After spending his fall semester working as a production intern on the musical Sweet Charity, SFUAD student Triston P. Pullen is announcing his next major project—a stage adaptation of Colleen Hoover’s book It Ends With Us. Pullen, a junior PAD student, will not only be sharing the task of adapting the book with Hoover, but he will also direct the play when it premieres in Sulphur Springs, Texas, a town with which both Pullen and Hoover have emotional ties. Pullen plans to bring the experience gained in New York to his own theater production company Studio 1621, which will co-produce the play. The project includes various SFUAD students including Evan Eastep as graphic designer, Austin Creswell as stage manager, Chris Hanna as film production, Liam O’Brien playing Ryle Kincaid, Madeleine Garcia playing Alyssa Kincaid and Natalie Fox playing Lily Bloom.
This was not the kind of book I would naturally gravitate toward, and I think part of that is my preconception of it as a straight-up romance novel, which it is not. Without giving anything away, I’ll say that romance is present, but this is absolutely about Lily and her personal journey, her hardships and getting through it, and for me, that made all the difference.
Lily’s relationships with Atlas and Ryle are definitely present within the book, but to me, the most stand-out relationships were Lily’s relationships with other women in her life. Her friendship with Allysa was so pure, so selfless. It warms my heart that they each have such heartfelt well wishes for the other. And Lily and her mom, Jenny — that was another lovely relationship. It may have begun in a place of resentment and low-key antagonism, but the growth they experienced by the end was beautiful. Also, the Ellen DeGeneres letters were ❤
This is a book I think everyone should read, despite their genre preconceptions, because the central theme — which is basically that we aren’t always very sympathetic to people in Lily’s situation — is one that everyone can appreciate.