Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Review: This is What Happy Looks Like

Title: This is What Happy Looks Like
Author: Jennifer E. Smith
Series: --
Published: 2013 by Little, Brown and Co.
Version: Hardcover
Obtained: Library

Perfect strangers Graham Larkin and Ellie O’Neill meet – albeit virtually – when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an e-mail about his pet pig, Wilbur. The two seventeen-year-olds strike up an e-mail relationship, even though they live on opposite sides of the country and don’t even know each other’s first name.

In a witty and unforgettable correspondence, Graham and Ellie share details about their lives, hopes, and fears. But they don’t tell each other everything: Graham doesn’t know the secret hidden in Ellie’s family tree, and Ellie is unaware of Graham’s life in the spotlight.

When Graham seizes an opportunity to spend time in Ellie’s tiny hometown of Henley, Main, he takes their relationship from online to in person. But can two people from such different worlds be together despite the odds stacked against them?

Spanning one fateful summer, Jennifer E. Smith’s new novel proves that life – like love – is full of unexpected connections and happy mistakes.

First Sentence:
It was not all that different from the circus, and it came to town in much the same way.”

Jennifer E. Smith is very talented at crafting adorable love stories. This is What Happy Looks Like is endearing in the way of feel-good movies. While it might be cheesy, it still makes you love it.

Graham accidently sends an email to the wrong address and it ends up in Ellie’s inbox. For about four months they have email conversations about everything except the important details of their lives. Graham is completely drawn to this girl, so he arranges to have his next movie shot in her small city in Maine. From here their relationship goes through a lot of ups and downs.

While this whole “famous boy falls in love with small town girl” plot has been done many times before, the email aspect is what drew me to this version. Almost the first 20 pages are their emails back and forth and it is too cute. Both are so witty and intelligent, and perfect for each other. Scattered throughout the book are more emails which are made sweeter since they are both in the same place.

Smith really enjoys writing love stories that are highly improbably. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight was equally unrealistic, but that’s part of the charm. It’s very fun to read books about romance that starts so perfectly and ends up perfectly. Smith still mixes in real life issues like family and friend problems, but she mainly shows how two people who are good for each other can overcome these issues together.

I will definitely read Jennifer E. Smith’s future books because she is a fantastic writer and story-crafter.

Content Warning: Nothing I can think of.

4 Pigs

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