Thursday, January 18, 2018

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY...Everything Here is Beautiful by Mira T. Lee

Hardcover, 368 pages
Expected publication: January 16th 2018 by Pamela Dorman Books

Two sisters: Miranda, the older, responsible one, always her younger sister's protector; Lucia, the vibrant, headstrong, unconventional one, whose impulses are huge and, often, life changing. When their mother dies and Lucia starts to hear voices, it's Miranda who must fight for the help her sister needs — even as Lucia refuses to be defined by any doctor's diagnosis.

Determined, impetuous, she plows ahead, marrying a big-hearted Israeli only to leave him, suddenly, to have a baby with a young Latino immigrant. She will move with her new family to Ecuador, but the bitter constant remains: she cannot escape her own mental illness. Lucia lives life on a grand scale, until inevitably, she crashes to earth. And then Miranda must decide, again, whether or not to step in — but this time, Lucia may not want to be saved. The bonds of sisterly devotion stretch across oceans, but what does it take to break them?

Told from alternating perspectives, Everything Here Is Beautiful is, at its core, a heart-wrenching family drama about relationships and tough choices — how much we're willing to sacrifice for the ones we love, and when it's time to let go and save ourselves.

My Thoughts…

Everything Here Is Beautiful is a story about family and mental illness.   Each family member has to make tough decisions in their lives yet they still manage to stand by each other.  

Lucia has a “normal” childhood until her 20’s when the serpents start talking to her in her head.    Her mental illness takes her life into directions that no one would want to take.    What I took away from all her mental issues was how much her sister, Miranda, stood by her.   Even when on a different continent Miranda manages to keep in touch and find ways to support Lucia.     I loved how Miranda stands up to her husband to help her sister when she needs it the most yet she doesn’t allow Lucia to take advantage.   

By reading this book I was able to better understand how mental illness can affect a person, a family, and a society.   The points of view of Lucia without the serpents and Lucia with the serpents opens my eyes to how helpless a person can be when really they just want a life with love, support, and family.      Miranda, Manny, and Yonah also get their turns sharing their stories in alternating chapters.   This gives the reader a total look at the life of Lucia and how it appears to those who know her best.     

Mira T. Lee is amazing.   This is a debut book from her and she has already secured a spot on my MUST-READ list.   I highly recommend picking up your own copy of Everything Here is Beautiful. 

Thank you Rebecca Marsh at Penguin Random House for a copy of the book in exchange for an honest review.

Add to your MUST-READ list on Goodreads
Purchase your own copy at AMAZON or BARNES AND NOBLE

About Mira T. Lee

Mira T. Lee's debut novel, Everything Here is Beautiful, was selected by the American Booksellers Association as one of Winter/Spring 2018's Top 10 Debut titles. Her short fiction has appeared in journals such as the Southern Review, the Gettysburg Review, the Missouri Review, TriquarterlyHarvard Review, and American Short Fiction, and has twice received special mention for the Pushcart Prize. She was awarded the Peden Prize for Best Short Story byThe Missouri Review (2010), and an Artist's Fellowship from the Massachusetts Cultural Council (2012).

Learn more about Mira at GOODREADS, Twitter, or Facebook      

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