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This is What Happy Looks Like
Cover of This is What Happy Looks Like
This is What Happy Looks Like
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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...
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...
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  • 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?

About the Author-

  • Jennifer E. Smith is the author of Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between, The Geography of You and Me, This Is What Happy Looks Like, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, The Storm Makers, You Are Here, and The Comeback Season. She earned a master's degree in creative writing from the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, and her work has been translated into thirty-three languages. She currently lives in New York City.

Reviews-

  • DOGO Books buggirl - I. LOVED. This . Book! This is a sweet romance with nice characters. What I liked about this book though was that there was no serious cursing, inappropriate anything, or mean jealous kids. This is a perfect summer book, I VERY highly recommend it. You will not want to put this book down, let alone get enough of it!
  • Publisher's Weekly

    March 4, 2013
    Like Smith’s The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (2012), this sweet novel has a premise worthy of the movies. When a lonely teenage Hollywood heartthrob accidentally e-mails a 16-year-old girl in smalltown Maine, there is an immediate spark. Graham arranges to shoot his new movie in Ellie’s seaside town, surprising her with his true identity and leaving levelheaded Ellie feeling “wildly unbalanced.” This is partly due to Graham’s fame, but also because she fears the spotlight would expose a family secret. The cute, brief e-mails between Ellie and Graham showcase the rapid but authentic connection between them (putting aside that they would be far more likely to text each other in this situation). Because the book is told from both characters’ perspectives, readers will understand their vulnerabilities as they try to take their relationship into the real world. Ellie’s family secret may not seem severe enough for the consternation it creates, and readers may be exasperated by the dramas that keep the couple apart. However, the charming leads, smalltown backdrop, and absurdly romantic conceit will win hearts. Ages 15–up. Agent: Jennifer Joel, ICM.

  • Kirkus

    March 1, 2013
    A typo misdirects teen film star Graham's email to Ellie in Henley, Maine, launching an intense epistolary friendship that rapidly becomes an anchor for each. Keeping his identity secret from Ellie frees Graham to be the pre-celebrity self he's felt disappearing. Anonymity allows Ellie to safely share private dreams and worries (like how to pay for the prestigious but expensive Harvard poetry workshop that's accepted her), though not the secrets her family life rests on. Spending his star capital recklessly, Graham insists on Henley as a film location. Their relationship intensifies when they meet in person. Confident yet lonely, Graham pursues more-conflicted Ellie. For Graham--isolated by fame, adrift in a world where image trumps authenticity--Ellie's a lifeline connecting him to what's real. But as their attraction grows, so does the threat his fame poses to Ellie, tasked with protecting family secrets. Utterly convincing, Graham and Ellie lend credibility to the otherwise far-fetched setup. Smith's work, occupying the zone between literary and commercial fiction, occasionally has an airbrushed feel, avoiding life's messier realities. (Graham and Ellie's chaste behavior seems at odds with their passionate longing, for instance.) It's a minor quibble, though, next to the author's strong suit: a cast of vivid, sympathetic characters whose fate matters to readers and keeps them turning the pages. (Fiction. 13 & up)

    COPYRIGHT(2013) Kirkus Reviews, ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

  • School Library Journal

    May 1, 2013

    Gr 8 Up-This well-crafted, character-driven love story opens with an endearing prologue told in emails. When 16-year-old Ellie O'Neill accidentally starts an exchange with a stranger, she doesn't expect their virtual conversations to turn into a romance. But over the course of a few months, that's exactly what happens. Ellie doesn't know the boy's name until he shows up on her doorstep. He's Graham Larkin, a famous movie star whose next film just happens to be shooting in her quiet Maine town. While most of the girls are dying to be in her shoes, she has reservations. Ellie is the illegitimate daughter of a prominent politician, and her mom moved them to escape the unrelenting media. Now they struggle financially in order to maintain their privacy. Graham's life is anything but private. However, though he is handsome and wealthy, the teen is also lonely and uninspired. His parents, uncomfortable with his fame, choose to distance themselves from him, while his controlling manager wants Graham to date his beautiful costar for the good publicity. Despite those obstacles, Ellie and Graham sustain a sweet and genuine romance. Their chemistry is undeniable, and readers will wonder about their love story long after the last page. An excellent recommendation for fans of Maureen Johnson.-Kimberly Garnick Giarratano, Rockaway Township Public Library, NJ

    Copyright 2013 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

  • VOYA, starred review Engaging from the first page.
  • Publishers Weekly Like Smith's The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (2012), this sweet novel has a premise worthy of the movies... [The] charming leads, smalltown backdrop, and absurdly romantic conceit will win hearts.
  • Kirkus Reviews Utterly convincing... a cast of vivid, sympathetic characters whose fate matters to readers and keeps them turning the pages.
  • School Library Journal Ellie and Graham sustain a sweet and genuine romance. Their chemistry is undeniable, and readers will wonder about their love story long after the last page.
  • The Horn Book Undeniable chemistry...Ellie and Graham's connection, 'like the pull of a magnet, powerful and inevitable,' lingers on beyond their wistful but optimistic goodbye.

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    Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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