Monday, August 4, 2014

Review: This is What Happy Looks Like

Title: This is What Happy Looks Like
Author:  Jennifer E. Smith
Release Date: April 2, 2013
Pages: 416
Format: ARC
Publisher: Headline
Rating: 4 Cows

Goodreads Description:

If fate sent you an email, would you answer?

When teenage movie star Graham Larkin accidentally sends small town girl Ellie O'Neill an email about his pet pig, the two seventeen-year-olds strike up a witty and unforgettable correspondence, discussing everything under the sun, except for their names or backgrounds.

Then Graham finds out that Ellie's Maine hometown is the perfect location for his latest film, and he decides to take their relationship from online to in-person. But can a star as famous as Graham really start a relationship with an ordinary girl like Ellie? And why does Ellie want to avoid the media's spotlight at all costs?

This is What Happy Looks Like was exactly what I was looking for the night I picked it up! I wanted a light, fun read and this book definitely delivered. When I first read the book description, I knew it was something I wanted to read. I loved the idea of an ordinary girl falling in love with a movie star via email. Coupled with the fact that I thoroughly enjoyed The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith, I was sold. As luck would have it, I was gifted this book from my friend Amber at Me, My Shelf and I (where I sometimes post reviews). Unfortunately, it took me longer than I anticipated to read it. It sat on my shelf collecting dust for quite a while until one night  I picked it up intending to read a couple chapters and ended up reading the entire thing!

I loved how the book starts off with the email exchanges written in actual email format. It was fun to follow and made the first few pages fly by.  Basically, the entire premise of the book is what every teenage girl dreams of (or maybe that's just what teenage me dreamed of). It was so fun to know that Graham is this famous person while the whole time Ellie has no idea. Their email exchanges were hilarous at times, especially the way it started off with Wilbur the pig!

I found Graham to be completely adorable! I loved his attitude and mindset. He was famous but he was still grounded. He hadn't let the whole thing go to his head. Also, I loved that the book is split into alternating perspectives so you can actually see what Graham is thinking. It was nice to be able to understand him and know how alone he feels at times.

Ellie was also a likeable character. While I'm still partial to Graham, Ellie definitely had some endearning qualities. My least favorite part of the story though was the storyline about Ellie's dad. I felt like it was only there to add conflict to Graham and Ellie's relationship and that there were some better options on how to add conflict. 

The feel of This is What Happy Looks Like reminds me of The Distance Between Us by Kasie West (which I absolutely adored). The plot definitely has some similarities (rich guy, poor girl, girl with daddy issues/family secrets) but they aren't so similar that you can't enjoy each. 

This is What Happy Looks Like is actually a rather long book, however, it is one that can easily be devoured in one sitting! Fans of Kasie West or other books by Smith will inhale this book! Perfect summer read!!


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AMAZING!!!! You should be at the book store right now buying it! :)

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