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The Jelly Bean Crisis

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A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B. When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B. When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like Poppy’s jelly bean theory is wrong. School has been her life until, but maybe it’s time to start living now. Poppy has thirty days to try a new life. No school, no studying. Just jumping into every possible world. Thirty days to find her passion, her path, and maybe even love. The Jelly Bean Crisis is officially on.


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A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B. When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like A total meltdown. The whole school watching. Now Poppy’s an ex-straight-A with no Plan B. When Poppy Johnson throws away a full scholarship to Columbia, she can only blame the jelly beans. The yucky green ones? Midnight cram sessions and Saturday’s spent studying. The delicious red? The family legacy: Columbia, and a future in finance. Except now it’s starting to look like Poppy’s jelly bean theory is wrong. School has been her life until, but maybe it’s time to start living now. Poppy has thirty days to try a new life. No school, no studying. Just jumping into every possible world. Thirty days to find her passion, her path, and maybe even love. The Jelly Bean Crisis is officially on.

30 review for The Jelly Bean Crisis

  1. 3 out of 5

    Nicola

    I am on such a contemporary kick this year. Every one of these books I pick up ends up blowing my mind. I'm actually surprised I practically ignored this genre for so long but happy that I've finally changed that! The Jelly Bean Crisis was a splendid novel and I'm happy to report that it's not just a pretty cover. This book really packs a punch and I devoured every page of it. I got so caught up in Poppy's story and I can tell you, ''one more page'' quickly turned into some lost sleep but it was I am on such a contemporary kick this year. Every one of these books I pick up ends up blowing my mind. I'm actually surprised I practically ignored this genre for so long but happy that I've finally changed that! The Jelly Bean Crisis was a splendid novel and I'm happy to report that it's not just a pretty cover. This book really packs a punch and I devoured every page of it. I got so caught up in Poppy's story and I can tell you, ''one more page'' quickly turned into some lost sleep but it was totally worth it. It was really lovely, from start to finish. Poppy is the protagonist in this book and a brilliant one at that. Her voice is really unique and strong. Her personality practically bursts through the pages. Obviously, being able to form a connection to the main character of a book is pretty important and thankfully I found that really easy. I felt like I knew Poppy from the get-go. As well as you can know a character who's going through a crisis like this, that is. It was so intriguing to watch Poppy just snap and to suddenly question everything she's ever known. The Jelly Bean Crisis follows Poppy on her month long journey to find herself. All her life she's planned for one thing: college and a steady financial career. I felt really sorry for Poppy when she started freaking out and feeling like she had to make all her major life choices right now as a teenager. I enjoyed joining her as she dove headfirst into the search for what she really wanted! Poppy's Jelly Bean Theory is that you should eat the not-so-nice jelly beans first and then save the best for last. In this book we see her going against the theory she's held for many years and wondering if perhaps she should have been going for the red jelly beans- her favourite- the whole time. Poppy gets up to a lot during her ''gap month'' in order to see if she can figure out which career path is perfect for her. We meet a whole host of interesting characters at each place and there are several minor characters who intrigued me. Poppy's friends annoyed me at parts but definitely redeemed themselves. Her Nana is a pretty awesome and wise woman and her relationship with her is really sweet to read about. The only thing I can say is that there wasn't enough of a certain love interest. Not really a flaw in the book- more of a personal preference and simply means he was such a great character, I wanted to read more about him! Overall, I seriously enjoyed this book and I'm so glad I got the chance to read it. I'd recommend it to any contemporary fans, and anyone in that awkward stage in their life where they've got to figure out what they want from their future- which is probably everyone, right? Definitely one to look out for. It's a beautifully told story that you'll still be thinking about long after you finish reading it.

  2. 3 out of 5

    Amanda

    The Jelly Bean Crisis by New Zealand author, Jolene Stockman, is set in Lakewood, California. Poppy Johnson is sixteen years old and since the age of ten, she’s been living life according to her Jelly Bean Theory. Her favourite jelly beans are the red ones, but if she eats them all she’s left with the so-so colours (orange, blue, white) and the worst colour: green. If she applies this to real life, it means that she should do the hard work now and she’ll get to enjoy the rewards later. She’s a s The Jelly Bean Crisis by New Zealand author, Jolene Stockman, is set in Lakewood, California. Poppy Johnson is sixteen years old and since the age of ten, she’s been living life according to her Jelly Bean Theory. Her favourite jelly beans are the red ones, but if she eats them all she’s left with the so-so colours (orange, blue, white) and the worst colour: green. If she applies this to real life, it means that she should do the hard work now and she’ll get to enjoy the rewards later. She’s a straight-A student, destined for Columbia University where she’ll study finance and become an investment banker. It’s a family legacy and one that her parents are keen to see her live up to. But then her theory starts falling apart, she’s left not knowing what she wants so she embarks on a gap month to find out. I enjoyed Poppy’s story from the moment we meet her. She’s about to win the Denton Award, something that only weeks ago was very important to her. It will mean four years at college, tuition-free and she’ll be on track with her life plan. But now she’s freaking out, worried about the fact that this plan might not be what makes her happy. I was immediately able to relate to Poppy, there’s a lot of pressure on teens in high school to know what they want to do and to make big decisions that will impact the rest of their lives. She has thirty days to accept the award and after seeing the school counsellor, Mrs Young, she decides to ask her parents for a month off. She wants to try some new things, get out of her comfort zone and see what happens. Poppy is super intelligent, hard-working, a good friend, daughter and sister. I liked her straight away but she’s not perfect, she can be a bit judgemental but also quite funny and awkward. The rest of the characters were just as well-developed. Her best friends, Bex and Ella, were great characters, I could understand their disappointment that Poppy was ditching them for a month off but they were still quite supportive of her. I really liked her family, even though there was a lot of pressure from her parents, particularly her dad, I felt that they were a strong, loving family and her brother Tyler was amusing. Poppy was also lucky to have a fantastic grandma, Rose, who helped smooth over tensions between her and her dad. And then there’s Stratford Logan, a boy that Poppy starts bumping into at her work experience placements. Their friendship was really cute and I enjoyed watching them grow closer, it made my heart flip. I think this would be a great book for teens to read, particularly if they’re in their final year of high school. As an adult reading this, I wanted to tell Poppy not to panic so much. Applying to college for a four year course does not mean you have to do those four years. You could switch classes, drop out, study part time, go travelling – there are so many possibilities these days, you don’t have to pick one thing and stick with it for the next fifty years. I’d also tell her not to worry so much about other people. Poppy starts questioning her theory when another classmate, who does little to no work, starts getting what she wants and making it look so easy. It doesn’t help to focus on other people and what they’re doing, just because they’re getting something good now, doesn’t mean their life is going to be perfect. But I completely understand Poppy’s meltdown and I’m really glad she stood up for herself and took the time to think about what she really wants from life. I really liked the Jelly Bean Theory itself; I am a big believer in doing the boring things now, like washing the dishes, so that I can do good things later, being able to sit and read knowing I don’t have any washing up do! But it doesn’t always work that way, sometimes it’s fun to do whatever you want now and do the boring stuff later on! The Jelly Bean Crisis is a very sweet contemporary novel that would be perfect for high school teens and anyone who loves YA set in high school.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Hilda

    And I really want to want this. But this is my life, my whole life. And it’s more than just success, you know? I want to be happy. Poppy Johnson is the kind of girl who has her life mapped out. For her, it was simple. She was born to be on Wall Street, and the first step to be an investment banker is by studying at Columbia. She has jelly bean theory to help her reaching her dream. Eat the yucky green jelly bean first, because then the delicious red ones would taste more amazing. Poppy applies th And I really want to want this. But this is my life, my whole life. And it’s more than just success, you know? I want to be happy. Poppy Johnson is the kind of girl who has her life mapped out. For her, it was simple. She was born to be on Wall Street, and the first step to be an investment banker is by studying at Columbia. She has jelly bean theory to help her reaching her dream. Eat the yucky green jelly bean first, because then the delicious red ones would taste more amazing. Poppy applies the theory to everything in her life. School is her green jelly bean, and it’s the hard work that she has to do before getting the life that she really wants. But after standing so close to the gate of her dream, Poppy starts to freak out. Is it really her dream to become an investment banker? What if her jelly bean theory has been wrong all this time? The Jelly Bean Crisis exceeded my expectation. I went to this book with something adorable and sweet in my mind, but this book blew me away with the inspiring message behind and the mature yet relatable main character. Poppy is a great character I adore. She reminded me of people I know in real life (aka me), and I’m sure that every teenager can identify themselves with Sophie. Who doesn’t feel scary about the future? When you are sixteen, it seems like every little turn you take can bring your life into a whole different direction. I think Poppy had to relax because after all, she’s only sixteen. It’s okay to make mistakes and have doubts in mind. She’s still young and it’s her life anyway to spend in any way she wants. Although I completely understand Poppy’s parents worry and her teachers’ reaction to her, I’m glad that Poppy still insists to take time to find her passion in life. In the end, she reaches a conclusion and I felt happy for her. The Jelly Bean Crisis is the book that I would recommend to any teenager because Poppy sets a good example about finding what you really want to do in life. It’s enticing, sweet, and brilliant, and when you realize, you would find yourself cheering for Poppy in her short journey about finding her true passion in life. Turns out the Jelly Bean Theory worked on a lot of things. I started brushing my teeth before letting myself read at night, I would finish my homework before watching TV. The theory has worked for home, and for school… but now, standing at the podium, I can’t see how it’s worked for me. Read other reviews in my blog! :) Catch the Lune

  4. 3 out of 5

    Jasprit

    Poppy Johnson is going through a Jelly bean crisis. She used to live by a jelly bean theory where she would eat up all the jelly beans she didn’t like first or fob them off to her brother and save the best (the red ones) until last. I remember doing this with my skittles when I was younger, but Poppy went even further, she soon found herself applying this same rule to life; whenever she ate a meal (she would save her favourite food till last and eat the least favourite on the plate first) and al Poppy Johnson is going through a Jelly bean crisis. She used to live by a jelly bean theory where she would eat up all the jelly beans she didn’t like first or fob them off to her brother and save the best (the red ones) until last. I remember doing this with my skittles when I was younger, but Poppy went even further, she soon found herself applying this same rule to life; whenever she ate a meal (she would save her favourite food till last and eat the least favourite on the plate first) and also to school; all the hard work she was doing now would pay off in the long run (to the final red jelly bean). But when her nana unexpectedly announces that she’s finally going to college to do what she’s always wanted to do at the age of 75, Poppy begins to doubt her jelly bean theory. Has everything she’s been doing all her life the right thing at all? Who is she studying so hard for? Does she actually want to follow the family route and go to Columbia? Poppy decides to take a gap month to figure it all out. I really liked Poppy, it wasn’t easy standing up to her family, (especially her dad who thought she was throwing everything away) just to stop to take time out and think what did she really want in life? her friends thought she was crazy, but Poppy was fed up of working hard all the time. Poppy’s gap month was an eventful one to say at the least, at times it could be hugely stressful, but it helped Poppy make a lot of important decisions in the end. What she’d originally thought was an awesome job ended up being a headache, and what she’d never considered before she found she ended up enjoying. I enjoyed meeting some of the comical characters along the way and just watching Poppy tackle different areas of work and realise a few of things about herself. When I’d first decided to read the Jelly Bean Crisis I thought it would be a cute, funny read and a lot of aspects of it was. But it also provided a lot more that, parts of it were gritty, raw and the tasks poppy challenged herself to real eye openers. I love it when you go into a book expecting something but end up with so much more. The Jelly Bean Crisis was definitely one of those books.

  5. 3 out of 5

    Heidi

    Rated 4 stars “ Four Stars: A book for everyone who has been confused over what they want to be if they grow up. Poppy's stomach is a rolling sea of anxiety. She is sitting in an assembly trying to soothe her jangled nerves. This could be the moment she has been waiting for her entire young life. She is a shoe in for the prestigious Denton Award. A four year scholarship to Columbia where she plans to fulfill her family legacy and get her degree in marketing. Poppy as a junior has pushed endlessly t Rated 4 stars “ Four Stars: A book for everyone who has been confused over what they want to be if they grow up. Poppy's stomach is a rolling sea of anxiety. She is sitting in an assembly trying to soothe her jangled nerves. This could be the moment she has been waiting for her entire young life. She is a shoe in for the prestigious Denton Award. A four year scholarship to Columbia where she plans to fulfill her family legacy and get her degree in marketing. Poppy as a junior has pushed endlessly to win this award, but why now is she feeling the butterflies of doubt? Isn't this her dream, her destiny, or is it what everyone else expects her to do. Her name is announced. Poppy should be overwhelmed with joy, but why does this feel wrong? Then she does the unexpected. Poppy announces to the whole school that she can't accept the award because she doesn't even know if she wants to go to college. Everyone is shocked! At home, Poppy's parents are upset. Her father demands that she come to her senses. Poppy has one month to accept the award. The next day at school, Poppy and her school guidance counselor hatch an exciting plan. Poppy is going to take a gap month. An entire month off from school and studies (she will have to make them up of course) for her to explore and try out different career paths. Can Poppy find the answer to her worries? Will she discover what she wants to do with the rest of her life? What I Liked: *The Jellybean Crisis was a surprise read for me. I was expecting a light, funny, fluffy read. What I got was something entirely different. This is a book about a teenager facing the difficult decision that we all face at some point in our life. Deciding what you want to do with the rest of your life and if that choice will bring happiness. This is a decision that plagues all of us. I throughly enjoyed watching Poppy grapple with this hefty choice. She is a girl who from an early age was groomed and prepped to follow in her father's footsteps. She constantly pushed for good grades and sought excellence. Now her world is spiraling out of control as she realizes that perhaps she doesn't fit into her father's shoes. It takes courage to set goals and follow your dreams and I applaud Poppy for taking a step back and questioning her life's path. *I was impressed by the positive tone of the book and all the inspirational messages. Ms. Stockman does a wonderful job in conveying her message: it is okay to be unsure about what you want in life, it is good to explore and try different career paths, all in order to ensure the right choice that works for you. Let's face it, picking out a job that you could be doing for thirty to forty years is scary. It is best to be prepared. This book is perfect for anyone who has felt lost when it comes to choosing a career. *I was intrigued by the idea of a gap month. I can totally relate to Poppy. High school can be tough and it is easy to burn out and become bored. Wouldn't a month long period in which you are allowed to explore and try out different jobs be a wonderful solution for many uncertain teens? I know I would have benefitted from this kind of experiment. I absolutely love this idea and I hope that perhaps it can be an idea that is implemented for teens. *I adored Poppy's jellybean theory. Basically she believes that jellybeans should be eaten in order of the least desirable to the best. For Poppy, green are the worst and red the best. She equates this philosophy to real life. Delaying gratification by tackling the hard things first. And The Not So Much: *I was disappointed in Poppy's father. In the beginning of the book, it is established that he has long been the driving force behind Poppy's quest for success. There is a brief mention that he had a tumultuous relationship with his father because his father pushed him too hard. There is not enough discussion on this, I would like more insight into this area. Furthermore, he is angry at Poppy and refuses to allow her to stray off his set in stone path for success. He is always pushing and pushing and he never takes the time to listen. Finally, at the end when he and Poppy sit down and come to an agreement, it is a quick scene. I would like it to have had more depth and I wanted more insight and admission from her father. *The ending of this one was a bit of a disappointment. It was abrupt and I felt like the book chopped off right at the climax. I wish the author had included and epilogue to let us know how Poppy worked everything out and what her final decision was. I also would like to have seen how the romance played out. Poppy was just realizing her feelings at the end. Honestly, I was surprised that I had reached the end; it felt like there was so much more to say! This book isn't a cliffhanger by any means, but the ending was too quick for my taste. I can see there easily being a sequel. *I was a bit put off by Poppy's attitude toward guidance counselors. She was ashamed to seek help and didn't want anyone to see her visiting the guidance counselor. She saw it as being weak. I hoped that her attitude on this would change, but it was never discussed. I understand where she is coming from, but I was hoping that the reader would leave the story with the idea that counselors are a resource that everyone should take advantage of when in need. The Jellybean Crisis is a book I can wholeheartedly recommend to any teen or any adult for that matter. It is a realistic look at a girl who is struggling with the daunting and all important questions of what do I want to do with the rest of my life? Will I be happy in my choices? This book walks you through the process and helps you to discover ways that might help you in answering these questions. Favorite Quotations: "So, save the red ones for last. If you eat the best ones first, there's nothing but green and yellow in your future. You should build on your future. You should build on the flavors, knowing that they're only going to get better and better." "But then I remind myself of the Jelly Bean Theory, that school is my green jelly bean. It's hard work that I need to do, to get life that I really want." "You don't get things just because you want them; you get things because you work hard for them." "It doesn't matter how you get there, as long as you get there." "This is your life, Poppy. Don't be afraid to not be perfect." "I think at some point every guidance counselor realizes what they really want to do. They guide themselves right out of a job, or right into their dream." "There's a bumper sticker that I like: Success is getting what you want, happiness iw wanting what you get." "There was this sudden ache I felt about my life. Like it wasn't mine. I'd bern doing everything to please everyone else and some imaginary me." "There is no real world. She smiles. "There is only what is real for you." "We all have dreams for our children. Sometimes you have to let them find their own way." "I think if planting a seedling changes the world, maybe planting s thought or a belief at a protest can do the same. After all, protests create awareness." "Knowledge makes a difference." I received a copy of this book as part of a promotional tour sponsored by AToMR Tours. I was not compensated for this review and all opinions expressed are my own." Posted originally @ http://rainydayramblings.typepad.com/

  6. 5 out of 5

    Jane

    5* Poppy had the ‘total blueprint for her perfect life’ printed and taped to the inside of her locker, it had been there since 7th grade. She knew exactly where she was going and the path she was taking to get there. Today she could cross off the Denton award, this was something she’d been working on through high school and it gave her a free ride through college, one step closer to her dreams… That was until attention seeker Lucy Tenaro read out her ‘What I want to be’ essay in class and made Po 5* Poppy had the ‘total blueprint for her perfect life’ printed and taped to the inside of her locker, it had been there since 7th grade. She knew exactly where she was going and the path she was taking to get there. Today she could cross off the Denton award, this was something she’d been working on through high school and it gave her a free ride through college, one step closer to her dreams… That was until attention seeker Lucy Tenaro read out her ‘What I want to be’ essay in class and made Poppy realise that maybe the perfect life she had planned was more for her parents and teachers than it was for herself. The Jelly Bean Crisis is a coming of age drama about a young girl who uses what she calls the ‘Jelly Bean Theory’ to live her life. It’s a simple method where red jelly beans (being her favourite) are her goal and all the other colours are what she has to endure to get there. When she receives a full scholarship to Columbia it dawns on her that the only reason she’s doing this is because her parents and teachers expect it, and not because it’s something she really wants for herself. After much deliberation her parents allow her to take a ‘gap’ month and try new things to see if she really has chosen the right path for her. Poppy takes that time to try all manner of things she has never thought of before, from making cookies in a factory to being a runner on a film set, and we take the journey with her while she discovers that the red jelly bean is not everyone's favourite! Jolene Stockman is fast becoming one of my ‘must read’ authors with her light hearted, easy writing style and witty comments. Her work is a pleasure to read and it's inspirational too. I managed to read this in one sitting and didn’t notice the time go by it had such a ‘feel good’ feel about it. I was on a high even after I’d finished reading! It was interesting to read a ‘coming of age drama’ that covers a subject the majority of kids go through instead of the rare and extreme cases of gang wars and teen pregnancies! Personally I would recommend reading this book to any teenager planning their future and any parent who tries to live vicariously through their children, it will give you all food for thought and hopefully help you find your 'red' jelly bean.......or yellow or which ever colour the case may be for ‘you’! Copy supplied for review and I can’t wait to see what Jolene has in store for us next.

  7. 3 out of 5

    Chimene

    I absolutely loved this book. I first saw a review for "The Jelly Bean Crisis" on a book blog, I instantly fell in love with the cover and it got me reading the review. As soon as I got my Kindle it went straight on there! And I wasn't disappointed. Poppy thinks she has it all worked out. Or rather, it all seems to be mapped out for her. She has her friends, she is a straight A student and to top it off she wins herself a scholarship... That's when she has her melt down and we learn about the jell I absolutely loved this book. I first saw a review for "The Jelly Bean Crisis" on a book blog, I instantly fell in love with the cover and it got me reading the review. As soon as I got my Kindle it went straight on there! And I wasn't disappointed. Poppy thinks she has it all worked out. Or rather, it all seems to be mapped out for her. She has her friends, she is a straight A student and to top it off she wins herself a scholarship... That's when she has her melt down and we learn about the jelly bean theory... We all have systems (especially when it comes to eating jelly beans right?!), Poppy's theory is: eat all the not-so-good ones first so you are left to eat the best ones at the end. This theory also seems to apply to her life. She is getting all the worst bits out of the way first; school, college, etc to get to the best part at the end... A career in finance. But she starts to wonder who she is actually doing it for and if she will be happy. Stockman's writing style was easy to get into and just seemed to be fluid. I quickly relaxed into the pace and really enjoyed getting to know the characters. I think what makes the book so great is that the character Poppy is someone who many of us can identify with. At some point in our lives (and for some, it's something that stays with us) we all ask: Why am I here? What am I supposed to be doing with this life? I thought Poppy's voice and character was believable and had me rooting for her all the way. The scary thing about this book, is how much you can relate to her. I kept finding myself nodding in agreement and determined to keep reading so I could see what she was to discover next. As the story progressed, I also thought her character did too; she seemed to get stronger and a bit more 'gutsy'. I particularly liked her grandmother; and I also liked the whiff of romance to the book - which wasn't overdone and was charming to follow alongside all the other events in the book. Overall, the book is very well written, a believable and strong protagonist and a wonderful plot line. It's a great read and I would recommend to anyone who would enjoy an inspirational read.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Christoph Fischer

    “The Jelly Bean Crisis” by Jolene Stockman is a cute and very thoughtful coming of age story with a quirky and interesting protagonist. Poppy Johnson favours jelly beans and has worked out a system for them to help her make decisions. She decides to turn down a scholarship to Columbia, because it doesn’t feel right. It is a conflict that I am sure many teenagers and youngsters out there can relate to. What to do when you’re grown up? I am ‘grown up’ and still don’t know. Choices, plans and decis “The Jelly Bean Crisis” by Jolene Stockman is a cute and very thoughtful coming of age story with a quirky and interesting protagonist. Poppy Johnson favours jelly beans and has worked out a system for them to help her make decisions. She decides to turn down a scholarship to Columbia, because it doesn’t feel right. It is a conflict that I am sure many teenagers and youngsters out there can relate to. What to do when you’re grown up? I am ‘grown up’ and still don’t know. Choices, plans and decisions with life-long consequences can weigh heavy on some and guidance is hard to find. The book follows her for one month during which she tries to make up her mind and find herself. Poppy is a great likeable character that many will be able to relate to. Very sensible but also very odd, she is breath of fresh air and very engaging. The story is inspiring and heart-warming and the message is well delivered. I don’t often read this kind of book but should do so more often. This was chosen by a reading group and I am very pleased they did. This is highly recommended.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Haley ~ YA-Aholic

    Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman was to say the least a pretty amazing and unique read. This is one of those reads that is going to stick with you and actually teach you something you will remember for your years to come. What if you had your whole life planned out ahead of you, every stepping stone set in place to lead you to your life goal, What if one day you realized maybe it wasn't the plan you wanted after all? The Jelly Bean Crisis follows Poppy, Poppy has her life all set in front of Jelly Bean Crisis by Jolene Stockman was to say the least a pretty amazing and unique read. This is one of those reads that is going to stick with you and actually teach you something you will remember for your years to come. What if you had your whole life planned out ahead of you, every stepping stone set in place to lead you to your life goal, What if one day you realized maybe it wasn't the plan you wanted after all? The Jelly Bean Crisis follows Poppy, Poppy has her life all set in front of her, she is going to get a full scholarship to Columbia, and go into finance, just like her dad and grand-dad did. That is until she realizes that her whole life has been centered on what everyone else wants…not what she wants. Now Poppy has thirty days to do whatever she wants, take chances, try new things, meet new people, but once the thirty days is up, will Poppy decide to take the path she has had set for years? Or will she create a whole new blue print? This read was shockingly good, I must say first going into the Jelly Bean Crisis I didn't really know what to expect, but I am happy to say it was very good! The Jelly Bean Crisis is a contemporary read I think any adult or teen will enjoy! My favorite part of The Jelly Bean Crisis was the message it gives (or at least the message it gave me!). It teaches you to do things for yourself, and to not let other people tell you what your dreams are or tell you what you should do with your life, and because of that message I feel this is a book most people can relate to. I have had numerous times where family members would tell me what I should do with my life, and then tell me that what I wanted to do was unrealistic or that I probably wouldn't like it blah blah, and after reading Jelly Bean Crisis I feel much better about choices I make. The bottom line of this book is you should do things for you, do things that make YOU happy, not everyone else. While the message of this novel was my favorite part there was deff other parts I enjoyed. Such as the overall story, and the sweet romance. The overall story of The Jelly Bean Crisis really surprised me with how much I enjoyed it, I'm not a huge contemporary reader so going into this I was a little worried, but right off the bat when I started The Jelly Bean Crisis I couldn't put it down! I read the novel in one sitting without even realizing it. Jolene's writing flowed so easily it was hard to find a good spot where I wanted to put it down! Along with the overall story I really loved the romance. While the romance was there, it was not a big part of the story at all. It was a very slight part in the story which actually made me like the story even more, the romance wasn't forced it was something that was there though and it was a nice cute romance. Overall The Jelly Bean Crisis is a novel I would recommend to anyone looking for something different in the YA genre, it was a book I picked up hesitantly, but am now glad to announce that I loved it!

  10. 3 out of 5

    Books

    The Jelly Bean Crisis was recommended to me by one of my most trusted book-addict friends, and what a terrific read it turned out to be. After having read countless less-than-mediocre attempts by inexperienced self-publishing authors, I’ve been steering clear of indie books for the past couple of months. Jolene Stockman’s The Jelly Bean Crisis can be shelved right up there with bestselling traditionally published works! First off, this book is extremely well-written compared to other self-publish The Jelly Bean Crisis was recommended to me by one of my most trusted book-addict friends, and what a terrific read it turned out to be. After having read countless less-than-mediocre attempts by inexperienced self-publishing authors, I’ve been steering clear of indie books for the past couple of months. Jolene Stockman’s The Jelly Bean Crisis can be shelved right up there with bestselling traditionally published works! First off, this book is extremely well-written compared to other self-published books. The storyline flows easily and the characters, especially Poppy, our leading lady, has been expertly developed. She’s likeable, easy-going, intelligent, perceptive, and reasonable. What stuck with me most about this story is the originality of the plot, especially considering the genre. This is not your average YA plot with the expected, predictable romantic interest, although it does have a little romance. Still, the romance between Poppy and who she at first thinks of as her stalker, unfolds gradually and convincingly. I enjoyed that this is a story about a teen wanting to make an informed decision about her future, and in order to do so she embarks on a “gap month” to explore a few possibilities for a potential career path that would make her happy. Ultimately, she wants to make a difference and inspire others to do the same. This decision not only affects her, but also her family and friendship with her two best friends, Ella and Bex. Poppy is used to doing everything for everyone; pleasing her parents and teachers, but now she wants to do something for herself - which is easier said than done. As the reader follows Poppy’s exploration of career possibilities, she becomes an even more likeable character at every turn. Her energy and excitement, while trying out different career positions, positively pops off the page as she throws herself into each activity! Even though she discovers that most of it isn’t her passion, she continually takes something positive from each experience with her. Just when she’s ready to quit, she discovers the biggest truth of all, which finally...well, I’ll leave it to you to find out. The comparison with how Poppy’s life plan relates to getting to the red jelly beans in her jelly bean theory makes perfect sense. It did to me anyway. Along the way we meet all sorts of inspiring characters trying to make a difference in the world. The reader also learns that there are many others who, in tiny ways, contribute to our daily lives in ways we might take for granted. The Jelly Bean Crisis is a unique and clever read with lots to smile about, and heaps of warm and fuzzy feels. With this novel Jolene Stockman has proved that she is one of a few independent authors who, by creating insightful characters and writing an uplifting story that breaks away from the YA norm, truly understand what young readers want. I’m excited to read more of her books!

  11. 3 out of 5

    Sana

    If anyone told Poppy Johnson on a Thursday that she would be a career-oriented yes-person starting Saturday, she'd have laughed in your face. Poppy's priorities are as solid as a rock and taped inside her locker door: from the Denton Award right down to the smiley face. But then she goes for her English class, where everyone is reading their career essays. And what do you know, after English, Poppy's Jelly Bean theory is giving off splinters! All because of Lucy who breezes through life and writ If anyone told Poppy Johnson on a Thursday that she would be a career-oriented yes-person starting Saturday, she'd have laughed in your face. Poppy's priorities are as solid as a rock and taped inside her locker door: from the Denton Award right down to the smiley face. But then she goes for her English class, where everyone is reading their career essays. And what do you know, after English, Poppy's Jelly Bean theory is giving off splinters! All because of Lucy who breezes through life and writes with glitter pens. Nothing like a I-can-do-or-have-anything-I-want-just-because-I-want-it teenager to get you to have second-thoughts on your err- whole life. Especially if you thrive on a Jelly Bean theory. How can Lucy go for the red jelly beans without getting rid of the green sucky ones, or the getting-there purple and orange ones? Then her path crosses with Mrs Young's, the guidance counsellor, who offers her a chat on Columbian insolence. Poppy cannot get the thought out of her mind that maybe she has done it the wrong way her whole life. So along she goes and gets her way with her parents. But only for a month, her snap month, where everything just clicks into place. Hopefully. From cookie dough to chicken tractors to media releases and free labour, Poppy dives head-on to take initiative to find the thing that makes her happy. She definitely has the energy! With friends who might just almost miss the whole point of a gap month and running into the Stratford guy everywhere, what's a girl to do? Also, Nana, her grandmother, has taken the plunge herself and is going to college. At seventy. Does that mean Poppy has all the time in the world to figure out what to do? Maybe. It's a good thing that Poppy writes in her journal when an idea strikes; her jumbled thoughts making sense on paper. The way she writes is so classy that the words just popped out of the pages at me. Poppy is one feisty and bubbly character, she's outspoken but sophisticatedly so. She's reserved, but not so much that she passes on the joy of living. Poppy is a very alive character and I loved every minute I spent with her. She catches on fast with a great learning insight and uncertainty because of that smiley she definitely wants in her life. And if the Denton Award and Columbia cannot give her that, then what's the point? The Jelly Bean Crisis is surely a very entertaining, gaining and an engrossing fiction debut by Jolene Stockman. Poppy is such a likeable character, a nice straight-A student who has had a meltdown. No pressure. I loved the writing style of Jolene, it just grabs you and keeps on surprising with such wonderful lines. It's also hilarious, case in point: "The whispers bubble up from all corners of the hall. My nightmare has surround sound." So when I finally got to the last page of The Jelly Bean Crisis, I was smiling a happy smile.

  12. 3 out of 5

    Marissa

    I just want to mention first hand, what a beautiful cover! What do you think? To me, it looks so colorful and eye-catchy! Before I even read the book description, I was drawn by the cover, so that's a good sign, as the story itself does not disappoint! The 'Jelly Bean Theory' is very creative and convincing, and we see how this plays a huge part throughout the story. It's obvious, from the first couple of chapters, that Poppy does what is expected of her. She studies extremely hard, get's Straig I just want to mention first hand, what a beautiful cover! What do you think? To me, it looks so colorful and eye-catchy! Before I even read the book description, I was drawn by the cover, so that's a good sign, as the story itself does not disappoint! The 'Jelly Bean Theory' is very creative and convincing, and we see how this plays a huge part throughout the story. It's obvious, from the first couple of chapters, that Poppy does what is expected of her. She studies extremely hard, get's Straight A's, does whatever looks good on the college applications and for scholarships, especially the most distinguish one that she does receive, but...Poppy rejects it, ok she does not accept it right away, as she wants to take a Gap Year, okay a Gap Month, to decide what she really wants to do in her life; what she wants to do that will make her happy, as she realizes that Legacy, doing what is expected of her, because it's a family trait, does and will not make her happy, not at all! Going into Finance, and one day on Wall Street does not make Poppy think she is really making a difference, not a difference that she was thinking about anyways. It seems, that for once, Poppy stands up for herself, and I applaud her for that, at sixteen years old, she wants to take hold of her life, and do some searching that will decide if she is going to Columbia for college. Throughout the story, Poppy has her own adventures in different fields, and it was pretty interesting to read what she gets herself into, including something with cookie dough. It was fascinating to know what she really loves to do, and in a way, it was something that she was always good at; you just have to read and find out what it is! I really like Poppy. She is a fun character to read, and this story is from her POV, which I think is really beneficial, as we are with her as she is on her Journey. I don't want to give too much, but in ways I felt like what she finds passionate about really is relatable to some people, including me, so that was a plus! I liked all in all that this story really concentrates on Poppy's determination to find what she is passionate about, what makes her happy, and she does this at an age when she is just ready to find answers instead of waiting. Another thing: there is a possible romance here; the story does not concentrate fully on Poppy and Stratford (nice name!) but there is a hint of something, and it was pretty cute! Anyways, this was a wonderful read and it is inspiring and i'm just so glad to have read it! Stockman has a great writing style as everything flowed, and there was some humor, and just writing from Poppy's POV just seemed so believable. This is a Novel I for sure recommend! :)

  13. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    This book had me riveted! Completely riveted the entire time. I loved the writing style of Jolene Stockman so much. The jelly bean theory totally fascinated me. I loved how poppy thought everything through. I am a big fan of plans, so I liked her right off the bat. The Jelly Bean Crisis was instant love for me. Poppy has it all together- or so it would seem. She is a girl after my own heart. Or maybe Bex is. but either way, they both started out pretty much the same. Which a total life plan alre This book had me riveted! Completely riveted the entire time. I loved the writing style of Jolene Stockman so much. The jelly bean theory totally fascinated me. I loved how poppy thought everything through. I am a big fan of plans, so I liked her right off the bat. The Jelly Bean Crisis was instant love for me. Poppy has it all together- or so it would seem. She is a girl after my own heart. Or maybe Bex is. but either way, they both started out pretty much the same. Which a total life plan already made, and she is only a junior in high school. Poppy is super smart, but sometimes she has a tendency to think things to death and that sometimes gets in the way. Plus, who has all the answers at 17? no one, but don't tell Poppy that. I got the feeling that not knowing was the worst possible scenario for her. Poppy gets this big award for college and instead of accepting it, she flips out. She doesn't know what she wants to do. Will finance actually make her happy? So she got her super strict parents, and the school to agree on a gap month. This was the only part of the story that I thought was a little unrealistic. I don't know any high school that would give the ok to allow a student to miss a month of classes straight. I would have preferred to see her do the soul search on summer break or something. But regardless of that, the concept and the writing were what made me love The Jelly Bean Crisis. Even though, for me it was easy to see what Poppy's passion would be, but I still loved seeing her journey. The Jelly Bean Crisis makes you think. It will make you laugh, make you smile. The writing is fantastic! It has enchanting quality to it. It just flows beautifully on the page. It just seems effortless for Jolene. I love the message of the Jelly Bean Crisis. This is a great book.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Duncan McGonall

    The Jelly Bean Crisis, Jolene Stockman Genre: fiction Category: Young Adult (contemporary) Poppy Johnson has a problem. All her young life she’s aspired to a career in Wall Street high finance. She’s an overachiever and has surrounded herself with friends of like mind. Her junior year of high school is a tipping point. She comes into the story having resolved early in life to delay gratification on the assumption that enduring the less savory today will make a better tomorrow—the jellybean theory— The Jelly Bean Crisis, Jolene Stockman Genre: fiction Category: Young Adult (contemporary) Poppy Johnson has a problem. All her young life she’s aspired to a career in Wall Street high finance. She’s an overachiever and has surrounded herself with friends of like mind. Her junior year of high school is a tipping point. She comes into the story having resolved early in life to delay gratification on the assumption that enduring the less savory today will make a better tomorrow—the jellybean theory—save the best for last, always lay something better into the future, work toward your favorite instead of grab it up and run with it. With a full ride to Columbia University hanging in the balance, Poppy leaves nothing to chance, until Lucy Tenaro challenges her theory. Lucy, a spoiled, presumptive and vapid teenager, announces she will enjoy all the wealth and fame her heart desires without doing any real work to get it. She’ll have these finer things in life simply because she desires them. The idea splinters Poppy’s driving philosophy. Up till now, she has filled her life with little more than extra-credit and top marks. Suddenly, Poppy Johnson finds herself in a crisis, what if she’s been wrong all along? Does she really want what she has worked so hard to get? Jelly Bean Crisis is a story of discovery, of finding ones true self, of being sure of oneself. Told in close, first person narrative, the reader is invited to experience Poppy’s most intimate fears and hopes as she explores options outside her paradigm and discovers a marvelous truth about life and about herself: making a difference in the world begins with you. (A touch of class alienation and the occasional tense shift knocks off half a star, otherwise it is a very good story. 4.5)

  15. 5 out of 5

    Angie

    Poppy has her whole life planned out, and her plan is based on jelly beans. Yes, jelly beans. Her theory is that she should eat her least favorite beans first so she can better enjoy her favorites at the end. Now she's applying her theory to everything in life, including college and a career. Then one day she realizes that this might not be the right way for her to live her life. Thus, starting the jelly bean crisis. The catalyst for this life change is Poppy winning the prestigious Denton Award. Poppy has her whole life planned out, and her plan is based on jelly beans. Yes, jelly beans. Her theory is that she should eat her least favorite beans first so she can better enjoy her favorites at the end. Now she's applying her theory to everything in life, including college and a career. Then one day she realizes that this might not be the right way for her to live her life. Thus, starting the jelly bean crisis. The catalyst for this life change is Poppy winning the prestigious Denton Award. She has thirty days to accept the scholarship and in those thirty days she hopes to find her passion. While I love the idea of a "gap month," I find it extremely hard to believe that her parents would let her take a month off of school to try out new things. Her dad was adamant about her going straight to college, graduating, and working in finance, so it was strange that he suggested her taking a month out of high school. Poppy's enthusiasm is infectious! She's so eager to grasp the opportunities that come her way, and I had a lot of fun reading about her trials. Overall, I really enjoyed The Jelly Bean Crisis. I loved how its focus was on Poppy trying to find what makes her happy rather than on a romance or a darker issue. This definitely makes it stand out from other YA Contemporaries. There is a romance, but it's a very minor part of the story, and it's very sweet. No undying love after a week! If you're looking for a quick, feel good read about finding yourself, give this one a try. I'm sure you won't regret it! Read more of my reviews at Pinkindle Reads & Reviews.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Dion

    This book isn't something I would probably choose to read. I was introduced to the author via a post looking for authors wanting R4R's, and of course I couldn't resist having a go myself, and I'm glad I did!! The writing isn't perfect - but then again it never is. There were a couple tense things (switching between) but I didn't really notice because I was so focused on the story. On Poppy Johnson, not on me. This is a book of self-discovery; of testing the boundaries and discovering where life ca This book isn't something I would probably choose to read. I was introduced to the author via a post looking for authors wanting R4R's, and of course I couldn't resist having a go myself, and I'm glad I did!! The writing isn't perfect - but then again it never is. There were a couple tense things (switching between) but I didn't really notice because I was so focused on the story. On Poppy Johnson, not on me. This is a book of self-discovery; of testing the boundaries and discovering where life can take you. Poppy's journey was especially inspiring to me as a high-school student currently trying to rough her way through and work out where she wants to be. Ill give you a taste of the plot, because I don't think I can do it justice otherwise. Poppy Johnson knows where she wants to be; what she wants to do - Finance at Columbia funded by the Denton Scholarship. And she's on that track, through and through, so what happens when The Splinter comes along in the form of sugar coated words? How can you differentiate between what YOU really want and what others want for you? This book is good and gives a great view of the world, one I value alot and will treasure and take with me through life. The other thing I liked was The Jelly Bean Theory - which is basically delayed gratification. I eat through delayed gratification, but I never thought of applying it to life like Poppy did, which interested me! A 4 star book, which could easily become 5 stars with a little bit of work on the writing and a little bit of extension of ideas, but worth the devouring read!! Good job, Jolene, and I look forward to Jawbreaker!

  17. 4 out of 5

    Tee loves Kyle Jacobson

    I would like to Thank AToMR Blog Tours for allowing me to be a part of this tour. I was dying to read The Jelly Bean Crisis and when the opportunity arose for me to be on the blog tour I jumped at it and I am so glad I did because I absolutely loved it! This story is so real life for a lot of teenagers that have parents who map out there entire life for them even right down to who they will marry. The Jelly Bean Crisis is about a girl named Poppy who does everything she is asked to do by her pare I would like to Thank AToMR Blog Tours for allowing me to be a part of this tour. I was dying to read The Jelly Bean Crisis and when the opportunity arose for me to be on the blog tour I jumped at it and I am so glad I did because I absolutely loved it! This story is so real life for a lot of teenagers that have parents who map out there entire life for them even right down to who they will marry. The Jelly Bean Crisis is about a girl named Poppy who does everything she is asked to do by her parents. She has the won a prestigious scholarship to Columbia and starts to panic because she is not sure that this is what she wants to do.She wakes up one day and realizes that the life set before her is not the life she may want. She needs some time to be alone and think. So she decides she will take a month off of school to find herself. She is not sure why she is questioning everything but it just doesn't seem right. Just maybe her Jelly Bean theory was wrong. See Poppy has lived her life on the theory that you eat the not so good jelly beans first and save the best for last. The red ones are the best so she treats everything like jelly beans. She is starting to realize that just maybe you have to take the good with the bad in order to have a better life. Sometimes the jelly beans are going to be gross but in the end they will be the best jelly beans for you.On her month long journey Poppy will go through things and work on problems but she will find herself and in the end she does what is right for her.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Heltsley

    "The Jelly Bean Crisis is officially on." I wanted to read this book on that saying alone. The story was one of the most unique stories I have ever read. It took an everyday problem and made it an extraordinary one. A young adult story based on jelly beans, come on you gotta read something like that. This book is audience geared for a certain age group, high school students. It was a little too young adult for me, but was fascinating none the less. The story touches on things every high school stu "The Jelly Bean Crisis is officially on." I wanted to read this book on that saying alone. The story was one of the most unique stories I have ever read. It took an everyday problem and made it an extraordinary one. A young adult story based on jelly beans, come on you gotta read something like that. This book is audience geared for a certain age group, high school students. It was a little too young adult for me, but was fascinating none the less. The story touches on things every high school student goes through. Basically it touches on romance, friendship, college, school, and career choices for the future. I enjoyed the tenacity of the main character, Poppy. She was a firecracker and I loved the way she discovered new things. The story was passionate and fresh. The supporting characters were pretty good, especially Stratford. He was the love interest and a very intriguing one. The circumstances that bring the two characters together and weaves the story is great. Overall, I enjoyed the read and highly recommend this to the young adult crowd. I give this book four glittery stars for a great story and immense originality.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Nikki Bywater

    Poppy Johnson’s life has all been mapped out for her. As she reaches the end of her school education she is expected to follow her families legacy and study investment banking at Columbia, following in her father’s and his father before him footsteps. When she wins a school scholarship and it looks like all is falling into place and for her to continue on her set out destiny, Poppy has a crisis, a jelly bean crisis. Since age ten Poppy always eats her favourite red jelly beans last, working her w Poppy Johnson’s life has all been mapped out for her. As she reaches the end of her school education she is expected to follow her families legacy and study investment banking at Columbia, following in her father’s and his father before him footsteps. When she wins a school scholarship and it looks like all is falling into place and for her to continue on her set out destiny, Poppy has a crisis, a jelly bean crisis. Since age ten Poppy always eats her favourite red jelly beans last, working her way through the ones she is not so keen on first, and this has become her theory for the way she deals with decision making in her life. Much to her parent’s horror, Poppy decides to take some time out. To try out and make her own decision about she wants to do career wise with her life. She is about to step off from her perfect pathway into the unknown. Will she learn there is more to life than she ever expected? A coming of age and a fight for independence story, that is written in a fun and lively way that is funny in parts. This is a great story and I know when I next eat jelly beans I will not look at them in quite the same way again, but much deeper!

  20. 3 out of 5

    Daniel

    Reading a teenage book with a crisis in the title at the moment that your own life goes through a crisis is always a risk, but this one was a wonderful choice at the moment. When the main character goes through the possiblities of her own life, you get dragged into the things that go through the minds of teenagers at that stage, and feel the disappointment when things don't turn out the way you hope they will or thought they would. The book is really well written and helps people to take the righ Reading a teenage book with a crisis in the title at the moment that your own life goes through a crisis is always a risk, but this one was a wonderful choice at the moment. When the main character goes through the possiblities of her own life, you get dragged into the things that go through the minds of teenagers at that stage, and feel the disappointment when things don't turn out the way you hope they will or thought they would. The book is really well written and helps people to take the right decissions in their life, in a fiction story that makes it all easier to accept and better to handle. Thanks a lot Jolene for this great book, and at the same time giving me the courage to take a new step in my own life!

  21. 4 out of 5

    Lauren

    I was gifted a copy of this book by the author. This review may contain spoilers. This is such a great read! Poppy is a junior in high school who thought she had it all figured out. Poppy wins a free college scholarship but realizes she doesn't love her choice. Poppy takes a month off to figure out what she loves, farming, baking cookies, working on a film and decides to write a book about her experiences. This would be a great book for junior high and high schoolers to read.

  22. 3 out of 5

    Shelley

    Author's guest post at my blog: https://bookfare.blogspot.com/2018/08...

  23. 4 out of 5

    Rachelia (Bookish Comforts)

    Actually 4.5 stars The Jelly Bean Crisis was a unique, fun, smart read that was for me at least, extremely relatable. Poppy is having a bit of a sophomore crisis – she’s not sure if she can or even wants to live up to all the expectations her parents and teachers have for her and go to Columbia to study finance as everyone else in her family has. Instead what Poppy wants is to try a few things out, and see if finance is the career for her before she accepts a major scholarship and commits four Actually 4.5 stars The Jelly Bean Crisis was a unique, fun, smart read that was for me at least, extremely relatable. Poppy is having a bit of a sophomore crisis – she’s not sure if she can or even wants to live up to all the expectations her parents and teachers have for her and go to Columbia to study finance as everyone else in her family has. Instead what Poppy wants is to try a few things out, and see if finance is the career for her before she accepts a major scholarship and commits four years of her life to university. So she decides to take a “gap month” and experience all that she can in the “real world”. However, not only does she have to deal with trying to figure the rest of her life out, she has to deal with some unsupportive family and friends along the way. I loved Poppy and her sort of wacky personality (um, hello, she has a Jelly Bean theory. You can’t say that’s entirely normal, haha) mixed with this sort of perfectionism she has been dealing with for most of her life. She realized that all her life she was has been working to make other people happy – getting perfect grades for her teachers and working towards a goal that her parents wanted, and that she came to believe she wanted as well. Yet, when Poppy decided to strip all of her achievements and schooling away, she realized she didn’t know who she really was without those things defining her. I admired Poppy’s enthusiasm and initiative in trying to find out who she was at her core. In fact, Poppy sort of reminded me of myself. From age seven or eight I knew with a fiery passion that I wanted to be a lawyer (a Crown Attorney/prosecutor) and eventually, a judge. From age thirteen, I had it planned out which universities I would attend for my undergrad and law school. I had a perfect, tidy little plan and I worked my butt off to try to make it work. However, much like Poppy, I woke up one morning during the first month of my senior year and had a crisis of faith and confidence. I believed after all those years of wanting so badly to be a lawyer that I just wasn’t cut out for it, that I didn’t have the skill set or confidence to pull it off. I was left without that passion in my heart for a career and honestly, as I go into my final semester of university this fall, I’m still not exactly sure what I want to be. So I completely understood where Poppy was coming from. I also loved how Poppy decided to handle her less than quarter life crisis – by experimenting with different careers. From working in a cookie factory to journalism and gardening and environmental activism, Poppy tried to experience a wide variety of careers and meet new people. I really enjoyed reading about her experiences, and how she learned a bit about life from each job. I think my most favourite was her job at the community gardening centre and her stint at experiencing activism – mostly because I am interested in politics and advocacy work. Poppy’s little project has even inspired me! I will hopefully be finished my degree come the middle of December this year, but I won’t be graduating until the spring. I think after reading The Jelly Bean Crisis I will try to see if I can experiment and shadow a few professionals in the careers I am interested in before I start applying for jobs. It will give me a way to be productive this winter while I’m no longer concerning myself with research and numerous essays! Lastly, I felt the characters were realistic and fun as well. Although I had a bit of problem with how unsupportive at first Poppy’s father and friends were (perhaps because mine had been so supportive when I went through a similar situation), the situation was handled realistically, and the tension added to the story and allowed Poppy to grow and become more independent. I may have spent my time gushing about Poppy in this review, and it’s true, she was a great character – but my favourite character has to be Nana. She was hilarious, spunky and so supportive and caring. I loved the little life lesson tidbits she imparted on Poppy, and you could just feel her unconditional love and years of experience emanating from the pages of the story! If you are looking for a fun read that can be also inspiring, I suggest you pick up The Jelly Bean Crisis immediately! Also, I didn’t realize until I got to the end of the book that Jolene Stockman actually adapted the story from her non-fiction book for teens on how to live the life you want and make your dreams happen. As a result, I think it would make the perfect gift for high school (and even college or university) students who are graduating as it really does have some wonderful lessons about school, work and the world in general!

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jessica

    I should point out that I normally don’t read young adult fiction. It’s just not a genre that totally grasps my interest; however, I will admit to wanting to read Jolene Stockman’s The Jellybean Crisis based on the cover alone. I mean, look at it! It’s gorgeous! In the end Stockman’s writing had me riveted. It’s a fun story, and I believe in the message in the book: You aren’t limited to just being you, you can be many things, but most importantly don’t forget about YOU. Poppy Johnson is a 16-yea I should point out that I normally don’t read young adult fiction. It’s just not a genre that totally grasps my interest; however, I will admit to wanting to read Jolene Stockman’s The Jellybean Crisis based on the cover alone. I mean, look at it! It’s gorgeous! In the end Stockman’s writing had me riveted. It’s a fun story, and I believe in the message in the book: You aren’t limited to just being you, you can be many things, but most importantly don’t forget about YOU. Poppy Johnson is a 16-year-old who does everything that is expected of her. Along the way, she loses the most important aspect–herself. She has a plan: attend Columbia, major in finance, and then work on Wall Street. She has a blueprint (yes, Stockman incorporates her Total Blueprint steps into the book) and sees life through jelly beans. For her the green jelly beans taste the worst and therefore anything she doesn’t like are the green jelly beans. While everything she does like or loves are the red jelly beans because the red ones taste the best (that they do). Everyone, including her teachers, has a high level of expectation for Poppy; and naturally when she wins a coveted scholarship, everyone assumes she will proceed as planned. However, her world is turned upside down. Moments before the announcement of the scholarship recipient, she meets with the new guidance counselor who tells her it’s okay to try new things and lose yourself along the path. Poppy rejects the award (much to the horror of people around her) to take a gap month–a month to try out new things and quite possibly decide if her future on Wall Street is what she truly wants. Through a series of adventures she grows and learns that sometimes it’s okay to try other avenues to find your true calling. I applaud Stockman for the realism used. Poppy has two best friends, Bex and Ella. All three have goals and dreams. Bex wants to be an engineer, and Ella wants to be an actress. When Poppy announces she’s taking a month off from school, her friends don’t quite understand why. Nor do they understand her mini meltdown and why she rejected the scholarship. Even her teachers don’t understand. That felt real. Often times we see someone reject something that is totally out of character, and all we can see is them throwing their life away. Poppy’s parents have a right to be concerned; but at the same time, she needed to be in charge of her life. So when I see Bex and Ella not supportive of Poppy’s decision, it hurt because here are the two people who are supposed to support her and be there, and yet they aren’t. Truthfully, you know they are secretly jealous of her and yet think that just because she’s not attending school that she can still make plans to meet them. Sadly, all three girls get a dose of reality and what it’s like in the real world. I like that Stockman introduced the subject of a gap year, something that normally is seen for example in the UK or Australia. In the US there is still that mentality that taking a year off will put you behind everyone else, which I don’t believe. Many people can be on track with taking summer classes and still graduate a year or two later because they are busy taking classes in other areas. The experiences gained from a gap year are beneficial. While Poppy didn’t get a whole year off, she got a month. What she learned she can apply to life. She got to figure out what she doesn’t want based on her short sojourn. If I could, I’d like to take the time to go discuss Stockman’s use of her book Total Blueprint. It’s not done in a “here’s my book and in your face.” It’s not obvious to the reader unless you are familiar with Total Blueprint. It provides a perfect example of how your blueprint can change, and it’s okay to do so because along the way you get to modify your own personal goals. I would rather be in Poppy’s shoes and modify the plan than to realize in the end I really didn’t want to be that doctor, but a baker instead. I loved the ending of The Jellybean Crisis; it was believable. And although I wanted Poppy’s story to continue, I like to think her new blueprint is kicking ass, and along the way, Bex and Ella also revised their goals. Perhaps the two of them created their own kick-ass blueprint. I also would have liked to have seen and learned more about Stadford, Poppy’s love interest, although he’s not introduced as one until later in the book. Overall, it was a fun book to read, and I think all young girls could benefit from reading this. It has a positive message, and it’s important to know that it’s okay to change your blueprint and modify it as you go.

  25. 3 out of 5

    Amy Fournier

    This book was fantastic. It has a wonderful message and I thought that in general the characters were pretty great too. There's a tiny little bit of romance, but it's mainly about finding yourself and making your own decisions. I loved the whole Jelly Bean Theory too. It was fun, but also made a lot of sense when you think about it. Why eat all the best ones first and get left with crap, save some of the best ones for last! Great life lesson. Poppy is super smart and has always known what her fu This book was fantastic. It has a wonderful message and I thought that in general the characters were pretty great too. There's a tiny little bit of romance, but it's mainly about finding yourself and making your own decisions. I loved the whole Jelly Bean Theory too. It was fun, but also made a lot of sense when you think about it. Why eat all the best ones first and get left with crap, save some of the best ones for last! Great life lesson. Poppy is super smart and has always known what her future holds. She will go to Columbia like her father, and his father, and so on and continue on the family legacy. She has worked hard for it her whole life. Then some certain events happen leading up to her getting the Denton award which is full scholarship to Columbia. She realizes that maybe that's not what she wants. It's what everyone else wants from her. She has spent her whole life living up to everyone else's expectations without thinking about what she wants out of life. She wants to be happy so she turns down the award in front of the entire school. Her dad is angry, but agrees to let her take a month to do what she wants and try to find what she's looking for. She tries a few different things and in the end makes a decision. Her choice, not what everyone else wants. I really liked her determination. It wasn't all easy, but she went in full out, head first. It is pretty inspiring honestly. The only thing I didn't like was that she was so easily judgemental of people and she is afraid of people being judgemental of her. It wasn't enough to bother me, but it did stand out for me. Her two best friends were just okay to me. I know they are in high school so pretty much everything seems like it's a big deal, but these are smart girls who have their future figured out. Bez is a little over the top for me and totally hypocritical. You will understand if you read the book. She is also not very supportive of Poppy at all and she is a bit selfish by thinking it's not fair for Poppy to just go off for a month and leave them. I really liked Ella. She is more laid back and fun. She doesn't try to interfere with what Poppy is doing. It's not to say that she agrees with it, but she isn't so dramatic about it like Bez is, and she is the one who is into performing arts. In the end I really did like both character though. I liked that they had their flaws. Perfect characters aren't realistic. Now onto how things actually happened. I have to say some of it was a bit unrealistic. Like when she works at the bakery and some of the other places. No one ever asks for paperwork, parent permission, wants her to sign wavers, no one even checks her ID or anything. She just goes to these places and it's like, "Okay cool, get to work." I mean really, companies have certain liabilities and such things so that's not very likely. I know that it would be a bit boring telling us about her doing all this stuff, but it's not even implied. She is just told to go show up so she does and that's that. Aside from that though, it's enjoyable to see how she fits in or doesn't in each different place. She takes a great lesson from each one too. You really get a feel for her excitement or disappointment. The message that this book gives is so great though. Poppy is just a girl who has done what she is supposed to her whole life. She wants to go to college, she wants a successful future, but she also wants to be happy. She needs to find that happiness and she won't let anyone tell her no. It's her life and she is ready to take control. She is a responsible girl and wants to make her family happy too, but knows that it's her life and future. She has always gone by her Jelly Bean Theory that you get the yucky stuff out of the way and save the best for last, but now she realizes that your least favorite jelly bean may be someone else's favorite. You need to have the good and the bad. If you eat all the best now, what do you have left to look forward to later. Poppy is not the only one who really comes to terms with things either. I loved how all of the characters really learned something along the way too. This book is a must read for contemporary lovers and I think that all teenagers should read this book. Wonderful story with a good strong message.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Sally

    This book has THE cutest cover ever, omg. And the cutest title to match! AND it meant I got to cross J off my A-Z challenge list... 22 down, four to go! (Q, X, V and Z for the record.) And it was, luckily, loads of fun to match the adorable cover and title combo. :) Basically, Poppy's a super-studious, over-achieving kind, who wins a prestigious scholarship... and then has a bit of a crisis when she suddenly realises that maybe going to Columbia and following the family "legacy", studying finance This book has THE cutest cover ever, omg. And the cutest title to match! AND it meant I got to cross J off my A-Z challenge list... 22 down, four to go! (Q, X, V and Z for the record.) And it was, luckily, loads of fun to match the adorable cover and title combo. :) Basically, Poppy's a super-studious, over-achieving kind, who wins a prestigious scholarship... and then has a bit of a crisis when she suddenly realises that maybe going to Columbia and following the family "legacy", studying finance, isn't what she truly wants. So with a bit of influence from guidance counselor Mrs. Young*, she goes off in the middle of her junior year to take a "gap" month, to basically live and work outside of school and figure out what it is she REALLY wants to do. *Mrs. Young is Australian! As a fellow Australian I can honestly say that I have NEVER before heard the expression "box of fluffies", and I can also honestly say that omg I am so going to start using it now because it's hilarious. Also the "rubber" thing made me laugh out loud on a tram, omg. During her gap month, Poppy works in a bakery, an eco centre, a newspaper office, and a film set... and doesn't really find her niche in any of those places, which I thought was pretty cool. It's frustrating and disappointing for her - but realistic, too. I remember work experience in year 10, and SCIP in year 9. I did WE at a vet's, and SCIP at a daycare centre and a radio station. I was never thinking of working for real at either of my SCIP places anyway, but the work experience week pretty much taught me that omg I did not want to be a vet. What I found really weird was the attitude of both Poppy's father and friends to the idea of a gap year - that if you did that, you'd then be a year behind. Behind what exactly?! It's as if everyone in their world went to uni at the same time, for the same time... which for me is just odd. I guess that's the Australian thing, because really most people DO do some kind of gap year, whether before or during uni. Or they take a semester off in the middle, or go part-time and work as well, or just stretch out a degree with as many extra subjects as possible because molecular genetics is only tolerable when you're doing a bunch of film classes and creative writing classes and zoology and basically everything you can possibly fit in that has nothing whatsoever to do with your actual major... And seriously, in third year prac? I swear you could count on the fingers of one hand the students in the class who were actually only in their third year at uni! I'm off the subject of the book... I really want a sequel now, to see how Poppy's actual gap year goes :) I find it a bit odd though that she'd take off her senior year of high school and do extra credit over summer or something to graduate, rather than just finish high school and then take the gap year, but I guess school works differently over there? (Also, I totally thought the author was Australian too when I was readying this, because she called a chicken a chook and a singlet a singlet, and I remember once having to explain to an American friend what a singlet was! Also 'mobile' phone.) I really liked Poppy herself, was a bit eh on the Stratford Logan romantic subplot, loved her ass-kicking Nana, was sad at how unsuportive Bex and Ella could be, and was horrified at her father's attitude, but loved how that was all explained at the end. Also my jellybean order would go (from favourite to least) orange, yellow, green*, red, blue, purple, pink, white, black. But I prefer Natural Confectionery Company jellybeans anyway, in which case my order goes ALL OF THEM AT ONCE. (*Except if they're Starburst jellybeans, because green Starburst tastes like soap.)

  27. 3 out of 5

    Hals

    Alright, this might be the most confusing book I've read in a while. Not that I've read that many books lately, but anyway. Poppy is a high school student who has always known she'd go to Columbia and study finance. Then she realizes she's not all that sure about it and takes a month off school to have time to discover what she really, really wants to do. I have to say, I was super excited when I read the summary. Poppy's doubts sound so familiar! I've been struggling with their kind for what? two Alright, this might be the most confusing book I've read in a while. Not that I've read that many books lately, but anyway. Poppy is a high school student who has always known she'd go to Columbia and study finance. Then she realizes she's not all that sure about it and takes a month off school to have time to discover what she really, really wants to do. I have to say, I was super excited when I read the summary. Poppy's doubts sound so familiar! I've been struggling with their kind for what? two years? and I wish my parents had allowed me to take a year off when I asked them. I thought The Jelly Bean Crisis would be interesting to read, because well, I'm self-centered like that, I gues. And sometimes it lived up to my expectations. Like I said, Poppy's doubts feel totally real (but maybe that's because I don't have to imagine them). She tries things and sometimes it doesn't work out and sometimes it does but not entirely and she changes her mind because of that. Her story is not all that smooth, and that was a nice change. I mean, some books are awesome, but they have that weird everything-will-be-solved-one-way-or-another thing going on, while I LOVE it, that's not really the way life works. So yeah, Poppy's changes of mind were nice - at least until it starts feeling forced or whatever. Even then, though, I did not mind. No: what bothered me were the characters, the romance *gasp*, and the writing style. First, the characters. Poppy has two awesome friends (or so we're told) but we see so little of them! Bex's confession about her own doubts comes out of nowhere - because Poppy has not seen her for days and so we can't know WHY Bex chooses to talk about her doubts. We can't even be sure she had them before. Ella's even worse, because I usually love secondary characters of her kind. But hey! she's fun, she's a drama star/queen and what do we need to know about her, beside that? I'm not even going to talk about Logan, Poppy's family or the counselor. It's not that they are irritating or boring - it's just that it feels like the author needed some characters and she didn't feel like fleshing them out so she gave them names and two or three characteristics, and here we go! Literally nothing about them is explained. (Seriously, I know it's Poppy's story, but then, is she really that self-centered?) I did not exactly hate the romance either. I just fail to understand why it was needed. It's barely even brought up, and I didn't feel like it helped Poppy make up her mind. I mean, sure, great time on opening night, but she could have been friend with Logan and still have a great time. And last but not least, the writing in this book is boring. I usually don't mind plain writing (unless I'm reading something that's supposed to be a piece of really good literature) because plain writing makes it easier to forget the words and the world, so yay! But Poppy is supposed to be good at writing. Besides, I don't know about you, but contemporary fiction bores me pretty fast if it doesn't make me feel something - the whole no-magic-no-unknown-world-no-heroic-crap, you know. All in all, I enjoyed The Jelly Bean Crisis, but it fell short of my expectations, and I certainly won't be re-reading it any time soon.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Heather

    So, why do I recommend you read this book? If you're a teen thinking about going to college or a parent with a kid going off to college, I think you should read it simply so you can remember who's life it is that's going to be affected the most by college. What's the right major? Should I take a year off? Should I let my child take a year off? Should I let them go for their dreams or a sensible job? If any of those questions are wandering around in your mind, even if you're an adult considering So, why do I recommend you read this book? If you're a teen thinking about going to college or a parent with a kid going off to college, I think you should read it simply so you can remember who's life it is that's going to be affected the most by college. What's the right major? Should I take a year off? Should I let my child take a year off? Should I let them go for their dreams or a sensible job? If any of those questions are wandering around in your mind, even if you're an adult considering going back to college, read this novel. Poppy has planned her life to please everyone but herself. She doesn't even know what makes her happy. I'm surprised she knows how she likes her pancakes. But when she's been pushing herself for so long to get the Denton award, a full ride to Columbia plus allowance, she stumbles. She realizes that being an investment banker may not be what she wants. She has never tried anything but what's on her plan, math, extra credit, lots of studying, anything that will look good on her transcripts. But her world is so limited that she doesn't know enough about it to know what she does and doesn't like. Her guidance counselor mentions a gap year between high school and college and Poppy jumps at that. Dad doesn't. Dad and all of the people on his side of the family, the men, are legacies at Columbia. His father made him go and become a bank manager and he's going to make sure Poppy is taking that scholarship and study finance at Columbia. But he's willing to compromise, amazingly. She gets 30 days starting now to find out what she wants to do. And the race is on. It's unfair pressure. Poppy is a junior and sixteen. I doubt any sixteen year old really knows what they want to be. And Poppy knows that she's good in math, with numbers, but it doesn't make her happy. But she is sixteen, and has amazing resilience and optimism. She doesn't even let the less than supportive talks from her teachers sway her from her gap month. There are some great moments in Poppy's experiences like eating all the cookie dough you could possibly want. Falling into the compost bin at an organic farm and chasing a chicken. Even being a go for on a movie set. She even meets a boy, something she's never done at her all girl high school and she learns the importance of her friends. I only had one small time when I felt Poppy was being a tad over dramatic, but she is a 16 yr old girl. She kept on about how she didn't feel anything and she was miserable and a failure. She hadn't discovered what she wanted to do for the rest of her life. As smart as she is she still didn't figure out for herself that she wouldn't figure it out at 16. If she did, she would be one of the very few. This is a really good coming of age, discovering yourself contemporary novel. Romance takes a back seat to the journey of finding yourself. Anyone struggling with that question might find some answers in the novel. I found the writing easy going, not overly descriptive. A couple of parts dragged but not for long. I'm almost hoping there will be a second novel to follow up on Poppy and let us see what happens. This is a very clean read and appropriate for 12 and up. I can't wait to read future works from this author, Jolene Stockman.

  29. 5 out of 5

    April

    I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I picked up The Jelly Bean Crisis. I read Jolene’s non-fiction book a little while back. The Total Blueprint for World Domination. I did like it, surprisingly since it’s not what I normally read. I’m so glad I did give it a try, because The Jelly Bean Crisis kinda ties into it. You don’t have to read Total blueprint to read TJBC though. Why am I mentioning it then? Well, let me tell you that Total Blueprint is a motivational book for teens. It’s a great gu I wasn’t really sure what to expect when I picked up The Jelly Bean Crisis. I read Jolene’s non-fiction book a little while back. The Total Blueprint for World Domination. I did like it, surprisingly since it’s not what I normally read. I’m so glad I did give it a try, because The Jelly Bean Crisis kinda ties into it. You don’t have to read Total blueprint to read TJBC though. Why am I mentioning it then? Well, let me tell you that Total Blueprint is a motivational book for teens. It’s a great guide on how to figure out your future and what you would like to do with your life. The Jelly Bean Crisis is a creative way of putting all that into a book that a teenager will enjoy. I’m not going to lie, I picked up on the fact it was based on Total Blueprint in the very beginning. That scared me a little bit. In the wrong hands, this could have been a disaster. Thankfully it was not. It was a seamless transition and I adored it. Poppy has been good at school her whole life. She has worked her hard to achieve what everyone else around her wants. It’s an important time in Poppy’s life. There are big decisions to be made. On the brink of these life changing moments, Poppy freezes. Yes, she’s made everyone proud. Her parents, her teachers, her friends, but what does Poppy want? Poppy wants to be happy. Throughout this book, you watch as Poppy tries new things, looking for something that clicks, and it’s hilarious at times. I found myself cracking up numerous times over something she would do or just think. example - "When I look back, Armpit Girl is placing her hands gently over the rooster's back and scooping him up. He snuggles into her armpit, and she's petting and cooing at him like he's the injured one. In that armpit? I hope he gets spiked" I really enjoyed this book for so many reasons. Not only is it informative, it’s entertaining. One thing I loved is it made me see total blue print in a whole new light. It’s one thing to read a non-fiction telling you how to map out your future, but it’s clearer reading and seeing a character actually do it. Another thing I loved was the lessons. There are so many lessons in The Jelly Bean Crisis. Good solid things to live by. Oh, and her jelly bean theory. I won’t elaborate, but I loved it. There is a little bit of romance... when I say little, I mean little. This isn’t about Poppy falling in love. It’s about Poppy finding herself and who she wants to be. She’s a smart girl. It’s refreshing to see a YA female focused on herself for once instead of her crush. The boy in question is adorable though, and I loved that sweet first love feeling you get when they interact. The cover, now I did a cover reveal for this. I stressed how I think all jelly beans pretty much taste like crap. I do love this cover so much though. Especially after reading it. There is a scene right out of the book. And I felt that tingle, that symbolism. When the story and a cover connect like that… pure love. Overall, this is a great feel good book. I think teens could gain a lot of perspective from reading this. And really anyone could. You are never too old to find yourself.

  30. 3 out of 5

    Laura

    Did you know that Jolene Stockman, who wrote The Jelly Bean Crisis, wrote a self-help guide for teens, too? Basically, it's supposed to help highschool students decide what to with their future. Basically, I imagine it to be the better version of The Jelly Bean Crisis. Because there's one thing Stockman managed to do really well with her novel - and that was giving advice. And introducing different kinds of jobs. And promoting gap months or years. We don't have counselers in Germany, but with The J Did you know that Jolene Stockman, who wrote The Jelly Bean Crisis, wrote a self-help guide for teens, too? Basically, it's supposed to help highschool students decide what to with their future. Basically, I imagine it to be the better version of The Jelly Bean Crisis. Because there's one thing Stockman managed to do really well with her novel - and that was giving advice. And introducing different kinds of jobs. And promoting gap months or years. We don't have counselers in Germany, but with The Jelly Bean Crisis, I didn't think I'd need one, either which was quite annoying. As I said, the general message, about doing what you feel like, about making educated decisions and to not let anyone tell you what your future is going to be was really good and well presented. However, the execution of the story idea, the character development, the dialogues, the writing, the ending - really didn't do it for me. At all. Let's start with Poppy, our main character. At the beginning of the book she finds herself at a point where - just as her dream, everything she worked for - is about to come true. And then she realizes that this might not, after all, be what she wants. The whole situation, I could identify with. I know exactly how it feels like to think you've given up so much and worked so hard and now that it's finally paying off you have to get the very, very best out of it. That situation in the beginning, Stockman explained and described really well. But it went downghill from there. Not only that I found the gap month idea pretty unrealistic. My teachers certainly wouldn't let me miss four weeks of school - at least not, if everyone else still has to go. Something else that totally bothered me was that Stockman created conflicts where there weren't any. It started with Poppy's best friends who seeemed to totally disapprove of her idea. They felt like she was abandoning them - which clearly wasn't the case! Also, while I do understand that her parents weren't too happy about the gap month, I did not understand their hysterical reactions to it. And all the family drama that Stockman threw in? It should either had been a big part of the novel or not be in it at all. But mentioning old granddad-dad conflicts every twenty pages or so did not help giving more depth to Poppy's father's character. The side characters were pretty flat in general. That alone wouldn't have bothered me, but they were complete stereotypes, too, and that got on my nerves a LOT. You know, the understanding, but quiet mom, the somewhat-hippie grandmother, the strict and overachieving dad, the ambitous best friends...ugh. Too much clichés for me. Overall, I cannot really recommend this book. To younger teens, maybe. Or for not-so-avid readers. Or for people who have trouble finding what they want. The Jelly Bean Crisis is full of good advice, but in general, this book was just not entertaining enough for me.

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