A thrilling debut novel for fans of Liane Moriarty and Celeste Ng about how far we’ll go to protect our families—and our deepest secrets
My husband asked me to lie. Not a big lie. He probably didn’t even consider it a lie, and neither did I, at first . . .
In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine—a pressurized oxygen chamber that patients enter for therapeutic “dives” with the hopes of curing issues like autism or 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’sMiracle Creekis 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 Creekis a brilliant, empathetic debut from an exciting new voice.
An IndieNext Pick
An April 2019 LibraryReads Selection
An April 2019 Book of the Month Club Selection
A Best New Book atPeople Magazine
A Most Anticipated Book of 2019:BuzzFeed, Refinery29, CrimeReads, Electric Literature, Nylon, The Millions, BookRiotand more;named one of 10 Best Books to Read in Spring 2019 inThe Saturday Evening Post; one ofSouthern Living's Best Books of Spring 2019
"[A] thought-provoking journey of ideas [and] a fascinating study of the malleability of truth in the courtroom . . .Miracle Creek is a brave novel that challenges assumptions of reality."
—Krys Lee,The New York Times Book Review
"A deeply moving story about parents and the lengths they will go for their children . . . readers will be riveted by the book’s genre-bending structure and superb pace.Miracle Creek is a stunning debut about parents, children and the unwavering hope of a better life, even when all hope seems lost."
—Jung Yun,The Washington Post
"[A] mesmerizing debut . . . [Angie Kim] shows an enormous amount of empathy for her characters, infusing them with such intense humanity that I sat weeping for them in an airplane middle seat, between two strangers, for several minutes after I finished the book. With clear, assured prose and penetrating emotional intelligence, she takes us deep into their inner lives . . . The plotting is deliberate and detailed and marvelously done."
—Steph Cha,Los Angeles Times
"Clear your calendars, put your phones on airplane mode, and get ready to hear the sounds of your heartstrings being plucked! This stunning debut is a family drama, courtroom thriller, and a mystery, all of which add up to one of the most incredible novels of 2019 . . . My two-word review: Jaw. Dropping. I was absolutely floored by this book! Reading it felt like opening a present I had been hiding in my heart."
—Liberty Hardy, Book of the Month Club
"I was immediately drawn in by Kim’s vivid, horrifying opening chapter, building a tension that doesn’t let up until the book’s final pages . . . [Miracle Creek] powerfully, and at times painfully, interrogates the inner lives of women who are the primary caregivers for children with chronic, debilitating medical conditions . . . Even as the courtroom plot unspools, Kim also encourages readers to look at the uncomfortable truths that might remain unspoken or barely whispered, as she lays bare her characters’ deepest vulnerabilities and darkest moments."
“A rigorous character study, touching on themes of immigration and motherhood.”
"Angie Kim’s intricately-plotted courtroom thriller isn’t a conventional whodunit where the bad guy is eventually unmasked and the reader closes the book with righteous satisfaction. Kim has weaved a more complicated web than that, one that ensnares characters many readers will empathize with--well-meaning but flawed, doing foolish things for noble reasons—and that only adds to the suspense."
—Erin Kodicek,Amazon Book Review
"Miracle Creekis a courtroom drama with impeccable pacing, an original plot, and stellar writing. It’s also a remarkably empathetic book, exploring the ripple effects of causality and the urgent need to do right by each other in big and small ways . . . A great read that deserves broad success."—Sara Hinckley,IndieBound.org
“With so many complications and loose ends, one of the miracles of the novel is that the author ties it all together and arrives at a deeply satisfying—though not easy or sentimental—ending. Intricate plotting and courtroom theatrics, combined with moving insight into parenting special needs children and the psychology of immigrants, make this book both a learning experience and a page-turner. Should be huge.”
“This stunning debut by Angie Kim is both an utterly engrossing, nail-biter of a courtroom drama and a sensitive, incisive look into the experiences of immigrant families in America.”
"Kim effectively uses her background as a trial lawyer, skillfully crafting her narrative by interweaving the stories of her characters, each of whom speak for themselves as the story progresses toward a surprise ending. With touches of mystery, legal thriller, and character-driven storytelling, where nothing is ever quite as it seems, Kim's promising debut will certainly have readers looking forward to her next offering."
—Library Journal(starred review)
“[A] masterpiece of grief, hope, and recrimination . . . A complex novel of parenting, prejudice, and putting blame where blame’s due, this one is not to be missed.”
"[Miracle Creek] has everything you're looking for in a book."
—Reading Women Podcast
"This courtroom thriller is easily one of my most favorite reads of the year-to-date and the industry buzz is massive. Pre-order this one, so that you can read it before all your friends start talking about it."
—Kristopher Zgorski,Bolo Books
“A stand-out, twisty debut . . . Kim, a former lawyer, clearly knows her stuff . . . a masterfully plotted novel about the joys and pains of motherhood, the trick mirror nature of truth, and the unforgiving nature of justice.”
“Powerful courtroom scenes invite comparisons to Scott Turow, but Kim’s nuanced exploration of guilt, resentment, maternal love, and multifaceted justice may have stronger appeal for readers.”
“I know this story but have never seen it in a novel—the struggles of the Korean immigrant entrepreneur in America, with a technology that seems like magic, who can go from hero to villain in an instant, now at the center of what is possibly a murder—a bright seam of crisis, mystery, and love emerges in these pages. Kim has written a bold debut novel about science and immigration and the hopes and fears each engenders—unforgettable and true.”
—Alexander Chee, author ofThe Queen of the Night
“Miracle Creek is a marvel, a taut courtroom thriller that ultimately tells the most human story imaginable, a story of good intentions and reckless passions. Compelling, generous, at once empathetic and unsparing. I am wrecked, I am heartened and hopeful, which means, in short, thatMiracle Creek is pretty much the perfect novel for these chaotic times in which we live.”
—Laura Lippman, author ofSunburn
“Miracle Creekgrabbed me hard right from the start. This is a terrific courtroom thriller, a sly whodunit that’s beautifully written and also full of heart.”
—Scott Turow, author ofTestimony
“Miracle Creekis an engrossing puzzle-box of a book: a twisty courtroom drama that also manages to be emotionally astute, culturally perceptive, and deeply empathetic. Angie Kim tackles hot-button subjects with a delicate touch, proving herself a master of both portraiture and storytelling. I loved this novel.”
—Janelle Brown, author of theNew York TimesbestsellerWatch Me Disappear
"I love a good courtroom drama, so I loveMiracle Creek. But this is more than a good thriller; it is the story of parents with children needing treatment for autism or cerebral palsy; the story of a family of Korean immigrants; the story of myriad marriages and the 'right' way to raise children in a very challenging environment. I loved this book and can't wait to introduce it to book clubs . . . if only so I can have someone to talk about it with."
—Sarah Bagby, Watermark Books & Cafe
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