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Greetings, coven! In this episode we discuss Pet by Akwaeke Emezi, their debut young adult novel. It’s a pretty quick read that deals with some heavy issues in ways that are accessible to younger audiences (i.e., middle grade) as well as teen and adult readers. Pet was a finalist for the 2019 National Book Award for Young People’s Literature – after reading it, we understand why!
Content warning for discussions child physical and sexual abuse.
On to some (brief) notes!
- Kelly highly recommends Emezi’s article “My Spirit Burns Through This Body” (Paris Review, 10 December 2020).
“My spirit bends worlds and does things that shouldn’t be possible, not with the way my flesh or this world is set up, but I’m learning that my body is something to be reckoned with as well. It keeps receipts and inevitably claims its debts.”
- Emezi’s other books include The Death of Vivek Oji, Freshwater, and Dear Senthuran
- Kelly has been learning from the collection Beyond Survival: Strategies and Stories from Transformative Justice Movements, edited by Ejeris Dixon and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha
- Check out this short video about the book cover design process
As always, we’d love to be in discussion with you, magical folx. Post or tweet about the show using #criticallyreading or #thelibrarycoven. Let us know what you think of the episode, anything we missed, or anything else you want us to know by dropping a line in the comments or reaching out to us on twitter or Instagram (@thelibrarycoven), or via email (email@example.com). You can also check out the show notes on our website, thelibrarycoven.com.
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The Library Coven is recorded and produced on stolen indigenous land: Arapahoe, Cheyenne, and Ute (Kelly) and Chickasha, Kaskaskia, Kickapoo, Mascoutin, Miami, Mesquaki, Odawa, Ojibwe, Peankashaw, Peoria, Potawatomi, Sauk, and Wea (Jessie)