books and movies and things – june review

I’ve never been the blogger to do a monthly review, but I figured it can’t hurt anything. I’ve had more time over the summer (during my two months as a nanny for my cousins) to read books and watch movies/tv. Plus, I started posted my poetry again.


  • The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins: As prequels go, this one wasn’t too bad. I didn’t love it because it’s hard to feel empathetic for the main character, Coriolanus Snow, who (spoiler??) is really terrible to everyone in the first three books. That aside, if you want to know more about Panem before Katniss’ life, I would recommend. It has some interesting explanations for some things in the first books.
  • Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz: I picked this book up without reading any pages, without reading the synopsis… I just had this feeling it would be good. It was. If you like LGBTQ+ reads or coming-of-age stories, this is one I won’t forget. I hear there’s a sequel coming in October…


  • Thief: This is a heist film from 1981 with James Caan. I am not a huge James Caan fan, but it had a pretty decent soundtrack. As 80’s films go, this one hit the mark. The opening scene that introduces our main character was interesting to watch at the very least.
  • The Night of the Hunter: I loved this film. It’s a noir-ish crime from 1955 about a murder-crazed religious man who seeks out a family for stolen money the childrens’ late father left behind. There is a strange point where the film no longer follows the original storyline and completely breaks off, but it was still really cool. Definitely watch this one.
  • JoJo Rabbit: I have been waiting to see this one for a while, but I finally got ahold of it — I’m not always a comedy person, but this one had be rolling. It’s a satire about nazis, so it’s definitely a delicate balance of humor and sadness. But between the cast list (Rebel Wilson, Taika Waititi, Scarlett Johansson) and the trailer, I knew I had to see it, and I wasn’t disappointed.

TV Shows

  • Game of Thrones: I am on the last season. I mocked this show for its insane popularity, because it was just another fantasy show in my mind. But I finally sucked it up enough to watch it, and I can see why it got so much fame. It’s absolutely genius. There’s not a moment in all eight seasons where I’ve been bored. That is HARD to do. Of course, they have source material, but even so! The world building and the way they draw the audience into a relationship with the audience is brilliant. I’m sorry I waited so long.
  • The Tatami Galaxy/Yojouhan Shinwa Taikei: If you aren’t an anime person, don’t let this trip you up. This is a subbed not dubbed anime about a college student who’s having trouble being happy. He keeps rewinding time (whether intentionally or not isn’t said) to start his college years over in order to get a different outcome. The synopsis doesn’t really explain it well, so fair warning. I quite enjoyed it.

My Updates

  • A New Book! I’m working on my FOURTH self-published work. If you haven’t read any of them, you can find them all on my Instagram shop, here. (The Instagram shop is only available on the app, but you can also click on the links I mention.) It’s going to be called Gently Used. It will be a collection of poetry, just like Lessons i learned when i was older and mind weaving. The other book, the garden boy, is a poetic essay format. I don’t have a timeline for the new one yet, but I’m working on that…
  • Instagram Poetry: I’ve decided to continue my Instagram author page as just a poetry page. I’ve always enjoyed other poets on Instagram, and I think it’s a good way to grow my readership. Do go and follow it if you’re so inclined.

So that’s about it for June. I hope you have a lovely July.

-ellynn ❤

dark academia in real life

If you’re on Pinterest or Tumblr, you have probably seen the “dark academia” aesthetic. I came across a few posts, and I realized that DA is something I’ve been a part of for my whole life. I’d like to explain with a list (because lists are just a part of this blog, and you know it).

  • Reading Alice in Wonderland, deciding I didn’t like the ending, and writing my own where Absolem convinces Hatter to jump through a portal and visit Alice instead
  • Filling notebooks with stickers, receipts, little scraps of pretty fabric or flowers, and any thought that pops into my head
  • Making a cup of tea or coffee when something doesn’t feel right
  • Always focusing better when it’s raining or gloomy outside
  • Loving long walks and picnics
  • Craving second-hand bookstores and thrift shops because I like to imagine the lives of the people who owned the things I purchase there
  • Keeping movie tickets, programs, concert bracelets, and railway cards in a lockbox to preserve the memories
  • A shelf of photo albums from my childhood
  • Late-night research about psychology, ancient architecture, or what it would be like to live in 18th-century London
  • Smiling at animals and calling them beautiful
  • Hearing “mystery of love” by Sufjan Stevens and realizing it’s an anthem for life
  • Planning anything and everything, down to the last detail, but always changing something someone else planned because it’s creative expression
  • My favorite color is dark forest/army green, and most of my room is denim, green, gray, and cozy brown
  • Giving each of my plants names, and some of them represent my friends, so if they aren’t doing well I check on the friend
  • Doing nothing on road trips but listening to classical music and staring out the window
  • Owning more jackets than any other item of clothing
  • Preferring to walk or bike rather than drive
  • Hating crowded places, but liking to watch crowds from a distance to see how other people interact
  • Keeping a frantic, giant mountain of different ideas in my notes app (but very well organized)
  • Hiding polaroids and small objects I find on nature walks in bags and jacket pockets, not finding them till later
  • Owning far too many pens, but organizing them by type… ordering refills of the ones I like
  • Insisting on visiting a city strip mall just so I can examine the Japanese paper in that one stationery store, holding a freshly-purchased notebook to my cheek because the pages are so soft
  • Learning better when I hear something out loud, rather than see or touch it
  • Spending hours staring out my window while clouds gather in the sky and a storm pours over the world
  • Watching the entire Harry Potter series every fall, making some of the foods they have in the Great Hall
  • Feeling guilty about keeping books I love because other people should read them, too
  • Highlighting quotes I love in “Looking for Alaska,” specifically the quote that says “NEVER USE A HIGHLIGHTER IN MY BOOKS!”

I’m going to stop here… but I think I’ll do a part 2 later because I really enjoyed making this list! Comment any dark academia things you do in your life and why you like it. 🙂

–ellynn ❤

my reading list.

Let’s keep the intro short for this one. My 2020 reading list!

  1. Get Your Sh*t Together by Sarah Knight: Honestly, I thought this was a great one to kick off the new year.
  2. The Dark Half by Stephen King: A little horror recommendation by a family member. I watch a lot of horror movies, but I haven’t read any books yet!
  3. People You May Know by Topher Kearby: One of my favorite writers.
  4. Hollow City by Ransom Riggs: I started this series last summer, but for some reason, I didn’t continue…
  5. Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs: The next book in that series. I know there are two more after this, but I’m going to cut it to the second and third.
  6. An Abundance of Katherines by John Green: The only John Green book I haven’t read yet.
  7. Water for Elephants by Sarah Gruen: A gift from a family member! I’m super excited.
  8. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald: Fitzgerald just speaks for himself, doesn’t he?
  9. The Collective by Don Lee: Racism is very much still an issue, and it’s important to read books where the characters don’t look like us and experience different things from us.
  10. The Deepest Roots by Miranda Asebedo: This one was a signed copy that was sent to me!
  11. Leah on the Offbeat by Becky Albertalli: I’ve been meaning to get around to it ever since Simon vs. The Homosapien Agenda.
  12. Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout: Been seeing this one all over my Instagram feed.
  13. The Day is Ready for You by Alison Malee: It’s so important, as a poet, to keep reading other poetry and supporting other authors like myself!
  14. We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: I love Adichie’s writings, and she is just so freaking cool. Also, she wears the most wicked Nigerian fashion. So much love for this woman.
  15. You Are A Bad*** by Jen Sincero: What is it with these profanity-titled self-help books? I want to understand the hype.
  16. The Girl With All the Gifts by M. R. Carey: I’ll be honest, the title just sounds cool.
  17. Call Me by Your Name by André Aciman: A friend of mine was really into this one.
  18. Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg: Always good to read some queer fiction.
  19. My Sister’s Grave by Robert Dugoni: I was made aware of this one through a book talk. Let’s give it a shot!
  20. The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt: Again, another one where the title is cool. Maybe afterward, I’ll watch the movie, but probably not.
  21. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr: I’m not one for historical books, but I simply can’t not read this one, not with all the raving reviews.
  22. Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Carroll: Alice in Wonderland is MY FAVORITE FANTASY WORLD. WHY HAVE I NOT READ THIS YET? AGH!
  23. The Boys Who Woke Up Early by A.D. Hopkins: This is a very old and powerful story that I believe needs to be in my mind.
  24. Catcher by Kalyn Nicholson: My favorite YouTuber! I cannot wait to meet the characters and see what it’s all about.
  25. The College Vegan Cookbook: 145 Affordable, Healthy & Delicious Plant-Based Recipes by Heather Nichols: This one’s obvious, but I’m going vegan in college, so I need some ideas.
  26. Whatever my English class reading is! Last semester, it was The Things They Carried by Tim O’Brien.

There you have it! At this rate, I’ll need to read one book every two weeks. For updates, be sure to keep up with my Instagram!



The Story Behind the Story — Guest Post on!

Meet our Guest Author Rachel Ellynn M. Rachel Ellynn M. is a published poet and author in KCMO. Her next piece becomes available 2.14.20, entitled the garden boy. You can find more writing on her blog and social media. Also you can follow her on the following: Twitter: @rachelellynnm Facebook: @rachelellynnm Instagram: @rachelellynnmauthor Preface The release of my upcoming […]

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