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ONE OF THE MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF 2022 – BuzzFeed, LitHub, Electric Literature, LGBTQ Reads, Latinx in Publishing
*Recommended by The New York Times*
"An incandescent bildungsroman." —Publisher's Weekly, Starred Review
"Haunting, sublime, solemn, and true." —Robert Jones Jr., author of The Prophets
"[An] intense, astute meditation on race, family, class, love, and friendship." —Deesha Philyaw, author of The Secret Lives of Church Ladies
In this contemporary debut novel—an intimate portrait of queer, racial, and class identity —Andrés, a gay Latinx professor, returns to his suburban hometown in the wake of his husband’s infidelity. There he finds himself with no excuse not to attend his twenty-year high school reunion, and hesitantly begins to reconnect with people he used to call friends.
Over the next few weeks, while caring for his aging parents and navigating the neighborhood where he grew up, Andrés falls into old habits with friends he thought he’d left behind. Before long, he unexpectedly becomes entangled with his first love and is forced to tend to past wounds.
Captivating and poignant; a modern coming-of-age story about the essential nature of community, The Town of Babylon is a page-turning novel about young love and a close examination of our social systems and the toll they take when they fail us.
Alejandro Varela (he/him) is based in New York. His work has appeared in The Point magazine, Boston Review, Harper's Magazine, The Rumpus, Joyland Magazine, The Brooklyn Rail, The Offing, Blunderbuss Magazine, Pariahs (an anthology, SFA Press, 2016), the Southampton Review, and The New Republic. He is a 2019 Jerome Fellow in Literature and his graduate studies were in public health.