an open journal about the awesome things that God has done in my life

Thursday, July 10, 2014

NBS Book Signing: STEPHANIE PERKINS

10:28 AM Posted by ask me No comments
One word: LOVE
I love, love, love everything about this day.

Today, I came with 2 of my closest friends, plus my twin sister. My sis and our guy friend just accompanied me and our another friend. We'll get our Anna and the French Kiss signed!!! That was the original plan. But then, I realized that I should seize the oppportunity and buy the second book (which is Lola and the Boy Next Door) since Stephanie has only two books in total. To keep my sister anticipating for the signing and as excited as us, I told her that she could get the LATBND signed so she could have a remembrance for today.

Undoubtedly, there were more people lined up early compared in Jenny Han's book signing. We fell in line pass 8AM (like we did in Jenny's, but a bit later), and we're 280th+ already! While we were in the line, we heard girls far ahead of us scream. We were curious, of course. Until the screams come closer and closer, we found ourselves screaming as well because Stephanie’s car (well, not hers actually, but the car she’s riding in) passed by the line and almost half of her body is outside the window as she was trying to wave to all of us. Gosh, she’s so lovely and sweet we fangirled.

Credits to NBS for being on time for the registration. J I think registration started even minutes before 10AM.

Lola and the Boy Next Door is actually mine, but my twin sister's getting it signed so she could meet Stephanie even though she is not a fan YET. That privilege is actually a reward for accompanying my friend and me in the signing :-P

After we registered, the four of us wandered around the mall. Came 1PM, we went back to NBS to find out that there were many people sitting on the floor already so we were not able to get a good spot. The only good thing in our place is that it's near the entrance.

I don't know what to call myself, but I forgot to remove the stub I kept at the back of my cellphone case protector. That's why that yellow stuff you see in the picture blocked the almost half of the shot. :-( Good thing, I still got Stephanie!

Who would actually think that their favorite author would bring her husband along in her book signing? Yes, Stephanie brought her husband, Jarrod, in today's event. And, they :) are :) soooo :) cute :) Many SP fans actually fangirled when Jarrod entered (because he is undeniably cute!). What's even cuter is that Jarrod signed Stephanie's books as well! So, both of them are signing books today. How cute could they be! Too bad I wasn't able to get my books signed by him :-(

  
Now, look at that cutie having he's book signing as well. You see the line at the back? Yes, that line is for Jarrod. :-)

As what I've said earlier, we got a bad place so we can't see her in the platform. Moreover, we can't hear the interview because of fan's scream. So, we decided to just skip the interview and come back to check the number from time to time. (T/N: today's system was the same as in Jenny Han's book signing) Two batches before us (meaning, 40 people before our range is called), we decided to settle and wait. That's just when I decided to buy something for Stephanie. After I explored the whole NBS, I haven't found a thing for her. I found maybe a couple of things, but they're either expensive or ordinary. Just a few minutes before our range was called, I figured that I should give her a card and write there everything I want to tell her because I know I won't be able to talk to her just like what happened in Jenny Han's event (I'm still sad about it. *cries*). So yeah, our range was called as I was just starting my letter! My hands were literally shaking! I can't write, dang.

The three of us lined up. I let myself be the last among the three of us as I was still finishing my letter. I was really nervous as we were figuring out what we'll say and what wacky pose we'll ask Stephanie to do. When it was my turn, my brain was running million miles per second as I sinally approached her. We had this very short conversation:
   SP: Hello! How are you?
   Me: Hi! I'm good! *big smile while handing her my letter* Can we hug?
   SP: Sure, of course! *while hugging me* Thanks for coming!
   Me: You're welcome! Please come back
   *takes a pic*
   Me: Thank you!
   SP: Thank you so much!
That's it. The moment I've been waiting for is over in just a minute. And I forgot to tell her our supposedly wacky pose! I doesn't matter that much, though. I'd say waiting for her is worth it. Definitely worth it. :-)

 
We :-) hugged :-)

This is the picture I posted on my Instagram.

Thanks a bunch to National Bookstore for hosting book signing events! You guys don't know how many dreams you've granted. (Well, I hope they're reading this. Haha.) Looking forward to Marie Lu's turn this fall!

NBS Book Signing: JENNY HAN

6:31 AM Posted by ask me No comments
So this June 21, I freaking met my  all-time favourite author – Jenny Han! I woke up at exactly 6AM to be one of the firsts. When I got there at around 8AM, a dang long line welcomed us. I was 155th. The night before, I was seriously stressing my brain on what to say to Jenny. I actually manage to have 2 options. With only 3 books that I will let her sign, I don’t think we’ll have enough time to talk. So, I kept my script short, but precise.

So here’s the system of National Bookstore’s (NBS) book signing event:
  1. Registration starts at 10AM. In all fairness, they’re on time. I guess, the first 50 in line got reserved seats. So as for the rest of us, we have to stand.
  2. After registering, you have the choice to stay there and wait til Christmas, or you could wander in the beautiful malls of Makati.
  3. 2PM should be the start of the event. (However, we started at 3PM.) interview, which will not be longer than an hour, comes first (OFC!).
  4. NBS calls numbers per range. Today, it’s by 20.
  5. You fall in line when your number belongs to the range that was called. When you’re almost next, they get your stub and the book in advance, let the author sign it, take a picture, then good bye.

During the interview. Gosh, her voice is so nice I just can't

Number 5 LITERALLY happened to me. I wasn’t able to talk Jenny Han, only “Hi... *picture* Thank you!” dang, right? It is because of a decision that I regretted the whole night after the signing. I decided to be the last person in line in our range for us to have an ample to chitchat without causing much delay. Well, that was what I expected. They got my books ahead of time, and when it was my turn, I simply went to the platform, said “hi,” smiled at the camera, and said my thanks to Jenny Han. (She didn’t even say ‘hello!’ *cries*) Though she is really my favourite and I’m glad I finally saw her, I don’t think my 8 hours of waiting was rewarded by less than a minute of encounter with her. No regrets, though. I REALLY AM glad to have finally met the first author who gave me my first book hangover. And she if ever comes back, I would be more than glad to meet her again, hoping for a better encounter.


This is the picture I posted on my Instagram.

Thanks to my sister for getting a digital shot!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Korean Dramas that Took 107 Hours of My Summer

THE HEIRS (2013)

Director: 
Kang Shin-Hyo, Boo Sung-Chul

Cast:

Lee Min-Ho, Park Shin-Hye, Kim Woo-Bin, Jung Krystal, Kim Ji-Won, Kang Min-Hyuk, Kang Ha-Neul, Park Hyung-Shik, Jun Soo-Jin, Jo Yoon-Woo, Choi Tae-Hwan, Yang Seung-Pil

Synopsis:
This drama follows a group of privileged, elite high school students as they are groomed to take over their families’ business empires. These wealthy students seem to have everything under control–except their love lives. Kim Tan (Lee Min Ho), an heir to the Empire Group, was sent to study in the U.S. In reality it’s a form of exile, as his elder half-brother back home, Kim Won (Choi Jin Hyuk) schemes to take over the family business. While in the States, Kim Tan bumps into Cha Eun Sang (Park Shin Hye), who’s arrived from Korea in search of her older sister. He feels himself falling for her, never realizing that she’s the daughter of his family’s housekeeper. When his fiancée Rachel Yoo (Kim Ji Won) arrives to bring him back to Korea, his heart is torn between love and duty. Meanwhile, Rachel’s half-brother Choi Young Do (Kim Woo Bin) develops his own crush on Eun Sung. Who said being a rich, beautiful high school student was easy? (Source)

What I think:
The Heirs became one of my favorite Korean dramas because of three reasons:
1) Its love rivals and family conflicts are superb! Without its rival and conflicts, this would be nothing (of course, like any other stories!). These made The Heirs really thrilling because you'll anticipate what Kim Tan's father would do just to separate him and Cha Eun Sang, and in return, what would Kim Tan sacrifice just for Cha Eun Sang. Kim Tan's physical fights with Choi Young Do is the best!
2) Complicated Character Relationship. Yes, you read that right. I love how many characters are related in one way another. At first, I was really confused. So, I searched in the internet the character's connection with each other, and I found this picture and it helped me a lot. Looking as complicated as it is, the writers and director did a really great job.

3) Lee Min-Ho. DUH! Haha! Gosh, he is so handsome. He really did such an outstanding job portraying a matured high school student which is contrary to his role in Boys Over Flowers. I have to commend Kim Woo-Bin's acting skills as well! He is really good. He was able to pull off the bad-boy-who-has-a-soft-heart image. I didn't quite like Park Shin Hye's role though. She's quite irritating to me. There are scenes where no one needs to cry, but there she is, about to cry. Sigh. I can't blame her though. Maybe it's in the script or whatever.
I really, really, really love The Heirs. If there would be one drama that I would be glad to watch again, it would be this. Who would not want to scream over Lee Min-Ho and Kim Woo-Bin, right?

My Rating and Recommendation:
I recommended this to almost everyone I know! Go watch it!

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BOYS OVER FLOWERS (2009)
Boys Over Flowers Poster,

Director: Jun Ki Sang

Cast: 
Ku Hye-Sun, Lee Min-Ho, Kim Hyun-Joong, Kim Bum, Kim Joon

Synopsis:
Jan Di is an average girl whose family owns a dry cleaning store located near the luxurious and well known Shin Hwa College. Jan Di meets the four richest and most spoiled boys known as the F4. After saving a boy from jumping off the roof of Shinhwa High School, she is admitted into the school on a swimming scholarship. Jan Di tries to avoid confrontation with the F4 at all cost because she knows what happens to those that stand against them. However, when Jan Di’s friend, Oh Min Ji, accidentally gets ice cream on the leader of the F4′s shoes, she’s forced to declare war on the leader of the F4, Goo Joon Pyo. (Source)

What I Think:
No offense meant to Boys Over Flowers (BOF) fans out there, but this is the most childish and unrealistic drama I've watched so far. Yes, I have to underline 'unrealistic' because it is the best adjective that describes BOF. First of all, it is impossible to have a school such as Shin Hwa High School. Even though a rich family owns a school and let's their child study in it, I doubt they'd be given a special treatment. Moreover, his barkada. Second, is this specific scene where Gu Joon Pyo and Geum Jan Di was riding a helicopter, and Gu Joon Pyo showed her this heart island saying that he is waiting for the girl he loves to show it. I find it corny, and again, unrealistic because I don’t think someone could be that rich.  Also, there is this scene where Gu Joon Pyo waited for Geum Jan Di during a snowy weather. Let’s say he didn’t expect the weather to be like that, but he doesn’t have to be a martyr and wait in the tower while it’s freezing cold. He could have ordered one of his chaperones to bring/buy him an umbrella if he doesn’t want to leave his spot. It’s kind of idiotic, if you ask me. Lastly, BOF is a childish high school drama. I don’t know, maybe The Heirs set my standards high. I was expecting so much from BOF because many k-drama lovers in my country loved it. I guess I don’t belong. However, NOT all 25 episodes are about childishness. Not really. In fact, I have a couple of favourite episodes. It gave me a titillating feeling, somehow. I guess it's Lee Min-Ho's work. ;-)


Heart Island my butt


Gu Jun Pyo waiting for Geum Jan Di. What a martyr.

My Rating and Recommendation:
I'd give it a 2.5. Somebody give me the Most Generous award.
I don't recommend it. But if you're a fan of Lee Min-Ho, or anyone in the cast, then give it a try. I'd say Meteor Garden still did a better job in remaking Hana Yori Dango.



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SECRET GARDEN (2010)

Director: 
Shin Woo-Chul, Kwon Hyuk Chan

Cast: 
Hyun Bin, Ha Ji Won, Yoon Sang Hyun, Kim Sa Rang

Synopsis:
Kim Joo Won (Hyun Bin) is the dream of every woman: he is young, rich, handsome, well-educated and he is the C.E.O of a big department store. However his bossiness and arrogance can not shield his heart from an unexpected and unlikely love. Gil Ra Im (Ha Ji-Won) is a professional stunt actress: she drives, fights and talks like a man. She is exactly the opposite of what he is looking for: poor, under-educated, old (30 years old), from an ordinary family. However, when Kim Joo Won attempts to do to a small favour to his cousin and famous singer Oska (Yoon Sang Hyun) -- of course in return for a profitable business -- he mistakes Gil Ra Im for the leading actress. From that moment on his comfortable and luxurious life shatters and the piercing love of this extraordinary woman over takes his life. As the story progress, fate, love triangles and magical potions (which made them switch bodies!) make their life more complicated, but nonetheless more thrilling and funny.

What I think:
I love Secret Garden. It never failed to make me laugh and even cry (in one of its episodes). I like the actors' acting -- they never overdone anything. I can't say much about this as this is Korean drama is full of comedy (like seriously. I love it) and love triangle (which is actually good compared to other dramas).

My Rating and Recommendation:



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MY LOVE FROM THE STAR (2014)

Director: Jang Tae-Yoo

Synopsis:
Do Min-Joon (Kim Soo-Hyun) is an ‘alien’ who was sent to Earth 400 years ago during Joseon dynasty by the planet where he was living. Do Min-Joon is no ordinary. He has the ability to teleport, listen through thick walls, stop time, and move in such speed. Living that long, he was able to do much in his life like studying and mastering law and medicine, making him even much better than the short-lived lawyers and doctors in Korea. In the present day, there were reports about a comet or an asteroid (I’m not sure) passing through Earth, which means that Do Min-Joon’s time on Earth is about to end – he could finally go back to his planet. Just 3 months before his departure, Do Min-Joon had an encounter with Korea’s superstar, Cheon Song-Yi (Jun Ji-Hyun), and fell in love with her. Leaving the Earth was all he wanted before. But now that there’s a reason – someone – for him to stay, he will make the hardest decision ever: to stay on Earth and die, or go back to his planet and live.

Cast:
Jun Hi-Hyun, Kim Soo-Hyun, Park Hae-Jin, Yoon In-Na, Shin Sung-Rok

What I think:
This is by far the best drama in 2014, not to mention one of my favorites. With its funny, thrilling, and titillating plot, it is impossible for anyone to not love My Love From the Star (MLFTS). Yes, it's funny and titillating; but you may be wondering what's thrilling. Well, similar with Missing You, there's this serial murder case that they've been trying to solve for like the 3/4 of the drama. There's this touch of mystery and annoyance with the killer. Needless to say, Shin Sung-Rok did a great job in acting out his role (because he, indeed, looked like a killer. LOL). Unexpectedly, MLFTS HAD ME IN TEARS. Yes, I cried. I didn't expect myself to cry; moreover, I didn't expect MLFTS to give me such emotion in the near end of the drama because of its really entertaining plot. If only I'm not watching the last few episodes with my mom, I would have sobbed like this:
instead of this:

But still, the bottom line is I CRIED OK.


My Rating and Recommendation:
I'm telling you, GO WATCH IT.

Here's something for you to listen while you're having a hangover with the drama:

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MISSING YOU (2013)


Director: 
Lee Jae-Dong, Park Jae-Bum


Cast:

Park Yoo-Chun, Park Shin-Hye, Yoo Seung-Ho, Han Jin-Hee

Synopsis:
15-year-old  Soo-Yeon (Kim So-Hyun) is a victim of bullying at school. They target her, because her father is a murderer. Soo-Yeon has an ally in Jung-Woo (Yeo Jin-Ku), who always protects her from the bullies. Soo-Yeon and Jung-Woo are in love, but due to an unexpected accident they become separated. Now as adults they meet again through destiny.
Jung-Woo (Park Yoo-Chun) is now a detective and his first love has always remained in the back of his mind. Soo-Yeon (Yoon Eun-Hye) is now a rookie fashion designer who tries to have a bright personality, but still carries emotional scars inside of her. Hyung-Joon (Yoo Seung-Ho) is Soo-Yeon's lover, who appears warm and nice, but he will try to take vengeance upon Jung-Woo. (Source)


What I think:
Even though it is a romantic-melodrama, Missing You didn't lack in making its viewers anticipate the next episodes by putting a lot of crime stuff and funny scenes. However, I got kind of tired with too much of its drama. I have to admit that the first few episodes didn't hook me. I guess I'm not a melodrama lover. This drama teaches us the value of love, family, friendship, and most of all, forgiveness. I love, love, love Park Yoo-Chun in this drama. Teehee.


My Rating and Recommendation:
This is perfect for crime-melodrama lovers. :-)