And They Lived...
Steven Salvatore. Bloomsbury, $17.99 (384p) ISBN 978-1-5476-0819-5
As viral film sensation and self-described “uncoordinated queer AF Disnerd Chase Arthur,” who is white, starts college, there’s a lot on his mind: avoiding his ex-best-friend on campus, becoming an animator for Disney, maybe falling in love, navigating body dysmorphia and disordered eating, and figuring out his gender identity and “the whole pronoun question.” He quickly befriends his roommate, “pure gay chaos” Italian American Benny and suitemate Xavier, Black and also gay, then meets adorably masc, white student Jack Reid, who’s as passionate about writing as Chase is about animation. Though Chase can’t tell whether Jack’s queer or into him, he can’t help making the lead characters in his tropey fairy tale animation project resemble the two of them. Salvatore (Can’t Take That Away) renders Chase’s experiences sympathetically, uses the animation project to create a romantic story-within-a-story, and fills the book with funny, pop-inflected dialogue. Taking on coming out, the challenges of art-making, the importance of mentors who get where one is coming from, and the joys and terrors of romance, Salvatore sweeps readers off their feet. Ages 14–up. Agent: Jessica Regel, Foundry Literary. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 01/20/2022
Release date: 03/08/2022
Hardcover - 384 pages - 9781547608195