There’s something incredibly tender about falling so deeply in love with fictional worlds and their inhabitants that their loss brings us to tears. Crying is also extremely therapeutic, releasing soothing chemicals and helping us process our real-life grief. Grab one of these books, a box of tissues, and prepare to embrace the delicious tragedy of it all.
When I put Arundhati Roy’s The Ministry of Utmost Happiness down for the first time, I breathed an enormous sigh — a sigh in realization that perhaps everything that needs to be said, has been, that a single book could contain so much of everything, so much anguish and joy and love and war and death and life, so much of being human. It’s the kind of book that makes you feel like you’ve lived several times over.
—Anita Felicelli, the Los Angeles Review of Books
Lovers who surmount the odds have always been intense emotional fodder, but rarely have we seen a story like Birthday… true and raw, haunting and undeniable.
—The New York Times Book Review
[My Lesbian Experience with Loneliness] sheds light on the complicated emotional and mental dynamics involved in lesbian relationships. Her story is an open, honest, and deeply personal look at her struggles to fight back against her eating disorder, stop self-harming, and learn more about her sexuality.
—Ana Valens, The Mary Sue
Rebecca Makkai’s The Great Believers is a page turner… among the first novels to chronicle the AIDS epidemic from its initial outbreak to the present—among the first to convey the terrors and tragedies of the epidemic’s early years as well as its course and repercussions…An absorbing and emotionally riveting story about what it’s like to live during times of crisis.
—Michael Cunningham, The New York Times Book Review
Junauda Petrus's debut brilliantly captures the distinctly lush and lyrical voices of Mabel and Audre as they conjure a love that is stronger than hatred, prison, and death and as vast as the blackness between the stars.
In this tragic queer romance (where the tragedy does not revolve around the characters’ sexualities!), Adam Silvera reminds us that there’s no life without death and no love without loss in this devastating yet uplifting story about two people whose lives change over the course of one unforgettable day.