Tim Te Maro and the Subterranean Heartsick Blues


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About the Author

H.S. Valley grew up on the Waitematā Harbour in Auckland, at the foot of Takarunga. She now lives near the Waitākere Ranges with her partner. She has a bachelor's degree in design. She won the Ampersand Prize for her debut YA novel, Tim Te Maro and the Subterranean Heartsick Blues.


'... As heartfelt as it is melodramatic. Tim, a Māori teen, is paired up with his nemesis, Elliott, to take care of an egg for a school project. Soon that tension turns from bickering to kissing. As the boys move from enemies to lovers, Tim has to find a way to deal with his self-esteem issues before it fractures their fledgling relationship. Sweet, invigorating and effervescent, like cold lemonade on a hot summer’s day.' – Alex Brown, NPR

'Sweet and sexy in equal measure,Tim Te Maro and the Subterranean Heartsick Blues explores all the confusion, messiness and joy that comes with queer first love.' – Erin Gough, author of Amelia Westlake

'... Sex, sexuality, and its various realities — including anxiety, boundaries, and consent — are discussed openly and honestly, and the characters’ myriad relationship dramas are portrayed using good-humored dialogue. The racially diverse cast and the worldbuilding surrounding the magic system ... provide a unique backdrop for Kiwi author Valley’s witty and buoyant debut.' – Starred review, Publishers Weekly

'... A fun, low-stakes (but high-investment) romp through the brains of lovelorn, hormone-driven teenagers, and the delightful array of queer people that populate their school and by proxy their world.' – Sam Brooks, TheSpinoff.co.nz 

'A beautiful and sweet story about figuring out your bisexuality set at a magical boarding school, highly recommended for anyone who loves the combination of a cute queer story with some fantasy on the side!' – Annie's Reading Tips

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