Hallmark's "The Story of Us" -- Finding True Love in a Bookstore?

Starring:  Maggie Lawson and Sam Page

Released:  2019

Summary:  A woman is distraught upon learning that her first love is an architect for a development company that threatens her beloved neighborhood and bookstore.

Image:  Crown Media, United States LLC 

What Is The "Story of Us?"

Before watching the movie, I assumed "the story of us" was about how the two leads met.  Though both Jamie Vaughn and Sawyer O'Dell were former sweethearts, "the story of us" is a collection of Valentines True Love Bookstore & Cafe has accumulated through the years from couples who wrote to share how they met and fell in love in the bookstore.

I have two issues with this premise:

  •  How did no one discover this honking box of letters until now?  Routine cleaning should have uncovered it long ago.  
  • Do enough people fall in love in bookstores to fill a box with testimonials?

Sure, some bookstores offer snacks and beverages, but most people assume a library voice and posture in a bookstore, which means they make a point NOT to strike up conversation with strangers.  In fact, if you want to peruse a particular section of a bookstore and someone is already occupying that space, you wait until the coast is clear before moseying over to it.   

If someone approached you in a bookstore, wouldn't it arouse suspicion?  That's why we carry mace.

I suppose if a guest author were speaking at the library for some type of literary soiree, the nature of such a gathering would spark conversation among fellow fans, but even that's a stretch.

Putting this enormous plot hole aside, the letters from past patrons who fell in love becomes a huge asset to saving Jamie's store.  They offer nostalgic support for the bookstore's history and show it to be an important pillar in the community.

Save The Bookstore Only to Burn It Down?

It's laughable that Jamie pours so much heart, energy, and time into saving her bookstore, only to light a gazillion unattended candles in it to form a path leading Sawyer to a romantic dinner for two.  We are supposed to believe she not only had a ton of votive cups on hand, but she was able to whack them all out and light them in under five minutes.

Samantha Stephens from Bewitched could manage that with a twinkle of her nose, but not a mere mortal!

The only thing we want smoking in this movie is the romance!

Take On Me And Princess Bride?

No one love loves 80's music more than me, but when I think of a day spent rekindling love with an old flame, I think of Whitney Houston's I Will Always Love You or Journey's Open Arms.  I'm a power ballad kind of girl.  The cover for a-ha's perky hit Take On Me isn't on my list, but apparently it was for Hallmark!

I guess Jamie "took" Sawyer's renovation proposals "on;" he planned to be gone in a "day or two;" and he wound up "coming for her love," so it fits.

Who hasn't see the movie, Princess Bride?  It's an iconic classic based on the book by William Goldman.  Why does Jamie leave it on the table for Sawyer?  Is there a connection?

Jamie's long, blonde hair is Buttercup-ish.  One could argue the attempted takeover of area merchant stores could be seen as pillaging by the dreaded Pirate Roberts (or Sawyer).  Though he's no farm boy, Sawyer also managed to pull things off "as she wished."  Meh.  It's a weak case.

Past Is Prologue

As old feelings well up between Jamie and Sawyer, she wonders if their past should stay in the past, but he suggests past is prologue.

That's an interesting spin.

Sometimes it works that way, but other times it doesn't.  Things happen in your past that prepare you for what comes later.  You can't see it at the time, but you connect the dots at a future point.  Your past becomes the beginning of your new story.

The past stays in the past when it comes to Jamie's ex, Matt.  When Matt comes back from Texas to  implore her to join him in the Lone Star State, she closes the door on that relationship once and for all.  

Marco Grazzini Would Make a Great Leading Man     

Rick (played by Grazzini) and Lucy shared a "wow" moment when they met, but Rick let the moment pass, and now he's scrambling to recapture her attention.  

Lucy has grown so accustomed to working with Rick at the bookstore and cafe that she assumes his interest in her is only the camaraderie of being her co-worker. 

When Rick sees Lucy with another guy, he's nervous and jealous at the same time.  Little does he know Lucy can't find the chemistry with her new suitor like she feels with Rick.  Eventually, they get in sync and find love too.  Another past is prologue moment!  

Grazzini shines as a supporting actor and needs a chance from Hallmark in a leading role.  He has a commanding presence and isn't cheesy and mechanical like some of the supporting cast can be at times. 

His interaction in the movie with Sam Page is also well done.  They do seem like best buddies from school with all of the banter that passes between the two.  In fact, I think I would rather see Grazzini as the lead rather than Page.  Page is a little too "nondescript" for me.  What do you think?  Take the poll below! 

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