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Kaitlyn Greenidge knows that her debut novel, We Love You, Charlie Freeman, is a disorienting read. She spent eight years grappling with how to render its vexing premise with nuance and substance. Her account of a black family hired by a research institute to raise a chimpanzee as their own is as wild as you would expect and more thought-provoking.

“Every couple of days when working on this, up until the end, I doubted whether or not this was a good idea, whether people will understand what I am trying to explore, and whether it will be taken seriously,” Greenidge says. Her perseverance paid off, leaving us with a strange but powerful debut novel that charms as it prompts reflection.

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