Happy Family

“Sometimes, for one’s own sanity, it’s best to rip up an entire life and start again. The question is: whose life? And who does the ripping?”

Germaine Kiecke was a foundling, an orphan, brought up by the infamous ‘Motherhood’ in a Belgian orphanage. 

Now she is a successful art academic who defines herself by her profession and prefers to experience the world through art and an augmented reality game called Happy Family

But when the artist Tom Hannah, the creative force behind Happy Family, moves to Spain, surrounds himself with high walls, three large guard dogs called Harpo, Chico and Groucho, and a runaway who teaches him to think like a tree, his existential melt-down threatens all Germaine holds dear. 

She is forced to re-engage with life and travels to Spain to try to make things right. Along the way she meets people who are also, for one reason or another, dependent on Tom’s fictional world to augment their own ‘real’ lives.

About the author

James Arthur Ellis has written two novels, The Wrong Story and Happy Family, and a novella, Fizz. He has published a number of prize-winning short stories, a travelogue of his journey through Central America and a monthly column for The Gudgeon. He designs and delivers workshops for fiction writers and is a regular speaker at writers’ events.

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Why We Like It

On James Ellis' book The Wrong Story:

  1. "The Wrong Story is the novel Beckett might have written had he watched Seinfeld, South Park and Curb Your Enthusiasm. Indeed, Ellis’ ruminations on time and being reminded me often of the opening scenes of McEwan’s Atonement." - Online reviewer
  2. The Wrong Story is a book I can’t, and don’t want to shake off – I’ve never read anything so original."- Online reviewer

He has an MSt in Creative Writing from the University of Oxford and is a member of the Society of Authors and the International Flann O’Brien Society. He is a presenter on Frome FM’s On-Air Book Group, a contributor to Carers UK‘s creative writing campaigns and was an ambassador for a Shooting Star - a charity for babies, children and young people with life-limiting conditions.

How it works

The book will be delivered in 10 instalments (or staves), one every day. The instalments are delivered to your Pigeonhole bookshelf on your IOS or Android app, plus you can read on our web reader. You will receive an email letting you know when each stave is available.

We believe that shared reading leads to new ideas and connections. That’s why we have a dynamic commenting system which allows in-text discussion between our readers. Post a comment and all your fellow readers will be able to respond. You can also choose to receive notifications (customise them here) when someone responds to your comment, or, additionally, whenever a comment is left in the book.

As you read you will see round purple icons at the edge of certain paragraphs – tap on these to reveal behind-the-scenes extra content!

Links will be included at the end of the final stave which will allow you to leave reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. The full book will be available on your Pigeonhole bookshelf for one month for you to read at your leisure. 

Any questions? Drop us a line on laurence@pigeonholepublishing.com.

1. CHOOSE WHO
TO READ WITH

Join our commmunity of readers or read with friends in your own private book club.

2. PICK A BOOK
 

And read it in bite-sized instalments – called staves – that fit busy modern lives.

3. HIGHLIGHT AND DISCUSS
 

Save your favourite bits and leave thoughts to connect with fellow readers.

4. GET BEHIND
THE STORY

Beautiful extras in the margins immerse you in the world of each book.

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