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More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
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More Happy Than Not (edition 2015)

by Adam Silvera (Author)

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9745018,152 (3.85)1 / 15
After enduring his father's suicide, his own suicide attempt, broken friendships, and more in the Bronx projects, Aaron Soto, sixteen, is already considering the Leteo Institute's memory-alteration procedure when his new friendship with Thomas turns to unrequited love.
Member:HYSLibrary
Title:More Happy Than Not
Authors:Adam Silvera (Author)
Info:Recorded Books (2015)
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More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

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» See also 15 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 48 (next | show all)
DNF

Thanks but no thanks.
Honestly don't understand why there is so much hype about this one. ( )
  QuirkyCat_13 | Jun 20, 2022 |
This was my very first Adam Silvera book, and the author definitely has a very gripping style! Aaron is growing up in the Bronx, with friends he can’t completely call friends, and a girlfriend he more or less likes. Sometimes more, sometimes less. Then he meets Thomas, who calls into question everything he thinks he believes about himself. Is he gay? There’s a new medical procedure that can help erase terrible or troublesome memories, even erase parts of your personality that are ruining your life. Would Aaron be better off if he wasn’t the way he is?

I found it so clever the way it was revealed near the end that Aaron had already had the procedure and forgotten everything about Colin and his former self. So horrible and brilliant to read. The ending with his permanent brain damage was very sad, definitely not a cheery book at all, but very moving.

Please excuse typos/name misspellings. Entered on screen reader.
( )
  KatKinney | Mar 3, 2022 |

Reading this book, I went through an emotional roller coaster. When I saw this book with elements of "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind", I had to at least check it out.

How can I write a review for this book without spoiling everything? At the start I felt OK with the book. I read a few chapters and decided to come back to it. Most books fail this first hurdle.

We follow 16 year old Aaron from the Bronx trying to just keep going through some horrific recent events, including his father's recent suicide. His family is poor and his brother is a jerk. Luckily, he has a supportive (and overworked) mother, a patient girlfriend, and a cast of crazy friends (I love Me-Crazy's nickname). Then by chance, Aaron meets Thomas.

For the first part of the book, I didn't really like Aaron. And more enjoyed the shenanigans and interactions with his friends. I spent way too much time trying to figure out the rules to their games. I did really like Thomas and envied the friendship that Aaron and Thomas formed.

I did find some of the climatic scenes rather tame. I felt like there could have been more there. Instead, I just get a couple pages where Aaron considers Leteo, mind-wipe and makes up his mind.

The last bit of the book after the twist ... wow. It was painful, and beautiful? Some of the characters really stepped up in the end. The scene with the Lake family were just heart-wrenching.

This is not your typical YA romance book. This book takes you on a roller coaster to somewhere you've not been before. And I think you'll like it.
( )
  wellington299 | Feb 19, 2022 |
Actual rating: 3.5-ish?

Review:

What normal people do when they're feeling down: try to cheer themselves up by doing/reading happy stuff.
What I do when I'm feeling down: make it even worse by reading depressing books (usually by Adam Silvera) that make me contemplate everything I've ever known.

Ah hell!
I haven't written a review in ages I don't even know where to start. Therefore please bear with me if this makes no sense.

More Happy Than Not follows the story of Aaron, a 16 y.o boy struggling with his identity and trying to find his true self, as I'm pretty sure we've all done at 16.
The story is set in a word pretty much similar to ours except one little detail, there's a procedure that could suppress one's unwanted memories if needed (and said person wants it) but it's only done in very severe cases such as to people with PTSD.

When we first meet Aaron he is pretty much a normal guy (or as normal as one could be after having his father kill himself and a failed suicide attempt of his own) he has an amazing artist girlfriend and friends that seem to care about him in their own weird twisted ways.

All is well then Aaron meets this kid Thomas and they immediately become friends, a couple of days (or maybe weeks? I'm not sure, my timelines suck) after that Aaron's girlfriend goes away for like 3 weeks for an artistic something something.

While she's gone, Aaron and Thomas start to hang out even more and get closer to one another, Aaron even starts referring to Thomas as his best friend.

As I was reading I could tell some sort of feelings were growing, then Aaron comes to the conclusion that Thomas likes boys.

I think in a way, that was his way of coming to terms with the fact that he -too- did in fact like boys, in a way thinking that his friend was gay was his way of admitting to himself that he was gay.

Aaron then comes out for Thomas expecting him to do the same but he never did.

Somehow Aaron kisses Thomas, but the latter doesn't kiss him back and that's basically what starts the downfall in this story.

Aaron decides that if Thomas can't reciprocate his feelings then he must go through a Leto procedure (the one where they suppress your memories) because he can't live with such a rejection, and he has to "turn himself straight" by forgetting that he ever liked a boy and confessed that to him. Which, in my opinion was the coward way out, because -past traumas or not- one can't possibly grow up and evolve if one has no past to learn from. If you don't face your first rejection and wipe it out instead then every other rejection you'll ever encounter will feel like the first, therefore you'd never grow to understand and rationalize and eventually accept it.

Afterwards Aaron's friends somehow get wind that he's not straight and beat the shit out of him in an attempt to... to be quite frank I have no idea why they rationalized doing that to themselves, all I know is that from where I stand it just seems like a crime of hatred.

As Aaron was getting the shit beaten out of him, something snapped and he started getting all sorts of flashbacks.

At first I was confused, because if Aaron had already came out to his mom at the ages of 8 and 9 then why did he make such a big deal out of saying it again to her at 16.
It only hit me later why it would be as such.

From the flashbacks we learn that the father that was so idolized earlier in the book by Aaron was a shitty person, who beat his son up, kicked him out then beat his wife up when his kid came out to him. He then committed suicide in the bathtub, and was found by poor little Aaron who blamed himself for that and later on tried to go down the same road as well.

We also learn that Aaron has a thing with this kid Collin -who we've encountered once throughout the whole book and Aaron mentioned that he got his girlfriend pregnant and that's it- but it turned out the story was much more than that, Aaron and Collin started falling for one another (while both had girlfriends) and on the day they decided to actually come clean to their girls and give this thing between them a chance, they got the shit beaten out of them by some random assholes. The same day in which Aaron went home to find his dad swimming in his own blood.

Aaron remembers a lot of things but these are the main ones, so basically after going through all this trauma he decides he should get a Leto procedure to "straighten himself out" by forgetting he ever admitted to being gay or anything related to that topic.

Flash forward, and Aaron is in the hospital yadayada.
He confronts Genevive (his ex girlfriend) and Thomas. And what I hated about this was that he was still adamant Thomas was gay and he was just pretending to be straight; it's like he was trying to force him to be gay so he can be with him.

After a few days (or weeks? idk I suck when it comes to time) Aaron starts showing some weird symptoms and it turned out that he has anterograde amnesia, which basically means he can't make new memories.

To be completely honest, I am not this plot "twist"'s biggest fan, to me (and I may get some backlash for this) Adam took the easy way out, so rather than have Aaron move on with his life knowing he fell for the wrong person, got rejected and it's okay, and rather than making him come to terms with all the wrongs he did and understand why it's wrong and actually seek forgiveness and understanding, he just made him get this sickness that just made everyone sympathetic toward him so they forgave him without actually solving the issues they had.

All in all, this was yet another beautiful, heartbreaking book by Adam Silvera, it wasn't as breathtaking as [b:History Is All You Left Me|25014114|History Is All You Left Me|Adam Silvera|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1462807691l/25014114._SY75_.jpg|44686341] or [b:They Both Die at the End|33385229|They Both Die at the End|Adam Silvera|https://i.gr-assets.com/images/S/compressed.photo.goodreads.com/books/1494333138l/33385229._SY75_.jpg|49456196] but it was his debut novel so it's understandable.
Despite having some issues with certain plotpoints and despite it combining a bunch of clichés, it was an honest story about love and heartbreak and sel-discovery and I really enjoyed going through it. ( )
  Ray_ | Jan 19, 2022 |
Aaron has decided to have a procedure to wipe out his memory. His memories are too hard to handle, especially after discovering that he is gay and his life-long friends have discovered it and have beaten him so bad.
This was different. Felt a little lost near the end, not really understanding the procedure and the choice for a second one. ( )
  JReynolds1959 | Apr 27, 2021 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Adam Silveraprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ocampo, Ramon deNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Peterson, LucasTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For those who've discovered happiness can be hard.

Shout-out to Luis and Corey, of course, my favorites who sucker punched me in the best ways.
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It turns out the Leteo procedure isn't bullshit.
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After enduring his father's suicide, his own suicide attempt, broken friendships, and more in the Bronx projects, Aaron Soto, sixteen, is already considering the Leteo Institute's memory-alteration procedure when his new friendship with Thomas turns to unrequited love.

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