Hello Everyone <3
It’s finally time for my “January Wrap Up/January Favs” post.. the first Wrap Up of 2018! I started off the new year with a bang, and I have SO many amazing TV Shows/ Movies & Books to share with you guys.
It’s February 3rd today, and I am already so excited for the upcoming month. I will have tons of exciting content coming your way 🙂 I’m off to Palm Springs in 9 Sleeps, and I can’t wait to share all my travel photos with you guys. Also this month a ton of amazing new books & movies are being released… and it’s Valentine’s Day…. so lots to look forward to.
January seemed to just FLY past me.. but in a great way. I only hated one book out of the nine books I read this month, so that was exciting! I had to include the book I disliked in my wrap-up, because I know how much you guys love reading my not-so-great reviews as well… so without going on and on… here we go!
1.) “The End Of The F***ing World”
On: Netflix Currently
In the first week of January, I was having a major Netflix Hangover after finishing all the episodes of “Dark”.. I had no idea what to watch next…. and I came across this new Netflix Original Series “The End of the F***ing World”. I had no idea what to expect, but the trailer looked really compelling.. and it was even BETTER than I could have ever expected.
This show is so darkly funny, beautifully shot.. and incredibly acted. The show is narrated by the two main characters Alyssa & James. James thinks he might 100% be a psychopath, and is haunted by urges and invasive thoughts about killing people. He isn’t sure what to make of all of it, but he thinks he might like to do it. Alyssa is a girl he meets at school, who is just as disturbed as him.. in a different way. She’s outspoken, rude, and absolutely hilarious. I LOVE the friendship/relationship that these two strike up in the first episode… and the rest of the season is SO wild. I loved this series so so much, and I hope there is another season. THAT ENDING THOUGH. If you guys have already Netflix-Binge-Watched this.. you know what I mean. The cinematography was so gorgeous, and artistic. I was blown away by so many scenes… all these images I shared here, I would print out for my wall. So stunning.
On: Netflix Currently
BBC British Drama Mini-Series
I basically love ANYTHING that the BBC makes… any British show/crime drama/mini-series…. They are all honestly amazing. I knew before I even started watching this mini-series, that it would be amazing & make it into my Wrap-Up.
The plot of this show immediately drew me in, and I knew it was right up my alley. It’s the story of a girl named Ivy who disappeared THIRTEEN years ago when she was 13 years old. At the age of 26, she finally escapes her captor… and is rescued. This is not a spoiler, it’s literally the first two minutes of the show. The real story picks up, when she makes it to the police station. Is she who she says she is? Was she really a prisoner? Did she know her captor before? SO many twists and turns! This show was just the most amazing thing to binge watch ever.. It’s only 5 episodes long, all on Netflix! You need to watch this one you guys! Loved it so much.
I came across this very randomly on Amazon’s streaming service. I just put the first episode one for the hell of it… and I was SHOCKED at how much I laughed out LOUD while watching it. This show is one of the funniest things I have ever seen. It’s a six-part show, which was actually adapted from a very popular play. Phoebe Waller-Bridge plays the lead actress, and she is honestly gut-wrenchingly funny. I related to her character SO much, and it was so much fun to watch. It was a whip-smart comedy, with so much heart. I loved loved LOVED this, and I can’t WAIT for Season 2. I watched all six episodes in one night, and didn’t come to bed until like 5 am. It was that good.
1.) “Three Billboard Outside Ebbing Missouri”
Incredible Drama/Dark Comedy
This Movie Better Take Home ALL The Oscar’s In March!
A few weeks ago, we watched the “Golden Globes”, and I had only seen a handful of films that were nominated for “Best Picture”. To say “Three Buildings Outside Ebbing Missouri” totally CLEANED UP, is an understatement. Not only did this film win “Best Picture”, but it also won “Best Supporting Actor” and “Best Actress”.. AND “Best Screenplay”. As soon as the Globes were over, I knew I had to see this film immediately.
Since that night, I have seen this movie two times. I watched it by myself the first time, and it was SO amazing and moving.. that I knew I HAD to watch it again with Ryan. The next night we went to see it together, and I loved it even more the second time.
Wow.. this movie. Everything about it was fantastic. It was a heartbreaking story about a woman who has lost her daughter in a tragic murder, and she wants answers. She feels the police force in her small town.. hasn’t done enough to help catch the man who killed her daughter. At her wits end, she finds these three billboards in town.. and decides to make a statement, that can’t be ignored. This happens within the first ten minutes… and everything that takes place afterwards.. is just genius.
The cast of this movie, ALL deserve an Oscar for their roles. Woody Harrelson was incredible as Chief Willoughby, Sam Rockwell was honestly perfect as Dixion… and FRANCES McDORMAND was SO FUCKING GOOD as the main character Mildred. Wow. Wow. Wow. The talent in this cast was so intense, and the movie speaks for itself. Also as a side note, Peter Dinklage aka “Tyrion Lannister” played the character of James, and I loved every second of it.
I hope this movie wins big at the upcoming Oscar’s. Frances McDormand HAS to win “Best Actress”, even though I think Margot Robbie did a incredible job as Tonya Harding…. in “iTonya”… Frances has to get the award. Also I would love to see Woody or Sam win as well. Just an amazing movie.. but it was quite dark, with some upsetting subject matter.
I’m sure all of you have heard at least something about the whole Tonya Harding/Nancy Kerrigan scandal (that happened in 1994). I was only like 7 years old, so I don’t really remember all the details that well.. but I have absolutely heard the story over the years. When I heard this story was going to become a film, I was so curious and excited about how it would turn out. As soon as I saw the beautiful Margot Robbie was playing Tonya, and that the incredibly hilarious/talented Allison Janney was playing Tonya’s mother.. I was SO invested in it.
This movie was everything I hoped it would be. I have seen every movie Margot Robbie has ever been in.. but watching her play Tonya.. made me forget everything else she has ever done. She BECAME Tonya Harding in this movie, and her performance was exquisite. It was very interesting to learn about Tonya’s life behind-the-scenes of all the drama with Nancy.
I think the most fascinating part of the movie, was the relationship between Tonya and her Mother LaVona (played by Allison Janney). Allison did the most CHILLING and dead-on job, playing this real life person. Her portrayal of Tonya’s mother was actually horrifying. She managed to act out, and make the cruelty and ruthlessness of her actions feel very real. Allison has been winning so many awards already for this role, and I’m confident she will win the Oscar.
Even if you have no interest in Figure Skating, or the Olympics.. or this infamous scandal.. you will still find something to love with this movie. It was wonderful.
3.) “Mr. Roosevelt”
I found this movie very randomly on Netflix, somewhere lost within the “Recently Added” section. It was really late at night, and I was just throwing it on with no real intention of actually watching it. This had me hooked within the first five minutes.
The main character, is played by Noel Wells, who is an actress I LOVED on Aziz Ansari’s Netflix show “Master of None”. She not only stars in this film, but she wrote and directed it as well. This movie is about a girl, who gets a call from her ex-boyfriend about the cat they used to own together.. named “Mr. Roosevelt” who is dying. She has to fly out of town, to go back and deal with the cats death. Not only does she have to deal with this upsetting situation… but she has to STAY WITH & face her EX-Boyfriend and his NEW-Girlfriend. To say this situation gets awkward as FUCK is putting it lightly.
I loved her character so much, she was so endearing and hilarious. This movie felt so relatable, and it was shot in a low-budget way.. that sounds bad.. but actually ends up making it feel more authentic.. and less like you are “watching a movie”. It felt like observing real life or something. Loved this one. I am in love with Noel Wells after watching this.
1.) “We Are Never Meeting In Real Life” & “Meaty” & “New Year: Same Trash/Resolutions I Absolutely Did Not Keep”
All Three Books By The Incredibly Talented, Samantha Irby
“Real love feels less like a throbbing, pulsing animal begging for its freedom and beating against the inside of my chest and more like, ‘Hey, that place you like had fish tacos today and i got you some while i was out’, as it sets a bag spotted with grease on the dining room table. It’s not a game you don’t understand the rules of, or a test you never got the materials to study for. It never leaves you wondering who could possibly be texting at 3 am. Or what you could possibly do to make it come home and stay there. It’s fucking boring, dude. I don’t walk around mired in uneasiness, waiting for the other shoe to drop. No parsing through spun tales about why it took her so long to come back from the store. No checking her emails or calling her job to make sure she’s actually there. No sitting in my car outside her house at dawn, to make sure she’s alone when she leaves. This feels safe, and steadfast, and predictable. And secure. It’s boring as shit. And it’s easily the best thing I’ve ever felt.”
― Samantha Irby,
“We Are Never Meeting In Real Life”
Ryan bought this book for me a few months ago, and I have already semi-reviewed in on the Blog in my “Best of 2017” post. I will do a brief summary again, just because I read her other two books and I wanted to do a full-package review for you guys.
It’s been a long time since I’ve read a book, that has actually made me laugh out loud in public. I was reading this on the plane, and I BURST out laughing.. like in a ridiculous/semi-insane way. Samantha Irby is my HERO. She is the funniest, realest, most dead-on observer… EVER. I can’t even tell you how fucking hilarious this is. Every single Essay is just perfection.
As soon as I finished this, I found out she has two other books out. I got them both on Apple Books, and read them BOTH on my iPhone over the next 24 hours. I have the same exact feelings about both of those books “Meaty” & “New Year: Same Trash”… Samantha is the funniest person maybe ever. Her work speaks for itself. Do yourself a huge favor and read literally ANYTHING she has ever written.
Samantha Irby has a super successful, and equally hilarious Blog “Bitches Gotta Eat”. Highly recommend checking that out as well.
Good-Reads Plot Summary
For: “We Are Never Meeting in Real Life”
(Sometimes you just have to laugh, even when life is a dumpster fire. With We Are Never Meeting in Real Life., “bitches gotta eat” blogger and comedian Samantha Irby turns the serio-comic essay into an art form. Whether talking about how her difficult childhood has led to a problem in making “adult” budgets, explaining why she should be the new Bachelorette–she’s “35-ish, but could easily pass for 60-something”–detailing a disastrous pilgrimage-slash-romantic-vacation to Nashville to scatter her estranged father’s ashes, sharing awkward sexual encounters, or dispensing advice on how to navigate friendships with former drinking buddies who are now suburban moms–hang in there for the Costco loot–she’s as deft at poking fun at the ghosts of her past self as she is at capturing powerful emotional truths.)
(The debut essay collection by Chicago writer and performer, Samantha Irby, creator of bitchesgottaeat.com.
Samantha Irby explodes onto the page in her debut collection of brand-new essays about being a complete dummy trying to laugh her way through her ridiculous life of failed relationships, taco feasts, bouts with Crohn’s Disease, and more, all told with the same scathing wit & poignant candor long-time readers have come to expect from her notoriously hilarious blog, www.bitchesgottaeat.com.
In addition to co-hosting The Sunday Night Sex Show, a sex-positive live lit show, and Guts & Glory, a reading series featuring essayists, Samantha has performed all over Chicago. She opened for Baratunde Thurston during his “How to Be Black” tour. She has been profiled in the Chicago Sun-Times as well as in Time Out Chicago, and her work has appeared on The Rumpus and Jezebel.)
For: “New Year: Same Trash”
(Comedian, blogger and essayist Samantha Irby is not going to be a better person this year than she was last. Nope. With a small group of woo-woo others, Irby sets seventy micro-resolutions, and then—with the rest of us—she fails at almost every single one of them.
Thoughtful, witty, poignant—the failed intentions in New Year Same Trash will make you laugh and cry. Because you know you’ve been there. You can’t wake up in time to go to brunch. Swimming three times a week? Who are you kidding. You’re not going to shower every day or pack your lunch every day. You’re definitely not going to choose a smart movie over mindless entertainment, because you’re tired. You’re lazy. And, no, you’re never going to be a positive thinker. “I didn’t do this. I’m gonna. Maybe.” Don’t worry. It’s okay. There’s always next year. Instantly recognizable to anyone who’s ever failed to make goals and stick with them, New Year Same Trash will bring hilarious relief.)
2.) “The Girl From The Other Side”
Stunning Art & A Haunting Dark Fairy-tale
I came across these beautiful Graphic Novels a few weeks ago, and I ordered #1 in the Series. I finished it within hours, and I immediately ordered the next two in the Series.
This story is a cute, but quite dark little fairy-tale, set in a society that is separated by the “Outside/Cursed” and the “Inside/Safe”. There are creatures, curses, and a little girl who is being watched over/saved by a “Outsider Creature” that she calls “Teacher”. Firstly, the ART in these Graphic Novels is so SO gorgeous, every page I want to rip out and frame. The story is so sweet, while also being very mysterious, slightly terrifying, and compelling. I loved every single page of this. If you like Graphic Novels/Manga.. this is for you. It was a bit weird to get used to the backwards way these books actually read.. instead of going right to left, the go left to right. I got the hang of it quickly, and am so in love with it now.
Good-Reads Plot Summary
(Once upon a time…
In a land far away, there were two kingdoms: the Outside, where twisted beasts roamed that could curse with a touch, and the Inside, where humans lived in safety and peace. The girl and the beast should never have met, but when they do, a quiet fairy-tale begins.
This is a story of two people–one human, one inhuman–who linger in the hazy twilight that separates night from day)
3.) “Call Me By Your Name”
By, André Aciman
I fell head-over-heels in love with this film, and I HAD to read the book next
“I stopped for a second. If you remember everything, I wanted to say, and if you are really like me, then before you leave tomorrow, or when you’re just ready to shut the door of the taxi and have already said goodbye to everyone else and there’s not a thing left to say in this life, then, just this once, turn to me, even in jest, or as an afterthought, which would have meant everything to me when we were together, and, as you did back then, look me in the face, hold my gaze, and call me by your name”
― André Aciman,
I’ve already raved on and on about how amazing I thought this movie was. One of my Top 5 of the year so far, for sure. As soon as I realized it was based on a novel.. I knew I had to read it. Oh my GOD this was wonderful. Such beautiful, hypnotic writing. The romance, intimacy and tension builds within these pages so intensely. I really loved this. It had a few differences from the film, but the overall feeling and message/story was dead-on accurate.
Good-Reads Plot Summary
(Call Me by Your Name is the story of a sudden and powerful romance that blossoms between an adolescent boy and a summer guest at his parents’ cliff-side mansion on the Italian Riviera. Unprepared for the consequences of their attraction, at first each feigns indifference. But during the restless summer weeks that follow, unrelenting buried currents of obsession and fear, fascination and desire, intensify their passion as they test the charged ground between them. What grows from the depths of their spirits is a romance of scarcely six weeks’ duration and an experience that marks them for a lifetime. For what the two discover on the Riviera and during a sultry evening in Rome is the one thing both already fear they may never truly find again: total intimacy.
The psychological maneuvers that accompany attraction have seldom been more shrewdly captured than in André Aciman’s frank, unsentimental, heartrending elegy to human passion. Call Me by Your Name is clear-eyed, bare-knuckled, and ultimately unforgettable.)
“We rip out so much of ourselves to be cured of things faster than we should that we go bankrupt by the age of thirty and have less to offer each time we start with someone new. But to feel nothing so as not to feel anything – what a waste!”
― André Aciman,
4.) “Sleep No More: Six Murderous Tales”
By, P.D James
Short Story/ Murder Mystery Theme Collection
“A successful murder depends on knowing your victim,”
― P.D. James,
I got this book for Christmas, from my Secret Santa.. and I am so obsessed with it. I love a good book of short stories. It’s fun to read one, here and there.. and keep coming back to it. P.D James is a VERY well known & very respected author of the crime/mystery genre. These six stories were all exceptional.. I think if I HAD to choose my Top 2.. it would have to be “The Yo-Yo” & “The Victim”. All six stories were amazing though, and I would suggest this collection to anyone who loves a good Murder-Mystery story.. especially one set a bit back in the day.
Good-Reads Plot Summary
(No one gets inside the head of the murderer–or makes it a more thrilling read–than the late, great P. D. James. Fast on the heels of her latest best seller: a new, fiendishly entertaining gathering of previously uncollected stories, from the author of Death Comes to Pemberley and The Private Patient.
It’s not always a question of “whodunit?” Sometimes there’s more mystery in the why or how. And although we usually know the unhealthy fates of both victim and perpetrator, what of those clever few who plan and carry out the perfect crime? The ones who aren’t brought down even though they’re found out? And what about those who do the finding out who witness a murder or who identify the murderer but keep the information to themselves? These are some of the mysteries that we follow through those six stories as we are drawn into the thinking, the memories, the emotional machinations, the rationalizations, the dreams and desires behind murderous cause and effect.)
5.) “Next Year For Sure”
By, Zoey Leigh Peterson
Initially the plot of this book was SO intriguing to me. It’s about a couple Chris & Kathryn.. who have been dating for like 9 years. Chris confesses he has a crush on this girl he keeps running into at the Laundromat. Kathryn.. instead of raging out.. suggests he ASK HER OUT and date her.. and see what happens. Now this sounded like it was going to be a book, focusing on “open relationships”.. and on all the problems this will inevitably cause. I was excited for some trashy, love-triangle drama.. you know what I mean? In reality.. this book was SO BORING OMG OMG OMG. The character of Chris was SO terrible…. like so passive he was almost creepy. He really grossed me out, and Kathryn was ok.. but the whole thing was SO FUCKING BORING. For a book about a scandalous open relationship.. this might as well have been about two 95 year old’s finding love at a Retirement Home. It was awful. Also a huge thing that bothered me was the pretentious way this book was written… they literally NEVER EVER used Quotation Marks.. when anyone was speaking!! This was way more annoying than you can even imagine.
Don’t be sucked in by the beautiful cover art.. this book sucked, hard.
Good-Reads Plot Summary (Don’t listen to it. This book is NOT deeply poignant OR entertaining)
(In this moving and enormously entertaining debut novel, longtime romantic partners Kathryn and Chris experiment with an open relationship and reconsider everything they thought they knew about love.
After nine years together, Kathryn and Chris have the sort of relationship most would envy. They speak in the shorthand they have invented, complete one another’s sentences, and help each other through every daily and existential dilemma. When Chris tells Kathryn about his feelings for Emily, a vivacious young woman he sees often at the Laundromat, Kathryn encourages her boyfriend to pursue this other woman—certain that her bond with Chris is strong enough to weather a little side dalliance.
As Kathryn and Chris stumble into polyamory, Next Year, For Suretracks the tumultuous, revelatory, and often very funny year that follows. When Chris’s romance with Emily grows beyond what anyone anticipated, both Chris and Kathryn are invited into Emily’s communal home, where Kathryn will discover new romantic possibilities of her own. In the confusions, passions, and upheavals of their new lives, both Kathryn and Chris will be forced to reconsider their past and what they thought they knew about love.
Offering a luminous portrait of a relationship from two perspectives, Zoey L. Paterson has written an empathic, beautiful, and tremendously honest novel about a great love pushed to the edge. Deeply poignant and hugely entertaining, Next Year, For Sure shows us what lies at the mysterious heart of relationships, and what true openness and transformation require.)
Last month I mentioned a book I really LOVED called “The Secrets She Keeps”. I read it on Apple-Books, and I loved it so much.. that I needed to own it for my personal library.. so I got it off Amazon. I thought I would share some photos of it.
Also this sort of falls into the “Book” category. As you all know.. I’ve been full-steam ahead planning our upcoming November Wedding… and these are a few books I’ve found SUPER helpful. I have the most amazing Bridesmaids in the world, and between them all I got a TON of amazing Bridal Magazines, a FANTASTIC Planning Book by “The Knot”, & A Bridal List Book! Love you girls so much, thanks again. Wedding Planning is INSANE, so overwhelming! We have booked our Date, Venue & Photographer so far. So not off to a bad start! I can’t believe I’m going to be getting MARRIED in like less than 10 months! Wild.
I will also share some personal photos, from the past month. A few from my Best Friend’s Baby Shower & Just other random moments.
Also in my last little section.. I will mention some other random FAVS I have from this month.
As you guys know I have quite the PIN collection growing. Many of which I got from the wonderful shop “Fox on an Island” & other assorted ones from Paperchase etc. For Christmas and my Birthday.. I was gifted a beautiful tray from Hudson’s Bay (thanks Mommy!) & Another gorgeous little dish from Anthropologie (Thanks Lindsey!).
Also one Pin in particular is quite close to my heart. As you all know, Professor Snape is my favorite character from the Harry Potter Series. I love him so much it’s gross. The amazing Etsy shop “Bookish and Bakewell” made me this amazing Snape pin, and I will never take it off. It says my all-time fav Harry Potter quote on it. “Always” <3
Also one last score from Etsy I got in January.. is this GORGEOUS “Stranger Things” print! It came all the way from Russia! I’m obsessed.
ALSO….. So as I mentioned above.. my Best Friend is having a baby in March… and I got her the CUTEST Harry Potter themed baby-scarf off Etsy. She loves Harry Potter as much as I do, and I’m sure her son will love it too. He better! Hahaha <3
You guys know I’m fucking terrified of flying… and in NINE sleeps I leave for Palm Springs. I’m honestly already losing sleep over this. So last night in a fit of anxiety, I decided to order this “How To Conquer Your Fear of Flying” book… and I added a few other things to the order. Amazon Prime is going to be the death of me/my bank account.. I swear to God.
So today… The Fear of Flying book came.. as well as a very cute iPhone case + holding ring. These “grip rings” have been all over the place, and I always thought they were just weird random additions to your iPhone case. IT HAS CHANGED MY LIFE in less than an hour. I have the iPhone 6S + which is HUGE, and I watch a ton of Netflix & You-Tube on my phone, and it’s so heavy I am ALWAYS dropping it on my own face. This little grip ring is so amazing, I can just let my hand hang. You won’t understand until you have one, just trust me.
I also got some baby pink ear-muffs.. because why the hell not? Also I’ve been watching a lot of “Scream Queens” and this seemed fitting.
Thanks so much for Reading & For All Your Continued Support.
I will see you all very soon with my Palm Springs Posts!
(All Photography @Carly Ingram Photography 2018)
(All Images of TV Shows & MOVIES @Google Images 2018)