Cover Image: If It Makes You Happy

If It Makes You Happy

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Member Reviews

Did not finish this audiobook. The narrator was not for me. I also did not become engrossed in the story. This might be the best book for other people but it wasn't one I enjoyed.
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This book was such a joy to read! A hilarious and witty, fat black queer girl who tells it like it is - this feels like what's been missing from my bookshelf for years. I'm so happy to see a queer-platonic relationship portrayed in a way where the characters don't constantly feel the need to explain how their relationship works, I think a lot of LGBTQ readers will find that validating. I also really appreciate that the manipulative relationship in Winnie's life didn't have a perfect ending or solution, that sometimes you just have to do what's right for you. It's just an all round easy to get into book and the narration by Caroline Sorunke was perfect.
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I wasn’t really into this. I got about half way through and just stopped reading. I want to give it another shot because maybe I just wasn’t in the best mindset so this could change!
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After reading and enjoying The Marvellous by Kann, I was excited to get my hands (ears?!) on an ARC copy of the audiobook for If It Makes You Happy, thanks to NetGalley.

Kann does an incredible job of making realistic characters that you like, but not because they fit “likeable” molds. 

The main character cares a lot about her friends and family, has love for herself, and definitely smarts and humour. Actually, I want you to read this book for her. I think this is lovely and imperfect young woman deserves a chance to be your next in-book friend.
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I liked the narrator and the length of the audiobook was perfect! When they get too long I start to lose interest quickly. 

The plot was a cute concept. I liked the small town feel and the weird matchmaking event. I also liked the discussions about weight, race, and gender. The only thing that I liked about Winnie was the fact that her character was used as a method of conveying the positive messages about body image, self-image and value, and standing up for oneself.  

That being said, Winnie felt very whiny and hypocritical throughout most of the book. I really, really disliked her. It's like she was OK promoting positivity when it related to her but then she seemed to treat others like they were less worthy of that than her. 
 
The other character, Kara in particular, were not much better. I really didn't understand the ungirlfriend relationship she and Winnie had. It seemed like Kara didn't really want to be in an open relationship but Winnie forced it on her. It also seemed like Winnie was way more into Dallas but wanted to keep Kara around, so instead of just being friends with her (which to me it already seemed like that's all they were) she kept her as her ungirlfriend, something that neither Dallas nor Kara wanted. 

At the end of the day this book does not make me want to read more from this author and I wouldn't recommend reading this.
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<b>*4.5 Stars*</b>

This was great. I loved the main character and felt for her chapter after chapter. She was flawed and that was what worked for me. Al l the characters in this were so layered and interesting and I really liked seeing their relationships evolve and grow and seeing Winnie grow with it.
Honestly, I don't know what to add, this was just a great time and I really enjoyed the narrator too. It's definitely a character-driven book, so if that's not your thing, I'm not sure you should read this but I, myself, truly enjoyed it.
I really cannot wait for more from Claire Kann. And I might just rearead Let's Talk About Love in the meantime.
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This was a SUPER charming, feel good, small town YA love story featuring a fat MC that you couldn't help falling in love with. I adored the 50s diner setting and how relatable MC Winnie is. Highly recommended for fans of I'll be the one or Cupcake. Much thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my ALC!
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I really wanted to LOVE this book but it really wasn't for me. I got a Audio Arc from NetGalley I started it and I was in a reading slump and thought that was why I wasn't connecting with it.  Then I tried 2 more times and just wasn't feeling it. I wasn't a big fan of the main character Winnie and I was kind of confused about her relationship with her best friend. At one point they seem like just friends then they ay things that make me think they are more.

There's a love interest named Dallas which I enjoyed but I didn't enjoy the main character. 
What I did like was the main character was a plus size girl., struggling with family expectations, and queerness the polyamorous was something new for me in a book.

I think once I'm back in a reading groove I might re red this book and see if maybe it was the timing for me or if this wasn't a win for me.

Thank you NetGalley For this Audio-Arc in exchange for my honest review.
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- The champion on this YA coming of age story for me is Winnie, the main character. She's a black, queer , plus size teen and she's my star. I adore her strenght, standing up for herself and caring for the people and things that matter to her.

- The audio narration is great, I had a great time listening! The narrator gave life to the whole cast and it was very entertaining!

- Love the portrayal of family relationships, the hard but necessary conversations between parent and child, friendship and the romance was cute too!
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Winnie spends all her summers in Misty Haven with her siblings working in her granny's diner and hanging out with her Ungirlfriend Kara. Winnie is a Plus-size Black, Queer Girl who does not like any sort of Spotlight on her. The small town of Misty Haven has its annual summer King-Queen contest which is a popularity contest where the selected King-Queen are treated like royalty and go around the town all summer attending events.
This year Winnie is selected as the Queen and Dallas one of the most attractive boys in town volunteers as her King. 
Now Winnie has to choose between Dallas and her QueerPlatonic relationship with Kara.

The only negative point of the plot for me was that if Winnie did not enter for the summer contest then who put her name
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I went in to this book not sure what i expect and i was blown away with. I found my self cheer on the mc and being like tell them girl. Now I will say this book might be triggering if people have problems with their weight since the book is about calling out people who fat shame. The MC also calls out this my way or the highway mind set.  over all i enjoy this book
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Thank you, NetGalley for the audio-Arc of the book.
I loved this story about family, friendship, love, and queerplatonic relationship.
It talks about being fat and how people's bodies shame you for that. But also about racism, and expectation for a young black woman.
The characters were lovely and had a great development.
Also the food description? Awesome
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This is the definition of a summery romcom, and it was lovely to read! I love when books make you smile, but also weave in complex relationships + some harder topics to mull over. I just loved Winnie SO HARD in this book. Her voice, her personality, the way she so fiercely and loyally takes care of her loved ones. The book is full of queer joy, deep relationship dynamics, unconditional love, and Winnie telling it like it is for life as a Black, queer, fat girl.

Winnie and her brother and cousin always spend their summers in Misty Haven, working at their granny's diner and just hanging out. But this year is different because Winnie's off to college next year and...she somehow gets nominated as the town's Summer Queen (which wreaks havoc on her anxiety about public speaking) and is being lowkey wooed by a Dallas, who she's had a crush on forever. It's complicated though because Winnie is in a committed platonic-relationship with Cara...and Dallas and her do NOT get on. Winnie is also dealing with being fat-shamed by her granny and everyone putting all this pressure on her to be perfect, not lose her temper, not stand up for herself if it makes someone else uncomfortable.

For me, the best part is the relationships!! Winnie is SO CLOSE to her brother (Winston) and she is a doting "older sister" to her cousin, Sam, too. Sam is ditzy and clueless and unintentionally hurtful sometimes, but still a sweetie, and Winnie will always protect her. And then there's Cara, her ungirlfriend, (I listened to t he audio so I just hope that's how you spell her name 😂) who Winnie LOVES with her whole heart. And I loved everyone's dynamics!! All the secondary characters were fun and complex. Dallas is like the Dream Boy™ who is caring and sweet and will talk about his emotions. Like the #1 thing I need in a contemporary is to care about the characters and this nailed it. Cara was tough to like at times, but still understandable, I think. THE THING WAS...Winnie is actually really mature and a lot of the time she was dealing with teens still acting like teens. You could just tell Winnie was a step ahead and ready to deal with adult problems, and doing so amazingly.

The queer rep isn't labelled on page, but I think Winnie x Cara were in a Queer Platonic Relationship. Winnie defines herself only as queer (I think she is polyam too) and I believe Cara was asexual/aromantic.

It also deals with toxic family relationships head on: Granny is old school in the "do what I say, do not ask questions" and completely unfair to the point of gaslighting Winnie. Winnie just has to take it because she's meant to be the "good girl mature oldest", and I ached for her so much. Disliked Granny hard by the end, but unfortunately she is a VERY realistic depiction of a lot of people in the world.

Overall it was a lovely read, heartfelt and full of self love and affirmations about taking care of yourself and your loved ones.
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Thanks to Netgalley and OrangeSky audio for the audioARC in exchange for my honest review! Since the ebook was already out when I grabbed this ARC I also had the ebook from the library to flip back and forth. 

This was fantastic. I love seeing diversity in books, that I can relate to and that I can’t - in this case being fat, struggling with family expectations, and queerness that are all things I did, and being Black, polyamorous, and gluten-intolerant, which I felt like gave me fresh insights. Winnie was a fantastic character, I loved the romance(s) and the sibling bonds. The audio was well done, and the book consistently compelling me to pick it back up. I hope we get another book with more of Winston.
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I didn’t know what was in store for me when I started this book. I knew the MC was fat, a WOC, and there were queer characters. So that was enough for me to request the audiobook on NetGalley! And boy was I happy I did!

Winnie is such an incredibly well rounded character. She is witty, loyal, knows herself, and most importantly, what she wants from life. She fights for (and with) her family for the majority of the book. She has an open relationship with her girlfriend and best friend, Kara, which I LOVED!!! I honestly don’t read enough books with that kind of Rep. So when resident popular pretty boy, Dallas shows interest in her, she’s able to pursue him as well. It gives a whole new spin on Love Triangle.

There was a lot of unfinished business that wasn’t really explained about her grandmother. We never get that familial resolution to an existing problem, which makes me sad. Her GMa doesn’t understand her, believe in her or her younger brother, and it spoils some of the book. I wanted some kind of confrontation where her father sticks up for his children, instead of not taking a side.

Beyond that, I loved this book wholeheartedly and want to read more from Claire Kann IMMEDIATELY!!!
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I enjoyed this one and I had been wanting to read it for a while, sadly I didn't love it as much as I wanted to. It was alright, but chances are I'll forget about it pretty soon. There was a lot happening too, between the beauty pageant and the cooking contest and the diner, it was a bit much for my taste, but I would still recommend it. It was fun for the most part.

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -  SPOILER - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - 

I really didn't like Cara, in my opinion, she was quite toxic, they way Winnie had to apologize for not talking to her at an event but she didn't even apologize for basically blackmailing someone into not being near her like a psycho, I mean... nope, sorry, that's too much for me. But aside from that everything was ok.
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This book just didn’t work for me. I found Winnie slightly annoying, and the whole relationship dynamics/drama with her grandmother was horrible to read. She came across as really mean and at times I really didn’t like her.

I’m also seriously confused at what is an ‘ungirlfriend’? I even went on urban dictionary to try to determine what this is exactly. I didn’t find much to help me understand this term, but it looks like its a platonic version of a girlfriend. So, basically just a friend? I’m so confused by it and wish it was described further in the book so I could get it.

The story itself was sweet, and I liked the representation of ace characters, people of colour and those with curves. It was the characters unfortunately that caused me to dislike this book so much. Kara is the ‘ungirlfriend’ and at times was manipulative with Winnie. When Winnie shows an interest in Dallas, Kara’s reaction and her actions were pretty terrible and the way Winnie responds just added to that toxic cycle. 

Not my favourite read but overall I enjoyed the narration of the audiobook. 

Many thanks to Netgalley and OrangeSky Audio for a copy of this audiobook. ARC provided in exchange for an honest review.
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This is not the follow-up I expected after Let’s Talk About Love. It’s better. Inside its pages you’ll find... queer-platonic partnerships, polyamory normativity, body positivity, found family, learning to let go of relationships that don’t serve you, and ALL the swoons. Plus a healthy dose of Winnie kicking ass and taking names, which, if you’re like me, will have you jumping around the room screaming YASSSS! If you need a feel-good read, this one’s for you.
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Loved this audiobook!! The representation and discussions here are amazing and so important. The queer platonic open relationship was super well explored and I wish we had more of it in YA books. My least favorite part of the book was the competition part of the book, since it's not something I enjoy reading about.
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If It Makes You Happy by Claire Kann is a coming of age YA story that tackles LGBTQIA issues, fat shaming, race, and family drama. Yet the writer was able to provide humor and a bit of romance.

Every summer Winnie enjoys working at her Granny's diner. This year is bittersweet because it is the last before she starts college. 

She knows things will never be the same when she wins the Summer Queen contest. Her curvy figure is not usually beauty queen material. Then she is paired with the winner of the Summer King contest. The most popular boy in town. Not everyone is happy especially Cara her ungirlfriend. What is an ungirlfriend? My older generation brain is still not sure. 

Narrator Caroline Sorunke gives some tender readings when we realize this isn't a perfect ending but it is somewhat an honest one.

I received a free copy of this audiobook from OrangeSky Audio via #Netgalley for a fair and honest review. All opinions are my own.
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