Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings" Book Review by Nicky

Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings"
Concise critical analysis of Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings."
# 128430 | 903 words | 0 sources | APA | 2010 | US
Published on Jul 22, 2010 in Literature (Canadian)

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This paper provides an analytical overview of Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings," in which six sketches illustrate vast differences between the beginnings and middles of six stories that end the same way. The paper explains that this premise is predicated on the fact that ultimately everyone dies, conveniently ignoring the fact that a story need not be carrying through to this ultimate conclusion to have relevance. The paper notes that Atwood's point is to stress the importance of understanding how the conclusion is reached and why; Atwood's other point in "Happy Endings" is that the story endings themselves are mere window dressing. The paper concludes that the heart of the story is in the reasons why that mutual love does not occur.

From the Paper:

"The examples of B and C illustrate stories with conflict. The point Atwood makes towards the end is that it is not the actions themselves that are the main point of interest, but the reasons for the actions. The conflict that arises between Mary and John in B derives from a lack of love on the part of John. The heart of the story is not that John does not love Mary, but why he does not and why she does love him. These questions reach into the core of the two characters and are the key to insight."

Cite this Book Review:

APA Format

Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings" (2010, July 22) Retrieved September 26, 2021, from

MLA Format

"Margaret Atwood's "Happy Endings"" 22 July 2010. Web. 26 September. 2021. <>