EVERY BRIGHT AND BROKEN THING is released! Today is the day!
I’m screaming with excitement because this book hit me right in the heart 6 months ago and I still cry about it. But enough of me. Here’s the info and then my UNprofessional review, ft. GIFs and Vines… (You can find the professional, boring reviews I did on Amazon/Goodreads, also.)
EVERY BRIGHT AND BROKEN THING by BRIAN MCBRIDE
Haunted by the last question their mother ever asked them before she passed away, the Greyson brothers struggle to cope with their grief and adjust to life after tragedy.
Semi-popular sixteen-year-old Liam spends his nights performing as the lead singer of his high school indie pop/rock band, Liam and the Landmarks. But something happened to Liam two years ago at his friend’s house – a secret Liam will take to his grave. But in small towns like Summit, Colorado, secrets always seem to find their way out.
Twenty-four-year-old Ezra thought that he could cure his grief when he left Summit behind for a prestigious art school in Chicago, but things only got worse. Now a college dropout working at a gas station mini mart, he turns to alcohol, prescription painkillers, and meaningless one-night stands. But Ezra can’t run forever – life always catches up with you.
With striking and abrasively honest dual-perspective narratives, EVERY BRIGHT AND BROKEN THING illustrates the unbreakable bond between brothers and the power in coming home.
Born and raised in Oregon, Brian moved to California at sixteen, where he has lived ever since. He’s been writing since he was thirteen-years-old and has been reading for longer. Now 23, Brian is pursuing a degree in Social Work, which he hopes to use to help rescue children and families from bad situations. A fourth generation pastor, he is heavily involved in his local church in the San Francisco Bay Area and is also pursuing his Minister’s License. Brian is currently building his first home, a Tiny House On Wheels (#THOW) in his parents’ backyard. Among other things, he is also passionate about iced tea, animals, adoption, and the arts.
EVERY BRIGHT AND BROKEN THING
Every Bright and Broken Thing is one of the most heartbreaking yet healing novels I have ever read. I don’t say this lightly when I say it is one of my all time favorites. You will fine a condensed, professional review on Amazon and Goodreads from me, but THIS review will be full of tears, feels, and screaming. Buckle up. Let’s do it.
The story is well-paced, intriguing, and beautiful. It never glorifies evil. It never ends with the characters lacking hope. Hope and love shine through the dark, just like they should. AND IT NEVER GETS BORING. I never felt like I was gonna suffocate because #stupidteenageangst. Nooo. It was realistic. All of it.
The story follows two brothers searching for home after their mother dies and their lives grow darker than they know how to handle. Let’s begin with wow, did it take one of my biggest fears (losing a parent) and play me like a fiddle! It was a great reminder that yeah, we all fear big stuff, but God is still God. He is always Good. No matter our fears. He’s bigger than them.
I’m a huge sucker for brotherhood bonds and this book delivered on that front. Soo well. I also adored how things were handled–from Liam’s tragedies, to Ezra’s romance, to the brotherly relationships, everything is realistic. There are always consequences, but there is always hope.
Christian fiction has a tendency to shy away from important, heartbreaking topics, or tackle them but without a Biblical perspective. The trick with Christian fiction, also, it might not be picked up by someone without faith, someone who needs the book. I’m delighted to say EBABT handled gritty topics in a strong Biblical perspective. Believers and nonbelievers both can see the TRUTH of the Light without getting dark content or preachy sermons shoved down their throats.
Hope shines brightest in the darkest of places. Having faith and love does not equal a perfect life or flawless happiness.
This novel shows Liam and Ezra finding the meaning of home, love, and hope. They make decisions, some bad, some good, but they never stop pushing on. That is life. We get hurt, battered, lied to, and broken, but God is enough to help us on, baby step by baby step. There is freedom in His Love. We can rejoice in absolute agony. That’s being human. Being human is scary and wild, but it’s far better than limiting ourselves to fleshly desires or material possessions.
Too often, we are hurt, and we decide to give up. We wallow in unforgiveness, fear, anger, and pain. We don’t choose courage. But this novel shows that even the ‘smallest’ choices make big differences. Healing is always possible with Jesus, even if it isn’t a magical fix, it is definitely better than what the world has to offer.
The themes are just stellar and we need more of them!
THE CHARACTERS ARE ALL MY BABIES (except Bill and Darren and Stacy, they can pound sand) and I LOVE THEM TOO MUCH. My sons. My babies. I will fight anyone in a Denny’s parking lot for these golden humans.
— Liam is the one who hit me very deeply. I know what it is like to have people I love just walk away from me and leave me behind without so much as a word as to why. I know what it’s like to want something but be unable to reach it and wonder what I did wrong. His anger and self-hatred was heart-deep for me, but I found his journey absolutely inspiring. I cheered him on, cried with him, and still want to wrap that boy in a blanket and give him hot coco and sing to him. Also, *SPOILER* THE SONG! THE DREAM! I AM DEAD INSIDE!*END SPOILER*
— I loved Ezra’s journey (AYYY ARTIST BRO) and found his redemption encouraging in my life right now. (Big shout out to the end of the book when Ezra protects his bro big time. I also adored his relationship with Elaine as they grew together and it wasn’t your cliche ‘good girl saves bad boy’ deal. It was real. Raw. Beautiful. Almost reminded me of my own parents, even!
— I loved Mr. Greyson so very much. YA fiction needs more supportive, loving, Christian parents who don’t just sit back and do nothing, y’all.
— THEO! MY SON! MY FIGHTER SON. I adored this dude. He was doing exactly what I wanted to do countless times and is a great example of a bestie. #EveryoneNeedsATheo
— Also, shoutout to Lincoln, who needs his own book. I totally called a few things regarding him and Liam but it made it even more heartbreaking…
Basically, I loved the cast of characters. They were real, motivated, and well done!
Mentions of drugs/drug abuse. Mentions of alcohol, drunkards, alcohol abuse. Some teenage partying. Some barely described kisses, all mild. A make out scene that doesn’t get graphic and stops short before anything happens. Mentions of blood and violence. Mentions of sexual abuse, briefly to mildly described, some on screen. Overall rating, 13+.
Healing from abuse is a topic dear to my heart. I relate to Liam–it’s hard choosing hope and healing but through Jesus, it is possible. And oh so worth it. This book made me laugh, cry, and I pray it blesses many others.
I’m so glad I listened to God 6 months ago when I signed to beta read this. I was “too busy, God” but I just couldn’t get this feeling out of my heart. Sure enough, I needed this book very much.
Big thanks to Brian McBride for allowing me to beta read and be a part of his street team. I look forward to what else God has in store for you. Thanks for being bold enough to share your heart in this novel.