Death alone can cause many problems, and the death of a mother is one of the biggest problems a teenage girl can face. In The Pursuit of Happiness, Betsy's mom dies from cancer. Betsy Ross Irving, her brother Ben Franklin Irving, and her dad now have to deal with grief. Each character then quietly goes off on their own, each dealing with death in his or her own way. Dinner time, which was once as a family, is now fast food time in their lonely rooms. Betsy solves the problem by one day making dinner for her family. At the dinner table, they shared good memories that they experienced with their mom. In the end, they learn how to be the loving Irving family that they once were. This book has a great message and I highly recommend this book to people of all ages.