Beanie level: Rooftop room dweller

Hyeona, as clear-eyed as always. Which is why I love and admire her so much.

#MyLiberationNotes

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My Liberation Notes ep 10

God, Tae-hoon’s family (especially Kyung-soon) has a massive baggage that they don’t even know existed, and they keep passing those baggage off towards Yu-rim, it’s a wonder the kid is well-adjusted enough growing up around her aunt.

I mean, I’m not making light of that family’s painful experiences, but it feels like Kyung-soon is refusing to move on from that hurt and resent Tae-hoon for wanting to do something more proactive about that problem. She is determined to begrudge Tae-hoon of wanting to live his life, and she is just as determined to teach that particular lesson to Yu-rim, which… problematic on all front.

If I was Ki-jung, I would be relieved not to be able to get inside that family. Tae-hoon might be a very decent man, but his family is tight-knitted to the point of being completely closed off and disapproving of any possible new person entering their circle, which is a huge red flag for me. And here I thought that Yu-rim would be the biggest problem Ki-jung has to solve if she wanted a relationship with him. Apparently the real problem is so much more complicated and messy than that.

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    I would run miles away from this family. But KJ being KJ she would want to protect him and liberate him too 🙂
    My first hint was in an earlier episode (probably ep 1) when she got the girl an expensive gift and mentioned something about she having to take care of her? I need to rewatch that episode/scene. The sister makes me extremely uncomfortable.
    you are right, they are living in a silo and don’t want anything to change. There are absolutely no boundaries either.

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    Gosh, I hate his sister GS! You are so right about her resenting him from wanting to move on. I got so angry every time she sneered at him for “daring” to date someone.
    And the manipulation? At first the “I dedicated my life to my niece” sounded cute and sweet. Now to me it sounds like “I dedicated my life to you and your daughter, you better be grateful and stay here with us forever”, ugh!!
    GJ can and should just leave if the situation gets too toxic (I mean she has options 😉), but I feel so bad for TH, he’s stuck with the toxicity forever. No wonder he’s so depressed all the time. I hope he can try to liberate himself from his family and find some happiness.

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    Yeah, that family…
    I feel bad for all of them, tbh.
    I hope they can heal (and accept KJ in the process).

    I wonder how much crap they have to hear every day about the three siblings living together, the child without mom, the single dad, the over-40 single woman raising her niece, etc. Even KJ did, even if it wasn’t on purpose.

    I think I would also try to protect my niece from all that stuff. I wouldn’t trust anyone.

    Tae Hoon wasn’t the only that lost his arms, his sisters too. And I imagine the big sister doing everything to protect the other two.

    And now she watches her niece with only one arm…

    I’m not saying that what she’s doing is right, there’s a lot of stuff she shouldn’t be saying in front of that kid, but I want to give her a chance to change. We did the same with Ki Jeong.
    Well, we’re doing the same with all the leads.

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The first time I don’t mind Fate’s meddling fingers.
#MyLiberationNotes

p.s. Kim Ji-won looks ethereal in this scene, somehow

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    Yes, she does and that’s the reason he stayed around I’m sure.

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Somehow, Chang-hee always makes the most sense in his more absurd moment. 😂😂😭😭
I feel him, though.

#MyLiberationNotes

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So, GRID ended.

And I still can\’t decide whether I\’m just blind to writer Lee Soo-yeon\’s fault. Or this is honestly a brilliant exploration of sci-fi genre from a completely new perspective.

I\’m very much okay with that wide open ending (because is there actually an end in this kind of scenario?). I feel like the weirdest person here for not having any complaint about it.

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    You are feeling exactly like what I usually feel about most dramas. It has made me very curious to start the to show.

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If 3 years ago someone told me that predictability would be one of my top requirement for a relaxing entertainment, I would laugh at their face. Being a k-drama watcher for more than a decade, and a voracious reader for even longer made unpredictability something I highly appreciated in the stories I devoured.

But that was in the world before pandemic.

Once the pandemic struck, surprises that used to delight me in all those fictions suddenly made me anxious. Real life surprises contained too much unpleasantness that I ceased to enjoy my inability to predict how a story would go. And that\’s when I fell into a rabbit hole called fan fiction, something that never even excited me all these years.

It was… a relief to go through countless adventure with all these characters that I already knew well. It felt safe no matter how many what-ifs started these re-imaginings because after 200 titles, even my range of prediction has became 99% foolproof. The fact that it has reignited my childhood excitement for all things Harry Potter is definitely a nice bonus.

This is actually the biggest reason I was in a drama and DB slump during the majority of 2020 and 2021. It took me some time, but I did started to enjoy a sprinkle of unpredictability in my stories again. But even then, I don\’t think this newfound love for fan fiction is going to fade anytime soon.

Love,
February

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    There’s something so comforting about a predictable story. It’s one of the reason’s I’ve embraced reading romance a lot more during these pandemic times.

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    I’ve been watching some dramas that I don’t objectively find good and I couldn’t really tell why, besides the fact that they remind me of the soaps I watched as a kid. But you explain it so nicely: predictability is comforting ☺️

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    I call these my comfort stories ~ it’s why I rewatch so many movies multiple times. I want rhe comfort of knowing the ending.

    Also, fanfiction can honestly be so delightful at reminding you of all the little things you loved about a story. A good one makes me feel like I’m fangirling with the author. 🤗

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      I call rewatches my comfort watches as well (also, I call them Macaroni and Cheese watches because I get the same feeling I get from that most comfort of comfort foods). I love rewatches (and re-reads) because it feels like I am spending time with old friends.

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Drama: *serious assassination attempt is going on*
Me: Cat!! It’s cat! I didn’t know this drama has a cat. *is completely distracted*

In my defense though, it’s a very pretty cat.

#SwordSnowStride

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Apparently My Roommate is a Gumiho has done its job by the time it hit the fourth eps. I did like how fun and slapstick-y it was. It got me laughing and enjoying drama again, which was a feat after my almost year-long slump. But now that my appetite for good drama has been awakened, I realized that I\’d rather watch something a little bit more serious and complex than that. So, this is a goodbye post of some sort (though I still enjoyed the many, many fan post about Dam and Woo-yeo being hilarious and sweet together).

And if anyone needed me, I\’m currently camping on Sell Your Haunted House thread, playing catch up with our ghost-hunting team.
(pssstt… @ravennightstar I finally take your recommendation, and what an awesome drama this one has proven itself so far.)

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    Aw don’t tell me you’re done with Gumiho-nim already!

    But yay so glad you got on board with SYHH! I haven’t been to the recaps much but I’ll keep my eye out for you there from now on☺️☺️ But yes how goooood are the earlier episodes of SYHH! I’m.sad that it’s almost over😔

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      I feel bad for leaving our Gumiho-nim mid-drama, but my attention span is flagging. I’m still getting some tidbits from my sister, though, since she has fallen hard for Dam and her refreshingly blunt way.

      SYHH is sooo good. At this point, Jang Nara could do no wrong. She is just fabulous in this role.

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        Haha maybe you can come back to it when you feel like watching something light and fluffy?

        Yea she’s amazing in this!

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Okay, what do you know? Apparently My Roommate is a Gumiho is a perfect drama to pull me out of my looo~~ng semi-self-imposed slump. I didn\’t even remember this drama existed, what\’s with the promised tropes-filled story, and yet… Yep, it\’s very much tropey, but it\’s also super fun. I couldn\’t count how many times I have to bite back my laughter.

Hyeri\’s acting feels more natural here and Jang Ki-young is finally back to his former captivating, dreamy presence. He is so good at the whole I-smile-because-I-want-to-look-kinder-but-I-manage-to-look-even-scarier-somehow thing. Oh, and Kang Hanna! Only her could make that baffling combination of manipulative and dumb into something charming.

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    Omg I really enjoyed this premiere. It was genuinely funny. The ox blood scene has ne laughing.

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    I’m jumping on this bandwagon too! Loved the premier soooo much that I couldn’t find any fault in it. Or maybe I didn’t want to LOL!

    Hope you’ve been well, @gladis ☺️☺️

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      Hi, raven! 👋 👋 I miss you all, beanies.
      I’m well, just a bit busy finishing grad school. How are you over there? Everything safe and well?

      This drama is just perfect for de-stressing. I hope they’ll maintain the minimum angst for the whole story.

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        Same same! Missed being here but life got in the way haha. Yep I’m doing alright! Hoping to see more posts from you! 😀

        Yes, definitely is haha. There’s just something quirky everytime the leads interact and I love it!

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    All these beanies back for this show!

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There goes my first effort in months to watch k-drama again. Bye, River… Bye, Times… It was fun while it lasted.

Maybe I should pick one of those recommended completed dramas instead. *side-eyeing My Unfamiliar Family and Run-On* Or just wait for one of my favorite writers to come back with a new project.

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I guess I did ask for this cameo. Still hurts though. 😭😭

#ForestOfSecrets2
#YoonGwajang

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 29: A book everyone hated but you liked

Hands down, it’s Stephenie Meyer’s The Host. Actually I surprised myself by how much I enjoyed this one, given that I still lamented the day I finished her Twilight saga. I started it purely out of curiosity to see how much of a mess Meyer would make out of her latest novel. Of course, the dramatic love triangle was there, the sappy inter species love story was also there. But the reluctant-alliance-turned-genuine-friendship between the 2 female leads was also very much there, and it’s enough to compensate for everything else. That, and the delightful found family that is the core of the story.

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    Hey! 🖐 I like this one too.
    I guess it had second-hand hate from Twilight.

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    I remember really liking this one too! Kind of bummed we never got a sequel.

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      I’m torn about the sequel. On one hand, I don’t mind reading more adventures from these characters that I came to love. On the other hand, I’m afraid the sequel would ruin this story instead. Though that unexpected meeting with other refugees was as good place as any to end this tale.

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        I think at this point, it’s just been too long since the initial book came out, too. Not many people would probably be interested now. I know I would have to reread the first one to remember what all happened.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 28: Favorite title of a Book

Luck in the Shadows (A shameless attempt at promoting Lynn Flewelling’s Nightrunner Series. Hehe)

Made to be Broken (Another shameless attempt at promoting Kelley Armstrong’s less popular series: Nadia Stafford. I know not that many people wanted to read a story about hitman-or hitwoman, but this one is unbelievably good.)

Handle with Care (Not my most favorite of Jodi Picoult’s novel, but the title always reminded me of beautiful, fragile thing, which is an apt description of the little girl that everybody’s lives revolved around in this tale.)



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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 27: The most surprising plot twist or ending

Given that some of my favorite genre were adventure, mystery, and thriller, the number of books I could mention to answer this challenge is immense. Which is why, I’d pick a book that shouldn’t be able to surprise me much, yet it did so anyway with such ease and originality. Lost You Forever by Tong Hua was one of my favorite character driven high fantasy. (She is the writer of the famous original novel Scarlet Heart, by the way.) At a glance, it seemed like the usual dramatic reverse harem romance. But the deep insight gleaned from each lead’s life elevated this into something much greater. And I’m yet to find a bigger-than-life character as compelling and well written as the nine-headed demon Xiang Liu.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 26: A book that changed your opinion about something

My Mister Ostrich by Han Yan was the first novel I’ve read about people with disability. I wasn’t familiar with Chinese novel yet, and I didn’t know much about that topic either at the time. Normally, a fiction that was written in biography style didn’t entice me much, but the strong slice-of-life tone of this story hooked me from the beginning. I don’t know how close the description of the male lead’s condition and struggle are to those in real life, but the book clearly has interesting things to say about living with disability.

One thing that left a lasting impression for me was the female lead’s utter inability to understand why other people felt the need to qualify their compliments towards the male lead with a mention of his missing hands. Her innocent question “What does it have to do with anything?” stunned me and frankly, it raised some excellent points to think about.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 24: A book you wish more people would’ve read

One of the reason I love fantasy genre is because I found it an exciting and harmless way to deal with many difficult and sensitive topics. But even then, it’s still hard to find a decent story that tackled the theme of religion or organized belief. Which is why Age of the Five trilogy by Trudi Canavan is still one of the best fantasy tale I’ve read. It spoke fluently of blind faith, of absolute power and its absolute corruption, of discrimination against “lesser race”, about the power of (mis)information. It featured one of the worst and most painful betrayal story I’ve encountered. But it also soothed us with deep relationships that transcended any barrier.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 23: A book you wanted to read for a long time but still haven’t

I’ve been trying to finish the classic series Buru Quartet from Pramoedya Ananta Toer for some years, but found myself stalling to start the last book House of Glass. The sudden change of narrative point-of-view, and the sense of impending doom and loss made me hesitant to go through it. The series covered the rise of Indonesian independence movement in early 1900. And frankly, the exile of the hero, a pioneering journalist who launched the first Indonesian newspaper, that started the finale book daunted me. The series is already hard to read as it is, and knowing that it wouldn’t end well for him is something I have to brace myself for sometime soon.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 22: A book that makes you cry

A lot of Jodi Picoult’s books could fit this challenge well. But I’ll choose her first book I stumbled upon, the classic My Sister’s Keeper. I still re-read that from time to time and somehow it managed to offer me a new nugget of understanding every single time. Anna is a small force of nature that often left me choked with my own feelings, and I don’t think I’ve met another supposedly bad boy character as complex and puzzling as Jesse.

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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 21: The first novel you remember reading

My memory is spotty (it’s almost 20 years ago, how time flies!), but it’s either an adventure series Double Ef Team by Nurul F. Huda or a touching family story from Pipiet Senja. Both were my favorite children’s story writers before I finally ventured to the fantasy genre later (ahem, Harry Potter).


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30 Days Book Challenge
Day 20: Favorite romance book

7 Unfortunate Lifetimes by Jiu Lu Fei Xiang (the English translation is available on novelupdates, by the way). But really, anything from this author is a guaranteed lovely read: fast-paced, humorous, and full of fluttery sweetness. So far, she is the only Chinese novel author that managed to convince me to read a lighter fare from period fantasy genre. And nothing could compare to the fine weave of tragic death underscored by sharp humor and amusing banter.

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