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Love and Happiness Hardcover – September 10, 2013


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: St. Martin's Press (September 10, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 031264373X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0312643737
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.8 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,245,584 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Neiferhoffer's third book (after The Romantics) is the story of the effects of twenty-first century curiosity in a mundane marriage. The main character Jean is grinding through her job, trying to raise money for her films, and sagging under the burden of a husband who was once a "vital passionate young man" and is now an "aging, empty vessel." Jean remedies her lifeless marriage by drafting e-mailing to a former flame Doug but never presses send. Then she meets a man named Benjamin Kraft at a bar on a business trip who offers up his number. When he doesn't return her text later on, Jean searches the Internet for him, improbably concluding he is a criminal, maybe a murderer. More and more enticed, Jean hires a private investigator to track him. Ben finally returns her second text and they meet. Neiderhoffer delivers pitch-perfect micro-renderings of human behavior throughout: describing "carnivores posing as vegans" in a bar, and "near-misses at wit" during a flirtation. But the strength of the novel is in Niederhoffer's ability to do this on a larger scale. She intricately portrays her dynamic protagonist as slightly unstable and only sort of self-aware. Agent: TKTK, Joy Harris Literary Agency.

From Booklist

Niederhoffer’s third novel, following The Romantics (2008), explores the dissolution of a marriage. At 35, producer Jean Banks has lost all sexual interest in her director husband, Sam. She’s doing her best to get his movie financed, but her ambivalence toward him leads her to look for excitement elsewhere. After fantasizing for weeks about her ex-boyfriend, Doug, she arranges a meet up only to be disappointed by his lack of interest. A chance encounter with a striking man, Ben, on a business trip to Los Angeles proves more fruitful: he gives Jean his number and she begins to text him. Back in New York, the two embark on an affair that brings with it the excitement and passion she’s been missing. When Jean finds herself pregnant, she’s forced to decide whether she wants to leave the safety of her marriage for the uncertainty of a new relationship. Jean’s callous indifference toward her family makes it difficult to muster up much sympathy for her, but the difficulties she faces at the 10-year mark of her marriage do ring true. --Kristine Huntley

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Rhonda on September 19, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Let me start by saying that I enjoy light romances where I can escape the real world for a while. Due to my desire to escape and enjoy light and happy stories, this was a difficult read for me. The story never really grabbed me and I did not connect with the main character, Jean, at all. Although, I understood that she was confused and dissatisfied with her life, I did not like to reading about her dating another man and drafting emails to an exboyfriend.A side from the infidelity and betrayal, I did like the way the book was written. There were witty remarks and great metaphors. It also provoked some deep thoughts about relationships and marriage.I thought the book was realistic and I could see someone actually behaving like Jean. The lengths she went through to find out Benjamin Kraft's past were like that of a stalker and again, realistic.There were a lot of descriptions about the making of an independent film that didn't particularly interest me.Overall, Love and Happiness touched on many questions, decisions, and consequences that people face in life and was full of drama.I'd recommend this book to the people that want to read gritty, realistic dramas.
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By Jersey girl on October 4, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book was an interesting take on a failed marriage, but, the male lead's character development was unrealistic. Some of the writing was disjointed and hard to follow.
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