‘I want to cast a spell where a Black trans girl is never hurt.’

Our June selection is PET, by Akwaeke Emezi, a Nigerian-born nonbinary author and activist. Set in the imagined American town of Lucille, a utopian place where evil has been eradicated and all children are supposed to be safe, the book centers on Jam, a young heroine like no other, who literally falls into a mystery and defeats a hidden monster.

“I want to cast a spell where a Black trans girl is never hurt,” Emezi told the New York Times in a 2019 interview. “Her parents are completely supportive. Her community is completely supportive. She’s not in danger. She gets to have adventures with her best friend. And I hope that that’s a useful spell for young people. I hope that’s a spell where someone reads that and they’re like, this is like what my life should be like. This is a possibility.”

RSVP here for our June 30 book club.

Pick up a copy at the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library, or our own little free library at Elementz, and make plans to join our youth-led book chat at 7 p.m. Wednesday, June 30, via Zoom. (You might win a WVXU/D&M swag bag, including a copy of our July book, Children of Blood and Bone, by Tomi Adeyemi).