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Family dynamics at play. It was a little difficult for me to get through because there was very little redemptive quality about it. It opened up with unrealized dreams and flaws within the family structure that lead to the dysfunction affecting everyone.
The book left me empty and sort of sad.
The book was a page-turner and I had to refrain from reading more than one chapter a day. Celeste Ng crafted a very tragic story of a seemingly normal family corroding from the secrecy, isolation, and misunderstandings between each flawed member. The book was heartbreaking, direct but also eloquent, and I think the title really embodies the problem of the family. The emotions, tensions, and short-fallings that go unsaid and unexplored resulted in a dysfunctional family that understood each other but could never say it. The parents are trapped by un-materialized dreams and ancestral baggage that seeps into the children, still coming of age, and forced to deal with these pressures in a different way. Made me sad because the solution to their problems seemed like it was right in front of them, to just open up, but those burdens mentioned earlier blinded them. I can surely relate to this struggle of misunderstanding, not from ineptitude to communicate, but personal and internal pressures that sink sincere dialogue and constrain our true feelings.
This book was an OK read but the author really dragged things out in the last few chapters.
Great book! We dove into the world and minds of each family member and the author shifted from each character flawlessly. I liked the true crime aspect of it. It left me wanting to read to the end to find out how she really died. Also the intro is one of my favorites I've read so far. "Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet." Haunting! There's a word I learned in the sixth grade for a situation just like this, where the reader knows something the characters don't. I'm leaving it at a four because while a captivating book while reading, I think the story is a little forgettable when you are finished. I really enjoyed this though. I thought Hannah's character was really well written. She was so interesting and overlooked -- which I think was the point. She was overlooked in her own family too. Living in the attic, aware of everything that everyone else is doing, but no one really knows what she is doing. She was able to memorize all of the creaks in the house to sneak out. I enjoyed reading her parts the most.
Haunting exploration of a family through the lens of the death of middle daughter Lydia. Ng shows all the little cracks beneath the facade that everything is OK through a deft touch and well-chosen details. It isn't just another "suburbia hides quiet suffering" tale, though, with the Lee family the only mixed-race (Chinese-American) family in their town in the 1970s and mother Marilyn struggling with accepting the life she never planned for herself. It's heartbreaking without being bleak, and it's phenomenal as an audio book.
'Everything I Never Told You' is a wonderfully elaborate and multifaceted book that paints the picture of complexities within a Chinese American family that is living during the 1970s. The book begins when the Lee family discovers that their daughter Lydia has been found dead in a lake nearby. The story continues as each member of the family reflects on their past as they each struggle to understand one another. This book not only sheds light on problems that all families face, but it also touches on topics such as racism and parental pressure, as well as the scars that they can leave on a person. Additionally, the characters are all very realistic and relatable. I'm sure everyone will be able to connect to this book in some way.
In Small-town Ohio, a mixed Chinese-American family meets a terrible fate: the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, Lydia, has been found dead in the local lake. Chaos erupts in the town, and the family is left by themselves to piece together what to do. I could read this story again and again without feeling exhausted because the nuances within each line become more exciting to read each time. The contrasts between the two cultural backgrounds is an ongoing battle in Ng's novel. The sudden death exacerbates how Lydia's siblings view their own roles in the family. I thoroughly enjoyed reading the gripping, page-turning storylines in this novel.
This is not an easy book. But you will be pulled in to the story and the writing. Sad as it is, there is a certain enchantment.
I flew through this book. Oh the ending actually killed me and I love Nath so much.
From the same author that brought you Little Fires Everywhere. Same writing style. Not sure what's going on? Yeah, me either. Keeps you wondering until the end.
Bonus points for author of color!
I devoured Little Fires Everywhere a few years ago,, but waited until now to read this book. It was just as enthralling to me! I wish it was longer, but it’s length probably was a good move by Celestine to ensure the text was powerful.
It is the story of the pressures of growing up in America. The pressure to fit in and succeed socially and academically.
I just wish Celestine would write more!!
I read this during while at home. I didn't really like it. I thought it was depressing. It is about a Chinese American family living in 1970s Ohio. The mom character lives vicariously through her oldest daughter.
I love Celeste Ng's writing style. It is so beautiful. "Everything I Never Told You" tells the story of family breaking apart due to the death of one of the daughters, Lydia. It explores many family issues, one being miscommunications that result from never really sitting down and talking as a family. It is absolutely heart breaking to read through the book, but it is a wonderfully, emotionally complex book to dive into.
DGG: This beautifully written and emotionally complex novel about the death of a troubled teen captures the tension between Chinese and American cultures and generations.
A touching story about a family struggling with teen suicide and the family dynamics that allowed it to happen.
It is depressing watching a family fall apart because of miscommunications but still worth a read and insight into being another culture in the midst of of a white community..
While reading this, I felt as if the author was consciously trying to jam into her story every plot device of every family drama she had ever read: racism, sexism, unfulfilled parental dreams and regrets, the child who becomes the unwilling repository of those dreams but can't be honest with her parents, another brilliant child whose success is just assumed, a third who is ignored if not actually resented, teen angst, marital infidelity, unrequited homosexual love. It's as if the author couldn't decide what to focus on so she threw everything at the story but the proverbial kitchen sink. The result is a cliched mess. The book is both too short and too long. Too short to properly explore everything the author introduces, and too long for me to keep caring about what happens around the central plot point.
A heartbreaking and suspenseful family drama with incredibly well drawn characters. Beautifully written and hard to put down.
OK read. Never really any changes in excitement of story (i.e revelations, climax).
I really loved the writing in this book. The author nailed the emotion and LACK OF emotion. I will be reading all of her future books! :-)
I loved this book. By turns heartbreaking, frustrating, shocking and infuriating, this story is about a teenage girl named Lydia in the 1970s whose body is found at the bottom of the local pond. The way each member of her family grieves is painful and realistic, since everyone knew Lydia was the favorite child. Did someone hurt her, did she do this to herself, or was it an accident? The lovely writing will pull you right from the very beginning, and during the last two pages I cried pretty much nonstop. There's a little bit of a waiting list for this title, but it's so worth it. I'm going to buy it. Those last few sentences... — Allison C., Maple Grove Library
The book is sad, sad, sad. Ng's other book is sad, sad, sad. Hopefully her real life isn't like this. Gosh, Ng needs to lighten up some. I can't imagine how depressed Ng must be when writing her books.