Enter your mobile number or email address below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Other Sellers on Amazon
+ $3.99 shipping
The Underside of Joy: A Novel Paperback – November 27, 2012
The Amazon Book Review
Discover what to read next through the Amazon Book Review. Learn more.
Frequently bought together
Customers who bought this item also bought
"The writing in The Underside of Joy is as purely beautiful as the story is emotionally complex. When Ella Beene is wrenched from a state of unexamined happiness into confusion and grief, she finds that her only hope of emerging whole is to face searing and long-buried truths. Ella embarks on a difficult journey, both morally and materially, one that requires her to risk losing everything she most loves. I cheered (sometimes through tears) her every step." -Marisa de los Santos
"An exquisite debut...moving and hopeful." -People Style Watch
"Searingly smart and exquisitely written, Halverson's knockout debut limns family, marriage and a custody battle in a way that gets under your skin and leaves you changed. To say I loved this book would be an understatement." -Caroline Leavitt, New York Times bestselling author of Pictures of You
“A book club favorite.” –Associated Press
“Engrossing and keenly affecting.” –Dallas Morning News
From the Back Cover
"The writing in The Underside of Joy is as purely beautiful as the story is emotionally complex. When Ella Beene is wrenched from a state of unexamined happiness into confusion and grief, she finds that her only hope of emerging whole is to face searing and long-buried truths. Ella embarks on a difficult journey, both morally and materially, one that requires her to risk losing everything she most loves. I cheered (sometimes through tears) her every step."
-- New York Times bestselling author of Falling Together and Love Walked In Marisa de los Santos
Browse award-winning titles. See more
If you are a seller for this product, would you like to suggest updates through seller support?
Top Customer Reviews
Ella tries her best to do what is right for the kids, her in-laws, her friends and lastly herself. She has great ideas and implements them in order to save the market. But, each success is bitter sweet because she is grieving for her husband, worrying about the kids, and uncovering more and more secrets.
The novel was well-written and engaging. I was glad that finally a stepmother was portrayed as kind and loving. I enjoyed Ella's relationships with her brother-in-law, David, her friend, Lucy, her in-laws, and her mother. I would have liked to have known even more about their stories.
I also wish that there was some real expression of anger by Ella at some point in the book. She was going through a stepmother's worst nightmare, and yet she remained so rational, so composed. Also, the oldest child, Annie, was a little too mature for a 9 year old. Additionally, she seemed to have no reservations about going off with her mother whom she hasn't seen for 3 years. It would have been more believable to me if Annie was conflicted about it.
It's definitely a book worth reading. It's a story that will stay with you.
Ella Beene leaves an unhappy, childless marriage in San Diego and heads up the coast to Northern California, where she met Joe Capozzi. His wife, Paige walked out on him several months earlier, leaving him with a three-year-old daughter and a four-month-old son. They fall in love, and Joe's children, Annie and Zach, become Ella's. This is the family she's been longing for.
Joe's dreams of being a photojournalist ended when it became necessary for him to take over the family grocery store. He still loves to take pictures and one morning he sets out for the beach to do just that. This time, he doesn't come back. A rogue wave catches him and pulls him under.
After three years of marriage, Ella thought she knew everything she needed to know about Joe. But Joe took secrets with him and left unfinished business behind. When Paige shows up at his funeral and makes it clear that she wants her children, Ella is devastated. Paige says she had suffered from postpartum depression and, fearing that she would harm the children, left to seek help. She insists that she sent letters to Joe and the children - letters that Ella never saw. The custody battle takes unexpected turns.
Seré Prince Halverson's novel is an exploration of sadness and shame, anger and forgiveness.
Reading THE UNDERSIDE OF JOY is a marvelous experience. It's as if when one's reading the narrative, one's listening to a wonderful lyrical sonata ebb and flow as the grief, heartache and healing of the relationships finally find resolution. I feel privileged to have been given Halverson's novel to review. It's amazing to realize this is her first book. We can only imagine what wonderful work is ahead.
You can find Seré Prince Halverson on Facebook and at her website.