Dogs of Summer By Andrea Abreu

Dogs of Summer

A Novel

ISBN: 9781662601606


Published by (2022-08-02)

"[A] firecracker of a debut."
The New York Times

"Andrea Abreu’s debut novel about two girls in the summer heat of Tenerife is perfect for these dog days."
Shreya Chattopadhyay, The New York Times Book Review

My Brilliant Friend meets Blue is the Warmest Color in this lyrical debut novel set in a working-class neighborhood of the Canary Islands—a story about two girls coming of age in the early aughts and a friendship that simmers into erotic desire over the course of one hot summer.

High near the volcano of northern Tenerife, an endless ceiling of cloud cover traps the working class in an abject, oppressive heat. Far away from the island’s posh resorts, two girls dream of hitching a ride down to the beach and escaping their horizonless town. 

It’s summer, 2005, and our ten-year-old narrator is consumed by thoughts of her best friend Isora. Isora is rude and bossy, but she’s also vivacious and brave; grownups prefer her, and boys do, too. That's why sometimes she gets jealous of Isora, who already has hair on her vagina and soft, round breasts. But she's definitely not jealous that Isora’s mother is dead, nor that Isora's fat, foul-mouthed grandmother has her on a diet, so that she is constantly sticking her fingers down her throat. Besides, she would do anything for Isora: gorge herself on cakes when her friend wants to watch, follow her to the bathroom when she takes a shit, log into chat rooms to swap dirty instant messages with strangers. But increasingly, our narrator finds it hard to keep up with Isora, who seems to be growing up at full tilt without her—and as her submissiveness veers into a painful sexual awakening, desire grows indistinguishable from intimate violence.

Braiding prose poetry with bachata lyrics and the gritty humor of Canary dialect, Dogs of Summer is a story of exquisite yearning, a brutal picture of girlhood and a love song written for the vital community it portrays.

Book Details

Format: eBook
Price: 18.99 CAD / 11.99 USD
Published: 2022-08-02
ISBN: 9781662601606
Page Count: 192
Trim Size: 5 x 7

"Read this coming-of-age story for its unsparing language and vivid sense of place."
—The New York Times

“In playful language, Abreu beautifully evokes a land of ‘light stored for so many thousands of years’, and an era of telenovelas and the birth of the internet, in which Pokémon and Bratz dolls give way to sexual discovery.”
—John Self, The Guardian

“One of the hottest translated novels of late . . . Dogs of Summer does a good job unnerving a reader in any language; it’s about girls navigating the complexities of being on the cusp of puberty as their bodies become increasingly more unrecognizable to them. Abreu captures the unique discomfort of this time through run-on sentences that are experimental and abrasive while also interspersing bachata dance music and chat-room threads.”
—Greta Rainbow, Shondaland

"Abreu’s novel, in Julia Sanches’s sparkling translation, is a revelation, perfectly capturing a festering summer of meltdowns and shrinking horizons."
—Anderson Tepper, The New York Times

“Emotionally resonant . . . Abreu’s exhilarating chronicle of a young friendship is not to be missed.”
Publishers Weekly (Starred Review)

"This frank exploration of the work of growing up as a girl in a place with limited horizons (don’t forget the clouds!) illuminates while it disturbs. This is not Little Women."

“Like the portrayals of girls in Elena Ferrante’s Neapolitan novels, Abreu offers brave and unvarnished renderings of complicated female friendships, painful sexual awakenings (with an LGBTQ twist), and gritty dialects, but she is in a category by herself. Her prose is bold and direct, and her characterization of two similar but different girls on the cusp of adolescence is as vivid as anything being written today.”
—June Sawyers, Booklist

"This lyrical novel is set in a working-class neighborhood in Tenerife, far from the Canary Islands’ poshresorts. During one oppressively hot summer, the 10-year-old narrator and her best friend Isoraexperience changes in their bodies and their volatile emotions — from love to jealousy, admiration,obsession and submission. The story, laced with Canary Islands dialect and bachata lyrics, builds to a crescendo when desire and violence fuse."
—Bill Morris, The Millions

"[Abreu] provides a unique perspective into romantic feelings buried within a friendship. Much like EdnaO’Brien’s The Country Girls, Elena Ferrante’s My Brilliant Friend, and Lorrie Moore’s Who Will Run theFrog Hospital?, the novel is a portrait of the intensity of love, desire, and frenzied obsession at such a pivotal age."
—Christina Obolenskaya, Ploughshares

"Dogs of Summer is a memorable debut, poetic and vibrant."
—Lydia Weintraub, Cleveland Review of Books

"Dogs of Summer is a thoroughly immersive story of youth, with all of the inequities and frustrations thatthat implies. It’s also, in Andrea Abreu’s telling and Julia Sanches’s translation, a fascinating study of itsnarrator’s method of seeing the world. The prose, the rhythms, and the sense of place all combine toward a memorable whole."
—Tobias Carroll, Words Without Borders

"Dogs of Summer is a perfect summer novel that follows two best friends as they come of age and theirfriendship begins to simmer with desire and violence. The writing is a crave inducing mix of bachatalyrics, Canary dialect, and the language of girlhood — gritty, wild, poetic — an exquisite feat by debut author Andrea Abreu and renowned translator Julia Sanches."
—Pierce Alquist, Book Riot

"Dogs of Summer resists nostalgia and sentimentality while preserving the freshness and vibrancy of the narrator’s voice . . . Tenerife in 2005 offers a vivid depiction of early aughts girlhood that captures the precarity of puberty and the intrusion of the outside world within an isolated community, most notably through the growing impact technology has on everyday life. Unlike Ferrante, Abreu doesn’t shy away from the grittier aspects of girlhood—rather, she revels in all their glory . . . an intimate portrait of girlhood friendship that treads the often precarious waters of obsession, codependence, and sexual violence."
—Eliza Browning, Asymptote

“A caustic, claustrophobic story of disturbingly sexualised preadolescent children: bored, traumatised, blistering with a mix of envy, tenderness and viciousness . . . sensual and dirty, absurdist and tragic. Abreu’s talent is thrilling to witness.”
—Catherine Taylor, The Irish Times

"The way that Abreu just very boldly and blatantly captures the narrative voice of a ten-year-old girlcoming-of-age is genius, and from the very first page I was brought right back to my own adolescence."
—Ashley Lynne, GateCrashers

"As sultry as the summer weather. In playful language, Abreu beautifully evokes an era of telenovelasand the birth of the internet, in which Pokemon and Bratz dolls give way to sexual discovery."
—OX Magazine

“Whip-smart. Angular. Dreamy yet lucid, and cathartically brutal.”
—Brontez Purnell, author of 100 Boyfriends

“Bold, dazzling, hilarious. Andrea Abreu is a lively meteorite in the landscape of Hispanic literature.”
—Fernanda Melchor, author of Hurricane Season

“This slim novel’s scope and intensity are shockingly, magnificently large, and the sentences blast off the pages with all the sordidness and wonder of early adolescence. Readers will be unable to resist the spell of Dogs of Summer, a hilarious, devastating story that is brilliantly attuned to the erotics of friendship, the intoxicating muddle of identification and desire, and the power of both the sublime and the profane. The unforgettable girls at the center of Andrea Abreu’s moving debut are two of the liveliest fictional creations I’ve come across in quite a long time.”
—Jamel Brinkley, author of A Lucky Man

Dogs of Summer will thump through your heart and mind. A novel that consumes and sentences to die for.”
—Amina Cain, author of Indelicacy

“Andrea Abreu’s characters, like her sentences, are bold and wild. Reminiscent of Marieke Lucas Rijneveld’s The Discomfort of Evening, Abreu’s writing twirls and clacks with tactile precision, like winding a cassette tape with a No. 2 pencil. I’ll return to Dogs of Summer whenever I crave a searing, brutal shot of life.”
—Gabriella Burnham, author of It is Wood, It is Stone

Dogs of Summer is like the tide. A force of nature. It drags you. It submerges you. And, all of a sudden, itleaves you stranded on a rich and prophetic insular world of women and low, grey, clouds that mergewith the sea. It is pure poetry. A book that carries you and makes you feel a place.”
—Pilar Quintana, author of The Bitch

“This is important: I felt envy. Envy over the impossibility of writing something like that myself.”
—Sabina Urraca, author of Your Spelling Errors Make the God Child Cry