To Future Me: Don’t forget why you loved Anna and the French Kiss

Hi! It’s me, or I guess you in the past. Just wanted to start off by saying, hope you’re well – happy, healthy and all that. I hope you’re doing well in uni and gotten to experience more life in the meantime. Lastly, but maybe most importantly, I hope you’re reading more. Right now… I’m not reading much but I’m trying. I’ve become really tired of the YA contemporary/ romance plots so I’ve tried going back to fantasy and paranormal but nothing’s really working out. But yesterday, I picked up Anna and the French Kiss – you know, our all time favourite book – and I realised I haven’t read it fully since the first time. Shocking, right?? We’ve read bits of scenes here and there but never the whole book. Well, I read the book cover to cover yesterday and it brought me back to the first time we read it.

Remember when you were scrolling on Goodreads looking for a book that was different from the others (as we were prone to do as a 13 year old who was starting to get tired of all the fantasy tropes)? And then Anna and the French Kiss came up. You had read other YA contemporaries before this so it wasn’t totally new to you. But this one was different – it was set in Paris.  Didn’t have expectations about it – just decided at 12am to get a ebook of it and try to read a chapter. It seemed kind of cheesy but you gave it a chance anyways. A chapter turned into two and two turned into three and suddenly it was 3am and you had finished the whole book, lying in your bed with a stupid smile that you couldn’t get rid off. You had never read something so extremely cute. It was basically a rom com in book form – it was perfect.

After that you read a lot of YA contemporaries, trying to chase that same thrill you had reading about Anna and Etienne. It got to the point where all you read were contemporaries and everything just became tropes, contrived romances and unrealistic stories. You didn’t read anymore because it was more of the same and it felt like you were wasting time. You spent hours on Goodreads looking for an interesting book and usually finding nothing good. There’s no point even trying to top this masterpiece you had already read. So you just stopped reading because even the books that had similar plots and vibes couldn’t live up to it.

There have been others like Adorkable by Cookie O’Gorman – super cute friends to lovers romance – and Geekerella by Ashley Poston – a super cute story about fandom with a touch of romance – but nothing will be as amazing as Anna and the French Kiss. And that’s the thing I didn’t realise… nothing is going to top it because of my own expectations. After re-reading it, I realised that I loved it so much because I didn’t care if it was going to be good or bad or worrying about making an interesting review of it. Because, Future Me, reading is fun when there’s no expectations (aaand I guess that’s why I also hated English in school!).

So whatever you’re doing then (or I guess now?), Future Me, go into the book with an open and patient mind, not caring about what you have to do after reading the book. Read even if you don’t think you’ll like it, because that’s where the gems are.

See you on the upside!

Prima

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Everything, Everything movie | Why was it just so cheesy??

I didn’t think that I’d write a full review for the movie but I have some feels and I have to express them. So the Everything, Everything movie came out sometime last year and I was super excited for it. Of course, I also totally forgot about it when it came out in cinemas.

However, last week Netflix sent me the best email: Everything, Everything was now available on Netflix. I may have had a fangirl moment in the middle of my math lecture, I won’t deny. I had high expectations for the movie because the book was so damn good. The feels, the romance, the eventual tears, all of in in Everything, Everything the book. But the movie? Let’s just say it targets its audience very specifically.

I’ll start with what I did like about the movie. The lead actors were likeable and charming. They played Maddy and Olly’s quirkiness really well, which made watching the movie a tiny bit better. The whole film basically hinges on these two. There’s not a lot of characters in the plot and even most of the side characters aren’t really there a lot. So acting wise the movie is pretty good. All the emotions are there and you really feel for the characters.

There’s these scenes where they’re texting and it suddenly just cuts to these crazy dream like locations with Madeline’s astronaut close by. I really loved these scenes. They were sort of out there but it showed the barrier between them two.  It’s actually really funny because they say things like “type faster!” out loud. It’s weird but it emphasized the normal teenage experiences Maddy missed out on. I was wondering how they’d translate all the multimedia stuff from the book over to the movie. They really captured the essence of all of that though.

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Can I also just mention how refreshing it is to watch a movie not about race but filled with race? The cast is very diverse but the plot isn’t about race. It’s a love story at its core and the movie gives us that. Personally, I love these kind of movies which just show everyday people having their own stories. I hope that the To All the Boys I’ve Ever Loved movie is something similar to this. Fingers crossed!

Ok, well now onto the bad bits. It’s so freaking cheesy. I honestly watched most of the movie in a cringe state. It feels like it’s trying to be Fault in Our Stars with the sick lit theme but doesn’t quite hit the bawl-my-eyes-out mood TFIOS had. Honestly, I didn’t have a problem with the way the actors portrayed Maddy and Olly but I do think that the characters themselves were boring. They weren’t really fleshed out. Like seriously, 20 minutes into the film and they’re like best buddies already. It doesn’t feel right. Same goes for the romance.

Oh the romance. How can I even explain it? The two leads had chemistry but somehow it just didn’t translate into a good romance. There’s just a constant weary tone throughout the movie that sucks the life out of everything … everything hehe yes I just reused my own joke from the previous post. It just reduces the romance to a whirlwind teenage attraction rather than anything solid. I know that Everything, Everything is Maddy’s story of growing up but if they couldn’t even do that properly, they should’ve at least gotten the romance on point.

To finish off, I have to address the very obvious target audience. Yes, the movie is for teen girls. What gave it away? Well, let’s play the “Is it Taylor Swift music video or Everything, Everything?” game.

Yep. Honestly sums up my feelings about the movie.

Verdict: Cringe. Cringe. Cringe. Style over substance. Everyone was a bit too perfect, a bit too slick.

The Darkest Minds trailer | It’s Hunger Games… with powers!

IT’S HERE! I’m pretty late to the party so it’s highly likely you guys have seen the trailer already but here it is anyways:

Ok, time for the rant!

First of all, I have to address the Shadowhunter vibes. To all YA adapations, please stop using Ruelle songs. It’s like you want to be synonymous with bad adaptations of books. If that’s what you’re aiming for, go for it, but I’m sure you don’t want that. I get that her songs sound angsty and teenagers are angsty but I don’t think that was the way to go for this specific book. It needed a more badass soundtrack.

The biggest complaint I probably have with the trailer is the way it treats the kids’ powers. It feels like they’re trying to sell it as a YA X-Men and I don’t like that. I really liked the road trip escape in the first book but it seems in the trailer that they’re just focusing on explosions! Telekinesis! Sparks! There’s also this scene where Liam uses his telekinesis to move Ruby towards him…. WHAT THE ACTUAL HELL WAS THAT? Cringe, cringe, cringe. It’s such a cliche teenage movie move that makes me so annoyed because The Darkest Minds has a really solid romance but that scene is just no.

It’s really screwing with my mind how Amandla Stenberg is in like every single YA adaptation right now. You could say she’s in everything… everything 😉 She was really likable in Everything, Everything though and we all know she can do YA dystopia so I’m looking forward to seeing her as Ruby!

I feel like the trailer is trying to channel Hunger Games vibes both tonally and visually. The scene where she puts up her hand and everyone follows… is that not just the three finger salute from Hunger Games?  Maybe I’m just really sick of dystopia in YA but it just seems like they’re straight up copying. I really hope they flesh out the interactions between the Black Betty gang and not just focus on the revolution aspect of the series. They have the potential sequels to do that but I want to love the characters in the first movie. Side note: didn’t they basically spoil the Ruby mystery from the first book with the paint?

Last thing: WHY IS ZU NOT BALD? At least she still has the yellow gloves though so 👍

So did I like this teaser trailer? Not reaaally. Will I watch the movie? Most likely yes. I can’t help myself 😂 Anyways, what did you guys think of the trailer?

❤ Prima

On Long Bus Rides and Movies

Hi guys! It’s been so long since I last posted – the last month and a half has honestly just flown by. I started uni and have a shit ton of work. It’s definitely not unexpected but it still hit me hard especially with the 1.5 hour commute there! Protip for any to be uni students: long bus trips are great for doing work…. or if you’re like me, to listen to an entire album and pretend you’re in a movie. I can’t be the only one who does this right?

Recently, I’ve been really liking Ruth B’s Safe Haven. She’s probably best known for her song Lost Boy inspired by the show Once Upon a Time. I feel like her songs have what I really loved about Taylor Swift’s Fearless and Speak Now albums. Each of the songs tell a different story about love and relationships. They have really beautiful melodies and her voice suits it so perfectly. Seriously, just go give it a listen. Dandelions and First Time are my personal favourites 🙂


As for books, this past month (and a half) hasn’t really been a great one. I bought a whole heap of books and started a whole heap more but I just haven’t had the time or strong feels to finish them. Anyone have any easy reads for me to get through? I did watch a couple of things on Netflix though! 5 word reviews in 3…2…1:

  • Everything, Everything – Strong aesthetic, but cheesy af
  • Brooklyn Nine- Nine – It makes me laugh loud
  • Grimm – OUAT but way, way darker
  • Anne With an E – Gilbert Blythe. Enough said. (It’s a decent show, but it’s different from the movie. A lot different.)

Anyways, that’s all from me. Can’t make any promises, but I’ll definitely try to read a couple of books and review them soon! How’s your past month and a half been?

❤ Prima

January 2018 Wrap Up

Is doing a monthly wrap up a week after the month has gone acceptable? Is this the same as leaving Christmas decorations up till mid January? The month has just gone by so fast! I haven’t done much this month other than read a couple of books and watching a TON of Netflix, getting every dollar’s worth from the monthly fee (I’m not addicted, I’m just being cost efficient cough cough). Currently in month 3 of my 4 month post high school holiday and I’m seriously considering extending this holiday into the rest of my life… I DON’T WANT TO GO BACK TO STUDYING 😦

Reading Log

I actually read quite a lot compared to the tragic year of reading that was 2017… buuuut I didn’t write that many reviews. I read 6 books but only wrote 1 review. I have no idea how people can write more than like 3 reviews in a month, just writing one takes me a whole week! Serious question though, are you guys actually aliens who can speed read and speed review?

Along for the RideThe Chaos of Standing StillBegin, End, Begin: A #LoveOzYA AnthologyLove Between Enemies (Grad Night, #2)The Loneliest Girl in the UniverseDefy the Stars (Constellation, #1)

Standouts of January:
  • The Chaos of Standing Still by Jessica Brody | Just so many feels. Also the airport conspiracy theories are amazing. Check out my review for it by clicking here
  • #LoveOzYA Anthology | A lot of anthologies don’t work but this one is some quality stuff! All the stories are unique and interesting in their own ways. I love how the authors weave in diversity throughout all their stories. Can honestly say I am proud to be an Aussie because this book exists 😀
  • The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James | This books is freaking creepy and suspenseful as hell. I couldn’t sleep after I read it. That’s how I knew it was good.
  • Defy the Stars by Claudia Gray | I feel like Claudia Gray gets better with every new series she releases. Her Evernight series was average at best. The Firebird series was good and Defy the Stars is an excellent book. The romance was what drew me in but the book delivered it in a surprisingly poignant way that I can’t wait to read more about in the next book!

Netflix Log

It only seems appropriate to dedicate a part of this monthly wrap up post to my new found obsession with all things Netflix.

I got back into Doctor Who thanks to Netflix! I’ve seen all of Ninth Doctor episodes before and really enjoyed them so now I’ve been (slowly) watching the Tenth Doctor episodes. So far, my favourite has to be The Girl in the Fireplace. THE ENDING THOUGH 😦

This month has also been a lot of me watching some trashy shows/guilty pleasures. For some people, it’s reality shows but for me it’s teenage drama shows. I watched most of Backstage season 1 and finished Free Rein (you can see my rant on it here). I’m still not over how

I also watched some Japanese dramas. Mischievious Kiss was honestly just me cringing the whole way though but My Little Lover was surprisingly good! I know the title sounds super lame but it kind of works?

And right before January finished, I started Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt and I’m hooked. It’s hilarious and everyone is weird which makes it even better!

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Instagram Log

Protip: taking photos in daylight is ALWAYS better than artificial light. Also paper stars are excellent filler. So happy with how these photos turned out!

Anyways, that’s my January in one post. Here’s to a great February (or what’s left of it by the time I post this lol)