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If It Makes You Happy


Can Winnie balance the title of Summer Queen with her friendships and a new romance?

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Full Description

Winnie is living her best fat girl life and is on her way to her favorite place – Misty Haven and her granny’s diner, Goldeen’s. With her family and ungirlfriend at her side, she has everything she needs for one last perfect summer before starting college in the fall.

…until she becomes Misty Haven’s Summer Queen.

Newly crowned, Winnie is forced to take center stage at a never-ending list of community royal engagements. Almost immediately, she discovers that she’s deathly afraid of it all: the spotlight, the obligations, and the way her Summer King wears his heart, humor, and honesty on his sleeve.

To salvage her summer Winnie must conquer her fears, defy expectations, and be the best Winnie she knows she can be—regardless of what anyone else thinks of her.


Mayor Way plunged his hand into the fishbowl. He took his time, shuffling and swirling the red strips of paper. Dramatic music kicked in—that was new and probably Shelley’s doing to impress the Starlight Crew.

“And so it begins.” Kara laughed. She hated romance for herself, but could never resist a good somebody else’s love story.

I leaned toward Sam and whispered, “May the odds be ever in your favor” and got a sly grin in return.

Thing was, I could totally see it. Mayor Way would read the slip and nod in approval before passing it to Mayor Iero who would shout Sam’s name into the microphone because that would be just oh so necessary.

Sam would then look at me, mouthing, “Me?” for confirmation because that’s what she always did. The clapping would start, followed by whoops and awes and more than a few disappointed death stares. Sam would blink away her surprise, hand Kara her ice cream, wipe her hands on her cut-off shorts and bound toward the gazebo, hair bouncing in a metaphorical manifestation of her internal giddiness. Her strangely familiar amethyst sunflower earrings would catch the fading light just right.

Winston would say something snarky. Kara would halfway agree but smooth it over somehow. Sam’s bright smile would light up the night. And I would sit, split into warring parts—happy for Sam and ready to cause bodily harm to any inappropriate volunteers wishing to be paired with my sixteen-year-old cousin—and concealing it all under a blanket of whatever, it’s cool.

Haven Central had a tendency to look the other way. I sure as hell didn’t. Neither did Granny or Winston. We’d burn this place to the ground for Sam if anyone tried anything.

“Winnie Woodson?”

My head snapped toward the stage as the crowd began to turn. Searching for, and then finding, me.


A Buzzfeed Best YA Book of 2019

"A body positive Gilmore Girls." —PopSugar

"Kann’s beautiful sophomore novel is a model for intersectional inclusion done right, exploring and questioning the social labels we place on ourselves and others. With visibility and love given to the asexual community, this character-driven story of a queer, fat Black girl will help fill an unfortunate hole on our bookshelves." —Booklist

"Winnie is a protagonist that is not only Black, but she’s also representing size diversity in a genre that desperately needs it. ... I think If It Makes You Happy is going to be a safe space for a lot of people, not just teens." —Refinery29

"Winnie is plus sized and a strong body positivity role model; her statements on what is means to love and to be true to yourself are inspirational for any reader. ... Teens searching for a cast of characters that represents diverse shapes, sizes, skin colors, social status, and sexual orientation will be happy to find this story." —VOYA

"Kann's voice shines in this one. Plus, who doesn't love a body-positive love story?" —Buzzfeed

Let’s Talk About Love:

"This book is so charming and funny and bighearted. ... I recommend this one for fans of Rainbow Rowell's Fangirl and Sandhya Menon's When Dimple Met Rishi." —Becky Albertalli, author of Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

"Claire Kann makes an admirable debut with this milestone for ace visibility." —Entertainment Weekly

"Truly shines in its depiction of the diverse range of life experiences its characters go through, and was an enjoyable read from cover to cover. I’ll certainly be looking forward to what Claire Kann does next." —Hypable