Thanks to all who participated in my contest for the release of Out on Good Behavior, and congrats to the winner, Alison! For those who didn’t get all of them and want the key, here’s Samara’s official reading list, paired with the quotes from the book:
This is Where it Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
She laughs. “It’s a really good book! Though it actually kind of destroyed me—it’s about a school shooting, told in real time from all these different perspectives, and honestly I probably would’ve just stayed in tonight, but after I finished, I felt like I needed to be around living, breathing people for an hour.”
None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio
Rainbow House is brimming over with people by the time I show up that night. Everyone who enters gets one of those “Hello, My Name Is” stickers, only these say, “Hello, My Pronouns Are.” I grab one and a purple Sharpie, scrawl on “She/Her,” and search my shirt for a stretch of fabric large enough to hold it. I end up sticking it just above the hem of my glittery halter, then go off in search of familiar faces. I don’t spot Abe or Sid right away, but I do accept an excited hug from Emily Strother, who’s wearing an “I Heart My Gonads” pin affixed to her sweater.
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne
I can’t help smiling at that, and after a few moments, so does she. “I recommended a really good political one about a girl whose dad is running for president, but he was not amused. Might’ve been the hot-pink cover.”
Underneath Everything by Marcy Beller Paul
“Lesbians?” I ask with a waggle of my eyebrows.
She tips her head to the side. “Let’s say…sexual orientation unclear. But I have my theories.”
“How are you so good at getting me interested in these?” I ask as I watch her tuck away the black hardcover.
Under the Lights by Dahlia Adler or About a Girl by Sarah McCarry
“Deal. I know just the book for you—lesbians right on the cover.”
The Weight of Feathers by Anna-Marie McLemore
“I think so, yeah. The writing is gorgeous, and it feels so artistic, I can totally see you loving it. It’s magical realism, and it has the most beautiful forbidden love story.” As she continues to gush about the book, I realize this is the most animated—maybe the most comfortable—I’ve seen her all weekend. Is it possible she’s more into books than me? Is booksexuality a thing?
Second Position by Katherine Locke
Her middle name is Jane. She doesn’t take coffee at all (see above); green tea is her caffeinated beverage of choice. Tea, period, is probably her favorite thing on earth, and lately she’s taken to drinking it with one orange teabag and one vanilla teabag, because she read it in a book she loved and thought it sounded delicious.
Black Iris by Leah Raeder
I glance at the book on the floor—is that flower on the cover supposed to look so vaginal?—and then back at Sam. She hasn’t so much as stirred since I walked in. Kissing her awake seems too presumptuous, so I kneel by the bed and lift her fingers to my lips instead. Her eyelids flutter open, revealing those gorgeous tiger eyes that melt me every time, and I say, “Hey.”
Jellicoe Road by Melina Marchetta
“How could I not ship us?”
“But, like, where do we rank? Do we beat Tim and Jenna?”
“You mean Taylor and Jonah?” She sighs. “Yes, Frankie, I ship us harder than Taylor and Jonah.”
The Conspiracy of Us and Map of Fates by Maggie Hall
“What about those books where you switched teams from one guy to the other in the middle? The one where you said the pink-covered book almost turned you bi.”
She contemplates for a minute. “I ship us harder than the girl with either guy,” she says carefully.
“But not more than if they were a threesome.”
“I mean…come on.”
So, that’s it! Hope you had fun figuring it out!