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May 26, 2020

Brené and Celeste Ng
on Little Fires Everywhere

My conversation with Celeste Ng is the first of two episodes on Little Fires Everywhere, where I’ll cover the book and the series. We talked about the writing process, the stories that we tell, and the stories that define us. We also covered how our hometowns shape us, how parenting is a shame minefield, and how we all have the power to mourn moments even while we’re in them. Celeste also filled us in on what she thinks about the series and what it felt like watching Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington create a show from her novel. I loved this episode as a reader, as a writer, and as an observer of what it means to be human.

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Guest Info

Celeste Ng

Celeste NGCeleste Ng is the bestselling author of the novels Everything I Never Told You and Little Fires Everywhere, both of which have been translated into over 30 languages. Her second novel, Little Fires Everywhere, was a #1 New York Times bestseller, a #1 Indie Next bestseller, and Amazon’s Best Fiction Book of 2017. It was named a best book of the year by over twenty publications, has spent over a year on the New York Times bestseller list, and has been adapted into a limited series for Hulu, starring Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington. Celeste’s writing has been featured in the New York Times, The Guardian, and many other publications. Among other honors, she is the recipient of the Pushcart Prize, the Hopwood Award, a fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, and a Guggenheim Fellowship. Celeste grew up in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and Shaker Heights, Ohio, and earned an AB from Harvard University and an MFA from the University of Michigan (now the Helen Zell Writers’ Program at the University of Michigan).

Sponsors

This episode is sponsored by Parachute.

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Show Notes

Little Fires Everywhere: A Novel by Celeste NgLittle Fires Everywhere: A Novel by Celeste Ng

Little Fires Everywhere is a 2017 novel by American author Celeste Ng. It is her second novel and takes place in Shaker Heights, Ohio where Ng grew up. The novel is about two families living in 1990s Shaker Heights who are brought together through their children. 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, PasteKirkus ReviewsSt. Louis Post-Dispatch, and many more. 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.

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Austin Channing Brown

 

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