Miracle Creek – Angie Kim

How far will you go to protect your family? Will you keep their secrets? Ignore their lies?

About the book:

In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine – a pressurised oxygen chamber that patients enter for “dives”, used as an alternative therapy for conditions including autism and infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community.

Who or what caused the explosion? Was it the mother of one of the patients, who claimed to be sick that day but was smoking down by the creek? Or was it Young and Pak themselves, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? The ensuing trial uncovers unimaginable secrets from that night: trysts in the woods, mysterious notes, child-abuse charges, as well as tense rivalries and alliances among a group of people driven to extraordinary degrees of desperation and sacrifice.

Angie Kim’s Miracle Creek is a thoroughly contemporary take on the courtroom drama, drawing on the author’s own life as a Korean immigrant, former trial lawyer, and mother of a real-life “submarine” patient. Both a compelling page-turner and an excavation of identity and the desire for connection, Miracle Creek is a brilliant, empathetic debut from an exciting new voice.

About the author:

Angie Kim is the debut author of the national bestseller Miracle Creek, a literary courtroom drama that has been named a LibraryReads Selection, an IndieNext pick, an Amazon Best Book of the Month, a Book of the Month Club selection, and Apple Books’ Top 2019 Debuts, as well as named a best book by Time, People, Entertainment Weekly, Elle, and Real Simple. Her writing has appeared in Vogue, The New York Times, The Washington Post, Glamour, Salon, and Slate. She moved from Seoul, Korea, to Baltimore as a preteen, and attended Stanford University and Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review, then practised as a trial lawyer at Williams & Connolly. She lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and three sons.

My Review:  Every now and then you read a debut novel and are emotionally blown away and MIRACLE CREEK is one of these books.  It’s one of those books that can’t be categorised as a mystery novel or a courtroom drama or a legal thriller because even though it IS all of those MIRACLE CREEK is so much more.

The writing is absolutely BEAUTIFUL, the characters are, in my mind, totally REAL, the courtroom drama is AUTHENTIC, the storyline is HEARTBREAKING and this goes straight into my TOP TEN Books of 2019.

Pak and Young are a Korean couple who have moved to America and set up an alternative health clinic with a HBOT (hyperbaric oxygenation tank) they’ve called MIRACLE SUBMARINE.  The HBOT claims to help with autism, infertility and other health problems.  Controversial and considered dangerous by many “non believers” on the day a group of protesters arrive to stop the patients using the HBOT a fire is deliberated started causing it to explode resulting in a catastrophic tragedy.

The story then takes the reader to 1 year later at the murder trial and is narrated by each of the former patients, victims and the families involved and affected during the fire.  It’s difficult to put into words how incredible this book is,  how real it felt, how plausible and believable each characters emotions, feelings and thoughts were.

We are taken into the lives and feelings of the parents of autistic children, their hopes and dreams, their pain and grief, their selfless determination and unconditional love is at times hard to read and yet it is written with such feeling and emotion you can’t help but feel for these fictional characters.

Throughout the courtroom chapters the reader is taken back to the event a year ago and slowly we learn more about what happened and why.  MIRACLE CREEK is beautifully constructed, cleverly interwoven and an emotional roller coaster.  In my opinion, this book will appeal to EVERYONE and I gave this book a very easy 5 stars.

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