Cover Art: Alban Fischer
Cover & Interior Design: Alban Fischer
Paperback | 240 Pages
March 15, 2020 | ISBN 978-1-936919-83-3
Golden Crown Literary Award 2018 YA Winner
LAMBDA Literary Award YA Finalist
Washington State Book Award YA Finalist
About Nina Packebush
Nina Packebush is a queer-identified, grown-up teen mama. She is the author of two YA novels, Girls Like Me (originally published by Bedazzled Ink, released by YesYes Books) and its sequel, Three Queerdos and a Baby (YesYes Books, Fall 2020). She loves her dogs, hiking, digging in the dirt, and making comic zines about empowered snails. Nina lives in the Pacific Northwest with her partner, a collection of kids, and a pack of wayward pets.
About Girls Like Me
With her genderqueer sweetheart dead, sixteen-year-old Banjo is left pregnant and institutionalized – it seems like things can’t get much worse for her. Now she struggles to face her demons, the future, and a staff that keeps giving her the wrong diagnosis, the wrong treatment, and the wrong perspective. At least she has her friends – but will friends be enough?
Girls Like Me
Praise for Girls Like Me
The novel explores the effects of trauma, teenage pregnancy, transnational adoption, and the power of queer community from a radical perspective that challenges the status quo. Girls Like Me is an affirmation for those who rarely get to see themselves represented in ways that not only accept, but value the distinctive characteristics that make them who they are.
"It’s not just that I couldn’t put it down and that I felt I was physically there with Banjo and her friends every minute of their journey through adolescence, their search for their identity and their increasing awareness of themselves and the world, but also that this story is 'singing my song' of girls like us who have or will traverse a similar journey and who desperately need this book. Stunningly important."
—Katherine Arnoldi, author, The Amazing True Story of a Teenage Single Mom and All Things Are Labor
“Nina Packebush’s Girls Like Me makes visible an invisible, necessary story—that of a pregnant teen wrestling with gender, grief, desire, and transformation. Packebush’s narrator Banjo is utterly real and refreshingly complex. We are compelled to stick with her as she and her quirky cast of misfit friends navigate the terrain of queer adolescence with humor and grit. An essential book for this generation of young adults.”
— Jacks McNamara, co-founder of the Icarus Project and author of Inbetweenland
"From page one, Girls Like Me is a novel that grips onto your mind and heart and won’t let go. Nina Packebush has created a world equal parts tragedy and magic that illuminates what it’s like to be a queer teen searching for love and belonging on the margins of heteronormative society. Through the unfolding of Banjo’s story, Packebush humanizes the struggles that queer and gender non-conforming youth face – very real and understandable struggles that are often wrongly pathologized in our mental health system as 'illness.' Packebush also does not shy away from traditionally taboo topics such as self-harm and suicide, creating a much-needed opportunity for youth to explore subjects that are so rarely discussed with honesty. Her stories also poignantly illustrate how our deepest healing happens in relationships with those we love and trust. This is a book that I dearly wish I had been around when I was a disaffected teen struggling with suicide and mental health issues."
—Leah Harris, poet, storyteller, and intersectional activist