WA Do I Read Next? (Part 2)

Here is the continuation of last week’s WA Do I Read Next post, in which we share a few more recently published titles by local authors shared at this year’s Washington Library Association meeting. (For more, see this Here is  list of many of the books we talked about at this year’s online conference. We Had No Rules, by Corinne Manning (Arsenal Pulp Press) Manning is a non-binary Seattle writer whose debut short story collection feels like a novel in stories, with recurring characters exploring queer lives with intimacy, insight, and humor. The prose is simple yet evocative. Relationships are central to these stories–exploring marriage, parenting, the dissolution of relationships, and the never-ending work of discovering the self. There is the story of a woman who embraces her queer self after divorce, her daughter who is also queer but does not identify with her mother because she is a daddy’s girl still upset about the divorce, a trans character who has to leave his partner to transition–all of the stories coalescing into a beautiful symphony of people striving, yearning for love and connection and communities that uplift them. Welcome to the Bitch Bubble, by Lauren Dixon (Hydra House) This collection is dedicated to and rallying cry for all of the femmes who have been called bitch, shrill, man-hater and more. With stories ranging from the weird to the wildly subversive to the slyly funny, this collection crackles with energy. With stories about a group of girls named after the days of the week, girls who won’t die, a Yeti, and other fantastical jaunts, all in the name of destroying the patriarchy. The Care and Feeding of Waspish Widows, by Olivia Waite (Avon) Waite’s utterly delightful Sapphic historical romance, second in the Feminine Pursuits series, is set in 1820 when England was in the midst of political turmoil that feels very much parallel to our present moment. Waite’s writing is divine, conjuring the historical time period in the details that those living in them would have noticed and felt in their day to day. Agatha Griffin runs a printing business with her son after her husband’s death, and is introduced to Penelope Flood in Melliton when bees take up residence on some of her printing plates. Thus begins a friendship that blossoms, slow-burn style, into more. The business of bee-keeping, the power of poetry and song to sway public opinion and foment rebellion, a Queen in exile whose defense wages a political upswell, and uppity rich folks trying to control what is considered sedition and indecent all conspire to make this book a memorable historical f/f/queer romance. Join me next Monday, for a few more treats from Washington’s best writers!      ~ Posted by Misha S.

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