Journal of Best PracticesUsually, people watch book trailers to learn more about an upcoming release or to decide whether they want to actually get the book. But with The Journal of Best Practices, it just so happens that I’ve already read it. So does the trailer accurately reflect the book?

This is one of the longer “author interview” style trailers, clocking in at around 3 minutes. While it’s interesting to see and hear author David Finch (and his long-suffering wife Kristen), this trailer, created by the publisher, doesn’t do much to liven up the talking-head format. Some bland adult-contemporary music and a slow pan of the book cover is about all we get.

While Finch gives a concise summary of what the book is and how it evolved (after being diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome and realizing how it had damaged his failing five-year marriage, Finch began obsessively writing notes to himself about how to be a good husband, which he and his wife half-jokingly called “the journal of best practices”), it’s in a dry, matter-of-fact tone that doesn’t reveal the funny, self-deprecating, and deeply self-aware writing that makes this unique memoir shine. And having the two of them sitting side by side, each nodding solemnly as the other one speaks, makes it look like a dull talk-show segment.

Best Practices is charming, witty, and often sweetly romantic — for those who prefer love stories between real, flawed people to saccharine, insipid chick-lit. But you’d never know it from this kinda boring, not-funny-at-all trailer, which is a real shame. Fortunately, this excellent book has been racing up the bestseller lists on its own merits. On second thought, just skip the trailer and go read the book!

Grade: C

Stephanie Perry
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