Author: Nicole Bokat
Publisher: She Writes Press
Release Date: May 18, 2021
A slow build to a great ending, The Happiness Thief turned out much better than I expected and was a very enjoyable read.
Natalie Greene has lived for years with uncertainty after the car crash that killed her mom and left her with unclear memories from the trauma. Her husband has left her for another woman and she reluctantly agrees to accompany her stepsister to a retreat in the Cayman Islands. Her stepsister is a Happiness Guru and Natalie is hoping to find some happiness on the trip. Instead she ends up in an accident that triggers memories and long held onto guilt of what happened to her mother.
Back home in Boston Natalie gets back to life as a food photographer and mother to her teenage daughter until an email arrives saying there is more to the accident in the Caymans than she was led to believe. As more clues come to light, Natalie realizes she has been lied to for a very long time and as the truth comes to light nothing is as it seems.
The Happiness Thief was a fun, quick read once I got past about the first third. There was a slow build, but once I got a little way in, the story picked up and had twists and turns in abundance. I loved the way each new clue unfolded a piece of the puzzle and it all came together in such a great way. Natalie was pretty easy for me to sympathize with and want to follow; however, I wasn’t fond of Isabel. Something about her just didn’t sit well with me but played out well in the end with how she was written in her story arc. Some of the secondary characters really brought a lot of what I needed to make the story mesh properly. At several different points throughout the story I enjoyed how Bokot showed we must do to find happiness for ourselves, we can’t rely on others to bring us happiness. I would recommend this book to mystery lovers that want a real page turner after a bit of a slow start.
I received a complimentary copy from the publisher. The views and opinions expressed within are my own.