What Have I Been Up To? April and May

Let me explain. I have been a LITTLE BUSY because of the end of the school year. I had no willpower to write while in crunch time! So, here I am two months later with a lot to cover.

Unless I have something really amazing to say about what I read or watched, I’m going to limit it to a picture, the synopsis, and my score. That way I can cover more ground.

This is what I base my ratings on.

  1. No redeeming qualities whatsoever visually, aesthetically, or as a story. 
  2. So boring I could barely pay attention. 
  3. I had a headache but somehow made it through. 
  4. I could make fun of it. . . because of how bad it is. 
  5. It’s not good, it’s not bad. It’s just blah. 
  6. There were various interesting aspects but nothing to really gush about.
  7. A solid story. Good characters, plot, and visuals. However, not amazing. 
  8. I genuinely enjoyed watching/reading it. I could see it again with friends.
  9. A great experience! AS a film it is visually stunning and has an incredible story I could go back to multiple times. As a book, I could do the same. 
  10. Near Perfect (nothing is perfect. ) It has become one of my favorites. I could also write entire articles on it.

Let’s get started!

Books

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (1997) by J.K. Rowling Audiobook, 10/10

Harry Potter’s life is miserable. His parents are dead and he’s stuck with his heartless relatives, who force him to live in a tiny closet under the stairs. But his fortune changes when he receives a letter that tells him the truth about himself: he’s a wizard. A mysterious visitor rescues him from his relatives and takes him to his new home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.

After a lifetime of bottling up his magical powers, Harry finally feels like a normal kid. But even within the Wizarding community, he is special. He is the boy who lived: the only person to have ever survived a killing curse inflicted by the evil Lord Voldemort, who launched a brutal takeover of the Wizarding world, only to vanish after failing to kill Harry.

Though Harry’s first year at Hogwarts is the best of his life, not everything is perfect. There is a dangerous secret object hidden within the castle walls, and Harry believes it’s his responsibility to prevent it from falling into evil hands. But doing so will bring him into contact with forces more terrifying than he ever could have imagined.

Synopsis via Goodreads

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (1998) by J.K. Rowling Audiobook, 10/10

Ever since Harry Potter had come home for the summer, the Dursleys had been so mean and hideous that all Harry wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange impish creature who says that if Harry returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike.

And strike it does. For in Harry’s second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor and a spirit who haunts the girls’ bathroom. But then the real trouble begins – someone is turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possible be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects… Harry Potter himself!

Synopsis via Goodreads

Kino no Tabi: The Beautiful World volumes 1-7 by Keiichi Sigsawa, 9/10

Destination is a state of mind. Kino wanders around the world on the back of Hermes, her unusual motorcycle. During their adventures, they find happiness, sadness, pain, decadence, violence, beauty, and wisdom. But through it all, they never lose their sense of freedom. This work tells the tale of one girl and her bike and the road ahead.

Synopsis via Goodreads

The Lonesome Gods by Louis L’Amour, 9/10

“I am Johannes Verne, and I am not afraid.”

This was the boy’s mantra as he plodded through the desert alone, left to die by his vengeful grandfather. Johannes Verne was soon to be rescued by outlaws, but no one could save him from the lasting memory of his grandfather’s eyes, full of impenetrable hatred. Raised in part by Indians, then befriended by a mysterious woman, Johannes grew up to become a rugged adventurer and an educated man. But even now, strengthened by the love of a golden-haired girl and well on his way to making a fortune in bustling early-day Los Angeles, the past may rise up to threaten his future once more. And this time only the ancient gods of the desert can save him.

Synopsis via Goodreads

Castle in the Sky (2001) by Diana Wynne Jones, 8.5/10

Far to the south of the land of Ingary, in the Sultanates of Rashpuht, there lived in the city of Zanzib a young and not very prosperous carpet dealer named Abdullah who loved to spend his time daydreaming. He was content with his life and his daydreams until, one day, a stranger sold him a magic carpet.

That very night, the carpet flew him to an enchanted garden. There, he met and fell in love with the beauteous princess Flower-in-the-Night, only to have her snatched away, right under his very nose, by a wicked djinn. With only his magic carpet and his wits to help him, Abdullah sets off to rescue his princess….

A Dance in Donegal (2021) by Jennifer Deibel, 8/10

All of her life, Irish-American Moira Doherty has relished her mother’s descriptions of Ireland. When her mother dies unexpectedly in the summer of 1920, Moira decides to fulfill her mother’s wish that she become the teacher in Ballymann, her home village in Donegal, Ireland.

After an arduous voyage, Moira arrives to a new home and a new job in an ancient country. Though a few locals offer a warm welcome, others are distanced by superstition and suspicion. Rumors about Moira’s mother are unspoken in her presence but threaten to derail everything she’s journeyed to Ballymann to do. Moira must rely on the kindness of a handful of friends–and the strength of Sean, an unsettlingly handsome thatcher who keeps popping up unannounced–as she seeks to navigate a life she’d never dreamed of . . . but perhaps was meant to live.

Ghosts of Greenglass House (2017) by Kate Milford, 8.5/10

Welcome back to the irresistible world of Greenglass House where thirteen-year-old Milo is, once again, spending the winter holidays stuck in a house full of strange guests who are not what they seem. There are fresh clues to uncover as friends old and new join in his search for a mysterious map and a famous smuggler’s lost haul.

Manga/Comics

D.Grayman (2004-?) by Hoshino, Katsura. 9.5/10

Thousands of years ago, there existed those gifted with the power of God. Their mission: to destroy the ominous evils that lurk in the darkness known as “Akuma.” Led by the Milenium Earl, Akuma seek to destroy fragments of “Innocence,” the only weapons capable of harming the Earl and his army and bring about the Great Flood from a hundred years ago.

To prevent this tragedy from happening, the Black Order was formed as an organization dedicated to fighting the Earl. They recruit Exorcists, those with the inherent ability to accomodate Innocence, to fight against the Akuma.

In the late 19th century, Allen Walker—a white-haired boy armed with Innocence that takes the form of his entire left arm and a cursed eye that can see Akuma—is sent to the Black Order. There, Allen meets various comrades from the Order—the mercurial Yuu Kanda, the kindhearted Lenalee Lee, and the cheerful yet mysterious Lavi. Despite their different personalities, they have one goal in mind: to bring salvation to the souls of Akuma and prevent the Earl from destroying the world.

Who’s Mr. President? (Webtoon) (2021-?) by S.M.S, 7.5/10

Chiara is a scholarship student starting her first year at Krisopras High School, an elite private school for the rich and famous. A commoner compared to her peers, Chiara’s first day is full of surprises. But the real shock comes when she ends up being chosen as the only “public” member of a private group dedicated to serving justice for the student body. Will she be able to cope with the life of a student at Krisopras High School along with her newfound position, and who is this “president” shrouded in mystery?

Little note, I think this is an interesting story but I don’t know yet if it is my kind of thing. We’ll see as I follow it.

Morgana and Oz (2022-?) by Miyuli. 8/10

What happens when a struggling witch meets an angsty vampire? Either love or war. Morgana belongs to a long line of witches, and Oz to the rival vampire clan. After a chance encounter… and maybe a few stray spells… these two need to find a way to work together, or risk all-out war between coven and clan.

Atelier on the Sunflower Hill (2020/?) by Roctis Tray, 9/10

After discovering a hidden chamber inside her late uncle’s house, Evangeline Griffon unintentionally awakens an ancient being who calls himself Vernon. Bound by a mysterious contract, Eva apprehensively accepts Vernon as her guardian and begins her new life in the countryside.

The Mob Boss’s Pet (2020-?) by Noroi Nikki, 7/10

It is rumored all of the members of S.Y.N are actually shapeshifters. That’s why no one dares to mess with them. However, an unfortunate young woman finds herself thrown into their den. What is the secret behind this mysterious group, are they really shapeshifters and will she be able to survive after becoming the pet of the infamous “Judge”?

Interview with the Crazy Rich (2020-?) by Daum Webtoon, 6.5/10

Yang Seojun, director of Taeyang Solar, finds himself caught in a life-threatening storm during a vacation hike in Sweden. As he takes shelter, he meets a pretty writer named Ji Eun who offers him the last of her food as they await rescue. But when he’s back home, he just can’t forget her, so he concocts a company-funded writing contest to find her. It won’t be easy… even his assistant has her reasons to prevent their reunion. Will Seojun find Ji Eun again, or will she be lost to him forever?

Kochou No Yumeji (2014-2018) by Shima, 10/10

Mejiro is a girl who wants to be needed. After desperately chasing the acceptance of her classmates she somehow finds herself drifting away in a river. For unknown reasons, the dream seller Shirogane finds her and gives Mejiro a new life as a yokai by placing a butterfly’s dream inside her. As Mejiro explores the world of yokai she begins to gain confidence in who she is. 

Movies

Secrets of Dumbledore (2022) Directed by David Yates, 7/10

Professor Albus Dumbledore must assign Newt Scamander and his fellow partners as Grindelwald begins to lead an army to eliminate all Muggles.

Anime/Shows

Bungo Stray Dogs (2016-?) by Bones, 9/10

Despite their differences in position, three men—the youngest senior executive of the Port Mafia, Osamu Dazai; the lowest ranking member, Sakunosuke Oda; and the intelligence agent, Ango Sakaguchi—gather at the Lupin Bar at the end of the day to relax and take delight in the company of friends.

However, one night, Ango disappears. A photograph taken at the bar is all that is left of the three together.

Fast forward to the present, and Dazai is now a member of the Armed Detective Agency. The Guild, an American gifted organization, has entered the fray and is intent on taking the Agency’s work permit. They must now divide their attention between the two groups, the Guild and the Port Mafia, who oppose their very existence.

Gravity Falls (2012-2016) by Alex Hirsch, 10/10

Twins Dipper and Mabel Pines are sent to spend the summer with their great-uncle, Grunkle Stan, in the mysterious town of Gravity Falls, Ore. Grunkle Stan has the kids help him run The Mystery Shack, the tourist trap that he owns. The twins try to adapt to the weird surroundings but sense there is something strange about Gravity Falls and begin to unlock its secrets. When Dipper uncovers a cryptic journal that offers insight into the town’s mysteries, he and Mabel use it and their enthusiastic desire to vanquish evil to battle the imminent mysteries that surround them.

Phineas and Ferb (2007-2015) by Dan Povimore and Jeff Marsh, 10/10

Phineas Flynn and his stepbrother, Ferb Fletcher, are determined to make every day of their summer vacation fun. They try building a full-scale roller coaster, becoming musicians, building a backyard beach, and traveling back in time to meet dinosaurs. Their family pet, Perry the Platypus, doubles as a secret agent and battles evil. Meanwhile, older sister Candace is tattling on them to Mom and Dad, though she can never seem to catch them in the act.

Thanks for checking in! I’ll try to write more in the coming weeks.

2 Comments

  1. Love reading your reviews on the various books, movies, shows, etc. that you experience! You give me a lot of suggestions at times on what to read/watch!

    I love Gravity Falls so much! It’s such an amazing show with great writing! I’m especially in love with Wendy and totally ship Wendip!

    1. aubreym3 says:

      Thanks! Sorry this one is not as detailed. 🙂

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