Miracle Creek (Hardcover)
Sarah Crichton Books, 9780374156022, 368pp.
Publication Date: April 16, 2019
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’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 moved as a preteen from Seoul, South Korea to the suburbs of Baltimore. She attended Stanford University and Harvard Law School, where she was an editor of the Harvard Law Review, then practiced as a trial lawyer at Williams & Connolly. Her stories have won the Glamour Essay Contest and the Wabash Prize for Fiction, and appeared in numerous publications including The New York Times, Salon, Slate, The Southern Review, Sycamore Review, Asian American Literary Review, and PANK. Kim lives in Northern Virginia with her husband and three sons.
Miracle Creek is Kim's debut novel.
Praise For Miracle Creek: A Novel…
A Barnes and Noble Bestseller
An IndieNext Pick
An April 2019 LibraryReads Selection
An April 2019 Book of the Month Club Selection
An Amazon Editors' Pick
A Best New Book at People Magazine
A Most Anticipated Book of 2019: BuzzFeed, AppleBooks, Refinery29, CrimeReads, Electric Literature, Nylon, The Millions, BookRiot and more; named one of 10 Best Books to Read in Spring 2019 in The Saturday Evening Post; one of Southern Living's Best Books of Spring 2019
"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
“Beautifully written . . . unflinchingly honest and thought-provoking . . . Kim deftly explores the lies that people tell themselves, the temptation of hope, and the struggles of the immigrant experience through the shifting lens of intensely believable characters.” —Yangsze Choo, Entertainment Weekly
"Engrossing . . . Miracle Creek turns a courtroom murder trial into a page-turning exploration of parenting, experimental therapies, and the emotional toil of immigration." —Elle
“[An] elegant edge-of-your seat debut.” —People Magazine
“Miracle Creek is already one of the page-turners of the summer." —Refinery29
“This clever, emotional courtroom drama pushes the boundaries of the whodunit genre. Angie Kim has created a narrative arc in her debut novel, Miracle Creek, that is unique in the annals of mystery . . . [Kim] brings more nuance to the [trial] proceedings than the 15 minutes allotted in a typical ‘Law and Order’ episode.” —Drew Gallagher, Washington Independent Review of Books
"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
“A rigorous character study, touching on themes of immigration and motherhood.”—Entertainment Weekly
“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.” —Kirkus (starred review)
"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)
"Like a Law & Order episode tossed into an immigrant’s bildungsroman, Miracle Creek has the heart of a Celeste Ng novel and the pacing of a thriller." —Hillary Kelly, Vulture
“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.” —Nylon
“[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.” —Crime Reads
"It 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.” —Publishers Weekly
“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.” —Booklist
“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 of The 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, that Miracle Creek is pretty much the perfect novel for these chaotic times in which we live.” —Laura Lippman, author of Sunburn
“Miracle Creek grabbed 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 of Testimony
“Miracle Creek is 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 the New York Times bestseller Watch Me Disappear
"I love a good courtroom drama, so I love Miracle 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