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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘Happily Whatever After’
by Stewart Lewis
Book Beginnings
First Lines

image of a woman sat reading by an open window - caption reads 'will these first few lines capture our imagination' - used as the image for Book Beginnings / First Lines, posts


This is a weekly meme, for all you ‘First Page Browsers’

Cover image of the book 'Happily Whatever After' by author Stewart Lewis





“It was a well-groomed Scottie dog that first attracted me to what I called the Elite Dog Park, a mound of Astroturf in the shape of an elongated triangle tucked into a trendy section of the city near Dupont Circle. I was walking around aimlessly on an early spring day, and I noticed the dog’s owner, dressed in a three-piece suit, cream on cream, right out of The Great Gatsby. He pulled out a shiny silver bowl from his leather briefcase and poured the Scottie some Pellegrino from the signature green bottle. The dog took a few licks and then smiled, as if all the other dogs were so beneath him, drinking (gasp) tap water that flowed from a little fountain in the corner of the park. What surprised me the most was that all the other dog owners didn’t seem to notice. Perhaps they’d seen it before? I found my mouth agape, and I was magnetically drawn through the double wrought iron gates.

Of course, I didn’t know that would be the day that changed everything. After four years of the disaster that was my relationship with Jack, I had also recently lost my job in New York City and moved in with my brother, Brady, in DC, where he was a trending restaurateur. His apartment, which he rarely spent any time in, was a modern penthouse in Logan Circle. It was super chic, with floor-to-ceiling windows, marble bathrooms, and a wraparound terrace. I showed up there jobless, penniless, single, and quickly approaching my mid-thirties. I would say it was the hands of fate, but they felt more like claws.

After another few licks of the Pellegrino, the Scottie just sat at his owner’s feet, blinking slowly and looking around the park at the other dogs, which were mostly in a state of chaotic bliss. This little canine couldn’t be bothered, and Gatsby had a similar expression, glancing at the vintage Rolex on his tanned wrist. He was tall and quarterback-handsome, probably in his mid-forties. I wondered if he was straight. I tried to imagine myself as his educated wife, spending my time throwing parties for charities, procuring art for billionaires, lunching at the club, aging gracefully in our beach house….”

Cover image of the book 'Happily Whatever After' by author Stewart Lewis

So, you have taken a look, will you read the book?

Let me know what you think in the comments section below.

Just to give you an extra helping hand, here is the book’s premise …


Cover image of the book 'Happily Whatever After' by author Stewart LewisA dark comedy about putting yourself in unexpected places, reaching for your dreams, and believing in second chances.

Thirtysomething Page was content with her life in New York City—until it went to the dogs. Unceremoniously dumped by her boyfriend of four years and fired from her art gallery job in the same week, she flees to Washington, DC, and moves in with her big brother. She hopes the new setting and familial comfort will help her finally find her bearings. What Page finds instead is an unlikely refuge: a park for the neighborhood’s poshest pooches, and a quirky pack of companionable dog-run regulars who become fast friends.

Both four-legged and two-, these new allies offer Page a world of possibilities. The woman who hit rock bottom now has dreams: of having her own business, getting her own place, and even wilder ones about the ruggedly handsome owner of a vineyard and two equally fetching Bernese mountain dogs.

Unleashed from all that once held her back, Page finds everything might be falling into place. But just when she thinks her life is headed in the right direction, the road takes a sharp turn to show her just how unpredictable second chances can be. Will Page get her happily ever after? Is there even such a thing?

Witty, smartly funny, and modernly romantic, Happily Whatever After shows us all that sometimes imperfect can still be good enough.


Image of author Stewart Lewis

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You might also like to visit Gilion, over at ‘Rose City Reader‘, where you can share links to the book beginnings from her own reading schedule and that of many of our fellow bloggers.

There are always plenty of new authors and titles to be discovered, and you never know when that ‘must read’ book might appear!


Written by

I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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Written by Yvonne