Everything I Never Told You

  • by Celeste Ng
  • Narrated by Cassandra Campbell
  • 10 hrs and 1 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

A haunting debut novel about a mixed-race family living in 1970s Ohio and the tragedy that will either be their undoing or their salvation.
Lydia is dead. But they don't know this yet.…
So begins the story in this exquisite debut novel about a Chinese American family living in a small town in 1970s Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee; their middle daughter, a girl who inherited her mother's bright blue eyes and her father's jet-black hair. Her parents are determined that Lydia will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue - in Marilyn's case that her daughter become a doctor rather than a homemaker, in James' case that Lydia be popular at school, a girl with a busy social life and the center of every party.
When Lydia's body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together tumbles into chaos, forcing them to confront the long-kept secrets that have been slowly pulling them apart. James, consumed by guilt, sets out on a reckless path that may destroy his marriage. Marilyn, devastated and vengeful, is determined to find a responsible party, no matter what the cost. Lydia's older brother, Nathan, is certain the neighborhood bad boy Jack is somehow involved. But it's the youngest of the family, Hannah, who observes far more than anyone realizes - and who may be the only one who knows the truth about what happened.
A profoundly moving story of family, history, and the meaning of home, Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping pause-resister and a sensitive family portrait, exploring the divisions between cultures and the rifts within a family and uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Character Novel

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

I would with the caveat that this is not a plot driven novel although it revolves around the mysterious death of a teenage girl. It's a character driven novel that examines in minute detail, and with lovely language, the dynamics within a mixed race family of five. It's mostly about what happens when parents project their own failed aspirations onto their children.


What about Cassandra Campbell’s performance did you like?

Cassandra is one of my favorite narrators. Her voice is buttery and smooth. I could listen to her recite the phonebook! Although other narrators have a more dramatic range hers is more subtle and highly effective.


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- colprubin

Amazon's Book of the Year!

This is not the kind of book I usually read, but as a member of the Ford Audiobook club I was given a copy.

The story revolves around a family that tragically fails to express their feelings and beliefs and when a horrible calamity ensues they are all tested beyond all boundaries.

We have James, the father, a Chinese American who just wants to fit in.

Marilyn, the mother, a woman who yearns for more than being a mother.

Nathan, the son, a disappointment to his father because James is reminded of himself.

Lydia, the cherished daughter, a blue eyed girl that both parent's pin all of their hopes on.

Hannah, the youngest, hiding in the shadows of a family that doesn't have room for anyone else.

Jack, the bad boy, neighbor fits into the story as the one that may have all the answers.

It's a beautifully, haunting story with a definite ending that some newer novels lack. At times, you find little love for these people that are operating at cross purposes, but in the end you come to love them all and mourn their tragedy with them.

I cried openly in the last two chapters and it was a catharsis cry that brings you to a feeling of promise and hope for a better day.

Hug your near and dear ones, you never know what tomorrow will bring.
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- Kristi Richardson "An old broad that enjoys books of all types. Would rather read than write reviews though. I know what I like, and won't be bothered by crap."

Book Details

  • Release Date: 06-26-2014
  • Publisher: Blackstone Audio, Inc.