Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste NgLittle Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ngsticker-burst

Little Fires Everywhere

byCeleste Ng

Hardcover | September 12, 2017

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The #1 New York Times bestseller!

Soon to be a Hulu limited series starring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington.

Named a Best Book of the Year by: 
People, The Washington Post, Bustle, Esquire, Southern Living, The Daily Beast, GQ, Entertainment Weekly, NPR, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Audible, Goodreads, Library Reads, Book of the Month, PasteKirkus ReviewsSt. Louis Post-Dispatch, and many more...
I read Little Fires Everywhere in a single, breathless sitting. Jodi Picoult

“To say I love this book is an understatement. It’s a deep psychological mystery about the power of motherhood, the intensity of teenage love, and the danger of perfection. It moved me to tears.” Reese Witherspoon

“Extraordinary . . . books like Little Fires Everywhere don't come along often. —John Green

From the bestselling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives.

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. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.

When old family friends of the Richardsons attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town—and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides.  Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia’s past. But her obsession will come at unexpected and devastating costs.

Little Fires Everywhere explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, and the ferocious pull of motherhood—and the danger of believing that following the rules can avert disaster.

Perfect for book clubs! Visit for discussion guides and more.
Celeste Ng grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Shaker Heights, Ohio. She graduated from Harvard University and earned an MFA from the University of Michigan. Her debut novel, Everything I Never Told You, was a New York Times bestseller and winner of the Massachusetts Book Award, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, and...
Title:Little Fires EverywhereFormat:HardcoverProduct dimensions:352 pages, 9.28 × 6.23 × 1.09 inShipping dimensions:9.28 × 6.23 × 1.09 inPublished:September 12, 2017Publisher:Penguin Publishing GroupLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0735224293

ISBN - 13:9780735224292


Rated 5 out of 5 by from I was hooked Great book with great characters and story. Highly recommend
Date published: 2019-04-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Exploration of Motherhood Little Fires Everywhere is an interesting book full of dichotomies and symbolism around fires and starting over. The story is set in the planned, manicured, and carefully regulated community of Shaker Heights where the Richardson family lives. They follow the rules and have a lovely, upper class suburban life, especially the mother, Elena. Elena rents an apartment she owns to Mia and Pearl — and Mia is Elena’s polar opposite: an artistic, single mom rebel whose possessions fit in her car. These two families are juxtaposed very well in this book, neither one quite understanding, and are rather suspicious of, the other. It’s easy to be drawn to the bohemian Mia and her carefree ways, though there were times when she annoyed me, especially when it came to her daughter’s needs. On the other hand, Elena was harder to like, but I did feel for her and her self-imposed need to do everything “right.” How each of these women mothers is scrutinized and neither is perfect, though it could be argued they are each doing the best that they can. This leads the book to exploring nearly every aspect of what makes a mother and how to become a mother — pregnancy, miscarriage and infertility, adoption, abortion, surrogacy, virgin birth, kidnapping, … Overall, I did enjoy this book, though it is a bit on the slow side, opting more to explore the characters and the themes rather than having lots of action.
Date published: 2019-03-17
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Had all of the potential, but let me down. I had heard many reviews from colleagues, in additional to reading many... and I definitely don't agree with the hype. The storyline progresses at a snail pace, although I thought that this would have lead to something incredibly dramatic.With that being said, I felt it had all the makings of what could become a really good read. Lots of little avenues to explore and make exciting. Unfortunately that didn't happen. The moments that felt like I should be pulled in were glossed over. All in all, an easy read, but kind of a bore.
Date published: 2018-10-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book - hard to put down once you get into it I really enjoyed this book. It took a little bit to get into, but once I did it was hard to put down. The characters are so well developed and captivating. The story has so many twists and turns.
Date published: 2018-09-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good, but not great I found that this book to awhile to get into. It wasn't until about halfway through that I started to read it consistently everyday - that's how long it seemed to take to entice me. I did enjoy the mix of characters and how they were written. Overall, I would say the novel was good, but not as great as the hype surrounding it. Still worth reading in my opinion.
Date published: 2018-09-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Virgin Suicide Vibes Really loved this. It gave me definite Virgin Suicide vibes. The writing was beautiful and the characters were captivating.
Date published: 2018-08-30
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Too Wordy I wasn't a big fan of the author's first novel Everything I Never Told You despite it's positive reviews, but I still decided to give her second novel a try. Although the story was kind of interesting, I found a majority of the novel to be too wordy for my liking. I found myself feeling disinterested in some of the overly detailed background written for some of the characters. Overall, I feel a bit disappointed and not sure if I would pick up anymore of the author's novels in the future.
Date published: 2018-08-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyed it a lot! It's a story of many often complicated relationships between mother and daughter. Great read!
Date published: 2018-08-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Great book, I coudn't put it down. If you like "Everything I Never Told You" you will love this book as well.
Date published: 2018-08-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book The book started off a bit slow but once the plot developed I couldn't put the book down. I did find the ending a bit unfinished as some of the other reviewers wrote, but overall I think the book was well written and provides different perspectives on motherhood and identities.
Date published: 2018-08-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Extremely enjoyed, but did not fall in love with this Don’t get me wrong, it was a good book with a tantalizing plot and interesting characters. But is it a life-changing book? Not really. I just wasn’t really blown away by it like I thought I’d be. I definitely don’t regret buying it, in fact, I recommend it as a casual summer read for anyone who can get their hands on it. I just think all the hype I heard about this book got my expectations a bit too high.
Date published: 2018-08-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Worthy of the Hype This book had been mentioned by a few booktubers and I decided to give it a try. I was not disappointed. As one review put it: "I liked that I could find the essence of the title throughout the story." I think the best way I can review this without spoilers, is that it really forced me to take a step back and really examine the characters from every angles, despite my own convictions. I didn't expect to feel so strongly about this book.
Date published: 2018-08-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Deserves the hype! I mostly read YA fiction, so when my sister gave me this book, I was hesitant. It took a few pages to get used to the slow pace and descriptive prose, but once I did, I couldn't put it down. The focus on mother-daughter relationships of all kinds and how they grow, change, and affect us throughout our lives was beautiful.
Date published: 2018-08-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Reads like a character based thriller I really enjoyed this book. I love how Ng sets the story in the mid '90s and uses various cultural references to set the scene. This book is a wonderful commentary on motherhood and questions, "who is a mother"? I also really enjoyed the development of the Richardson teenager characters. This book was a quick read, but has some powerful messages. highly recommend!
Date published: 2018-08-01
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Here's a book I would set on fire I bought this book for my daughter-in-law for Christmas based on all of the rave reviews. I recently picked it up for myself to see what all of the fuss was about. I struggled to about the halfway point before I abandoned it. I found it juvenile and predicable and disinteresting. The characters are dull. The plot is duller. I know more about Shaker Heights than I'd ever care to know - but that was the most interesting part. I owe my daughter-in-law an apology and a better Christmas gift. Hated it. A lot.
Date published: 2018-07-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from great read An interesting read about where blame is placed in crazy situations.
Date published: 2018-07-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Ng is such a beautiful writer Man is Celeste Ng good at family & interpersonal dynamics and small town politics. It's a slow burn of a novel that I could not put down, but literally gasped in places in response to the choices that characters made.
Date published: 2018-07-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Beautiful Prose and Complex Characters Ng is able to capture the flow of everyday life so well that even though these characters have lived lives far more complex than me I know exactly how it feels to be in their position. That, on top of beautiful writing, makes me fall in love with Ng's work every time I read a new page.
Date published: 2018-07-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from good! A friend lent this to me and it was such a good read!!! I really enjoyed the sotryline and her writing style.
Date published: 2018-07-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Couldn't Put it Down! Had seen so many recommendations for this book, but didn't feel the excitement to pick it up. I finally did, and WOW! Loved it! Will be looking for her first book now, loved her writing style.
Date published: 2018-07-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Gripping I really enjoyed Celeste Ng's first book 'Everything I Never Told You'. She's really honed her craft with this one. Well-written and suspenseful with topical themes. #plumreview
Date published: 2018-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fast Read, Better than her first Though I must say this reads like a well-written YA novel, it's hard to put down.
Date published: 2018-07-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved this book So incredibly well-written. This book evokes so much empathy for many of the characters, as we get to see what each of them thinks/feels about the same situation. It doesn't necessarily have a huge climax, but rather a bunch of mini climaxes throughout the book. I couldn't put it down and was so sad when it ended!
Date published: 2018-07-10
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Anti-climactic I too found this book didn't live up to the hype. It almost felt to me as if this book was originally written for teens and the publishers decided that some of the content was better suited for an adult audience. While I didn't hate it, most of the characters seemed hollow or cliched. It was a decent quick read but don't count on to be a big impact or real page turner.
Date published: 2018-07-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great book Really draws you in, well written. I want a sequel! Celeste Ng does not disappoint!
Date published: 2018-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read Made it through this in no time. Very well written. An easy read but not short on substance.
Date published: 2018-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Wish it didn't end! I absolutely loved this book! It had me hooked. The author did a fantastic job painting the story. I was sad it was over because I could have read it more of it. I hope there is a second book based on how the book ended. Can't wait to see the mini series!
Date published: 2018-06-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from brillant Engaging, inspiring and mind blowing. This story will stay with you long after you have turned the final page.
Date published: 2018-06-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good book Never really into fiction books but this was a great read with interesting characters and compelling plotline
Date published: 2018-06-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Better than the Last I much preferred this book to the author's previous novel Everything I Never Told you. The plot has much more substance and is a bit more original. I appreciate the author's unique point of view and cultural additions. The end does wrap up a bit quickly however, would have liked another chapter or two so i left off one star
Date published: 2018-06-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Incredible This book was one that I found incredibly interesting - the storylines weren't particularly exciting, but yet I was captivated by every word. I thought this book was incredibly well written, and the stories of family and race were ones that I found amazing. This book is definitely worth the hype.
Date published: 2018-06-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Book Quick read. The author does a great job of telling several stories along side for various perspectives. The author touches on topics that are not clearly black and white.
Date published: 2018-06-13
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Lived Up To The Reviews! There was a lot of hype around this book - and I was so happy that it was totally worth it!
Date published: 2018-06-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A good book A great read, it started slow but before you know it you are enthralled
Date published: 2018-06-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Long, slow burn Ng does a great job of character portraiture here; the little things that leave you knowing the people in the story very well. Its rare to feel that way about several characters in a story as you watch the dynamics play out. It was a long slow burn with enough pull you keep you reading without it feeling slow.
Date published: 2018-06-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it An entertaining book, but one that dealt with real issues that covers both sides and why things often aren't so black and white.
Date published: 2018-06-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Mixed I loved the book something about the ending just set me off I was like really and not so impressed.
Date published: 2018-06-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Absolutely Gripping! This book did not grab me initially. I thought the opening was rather slow and the amount of characters introduced was a tad tedious. However it surprised me because as I gradually continue to delve into the storyline of the McCullough's and the Richardson's I started to become emotionally invested in the story and the outcome of the plot. The ending was bittersweet but overall this book is definitely worth all of the hype.
Date published: 2018-06-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Better then her first one! Loved her first novel and the second was even better.
Date published: 2018-06-02
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not bad, but not great This book was a bit of a let down for me, after all the hype surrounding it. It was a good story, but very generic, I would call this more of a young adult novel. It took me a long time to finish, as it just did not hold my attention or interest. The ending was disappointing, and didn't feel complete to me, it seemed more like the author didn't really know how to end the story.
Date published: 2018-05-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Heart-wrenching. I hadn't heard much about this book (or Celeste Ng) before reading, and I was very impressed. Woven through different timelines, this novel shares perspectives on motherhood, adolescence, and identity. It's a bit of a slow burn at first (in that the central plot point is only introduced about 1/3 of the way in), but to me that was fine. Ng is a master at scene-setting, and I loved the initial chapters that paint the picture of Shaker Heights. This novel is being made into a miniseries, but I think there's a lot captured that won't necessarily translate to TV in the artful way Ng has written it. I'd recommend reading the novel first.
Date published: 2018-05-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Enjoyable This was an enjoyable read! A good story with lots of characters to keep up with.
Date published: 2018-05-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Enjoyable Read I really enjoyed this read. I like Ng's style of writing, it differs from the style that is so popular at the moment. I really loved these characters. Motherhood is a major theme and having been brought up by a single Mom, I found it touching. Look forward to her next one!
Date published: 2018-05-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read I enjoyed this book just as much as "Everything I Never Told You". Celeste Ng clearly has a style of writing that is different than most of the "hot" books that have been coming out recently. I loved Motherhood theme in this one. I look forward to the film/TV adaptation, and I also look forward to her next book!
Date published: 2018-05-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Okay Not what I was expecting when I picked up the book. I think there was more hype than necessary on this book. I enjoyed it but felt a little disappointed with the ending. Felt lackluster
Date published: 2018-05-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Well written book This story follows two families with different morals and values, stirring up questions related to race, family, societal norms and if things can really be black and white.
Date published: 2018-05-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A beautiful puzzle, masterfully pieced together This book weaves together so many layers of tension. At first, it seems as though they are all unrelated. However, the ending ties all these strings together. The power of Ng's storytelling is extremely powerful and beautiful. Another strong aspect in this book deals with the timeline. Even though the reader is flipped through time quite often, you never become confused. I think the best way to sum up Little Fires Everywhere is that you're given the pieces in the beginning, and Ng places each piece together, forming a tender and shocking story.
Date published: 2018-05-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Really touching book I personally loved this book, but it's probably not for everyone. If you're looking for a bestseller like Girl on the Train or anything in that vein where lots is constantly happening and there is inherent mystery or wondering within the events of the story, then you might be a bit let down. A lot of people really need novels to resolve more assuredly, or to be more final, but what I love about this novel is it finishes appropriately to the kinds of characters in the story. It is much like you are watching them from the perspective of a person living in Shaker Heights, like watching strangers passing through and not knowing where the rest of their lives might go. That said, the story itself is beautiful and Ng weaves it wonderfully. It is about the different kind of families and the lives they live, what happens when they intersect, when the outsider is let in and inevitably in some way pushed out.
Date published: 2018-05-05
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Couldn't finish I don't know what it was about this book but I just couldn't get past page 25! On top of took me two weeks to get there! I eventually returned the book.
Date published: 2018-05-03
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Loved the book at first, especially at the halfway point, it felt like you had to keep reading to get to the bottom of the story, but was pretty disappointed with the end. Felt unfinished, but maybe that was the point. #plumreviews
Date published: 2018-05-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from YES! I LOVED THIS! Ng is such a powerful writer. I loved how she interweaved the characters stories. This is a book about motherhood and the people that truly "see" us. I also loved her first novel. I'll read anything Ng releases!
Date published: 2018-04-22
Rated 3 out of 5 by from It was alright. This book did not live up to it's hype. The premise was interesting and the beginning started of dramatically but by the end of the book, you think "Okay so what now?." The story lines were interesting, just wish she fulfilled it's potential. I would still tell a friend to read it.
Date published: 2018-04-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved it! I love this book! I was about 30 or 40 pages in and liking it, but not to the point of not being able to put it down, and then there was a huge snowstorm that gave me the day off -- I decided to read, and I ended up finishing it that afternoon. Once Celeste Ng started delving into Mia's past, I could not stop turning the pages! Highly recommend.
Date published: 2018-04-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Excellent This is a character-driven novel, and by the end of it you’ll miss the people you’ve been reading about. There’s lots going on here - race, dreams, family, adoption - but Celeste Ng has a knack for making all of the characters and thoughts seem authentic. This would be a good vacation read (although there are some heavier themes), but you might find it hard to put the book down!
Date published: 2018-04-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Compelling read This book tackles a lot of difficult topics- race, class, and familial relationships- while spinning an absolutely beautiful story.
Date published: 2018-04-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Confusing At First, Gets Good This book was a little confusing at first for me. I continued to read and I'm glad I did because it all made sense and it got really good! I can't wait for the movie!
Date published: 2018-03-31
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great read! love the story line. recommend this for more mature reader.
Date published: 2018-03-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great read The character development in this novel was inspired. Definitely recommend
Date published: 2018-03-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from An Interesting and Fascinating Read An interesting look at what compels people to look in to the lives of others under the guise of trying to help. The characters were well rounded and you understood their motivation if you didn't agree with their actions.
Date published: 2018-03-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Interesting and compelling read This book does not shy away from difficult topics like class, race, and family dynamics. I would recommend this book to every adult and teenager, as it is a wonderful piece of fiction with truth embedded into it.
Date published: 2018-03-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Morals and Motherhood. The story is about a Chinese baby abandoned at a fire station and the subsequent court battle when the single mother surfaces six months later to try to reclaim her daughter from the family in the process of adopting her. Very well written It contains important themes of motherhood, friendship, the significance of art, the burden of secrets, and the behaviors of community. All sorts of details are woven together in a terrific way but a little more work on the ending would've made it 5 stars. Still a fantastic read. #plumreviews.
Date published: 2018-03-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A beautiful study of sacrifice Beautifully written interwoven stories that examine surface and depth, what we sacrifice and what we hold dear.
Date published: 2018-03-09
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderfully Complex This book doesn't shy away from the racism, classism, or complex family dynamics. This book covers a lot and jumps back and forth so as to keep you flipping the pages. Beneath everything, there was an essence of art and mystery captured so perfectly that I couldn't help but enjoy this novel.
Date published: 2018-03-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very interesting This book was very interesting as the story unfolded, but the ending was a little ambiguous and I couldn't decide if I liked the ending or not.
Date published: 2018-02-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing Writing of a Family I love the way the Celeste Ng writes about the complicated families in this book. It's set in a small town, but the characters are so large. Recommended.
Date published: 2018-02-26
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Didn't Live Up To Hype I checked this book out of the library last month and struggled to read it. I did finally give up about three chapters in.
Date published: 2018-02-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from loved this amazing book goodreads recommended this book to me and I dont regret reading this book. It was such a lovely read
Date published: 2018-02-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing Read! I really enjoyed reading 'Little Fires Everywhere.' It was very easy to follow and definitely a page-turner! Celeste was able to capture her characters with great depth and this gave me an intuitive understanding of each characters' personality and motives. While not a lot happened in the plot, readers are able to learn the nature of the characters, how they develop, and how they all fit in together. Overall, this was definitely a page-turner and I would recommend giving this book a read!
Date published: 2018-02-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Character-driven and fascinating. The Nitty-Gritty: There was a lot happening in this book. There were lots of flashbacks, and we saw the story unfold from at least ten different perspectives. I loved how big the scope of the story was. I loved how carefully Celeste Ng unwrapped each layer, presenting it to the reader like a meticulously planned 6 course meal. That being said, I struggled to get through this book. The story was interesting, and the characters were fascinating, but I rarely felt compelled to pick the book back up after I put it down. I didn't want to spend my time with most of these characters, because the majority of them were astoundingly self-absorbed and infuriatingly obtuse. I still want to talk about this book, though. It looks at so many fascinating topics: motherhood, surrogacy and adoption, racism, classism, community planning, the value of art, materialism, adolescent sexuality...I feel like so many conversations can be rooted in this text. Even though I had to push myself to get through this book, I am very glad that I read it. The Verdict: Little Fires Everywhere is not meant to be devoured in one sitting. It is best experienced slowly, and carefully thought about. While not fast-paced or action-packed, the characters will root themselves in your subconscious, and they'll stick around for a while.
Date published: 2018-02-23
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful There were so many different stories happening within this one book - from Mia and Pearl’s nomadic lives, each of the Richardson children’s teenage troubles, Bebe’s loss of her child, the McCulloughs’ adoption feats, and so on and so forth. Even though there happened to be many side stories, they all tied together nicely into a story that made me feel as if a constant weight was on my chest. It made me wonder if any of these characters would find peace happiness in the end. Little Fires Everywhere wasn’t a cheerful story, but it offered a glimpse into the lives of many troubled souls.
Date published: 2018-02-18
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Character-Driven This was a very slow-moving character-driven novel. It was very emotional at times and deals with a somewhat controversial issue that I'm sure will get a reaction out of anyone reading it. You'll feel a lot of different emotions and come out of it conflicted and exhausted. Nevertheless, it's worth it.
Date published: 2018-02-14
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Insightful and a real page-turner Celeste Ng crafts such an engaging story in "Little Fires Everywhere". It sweeps you along, providing insight into each character and the relationships between them and the wider community. I loved how the story shifted, slowly revealing complex familial and community dynamics, ultimately revealing what motivated the fire that opens the novel. My one criticism is that the motive didn't seem to match the conduct. I think there could have been an equally powerful step that character could have taken that would have seemed more complimentary to the betrayal she was feeling and what she hoped to accomplish. That said, I will continue to read anything Celeste Ng writes because her style is so engaging and writing so confident.
Date published: 2018-02-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good book Little Fires Everywhere is an interesting book full of dichotomies and symbolism around fires and starting over. The story is set in the planned, manicured, and carefully regulated community of Shaker Heights where the Richardson family lives. They follow the rules and have a lovely, upper class suburban life, especially the mother, Elena. Elena rents an apartment she owns to Mia and Pearl — and Mia is Elena’s polar opposite: an artistic, single mom rebel whose possessions fit in her car. These two families are juxtaposed very well in this book, neither one quite understanding, and are rather suspicious of, the other. It’s easy to be drawn to the bohemian Mia and her carefree ways, though there were times when she annoyed me, especially when it came to her daughter’s needs. On the other hand, Elena was harder to like, but I did feel for her and her self-imposed need to do everything “right.” How each of these women mothers is scrutinized and neither is perfect, though it could be argued they are each doing the best that they can. This leads the book to exploring nearly every aspect of what makes a mother and how to become a mother — pregnancy, miscarriage and infertility, adoption, abortion, surrogacy, virgin birth, kidnapping, … Overall, I did enjoy this book, though it is a bit on the slow side, opting more to explore the characters and the themes rather than having lots of action.
Date published: 2018-02-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Very well written Could not put this one down. An easier read, but jam packed with extensive detail and great character development. Such a great plot. Will look for other books by this author.
Date published: 2018-02-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Left you wanting more.. I borrowed the e-book from the local library and am so glad I got the chance to read this novel. Celeste really makes the characters so human with all their faults and strengths, she shares their inner quirks so well. In the end I was left with the feeling that I wanted the story to go on a bit more - almost wanted to know what happened to the mother and daughter later. You know.. sort of wanted to know they are okay.
Date published: 2018-01-30
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read, but not memorable I read this book over Christmas and before writing this review, I had to remind myself what the story was about. All that to say, I feel like Celeste had interesting and quirky characters, an interesting premise, but the book lacked an overall 'Wow" factor in my opinion. Not as memorable as "Everything I never told you"
Date published: 2018-01-26
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Liked it Really going to be thinking about this story a long time afterwards.
Date published: 2018-01-25
Rated 3 out of 5 by from yes Definitely deserves the hype
Date published: 2018-01-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What an intro to this author! This book was fantastic! Well written, good character development. Celeste Ng definitely deserves the hype around her. Immediately purchased Everything I Never Told You. Can't wait for more books by Celeste.
Date published: 2018-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Loved my Christmas Gift! I really liked this book and the suspense and mystery kept me reading past my usual bedtime. Celeste Ng expertly manipulated my opinions of the characters, making me love them one minute and judge them harshly the next. Just as the custody battle made everyone in Shaker Heights question what was right or wrong, Celeste Ng made me consider and re-consider my own judgements. I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in reading about mother/daughter relationships. This is a major theme in the book and is tackled from multiple angles. Ng also cautions readers on the danger of perfection and suggests that things in life are seldom black and white.
Date published: 2018-01-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing book Subtle, well written, good character development, easy to read. Couldn't put it down.
Date published: 2018-01-13
Rated 3 out of 5 by from detailed very detailed just not my fav
Date published: 2018-01-12
Rated 5 out of 5 by from My Christmas morning read I loved this book! I read it as John Green had recommended on twitter. The story captivated me and it is a fast read. Great characters and story.
Date published: 2018-01-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Very detailed that sparks the imagination This is a battle of the norm and change where in community hardly accepts the evolution of what is acceptable in time.
Date published: 2018-01-11
Rated 3 out of 5 by from ok I was a little disappointed with the ending
Date published: 2017-12-31
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Interesting Interesting narrative. It was thought-provoking and I while I did find the pace gradual, it's still an interesting read.
Date published: 2017-12-28
Rated 1 out of 5 by from Too many controversial topics touched in surface in one book Characters were not sensible! so many useless information pieces between pages that will not help in understanding the character's either background or decision! So many important and sensitive topics touched in surface or underestimated! There is adoption, abortion, poverty, racism, relationship virgin single mum!, loss of sibling, and much more...all in one book!
Date published: 2017-12-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Slow start but full of depth At first I thought this book had a slow start, but after I got into it I really fell in love with Ng's storytelling. If you are looking for something character-driven and full of depth, this would be a good one to check out! #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-27
Rated 2 out of 5 by from One dimensional characters and questionable grammar The storylines were okay, but they were watered down with truly bland and one-dimensional characters who showed zero growth. Furthermore, this author's use of grammar was abysmal! There were so many sentences with colons AND semicolons AND dashes- quick writing tip for you, don't use run-on sentences. It was very distracting. I pushed through it in hopes that there would at least be a satisfying ending, and there was not.
Date published: 2017-12-24
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great book This book starts with a dramatic event, but I still felt that it started gently. The author introduced us to the characters so easily, with just a few words to create an impression. I was drawn in quickly and read this book in a few days. A unique and thought-provoking story.
Date published: 2017-12-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read! I really enjoyed this book! Super interesting but I was kind of disappointed with the ending though. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-12-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Pretty good book I enjoyed this book, but I liked her first novel more. Still good though.
Date published: 2017-12-07
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Didnt live up to the hype for me I heard so many great reviews for this book and I was really let down! I found there were different storys that had nothing to do with the other .. and also there wasn't even a wow moment. I read it to just finish it but it really wasn't for me
Date published: 2017-11-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read I really enjoyed this book! Kind of disappointed with the ending though. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-11-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good read I really enjoyed this book! Kind of disappointed with the ending though. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-11-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from masterfully written masterfully written, even if at times it seemed to lack the warmth of her earlier novel. still fascinating and worthwhile
Date published: 2017-11-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great read I really liked this book. From the beginning, I was hooked and wanted to know more. I loved all the storylines in this book.
Date published: 2017-11-09
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Good A little flat compared to "Everything I Never Told You" but still an amazing read.
Date published: 2017-09-18
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Little Fires Everywhere The characters sometimes felt a little too much like stereotypes, but the mystery surrounding Mia’s past, and also who would win the custody case kept me interested. I received this through a giveaway. #plumreview
Date published: 2017-08-29

Read from the Book

***This excerpt is from an advance uncorrected copy proof*** Copyright © 2017 Celeste Ng  1 Everyone in Shaker Heights was talking about it that summer: how Isabelle, the last of the Richardson children, had finally gone around the bend and burned the house down. All spring the gossip had been about little Mirabelle McCullough—or, depending which side you were on, May Ling Chow—and now, at last, there was something new and sensational to discuss. A little after noon on that Saturday in May, the shoppers pushing their grocery carts in Heinen’s heard the fire engines wail to life and careen away, toward the duck pond. By a quarter after twelve there were four of them parked in a haphazard red line along Parkland Drive, where all six bedrooms of the Richardson house were ablaze, and everyone within a half mile could see the smoke rising over the trees like a dense black thundercloud. Later people would say that the signs had been there all along: that Izzy was a little lunatic, that there had always been something off about the Richardson family, that as soon as they heard the sirens that morning they knew something terrible had happened. By then, of course, Izzy would be long gone, leaving no one to defend her, and people could—and did—say whatever they liked. At the moment the fire trucks arrived, though, and for quite a while afterward, no one knew what was happening. Neighbors clustered as close to the makeshift barrier—a police cruiser, parked crosswise a few hundred yards away—as they could and watched the firefighters unreel their hoses with the grim faces of men who recognized a hopeless cause. Across the street, the geese at the pond ducked their heads underwater for weeds, wholly unruffled by the commotion.Mrs. Richardson stood on the tree lawn, clutching the neck of her pale blue robe closed. Although it was already afternoon, she had still been asleep when the smoke detectors had sounded. She had gone to bed late, and had slept in on purpose, telling herself she deserved it after a rather difficult day. The night before, she had watched from an upstairs window as a car had finally pulled up in front of the house. The driveway was long and circular, a deep horseshoe arc bending from the curb to the front door and back—so the street was a good hundred feet away, too far for her to see clearly, and even in May, at eight o’clock it was almost dark, besides. But she had recognized the small tan Volkswagen of her tenant, Mia, its headlights shining. The passenger door opened and a slender figure emerged, leaving the door ajar: Mia’s teenage daughter, Pearl. The dome light lit the inside of the car like a shadow box, but the car was packed with bags nearly to the ceiling and Mrs. Richardson could only just make out the faint silhouette of Mia’s head, the messy topknot perched at the crown of her head. Pearl bent over the mailbox, and Mrs. Richardson imagined the faint squeak as the mailbox door opened, then shut. Then Pearl hopped back into the car and closed the door. The brake lights flared red, then winked out, and the car puttered off into the growing night. With a sense of relief, Mrs. Richardson had gone down to the mailbox and found a set of keys on a plain ring, with no note. She had planned to go over in the morning and check the rental house on Winslow Road, even though she already knew that they would be gone. It was because of this that she had allowed herself to sleep in, and now it was half past twelve and she was standing on the tree lawn in her robe and a pair of her son Trip’s tennis shoes, watching their house burn to the ground. When she had awoken to the shrill scream of the smoke detector, she ran from room to room looking for him, for Lexie, for Moody. It struck her that she had not looked for Izzy, as if she had known already that Izzy was to blame. Every bedroom was empty except for the smell of gasoline and a small crackling fire set directly in the middle of each bed, as if a demented Girl Scout had been camping there. By the time she checked the living room, the family room, the rec room, and the kitchen, the smoke had begun to spread, and she ran outside at last to hear the sirens, alerted by their home security system, already approaching. Out in the driveway, she saw that Trip’s Jeep was gone, as was Lexie’s Explorer, and Moody’s bike, and, of course, her husband’s sedan. He usually went into the office to play catch-up on Saturday mornings. Someone would have to call him at work. She remembered then that Lexie, thank god, had stayed over at Serena Wong’s house last night. She wondered where Izzy had gotten to. She wondered where her sons were, and how she would find them to tell them what had happened. By the time the fire was put out the house had not, despite Mrs. Richardson’s fears, quite burned to the ground. The windows were all gone but the brick shell of the house remained, damp and blackened and steaming, and most of the roof, the dark slate shingles gleaming like fish scales from their recent soaking. The Richardsons would not be allowed inside for another few days, until the fire department’s engineers had tested each of the beams still standing, but even from the tree lawn—the closest the yellow caution tape would allow them to come—they could see there was little inside to be saved. “Jesus Christ,” Lexie said. She was perched on the roof of her car, which was now parked across the street, on the grass bordering the duck pond. She and Serena had still been asleep, curled up back-to-back in Serena’s queen size, when Dr. Wong shook her shoulder just after one, whispering, “Lexie. Lexie, honey. Wake up. Your mom just called.” They had stayed up past two a.m., talking—as they had been all spring—about little Mirabelle McCullough, arguing about whether the judge had decided right or wrong, about whether her new parents should’ve gotten custody or if she should’ve been given back to her own mother. “Her name isn’t even really Mirabelle McCullough, for god’s sake,” Serena had said at last, and they’d lapsed into sullen, troubled silence until they both fell asleep.Now Lexie watched the smoke billow from her bedroom window, the front one that looked over the lawn, and thought of everything inside that was gone. Every T-shirt in her dresser, every pair of jeans in her closet. All the notes Serena had written her since the sixth grade, still folded in paper footballs, which she’d kept in a shoebox under her bed; the bed itself, the very sheets and comforter charred to a crisp. The rose corsage her boyfriend, Brian, had given her at homecoming, hung to dry on her vanity, the petals darkened from ruby to dried-blood red. Now it was nothing but ashes. In the change of clothes she had brought to Serena’s, Lexie realized suddenly, she was better off than the rest of her family: in the backseat she had a duffel bag, a pair of jeans, a toothbrush. Pajamas. She glanced at her brothers, at her mother, still in her bathrobe on their tree lawn, and thought, They have literally nothing but the clothes on their backs. Literally was one of Lexie’s favorite words, which she deployed even when the situation was anything but literal. In this case, for once, it was more or less true. Trip, from his spot beside her, absentmindedly ran one hand through his hair. The sun was high overhead now and the sweat made his curls stand up rather rakishly. He had been playing basketball at the community center when he heard fire trucks wailing, but had thought nothing of it. (This morning he had been particularly preoccupied, but in truth he likely would not have noticed anyway.) Then, at one, when everyone got hungry and decided to call it a game, he had driven home. True to form, even with the windows down he had not noticed the huge cloud of smoke wafting toward him, and he only began to realize something was wrong when he found his street blocked off by a police car. After ten minutes of explaining, he had finally been allowed to park his Jeep across from the house, where Lexie and Moody were already waiting. The three of them sat on the car’s roof in order, as they had in all the family portraits that had once hung in the stairwell and were now reduced to ash. Lexie, Trip, Moody: senior, junior, sophomore. Beside them they felt the hole that Izzy, the freshman, the black sheep, the wild card, had left behind— though they were still certain, all of them, that this hole would be temporary.“What was she thinking?” Moody muttered, and Lexie said, “Even she knows she’s gone too far this time, that’s why she ran off. When she comes back, Mom is going to murder her.”“Where are we going to stay?” Trip asked. A moment of silence unreeled as they contemplated their situation.“We’ll get a hotel room or something,” said Lexie finally. “I think that’s what Josh Trammell’s family did.” Everyone knew this story: how a few years ago Josh Trammell, a sophomore, had fallen asleep with a candle lit and burned his parents’ house down. The long-standing rumor at the high school was that it wasn’t a candle, it was a joint, but the house had been so thoroughly gutted there was no way to tell, and Josh had stuck to his candle story. Everyone still thought of him as that dumbass jock who burned the house down, even though that had been ages ago, and Josh had recently graduated from Ohio State with honors. Now, of course, Josh Trammell’s fire would no longer be the most famous fire in Shaker Heights. “One hotel room? For all of us?”“Whatever. Two rooms. Or we’ll stay at the Embassy Suites. I don’t know.” Lexie tapped her fingers against her knee. She wanted a cigarette, but after what had just happened—and in full view of her mother and ten firemen—she didn’t dare light one. “Mom and Dad will figure it out. And the insurance will pay for it.” Although she had only a vague sense of how insurance worked, this seemed plausible. In any case, this was a problem for the adults, not for them.The last of the firemen were emerging from the house, pulling the masks from their faces. Most of the smoke had gone, but a mugginess still hung everywhere, like the air in the bathroom after a long, hot shower. The roof of the car was getting hot, and Trip stretched his legs down the windshield, poking the wipers with the toe of his flip-flop. Then he started to laugh.“What’s so funny?” Lexie said.“Just picturing Izzy running around striking matches everywhere.” He snorted. “The nutcase.” Moody drummed a finger on the roof rack. “Why is everybody so sure she did it?”“Come on.” Trip jumped down off the car. “It’s Izzy. And we’re all here. Mom’s here. Dad’s on his way. Who’s missing?”“So Izzy’s not here. She’s the only one who could be  responsible?”“Responsible?” put in Lexie. “Izzy?”“Dad was at work,” Trip said. “Lexie was at Serena’s. I was over at Sussex playing ball. You?”Moody hesitated. “I biked over to the library.”“There. You see?” To Trip, the answer was obvious. “The only ones here were Izzy and Mom. And Mom was asleep.”“Maybe the wiring in the house shorted. Or maybe someone left the stove on.” “The firemen said there were little fires everywhere,” Lexie said. “Multiple points of origin. Possible use of accelerant. Not an  accident.” “We all know she’s always been mental.” Trip leaned back against the car door. “You’re all always picking on her,” Moody said. “Maybe that’s why she acts mental.”Across the street, the fire trucks began to reel in their hoses. The three remaining Richardson children watched the firemen set down their axes and peel away their smoky yellow coats. “Someone should go over and stay with Mom,” Lexie said, but no one moved.After a minute, Trip said, “When Mom and Dad find Iz, they are going to lock her up in a psych ward for the rest of her life.”No one thought about the recent departure of Mia and Pearl from the house on Winslow Road. Mrs. Richardson, watching the fire chief meticulously taking notes on his clipboard, had completely forgotten about her former tenants. She had not yet mentioned it to her husband or her children; Moody had discovered their absence only earlier that morning, and was still unsure what to make of it. Far down Parkland Drive the small blue dot of their father’s BMW began to approach. “What makes you so sure they’ll find her?” Moody asked.

Bookclub Guide

1.       Shaker Heights is almost another character in the novel. Do you believe that “the best communities are planned”? Why or why not?2.      Little Fires Everywhere is set in the late 1990s, and we see the experiences of marginalized characters in the novel, as well as their interactions with those in the larger community. In what ways are attitudes toward race and class the same today? In what ways are they different?3.       There are many different kinds of mother-daughter relationships in the novel. Which ones did you find most compelling? Do mothers have a unique ability to spark fires, for good and ill, in us?4.       Which of the Richardson children is most changed by the events of the novel? How do you think this time ultimately changes Lexie’s life? Trip’s? Moody’s?5.       The debate over the fate of May Ling/Mirabelle is multilayered and heartbreaking. Who do you think should raise her? 6.       How is motherhood defined throughout the book? How do choice, opportunity, and circumstances impact different characters’ approach to motherhood?7.       Mia’s journey to becoming an artist is almost a beautiful novella of its own. Mia’s art clearly has the power to change lives. What piece of art has shaped your life in an important way? 8.       Pearl has led a singular life before arriving in Shaker, but once she meets the Richardsons, she has the chance to become a “normal” teenager. Is that a good thing? 9.       What ultimately bothers Elena most about Mia? 10.   The novel begins with a great conflagration, but its conclusion in even more devastating. What do you think happens to Elena after the novel ends? To Mia and Pearl? To Izzy? Do you think Izzy ever returns to Shaker and her family? Why or why not? 11.   Celeste Ng is noted for her ability to shift between the perspective of different characters in her work. How does that choice shape the reader’s experience of the novel?12.   Izzy chooses “This Be the Verse” to sum up her life. Is what the poem says accurate, in the context of Izzy’s experience?13.   What does the title mean to you? What about the book’s dedication? 

Editorial Reviews

"I read Little Fires Everywhere in a single, breathless sitting. With brilliance and beauty, Celeste Ng dissects a microcosm of American society just when we need to see it beneath the microscope:  how do questions of race stack up against the comfort of privilege, and what role does that play in parenting?  Is motherhood a bond forged by blood, or by love?  And perhaps most importantly:  do the faults of our past determine what we deserve in the future?  Be ready to be wowed by Ng's writing -- and unsettled by the mirror held up to one's own beliefs." - Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of Small Great Things and Leaving Time “Witty, wise, and tender. It's a marvel.” -Paula Hawkins, author of The Girl on the Train and Into the Water “Witnessing these two families as they commingle and clash is an utterly engrossing, often heartbreaking, deeply empathetic experience…It’s this vast and complex network of moral affiliations—and the nuanced omniscient voice that Ng employs to navigate it—that make this novel even more ambitious and accomplished than her debut…Our trusty narrator is as powerful and persuasive and delightfully clever as the narrator in a Victorian novel…It is a thrillingly democratic use of omniscience, and, for a novel about class, race, family and the dangers of the status quo, brilliantly apt…The magic of this novel lies in its power to implicate all of its characters—and likely many of its readers—in that innocent delusion [of a post-racial America]. Who set the littles fires everywhere? We keep reading to find out, even as we suspect that it could be us with ash on our hands.” —Eleanor Henderson, The New York Times Book Review “[Ng] captures her setting with an ethnologist’s authority…And there are time-capsule pleasures in her evocation of 1997…The writing is poised.” —Wall Street Journal “Delectable and engrossing…A complex and compulsively readable suburban saga that is deeply invested in mothers and daughters…What Ng has written, in this thoroughly entertaining novel, is a pointed and persuasive social critique, teasing out the myriad forms of privilege and predation that stand between so many people and their achievement of the American dream. But there is a heartening optimism, too. This is a book that believes in the transformative powers of art and genuine kindness — and in the promise of new growth, even after devastation, even after everything has turned to ash.” —Boston Globe    “[Ng] widens her aperture to include a deeper, more diverse cast of characters. Though the book’s language is clean and straightforward, almost conversational, Ng has an acute sense of how real people (especially teenagers, the slang-slinging kryptonite of many an aspiring novelist) think and feel and communicate. Shaker Heights may be a place where “things were peaceful, and riots and bombs and earthquakes were quiet thumps, muffled by distance.’ But the real world is never as far away as it seems, of course. And if the scrim can’t be broken, sometimes you have to burn it down. Grade: A-” —Entertainment Weekly “Stellar…The plot is tightly structured, full of echoes and convergence, the characters bound together by a growing number of thick, overlapping threads….Ng is a confident, talented writer, and it’s a pleasure to inhabit the lives of her characters and experience the rhythms of Shaker Heights through her clean, observant prose. Before she became an author she was a miniaturist — almost too perfect for a writer of suburban fiction — and there’s a lovely, balanced, dioramic quality to this novel. She toggles between multiple points of view, creating a narrative both broad in scope and fine in detail, all while keeping the story moving at a thriller’s pace.”—LA Times “Riveting…unearthing the ways that race, class, motherhood and belonging intersect to shape each individual…Perhaps Ng's most impressive feat is inviting the reader's forgiveness for Mrs. Richardson –– a woman whose own mission for perfection, and strict adherence to rules ultimately become the catalyst for the maelstrom that ensues.”—Chicago Tribune “Like Sue Monk Kidd or Madeleine Thien, Celeste Ng has a carpenter’s sure touch in constructing nested, interconnected plots…There are few novelists writing today who are as wise, compassionate and unsparing as Ng, about the choices you make, the ones you don’t, and the price you might pay for missed lives.” —Financial Times "When you're in the mood for family drama that's not your own, Little Fires Everywhere by CelesteNg will have you hooked." -The Skimm“Sharp and entertaining—you can’t look away even when things are crashing and burning (literally)—and it possibly ranks up there with all-time great suburbia fiction, like Jeffrey Eugenides’s The Virgin Suicides.” — Goop“Opposites attract and also ignite in this thoughtful novel.” —People   "Ng writes with the wisdom of a hundred lives lived.” — Harpers Bazaar “A riveting read and one of our favorite new works of fiction this fall.” —Refinery29   “[Ng] probes privilege and the compromises it requires in a riveting novel.” –O, The Oprah Magazine“A meditation on rules, race, class, insiders, outsiders, motherhood. There is no throwaway character. And after you've raced to the end of the book, you'll want to read it again, to take the ideas and hold them up to the harsh light of 2017. Ng's novel would be a great read in any time period—but if you’re struggling with the present moment and how we got here, this novel will do what any good piece of fiction does: illuminate.” —Barrie Hardymon, NPR’s Best Books of 2017 “Like Everything I Never Told You, Ng’s excellent debut, the book plots its way into a smart, accessible conversation about race and class. But free of the restraints of Everything’s thriller construction, Little Fires gives Ng the space and patience to confront how progressive-minded communities approach identity.” –  “[A] suspenseful, tense tale.” —W Magazine “[Ng’s] descriptions are so dead-on you can practically see the Cleveland skyline as you ride shotgun with these characters.” —Glamour“A meditation on the unspoken pains and contradictions of motherhood. Its story unspools all the raw, knotted tensions that go into making a family…Choosing a rambling van over a 401(k) isn't a sign of delinquent parenting in Ng's universe; it's just one of a series of possible paths, with its own unique pleasures and pitfalls.” –Refinery29 “Unmissable…Ng’s psychological insight is acute, yet generous,…Little Fires Everywhere examines the cruelties that we unwittingly inflict on those we claim to love.” ―Claire Fallon, HuffPost’s Best Fiction Books of 2017“Takes unerring aim at upper-middle-class America’s blind spots…a nuanced study of mothers and daughters and the burden of not belonging to our families or our communities.”  — Vogue“Totally absorbing, each character drawn so well it makes it impossible to decide whose side you’re on.”  — Marie Claire “Ng writes with the wisdom of a hundred lives lived, churning out complex characters mostly sympathetic, sometimes loathsome, but all startlingly human.” —“Fans of novelist Celeste Ng’s debut, Everything I Never Told You, and devotees of her resistance-ready Twitter feed can rejoice…The story drifts effortlessly between characters; each is full and memorable as they coax the novel to its fiery climax. Ng reminds us that action is a choice, and you’ll want to keep reading until the last irreversible actions play out.” —Bust “Couldn’t be more timely… Little Fires Everywhere might just be the signpost that we need, pointing a way forward with the gentle suggestion that sometimes doing the right thing means breaking some rules.” –Paste “Compelling…Little Fires Everywhere invests all of its emotional energies in the relationship between mothers and their children…in Ng’s precisely rendered perfect suburb.” –Vox “Ng’s taut class drama is calibrated for fireworks.” –New York Magazine, Books to Read This Fall  “Written with deep empathy and vivid characters who feel true to life, Little Fires Everywhere is a captivating, insightful examination of motherhood, identity, family, privilege, perfectionism, obsession, and the secrets about ourselves we try to hide.” –Buzzfeed “There are few modern writers as brilliant at capturing the complexities of a family as Celeste Ng…The book is smart, nuanced, and exhilarating—but more than anything, Little Fires Everywhere is a gorgeous exploration of motherhood in its many forms, and the many different paths that women travel to get there.” — “Ng’s uncanny ability to embody multiple viewpoints makes for a powerful, revelatory novel.” –, Ten Books to Read in September “The un-put-downable story that everyone will be talking about this Fall. A must read for book clubs.” –PopSugar “Equal parts clever, relatable, surprising and unsettling… Ng covers a lot of ground here, from class nuance to the nature of conformity. But the story really shines when she examines complex mother-daughter relationships and how they work…until they don’t.”— PureWow “Engrossing…Ng’s characters are authentic and complex, but it’s her confident narration that will invite readers to settle in for the ride—a storyteller who knows what she's doing is at the wheel…With each revelation, Little Fires Everywhere grows more propulsive and insightful, boring through the placid surface of American suburbia.” —Dallas Morning News “Ng has one-upped herself with her tremendous follow-up novel… a finely wrought meditation on the nature of motherhood, the dangers of privilege and a cautionary tale about how even the tiniest of secrets can rip families apart… Ng is a master at pushing us to look at our personal and societal flaws in the face and see them with new eyes… If “Little Fires Everywhere” doesn’t give you pause and help you think differently about humanity and this country’s current state of affairs, start over from the beginning and read the book again.” --San Francisco Chronicle“The truth is messy for everyone in Little Fires Everywhere. As she did so well in Everything I Never Told You, Ng crafts sympathetic backstories for the characters that make their decisions understandable if not entirely acceptable. She also creates layered portraits, especially of the girls and women, to raise questions about what mothers can give and what their children need when no one can stick to the rules.”—St. Louis Post-Dispatch “Ng’s talent for depth of story and character development shines and will stay with you long after you’ve finished the book.” —Richmond Times-Dispatch   “Immersive and thought-provoking…Hang on and prepare to be mesmerized as you meet two families in idyllic Shaker Heights, Ohio.” —The Missourian “A haunting, layered story of mothers and daughters, and how they attract and repel each other.” – Seattle Times “A multilayered, tightly focused and expertly plotted narrative…A deeply impressive novel with the power to provoke and entrance.” —Minneapolis Star Tribune “One of the best novels of the fall is an emotional tale about motherhood, class and so much more… Everything I Never Told You, was good, but this is better.” — “Mesmerizing…The result is a deftly woven plot that examines a multitude of issues, including class, wealth, artistic vision, abortion, race, prejudice and cultural privilege.” —BookPage  “Ng’s best-selling first novel Everything I Never Told You proved her deft hand at crafting family dramas with the deep-rooted tension of a thriller, a skill she puts to pitch-perfect effect in her latest entry…that is equal parts simmering and soulful.” — “A quiet but powerful look at family, secrets, and running from the past. Once again, Ng has delivered a near-perfect novel.” —BookRiot “An intricate and captivating portrait of an eerily perfect suburban town with its dark undertones not-quite-hidden from view and a powerful and suspenseful novel about motherhood…Ng explores the complexities of adoption, surrogacy, abortion, privacy, and class, questioning all the while who earns, who claims, and who loses the right to be called a mother…an impressive accomplishment.” —Publishers Weekly (starred review)“Ng’s stunning second novel is a multilayered examination of how identities are forged and maintained, how families are formed and friendships tested, and how the notion of motherhood is far more fluid than bloodlines would suggest…[A] tour de force.”—Booklist (starred review)“This incandescent portrait of suburbia and family, creativity, and consumerism burns bright… As in Everything I Never Told You, Ng conjures a sense of place and displacement and shows a remarkable ability to see—and reveal—a story from different perspectives. The characters she creates here are wonderfully appealing, and watching their paths connect—like little trails of flame leading inexorably toward one another to create a big inferno—is mesmerizing, casting into new light ideas about creativity and consumerism, parenthood and privilege. With her second novel, Ng further proves she's a sensitive, insightful writer with a striking ability to illuminate life in America.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred)"Spectacular sophomore work...a magnificent, multilayered epic that’s perfect for eager readers and destined for major award lists." -- Library Journal (starred review)"Little Fires Everywhere takes us deep into other people's homes and lives and darkest corners. Along the way, Celeste Ng is always witty, engrossing, unsparing and original." -- Meg Wolitzer "Little Fires Everywhere is a dazzlingly protean work - a comedy of manners that doubles as a social novel and reads like a thriller. By turns wry, heart-rending and gimlet-eyed, it confirms Celeste Ng's genius for gripping literary fiction." -- Peter Ho Davies, author of The Fortunes   "As if it wasn't totally obvious from her stunning first novel, Little Fires Everywhere showcases what makes Celeste Ng such a masterful writer. The way she examines the complexity of place, and the people who inhabit that place, is some of the most virtuosic, compelling, and wise storytelling that I've seen in a long time. By looking so closely at this community, she opens up the entire world, and it's an amazing experience." -- Kevin Wilson, author of The Family Fang and Perfect Little World   "Yes, it's the story of one Ohio town, but Little Fires Everywhere is not that familiar tale of the underside of the American suburb. It's a powerful work about parenthood and politics, adolescent strife and artistic ambition, and the stark choice between conformity and community. Celeste Ng possesses the remarkable ability to write about the most serious of subjects with the lightest possible touch." -- Rumaan Alam, author of Rich and Pretty   "I cracked open this book mid-morning and did not even move again until it was time to turn on a light. What a joy it was to be so thoroughly taken, to let the chores and clocks and even my own breathing stop while I raced through these pages. Celeste Ng once again proves she is a force to be reckoned with. Little Fires Everywhere is a deft, smoldering masterpiece." -- Mira Jacob, author of The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing   "As I read Celeste Ng's second novel I found myself thinking, again and again: how does she know so much? About all of us? How does she write with such perception, such marvelous grace, such daring and generosity? Little Fires Everywhere has the irresistible pace of an expertly tuned thriller, and the observational brilliance of lasting literature. It marks Celeste Ng as a writer of the first rank, among the very best in her generation - right there with Zadie Smith and Jacqueline Woodson. I was mad for this book." -- Joe Hill, author of The Fireman and Heart-Shaped Box“I was fascinated, not to mention worried about, and frightened of and for, these intriguing characters. Celeste Ng is a powerful and poignant writer whose attention to detail is pitch-perfect. Her intuitive rendering of how and why people behave in such unflattering ways is important. Her writing is honest and rich--and I love how little fires spread here until they're put out.” - Terry McMillan, author of I Almost Forgot About You