Everything Here is Beautiful – Mira T. Lee

Everything Here is Beautiful is a heartbreaking yet insightful look into mental illness. This story revolves around two sisters, Miranda who is the responsible and reliable older sister and Lucia the carefree, outgoing younger sister. When their mother dies and Lucia starts showing signs of mental illness Miranda fights for her to receive the help she needs but Lucia rebels living her life as she wants. She gets married, decides to have a child and moves to Ecuador before showing signs of her illness again and Miranda has to decide how far she will go to save her again.

The story is realistic and unflinching in the portrayal of mental illness. It gives the reader insight into how it can affect everyone from the person suffering to their family members and partner. I found this one consuming and easy to read despite the content. The multiple point of views Lee employs is important as we see each character’s story and just how different one person’s actions and motivations can look in another person’s eyes. Not one character was perfect and yet each was loveable in their own way despite their flaws or mistakes.

The insight into Lucia’s mind was particularly important and took this book to the next level. The reader was able to understand and experience the beliefs systems, the delusions and the struggles of a person who is suffering an acute bout of mental illness. This is a great read for people with family, friends or partners suffering from mental illness, which lets be honest is just about everyone as we all know how common these struggles are. This allows them to understand where different motivations and actions come from.

A strong and thought provoking read that is bittersweet and honest. Everything Here is Beautiful is an important read for breaking down the barriers of mental health and was an engaging read to boot.

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