From Page to Screen: So B. It

Adaptations of books to any form of media can be dicey, so I typically go into them with low expectations because they almost always disappoint me. So B. It wasn’t one of those films, though. Based on the novel of the same name by Sarah Weeks, So B. It was a heartfelt family movie that perfectly captured everything I loved about the book.

At the start of the film I was nervous because it didn’t begin the way the book did. The film chose a time jump narrative, in which it begins with Heidi already being in the police station holding her jar of jelly beans (if you didn’t read the book this will make more sense once you do), and then jumps back to fill in the details of how she got there. I wasn’t sure if I would like this but as the movie went on I really enjoyed this form of storytelling, and somehow it made the movie even more emotional for me. I didn’t cry while reading the book, but I definitely cried a few times during the movie.

Overall, I only really had one issue with the film. Unlike in the book ,the film gave a name to Heidi’s mom’s mental illness and I was very confused by it because it just didn’t seem to fit how Heidi’s mom acted and her symptoms. Still, I’m not an expert on mental illnesses so maybe I’m way off base here. Besides that, I can’t think of any other issues I had with the movie. It was very well done, and like I said, the changes were all worth it, and didn’t take away from the story. There was one scene that was cut for the movie that I wish made it in, but I understood for the sake of time why it was cut and the scene I’m thinking of wasn’t really necessary to the story so I’m able to accept that.

Unfortunately, the film is no longer in theaters but keep an eye out for the DVD release. This is a movie I highly recommend seeing. Just make sure you have a tissue box.

Book Review: So B. It

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Synopsis

She doesn’t know when her birthday is or who her father is. In fact, everything about Heidi and her mentally disabled mother’s past is a mystery. When a strange word in her mother’s vocabulary begins to haunt her, Heidi sets out on a cross-country journey in search of the secrets of her past.

Far away from home, pieces of her puzzling history come together. But it isn’t until she learns to accept not knowing that Heidi truly arrives.

Purchase From:

Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Book Depository

Review

Full disclosure, I’m currently studying at The New School and Sarah Weeks, the author of this book, is my professor. That being said, I really enjoyed this book.

Prior to taking Sarah’s class, I was aware of this book but I don’t think I ever read it, or if I did, I don’t remember it. The story follows Heidi, who lives with her mother, So B. It, and their neighbor, Bernie. Heidi’s mother is mentally disabled and can only say a few words, but one day she says a new word, “Soof,” and Heidi can’t get it out of her head.

Soon after, she finds an old photo of her mother, who’s pregnant with Heidi at the time, and a bunch of others at a Christmas party. Heidi notices the name of the place where the party is taking place and decides she most go there to finally get some answers about where she and her mother came from. If you’re wondering how a young girl could make such an incredible journey, it’s all because of her luck.

Heidi is just lucky. No one knows why, that’s just how it is. Using her “power” she’s able to get money from slot machines to pay for her necessities and just happens to know the right people to follow onto the bus so she doesn’t look suspicious. Through her journey Heidi learns more than she ever bargained for and afterwards, her life is never the same.

What I loved about this book was Heidi’s little family with her mom and Bernie. While her mother suffers from an unnamed illness, Bernie suffers from agoraphobia, which means she can’t leave the house. This is another reason why Heidi has to be so independent; there are a lot of things she just has to do on her own. But I loved how even though this isn’t a “traditional family” you could still see all the love in it. While this story definitely broke my heart in some ways, I still laughed and my heart felt full while reading. That being said, I’m very happy Sarah’s writing a sequel because I want to know what happens next for Heidi.

Overall, this was an enjoyable read, but I’m not sure I would read it again. This is a story I think every one should read, but for the sake of my emotions, I don’t think I could read it twice.

Borrow or Buy: Borrow

Stars:

4 stars

Favorite Line:

“You can’t miss what you don’t remember ever having.”