If you have been following my blog, you already know this was one of the books I picked up for my OWLS Readathon this year.This book is a debut novel and the first book I have read by the author. I had heard such good things about this one , I was afraid it’s going to be one of those over hyped books but Oh god was I wrong…. This books lived up to my expectations and deserves all the hype it has been given..
WHAT IS IT ABOUT?
In a small town in Virginia, a group of people know each other because they’re part of a special treatment center, a hyperbaric chamber that may cure a range of conditions from infertility to autism. But then the chamber explodes, two people die, and it’s clear the explosion wasn’t an accident.
A showdown unfolds as the story moves across characters who are all maybe keeping secrets, hiding betrayals. Was it the careless mother of a patient? Was it the owners, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? Could it have been a protester, trying to prove the treatment isn’t safe?
ENGAGING STORY LINE
The plot at it’s core revolves around a court trial but as the story progresses you see how different the motives of each person are and that brings in the multiple layers this plot weaves together making it all the more complex.
One of the themes that I really enjoyed watching and could relate to is the narration of the Korean Family Members. They each have their version of an immigrant story coming from the parents that moved to America for their daughter’s better future and the daughter that is feeling homesick and misses her home country as she experiences the feeling of “other” in her environment.
MULTIPLE POINTS OF VIEW
Even though this story is told by multiple points of view, you are left wondering who is responsible for the accident after every accident. All the characters in the book are well developed with their own story and purpose in the story all the while keeping the mysterious vibe .
AUTISM & PARENTING FOR KIDS WITH SPECIAL NEEDS
The main suspect in the book – Elizabeth is the mother of the autistic kid that ends up dead and it really brings about what a parent with special needs must go through. It’s raw, heartbreaking and thought provoking. It hit me differently because I have know someone that needs special care and a few scenes in the book are too accurate when it comes to portraying the embarrassment, the stares and the sympathy that you receive.It’s hard to be a parent of someone that needs special care and look at another kid and realize your child will never do that. I can’t fathom to say how well this book has captured that.
There are a lot of dysfunctional and problematic characters in this one. We have a married man cheating on his wife with an underage girl. We have a marriage falling apart because of infertility issues. We have secrets and trust issues. But overall, we also have the hidden sense of understanding that sometimes there is no extent to how far we would go for our loved ones. Also the big question that hits you is what is bigger to you after all? Are you the character that terms to regard their morals above everyone else or the one that is a hypocrite and doesn’t practice what you preach.
Overall, this book is worth all the hype and you should definitely pick this up. The book is engaging and educational and thought provoking and that is exactly how I like my books to be.
Published: April 16th 2019
Publisher: Sarah Crichton Books