How to be Happy by Eva Woods

howtobe

Length: 432 pages

Please note that the cover leads to a universal Amazon buy link for the book and is only £0.88 at this moment!

Another note: This book is also published under the name ‘Something Like Happy”

What they say: Annie has been sad for so long that she’s forgotten how to be any other way. Until she meets Polly.

Polly is everything that Annie is not. She’s colourful, joyful, happy. Because if recent events have taught Polly anything, it’s that your time is too short to waste a single day.

Polly has one hundred days to help Annie find happiness. Annie’s convinced it’s impossible, but so is saying no to Polly. And on an unforgettable journey, Annie begins to realise that maybe, just maybe, there’s still colour to be found in the world.

But then it becomes clear that Polly’s about to need her new friend more than ever…and Annie will have to decide once and for all whether letting others in is a risk worth taking.

The Review: I had been hankering for this for a long time after I’d requested it on Netgalley. I knew it was going to be a tear jerker, but just was never in the frame of mind for laughing through the tears and so I stayed away but I am so so happy I finally got to it because what a gem this book is !

We begin with our lead, Annie Hebden, trying to get the attention of a receptionist in a hospital. The receptionist isn’t taking to Annie’s firm approach and so ignores her but quickly jumps for a stranger who seems to be of the more positive demeanor. And so it is that we meet Polly. Polly decides to latch onto Annie and begins to turn up everywhere, at her house, at her work, and we wonder what her story is. I can’t give away too much but I will just say that both Annie AND Polly have reasons to hide away from life and I knew I was in for a both a treat and a rough time.

This book was magnificently done, a real lesson in writing, in particular the way you didn’t dislike Annie even though she was like a rain cloud and Polly like the sun. Polly decides she’s going to change Annie’s life and make her see that there’s more to life than just getting through each day. The surrounding characters were fantastic, the settings perfection, and the genius of the new heading for the one hundred chapters (not all long, don’t worry!), that showed us the one thing Annie had to do to change things blew me away.

This is  a very special book and a very special mention has to go for Polly but in particular the moment when we actually got to SEE her. I had her in my mind as something and then suddenly started bawling crying when I really saw her ( trying not to cry now actually!) There was so much comedy and joy and heartbreaking aches in this book and it blew me away.  If this isn’t in my Top ten at Christmas (yes, I know I chickened out last year!), I will be so so shocked. Thanks so so much to Netgalley and Sphere for this book in return for an honest review and to all the bloggers whose posts convinced me I needed to suck it up and read something that required me to be braver.

Rating: 5/5