HELLO HELLO Friday is here and that means you get to read another Friday debrief!
You know the drill, every week some of our glorious writers let us know what they have been reading this week. As always the full list is also available for easy browsing in our US and UK Bookshops! If you buy any of the books in our shops, not only are you actively supporting us and our work but you are also supporting independent bookstores with 10% of your purchase going directly to them at no extra cost to yourself, and all carbon emissions are offset! Good vibes all round. Now enough chat, big love and here is this week's debrief!
Lies, Lies, Lies by Adele Parks - Melissa
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston - Mel
This very much feels like the book of the moment, published just a week ago, I’ve seen it at the top of many of my friend’s to-be-read piles. It was not at all what I was expecting, though the magical element is revealed on the back cover synopsis, but it was exactly what I was looking for! Beautifully queer and funny and sexy, McQuiston has given us the perfect gateway into summer reading.
The Vault by Andrés Cerpa - Marian
My first introduction to the sublime poetry of Andrés Cerpa happened when I read the edited collection of Latinx poetry, LatiNext: The Break Beat Poets, Volume 4 (US & UK) earlier this year. Cerpa’s recent collection The Vault does not disappoint and is equally stunning. The spare, vulnerable poems reveal pain, loss, grief, and coping in the wake of a parent’s death.
Buy it from our Bookshop - US.
Conventionally Yours by Annabeth Albert - Lucy
I picked this up from the library because it contains all the main ingredients I love out of a romance novel—gay, enemies to lovers, fandom! So far, it's grabbed my attention... but it's a little slow going. Definitely going to stick with it though!
One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston - Lauren
I finally got my hands on my most anticipated read of the year! I loved Red, White, & Royal Blue (US & UK) SO MUCH, and 100 pages into One Last Stop, the feeling is no different. Every word Casey writes is poetry and I cannot wait to see where this story goes!
The White Bone by Barbara Gowdy - Aleesha
I was trying to explain this book to someone the other day, and they said I sounded insane. So, I'll try to be better here. The White Bone is about a pregnant elephant named Mud and her herd trying to find safety from poachers, water in a drought, and direction from a mythical talisman called The White Bone. This is the most creative and imaginative piece of writing I've come across in a while. Told from the perspective of elephants, The White Bone feels hauntingly human. It's a book about memory, collective belief, and the connections between living things.
De Rightest Place by Barbara Jenkins - Akilah
It's Read Caribbean month, and the Reading Women podcast just released an episode on books by older women writers, so I'm happy one of my current reads fits in with both. Jenkins’ debut novel is a proper slice-of-life novel about various lives that circulate in and around a pub in Belmont, Trinidad. Jenkins treats a televised attempted coup and cooking a meal with the same focus and descriptive detail with the sweetest, sweetest prose.
A Torch Against The Night by Sabaa Tahir - Courtney
After binge reading two somewhat literary novels I thought I’d let my brain rest and read some YA fantasy. I read the first book in this series, An Ember In The Ashes (US & UK), last year and I loved it so was excited to get to book two (despite remembering mostly nothing lol). This book is totally fierce and fun. It sets itself aside from other YA fantasy books for me because it’s quite murderous and savage. Nothing says a fun relaxing read like death and murder right?!?
Detransition, Baby by Torrey Peters - Jessica Maria
So often I open a book and can guess what beats the narrative might take. But Detransition, Baby is proving to be wondrous in its examination of three people's interiors as they try to manage the complex relationships they have with each other, themselves, and the world--as well as an impending baby. There are stories lurking everywhere, and so many stories not yet told though we like to think that can't be true. Here's something new and exciting, funny and depressing, and above all, mesmerizing.