Weiner's travels take him from Bhuton and Bangkok to Moldova and Miami--and many interesting places in between. Along the way, he tries to answer big questions, such as "Does money make us happy?" (In oil-rich Qatar, he determines not so much.) or "Is a warm climate and a beach abode the key to happiness?" (Here happy-go-lucky Iceland gives us all a resounding"nuh-uh.")
At times, I found myself tripping over the plethora of quotes from sociologists, psychologists, and experts in the field of Happiness Studies, occasionally bummed that the more "scientific" aspect of the search for happiness was encroaching on this very readable travel memoir. But I think that probably says a lot more about me than it does about Weiner. (Do I sound unhappy? Is this too meta?) Ultimately he's funny, sincere, and raises a lot of good questions about the geographic and relational aspects of being (or not being) happy.
Weiner may be a grump, but he's a grump with a lot of heart and a lot of good humor. Read up!
Is there a place in which you think you'd be truly happy? (I wasn't kidding about that sheep ranch...)