Everything is Beautiful and Everything Hurts: Our May eBook Club pick!

Big Library Read: Everything is Beautiful and Everything Hurts, by Josie Shapiro

Welcome to the WCL eBook Club, where each month we highlight a popular eBook in our digital collection and give access to an unlimited number of downloads on Libby. That means no waiting in long reserves queues- you’ll get instant access to our monthly popular pick!

From May 20 – June 2, our eBook Club title is the stunning, unforgettable debut novel from Josie Shapiro — Everything is Beautiful and Everything Hurts.

It’s a heart-warming coming-of-age story about overcoming adversity. At its centre is Mickey Bloom who is bullied at school and dyslexic who doesn’t think of herself as special, until she discovers her talent for running. Initially she becomes a star, but eventually the pressure to succeed becomes too much and her dreams collapse in tatters. The plot then skips forward a few years — Mickey is now in a dead-end job with a drop-kick boyfriend and a seriously ill mother. After nursing her mother she begins to realise that the only way to find herself again is to run.

The novel is about the glory and pain of putting everything you have on the line to find yourself. An uplifting and inspiring story about a young woman overcoming some big hurdles, it also plunges the reader into the gruelling world of the long-distance runner.

Josie states that the initial idea for the novel came from the idea of “a woman, about to embark on something immensely difficult”. The book was inspired by events from Josie’s own life, and from other athletes she’d heard about.

About Josie Shapiro

Josie Shapiro, larger imageJosie Shapiro has a master’s in creative writing from the University of Auckland, where she was awarded a Wallace Arts Scholarship for her work. Her short stories have been published online and in literary journals and her work is included on the anthology Ko Aotearoa Tatou: We are New Zealand. In February, Josie was awarded a Michael King Writers Centre residency.

Her stunning debut novel won the Allen & Unwin Commercial Fiction Prize, and although the book has only just been released it has already featured heavily on many hot, must-read lists. We loved the book so much we decided to make it our eBook club title pick. You can read for free about what all the excitement is about yourself by joining us on our Libby app as we offer unlimited downloads in May of this fabulous newly released title, Everything is Beautiful and Everything Hurts by Josie Shapiro.

Watch our interview with Josie:

Unlimited downloads will be available through Libby from May 20th!


Josie Shapiro’s accomplished debut novel has the compulsive forward motion of a world-class race. You don’t have to be a runner to get the high, just read this book!’

-Kirsten McDougall, author of She’s a Killer

The stunning debut novel by the winner of the Allen & Unwin Commercial Fiction Prize. If you loved Lessons in Chemistry and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine, you will adore Everything is Beautiful and Everything Hurts.

-OverDrive Description

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