A Scatter of Light

­Dutton. Oct. 2022. 336p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780525555285.
Gr 9 Up–Exiled to spend the summer with her grandmother in California after an incident at a graduation party, Aria Tang West expects a summer of boredom. Enter Steph Nichols, her grandmother’s gardener, who befriends Aria and brings her into her circle of friends and the queer community to which they belong. The more time Aria spends with Steph, the more she questions her identity. Using the summer of 2013, when same-sex marriage became legal in California, as the backdrop, Lo here presents an excellent coming-of-age and coming out story. Characters are complicated and messy but in a realistic and relatable way. The story is driven by Aria’s truthful narration, which is beautifully reflective of an 18-year-old at that time. Aria is biracial (Asian and white), with most other characters defined or cued as white. Although not a sequel to Last Night at the Telegraph Club, there is a glimpse into Lily and Kath’s life since the events of that novel.
VERDICT A must-have for any library collection.

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