LITTLE FIRES EVERYWHERE - CELESTE NG
Title: Little Fires Everywhere
Author: Celeste Ng
Published: September 2017
In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned--from the layout of the winding roads, to the colors of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.
Enter Mia Warren--an enigmatic artist and single mother--who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenaged daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.
TAY'S REVIEW ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
Nicky read this guy first and rated it low, so I had a preconceived notion that I was going to find it more on the slow side. I was pretty stoked to find that there was nothing boring about it. This book was JUICYYYY. Something I thought Celeste Ng did an incredible job of was telling a story in a way that made the reader dislike a certain character, but then go on to tell that character's story in a way that evoked sympathy. Yet another lesson in the importance of not falling victim to pre-conceptions and initial snap judgements. There were major Mean Girls vibes towards the start when it came to Pearl being swept up in Lexie’s flashy, privileged world that slowly ate away at her own identity (Cady Heron, anyone?). The irony of Izzy wishing she was a Warren and Pearl wishing she was a Richardson was also not lost on me. I loved that there were multiple story lines intertwining and thus several main characters. I read this book quicker than I usually would, because I just COULD NOT put it down. Brb signing up to Hulu to binge the miniseries 🙋🏼♀️
NICKY'S REVIEW ⭐️⭐️
Another Reese recommendation, and sadly another “eehhh” for me. I dove into this one head first with excitement because of the hype, and was so ready to read it quickly. The story of American high-class town, Shaker Heights and its residents who live by rules and regulations to uphold this status. There is a consistent theme of ignorance in the town which only newcomers Mia and Pearl can see. Then comes a series of events or “little fires” which slowly unravel until the plot reaches its climax. Don’t get me wrong, there were some elements I liked and the overall concept was interesting. But for me, it dragged. It may sound harsh, but I felt like I was waiting for it to captivate me and it just never did. I put this down to the tempo and the lack of execution in portraying the message. Coming off as almost slightly juvenile, there seemed to be no real substance and the characters came across as surface level (except for Izzy, who was my favourite), and it was not enough for me to engross myself in the story.