Bookseller Jason Hong didn’t expect to love Alyssa Songsiridej’s “Little Rabbit” so much, and now he’s a fan. When recommending the novel at Yu and Me Books in New York, he tells people that the novel is “ultimately about sex, power and female desire”.

“Little Rabbit” by Alyssa Songsiridej

Bloomsbury Publishing, New York

The main character, called Rabbit, is an Asian-American writer in her thirties who finds herself forming a relationship with a choreographer. Their connection is surprising for several reasons, says Hong. Rabbit dislikes the older man when she first meets him at a writer’s retreat, but enemies soon turn to lovers. Second, Rabbit is queer. This new straight relationship challenges her and her desires, and it raises a point of contention with Rabbit’s roommate, who is also queer.

There are a number of ways a plot like this could go wrong, but Songsiridej avoids those missteps. It’s a complex exploration of relationships in a book that’s decidedly sexy, Hong says, adding that the novel “gives us insight, like, ‘What’s it like to care about someone, no matter what? either his identity, etc?’ How can we give ourselves space to explore ourselves when we are outside the labels?