Little Fires Everywhere is a spectacular title for Celeste Ng’s latest novel, as she carries that imagery throughout the story. Set mostly in Shaker Heights, Ohio, an affluent suburb of Cleveland during the mid-1990s, we meet the Richardson family (mother Elena and children Lexie, Trip, Moody, and Izzy) and the Warrens (Mia and her daughter Pearl). Artist Mia and Pearl have always lived a transient existence and have kept mostly to themselves. But when they settle in to Shaker Heights to stay, their lives intersect with the Richardsons' lives in unexpected and irreversible ways. I loved how this story was told from different perspectives as we get to know the thoughts of Elena, Lexie, Trip, Moody, Izzy, Mia, and Pearl.
Celeste Ng creates this story with intricately drawn portrayals and vivid descriptions of place. She also offers an abundance of surprises along the way. If you enjoy layers of realistic detail and slow-building character portraits, I highly recommend Celeste Ng’s latest book.