Everything Is Not Enough: A Novel (Hardcover)
From Lola Akinmade Åkerström, international bestselling author of In Every Mirror She’s Black, comes the highly anticipated second novel, focusing on the lives of three Black women as they fight their own personal struggles in one of the most egalitarian societies, Sweden.
Can a career woman truly have it all?
Powerful marketing executive Kemi Adeyemi has finally found the man she needs, but Tobias Wikström thinks she’s the most selfish woman he has ever met for asking him to give up his life in Sweden and move to the US for her own comfort. Will Kemi be forced to stay if she wants to keep him while chipping away at her hard-earned career? As things begin to sour and challenge her relationship with Tobias, someone else moves back into the picture.
Can having it all be a gilded cage?
Looking into divorce in Sweden isn’t what former model-turned-flight attendant Brittany-Rae von Lundin anticipated. Only jointly owned assets are split evenly between couples. Brittany gave up her career and came with nothing into Jonny’s kingdom. Having had a child with him, her greatest fear for Maya includes being cut off from the resources she’s become accustomed to. With a man obsessed with a ghost, trying to get away isn’t going to be easy. And the deeper she digs into his past, the darker the secrets she unravels.
Can you run from your past to have it all?
After fleeing her home through a client to seek a new life in Sweden, Yasmiin finds love in the arms of Yagiz Çelik while carving out her own small corner. But as someone from her past forces Yasmiin to become a caretaker before she’s ready, she now must confront and move beyond her teenage history, while following her dreams of becoming a makeup artist.
Everything Is Not Enough follows the loosely intertwined and messy lives of Kemi, Brittany, and Yasmiin as they interrogate themes of place, prejudice, and patriarchy in Europe, proving—yet again—that Lola Akinmade Åkerström is the next great voice of nuanced contemporary women’s fiction.
Nigerian-American and based in Sweden, Lola Akinmade Åkerström is an award-winning author, speaker, and photographer. Her work has appeared in National Geographic, BBC, CNN, The Guardian, Sunday Times Travel, The Telegraph, New York Times, Travel + Leisure, Slate, Travel Channel, Adventure Magazine, Lonely Planet, amongst others.
In addition to contributing to several books, she is the author of the following books: 2018 Lowell Thomas Award winner for best travel book, Due North, bestselling Lagom: Swedish Secret of Living Well, available in 18 foreign language editions, and internationally-acclaimed In Every Mirror She's Black.
She has been recognized with multiple awards for her work, including being named a 2022 Hasselblad Heroine and receiving the 2018 Travel Photographer of the Year Bill Muster Award. She was honored with a MIPAD 100 (Most Influential People of African Descent) Award within media and culture in 2018. She contributed to National Geographic's Image Collection.
She is based in Stockholm and tweets at @LolaAkinmade.
"Lola Akinmade Akerstrom weaves a complex tapestry of three women through her deft storytelling and absorbing prose. These rich characters' lives are complicated, messy and heartbreakingly real as they struggle with love, family, and identity in a world that consistently thwarts women's ambitions. Their passions, desires, and vulnerability will stay with readers long after they finish this fascinating page-turner." — Christine Pride and Jo Piazza, bestselling authors of You Were Always Mine
"Everything is Not Enough presents a fascinating and complex kaleidoscope of women's lives in Sweden, asking crucial questions around career, love, family, and the definition of success. There are no easy answers in this book—the characters are real, subtle and surprising and you root for them the whole way through." — Kathy Wang, author of Impostor Syndrome
“Compulsively readable, Everything is Not Enough is a worthy successor to Akerstrom's debut. It was profoundly comforting to see Akerstrom's women wade into their power, claiming their space in a world that gives them very little room to be. Akerstrom is a master at shading the gaps between power and love. This book filled me up like food. Everything about it is absolutely enough.” — Chika Unigwe, award-winning author
"Incendiary, emotionally devastating, absolutely wonderful." — Onyi Nwabineli, author of Someday, Maybe
"Everything is Not Enough is a searing account of three women struggling through heartbreak, deception, and the scars of their pasts to find their rightful place in a society that isn't eager to make space for them. Lola Akinmade Akerstrom writes with clarity and fearlessness, baring ugly truths amidst the strength and resilience of women who come into their own, while also coming into the beauty of hope." — Charlene Carr, author of Hold My Girl
"Åkerström carefully examines the loneliness of frequently feeling like an outsider and how this can draw the most disparate of people together. Balancing the trauma and turmoil of being judged and appraised based on the prejudices of individual people and societies, this fitting follow-up dwells on the comforts of finding a community on which to depend." — Booklist
“In Every Mirror She’s Black is a wise and complicated exploration of the lives of three Black women in America and Sweden. Lola Akinmade Åkerström offers a sharply written story with messy, deeply moving characters, raising brutal questions and steering clear of easy answers. A book that will stick with you long after you've turned the last page.” — Taylor Jenkins Reid, NYT bestselling author of Daisy Jones and the Six
“In Every Mirror She’s Black highlights the struggles of three women fighting to assimilate into a society that ignores their worth. These characters will pull at your heartstrings. Lola writes with a contemporary flair, highlighting the layered subtleties of the Black woman’s plight. In Every Mirror She’s Black will stay with readers for a long time.” — Nicole Dennis-Benn, author of bestselling novels Here Comes the Sun and Patsy
“Beautifully complex and deftly drawn, Kemi, Brittany, and Muna are going to stay on my mind for a long, long time. In Every Mirror She’s Black is a sexy, surprising, searing debut about love, loss, desire, and the many dimensions of Black womanhood. Timely and terrific!” — Deesha Philyaw, award-winning author of The Secret Life of Church Ladies
"From its relatable and three-dimensional characters, to its delving into racism and tokenism, to its unique and sometimes heartbreaking examination of the lives of Black women in a Nordic setting, this novel delivers an emotional punch. Kemi, Brittany, and Muna’s lives come alive...If you’re looking for a novel that will stay with you even days after you’ve read the last page, then make sure you grab a copy of Lola Akinmade Åkerström’s In Every Mirror She’s Black. This is a very different and unpredictable portrayal of Black women’s search for love and self, and it’s pure magic.” — Kim Golden, USA Today bestselling author
“In her debut novel, Lola Akinmade Åkerström has given us a story that is at once enjoyable and disturbing as it explores the painful price millions of women around the world pay for walking around with black skin.” — Imbolo Mbue, New York Times bestselling author of Behold the Dreamers