For Her Consideration

Kensington. Feb. 2023. 320p. ISBN 9781496739513. pap. $16.95. LGBT ROMANCE
Nina Rice moved to Los Angeles to be a writer, and technically she is: she works for a talent agency, answering emails in the voices of their celebrity clients. One of those clients, Ari Fox, is positioned to be the first out queer performer to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress (in a present-day world without Angelina Jolie or Ariana DeBose). Nina and Ari start spending time together so that Nina can better mimic Ari’s voice, and they become fast friends. Their romance, when it takes off, is passionate, but it’s only a piece of Nina’s larger journey as she untangles a tough breakup from years earlier. Spalding focuses on Nina’s broadly-creative friend group, rather than Ari’s Hollywood scene and depicts a comfortable world. Nina’s career worries are cushioned by an emotionally and financially supportive aunt, and Ari is depicted as groundbreaking in a generally heteronormative, but not overtly hostile, media landscape.
VERDICT YA novelist Spalding’s (We Used To Be Friends) adult debut is an optimistic, empathetic choice for readers, which highlights queer women pursuing creative careers and showcases a strong emotional growth arc.
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