Little Fires Everywhere: Celeste Ng: Book Review

Little Fires Everywhere


Celeste Ng

Reviewing Nerds 3rd April, 2018, Book Review, Little Fires Everywhere, Celeste Ng

No of Pages: 338

Publisher: Penguin Press

Date of Publication: September 12, 2017

Genre: Fiction

Series: NA

Should Buy: Yes (Little Fires Everywhere)

Book Source: Personal Collection

Star Rating: 4.5/5

Words That Touched My Heart ❤

Life Isn’t fair, or Fair doesn’t always mean right.

Title: The title has been justified right from the beginning of the story when the Richardsons house is burnt down by little fires.

Title Rating: 5/5

Cover: The cover depicts the supper planned Shaker Heights community with a fire burning in one of the house. The designer had the eye for detail which makes it a good cover for the story.

Cover Rating: 4.5/5

Characters:     Mia: She has a unique personality with an artistic flair like no other. She works hard on her projects, does everything in her power to give her daughter comfort and is a proud woman who doesn’t like to accept favors. She is a true believer of hard work and is a creator of her art. She has a past that she doesn’t like to talk about as it contains things she has tried to lock away. She doesn’t like to plan and goes with her eyes to look for new artistic projects.

Mrs. Richardson: She is the exact opposite of Mia, afraid to take risks, calculating and planning her life to a strict order. She believes in going by the standards set by the almost perfect society of Shaker Heights. She is too afraid to take risks, takes extreme pride in her family and upbringing. She tries to be the nice one buy somewhere in her head she’s keeping a tally of all her favors.

Characters Rating: 4.5/5

Review: The story is simple to follow. I finished it in 2 sittings: one very short and the second one was extremely long. The first sitting was for the first 100 pages which involves heave background and plot stories which seemed like a bit drag to me. The moment things started happening, everything was in a whirlwind and I couldn’t have slept on it or left the book even for a second. The story revolves around Mia who has decided to stay in Shaker Heights for her daughter and a Mrs. Richardson who only thinks that everything should be ideal and never be disturbed. She is like a bird who hasn’t known any fear, any risk and happy to be in the confines of society.

Once Mia’s daughter Pearl and Richardson children start mingling it wreaks a havoc on everyone’s life. Pearl feeling the peer pressure, Lexie wanting to have everything sorted like her other, Trip thinking on the deeper level, Moody infatuated with the idea of Pearl and Izzy finally finds someone who begins to see her the way she is. When the adoption issue arises in the community and everyone is divided between the right and wrong. Mrs. .Richardson has decided that Mia has secrets that she must uncover for her mental satisfaction as she had refused to be her charity case. Mia’s past comes as a shocking twist and changes everything you have been thinking till the first half of the book.

Story Rating: 4.5/5

Appreciation: The book pushed me out of my comfort zone and made me think about things that I had no perspective on. For example, the issue of the adoption of a Chinese baby makes you wonder which side of the fight you are on. You would think what does adoption have to do anything with the baby being Chinese, it is an act of kindness and brings joy to all. Celeste made me think that if the baby is taken away from the birth mother and given to a white family, the baby will start noticing when she grows up and wonders if she was snatched from her roots. Even after the book has been finished I still have this dilemma that what would have been right for the child: a better life or a real life.

Let Downs: The starting was slow which lowered my expectations from the book. The moment we hit the main plot all my expectations went soaring up again.

Surprise Factor: The description of the mother’s love for her kids (The only thing which stood true for both Mia and Mrs Richardson):  To a parent, your child wasn’t just a person, your child was a place, a kind of Narnia, a vast eternal place where the present you were living and the past you remembered and the future you longed for all existed at once. You could see it every time you looked at her; layered in her face was the baby she’d been and the child she’d become and the adult she would grow up to be and you saw them all simultaneously, like a 3-D image. It made your head spin. It was like a place you could take refuge, if you knew how to get in. And each time you left it, each time your child passed out of your sight, you feared you might never be able to return to that place again.

Would I be reading more from Celeste Ng: ABSOLUTELY! She knows how to write an intricate story where the characters come to life and you feel as if you are watching everything from the railing.


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