Please Don’t Hug Me

Kerr_PleaseDontHugMe_4 copy‘The most stressful interactions for me are ones like this, where the person’s face says one thing but their words say another. Which one am I supposed to believe? Faces seem to be more truthful, but people always act as though their words are the only things that matter.’

ERIN is looking forward to Schoolies, at least she thinks she is. But her plans are going awry. She’s lost her job at Surf Zone after an incident that clearly was not her fault, and now she’s not on track to have saved enough money. Her licence test went badly, which was also not her fault: she followed the instructor’s directions perfectly. And she’s missing her brother, Rudy, who left almost a year ago. But now that she’s writing letters to him, some things are beginning to make sense.

Kay Kerr’s Please Don’t Hug Me depicts life on the cusp of adulthood—and on the autism spectrum—and the complexities of nding out and accepting who you are and what’s important to you.

Order from Booktopia or your local bookshop.


A #LoveOzYA All Stars panel at Readings with Sarah Epstein, Poppy Nwosu and Anna Whateley on June 4 at 6.30pm. Free event. Booking required.


I did an interview with Books + Publishing where we talked about what it was like getting an autism diagnosis, epistolary novels, feeling ‘seen’ and vulnerability.

I spoke to The Bookish Bex as part of the Autistic Pride Readathon about autistic rep—the good and not so good.

I wrote a post for the Readings blog, where I highlighted three things I’ve learned from getting an autism diagnosis.

I did Ten Terrifying Questions with Booktopia, in which I talked about autism, fairies, my emo phase, crap pay in journalism, Hannah Gadsby, #LoveOzYA and my advice for aspiring writers.

Please Don’t Hug Me is the May pick for Kill Your Darling’s First Book Club.

Praise for Please Don’t Hug Me

‘This book is beautifully intimate, and so authentic. You’re going to love getting to know its central character, Erin. I’m so thrilled this book exists.’

Claire Christian

‘A moving and insightful story about finding your place in the world.’

– Nina Kenwood

‘Kay Kerr is a skilful writer who deftly balances the serious and the light in this coming-of-age narrative…This is another exciting release in Australian young adult fiction that I can’t wait to recommend to a host of sharp and curious minds.’

– Books+Publishing