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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

My Thoughts: Happily Ever After by Harriet Evans

At twenty-two, Eleanor Bee is sure about three things: she wants to move to London and become a literary superstar; she wants to be able to afford to buy a coffee and croissant every morning; and after seeing what divorce did to her parents—especially her mum—she doesn’t believe in happy endings.

Elle moves to London. She gets a job at Bluebird Books, a charmingly old-fashioned publisher. She falls out of bars, wears too-short skirts, makes lots of mistakes, and feels like she’s learning nothing and everything at the same time. And then, out of the blue, she falls in love, and that’s when she realizes just how much growing up she has to do.

Ten years on, Elle lives in New York, and you could say she has found success; certainly her life has changed in ways she could never have predicted. But no matter where you go and how much you try to run away, the past has a funny way of catching up with you. . . .

**Finished copy received from Simon and Schuster Canada for an honest review**

I love Chick Lit!! I don't know why, but these is something about it that I really enjoy about it. And Happily Ever After by Harriet Evans was everything that I would have wanted in a Chick Lit. It was light and quirky, the dialogue was fun and Elle the protagonist was really likable- although she was far from perfect, and sometimes fell flat.

First off, let me say. This book is not a simple chick lit novel. It is muddier than that. It is thoughtful and tackles dark issues such as alcoholism, mental health and suicide. Which are pretty heavy issues for this genre. I am not sure that they were addressed perfectly, but they were applied to believable situations, which helped put these things into perspective.

Elle has a terrible relationship with her family. And a big part of it is her fault. When it comes to her parents (who are divorced) Elle is pretty selfish and not very understanding. This aspect of the Happily Ever After  is a bit of an eye roll. The way Elle would act toward her father felt very immature to me. I would expect that kind of behaviour from a 15 year old not a 26 year old. Don't get me wrong any child can be disrespectful and rebel against their parents, it just happens in different, age appropriate ways. Elle did not reflect this.

I liked this story. I liked seeing the story evolve for Elle at the age of 22, 26 and 32. I liked seeing her train wreck of a love life take form, I loved seeing her succeed in the publishing business. I loved seeing her gain a sense of understanding about what actually happened between her parents and why their marriage ended.

Overall, Happily Ever After was a good (not great) read. It was entertaining, but not memorable in any way. If you are looking for a good afternoon read or even a good weekend read that will allow you to relax and not think so much Happily Ever After is the book for you.

~Happy Reading Everyone!


  1. This sounds like a great read! I definitely want to read this now, it's been too long since I've read a chick lit book!

  2. It sounds like a flawed read but that still has enough good things to make it worth while. I think I'm going to see if I can find it :D thanks for the review

  3. Sounds like a gread read, I love chick lit books! :)

  4. I haven't heard of this one, but it sounds like a fun, light read. Sometimes I am in the mood for books that are good for passing an afternoon. This one sounds perfect. Thanks for the recommendation!

    s @ Oh! Paper Pages

  5. I think I'm finally coming around to the fun of chick lit reads. For a long time, the idea of them would just not interest me at all, but after having read a few now, I can totally see the appeal. Though I do like that this one has a bit more depth to it than your typical chick lit read. It's too bad that this one wasn't a "wow" read for you, but I'm glad you still enjoyed it!


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