The Important Story of the Yellow Wife

Five-Star Read: Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson

I recently wrote about five reasons I love reading historical fiction, and Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson is an excellent example of why I love this genre.

About Yellow Wife

Yellow Wife is the story of Pheby Delores Brown, born on Bell Plantation in Virginia. She was favored by the owner of the plantation, who is her biological father, and his sister. Her mother, Ruth, protects Pheby from as many of the horrors of slavery as she can. However, when tragedy strikes, Pheby is taken from the plantation and loses all whom she loves, including her beloved Essex Henry.

Pheby is transferred to Lapier Jail, also known as Devil’s Half-Acre, where she quickly sees and experiences the brutality of the enslaved who are held at the jail, whether they are to be auctioned to new owners, punished for perceived wrongdoings, or forced into work of many nightmares. The owner of Lapier Jail takes her as his own, and Pheby must decides what sacrifices she must make as she lives under his rule.

I don’t have the adjectives for a review that encapsulate my feelings for Yellow Wife, but here are a few of the reasons I loved it and firmly believe it is a book to be recognized by all.

Revealing Real History in Yellow Wife

Yellow Wife is an example of what U.S. schools have not taught in history classes. Like most products of this education system, I studied the Civil War, but I’m ashamed to acknowledge that slavery wasn’t covered in detail. While it’s been several decades since I was a public school student, I should know more now. Learning about the jails that slaves were sent to, like Devil’s Half-Acre, was eye-opening, and now I am determined to learn more about what my teachers never discussed, and it’s my responsibility to ensure that my children learn the entire history.

Sadeqa Johnson and Research for Yellow Wife

Alongside learning about history by reading this novel, I greatly appreciated the research in Yellow Wife. Ms. Johnson explains how she was inspired to write the book, and she outlines all of the research she conducted. This is really important because it reveals a part of history that needs to be shared in a correct, authentic way. Reading her explanation made the story of Pheby and her time at Lapier Jail even more powerful, even though she is a fictional character.

A Vivid, Brutal World

Ms. Johnson’s book took me into a vivid, but horrifying, world with a well-researched, well-told story about Pheby and how she and others experienced deep pain and injustice in Lapier Jail. This was a difficult book to read because of the subject matter, but I know that the story was important for me to read. I encourage everyone to do the same because of the quality of Ms. Johnson’s writing and storytelling, but most importantly because it demands attention to a part of history that may not have been shared otherwise.

A Family Saga — Pheby’s Sacrifices

The spirit of family is integral to Yellow Wife, as we meet Pheby’s mother, Ruth, and her children. I felt the power of these familial connections, as well as the impact of found family. Pheby’s relationships with the other slaves at Bell Plantation and in Lapier Jail showed how connections to others was key to Pheby’s survival as she made extreme sacrifices to help her family and loved ones.

Yellow Wife is an excellent novel, one that I’m glad to have read. I hope you will read it, too!

Books I Read Last Week

Another week of reading some backlist books! Last week was a varied mix of satisfying reads and audiobooks. Here’s a quick review of the three books I checked off my list last week.

Spells for Forgetting

Spells for Forgetting by Adrienne Young was one of my 2022 Book of the Month picks, and overall, it was a satisfying read. The premise—August returns to Saoirse Island, his home that he and his mother fled years ago, to bury his mother and finds himself reckoning with his past, including the love of his life, Emery. This book is about family, loyalty, and commitment, with a dose of ancestral magic. August and Emery were by far the most interesting characters in Spells for Forgetting, and I could relate to the experience of growing up in a very small, insular community. Overall, this is a book I enjoyed and may recommend in the future.

Bloomsbury Girls

I had high hopes for Bloomsbury Girls by Natalie Jenner as it is a historical fiction novel set in a London bookshop. The plot and settings checked all the boxes for me, but in the end, the characters felt a little flat to me. I didn’t feel strong emotions toward any of them. The best part of the book for me was a scene at the end that was very reminiscent of one scene in The First Wives Club, one of my favorite comedies. I won’t say any more to avoid spoilers, but if you’ve read Bloomsbury Girls and seen The First Wives Club, I’m sure you’ll make the connection.

Yellow Wife

I finished Yellow Wife by Sadeqa Johnson late Sunday night, and I’m still processing the book. A full review will definitely be posted soon, but what I can say for certain is that Yellow Wife is one of the most impactful novels about slavery that I have ever read. It’s brutal and unflinchingly open about the horrors that Pheby Delores Brown sees and experiences when she’s sold from Bell Plantation and taken to Lapier Jail, The Devil’s Half-Acre. This book, based on actual slave jails in the South in the 1800s, is one I felt through my core and a definite 5-star book. Everyone should read it.

And so, another week begins with more books to be read in between doing “life” things. What did you read last week?

More Adventures with Jess Gabriel – A Place Like This Review

Book Review: A Place Like This by Cari Scribner

Jess Gabriel is figuring out life as a single woman in her fifties. As a follow-up to A Girl Like You, author Cari Scribner takes us alongside Jess as she wonders what could have been if one of her two marriages had worked out, as she explores more of the dating world, and finds ways to fill her world once she suddenly becomes an empty nester.

Thank you to Ms. Scribner for my copy of A Place Like This in exchange for my honest review.

What I Enjoyed About A Place Like This

A Place Like This is a character-driven novel full of emotional events, ranging from Jess spying on her ex-husband Bryan at his beachside wedding to her encounters with patrons as an Uber driver to her recaps of the conversations of her coworkers — the Three Stooges — at Town Clerk’s office. Jess is an endearing, authentic character with quirks and a lot of heart, and I enjoyed getting to know her better in this novel. The side characters, especially Jess’s friends Nadine and Eddie, are people I’d want to have in my own life.

Much of this book is about Jess mourning what could have been. Her first husband, Adam, left the family to travel the U.S. in an RV., unsatisfied with the stable family life that Jess treasured. Years after Adam left, Jess still questions what made him so unhappy and why he didn’t find comfort in the home and family time she embraced.

Then, Jess’s emotions are torn even further as her son, Ian, decides to join Adam on the road after finishing his college classes. Nearly every chapter of the book including Jess reminiscing about when Ian and her daughter, Madison, were young. The memories are sad yet heartwarming as they demonstrate how dedicated Jess is as a mother, and the inclusion of so many shows the impact of Jess’s feeling of loneliness.

A Place Like This is a quick, entertaining read with short chapters, engaging characters, and fun vignettes of Jess’s adventures, including some very steamy date nights. If you’re looking for a read that hits all the emotions and leaves you feeling satisfied, this is a book for you.

What I Read This Week: Thrills, Chills, and Frills

This week was a continuation of clearing my to-be-read shelves. Two of the three books I read will stay in my collection, and one will be added to the donate pile. All in all, not a bad week of reading!

Final Girls by Riley Sager

Final Girls is Riley Sager’s first novel and my third read of his collection, but wow, this one knocked it out of the park. Is a normal life achievable for someone who survived a brutal massacre? Quincy Carpenter is determined to prove that it is, despite being a Final Girl. From the moment she ran out of the woods in a blood-soaked dress 10 years ago, Quincy hasn’t been able to remember the details of the night her friends were butchered at Pine Cottage and she escaped. Now, as things start to happen to other Final Girls, Quincy must face her past once more to address what really happened in the woods that night.

This was a definite win for me. Sager added all the necessary elements: unreliable characters, plot twists, and spooky locations, to create a book that left me on edge. Final Girls is a definite recommended read!

A Place Like This by Cari Scribner

Cari Scribner’s follow-up to A Girl Like You is a sweet, emotional look at how a woman in her fifties deals with loss and finding a new life once she becomes an empty nester. A highly character-driven novel, A Place Like This is a quick read with endearing characters, particularly the female lead, Jess Gabriel.

I enjoyed Jess’s storyline and all the close-to-home adventures she experiences over the course of a year in this book. My full review of A Place Like This will be up on my blog later this week!

It’s Been a Pleasure, Noni Blake by Claire Christian

I’m pretty certain this book was an impulse purchase as part of a buy two-get-one-free sale or something similar, as It’s Been a Pleasure, Noni Blake has been on my shelf for at least a year and I knew nothing about it. I did use the audiobook for my reading this week, though.

Noni’s long-term relationship with Joan is over, and now she doesn’t know what to do. She’s hopping from bed to bed in hopes of finding a new person to fill her heart, but nothing works. It takes a decision to focus on her own pleasure—from haircuts to vacations to intimate positions—for Noni to learn what she really wants, even with heartbreak along the way.

I appreciated the representation in this book of bisexuality and fluid sexual partners, but ultimately Noni just wasn’t a likable heroine for me and I couldn’t get invested in her journey. Still, I’m glad to have read the book.

Seven Days in June with Eva and Shane

Seven Days in June by Tia Williams – A Five-Star Book Review

“I wish you the most brilliant, weird, and wonderful things, every day of the world.”

Tia Williams, Seven Days in June (pg. 113)

This might be one of my all-time favorite book quotations now, and it encapsulates everything I feel about Seven Days in June, a brilliant novel by Tia Williams that has been sitting on my to-be-read shelf for far too long.

Eva’s life is full in Brooklyn. She is a celebrated Black author with her bestselling he erotic fantasy series Cursed; friends with vibrant, inspiring women like her editor Cece and renowned poet Belinda; and, most importantly, a devoted mom to her precocious pre-teen daughter Audre. All Eva has is focused on giving Audre a better life than what Eva experienced during her childhood.

Yes, her life is full but it’s far from perfect, something that Eva has come to accept. She deals with her invisible disability–debilitating migraines that bring her to her knees–in silence, taking precautions and hiding her emergency painkillers outside of her inner circle. And, while Cursed has been her life’s work for 14 novels, she feels trapped in the fantasy world of Gia and Sebastian because those stories sell copies and there’s a movie deal on the table. Eva wants to move beyond those stories and explore her own family’s stories, those of her mother Lizette, grandmother Clotilde, and great-grandmother Delphine.

But, one steamy day in June, a man walks back into Eva’s life from decades before, and all is no longer fine. Shane, an award-winning novelist himself, disappeared from her life after a heady, drug-infused week of their senior year in high school. Now he wants to make amends, and Eva starts to question all that she’s known.

What I Loved About Seven Days in June

There is so much to love about this book. Ms. Williams pours emotion onto the page and lets you sit with the characters as they feel happiness, doubt, pain, and heartbreak. Those characters and the representation of not just race but also disabilities, mental health, and poverty are what made me love this book with ferocity, but really, every bit of this novel is perfect, in my opinion.

The Characters

Eva is a beautiful protagonist, one who isn’t perfect but is endearing in every way. Her devotion to Audre is palpable, as is her love for Shane, even when she tries to deny that love. Through flashbacks, we see how Eva developed into a fierce but tender woman despite her mother’s neglect, and we see how writing became a survival mechanism for her. Also, Ms. Williams did an excellent job of showing us how trapped Eva felt in continuing Cursed, a sure-thing for her finances, rather than pursue what she really wanted to write about. I loved Eva’s character, her nuances and flaws. She is a character I would want to meet in person, learn from, and be friends with.

Shane is just as imperfect and endearing as Eva. We learn so much about his troubled, heartbreaking past in the book’s flashbacks, but we also see how he has started to rebuild his life, first by choosing to become sober and then by teaching at inner-city schools, despite his resounding literary success. Shane hasn’t written a new novel in awhile, but everything he’s written has been praised–and it’s all been written for Eva. Shane is a deeply feeling man who places so much of the world’s burden on himself.

Audre is the picture of a 12-year-old girl about to explode into womanhood. She’s dramatic with a capital D, but she’s also incredibly intelligent and insightful, and she’s determined to use those gifts for the good of others. After all, she runs a side business of Snapchat therapy sessions for her friends. Every scene with Audre was like a burst of color and emotion.

While Eva, Shane, and Audre are the main characters in the book, the secondary characters like Cece, Belinda, Ty, and Lizette bring so much to the story. They are fully realized characters, with their own strengths and flaws. Ms. Williams spends time with each, and I appreciated how even the characters with the shortest presence in the book were still well-developed and realistic, not just acting in the background of the story.

The Representation

From the descriptions of the Black literati celebrations to the way Eva plaits Audre’s hair, this book gives beautiful representation to Black identity and experiences. Throughout her novel, Ms. Williams addresses whitewashing, generational trauma, and the systemic injustices that occur as children are born into poverty. Yes, this is a love story between Eva and Shane, but it is more than that.

Disability and mental health play key roles in Seven Days in June as well. Eva hides her migraines despite their crushing daily presence. Flashbacks show both Eva and Shane self-harming and using alcohol and drugs to numb their pain. In the present, Shane uses running to keep himself from turning back to alcohol, but he still keeps the burden of others on his shoulders and feels deep shame and guilt if he cannot help them.

Seven Days in June is more than a romance novel. Yes, it is steamy and brings all the feelings when you read about Eva and Shane’s past and current interactions, but it is a story about growth and identity as well. I loved the characters and the representation in this novel, and I can’t wait to pick up another book by Ms. Williams.

You Have Entered Beartown

Beartown by Fredrik Backman – A Five-Star Book Review

Beartown is a mainstay in book club conversations and on Bookstagram, with so many reviews raving about the power of this book by Swedish author Fredrik Backman. It took me until 2023 to understand why.

I had trepidations about reading this book when I first heard about it. Ice hockey? Sexual assault? A tight-knit community’s reactions to one girl’s accusation of rape against the star hockey player right before the championship game? I didn’t think it was a book I’d enjoy, but while it took me several weeks to read it, the payout was so amazing.

What I Loved About Beartown

Beartown is a definite five-star book for me, with so many aspects that I loved. Here are a few.

The Themes of Beartown

On its simplest level, Beartown is laid out like the plot of a 1990s Lifetime Movie of the Week: the high school star athlete sexually assaults a vulnerable teenage girl, and the aftermath of this violence impacts everyone from the victim and perpetrator to the parents and townspeople surrounding them. But Backman weaves in themes of family, friendship, community, and justice in such a way that it is much more than an old TV movie starring Tori Spelling. He accomplished this by using multiple points of view, crafted with precision in beautiful prose and an awareness of the fragility of all that he includes.

The Writing of Backman

Backman wrote this book in Swedish, so I read the English translation. But, friends, the beauty of his words transcends languages. Not only are his syntax, diction, and skill on pointe, but also the level of detail and precision in descriptions are so impressive. And Backman is the king of foreshadowing, leaving important touchstones throughout the book to know you’re in safe hands as he guides you through the story.

The Relationships of the Characters

Every relationship within the community of Beartown is nuanced with tension and emotion. From the current l teammates and the adults who once skated the ice together, to the business owners and sponsors, to the parents and children and friends, there are layers of interactions, histories, and feelings.

My Personal Connection

I was sexually assaulted at 18, just two weeks into my freshman year at college. The perpetrator was a college boy who’d gone to high school with my dorm roommate, and he was a member of the fraternity associated with my sorority. I was embarrassed and frightened, in denial for the most part. I’d been so desperate to be liked, I kept my mouth shut. Other than making light of the bruises on my arms, I didn’t tell anyone the truth about what happened until three months later during an emotional breakdown fueled by vodka and desperation.

So I deeply empathized with Maya in this story, and it brought up many emotions surrounding the responses from family and friends when I finally explained what happened. This is probably why I resisted reading this book for so long, but what Backman wrote resonated with me on many levels, and I deeply appreciate his tender, honest look at what happens to those impacted by trauma.

The Vibrant Years

Book Review: The Vibrant Years by Sonali Dev

With gorgeous writing, amazing characters, and deep representation, The Vibrant Years by Sonali Dev is an excellent read about family, womanhood, and choosing your path. I really enjoyed reading this book, especially because of the exploration of Indian culture and how each character finds their way amidst social expectations.

The Vibrant Years is a great read that is full of humor and heart, and it’s a Mindy’s Book Studio pick! I received my copy from Dart Frogg Communications in exchange for my honest review.

What I loved about The Vibrant Years

The Vibrant Years is a beautiful character study of three Indian women finding their authentic selves against social and cultural norms, all the while finding romance (and failed dates) along the coastline of Florida.

  • Bindu, the matriarch, loves her daughter-in-law Aly and her granddaughter Cullie with a ferocity that only she can show. But when she receives a gift from someone in her past, Bindu fears that the family she has built will fall apart.
  • Aly finally started to pursue her dream of becoming a newscaster, but she lost her marriage in the process. Now, she continues to face barriers in the workplace and questions whether her lack of romance will be forever.
  • Cullie channeled her genius into an app that helps her and thousands of others improve their mental health. But now her (married) ex-lover and her boss are trying to change her vision. She must invent a new app to keep her dream alive.

When an unexpected event occurs, Aly and Cullie rally around Bindu. Soon the three women are on journeys that are both hopeful and humorous.

Five Stars for Someday, Maybe

Someday, Maybe by Onyi Nwabineli – A Five-Star Book Review

What would you do if you lost the person closest to you? And how would your response be if that person chose to leave by suicide? That’s what Eve, the protagonist of Someday, Maybe, must experience when she finds her husband, Quentin, in a pool of his own blood. Eve doesn’t know why her Q died by suicide. All she knows is grief at this unimaginable loss.

What I Loved about Someday, Maybe

This book, the debut by Onyi Nwabineli, is a deeply moving novel about grief, family (both born and found), and grappling with death. I loved Someday, Maybe for so many reasons, including the characters, the writing, and the message.

The Characters

Much of this book is a character study of a widow who is entrenched in guilt, shame, and loss as Eve tries to understand why Q would die by suicide. He did not leave a note, so there is no evident answer, despite Eve’s efforts to find the reasons. I loved Eve’s journey as her actions and thoughts were realistic and uncontrived. And, just as important, I loved the side characters in this story. From Eve’s Nigerian parents and grandmother, to her headstrong sister Gloria and her blunt brother Nate, to her best friend Bee and the people she meets along the way, these characters are four-dimensional, true-to-life loved ones who help Eve find her way. And then there’s Aspen, Q’s mother and Eve’s antagonist. Somehow Nwabineli makes this snobbish, hateful woman a realistic portrait of a mother in grief, too.

The Writing

I highlighted so many passages in Someday, Maybe. Not only are Nwabineli’s words powerful and impressive, but she fits together sentences and meanings, uses metaphor to show us the pain Eve feels, and lets us sit in Eve’s grief alongside her. This is one example:

There is a sacredness in tears. They are not the mark of weakness, but of power. They speak more eloquently than ten thousand tongues. They are the messengers of overwhelming grief, of deep contrition, and of unspeakable love.

Onyi Nwabineli (Someday, Maybe, pg. 337)

The Message

Reading this book at the end of December 2022 (and finishing it on January 1, 2023) felt especially timely as we saw news of Stephen Laurel “tWitch” Boss’s suicide. News story after news story have posited questions about tWitch’s death by suicide, as the dancer and DJ appeared to have a happy family, career, and life. But it’s not our place to know all the details of why. It’s our job to have empathy for his family and friends, letting them grieve and share if/when they are ready. Also, it’s our job to understand that whatever outward presence a person shows is not always a true indicator of their internal thoughts, struggles, and feelings. That is the message that I felt carry through Someday, Maybe. Eve doesn’t understand why Q died by suicide. She feels shame for not being able to save him and shame for not seeing beneath his charismatic, successful exterior and place as her husband of more than a decade. She blames herself for not knowing he was in pain, and her journey in this book walks us through those stages of mourning and grief.

There aren’t enough adjectives to properly describe how much I loved Someday, Maybe by Onyi Nwabineli. Please just take my word for it, and pick up this book to experience on your own.

All the Stars for Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow

Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin
A Five-Star Book Review

Do you enjoy video games? I played Nintendo’s Super Mario Brothers and Duck Hunt when I was a kid (yes, I’m that old), but I’ve never gotten into console games. Well, I did have a couple periods of life in which I was obsessed with The Sims and Candy Crush. I’ve never felt compelled to dig deeper into games. I’m much more interested in finding another book to read.

Given my general disinterest in gaming, I was hesitant to pick up Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow (Tomorrow x3) by Gabrielle Zevin. But, as they say: #BookstagramMadeMeDoIt. And I am so glad it did!

Tomorrow x3 is a longform character study of two friends, Sadie and Sam, who met just before they became teenagers in the 1980s. They bonded over their love of video games while Sam and Sadie’s sister Alice were in the hospital, but then lost touch until they run into each other in Massachusetts during college. That chance meeting begins a journey of friendship as they build a groundbreaking new video game, Ichigo, and eventually form their own company, Unfair Games. Tomorrow x3 is a love story about these friends who never become romantically involved. It is a beautifully written, complex novel that shifts time periods, perspectives, and even brings you into the world of video games.

What I Loved about Tomorrow, and Tomorrow, and Tomorrow

  • The characters: Sadie and Sam are the protagonists within the book, and they are flawed but fully developed characters who made me root for them as well as yell at them for poor decisions. However, my absolute favorite character in the novel was Marx, Sam’s Harvard roommate. Marx could have been a 2D side character, but Ms. Zevin brought him into the story as a real, human character. He is innately a good person who wants good for his friends, and that was so impressive. When I first started reading the Tomorrow x3, I thought Marx was going to be a stereotypical envious third wheel, but he’s not. I loved him!
  • The representation: This book addresses race, mental health, disability, and sexuality. The representation is so well-represented here, and the author really refined each character’s struggles and experiences.
  • The plot (and its sideplots): This book could have been a linear story told from two points of views – Sam’s and Sadie’s. But it’s not. There are flashbacks and shifts that create a more layered story. It brought so many nuances to the characters. What was also important to me is that the gaming industry was part of the story, but only as it benefits the characters and the plot. Those gaming sections brought more to the story.
  • The writing: I highlighted so many passages in this book! Ms. Zevin is an amazing writer. Not only does she deliver beautiful prose, but also she leaves little moments of foreshadowing throughout the book. I love when an author uses that narrative device in a smart way. These moments weren’t blatantly obvious in the book, but I could tell when Ms. Zevin wanted us to prepare for something that was going to happen soon.

I was worried this book wouldn’t feel accessible to me because of the video gaming aspects, but it was so enjoyable. There is clearly a reason why Tomorrow, Tomorrow, and Tomorrow by Gabrielle Zevin is getting accolades this year, including being named the Book of the Year by Book of the Month! I highly recommend this one!

Meeting the People We Hate at the Wedding

Book Review: The People We Hate at the Wedding by Grant Ginder

When I saw that Allison Janney and Kristin Bell are amongst the cast of the movie adaptation of The People We Hate at the Wedding by Grant Ginder, I pulled my copy off my shelf and pledged to read the book before I watch the movie starring two of my favorite actresses.

I will keep this book review short because I have to admit that it wasn’t a win for me. Ginder is a good writer, I fully recognize, but the book was slow and didn’t come to a full resolution.

About The People We Hate at the Wedding

When Alice and Paul receive invitations to their half-sister’s English countryside wedding, their first action is to price out the wedding invites, setting the understanding that both are resentful of Eloise’s money. After all, the three’s mother, Donna, has spent Alice and Paul’s lifetimes wishing that she’d never left France after Eloise’s father had an affair. Alice and Paul grew up seeing Eloise as the perfect, privileged half-sister who has coasted through life. Thus, neither are overly keen to participate in the marital celebrations.

Through a series of events that, in my opinion, take up way too many pages of prose in this book that’s just over 300 pages long, Alice and Paul do go to the wedding in England, but their resentment of Eloise and their mother, as well as their own life events, make the trip much more complicated.

My Thoughts While Reading the People We Hate at the Wedding

I love a flawed character. I’m here for their mistakes, opinions, and (hopefully) growth. But Donna, Alice, and Paul do not make good decisions. Let me clarify that: their decisions don’t make sense.

Donna is still mourning the life she could have had with Henrique, her first husband and Eloise’s father, but she plays a melancholy victim. She’s not a fully developed character and seems to star in misaligned vignettes rather than act as the matriarch.

Alice is having an affair with her married boss and struggling to deal with a past, horrific trauma. She was the most likable character for me, but she kind of disappeared at the end of the novel.

Paul resents Donna for how she reacted after his father, Bill, died. He doesn’t know that Bill was a bigot who refused to accept Paul’s homosexuality and only remained quiet because Donna threatened to leave Bill after Paul came out. That’s a terrible experience, but Paul plays victim to his arrogant partner, Mark, and has a tendency to explode in frustration and anger. He’s both dramatic and passive, making me want to yell, “Express your feelings in a productive way.”

Eloise appears to mean well, but she’s not an altruistic person. She uses her money and influence to help her siblings, but doesn’t do it solely out of the goodness of her heart. She wants their approval and acceptance, which is reasonable. However, her final story arc was inconsistent and felt forced.

The People We Hate at the Wedding wasn’t for me, but I recognize that others may love this book. I still plan to watch the movie, and I’m glad I read the book first. This is a rare case of I hope the movie is better than the book.