Pennsylvania

Such a Fun Age by Kiley Reid

Such a Fun Age is a engaging, if ultimately frustrating, read. The premise brought to mind two favorites of mine (Lucy and Luster, both focus on young black women living with white middle-class couples and taking ‘care’ of their child). Given the buzz around Such a Fun Age I had rather high expectations and when […]

More

What We Lose by Zinzi Clemmons

Though mostly comprising of short chapters, some shorter than a page, What We Lose is a poignant novel that succeeds on many different levels: it captures the narrator’s inner feelings, it gives a crystal-clear understanding of her circumstances, and it provides us with insights into questions of love, race, illness, grief, and motherhood. Thandi, our […]

More

A Crooked Tree by Una Mannion

“That summer when I so desperately tried to reel us all in, I didn’t understand the forces spinning us apart.” The opening of A Crooked Tree is certainly chilling. Libby, our fifteen-year old narrator, is in the car with her siblings. When their squabbling gets too much their mother dumps twelve-year old Ellen on the […]

More

These Violent Delights by Micah Nemerever

“They could only stitch themselves back together if they did something irreversible.” Heavenly Creatures by way of Patricia Highsmith, plus a sprinkle of Like Minds, and with the kind of teenage morbidity one could find in Hangsaman or Stoker. Adroit and gripping, These Violent Delights is a superlative debut novel. Being the self-proclaimed connoisseur of […]

More