Q & T Community Virtual Book Club: January 2023

Tuesday, January 31, 2023 - 7:00pm
2113 Amsterdam Avenue
New York, NY 10032


What is it?

This a virtual book club that meets to discuss writing from different genres written by and/or about LGBTQ+ people. This is a space book club for open discussion, literary analysis, political discourse, and chatting centering exciting contemporary and older books. The book list is still in formation (share your book recommendations by joining), however we will be reading literary fiction, history, fantasy, sci-fi, romance and more.

This is a Q & T program run through Word Up Community Bookshop/Librería Comunitaria and facilitated by Memphis Washington. 

We'll send you the zoom information once you are signed up! 


When: Every last Tuesday of the Month @ 7pm

Where: Zoom

Each book is discussed once in a monthly session. 

Keep an eye out for Tuesday, February 28's information!

January Meeting Information: 

When & Where: Tuesday, January 31st on Zoom

Reading: Memorial by Bryan Washington

Discussion Questions & Topics:

  • Is a person a home?
  • Both Benson and Mike have complicated and strained relationships with their fathers. How do these relationships develop over the course of the book?
  • What role does sex play within and without Mike and Ben's relationship? What do you think of that?
  • What do you think of the plain, sparse writing style and the structure of the story? What did you think of the dialogue?
  • Mitsuko has distinct relationships with Mike and Benson. What do you think of her time in Houston and its impact on both Benson and Mike?

These are only meant to start the conversation. Please come up with your own questions and bookmark passages you might want to discuss! Content warnings at the bottom of the page.

About Memorial

A funny and profound story about family in all its strange forms, joyful and hard-won vulnerability, becoming who you're supposed to be, and the limits of love.
Benson and Mike are two young guys who live together in Houston. Mike is a Japanese American chef at a Mexican restaurant and Benson's a Black day care teacher, and they've been together for a few years—good years—but now they're not sure why they're still a couple. There's the sex, sure, and the meals Mike cooks for Benson, and, well, they love each other.

But when Mike finds out his estranged father is dying in Osaka just as his acerbic Japanese mother, Mitsuko, arrives in Texas for a visit, Mike picks up and flies across the world to say goodbye. In Japan he undergoes an extraordinary transformation, discovering the truth about his family and his past. Back home, Mitsuko and Benson are stuck living together as unconventional roommates, an absurd domestic situation that ends up meaning more to each of them than they ever could have predicted. Without Mike's immediate pull, Benson begins to push outwards, realizing he might just know what he wants out of life and have the goods to get it.

Both men will change in ways that will either make them stronger together, or fracture everything they've ever known. And just maybe they'll all be okay in the end.

About Bryan Washington: 

Bryan Washington is a National Book Award 5 Under 35 honoree and winner of the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Ernest J. Gaines Award for Literary Excellence. He received the New York Public Library Young Lions Fiction Award for his first book, Lot, which was also a finalist for the NBCC’s John Leonard Prize, the PEN/Robert W. Bingham Prize, and the Aspen Words Literary Prize. He has written for The New YorkerThe New York TimesThe New York Times MagazineBuzzFeedBon Appétit, and GQ, among other publications. He lives in Houston.

We strongly encourage people to purchase their books from our home bookstore www.WordUpBooks.com/ or their affiliate accounts on Bookshop.org or Libro.fm (audiobooks). 

If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please share them with Memphis at QNTCommunity@gmail.com

Content Warnings: domestic violence, racism, homophobia, sexual assault, terminal illness, death

Memorial: A Novel By Bryan Washington Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593087282
Availability: Usually Ships in 1-5 Days
Published: Riverhead Books - October 26th, 2021