In a recent interview with Vulture, Antoni Porowski— resident food expert and self-described “hopeless romantic” of the Queer Eye reboot — revealed that he’s a huge fan of the novel A Little Life and its author, Hanya Yanagihara.
Apparently, the feeling is mutual.
After Porowski wore a graphic tee that referenced Yanagihara’s characters on an episode of Queer Eye, the author posted a screenshot on her Instagram. Like any fanboy, Porowski freaked out — and then decided to send her a message on Instagram, where the two began chatting.
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@alittlelifebook is on TV! Well, kind of. What a beautiful surprise to see the boys on (a T-shirt on) the @queereye reboot: thank you so much for the lovely honor, @antoni, and to @kurtsoller and @leonorjr for the tipoff. (Go to the @alittlelifebook insta or twitter or Facebook page to download the art now—don’t worry, it’s free.) #queereye #alittlelifebook
“I probably tried to stay cooler than I was actually feeling because I burst into tears immediately,” Porowski told Vulture. “Her book has such an important place in my life. I thanked her and said, ‘I don’t really know what to say except I’m crying and thank you for posting about it and taking notice, and I hope you know that I wore the T-shirt with pride.’ And she wrote back saying, ‘The boys would be really proud of the work that you do on the show.'”
Yanagihara later sent him A Little Life tote bags with a handwritten note, which Porowski says is now hanging on this fridge. The friendship is made even sweeter by the fact that Porowski’s copy of A Little Life was actually signed by Yanagihara, long before they ever connected.
“When I showed up at Three Lives, my favorite bookstore, and said, ‘I need another book to read, I kind of want A Little Life,’ the person who helped came back with it said, ‘Hang on. Hanya was here. She signed some of them and this one is special because there’s a happy face she signed with her initials, so I’ll let you have this one,'” said Porowski. “I immediately fell in love with the book.”
One question still stands: which of the book’s characters does Porowski identify with most?
Turns out that he sees himself a mix of Jude and Willem, the protagonist and his caretaker, saying: “I know they’re characters, but I think we all have a little bit of Jude and Willem inside of us.”