Wednesday, December 11, 2019

The Magnolia Story - Nonfiction Review

Goodreads:  The Magnolia Story by Chip and Joanna Gaines

Rating: Very Good
Source: Library (Audio)

Description:  These famous words are now synonymous with the dynamic husband-and-wife team Chip and Joanna Gaines, stars of HGTV’s Fixer Upper. As this question fills the airwaves with anticipation, their legions of fans continue to multiply and ask a different series of questions, like—Who are these people?What’s the secret to their success? And is Chip actually that funny in real life? By renovating homes in Waco, Texas, and changing lives in such a winsome and engaging way, Chip and Joanna have become more than just the stars of Fixer Upper, they have become America’s new best friends.
The Magnolia Story is the first book from Chip and Joanna, offering their fans a detailed look at their life together. From the very first renovation project they ever tackled together, to the project that nearly cost them everything; from the childhood memories that shaped them, to the twists and turns that led them to the life they share on the farm today.

They both attended Baylor University in Waco. However, their paths did not cross until Chip checked his car into the local Firestone tire shop where Joanna worked behind the counter. Even back then Chip was a serial entrepreneur who, among other things, ran a lawn care company, sold fireworks, and flipped houses. Soon they were married and living in their first fixer upper. Four children and countless renovations later, Joanna garners the attention of a television producer who notices her work on a blog one day.

Genre: Nonfiction - Memoir

Why I Picked This Book:   I saw a very positive review on this book and I kind of wanted to see if I could figure out what all the fuss was about with this couple.

My Impression:  I've watched the show Fixer Upper.maybe 3 or 4 times and enjoyed it.  It makes for nice easy watching.  Chip and Joanna seem likable and their renovation work is fascinating even though our styles don't exactly line up.  But I never quite understood just what the magic was. And honestly I don't think I'll be signing up as their #1 fan anytime soon I think I understand it a bit more now.

They both came off as really likable people though Chip would drive me absolutely insane in real life with his impulsiveness.  I could relate to Joanna quite a bit with her calmer more planned out way of doing things.  But I really enjoyed getting a peak into how Chip thinks.  I'm not much of a risk taker and the idea of starting up businesses, flipping houses, and not having a nailed down plan is just hard to comprehend so hearing about the thought process was absolutely fascinating to me.  The Gaines' are a very religious couple and this came through in parts of their book.  I didn't feel like it got particularly preachy - just more them explaining their beliefs and how it affected their lives.  The audio was read by Chip and Joanna which I thought really made this an enjoyable listen and I'm very glad I picked it up!

Would I Read More of this Series/Author?  I would.  I enjoyed this one much more then I expected and would definitely like to hear more from them.

Would I Recommend this Book?  If you enjoy the Gaines' show or have always wondered just what the big deal is I think this is a good read and it's even better in audio.


  1. Hmmm sound like opposites attract with this couple. Maybe they complement each other. I like fixer upper shows or selling houses because it is easy TV watching.

  2. I have watched a few of their shows and liked them all well enough. My sister adores this couple and even went to Waco for a trip because of them. Chip would be bit much in real life wouldn't he?