Let’s Chat: Read the Book First or Watch the Movie First?

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After I published my last post with my review of A Simple Favor and saying how I now have zero desire to watch the movie, it got me thinking about books I have read which also happen to have movie versions.

If I read a book that happens to have a movie version, I may or may not then decide to watch the film.  However, one thing that I will ALWAYS do after I finish reading the book is to immediately Google it and watch the movie trailer! Just seeing the casting choices and snippets 99 percent of the time is enough to fulfill my curiosity of how the movie was made (obviously I never do this before I finish reading the book as I avoid spoilers at all costs).

As I’ve mentioned in my list of 100 things that I love…I pretty much hate watching movies and will ALWAYS choose watching a tv show or reading a book for entertainment.  Books and tv trumps movies anytime 🙂

However, if I DO happen to watch the movie version first….there is NO WAY I will then go and read the book!  Never!  I would be much more inclined to watch the movie after reading the book than the other way around although truthfully I usually just do one or the other.

Not to mention (and this should be an obvious statement but I’ll make it anyway), 99 percent of the time the book is better (one of the only exceptions to this rule might be this book but I still haven’t actually seen the movie).  I do plan on doing an entire blog post on this topic soon 🙂

So how about you?  Do you typically read the book or watch the movie version first?  And if you do see the movie first…will you then go and read the book?  I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments!

Xo,

Jenny

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Book Review: A Simple Secret {Darcey Bell}

Do you remember a few weeks ago when I picked up 3 new (to me) books from a generous library donation?  Last week I decided to read one of them and it was AMAZING.  This book review was such an easy one to write because my feelings about this book were so clear cut.  I LOVED IT.  I was so impressed with this debut novel by Darcey Bell and I’m anxiously awaiting future works by this clearly gifted writer.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

It starts with a simple favor—an ordinary kindness mothers do for one another. When her best friend, Emily, asks Stephanie to pick up her son Nicky after school, she happily says yes. Nicky and her son, Miles, are classmates and best friends, and the five-year-olds love being together—just like she and Emily. A widow and stay-at-home mommy blogger living in woodsy suburban Connecticut, Stephanie was lonely until she met Emily, a sophisticated PR executive whose job in Manhattan demands so much of her time.

But Emily doesn’t come back. She doesn’t answer calls or return texts. Stephanie knows something is terribly wrong—Emily would never leave Nicky, no matter what the police say. Terrified, she reaches out to her blog readers for help. She also reaches out to Emily’s husband, the handsome, reticent Sean, offering emotional support. It’s the least she can do for her best friend. Then, she and Sean receive shocking news. Emily is dead. The nightmare of her disappearance is over.

Or is it? Because soon, Stephanie will begin to see that nothing—not friendship, love, or even an ordinary favor—is as simple as it seems.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

5 Stars

From page 1, I was hooked.  This book is AWESOME.  I read it in 3.5 days although if I had the time I could easily have knocked this one out all in one sitting.  There were twists and turns all throughout this story (some I saw coming, some I did not) that kept me interested until the very end.  I loved the writing style, I loved that there weren’t too many characters, I loved that the story wasn’t told from too many perspectives, I loved the twists,  I loved how utterly MESSED UP some of the parts were (I actually felt my eyes widen quite a few times while reading…the sign of an awesome book), I loved it all!

And obviously, I loved that Stephanie (one of the main characters) was a blogger 🙂

I posted about my love for this book on Instagram:

And in the true spirit of paying it forward, I held a giveaway on Facebook for my personal copy of this book to share with someone else in the community:

Congratulations Dianna!!!

As I was reading, I was told there was a movie version of this book starring Blake Lively (Love her, LOVED Gossip Girl) but I reused to watch the trailer as by now you know how I feel about spoilers 🙂  Within 5 minutes of finishing this book, I Googled the trailer…and was completely underwhelmed by what I saw.  Even from watching this 2 minute clip of the movie, I can already tell that there are WAY too many differences from the book!  I know people who loved the movie and people loved the book…but I’m curious as to how they compare.  Have any of you seen the movie AND read the book?  They look so completely different!  Based upon this trailer I have no desire to now watch the movie…

Here is the movie trailer:

Bottom Line:

LOVED.  THIS.  BOOK.  The movie looks to be waaaay too different (not in a good way) from the book!?!?  Why do movie studios do this?!?!  Don’t mess with a great thing!!!  Ugh.

Xo,

Jenny

Did you read this book?  Have you seen the movie?  What did you think?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

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Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

4 Books I Started But Didn’t Care To finish {Part 2}

**You can read 4 Books I Started But Didn’t Care to Finish HERE  and my requirements for deciding when not to finish reading a book I’ve started HERE.**

**This post contains affiliate links (both through the words as well as through the book cover pictures). I receive a small commission if you purchase through any of these links. I obviously wouldn’t recommend buying ANY of these books but if you do…I would be thankful if you could do it through my links, lol 😉**

The Glass Castle: A Memoir

Oh man did I HATE this book.  So many people love it, I was excited to read it, and I absolutely hated it.  Dark, awful, depressing, etc.  I got about 200 pages in before I officially called it quits.  WHY do people love this one so much?!?

Class Mom

Being that I’m the PTO President of my daughter’s school, I thought I would find this book hilarious.  Instead I just found it annoying.

Nineteen Minutes

I honestly don’t even remember details of this book.  I just remember starting it and putting it back down after only a few pages.  This is probably one of those books I should give a second chance, I’ve heard it’s actually really well written???

Pretty Ugly

I randomly stumbled upon this book on a bookshelf at my library and was so excited to read it!  The synopsis sounded great!  I immediately went to the “Quiet Reading Room” (aka my heaven), pulled a chair close to the fireplace, and started reading.  An hour later and a few chapters in, it was time for me to leave the library.  I took this book with me as I exited the room but instead of heading for the check out desk…I headed straight back and placed it on the shelf exactly where I had found it an hour prior.  Hated it.

Have you read any of these books?  Were you able to finish them?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!  What are other titles that you didn’t finish???

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2019 Mid Year Reading Check In

Today is July 1st which means 2019 is officially halfway over!  At the beginning of the year I posted a very small sample from the list of books I was hoping to read in 2019.

*Side note: reading that linked post reminds me that I started 2019 with my poor arm in a sling!  I am so happy to report that 6 months later my elbow is 100 percent back to normal. 🙂 It healed insanely quickly and I’m so thankful!!  I truly didn’t think it would ever heal correctly from that break…omg…*

As for the books, I have done lots of reading so far this year and have read many books not even included on this list!  As for the small sample of books that WERE on my 2019 To Read List, here’s where I currently stand with them:

*This post contains affiliate links. Click each image below to read the synopsis and order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo*

A Spark of Light: Read it.  Loved it.  Read my review HERE.

Becoming: Read it.  Didn’t love it.  Watch my Vlog review HERE.

The Unbreakables: Own it.  Can’t WAIT to read it.  Stay tuned for my review AND a blog giveaway soon!

What if It’s Us: Read it.  LOVED it.  Quite possibly my favorite book of 2019 so far.  Read my review HERE.

One Day in December: Haven’t read it yet…

All Your Perfects: Haven’t read it yet…

Foam on the Crest of Waves: Read it.  Really enjoyed it.  Read my review HERE.

On the Come Up: Read it.  Eh.  Read my review HERE.

The Other Woman: Read it.  Loved it.  Watch my Vlog review HERE.

Maid: Haven’t read it because I need a break from memoirs since I’ve come to realize that I just don’t seem to enjoy the genre (watch my review of Michelle Obama’s book for more on this).  I’ve heard this one is fantastic…I’m just thinking it might not be for me.

Dumplin’: Read it.  Underwhelmed.  Read my review HERE.

Have you read any of these?  If so, NO SPOILERS PLEASE!

How are you doing on your 2019 To Read List?

Xo,

Jenny

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

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#Givereading, What I’m Reading, Giveaway Winner

#Givereading Campaign

I love that I live in a town where promoting and encouraging reading is such a priority.  It was such a glorious surprise to walk past this beautiful display at our local park district building last week to promote the #givereading campaign:

I stood there forever and finally (happily) made my decision.  I walked away with this one…have any of you read it?  I think it sounds great!

I know nothing about it but it’s written by the same author who wrote Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows (affiliate) which has been on my to read list for months.

Thank you so much, Indian Trails Public Library!

What I’m Reading

I’m currently reading this book (affiliate) and I’m enjoying it!  I’m a huge fan of thrift shops, (as well as antique stores, flea markets, etc.)  so it’s fun for me to read about the inner workings of one!

Full review of this book and blog GIVEAWAY for it coming soon!  Stay tuned 🙂

Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All) Giveaway Winner:

Congratulations to Amy (I am 5’4. I would LOVE to add this book to my Social/Emotional curriculum in my first grade class. Perfect read aloud to use for differences and acceptance! I love it!!! Thanks for introducing me to it!!!)!  You won the giveaway!

Please email me (bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com) with your mailing address and the name(s) that you would written in the book’s dedication from the author.  Your copy of Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All)  (affiliate) will be mailed to you ASAP!

Thank you to everyone who entered!  If you didn’t win this one, I have some other fantastic giveaways coming to the blog SOON (see above picture for a spoiler of the next one)!

Happy Friday!  I hope you have a lovely weekend.  Anyone doing anything fun?  I will be spending today floating around in my most favorite pool with one of my most favorite friends.  I’ll post about it in my Instagram stories!

Xo,

Jenny

***INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S BOOK GIVEAWAY*** Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All) {Lori Orlinsky}

Oh do I have an adorable book to give away today!

As I said on Instagram, Lori Orlinsky’s book was delivered to our house at the PERFECT time.  It was like a gift from the heavens above on that dreadful day, lol.  I’m so excited to be hosting an international giveaway for it today!

Full disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book to read and review for my blog.  All opinions are my own.

Giveaway details will be given at the bottom of this post!

I absolutely love this book and so do my kids.  It’s adorable!  The pictures are so cute.  One thing that I am very particular about is how the rhyming and the flow of a children’s book is.  As a former teacher (and now as a mother) reading books aloud is part of my everyday life.  It is so much more enjoyable for both my kids and myself if the rhyming and overall flow of the words is smooth…and this book is a joy to read.

The message of this book is beautiful.  Acceptance of things that cannot be changed is one of the most challenging things for a child to understand.  This book is a beautiful way to help a child understand that acceptance.

I also appreciate that this book finds the “silver lining” in the situation by highlighting all of the positive aspects of being on shorter side.  This is a tactic that I often try to teach my own kids when faced with any problem.  Always looking for the positive aspects of the situation and learning to “turn the situation around” are always such hard concepts to teach.  This book does such a lovely job and sets such a perfect example of how to do this!

I would have loved a copy of this in my classroom when I was a teacher and it would have been one of my favorite read alouds.  Teaching tolerance and social awareness of accepting the differences in others is something that every teacher pursues and this book would have led to such wonderful classroom discussions.  Teachers, your classrooms need a copy of this book!

Fun Height Fact:  I’m 5’1…and my husband is 6’3!

A Conversation with Lori Orlinsky, In Her Own Words:

How did you create the idea for your book?

When my daughter Hayley was 3, she told me she didn’t want to go to school anymore because she was the shortest kid in her preschool class. It turns out, the teachers hung a growth chart on the wall, and while all of Hayley’s friends were at the top and middle of the chart, Hayley’s name was at the bottom, with no other names in sight.  For the first time in her 3 years of life, I saw my outgoing, confident girl feel a sense of shame about the way she looked. I tried to find a book with a short heroine in which she could relate to, but no book on the topic existed, until I wrote “Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All).”

What audience would be most interested in your book?

The book is geared towards babies through elementary school aged children. Despite the title, “Being Small” it isn’t just for short kids – there are wonderful messages in the book about self-confidence, which every child needs to hear in a world filled with bullying. Additionally, the book is also designed to give all children perspective on the power of their words. Told in rhyme, the topics in the book are more approachable, often leading to post-book discussions about self-acceptance and how to recognize and prevent bullying behavior.

Where can your book be purchased?
Online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. It is also available in select Barnes & Noble locations.

Use 3 adjectives to describe your book:

Empowering, inspiring, sweet

Any additional information that you would like to provide about you or your book:

Hayley is now 6 years-old and just graduated from Kindergarten. I truly believe the book has helped her embrace being short. Just last week, we went to the playground, and she was excited to show me the monkey bar flips that only she could do because of her height. I hope this book will make a difference in the lives of other children, too. It is a perfect read for anyone who has ever felt different.

“Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All)” was recently named a Gold Award Recipient of the 2019 Mom’s Choice Awards in the children’s book category. Additionally, the book is a Readers’ Favorite 5-Star Recipient

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***

Do you have a special child in your life who would benefit from learning the beautiful messages taught in this book?
I have 1 autographed and dedicated copy of Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All) to give away! 
If you are located in the US, the hard copy will be mailed to you and if you are located internationally an e-copy will be emailed to you!  

To be entered, please complete these 2 simple steps:

1. Make sure that you are following and/or subscribed to my blog

2. Leave a comment below telling me how tall you are!

**You must complete BOTH of these steps to be eligible for the giveaway and you must complete them here on my blog (not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)**

Giveaway will close tomorrow (Thursday) at 4:00 pm CDT and the winner will be randomly chosen and announced in Friday’s blog post (6/28/19).

Make sure you check the blog on Friday to see if you’ve won (you will have 48 hours from the time I post the winner to email me your mailing address.  If I don’t hear from you within 48 hours, I will pick a new winner).

If you already follow and/or subscribe to my blog, you are still eligible…just leave a comment below to be entered 🙂

Good luck!  Can’t wait to read your comments!

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

1. Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)

2. If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine

3. “Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)

4. Follow me on Instagram

5. Follow me on Twitter

6. Subscribe to my YouTube channel

7. Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.

8. Leaving a positive review on my Facebook page

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

Book Review: The Mother-In-Law {Sally Hepworth}

Before I review Sally Hepworth’s AMAZING new book, The Mother-In-Law, I want to thank all of the bloggers and vloggers who left their links to their websites in the comments on my last post!  I’m still in the process of checking them all out and I’ve already discovered some great new ones 🙂  If you haven’t added your information on that post yet, please do so!

A special welcome to all of my new readers!  I’m so glad you’re here 🙂

*This post contains affiliate links*

The Mother-in-Law was my 3rd Sally Hepworth book that I’ve read. I read The Secrets of Midwives years ago (I thought it was just eh) and last year I read The Family Next Door (you can read my review of that one HERE).  I had been waiting for months to read her newest book, The Mother-in-Law, and it was so worth the wait!

I devoured this book.

Synopsis from Goodreads:

A twisty, compelling novel about one woman’s complicated relationship with her mother-in-law that ends in murder…

From the moment Lucy met her husband’s mother, Diana, she was kept at arm’s length. Diana was exquisitely polite, and properly friendly, but Lucy knew that she was not what Diana envisioned. But who could fault Diana? She was a pillar of the community, an advocate for social justice who helped female refugees assimilate to their new country. Diana was happily married to Tom, and lived in wedded bliss for decades. Lucy wanted so much to please her new mother-in-law.

That was five years ago.

Now, Diana has been found dead, a suicide note near her body. Diana claims that she no longer wanted to live because of a battle with cancer.

But the autopsy finds no cancer.
The autopsy does find traces of poison and suffocation.
Who could possibly want Diana dead?
Why was her will changed at the eleventh hour to disinherit both of her adult children and their spouses?

With Lucy’s secrets getting deeper and her relationship with her mother-in-law growing more complex as the pages turn, this new novel from Sally Hepworth is sure to add to her growing legion of fans.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

4 Stars

I. LOVED. THIS. BOOK.

This review will be a bit difficult to write without giving anything away but I will say that this book was absolutely nothing like I was thinking it would be. Maybe it was because of the title that I just assumed it was going to be a similar read to this book? It was NOTHING like that one although I did enjoy that book as well (for completely different reasons).

I absolutely love when books contain the magic to make you think about your own experiences and relationships with others in different ways and this book absolutely did that for me. I’ve been quite reflective thinking about various relationships in my own life after finishing this book.

The Mother-In-Law had short (some just a handful of pages) chapters which is always my favorite way for books to be written.  I find it’s so much easier to read books this way as I read them at a quicker pace and they hold my attention for longer period of time!

The Mother-In-Law is a beautifully written, thought provoking, fantastic read that will make you look at all of your personal relationships in a different light. Highly recommend.  I haven’t stopped thinking about these characters and their situations since I finished reading 3 days ago.

The reason for my 4 star review was that some of the time frames were a bit confusing, a few character relationships weren’t as developed as they could have been, and the second half of the book was overall so much more captivating than the first.

Another flaw I did notice about this book is the ridiculous amount of screen time the children have! I’m most definitely NOT one of those moms who never allow TV or the iPad but truly it felt like every time a child was in a scene in this book they were attached to some device.  Play!  Talk!  Create!  There are so many things for children to do to entertain themselves…devices shouldn’t be the only answer.

(And on a side note which has nothing to do with this book…don’t even get me started on seeing children on devices while sitting at tables in restaurants and completely tuning out all of the social situations surrounding them.  MY. BIGGEST. PET. PEEVE).

I digress…

Even with the few flaws that I did find with this book, it’s overall so wonderfully written and fantastic!

A beautiful book.

Did you catch Sally Hepworth on the Today Show last week?  She’s adorable!

Bottom Line:

Read this.  Today.  And then take a step back and look carefully at how you perceive the others around you.

Be sure to check the blog on Wednesday for a GIVEAWAY of an ADORABLE book! 🙂

Xo,

Jenny

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  Have you read others by Sally Hepworth? I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

1. Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)

2. If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine

3. “Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)

4. Follow me on Instagram

5. Follow me on Twitter

6. Subscribe to my YouTube channel

7. Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.

8. Leaving a positive review on my Facebook page

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo