Everyone deserves a chance at happiness…
Danniella is running from her past, so when she arrives at the beautiful seaside resort of Whitsborough Bay, the last thing on her mind is making friends. After all, they might find out her secrets…
Alison is fun, caring and doesn’t take herself too seriously. But beneath the front, she is a lost soul, stuck in a terrible relationship, with body confidence issues and no family to support her. All she really needs is a friend.
Karen’s romance has taken a back seat to her fitness business. But she doesn’t want to give up on love quite yet. If only those mysterious texts would stop coming through …
When the women meet at their local bootcamp, a deep friendship blossoms. And soon they realise that the secret to happiness is where they least expected to find it…
An uplifting story of friendship and finding the strength to come to terms with the past. Perfect for fans of Tilly Tennant and Cathy Bramley.
‘Forget the Cotswolds, Jessica makes the Northern English coast sound like the most idyllic place to be’ The Cozy Pages
- Print Length: 408 pages
- Publisher: Boldwood Books (September 3, 2019)
- Publication Date: September 3, 2019
Oh wow, perhaps the best by Jessica yet… and that saying something as I’ve loved all her books so far. A story that sends me off to bed crying one night and then smiling the next is certainly one I’ll recommend reading.
Every time I’m about to start a new book by this author, I have to ask myself if I’m ready to meet new friends and get invested in their lives. The characters come to life within the pages and make the reader want to know all about them, feel for them and root for them to overcome their trials.
There are also many themes touched on in this book: Betrayal, infidelity, negative body image, eating disorders, grief, loss and family are all touched on. It’s enthralling how the author is able to do them all justice. She dials into just the most poignant elements and brings the issues out in a sensitive and satisfying way.
With three leading ladies, the book is really a three in one and we follow the challenges of Alison, Daniella and Karen. Their stories are woven together as their friendship builds and they find strength within themselves for oneanother.
At first I thought I was going to wish that each of the three ladies got more page space to really develop their characters and stories… but no. Jessica manages to write three incredibly detailed protagonists and takes us through their metamorphoses is a way that is complete. It’s only because I’m greedy I’d say I wished they were three individual books. 🙂
The story utilises alternating points of view, something I’m not usually fond of, but it works really well in this narrative. The switching up of perspectives also lends a touch of suspense. Just as you want to know what happens next with Karen or Alison, you’re pulled into Danniella’s tale of woe.
Speaking of Danniella, if she had her own book, I can guarantee it would be a book that would have you getting through an entire box of tissues. Perhaps, she’s the only one I would have liked some more development with, especially when she has to reconnect with her past and figure out how and if to make it part of her future.
Alison’s tale is really one of self-love and finding your own way to happiness. Karen’s story brings some intrigue and allows us to cross paths with a couple of past Whitsborough Bay characters. Don’t worry, you definitely don’t need to read the other books set in this picturesque northern coast town to fully enjoy The Secret of Happiness.
Overall, I simply loved this book and once again will be eagerly anticipating Jessica’s next book!
I give The Secret of Happiness 5/5 happy espresso shots.