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The February 2023 Happy Endings Book Club selection. Learn more about the club or join here.
An Armenian-American woman rediscovers her roots and embraces who she really is in this vibrant and heartfelt queer rom-com by debut author Taleen Voskuni.
When Nareh Bedrossian’s non-Armenian boyfriend gets down on one knee and proposes to her in front of a room full of drunk San Francisco tech boys, she realizes it’s time to find someone who shares her idea of romance.
Enter her mother: armed with plenty of mom-guilt and a spreadsheet of Facebook-stalked Armenian men, she convinces Nar to attend Explore Armenia, a month-long series of events in the city. But it’s not the mom-approved playboy doctor or the wealthy engineer who catch Nar’s eye—it’s Erebuni, a woman as immersed in the witchy arts as she is in preserving Armenian identity. Suddenly, with Erebuni as her wingwoman, the events feel like far less of a chore, and much more of an adventure. Who knew cooking up kuftes together could be so . . . sexy?
Erebuni helps Nar see the beauty of their shared culture and makes her feel understood in a way she never has before. But there’s one teeny problem: Nar’s not exactly out as bisexual. The clock is ticking on her double life—the Explore Armenia closing banquet is coming up, and her entire extended family will be there, along with Erebuni. Her worlds will inevitably collide, but Nar is determined to be brave and to claim her happiness: proudly Armenian, proudly bisexual, and proudly herself for the first time in her life.
About the Author
Taleen Voskuni is an Armenian-American writer who grew up in the Bay Area diaspora surrounded by a rich Armenian community and her ebullient family. She graduated from UC Berkeley with a BA in English and currently lives in San Francisco, working in tech. Other than a newfound obsession with writing romcoms, she spends her free time cultivating her kids, her garden, and her dark chocolate addiction. Sorry, Bro is her first published novel.
“Here, since Explore Armenia was so central to the plot, Voskuni fills the book with details about food, history, dances, songs, etiquette, stereotypes, politics and even artistic motifs…The overall effect is celebratory and defiant, and it pairs beautifully with Nar’s journey to fully accept who she is.”—The New York Times Book Review
"As I read [Sorry, Bro], I kept cackling out loud and I would often pause to describe to my husband what was happening—or try to, anyway—I sometimes couldn't because I would be laughing so hard. But underneath the humor is such an important story of love between two women and the journey to rediscovering Armenian culture and heritage.”—Jesse Q. Sutanto, author of Four Aunties and a Wedding
"Sorry, Brois a beautiful love letter to Armenian culture wrapped up in a warm and witty romance that absolutely sizzles with chemistry. Like heroine Nareh, Voskuni is forging a remarkable path, and I will gladly follow wherever it leads!"—Dahlia Adler, author of Cool for the Summer and Out on Good Behavior
"Taleen Voskuni's Sorry, Bro is one of my new favorite romances! Sharp, funny, and full of heart, it’s a love letter to Armenian culture and a thoughtful exploration of the ways our roots define us, all wrapped up in the most delightful romance. I couldn’t put it down!"—Jenny L. Howe, author of The Make-Up Test and On the Plus Side
"Taleen Voskuni expertly braids romance with jaw-dropping atmosphere and swift hits of knowledge and strength. She pours her heart onto the page with power and beauty in a way that makes readers feel seen and cared for. A new auto-buy author for all. Sorry, Bro is as indulgent as it is profound, breathtaking as it is healing, and in one word: EXQUISITE."—Courtney Kae, author of In the Event of Love
"The most heartwarming tale of family, heritage, loving bravely, and loving yourself, with a humor that adds a light touch to the poignant themes and a vivid San Francisco setting that brings the whole story to life. Sorry, Bro made me laugh and touched me deeply in equal measures."—Kyla Zhao, author of The Fraud Squad
"Voskuni debuts with a bighearted queer rom-com uniquely inflected with Armenian American culture...This is a treat."—Publishers Weekly
“With this radiantly ravishing debut, Voskuni beautifully illustrates the courage it can take to be your own true self and risk everything for love.”—Booklist, starred review
“Voskuni's debut is equal parts comic, heartfelt, and profoundly rooted in Armenian culture, with a lead you'll want to befriend and a romance you'll want to cheer on in equal measure. A sparkling story about love, family, and identity.”—Kirkus Reviews, starred review
"Featuring a slow-burn, chemistry-driven relationship, this book also beautifully depicts and celebrates Armenian culture and traditions throughout the story."—Library Journal
"With what has to be one of the best book titles this year, Sorry, Bro is equal parts funny, serious, and full of Armenian culture. Nar is charming and witty, and you’ll be rooting for her and Erebuni’s romance to flourish. And the message of self-acceptance, despite tradition, is always welcomed."—BookRiot
"...If you find yourself needing a bit of sweetness and charm in these early, dreary months of the year, Sorry, Bro is a perfect pick me up. It understands what it feels like to be stuck, in so many ways—career, life, relationships with family, and how we can learn to fan that little flame within ourselves without losing everyone around us in the process.”—Autostraddle