Little Fires Everywhere is a television adaptation of Celeste Ng’s 2017 novel. This show was produced and starred Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington. This show was one of the best shows of 2020. In case you are wondering if the story is based on real life, this article is just for you!
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Little Fires Everywhere Cast
- Reese Witherspoon as Elena Richardson
- Kerry Washington as Mia Warren
- Joshua Jackson as Bill Richardson
- Rosemarie DeWitt as Linda McCullough
- Huang Lu as Bebe Chow
- Jade Pettyjohn as Lexie Richardson
- Lexie Underwood as Pearl Warren
- Megan Scott as Izzy Richardson
Little Fires Everywhere Plot
The series Little Fires Everywhere is set in the late ’90s. The series begins with Mia Warren, a single mother moving to the suburbs in Ohio with her teenage daughter. She meets Elena who is a local journalist and extremely obsessed with holding the image of her family. She has four kids named Lexie, Trip, Moody, and Izzy.
Meanwhile, Mia’s a bohemian artist. Mia and Pearl end up renting a house owned by Elena. The series continues with Pearl growing more comfortable around Elena than her mom, and Izzy growing more comfortable around Mia than her mom.
The series takes a turn when the backstory of Mia’s new coworker Bebe is revealed. Bebe is an illegal immigrant from China who left her 2-month-old daughter at a fire station. Elena’s infertile friend Linda adopts the baby. Bebe is now desperate to get her kid back and Linda is determined to keep her daughter.
Mia takes the side of her friend Bebe and Elena takes the side of her friend. The rest of the series portrays the different types of struggles of motherhood by justifying the different opinions of mothers about this case.
Is Little Fires Everywhere Based On Real Life?
The series ‘Little Fires Everywhere’ made the audience wonder if the series is based on a true story and if the act of arson actually happened in real life. No, this story is not based on any real-life events. The writer of the story came up with a completely fictional plotline for her novel. However, the writer of the novel took inspiration from the town she grew up in.
The story is set in Shaker Heights, Ohio which is also the hometown where the writer Celeste Ng grew up.
Celeste Ng said in an interview, “I really wanted to write about my hometown. I think I had reached a stage where I’d been away long enough, so I could see it with a bit of distance. I loved growing up in Shaker Heights, and I really miss it, I’d been away for about 10 years and I recognized both the weirdness of growing up in this community that was very socially oriented and race-conscious, yet still had blind spots.
It shaped me into an idealist and a person who believes you can have an impact on the world. I was thinking about how I could personify this place with its wonderful aspects and its faults,” Ng told The New York Times
The aspects of the town portrayed in the series are also based on real life. In Little Fires Everywhere, many residents always made sure to keep their town manicured by not keeping their grass over six inches and only painting their houses with certain colors, depending on whether they were built in the Tudor, English, or French style. These events are pretty accurate to what actually happens in real life in Shaker Ohio.
Ng also revealed that being an Asian woman, she experienced a lot of unpleasant racial slights from her classmates. She said, “If there was an Asian boy, the other kids would be like, ‘Oh, you two are going to have an arranged marriage,’” she recalled to Time.
The vivid descriptions of the town portrayed in the show are extremely accurate when compared to real life. The unpleasant stuff portrayed about the town in the book and series still exists in real life. Celeste also said, “I now see some of the blind spots [Shaker] has. It does struggle with issues of race and class, like everywhere else does. I was interested in that tension, and I wanted to try to write about it.”
Thus, even though the characters and plotline of the story are fictional the town of Shaker Heights is real and it is inspired by the experience of the writer’s own life!
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