How to be Happy

How to be Happy


Eleanor Davis's How to be Happy is the artist's first collection of graphic/literary short stories. Davis is one of the finest cartoonists of her generation, and has been producing comics since the mid-2000s. Happy represents the best stories she's drawn for such curatorial venues as Mome and No-Brow, as well as her own self-publishing and web efforts. Davis achieves a rare, subtle poignancy in her narratives that are at once compelling and elusive, pregnant with mystery and a deeply satisfying emotional resonance. Happy shows the full range of Davis's graphic skills -- sketchy drawing, polished pen and ink line work, and meticulously designed full color painted panels-- which are always in the service of a narrative that builds to a quietly devastating climax. (Summary and cover courtesy of


I didn’t finish this one and gave up after 5-6 of the mini comics inside of the book.  Originally I had picked this one up at the library because it had come highly recommended.  Unfortunately, I didn’t find the art visually engaging and therefore it was tough for me to try to suspend reality to immerse myself in the story.

I was expecting more of a cohesive narrative and instead it reads like a collection of short stories.  Much of the art doesn’t have talking, which I can be completely fine with, but I found it made it lacking for me.  I’m sure many will love it, so take a look yourself and see if you like the art.

Rating: 1 star!

Who should read it? Folks who think the cover is gorgeous and are willing to have super open mind.