Pet
by Akwaeke Emezi


Overview - NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST

" A] beautiful, genre-expanding debut. . . . Pet is a nesting doll of creative possibilities." -The New York Times

The highly-anticipated, genre-defying new novel by award-winning author Akwaeke Emezi that explores themes of identity and justice. Pet is here to hunt a monster. Are you brave enough to look?

There are no monsters anymore, or so the children in the city of Lucille are taught. Jam and her best friend, Redemption, have grown up with this lesson all their life. But when Jam meets Pet, a creature made of horns and colors and claws, who emerges from one of her mother's paintings and a drop of Jam's blood, she must reconsider what she's been told. Pet has come to hunt a monster, and the shadow of something grim lurks in Redemption's house. Jam must fight not only to protect her best friend, but also to uncover the truth, and the answer to the question--How do you save the world from monsters if no one will admit they exist?

Acclaimed novelist Akwaeke Emezi makes their riveting and timely young adult debut with a book that asks difficult questions about what choices you can make when the society around you is in denial.

"Like Madeleine] L'Engle, Akwaeke Emezi asks questions of good and evil and agency, all wrapped up in the terrifying and glorious spectacle of fantastical theology." -NPR

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More About Pet by Akwaeke Emezi
 
 
 
Overview
NATIONAL BOOK AWARD FINALIST

" A] beautiful, genre-expanding debut. . . . Pet is a nesting doll of creative possibilities." -The New York Times

The highly-anticipated, genre-defying new novel by award-winning author Akwaeke Emezi that explores themes of identity and justice. Pet is here to hunt a monster. Are you brave enough to look?

There are no monsters anymore, or so the children in the city of Lucille are taught. Jam and her best friend, Redemption, have grown up with this lesson all their life. But when Jam meets Pet, a creature made of horns and colors and claws, who emerges from one of her mother's paintings and a drop of Jam's blood, she must reconsider what she's been told. Pet has come to hunt a monster, and the shadow of something grim lurks in Redemption's house. Jam must fight not only to protect her best friend, but also to uncover the truth, and the answer to the question--How do you save the world from monsters if no one will admit they exist?

Acclaimed novelist Akwaeke Emezi makes their riveting and timely young adult debut with a book that asks difficult questions about what choices you can make when the society around you is in denial.

"Like Madeleine] L'Engle, Akwaeke Emezi asks questions of good and evil and agency, all wrapped up in the terrifying and glorious spectacle of fantastical theology." -NPR

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780525647072
  • ISBN-10: 0525647074
  • Publisher: Make Me a World
  • Publish Date: September 2019
  • Page Count: 208
  • Reading Level: Ages 13-17
  • Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.7 x 0.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.75 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Young Adult Fiction > Fantasy - General
Books > Young Adult Fiction > People & Places - United States - General
Books > Young Adult Fiction > Art

 
BookPage Reviews

Pet

Akwaeke Emezi, the acclaimed nonbinary author of last year’s buzzy adult novel Freshwater, further asserts themself as a unique, bold new voice in fiction with the surreal Pet.

The people of the town of Lucille live a blessed life. The heroes known as angels chased away all the monsters, and kids like Jam and her best friend, Redemption, have grown up without the threats that kept their parents and grandparents in fear.

Jam’s mother, Bitter, tells her daughter that monsters and angels aren’t like the ones she might have seen in old books. “It’s all just people,” she says, “doing hard things or doing bad things.” But Jam starts to reconsider her mother’s words when a frightening creature in her mother’s latest painting comes to life. The creature asks Jam to call it Pet and says that it’s on a mission—to hunt and kill the monster that, Pet claims, is lurking unseen in Redemption’s otherwise loving and happiness-filled home.

Jam is skeptical, not to mention fearful. But as she begins to trust Pet, she starts to question much of what she’s been told, and soon she and Redemption must decide for themselves what brand of justice is best suited for the monster that might lurk in their midst. 

By conceptualizing sexual violence, physical abuse, drug use and other social ills as literal monsters, Emezi gives young readers much to think about, from questioning authority and received wisdom to redefining justice. Emezi’s characters are diverse in race, physical ability and especially gender. Jam is a transgender girl, and Redemption has three parents, one of whom is nonbinary.

Despite Jam’s growing realization that Lucille is far from the utopia she’s been told it is, readers might see in Jam’s surroundings a version of a world that they, like Jam, might choose to fight for.

 
BAM Customer Reviews