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Hello Beautiful (2023)

por Ann Napolitano

Outros autores: Ver a secção outros autores.

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1,3536114,012 (3.98)48
William Waters grew up in a house silenced by tragedy, where his parents could hardly bear to look at him, much less love him - so when he meets the spirited and ambitious Julia Padavano in his freshman year of college, it's as if the world has lit up around him. With Julia comes her family, as she and her three sisters are inseparable; Sylvie, the family's dreamer, is happiest with her nose in a book; Cecelia is a free-spirited artist; and Emmeline patiently takes care of them all. With the Padavanos, William experiences a newfound contentment; every moment in their house is filled with loving chaos. But then darkness from Williams' past surfaces, jeopardizing not only Julia's carefully orchestrated plans for their future but the sisters' unshakeable devotion to one another. The result is a catastrophic family rift that changes their lives for generations. Will the loyalty that once rooted them be strong enough to draw them back together when it matters most? An exquisite homage to Louisa May Alcott's timeless classic Little Women, Hello Beautiful is a profoundly moving portrait of what is possible when we choose to love someone not in spite of who they are, but because of it.… (mais)
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HELLO BEAUTIFUL by Ann Napolitano

While honoring Little Women (in a more grownup, grittier way), Hello Beautiful paints a—well, beautiful—portrait of the “one-two punches” of life: With goodbyes come hellos, with losses come gains, with death comes life. And while this is a story about a family, it’s really more so about relationships and kindness and looking out for each other and how we’re shaped by the conflict of living in both the shadowed brokenness and lighted beauty of the world—something that can only be tempered with the broad, colorful strokes of love.

This story begins in the black and white and gray scale of William’s world where he grows up unloved and unacknowledged—a silent, frozen tundra of an isolated childhood, full of fissures and cracks. It’s not until he discovers his first love, basketball, as a kid, and then his second love, Julia, as a college basketball player that he begins to live in the warmth of color. But, really, it’s his entanglement with Julia’s family that begins to open his world to the palette of possibilities he never imagined, answering the question: is love enough? Is love enough to cover the losses we experience from acts of bravery and cowardice and selfishness? Is love enough to bring us out of the dark shadows, making us feel worthy and whole?

If you pick up this book (and you definitely should), be sure of a few things: have time (because you’ll ignore all other responsibilities until you finish it) and have tissues (you’ll cry—a lot—like from beginning to end). Honestly, this will pull you in, making you utterly besotted by these characters who feel both uniquely original and nostalgically familiar. And if you’re lucky enough to have a sister, this will make you want to reminisce about late-night childhood talks in your shared bedroom (or just reach out to say I love you) ( )
  lizallenknapp | Apr 20, 2024 |
DNF
Too somber for my taste
  mimji | Apr 20, 2024 |
had two brothers -- no sisters. Perhaps that's why I never could identify with Little Women, and Hello Beautiful didn't really make a big impression on me either. The characters seemed shallow and the story a bit melodramatic. The best thing I got out of it was an AI generator I found online that created snack recipes based on the book. I've attached three vegetarian recipes that include a short description of their connection to the story.

We liked the book; no one objected to reading it. No one had 4 sisters so we didn't talk about that aspect at all. Julie Poe's favorite book in her life is "Little Women;" she objected to the sisters pretending to be them. Like you, Julie has 2 brothers. My big objection was Julia's life in NY. Everything came so easily to her: where she and her daughter lived, $$$ for daycare, someone to watch Alice, her grandmother's friend being on the board of her co-op and OKing her to live in the building. The icing on the cake was her salary of $300,000 and living in a 2 bedroom on the Upper East Side. Does anyone know how expensive it is to live in NY???!!! No way could this happen , , if it were possible, I'd be living there myself. Betty Ann did not find Julia as objectionable as the rest of us did. Sylvie was our favorite. The book was definitely a soap opera in the making. On a soap, when Sylvie died, she would be replaced by her unknown twin who, then, mysteriously appeared on the show.

We did have a good discussion. Julia's relationship with Alice, telling her her father was dead. Rose's suddenly loving her family, when William died. We all hoped William and Alice would be close but there was a lot of work to be done. ( )
  NMBookClub | Apr 17, 2024 |
"Sylvie wondered, looking at the mural, if bravery was wedded to loss. You did the unthinkable and paid a price." (p. 229)
This is the main motivation for many of the characters... as they search for ways to fully reach the potential their dad saw in them, to be "the rocket" or "raise these giant beautiful sails and go", the family breaks apart.
The main characters make selfish decisions which reverberate over generations. Eventually, as they mature, the realize that "forgiveness is love".⭐️⭐️⭐️ ( )
  Chrissylou62 | Apr 11, 2024 |
I was so optimistic that I would like this book when I first started reading it. It seemed to have so many elements I liked - but then things went off the rails for me.



I liked the obvious connections to Little Women - but even at the beginning I felt like it was so pronounced that it even kept pulling me out of the actual time period that this book was supposed to be set. Everyone interacted and spoke like they were from an earlier time and I had to keep reminding myself of the actual decade.

But the major issue I had was that I just can’t swallow the whole - "you are powerless in the face of love" - and that Sylvia did something “heroic” or brave in choosing “love” over her family being together - when actually she got the family it was her sister that paid the much greater price.

What if Sylvia and William had wanted or had children? Would the complexity of this situation have been really addressed at that point? These felt like decisions made by a narcissist who was wiling to sacrifice her sister’s life for her own pleasure.

Yuck.

( )
  alanna1122 | Mar 30, 2024 |
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Napolitano, Annautor principaltodas as ediçõesconfirmado
Tierney, MauraNarradorautor secundárioalgumas ediçõesconfirmado
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For the first six days of William Waters's life, he was not an only child.
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William Waters grew up in a house silenced by tragedy, where his parents could hardly bear to look at him, much less love him - so when he meets the spirited and ambitious Julia Padavano in his freshman year of college, it's as if the world has lit up around him. With Julia comes her family, as she and her three sisters are inseparable; Sylvie, the family's dreamer, is happiest with her nose in a book; Cecelia is a free-spirited artist; and Emmeline patiently takes care of them all. With the Padavanos, William experiences a newfound contentment; every moment in their house is filled with loving chaos. But then darkness from Williams' past surfaces, jeopardizing not only Julia's carefully orchestrated plans for their future but the sisters' unshakeable devotion to one another. The result is a catastrophic family rift that changes their lives for generations. Will the loyalty that once rooted them be strong enough to draw them back together when it matters most? An exquisite homage to Louisa May Alcott's timeless classic Little Women, Hello Beautiful is a profoundly moving portrait of what is possible when we choose to love someone not in spite of who they are, but because of it.

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