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Happiness Key Paperback – July 1, 2009

4.6 out of 5 stars 54 customer reviews
Book 1 of 3 in the Happiness Key Series

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--This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

A divorcée is handed a swath of Gulf Coast Florida real estate in Richards's slow if involving latest. After Tracy Deloche's ex-husband lands in federal prison, she takes control of his Happiness Key development, which consists mostly of a handful of ramshackle cottages. Her tenants—Wanda Gray, Janya Kapur, Alice Brooks and Herb Krause—are misfits, but when Herb dies, Tracy goes on a quest to find his family that ends up forcing her to bond with her tenants in ways she never thought possible. In the meantime, the mismatched crew learns that in helping each other, they are really helping themselves. This quintessential beach read is full of intrigue, romance, comedy and a splash of mystery, and while it could be shorter and faster paced, the women at its center—and the problems they face—are fully believable. They deserve a better plot. (July)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

About the Author

Emilie Richards’s many novels feature complex characterizations and in-depth explorations of social issues. Both are a result of her training and experience as a family counselor, which contribute to her fascination with relationships of all kinds. Emilie and her husband enjoy dividing their time between the Florida Gulf Coast and Chautauqua County, New York. She is currently working on her next novel for MIRA Books. --This text refers to the Mass Market Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 536 pages
  • Publisher: Mira; Original edition (July 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0778326608
  • ISBN-13: 978-0778326601
  • Product Dimensions: 5.1 x 0.9 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (54 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #953,128 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book explores the relationships of women. In the begining each woman has her own reservations, prejudices and impressions of the other women that live in their tiny group of homes on the sound. It is perfect in the way Emilie Richards was able to capture the true essence of how women think, including the fears that can make us seem unapproachable at times. As the women begin to let down their guard the relationships blossom into something very precious and also very needed. I found this book to be helpful in the way that I view relationships with the women who come and go in my life and to realize how important those relationships can be. This story was good, a real page turner, but I walked away with so much more. Every woman should read this to not only see herself but also other women and how misunderstood many of our actions can be. Excellent book, a must have.
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Format: Paperback
When rich socialite Tracy Deloche learns her con artist husband CJ has been convicted and headed for prison, she leaves her posh LA life for Florida. All she has left is an almost worthless piece of oceanfront property with dilapidated cottages that she somehow "inherited" from CJ. Tracy is determined to sell the land to a developer so she can have enough to rebuild her life and put her bad history behind her. Unfortunately a group of naturalists are out to keep the land pristine and unspoiled by development. As Tracy settles into her new life, she determines she will not socialize with her tenants who consist of elderly Herb Krause, middle-aged, sharp tongued, Wanda Gray, young foreign bride, Janya Kapur or grandmother Alice Brooks, who lost her daughter and is now being taken care of by her son-in-law, Lee Symington and young granddaughter Olivia. Tracy goes to each cottage to collect rent, hoping she can scrape together enough money for her next meal. What she finds is her tenant Wanda with an attitude problem, having set her sights that Tracy is a spoiled rich girl; Janya who is timid, but friendly, and at Alice's home, she finds herself attracted to her widower son-in-law, Lee. When she gets no response at Herb's, she is concerned, for his car is in the drive. Asking for Janya's help, they enter his cottage and find the man dead in bed. His death is the catalyst that brings the women together in a search for his next of kin. The unlikely group soon become friends and though they are different in many ways, they are vulnerable and in need of each other's friendship.

Tracy commits to a part-time job at the local community center and gets Janya and Alice involved there too.
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By A Customer on July 2, 2009
Format: Paperback
Following the incarceration of her former spouse in a federal pen Tracy Deloche takes over managing his property Happiness Key. However, she is shocked to find the five Gold Coast acres contains five dilapidated shacks with a tenant in four of the beach cottages; she moves into the vacant one. Her renters are an eccentric group of seemingly losers. Still she tries to be nice to the oddball runaways who pay to lease a dump from her. Wanda Gray is fleeing a broken marriage; Janya Kapur is fleeing an arranged family marriage before she must wed; Alice Brooks is a widow who is becoming increasingly forgetful but does not want her son-in-law and granddaughter living with her; and the only male is hermit Herb Krause.

When Herb dies, Tracy leads the other three women in search of his family so they will know and if they want to arrange his funeral. As the four seemingly different women forge friendships on their mission, they begin to help one another.

This is an interesting character study focusing on four diverse females who come together when the fifth person in their tiny community dies. The storyline is well written but the plot extremely thin. Still Emilie Richards enables the audience to get inside the fearsome foursome females enabling us to understand what motivates them to "hide" at dumpy Happiness Key and yet turn these five single dumps into a community.

Harriet Klausner
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
My wife is member of book club. Enjoys reading with her Kindle. I like to read the same books she buys, but I read them on my laptop PC. Once bought/downloaded, books can be read on multiple devices in my home network... my laptop, my desktop, and my Android Phone.
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Format: Paperback
Happiness Key begins the story of four women who could not be any more different. First, there is Tracey Deloche, a former socialite still dealing with the consequences and figurative punches that come from her now ex-husband's con dealings that landed him in one of California's finest jails. The main consequence: having to live in and deal with Happiness Key, twenty-five acres of Florida Gulf Coast where five cottages and its residents reside. As for the residents, there's Janya, an India transplant dealing with her troubled past and her arranged marriage to a man she barley knows, as well as headstrong Wanda who is watching her marriage slowly fall apart, and Alice, a widow living with her son-in-law and granddaughter. At first, these women are ones who don't get along at all, but when their fifth neighbor, Herb, is found dead and alone in his cottage, they are brought together to find his family as well as the secrets he left behind. It will not be an easy journey, especially when another destructive danger lies in their path. Will they be able to save the day? More importantly, will these they ever call a truce? Find out in this first fun and fast-paced addition in the Happiness Key trilogy.

If there's one thing I love in a book, it's well-developed characters, and thankfully enough Happiness Key had that and even more! When I first discovered that the story would be told through reversing third person, I was a bit wary, but even with that, these four characters (Janya, Alice, Tracy, and Wanda) were able to thrive and come alive within their passages becoming four characters I could not help but root for and adore.
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