Thursday, February 23, 2017

Book Series I Probably Won't Finish

It’s been longer than I would have liked since I last posted, my bad. Mark has switched to a night schedule at work and since he works a couple days, is off a couple days, works a couple days, and so on. With him being a night, we’ve been trying to figure out how our sleep schedule and whether we should or shouldn’t switch back to days when he’s off and it’s just been rough. We’ve slept such weird hours and so much that not much has gotten done. But we’re finally adjusting…I hope.

Anyway, I was looking at all the series I’m currently reading, which are numerous because I have a hard time finishing series. I just don’t want the world to end! But I was also looking at the series that I don’t plan on finishing for whatever reason. I thought I’d come tell you guys, maybe it’ll help you decide what series to pick up or not pick up. Unfortunately, there won't be pictures because I don't own any of the first books anymore...oops.

1) I am Number 4 - Pittacus Lore //
This series seemed so good when it first came out, and it was. However, I just stopped caring. I never really had the desire to continue with the series. I even got the second book from a thrift store but I just never wanted to pick it up. Usually, with series, I think about them a lot but this one left my mind immediately.

2) House of Night - P.C. Cast //
I loved this series. I started reading it when only two or three books had come out. I laughed and cried with the characters. I truly loved it. I read it up to sophomore year of college. Why did I stop? Because there are so many books that I cannot remember where I left off. I have tried too. I’ve gone to the bookstore and tried to look at the books and figure out where in the last 4 novels that came out to see where it was I left off. I’ve googled synopses to get more detail. But I just can’t figure it out. So I’m just not going to finish the series. If you haven’t read it and enjoy vampire novels, it’s great.

3) Virals - Kathy Reichs //
I read book one, bought books two and three, and I just haven’t finished it. I remember enjoying books one. I remember a little bit of what happened in the book but I just don’t have a desire to finish it. If I was going to finish it, I would have read book two at least. But I haven’t and I probably won’t.

4) Divergent -  Veronica Roth //
Yes, I know. This is one of those series that everyone has read, even people who don’t read a lot. I read book one and enjoyed it before it became a big deal. Then I wanted to read the sequels for a while. But they never came out in paperback! I read through young adult books in a day or two, so spending twenty-plus dollars on a hardback that I’ll read in a day is not worth it. So I always wait for books to come out in paperback. Usually, it takes about six months to a year. NOT THESE BOOKS. Eventually, I had friends who bought them and let me borrow book two, My mom read it and I read it and we both thought it was okay. She finished the series but I never wanted to. I was disappointed as it was, I already know how it ends. I’m just not finishing it.

5) Maximum Ride - James Pattersom //
Oh, how I loved this series. But it never ends. I read it when the first book came out. And I’ve read every book since. I thought that it would end with Angel. But then two more books have come out. I may eventually end up finishing it because let’s be honest, putting it on this list kind of hurts; I really did enjoy this series. But I just don’t think I have much care to continue it. I wasn’t as in love with Angel as I had been with the others. So for the moment, I’m saying that I’m not going to finish it.

What are some series you aren’t going to finish? To be honest, I probably have more but I’m in the middle of so many series that I don’t even know all of them.

Friday, February 10, 2017

South Korea Adventures: Dongdaemun Market

So even though we’ve (well he has) been here eight months, I haven’t really been to any of the markets. For a while, I was favoring the INSANE malls here and streets like Hongik or Myeongdong (my FAVORITE) and we never really went to any markets. The other day I was feeling like I just wanted to go out in Seoul and just go somewhere and explore and see what we came across. I felt like we haven’t explored Seoul in a while because we had to deal with car issue and other life things.

For this exploration, we went to Dongdaemun Market. We first got off the subway exit for “Dongdaemun History and Culture Park,” where there was a museum, design gallery, and lots of interesting art scattered around the area. It was here that we found a little café that sold the best macaroons that we’ve had since being here and they’re sold at most cafés so we’ve had many.
We also walked around the area near the museum; unfortunately, the museum and design plaza were closed; but we did get to see some interesting artwork that was displayed outside.
We had plans to go to a Korean restaurant and eat, but then we found street food. Every time we go out and plan to actually eat at a restaurant, we end up eating street food. It’s just so good and so cheap! So we first got crepes with Nutella, banana’s, strawberries, and frosted flakes for 3,000 won each and they were so good! I love the street food crepes. Then I got tteokbokki, which are rice cakes in a spicy tomato-y sauce. They’re so good but so spicy. Mark got Sun-dae, which is stuffed pig intestine with a side of liver, heart, and lung (ick), and then we shared this crab meat on a stick and it was wrapped in something dough-y, and topped with mustard and ketchup (I think) and that was super good.
After exploring this area a little, we got back on the subway and rode one stop to “Dongdaemun.” This is where the actual market area was. We exited the subway and just started walking. At first, we saw a fortress wall in the middle of the area which was really interesting. Then we just walked and we happened down the street that was all hiking and outdoorsy clothing. There was so many! It was crazy the number of stores that sold the exact same thing. Then I saw a sign for the Pyounghwa Fashion Plaza. So we went in and it was a little late and a lot of the shops were closing so we only walked the first floor, but it was CRAZY! Like this was what I had pictured shopping in Korea would be like, especially because before moving here, we were told: “Korea is so cheap!” But when you go out in town, like Myeongdong, it's expensive! So seeing an actual market where it’s just shops upon shops upon shops of cheap clothing and cheap products was just crazy. I feeling like actually shopping there would be difficult because it seems like a place you haggle, and not only do I not haggle in English, I only know a couple words in Korean so I definitely can’t haggle in Korean.
At the end of the night, we went back to the history and culture park so that we could see the LED rose garden and the bottle tree at night, lit up in all their glory. It was worth the extra walk to see everything lit up so beautifully.
I do recommend checking out Dongdaemun if you want to experience shopping for clothes and other products unlike any other shopping experience. We’re definitely going to go back and check out the museum and the design plaza as well as other areas of the market that we haven't seen. Apparently there's so much more than what we saw.

Friday, February 3, 2017

January Reads

Since graduating in December I’ve been trying to read more and read more books that I’ve been wanting to read for a while. Because I was an English Literature major in college, all my reading time was spent reading the novels that I had to read for class. I didn’t have much time to read any fun books. I thought it would be fun to recap what I read every month and maybe give you guys some ideas as to what books to pick up.
1) Caliban’s War: James S.A. Corey //
This is the second book in The Expanse series. I read the first book in January of 2016 and was completely enthralled and this was no different. I purposefully saved this book for my trip back to Korea because I knew it would suck me in and be a wonderfully entertaining read during my two days of travel. The book follows along the first book and the action picks up from the get go and doesn’t stop. Unfortunately, it’s hard to review the book without giving away spoilers for either the first or second. I can say though, that yet again James Holden finds himself and his crew in the middle of a possible interplanetary war. This series is my first space epic and I completely recommend it.
2) Infinity: Sherrilyn Kenyon //
Infinity is the first book in the Chronicles of Nick series. My mom read it first and raved about it so I decided that I would read it and see why she loved the series so much and it is great! Nick has a very sarcastic and witty sense of humor which is right up my alley. Throughout the novel, Nick slowly learns that the world is not exactly as it seems. He gets sucked into the world of supernatural creatures and demons all while being influenced by good and evil entities. He also discovers that he has powers of his own. There are few books that are centered around demons/demon hunters. When I find one, I pick it up because it’s a change of pace from the typical supernatural creature books. This one did not disappoint. I’m excited to read the rest of the series now. Totally recommend this book if you are a fan of supernatural plots.
3) Shadow and Bone: Leigh Bardugo //
In a way, this book reminds me of MY FAVORITE series Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. The book is set in a world where a ‘tyrant’ has destroyed the country and war rages. The book follows orphan Alina Starkov as she learns that she holds the power that can save the country and eventually fight the tyrant. The book has a typical magic system in a way but also a different magic system in a way which is something that attracts me to this novel. If you love sci-fi but aren’t ready for the in-depth world building of a bigger sci-fi book, this delivers. I cannot wait to read the next books and I wish that I had it on hand.

Hopefully next month I will be able to report even more books. Reading is my passion and my hobby so I want to really dive back into it.

What is a book that you read this past month that you really enjoyed?