Miranda Fitch's life is a waking nightmare. The accident that ended her burgeoning acting career left her with excruciating, chronic pain, a failed marriage, and a deepening dependence on painkillers. And now she's on the verge of losing her job as a college theatre director. Determined to put on Shakespeare's All's Well That Ends Well, the play that promised—and cost — her everything, she faces a mutinous cast hell-bent on staging Macbeth instead. Miranda sees her chance at redemption slip through her fingers.
That's when she meets three strange benefactors who have an eerie knowledge of Miranda's past and a tantalizing promise for her future: one where the show goes on, her rebellious students get what's coming to them, and the invisible, doubted pain that's kept her from the spotlight is made known.
With prose Margaret Atwood has described via Twitter as "no punches pulled, no hilarities dodged . . . genius," Mona Awad has concocted her most potent, subversive novel yet. All's Well is the story of a woman at her breaking point and a formidable, piercingly funny indictment of our collective refusal to witness and believe female pain. (From Hamish Hamilton)
Mona Awad is the author of 13 Ways of Looking at a Fat Girl, which won the Amazon Canada First Novel Award, the Colorado Book Award and was shortlisted for the Scotiabank Giller Prize. She currently lives in Boston.
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"I struggled with chronic pain for a number of years. I had a hip injury and had to have surgery for it. It was a rough recovery where I injured my back and ended up having neurological symptoms down both legs. Tasks that I took for granted — like sitting at a desk, driving to the supermarket, shopping in a supermarket, bending down to get the socks on the bottom shelf — I couldn't do those things anymore. They suddenly seemed impossible.
I was interested in exploring living with this kind of condition, which is invisible to the outside eye. Nobody could see that I was in pain, but it affects so many aspects of everyday life and your relationships and vital aspects of your life,.- Mona Awad
"So with Miranda, I was interested in exploring living with this kind of condition, which is invisible to the outside eye. Nobody could see that I was in pain, but it affects so many aspects of everyday life and your relationships and vital aspects of your life, like your career, your romantic life, your friendships, everything."