Thursday, August 19, 2021

Book Review and GIVEAWAY: All's Well, by Mona Awad {ends 8/26}

Guest review by: Becki Bayley

Impossible, I think, sheets snaked around my body, still light as air, light as the breeze in my hair, lifting it lightly off my shoulders. My window’s open, but I’m not cold. I stare at the blue, blue sky through the window screen. A bright blue that reminds me spring is coming. Right around the corner, Miranda. Almost here. And for once, I feel no fear. No pain. Nothing. Nothing? No. Not nothing. Something. Something else is here. Inside. Deep, deep, what is it? Whatever it is, I’m humming with it. Limbs buzzing with it. Heart brimming with it. Eyes filling with it. Bones brightening with it. Blood singing with it. Lips smiling with it. Smiling at three black crows perched upon the branch outside.

“Good morning,” I say.

And they fly away.


How much of Miranda’s life is real, and how much is her own drug-induced perception of it all? There doesn’t seem to be any way to tell for sure.

Official synopsis:
Book Review and GIVEAWAY: All's Well, by Mona Awad {ends 8/26}
Miranda Fitch’s life is a waking nightmare. The accident that ended her burgeoning acting career left her with excruciating, chronic back pain, a failed marriage, and a deepening dependence on painkillers. And now she’s on the verge of losing her job as a college theater director. Determined to put on Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well, the play that promised, and cost, her everything, she faces a mutinous cast hellbent on staging Macbeth instead. Miranda sees her chance at redemption slip through her fingers.

That’s when she meets three strange benefactors who have an eerie knowledge of Miranda’s past and a tantalizing promise for her future: one where the show goes on, her rebellious students get what’s coming to them, and the invisible, doubted pain that’s kept her from the spotlight is made known.

With prose Margaret Atwood has described as “no punches pulled, no hilarities dodged...genius,” Mona Awad has concocted her most potent, subversive novel yet. All’s Well is the story of a woman at her breaking point and a formidable, piercingly funny indictment of our collective refusal to witness and believe female pain.


What a unique book! Nothing goes right for Miranda, until everything does. Since she’s admittedly drug-addled and spending most of her time in her own head, it’s hard to know how much of her story is real and how much is her fantasy, or even her mind playing tricks. If one could have everything just the way they wanted it, is that really how they’d want it?

Miranda’s interesting observations and perceptions also question the experience of chronic pain, and the way those with pain are treated differently by those who may not understand it the same. Perhaps the most intriguing question Miranda faces, though, is what cost one would be willing to pay for everything they thought they wanted...or what cost would they be willing to have someone else pay?

Overall, this story was definitely open to imagination and interpretation. I’d give it 4 out of 5 stars, but the reader definitely needs to be willing to appreciate an unreliable narrator.

{click here to purchase}

Becki Bayley is a Gemini who likes unreliable narrators in a fictional capacity, fantasy stories with happy endings, and the company of sleeping cats. Find out more of what she’s been up to at SweetlyBSquared.com.

GIVEAWAY:

One of my lucky readers will win a copy of All's Well!

Enter via the widget below. Giveaway will end on Thursday, August 26th, at 11:59pm EST, and winner will be contacted via email the next day and have 24 hours to respond, or an alternate winner will be chosen. 

U.S. residents only, please.

Good luck!

All's Well, by Mona Awad

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