Yesterday marked the release of Miranda July’s newest book, It Chooses You, a quirky piece loosely tied to her newest film, The Future, which will be released on DVD November 29th. July’s style and persona has been the subject of much debate — people usually either love or hate the precious, semi-ironic, self-aware sweetness that we have come to call “twee,” and of which July is one of the most prominent contemporary examples. The reemergence of the pixie princess of literature inspired us to consider a few other authors whose work can veer into the impossibly twee. Now, don’t get us wrong — we’re not saying that twee-ness is an inherently bad thing. In fact, several of the authors on this list number among our all-time favorites in any genre, and we happen to be on team July, at least most of the time. Click through to check out our list of twee authors, or at least authors who write twee books sometimes, in between setting up tea parties for their kittens, who are all wearing argyle socks, and let us know which of them tickle your fancy in the comments.
Maddening to some and delightful to others, the ultra-ironic Miranda July is pretty much the epitome of twee, a wide-eyed pixie whose writing and films are impossibly cute, but also often incredibly poignant and affecting. Her newest book, It Chooses You, may actually be her most precious work yet, a compendium of prose, photographs and interviews from the time she drove around LA meeting people who were selling random items (kittens, leather jackets, bullfrog tadpoles) in the PennySaver. Even the book itself looks like an adorable cat-based scrapbook, but the stories inside are those of real people and her interest genuine, which makes it all okay by us.
Sample passage: “Weren’t leopards massive and deadly? These looked more like cute kittens. Then one of them suddenly jumped in the air to the height of my face. Two more began wrestling, slamming each other against the wall with violent cracks. They were small, but they no longer seemed cute; there was a strong man inside of each one. I tried to contemplate breeds and cross-breeds, but my knowledge was thin and I had to supplement it with what I knew about Spiderman and Frankenstein. And the Incredible Hulk.” (It Chooses You, 2011)