In Shaker Heights, Ohio, life is strictly regulated to be harmonious and predictable, right down to house color and garbage can placement. When free-spirited artist Mia Warren and her daughter, Pearl, move to Shaker Heights, however, a chain reaction begins that results in the destruction of the Richardson family’s home at the hand of their youngest daughter, Izzy.
With the ending of Little Fires Everywhere revealed in the first chapter, author Celeste Ng takes us back to the previous summer, when Mia and Pearl met the Richardson family. Pearl and the Richardson children, Lexie, Trip, Moody, and Izzy, are drawn to each other and are soon inseparable. Family matriarch Elena soon becomes more determined to learn more about Mia, her past, and her unconventional lifestyle. The two women’s distrust of each other grows when an interracial adoption becomes the center of attention in Shaker Heights and the question of what makes a mother divides the town deeply.
Little Fires Everywhere explores class, privilege, and motherhood; the story and characters are complex and watching the story build to a climax is mesmerizing. Betrayals are inevitable and crushing, but as Mia reminds Izzy Richardson, people always start over and find a way. Fans of Celeste Ng’s first book, Everything I Never Told You, will surely enjoy her newest novel.