Attending BookExpo with her new book,
Something Like Happy (Graydon House,
Sept.), is a dream come true for Eva
Woods. “I grew up in a small Irish town with
no bookshop for miles around, and so I still don’t take it for granted that I
can slip inside one, sniff the lovely paper smell, and browse among the
books. Booksellers are some of the world’s unsung heroes!” she says.
Something Like Happy will be the launch title of Harlequin’s new Graydon
House imprint. How does that make you feel?
This is the first time I’ve ever been published in the U.S., and to be the lead
title of this incredible new imprint is a huge honor. Everyone at Graydon
House has been amazing to work with.
The book drew its inspiration from the #100HappyDays social media
trope. What drew you to the topic?
My first experience with #100happydays was seeing a few friends posting on
Facebook, and although I was skeptical at first, I noticed I was looking for-
ward to seeing what they’d post each day. I started to wonder if small acts
like that could really make a difference. The book is sort of a pessimist’s take
on the happiness industry. It takes life as a whole, the good and the bad.
We have to ask: what would you do if you had 100 days left to live?
I’d make sure everyone knew I loved them, and, like Polly, one of the main
characters in Something Like Happy, it would be hard not to leave behind
some “wise” advice, too. I would probably also go on a round-the-world
trip and see as many different things as I could. Plus, I’d definitely eat as
much food as I could every day. I’m planning to do the same while I’m in
Do you think a person can feel happiness if they’ve never felt its opposite?
In the Western world, most of us live such comfortable lives, and yet many
people are lonely, empty, and lost. I do think that experiencing sadness and
loss can open your eyes to the joy in the world. Of course, as I try to say in the
book, it’s really hard to keep that level of awareness all the time. Eventually,
some petty thing will annoy you—that’s just human nature. But we can all
remind ourselves from time to time how lucky we are.
Eva Woods is a pseudonym; you write crime fiction as Claire McGowan. Do
you draw from different sides of yourself for the two?
My natural bent is probably to be more cynical and pessimistic, so in many
ways my Eva Woods books are a way to remind myself of all the good things
in life. Women’s fiction is such a powerful “genre,” if you can call it a genre. I’m
interested in exploring the issues we all deal with—relationships, work, family, and even death—in a way that feels true to real life. —Beth Levine
Today, 12:30–1: 30 p.m. Eva Woods signs ARCs at the Harlequin booth
Readto Believe You’ll have to
Revolutionize any product • books • toys • puzzles with Custom Augmented Reality.
For an appointment at the Book Expo, contact:
Dennis M. McAuley
TIGRA Live Animations
Office:631-651-8847 | Cell:631-241-4167
Visit Booth #1729
the new DIMENSION for books Powered by TigraLive.com
A Pessimist’s Take