Marisa Crane’s debut novel, I Keep My Exoskeletons To Myself, explores queer parenthood in a near-future dystopian America. In it, Kris is a new mother who is grieving the loss of her wife. She’s also a “Shadester,” a person who has been stripped of civil rights protections due to something she did in her past.
The novel is written in beautiful, vivid fragments that will leave a lump in your throat. Crane taps into their characters’ inner psyche with pitch perfect insight. There is a sense of very real realism in this very weird speculative work of fiction. I first read Crane’s book in August 2022 and I can say I have thought about it at least once a week. Exoskeletons will stay with readers long after the last page. It will haunt readers. It will change how readers think about parenthood, grief, and our country. It’s a must read for anyone looking for one of the best books of 2023.
I Keep My Exoskeletons To Myself is out now. You can read an excerpt from the book below.
Continue reading “Read an excerpt from I Keep My Exoskeletons To Myself by Marisa Crane”
Each month, Debutiful helps readers discover debut authors who are releasing can’t-miss books!
Continue reading “4 can’t-miss debut books you should read this December”
Get the Word Out, a publicity incubator program for debut authors from Poets & Writers, has announced their inaugural fiction cohort. The program is designed to pair debut authors with a Publicity Mentor who will guide them in executing a successful publicity campaign for their first major book publication.
Continue reading “Announcing the Poets & Writers’ Get the Word Out Debut Fiction Cohort”
Author Onyi Nwabineli was born in Nigeria and grew up in numerous cities across the United Kingdom. She is the cofounder of Surviving Out Loud, a fund that provides fiscal support for survivors of sexual assault, and the founder of Black Pens (black-pens.com), a writing retreat for Black womxn. Her debut novel, Someday, Maybe, is about a woman overcoming the death of her husband and navigating what her new life is.
Debutiful asked her our recurring ‘A Life of Books’ questionnaire so readers can get to know her better.
Continue reading “A Life of Books: Onyi Nwabineli, author of Someday, Maybe”
Debutiful’s goal since launching in January 2019 has been to help readers discover debut authors. Sometimes ‘debut’ means renowned poets publishing a novel for the first time. Sometimes it means authors publishing on a bigger print after finding success in the indie world. Sometimes it’s a collection of essays or stories from someone who released a longform project.
Precisely defining debut never was what Debutiful wanted to do as long as we’re introducing readers to damn good writer entering the fray.
With that being said, two of the best books this year that are debuts in a new form have been left off this list because Debutiful has included the author on previous Best Of the Year lists. Chelsea Bieker was previously introduced by Debutiful for her debut novel Godshot. This year’s story collection Heartbroke is hands down one of the best collections this year. Similarly, Kali Fajardo-Anstine’s collection Sabrina and Corina was listed as a Best Debut a few years ago. Her first novel Woman of Light is a novel everyone should read. When it comes down to semantics, they were both debuts, but hopefully those authors have been discovered by Debutiful’s readers before. This list includes authors Debutiful have never covered before.
Below are the Best Debut Books of 2022.
You can purchase the books on Debutiful’s Bookshop.org store by clicking each title. Each purchase will help support the Debutiful website and podcast.
Continue reading “The Best Debut Books of 2022”
When you google Omolola Ijeoma Ogunyemi, you’ll discover a slew of results about a computer scientist and biomedical informatics researcher. Scroll a little bit and you’ll discover that Ogunyemi also wrote a stellar debut called Jollof Rice and Other Revolutions.
I wanted to get to know how Ogunyemi has mastered two wildly different fields and introduce her to readers. We corresponded via email and discussed her science background, life in Nigeria, and writing fiction.
Continue reading “Omolola Ijeoma Ogunyemi and Other Revolutions”
Every year, PEN America releases an anthology of the best short stories written by first time published writers. This year, a dozen writers were selected from a wide-ranging array of literary journals – both in print and online. They were judged and selected by Sabrina Orah Mark, Emily Nemens, and Deesha Philyaw.
You can read previous roundtables featuring writers from past collections here: 2021, 2020, and 2019.
Continue reading “Meet 7 writers collected in the PEN America Best Debut Short Story Collection 2022 Anthology”