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Orpheus Girl

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  32 ratings  ·  27 reviews
In her debut novel, award–winning poet Brynne Rebele-Henry re-imagines the epic of Orpheus as a love story between two teen girls in rural Texas.

Abandoned by a single mother she never knew, 16-year-old Raya—obsessed with ancient myths—lives with her grandmother in a small conservative Texas town. For years Raya has hidden her feelings for her best friend and true love, Sa
Hardcover, 176 pages
Expected publication: October 8th 2019 by Soho Teen
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Brynne Rebele-Henry Hi! It's a standalone, but I haven't completely closed the door on Raya and Sarah, so maybe we'll see more of them in the future!
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4.09  · 
Rating details
 ·  32 ratings  ·  27 reviews

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Apr 29, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: glbt
doesn't this cover give you all the We Are Okay feels?? AND it's an f/f romance too.
ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review

My heart is now in smithereens.

This book physically hurt me. My body felt bruised or exhausted, like I was dehydrated. The feeling would go away after I put the book down and stopped thinking about it, but as soon as I picked the book back up, there was that bruise-feeling. It’s because the experiences that these characters are forced to go through, because they are LGBTQ+, are as horrible as they are real. Raya and Sarah have to liv
Apr 23, 2019 marked it as to-read
gays of the world,,,,,,,I GOT AN ARC *screams*

Many thanks to Soho Teen for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review

This sounds like the perfect blend of heartbreaking, funny and, in the end, inspiring.

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i want to destroy every person ever who even thinks conversion therapy isnt a fcking terrible idea i hate straight people so much

rtc when im not sad/fuming

Rep: lesbian mcs, trans side character, gay side character

CWs: homophobia (from family, slurs, telling them they're disgusting/going to hell), conversion therapy (aversion therapy with freezing water, later electroshock therapy), transphobia, suicide attempt
Vicky Who Reads
Apr 11, 2019 marked it as to-read

the girls on the cover holding hands give me life!!!! the ombre is so perfect!!! AND ORPHEUS YES OMG GIVE IT ALL TO ME

scream with me about this, friends. scream.
May 12, 2019 marked it as 2019-releases  ·  review of another edition
Me: I'm tired of conversion therapy stories
This book: *has sapphics*
Me: Give it to me now
Brenna Clark
Apr 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Thank you to Edelweiss for this ARC! I saw the synopsis and immediately knew it was a story I wanted to read. Inspired by Greek myths, Orpheus Girl is a tale of love, and the forces that will stop at nothing to extinguish it. The backdrop for the story was all too familiar; a small town in the middle of nowhere with people who had even smaller minds. Growing up in such places can make you feel like you're in a place time hasn't touched. Sure, they have cell phones and a bathroom inside their hou ...more
Stephanie Gillespie
May 04, 2019 marked it as to-read
Arc provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange of an honest review.
anna (readingpeaches)
i gotta be completely honest, what sold me on this one is that kaveh akbar follows the author on twitter
Maggie Tibbitt
May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Disclaimer: I received an advanced reading copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review.
This book reached out, snatched my heart, and broke it in the best way and in the way only books can. I really don’t know how this magical book did it, but I cared about the characters so deeply. I absolutely love that there was an Orpheus metaphor and Raya was the coolest main character ever. You know how I’m always talking about showing not telling? This book had such beautiful showing that I
Claudia Amendola
Apr 21, 2019 rated it liked it
Hemingway always used to say, "Write what you know." It is clear that the author of this book writes from her own experiences. It is short but powerful, and when you are reading it, you feel as though you are in the young girl's shoes. But it also reads more like a blog post or a diary entry, and I find that many things are consistently repeated by the narrator. There are a lot of moments where I said to myself, "Yeah, you've said that already." or, "Haven't I read this part already?" or, "Okay, ...more
Elise (TheBookishActress)
May 15, 2019 marked it as please-give-me
reading this blurb genuinely made me tense up. this is absolutely going to shatter me and it will be worth it.
Warnings: homophobia (use of homophobic slurs, transmisia and misgendering, forced outing, religious condemnation), mentions of self-harm and suicide, physical torture (including electroshock therapy), parental abuse

Rep: Has majorly queer characters, including protagonist and her love interest who are lesbians, and a minor trans boy character

A retelling of the Greek myth of Orpheus, centering two lesbian teens and their confinement at a conversion therapy center, Orpheus Girl is a raw and powerf
Apr 20, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
cw: homophobia, transphobia, torture

i never knew i needed a lesbian orpheus retelling until i read this book.

i was browsing netgalley and this cover caught my attention and blew my mind. the colours are gorgeous and the two girls holding hands is everything. once i saw the title i was sold. i love greek mythology, i love lgbt content, i love retellings, so this was pretty much up my alley.

the writing was beautiful, it was so illustrative i could picture everything perfectly and the emotions it
Amelia Rosegrant
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites, queer, ya
e-ARC provided by Netgalley in exchange for review

This book was beautifully terrifying. I haven't cried so much over a book in a very long time.

The main setting of this story is a "pray the gay away" type conversion camp. It was brutal just to read about this, and it breaks my heart that there are people this is happening to right now, in the name of religion, hate, whatever other excuse people use to torment teens this way.

The cast all had such interesting backstories, and i would like to read
Apr 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I loved this book so much. I can't even begin to explain how beautiful and powerful this story was.
I requested the arc because I'm currently devouring every lgbt title I can find. But it was so much more than what I was expecting.
Orpheus Girl is an ode to love and self acceptance. I loved it, I loved Raya and Sarah, their bravery and how they remained true to their feelings for each other even when everything was against them. But I also felt so much rage because people can be so stupid. Becau
Apr 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
*I was given an ARC in exchange for an honest review*

On my quest to find f/f books that are good, I’ve come across many bad ones. I’ve come across *maybe* 4 really good ones. I’m so incredibly happy I get to add this book to my list.

This book was short (I devoured it in a single sitting), but packed enough punch and emotion to force me to close the book because I didn’t want to cry.
This book was hard to read but in a good way.
This book was real.
This book was fantastic.

And I don’t plan on ta
Flora ❀
May 19, 2019 marked it as wish-list
Shelves: to-be-released
orpheus reimagining (◕ᴗ◕✿)

(ʘ‿ʘ✿) with a w/w lovestory
Apr 21, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
such a hard book to read but so important and full of mythological references
May 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Books like this make me so sad. Why is loving someone of the same gender something that is wrong and needs to be 'fixed'? I was really hoping that the storyline with grandma would go in a different direction but it did not. Just wanted to give these two girls such a big hug. Love is love.
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is emotionally draining in the best way. The characters go through terrible things and it can be a lot to handle just reading it. Since the book isn't very long, you'd think it would be a quick read. But the author pulled me in and made me feel very attached to these characters, which meant sometimes I'd have to put it down for a minute because Rebele-Henry's writing affected me so much. I can't wait to see what this author has in store for us in the future.
May 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such an impactful read and is about a topic that needs to be talked about more. It's so sad to think about how this has happened and still is happening. This is a difficult read but It's so important.

Thank you to Edelweiss for the ARC
Apr 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
TW: torture, electroshock therapy, conversion therapy, suicide, self-harm
Christy Dyer
May 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
I received an e-book copy of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Raya is very good at hiding who she is. There may have been times where she slipped up, but she was able to pass it off as something else. That is, until her best friend Sarah starting liking her back. It's dangerous for queer teens in Texas. There are other queers that were caught only to never be seen again. Raya and Sarah try to be careful, but they are caught and are soon sent to a camp to be "fixed." Now
rated it really liked it
Apr 28, 2019
rated it really liked it
May 01, 2019
May 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is an emotional read for anyone and highlights some of the horrors of conversion camps. It gave me goosebumps and made me cry multiple times by the end.
rated it really liked it
Apr 26, 2019
Alexa Wejko
rated it it was amazing
Apr 22, 2019
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Brynne Rebele-Henry was born in 1999. Her poetry and fiction have appeared in The American Poetry Review, Rookie, and Blackbird, among other places. Her writing has won numerous awards, including the 2015 Louise Louis/Emily F. Bourne Award from the Poetry Society of America. She has two books of poetry: Fleshgraphs and Autobiography of a Wound, which won the AWP Donald Hall Poetry Prize and is a f ...more
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