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‘Happiness Falls’

‘Happiness Falls’

By Stefanie Davis

“Happiness Falls” by Angie Kim is a deep, thought-provoking mystery that covers many topics, from racism and ableism to family secrets. College student Mia is adjusting to living at home during quarantine. One day she has an argument with her boyfriend on the phone and is thinking about that, when suddenly she sees a boy in a yellow shirt running fast around the street corner. It finally clicks that it is her younger brother Eugene, so she runs outside and cheers him on.  Eugene has both autism and mosaic Angelman syndrome, which means he is non-verbal and has motor difficulties, but also has an unusually happy demeanor. Eugene went to the park with his dad Adam as they had done many times before to work on Eugene’s therapy, but now Eugene has returned home bloody and alone. Mia and other members of her biracial family weren’t immediately concerned until it became clear that their father was definitely missing, and Eugene, who is non-verbal, was the last to see or speak with him. The only leads are a possible affair, a waterlogged notebook, and of course, Eugene. Later evidence comes in that begins to implicate Eugene in the disappearance of his father. What lengths will the family go to clear Eugene’s name, and will they ever have answers as to what happened to their father and husband? Different from the typical mystery in that the over-analytic narrator includes her side notes as footnotes. If you enjoy this, you may also enjoy “The Color of Bee Larkham’s Murder” by Sarah J. Harris, “The Last Thing He Told Me” by Laura Dave and “Nuclear Family” by Joseph Han.



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“The Bad Guys in Let the Games Begin!” by Aaron Blabey

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