Lesbian romance novella at a girl’s school, with a musical twist

Make Much of Me by Kayla Bashe (kayla-bird on Tumblr) was a fun little $2.99 read that I whipped through on my phone’s Kindle app while flying back home from my in-laws yesterday. What is it? It’s lesbian romance where an irrepressibly cheerful girl (Lily) forever physically weakened by tuberculosis and her beautiful classmate (Laura) who’s carrying the burden of an incredibly fucked-up and abusive home life come together in the setting of a music academy.

It’s full of positive energy, girls sticking together to help other girls, girls of various queernesses believing and supporting each other (there’s a bi girl and an ace girl who wind up joined at the hip), and beautiful little moments like the one where Lily’s troupe of friends go find some strapping young men willing to help carry her up the stairs so she can eat pastries from the shop on the top floor with everyone else.

I was a little jolted by the use of 21st century words like “alloromantic” in the dialogue of what I thought were supposed to be 1920’s characters (unless I read that wrong in one of the author’s ads), but that might be a generational thing, as I’m over ten years older than the author and would never presume to dictate style. I am definitely not suggesting that one shouldn’t depict the concepts of alloromanticism and aromanticism, to use that as an example, in historical fiction. Representation of all types is important.

Laura’s rescue and resurrection made me wish this was a movie, because I think this kind of story of healing needs to get told over and over again as long as people keep needing to heal.

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About Shira

Queer Jewish feminist author
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