Happy Place: Book Review

Most modern readers know the name Emily Henry, but not all Emily Henry books are created equal. Her books are always full of warmth and wit, charming characters, and sexy banter. Happy Place is no different, but it has something other Emily Henry books don't. This book is full of growth, change, and hard decisions, not to mention life-long friendship stories. If you love a heart-tugging contemporary romance that celebrates personal growth then you'll love Happy Place!

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Happy Place Book Review

Quick Look

  • heartbreaking romance
  • friendship story
  • emotional read
  • miscommunication and forced proximity tropes
  • trademark Henry banter
  • Julia Whelan audiobook narration

Pub Date: April 25, 2023⁣

Thank you @prhaudio for the early access copy!

Publisher's Synopsis

Harriet and Wyn have been the perfect couple since they met in college—they go together like salt and pepper, honey and tea, lobster and rolls. Except, now—for reasons they’re still not discussing—they don’t.

They broke up six months ago. And still haven’t told their best friends.

Which is how they find themselves sharing the largest bedroom at the Maine cottage that has been their friend group’s yearly getaway for the last decade. Their annual respite from the world, where for one vibrant, blue week they leave behind their daily lives; have copious amounts of cheese, wine, and seafood; and soak up the salty coastal air with the people who understand them most.

Only this year, Harriet and Wyn are lying through their teeth while trying not to notice how desperately they still want each other. Because the cottage is for sale and this is the last week they’ll all have together in this place. They can’t stand to break their friends’ hearts, and so they’ll play their parts. Harriet will be the driven surgical resident who never starts a fight, and Wyn will be the laid-back charmer who never lets the cracks show. It’s a flawless plan (if you look at it from a great distance and through a pair of sunscreen-smeared sunglasses). After years of being in love, how hard can it be to fake it for one week… in front of those who know you best?

My Review

Well, I was very skeptical about Happy Place given how much I disliked Book Lovers. To me, Beach Read is the ultimate Emily Henry book and one of my all-time favorite romances. But Book Lovers was a big letdown for me, leaving me wondering if she'd lost her touch. Thankfully she hasn't!

One of the things I loved most about Happy Place was the characters. Each is flawed but human, something I appreciate given my own flawed human state. Relationships are HARD AF, y'all, and I think Henry captured that perfectly in this book. Both romantic relationships and friendships are fraught with complicated emotions, emotional baggage, and unresolved anger and grief. In other words, they are all human.

More than any of her other books Henry incorporates aspects of aging and adulthood into the storyline of Happy Place. She perfectly captures the growth and change we all experience as we age, sometimes outgrowing our partners and our friends. I felt like Henry shared a little bit of her own story here, one I was absolutely able to relate to on a deep level.

My Review

If you're a fan of Emily Henry then don't think twice about picking up her latest, Happy Place. Her trademark style is there, but she also incorporates elements of personal growth and feminism, veering away from her previous novels in some respects. This contemporary romance has elements of women's fiction that should not be overlooked, so even if you aren't a huge romance fan this is still one you should add to your list!

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About Carlie

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