cover image Not Otherwise Specified

Not Otherwise Specified

Hannah Moskowitz. Simon Pulse, $17.99 (304p) ISBN 978-1-4814-0596-6

Etta knows she doesn’t really fit in easy categories: she’s a “rich black was-ballerina in Nebraska,” who quit her elite ballet company after a choreographer told her to lose weight. Also, bisexual Etta is being shunned and bullied by her lesbian friends, who feel betrayed because she briefly dated a boy. As Etta focuses on recovering from an eating disorder, she learns about open auditions for scholarships to an arts school in Manhattan. But when she befriends two other applicants, a talented but troubled singer struggling with anorexia and her gay older brother, Etta must decide why she is working so hard to get accepted. Determined and irrepressible, Etta is a memorable narrator with smart insights into the particular challenges of bisexual teens (“If I end up marrying a guy, what the hell queer community is ever going to want me?”). However, Moskowitz (Teeth) doesn’t fully explore several of the issues she raises, which include eating disorders and codependent relationships, making them feel somewhat scripted. Ages 14–up. Agent: John Cusick, Greenhouse Literary Agency. (Mar.)