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Wake Up Happy Every Day

Wake Up Happy Every Day [Kindle Edition]

Stephen May
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £12.99
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Product Description

Product Description

Nicky has always known Russell was rich, but he has no idea how astronomically rich Russell is until his friend drops dead, on his 50th birthday, in his San Francisco mansion, with Nicky as the only witness.

For forty years the two men have kept up their friendship, with Russell’s birthday offering him an annual opportunity to remind Nicky of how much more successful Russell is, and how much further he has come since their English suburban childhood.

And now Nicky has come up with an uncharacteristically daring plan.

If Nicky were to become Russell and leave his old life lying dead on the bathroom floor, then he, his wife Sarah and their daughter Scarlett could start again. Only with better clothes, better hair, better stuff and a better future: everything that money can buy. Especially happiness.

But when the foundations of their glittering new existence start to crack, the impact of Nicky’s hasty decision begins to be felt by all those around him: by his daughter; by his own distant, confused father; by a young English woman who has come to America in search of her father, and by the mysterious Catherine, an ex-soldier who seems to take an unhealthy interest in Nicky’s movements...

Sharp, funny, warm and acutely observed, Wake Up Happy Every Day is a novel about dreams and delusions, family and friendship, and what happens if you do actually find the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 645 KB
  • Print Length: 369 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 140884074X
  • Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing; 1 edition (1 Mar 2014)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #122,641 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Quirky and fun 18 Mar 2014
I don't typically write reviews on books as I feel like it's usually all been said before, but this book doesn't have any ratings yet, so for anyone considering reading it, here are my thoughts.

I haven't read any of the author's previous work so I have no frame of reference, and I didn't really read anything about the book prior to starting. I'm glad I didn't so I had no expectations.

I'm not going to give away the plot, so I'll keep it high level, but in a word, it's great fun! Well written, witty and at times punchy prose. Well developed and, on the whole, likeable characters (even the baddies, which is quite a feat in my opinion). It's quirky, fun, and original. The ending wasn't what I expected and for that I'm grateful as I was terrified that it would let the story down, but it didn't.

It's the sort of book that makes me look forward to my commute so that I can lose myself in another world for a short time.

Really enjoyed reading it, and I'm just sorry that I'm finished! My next book will have a lot to live up to.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Daring, original and brilliantly acerbic 25 Mar 2014
“Wake Up Happy Every Day” is an astonishing achievement. Stephen May’s third novel centres around Nicky Fisher’s opportunistic decision to assume the identity of his dead friend Russell, and the catastrophic implications of this sudden choice. It is a brave and ambitious story which weaves together five narrative strands that slowly become connected. Often when an author attempts such a feat the potential danger is an epic fail; as a reader you only want to follow one thread and quickly become irritated by the other voices or the other stories. However May’s skill is to create an entire cast of characters that you care about, from the central protagonist and his immediate family through to even the most minor supporting character. As I was reading the novel I was trying to work out just how he achieves this, and my feeling is that it’s down to the individual voices, each distinct, yet each imbued with May’s own quirky observations. It’s quite a skill.

The novel is full of great little gems. I particularly enjoyed “I don’t understand why more people don’t embrace doubt, when it generally works so much better than the alternative.”

May’s tone is acerbic, belligerent and angry as he riffs on topics as diverse as loss, longing and cake. Indeed his views on the importance of cake in maintaining successful office dynamics struck a particular chord (probably a C# diminished!).

The plot structure is wonderfully, bizarrely left-field with an ambitious mix between first person narration and third person segments. The pace is relentless and the pages simply fly by before you can draw breath.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Hilarious, ingenious and totally engaging 26 Mar 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
'Wake Up Happy Every Day' sets out at a ripping pace - and gets pacier! If you need an outline of the plot (or at least the starting point as too much info would ruin your enjoyment) read the blurb above. We follow half a dozen characters whose lives interact with, and impact on, that of our 'hero', Nicky Fisher. The multi-point-of-view narrative is complex but never muddle-y. Just when you think you can see where it's going, May throws a curve ball and we're off again. It's a page turner. The dialogue is razor sharp, the thoughts and ideas May allows his cast of characters are plausible (and occasionally shocking) but always interesting. And the ending is brave. W.U.H.E.D. is simultaneously inventive, hilarious, touching, romantic, edgy, sinister, exotic and down-to-earth.
P.S. May's previous novels - 'Tag' and 'Life! Death! Prizes!' are terrific too.
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4.0 out of 5 stars then this one comes highly recommended. 10 Aug 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
A punchy, original read with strong voices and engaging characters. If you're looking for a book that's different from so many others, then this one comes highly recommended.
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0 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Refocuses Perception 16 May 2014
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Useful exercises that help focus on what really matters. Good workbook which should probably be done every six months. Wish I could print it or use it on my iPad.
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