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‘Deeply compelling… sexy.’ Roxane Gay

‘Takes you on a dizzying tour of love addiction, rehab, homophobia, betrayal, obsession and the aching need for a mother’s unconditional love. At different times throughout, you’ll find the protagonist needy, reckless and selfish but also smart, intuitive and trapped between two cultures – because as we all know, humans are nothing if not complicated. Roxane is right: this deserves five stars.’ Stylist

Told in vignettes that flash between the US and the Middle East, Zaina Arafat’s powerful debut novel traces her protagonist’s progress from blushing teen to creative and confused adulthood.

In Brooklyn, she moves into an apartment with her first serious girlfriend and tries to content herself with their comfortable relationship. Soon, her longings, so deeply hidden during her teenage years, explode out into reckless romantic encounters and obsessions with other people, which results in her seeking unconventional help to face her past traumas and current demons.

As heard on Radio 2 Book Club, this captivating novel is perfect for readers who love Maggie Nelson and Garth Greenwell. Opening up the fantasies and desires of one young woman caught between cultural, religious and sexual identities, You Exist Too Much is a captivating story charting two of our most intense longings – for love, and a place to call home.

What people are saying about You Exist Too Much:
‘Real and deliciously messy.’ Attitude

‘An elegantly written debut… A thought-provoking exploration of love and belonging, and how the two come together to create a sense of self.’ New European

Exquisitely written and crafted with a compelling lightness of touch.’ Living Magazine

‘A nuanced, sparky debut.’ Observer

‘A wonderfully written, queer, coming-of-age story.’ i newapaper

‘A novel of self-discovery following a Palestinian-American girl as she navigates queerness, love addiction and a series of tumultuous relationships.’ The Millions, One of the Most Anticipated Books of the Year

Powerful… With You Exist Too Much, Arafat announces herself as a provocative and insightful writer.’ Irish Times

Reviews

Real, non-fetishised bisexual characters can be few and far between in literature, but You Exist Too Much isn't just worth reading for its efforts in representation. It's a stunning debut . . . It's a devastating portrayal of what it's like to feel as though you never fit in - both in terms of the narrator's sexuality and racial identity. Arafat handles these weighty topics with real compassion
Press Association
Powerful . . . With You Exist Too Much, Arafat announces herself as a provocative and insightful writer
Irish Times
Navigating queerness, bisexuality, love, and addiction, this captivating story takes readers on a journey to find two of the things we all long for the most: love, and a place we can call home. If you're looking for a captivating, first-person read, this really is one you don't to want to miss
Happiful
A wonderful illustration of how our most significant formative relationships can be simultaneously the most positive and negative force in our lives
The Arts Desk
Switching between New York, Beirut, Florence, Washington DC and the West Bank, You Exist Too Much takes you on a dizzying tour of love addiction, rehab, homophobia, betrayal, obsession and the aching need for a mother's unconditional love. At different times throughout, you'll find the protagonist needy, reckless and selfish but also smart, intuitive and trapped between two cultures - because as we all know, humans are nothing if not complicated. Roxane is right: this deserves five stars
Stylist
You Exist Too Much is a first novel that is exquisitely written and crafted with a compelling lightness of touch
Living Magazine
A stunning debut . . . Arafat handles . . . weighty topics with real compassion
Scotsman
The first-person narrator has a distinctive voice and is a magnetic presence on the page; the scenes with her mother are electric . . . A nuanced, sparky debut
Observer
A wonderfully written queer coming-of-age story
i newapaper
An elegantly written debut . . . a thought-provoking exploration of love and belonging, and how the two come together to create a sense of self
New European
Arafat's writing is fresh, witty and packs a heavy punch
The Skinny