Author: Jennifer E Smith
Genre: Contemporary romance (YA)
I'm a little in love with Jennifer E. Smith's writing. There is something so effortless about it, as though I'm not reading a book at all, but living it through her characters instead. I was invested in this story right from the first page.
I admit, "young me" is a little jealous of Ellie—the protagonist of This Is What Happy Looks Like. She receives an accidental email from a movie star, who is pretty much one of the sweetest, most swoon-worthy guys I've read about in a long time. And he's not even a "bad boy." I know, I'm shocked, too.
When their email correspondence turns into a face-to-face meeting, the reactions, the feelings, are authentic. Their "romance" isn't easy, marred by their personal demons and public obstacles. But when it works—wow. It works!
I read this book in a day and a half, putting aside a whole bunch of stuff I should be doing, including my own writing. It's not a thin novel—more than 400 pages—but I read it quickly, and with a giant, goofy smile on my face until the last chapter when I was bawling my eyes out. Yeah, I'm a sucker for a well-written romance.
Despite a somewhat short timeframe (the story takes place over a summer), this isn't insta-love. There's no true love triangle to muddy the waters. It's just a really sweet, fun story about two people figuring out the meaning of happiness.