters somehow got sent to the guys she liked, it wreaks a havoc to her love life. 



I have avoided rom coms for awhile but I'm glad that when I decided I'd watch them again, this is one of the latest I've seen. It'll definitely make you remember what it feels like to have a new crush or a budding romance - all that warm fuzzy feelings. I couldn't get enough of Laura Jean and Peter! The story is so high school and I'm 33 but this was seriously super kakilig! I'd watch it again and again! 


2. The Ugly Truth

Speaking of rom coms, this is another one I recently watched. It stars Katherine Heigl as an uptight TV producer who is forced to run a morning show hosted by a misogynistic pig played by Gerard Butler about modern relationships.

In my list of rom coms to watch, this was definitely in the bottom if it was even included. I read bad reviews on this film. Also I just don't see Gerard Butler as a lead guy in a romantic role. Oh well. I finally gave it a chance and I would say it wasn't so bad. It's kind of nice - just don't expect kilig from this film though because Katherine and Gerard just don't have chemistry! 

But it's got an interesting story to it. It's kind of like He's Just Not that Into You where the guy guides the leading lady on how to navigate in the modern dating world to land the guy. 

  
 

3. The Secret Life of Pets

This was a film I wanted to see in the cinema but never did because well movies are expensive nowadays and I have a lot of things I like to spend for. Anyway, so it's finally on Netflix and I thought I needed to watch a feel good movie before I go to sleep. 

This computer animated adventure film is about Max, a terrier enjoying a good life in a New York city building until his owner surprises him by bringing in another dog into the family, Duke, a giant and unruly canine. When they get lost in the big city, they encounter a group of animals planning an attack against humans and what ensues is a story full of action and laughter. 

I don't own a dog. Actually I don't have pets now. When I was kid, I did own a fish, a bird, a rabbit and a dog. We tried cats but they only ran away. Now there are cats living in our house but they're not really officially part of the family. They kind of just made themselves at home here. But when I was growing up, I did wonder what my pets did when their human owners aren't around. Well this story sure answered that! Ha! Ha! 

 

4. The Equalizer 

This stars Denzel Washington as Robert McCall who lives in a quiet life but has a secret past life. When he meets a young girl under the control of an ultra-violent Russian gangster, he decides to end his self imposed retirement and become a sort of avenging angel for the helpless. 

I thought it was a good movie. Denzel Washington was quite a bad ass in this film. Just be prepared for the gory scenes because this movie doesn't spare you from the blood bath. And recently, I read that it now has a part 2! Check out the trailer for Equalizer 2. It definitely seems like a movie worth watching again if only to watch Denzel in action again.    



5. The Stepfather

The movie stars Penn Badgley as the son returning home from military school finding out that his divorced mom is now engaged to a new guy, David whom she only recently met but makes her so happy. Though David appears to be the ideal husband, he turns out to be a psychotic serial killer out looking for his perfect family and will kill when it turns out that his new family ends up disappointing him.

I love a good suspense film and this movie brings it! It kept me at the edge of my seat, rooting for Penn Badgley's character to keep on digging about David, to not let his guard down on him and ultimately to save his family from becoming another one of his victims. There was also that part of me who wanted to scream at Selma Ward's character (Badgley's mom) and call her an idiot for being so trusting so easily of a man she just met. I mean, my gosh! Yes, you're lonely from being divorced and don't want to end up growing old alone but you've only met the guy!

    

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Confessions Part 16: A Year of Full of Hellos

Last year, around this same time, I wrote a post about how 2017 was shaping up to be. I called it The Different Kinds of Goodbye because well it was full of goodbyes. It was still all about saying goodbye up to the end of the year because I found myself leaving the job I thought I wanted.

Now that we're in August 2018, I found myself looking back to how this year has been so far for me. This year seems to be about Hellos.



Hello second chances   

Last year, I decided to leave in search of greener work pastures. But I ended up realizing I was better off where I was before so I left the shiny new workplace and went back to the previous one. I've been back for 8 months now. The only difference is I am no longer part of the PR group. I'm part of the digital marketing group. New challenges. Same company. 

I also have a couple more travels lined up for this later part of the year. Going to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, Hongkong and Macau. I've been to all these places before. My first ever trip abroad brought me to Kuala Lumpur and my first travel with my mom was to the latter two. But here I am, going back!

Hello new adventures

This year, I'm finding myself exploring again. Remember when I went to Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar? And when I celebrated my birthday with a trip to The Dessert Museum

I might have gone to Kuala Lumpur already but honestly I didn't enjoy it the first time around. It was work that brought me there - to chaperone winners of a contest and it was overnight. I did see Petronas Twin Towers and the Blue Mosque from afar and got to buy chocolates and a little souvenir but I didn't really get to experience much of it. 

Same goes for HK-Macau. I did see some places in both but I want to go back and explore some more. Take more photos too! 

Hello new friends

My best friend has been in a relationship for almost a year now! And that means I've known his partner, Dom for that long as well! He's a sweet guy who's crazy in love with my best friend and honestly who could blame him? I think he's nice and he's amusing with his corny jokes. I'm glad to know him. 

Rej is also a new friend. I've known him for awhile since he teaches the Body Jam class at the gym but we've never really interacted much 'til this year. He's a cool guy who seems to be a lot like Ryan   - personality wise. Who would've thought a spontaneous movie invite could bring me a new friend? 



Current List

Currently Reading: Origin by Dan Brown

I super love Dan Brown's Robert Langdon novels. They're so full of mystery and suspense! Plus the descriptions of the places that Professor Langdon finds himself going to just make me want to visit Europe and US more! If people who loved Koreanovelas went on a travel visiting famous places featured in those shows, I'd be the one doing a Robert Langdon travel itinerary. 

Almost done with the book. Well halfway through it at least. I would've honestly finished by now if only I didn't have to wake up early the next morning. I am super intrigue with this story and I can't wait to find out what happens! 

    

Currently Thinking About: The new Plains and Prints x Mark Bumgarner collection

So local fashion brand, Plains and Prints recently launched their newest collection - a collaboration with fashion designer, Mark Bumgarner and I love the designs! Have you seen them? I'm honestly a fan of Plains and Prints. I love how chic, playful and colorful their designs are.

Currently Saving Up For: Well my travels of course! 

I promised myself that I will not depend on the salary I will get right before I travel for my pocket money. I even downloaded an app where I set a target amount to save for my trips and a deadline to which I should have met my goal. 

It's called Saving Made Simple. Just as its name says, it makes keeping a record of my savings simple to manage. I'm actually not just using it to keep track of my travel funds but for all other savings I have. 

Recent Watch: Like Father 

It's a new Netflix original film that stars Kelsey Grammer and Kristin Belle. You have to watch it! It's such a tear jerker! Also it makes you realize that while work is important, there are other aspects of your life you just shouldn't forget to make time for.

Here's a trailer:


I also did watch Veronica on Netflix. I heard claims it's so scary that a lot of people can't bring themselves to finish it. It's from a true story. But well in my honest opinion, the movie was dragging. 


It's a psychological thriller that's worth reading. Trust me. 


What's on your current plate? I would love to know.  





Wednesday, August 1, 2018

Book Review: Before I Go to Sleep

Still keeping up with my Goodreads challenge to read 12 books by end of 2018, I want to tell you guys now about my latest read: Before I Go to Sleep by SJ Watson. This is a pre-loved book which I bought from a friend of mine at the gym for only Php100. I still have a lot of books I bought from The Big Bad Wolf Books sale earlier this year but I found my interest veering away from my usual chick lits. Not that I don't want chick lits anymore but I guess my reading palate was looking for something different. I think that happens to the best of us book lovers from time to time - wanting for something new than what we usually read. 



How would you feel if every night that you fall asleep, you wake up in the morning not knowing who you are, where you are and what has happened to your life? I would most likely be scared to sleep. Well that's Christine's life.

The Plot (from Goodreads): Christine wakes up every morning in an unfamiliar bed with an unfamiliar man. She looks in the mirror and sees an unfamiliar, middle-aged face. And every morning, the man she has woken up with must explain that he is Ben, he is her husband, she is forty-seven years old, and a terrible accident two decades earlier decimated her ability to form new memories. 

Every day, Christine must begin again the reconstruction of her past. And the closer she gets to the truth, the more unbelievable it seems. 


This was definitely a different book for me to read because when I'm not reading chick lits, I'm usually finding myself drawn to murder mystery books like Agatha Christie and lately, crime thrillers thanks to James Patterson. Before I Go to Sleep is a psychological thriller. 

On the first few pages of the book, I was already intrigued as to how the whole story would turn out especially after she found her journal where a warning "Don't trust Ben" was written. My eyes widened in surprise when I read those three letter words. I mean, why not trust Ben? This was her husband we are talking about! Why would she not want to trust the man who's been by her side throughout the ordeal? Why would she not trust the man who has to endure explaining every single day to her who she was, where she was, what happened to her and who he was in her life. 

I think that having someone you can trust is a very important thing when you have amnesia. After all, you'll be dependent on this person to tell you about the forgotten pieces of your life. It's a very scary idea - not knowing who you are, who those people around you are and realizing that you lost a huge chunk of your life's memories. So it's even scarier to think that you can't trust the person you're living with to tell you the whole truth about you. 


In terms of how this book ended, I'm honestly not sure what to feel about it. It has a nice ending but I guess I was maybe expecting for more. But then again, perhaps the ending is more realistic. I believe this book took a lot of research just to be made into a story so why should the ending not be as close to reality? 

What I'm surprised with is that the reviews of this book on Goodreads is a mix. I expected it to be a five star book. That's how I rated this book. But there were those who thought it was badly written and that there were a lot of inconsistencies to it. 

A quick look on Google and I found that this book had actually been turned into a Hollywood movie starring Nicole Kidman in 2014. 



Seems like it was a pretty exciting movie to watch to. But I don't think it was shown in the Philippines, was it? I'll have to find myself a copy of this movie so I can watch and see if the movie adaptation really did do this book justice. 

With Before I Go to Sleep now added on to my list of books I've finished reading this 2018, that puts my 2018 Goodreads Challenge to:


Have you read this book before or seen the movie? If you want to buy this book, you can shop for it through Amazon.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Sweetest Birthday So Far at the Dessert Museum, S Maison

One stormy day in July back in 1985, a baby came into this world. Fast forward to years later and that baby is all grown up and officially 33. Whenever my birthday comes rolling around, depending on my mood, I either throw a party or make it a low key celebration. During my 31st birthday, I threw a Murder Mystery party. Last year was a videoke party with select people. This year, my birthday celebration was simply a dinner with some of my closest friends.

But when your birth month comes rolling around, I'm sure you also receive various promotions from different brands so you can celebrate your birthday by giving them your hard earned money. Ha! Ha! Well as I was browsing through Instagram one day, I came upon The Dessert Museum's post that for this month, all July babies are free with the condition that we bring a paying companion with us. Since I've always wanted to visit the place ever since I learned about it, I brought along another my other friend, who's also a July birthday celebrant and two more friends willing to pay for a visit at The Dessert Museum.   



That's Dom, my friend who's birthday is also July. Actually, the day of our Dessert Museum visit is his birthday so you could say he too celebrated his birthday in the sweetest way possible.

While it's called The Dessert Museum, it's not really a museum though there are some trivia about desserts that you'll find written on the walls. This pastel colored place is really meant more for getting your photos taken around to post on your social media accounts like Instagram.



This group photo of us (Dom, me, Ryan and Mai) was taken by the nice staff of The Dessert Museum. I guess they're trained to do this sort of thing for the visitors of the place. It's not obvious in the photo but I was honestly a little scared of being on that upside down lollipop. I'm such a klutz so the risk of encountering an accident while on it or while climbing it is high. Plus my sandals didn't hold much friction on the top's shiny coating.

The place is filled with sweetness from lollipops, donuts to candy cottons! And yes, you can eat some desserts in here too so there's a treat not only for the eyes but for your sweet tooth as well.



We went on a weekend and the place was packed! But don't worry, you'll be able to take photos without strangers accidentally photo bombing you as the staff controls the number of people who go inside each room. Plus we let the others take their turns first and move on to the next room before we take our photos so we can have the place to ourselves.

Each pastel colored room is just so worth taking photos of! Here are some more photos of us in The Dessert Museum.














This definitely was a sweet 33rd birthday. And it's by far, my sweetest one yet. If you're a July baby, there's still time to head over The Dessert Museum and get in for free! The Dessert Museum is located at the Ground Floor, S Maison, Conrad Hotel, SM Mall of Asia Complex.



What I Wore:

Romper from Maldita
Sandals from Melissa Shoes

Sunday, July 22, 2018

Confessions Part 15: Rainy Days and Birthday

It's been raining like crazy these past few days in the city. I would say that I'm not the best fan of the rainy season even though my birth month is July which means a whole lot of rain. Luckily these days, I come armed with the right clothes for the season.



Seen here wearing my favorite pastel green parka from Topshop and pastel green Eton from Butterfly Twists. I swear it's only a coincidence that my boots match my jacket. I bought them on two separate occasions and did not think about how the color would match the other.

Of course in this weather, a parka is a good idea because water slides off of it - my arms are protected from wearing a wet outfit which usually happens even when I'm holding an umbrella. As for my boots, well with non stop rains, there's usually a little bit of flooding involved so my pair comes in handy for keeping my feet warm and dry!

In other news, recently celebrated my birthday with a dinner out with some friends. I'm grateful to be 33 and to be surrounded by people I care about. It was a pretty low key celebration compared to my previous years when I threw a videoke party and a murder mystery party. Though I did feel a slight twinge of sadness remembering last year and how excited I was to celebrate it. It was a year full of possibilities for me both in the career and romance department. A year later and I realized the career change I chose was not exactly the best move to make and the guy I thought could be a new love interest - well that's gone kaput too since we had a falling out earlier this year. My sadness is more brought about by the latter but I am slowly coming to terms with what happened.

Anyway if you feel like getting to know me, you might want to read my last confession where I shared 33 things about me.
Some of the awesome people I have in my life I call friends


 
Current List

Currently reading: Origin by Dan Brown

I started re-reading LA Candy by Lauren Conrad which I started way back in 2011 but never got to finish as I was just reading it in Powerbooks but then just recently I saw that Dan Brown's latest Robert Langdon novel is now available on paperback so I had to get it. Lucky me, I got it on a discount since National Bookstore is having a sale which runs 'til July 31!

Currently watching: American Horror Story

I know this series has been running for awhile now (I think Season 8 now?) but I've only just begun since I saw that it's finally available on Netflix! Looks intriguing and exciting!

Next on the blog: My weekend at the Dessert Museum

July babies are free this month so I finally convinced my friends to go. It's a real awesome place to take photos worth sharing on Instagram. I took a lot! Will share those on the blog soon. Meanwhile, do checkout my IG for some of the photos I've already shared.


Monday, July 9, 2018

Confessions Part 14: 13 Going 33

Since it's my birth month this July and I'm turning 33 (wow I'm old! LOL!), I thought I'd share 33 things about me. These are really just some random facts about me. Now if you and I are very close in real life and been my friend since grade school or high school, you'd most likely know some if not most of these things about me.



1. Backstreet Boys led to me finding the very first friend who actually stuck around beyond 1 school year.

My friendships in grade school had an expiration date. Once the school year ends and we're no longer classmates, we're not friends anymore. I was actually afraid that I'd never make real friends - friends whose house you'd visit on weekends and vice versa, friends you'd do sleepovers with, friends you go to the mall with, and friends you'd turn to in your hour of need.

But then came sixth grade. And this was in the '90s where boy bands like Boyzone, 911, Westlife, 98 Degrees etc., were all the craze of pre-teens and teenage girls. I remember seeing Anerine showing our classmates her photo album full of Backstreet Boys photos. She was not shy about letting people know how much she loved the boys and particularly the youngest one, the gorgeous blonde, blue eyed Nick Carter whom I was also crazy about.

When she found out I liked BSB and Nick, the next day, she came up to me with a photo of Nick Carter with a note on the back: Will you be my best friend? 

Just like that I had landed myself an instant best friend. LOL! Turns out she was just one of the many to come along who would become my friend.

2. My first ever celebrity crush was Romnick Sarmienta. 

This came about after watching Si Pardina at mga Duwende which starred Sheryl Cruz opposite him. I was particularly drawn to his eyes - chinito. For a time, I wanted to meet a dwarf as cute as Romnick. But then most movies, TV shows or comic books that had dwarves in them were nowhere near as cute he was.

3. I'm hardly crazy about chocolates. 

Most of the chocolates I get whether given by friends, wanna be suitors, acquaintances etc., I give to my mother because she's the one who likes them. The only chocolate I really like is Kit Kat - the original one. Not the dark choco or matcha one.

Though I did wish to receive Ferrero Chocolates back in high school from a guy because it was the chocolate to give back then. Eventually, I did get my wish to receive Ferrero. Did not like the taste at all. Guess who ate the rest of that chocolate? That's right. Mom.

4. But I am crazy about shoes. 

'Cos shoes don't make you feel fat. Also I particularly like heels. What can I say? I loved Carrie Bradshaw walking the streets of NYC in Manolo Blahniks. But yeah, I soon realized that it's not easy to walk in high heels. I have one too many experiences of being in heels for hours and boy did my feet hurt like hell.   

5. I have a very bad memory. 

My Dad always said "Ang bata bata mo pa, makakalimutin ka na." How bad is my memory? Well, let's put it this way - I go in a room and two seconds later, I end up wondering what I was there for. I meet someone new and a minute later, I've already forgotten his or her name. And when I leave my umbrella by the guard station at the gym, the guard would always ask when I'd be coming back for it because I sometimes would remember the umbrella only after a day or two.

6. I don't have an all time favorite movie. But I do have my go-to-films for certain moments in my life.

Bruce Almighty - When my faith is challenged because life was particularly sucking at that moment. 


500 Days of Summer - For when I get my heart broken

Image result for 500 days of summer quotes

"I know you think she was the one, but I don't. Now I think you're just remembering the good stuff. Next time you look back, I really think you should look again"

The Devil Wears Prada - During challenging times at work. Gotta be like Andy.


and finally, He's Just Not that Into You - to remind me to look at the signs - how to tell if a guy likes me.
Image result for if a guy likes you he will make the effort he's just not that into you movie

7. I went to a Catholic school all through my student life. Including graduate school. 
I could probably still recite the words from Angelus if you asked me to.And most prayers like the Holy Rosary.
  
8. I was both class president and club president of Mother Ignacia club during my senior year in high school. 

I've always wanted to be one. I think there's power and prestige that comes with the position. I was not really the elected class president. I don't think I was even class officer! But when our original class president had to step down, she surprisingly nominated me to be her replacement. Well also because our class adviser didn't think our class VP was also worthy of holding the post.

As for the Mother Ignacia club... Well, that was never a part of my plan. I only signed up because I thought my crush did. What was I thinking really? My crush at a religious club? Fat chance! But well I was in the club and they needed a president. Being one of the only two seniors in the club (the other was my friend whom I dragged with me into signing up in the club. Hi Bonsch! LOL!), being elected president was a walk in the park.

9. Not a beach person.
10. I am a lotion addict. 
11. I'm miserable when it's cold. Though I still want to go abroad and experience winter!
12. I thought I was ugly growing up.

Bad haircuts. Acne. Oily face. Ugh! I hated the way I look when I was in my early teen years. But Dad would always remind me of the ugly duckling and how he turned out to become a beautiful swan when he grew up.

But I guess I'm not a lost cause after all because my acne cleared up and I discovered how make up can hide beauty flaws. Also I learned to pick a hairstyle that suits my face shape and a salon with good stylists (Thanks Piandre Salon!)

13. My best friend was my 4th grade bully.

So it turns out the term best friend isn't something you coin for the heck of it. While Anerine and I are still friends to this day, it would turn out that it's actually the guy who teased me a lot in fourth grade who would become my very best friend to this day.

He was responsible for the nicknames "Dabiana, balyena e basurera!" that my classmates in fourth grade teased me with. But then we became classmates again in high school and from there on, we became friends. 

And overtime, that friendship only grew deeper. Turns out, he's a sweetheart. Oh he still teases me a lot til this day but I know it's in a good natured way.

14. My favorite color is green. 
15. Can't sleep with the lights off.
16. I wear my heart on my sleeve. 
17. I dream of writing a romance novel and seeing that published book displayed on the shelves of book stores.
18. I have no patience in the kitchen.

I read that Cancer signs are actually great cooks or at least good in the kitchen. I can't really prove it as I have no patience in the kitchen. I easily get bored waiting for food to get cooked. I know this because of the times I tried to cook something which was usually because I wanted to impress a guy with my cooking skills.

19. I have great admiration for people who can dance really well.

I wish I could dance just like them. But I have really bad coordination skills. Fast feet and fast hands moving together? I get lost. Being great at dancing - that's actually what I liked the most about my high school crush. So if you're a guy and you're a great dancer and maybe cute to boot, I might just like you.

20. I taught myself how to ride a bike.

When I was about eight years old, our neighbors who rented the apartment beside our house moved out and left a bike. The training wheels had to come off because they were broken. I practiced for hours on end going around our garage until I got good at it. I have a scar on my leg that reminds me of that one time the bike fell on me while I was learning. Now if only I was brave enough to ride a bike around the roads of Metro Manila, I would be saving me jeepney fare.

21. I am stubborn AF! 

You can't talk me into anything I don't want to do. I think this is especially true when it comes to matters of the heart. 
  
22. I am a klutz. 

I tend to bump into things a lot. Sometimes I end up with cuts or bruises that I don't have the slightest idea how I got them. I even trip on my own two feet even while I'm just walking. Ryan is almost always a daily witness to that.   

23. Not a morning person.
24. My first ever travel locally and internationally were because of work. 
25. My love language is quality time. 

If you find me spending a lot of time with you without or talking to you without anyone or anything forcing me to do so or asking you to hang out with me, then you know I like you whether as a friend or a special someone.

26. I've been keeping a diary since grade school. 

It's how I discovered my passion for writing. When I was just starting out, my diary only consisted of one word per day. Well I'm proud to report that my diary recording has graduated from that and evolved over time to consist of more sentences. Enough to tell a bigger story. And yes, I have all my diaries with me. I still read them from time to time.

27. I have low tolerance for alcohol. 

That's probably because I don't drink a lot. So when I do get drunk, I end up puking my guts out.

28. I really like horror movies. 

I especially like it with the lights off. Scarier that way, don't you think? I even watched The Conjuring 2 alone. So if you ever feel like watching a scary movie and want company, ask me to go with you.

29.  I adore dogs specially the fluffy type. 

I gush over them when I see the cute dogs being walked by their owners. I wish to pet them and play with them. But I don't like the responsibilities that come with owning one. My favorite dog breed is Chow Chow.

30. I find forensic science very fascinating. 

I grew up watching crime scene investigations on Discovery Channel and my Sundays consisted of CSI marathons: CSI, CSI New York and CSI Miami.

31. Deathly afraid of snakes. 

32. I like guys with a good sense of humor. 

He doesn't have to be a class clown. But I like guys who can crack a joke or two and people actually laugh. I want someone who doesn't take himself too seriously. He can poke fun at himself. It's the opposite of me because I'm quite the serious type. Don't expect a wacky pose from me because I'll just give you a peace sign pose.     

33. I think Got to Believe is the sweetest romance Pinoy film ever made. 


"I never even believed in forever Toni but I think I found forever in you." *swoon*





Oh yeah, I might say I'm forever 25 but I am grateful to be 33. I have learned a lot about myself, about love and life in general and I know there are plenty more to learn. Plenty more experiences to have and memories to make and more people to meet too! And to those who I know in real life whether we've only known each other for months, for a year or have been in my life since I was young, I want to say thank you for being part of my journey. You guys are a big part of what makes my life colorful! 



P.S. Thank you Ryan for taking these photos.😊  







Sunday, July 1, 2018

Top 5 Netflix Movie Night Recommendations

Since I subscribed to Netflix, most of the movies I watch nowadays are in it - either an original Netflix film or one that hit theaters before, got a DVD version and now, on the streaming giant. Watching movies is one of my favorite things to do to while away the time. It was my favorite bonding activity with my Dad too - that's actually why we had tons of DVDs at home 'til Mom decided they were only adding to the clutter of the house and sold them all.

Anyway, so let me just share with you some of the movies I've watched and liked on Netflix. 


1. The Crush

This 1993 film stars Alicia Silverstone and Cary Elwes. It's a psycho thriller story about a young man who becomes the object of affection of a mentally unstable young girl. Nick Elliot, a journalist, rents the house of a wealthy couple whose 14 year old daughter flirts with him and becomes increasingly obssessed with him when her advances to him are rejected.



This was an exciting movie. Alicia played the role of the obsessed girl perfectly. It's reminiscent of Fatal Attraction except you know, the obsessed female is younger. 


2. Primal Fear

Edward Norton plays an altar boy who gets accused of murdering a priest and Richard Gere plays a high powered, well known lawyer who has to prove his innocence in the court. 


I would say this movie is real twisted. But superb acting from Edward Norton. It's no wonder he earned an Oscar nomination as Best Supporting Actor in this film. To think this movie was his on screen debut! 

3. Fracture

The movie stars Ryan Gosling as a young assistant district attorney intent on climbing up the career ladder who finds himself engaging in a battle of the wits with Anthony Hopkins' character, a wealthy man accused of attempted murder of his unfaithful wife.



Another great watch. It's a smart thriller that'll keep you at the edge of your seat. Hopkins' acting was as always impeccable. Very reminiscent for me of how he played Hannibal Lectre. And Gosling was able to keep up in terms of acting so together they made a great pair to watch.

4. Straight Outta Compton

I'm sure you're familiar with Beats by Dr. Dre and Ice Cube. Well, this movie will give you an inside look at how they started their music careers. This is a biographical film about N.W.A (Niggas with Attitude) and the rise and fall of this gangsta rap group.

    


I liked this film because it gave a very interesting look at the lives of two guys and their friends who are now very big in the entertainment industry. Also while not a fan of rap music, I would have to say Fuck the Police song was very catchy. 


5. Set it Up

The film is about two assistants who are in desperate need of a break from the office. They team up to trick their workaholic bosses into falling in love. This one is a Netflix original and a fairly recent release.  



This movie is super cute and full of kilig. Also comes with a love lesson too - how to tell the difference between like and love. You like someone because of their qualities/personality. You love someone despite of. 



Sunday, June 24, 2018

Confessions Part 13: The One About Heartbreaks

For the past couple of weeks, I found myself trying and failing to talk a friend into taking the first step in dealing with her very tough breakup. And just this week, someone asked me "Have I ever had my heart broken?" because I was giving so much advice to my friend about letting go and moving on. I smiled at this friend of mine as I replied that yes, I have in fact had my heart broken. Many times in fact. I actually almost want to refer to myself as the 'Hari ng Sablay' (King of Failures) as inspired by the Sugarfree song of the same title.

I've had a relationship and went through a painful breakup. I've loved guys who were emotionally unavailable and very much complicated. I've also had the unrequited kind of love and the almost love. I've had my fair share of crying buckets of tears; days and months, maybe years of being hoping, yearning only to be met with a sad kind of ending. I've had days when I had a loss of appetite and feeling so alone. I've had times of being in the dark because I was just so sad. But I'm no expert at heartbreaks. I don't think anyone can actually claim to be one. We ache in different ways and we heal on our own time. But I do know some things for sure: Moving on starts with learning to let go. It's not easy I know. I still struggle from time to time. But I keep trying until it sticks. Self love is very important. I will be honest in saying that growing up, I thought I needed to find my other half wherever he is. I blame that on Jerry Maguirre's "You complete me" line that I'm sure made a lot of women swoon. Not ashamed to admit I was one of them. But my very first heartbreak taught me that I didn't need to find my other half. I needed to complete me. He's just gonna be the cherry on top. I think I only started to love myself after my first real relationship ended. Truly it was a very enlightening experience for me. At the end of the day, if you love yourself, no one can break you so bad that you'll find yourself lost and would struggle to bounce back. While I haven't found my Mr. Right, I'm just going to continue loving myself and discovering who I am. A great support system is important. I am very lucky that I have a loving family and a very tight knit circle of friends whom I can always turn to in my hour of need aka shoulders to cry on; ears ready to listen and armed with words of wisdom - advice that may sometimes be tough and hurtful to hear but always done out of love for me.

Anyway, so since we're on the topic of heartbreaks, did I ever tell you guys that I once wrote a listicle of songs to listen to to get you through a breakup and it was something that got published and I got paid for? It was inspired by a summer romance I once had that yep, you guessed it - turned sour. I also have a Heartache playlist on Spotify that I listen to because like I said I somehow keep making poor choices and missteps when it comes to matters of the heart.

    


If you're wondering how my heart is doing now, I would say it's not as broken as it was a couple of months ago. There are still days I hurt and days when I long. But I'm always trying to take steps to move on and heal completely. I'm hopeful that my friend would too. 

Current List: 

Currently reading: Before I Go to Sleep by SJ Watson

I bought this second hand book from a friend at the gym a couple of months back. Finally decided yesterday to make time to read again and this is the book I chose. I'm making good progress with this book. I think I'll be done with it by tonight. 

The story is about a woman who has amnesia. Every time she goes to sleep, she forgets her name, her identity, her past and even all the people she love. And the one person she has to trust in telling her the truth might be telling her only half of the story. 




Currently watching: Brooklyn Nine Nine Season 5

You've probably seen this clip making the rounds on your Facebook newsfeed. It's from Season 5. 



I finally got a copy of the entire fifth season from a friend of mine because Netflix only has up to the fourth season. I think this show is so funny. The entire cast just works well together. 

But aside from this, I also have some new old movies I discovered on Netflix. This week, I watched Primal Fear starring Edward Norton and Richard Gere (a really nice movie!) and The Crush starring Alicia Silverstone and Cary Elwes (also a real nice movie!). Will do a post of all my recent old movie discoveries on Netflix soon. 

New discovery: Figaro's Pudding with vanilla sauce

I credit my foodie best friend, Ryan, for this. He ordered one for himself when we stayed at Figaro and when I had a bite, I tasted an explosion of sweetness. I had to order one for myself as well together with the Butterscotch Vanilla Latte, also a new discovery thanks to him.   


   

Sunday, June 17, 2018

Confessions Part 13: The One About Dad

Today's confession is all about my Dad because it is Fathers' Day after all. My Facebook news feed is full of Fathers' Day greetings and tributes of people I know to their own fathers both living and deceased. Sadly, my own Fathers' Day tribute now belongs to the latter category. It's been six years since I lost my Dad to cancer which came by surprise to us all when we found out and even more a surprise that the disease took him away so fast - just about a month after.

I was close to my Dad. I would even say that I was a Daddy's girl. A lot of the things that I liked are because of him. Let me just tell you a few things about him.


1. He loved reading. 

I would say that my love for reading is one of the things I got from him. I remember him having a lot of Readers Digest stacked neatly on a shelf in their room and when I was old enough to understand its contents, I would borrow from his collection and just read. My favorite part was the true stories which could be an inspirational one, a story about love or a survival story. I also liked the jokes section and the vocabulary.

When I was a teenager, my Dad used to take me to National Bookstore and Powerbooks a lot. We'd browse through different books and magazines and I'd ask him to buy me a book or two. He was the one who exposed me to reading mystery and detective story books like Nancy Drew and Encyclopedia Brown and Choose Your Own Adventure books.

2. He loved, loved, loved movies especially the Hollywood ones.

He used to have a collection of movie VCDs and DVDs at home. In fact, watching movies was a favorite past time of ours. If there was a good movie showing in cinemas, you bet your boots we'd be watching and every night, when I get home, I would stay in their room and we'd just spend the hours watching a movie on DVD until my mom came in the room to say it was time for bed or until my Dad couldn't fight off his sleepiness anymore.

I think that my Dad could give Lorelai Gilmore a run for her money when it comes to making movie references or at least, he'd be able to relate to her quips more than I can. My earliest recollection of Dad taking me to the movies was when he took me to Greenbelt to watch the premiere of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and one of my last memories with Dad was us watching Mission Impossible 4 at Waltermart Makati which was the same day as the day we got the diagnosis from the doctors about how serious his condition was. I had to hand it to my father. If I was told I had only months to live, I don't think I would be able to bring myself to watch a movie pa. But he did.

I think if my Dad knew how to download movies and if he was still alive today, he would probably have a subscription to all the streaming sites available - Netflix, iflix, HOOQ and Fox+. I think my love for all things Hollywood is also because at such a young age, most movies I was exposed to were American made.

3. He was the strict parent.

Nope he didn't impose the no-boyfriend-until-after-College rule with me. But he was strict in a whole lot of ways! No going to the movies until College (but I did break that rule in high school! Ha! Ha!). If I was to meet my friends, I would have to ask permission days ahead and I normally had to chat him up for a while about things under the sun before I could get around to what I really wanted to say which was "Dad, could I go out with my friends?" And that comes with all the details - where; what; when; who; why. Also when I tell him I'll be home by 10PM, he's already texting me at 9:30PM to remind me and ask me where I was already. Mom's easy going. With her, it's more like "I'm going out ma. Meeting Ryan." Telling her. Not asking permission. Also usually can even do that when I'm already dressed to go out.

When I finally started entertaining guys, my Dad would always be asking me who it was I was talking to on the phone or chatting with over Yahoo Messenger. When I got a boyfriend, he would require him to pick me up at home. I used to dislike that because my then boyfriend disliked it too. He thought it was such an inconvenience that he had to go to my place first when his house was nearer the mall. I only realized as I got older that I was so wrong to dislike Dad for being so strict about that. I should have been angry at my then boyfriend for thinking what a hassle it was. I guess that's part of why he was not the right one for me.

Of course I also disliked that my Dad was so strict with me when I was growing up. I used to resent it. But again as I grew older, I began to understand where he was coming from. He was just being protective. He just wanted me to be safe of course because he loves me.     


4. My Dad was not a religious man. 

He's not. But he served God for half his adult life at church because he had good faith in Him. I remember him telling me that when my mom got sick he made a deal with God. Namanata sya. He told God if he cured my mother of cancer, he would join the people who annually does the Black Nazarene procession. But since he was claustrophobic, he didn't join the crowd instead he would walk barefoot from Quiapo to home to fulfill his end of the deal with God.

He was not a religious man but he always told me that he felt His presence in his life. He told me he knew it was God that also brought him and his father together. You see my Dad never knew his own father growing up and he had always been okay with it. But one day, it seemed like God was telling him to search for his father. Turns out, his father was sick and dying and it just seemed as though his Dad was praying to see him just before he passed away.

And even when he got sick, my Dad never blamed God. He never got angry at him or questioned Him as to why he would end up being so sick.

He touched lives when he was still alive because of his faith too. I know because there's a couple who was on the verge of splitting up then that he counselled and somehow, someway he was able to help them stay together, to remember not to give up on each other. There was also another guy who made us laugh despite our grief at church after the priest gave his final blessing of the dead. He came up to the podium, in tears just like most of us that day when we were about to bring my Dad to the crematorium, who stepped up to the microphone and said "Bakit sya pa? Marami namang iba dyan. Yung masasamang ugali." 


5. My Dad was my confidant.

I turned to my Dad for a lot of things especially for advice. When I was a kid and I was feeling lonely because I had no playmates (I wasn't allowed to go out to the streets then), my Dad told me I should use my imagination. When I had friendship troubles, he was the one I confided in him. When I graduated, he was the one who helped me look for a job. He accompanied me to every job interview, staying in nearby Mini Stops while I interviewed and when I had work troubles and worried I might never be regularized at work, he told me I would find the right job. When my boyfriend and I broke up, he was the first one I turned to. I went home crying to him and later that day, he came to my room with my favorite spaghetti from Pancake House so I could eat. He was also the one who told me there'll be other guys for me. No Mr. Right yet. But I'm sure my Dad's also helping Cupid now look for that guy.



    
This was us at the annual Ayala Triangle Lights and Sound Show. I have not learned how to put on make up just yet and so my eyebrows are hardly seen! Ha! Ha!

I was lucky I had a father like him in my life for 26 years. I miss him of course. And I wish we had more years together. That he'd be here to meet the guy for me and walk me down the aisle when the time comes. But I know he's in a better place now, looking down at us from Heaven.

To those who still have their Dads with them, I cannot begin to tell you how lucky you are. Treasure every moment you have with the first man in your life. Happy Fathers Day! 


Current List

Recently watched: Set It Up

Another Netflix original romcom! The story about two assistants who decide to set up their bosses so they could have a life outside the office. It's cute. Super love it. More than The Kissing Booth. I even like how they defined the difference of love and like. You like a person because... while you love a person despite of...



Also, just finished Queer Eye Season 2! What can I say? It's still fabulous! The Fab 5 did it again! And yes, still love Antoni so much and I adore Jonathan still! 


Currently listening to: Dancing on my Own by Robyn

I know it's not new. But recently just discovered it and loving it. Yes, I find it so relatable and think it's the soundtrack of my life right now.


I'm in the corner, watching you kiss her, ohh 
I'm right over here, why can't you see me, ohh 
I'm giving it my all, but I'm not the girl you're taking home

  


Sunday, June 10, 2018

Confessions Part 12: The Week that Was

And so I'm back after to sharing my weekly confessions! Where do I start?

Okay, so last week felt like a long weekend for me. Our office went to a resort in Laiya, Batangas for a last summer hurrah outing. The place was real nice I must say. There was a beach of course and a pool for those of us who don't want to swim at the beach (ehem me!).  There was beach volleyball and water sports activities for those who like sports and adventures (not me!). And the surrounding was pretty - real good enough for Instagram! Guess what I did?





Anyway so last week was also the first in a long while that I decided I'd go watch the sun set by the bay. I haven't stopped to appreciate the beauty of the setting sun since the fall out but someone I know has been posting sun set photos as a photo project of his so it reminded me of the days I used to sit by the bay to stare at the sun as it set in the distance. Well... it's still a beautiful sight to see.



Still made me sad to be reminded of someone who doesn't want to be part of my life even though I feel the exact opposite but it doesn't hurt as much anymore. There is still that part holding out - that part that secretly wishes he'd look my way. I mean really look my way and see me. Not just another face in the crowd. I still secretly wish he'd call my name. I still wish he'd talk to me again. But there are things in life that you can't get right? No matter how much you want it. Alangan namang pilitin ko di ba? Anyway, I'm just going to focus my efforts on spending time with people who actually want to be part of my life.

Relationships sure are tricky. And I mean all kinds! Even friendships! Recently, a friend of mine upset me real bad due to a commitment that was broken and an expectation that was not met. That's actually why I didn't get to blog last week. My emotions were at an all time high in a negative way and I knew that if I sat down and blogged that day as I usually do now on Sundays, nothing good will come out of it. I'm much calmer now as I have come to accept that it is how it is. Sometimes, people will disappoint you. Sometimes they'll hurt you whether they mean to or not and it's up to you how you'll deal with it. I know I've done my fair share of letting people down and hurting them too. In the case of my friend, I chose to forgive and move on.


Current List

Recent read: After Eden by Arnold Arre

It's been sitting on my desk for a couple of months now so finally about two weeks ago, I finally decided to read it! I only got to finish it yesterday though all thanks to this nonstop rainfall that's been going on since Friday that forced me to finally stay at home!


And so that puts another dent to my 2018 GoodReads Challenge. I have read 6 books out of the 12 books that I pledged to read this year. Also that brings me to my next current...

New blog post: What happens After Eden

After Eden is actually my first local graphic novel. It was given to me by a former work colleague who now (or is it used to by now?) works in the publishing house that carries this book. She asked me and Maila to write a review about it on our blog. Well since I was just at home yesterday, I figured I'd sit down and finally write that review. So you know, if you want to know what After Eden is all about and what I thought of it, click on the link above to take you to that blog post.

Streaming: Gilmore Girls rerun mostly 

I just love how the characters in this show talk especially Lorelai! It's my must-watch show every morning these days before going to work. When I first watched this show way back my teen years, I used to root for Lorelai and Christopher. But now, I'm really all for Luke. I now see how he is really the right guy for her. As for Rory, well, there's no changing my mind about being Team Jess! I wish Amy Sherman-Palladino and Dan Palladino gave Rory and Jess another chance at love when they made Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. I do not like that ending - that Rory ends up pregnant and a single mom! Full circle my foot! Rory deserved a better ending than that. I'd hold out for another season of A Year in the Life where Rory and Jess finally get that second chance at love but I read that the way that show ended was exactly how she envisioned it would.

But it's not to say I didn't watch anything else on Netflix recently! Actually, I watched The Italian Job. Charlize Theron so gorgeous! Mark Wahlberg sooo hot! That whole movie - an exciting watch. I know it's old but I didn't like action films back then. These days, while it's still not my first choice for a movie, I can be persuaded to watch one now.

Also watched Alex Strangelove which is a Netflix original film. It's a coming out movie of a high school guy who finally embraces his sexuality. I thought it was funny and nicely done. I could only relate to that part about Clare liking a guy who turns out to be gay because I briefly had a crush on a gay guy!  Luckily for me though, I didn't end up being in a relationship with the guy before realizing why we just couldn't be! Well I think now my gaydar is stronger so I can easily avoid going down the same road twice. What needs improvement is my asshole radar though so I can also stay away from guys who would bring me nothing but heartache.  

Anyway watch the trailer here:



Another film I recently streamed? Straight Outta Compton. This is a biographical film about the rise and fall of gangsta rap group called N.W.A (Niggas with Attitude). Most notable members of the group are Dr. Dre (yes that Dre of Beats by Dre) and Ice Cube (rapper, writer and now actor). The film was actually a box office hit when it came out in theaters back in 2015. It was even nominated for an Academy Award for Best Original Screenplay. Also the movie soundtrack which featured music by N.W.A debuted at no. 1 on Rap Album charts and became no. 1 on the Top R&B/Hip Hop charts. I'm not a fan of rap music but I have to say Fuck the Police was real catchy.

Anyway here's the official trailer of that:

    



    

Saturday, June 9, 2018

What Happens After Eden?

Love is always sweet in the beginning. But what happens to your world after you leave Eden?

This is the question that the story of graphic novel, After Eden, posed to its readers. If you've ever met someone and fallen in love, then you know that love can send you into a blissful state wherein you might feel like there's nothing you couldn't do especially when you're together and nothing and no one can ruin the happiness you feel especially at the beginning of the relationship.



That's how Jon and Celine felt when the two childhood friends meet again and get into a whirlwind romance. Suddenly their lives had color and more meaning to it. But keeping the love alive and getting their  relationship to last did not come without its challenges with angels and demons wagering who gets to control the world with the outcome of their relationship and their friends, Mike, Greg, Lea and Cathy not caring much for their new relationship as well. They wanted the old status quo back and they wanted their friends to stop playing matchmaker with them. So they conspire with each other to put Jon and Celine's relationship to the test.

After Eden by award-winning comic creator Arnold Arre is one of his earliest works. In fact, my friend, Ryan, told me when I posted a story on IG about me reading this graphic novel, that he remembers reading this in the school library back in College. He loved the story. And you know I did too - this 2016 version at least because I have not read the first edition. 

I like how creatively titled this was: After Eden. A colleague of mine asked me why it's called After Eden and I actually wondered that too when I first got a copy of this graphic novel. The garden of Eden is used as a metaphor for love. Eden being the wonderful place created by God for Adam and Eve where they know nothing but joy and life's simplicity. When Adam and Eve ate the forbidden fruit and banished from Eden, they are introduced to life's hardships and negative emotions just like how one would feel when you break up with someone you love. 

It's a very relatable story as it's so close to reality. I think that's what I liked about After Eden the most. I felt the kilig as I followed Jon and Celine's blossoming romance and I felt so sad when they broke up.

I have to say I also liked Greg and Lea's story which is more of the more-you-hate-the-more-you-love kind. They cracked me up with their fights. But I also like how the story shows that while it seemed they were the kind of people who didn't care for love, they would find that they just didn't know better until love came knocking on their own doors.

These are some of the lines from After Eden that struck me:

Love is the biggest mystery of the universe. But why try to solve it when one can simply view it for what it is and marvel at the wonders and strangeness it brings?

I was once a sleeping child. But now I've opened my eyes. I chose to walk the path of ignorance and  this is the price I must pay. I was seduced by all the songs and all the poems about love being a magical place. So I entered. I saw in that place a castle in the clouds. And a price waiting for me at the gate. He brings me a magical forest. H kisses my hand and we dance till dawn breaks. But no there is no prince. No magical forest. No castle. There are no such things. I was once a sleeping child but now I've opened my eyes. Love songs have lost their meaning. Sunsets their beauty. The stars have grown tired of shining. The flowers have all wilted. There's no more dancing. No more evening walks. No more staring at the clouds. No more wishing on the moon. No more birds flying overhead. No more soft whispers. No more laughter. No more embraces. No more. No more.

Out there is a season for you, but you'll only meet it once. It stays for a while, then goes away. So don't lose it. Hold on to it. Never let it go. Let it know that it's loved. Let it know that you long for it.  Because when you do it will have finally found a home. And you'll always have that season in your heart no matter what time of the year it is. Catch the season. Don't look for a reason. 

Maybe you've fallen in love and had your heart broken; maybe you're in a happy relationship right now; or maybe you're still waiting for love to come knocking at your door. In any case, I think you'll enjoy reading this graphic novel. Yes it's sappy and cheesy but well I'm hopeless romantic so... Seriously though, I recommend After Eden. You won't regret it.



After Eden is available in National Bookstore and Fully Booked. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Books of the Month: Time of My Life, Postcard Killers and Cocktails for Three

As soon as summer kicked in, I found myself feeling the desire to sit down and read. In fact, I finished two books in March: Cecilia Ahern's Time of My Life and Judy Blume's Forever and two books in April: James Patterson's Postcard Killers and Madeleine Wickham's Cocktails for Three.

Now I'm finally sitting down to share my thoughts on the three other books I finished reading.  

 
The Postcard Killers

This is my first James Patterson novel lent by someone I know from the gym. Although I know of James already because of the Alex Cross novels that have been adapted to a movie - which I loved by the way - Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider

The Plot
The story centers on NYPD detective Jacob Kanon who's on a tour of Europe's most gorgeous cities. But it's not the sights that draw him in. He sees every cathedral, cafe and museum through his daughter's eyes. His daughter Kimmy and her boyfriend were murdered during their vacation in Rome and since then young couples around Europe have been found dead. The only connection of the murders is a postcard sent to the local newspaper precedent of each new victim.  Kanon teams up with Swedish reporter, Dessie Larsson who receives a postcard from Stockholm and they think they know where the next victims will be. 

My two cents:

I loved this book. I found it to be a thrilling read. The Postcard Killers reminded me of Bonnie and Clyde and as I followed the story through their perspective, I kept thinking to myself how twisted they were! Twisted but good. They committed a series of murders without the police catching up to them until Kanon that is. 

Kanon's probably a really good detective since he was the only one who could see the pattern. Didn't care much for Dessie though. In my head, I pictured I imagined who would play Sylvia and Mac Rudolph, the killers in a movie. 

Sydney Sweeney as Sylvia

 
Elijah Stevenson as Mac 


Both were actors in now cancelled, Netflix original throwback to the 90's film, Everything Sucks. They're both good looking just as The Postcard Killers were described in the novel and I liked them together in that film. They had chemistry. 

But a quick search on Google and I found out on IMDb that it's actually going to be turned into a film already called The Postcard Killings. Patrick Dempsey is set to play Jacob Kanon and Brittany Robertson from Netflix's GirlBoss is set to play Dessie. It's still in pre-production according to what I read but Liza Marklund, the co-author of the book is also writing the screenplay. I can't wait to see this crime thriller come to life! 

  Cocktails for Three 


This is my first Madeleine Wickham novel. Most people know her by her pen name, Sophie Kinsella. Surprised? Yup! Me too! I thought it was the other way around - Sophie being her real name and Madeleine her pen name. Anyway, her writing style in this book is far, far, far different from her style as Kinsella, writing novels such as the Shopaholic series. As Wickham, her characters are more mature. I didn't find myself being amused by the heroines of this book thinking about how silly adorable they are like I would have if this was a Kinsella novel and I know because I've read a lot of Kinsella books! 

The Plot

It's about three savvy young women who share secrets they own over monthly cocktails. Roxanne is a glamorous and confident woman but she has a secret lover who's a married man. Maggie is a capable and high achieving woman who finds herself with one thing she can't cope with - motherhood. Candice is honest and decent until a ghost from her past shows up. 

The story about Candice reminded me of the movie, Single, White, Female except there was no psychotic killer in this book. Just a vengeful one. Roxanne's story was the one I liked the least because well, confident and glamorous and yet she's in love with a man she can't have. I guess for me it's all black and white. If you love someone, you will be with her so I never understood why her secret lover just couldn't do that and still she stayed. If it was real love, then why was she kept a secret? As for Maggie, well I would have to say her life was is #goals. She had a successful career and a supportive husband. 

My two cents:
Anyway I liked it because of its depth and realism. The problems these women faced were very much relatable. I loved how it showed that even when the three women faced different struggles of their own, they still came through for one another when the need came. 

Will I read another Wickham novel? That is most likely. But I think it's safe to say that I still prefer her light and amusing novels as Sophie Kinsella. 



The Time of My Life


       
This is my first Cecelia Ahern novel. You might know her from her novel turned movie, Love Rosie. 

The Plot: (from GoodReads)

Lucy Silchester has an appointment with her life – and she’s going to have to keep it.

Lying on Lucy Silchester’s carpet one day when she returns from work is a gold envelope. Inside is an invitation – to a meeting with Life. Her life. It turns out she's been ignoring it and it needs to meet with her face to face.

It sounds peculiar, but Lucy’s read about this in a magazine. Anyway, she can’t make the date: she’s much too busy despising her job, skipping out on her friends and avoiding her family.

But Lucy’s life isn’t what it seems. Some of the choices she’s made – and stories she’s told – aren’t what they seem either. From the moment she meets the man who introduces himself as her life, her stubborn half-truths are going to be revealed in all their glory – unless Lucy learns to tell the truth about what really matters to her.

My Two Cents

Can you imagine having your life pay you a visit and to find out that the manifestation of your life is a disgusting, smelly old guy? That was Lucy's life. Reading this book made me reflect about life. 

I know some of us have the tendency to live on auto pilot mode. You know how it is - just going through the motions, never really acting on anything. Sleep. Eat. Go to work or school. Go home. Eat. Lose yourself browsing social media or watching TV. Sleep again. Repeat the following day. You're comfortable and safe in your own little bubble. But really you're dead inside. It's not the best way to live at all. I mean, if you look back in your life, would you be able to say you lived your best years? 

A few years ago, I found myself living an auto pilot mode kind of life. I was working and going out with friends after work. On the weekends, I would either go out again with the same set of friends or lose myself in front of the TV at home. I repeated that everyday and I was okay with it because I was comfortable. I guess if my life paid me a visit too back then I'd also probably be shock to find a stinky old guy as well. But thankfully, there's a leadership program I joined a few years ago that made me realize that really was not the way to go.  

This book is a good read. I think it will also make you reflect on your own life and make you want to grabbing life by the balls as they say.  

So those are my books of the month (BOM) and as it turns out, they're a series of firsts for me! They're also not going to be the last novels I'd be reading from these authors. As for my 2018 GoodReads Challenge, well I'm now four books down. Eight more to reach my 12 books goal for the year.