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Now a Major Motion Picture

Review

Now a Major Motion Picture

NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE by Cori McCarthy is for fans of fantasy, adventure and LORD OF THE RINGS. As a fan of those things myself, I was so excited to read the book. And it didn't let me down. With references to several fantasy fandoms, the book was a joy to read.

Elementia, a fictional book series by teenage Iris and Ryder’s grandmother is being adapted for the big screen. The grandchildren have been invited to the set. Ryder couldn’t have been more ecstatic, talking nonstop about his love for the books to anyone who would listen. Iris is less so, in that she wants absolutely nothing to do with the books that have ruined her life thus far. However, when her father forces her to take Ryder to Ireland to watch their grandmother’s fantasy series come to life, Iris begins to feel closer to her grandmother than she’s had in her entire life. NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE is a lovely summer read that will leave you smiling.

"NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE by Cori McCarthy is a gem. With its fun writing, complex themes and gorgeous setting, this book is an absolute must for all readers."

At first, the protagonist, Iris, is understandably grumpy and a bit unlikable. She is annoyed at people judging her from a book her grandmother wrote long before she was born. McCarthy gives readers a complex family dynamic that you don’t see in a lot of YA today. Ryder, Iris's brother was a breath of fresh air --- he was fun and lively. His eight-year-old perspective really lightened the mood, especially when Iris brings most of the negativity to the dialogue. Iris eventually warms up to the readers and by time the book was over, Iris and I could have been best friends.

Eamon, an actor in the movie, is the one person who begins to break down Iris's walls. McCarthy certainly built a romance that readers will adore. Before you think it was all romance, Now A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE is much more of a coming-of-age novel. It is a multifaceted book. Not only is it a coming-of-age story and a romance but also a feminist perspective that highlights the gender inequality of Hollywood.

I haven’t read Cori McCarthy’s previous novels. However, the writing in NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE is fun, almost playful. It reads like a fast-paced beach read, despite some of its complex elements.

There are excerpts of the filming notes at the beginning of some chapters. Readers become immersed in the filming of the day, knowing what will be filmed. It’s a great way to add extra depth to the plot, telling the story beyond usual prose. Also, there are some excerpts of Elementia, the book series in which the film is being adapted. It reminded me a bit of FANGIRL by Rainbow Rowell, where there were excerpts of the fanfiction being written in the novel; these excerpts eventually were turned into a full-length novel, CARRY ON. NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE definitely deserves the same treatment, and it would be fantastic to see McCarthy’s fictional book series come to print. According to her acknowledgments, you can head on over to her website (corimccarthy.com) to read the shooting script for Elementia.

The book is set in Ireland. The descriptions of old ruins, looming cliffs and gorgeous views were enough to make me want to visit someday. Similar to high fantasy novels, NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE gives readers a message to learn that is both beautiful and raw. The ending is sweet, wrapping everything up very nicely. It is sure to put a smile on your face.

Overall, NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE by Cori McCarthy is a gem. With its fun writing, complex themes and gorgeous setting, this book is an absolute must for all readers.

Reviewed by Jeanna Michel on April 11, 2018

Now a Major Motion Picture
by Cori McCarthy