Punch Me Up to the Gods introduces a powerful new talent in Brian Broome, whose early years growing up in Ohio as a dark-skinned Black boy harbouring crushes on other boys propel forward this gorgeous, aching, and unforgettable debut.
Brian’s recounting of his experiences—in all their cringe-worthy, hilarious, and heartbreaking glory—reveal a perpetual outsider awkwardly squirming to find his way in. Indiscriminate sex and escalating drug use help to soothe his hurt, young psyche, usually to uproarious and devastating effect. A no-nonsense mother and broken father play crucial roles in our misfit’s origin story. But it is Brian’s voice in the retelling that shows the true depth of vulnerability for young, queer Black boys that is often quietly near to bursting at the seams.
Universally resonant and thought-provokingly specific, Punch Me Up to the Gods is at once playful, poignant, and wholly original. Broome’s writing brims with swagger and sensitivity, bringing an exquisite and fresh voice to ongoing cultural conversations about racism and homophobia.