The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

From the Publisher: "The story of a solitary green notebook that brings together six strangers and leads to unexpected friendship, and even love

Julian Jessop, an eccentric, lonely artist and septuagenarian believes that most people aren't really honest with each other. But what if they were? And so he writes--in a plain, green journal--the truth about his own life and leaves it in his local café. It's run by the incredibly tidy and efficient Monica, who furtively adds her own entry and leaves the book in the wine bar across the street. Before long, the others who find the green notebook add the truths about their own deepest selves--and soon find each other In Real Life at Monica's Café.

The Authenticity Project's cast of characters--including Hazard, the charming addict who makes a vow to get sober; Alice, the fabulous mommy Instagrammer whose real life is a lot less perfect than it looks online; and their other new friends--is by turns quirky and funny, heartbreakingly sad and painfully true-to-life. It's a story about being brave and putting your real self forward--and finding out that it's not as scary as it seems. In fact, it looks a lot like happiness".

I really wanted to like this book, but it was just okay for me. I liked the concept of “The Authenticity Project” and how the notebook was passed from character to character. I also enjoyed the diversity of the cast of characters and the friendship that they created but I just didn’t feel connected to these characters and their story. I felt it difficult to stay engaged to this book. This is most likely simply a mismatch of reader to book as others have reviewed this book much more positively.

Thanks to Netgalley and Penguin Random House Canada for the ARC of this book in exchange for the honest review provided here.

My rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️/5 stars.

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