- By: Maryam Naeem
If the books in the mind, body, spirit section of your local bookshop are to be believed, most psychiatric and metabolic disorders can be cured by “positive affirmations” or by following stringent non-evidence based diets which eliminate more food groups than actually exist.
Ferguson's first novel, Happiness™, is a razor sharp satire on the entire self help industry. It derides those who buy books that help you to “release your creativity. And achieve inner balance. And lose weight. And make money” but also argues that happiness is an abstract concept that is not meant to be attained, only pursued.
Happiness™ revolves around the hapless Edwin Vincent de Valu, junior editor at Panderic Inc, a small publishing firm. It is his job to sift through the slush pile to extricate the few manuscripts that might actually be worth publishing. Edwin unknowingly stumbles across a self help manual, which (whisper it) actually