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Happily Ever After Paperback – 22 Nov 2012

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Product details

  • Paperback: 480 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (22 Nov. 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0007350279
  • ISBN-13: 978-0007350278
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 3 x 19.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (58 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 44,802 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Hi there Amazonians, greetings and thanks for stopping to read this. I have written eight novels (WHAT? how did that happen. That's completely bonkers.) Yes, eight. Anyway while I get over that, what else do you need to know? I live in London, near the canal. I like: the Golden Girls, karaoke, the clothes shop Anthropologie, books books and more books, and my daughter Cora and my boyfriend Chris. Not in that order. I used to work in publishing and look at authors and think well, I can do that! So I thought I'd fulfill my life-long ambition and try writing a book because how hard can it be? Now I know the answer which is: er, kind of pretty hard. But it's the best job in the world (apart from acting in musicals which one day I also hope to do *stop kidding yourself & get back to work*) and I know that too.

My latest novel is A PLACE FOR US, which is out at the moment... sort of. It's about a family reunion, and opens with the matriarch of the Winter family, Martha, sitting down at the breakfast table one morning to write out the invitations that will call her family back from around the world back home to their beautiful old family home, Winterfold. She is throwing herself an 80th birthday party where she hopes to tell them the secret she's been carrying for years... It is hands-down my favourite novel so far, love thinking about it, love the characters, love the house I spent ages (and lots of visits to nice houses as research haha) creating in detail in my mind. My brilliant publishers are doing something quite interesting with it which is to release it as an e-serial in four parts, one new part a month. Am thrilled at the feedback we've been getting, so thanks to everyone who's read it so far.

Anyway If you'd like to get in touch I would lurve to hear from you. Please visit my website: http://www.harriet-evans.com/

Or follow me on Twitter @HarrietEvans

Or (this is the last one I promise) check out ma rockin Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/harrietevansbooks

Harrie x

Product Description


'Funny, wistful and wise, I loved this book.' Katie Fforde

‘I love Harriet's combination of great writing talent and a wonderfully warm heart.’ Jilly Cooper

‘If you’re addicted to new TV comedy Girls, this realistic read will definitely be your cup of tea. … A chick-lit game changer.’ Now

‘An absorbing and empathetic read.’ Press Association

‘Ladies’ literature at its convincing and applicable best.’ Daily Express

‘Sure to keep readers gripped with its engaging story.’ Star

‘[A] warm and wise tale of a girl’s coming of age in the grown-up world of commerce… A witty and knowing look’ Red Online

‘More serious and weighty then a fluffy, light chick-lit read, and all the better for it – it will keep your attention from the opening chapter to the last page as Elle embarks on her journey of self-discovery. Nostalgic and poignant, you’ll fall in love with this fab book.’ Fabulous Online

About the Author

Harriet Evans is the author of five previous novels, Going Home, A Hopeless Romantic, The Love of Her Life, I Remember You and Love Always all of which were bestsellers. She lives in London and now writes full time.

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Customer Reviews

3.9 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Best Crime Books TOP 500 REVIEWER on 15 Dec. 2011
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I read a book by Harriet Evans earlier in the year and thoroughly enjoyed it. I was looking forward to reading her latest book but wasn't prepared for the bumper book that landed on my doorstep. At 420 pages it's certainly a hefty book but that didn't put me off at all.

The book starts off early in Elle's life when she was a young girl and then quickly moves to her starting out her working life doing the one thing she loves; books! Elle is a character that if I am being honest I didn't warm to straight away. Her life is made so complicate by her incessant need to worry about everything. She comes across as a very naïve girl trying to make her way amongst the other more glamorous women working in publishing.

Her boss Rory was also a character that I didn't particularly like, although that didn't change throughout the book. The story was interesting and Harriet Evans writing style is very easy to read. However, the first part of the book was set in 1997 and then there was a jump to a few years later as we literally see Elle grow up.

As each section of the book takes us to a point further in Elle's life, I admit I liked her a little more, but her life itself left a lot to be desired. Some of the other characters in the book stuck around for longer than others but only one or two stuck out for me. Elle's friend Tom was a nice guy, as was Sam her flatmate, but the rest just didn't sit well with me.

The further into the book I got the more I enjoyed it, but towards the end which took place in 2008 over ten years later I felt like the story hadn't quite taken the turn I expected. The story held interest for me, and I actually liked the fact that we see Elle grow up but by the time I finished I wasn't quite sure how I felt.
Did I enjoy it? Yes.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By K-O on 1 Feb. 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I've read all of Harriet Evans books and enjoyed them. I admit I'm a rom com book kind of gal and I don't mind a big book and this book is bigger than previous books, which I thought was great before I opened the pages.

The other reviews here take you through the plot so I won't to do that in more detail because you'll already have a gist of the story.

I will say I started enjoying the book but throughout it kept leaping years and I felt left characters hanging or simply by the time I'd got to the 2 x jump ahead, I'd forgotten who someone was who'd been mentioned before but the jumping forward years had just taken over.

The ending is a bit predictable and you can spot it fairly early but that's not a bad thing. I always enjoy the read getting to the point of them getting together.

All in all it's an okay read, I didn't find myself warming to any of the characters except Felicity maybe but I thought by the size of the book we'd cover more, not less and it has the feeling of someone editing and taking chunks out to avoid more pages which is sad and leaves you feeling like you missed out on the in between period, or the plot timing should have been different so you didn't have such big time gaps with missing information/plots.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Louread on 28 Jan. 2012
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I am a loyal reader and ordered this on release day. Eleanor Bee is the main character and her story evolves from being a teenager in the middle of her parents divorce to Eleanor in her thirties as a successful woman in the publishing world. It addresses alcoholism very well as Eleanor is as much in denial about her mum's drink problem as her mother. The book shows the devastation this disease has on families and touches on the hereditary factor with Elle's grandfather having the same problem and Elle herself at one point. The guilt, secrecy and isolation associated with alcoholism is so well explored and so sad.

There is a wide cast of characters in the book from Rory, the son of her first boss who uses Elle to Tom the book shop owner who appears throughout the book as a solid friend. All characters help the story to evolve including Elle's colleagues and family. At times I wanted to shake Elle for being pathetic and doing silly things, but then I think it made her real and I could relate to her insecurities easily.

The ending was predictable in a way and I wasn't sure whether that was deliberate or not. It was good all the same.

This is not as easy a read as Harriet Evans' other books and I found it hard going at times. However, it is worth a read, but don't expect it to be light and fluffy.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ms. A. Brooke on 1 Dec. 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I started off actually liking this well enough, as the set-up was very powerful. I particularly enjoyed Elle’s difficult relationship with her brother – that scene at the start when they’re children is simply brilliant. Sadly, we don’t stay in this childhood moment as we’re quickly tumbled into Elle as a young woman trying to make her way in the publishing world.

Entirely due to the great start, I was prepared to give Elle the benefit of the doubt and kept my determination going for a good 100 pages or so. Gradually it dawned on me that, no matter how much I tried to deny it as a reader, Elle is simply a doormat, and a dull one to boot. Sorry, but she just is. Yes, I know she’s a borderline alcoholic with an alcoholic mother, and surely medically depressed, but every time there’s a crisis she simply just keels over and agrees with whoever the strongest person in any particular scene is. I have to say it’s never her. If you want interesting depressive and/or alcoholic women in your fiction, you’re better off with Marian Keyes. However, there was one moment when I got rather excited because Elle was about to launch into a very justified row with her bitchy boss, but the moment said boss challenges her, Ellie gives in and just agrees. Sigh …

There’s also an allegedly torrid affair between her and another boss, Rory, whom she’s obsessive about but really I just didn’t believe anyone would be interested enough in her to bother. That goes for the on-off relationship with an ex-colleague too – and the moment when she realises (no serious spoilers here) that he’s fathered a child by someone else has to be one of the great clichés of romantic fiction – so clichéd that I couldn’t help but laugh uproariously.
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