“Lisa Harding is a vivid and original stylist and a gifted storyteller. This is a fabulous novel.”—Kevin Barry, author of Night Boat to Tangier
“On every page there are little shimmering bombs. Like Room, where parenthood is at once your jail and your salvation, it is almost claustrophobic—but in the most glorious way.”—Lisa Taddeo, author of Three Women
A rising international literary star makes her American debut with this visceral, tender, and brave portrait of addiction, recovery, and motherhood, as harrowing and intense as Shuggie Bain.
Sonya used to perform on stage. She attended glamorous parties, dated handsome men, rode in fast cars. But somewhere along the way, the stage lights Sonya lived for dimmed to black. In their absence, came darkness—blackouts, empty cupboards, hazy nights she could not remember.
Haunted by her failed career and lingering trauma from her childhood, Sonya fell deep into an alcoholic abyss. What kept her from losing herself completely was Tommy, her son. But her love for Tommy rivaled her love for the bottle. Addiction amplified her fear of losing her child; every maternal misstep compelled her to drink. Tommy’s precious life was in her shaky hands.
Eventually Sonya was forced to make a choice. Give up drinking or lose Tommy—forever.
Bright Burning Things is an emotional tour-de-force—a devastating and nuanced look at an addict’s journey towards rehabilitation and redemption.