All's Happy that Ends Happy (Book 7 in the Happy Life Series)

ISBN 9781776572922

Regular price $24.99 Sale price $22.80

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Written by Rose Lagercrantz and illustrated by Eva Eriksson; Translated by Julia Marshall

It is spring and Dani is going to Rome for her father’s wedding. But Ella is not invited; Dad said no. What will Ella think when she learns she hasn’t been invited to her best friend’s dad’s wedding?

This is the final book about Dani and Ella’s friendship.  The road between them has become longer and longer.  They almost never meet.  Will their friendship survive the distance?

A chapter book for children ages 6 and up.

The 7th and final book in the My Happy Life series

Recommended for ages 6 - 8 years.

Hardcover, 224 pages.  21 x 15 cm (8.3 x 5.8").

Gecko Press, 2020.



“This series fills a gap of good reading for five- to seven-year-olds. It gives them a proper grown-up reading experience that is accessible but also has emotional weight.”  ~ Julia Marshall

"As fresh, funny, and real as ever, this seventh volume of the series sees the two firm friends Dani and Ella separated by circumstance. First Dani is sick in hospital with pneumonia. Then she travels to Italy for her father's wedding. The cast is bigger here, as Dani meets the Italian side of her extended family, and the setting is wider, as she is dragged along to see the sights of Rome. (The Sistine Chapel is 'old ceiling paintings.') The plot contains several suspenseful crises and one good surprise. But the heart of the story, and its appeal, remains in its emotional authenticity and in the subtle shifts in the girls' relationships with their families, schoolmates, and each other. The text's short chapters are filled with perfectly chosen details. The scratch black-and-white drawings convey subtext in their composition. Dani's relatives bunch together on a picturesque bridge, energetically chatting away in Italian as she stands apart, gazing into the water. The pictures also add texture and depth to the settings—a hairy dog, a pile of scratchy branches, smooth cobblestones, the nubble of a knitted sweater. In this child-centered take on sightseeing, the Colosseum is sketched in a few lines; the window of a toy store, much more detailed. Once again, this Swedish author-illustrator duo demonstrates the rich potential of the early chapter book."—The Horn Book MagazineJournal

"Fans of the Dani series won't want to miss this endearing story, in which Dani deals with illness, makes a match, and forges ahead with a new adventure. Woven into the third-person narrative are reminders of events in the previous six books concerning Dani, her father, and her best friend, Ella. While hospitalized with pneumonia, Dani manages to reunite her father and his exgirlfriend, who become engaged. Dani recovers and attends their wedding in Rome. Afterwards, her grandmother takes her home to Sweden and arranges for her to visit Ella. Though both girls are anxious, for different reasons, about seeing the other again, the tension dissolves and happiness returns when they are able to share their worries with each other. The simply written story reflects its main character's hopeful outlook, while remaining grounded in fine-tuned emotional realism. Appearing throughout the book, Eriksson's wonderfully expressive ink drawings capture the tone of the text while portraying the characters with individuality, sensitivity, and humor. A satisfying conclusion to the lively Swedish chapter-book series that began with My Happy Life (2013)."—Booklist OnlineWebsite

"The seventh in the My Happy Life series, translated from Swedish and imported from New Zealand. The story opens with a mystery: Where is Dani? She hasn't been to school for seven weeks, and now, no one is home at her house. Her school friends assume she's in Northbrook with best friend Ella for Easter break. But Ella is at her family's house on the island and hasn't seen Dani either. The storyline segues to Ella, who insists she is responsible enough to watch her little sister, Miranda, while their mother takes the little boat to pick up 'Ella's extra father,' Paddy. But Ella gets distracted and Miranda disappears. Ella, unable to face her mother, hides. Meanwhile, readers learn that Dani is in Rome, where her father is getting married. The Italian side of Dani's family is in full force, introducing her to Rome's attractions, but Dani misses Ella and wishes Ella could have come to the wedding too. The two storylines seamlessly join, and readers are treated to another stellar Dani and Ella story, enriched with Eriksson's inimitable (and happily, copious) pen-and-ink illustrations that express astonishingly subtle expressions and attitudes with simple lines. As in the other books in the series, this one brings a perspicacious perspective, a natural humor, a solid theme of friendship, and Dani's belief in life's capacity to bring happiness. All characters' skin is shown as the white of the paper. A gem."—Kirkus ReviewsJournal

"The sweet adventures of Dani and Ella continue in this final installment of the 'My Happy Life' series. Dani has missed school for the past few weeks after having surgery to remove her tonsils and catching pneumonia during recovery. While she is recuperating, her father Gianni decides to marry his fiancée in Rome. Dani misses her best friend Ella and is heartbroken that she can't invite her to the wedding because she is too far away. Meanwhile, Ella is slacking on her other responsibilities, like caring for her sister, as she and Dani strive to keep close when the physical distance between them grows. Lagercrantz's heartfelt story touches upon many realistic issues that young children may face, including the loss of a parent, parents dealing with depression, and adjusting to moving away from friends.

VERDICT Fans of the previous books in this series will again be delighted by this gentle, realistic depiction of two girls coping with big life changes while maintaining their friendship."School Library Journal Journal

About the Author & Illustrator
Rose Lagercrantz is a popular Swedish author of books for children as well as for adults.  She has received many literary awards, including the August Prize and the Astrid Lindgren Prize.

Eva Eriksson is one of the world's great illustrators.  Her awards include the Astrid Lindgren Prize and the August Award and she is consistently nominated for the Hans Christian Andersen Award.