The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry

Based upon the book by Gabrielle Zevin, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry is about a bookshop owner (Kunal Nayyar) who is struggling to stay afloat after the death of his wife. Tending to drink himself to sleep at night, he’s at his wits end. But then the unthinkable happens – a child is left in the store with instructions that A.J. must look after her from now on. Without second guessing it, he takes the girl under his wing, unbeknownst to himself that she is giving him a second chance.

This movie had everything I could possibly love wrapped into one. The romance aspect was perfectly executed with its budding relationship between A.J. and Amelia (Lucy Hale). Starting off as colleagues, becoming friends and eventually more, the gradual order of events made sense for both characters and really made me root for them to end up together. Nayyar and Hale’s chemistry was effortless and helped make their love story all the more realistic.

I loved the father daughter relationship that A.J. shared with Maya. Played by Charlotte Thanh Theresin, Jordyn McIntosh and Blaire Brown over the years, her introduction into A.J.’s life really was the turning point for the story. From then on, he was given a purpose and there was nothing he wouldn’t do for her. I consider my father to be my best friend and so this was a touching plot point to watch unfold.

What you probably wouldn’t expect about this film is that there is an air of mystery to it. Starting with A.J.’s most prized possession being stolen from his house one night while he is blackout drunk and some more instances that occur throughout, they keep the audience on their toes. I like how this wasn’t your typical romance where you can pretty much guarantee how it’ll all come together.

Taking place in a beautiful beachside location, with a stellar supporting cast consisting of Christina Hendricks, David Arquette and Scott Foley and great performances by the two leads, The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry will surely capture your heart right from beginning to end. I unfortunately didn’t get around to reading the book before watching, but you can bet your ass I ordered myself a copy as soon as the credits rolled.

Rating: ♥♥♥.5