Happy for You is the third book in the author’s “Love and Family” series, all of which can be read as standalone.
This story follows Mort who, for reasons unknown, left town a year ago with no explanation to his de facto family, the Rochesters. He simply left town without a word — though we do find out pretty early on in the novel his reason for leaving.
So now he’s back, and he’s attempting to repair his relationship with each of the family members and win them back, especially Felix, to whom Mort is very much attracted. There’s also the issue of Felix’s brother Roch who was Mort’s best friend and whose relationship with Mort is now especially rocky.
To complicate matters, Felix has been in love with Mort for years, and Mort has been in love with Roch but now has feelings for Felix. So that being said, Happy for You is a “falling in love with best friend’s little brother” trope which is a trope I especially enjoy, and the author executed it to perfection here.
I felt this was a bit different than a lot of the author’s other books. In this story, rather than feelings slowly developing between the characters, the romantic feelings were already there, so there wasn’t that super slow build-up that we see in her other novels. There was the issue, however, of Felix allowing himself to trust his heart to Mort, which took some time (and care, on Mort’s part). Regardless, I still enjoyed the deep connection between the two characters and rooted for them to get together. I thought they had terrific chemistry together. Both of them knew what they wanted — it just took some time for them to get there.
What I loved about this story, is that it wasn’t merely a “boy likes boy” romance but rather, Happy for You is quite a complex story with a myriad of themes such as acceptance, family, friendship, redemption, betrayal, trust, depression, and forgiveness. I love how the author peeled back the layers of the story bit by bit as the puzzle pieces from the past slowly came to fit together.
My only niggle with the book was Felix’s mom. she played an essential part in the plot of the story, yet I felt that her character was underdeveloped. I wanted to know a lot more about her and her depression, her surgery, and her relationship with those around her.
But all in all, it was a pleasure reading this novel, and I was so hooked that I read the entire thing in one go. Happy for You is such a sweet story, and the book hit all me in all the right places. I enjoyed the slow burn romance and loved the dorky, funny, and quirky characters, all of whom had an enormous heart.
I thought this was a solid book and feel that this tender story is an exquisite addition to the author’s Love and Family series. This is a lovely story with plenty of heart, humor, family, and chemistry that leaves you feeling happy for all of the characters and with a warm and fuzzy case of the ‘feels’ at the end.
There’s a reason that Anyta Sunday is an auto-buy author for me and I already look forward to her next book.
A huge thank you to NetGalley and to Anyta Sunday for providing me with a review copy in exchange for an honest review.