• Little Fires Everywhere

  • By: Celeste Ng
  • Narrated by: Jennifer Lim
  • Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
  • 4.4 out of 5 stars (59,989 ratings)

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Little Fires Everywhere  By  cover art

Little Fires Everywhere

By: Celeste Ng
Narrated by: Jennifer Lim
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Publisher's Summary

A Reese Witherspoon Book Club Pick

The runaway New York Times best seller! 

Named a Best Book of the Year by: 

People, The Washington Post, Bustle, Esquire, Southern Living, The Daily Beast, GQ, Entertainment Weekly, NPR, Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, Audible, Goodreads, Library Reads, Book of the Month, Paste, Kirkus Reviews, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, and many more! 

"I read Little Fires Everywhere in a single, breathless sitting." (Jodi Picoult)

“To say I love this book is an understatement. It’s a deep psychological mystery about the power of motherhood, the intensity of teenage love, and the danger of perfection. It moved me to tears.” (Reese Witherspoon)

“I am loving Little Fires Everywhere. Maybe my favorite novel I've read this year.” (John Green)

From the best-selling author of Everything I Never Told You, a riveting novel that traces the intertwined fates of the picture-perfect Richardson family and the enigmatic mother and daughter who upend their lives. 

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned - from the layout of the winding roads to the colors of the houses to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules. 

Enter Mia Warren - an enigmatic artist and single mother - who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenage daughter, Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than tenants - all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community. 

When old family friends of the Richardsons attempt to adopt a Chinese American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town - and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at unexpected and devastating costs. 

Little Fires Everywhere explores the weight of secrets, the nature of art and identity, and the ferocious pull of motherhood - and the danger of believing that following the rules can avert disaster. 

Perfect for book clubs! Visit celesteng.com for discussion guides and more.

©2017 Celeste Ng (P)2017 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

"Witty, wise, and tender. It's a marvel." (Paula Hawkins, New York Times best-selling author of The Girl on the Train and Into the Water)

Featured Article: The Best Audiobooks for Moms


Moms are some of the hardest working, most resourceful, and most amazing people on this planet. The audiobooks on this list show appreciation to all the moms of this world, from new moms to single moms, from moms with adult children to moms who have lost their children. Some of these books are fictional. Some are about self-improvement. Some are personal memoirs. If you're a mom or if you know a mom who needs a listen to boost her spirits, offer reassurance, or simply speak to her, you're sure to find the right one here.

What listeners say about Little Fires Everywhere

Average Customer Ratings
Overall
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    36,451
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  • 2 Stars
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  • 1 Stars
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Boring and Drawn Out!!!

Kept falling asleep while listening, but was determined to finish it, especially due to all the hype over this audiobook. The story never got any better, and the ending was ridiculous! Really wish I could understand why there are so many great reviews. What are people seeing, that I just don't? As for the narration, J.L. did a pretty good job of performing each of the characters, though she did not use different voices or inflections for them. She basically used the same voice during the whole story. Sadly, I would definitely recommend passing this one up, and not wasting your time on it. 👎🏼

698 people found this helpful

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Let Me Stop You Right There

To me, this book was written by an author who believes that her listeners are as thick as two planks. Further, the tone of the narrator adds to the unbelievably slick and condescending flavor of the whole package. Everything is so slowly drawn out and hammered down that there is no room for any personal thought or feelings the reader might dare to have. I'm bored. Are we there yet?

515 people found this helpful

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"Little Whiny People Everywhere"

I also am not entirely sure what this book was about. What are the take home points? What is the moral of the story? Truly, the only thing I was certain of is that Celeste Ng has made enemies out of the entire population of Shaker Heights, Ohio!

Throughout the book I found myself not warming up to any of the characters. I think I know which ones I was SUPPOSED to like -- or at least the ones I was supposed to have sympathy for -- but, jeez, they all just seemed so very hard to like.

But I think what really got in the way of my enjoyment of the book the most was the narrater. As listeners we rely so much on the narrater's interpretation of the characters. But I was finding myself re-saying sentences of the book in my head in a different way than the narrater to see if a different prosody would work better for me. There were so many times when she would read a character's dialogue, for example, as though the character were whining, but that just didn't seem to fit -- it didn't make sense given what was happening in the book. When I re-said those lines in my head in a less whiny, more desperate way, it all seemed to make more sense to me. Lim makes ALL of the characters whiny, hence my renaming of the book -- "Little Whiny People Everywhere."

241 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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little epiphanies everywhere

Another thoughtful and thought-provoking book by Celeste Ng. I loved her first book, and didn't imagine that this one could be as good, but it is. This is a sensitive and nuanced look at motherhood, social class and race. She does not let her characters or her plot off with easy answers, or with good guys and bad guys. Even though each character seems to be somewhat of a "type" initially, as the narrative deepens we see how multifaceted each participant in this story is and I found myself feeling more and more empathy for each of them as the story developed. Lovely and evocative book that I didn't want to end. I listened to this as an audiobook (from Audible) and thought the narrator was perfect.

151 people found this helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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Scattered story

This book should be renamed ‘small scattered stories’. There were some decent characters and an attempt at the end to pull it all together but it was unsuccessful.

115 people found this helpful

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I Actually Pre-Ordered This.. Never Again

I was really looking forward to 'Little Fires Everywhere' by Celeste Ng. The day my pre-order was available I immediately downloaded and started to listen. I listened for two hours and I thought 'there has to be more than this.'

I listened for another three hours. The book is about a neighbourhood and kids' pranks and a woman's job and how some people pay bills. Okay, maybe there is some deep symbolism I am missing. However, I don't care. This book is boring, tedious, and I dare to say it's a YA book- however the YA audience would find it boring too.

I am returning this dud. Even the narrator sounds like a little child. The characters are disjointed, the plot is all over the place and the whole book pretty much sucks. Urgh.

Audible, I will need this credit back.

-Wendi

111 people found this helpful

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I kept Waiting for it to get good...it never did.

I don't really understand the point of this book. It followed many different characters which I have found I am not a fan of. I like books that follow a main character but regardless of that, this book I found, didn't really have a point. I was bored throughout the book but finished it hoping it would get better or all the story lines would somehow come to this awesome ending...I was sadly disappointed. It was predictable and didn't leave me wanting more. I would pass on this one.

109 people found this helpful

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meh, not worth the hype

This book starts out as a very promising drama but abruptly becomes tedious almost exactly half way through. I stuck with it for as long as I could but it just kept getting more and more eye-roll worthy and....honestly, tedious is just the best word for it.
Everyone I know was raving about this book, but it just didn't hit the mark for me. If you like suburban drama, I guess this book is for you? Narration is okay.

100 people found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Conformity vs. thinking for yourself

Celeste Ng covers a lot of ground in Little Fires Everywhere - conformity vs. thinking for yourself, motherhood, relationships, secrets, lies, culture, ethnicity, creativity, economic safety vs. barely getting by, family dynamics, and privilege. There really are little fires everywhere, both literal and figurative. Like Everything I Never Told You, this story opens at the end and then the author tells an engrossing tale to explain how it all unfolded. Ng has an extraordinary ability to make the reader consider a story from different perspectives through her well-developed and complicated characters. Even the setting of Shaker Heights, planned, manicured, and with rules for everything, contributes to the narrative.

Some of the parts that I found most exceptional were the descriptions of Mia Warren's art. The character captured so much in her photographs, and Ng captured so much in her writing about them. I'm going to be thinking about this book and those photographs for quite a while.

90 people found this helpful

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I’m surprised this had such good reviews

The story line was OK at best. It was an easy read because it was
sort of teenybopper. I listened to it in my car during my drives but by the end of the book was extremely disappointed with the ending. The end was so anti-climactic, insignificant, and left the readers with a bunch of loose ends. The book was not at all thought provoking and was just a random story to be told that ended on the mild note. Would not read from this author again.

89 people found this helpful