Hector is a psychiatrist. A successful psychiatrist who enjoys his job and is very good at it. Because he likes people and is interested in them.
But Hector had a concern. Why were so many people who had everything – career success, money, family, friends – not happy. It really worried him.
And that was why, when one of his patients told him that he looked tired, he decided to take a holiday. To travel the world and uncover the answer to the question that caused him so much concern.
Where does happiness come from?
Now this may be sounding a little simplistic. A little child-like even. And in a way it is – Hector’s story is written in the style of a children’s book. But it works because that perfectly balances an underlying intelligence and a serious theme. And that particular combination turns this little book into a lovely fable for grown-ups.
And so to Hector’s journey.
He crisscrossed the globe, meeting an extraordinary array of characters, and getting into – and out of – some very strange situations. His professional skills and his genuine interest in people came in very useful.
Those characters and those experiences bring light and shade to the story, and they allow Hector to build up a list of twenty-five important lessons about happiness.
Hector is an engaging character and his is a lovely story. it is warm and insightful, and it cleverly avoids the pitfalls of silliness and sentimentality.
It’s the sort of story that I could probably find a hole in if I wanted to, but I don’t want to. It’s that kind of book!
And so to the final question. Does Hector get a happy ending? Well, that would be telling!
But there are sequels, and so the ending of this book is not goodbye for good.
I’m looking forward to meeting Hector again one of these days.
Translated by Lorenza Garcia