Tuesday 6 May 2014

Book Review Happily Ever After by Harriet Evans


You can’t escape the ties that bind. The past catches up with you no matter how far you try to run…
This is a story of a girl who doesn’t believe in happy endings. Or happy families. It’s the story of Eleanor Bee, a shy, book-loving girl who vows to turn herself into someone bright, shiny and confident, someone sophisticated. Someone who knows how life works.
But life has a funny way of catching us unawares. Turns out that Elle doesn’t know everything about love. Or life. Or how to keep the ones we love safe….
Absorbing, poignant and unforgettable, Happily Ever After is a compelling story of a fractured family and a girl who doesn’t believe in love.

My Musings
I always liked Harriet Evans especially after reading her first book, Going Home but this was far darker than her previous books which I wasn't expecting. It deals with Elle at different stages of her life and her alcoholic mum, how it effects her and her family and relationships. 
It does have have romance in it but I felt this dealt with Elle's growth and how she deals with the drama in her life. There are times you find Elle very irritating and I felt she brought the disasters on herself. Sometimes you want to shake her. But then you think well aren't we all guilty of doing silly things at the wrong time. It does deal sensitively with the scarring nature other peoples addictions can have I feel but someone who has dealt with this in real life may think differently. The romantic element is somewhat an afterthought although there are some really romantic moments. Its also a really big book and at times got a bit fed up and thought she may have needed a stricter editor. Its supposed to be Chick lit but I felt it was trying to be a more serious and the book cover did not portray this at all. This was  more about the struggle to lead a life after coming from a dysfunctional family. Not really the sort of escapism I was looking for or used to by Harriet Evans. It is worth a read but its not her usual light read which is why I rated it OK.

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