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Summary

Lydia is the favourite child of Marilyn and James Lee - a girl who inherited her mother's bright-blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair.

When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, James is consumed by guilt, and Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to hold someone accountable.

But it's the youngest in the family, Hannah, who may be the only one who knows what really happened.

©2014 Celeste Ng (P)2014 Blackstone Audiobooks

Critic reviews

"[A] moving tale...of daughters for whom cultural disconnect is but the first challenge." ( Vogue)
"The mysterious circumstances of 16-year-old Lydia Lee's tragic death have her loved ones wondering how, exactly, she spent her free time. This ghostly debut novel calls to mind The Lovely Bones." ( Marie Claire)

What members say

Average customer ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Beautiful, wise, engrossing

The blurb on the front, from Marie Claire magazine: "this book calls to mind 'The Lovely Bones'. An unwarranted insult in my opinion; this book is a darn sight better than that one!

10 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Superb!

A moving, intelligent novel with depth and compassion. I'll miss the characters. It's the type of book that makes you think about your own relationship with your children and ask yourself if you're unconsciously trying to make them fit into a particular mould.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Thought provoking

Not any easy listen in many respects but thought provoking and powerful. Makes you reassess your own family relationships. Only downside was unfortunately I hated the narrator which made it difficult to finish.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Engaging and thought provoking

I found the audiobook well ready and captivating. I thought the story of the family was engaging enough without being truly riveting. It provided food for thought. I found it a good way to pass time.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Brilliant

This was my second Celeste Ng book and I have loved both. the narrator was perfect.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Clare
  • Hertford, UK
  • 16-01-18

Interested throughout, unhappy with the ending.

What did you like best about Everything I Never Told You? What did you like least?

The book certainly held one's attention. The interpretation of the same events by different characters was well done, and by and large the characters were believable, but the Mother's was the least credible I felt. Her dropping of all contact with her mother, complete abandonment of the family and then obsessive focus on just her daughter, made her the source of most of the family's problems; yet nobody appeared to question her or her judgement, and the reader is asked to accept that it was all down to thwarted ambition.

What aspect of Cassandra Campbell’s performance might you have changed?

Her style is very flat and factual, but that probably suited the story.

Any additional comments?

I found the ending rather unsatisfactory. Spoiler alert! - The idea that she didn't intend to commit suicide, but rather thought that she, a non-swimmer, would magically swim to the dock was absurd. Also it it hinted that Nath comes to share his life with Jack - how neat, but implausible.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Overly sentimentalised and SO slow

This novel tells the story of a mixed race marriage in the USA in 60s-70s. The only interesting side to this tale is that we forget, all too quickly, how we have moved to living within ethnically mixed communities. In the USA when this story starts, a mixed marriage was still illegal in some states!
Both parents try to re write their own past shortcoming/ failures by directing their children to succeed, be beautiful and smart and the whole book is a litany of parental mistakes. It is over sentimentalised, overly emotional and really depressing. The tale unravels just too slowly and after 1 hour , I should have sent it back. It was actually really boring!!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Family drama, beautifully woven and emotional

Great family centred, multi generational story of mid America. Focused on family ties and the misunderstandings and mid interpretations of all that is said (and not said). Compelling and satisfying.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

sad

about a mother who forces her dreams onto her daughter, without realising.
the consequences of her own actions, in this selfish act.
there is a lesson to be learned in this book.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Unlikeable characters

I’d been recommended this book by my book club and had high hopes. Sadly for me it didn’t live up to expectations. The story of a family torn apart when the doted upon middle daughter dies, should have caused me empathy but I actually found the characters more and more irritating as the story went on. I felt as though I should feel sorry for the whole family as we weaved backwards and forwards in time to find out why Lydia died. But I generally found them all quite selfish and just couldn’t warm to their plight. Perhaps that was what the author intended! I did like the narrator though, her voice suited the story and characters.

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  • Rebecca
  • 24-10-15

loved this book. Didn't sleep til it was finished

loved this book. Didn't sleep til it was finished. I characters are so well illustrated and the story has real depth.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Julia
  • 18-01-18

A must-listen

This novel is heartbreakingly sad, but I couldn't stop listening. It is complex and beautiful