In Petrus’ bewitching debut, Aquarius meets Scorpio and contemplates what comes next.
Audre has found religion in the form
of Neri, the pastor’s granddaughter, much to the chagrin of her religious
mother. Sent from Trinidad to Minneapolis to live with her father, Audre is
afraid of leaving her beloved grandmother, being cut off from her home culture,
and starting over in a new country. Meanwhile, fascinated with Whitney Houston
and the singer’s supposed romance with a female friend, Mabel is attempting to
fit the pieces of her sexuality together. Although she’s been feeling sick, she
agrees to entertain her father’s friend’s newly arrived daughter, and Audre and
Mabel grow close over the summer. As the school year ramps up, Mabel can no longer
ignore her chronic fatigue and pain and must grapple with life-altering news.
She finds comfort in reading an old book of her parents’, learning about astrology,
and seeking Audre’s healing presence. Audre’s voice is lyrical, and readers
will practically hear her Trinidadian accent as she overcomes her fears and
self-doubt. Through a nonlinear storyline and two secondary characters, Afua and
Queenie, the author beautifully interjects elements of magical realism while
delving into the complexities of spirituality. Readers seeking a deep,
uplifting love story will not be disappointed as the novel covers both flourishing feelings and bigger questions around belief and what happens when we face our own mortality. Main
characters are black.
A cosmically compelling read. (Fiction.