Category: Reviews

Review: Gifted

Posted November 15, 2017 by Rowena in Reviews | 1 Comment

Gifted (2017)

Starring: Chris Evans, McKenna Grace, Lindsay Duncan
Director: Marc Webb
Release Date: April 12, 2017
Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 1:41
Movie Type: Drama

Frank Adler (Chris Evans) is a single man raising a child prodigy – his spirited young niece Mary (Mckenna Grace) in a coastal town in Florida. Frank’s plans for a normal school life for Mary are foiled when the seven-year-old’s mathematical abilities come to the attention of Frank’s formidable mother Evelyn (Lindsay Duncan) whose plans for her granddaughter threaten to separate Frank and Mary. Octavia Spencer plays Roberta, Frank and Mary’s landlady and best friend. Jenny Slate is Mary’s teacher, Bonnie, a young woman whose concern for her student develops into a connection with her uncle as well.

I have lost count of how many times I’ve watched this movie since it came out but with each viewing, I love the movie just a little bit more.

Frank’s sister died and left her genius daughter for Frank to raise in a normal upbringing. So Frank moves to Florida with little Mary, in an effort to give her as normal a life as he can. Mary’s mother was just as gifted and intelligent as Mary is but her life was filled with math question after math question and she didn’t want that for Mary. That was why she turned to Frank. Everything was going great until Mary became old enough to attend to public school.

You can’t hide a brain that big and Mary, well, Mary is a memorable character. She’s bright and she’s funny and she’s so full of love and wisdom for someone so small that she literally made this movie. That’s saying something because Captain freaking America plays her Uncle.

So, Mary becomes involved in a custody battle between her Uncle and her Grandmother. The grandmother that her mother didn’t want to raise her. They’re both fighting for what they think is right, at least that’s how it seems but Frank, mostly, Frank is fighting for Mary. He’s fighting for Mary to have the life that her mother didn’t have. He’s fighting for the Mary to have what her mother wanted her to have and that whole thing broke my heart because through it all, Mary is left pretty much on her own.

Frank wasn’t the perfect guardian for Mary. No, he was selfish and he was dumb but at his core, he was a good guy. He didn’t love Mary because she was smart or because she was cute. He just loved Mary and I adored him.

This movie kept my attention from beginning to end. I came to care for all of the characters in this movie (well, most of them anyway) and Mary and Frank wormed their way into my heart. I laughed and I cried and I was completely charmed with this movie so yes, I highly recommend this to everyone.

My favorite quote:

“He’s a good person. He wanted me before I was smart.”

Movie Trailer

My Rating

5 out of 5


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Review: Table 19

Posted November 8, 2017 by Rowena in Reviews | 4 Comments

Table 19

Starring: Anna Kendrick, Lisa Kudrow, Craig Robinson, Tony Revolori, Stephen Merchant
Director: Jeffrey Blitz
Release Date: March 3, 2017
Rating: PG-13
Run Time: 1:27
Movie Type: Comedy, Drama

Ex-maid of honor Eloise (Anna Kendrick) – having been relieved of her duties after being unceremoniously dumped by the best man via text – decides to hold her head up high and attend her oldest friend’s wedding anyway. She finds herself seated at the ‘random’ table in the back of the ballroom with a disparate group of strangers, most of whom should have known to just send regrets (but not before sending something nice off the registry). As everyone’s secrets are revealed, Eloise learns a thing or two from the denizens of Table 19. Friendships – and even a little romance – can happen under the most unlikely circumstances.

I’m kind of bummed that we haven’t had very many new romantic comedies to watch over the last couple of years. There’s mostly action hero movies and kiddie movies and lots and lots of dramatic movies but romantic comedies have been pretty sparse. When this movie came onto my radar, I knew that I wanted to watch it because 1) It looked pretty funny and 2) Anna Kendrick. There isn’t much that I wouldn’t do for Anna Kendrick.

Mostly, I look like this every time AK has a new movie coming out…

I watched this a while ago but I rented it over the weekend again just because I felt like it and I liked it all over again.

Eloise is attending her oldest friends wedding by herself and that wouldn’t be a big deal if she was supposed to be the Maid of Honor in the wedding (and isn’t anymore) and she wasn’t dumped via text by the Best Man, who also happens to be the bride’s brother. Sucking it up, Eloise attends the wedding and isn’t at all surprised that they sat her at Table 19.

You see, Table 19 is…

“The table that should have known to send regrets but not before sending something nice off the registry. The table that could disappear in the middle of the wedding and nobody would notice…”

So, Eloise is at this wedding, sitting with a bunch of strangers and over the course of the day, this table of strangers become friends and their shenanigans had me cracking up all over the place. This was such a fun movie to watch on a lazy weekend because it’s filled with a great cast with great chemistry and a female lead that is just too adorable for words. There’s also a pretty big plot twist and that was fun. So really, if you’re in the mood for something fast, cute and fun…check this movie out.

Movie Trailer

My Rating

4 out of 5


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Mini Review Round Up (8)

Posted October 26, 2017 by Rowena in Features, Reviews | 3 Comments

Lady Sophia’s Lover (Bow Street Runners #2) by Lisa Kleypas
Release Date: June 4, 2002
Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon
Genres: Historical, Romance
Pages: 37
Format: eBook
Source: Bought
Buy the Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Why is Lady Sophia looking for a lover?
And could she seduce the most marriageable man in London?

Lady Sophia Sydney would do anything to ensnare the unattainable Sir Ross Cannon. Her goal: to ruin his reputation and cause a scandal that would be the talk of all London. So she insinuates herself into his life by gaining his trust and living in his house.

Every morning, her lush presence tempts him beyond all reason . . . the way she bends over the table to serve him the meals she has prepared . . . the way her hands oh, so gently—yet sensuously—brush against him. Every night, she promises with her eyes—and her body—that the hours before dawn could be spent in unbridled passion instead of restless sleep—if only he’d let her share his bed.

She knows he is falling more in love with her each day. But she never counted on falling in love with him. And she never dreamed he might very respectably ask for her hand in marriage.

I’ve had this book on my TBR pile for the longest time. I’m talking years and years, this book has sat on my TBR and I just never read it. I don’t even know why since I adore Lisa Kleypas’ writing. Her books and her heroes are always so good so I’ve been a bum about her older books but not anymore. I read this book and just adored it. Sophia and Ross were wonderful characters and their romance was soo good.

Lady Sophia Sydney is out for revenge against Sir Ross Cannon because she holds him responsible for the death of her brother. Her plan is to get close to him, seduce him and then ruin him…only her plan starts to go awry the more time she spends with him. He’s not at all what she was expecting him to be and the plan was never to fall in love with him but now she’s gone and done it.

Sir Ross Cannon wants nothing to do with emotions of the heart. He’s had his fair share of that stuff when he was married and after his wife died but there’s something about Lady Sophia that calls to him and he doesn’t spend too much time fighting it.

Lisa Kleypas does such a great job of storytelling that with each and every single one of her books, I fall more and more in love with her writing. Her books are always full of humor, her characters full of charisma and her romances full of depth that for me, she gets it right every time. This book is a great showcase of that. Her talent shines in this book and even though it’s not my favorite book of hers, it’s still a damn good romance and I definitely recommend.

Bow Street Runners Series

My Rating


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4.25 out of 5

Suddenly You by Lisa Kleypas
Release Date: November 28, 2006
Publisher: Harper Collins, Avon
Genres: Historical, Romance
Pages: 384
Format: eBook
Source: Bought
Buy the Book: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo

Bestselling author Lisa Kleypas creates a beguiling story, set in a world where appearance means everything, passion simmers just below the surface, and a respectable Englishwoman is willing to risk scandal for one night of love.

She was unmarried, untouched and almost thirty, but novelist Amanda Briars wasn’t about to greet her next birthday without making love to a man. When he appeared at her door, she believed he was her gift to herself, hired for one night of passion. Unforgettably handsome, irresistibly virile, he tempted her in ways she never thought possible, but something stopped him from completely fulfilling her dream.

Jack Devlin’s determination to possess Amanda became greater when she discovered his true identity. But gently bred Amanda craved respectability more than she admitted, while Jack, the cast-off son of a nobleman and London’s most notorious businessman, refused to live by society’s rules. Yet when fate conspired for them to marry, their worlds collided with a passionate force neither had expected… but both soon craved.

I’ve been re-reading this book for the past couple of years. I read it at least once every year for the last three years, maybe? Each year, I’ve come away from the book just over the moon about it but this year was different. I re-read this book for book club this year and I had to prepare a discussion of it so I read the book, read through different people’s reviews on the book and then I read it again and I’ve got to say…the last re-read of the book was a different experience for me.

I will say that even with my eyes being open to just how manipulative some of the characters were in this book, Lisa Kleypas worked her magic because in the end…I still rather enjoyed the story.

So this book is about Jack Devlin and Amanda Briars falling in love with each other. They meet when Amanda orders herself a man for her thirtieth birthday and I thought that was awesome because why not? You do you, boo boo. So Jack shows up at Amanda’s house on her birthday and Amanda is like, you know what? I changed my mind. I don’t need a man but Jack worms his way in and gives her a night she’ll never forget and then he shows up at a party and is not even a hooker. He’s a publisher!! And he lied to her. So that doesn’t endear him to her at all but he’s all aboard the Amanda train and he’s not above using whatever weapons he has to win her over.

I really enjoyed the chemistry between Jack and Amanda because overall, that was undeniable. Those two had some serious feelings for each other and I enjoyed seeing them together but what I didn’t enjoy was how much manipulating Jack did to get whatever he wanted. He seduced Amanda into doing whatever he wanted and that wasn’t cool. Sure, Amanda was game for anything but there were times when I was like, come on Jack…get over it. But I still really enjoyed this book.

This book is another testament to how good Lisa Kleypas is. She can write the hell out of stories, out of characters and her romances are always steamy. This one is one of her steamier romances and I was all about it.

My Rating


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Grade: 4 out of 5


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