Publication Date: 29/06/2023 ISBN: 9780857529237 Category:


Nicola Dinan

Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
Publication Date: 29/06/2023 ISBN: 9780857529237 Category:


Become the envy of all book lovers with your own Mr B’s sticker to show off where you do your shopping.



‘Smart, hilarious and deeply moving’ Elliot Page, author Pageboy

‘Bellies announces Nicola Dinan as a genuine literary talent, a gimlet-eyed cartographer of the human heart’ Sharlene Teo, author of Ponti

‘Thoughtful, seductive, and entirely engrossing – Bellies is already a classic’ Bryan Washington, author of Memorial and Lot

It begins as your typical boy meets boy. While out with friends at a university drag night, Tom buys Ming a drink. Confident and witty, a charming young playwright, Ming is the perfect antidote to Tom’s awkward energy, and their connection is instant. Tom finds himself deeply and desperately drawn into Ming’s orbit, and on the cusp of graduation, he’s already mapped out their future together. But, shortly after they move to London to start their next chapter, Ming announces her intention to transition.

From London to Kuala Lumpur, New York to Cologne, we follow Tom and Ming as they face shifts in their relationship in the wake of Ming’s transition. Through a spiral of unforeseen crises – some personal, some professional, some life-altering – Tom and Ming are forced to confront the vastly different shapes their lives have taken since graduating, and each must answer the essential question: is it worth losing a part of yourself to become who you are?

Publisher Review

The most hotly anticipated novel of the summer * Harper's Bazaar * A tender, emotional exploration of gender and sexual identity * Marie Claire * This begins as a boy-meets-boy love story, but when the couple leaves university to go to London, one goes through the process of transitioning and the story is about what happens to their relationship from that. It's a really beautiful, underrepresented love story in fiction. * i, Debuts To Keep An Eye On In 2023 * The way Dinan writes about love, loss, growing up, transitioning and our bodies took my breath away. I can't wait for this novel to be published, so I can talk about it with everyone I know. -- Travis Alabanza * Guardian * Triumphant and humane, Nicola Dinan's Bellies gently turns over that essential question: What are we willing to sacrifice to know ourselves? * Elle, A Most Anticipated Book of 2023 * Smart, hilarious and deeply moving * Elliot Page, author Pageboy * With Bellies Nicola Dinan has written an intimate odyssey - full of warmth and humour... Offering a story about connection, loneliness, identity, and the many different forms that family can take. Thoughtful, seductive, and entirely engrossing - Bellies is already a classic. * Bryan Washington, author of Lot and Memorial * A youthful and urgent look at relationships, family, gender expression, intimacy and trust. * Mendez, author of Rainbow Milk * Bellies is fun, clever, and very good * Alice Winn, author of In Memoriam * I haven't felt so seen by a book in a long time. Neither have I cried like that at one. Bellies broke me apart in the best way possible. Dinan is a huge talent and I'll read everything she writes. * Annie Lord, Vogue columnist and author of Notes on Heartbreak * Bellies is a breathtakingly vivid, unflinching work that feels deeply honest. Reading it, I was so powerfully reminded of what it is to be young and to find one's way in a difficult world. Tender and warm, Bellies is a testament to the courage it takes to be vulnerable. * Okechukwu Nzelu, author of The Private Joys of Nnenna Maloney * In this dryly comedic, richly drawn portrait of friends and lovers in early adulthood, Nicola Dinan charts the complexities, contradictions, and joys of human entanglement, and reminds us of the inevitability of being changed by those we love. Bellies is a book that not only explores transformation, but transforms the reader, too. I loved this powerful, mortal, moving debut. * Rachel Khong, author of Goodbye, Vitamin * Bellies is an engrossing, perceptive novel of the now, charged with the nail-biting hesitancy and giddy exuberance of youth, transition and myriad kinds of love. Bellies announces Nicola Dinan as a genuine literary talent, a gimlet-eyed cartographer of the human heart. I'm a huge fan and I'll read anything she writes. * Sharlene Teo, author of Ponti * With Bellies, Nicola Dinan has written an exquisite portrayal of relationships, of our need for connection in this modern world, and of what we owe to one another. Sumptuously written, it reaches through the darkness of our fears to remind us that the only way to be seen is to ask. With Bellies, her debut, Nicola Dinan foregrounds herself as a bright literary talent, one whose next work I await with little patience. * Kasim Ali, author of Good Intentions * Filled with warmth and heart, Bellies is a tender, beautiful and heartbreaking exploration of identity, growing up, and love in all its glorious forms. I can't wait to see what Nicola Dinan does next. * Cecile Pin, author of Wandering Souls * Wry, vulnerable, chic, devastating, aflutter with supple insights into becoming dimensional and beholding the puzzle of other people. * Jeremy Atherton Lin, author of Gay Bar * A luminous depiction of what it's like to love someone for their very soul. Nicola is a beautiful, beautiful writer. * Ore Agbaje-Williams, author of The Three of Us * In growing up, we each have to gain a sense of the world. In these absolutely glowing pages, Tom and Ming make their way. They love and dream in ways that only youth can, but perhaps we all should. Dinan imbues this tale of identity and friendship with generosity, hope and that mighty keen touch of wit. * Weike Wang, author of Joan is Okay * Bellies is a sumptuous, powerful novel, about the self, about food, about relationships but ultimately about finding yourself in a complicated world. * Nikesh Shukla, author of The Good Immigrant * Both incisive and propulsive. With intimacy and intelligence, this excellent debut asks important questions about how we try, and fail, to transmute our ideology into empathy, about the responsibilities we owe to one another. * Susannah Dickey, author of Tennis Lessons * Dinan's prose is heartfelt and endlessly readable. She explores her characters with sympathy and patience, never casting villains, only complicated humans who are trying their best. It is an earnest and honest exploration of identity and connection that is sure to resonate. * Reader's Digest '5 Debut Books to Look Out For in 2023' * Bellies by Nicola Dinan is a beautifully bittersweet depiction of the seismic changes of early adulthood with unforgettably funny, spiky, believable main characters. * Leon Craig, author of Parallel Hells * I finished this book and wanted to tell everyone I met to read it. Quietly heartbreaking whilst tremendously sharp and funny. I couldn't stop reading. * Travis Alabanza, author of None Of The Above *

Book experts at your service

What are you looking for?

A recommendation
Something specific
  • Mr B's Recommendation Station
  • Fill in the three questions below, along with your name and email address, and our book experts will be in touch soon with their personal recommendations

  • I'm after something specific
  • Tell us about the book, author or subject you're looking for, along with your name and email address and our book experts will be in touch as soon as possible