The Book 

The Good Hurt is a family memoir that sets out to excavate beauty and healing from our most challenging experiences. The reader joins Ella in an exploration of childhood belonging, family secrets, and the ghosts that haunt us. She retraces her ancestors’ steps, going back to post-revolution Nicaragua, 27 years since her family fled and a booming city in China that use to be her grandfather’s small village. These family journeys are juxtaposed by her average American upbringing in which she never quite belonged. Ultimately these stories collide to demonstrate the healing power of language and storytelling.

With humanity, grace, and incredible scope, Ella Mei Yon’s The Good Hurt walks fearlessly into the most painful areas of human existence in search of meaning. Using her life as an entry point, she is an incisive observer of each moment, drawing connections across time and distance, the present moment and all of history, in trauma and in quietude, querying what keeps us apart even as we are right beside each other. A deeply empathic writer, she is just as much a warrior of the human heart, a survivor. A necessary voice.
— Sarah Gerard, author of Sunshine State
In The Good Hurt, Ella Mei Yon’s profound empathy and close observations elevate the mundane and ground the sublime. She has a voice like no other, as lyrical
and rhythmic as it is clear and cutting.
— Nicole Haroutunian, author of Speed Dreaming