As the sun sets behind the big construction site, all the hardworking trucks get ready to say goodnight. One by one, Crane Truck, Cement Mixer, Dump Truck, Bulldozer, and Excavator finish their work and lie down to rest—so they'll be ready for another day of rough and tough construction play! - Blurb from Amazon.com for Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site.
Both are bedtime books, both written and illustrated by the same people and both unique in their own way. What I like about both books are the rhymes and illustrations. The rhymes were very simple, easy enough for young readers follow along and even repeat after hearing them over and over again (as young reader tend to do). I love how the rhymes intertwined with the illustrations at times giving them a sort of rhythm. This brings me to the illustrations. I am always a fan of color, the brighter and more colorful the better. These illustrations were colorful, but more subtle than bright. What I love about them is the drawing feel. They look like they were drawn with crayons which are very familiar to young readers who at this stage use primarily crayon to draw pictures. They can relate to these images and feel as if it is something they can do one day.
My favorite of the two is Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site. I love how each “truck” is highlighted with a quick description of their role on a construction site. They’re all in rhyme and all end with the same phrase “Shh . . . goodnight, [truck], goodnight.” Even with a first read through, young readers and pick up this line quickly and say along with their parent when they get to that part in the book, thereby feeling involved in the story. I also like the words in parenthesis: sigh, yawn, crrrunch and so forth. At first, I didn’t get it, but then I realized that these words aren’t made to be said, they’re made to be acted out. They give the parent reader an indication of action to make the story come alive.
My nephew loves this book and now I can see why.
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Allyson Healey's life is exactly like her suitcase—packed, planned, ordered. Then on the last day of her three-week post-graduation European tour, she meets Willem. A free-spirited, roving actor, Willem is everything she’s not, and when he invites her to abandon her plans and come to Paris with him, Allyson says yes. This uncharacteristic decision leads to a day of risk and romance, liberation and intimacy: 24 hours that will transform Allyson’s life. - Blurb from Amazon.com for Just One Day.
I have always enjoyed Gayle Forman’s books. I was a big fan of the If I stay/Where She Went series and I am a fan of this series as well. I love the concept of fate and destiny. I am a firm believer that there are multiple destinies out there for you and the one you end up with will be based on the choices you make. It’s the aspect of this series I enjoyed the most. I enjoyed how Forman played around with the idea of destiny and expanded on it. There were moments where the characters just went with it and moments where they made choices to lead them down their paths.
What I have also liked about Forman’s series, is the duel point of views but in separate books. I find it hard sometimes when an author choices to jump POVs back and forth in the same book. I tend to get lost sometimes and can’t remember which POV I am following in that chapter. I get showing the two sides of one story and I do like that idea, but what makes it work for Forman is that she choices to tell the stories in their own book giving each POV the attention they deserve and need. I get the bigger picture that way.
As for the story itself, it’s pretty straight forward: boy meets girl, boy and girl fall in love, they separate in some way and then they come back together again. It’s a formula that’s common. It’s up to the author to out a spin on it and Gayle Forman did just that.
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The movie makers took a lot of leeway with the story. There were numerous amounts of changes from the book to the movie. Some worked and some, in my opinion, not so much.
Let’s take a look at my list:
Please note: spoilers are a foot.
1) Starting with the most obvious change, Lena’s removal of Ethan’s memory. I’m still not sure why the movie makers decided to go this route. Except for showing Lena’s love for Ethan, I didn’t see much reasoning behind this plot device. I felt that it made Ethan much more of an outsider in the castor world. True he was an outsider in the book, but his devotion to Lena and the fact that he was her protector of the influences of Sarafine made him much more important to her than just her loving him.
2) The physical relationship of Lena and Ethan. There is this point that comes across about Casters falling for mortals, how it’s forbidden and even dangerous for mortals. In the book, this is brought to the surface by the fact that every time Lena and Ethan got physical with each other, Ethan’s heart would stop and he would almost die. This was not in the movie and I felt that removing it made the whole caster/mortal thing less important.
3) No Marian Ashcroft. Marian was the keeper of the Caster library in the book and Ethan’s mom’s best friend. While her removal in the movie didn’t change any of the plots, I was sad to see her gone. I liked her and her kooky was in the book.
4) No telepathy. In the book Lena and Ethan can here each other’s thoughts and would constantly speak to each other as such. This was not in the movie. It didn’t affect the plots, but it did lose the affect of showing just how connected the two were.
Because of the length of the novel and the movie maker’s having to shorten it to fit into a 2 hour film, I did feel Lena’s and Ethan’s relationship was rushed. There were times where I thought “why should we care?” We don’t get to see the development and therefore invest the time in them before the action starts. But, unfortunately, sometimes this is the case with most adaptations.
P.S. My book club reviewed this book as our first introduction to the club. Check out our thoughts here.
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