A young mother, in denial after the loss of her sister, navigates the dizzying landscapes of desire, guilt, and grief in this darkly comic, highly anticipated debut novel from Kimberly King Parsons, author of Black Light
(longlisted for the National Book Award).
The trip was supposed to be fun. When Kit's best friend gets dumped by his boyfriend, he begs her to ditch her family responsibilities for a quick, idyllic weekend in the Montana mountains. They'll soak in hot springs, then sneak a vape into the local dive bar like old times. But it's soon clear that this getaway only gets Kit closer to something dire and unfathomable that's been building inside her for years, ever since her sister Julie died.
Back in the Dallas suburbs, Kit tries to settle into her usual routine: long afternoons spent taking care of her irrepressible young daughter, going on therapist-advised dates with her concerned husband, and reluctantly taking her mother's phone calls. In the secret recesses of Kit's mind, though, she's dreaming of an impossible threesome with her kid's pretty gymnastics teacher and the cool mom she just met at the playground. She's reminiscing too much about the band she used to be in--and how they'd go out to the desert after shows and drop acid. Keyed into everything that might distract from her surfacing pain, Kit longs to be anywhere but inside the confines of her own life. As her already thin boundaries between reality and fantasy blur, Kit begins to wonder: Is Julie really gone?
Neon bright in its insight, both heartbreaking and laugh-out-loud funny, We Were the Universe is an ambitious, inventive novel from a revelatory new voice in American fiction--a fearless exploration of sisterhood, motherhood, friendship, marriage, psychedelics, and the many strange, transcendent shapes love can take.