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Others Were Emeralds is rich with lush descriptions and an unmistakable sense of place . . . there’s a beautiful specificity in Leav’s evocation of life as a second-generation Cambodian-Australian. 


Sonia HairBooks + Publishing

“With lyrical and moving prose, Lang tells a stunning tale of love, loss, and the true power of friendship. Filled with unforgettable characters and richly detailed settings, this is a deep, beautiful novel.”


Etaf Rum, New York Times bestselling author of A Woman is No Man

We are invited to work alongside a newly introspective Ai as she rebuilds herself through her art, dressmaking, and creativity. Her success (and potential romance) will leave you on a high, filled with that elusive quality: hope. 


— Cassie Stroud, Well Read




Leav’s coming-of-age debut is poetic and lyrical, her prose rich in beautiful imagery. She tenderly explores grief, trauma, and love as Ai reflects on her past and makes sense of it in order to move forward. 



A heartrending novel . . . Leav skillfully captures the details of senior-year high school life, but is even better in depicting Ai’s teenage experiences with microaggressions and outward racism . . . a resonant portrayal.


—Publishers Weekly


Self-discovery, creativity, intense and volatile relationships, feeling like the world is opening up before you at one moment and crashing down around you the next – all of these teenage experiences are beautifully depicted in Others Were Emeralds. The way that Leav wove all of this together whilst striking a delicate balance between darkness and light was impressive and moving.







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