A round-the-world trip uncovering the global secrets of happiness, from the internationally bestselling author of The Year of Living Danishly and Leap Year

The global secrets on how to be happy

Atlas of Happiness


From ikigai and forest bathing in Japan to hyggelagom and fika in Scandinavia and the ‘Gross National Happiness’ of Bhutan; from the tradition of Chinese New Year cleaning to the South African concept of ubuntu – and many more along the way – Helen Russell will uncover the global secrets of happiness, and how they can change our lives. Whoever you are and wherever you’re from, there’s much to be learned from this round-the-world happiness trip.



Feeling terrified of that upcoming job interview? Take inspiration from the Icelanders and get some Þetta reddast – the unwavering belief that everything will work out in the end.

Lost your way in life? Make like the Chinese and find your xing fu, or the thing that gives you real purpose.

Too much on your plate? The Italians can help you learn the fine art of dolce far niente, aka the sweetness of doing nothing at all.

Overwhelmed by busyness and disconnected from nature? The Swedish have a solution – just find your smultronställe, or ‘wild strawberry patch’, your perfect escape from the rest of the world.












From Australia to Wales, via Bhutan, Ireland, Finland, Turkey, Syria, Japan and many more besides, The Atlas of Happiness uncovers the global secrets to happiness, and how they can change our lives.



Helen Russell Two Roads Books

Helen Russell is a journalist and the bestselling author of The Year of Living Danishly and Leap Year. Formerly editor of, she now lives in Denmark and works as a Scandinavia correspondent for the Guardian, as well as writing a column on Denmark for the Telegraph and features for The TimesThe ObserverGraziaThe Wall Street Journal and the Independent.

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