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The Complexities of Love
The Complexities of Love

"Most Anticipated LGBTQ in Young Adult Literature." —Lambda Literary

"The reveal of Mark's family history is intriguing and messily realistic..." —Kirkus Reviews


M.A. Quigley's critically-acclaimed debut novel, The Complexities of Love, tells the story of Mark navigating life as a closeted gay man in 1960s Australia. Always feeling that he was different, Mark did his best to fit in and follow what his family always wanted for him: a lovely Australian girl. But after meeting Dave in middle school, everything changed.

Mark no longer wanted to make his family happy by following what they had planned for him, he wanted to be with Dave instead. Growing the courage to tell Dave about his crush, they share a romantic kiss at sunset before getting interrupted by Mark’s parents. Dave leaves, but not just for the night, he is sent to live hours away with his aunt, crushing Mark’s fantasies of having the perfect boyfriend.

Ten years pass and Dave shows up again, but something feels different. Finding out the horrible things Dave’s family made him go through after discovering that they were gay, Dave and Mark decide to rekindle their relationship.

With his own problems at home, and now with Dave returning after all these years, Mark must decide if the man he wanted years ago is worth risking everything for, or if he can indeed be happy with Dave and build a new life together.


Mark Cooney grows up aware that there is something different about him and hopes that his parents will never find out. Mark's best friend Dave disappeared when he was thirteen and returned ten years later. Mark became more and more vulnerable as they got closer. It came with a price. Tormented by his inner demons and refusing to be controlled by anyone, Dave reveals a secret that he has kept since childhood, which leads to a terrible misunderstanding that will have grave consequences for Mark and his family. All Mark yearns for is for Dave to return his love, but will that happen, or will he find someone else?

The Complexities of Love is a coming-of-age story about Mark as he confronts the truth about his family and his identity.

What others are saying:

Alex Williams, editor

"Exceptional story! Such a tender romance, very gratifying ending."

Lambda Literary


Starred Review 5/5

"Very emotional..."

Kirkus Reviews

"Intriguing and messily realistic..."

Starred Review 5/5

"An extremely powerful story!"

Starred Review 5/5


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