More Happy Than Not

by Adam Silvera

Aaron Soto and his neighbors in the Bronx projects have had more than their share... read more

Aaron Soto and his neighbors in the Bronx projects have had more than their share of bad experiences and tough times. The memory-wiping promises of the Leteo Institute are a tempting solution. The procedure seemed to help Aaron’s friend, Kyle, start a new life after his twin was accidentally killed. Aaron has survived his own family tragedy—his father’s suicide—with the help of his dedicated girlfriend, Genevieve, and his loving mother. Still, life in the family’s one-bedroom apartment is grim. His mother is overworked and depressed, and his brother is distant. When Aaron meets thoughtful, artistic Thomas, he finds some happiness and a true friend. As they grow closer, Aaron realizes he is in love with Thomas. Heartbroken by Thomas’s rejection, Aaron’s sadness feels inescapable, and the Leteo Institute’s memory wipe may be the only escape. But, this high-risk procedure has questionable rewards. Set with small, vivid details that bring the book to life, Silvera creates a palpable tension between the loss of childhood, lack of safety, and wonder of love in a novel that offers an honest, edgy look at race, class, sexuality, and mental health. Ultimately, Aaron’s struggle to be honest to who he is and the beautifully developed relationships between Aaron and others are the heart of this book. (Age 14 and older)

© Cooperative Children's Book Center, Univ. of Wisconsin - Madison, 2016

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