Thoughts on The Deathly Hallows & the Harry Potter Series Overall

In case you are not a frequent visitor of my blog and thus unaware, I spent the latter part of last year and the early part of this year reading all the Harry Potter books and watching all the Harry Potter movies for the first time ever. I have really enjoyed my experience and am so happy that now I understand all HP references and don’t have to worry any more about spoilers!

I wanted to discuss briefly my feelings on Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, book and movies, and then give a bit of a recap on my feelings of the series overall.

deathlyhallowsOn the Thursday I intended to start reading The Deathly Hallows, I got some bad news that ended up kind of working out for me. I felt pretty terrible the night before, and woke up feeling not significantly better, so I decided to go to a walk-in clinic. I ended up testing positive for strep throat and was instructed to stay home for the next two days. So while I didn’t feel so great, and would have rather been at work than not feeling good, after taking my first antibiotic and a quick nap, I was feeling well enough to start reading.

And in my time home sick, I devoured this book. A book that would have normally taken two weeks to read over my lunch breaks took me just slightly over 2 days at home (a friend of mine told me recently that he read this book in 4 hours, and I pretty much hate him for that because I don’t even know how that’s humanly possible). So while I wonder if I might have had a problem with all that camping out had I taken my time to read this book, I had no problem with it while reading it in large chunks. In fact, I really never wanted to put the book down. I was completely engaged and wanted to know exactly what was going to happen.

Truly, all the fantastic character moments in this book was what I had been waiting the whole series for. Everyone who’s read Harry Potter talks about how much they love the characters, and while reading this book I completely understood why. I don’t even know how to express in words my strong love for Hermione, Luna, and Neville now, but I think you guys understand. And I had somehow (thankfully) been spared of details of how it all went down between Harry and Voldemort, and all I can say is WOW.

And the movies? They were near flawless. Seriously, again, these were the Harry Potter movies I had been waiting for! I gave them both 4.5 stars, which considering I pretty much only give a movie 5 stars if I know it’s going to be one of my absolute faves, is pretty dang good. There were a lot less changes, and the ones they had didn’t bother me. Like that scene of Harry and Hermione dancing? LOVE. And that cute Neville and Luna thing? Oh yeah, you know the director totally shipped them (me too!).

luna-nevilleI will voice one opinion I have that will not be popular. I still don’t really get the Snape thing. I will say, I thought I could never forgive him or find him redeemable and actually found myself doing so (but he was still a bullying jerk to Harry and it was not cool), so that’s not “the Snape thing” I’m referring to. It’s referring mostly to these famous lines…

After all this time?


When I read those words I was like, “Wait? What?” I was confused as heck. He’s just cast a Patronus and is talking to Dumbledore. This exchange made literally no sense to me. I had a hunch, and it was right, but until it was spelled-out I felt myself frustrated for reading these famous lines and not feeling whatever it was I was supposed to feel. So just that moment being over-hyped kind of made me not care for it much. And really, why does this surprise Dumbledore? It’s clear Snape isn’t Harry’s number one fan, and that his motivation to care about him at all in the first place would still be in tact otherwise he would have pulled the ripcord and gone back to Voldemort the second he had the chance.

All in all though, I was extremely satisfied with the series. The ending was pretty close to perfection. I understand all the love, it’s well deserved. Bravo, J.K., bravo.

Overall assessment…

My ranking of the books:

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (5 stars)

2. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (5 stars)

3. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban  (4.5 stars)

4. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (4.5 stars)

5. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (4.5 stars)

6. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (4 stars)

7. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (3.5 stars)

My ranking of the movies:

1. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Parts 1 and 2 (4.5 stars for both)

2. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (4 stars)

3. Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (4 stars)

4. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (4 stars)

5/6. (tie) Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone/Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (I don’t remember the differences enough to choose one over the other) (3.5 stars for both)

7. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (3 stars)

And then of course, like everyone else, I have fantasized about living in Harry’s world, going to Hogwarts, and all that jazz. After I finished the book I signed up for Pottermore solely for to get my official House Sorting. I knew it was between Ravenclaw and Hufflepuff, and I had even taken an “are you a Ravenclaw or Hufflepuff quiz” shortly before and gotten Ravenclaw, but the Sorting Hat spoke and…


Even before I read the series I was aware of the Hufflepuff hate, so this sorting made me a little less excited than I feel it should have. I mean, Hufflepuffs are good people. They are loyal and hardworking. For some reason people don’t like that. Cedric was a good guy. So, whateves. I’ll claim it.

Also: like half the reason why I wanted to be Ravenclaw so I could be BFF’s with Luna, which I think ironically just proves I’m probably more Hufflepuff.

What are your thoughts on The Deathly Hallows book and movies? Who are your favorite characters? Which house do you belong in? 

Mini Book & Movie Reviews: Fairest, The Half-Blood Prince, and The Theory of Everything

The Books


This backstory on Queen Levena was certainly illuminating. You can understand why, with the family that she has, that she would turn out so twisted, but that certainly does not excuse what she does. What she did to Evret Hayle made me extremely uncomfortable, and I was so sad for him and Winter and everyone else who was really involved. It was also really interesting though to see how everything tied in, and I think that helped me enjoy this book a little more. I think this is definitely an interesting addition to The Lunar Chronicles and have to hand it to Marissa Meyer for not pulling any punches with Levena’s character.

Rating: 4 stars

Harry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince

So I rated this one 4.5 stars on Goodreads, and I stand by that rating, but this has been one of the more forgettable books for me so far I think. I mean, what happens? Going to class, SNOGGING (I hate that word so much, especially since it sounds make up, but I guess it’s British?), Harry trying to spy on Malfoy, more snogging, Dumbledore sessions, and then SADNESS. Yeah, I had not been spoiled on that so I did not see that coming.

Ron was ridiculous in this book. I mean, I know he’s a teenage boy but wow, I wanted to rattle him. And then Ginny. I thought I was supposed to like Ginny? Actually, I did like her in the end and what she says to Harry, but I don’t like the Ginny who makes out in public and yells at Ron about it and just acts annoying. I was thinking what the heck does Harry see in her? And not only that, but I don’t feel Harry having feeling for her, I’m just told that he does. I’m not buying into the Harry-Ginny or the Ron-Hermione romances the way I hoped I would.

But I adore Luna. And I did like this book, overall, it just mostly feels like another stepping stone to the grand finale.

Rating: 4.5 stars

The Movies

minireviews-hptheoryHarry Potter and The Half-Blood Prince

This is definitely my second favorite movie of the series so far now, as I felt it did a much better job of sticking with the highlights and not making too many unnecessary changes, except for a couple of glaring exceptions. First, what the heck was with them burning the Weasleys’ house?! And then that’s it, no follow up?! Maybe it will make sense to me later, but right now I’m just perplexed. That’s a big thing to just add in there! And then of course there’s Ginny…

I’ve seen where a lot of people complain about movie Ginny, which at first I wasn’t understanding, because, as I mentioned before, I found her kind of annoying in the book, and she seemed sweet in the movies, including this one… UNTIL IT GOT WEIRD. What was with her in the Room of Requirement when she’s like, “Close your eyes,” and kissing Harry and “I can stay if you’d like me to.” I mean, really?! That was the weirdest crap ever.

But I loved that scene with Harry and Hermione when she asks Harry how it feels to see Ginny with Dean, and he responds to her crying, “Like this.” So sweet. And I liked Luna saving Harry in the beginning, not that I had a problem with Tonks doing it in the book, but this way we got less Snape and more Luna. (I HATE THAT MAN.)

Rating: 4 stars

The Theory of Everything

This movie was not what I expected. No doubt that Eddie Redmayne did a phenomenal job playing Stephen Hawking, but I felt very hollow at the end. I didn’t feel I really got the “point” of the movie, and all the triumph in Hawking outliving his life expectancy is overshadowed by the brokenness of his family. If you’re expecting this movie to simply be a feel-good love story of Stephen and Jane and how they deal with Stephen’s conditions, then you’ll find yourself as disappointed as I was. This story ends with the deterioration of their marriage, which made me just feel sad for them, even more so than the diagnosis had.

Rating: 3.5 stars

What are your thoughts on any of these books and/or movies?

Double Book & Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

The Book

gr-orderofthephoenixSo I had heard a couple of people mention this isn’t exactly their favorite of the series, one stating there was something that actually made her upset enough that she didn’t read the last two books until years later. On the flip side, I knew someone else say this book was their favorite of the series. Needless to say, I wasn’t sure what to expect exactly, but I was a little nervous.

Most of the book felt pretty typical of Harry Potter, but not in quite the same blase way The Chamber of Secrets did. Harry has a terrible time at the Dursley’s and has no clue what’s going on in the wizard world. Harry nearly gets in trouble but Dumbledore saves him. We meet a new professor, Umbridge, who is awful and I hate her. We meet Luna Lovegood (finally, I’ve been oddly fascinated about meeting her), and we get some more of Cho and Ginny and Neville and Fred and George and others.

Then there’s the point before the climax where things aren’t looking good, our characters take a journey, are thrust into the climax which is pretty dramatic, but for some reason I didn’t quite feel it as much as I would have expected. I think I can blame this at least partially on the time I was reading these scenes, particularly that I didn’t get to read this part all at once, so that probably hurt more than any of the actual writing. And then, that thing that made me nervous even though I didn’t know what it would be until it happened HAPPENED and that kind of shocked me and then once it sunk in for me the way it did for Harry I was just so incredibly sad. Especially when Harry opens that package at the end and you realize so much could have been avoided and it sort of bothers me he doesn’t even acknowledge that himself, but then again maybe it’s for the better he doesn’t think of it? But it bothered me.

And then what is up with Dumbledore? I can’t decide if it’s a character flaw or an author flaw that he didn’t tell Harry ALL THE THINGS at the end of book 3. That really would have been the time. How much of this did Rowling have planned out in advance? I have no idea. I almost felt like Dumbledore was like, “Please excuse my dumbness, but two books ago I honestly had no idea the story was going to turn out this way.” But I don’t know, maybe she really wanted Dumbledore to mess up that badly. I mean, people do that. It just stinks, especially when you think they’re so wise.

Anyhow, I did enjoy it overall, but so far it is my second least favorite. Based on what I hear, that’s probably where it will stay. I’ve been trying to decide between a 4 and a 4.5… and I think I’ve finally settled on 4 stars.


The Movie

orderofthephoenixI didn’t enjoy this movie as much as The Goblet of Fire, but I did enjoy it more than the first three. The changes are still there, but I think I’ve become a bit more forgiving of them. And again, the direction in this one was mostly pretty good, though I didn’t love the beginning scene with Dudley and Harry. This one was also shorter than the others, so it almost felt too short, even though I don’t think it actually was.

The only specific thing I really wanted to mention about the movie was that I think the actress who played Luna did a great job. And I love that added scene of her and Harry in the forest.

4stars2What are your thoughts on Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix (book and/or movie)?

Double Book & Movie Review: Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

As you may recall, I am reading Harry Potter FOR THE FIRST TIME and then watching the corresponding movie after each book. So far, I really enjoyed books 1 & 3, thought 2 was decent but felt it suffered from being formulaic, and that I have not been overly thrilled with any of the movie adaptations, but the third has been my least favorite of those so far.

Now I have great news: So far, The Goblet of Fire is my favorite Harry Potter book AND movie!


The Book

gr-goblet-of-fireThis is when the books start getting long, 700+ pages, and I can’t deny that it was intimidating (my longest read last year was 562 pages). However, I hoped with a longer book we would get a lot more details and action. I won’t say that 700+ pages delivered significantly more than the previous books with only 300ish pages in terms of how much happened (well, before the really intense stuff, obviously), but the pacing was usually on point (I did find it lagging or sort of odd in a few spots), and I did like the development. And just like Azkaban, those last few chapters were like OMGOMGOMG for me. I mean seriously, when a certain person met a certain fate and crap was going down I’m pretty sure I said something out loud, like WHAT, or ARE YOU SERIOUS, or who knows what, but the point is I was really into it. It was the point I feel I have been waiting for, that turning point in the series everyone talks about. The book has some flaws, but I really loved this story and just devoured that ending.

5stars2Also, Hermione is still my favorite. She’s so much more reasonable than everyone else.

hermione-gobletoffireThe Movie

gobletoffireThank goodness, finally, the script didn’t feel strange! There were several added lines that were seriously funny, I liked the addition of more Neville, the omission of the house elves and their subplot, and the things that were changed or condensed actually made sense this time (except I think we could have used a few more minutes of The World Cup and The Dark Mark stuff at the beginning. I like that we skipped the Dursleys entirely though!).

You know what else didn’t feel strange? The directing! I think maybe only once I thought someone was staged awkwardly, and it was far less egregious than the previous movies.  I mean seriously, despite my production background, I only think about the direction of a movie/show if it truly stands out, either for being awful or for being great, and the Harry Potter movies have made me think way too much about directing in a not good way. Until now, finally. I know the director changes yet again so I hope I will be as happy with the last few films as I was with this one. At the very least, maybe the screenwriter is finally getting the hang of adapting the books to script.

I will say that this movie gets a 4 for being a worthy adaptation, but I feel I can’t give it higher since it can’t replace the book and I don’t know how many times I would rewatch it on its own.4stars2Alright, The Order of the Phoenix is next, about an extra 100 pages, and I know stuff is just going to keep going down. Bring on the action, the drama, and the teenage angst (seriously, these kids are starting to get moody)!

What are your thoughts on The Goblet of Fire (book and/or movie)?

Movie Reviews: The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies & Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban

The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

hobbit_the_battle_of_the_five_armiesposterThe Hobbit simply should not have been made into three movies. One would have sufficed, two at most. Three was just ridiculous.

I had some big problems with the second movie, mainly the overly-dramatic and poorly produced barrel escape scene and the ridiculous “cliffhanger” ending that cut the movie off before a climax even hit. The third movie is just a continuation of the overblown nature of the trilogy, but at least it does not have as many frustrating moments.

The movie begins with what easily could have been and should have been the ending of the second movie. Within 10 to 15 minutes, we finally see Smaug meet his demise. And then the rest of the movie carries on with a completely different tone. Dear Editor of The Hobbit Trilogy, why in the heck couldn’t you have cut a few minutes from movie 2 and included the first 10 minutes of this movie at the end of the last movie? Signed, Everyone. It makes no sense.

I feel at least an hour and a half (but possibly more) of this 144 minute long movie was battle sequences. I usually get bored with non-stop action/fighting sequences within 20 minutes, so kudos to Peter Jackson for actually keeping me engaged in these fighting sequences, but I have to say I would be surprised if I will retain such interest upon a rewatch of the film.

And then there’e that dang love triangle again that is crazy ridiculous…

And in the end, this movie did not leave me with the same satisfaction as The Return of the King. It was just a showy display of CGI (it’s not as bad in this movie as it was in the second, but the LOTR movies seriously look better than The Hobbit movies do) and drawn-out storytelling. It has its good moments, but for the love of New Zealand and second breakfast, don’t do this to us again, Peter Jackson.

Rating: I gave this one 3.5 stars on Letterboxd, but I think I felt obligated to do so because that’s what I rated the second one and this one made me less upset. I’ll have to rewatch both before I can determine if both ratings hold up.

Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry-Potter-and-the-Prisoner-of-Azkaban-movie-posterThough at first I thought this book felt too much like the first two (especially considering everyone said this was the book where the series got better), the ending certainly set-up for something more promising. I was less than impressed with the way the first two movies adapted the book, and was hoping with the change in direction would come a better adaptation. Um, not so much. If anything, the direction was MORE awkward.

It’s like Alfonso Cuarón knows nothing about how to stage a scene. (But a look at his IMDB credits shows he directed well-regarded films such as Children of Men and Gravity, though I haven’t seen either of these so I can’t attest to them.) Maybe they just gave him super crappy sets to work with? (All the sets before Hogwarts did look super crappy. The Dursley’s house did not even look like the same place to me.) And the screenplay was again very awkward in which parts were omitted from the film (like there is no zero explanation about Buckbeak’s trial, Hagrid just suddenly talks about it). Unfortunately, it looks like Steve Kloves writes the screenplays for all the movies.

And while I think Gary Oldman is a great actor, his portrayal of Sirius Black felt way off base. I was very unhappy with the way he came off, and the epic stand-off in the book fell so flat in the movie. Then there was the movie ending on a ridiculous freeze frame of Harry… that alone deserves at least half a star knocked off the rating.

And what was up with The Knight Bus sequence? It felt totally bizarre and nothing like the book. And all those shrunken heads? Where the heck did that come from?!

I don’t hate everything about this movie… I still like our main three characters in the movie, particularly Hermione. I just really hope with the next movie and another change in director, maybe Goblet of Fire will launch a better era in Harry Potter adaptations? (Just looked at the next director’s resume… hmmm… not sure about that either…)

Rating: 3 stars

What are your thoughts on the ending of The Hobbit Trilogy? How do you feel about how The Prisoner of Azkaban was adapted? 

Harry Potter Mini Reviews

Movies: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone and Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets 

harrypottermovies1&2While overall I liked the first two movies well enough, I do hope they get better. They’re not bad, but they are only pretty fair adaptations in my opinion. I don’t mind changes that help speed things along, but I hate completely unnecessary changes, some are even downright awkward, like Draco and Harry having their first encounter in front of everyone instead of on the train. I noticed the director changes after the second movie, however, so maybe I will like the next director’s way of doing things better. A lot of the direction felt inconsistent, with moments that felt well-done like the invisibility cloak, but then there would be simple scenes, like in the second movie when Harry and Ron are hiding from Dumbledore, Mr. Malfoy, etc. in Hagrid’s cabin and the whole scene was just so poorly staged. I do like the actors and actresses though, but of course I’ve known of who was who in the cast for years now, so I already feel familiar with them. I’m also looking forward to continue watching them grow up (even between the first two movies Harry had a growth-spurt and poor Ron was going through puberty!).

Book: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

harry-potter-new-chamber-of-secretsSee my review of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone here

I don’t have too much to say about Chamber of Secrets, especially since I waited too long after reading this book to start writing this review, but it felt a little too much like it was trying to stick with the formula of the first book, and it didn’t really introduce very many new elements or character insights. I did, however, really like the chapters we got where Harry spent time with Ron’s family. It was nice to get more of Ron’s mom and to meet his dad, and I’m looking forward to more reading about the Weasleys (all of them!) in the future books. I’m surprised by how quickly Hermione was fine with breaking the rules (even suggesting it!), but I guess after everything that went down in the first book she realized things could get pretty serious at Hogwart’s. But still, why don’t these kids ever just tell the adults what’s going on?! But as mentioned before, I’m still really looking forward to continuing the series.

What are your thoughts on the first two Harry Potter movies and on The Chamber of Secrets book? 

Book Review: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

In case you’ve been living underneath a trapdoor guarded by a 3-headed dog, or you know, are just new to my blog, you should know that before August I HAD NEVER READ A HARRY POTTER BOOK.

harry-potterWell, this has now been remedied and I can gladly say that I really enjoyed the first installment and look forward to reading more!

HARRY-POTTER-AND-THE-SORCERERS-STONEI knew that the first book of the series was going to feel a bit younger than my usual fare, and though I am glad I have these expectations, I think I would have been fine just expecting what I normally get from reading YA. Yes, it does feel younger, but there is so much richness in the story itself that helps you look over the more simplistic writing style. And simplistic writing generally does not bother me as long as I can get into the story. I was also told that the story doesn’t really pick up until book 3, but what I was hoping to see in this book was potential for the epicness everyone talks about when they talk about Harry Potter, and I did see that.

The World-Building

I think J.K. Rowling did a very good job of establishing how the world of wizardry works within the world we work, and everything unfolded very naturally as Harry is learning along with us. I really loved reading about Diagon Alley and the different shops there specifically for wizard things.

The Characters

I know how much everyone loves the characters of Harry Potter, (particularly Harry, Ron and Hermione) and while I didn’t connect with them on some amazing deep level, again, I definitely saw the potential of connecting with them more and more as the series goes on and they face new challenges and grow older. I mean, they’re 11 in this first book. It’s been a long time since I was 11. But I liked them and I look forward to experiencing this journey with them. And I could definitely relate to Hermione the perfectionist, though she’s even more anal than I was in school! hermione


Hogwarts itself is a pretty awesome setting, and I know everything in the books won’t take place there, but I’m looking forward to spending more time there! More Quidditch matches, please; what an interesting sport!

The Story

In addition to an interesting world and likable characters, the story also kept me engaged. And I have to say, I was just surprised as Harry at the end when he realized what exactly was going on! I was always excited to pick up the book and dig deeper into the storyline.

Overall, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone met all my expectations and did not disappoint me! It definitely felt like a beginning and it did not have quite the awe of a 5 star book, but I was extremely satisfied with my first time reading it and feel it deserves a solid 4.5 stars!

4-5stars-editTell me your favorite thing about Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone! Or share your experience with reading the book for the first time. Or if you haven’t read Harry Potter yet either, did I pique your interest? 

The Top 10 Things on my Bookish Bucket List

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Today’s topic is Top Ten Things On My Bookish Bucket List. According to the ladies of The Broke and the Bookish, this may include things like meeting authors, reading x many books per year, finishing a daunting book, etc. This week’s list is in no particular order.

1. Meet Marissa Meyer

marissa-meyerThere are several authors I like and would enjoy meeting. But since Marissa Meyer is really becoming my favorite “current” author, I’d have to say she’s the author I’d definitely geek out/fangirl over the most if I had the chance to meet her, and I really hope to have the opportunity some day!

2. Visit a Hunger Games filming location

HenryRiver4When my husband and I went to Asheville last year, I looked into tours that took you around the District 12 village that was set up for The Hunger Games movie. Unfortunately, it just wasn’t going to work out for that trip, but since both the Asheville area (where they shot the first movie) and Atlanta (where they shot a lot of Catching Fire) are both very attainable drives for us, I hope I can visit some of these set locations sometime.

3. Finish Les Miserables… preferably this year

les-miserables-bookI started reading Les Miserables at the beginning of the year with the intention of reading small snippets at a time, hopefully finishing it by the end of the year. Well, I am reading it, and I do think it’s very good, but it’s hard to for me to read too many chapters in one sitting because of the way it’s written. And let’s just say at my current pace I am not set to finish by the end of the year. But maybe I can pick things up. Or maybe I’ll finish next year…

4. Read Harry Potter

harry-potter-seriesYes, I know. We’ve already discussed this. Let’s move on.

5. Read Lord of the Rings

LOTR111I’m crazy intimidated by this classic trilogy, but I want to read it.

6. Become a Published Author

snoopy-writerMy ULTIMATE bookish goal!

7. Take an archery lesson so I can feel like Katniss for a day

katniss-archerI think this is self-explanatory.

8. Read ALL of C.S. Lewis’ books

cslewisbooksSo I’d like to consider C.S. Lewis my favorite author of all time, but can I do that without having read all his books? So far I’ve read all of The Chronicles of Narnia and Till We Have Faces cover to cover, and I’ve read snippets of The Screwtape Letters and several of his nonfiction books. I own The Screwtape Letters and Mere Christianity, and let’s not forget that Lewis also wrote a space trilogy. Needless to say, I have a long way to go, but everything I’ve read by him so far I have enjoyed.

9. Read to my future children

bedtime-story2This seems like a really simplistic thing to say, but I’m sure it’s harder to put into action. I would like to tuck my kids into bed every night possible, and again, whenever possible, I want to carve out the time to read to them/with them. I think instilling books into a child’s life is important, and of course it is a great way to spend quality time with your child. I hope I will put this into practice one day.

10. Read all 6 of Jane Austen’s novels

jane-austen-booksI’m already halfway through with this item, and plan to continue reading one Austen novel a year until I’m finished.

What’s on your bookish bucket list?