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Get Happy

3.63  ·  Rating details ·  591 ratings  ·  191 reviews
In this poignant, realistic, contemporary YA by a state master list star, perfect for fans of Sarah Dessen and Gayle Forman, a young songwriter builds a substitute family with her friends in place of the broken family she grew up with.

A hip high school girl who loves music, writes songs, and is desperate for a ukelele, learns to her shock that her father did not abandon
Hardcover, 256 pages
Published October 28th 2014 by EgmontUSA (first published August 1st 2014)
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Average rating 3.63  · 
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Tanja (Tanychy) St. Delphi/James
Review also posted at Ja čitam, a ti?

It's been a while since I have read (and loved) Guitar Notes and in the meantime a lot has changed. I became a different reader and my reading preferences have changed as well. But good thing about all this is that I can change, but my love for realistic stories and characters never will. Luckily, Mary Amato really knows how do write them.

I don't know for you but when I was a kid I really wanted to learn how to play piano (It's still something I desire to
Provided by the publisher via NetGalley

This is a kind of books that will put a smile on your face...

First off, I was so excited to find out that the author of Guitar Notes was going to release another book. I seriously loved that book and am so glad to say that she didn't disappoint with this one either.

I loved that this book was lighthearted, yet emotional at the same time. This book was about a budding songwriter and ukelele lover, Minerva and her discovery of her father. It was a really nice
(Source: I received a digital copy of this book for free on a read-to-review basis. Thanks to EgmontUSA and Edelweiss.)
16-year-old Minerva wanted a ukulele for her birthday and instead got a hideous jumper. Because of this she decides to get a job working for ‘Get Happy’ a company that specialises in birthday parties for little kids, in order to buy her ukulele herself.
Will Minerva ever get her ukulele? Can she live with the mermaid costume? And what was so wrong with her that her father
Pre-Review - Let me start off by saying I was so over the moon excited when I found out about this book and even more so when I got this book. This author also wrote Guitar Notes which is one of my all time favorite books, and I didn't know that she was writing another YA book and this has to be close to the most excited I have ever been about a book.
If you read Guitar Notes there is no way that you will not also enjoy this one, if anything it's a little bit better than Guitar Notes because
Dec 02, 2015 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Three Stars: A nice, light contemporary that ends too soon, and it fails to adequately explore the main conflict.

Minerva has been looking forward to her birthday for months. Today is the day when she will finally get the ukulele she has been coveting. Unfortunately, Minerva's mother doesn't deliver, instead Minerva receives a hideous blue sweater. Her day isn't off to a good start. As she dashes out the door to school, she collides with a delivery man, who has an envelope addressed to Minerva
Stefani Sloma
Oct 25, 2014 rated it really liked it
You can read this review and more on my blog, Caught Read Handed.

A sweet, fun, emotional read from Mary Amato (author of Guitar Notes), Get Happy made me…well, happy.

Get Happy is about high-school girl Minerva just wants to buy a ukulele and play songs while hanging out with her friends. In the novel, she learns that her father didn’t abandon her like her mother told her, and so she begins to investigate him. As Goodreads says, she “builds a substitute family with her friends in place of the
May 10, 2014 rated it liked it
My copy was provided by Netgalley.

Minerva is a girl who just really wants to get a ukulele. She has a pretty small family, considering she doesn't even know her own father's name. Her mom never talks about her and for all of Minerva's life, she thought her father had abandoned her and left.

But Minerva never let the sadness get to her. She got a job at Get Happy with her best friend, a hot new guy, and a beautiful girl that makes Minerva jealous. This job is not an ordinary fast food job. No,
Michelle Kidwell
Mar 31, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Get Happy
Mary Armato
Copyright 2014

In this Young Adult Novel

This story opens up on Minerva's sixteen birthday, and she is disappointed because instead of a Ukulele she gets a sweater from her Mom and a twenty dollar bill from her Aunt. The next day Minerva goes to school and opens a package she believes to be from her Father, the Father she has never known, but she had not wanted to open it in front of her Mother. Inside is a letter wishing her a Happy Sixteenth birthday, and a Sea Horse, he also
Apr 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I knew I would like this book the moment I read the first page and the main character wanted a ukelele, awesome. This book is meant for 7th grade and up, but I picked it because I wanted a quick and fun read, and that was exactly what I got! However, it turned from a fun/quick read, and it was quick because I flew through it, and into a shocking beautiful one. The last one hundred pages or so was really well-written, and yes I got misty-eyed by the end of this novel and it hit me more then I ...more
Aug 12, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Reading Get Happy actually made me extremely happy. I have never laughed so much reading a book in my life. It was so lighthearted and hilarious. Mary Amato wrote a story that captures what it is like to be a teenager, without making the main character unlikeable. Actually, I loved Minerva. She is honest, funny, sarcastic and insecure. She reminded me so much of myself when I was a teenager.

I was shocked at how good this book was. It wasn't exactly the storyline, but it was the writing that
Mar 19, 2014 rated it really liked it
I am a ukulele player--I love the ukulele like an obsessive crazy person. I own 5 and a half ukuleles (my future baritone uke is half-built). So, as a result, I'm probably being overly enthusiastic, but this is a ukulele novel! Guitar players get all the books, but those of us who know that four strings are better than six never get books.

Anyway, this is a pretty sweet little novel, with more to it than I thought it would have, given how short it is, especially the family stuff. It definitely
Linda (un)Conventional Bookworms
*I received a free ARC of Get Happy from Egmont USA via Edelweiss in exchange of an honest review*

Cute contemporary about a girl who is obsessed with getting a ukulele. The writing is a little juvenile, but this managed to get across the MCs age and naïveté.

Full review to come soon.

This and all my other reviews are originally posted on my blog (un)Conventional Bookviews
This was a fun story. I loved how Minerva would write songs. The ending was rather abrupt, would how like a little more, but all in all this was a pretty good book.
Mar 08, 2014 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2014
Get Happy is a super-short read. It's only 256 pages, and the spacing makes it even shorter than that sounds. To add to that, we have Minerva's song lyrics at the end of most chapters, and the last of those 256 pages has those lyrics again, this time with the musical chords. So the good news is, it only took me like two and a half hours to read Get Happy. But the bad news, sadly, is that this short length means that nothing really happens, and nothing is as complex as I would like, making this a ...more
Alisha Marie
I'm one of those readers that's okay with books that have very little plot. I don't need a rollicking plot or tons of action to get pleasure from a book. However, if you are going to write a book that has absolutely no discernible plot (or very little of one), the one thing that you absolutely must have for me to enjoy the book are intriguing characters. And unfortunately, Get Happy had no plot and the main character was totally blah.

Besides her blahness, I also found Minerva to be kind of
Nov 14, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya
I was so excited to get this book. I recently met the author, Mary Amato at a bookstore in Pennsylvania. Mary was warm and easy to talk to. She even played a song on the ukulele for my husband and I. The song is featured in the book.

I enjoy YA stories, and Get Happy was an easy read. I was pulled into the story of 16-year old Minerva Watson immediately. The story is not a happy read, but instead a realistic story of how she copes with disappointments and an over-protective mother. Lots of feels
I received a digital galley of Get Happy courtesy of EgmontUSA and Net Galley in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was quite excited to be approved to read Get Happy because I enjoyed Mary Amato's Guitar Notes so much. Get Happy is the story of Minerva who is being raised by her control freak single mom. Minnie's mom means well but she is way too up tight to be raising a teenage daughter. The book opens with Minerva celebrating her birthday and her mother giving her a sweater that is not ...more
Sejal Sankaran
Oct 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
1) The author, Mary Amato, of Get Happy has a distinct style of writing. She makes every chapter seem realistic. Her portrayal of Minerva, the main character, depicts the turmoil of a child going through a divorced life. Minerva has ongoing conflicts with her mother as she realizes that her mother lied to her about her father, saying how he was an evil person even though he sends birthday gifts to Minerva every year. Amato does an exceptional job with conveying how frustrated and confused ...more
Apr 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2014, arc
Minerva's 16th birthday falls flat with an ugly gift and the lack of what she really wants, a ukulele. It falls even further with an arrival of a package- from Minerva's father who left her as a baby. Minerva uncovers secrets of her family's past, fits in a job as a mermaid at birthday parties, and takes hold of her ukulele.

a YA fiction ukulele book. hallelujah.
as a ukulele playing/loving teenager how could i not grab this one and read it immediately?
Such a cute, fun, book- and the songs. Love
Mar 15, 2014 rated it liked it
First off Thank you to NetGalley for providing me with an ARC for "Get Happy".

Now on to the review part of the book.

The cover: I love this cover! How can you not? It looks like a cute YA novel about a girl finding her dad...but that leaves me to the review part.

The review: I was captivated by this book instantly but my problem was the plot. There wasn't one until the 15% before the books ending. On the description it states "...learns to her shock that her father did not abandon her years ago
Julia Nashif
Jun 24, 2014 rated it really liked it
You know how I get happy? When I get good books from NetGalley. So thank you, Egmont USA and NetGalley, for this free title to review!

I I love this book to pieces. Minerva is a great character. She had understandable reactions and felt so real. Her relationship with Fin was funny and supportive. They both looked out for each other. And Hayes.... Oh Hayes. I wish I knew guys as awesome as him. ;) He's such a cute gentleman.

There is a love triangle, but bear with me, people. This love
I received this from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review

Sooo, I don’t have that much to say about this book, but since I received it for review I’ll do my best to gather some thoughts!

Singing has been a big part of my childhood and whilst growing up - but I still don’t enjoy reading songs in books, for the most part I feel like they just don’t belong there. Which is one of the reasons that this book is a bit in the neutral end of the scale for me. In the end I started skipping the songs
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Rebecca Pierce
Jun 26, 2014 rated it did not like it
This book had likeable characters and potential for a good story was really there. I felt there were two events on the horizon for this heroine: romance and the resolution of a life without her estranged father. However, the plot was very developed for the father unification though no ending or resolution occurred with that plot at all, and there was a loose, maybe she likes this guy, maybe he likes her plot with a romantic contender thought the support for that plot was shallow and not the ...more
May 21, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2014
Thanks to Netgally for providing me with an ARC of Get Happy.

Having recently read Just One Day by Gayle Forman, I decided to request Get Happy. The synopsis claims that this book is perfect for fans of Forman, however, I found the only similarities between the two were the YA genre and a female protagonist, and ended there.

Get Happy wasn't terrible. I would categorize this as a family drama. It was an easy, light read, but I started noticing a trend around chapter 4, where the chapters were
Tara Ethridge
Sep 05, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I'm quite choosy with my 5 star ratings, but I just had to give it to this book because it was the complete package. Great, super-developed characters, teenage angst, some poor decisions and a dash of romance made this a fantastic read. As I was reading, I really wanted to be in the book hanging out with these great people. What I also really love and appreciate greatly about Mary Amato's books, as a teacher, is the fact that she can create a page-turning read for teens with not a single bad ...more
Jul 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-to-review
(I received a copy from Edelweiss, in exchange for an honest review.)

Get Happy was a fun read.

I really liked Minerva, and her best friend Fin. They were both really funny, and i loved their friendship!
There was one part where Minerva was quite mean, but it didn't last very long, so it didn't make me like her any less.

There was lots of little moments in this that made me laugh, and the story flew by because of it. It didn't take me long to read at all!

The ending to this was really cute, even if
 Reading Divergence

Genetics or kinship of the mind, spirit, and emotions--which delivers the foundation of a stronger bond? Like the Nature vs. Nurture controversy, perhaps the answer is different according to individual.
Turning 17, Minerva discovers that instead of the ukelele she requested, instead she is.tuned to the truth about her parentage: father is not the deadbeat absent runaway, but a renowned marine biologist at Chicago's Shedd Aquarium; and he hasn't been avoiding her.
May 13, 2014 rated it liked it
Sixteen-year-old Minerva lives with her mom since her deadbeat father abandoned them when she was just 2 years old. Over the years, she’s written songs and imagined actually playing a ukulele to hash out her feelings. When she receives a seahorse necklace from her absent father, confusion, hope and anger mingle within her. After deciding to check him out online, she discovers he is now living in the area but has a new wife and stepdaughter. Read the rest of my review on my blog: ...more
Mar 26, 2015 rated it liked it
This ws written by the same peon who wrote Guitar Notes. It is fun, and has lovable characters. I really enjoyed the pacing. However, I admit it's stiff when I started reading the book because if you know this author, when things look great, buckle up. But it was really fun, no serious trauma or anything. It's hard to write about it much because one of the fun parts of the book is the timing of when things are revealed. I highly recommend this I for all people ages +13, although its mostly a ...more
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I write fiction for young adults and children and enjoy connecting with my readers through Skype and school visits. I also write for adults--songs, plays, poems, and essays. I teach privately via Skype and in person.
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