27 August 2015

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Publication: 2015

# of Pages: 293

Source: Library

Favorite Quotes:

  • "Sometimes pain is so unmanageable that the idea of spending another day with it seems impossible. Other times pain acts as a compass to help you through the messier tunnels of growing up. But pain can only help you find happiness if you remember it."
  • "The boy with no direction taught me something unforgettable: happiness comes again if you let it."
  • "I've become this happiness scavenger who picks away at the ugliness of the world, because if there's happiness tucked away in my tragedies, I'll find it no matter what. If the blind can find joy in music, and the deaf can discover it with colors, I will do my best to always find the sun in the darkness because my life isn't one sad ending--it's a series of endless happy beginnings. 
  • "I have to push ahead with people who don't take the easy way out, who love me enough to stay alive even when life sucks."
  • "We all make mistakes...but it's also a step in the right direction. If nothing else it's a step away from the wrong one."
Goodreads Summary/Blurb: "In the months after his father's suicide, it's been tough for 16-year-old Aaron Soto to find happiness again--but he's still gunning for it. With the support of his girlfriend Genevieve and his overworked mom, he's slowly remembering what that might feel like. But grief and the smile shaped scare on his wrist prevent him from forgetting completely. 

When Genevieve leaves for a couple of weeks, Aaron spends all his time hanging out with this new guy, Thomas. Aaron's crew notices, and they're not exactly thrilled. But Aaron can't deny the happiness Thomas brings or how Thomas makes him feel safe from himself, despite the tensions their friendship is stirring with his girlfriend and friends. Since Aaron can't stay away from Thomas or turn off his newfound feelings for him, he considers turning to the Leteo Institute's revolutionary memory-alteration procedure to straighten himself out, even if it means forgetting who he truly is. 

Why does happiness have to be so hard?"

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My Review/Thoughts

What if I told you you could erase every bad memory in you life? Would you take my offer? Adam Silvera tests the boundaries of human memory and pain in his debut novel More Happy Than Not. In this beautifully written and captivating novel, the reader is introduced to the complex character of Aaron, a young man learning the meaning of happiness. 

What proves to be most interesting about the development of this novel is Silvera's discussion of pain and memory. Quite often when we experience pain or traumatic events we attempt to disregard it to maintain a certain level of happiness. Silvera utilizes his book and his characters to teach us that not only is pain inevitable, but if we can work through our pain and see the beauty of  the life we've been given we ultimately become resilient and find more happiness than not. It is only when we fight who we are and refuse to face our fears and pain do we truly become unhappy. You can't spend your life running. 

For his first novel, Silvera truly captures how humans weigh and define the purpose of their lives, how they find happiness, and how they cope when happiness is no where to be found. I was positively surprised at the depth of knowledge Silvera exposed to his readers. He proves more than capable of illustrating one's appreciation for sexuality, mental illness, acceptance, betrayal, love, friendship, and last but certainly not least an understanding of the human heart and strength to persevere. I truly feel as though I could go on and on about the sheer beauty of this novel; however, it is best that readers discover this for themselves. Pick up this book and take a journey with the main character Aaron as he discovers himself and you just might find yourself reflecting and understanding that when life becomes difficult and challenging it is okay to be more happy than not. 



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