Tak­ing charge for your own hap­pi­ness

Coastal News - - Meads Cup Triumph -

Your Sec­ond Life Be­gins When You Re­al­ize You Only Have One By Raphaelle Gior­dano Pen­guin Ran­dom House, $37

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This is a “nice” lit­tle book

— faint praise, but it’s worth a look.

Camille is late 30s, liv­ing in Paris — this is a trans­la­tion — with a nice hus­band, a son and a good job. But she’s not happy, and she’s bored. Driv­ing home in the rain her tyre bursts and she ends up meet­ing a man who says he can fix her life. He’s not your usual ther­a­pist. He calls her is­sues ‘acute rou­tini­tis’. She is dis­sat­is­fied, un­mo­ti­vated and can’t find mean­ing in her life.

Claude, her res­cuer, pre­scribes un­usual fixes. They in­clude spring clean­ing her house, tak­ing a hot air bal­loon ride, be­com­ing more cre­ative and also al­low­ing your­self to be­have like a cat — tak­ing time for your­self.

I’ve al­ways strug­gled with trans­la­tions but this one is done well, although there’s not a lot of sub­stance to trans­late. It’s a light read, and be­cause we never learn much about Camille there’s not a lot to care about.

It’s about tak­ing charge of your own hap­pi­ness. Just nice.

— Linda Thomp­son

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