#5OnMyTBR: Small Town

#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook and you can learn more about it here or in the post announcing it. It occurs every Monday when we post about 5 books on our TBR. Thank you E. for the awesome graphic for these posts as well!

Hi everyone,

This week we’re talking about Small Town books. And as someone who grew up in a small town, I have spent half my life trying to escape them, and so I really struggled with this prompt! Because the small town environment is just not a fun environment for me to read about, hello memories. But I’ve managed to find a few, although I’m not really sure how well some (most) of them fit the prompt…

Please note, next paragraph has a content warning for mention of Harry Potter and TERFs, please skip to the books if needed.

I hope everyone had a good week. Main event for me was that I got a Harry Potter tattoo burned off me with a laser. As the laser specialist said, it’s “shitter but quicker” than getting the actual tattoo in the first place and I would definitely agree with that assessment. But now that I don’t have to think about TERFs everytime I look at my body, I’m looking forward to getting a new cover up over the top! I’m thinking a mushrooms/flowery/foresty scene.

Song of the Crocodile by Nardi Simpson

First up is a book by Yuwaalaraay author, Nardi Simpson about a gateway town, Dartmoor, a place where race relations are fraught and three generations of one family are visited by ancenstral spirits and spirits of the recently deceased to help keep their descendants on the right path. But an act of violence will rip the town apart.

Vanishing Monuments by John Elizabeth Stintzi

So this one I really don’t actually know if it features a small town, but it kind of sounds like it might? So I counted it. It’s about a nonbinary teacher who hasn’t seen their mother since they ran away from home at 18. But 30 years later, their mother’s dementia has worsened and they are pulled back to their mother’s hometown to wrap up the loose ends of their mother’s life.

Earthlings by Sayaka Murata

This is another that I don’t actually know if it features a small town, but it’s set in the mountains of Nagano so I figured there’s gotta be a small town somewhere there? Earthlings is a weird and wonderful novel about a girl who might be a witch or an alien and the summers she spends with her cousin in the wild mountains of Nagano, and the promise they make there to survive, no matter the cost.

Watch Over Me by Nina LaCour

I wasn’t the biggest fan of my first LaCour book (We Are Not Okay) which I think might make me the only sapphic who didn’t like it. But I’m going to give her another go with Watch Over Me, because I am a sucker for a pretty cover. Watch Over Me is about a girl called Mila who ages out of the foster care system and is offered a job on an isolated farm where Mila hopes to finally find a family.

The Prettiest Star by Carter Sickels

Okay this might be the only one that actually, definitely fits the prompt because it has the words “small town Appalachia” in the blurb! Set in the 80s during the AIDS crisis, The Prettiest Star follows follows Brian after he loses his friends, lover and future to the disease. So he goes back to his hometown to die, the place he was once desperate to escape.

I hope everyone managed to do better than I did with actually finding books to fit this prompt! Have a lovely week!

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