Soap Opera + Clue + Lesbians = Mariel Cove Season 2, Your New Beach Read

Ali’s Team Pick:

The summer is officially winding down, but there are still many more weekends left for beach getaways before the big freeze. I’m sure I’m not the only one still looking for a good, relaxing book that flows like a TV show and has plenty of queer action, yes? If you are also looking for the kind of book that’s perfectly paired with a bright blue sky and no cares in the world, you might want to take the plunge into Mariel Cove. This serial fiction about a town in the Pacific Northwest populated almost entirely by lesbians is written by a group of writers, the same way a television show is written – we interviewed editor Jennifer DiMarco about this unique writing style back in May.

Much has changed since May, though – so much that I would, in fact, no longer classify this series as erotica. Don’t get me wrong, there’s still plenty of sex in here, but I would argue that the sex is no longer the focus or purpose of the story, if it ever was. Instead, accusations of murder erupt in the ultra-small queerville after an upsetting visitor comes to town, a landslide traps everyone on the island, and something is spotted on the beach (is that a body?). The content is very much Clue + Soap Opera, but the style recalls lesbian pulp + the final season of the L Word. I’m only on the first episode, but I’m already wondering who killed Jenny (so to speak).

mariel cove cover

Mariel Cove is released serially through Amazon Kindle every Monday – you can purchase Season 2 Episode 1 or start at the very beginning with Season 1 Episode 1. If you’re like me and you pound through a few books a weekend when you’re in a land of sea and sun, you might want to consider getting the entire first season at once – if you like to binge watch shows on Netflix (OITNB, anyone?), this might be the reading style for you. Unfortunately for me, it doesn’t seem that Angels Of Anarchy has decided to release the entirety of season 2 at once like they did with season 1, so alas. Patience is a virtue.

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A.E. Osworth

A.E. Osworth is part-time Faculty at The New School, where they teach undergraduates the art of digital storytelling. Their novel, We Are Watching Eliza Bright, about a game developer dealing with harassment (and narrated collectively by a fictional subreddit), is forthcoming from Grand Central Publishing (April 2021) and is available for pre-order now. They have an eight-year freelancing career and you can find their work on Autostraddle (where they used to be the Geekery Editor), Guernica, Quartz, Electric Lit, Paper Darts, Mashable, and drDoctor, among others.

A.E. has written 542 articles for us.


  1. I missed your first article about this series. I’m super excited. My girlfriend and I are going to read these to each other to get our lesbian media fix now that we’ve finished OITNB.

  2. Since reading the first piece on here about this series I have become I gigantic fan! I loved the first series a lot with only a few quibbles. I’ve been so excited for season two. They are really well written with lots of atmosphere, mystery and great characters.

    Personally I’m really happy about the weekly release format because I’m someone who looks forward to a book for ages and then reads it in a day. So I enjoy the anticipation a lot.

    I think the promotion is a little lacking. The TV series vibe seems tailor-made for the fandoms and shippers on tumblr and I offered them some suggestions and help but so far their blog is pretty pointless. When I love something I want to help it succeed.

        • Thanks! I’m always down to get fan feedback. In fact, we’re shaping a lot of season 2 around it!

          As for the blog, btw, I should mention that the official blog has all the writer commentaries for every episode in season 1. I really loved doing those and don’t think they were pointless at all :)

        • I didn’t mean those! OMG! I’m not hating. Please don’t think so. I’ve only ever been talking about Mariel Cove’s presence on tumblr.

  3. Thank you, Ali! We’re so excited about the second season. I agree it’s very different from season 1 (it’s more focused, the characters interact with each other a lot more and, in my opinion, it’s a lot darker. The killer’s scenes gave me nightmares. No joke.) but I adore it.

    Also, thank you Autostraddle for being so good to us! You’re all my favorites.

  4. Oh! Also, I forgot to mention we decided to release one episode every Monday for Season 2 literally as the episodes are being written so readers can write to us and let us know how they’d like to see the season shaped! That’s why we don’t have a complete season 2 releasing right away. We want your feedback!

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