Mini-Review: Extraordinary Ordinary Moments: A Journal, Jorey Hurley (2016)

Saturday, October 8th, 2016

Versatile & Very Cute!

five out of five stars

(Full disclosure: I received a free copy of this book for review through Blogging for Books.)

— 4.5 stars —

If I had to choose just one word to describe Extraordinary Ordinary Moments: A Journal, it would be “adorable.” Jorey Hurley’s artwork is simple and understated – yet cute as all get out. Her previous titles include four picture books for kids – Nest, Fetch, Hop, and Ribbit – and the illustrations in Extraordinary Ordinary Moments are similar in style to what you see on the covers. (Of course I can’t speak to the interior artwork, seeing as I don’t own any of the books!)

Each page in this thick, 368-page journal features a different image or scene, along with a prompt. The general theme is “extraordinary ordinary moments”: an event, chore, object, person, or experience that’s so mundane that maybe you often take it for granted, or don’t even register it at all.

2016-09-23 - Extraordinary Ordinary Moments - 0006 [flickr]

Some of my favorite examples include:
– something nerdy
– comfort food
– something with nice curves
– something that puts you in a good mood (yeah, because there’s an illustration of a dog! you got me!)
– something silly (^ditto!)
– a good walk (definitely should include a dog, okay.)
– something eternal
– something you carry with you
– a good excuse to order a pizza

2016-09-23 - Extraordinary Ordinary Moments - 0007 [flickr]

You can take the prompts literally, interpret them loosely, or ignore them altogether; that’s what makes this journal so versatile. The prompts are written in a smallish font and are rather unobtrusive so, if you’re not especially partial to one (or all), just use that page for regular journaling. I guess the lack of lines might make this difficult, though all the white space is conducive to drawing, sketching, or scrapbooking, so there’s a tradeoff.

2016-09-23 - Extraordinary Ordinary Moments - 0009 [flickr]

The pages are made of a thick paper stock, and the book has a pliable but bendy cover; it’s softcover, but not quite paperback. There’s an image of an orange peel embossed on the cover, which might sound a little boring, except you can actually feel the texture of the peel when you run your fingers across it.

2016-09-23 - Extraordinary Ordinary Moments - 0004 [flickr]

Many of Potter Style’s journals are tiny, about the size of a mass market paperback; the small size of the paper, coupled with the thickness of the book, makes them very difficult to write in. Extraordinary Ordinary Moments is a little more generously sized, at six by eight inches. New rule: all journals should be these dimensions at the very least!

Though I enjoyed most of the artwork, there are a few pictures of animal-based foods that didn’t come as a surprise, but turned me off just the same. I can pretend that the sizzling bacon strips are Lightlife Smart Bacon (delish!), but the whole roasted turkey is a little harder to rationalize away. I know not everyone’s a vegan like me – I’m not delusional, okay – but it’s still tedious to see images of animal suffering everywhere I look. Even in seemingly neutral places, like guided journals. (I guess maybe I can use that page for all my favorite AR quotes?)

I feel a little weird deducting a full star for this, though, so let’s call it 4.5 stars, rounded up to five where necessary.

(This review is also available on Amazon, Library Thing, and Goodreads. Please click through and vote it helpful if you’re so inclined!)