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Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano Book Review

Reason for Reading This Book:

I was on the wait-list for Hello Beautiful by Ann Napolitano for so long that when it finally came available for me to check it out I could not remember who recommended it or if I saw a review of it somewhere and liked the description and that is why I put it on my list. So I can't really give give an exact reason for why I chose to read this book. Interestingly enough, when I was listening to The Readhead’s episode for Fourth Wing by Rebecca Yargo, one of the host’s read Hello Beautiful and enjoyed it. I was already reading it at the time, so it was a coincidence that someone else had just read it.


Content of This Book:

Hello Beautiful tells the dark and emotional story of William Waters who grew up in a home with uninvolved and unloving parents. Finding basketball as a child was William's way out of his hometown and home life. After getting a college scholarship to play basketball he began a new life for himself where he made friends and got a girlfriend. When William married Julia, he gained a loving family of three sisters and a mom and dad. Each sister is very different from one another. Sylvie is the dreamer who always had her nose in a book; Cecelia is a free-spirited artist and Emeline is patient and motherly. Julia has high expectations for William, but the darkness that takes over his life makes achieving those expectations impossible. The state of William's well-being sends the family into a situation that challenges that strength of the once inseparable sisters for generations. Follow the lives of these characters as they battle mental health, physical health, loss, love, and navigate their new family dynamic. 

What I Liked About This Book:

The last few chapters were my favorite of the whole book. If it was not for the latter half of the book this book would have received 2 stars from me instead of 3. Without going into detail, the last few chapters of the book had things that were said or done that reflected things that have happened in my life. These are things that I have never seen played out in a book or on screen so that was shocking yet comforting at the same time. These last few chapters were the sole reason that my stance on this book was redeemed. As I will mention in the next section, the mundane parts of life that made up a majority of this book bothered me, but something that did keep me reading was the pull to want to see these characters grow and achieve big accomplishments and come out of the dark times they were repeatedly pulled into. Throughout reading this book I had the feeling like I was holding my breath for two reasons. One was because I expected something terrible to happened, like it always seemed to do, or I was waiting to let out a sigh because things were finally content and happy for the family. Even though this book was not exactly a page turner for the plot, the yearning to see these characters lives' play out, kept me reading. This book is narrated by multiple characters who are all experiencing things both together and independently. With that there are many different subplots occurring at the same time. For any plot like this, the reader will fine some subplots more interesting than others, and this was the case for me. The last things I will say about my likes for this book is that I sat with it for sometime after reading it because I wrote this review because I wanted to see if after finishing it I would still think about it. The part that I have thought about since finishing it is the ending which I already mentioned was my favorite part. 


What I Disliked About This Book:

Once I got into the book it was nothing like what I expected. It was very slow and focused a lot on mundane parts of life, which is interesting and necessary to a add, but in this book it became too much and dominated a majority of the plot. As mentioned above, the last few chapters of the book were really the only parts of the book that I truly enjoyed. Of all the characters I only found one to be somewhat relatable to me. The writing style was uninteresting and very forgettable in my opinion. I was never captivated or moved by any of the descriptions in the book. The author also repeated a lot of the same descriptions over and over. For example for, the descriptions of the sister's combined hous was overused. The length of this book was also unnecessary. The inclusion of so many mundane activities increased the length of the book and caused me to dislike the book more than I already did. As I was reading I was trying to imagine how the book was going to end. There was no indication at any point of what the conclusion of these character's stories were going to be. The ending came on suddenly, but finally picked up the pace of the book. If this book was shorted and some less interesting descriptions of the characters' lives were removed this book would have received a higher ranking from me.


Would I Recommend This Book?

I initially gave this book 2 stars in my ranking system, but I increased it to 3 stars because the latter half of the book captivated me and had a lot of aspects that were relatable to my life. In the end I would recommend this book to some people but overall it is not a book that instantly comes to mind for a book recommendation. I will say from what I am seeing online, I am one of the few that feel this way so take that into consideration when deciding if this is a book you should read.

Check out my book reviews for 2023!!

Horse by Geraldine Brooks  
Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens
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Luckiest Girl Alive by Jessica Knoll
Hester by Laurie Pico Albanese
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Environmental and Sustainability Book Reviews 2022
Self-Improvement Book Reviews 2022
American Dirt by Jeanine Cummins
Know My Name by Chanel Miller
The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley
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The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
Golden Girl by Elin Hilderbrand
Lessons in Chemistry by Bonnie Garmus
Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton
A Flicker in the Dark by Stacy Willingham 
Girls With Bright Futures by Tracy Dobmeier and Wendy Katzman
Run, Rose, Run by James Patterson and Dolly Parton
The Summer Series by Jenny Han
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The Housewives: The Real Story Behind the Real Housewives by Brian Moylan
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All Rhodes Lead Here by Mariana Zapata
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Our Country Friends by Gary Shteyngart 
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Check out my book reviews for 2021!!

2021 Book Rankings

Beach Read By Emily Henry
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Maybe In Another Life by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Educated by Tara Westover
The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker
The Midnight Library by Matt Haig 
The Kitchen Front by Jennifer Ryan
Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins 
We Are the Brennans by Tracey Lange
Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid
A Slow Fire Burning by Paula Hawkins 
We Are the Brennans by Tracey Lange
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Klara and the Sun 
The Nature of Fragile Things by Susan Meissner
American Duchess by Karen Harper 
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Girl With No Job by Claudia Oshry
Down the Habit Hole by Holly Madison Book Review
My Story by Elizabeth Smart
Layla by Colleen Hoover

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