Sketchtasy takes place in that late-night moment when everything comes together, and everything falls apart—it’s an urgent, glittering, devastating novel about the perils of queer world-making in the mid-‘90s.
Sketchtasy, Sycamore’s third novel, takes us to Boston in 1995, where Alexa, a twenty-one-year-old queen, is waiting for her soup and arguing with another queen about the empty activism of the AIDS ribbon ... The prose unveils like a spiraling phone message from someone you love, moving at the timeless pace of a high you keep rolling through to prevent crashing.
At the height of the HIV/AIDS crisis, Boston nightclub queen Alexa and her friends navigate the pitfalls of 1990s romance together, stumbling as one united front through acne, bad dates, bad trips, and the risks of sex work. Between the all-nighters fueled by ketamine, cocaine, and ecstasy, Alexa works to make peace with her past ... As stupefying and white-hot as the drugs coursing through Alexa’s veins, Sycamore’s latest is a love letter to and a formal complaint about the glitter and horror of the 1990s.