REVIEWS · thoughts

Summer Treats | Ion Doughnut

Another lovely addition to our beloved city’s culinary experience, Ion Doughnuts is a must-try to all of you die-hard doughnut lovers out there. Freshly baked with love, these roundsomes will fill that hole of missing piece that you may not find during hot summer days like this, and will also most certainly satisfy all your set of cravings.

So these delectable treats came in my doorstep this morning, and I completely fell in love with how pretty it looked:

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Knowing that it was crafted so carefully, and was also made this very morning, gave me the idea of how wonderful it would be to write and communicate all my thoughts on its glorious existence here on my blog, and make a review out of it as well.

REVIEW

Starting off with the packaging, it followed a simplistic square shaped white box, the one you’d normally get when you order pizza, and which included an adorable sheet of embroidered paper that on top of it lies a 9 share amount of your average sized doughnuts inside of it. Decorated with all kinds of different toppings, these chocolate gravy covered doughnuts tasted exceptionally delightful, as if it just went straight out of the oven. (and yet it does) Toppings include: rainbow sprinkles, peanuts, chocolate chips, oreos, and cheese. I hear that they’re still on the run towards innovating more toothsome flavors and toppings on the way, so be sure to stick around to find out during its release!

Next off, flavor. The combination between the doughnut itself and the toppings that lie on top of it are surprisingly out of this world, and what do you know, it’s best served hot! So make sure to heat it up in advance to get the maximum eating experience of these addictive babies. Moreover, it relies upon no preservatives for it is homemade, which makes it even better. The dough itself is super soft to chew on, and the chocolate coating had such an excellent balance when it comes to the bittersweet texture underlying it. Highly recommended for those of you who aren’t huge fans of a little too much sugar on top of anything, so yes. This certainly is your cup of tea.

Aside from all that, the presentation of these doughnuts are super decent to cooperate with, that it is aesthetically pleasing enough to decorate your desired instagram feeds.

Guess that is it for my review on these lovable homemade doughnuts. I highly anticipate you guys to check them out through all the social media links that will be mentioned down below, as they are currently open for pre-order to those of you who live in Surabaya. So make sure you donut forget to grab a box of these mouthwatering treats until then!

Instagram | Facebook

Have a lovely day!

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movies · REVIEWS · thoughts

Cek Toko Sebelah | Review

The story follows Yohan and Erwin, being the only two sons of a shop owner in a suburban area of Jakarta, Mr. Afuk. Devastated after the death of his wife and his uncalled disease, he decided to let Erwin, his younger son to take over the shop he built together along with his already dead wife before he retired. And Erwin, being the  ultimate favored child, agreed to give it a go for a month, for he couldn’t just leave his uprising career and girlfriend in the company he worked so hard to get into. While on the other hand, Yohan being the least favored son, was offended that his dad ended up choosing Erwin instead of him.

REVIEW

Words can never legitimately describe the love I have for this movie. Indonesia has finally took a huge turn with its film industry with this relevant release. A huge praise goes to Ernest for outlining the core plots of this film, it was undeniably amazing. The humor this movie offered, not to mention the drama, and the entire pacing of the plot from the very beginning shook me to the point where I wanna do a re-watch on it again someday.

The thing I love most about this movie was that it was super relatable for me remembering that I too, came from a similar Chinese family background. The approach upon the acculturation between the Indonesian-Chinese ethnic and the pure Indonesian locals from this story was cordial, and it made me super happy to see both sides get along very well throughout the entire movie. We get to see the things they’re going through in a story told so realistically, in such an appropriate everyday life setting being shown through an Indonesian movie format, which was exactly what I needed to freshen up my mind after not watching one for so long.

The plot of it, was interwoven so well from the very start. As a result, it was very easy to comprehend and absorb the messages being thrown off to the audience. There was this sheer balance between the humor, seriousness, and drama that it made the movie even more entertaining to watch to its very core.

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Safe to say as it is, the representation of these set of characters were brought down quite nicely, and that the cast very much fits the roles they had for themselves in this movie. I enjoyed seeing everyone giving their best skills to deliver such an amazing storyline in return, as it was of course, once again, relatable for me personally because I too have experienced living in quite the similar setting of this movie.

All in all, I enjoyed every minute of it, and personally believe that this is one of those must-watch Indonesian movies out there that fits the bill for everyone. I feel like I could pick something new out of it, after each new time I ended up seeing the movie again repetitiously. The movie supports a very strong dynamic Indonesian-Chinese family aspect to it, and such strong representations of them that it felt really similar to the ones I personally experience with in real life!


I’ve always wanted to try reviewing an Indonesian produced movie here on my blog, knowing that I happen to live here and become one myself. So then yeah, I am super happy I finally found one that really moved my heart enough for me to write it! Just to lay it out there, this was not exactly the newest release in the industry, but it was a movie that got recommended to me so often. I have heard nothing but amazing things and positive feedbacks coming from the people who had seen them. That led me saying to myself, “Hey, why not give it a go?” SUPER glad with how this review turned out a little more concise than the previous ones I’ve written in the past, because I’ve absolutely adored it very much, and had honestly zero complaints regarding its existence.
Some of you may be wondering why I have not yet continued on my travel writing spree on this blog, and the thing is, I still most likely will, and I still am up for it entirely. There were just a couple of things to clear up at the back of my mind to settle in through writing that I just had to move ahead by posting it before it shuts off completely. You know what I’m saying?
ANYHOW, let me know what you think of this movie overall down below? Have you seen it? Or have you not and are planning to see it in a short time? What did you think about this post? It’d be super lovely to read from you guys. Once again, thank you  so much for reading.

have a lovely day!

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REVIEWS · thoughts

13 Reasons Why | Pros & Cons

Trigger warning – This review may contain spoilers that might make those of you who haven’t seen the show to throw a fit at me for revealing some of them, so therefore of course, read at your own risk.

This series has taken such a huge portion of time in my life, by all means, I really couldn’t stop myself from watching it. So instead of a casual ramble talking about the things I want to say regarding on how much I might have somehow both like and dislike this TV series, I’ve carefully accumulated upon 8 pros and 5 cons that I may have which come across to personally, so that’s 13 points in total, which is by far the iconic amount for a number of reasons, no? (See what I did there? No? Okay, moving on.)

Let us hop in with a friendly discussion upon the pros.

  1. This show had really chosen their casts accordingly. One thing’s for sure about this particular series, is that they have such an amazing array of casts enrolling such authentic roles that fit so perfectly. Their acting was what I would automatically picture a typical teenager would react whenever being faced through those of significant trials in life. In a way, I can somehow connect to some of the characters that played along this series quite well, which is very much appreciated.
  2. The cinematography for each episode was surprisingly on point. For a TV show, handing out the audience with a good screenplay motion is one thing, but throwing out a great one is definitely another. The angles were brought down super nicely, and I appreciated the fact that they put so much effort and dedication into delivering the visual focus that needed to be seen by the audience, which made it super easy to not only understand what was going on at the present point, but also to grab ahold of where the situation was partly taking them next.
  3. There were several episodes that provided specific trigger warnings. It is extremely important for a show to bring down trigger warnings of what may seem to appear toxic in the eyes of children, or anyone in particular who may have issues viewing things like this beforehand. It was nice to see that they had warnings regarding the topics such as, rape, abusive content, etc that are going to be shown in certain episodes, for it indirectly gave the audience a choice to take in consideration of whether or not they should continue watching it. Which in a way, I think is a very responsible and respectful feature that ended up not being forgotten through the course of this show happening.
  4. The plot of this story = one heck of a ride. I have to say, just from the very beginning I was a little skeptic of going into this with all the hype surrounding it, but I ended up watching 5 episodes in one sitting which was really something I don’t normally do on a regular basis when it comes to marathoning TV shows. I was quite surprised, that this show had succeeded into keeping me on the edge of my seat, for I was always, always, wondering of what might happen next, and was waiting for the time where Clay was going to finally listen to his own tape, etc etc. One word: in-trigue-ing.
  5. It had a very appealing message. The show taught us to never treat others badly, for they may be the reason behind the sufferings of another. It approached massive focus regarding one of the most fundamental topics in this series, aside from suicide, in a way which, was appealing, and it was rape. People may or may not look at the message being sent across similarly, and I too was not a big fan of the initial raw moral that this story had portrayed from the beginning, which thoughts you may find when reading ahead in the con section down below.
  6. It is unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. I love the idea that this was a very interesting concept to begin with. Having 13 reasons why Hannah Baker killed herself being recorded on tape, and with each containing a story inside of it had really killed the job. It was intense, outstanding, and very intricate in a way that it really deserved all the positive hype its been getting from the media lately. It promotes an ideal format that involved a jungle of series of topics that may have consciously raised awareness and representation towards the people who might suffer from it. Very well intended, indeed.
  7. Nominated as the one of the best book-to-TV-show-adaptation so far. I have seen other reviews online saying that this was a one of a million book inspired TV show that stood out better than the book itself. I may not have a say to this, for I haven’t exactly read the book, but I can might as well say that I have heard the actual brief outline of it, and that it ended up sounding a bit dull for me to the point where I lost interest towards reading it after. So yeah. I’m sorry.
  8. There was so much diversity being brought to the table. The high level of diversity being put to play in this story was surely unimaginable. Its fine elements are what makes the show whole. I’m not going to say too much at this point, for I personally think that it’s fairer for me to not do so, but to hint those of you who managed to have seen  this series yourselves, I hope you get my point. (:

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Disclaimer: For those of you who merrily agreed along to all my positive thoughts on this show from above, please bear with the few more that will soon be written down below as of course, this is a very controversial series, and that hearing from different sides can never be wrong to avoid. Therefore to remind, I’d like it better if you guys respect the issues I have for this show as much as you did for the love I have for it. No hate, please. Thank you.

And with no further ado, here are the cons to bear with that comes after:

  1. It supports a harmful message. Some people may view it this way because the mere raw plot of this story was how Hannah reacted to the people that hurt and ruined her as a person by cutting her own wrists that enabled her to bleed to death. This was not a healthy message to promote through a 13-episode-television series that is to be seen by millions of people worldwide, especially teenagers. As great as it sounds, that the producers created this plotline in means of spreading suicide awareness, the bare truth still lies on Hannah choosing the only worst possible decision to “solve” all her problems in which was cruel, as well as ironic as it is: committing suicide. 
  2. There was an episode in which they did not provide a trigger warning. Trigger warnings are a crucial element to consider beginnings with, there was an episode where Clay hallucinates Hannah Baker’s wrists bleeding unexpectedly which ended up with her lying on the ground and her blood spreading all over the floor. This was indeed, very disturbing to view for a number of certain people, and that they should have put a warning about this in advance to prevent triggering, unwanted actions to likely happen.
  3. No mental health related matter was mentioned in this story. There should have been an explanation through all the stakes Hannah and her friends were battling at the moment being related to mentally unstable issues at the very least, to properly educate the viewers instead of only plucking upon the generally assumed suicidal aspects of it.
  4. The characters of this story often refused to talk to their parents and/or authority about their problems and chose to deal with it on their own. I apologize, but this was another harmful thing that might have been the core issue for me that I have for this series, as it is very important to be open to those around you who can actually distribute help. Teenagers should acknowledge the adults who obviously knew better to assist them getting through horrible things in the most well-mannered way possible.
  5. Dangerously triggering to suicidal people. As a result of the release itself, we still can’t neglect the fact that its intense content is triggering many teenagers out there to commit suicides after watching this show every now and then. Some even got downright inspired by the show that they copied the awful turn Hannah made by recording reasons of their own as to why they ended up committing on tape. Let’s hope the good will outweigh the bad on this one.

Aaaand yep, that finishes off all my thoughts, feelings, and opinions being successfully planted on this post. I’ve actually finished this series quite a long while ago, so this was honestly a long overdue post. I’m super glad that I’ve finally come around to writing it, feels good to let my inner thoughts yet flow like river once again. Thank you so much for your time reading this!
What are your thoughts after watching 13 Reasons Why? Did you like/dislike it? Or both? Drop your comments down below, as it would be nice to hear from you.

brb as I go along writing more articles to post on my blog,

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books · REVIEWS · thoughts

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas | Review

Short disclaimer to throw out there, this review will simply discuss my own personal yet honest thoughts being given upon this book, I do apologize for the fact that this is my first time reviewing a novel that is completely right off my alley, for it is an own voice’s novel and whatnot. But with that being said, I’d still hope you guys would enjoy reading my opinions regarding this novel, and for this review to hopefully convince you guys enough into picking this up yourselves in the forthcoming future.

I guess that’s enough dilly dallying for now. On to my review, then!

REVIEW

I came across this book not really knowing too much about it other than it supporting the #BlackLivesMatter movement, fighting against police brutality, and how powerful of a weapon a single voice can be today. There were a ton of hype surrounding it, and I was quietly questioning myself as to why it was getting a lot of it, so I went in and devoured the whole entire book myself.

Now, I do not have to question as to why it got the hype it deserved in the first place, because overall, this book was a complete set of empowering, wonderful, and insightful novel itself. It stood out among the other books out there because of the topics it covered, and how it explored such healthy representations of underrated yet still prominent and realistic themes that we do not frequently get in the YA literature.

Reading through the perspective of a black main character, Starr, really immersed me into this world she lives in, and how she deals with living the best of both worlds, with one being the poor, dangerous, yet also welcoming neighborhood she currently lives in, and the other being her school she goes to everyday filled with rich, white, kids who fully accept her regardless of who she is. Starr really brought down a lot of the things that happened to her in a very serious level that is enough to provide contrast to the fact that she is still 17 years old at the time being.

There were a number of interesting topics being shown throughout the course of this story, one being interracial relationships, toxic friendships, the black culture, grief, and family that simultaneously collides with the main theme of this book being about the importance of having a voice. Which was super interesting to read about, because again, this book is not something I normally read on a regular basis, therefore I feel super grateful to have finally get a chance of reading it.

The writing of this book, felt very honest. Everything being written down here, from the dialogues of the conversations in between the black characters, Starr’s deepest, darkest thoughts, the descriptions of the world where Starr lived in practically two different neighborhoods, felt extraordinarily concrete, on point, and four-dimensional to me. Yes, I said four instead of three because they are that real to me. There were references here and there that supports the story as it helped unfold the story, which surely made a difference when being compared to a normal reading experience.

I feel like this book offers a lot for any readers out there to gain something in return after finish reading it. As for me, I learned the importance of how a single voice can empower the lives of many, and that we should never be obliged into using them against the people who did us wrong. In conclusion, I should feel the need to give this book a 5/5 stars rating it deserves.

However, I highly encourage you guys to also pick this book up to as well learn why people have been raving about this since its pre-release. Trust me when I say this book is phenomenal, mindblowing, eye-opening, and life-changing to its very core. So, make sure you don’t miss out!

from a girl who is ready to stand for what she believes,

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books · REVIEWS · thoughts

The Kite Runner | Review

A story of two young boys, forming a friendship filled with unforgettable memories, going through a line of troubles, facing adventures, and valuing a tethered, unbreakable bond towards one another. This is a tale that yearns to be heard by many people out there that tells an array of tragedies, terror, and war happening in Afghanistan in the late 1970s, when the Russians have come to attack that made such difference to the country itself.

REVIEW

This book, though. I honestly don’t even know where to start. I have such mixed feelings about it, I love it, but also at some point sometimes pissed about it being told in such a long format of pages. So with no further ado, let’s jump into what I really think about the whole entire thing down below.

I especially think the descriptions being inserted in this book were so vivid, it was as if reading it would make me literally see and feel everything all at once. From the setting, the atmosphere, and the people who were right there in the picture, which really isn’t a bad thing at all. Unless of course, if you find yourself reading paragraph by paragraph, minding it to have become too distinct for you. I sometimes find it really bothering how Khaled depicted this whole story, adding it with a ton of additional background to it which I find really unnecessary?

Other than it being extremely three-dimensional, I often find the writing of this book to become very insightful. As there were several things that the book mentioned regarding the country of Afghanistan, and its diverse culture being a fine added element to this story being brought out to the table for the readers to see. It showed very much everything there is to know reading an Afghanistan person’s personal life and the issues he were facing, which added so much contrast to the diversity being presented in this novel, and made me understand a lot of which that happened during that period of time in the country of Afghan.

“There are a lot of children in Afghanistan, but little childhood.”

The plot twists were at a very high superior yet complex level where you will have zero clue of what was going to happen on the very next chapter, and that it kept you guessing the whole time reading it. I enjoyed the twists and turns in this story,  it really helped me to continue on reading it until finally reaching its very end.

 Let’s not even begin with the character developments in this novel, because Khaled had done such a great job of giving each of them a certain ration of growth throughout the course of each phase throughout the story. I was blown away by the fact that the characters developed so well with a very reasonable pace, and at the end was well wrapped up so firmly. Even if I sometimes find the book to be super character based, it still had managed to showcase the things that surrounded the characters for the readers to pick along as well, like the setting of where they were, and the reason why they were being placed in a situation like that in the first place. Everything was well composed to the point where you completely understand what the main idea of this book was while casually reading it.

“And that’s the thing about people who mean everything they say. They think everyone else does too.”

So to wrap this up, I would like to give this book a 4/5 stars for its major diversity element being thrown off throughout the entire story, also for it being a wide eye-opener based off of a real thing that has really happened in real-life history. I have personally learned and absorbed so much after reading this book, and would highly recommend you guys towards picking it up as well if you are especially interested in historical fiction regarding the country Afghanistan, as we do not get a lot of authors writing about it in Y/A, so it’s super refreshing to see such matters being discussed and spread across for readers out there to enjoy through a perspective in literature.

from a writer who’s been reading a little too much lately,

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Hey! Always a pleasure to see myself writing here again. Do note that I have been reading this book for an English class I currently am taking in school, and that this review was set to be an assignment to fill up my final oral test grade in my report card. Huge shoutout to Mam Ella for recommending this book to us! It was a very genuine reading experience that should personally stick with me for quite some time c: I hope we’ll get to do more exciting things like this during our next learning semester, you rock! 😉

books · REVIEWS · thoughts

Beauty and the Beast: Lost in A Book | Review

The story follows Belle, the original Disney classic, being already held as prisoner inside the Beast’s castle. Given the opportunity of exploring the Beast’s gift to her, being his very own library, Belle soon finds herself literally lost in a book entitled “Nevermore”. It having a superior tether towards magic, enabling Belle to experience such a wondrous world filled with everything she has ever dreamed of that made her wanted to stay forever. Or will she?

Review

Remembering that I am such a huge crybaby fan myself when it comes to anything that constantly relates to Beauty and the Beast, has led me into buying this retelling as soon as I heard and saw it being mentioned on Hailey’s channel. I know it wasn’t going to be the book that could perhaps blow my mind or anything for that matter, but I decided to pick it up anyways. After all, reading this really pushed me back up from the slump I’ve been holding on back then as I finally got myself to finish reading Illuminae.

This novel, guys. It was very cute. A fun lighthearted read that constantly brings you back into the realms of your old disney childhood feels. The setting of this book was based upon the original story itself, but was told in a very different yet relevant way that may leave the readers curious on what was going to happen next. Even if you are slightly older than you should be as you read this novel, it would still appear super interesting to see a character from your childhood being brought to flesh in words through a literature perspective.

I seriously adored reading this, the writing of it was super concise as you move from one chapter to another, the story itself flew through as it takes you on this enchanting story located in the very heart of France, that is very much similar to the original setting itself. It gave in this new side of Belle, where we all may see her as an independent, selfless, strong, and realistic person on Disney, finally showing off her doubt and immaturity throughout the course of this novel. Which in my defense feels very much human, for I myself identify a lot with this character trait of hers. (other than the fact that she’s a bookworm who reads a lot of course)

“Home is all the people, all the places, and all the things that you love. You carry it wherever you go. Don’t you know that?”

We also follow the whole Disney cast as the story moves along quite so briefly, that may bring back memories and feels to the people that lived through watching Beauty and the Beast their whole lives. The characters were just like the ones you see on set, having similar traits that had successfully identified with the ones in the original story as well. I enjoyed reading from them so much, especially the Beast, whom to fairly put, lacked the development he may have deserved, in which I have also been anticipating on, but all in all, it was still a joy to reflect on the characters that more often than not, complete the story as a whole interactive pack on its own.

My one complaint was that it didn’t necessarily have the best ending to conclude this whole story. I just didn’t click at all with it, no matter how much I loved the idea of new characters appearing here and there along with a whole different yet still related setting in Nevermore, the ending didn’t really give an impression for me, as it also capsized my expectations towards it being properly written.

All in all, this was a very fascinating yet entirely smooth read. Perfect for those of you who are in need of a cure from a reading slump. It didn’t very much play the role of a book that casually sticks with me for a very long period of time like several books I previously read that actually did, but still, there were absolutely no regrets in regards of picking it up in the first place. (also the cover was yet super intriguing and aesthetically pleasing so I really had to go get one myself) So that leaves it to a 3,5/5 stars from me!


There wasn’t really much to say in regards of my reading experience towards this book, other than it being refreshing and a casually super fun read, so I apologize for the non-lengthy post I’ve got myself written and posted for today. But still, let me know your thoughts if you have read this book yourself, and feel free to leave them down below for me to see 🙂 Thanks again for stopping by. Au revoir!

from the most peculiar mademoiselle,

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books · REVIEWS · thoughts

Illuminae | Review

Prior reminder before anything else: Everything I say here are entirely based upon thoughts, feels, and opinions of my own. Do remember that each and every one of the readers of this book might not always have a same say regarding the results of their own reading experience, as I am here to write about my own. 

My first thought after looking up on all the hype there is on BookTube regarding this book was that, it would be impressive. Marvelous. Extravagant. The synopsis of this book really drew me into getting a copy of my own, and after finally finished reading it, I have really mixed feelings about it. Sure, it was as interesting as it sounds, but I kind of felt like there was this missing piece that I failed to grab a hold on while reading this book. I don’t really know.

The writing of this book was, unlike any other. I think the concept of this book being in a format of files, transcripts, images, and whatnot are what’s actually selling it. It was well put, and action-packed of course. The authors of this book, Amy and Jay, were exceptionally good at what they’re doing. The way they craft this futuristic world somewhere in the dark voids of the universe where a war actually occurs between two sides, is rather fascinating on its own. I admire the way they have multiple writing styles towards how they brought the story to life, and conclude things with images, illustrations, maps, etc. The atmosphere I grasped while reading this book felt surreal, as if you’re scanning through an actual file at hand.

The plot was kind of a let down for me, because I didn’t think I was in the right mood of reading it, considering the fact that I’m not a really huge science-fiction novel reader, and have read very few of them in the late period. My one complaint was that the words and format were laid out to the readers so diversely, it sometimes confused me of what was actually going on at the time, who was which, and what was where. I get that there were two ships, being Hypatia and Alexander who are indeed on the same side facing the evil Lincoln ship that were on its way towards attacking them. I was a few times lost, as the story moves along, but caught up pretty well after a continuous read of the few following pages.

The characters are whom I adore most in this story. Kady and Ezra. I ship them very, berry much as I look forward turning the next pages to read their hilarious set of conversations through chats. I admire that, they worked a lot of things out, even after a tremendous amount of time not seeing each other as they are located in separated ships. I loved reading Kady’s thoughts as well, for the readers get to see how she developed so much from way beginning of this story until the end of it.

Overall, it was a very interesting reading experience that took me quite forever to finish. But I’m still looking forward towards learning what happens in the next book, Gemina. Which I will probably find myself reading soon, for I already own a copy of it. So that’s a 4/5 stars from me!


Well, this was short. But I think I can manage into doing my future reviews similar to this one, it having to showcase what I think of the book in multiple briefly-put paragraphs. I personally liked it, and I think you all should give it a go, especially if you’re a wide sci-fi reader yourselves. But if you have, please let me know what your thoughts are on this piece? Have you read the next one?  Leave a comment below, you guys. I won’t bite 🙂

from a girl who casually reads,

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