Today A Queerer Mirror is officially welcoming our first guest blogger! I’m super excited to introduce you to Ray. Ray is a voracious reader with a huge interest in queer books and has a great one to recommend to you today.
QM: So what’s it about?!?
Ray: Months after her best friend dies in a tragic accident, Megan still cannot speak a word. Her voice gets caught in her throat every time she tries. But when a new girl moves to town towards the end of the school year, Megan learns that spoken word is not the only thing that can bring two people together.
Part mystery, part love story, this is a book about learning how to heal even when you don’t feel you deserve it.
QM: What makes it a queer book?
Ray: Megan and Jasmine end up in a relationship together, much more than just best friends. They hug and kiss and hold hands. It takes a while for the plot to get there with a lot of Megan going “Why do I want to kiss her?” and “Why am I jealous of her boyfriend?”. But it does eventually get there!
I think what makes this book stand out among queer books is that it’s not a coming out narrative. In fact, Megan never gives herself a label for her sexuality. She simply lets it be and go with what feels right to her. There is so much pressure in the world to know exactly who you are from day one that it is important to remember that finding yourself is a journey, and it is not the only thing that can be going on in a person’s life.
QM: Why is this book important to you personally?
Ray: I’m a semi-verbal autistic, which means that I can talk a good chunk of the time but not all the time. When I get stressed, I often lose the ability to speak, which makes it harder to communicate with my loved ones. Sometimes I feel guilty about this and wonder if they will eventually just give up on me and leave.
While Megan isn’t written as autistic, she is non-verbal. Not only is she a non-verbal character with a solid friendship and a good mother-daughter relationship and a girlfriend, she is a non-verbal character who is also queer. Most characters are either non-verbal and straight or verbal and queer. But in Megan I can see two large parts of myself. Her relationships turn out all right, even though she can’t speak, so maybe mine aren’t doomed.
QM: What makes it awesome?
Ray: I think this book is awesome because the writing just sucks you in. The people feel real and the setting is believable and you can really get attached to what Megan is going through. Megan feels especially real. She doesn’t know what she wants for lunch let alone what labels to use on herself or how to feel about her whole situation. Her lack of certainty gives her a very human quality that makes it easy to relate to.
QM: Who would you recommend this book for?
Ray: I would recommend this book for any person who loves a good mystery and may or may not be questioning their own sexuality or the validity of it.
It’s a book meant for teenagers, but… I’d say it’s suitable for tweens up to adults. There is a bit of violence in it and some tough social issue stuff, but nothing overly graphic.
QM: Thanks Ray! Now everyone go check out Unspeakable and then let us know what you think in the comments below. Happy reading!