Book Review: Somewhere Inside of Happy by Anna McPartlin

Title: Somewhere Inside of Happy
Author: Anna McPartlin
Publisher: Black Swan, Penguin Random House
Date: April 7th, 2016
Pages: 427
Format: Paperback
Source: Won in a giveaway


Synopsis (from Goodreads): Maisie Bean is a fighter. A survivor. Seventeen years ago, she went on a first date that went so badly it was enough to put the girl off chips. The marriage that followed was hell but it gave her two children: funny, caring Jeremy and bullish but brilliant Valerie.

Just as it seems everything might finally start going right, sixteen-year-old Jeremy goes missing. The police descend and a media storm swirls, over five days of searching that hurtle towards an inevitable, terrible conclusion.

Maisie is facing another fight, and this time it’s the fight of her life. But she’s a survivor. Whatever the odds, she’ll never give in.


I should have read synopsis before starting this book.
I always like to go blind into stories, read recommendations and judge books by their covers.
If you ask me how I decide what I’ll read next, I usually go with my instinct.
I always buy books based on the fact who wrote them and if someone from my goodreads friends or bloggers already reviewed it.
Rarely, if a book catches my eyes without me hearing about it before, I’ll read what it is about.

As you can guess by now, I didn’t know what Somewhere Inside of Happy is about.
I just hauled it and saw people really enjoyed it. One blogger who had the same taste as me said it was one of the best books she read in 2016, and that was enough for me.

I’m saying that I should have read the synopsis first not because I didn’t like it. No, that was not the case, because this book is beautiful in an exceptional way, but because I was in the mood for something light and fun, and this is anything but.

Somewhere inside of happy is one of the most important books I’ve read this year. It should have a huge impact on it’s readers and I hope it will reach everyone who’ll read it. 

It is not an easy book to read. However, I feel like everyone who’ll get a chance to read it, will be glad they did.

One thing I am not a fan of is how the message and everything that was important in this story is perceived as huge spoiler in company of smaller spoilers.

Therefore, I will warn you: After this sentence this review will be full of spoilers, so don’t read it if you don’t want to be spoiled!!

At the very beginning of the book, we already know that our main character Maisie had a son who died. We don’t know how or why, we just know it was violent (and if you ask me, his death was unfortunate, but I wouldn’t call it violent).

We follow the story of her family while her son was alive.

She lives with her mother who suffers from demantia (sometimes it was really hard to read about her situation), takes care of her, and she also had a son and a daughter.
Her husband who’s she separated with is nowhere near for some time now, and she can finally breath.

One day, her son doesn’t come back from the party, and we follow her and her family trying to find him.

The story takes place in Dublin.
I really enjoyed reading about that place, but all the time I had one big question mark over my head: Jeremy (her son) didn’t come to school on January 2nd. I was so confused, because I wondered do in Ireland schools really work in period between Christmas and January 6th.
I wouldn’t know because I don’t live there, but it is so close to New Year’s Eve…

This book contains some themes that readers should be warned about: violence and rape.

The story with it’s message reminded me of the movie Prays for Bobbie, only the movie is better.

Overall, I am glad I read this book and would really recommend it to everyone because I think it is really important to accept all the people, and I hope one day hate against everyone who’s different in anyway  will no longer exist.
That is the world I want to live in one day.

I would like to stress out that even though I am glad that I read this book and I think it is of huge importance, I didn’t click with the way it was presented.
I can’t figure out was it the writing style or just the story itself, or maybe even characters, but something was off, so therefore I can’t give it higher rating.



  1. Nice review Irena. The cover doesn’t seem to match the blurb, which is a shame because people will be decieved and perhaps miss out on something they would love, or vice versa. I’m not sure it would be a book for me, but reading something out of your comfort zone is good once in a while, you never know what you will find you like.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Amanda. I’ve seen the American cover for this book and it better matches the story. You are right, though. Some people who would maybe enjoy this type of story could miss this one bc of this cover, bc they would assume it’s a funny chick lit.
      And I totally agree with you, it’s good to explore books out of your comfort zone sometimes…

      Liked by 1 person

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