Read Never Trust a Happy Song by Natalie Bina Online


When Cassidy Diamond is admitted to a prestigious summer program at Stanford University, she looks forward to being surrounded by people just like herself: smart, studious, and antisocial. But when Cassidy is assigned to stay with the Harper family and meets their vivacious and uninhibited daughter Grace, the two girls clash at first sight. Cassidy is determined to not letWhen Cassidy Diamond is admitted to a prestigious summer program at Stanford University, she looks forward to being surrounded by people just like herself: smart, studious, and antisocial. But when Cassidy is assigned to stay with the Harper family and meets their vivacious and uninhibited daughter Grace, the two girls clash at first sight. Cassidy is determined to not let Grace distract her from her studies, while Grace wants to show Cassidy that maybe her grades aren't all she has going for her, and that life might be about more than building the perfect resume....

Title : Never Trust a Happy Song
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 25379427
Format Type : Kindle Edition
Number of Pages : 246 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Never Trust a Happy Song Reviews

  • Alex
    2019-01-19 09:52

    I thought this book was going to be different from all those standard YA novels. But unfortunately for me, it wasn't.I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.**slight spoilers**This is about a girl, Cassidy, who is always busy with school; her mother is always pushing her and she seems to always be in overdrive. When she meets Grace, the girl who is always smiling and being herself, Cassidy starts to get out more. Grace wants her to have fun and be able to do teenager things. Unfortunately both the girls have their demons that they are trying to overcome.When I first agreed to read this book I was unaware it was about mental health. In the end of the book there is a big revel about Grace that even I didn't see coming. The warning signs are present throughout the entire book; I just thought she was a quirky girl, which is what the author wants. However, I think that the story could have done a little more to make the mental health part of the novel more prominent. The story was strong, but I felt the characters were lacking slightly. These "Mean Girls" could have easily been given names and not all been the same, because in the real world, mean girls aren't all the same. They all have their own poison they like to use and I would have liked to see that incorporated into the novel.Unfortunately this book was not for me, but that certainly doesn't mean it isn't for you. I read more New Adult books that deal with different kinds of issues, but I will say that this book is really great for mental health. It really shows how well people you think you know can hide these things from you.

  • Michelle
    2019-01-25 16:05

    **You can see this full review and more at Book Briefs:** Never Trust a Happy Song is a standalone young adult contemporary/realistic fiction novel that deals with the surface and below the surface two very different teenage girls face. Though one or two aspects of this story didn't 100% agree with me, I liked the overall story progression and theme. And I thought the story ended in a nice place. (although where was Cassidy's mother. She was coming up to visit with her and then poof nothing. The story ended and there was no mention of her.) This is not necessarily a happy book, but it is the journey of two 15 year old girls. When you look at Grace and Cassidy, you couldn't find two girls that seemed further apart.Cassidy is ALL about school and studying and basically entering the rat race as a tween. It is all she has known. Which wouldn't bug me at all, if that had been her choice. But she didn't even seem to have a helping hand in picking the direction of her future. This led me to my main issue with the story. And I will admit up front that it was an intentional decision on the part of the author to portray Cassidy this way. I get it and I get what it did to progress the story. But Cassidy seemed kind of hollow and robotic. I liked her I did, but what bugged me was at first I couldn't figure out whether Cassidy just loved studying and school or if she was pressured into studying all the time and it wasn't really something she enjoyed.And let me explain why. Because I think the things and pressures that Natalie Bina described to the extreme do very much so exist in the world today. It is getting harder and harder to get into college, into grad school, to find a good job. I know all of these things. Kids are having to prepare for their "future" earlier and earlier in life. Whether that is good or bad or right or wrong is not something I want to comment on, but it does exist. So if Cassidy loved school and wanted to do all these things for herself then I wouldn't care that she seemed robotic. She was doing what she liked, and I don't think that point is what the author got across. That if the teenager decided that they wanted these high aspirations for themselves that is ok too. But it is more problematic when it is forced upon them. That was the main focus of the story. Cassidy didn't know anything about being a kid or a teen.That turned out to be a longer explanation that I thought it would be. Suffice it to say that this book is not a light and fluffy contemporary. Cassidy and Grace each have different issues, but past that, I love the journey and the influences they each were on the other when they came into one another's lives. Watching them interact and disagree was the real magic of the story for me. I liked Never Trust a Happy Song for Cassidy and Grace's friendship. I thought that was the winning theme of the book, and seeing the two of them together is worth a read. This book really is something different. It is not like many other YA contemporaries. Fans of realistic fiction will enjoy this book. There is no romance in this story at all, which is also something different than most YA, but it was absolutely fitting for the story. It was something totally different than what I was expecting, and I like it when a book can take me by surprise like this one did. This review was originally posted on Book Briefs

  • Lauren (My Expanding Bookshelf)
    2019-01-27 16:55

    Never Trust a Happy Song is a nice YA contemporary story about two girls, with completely different problems in life, that are trying to find their place. Honestly, I preferred the second half of the story to the first half and it brought my review up from a 2 to a 4.Although Cassidy's life is pretty unique and mind-boggling, Never Trust a Happy Song deals with a lot of common issues related to teenagers and growing up, including bullying and both physical and mental health. This allows not only teenagers but anyone to relate to the story. I also found the title "Never Trust a Happy Song" to be tragically perfect for the story, particularly in relation to mental health.Never Trust a Happy Song is told via the point-of-view of Cassidy. This gives an insight into how Cassidy deals with situations, particularly social situations, and tries to use logic to explain everything. The basic storyline is very predictable - two girls meet, one doesn't like the other but they have to spend the summer living together and by the end their pretty close. I also had an inkling that there was something up with Grace particularly when she was faced with the "Mean Girls" but i wasn't sure what until it was revealed. The plot wraps up quite nicely however i wish there was some sort of face-to-face confrontation between Cassidy and her mum.My favourite character was Grace. She is such a quirky and fun character. Grace is all about living life to the full and doesn't understand why Cassidy refuses to let herself have fun. In a way Grace reminds me of Luna Lovegood in that they are both considered different and they tend to say some quite philosophical things. I don't understand how anyone could possibly be mean to someone as lovely and sweet as Grace and I hate that she puts herself down and calls herself "dumb". She just knows different things.To begin with, I didn't like Cassidy at all. In fact I hated her so much I thought about DNFing. The Harpers opened up their home to her and let her into their lives and she was just so rude and ungrateful towards them. The Harpers done nothing but try to make her feel welcome and she just dismissed them as they weren't as intelligent as her. The least she could have down was participate with them a bit. However, as the book went on I did find myself liking Cassidy more and more. She slowly opened up more, especially to Grace, and started participating in activities that she wouldn't normally. In a way she stepped out of her comfort zone and I really liked that. Cassidy also began to stand up more for what she wanted, especially when it came to facing her mum.Cassidy's mum is absolutely awful. I hated her! To put it in perspective, on a scale from one to Umbridge, I'd say she was pretty damn close to Umbridge. She had so little regard for her own daughter's health and didn't seem to care that fainting was a regular occurrence. She practically tells Cassidy to work harder when she finds out her daughter is stressed. She just came across so selfish and I couldn't help but think that she had ulterior motives when it came to Cassidy having the "perfect resume".Never Trust a Happy Song is a book that I would definitely recommend, particularly to fans of YA contemporary fiction. The story deals with such important issues that I feel that it is definitely something that teenagers should read. I look forward to finding more books by Natalie Bina.

  • T.H. Hernandez
    2019-01-29 16:57

    3-1/2 Stars. I was excited to read something different in the young adult genre, and Never Trust a Happy Song delivers that. Fifteen-year-old Cassidy is singularly focused on her studies, and her mother is a strong driving force behind this. In the opening scene, we get to see just how much that's the case. So when Cassidy gets to spend the summer at Stanford, staying with a host family, I'm already hoping this family will help lighten her up a little. Their teen daughter, Grace, seems to be the polar opposite of Cassidy, wild and free, spontaneous and happy. But underlying her free-spirited nature are hints that something isn't quite right.The book gets off to a slow start. Almost too slow, because I found myself putting it down for long stretches before picking it up again, but the second half flows better, so I'm glad I stuck with it. The story deals with some heavy issues, including bullying, mental illness, but it's also the story of friendship.PlotThis is almost exclusively a character-driven story, but plot plays a role. Cassidy and Grace do not get along. Cassidy is serious, goal-oriented, and Grace is neither of those and tries to get Cassidy to lighten up. This aspect of the story is relatively predictable. You know they'll end up as fast friends by the end, but how they get there is where the story really takes place.CharactersThere's a fair amount of character development as the story unfolds, particularly for protagonist, Cassidy. But she didn't start out fully fleshed out. I never understood her motivations, and we never learn why she has such an academic drive. But she goes from being somewhat judgemental, narrow-minded, and selfish to a more well-rounded character by the end, questioning her priorities. I didn't care much for her in the beginning and maybe that contributed to my stop-and-start approach to reading the book.Grace, on the other hand, grabbed me from the start. She was instantly likeable and I wanted to slap Cassidy upside the head a few times for her attitude toward Grace in the beginning. I would have liked to understand Cassidy's mom more, too. She came across as somewhat two-dimensional and the "Mean Girls" are stereotypical, but I don't think that harmed the story, I just think it could have been more interesting if there was more to them as well.EndingI like how the story ended, although it feels a little unfinished, but then, teens are a work in progress, so that might actually be intentional by the author.Top Five Things I Enjoyed about Never Trust a Happy Song:1. Friendship. The friendship that ultimately develops between Cassidy and Grace is worth waiting for.2. Grace. She's a fun and funky free-spirit, and by far my favorite character in the story.3. Personal Growth. The way Cassidy develops through the story felt organic and authentic.4. The Harpers. The family Cassidy stays with are genuine, something Cassidy doesn't truly understand or appreciate at first.5. Finding Balance. I think the lessons Cassidy learns are essential to surviving in life. Not everything needs to be about school and getting perfect grades.Bottom LineNever Trust a Happy Song is a realistic contemporary teen story about learning to let go in order to find yourself.DisclaimerI was provided with a copy of this book by the author in exchange for an honest review.

  • Maggie61
    2019-01-21 11:38

    I received this ebook free in exchange for an honest review Wow. This book just grabbed into me and wouldn't let go until I finished the last page same day. Such an impact but as I was reading I was overcome with enormous sadness for both Grace and Cassidy. First we meet Cassidy, who only has school and academics in her life. She has an overbearing mother who has Cassidy's whole life mapped out for her. Cassidy has no idea how to relax, has had no time for anything fun, her whole life has been about preparing for her future. She accepts a summer at a "camp" (which is nothing like any camp I have ever been to) at Stanford where there is more academic lessons in store for her whole summer. She finds herself placed with a host family of people with life outlooks much different from her. Grace, the teenager in the home is close to Cassidy in age, but totally her polar opposite. She skips, and wears neon colours and rain boots, sings a lot and plays silly games, a unique being who isn't afraid to be who she is and has no plans for her future. But is it that simple? It turns out that as they begin to understand each other that maybe Grace needs Cassidy as much as Cassidy needs Grace.Being that Cassidy is a total science and math nerd, there is a touch of jargon that was over my head, think a teenage Temperance Brennan, but hearing her logical and scientific answers to normal questions was quite amusing. I really wanted to have a few choice words with Cassidy's mother who was totally controlling and cold whereas the Harpers were so refreshing and warm. This was a really quick read for me and one I really enjoyed. It took off a little in a direction that surprised me a little but it isn't a book you will just read and forget. It's a little different and has an impact, I wanted to jump into those pages and just give both girls a big hug.I received this book in exchange for an honest review. Thank you Library Thing and Natalie Bina for the opportunity.

  • Pallas
    2019-02-12 12:43

    "Never Trust A Happy Song" was one of those books I will not forget. It brought me back to high school and all of the pressure I felt to get into college. Cassidy is a Type A personality who does everything she can to make sure she stays on course to get into a good college, presumably to get a good job, and go on to live a good life. Her parents have taught her that all of those things go together, and that it is only by cracking down and achieving outstanding academic success that one will be able to be successful and thereby happy. Cassidy has never had the chance to question her beliefs; she is far too busy with schools and studying to earn perfect 800s on each section of the SAT. "Never Trust a Happy Song" is the story of a summer that led her to question these assumptions. While attending a summer physics program at Stanford, Cassidy is assigned to live with a local family, one very different than her own, who allow her to see another way to live life. And though she initially dismisses their perspective, as the summer progresses, she is forced to confront everything about herself and her values, and she begins to realize that her way of doing things is only one way. This is not a simple tale or a moralistic tale. Natalie Bina tells this story in a subtle yet engaging way. Even as an adult reader, I was absorbed the entire way through, and the book made me reconsider my own values and perspective on student achievement and the value of leisure. I highly recommend this book to anyone. For anyone currently in high school contemplating how they want to live the next few years, this book would be invaluable. But for anyone at all interested in these topics, it is an engaging and compelling read and most definitely worth the time.

  • Jess at Such a Novel Idea
    2019-01-23 11:56

    4.5/5 starsI received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest opinion. This did not affect my review in any way.Review from Such a Novel Idea.The thing I love about reading YA as an adult is that I have the opportunity to read from several angles of life. Based on my experiences (and age, if we’re being honest), I have the ability to read from 14 year old Jess, 17 year old Jess, or 31 year old Jess, who also happens to be a mom.In the case of Never Trust a Happy Song, I was definitely reading from an adult perspective. It was as if I could see these kids through the lens of all my knowledge and own growth, but I could also see the things as the helpless parent who has to learn to take a step back and let their child learn to grow on their own. As I am going through this now with my six-year-old who becomes more and more independent each day, it was a really tough perspective that I saw very easily. II intensely wanted to help Cassidy — and even Grace — but I could only watch their stories unfold.To me, this speaks volumes about this 19-year-old author. To make someone feel that passionate about characters is something all authors covet. But to be so young when you figure that out — what depth and insight will you bring the world in 10 short years?For the first quarter of the book, I found myself wondering about Grace and Cassidy and their lack of surprise as characters. Both girls seemed very stereotypical of their ‘type’ of character the author needed to tell her story. They seemed to lack a subtle underlining that fleshes out a character. But THEN, like the day of a big move, the author began unpacking layers, precariously hinting at more.I found myself sucked into this story. When I had to go to work, I couldn’t stop thinking about how it was going to end. It didn’t take very long to read, mostly because I stayed up all night to finish it.There is a lot to like (and dislike about this story). The things that both these girls go through will make you MAD. To be a parent who hovers that much over your child’s every waking moment has to be exhausting. I couldn’t help but pity Cassidy. As a former Admissions Counselor, I spent so much time trying to counsel students on their futures and the fact that mom isn’t going to be there to take the classes, so she can’t make all the decisions about which ones you’ll take. As a parent, we want what’s best for our kids, but there is a point where we have to let go and let them be. Let them make mistakes and live life and learn how to do it on their own.I loved Grace’s whimsy and zeal. She was a beautiful character and her family was the sweetest. Her outlook on life is so different from mine, but I could see her positivity rubbing off on me.Overall, this book took me by surprise and really made an impression on me. In this point of my book reviewing career, that’s a hard thing to accomplish. I definitely cannot wait to see what Natalie comes up with next!

  • Noora
    2019-02-14 11:53

    This review was originally posted in my blog: Dawn of books, few months ago Natalie Bina approached me to ask if I’d be interested in reviewing her YA book, Never Trust a Happy Song. I was a bit hesitant at first, because I’ve lately felt that I’ve “outgrown” the YA genre. However, the premise of the book sounded interesting and I felt that at least I could relate to the problem of trying to balance life and studies. And I’m so glad that I did read this, because it was such a joy to read – a Sunday well spent!Never Trust a Happy Song begins with Cassidy and her mom driving to Stanford, where Cassidy is going to spend the next three months studying maths and physics. This is the second summer that Cassidy spends studying, but unlike last summer, this time she is placed in a host family – the Harpers. From the get-go Cassidy feels like a stranger in the house: the family jokes with one another, does small talk during dinners, and the daughter, Grace, keeps following her around, inviting her to go bowling, shopping, etc. The summer program in Stanford is no joke, and Cassidy has to keep her head in the game if she wants to get good grades – which, according to her parents, she’ll need to ensure she’ll get to an Ivy League college. However, as she becomes more accustomed to living with the Harpers, she slowly starts to question whether she is making the right decisions.I was surprised how much I enjoyed the book although high school was ages ago. Never Trust a Happy Song reminded me of both the academic and social pressures that are at work, but also about the importance of making your own decisions. Cassidy’s mother is one of those “tiger mothers” that keep pushing their children to work harder in order for them to gain success. Reading about Cassidy’s experience and about finding her own voice was sort of inspiring. The only thing that bothered me slightly was the fact that in the beginning of the book I had some trouble picturing the characters. However, as the story progressed the characters also began to grow and pull the story together. Besides that, there were also some scenes that could have been developed further to push the envelope. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed Never Trust a Happy Song and I’d recommend it to everyone who’s feeling unsure about the future or anxious about applying to college/university.

  • Star
    2019-01-25 08:53

    NEVER TRUST A HAPPY SONG is the story of overachieving high school student Cassidy Diamond. Cassidy has been pushed from a young age to be the best student, so she can have perfect grades which will lead to a good college and a prestigious job in the future. Cassidy has internalized this pressure so much she doesn’t see a life outside of schoolwork and achievement. When she’s accepted into a summer program at Stanford, she’s looking forward to spending her summer with her nose in a book and learning all she possible can from the professors. However, the daughter of the family she’s placed with, Grace, is wild, upbeat, and the complete opposite of Cassidy. Grace tries to drag Cassidy out of her shell so she can see there is more to life than getting perfect grades. NEVER TRUST A HAPPY SONG is a stirring story of life for two very different high school girls. Over the summer with the Harper family, Cassidy’s eyes are opened to a different side of life. I felt a kinship with both Cassidy and Grace and quickly grew attached to them. NEVER TRUST A HAPPY SONG shows readers the importance of a balanced and integrated life, even as adults. Sometimes a new perspective can truly help someone see a bigger picture. The author has made the characters so authentic and readers will see the Graces and Cassidys in their own life. Give NEVER TRUST A HAPPY SONG a try and I promise you’ll enjoy it.

  • Amberdenise Puckett
    2019-01-20 10:50

    *While reading Never Trust a Happy Song, I found myself sad for Cassidy (especially in the beginning). The only thing Cassidy could think of was her school work and she didn't have much use for small talk or things that would not help improve her education, college applications and her resume. I can't even begin to tell you how many time I wanted to take Cassidy's mom and shake her, make her realize that the amount of pressure she was putting on her daughter wasn't helping. I did find Grace an interesting balance (at least on the outside) to Cassidy's very studious nature.I will admit, I did have trouble getting into the story at the beginning of the book, but after a few chapters, I did begin to enjoy the book. I will give Never Trust a Happy Song 3.5 dragonflies.Full disclosure: I was contacted by Natalie Bina to read her novel and host a spot on her blog tour. Natalie Bina was kind enough to send me a copy of her ebook. Supplying her book did not in anyway sway my review of her book.The full review and guest post by the author can be found at my blog

  • Callie Stuck
    2019-01-29 11:54

    I wasn't really a big fan of this book. Some people might love this book but I felt that the plot jumped around a lot and the book itself just ended leaving a lot of open ends. I also had a problem with how cruel and rude the Cassidy's mother was as well as Cassidy during most of the book. If you like contemporary or YA books then give this one a try, just because I don't like something doesn't mean you won't like it. My opinion is one of many.For Full Review Please Visit My Blog:

  • Ashley
    2019-02-11 09:49

    I received this book from LibraryThing in exchange for an honest review.It's an average book. It had cute characters and a relatable plot line(to me at least) ,but I felt like there was something missing.

  • Shirley McCann
    2019-02-07 16:54

    I received a request to review this book, but the review is my own. I loved it right from the beginning. I read it in two days. If you'd like to read a longer version of this review, visit my blog at