Depart, Depart! by Sim Kern


An award-nominated novella about finding and holding onto identity in the face of disaster.

An Otherwise Award (formerly the Tiptree Award) Honor List Book

“With high stakes and a solid emotional core, and a perfect balance of speculation and an all-too-real vision of climate apocalypse, Kern shows the necessity of compassion, empathy, and community in the face of crisis.”
Publishers Weekly starred review

“This book is a ghost story, but it’s a love story too: to the queer community, to those we’ve lost, and all we stand to lose if we don’t take drastic action. Kern’s prose is tremendously effective and will both break your heart and offer hope.”
Chicago Review of Books

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About the Book

When an unprecedented hurricane devastates the city of Houston, Noah Mishner finds shelter in the Dallas Mavericks’ basketball arena. Though he finds community among other queer refugees, Noah fears his trans and Jewish identities put him at risk with certain “capital-T” Texans. His fears take form when he starts seeing visions of his great-grandfather Abe, who fled Nazi Germany as a boy. As the climate crisis intensifies and conditions in the shelter deteriorate, Abe’s ghost grows more powerful. Ultimately, Noah must decide whether he can trust his ancestor — and whether he’s willing to sacrifice his identity and community in order to survive.

About the Author

Sim Kern is an environmental journalist and speculative fiction writer, exploring intersections of climate change, queerness, and social justice. You can find links to all their stories at and follow them on Twitter @sim_kern, on Instagram @Sim_bookstagrams_badly, and on their YouTube channel.

Learn More
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Additional information

Book Format


Page count

82 pp.


9781777091705 (trade), 9781777091712 (ebook)

Publication Date

September 1, 2020


horror, climate fiction, novella


climate change, natural disasters, trans rights, LGBTQ rights, Jewish mythology

Cover Art and Design

Anne Middleton


Otherwise Award Honor List


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