Book Review: Tender Underneath by Angasa Salome

Tender underneath by angasa salome

“It took me a really long time to realize that the relationship wasn’t something that happened, it was something he did to me”

Sometimes a book comes along and has your heart racing, and your mind drawn back to your past. A book that takes you back to memory lane and gives you nostalgia. One where you fully picture yourself as the protagonist and feels all the events unfolding in the book are actually happening to you.

Tender Underneath is that book. I had the privilege of being the first readers of the novel. For two days, I remained glued to my laptop, reading nonstop and making sure I let every word sink in. And every word did sink in.

“I guess their boy didn’t tell them he was bringing home a black girl”

One of the reasons I fell in love with this book is the diversity of social issues that were covered that affect teenagers who are transitioning to young adult. Although the book initially is centered on young love, it wasn’t just lovey dovey. There were different aspects of love issues discussed, ones that can be easily related.

I want to talk about the topics so bad, but I wouldn’t want to ruin it for you.

“Life is a sea of unpleasantness, the waves always wanting to drown you in its body of anguish”

A good book is characterized by how alive the characters become. When you can hear them breath, can hear their voices and all their movements like they are people you’ve known for the longest. And this is exactly what you will get from Tender Underneath. Each character felt different and alive. They all had their unique voices that even without reading who had said what, it would click.

Overall, this is vibrant in so many ways. One that will have you on the edge of your seat. One that will have you nail-biting. I guarantee that many times you will be screaming at the protagonist and her decisions. For the most part, all you will feel is LOVE.

Angasa, through her words, has a way of gripping one’s attention. The cursing, emotional and stressing words in each statement is what makes the novel perfect. I cannot wait for more of her work and the growth that will come with.

“The water felt so amniotic, so still and untethered by the stresses of my life above. It was tender underneath”


All Effie May wants to do is finish high school for her dead grandpa’s sake.

Simple, right? Except a sordid scandal has everyone at school talking. A scandal that has nothing and everything to do with Effie. Either way, she knows she has to keep what happened a secret.

Now she mustn’t just survive high school, she has to keep her life from unravelling while making sure everyone thinks she’s okay.

But with her best friends, her wacky sister, her moody ex, his hot best friend, her nemesis and an unlikely friendship to deal with, keeping her life from blowing up might just be easier said than done.


About the author:

Tender underneath by angasa salome

Angasa is a Malawian writer and humorist. She gave up the glamorous life of a model/secret agent/cage fighter to make things up for a living. She likes to share her life and thoughts on a blog called Pastiche Mode. Tender Underneath is her debut novel

You can read more of Angasa Salome’s work here


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