‘Cat Person’ by Kristen Roupenian

This is a graphically explicit tale of contemporary girl-meets-older-man. The protagonist grapples with digital intimacy and disconnection, desire and bad sex.

In this story the young and female experience is lifted up and given literary heft and importance. I believe that we may often find it easy to dismiss such a perspective as “trashy”, “chick lit”, and inherently unworthy, so it made me very happy to see this in The New Yorker.

It was a terrible kiss, shockingly bad; Margot had trouble believing that a grown man could possibly be so bad at kissing.

First published in The New Yorker, December 4, 2017, and available to read online here. Collected in You Know You Want This, Jonathan Cape, 2019

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