Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng
Entertaining enough–but there was a lot going on and no center of gravity. Characters who ultimately don’t seem that important get point-of-view sections, and in the end I didn’t truly care about any one character because it was so diffuse. I also had the sense that the book came from ideas, both plot ideas and capital-I Ideas, rather than from an investigation of what makes people feel and act the way they do.
Between Mia (Pearl’s mother), the vagabond photographer, and the Chinese mother abandoning a baby that’s adopted by a fancy white family, to abortion, to arson — it just felt like a lot of action and not much depth. Plus, Mrs. Richardson, maybe the best candidate for center of gravity, was largely unlikeable, in the way that I felt the author fully understood her and had contempt for her.
So–not a bad book. Maybe this is all it aspired to be.