Join Napa Bookmine at the Napa Library to welcome Bay Area author Ruth Whippman to Napa!
Are we looking for "happy" in all the wrong places? This "whip-sharp British Bill Bryson" (The Sunday Times UK) thinks we might be.
After she packed up her British worldview (that everything is pretty much rubbish) and moved to America, Ruth Whippman was increasingly perplexed and baffled by the daily focus, if not obsession, on her own and other peoples’ happiness: it came up among the mothers at the playground swings, with the butcher at the supermarket, with her babysitter who sang the praises of nudist happiness retreats, and even with her gynecologist. But despite the fact that Americans spend more time and money in search of happiness than any other nation on earth, research shows that the United States is one of the least contented, most anxious countries in the developed world. Whippman had discovered an American public that—stoked by the multi-billion dollar happiness-industrial complex—was making itself crazy.
Now, in America the Anxious, Whippman embarks on an uproarious pilgrimage to explore the American happiness machine, tackling both the ridiculous and the sublime. Her search to discover what, if anything, actually does make us happy, unveils a startlingly straightforward, rigorously-researched universal answer that requires no hot yoga.
RUTH WHIPPMAN is a British writer, journalist, and documentary maker living in the United States. Her essays and comment pieces have appeared in various publications including the New York Times, The Independent, The Guardian and the Huffington Post. She graduated from Cambridge University and now lives in California, where she is the proud mother of two little boys.