Published on December 29th, 2018 | by Tony Smith

What Makes You Happy? Book Review

What Makes You Happy? Book Review Tony Smith

Summary: What Makes You Happy? is a clever book that asks younger children what makes them happy with a clever twist of mindfulness.


Mindfulness happiness

This beautifully written book by author Marie-Agnès Gaudrat focuses on 13-stories about what it really means to be happy and the text is accompanied by some amazing paintings by artist Carme SoléVendrell. So while it is a joyous, clever and well-written book, “What Makes You Happy? “ actually has elements of mindfulness as it asks children to describe what makes them happy and this book acts as the catalyst for that conversation.

A clever element of the book is that it asks the reader to keep a fold-out page open which asks the question… What Makes Us happy? These fold-out pages are also a theme in the book such as one page showing a lamb covered in wool as his mum knits a blanket around him to keep safe with the book answering the question for the reader Being Protected from all Dangers? Then while you turn the page, it asks another question…Or daring to jump and have fun? as the young lamb jumps for joy.

Another scene is of a crocodile crying with the book asking you the question of Looking for Reasons to Cry? and as you turn the page the book asks the reader another questions… or Looking for Reasons to be Hopefully? as the crocodile is now smiling at the sky. So as you can see, the author is challenging the reader.

Besides the engaging text, the paintings that are showcased in “What Makes You Happy? “ are truly wonderful and they definitely take this book to the next level and while they have an element of cartoonish to them, Carme SoléVendrell’s artistic skills put her own colourful twists on these amazing animal pictures that as a result makes them quite engaging for both children and their parents.

Final Thoughts?

What Makes You Happy? “ is almost a magical book about happiness as it poses the question to children on what makes them happy, including other people in their lives. The 13-stories are fun, especially with the paintings that help bring these stories to life and more importantly, it introduces mindfulness into the lives of younger readers.


Book Details
Title: What Makes You Happy?
Format: Hardback
Release Date: Nov 2018
Publisher: Shelter Harbor
Distributor: New South Books
ISBN: 9781627951210
Pages: 60
Dimensions: 280x254mm
Price:  AUD$24.99

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