As described on their website, Anna-Marie McLemore writes “magical realism and fairy tales that are as queer, Latine and nonbinary as they are.” Their second novel, When the Moon Was Ours, captures the intense love of two young outsiders, each with fantastical traits that estrange them from the rest of the world but entrance one another. There’s Miel, a girl seemingly born from a fallen water tower, who never dries completely and who grows roses from her wrist. And there’s Sam, a trans boy of Pakistani heritage who constantly paints lunar scenes and shadows to place around the town. Sam and Miel’s deep attachment and comfortable social seclusion is challenged when rumored witches plot to steal Miel’s roses. With textured, poetic and charming writing that evokes the magical realism of Isabel Allende and Gabriel García Márquez, McLemore brings a deep and apparent adoration of the many ways love reveals itself to us all. —Peter Allen Clark

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