Aaron Soto doesn't like what's happening to him. He has a perfect girlfriend who has helped him cope with the grief of his father's recent suicide, a big group of friends from his Bronx neighborhood, and even a part-time job. But when Aaron meets Thomas, he gets turned upside down. Suddenly Aaron can't think about anything but Thomas, they spend all their time together, and he isn't even that interested in his girlfriend anymore. What is happening to Aaron? He doesn't want to find out. Instead, Aaron turns to the Leteo Institute to find an answer to these changes that he can't accept.
MORE HAPPY THAN THOUGHT is a powerhouse of a YA debut that will crumple your heart and make your soul soar, all in the same chapter. The writing is very good, driven by Aaron's strong and captivating voice. While I wanted a little more connection to Aaron in the first half of the novel, I got that connection later on, once the secrets and twists come to light. The near-future setting is so very authentic, yet fascinating in its nuanced differences. The story is also incredibly contemporary - it isn't quite sci-fi and isn't quite your typical realistic novel. With powerful, sucker-punch moments and tearful, soul-searching questions, MORE HAPPY THAN NOT is quite possibly the best debut novel of the year.
Incredibly authentic setting.
Fascinating near-future context.
Real life issues.