Review | The Happiness Effect by Donna Freitas

The Happiness Effect: How Social Media Is Driving a Generation to Appear Perfect at Any Cost


Title: The Happiness Effect
Author: Donna Freitas
Genre: Non Fiction
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

Publishing date: 1st February, 2017
Pages: 368

My Rating: 2/5 stars


*e-copy received from the author/publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*


Sexting. Cyberbullying. Narcissism. Social media has become the dominant force in young people’s lives, and each day seems to bring another shocking tale of private pictures getting into the wrong hands, or a lament that young people feel compelled to share their each and every thought with the entire world.

Have smartphones and social media created a generation of self-obsessed egomaniacs?

Absolutely not, Donna Freitas argues in this provocative book. And, she says, these alarmist fears are drawing attention away from the real issues that young adults are facing.

Drawing on a large-scale survey and interviews with students on thirteen college campuses, Freitas finds that what young people are overwhelmingly concerned with–what they really want to talk about–is happiness. They face enormous pressure to look perfect online–not just happy, but blissful, ecstatic, and fabulously successful. Unable to achieve this impossible standard, they are anxious about letting the less-than-perfect parts of themselves become public. Far from wanting to share everything, they are brutally selective when it comes to curating their personal profiles, and worry obsessively that they might unwittingly post something that could come back to haunt them later in life. Through candid conversations with young people from diverse backgrounds, Freitas reveals how even the most well-adjusted individuals can be stricken by self-doubt when they compare their experiences with the vast collective utopia that they see online. And sometimes, as on anonymous platforms like Yik Yak, what they see instead is a depressing cesspool of racism and misogyny. Yet young people are also extremely attached to their smartphones and apps, which sometimes bring them great pleasure. It is very much a love-hate relationship.

While much of the public’s attention has been focused on headline-grabbing stories, the everyday struggles and joys of young people have remained under the radar. Freitas brings their feelings to the fore, in the words of young people themselves. The Happiness Effect is an eye-opening window into their first-hand experiences of social media and its impact on them.

My Take:

The synopsis already talks a lot about what’s in the book, so I am going to skip that part and focus on how this book turned out.

This book is a result of a lot of research and with that the author has done a good job of presenting us with her research.I loved reading the interview parts because you can see from where the author is coming from, what actually she focused on. She talks about the conclusion she drew from the research.

Image result for reading social media gif animated

One of my problems with research based books that focus on a single topic is that there is a lot of repetitiveness and this book is no exception. Reading the same thing again and again in different forms can be boring and that’s what I found some parts to be.

It sure is insightful on how some of the kids these day feel, focus on “some” because the large percentage of people I know in person don’t resonate with the idea of this book because these things like being jealous of other people’s life, wanting to appear happy and successful, wanting to appear perfect, etc has been a part of many people’s emotions prior to the existence of social media, social media is just another way for them to be all out about how they feel. With social media it just gets easy for them to detect it. It’s nothing that I haven’t read about before, so it was an okay read for me.

Why would I pick it up?

Image result for reading social media gif animated

For the social media approval cravers, to make them read and understand.

Blog Tour | Book Blitz | Despair by Ryanne Anthony

Ryanne Anthony
(Negative Ion #2)
Published by: Booktrope Editions
Publication date: December 14th 2015
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Cassidy Wren followed her dreams to sing from a farming community in Iowa to bustling New York City, with her small town boyfriend Eddie by her side. Tired of rejection, a fateful phone call leads them back to her hometown of Hampton, California.

Negative Ion keyboardist Greg Mitchell is embroiled in a nasty custody battle with his ex while attempting to heal and keep strong for the rest of the band members after the loss of a brother. Sparks fly when Cassidy and Greg’s paths collide, but the guilt from their unusual rendezvous may just be enough to destroy her. Plus, Cassidy’s new friend Kimber is hiding something and she suspects it has to do with missing Negative Ion drummer, Jaxon Malloy.

Cassidy soon finds her life in a complete flux and she doesn’t know who to choose: the man she knows will always be there for her or the man who sets her body aflame?

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble

Despair Desire Greed Final


I felt him move closer then he pressed his hard, lean body into my back.

“Hello, Cass. I’m Greg.”

I breathed deeply, and closing my eyes, I took a step forward. I shook my head, wanting to scream that I didn’t know him, but at the same time, I just…I couldn’t. I wanted him and knew it as soon as he’d stepped into the elevator. I knew it because my nipples tightened and every hair, not just the ones on my neck, raised. I prayed the elevator would move faster. Tension crackled everywhere in that tiny space, and I shivered. I wanted this stranger.

“H-hello, Greg,” I managed to reply, tightly crossing my arms on my heavy breasts.

“We don’t have much time. I’d like us to stop talking now so that I can help with your problem. I have a condom.”

I closed my eyes tighter, trying to keep my breathing in control. My mouth went dry and I lost all train of thought so all I could say to that was: “Um, huh?”

“Shh,” he whispered at my ear, moving my hair to the left shoulder.

My pulse raced. He said nothing else. I saw his chocolate hand reach past me to the control panel and pulled the stop button. Next, the power shut off and it was dark. Pitch black dark, and it made me even more aware of the heat and tension that crackled like an open flame between us.

I felt his hand on my thigh, then my skirt hiked up achingly slow. His other hand gradually lowered down my quivering belly into the waist of my skirt. His fingers slithered inside my panties and I felt like I was choking as I panted in anticipation and waited… waited for his hand to reach where I needed him.

His finger finally reached my clit and circled it slowly. I gasped and threw my head back, the base landing on his hard chest. I heard my panties rip and then his other hand cupped my ass, then his long fingers entered me and I gasped when he began to stroke.

“You can tell me to stop, Cass,” he whispered heatedly into my ear.

Yeah, that’s not going to happen.


Author’s Bio:

Born and raised in the Midwest, Ryanne Anthony is a wife, mother of two, daydream believer and writer whose third passion is giving life to the characters that occupy her mind, in hopes that she thoroughly entertains her reader and earn a fan or two.

“My goals in writing are to make my reader laugh, gasp, scream, yell, get angry, cry and nod. At the end of every story, I want them to THINK on what I’ve written, possibly identify on a storyline or two. Every book, I try to do that. I want to entertain you, to not regret spending time ‘inside my head’.”

Shorts stories and more excerpts here:

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Blog Tour | Cover Reveal | Harley by Michelle Jo Quinn

Michelle Jo Quinn
Published by: Limitless Publishing
Publication date: January 19th 2016
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance

All of her life, Cadence “Cade” Williams has been lied to…

With her ailing father on his deathbed, a whispered secret sends Cadence’s life into a tailspin. Determined to either confirm or debunk her father’s claim, she sets out on a mission to grow close to the only man with evidence to set things straight. To do that, Cadence earns a position in an elite security firm owned by her father’s old army buddy, Noah “Mac” Mackinley.

Mac is the only man who could hold the evidence to support her father’s claims…

But first, she must prove herself worthy of Mac’s trust and get close enough to find the truth. Her first mission is to watch over an eight-year old girl, Harley Clark.

Harley is not an ordinary girl. She’s the daughter of a rock star…

Despite her fragile appearance, Harley has tenacity and brilliance like nothing Cade has ever seen. To everyone’s surprise—including her own—Cade forms an unlikely friendship with the beautiful wallflower.

Her first assignment just became more interesting…

When Harley’s rock star father, Jax Clark, enters the scene, Cade can’t deny the instant attraction for the self-proclaimed bad boy. Tattoos, piercing eyes, and a raspy voice that sends thousands of fans into a screaming frenzy, he’s more than just a heartthrob. Worse, Jax starts to pay her more attention than she expects.

She’s faced with a choice—get lured in by the celebrity world and lose any chance of finding out the truth, or stick to the plan and avoid Jax at all costs to earn Mac’s trust.

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Author Bio:

Michelle ‘s love for writing blossomed when her father gave her a diary. However, instead of recounting her daily life, she wrote stories of fictional people. Like most of her characters, she believes in Happily Ever After. Naturally, she finds harmony in writing romance.

An unabashed, self-proclaimed foodie, Michelle loves to try new food whenever she travels. She once had triple crème Brie and duck rillette for lunch on top of Grouse Mountain. She enjoys watching foreign films and reading a good book by the fireside.

Michelle is an active member of RWA and several of its chapters. She lives in Ontario, Canada with her husband and two kids.

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Blog Tour | Review | Blood Master by Kirsten Campbell


Click on the banner to see the complete tour schedule. 😀

Welcome to my stop of the blog tour for the book “Blood Master” by Kirsten Campbell, hosted by Sage’s Blog Tours.

Let’s get on with the review, shall we? 🙂 

Blood Master Adult Book Cover

Title: Blood Master (Book 1 of the G.O.D.s series)
Author: Kirsten Campbell
Genre: Urban Paranormal Fantasy
Publishing date: 10th August, 2014
Published by: Kirsten Campbell
Pages: 449

My Rating: 4/5 stars


2052: Two-thirds of the human population have been killed by the Great War, the Clover Virus and the Death Plague. Only one man survived the Death Plague, an albino man named Griffin Storm. He’s the only albino in existence. No one knows what happened to the other albinos, but most believe the rumors that they were eliminated by the Guild Faction’s deadly experiments.

Griffin is hiding out in Underground Atlanta. He has special abilities. He can manipulate crystal and glass. He uses these abilities for good, raiding warehouses and old buildings for food and medical supplies to give to the abandoned children that live in the Underground. While on a raid he meets Tassta Vinetti. She’s a resident of the legendary Brotherhood Fortress. Griffin is taken to the Brotherhood and chaos ensues as Tassta, her twin brother Penn and her Uncle Lerin Sanctobous keep their new visitor and his untold powers secret. They can not disclose that the only albino in existence is now at their fortress or they could all be in great danger.

Fact is the Guild is hunting Griffin. He is the only survivor of their deadly experiments and his survival will have dynamic consequences. The Guild believes Griffin will transform into a G.O.D., a Genetically-enhanced Omni Dimensional being. If he transforms, he will have inter-dimensional doors within his body, doors that lead to heaven and hell. Griffin will become a Blood Master and he’ll be able to control the demons from the Dimension of Blood.

Will Griffin save the children of the Underground from their tragic life? Will he transform into a G.O.D. and become the Blood Master? Only time will tell…

My Take:

Before I start with what I felt about this book, I want to tell you guys that I don’t have any highlighted quotes right now because my tablet froze. As soon as the device decides that it should start working again, I will update the review with the quotes. 🙂 

Okay, so why I selected this book can be told by the summary of the book. 😀

Post-apocalyptic world and that too not too far in time made sense for it to sound more real. You know, when humans didn’t have much time to evolve things around them and almost completely forget the world as it is now. The first line of the summary hooked me and when I started the book the first paragraph of the foreword had the same effect. 😀

I liked all of the characters, they are well thought off and instantly likeable. 🙂 I doubted bromance between Griffin and Penn before the romance between Griffin and Tassta. 😉 The romance doesn’t look forced and doesn’t interrupt the story line which I find to be a thing to appreciate in books now-a-days. 😛

Tassta is a true example for feminism, she desperately wants to be a Guardian of the Brotherhood. She doesn’t want to be like the men but she wants to be alongside them. She understands her weaknesses and strengths. That’s what feminism is about, although the book isn’t focused on that but hell, I like finding things that are hidden, as you all know. 😛 The hidden treasure. 😛

The characters are really likeable and I found it easy to get into the book and feel attached. 🙂 I liked how the author instructed how the name of the main characters are to be pronounced in the start of the book. That was very thoughtful. 🙂

I am excited for the next book. 😀

I like the cover, it shows Griffin and Tassta but maybe, just maybe, something else would have made the cover more interesting. Just a thought. What do you guys think?

Why would I pick it up?

The summary is appealing and so is the book. 😉

Author’s Bio:

PictureKirsten Campbell is the author of several short stories and poems that have been published in Bewildering Stories, The Pittsburgh Quarterly Online, Ascent Magazine, The Fairfield Review, Poets-Artists & Madmen, Interracial Voice, Beauty Talk, The CoffeehousePress Journal, The Write Gallery, Sagazine Online, COBRA, and several other magazines.

Her novel, Blood Master – Book 1 of The G.O.D.s Series is an Urban Paranormal Fantasy novel that is currently available on in Adult and Young Adult version. Blood Master hit the Amazon Top 100 List. The second book of The G.O.D.s Series, Blood Rage, will be out by the end of this year. She is also the author of Darkness Calls, a book of Paranormal Short Stories. Her websites are, which is the site for all things Blood Master, and her Author’s Website,

She has two chapbooks that were published; one by Ladybug Press (Poetry from the Covert Bourgeoisie), and the other by Puddinghouse Publications (The Abandoning Kind). She is also the author of Perfect Chaos, a book of poetry that is currently on Amazon.

Meet the author: | Website | Book Website | Facebook | Goodreads | 

Get the book on: |Amazon