Open Throat by Henry Hoke
A queer and dangerously hungry mountain lion narrates this fever dream of a novel, carrying us on a universal journey through a wondrous and menacing modern day L.A.
I’ve never eaten a person but today I might . . .
A lonely, lovable, queer mountain lion lives in the drought-devastated land under the Hollywood sign. Fascinated by the voices around them, the lion spends their days protecting a nearby homeless encampment, observing hikers complain about their trauma and, in quiet moments, grappling with the complexities of their own identity.
When a man-made fire engulfs the encampment, the lion is forced from the hills down into the city the hikers call 'ellay'. As they confront a carousel of temptations and threats, the lion takes us on a tour that spans the cruel inequalities of Los Angeles. But even when salvation finally seems within reach, they are forced to face down the ultimate question: do they want to eat a person, or become one?
Feral and vulnerable, profound and playful, Open Throat is a marvel of storytelling that brings the mythic to life.
Named a Most Anticipated Book by The New York Times, ELLE, Vanity Fair, Buzzfeed, i-D, Boston Globe, Nylon, Alta, Shondaland, Chicago Review of Books, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Literary Hub.
"Open Throat is a blinding spotlight beam of a book that I was completely unable and unwilling to put down. I am not convinced Henry Hoke isn’t a mountain lion." - Catherine Lacey, author of Pew
'[A] slim jewel of a novel . . . Though many readers will label Open Throat unconventional, this act of ravishing and outlandish imagination should be the norm, not the exception. At its best, fiction can make the familiar strange in order to bring readers and our world into scintillating focus. Open Throat is what fiction should be." - The New York Times Book Review
"A propulsive, one-sitting read, if also a somber one . . . Without spoiling the story, it’s perhaps enough to say that the climax of Open Throat is a very L.A. one, with spotlights and drama. But it’s also a universal one." - Los Angeles Times
Publication Date: 27/7/23