Happiness Ltd.

 
Happiness Ltd. by [McGhee, Michael]THIS WEEK’S OTHER FEATURED BOOKS, “INCIDENT IN PATAGONIA,” BY ISABEL GARCIA CINTAS, AND “THE SPIRITUAL AWAKENING PROCESS,” BY CHRISTINE HOEFLICH, CAN BE FOUND BY SCROLLING DOWN BELOW THIS POST, OR BY CLICKING THE AUTHOR’S NAME ON OUR AUTHOR’S PAGE.
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THE BOOK: Happiness Ltd.

PUBLISHED IN
: 2014


THE AUTHOR:
  Michael McGhee

THE PUBLISHER: Laughing Fire Press

SUMMARY:  Happiness Ltd., by Michael McGhee, is a darkly comic dystopia novel set in New York City of the near future, where multiple hurricanes have turned downtown into crumbling marshland; where citizens have signed over their civil rights to corporate sponsors; and where threats to the consumer state are considered terrorism.

When Nelson Young, an employee of Happiness Limited, falls in love with Celia, a disenfranchised rebel, he becomes a liability to his employer. Nelson and Celia try to escape, but are charged with “economic terrorism” and put on trial for their lives.

THE BACK STORY:  The roots of the story go back to 2003, when my wife and I moved to an apartment near “Ground Zero” because the city was offering subsidies to anyone who would live there, in an effort to help downtown recover from 9/11.

 Michael McGheeIt was a paranoid time. Washington was creating the Patriot Act and the surveillance state that Edward Snowden would later expose. At night I would walk our dog around Ground Zero, where soldiers stood guard with machine guns. Yet at the same time, the nearby neighborhood of Tribeca was bouncing back with trendy little restaurants and bars. It felt like people were partying at the end of the world.

 These strange juxtapositions gave me the idea for a novel about Manhattan in the not-distant future, where the sea levels are rising and the surveillance state has become a police state, yet the city remains (as it has always been) a crazy unmanageable stew where the super-wealthy live side by side with the destitute and where love or mayhem can break out at any time.

WHY THIS TITLE?: It’s an ironic title: Happiness Ltd. is the name of the corporation that controls all corporations, and promises “happiness” to consumers who are willing to give up their civil rights.

WHY WOULD SOMEONE WANT TO READ IT? 
Anyone who enjoyed “1984”, “It Can’t Happen Here,” and other great dystopian novels, and/or is frightened by the trends in our society today, is likely to enjoy Happiness Ltd. 

REVIEW COMMENTS
:

“A highly original and gripping novel, this is also a frightening commentary on overarching governmental control, with just enough plausibility to be terrifying.” –  Publishers Weekly
 
“If you wonder if Edward Snowden’s revelations matter, read this book and think about it for a while,” Bill McKibben, author of The End of Nature
 
“The strength of Happiness Ltd. is in McGhee’s clear prose and the depth of this dystopian future…a frightening wake-up call to an American society that could easily move in that direction.”  — Melanie Cordova, Santa Fe Writers Project Journal

AUTHOR PROFIL
E:

Michael McGhee is a pen name, which I use because I work for a company that might not like this book. I have lived in New York City for almost 30 years, but grew up in Chicago and spent several years hitchhiking around the U.S., Mexico, and Canada before marrying, having kids and settling down. I have built a career as a journalist and writer, but was at various times a taxi driver, short-order cook, house painter, antique furniture refinisher and stained-glass repairer, among other pursuits.

 AUTHOR COMMENTS: Happiness Ltd. was published two years ago, but since the election of Donald Trump to the White House, the story is more relevant than ever.

SAMPLE CHAPTER: Read a sample on my Amazon page:
https://www.amazon.com/Happiness-Ltd-Michael-McGhee/dp/0967492246/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1488839708&sr=8-1&keywords=happiness+ltd

LOCAL OUTLETS: Publisher: www.laughingfire.comWHERE ELSE TO BUY IT: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, or any popular bookseller

PRICE: Paperback: $17.95; Kindle: $7.99; Nook Book: $7.49

CONTACT THE AUTHOR: authorhappinessltd@gmail.com

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writersbridgebridgebuilder

Recently retired after 35 years with the News & Advance newspaper in Lynchburg, VA, now re-inventing myself as a novelist/nonfiction writer and writing coach in Lake George, NY.

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