Wild Geese by Soula Emmanuel

Wild Geese is a novel about a woman who spends a weekend with her ex-girlfriend and explores the messiness of life. Phoebe is trans and Irish and lives in Copenhagen, where she moves through the world largely alone, with the company of the dog she looks after, Dolly. When her ex-girlfriend Grace suddenly appears on her doorstep, visiting the city for the weekend, something is kindled between them, but it isn’t straightforward, and both of them have pasts and places to reconcile and a sense of being lost to face.

This is a beautiful novel, set over a single weekend (with timestamps) from Phoebe’s point of view, and manages to capture a lot of wistfulness, loss, and hope within the writing. It combines poetic, literary prose with modern references (Blåhaj being my favourite, but I was sat with one whilst reading) and the limited timeframe of the narrative allows for a lot of space for not only thinking about the past, but also plenty of thoughts about the present and future. I spent a fair bit of the book worried about how sadly it might end, but actually I think it was a powerful narrative with a conclusion that was satisfying and shows how things can be complicated and messy, but also help you to move forward.

As the title suggests, this is a book about two women chasing things and hoping to find them in each other as they reunite. Wild Geese is both an emotional look at a relationship and the changing nature of one, and an exploration of escaping place and gender and how these can feel intertwined.