Weekend Plans: Printer’s Row Lit Fest

This weekend marks the 35th anniversary of the Printer’s Row Lit Fest and I can’t WAIT  to attend!

You can learn more about the Printer’s Row Lit Fest HERE.

The Printer’s Row Lit Fest prides itself on being the “largest free outdoor showcase in the Midwest” and it’s AWESOME.  On Sunday I will be taking myself on a special date downtown and will spend the day meeting authors, browsing books, listening to speakers, watching demonstrations, and so much more all in my very favorite city (Chicago).  I wonder what treasures I will come home with?!? As a bonus, the Midwest Writer’s Association and the Windy City Historians will have a tent and I’m excited to stop by and say hi (read about the first time I met these lovely groups of people HERE).

Check out this video to see Lit Fest highlights from 2 years ago:

The last time I attended the Printer’s Row Lit Fest was in 2004 and I absolutely loved it.  My best friend and I went specifically to listen to Julie Andrews speak about her new children’s book that had recently been released.  I am a HUGE Julie Andrews fan (The Sound of Music is hands down one of my all time favorite movies) and listening to her speak was pure magic.  I cried. 🙂 I’ll never forget the kids in the front row holding up a poster that read “Please be our nanny!”  So, so cute.

I will write a recap blog post all about the Printer’s Row Lit Fest once I’m back but if you would like to follow along on my adventure, I will be posting live to my Instagram stories throughout the day on Sunday!

I’m A Chef and My Kids Want Buttered Noodles Giveaway Winner:

Thank you to everyone who entered the I’m A Chef and My Kids Want Buttered Noodles Giveaway!

Congratulations Jana H (My absolute favorite meal is crab cakes! I’d love to check out some new recipes!)!  Please email me your mailing address to bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com!  Enjoy your new cookbook 🙂

If you didn’t win this one….fear not!  I have some wonderful giveaways scheduled throughout the summer.  Stay tuned 🙂

What are your plans this weekend?  Anything exciting?  Are any of you going to Lit Fest?  If you do and happen to see me there…please come say hi!  I’ll be the one aimlessly walking around with a gigantic smile on my face.  I’m so excited!

Xo,

Jenny

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

Cookbook Giveaway: I’m A Chef and my Kids Want Buttered Noodles {Heath Schecter}

I have such a fun book giveaway for you today…a cookbook!

This blog has awarded me with the unique opportunity to meet so many authors.  I’ve read such lovely books and have met such lovely people.  It has been an amazing experience, that’s for sure!

But today is a brand new experience for me.  Today, I get to review my FRIEND’S book!

I’ve known Heath for years.  His sister, Becca, has been a really close friend of mine since the day we met at overnight camp.  Her and I have been through it all…side ponytails, overalls, and our favorite show “My So-Called Life”…anyone else LOVE that show as much as her and I did?!?  Becca has the cutest family…check out and subscribe to their YouTube channel HERE!  Love you so much, Becca 🙂

Heath married Becca’s sister and we now live about 2 minutes from each other.  When he first wrote his cookbook back in 2017, my husband and I bought our copy immediately!  We love it!

Fun Fact: My husband is a HUGE fan of Heath’s cooking.  For Jon’s 40th birthday, I hired Heath to come to my house and cook a 5 course MEAT dinner for Jon and his best friend.  Both men declared that dinner that Heath cooked to be one of the best meals they have ever had.  A huge success!

You can see Heath in action in this link to an awesome news segment that he filmed a few months ago:

Midday Fix: Hangover Help Recipe from Chef Heath Schecter

I’m both honored and excited to share his awesome cookbook with all of you today!

The book itself is gorgeous.  It’s filled with beautiful, colorful pictures and has so many interesting and unique recipes.  It includes starters, soups & salads, main courses, sous vide cooking, desserts, sides, sauces, seasonings, and so much more!

This chef knows his stuff.  You should have smelled my kitchen when he came over to cook for Jon and his friend…DELICIOUS.

This book would make a perfect Father’s Day gift or any gift!  It’s a fantastic addition to any kitchen.  We love our copy and know that you will, too 🙂

A Conversation with Heath Schecter, in His Own Words:

How did you create the idea for your book?

When my photographer friend, Garry Rosenfeldt, asked to take chef pictures of me. When he did, one of the pictures looked like it would be a great photo for a book. Over the years, as a chef, I have created a lot of recipes. Over those years, my kids wouldn’t really eat most of the food I created. So, having this picture and all these recipes, I decided I’d write a cookbook. I needed a title and figured I’d create a title based off my experience of cooking all these dishes and my kids not wanting any of it, and just wanting buttered noodles, or chicken fingers, etc.

What audience would be most interested in your book?

I think the audience for my cookbook would be anyone that likes to cook. I tried to write the recipes so that anyone could reproduce them.

Where can your book be purchased?

You can find the book on Amazon

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

This isn’t a cookbook filled with recipes for kids. These are a collection of recipes I have created over the years. It is filled with a bunch of different dishes that should satisfy all palates.

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***

I have 1 autographed copy of I’m a Chef and My Kids Want Buttered Noodles to give away (US only for this giveaway)!

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 describing your favorite meal!

**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 (6/7/19).

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

My #1 Must Have Book Accessory

I am a true minimalist and hate owning unnecessary items (don’t even get me started on the baby industry and how many unnecessary things parents feel they need to own to care for their babies. So ridiculous).

When it comes to reading, I truly feel there are only 4 things one NEEDS to have to achieve the perfect reading experience.

1. A book (obvi)

2. A delicious cup of coffee

3. A delicious smelling candle

And….

4. A BOOKLIGHT.

Thank God for booklights.

At the end of a long day, relaxing in bed with a book is the perfect activity.  Reading calms me and helps to pave the way for a peaceful night of sleep.  Unfortunately, I am married to someone who cannot fall asleep with the light on (lame) and so booklights are an absolute necessity for me.

I am often the first person awake in my house long before the sun rises (yup…I’m often the last one to fall asleep and the first one to rise over here). Nothing better than waking up and reading a few chapters before the craziness of the day begins. Booklight to the rescue!

Whenever I go on vacation, my trusty booklight is high on my list of items to pack. I could never travel without it (apparently unless my destination is here where relaxing with a book is virtually impossible).  Late at night or first thing in the morning reading in the same hotel room as my sleeping family? Booklight for the win!

Here is my old, broken, and yet completely perfect and lovely booklight:

(Slooooowly still making my way through How to Find Love in a Bookshop.  My full review will be posted when I finally finish)!

The backing has long since broken off and the entire thing is currently being held together by painters tape. Adds to her charm 🙂

The one I have has led lights which are both a blessing and a curse. This baby is BRIGHT. As in, if it’s mistaking pointed at my sleeping husband he is immediately woken up (and momentarily blinded. Oops). It can truly light up our entire bedroom which is crazy…and yet amazing!

I bought mine on Amazon many years ago and it came in a pack of 4. I’m not sure why anybody would need 4 booklights and I gladly gave 2 of them away to 2 fellow bookloving friends of mine (Hi Julie and Beth!). I don’t believe the exact ones I bought are still available but here is one that looks awesome (AND you can apparently adjust the brightness level so you won’t momentarily blind your spouse!  Sorry Jon…)

Do you read with a booklight? 

I’d love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

Be sure to check the blog on Wednesday…I’ve got a super fun (and different) giveaway for you!

Xo,

Jenny

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 (search Book Coffee Happy)

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 this booklight through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

 

Book Review: Dumplin’ {Julie Murphy}

This book had been on my radar for months…I couldn’t wait to read and review it!

Synopsis From Goodreads:

Self-proclaimed fat girl Willowdean Dickson (dubbed “Dumplin’” by her former beauty queen mom) has always been at home in her own skin. Her thoughts on having the ultimate bikini body? Put a bikini on your body. With her all-American beauty best friend, Ellen, by her side, things have always worked…until Will takes a job at Harpy’s, the local fast-food joint. There she meets Private School Bo, a hot former jock. Will isn’t surprised to find herself attracted to Bo. But she is surprised when he seems to like her back.

Instead of finding new heights of self-assurance in her relationship with Bo, Will starts to doubt herself. So she sets out to take back her confidence by doing the most horrifying thing she can imagine: entering the Miss Clover City beauty pageant—along with several other unlikely candidates—to show the world that she deserves to be up there as much as any twiggy girl does. Along the way, she’ll shock the hell out of Clover City—and maybe herself most of all.

With starry Texas nights, red candy suckers, Dolly Parton songs, and a wildly unforgettable heroine—Dumplin’ is guaranteed to steal your heart.

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)

3 Stars

I’m so torn with my review of this book. I REALLY wanted to love it. It has everything in terms of story line that a great book should have. Interesting characters? Check. Interesting story line? Check.

And yet…eh. I found this whole book just fell flat.

If the story had really focused on the pageant and everything leading up to it as the synopsis promises, it would have been so much better. However, the majority of this book focused on a teenager’s day-to-day life which I found boring.

Also, this book has WAY too many characters and WAY too many story lines. None of the characters even had a chance to become fully developed and therefore became unforgettable and interchangeable as the story went on. I also found the majority of these characters to be very unlikable! The only characters I truly liked in the entire book were Mitch (and Lucy).

The main character (Willowdean) was extraordinarily judgmental of other people (and obviously of herself) which is ironic since the entire premise of this book is about breaking through stereotypes.

I found her relationship with her best friend to be obsessive and unhealthy.  I get that we are viewing this relationship through the eyes of a (dramatic) teenager but still…it bothered me that she felt she NEEDED this relationship to feel whole.  In fact, I believe she even made this exact comment in this story!

I had one MAJOR issue with this story which I will say in the comments because it’s also a major spoiler 🙂

However, in between the parts of the book where I found fault, I also found beauty.  There ARE beautiful and important messages, lessons, and moments delivered throughout this story.  Unfortunately, combined with all of the reasons stated above, this book just wasn’t nearly as great as I was expecting it to be.

There is a sequel to this book which unfortunately I have zero desire to read. Ugh! I really thought I was going to love both of these books!  I have already returned both to the library.  Sad.

But here’s the weird thing…The trailer for the movie looks AMAZING. Could this possibly be one of those rare occurrences where the movie is better than the book??? Check out the movie trailer starring Jennifer Aniston:

Looks so amazing, right?!?  Have any of you seen it?  I would love to hear your thoughts.  If any of you have read the book AND have seen the movie, I’m really wondering how they compare?

Bottom Line:

If the movie is truly as wonderful as the trailer makes it out to be, I say skip the book and just watch the movie.  And I NEVER say that.

Foam on the Crest of Waves Giveaway Winners:

Thank you so much to everyone who entered the Foam on the Crest of Waves Giveaway!

Hard Copy Winner:

Melissa A (I am subscribed via my blog account (chicklitcentral). I just went to Miami a few weeks ago and loved the beach there! I used to go to Pompano Beach (also in FL) every year as a kid and that also brings back great memories. I live in the US. Hard copy preferred. Thanks for the chance!)

E-Book Winners (There were so many entries for the hard copy but only 3 for the e-books! So…congratulations to all 3 of you!):

Kelley Blair (My favorite beach is Ocean Isle in North Carolina. I am USA and either hard copy or e-book works for me. Thank you kindly.)

Melissa Strader  (This sounds like a great book! I already follow your blog and love reading it! My favorites beaches are located along the coast of La Jolla, CA – so much to see and do there, not just water activities, but also restaurants and shopping and biking. Kayaking the Sea Caves is the best! I’m ok with a real book or electronic copy. I live in the USA!)

Mistysbookspace (Thank you so much for the chance. I am already a follower. I have only ever been to two beaches and those are New Smyrna beach and Myrtle Beach. I don’t really remember much about my visit to New Smyrna beach because I went when I was younger so I’m going to say Myrtle beach is my favorite. It’s a little crowded at least when I’ve gone but it’s gorgeous and there are so many other activities to do there as well. I live in the US. I would prefer a hard copy but I’m ok with ebooks too. Thank you again for the chance.)

Ladies, please email me (bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com) with your mailing address (hard copy winner) or your email address (e-book winners) of where you would like your book sent!  Congratulations and enjoy!

Have a great weekend, everyone!  I hope you fill it doing things with those you love!

Xo,

Jenny

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 (search Book Coffee Happy)

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

100 Things I Love and 8 Ways You Can Support Book Coffee Happy

This is officially my 100th post! How have I written 100 posts on Book Coffee Happy?!?  This little blog has proven to be the most fun hobby I have ever had.  I have loved writing posts, reading amazing books, meeting lovely authors, and meeting/interacting with YOU!  In honor of my 100th post, I present you with 100 things (other than books) that I LOVE!

Coffee

Dunkin’ Hot Coffee (all time favorite), Starbucks Chai Tea Latte, Joffrey’s/Dunkin’ Vanilla Iced Latte, Kona Coffee

Movies

Fun Fact: I pretty much hate watching movies.  I ALWAYS choose to watch tv or read a book over watching a movie! Serendipity is one of the only movies I could truly watch over and over (I saw it 10 times in the theater)!

Fashion 

INFINITY SCARVES, fuzzy boots, humongous sunglasses, yoga pants, crossbody purses, ankle boots

TV Shows

Anything reality (Bachelor, Bachelorette, Big Brother, etc.), The Office, Beverly Hills 90210 (original), Parks and Recreation, Friends, Shameless, Orange is the New Black, Schitt’s Creek, Sex and the City

TV Shows I Watch With My Kids

Kid’s Baking Championship, Full House, Fuller House, Sophia the First, Doc McStuffins

Vacations

Mexico (over the past 2 years we have been to Cabo without our kids and Puerto Vallarta with our kids), Great Wolf Lodge (Wisconsin Dells is our favorite location), Jamaica (our honeymoon in 2010), Michigan (Saugatuck), San Diego (La Jolla), DISNEY WORLD!

Plays

HAMILTON, Evita, Aladdin, Bridges of Madison County, The Little Mermaid

Food

CHINESE FOOD (Chicken in a Nest, pot stickers), bananas, lobster, purple grapes, pizza, tofu, salmon, scallops, tacos, pasta, cupcakes, eggs, cheese, Thai food (tofu pad thai, crab rangoon)

Best Things About Being a Mom

Watching them experience joy, hearing them say I love you, holding their hands, laughing with them. BREASTFEEDING (I nursed my daughter until she was 2.5 and my son until he was 2), Co-sleeping, cuddling, being called “Mommy”…and SO much more!  *My favorite parenting books can be found here*

Color

PINK.  Obviously.  There are no other colors.

Posts I’ve written

Let’s Chat: When Did This Happen? More Importantly…WHY Did This Happen?

My Life: Our Perfect Getaway

4 Best Friends, 1 Alma Mater

SNOW, My Favorite Quote, and a Book Review: Little Fires Everywhere {Celeste Ng}

Birthday of a Book Blogger

Book Coffee Happy Now Has Over 300 Blog Followers/Subscribers!

My Favorite Books for Pregnancy/New Parents/Baby Shower GiftsGREETINGS FROM THE

POLAR VORTEX and a Book Review: The Light Between Oceans {M.L. Stedman}

My First VLOG! Book Review: Becoming {Michelle Obama}

Spring Break 2019 Book Recommendations {Book Coffee Happy}

A-Z Book Tag {AKA Random Facts About Myself as a Reader}

Walt Disney World Vacation Tips and Tricks VLOG!

Music

BRITNEY SPEARS, Josh Groban, Andrea Bocelli

Smells

Coffee, Clinique Happy , libraries, bookstores, Little Trees New Car Smell

Candles

Bath and Body Works Winter Candy Apple, Yankee Candle Brandy Pear Tart

To Cook

Mozzarella Stuffed Turkey Meatloaf, Vegetable Lasagna, Spinach Stuffed Shells, Chocolate Chip Cookies, Whole Wheat Banana Muffins

Stores

Target, Homegoods, independent bookstores, Hobby Lobby

Chicago Restaurants

I lived downtown for 8 years (LOVED IT SO MUCH) and some of my favorite places to eat included: Chicago Pizza and Oven Grinders, Tiparos Thai, Pockets, Grand Lux Cafe, Lawrys, Pizanos Pizza, Tempo

And that makes 100!  Thank you for supporting my favorite hobby, Book Coffee Happy!

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 (search Book Coffee Happy)

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

I would be so thankful if you could do these things for me.  So many of you already do these things and I’m very thankful for your love and support 🙂 I have truly loved writing these 100 posts for you!  Best hobby ever!  Happy 100th post to ME!

**Check back here on Wednesday…I will be reviewing and giving away 6 COPIES of a beautiful book (open to US and International readers)!  I can’t wait to share this one with you!**

Xo,

Jenny

Judging Books By Their Covers

They say that you should “never judge a book by it’s cover” and I completely, 100 percent believe that to be true.  Unfortunately, the cover of a book is what will initially make you want to pick it up, read the synopsis, and eventually determine if you will spend the time to read the book or not.

When I was a teacher and I would begin to read aloud a book with a torn (or lost) cover, my students were never as excited to hear it as they would have been if the cover were beautifully artistic.  I used this “teachable moment” thousands of time in my 14 year career trying to instill in my students that just because something isn’t beautiful on the outside doesn’t mean that it’s not beautiful on the inside (and yes…I hope that lesson carried over into real life with them and not just books…)

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

Here are a few examples of amazing books with not so amazing covers:

I hate when books ambiguously use real life people on the covers.  Always messes up my image of what I think they should look like as I read.  I feel like I then have to conform my mental images with the ones on the cover…fail.

This book is AWESOME.  This cover is…pretty…but says absolutely nothing about the beautiful book inside?  So misleading…

AMAZING book with a strange faceless woman on the cover.  How old is she supposed to be here???  Says nothing about the book inside.  You can read my review of this amazing book HERE.

Here is an example of a book where the gorgeous cover doesn’t quite match up with the words inside:

I was bored. You can read my review HERE.

Sometimes a book can easily be judged by it’s cover when the cover isn’t great and neither is the story inside:

The story itself was just ok…unforgettable.  The cover?  Not so unforgettable.  In the history of the entire world, I truly don’t believe an uglier cover exists. Holy hell.

This book had so much possibility!  The topic is FASCINATING….the cover (and the writing) is boring.

I absolutely hated everything about this book.  Including it’s ugly cover.

And HERE we have the perfect combination of beautiful covers which also just happen to contain beautiful stories inside:

Bottom Line:

Just like people…some books are prettier on the inside then they are on the outside but you have to read them to find out 🙂

Have you read any of these books?  What did you think?  Can you think of other books with beautiful (or not so beautiful) covers?  Do you allow a book cover to determine if you want to read the book inside?

Still Breathing Giveaway Winner:

Congratulations, Loredana (I’d love to visit Paris, I wish this since Inwas 18 years old, wanted to go there with my best friend after we finished high school, but didn’t make it so far :(. I’m Internationally, also I’m subscribed to your blog. Hugs and kisses from Romania!)

Please email me (bookcoffeehappy@gmail.com) and I will make sure your copy of this lovely book gets sent to you!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

 

Book Review: On the Come Up {Angie Thomas}

Nobody was more excited for this book to be released than I was.  I waited (not so patiently) for months!   It was finally released last month and I couldn’t get my hands on a copy soon enough.  FINALLY my wait was OVER!

Synopsis from Goodreads:

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighborhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.

On the Come Up is Angie Thomas’s homage to hip-hop, the art that sparked her passion for storytelling and continues to inspire her to this day. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; of the struggle to become who you are and not who everyone expects you to be; and of the desperate realities of poor and working-class black families.

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)

3.5 Stars

So…It’s not The Hate U Give. I completely understand that I shouldn’t be comparing them because they are stand alone novels…but…it’s not The Hate U Give .

I loved that this book took us back to Garden Heights and I loved the references back to storylines from The Hate U Give . But again…it’s not The Hate U Give. .

The issues that this book discussed are IMPORTANT and truly are ones that NEED to be discussed. Angie Thomas has such a gift of being able to tell a story from a teenager’s point of view while appealing to adults at the same time. This allows everyone to benefit from the lessons and messages that this book tells. Perfection.

And yet…

There were way too many storylines for many of them to be properly developed, just about everything in this book was predictable, and so many of the characters were either completely underdeveloped or just not likable.

The first 200 pages or so were actually pretty boring.  I debated on Instagram if I should have even continued reading or if I should have abandoned the book halfway through!  I WILL say that the last half of the book (it’s 447 pages total) was MUCH better than the first half.  I’m glad I stuck with it and forged though.  If wasn’t that the beginning was bad, it was just…boring.

Overall, I liked this book and I think the messages it delivers are extremely important. Was it Angie Thomas’s best? Absolutely not. Would I recommend it? Absolutely.

I truly wonder if I had read this book before reading her first one if I would have enjoyed it more without the comparison?  I wouldn’t recommend doing that, though.  She references the first book a few times and the description of Garden Heights is SO much more detailed in her first book.  It sets the entire tone for this book in terms of the neighborhood’s setting.  I think that without reading the prior description of the Garden there would be a major disconnect while reading this book.

In case you haven’t figured out yet that I loved The Hate U Give so much (it’s is one of the best books I’ve ever read), you can read my review of it here.

Bottom Line:

This book is really good…just not as good as, well, you know 🙂

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

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:30! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader, please be sure to introduce yourself!  I can’t wait to meet you and your little ones. 🙂

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