I received this book for free from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.All the Things We Don't Talk About by Amy Feltman
Published by Grand Central Publishing on May 24, 2022
Genres: Fiction / Coming of Age, Fiction / Family Life / General, Fiction / LGBTQ+ / Transgender, Fiction / Literary
Format: ARC, eBook
A “big-hearted, lively, and expansive portrait of a family” that follows a neurodivergent father, his nonbinary teenager, and the sudden, catastrophic reappearance of the woman who abandoned them (Claire Lombardo, New York Times bestselling author).
Morgan Flowers just wants to hide. Raised by their neurodivergent father, Morgan has grown up haunted by the absence of their mysterious mother Zoe, especially now, as they navigate their gender identity and the turmoil of first love. Their father Julian has raised Morgan with care, but he can’t quite fill the gap left by the dazzling and destructive Zoe, who fled to Europe on Morgan’s first birthday. And when Zoe is dumped by her girlfriend Brigid, she suddenly comes crashing back into Morgan and Julian’s lives, poised to disrupt the fragile peace they have so carefully cultivated.
Through it all, Julian and Brigid have become unlikely pen-pals and friends, united by the knowledge of what it’s like to love and lose Zoe; they both know that she hasn’t changed. Despite the red flags, Morgan is swiftly drawn into Zoe’s glittering orbit and into a series of harmful missteps, and Brigid may be the only link that can pull them back from the edge. A story of betrayal and trauma alongside queer love and resilience, ALL THE THINGS WE DON’T TALK ABOUT is a celebration of and a reckoning with the power and unintentional pain of a thoroughly modern family.
This book was really difficult for me, personally, to get through, due to Trauma, You Know, of being part of a really dysfunctional family. But it’s also a story of wild interpersonal relationships, of existing around charismatic but ultimately destructive people (Zoe is the Caroline Calloway of this book and also this family), of betrayal and grief and having something fundamentally missing and trying to fill that. And ultimately, it’s a queer story about family love and acceptance. Five stars.