When Amazon announced it’s Top 100 Books of the Year 2014 , I paid attention. After all, doesn’t Amazon know a bit about books? Their #1 selection was Everything I Never Told You, a break out, debut novel by Celeste Ng .
The opening line of this concise (297 pages), well sculpted novel is “Lydia is dead.” At this point only the reader knows this. Lydia is the middle child of a 1st generation Chinese American academic father and a mid western med school drop-out homemaker mother, each of whom carry weighty baggage into their marriage and into the family they raise. The failure to communicate in their most basic relationships (husband-wife, parents-child, brother-sisters) brings this story alive and gives it worth.
As the title suggests, there were too little true feelings and honesty shared in this family setting in 1977. What the novel concerns itself with is the before and after–how/why the death occurred as well as the aftermath of the tragedy within this fragile family.
I love a psychological thriller, but even more I love delving into the relationships within a family. This book lets me know that Amazon, indeed, knows it’s business.