Never Was

Never Was

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Author: H. Gareth Gavin

Publisher: Cipher Press

Paperback

Staff Pick! Oisín says…

I love this book!!! It’s my JOINT #1 book of the year (with Hijab Butch Blues by Lamya H.). Never Was is an experimental sad-boy trans-boy novel by H. Gareth Gavin. Never Was is the place the where the story is set, it’s 'a place for lost dreams disappointments and things that never came to be'. I've never read anything else like it. The main character is in Never Was but doesn't really know where what that is or how they ended up there. The book follows the main character Fin telling their story ~ a scrappy, foggy, remembering or misremembering of a working-class upbringing, a memory of childhood friends, complicated family members and how gender interrupts and cuts through all these stories - into the person that is storytelling in the moment. There are so many stories in this book. H. Gareth Gavin is so good at giving a voice to everything - all characters and the world they’re in - it's experiential but not messy, it's a life story but not boring, the roots of all the references are so vivid and real that it's weird.