Review: All the Little Lights by Jamie McGuire


From #1 New York Times bestselling author Jamie McGuire comes a riveting tale of first love that starts young but runs deep.

The first time Elliott Youngblood spots Catherine Calhoun, he’s just a boy with a camera, and he’s never seen a sadder and more beautiful sight. Both Elliott and Catherine feel like outcasts, yet they find an easy friendship with each other. But when Catherine needs him most, Elliott is forced to leave town.

Elliott finally returns, but he and Catherine are now different people. He’s a star high school athlete, and she spends all her free time working at her mother’s mysterious bed-and-breakfast. Catherine hasn’t forgiven Elliott for abandoning her, but he’s determined to win back her friendship…and her heart.

Just when Catherine is ready to fully trust Elliott, he becomes the prime suspect in a local tragedy. Despite the town’s growing suspicions, Catherine clings to her love for Elliott. But a devastating secret that Catherine has buried could destroy whatever chance of happiness they have left.


I have read nearly all of Jamie McGuire's novels.  She's one of the first few indie authors I had been introduced to when I started this journey in the book review world.  So, when I grabbed this book, I already knew it was something I would genuinely enjoy.  What I didn't know is how much it would make me feel.

We read this book in the first person point of view of our main character, and we understand that she has a very difficult reality at home, but you can't quite pinpoint what exactly makes her keep her home life so close to her chest.

This coming of age story sheds light on what it is like to live with someone close to you who struggles with severe mental illness.  You feel for her in a way that is indescribable, and causes your chest to literally ache for her.

I recommend this book to anyone who has a mentally abusive mother who suffers with mental illness.  All the Little Lights is a thrilling read for teens and adults that will grip you from start to finish.

Thank you for making me feel normal, Jamie.  You have no idea what that means to me.  Or, maybe you do.