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We Contain Multitudes

Written by: Sarah Henstra
Narrated by: Matthew Gouveia, Tony Kim
Length: 9 hrs and 14 mins
5 out of 5 stars (26 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

An exhilarating and emotional LGBTQ story about the growing relationship between two teen boys, told through the letters written to one another. For fans of Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe and I’ll Give You the Sun.

Thrown together by a zealous English teacher's classroom-mailbox assignment, notorious scrapper, Adam "Kurl" Kurlansky, and Jonathan Hopkirk, a flamboyant Walt Whitman wannabe, have to write an old-fashioned letter to each other every week. 

Kurl is a senior, an ex-high school football player, held back a year, while Jo is a nerdy, out tenth grader with a penchant for vintage clothes and a deep love for poetry. They are an unlikely pair, but with each letter, the two begin to develop a friendship that grows into love. But with homophobia, bullying, and familial abuse, Jonathan and Kurl must struggle to overcome their conflicts and hold onto their relationship, and each other.

One of BookRiot’s 25 Awesome 2019 Queer YA Books to Preorder Right Now
One of CBC’s 29 Canadian Kids Books & YA to Look For in Spring 2019 

©2019 Sarah Henstra (P)2019 Penguin Teen

What the critics say

"The title of this book is incredibly fitting. Jonathan and Kurl are two complex and fascinating characters, and they instantly drew me into the world created by their letters and their love. It's an astonishing romance and character study that also happens to be full of gorgeous writing." (Robin Talley, author of Lies We Tell Ourselves and Pulp)

"We Contain Multitudes is an emotional journey, both heartbreaking and healing. A true love letter to the way family, friendships, and first loves slowly peel away our carefully-constructed walls to the layers beneath. Henstra’s words are a universe I never want to escape." (Julian Winters, author of Running with Lions)

“This is an absolutely extraordinary work of fiction that proves the epistolary novel is an art form. Kurl and Jo are characters to die for, emotionally compelling and empathetic. . . . [This novel] is not to be missed.” (Booklist, starred review) 

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my heart

this was so wonderful, it hurt my heart with cuteness and with pain.
its presentation as letters the entire time was very interesting as well, made it feel like it was going by very fast