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November 7, 2023

The Happy Couple by Naoise Dolan ~ A Review

by Susan Roberts

An intimate, sharply funny novel about a couple heading toward their wedding, and the three friends who may draw them apart

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of women's fiction novel The Happy Couple by Naoise Dolan
November 2023; Ecco; 978-0063330467
audio, ebook, print (272 pages); women's fiction

Celine and Luke are planning to get married and the road to their wedding day is told by several different friends who all have plenty to say about the couple.  Along with their friends' negativity, both Celine and Luke have a lot of baggage to work through before they have their happily ever after...or will they just call it quits?

The book is cleverly divided into six chapters that are told by one of the characters.
  • The Bride - Celine is a well-known pianist.  She lives for her work and the rest of life just isn't that important to her.  The love of her life so far was Maria who was another pianist and very jealous of Celine's talent.   Even though Celine has some suspicions about Luke, she accepts him as he is and doesn't spend much time thinking about her doubts.
  • The Bridesmaid - Phoebe is Celine's sister and she doesn't like or trust Luke very  much.  She thinks that their relationship should end.
  • The Best Man - Archie was supposed to be the best man but backed out because he and Luke (who had a long term relationship) had major a disagreement.  Archie thinks that the marriage should never happen.
  • The Groom - As the wedding day gets closer, Luke begins to panic.  He loves Celine but he's a serial cheater and doesn't know if he can settle down.
  • The Guest is Vivian a long-time friend of Luke and Archie.  She is helping Luke work through his panic as he decides whether to go through with the wedding or just disappear.

Wedding Day is told by Celine.  Will they or won't they?  Nothing is revealed until the last chapter.

Bottom and love are both messy and there is no perfect solution for everyone.  This book was an interesting look at two people who thought that marriage was the ultimate answer but to what question??

I enjoyed this book and the way the author told the story.  I really didn't love any of the characters but learned to like them more as I read their perspectives on love and marriage.  It's an interesting look at marriage in the modern age.

Buy The Happy Couple at Amazon

Susan Roberts grew up in Michigan but loves the laid-back life at her home in the Piedmont area of North Carolina where she is two hours from the beach to the east and the mountains in the west.  She reads almost anything but her favorite genres are Southern Fiction and Historical Fiction.   

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