Search This Blog

2024 Bookish Books Reading Challenge (Hosted by Yours Truly)

2024 Challenge Sign-Up Post

January Reviews Link-Up

February Reviews Link-Up

March Reviews Link-Up

April Reviews Link-Up

May Reviews Link-Up

June Reviews Link-Up

July Reviews Link-Up

August Reviews Link-Up

September Reviews Link-Up

October Reviews Link-Up

November Reviews Link-Up

December Reviews Link-Up

My Progress:

13 / 30 books. 43% done!

2024 Literary Escapes Challenge

- Alabama (1)
- Alaska
- Arizona (1)
- Arkansas
- California (5)
- Colorado (1)
- Connecticut
- Delaware (1)
- Florida
- Georgia (1)
- Hawaii (1)
- Idaho (2)
- Illinois (2)
- Indiana (2)
- Iowa
- Kansas
- Kentucky (1)
- Louisiana (1)
- Maine (1)
- Maryland
- Massachusetts (2)
- Michigan
- Minnesota
- Mississippi
- Missouri
- Montana
- Nebraska (1)
- Nevada (1)
- New Hampshire
- New Jersey (1)
- New Mexico (1)
- New York (5)
- North Carolina (4)
- North Dakota
- Ohio (1)
- Oklahoma (1)
- Oregon (2)
- Pennsylvania (2)
- Rhode Island (1)
- South Carolina (1)
- South Dakota
- Tennessee (1)
- Texas (3)
- Utah (1)
- Vermont (2)
- Virginia (2)
- Washington (2)
- West Virginia (1)
- Wisconsin (1)
- Wyoming
- Washington, D.C.* (1)

- Australia (2)
- Canada (2)
- England (10)
- France (1)
- Indonesia (1)
- Ireland (4)
- Italy (1)
- Scotland (2)
- The Netherlands (1)

My Progress:

35 / 51 states. 69% done!

2024 Historical Fiction Reading Challenge

My Progress:

29 / 50 books. 58% done!

2024 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge

23 / 50 books. 46% done!

Booklist Queen's 2024 Reading Challenge

My Progress:

50 / 52 books. 96% done!

2024 52 Club Reading Challenge

My Progress:

42 / 52 books. 81% done!

2024 Build Your Library Reading Challenge

My Progress:

29 / 40 books. 73% done!

2024 Pioneer Book Reading Challenge

16 / 40 books. 40% done!

2024 Craving for Cozies Reading Challenge

My Progress:

11 / 25 books. 44% done!

2024 Medical Examiner's Mystery Reading Challenge

2024 Mystery Marathon Reading Challenge

My Progress

17 / 26.2 miles (2nd lap). 65% done!

Mount TBR Reading Challenge

My Progress

30 / 100 books. 30% done!

2024 Pick Your Poison Reading Challenge

My Progress:

74 / 104 books. 71% done!

Around the Year in 52 Books Reading Challenge

My Progress

50 / 52 books. 96% done!

Disney Animated Movies Reading Challenge

My Progress

84 / 165 books. 51% done!
Tuesday, January 31, 2017

It's A Book! It's A Film! It's Fantastic All Around!

(Image from Barnes & Noble)

I think most readers would agree that:

(1) It's better to read the book before seeing a movie based on said book.
(2) With a few exceptions, the book is always better than its movie. 

Am I right?  Thought so.  

Well, I adhere to Rule #1 the vast majority of the time since I prefer to "see" a book in my head before I view it on the Big Screen.  Hollywood and I rarely see eye-to-eye, so this technique has served me well.  I break this habit only on very rare occasions.  A movie date with my California sister and our daughters over Thanksgiving weekend seemed like a legit reason, so I went to see Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them before reading the original screenplay by J.K. Rowling.  The shock!  The horror!  Actually, since the film follows the published screenplay exactly, it wasn't that big of a deal.  And you know what?  I loved the movie.  Loved it. 

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them features Newt Scamander, a British magizoologist, who arrives in New York City in 1926 to perform a special mission.  Obsessed with magical creatures, Newt carries a number of them in his suitcase.  When Jacob Kowalski, a Muggle baker, accidentally opens the case, he sets the animals free.  As Newt's precious creatures escape and wreak havoc on the city, he tries to convince the Magical Congress of the United States (MACUSA) that he can take care of the problem without any harm to either the creatures or American Muggles.  
MACUSA is already struggling to manage magical-Muggle relations.  It doesn't help that a dark force is causing trouble in the city.  MACUSA assumes it's the work of one of Newt's creatures; Newt refuses to believe it.  He thinks it's something much stronger, much more dangerous.  With the help of Tina Goldstein, a disgraced Auror; her sister Queenie, a skilled Legilimens; and Kowalski, Newt must find the culprit in order to pacify MACUSA and save New York City.  The job is a much more dangerous one than anyone could possibly have imagined ...

When I heard about J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter screenplays, I wasn't sure what to think.  All Potterheads long for more from the HP universe, but I've been hoping for novels.  It's only in this format that the real color, charm, and depth of Rowling's world-building can truly come alive, right?  Right.  Sort of.  The Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them screenplay definitely lacks the fullness that would no doubt be found in a novel version.  With short stage directions instead of meaty description, it's difficult to really visualize the setting, characters, and creatures that appear in the story (at least I assume this is true since I actually saw the film before reading the screenplay).  What this format does offer is a reading experience that is fast, exciting, and unique.  Readers— especially young, reluctant ones—who want to delve into the Harry Potter books but shy away from the weighty tomes might find this format more to their liking.  It also helps that they can enjoy this story without having read any of the Harry Potter books.  Personally, although I enjoyed reading Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, I would have preferred it in novel form.  Still, this is a fun, magical tale that translates perfectly to the Big Screen.  I loved both the written screenplay and the film version.  

(Readalikes:  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone; Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets; Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban; Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire; Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix; Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows; Harry Potter and the Cursed Child; Quidditch Through the Ages; and The Tales of Beedle the Bard)


If this were a movie (and it is!), it would be rated:

for brief, mild language, violence, and scary images

(Note: The actual movie is rated PG-13)

To the FTC, with love:  I bought a copy of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them from Amazon with a portion of the millions I make from my lucrative career as a book blogger.  Ha ha. 

*Movie image from


  1. I'm glad you enjoyed them both. I actually find that I enjoy seeing the movie first. Then I can enjoy both. For some reason when I read the book first the movie just makes me angry.

  2. Yes, I agree. Me, I'd love to see the Fantastic Beasts story as a full length novel, but the movie was indeed so good. And those creatures. Really, really fun on the big screen. I've heard there will be more Fantastic Beasts movie. Hope so.

  3. I'm so glad to hear you enjoyed the movie! It's on my to watch list but I haven't made it happen yet. I can see where a screen play would lack a little of the warmth and magic of a novel so I'm not sure how interested I am in reading it but I will most definitely be seeing the movie!


Comments make me feel special, so go crazy! Just keep it clean and civil. Feel free to speak your mind (I always do), but be aware that I will delete any offensive comments.

P.S.: Don't panic if your comment doesn't show up right away. I have to approve each one before it posts to prevent spam. It's annoying, but it works!

Blog Widget by LinkWithin


Homecoming by Kate Morton


The Good Neighbor by Maxwell King

Followin' with Bloglovin'


Followin' with Feedly

follow us in feedly

Grab my Button!

Blog Design by:

Blog Archive