This Is Happy

This is Happy has just been shortlisted for the 2016 RBC Taylor Prize.

Camilla's memoir was selected as a best book of 2015 by the National Post, the Globe and Mail, the CBC, Quill and Quire and the Vancouver Sun.                 

The Globe and Mail calls This is Happy

"one of the most exquisite, agonizing and, above all, uplifting books of the year."       

"Raw...intelligent and insightful...a moving testament to resilience..." MacLean's Magazine

"[Camilla Gibb is] a gifted storyteller . . . Her story is touching, human, alive. . . . It is beautifully written, brave and sincere. Enjoy." —The Vancouver Sun

"This Is Happy is a powerful testament to what people can overcome and permission for what people can't." —Toronto Star

"This Is Happy has a rawness and power that's hard to resist. . . . this engaging memoir comes from a gifted writer." —NOW (Toronto)

"An array of life experiences both marvellous and painful in quiet language that often belies their extraordinariness. . . . This Is Happy is a tiny green shoot peeking through a crack in heavy concrete, wily and survivalist, but tenuous too." —The Globe and Mail

‘“All sorrows can be borne if you put them into a story or tell a story about them,’ Isak Dinesen once said. Sorrows are all pain otherwise, pain without sense or meaning. But joys, too, it seems to me, need their context. And sometimes their coexistence needs to be borne. The coexistence or possibility of the opposite can be what gives an experience its meaning. At its simplest, that is a story.”

— camilla gibb, this is happy

In this profoundly moving memoir, Camilla Gibb, the award-winning, bestselling author of Sweetness in the Belly and The Beauty of Humanity Movement, reveals the intensity of the grief that besieged her as the happiness of a longed-for family shattered. Grief that lived in a potent mix with the solace that arose from the creation of another, most unexpected family: one composed of a small cast of resilient souls, adults broken in the way many of us are, united in love for a child. Reflecting on tangled moments of past sadness and joy, alienation and belonging, Gibb revisits her stories now in relation to the happy daughter who will inherit them, and she finds there new meaning and beauty.

Raw and unflinching, intelligent and humane, This Is Happy asks the big questions and finds answers in the tender moments of the everyday.

      Connect with Camilla Gibb on Facebook
Connect with Camilla Gibb on Facebook


This is Happy will be on sale August 18th.

"Camilla Gibb has written a compelling memoir of new motherhood, altered relationships, and a family finding its way to wholeness. How moving this book is, in its quiet resolve and deep compassion."  Anne Michaels, author and poet

"This Is Happy broke me, lifted me up and filled me.  I can't remember the last time I read something so honest, tender, brutal and kind."  Sarah Polley, actor and director

"One of the most dignified books I’ve ever read, mirroring life itself, in all its baffling, painful contradictions. Out of heartrending rejection, Camilla Gibb offers us a story about love rising up, like new green shoots, through grief; in a book whose root grows out of two damaged families, she grows herself a new one, chosen, authentic, and tender. A brave memoir about bearing the damage of life, it’s also grounded, richly, insistently, in the sweet pleasures of a new baby, and making a new home, and the deep balm of friendship among women." Karen Connelly, author and poet




In the Globe and Mail, August 21, 2005

 This Is Happy