A novel of family, fame, and religion that tells the story of the seventeen-year-old daughter of an evangelical preacher, star of the family's hit reality show, and the secret pregnancy that threatens to blow their entire world apart.
Clearly there’s a lot going on [within The Book of Essie and it is a testament to author Meghan Weir’s firm hand on the tiller of her plot that it never gets confusing. Indeed, her novel is nothing if not readable ... Without a deeper exploration of the behaviors she describes, Ms. Weir has created a novel better adapted to young adults ready to engage with dilemmas and take the high road to solutions rather than to questioning readers, who may prefer to walk the low road explanation. Nonetheless the tight plot and the inspirational ethos will make this novel, Ms. Weir’s first, an attractive candidate for summer entertainment.
[A] propulsive debut novel ... The tentative trust that grows between [the protagonists] gives The Book of Essie emotional depth, and the questions at its center have a surprising moral weight. Readers will root for Essie through every twist and turn of her story.
[A] gripping page-turner that will have readers rooting for Essie's freedom, and her baby's safety, at ever surprising turn. But what The Book of Essie offers readers is more than entertainment. It offers us a chance to explore our deep-rooted obsession with fame and celebrity, with reality television and its stars. The novel forces us to ask what role we play in creating them, and in turn, what responsibility we have for any pain or trauma they might cause.