2015 | Post #06: Book review || Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

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Rainbow Rowell is the author of Eleanor and Park and Fangirl, both of which I still have yet to read. Attachments is the first book of hers that I have read and I must say that I truly enjoyed it. It’s a light hearted story about friendship and love and office emails. Yep, you read it right, OFFICE EMAILS. That is actually the reason why this book piqued my interest.

I have read a couple of books where the stories were told through mails (Daddy Long Legs) and emails/IMs (Love, Rosie). Both I enjoyed tremendously so as soon as I read the story summary, I bought Attachments. I didn’t notice that it was written by Rainbow Rowell until my cousin told me so.

The story timeline was 1999, when all were frantic about the Y2K bug that was supposed to happen at the turn of the new century. It was also the time when internet and emails were fairly new to the newspaper publishers and traditional journalists.

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Taichi and Chihayafuru Season 2

So season 2 has finally ended. I am so happy that things I read in the manga were shown magnificently in the anime. I so loved that the best karuta battles were given emphasis. The season 1 characters we wanted to see again came back in season 2. Those we wanted to play shown great battles in this season as well. Plus, there were newbies in Chihaya’s team, they were given enough time to shine and they did have fascinating stories told.

Tsukuba Akihiro, the hero in his little brothers’ eyes, a master in the second verse karuta game. He is definitely an eccentric character with his slanted eyes and weird gestures. But his love for the game and his want to be the role model for his younger siblings were a fun watch.

Hanano Sumire, the vain freshman who is so enamored with her senpai. She joined Mizusawa Karuta Club to be near the club’s president. But along the way, Sumire developed a love for the game. She may still be in denial but her actions showed otherwise.

Then there are our main characters – the original Mizusawa players. Each of them grew so much in character. Of course we all wanted them to win in their individual battles but no great lessons can be learned that way. At least this season they went home as the National Team Champions, beating the five-time Karuta team champion Fujisaki High.

And as much as I wanted to discuss Wataya Arata’s exemplary display of his one of a kind Karuta game, this season is actually all about Mashima Taichi. Season 2 showed how much Taichi grew stronger and his decision to breakaway from his mentor and develop his own sense of playing the game. His want to support Chihaya in her aspiration to be queen, Taichi unintentionally developed his own desire to become stronger, not necessarily to beat Arata or Chihaya but to be able to play in their level… to be able to play with them.

With that, I am ending this entry with a fanart.

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Here’s Taichi’s favorite poem from the Ogura Hyakunin Isshu:
Poem # 16:
Ariwara no Yukihira
Though we are parted,
If on Mount Inaba’s peak
I should hear the sound
Of the pine trees growing there,
I’ll come back again to you.

Sharing my old Bleach thoughts…

Because charlmeister is a fellow Ichi-Ruki fan, I want to share here (and with her) what I wrote about Bleach, Ichigo and Rukia at the end of the Deicide arc (Chapter 420). It was posted in my old blog (viktorialouise@LJ) last September 22, 2010.

I am stunned to learn that there are only a few Ichi-Ruki shippers. I’ve always thought that this pairing is the most famous and the most probable to come true should Kubo end the manga with a romantic twist. As of the moment, that wish of mine is far from ever happening. But I am crossing my fingers…

Anyways, here’s what I wrote before:

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Karuta, Arata and Chihayafuru

To be honest, I just decided to watch this anime because of the beautifully drawn characters. I didn’t expect to fall in love with the story, its characters and its main theme – Karuta.

Like most of Chihayafuru’s fans, I have no idea what Karuta was until Chihayafuru aired. According to the anime, it is a card game where speed, memorization and sharp listening skills are needed. It’s a one-on-one game where players are given a set of twenty five cards that they are to lay strategically in front of each other. They are to memorize the placements of the cards and once the first verse of each card is read, the players race against each other to tap, touch, or swipe away which card contains the second verse.

You think that’s easy? Well, the type of Karuta in the anime is Uta-garuta. Its cards contain waka (now called as tanka, English translation: Japanese poems) from the Ogura Hyakunin Isshu, which is a classical Japanese anthology of one hundred poems by one hundred poets and was compiled by the scholar Fujiwara no Teika during his stay in the Ogura District of Kyoto, Japan between the 12th and 13th centuries. A waka is a five-line poem of thirty one syllables, arranged as 5-7-5-7-7. So, to be a Karuta player, one has to memorize all the poems in the said anthology. Most of all, one should be able to read hiragana because the poems are written in that manner.

Reading my simple explanation of the card game, do you think you’d be interested to watch this anime even without seeing what the lead characters look like? I personally would not be interested. My first thought when I read about this anime was, “I think this would be boring.” If I hadn’t seen the beautiful lead character, Ayase Chihaya, I would not have given this anime a shot. Thankfully, I saw her because if I didn’t, I might be having one of my greatest regrets right now. I might not have seen Wataya Arata, my current anime crush ♥

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Movie Review: Life of Pi

Quite a procrastinator, that I am, thus this review is already more than a month long overdue ^,^

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The Life of Pi. The moment I saw the preview of this movie I have decided to watch it, hectic schedule or not. For how could my interest not be piqued when I saw two creatures, from the opposing ends of the food chain, trying to survive together in a small life boat in the midst of a vast ocean? Intriguing and so fascinating, don’t you think?

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Movie Review: Rurouni Kenshin

I learned early last year that a live action version of the famous anime character – the samurai wanderer-slash-hero popularly known as Rurouni Kenshin – was going to be launched to the silver screen some time August of 2012. I waited for it to be shown in our local cinemas on said month but nothing happened. It was only last December when one mall company decided to show it and its airing date lasted only for just one week. It broke my heart that I was not able to watch it in the big screen. December was a busy month for me and because of the film festival, all foreign films were banned during the holiday seasons. Sucks! But don’t fret, with the aid of some online friends, I was able to get a copy and watch the movie in the comfort of my home.

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Emily Owens, M.D.

I was never a fan of medical dramas. Though I found George Clooney sexy especially when he was younger, I never once watched an ER episode. When House was launched, I suddenly found myself engrossed and eager to watch new episodes every week.

So I thought most medical dramas were good. I thought I didn’t like ER coz I was just too young to understand it before. After House, I tried watching Grace Anatomy thinking that I’d like it as well. Sadly, I was wrong. I learned that I liked House only because of its comedy, no matter how dark it became at some point, and its CSI-like concept – investigating and dissecting all possible things and circumstances surrounding the patient to give the correct diagnosis and therefore the cure. Most of the time it’s a hit and miss but Gregory House’s mind worked in a different level than most…

Well, House ended last year. ‘Sad that its ending wasn’t as fabulous as its beginning. But I was generally sad because I had no more medical drama to watch. Until…

Emily Owens, M.D. If I remember it correctly, the reason why I gave this drama a try was the preview of its first episode. It was so funny that I just had to give it a shot.

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Movie Review: Rise of the Guardians

I just saw Rise of the Guardians a couple of hours ago. I knew I’d like it the moment I saw its trailer some months ago. It’s artful, digitally mastered and the hero, Jack Frost, was beautifully drawn. The kid in me was so happy that at some point in the movie I think I squealed like a five-year-old who was having her first crush. The fangirl awakens and there’s no stopping her now.

But putting the fangirl aside (even if she’s still excitedly squealing inside my head) the movie was really a great story magnificently told and shown in the most artistic way. Please take note that I didn’t use the word children in the phrase “great story”. Tell you honestly, there was not a single kid in the movie house I went in to see the movie. Most watchers were teens and young professionals who were to this day nurturing the little kids inside them. But don’t get me wrong, the story is really for kids but adults like me loved it. It’s a great movie to watch with your loved ones. I recommend it with two thumbs up.

So what is it about? Let me tell you why I love Rise of the Guardians and how this movie awakened the slumbering fangirl in me. [SPOILERS ahead!]

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Movie Review: The Fellowship of the Ring

Let me share with you what I wrote two years ago about this epic tale. I actually posted this in my old blog. I am rewriting this with the same point of view and enthusiasm.

JR Tolkien’s epic story about the hobbits, elves, dwarves, mortal men and the middle earth was by far the grandest of stories I’ve ever watched (not read, I am still not decided whether to buy the books or not).

The Fellowship of the Ring was a simple tale of good versus evil. It was a tale about man’s struggle within himself. The way Tolkien described man’s weakness and folly about power was classic. He was able to show the demons a man battles with when he is faced with ambitions of power and greed. Aside from showing the dark side of a man’s heart he was able to show the humility and honour he holds on to, from which he draws strength to do the right thing – to always choose goodness over evil. Along with telling the tale of conquering evil was the story of love and friendship and how easy it is to give someone your trust and your heart no matter what the circumstances are.

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Anime Review: The Girl Who Leapt Through Time

Here’s a review of one of the finest anime movies I’ve seen since I became an anime fan – The Girl Who Leapt Through Time.

I saw this movie a couple of years ago and I have already watched it thrice since then. It was recommended by a friend in the office, an otaku, and he kind of suggested that it would make my heart cringe a bit. My overactive imagination thought that the story has a heavy dramatic storyline. On the contrary, the movie was light that turned kind of dramatic toward the end but not really leaning on the heavy dramatic side.

Time waits for no one.

But what if you can have it wait for you till you feel it’s the right time to move forward?

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