Little & Lion | Sticky Note Reviews

So, after I finished Dear Martin yesterday, I went off in search of a new book. I have my TBR saved in Evernote, and as I was perusing the list I narrowed it down to two: Orphan Island (because someone was talking about it on #titletalk on Sunday) and Little & Lion. I knew they were both popular, so I didn’t get my hopes up that a digital copy would be checked in.

Luckily for me, though, I found both the ebook and the audiobook copy checked in (this is the second time this week I’ve been this lucky. The first time was with Long Way Down, which was awesome).

I started the audio on my way to work this morning, all of my classes read today, and then I finished the audio on my way home. Lots of reading today.

When Suzette comes home to Los Angeles from her boarding school in New England, she isn’t sure if she’ll ever want to go back. L.A. is where her friends and family are (along with her crush, Emil). And her stepbrother, Lionel, who has been diagnosed with bipolar disorder, needs her emotional support.
But as she settles into her old life, Suzette finds herself falling for someone new…the same girl her brother is in love with. When Lionel’s disorder spirals out of control, Suzette is forced to confront her past mistakes and find a way to help her brother before he hurts himself–or worse.
 Here’s why I added Little & Lion to my TBR (even if my sticky note says something else) from Recently Added [20]

Why I added it: Saw this on I’m Here. I’m Queer. What the Hell Do I Read? and was intrigued by the premise. I’m always looking for books that involve discussion of intersectional diversity. Plus, black and bi character? Yes, please. And that she’s Jewish is also interesting.

-From Recently Added [20]

And finally, after all that, here’s my review

#bookaday Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert. #StickyNoteReviews Oh, boy. I don't even know where to start. I was drawn to this book because the protagonist, Suzette, is black, bi, and Jewish (and I'm two of those three). I was drawn because her brother struggles with mental illness [and I was curious about how that would be handled]. [I was drawn] because I knew that Colbert wouldn't shy away from the tough stuff. I am one satisfied reader. Through Suzette's first person, present tense narrative, Colbert addresses racism (both overt and unintentional), stereotyping not just by race, but also about people with mental illneesses and bisexuality. Intersectional identity. ALL THE THINGS, really. But it's done in such a way that it feels real. I could identify with Suzette's struggle with [defining] her sexual orientation, with her sense of cultural Judaism (I'm not Christian, but I grew up in the church and am known to rock me some Kirk Franklin), with the love she has for her sibling. Fans of My Name is Leon and A List of Cages will enjoy this one too. #bookreview

A post shared by Eli Oldham (@thebooksupplier) on

I ran out of space on my sticky note, but I was thinking about bi rep and love triangles after I read it, and I can’t help but wonder if that could have played out any other way. I mean, I thought Suzette’s struggle was handled pretty well, or at least, it seemed pretty true to my experience (with the exception of being attracted to two people because I’m scared of people in general). But did the triangle have to be a girl and a guy? It seems like that’s what it always is. And did it have to have this ghost side that was Suzette’s boarding school (first) girlfriend? Though, I do get Iris hanging over Suzette’s head as she tries to enter into another relationship.

Have you read this? What did you think?

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