By Akwaeke Emezi,

Book cover of Pet

Book description

How do you save the world from monsters if no one will admit they exist?

She stumbled backwards, her eyes wide, as the figure started coming out of the canvas
She tried to be brave. Well, she said, her hands only a little shaky, at least tell me what…

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Why read it?

4 authors picked Pet as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

The City of Lucille has gotten rid of all its monsters.

That’s what Jam, a teenage trans girl, believed until the demonic-looking Pet emerged from one of her mother’s paintings. But despite their monstrous appearance, Pet isn’t the monster, but came forth to hunt a monster already living among the people of Lucille undetected. 

Pet contains vivid imagery, powerful themes, and a sensitive and brave protagonist. Be bold. Be vigilant. Monsters never entirely go away because we are the monsters.

Akwaeke Emezi’s Pet is an emotional wave that will engulf you. When a nation has freed itself of the monsters that terrorized it, an angel appears: there is still one monster left. The novel’s young hero has to help track it down and destroy it. I have never encountered a more breathtaking expression of the rage and pain caused by abuse. Pets avenging angel is sublime. It says—in its sheer force alone—what we, in our world, often cannot put into words.

Chibundu Onuzo’s debut novel PET is an exciting introduction to one of literature’s most innovative voices. PET is a YA novel set in the fictional city of Lucille. The adults tell the children there are no more monsters, but best friends Jam and Redemption learn otherwise. The novel doesn’t flinch from big issues—identity, abuse, and police brutality. The book is so unique it’s hard to classify it.

From Sari's list on by African women.

Imagination + everything. I’ve been telling everyone to read this book. It’s a bit older than the other recommendations, but it is a wholly original fantasy, covering topics and themes that are so pertinent to today. Jam, a trans teen, has unintentionally summoned a grotesque creature from one of her mother’s paintings. Pet is a monster sent to hunt another hidden monster that nobody believes exists. It’s a thought-provoking masterpiece about hidden evil and what we must face to eradicate it.

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