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Happy & You Know It by Laura Hankin
Contemporary fiction

Happy & You Know It

by Laura Hankin

Quick take

Your sneak peek into the lives of wealthy NYC moms, whose delicious scandals actually make them more relatable.

Good to know

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_FastRead

    Fast read

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MultipleNarrators

    Multiple viewpoints

  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Snarky


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_MamaDrama

    Mama drama

Why I love it

Zibby Owens
Creator and Host, "Moms Don't Have Time to Read Books"

As a mom of four kids, a New Yorker, and the host of a literary podcast, I love reading stories that poke fun at the craziness of modern motherhood, especially those that take place in Manhattan. After long days of caretaking—especially now in the coronavirus quarantine when I’m (supposed to be) overseeing homeschooling—I crave the moment when I can fall into bed and crack open a book that I know will make me laugh. That’s why Laura Hankin’s debut novel, Happy & You Know It, was the perfect read for me.

Laura writes with quick-witted humor and a keen observer’s eye about Claire, an aspiring musician who reluctantly becomes a children’s playgroup entertainer to make ends meet. When her path intersects with one stereotypical Upper East Side playgroup, she becomes a part of their lives in unexpected ways. Not only does she begin to uncover some of their closely held secrets, but she also finds, to her surprise, compassion and a sense of sisterhood.

At times happy, at times sad, Happy & You Know It will remind readers like me that no matter how different women may seem on the outside, when you dig a little deeper to that magical place of vulnerability and truth, we’re really all quite similar. (Just try to overlook the green juice.) Thanks to Laura for providing such an entertaining read during these stressful and uncertain times.

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After her former band shot to superstardom without her, Claire reluctantly agrees to a gig as a playgroup musician for overprivileged infants on New York’s Park Avenue. Claire is surprised to discover that she is smitten with her new employers, a welcoming clique of wellness addicts with impossibly shiny hair, who whirl from juice cleanse to overpriced miracle vitamins to spin class with limitless energy.

There is perfect hostess Whitney who is on the brink of social-media stardom and just needs to find a way to keep her perfect life from falling apart. Caustically funny, recent stay-at-home mom Amara who is struggling to embrace her new identity. And old money, veteran mom Gwen who never misses an opportunity to dole out parenting advice. But as Claire grows closer to the cool women who pay her bills, she uncovers secrets and betrayals that no amount of activated charcoal can fix.

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Get an early look from the first pages of Happy & You Know It.

Member thoughts

All (16062)
All (16062)
Love (6492)
Like (8520)
Dislike (1050)
16287 ratings
  • 40% Love
  • 52% Like
  • 6% Dislike
  • Burlingame, CA

    LOVE LOVE LOVE! I finished in 1 day! This is like hulu’s “book club” or “working moms” its just hilarious and gossipy but at the same time you feel for the characters. Such a fast, lighthearted read.

  • Garland, TX

    I finished this book months ago and I’m still raving about it to friends. Following multiple intertwining story lines that expose a ritzy stay at home city “mommy & me” play group in an explosive way.

  • Macomb Township, MI

    As a mom i could connect well with these women. They seemed like they had the perfect life but they have the same pressure as any mom. Plus there is a twist that keeps them from being your avarage mom group

  • Lubbock, TX

    I think this would have been a “like” rather than “love” had it not been so parallel to my current life stage. I’m a mom, in mom groups, and life is always interesting. So this was a fun twist!!

  • New York, NY

    Loved this look into the NYC moms who seem to “have it all”. The story is about a young girl who gets swept up into the allure, only to find out that things aren’t as perfect as they seem. Good read!

  • Clermont, FL

    As a mom of a 3 and 1 year old, I was able to relate to this story. I found it to be a fun read with an unexpected “culprit” and really enjoyed it. I think I’d have liked it even if I wasn’t a mom.

  • Tulsa, OK

    Quick and easy read that bounced through Manhattan elite “super mommies.” But when they found out they’re not as super as they thought, things get interesting. Good visuals and likeable characters.

  • Wood-Ridge, NJ

    This book kept shelling out surprise after surprise that I could never see coming. I also loved how the story was told through the POV of each of the 4 women at the center of the NYC “Insta Mom” drama

  • San Francisco, CA

    From the first page I was hooked. This smart, funny book about a group of yummy Upper East Side mommies and their “perfect” lives only got better as it went along. This novel would make a great movie.

  • Charlotte, NC

    Cleverly written & masterfully revealed are the less than perfect ‘InstaMommy’ lives in this book. A hilarious & sometimes serious reminder that lives aren’t always how they appear on Social Media.

  • Lakewood, CO

    Dark, sweet, funny, and shocking. I enjoyed the flawed relationships and the hard-learned lessons, and I wasn’t expecting the twist. I liked the mix of sticking to some stereotypes and upending others

  • Sardinia, NY

    If I went to a bookstore I would never have bought H&YKI. I chose it as my BOTM because I desperately needed something light, AND THEN I FELL IN LOVE WITH IT. It’s not the most profound, but it is FUN

  • Madison, WI

    This was a lot less fluffy than I originally assumed—a very witty but also serious look at what we expect of modern mothers. The plot twist is crazy & all the loose ends tie together so satisfyingly!!

  • Medina, OH

    I didn’t expect the twist at all, well let me rephrase that...I knew it was coming but would never have guessed the whodunnit. Clever, engaging & original...I read it one day & thoroughly enjoyed it.

  • Colorado Springs , CO

    Wow. You know the train wreck is coming but it’s still a bit of a suprise when it happens. The mommy struggle is real; these moms took it over the top & I enjoyed my peek into the world of privilege.

  • Burlington, WA

    Amazing read, reflecting on how mothers are viewed in today’s society as well as a mystery filled with surprising twists! I tend to get thrillers but I couldn’t put this down! Happy I branched out!

  • Midland City, AL

    This was such an enjoyable witty read that I breezed through very quickly.  I love how every character was explored in depths and the main character Claire is such a gem. I will seek out Hankin again!

  • San Diego, CA

    The author uses the struggles & pressures of being the perfect mom to shed light on how social media can be deceiving and far from reality. This story felt unique. I was hooked from the first chapter.

  • Oakhurst , NJ

    This was such a relatable yet dramatic read for all new moms and caregivers! The characters were multifaceted and interesting, and the writing was witty and smart. The twist at the end was unexpected!


    This was an excellent read to make me forget about the drama in my own life. The characters are realistic because they all have flaws. It reminded me of the real housewives of New York, in a good way.

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