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Isabel Waidner in Conversation with Maz Murray

Yesterday evening we welcomed Isabel Waidner for an amazing discussion of their new novel, STERLING KARAT GOLD, with Maz Murray! Catch up below if you missed it, and make sure you grab a copy of the incredible SKG which is in stock now ✨

Huge thanks to Isabel and Maz, Sam at Peninsula Press, and everyone that joined us live. What an absolute treat!

Sterling Karat Gold: Isabel Waidner in Conversation with Maz Murray

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27 July 2021 @ 7:30 pm 8:30 pm BST

Join us when we welcome Isabel Waidner to discuss their phenomenal new novel, STERLING KARAT GOLD, with Maz Murray of The right lube. The conversation will be streaming via Instagram Live.

Sterling is arrested one morning without having done anything wrong. Plunged into a terrifying and nonsensical world, Sterling – with the help of their three best friends – must defy bullfighters, football players and spaceships in order to exonerate themselves and to hold the powers that be to account.

Sterling Karat Gold is Kafka’s The Trial written for the era of gaslighting – a surreal inquiry into the real effects of state violence on gender-nonconforming, working-class and black bodies.

Following the Goldsmiths Prize–nominated We Are Made of Diamond Stuff, Isabel Waidner’s latest novel proposes community, inventiveness and the stubborn refusal to lie low as antidotes against marginalisation and towards better futures.

Isabel Waidner is a writer and academic based in London. They are the author of three novels: Sterling Karat Gold (2021), We Are Made of Diamond Stuff (2019) and Gaudy Bauble (2017). They were shortlisted for the Goldsmiths Prize and the Republic of Consciousness Prize (twice), and won the Internationale Literaturpreis. They are a co-founder of the event series Queers Read This at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), and the programmer and presenter of This Isn’t a Dream, a fortnightly literary talk show, also hosted by the ICA via Instagram live.

Maz Murray is an artist based in Basildon and London, working mainly in film and writing. They’ve made short films for ICA and Random Acts, and have written for montez press as part of The right lube, a collaborative blog and social space for trans people.

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Brontez Purnell in Conversation with Huw Lemmey

Yesterday we hosted the UK launch for Brontez Purnell’s explosive new book, 100 BOYFRIENDS! Huge, huge thanks to Brontez, Huw Lemmey, and everyone who joined us live.

Watch both parts below if you missed it!

100 Boyfriends: Brontez Purnell in Conversation with Huw Lemmey

Virtual Event Virtual Event

2 June 2021 @ 7:30 pm 8:30 pm BST


We’re truly delighted to be welcoming Brontez Purnell for the UK launch of his new book, 100 BOYFRIENDS. Brontez will be joined in conversation by Huw Lemmey, and the event will be streaming via Instagram Live.

Transgressive, foulmouthed, and wildly funny, 100 BOYFRIENDS is a filthy, unforgettable, and brutally profound ode to messy queer love. From one-night stands to recurring lovers, Brontez Purnell’s characters expose themselves to racist neighbours, date Satanists, and drink their way out of trouble, all the while fighting – and often losing – the urge to self-sabotage.

Brontez Purnell is a writer, musician, dancer, filmmaker, and performance artist. He is the author of a graphic novel, a novella, a children’s book, and the novel Since I Laid My Burden Down. The recipient of a 2018 Whiting Writers’ Award for Fiction, he was named one of the 32 Black Male Writers of Our Time by The New York Times Magazine. Purnell is also the frontman for the band the Younger Lovers, a co-founder of the experimental dance group the Brontez Purnell Dance Company, the creator of the renowned cult zine Fag School, and the director of several short films, music videos, and the documentary Unstoppable Feat: The Dances of Ed Mock. He lives in Oakland, California.

Huw Lemmey is a novelist and essayist based in Barcelona. He is the author of three novels: Unknown Language (2020), Red Tory (2019) and Chubz (2014), and co-host of the podcast Bad Gays.

Jamie Windust & Alex Iantaffi in Conversation

Virtual Event Virtual Event

21 April 2021 @ 7:30 pm 9:00 pm BST


Join us when we welcome Jamie Windust and Alex Iantaffi for a discussion of their respective groundbreaking new books, IN THEIR SHOES: NAVIGATING NON-BINARY LIFE, and GENDER TRAUMA. The event will be streaming via Instagram Live.

“There is no one way to be non-binary, and that’s truthfully one of the best things about it. It’s an identity that is yours to shape.”

Combining light-hearted anecdotes with their own hard-won wisdom, Jamie Windust explores everything from fashion, dating, relationships and family, through to mental health, work and future key debates. From trying on clothes in secret to iconic looks, first dates to polyamorous liaisons, passports to pronouns, Jamie shows you how to navigate the world and your evolving identity in every type of situation.

Frank, funny, and brilliantly feisty, this must-read book is a call to arms for non-binary self-acceptance, self-appreciation and self-celebration.

Jamie Windust is an award-winning non-binary writer, public speaker and model from London. They are Contributing Editor at Gay Times, and have written for The Independent, British GQ, Cosmopolitan and INTO More, and were named as one of London’s most influential people, in the story telling category, by the Evening Standard. IN THEIR SHOES is their first book, and was published in 2020 by Jessica Kingsley Publishers.

Exploring how the essentialism of the gender binary impacts on clients of all genders, this ground-breaking book examines how historical, social and culturally gendered trauma emerges in clinical settings. Weaving together systemic ideas, autoethnography, narrative therapy and somatic experiencing, the book charts the history of the gender binary and its roots in colonialism, as well as the way this culture is perpetuated intergenerationally, and the impact this trauma has on all bodies, gender identities and experiences.

Featuring clinical vignettes, exercises and reflexive practices, this is an accessible and intersectional guide for professionals to develop their understanding of gender-derived trauma for supporting clients. Highlighting the importance of applying a trauma-informed approach in practice, this book provides insights as to how we can work towards collective healing, for future generations and for ourselves.

Dr. Alex Iantaffi is the co-author with Meg-John Barker of How To Understand Your Gender and Life Isn’t Binary, both published by Jessica Kingsley Publishers. They have researched and published extensively on gender, disability, sexuality, and relationship issues. Alex also works as a therapist and supervisor at their own clinical group practice, Edges Wellness Center LLC, on Dakota and Anishinaabe territories, currently known as Minneapolis, MN (US). They are passionate about healing justice and writing as a form of personal and collective healing. Alex is also the host of the podcast Gender Stories.

Diary of a Film: Niven Govinden in Conversation with Rosie Dastgir

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18 February 2021 @ 7:30 pm 9:00 pm GMT


Join us as we celebrate the publication of Niven Govinden’s latest novel, DIARY OF A FILM. Niven will be joined in conversation with Rosie Dastgir via Instagram Live.

An auteur, together with his lead actors, is at a prestigious European festival to premiere his latest film.

Alone one morning at a backstreet café, he strikes up a conversation with a local woman who takes him on a walk to uncover the city’s secrets, historic and personal. As the walk unwinds, a story of love and tragedy emerges, and he begins to see the chance meeting as fate. He is entranced, wholly clear in his mind: her story must surely form the basis for his next film.

This is a novel about cinema, flâneurs, and queer love – it is about the sometimes troubled, sometimes ecstatic creative process, and the toll it takes on its makers.

But it is also a novel about stories, and the ongoing question of who has the right to tell them.

Niven Govinden is the author of five previous novels, most recently THIS BRUTAL HOUSE, which was longlisted for the Jhalak Prize and shortlisted for the Polari and Gordon Burn prizes.

Rosie Dastgir is a writer and novelist, born in England to a Pakistani father and an
English mother. Her nonfiction writing has appeared in the Weekend Financial Times,
New York Times Magazine, Stella, Planet Mindful, Prospect
, and she has written and
presented for BBC Radio 4. Her novel, A SMALL FORTUNE, is published by Riverhead
(USA), Quercus (UK), and Editions Bourgois (France). She lives in Dalston, London.

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Torrey Peters discusses Detransition, Baby with Shon Faye

Torrey Peters joined us from Brooklyn via Instagram Live yesterday evening to discuss her groundbreaking debut novel, DETRANSITION, BABY, with Shon Faye. If you missed the event live, you can now catch up below.

Huge thanks to Torrey and Shon for an excellent discussion, and thanks also to everyone who joined us live in the chat!

Detransition, Baby: Torrey Peters in Conversation with Shon Faye

Virtual Event Virtual Event

3 February 2021 @ 7:30 pm 9:00 pm GMT


Join us when we welcome Torrey Peters for a virtual event to discuss her new novel, DETRANSITION, BABY, with Shon Faye. The discussion will be held via Instagram Live.

Reese nearly had it all: a loving relationship with Amy, an apartment in New York, a job she didn’t hate. She’d scraped together a life previous generations of trans women could only dream of; the only thing missing was a child. Then everything fell apart and three years on Reese is still in self-destruct mode, avoiding her loneliness by sleeping with married men.

When her ex calls to ask if she wants to be a mother, Reese finds herself intrigued. After being attacked in the street, Amy de-transitioned to become Ames, changed jobs and, thinking he was infertile, started an affair with his boss Katrina. Now Katrina’s pregnant.

Could the three of them form an unconventional family – and raise the baby together?

Torrey Peters lives in Brooklyn and holds an MFA from the University of Iowa and a Masters in Comparative Literature from Dartmouth. She is the author of two novellas, Infect Your Friends and Loved Ones and The Masker.

Shon Faye is a writer and editor who has written for The Guardian, The Independent, Vogue, Dazed and others. Her first book The Transgender Issue: an argument for justice will be published in September 2021.

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Rainbow Milk by Paul Mendez

A skilful debut with a lot of heart, Rainbow Milk is a novel adapted from autobiography. It spans the narrator Jesse’s trajectory from a stifling childhood in a Jehovah’s Witness community, coming out as gay and his subsequent estrangement from his family, through to his experiences as a sex worker and waiter as he carves out his path in London searching through sex and drugs, eventually finding his people and the belonging that was lacking in his family. The story begins 50 years earlier with his grandparent’s arrival on the Windrush, clearly showing the traumatic repercussions across generations where hopes for a better life are met with a hostile reception; this doesn’t change for Jesse decades later as a gay black man in white spaces. Mendez brilliantly writes Jamaican patois and Black Country dialect into the dialogue and peppers the narrative with pop culture and music references which make the reading experience truly immersive. This is a stunning rollercoaster of a story about self-discovery through faith, race, sexuality and ultimately love. Highly recommended

Published by Dialogue Books on 23 April 2020

Niven Govinden and Paul Mendez in Conversation with Sophia Blackwell

Niven Govinden and Paul Mendez in Conversation with Sophia Blackwell
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Join us as we welcome Niven Govinden and Paul Mendez discussing their novels, THIS BRUTAL HOUSE, and RAINBOW MILK, with Sophia Blackwell.

THIS BRUTAL HOUSE by Niven Govinden

On the steps of New York’s City Hall, five ageing Mothers sit in silent protest. They are the guardians of the vogue ball community – queer men who opened their hearts and homes to countless lost Children, providing safe spaces for them to explore their true selves.

Through epochs of city nightlife, from draconian to liberal, the Children have been going missing; their absences ignored by the authorities and uninvestigated by the police. In a final act of dissent the Mothers have come to pray: to expose their personal struggle beneath our age of protest, and commemorate their loss until justice is served.

Watching from City Hall’s windows is city clerk, Teddy. Raised by the Mothers, he is now charged with brokering an uneasy truce.

With echoes of James Baldwin, Marilynne Robinson and Rachel Kushner, Niven Govinden asks what happens when a generation remembered for a single, lavish decade has been forced to grow up, and what it means to be a parent in a confused and complex society.

Niven Govinden is the author of four previous novels, most recently All The Days And Nights which was longlisted for the Folio Prize and shortlisted for the Green Carnation Prize. His second novel Graffiti My Soul is about to go into film production. His third novel Black Bread White Beer won the 2013 Fiction Uncovered Prize. This Brutal House was shortlisted for the Gordon Burn Prize 2019.

RAINBOW MILK by Paul Mendez

Rainbow Milk is an intersectional coming-of-age story, following nineteen-year-old Jesse McCarthy as he grapples with his racial and sexual identities against the backdrop of a Jehovah’s Witness upbringing and the legacies of the Windrush generation.

In the Black Country in the 1950s, ex-boxer Norman Alonso is a determined and humble Jamaican who has moved to Britain with his wife to secure a brighter future for themselves and their children. Blighted with unexpected illness and racism, Norman and his family are resilient in the face of such hostilities, but are all too aware that they will need more than just hope to survive.

At the turn of the millennium, Jesse seeks a fresh start in London – escaping from a broken immediate family, a repressive religious community and the desolate, disempowered Black Country – but finds himself at a loss for a new centre of gravity, and turns to sex work to create new notions of love, fatherhood and spirituality.

Paul Mendez was born and raised in the Black Country. He now lives in London and is studying for an MA in Black British Writing at Goldsmiths, University of London. He has been a performing member of two theatre companies, and worked as a voice actor, appearing on audiobooks by Andrea Levy, Paul Theroux and Ben Okri, most recently recording Ian Wright’s A Life in Football for Hachette Audio. As a writer, he has contributed to the Times Literary Supplement and the Brixton Review of Books. Rainbow Milk is his debut novel.

Sophia Blackwell is a performance poet. She has been a featured artist at Glastonbury, the Edinburgh Fringe, the WOW (Women of the World) Festival and L Fest among hundreds of other events. She is the author of three collections of poetry – Into Temptation, The Fire Eater’s Lover and The Other Woman – and a novel, After My Own Heart. Her poetry has been published by Bloodaxe, Burning Eye, Nine Arches and the Emma Press, and featured in DIVA Magazine, Time Out and The Morning Star. She recently headlined a national tour with Hammer and Tongue and hosts and organises literary events around the UK.

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