In the heat of a west coast summer three very different women, each poised for success, find themselves failing spectacularly. Janice, a devoted mother and housewife who's approaching fifty, is cold-heartedly abandoned by her husband; her elder daughter Margaret, a magazine editor, is driven back home by towering debts; and her teenage daughter Lizzie is humiliated by the boys whose affections she has unquestioningly embraced. At first they hide their downfalls - bankruptcy, addiction, promiscuity - from one another, but as the curtain-twitching world they inhabit begins to intrude, they find their secrets exposed. And in the midst of the manicured lawns and country club whispers, the Miller women cloister themselves in their suburban home and confront first their individual crises, then each other ... All We Ever Wanted Was Everything is an astonishing portrait of modern-day women trying to stay afloat, of secrets and lies, and of what happens when the world you know comes crashing down.
Janelle Brown is a Los Angeles-based freelance journalist. Having spent four years as a senior writer at Salon, she currently writes for the New York Times and Vogue, amongst others.