"This book snuck into my heart like a song I'd never heard but always wanted to, and now I can't stop humming it. Burning Butch is an urgent reminder that in any community where people read the same stories, sing the same songs, and pray the same prayers, there are stunning souls buzzing with contradiction, pain, beauty and desire, voices which create gorgeous polyphony rather than discord. With generosity and disarming honesty, R/B Mertz has written a book to help all of us survive being alive, being alive, being alive."
-- Will Arbery, author of Pulitzer Prize nominated 'Heroes of the Fourth Turning'
"Don’t let BURNING BUTCH’s wry, witty voice fool you. This work is also heartbreaking and harrowing, carefully calibrated, and downright illuminating. R/B Mertz’s strikingly original memoir creates a space on the page for all outsiders, misfits, renegades, rebels, and queers. This is a tale of resilience and hope penned by a writer whose singular artistic voice is like no other. BURNING BUTCH is an account of a life lived bravely, honestly, and above all else, proudly."
—Alex Espinoza, author of 'Cruising: An Intimate History of a Radical Pastime'
"Burning Butch by R/B Mertz howls against the dogged mouth of the past as much as illuminates the present, evoking the legendary Leslie Feinberg and their struggle for selfhood in the classic memoir, Stone Butch Blues. Mertz’s extraordinary and stunning debut memoir extends and deepens the tradition begun by Feinberg for “butch” life, butch recognition, gender non-conformity, and queerness by writing the catastrophic and world- shattering repressions that radical Christianity can inflict on children, people, and communities. In this gorgeously written, powerful and moving literary accomplishment, Mertz reminds us of the sheer miracle that any of us queer kids are alive. Burning Butch is sure to be a new classic. It will lead us into a brighter future."
--Dawn Lundy Martin, poet, essayist, memoirist
"That was cool. And I think you'll agree. Cause r/b mertz is queer as hell and can really really write prose. "