Title: The Measure

Author: Nikki Erlick

Pages: 368 Pages

Publisher: Harper Collins

The Blurb

Your fate arrives in a box on your doorstep. Do you open it?

It seems like just another morning.

You make a cup of tea. Check the news. Open the front door.

On your doorstep is a box.

Inside the box is the exact number of years you have left to live.

The same box appears on every doorstep across the world.

Do you open yours?

THE MEASURE

IT’S THE DECISION OF A LIFETIME.

The Review

I feel like 2022 has had some absolute cracking novels. It has been an overly impressive year with the quality and diversity of the books that have been released and to be honest I thought I had already found the books that would be in my top ten by the end of the year but then I read The Measure and I was blown away.

The story seems simple enough. It is almost a retelling of the myth of Pandora mixed with an allegorical tale of everything that has happened since 2020. Erlick has been clever because facing our mortality is a topic that we have all had to deal with since the pandemic so the story at its very basic level is relatable. And then you get to the characters and oh wow how Erlick tells their story is beautiful and touching.

Without going in to too much detail the story centres around knowing when you are going to die. If you had the option to know, to find out that information, would you do it? Or would blissful ignorance be the better option? If you do find out, what do you then do with that information? Does it change the way you live your life?

The way that Nikki Erlick explores this topic is masterful. The twists and turns along the way are breathtaking and heartbreaking in equal measure. There are some books that sit with you and make you think long after turing that final page and I know without a shadow of a doubt that The Measure by Nikki Erlick will be a book that I will keep with my for a very long time.

The Measure by Nikki Erlick is available now

For more information regarding Nicki Erlick (@nickierlick) please visit www.nikkierlick.com.

For more information regarding Harper Collins (@HarperCollinsUK) please visit their Twitter account.

Title: When You Call My Name

Author: Tucker Shaw

Pages: 368 Pages

Publisher: Penguin Random House Children’s UK

The Blurb

A heartrending novel about two gay teens coming of age in New York – perfect for fans of It’s a Sin and Adam Silvera.

It’s 1990 in New York City.

Adam is falling in love for the first time. Ben is leaving home for the last.

Drawn by the city’s irresistible energy, the boys are swept up into the queer scene, where the potential for life and love seems limitless.

But as the shadows of prejudice gather, Ben and Adam discover how their newfound community is facing the looming threat of AIDS, which will touch their lives more closely than they ever could have imagined. 

Heartbreaking yet hopeful, When You Call My Name tells the story of the moments that break our hearts and the people who make us whole – and shows how together we burn brightest in times of darkness.

The Review

Oh my wow. I loved When You Call My Name by Tucker Shaw.

Tucker Shaw’s novel tells the story of two young men living during the turn of the decade from the 80s into the 90s in New York. The AIDS pandemic was on the rise and emotions were running high within the LGBT+ community and outside of it. Ben and Adam met through a chance encounter and form an unusual friendship that is tested by the world around them. Can Adam and Ben maintain their friendship in a world that is constantly changing?

I read a lot of LGBT+ fiction. It is something that I am passionate about. As an ally, I feel the best way that I can educate myself of the LGBT+ community is by learning the stories – whether they be fiction or non-fiction – and opening myself up to knowing the history. When You Call My Name is a fictional story but it is not too far from the truth. There will have been Bens and Adams all over the world going through what they went through which is why stories like When You Call My Name are vital.

For me, the absolute power in this book comes from very certain moments. It is not what Tucker Shaw has had his characters say. The power comes in what was not said – the Pinter pauses that say so much whilst saying absolutely nothing at all. That was writing at its most perfect.

When You Call My Name had me in absolute bits. It has shot to the top spot in my books of 2022.

When You Call My Name by Tucker Shaw is available now.

For more information regarding Tucker Shaw (@tucker_shaw) please visit www.tuckershawwrites.com.

For more information regarding Penguin Random House Children’s UK (@PenguinUKBooks) please visit www.penguin.co.uk.