The best LGBTQ books

Who picked these books? Meet our 730 experts.

730 authors created a book list connected to LGBTQ topics and characters, and here are their favorite LGBTQ books.
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Red Heir

By Lisa Henry, Sarah Honey,

Book cover of Red Heir

Jane Buehler Author Of The Forest Bride

From the list on romance set in a lighthearted, cozy fantasy world.

Who am I?

I have always loved fantasy worlds and romantic stories, but in recent years I’ve found it harder to read stories with extreme violence or trauma. When I started writing fiction, I planned to write a fantasy romance with a kingdom and a battle, but I couldn’t do it—my characters organized a nonviolent revolution and formed a democratic system of governance instead. I reconsidered and decided to write what I call cozy fantasy romances. So many types of romance novels could be set in a fantasy world, such as an office romance or road trip comedy. I’ve been searching for these types of romance novels—fun, lighthearted romances set in a fantasy world—and am slowly finding them.

Jane's book list on romance set in a lighthearted, cozy fantasy world

Discover why each book is one of Jane's favorite books.

Why did Jane love this book?

This book made me laugh out loud so many times—it's the funniest fantasy I have ever read. An oddball crew breaks into the protagonist’s prison cell to rescue a prince, so the protagonist claims to be the prince and is rescued along with his cellmate.

The journey back to the prince’s country is a road trip comedy with a wacky cast... but amid all the crude jokes are real emotional moments and characters being kind to each other. The protagonist can’t stop himself from falling for the prince and grows as a person in the process. Nothing about the story ever gets too serious, and the bad bits happen quickly and without prolonged trauma. I loved everything about it.

By Lisa Henry, Sarah Honey,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Red Heir as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

The Madness Vase

By Andrea Gibson,

Book cover of The Madness Vase

Sophie Johannis Author Of Traces

From the list on surviving trauma through the magic of imagination.

Who am I?

My first memories are of my brother’s death. Maybe that’s why I’ve always wanted to understand the connection between memory and identity. At 17, when I was writing the very first draft of Traces, I was also bandaging my friends’ suicide attempts. I’ve volunteered as a writing tutor for refugees and autistic students, visitor on the closed ward of a psychiatric hospital, advocate for the LGBTQIA+ community (of which I am a member), and celebrant for bereavement ceremonies. As an educator, YA/NA novelist, and poet, I know that nobody can heal unless they feel safe and seen, which is why I believe so strongly in trauma-informed communication and radical acceptance.

Sophie's book list on surviving trauma through the magic of imagination

Discover why each book is one of Sophie's favorite books.

Why did Sophie love this book?

Andrea Gibson’s spoken word poems are gut-wrenching testaments to the power of vulnerability and tenderness, weaving anecdotes into fervent pleas for empathy, connection, and social justice. The magic of their pieces lies in the both/and of beauty and pain, unflinchingly facing trauma while clinging to hope. This collection’s strongest poems include “Ashes” (about a gay soldier burned to death) and “Somewhere, a Carpenter” (about the artist’s love for their grandmother). If you want to be truly spellbound, look for the recorded versions of these poems—I’ve attended two of Gibson’s live performances and had goosebumps all over and/or tears streaming down my face from start to finish.

By Andrea Gibson,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Madness Vase as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

These poems’ topics range from hate crimes to playgrounds, from international conflict to hometowns, from falling in love to the desperation of loneliness. Gibson’s work seizes us by the collar and hauls us inside some of her darkest moments, then releases us out the other side.

Jeb and Dash

By Ina Russell (editor),

Book cover of Jeb and Dash: A Diary of Gay Life, 1918-1945

Jeff Stookey Author Of Acquaintance

From the list on revealing LGBT life in the early 20th century.

Who am I?

I’ve known all my life that I am gay. At age 50 I decided to try my hand at writing. After an image of two men kissing in a 1920s vehicle landed in my head, I began writing my Medicine for the Blues trilogy (Acquaintance is book one). But knowing nothing about LGBT history, I began a deep dive into gay and lesbian history, into the history of Portland and Oregon, into the era of the 1920s, the KKK, Prohibition, Freud, eugenics, and more. During 20 years of writing the trilogy, I’ve read dozens of books that roiled through my imagination and the information spilled out in the story.

Jeff's book list on revealing LGBT life in the early 20th century

Discover why each book is one of Jeff's favorite books.

Why did Jeff love this book?

A valuable first-person account in real time describing what it was like to be gay in early 20th century USA. Jeb is well-read in the homosexuality literature of his era, from Havelock Ellis to Walt Whitman. One sympathizes with Jeb’s shame and misery in a time when being homosexual was socially unacceptable and illegal. Yet his self-pity and social ineptitude can be exasperating. In time he makes some gay friends, but he is often ambivalent toward them. Eventually he does develop some confidence and self-assertiveness. Most admirable is his love of culture (books, art, movies, stage plays, concerts) and his affection for nature (weather, plants, scenery, etc.) which he describes so exquisitely. By sloth and lack of dedication, Jeb never achieved his ambitions as a writer, but he did leave us these diaries that so well describe his singular life.

By Ina Russell (editor),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Jeb and Dash as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

It occurred to me today with something of a shock how horrible it would be for this diary of mine to be pawed over and read unsympathetically after I am dead, by those incapable of understanding... And then the thought of the one thing even more dreadful and terrible than that - for my diary never to be read by the one person who would or could understand. For I do want it to be read - there is no use concealing the fact - by somebody who is like me, who would understand.
Jeb Alexander was a gay man…

Adventures with My Daddies

By Gareth Peter, Garry Parsons (illustrator),

Book cover of Adventures with My Daddies

Meryl G. Gordon Author Of The Flower Girl Wore Celery

From the list on children with LGBTQ family members.

Who am I?

When my son and son-in-law were getting married back in 2010, my cousin’s four-year-old daughter Emma was excited to be their flower girl. I wanted to buy Emma a book about a flower girl to prepare her for the wedding, but I couldn’t find anything that worked for our situation, since we were having two grooms and no bride—at an otherwise traditional Jewish wedding. Then one day, my cousin called, laughing, and said “Emma said she’s afraid to come to the wedding because of the Ring BEAR!” So I needed to write this for Emmaa story where everything isn’t what the child imagines, but it’s all joyful. 

Meryl's book list on children with LGBTQ family members

Discover why each book is one of Meryl's favorite books.

Why did Meryl love this book?

A new two-daddies book! The two dads, one Black and one white, embark on exciting and brightly illustrated adventures with their daughter through the magic of reading books. And what is their favorite story of all? The story of their daughter’s adoption! The sweet rhyming text is ideal for very young listeners.

By Gareth Peter, Garry Parsons (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Adventures with My Daddies as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Set off on a series of incredible adventures with a family that has two dads!

As they read bedtime stories with their little one, the pages burst into colorful life. Together, this LGBTQ+ family battles dragons, dodges deadly dinosaurs, zooms to the moon, and explores the world in a hot air balloon, before winding down to sleep in a wonderfully cozy ending.

This rhyming read aloud celebrates the power of imagination and champions the love that brings all kinds of families together.

Author and illustrator team Gareth Peter and Garry Parsons deliver an imaginative, heartwarming tale filled with bright and…

Book cover of Nothing Burns as Bright as You

Dev Jannerson Author Of The Women of Dauphine

From the list on dark, gritty YA for the omnivorous reader.

Who am I?

Two facts about me as a reader: I like books that deal with difficult issues, and I like reading a lot of them. There’s something about watching teens, for whom everything feels new, deal with the toughest stuff imaginable and come out the other side. I love a protagonist who has been through the wringer. Some people call these stories dark or morbid. I prefer to think of them as hopeful. My own writing history is as diverse as my reading habits. I’ve published in poetry, romance, and criticism, but these days I’m all about YA, like the politically-charged thriller I’m querying or my queer New Orleans ghost story, The Women of Dauphine

Dev's book list on dark, gritty YA for the omnivorous reader

Discover why each book is one of Dev's favorite books.

Why did Dev love this book?

What’s more all-consuming than being in love with your best friend? An uncontrolled fire, maybe–or a few of them. This turbulent romance between two teenage girls is told in prose poetry, and like the best novels in verse, every carefully formatted word carries weight. The narrative jumps back and forth in time, and it dives into the (main) narrator’s mind so intimately you’ll forget you don’t even know her name.

By Ashley Woodfolk,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Nothing Burns as Bright as You as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Five starred reviews!

From New York Times bestselling author Ashley Woodfolk, Nothing Burns as Bright as You is an impassioned stand-alone tale of queer love, grief, and the complexity of female friendship.

Two girls. One wild and reckless day. Years of tumultuous history unspooling like a thin, fraying string in the hours after they set a fire.

They were best friends. Until they became more. Their affections grew. Until the blurry lines became dangerous.

Over the course of a single day, the depth of their past, the confusion of their present, and the unpredictability of their future is revealed. And…

Rise to the Sun

By Leah Johnson,

Book cover of Rise to the Sun

Llinos Cathryn Thomas Author Of A Duet for Invisible Strings

From the list on mixing music and romance.

Who am I?

It’s often been said of musical theatre that the point when the characters begin to sing is the point their emotions become too much to express in words alone. I think that’s one reason I’m so obsessed with books about people connecting over music, art, and performance—it allows for so much passion and intensity. Having sung and played instruments over the years, I know how powerful it can feel to make music with other people, even when you’re not in love! These days, though, I spend more time reading and writing about music than I do playing it.

Llinos' book list on mixing music and romance

Discover why each book is one of Llinos' favorite books.

Why did Llinos love this book?

This Young Adult romance takes place over the course of a single weekend, and it captures the urgency of young love perfectly. Sure Olivia and Toni fall hard and fast, but it’s no wonder—a great music festival can pull you far enough from your day-to-day that you feel as though you’ve been there a lifetime, even as an adult. And this book captures that so clearly, bringing you right into both girls’ perspectives, letting you feel every triumph and every moment of despair as they chase their dreams, musical and otherwise, and figure out who they are.

By Leah Johnson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Rise to the Sun as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A stunning novel about being brave enough to be true
to yourself, and learning to find joy even when times are unimaginably
Three days.

Two girls.

One life-changing music festival.

Toni is grieving the loss of her roadie father
and needing to figure out where her life will go from here - and
she's desperate to get back to loving music. Olivia is a hopeless
romantic whose heart has just taken a beating
(again) and is beginning to feel like she'll always be a square
peg in a round hole - but the Farmland Music and Arts Festival is…


By Anthony Veasna So,

Book cover of Afterparties: Stories

Renee Macalino Author Of The ABCs Of Asian American History: A Celebration from A to Z of All Asian Americans, from Bangladeshi Americans to Vietnamese Americans

From the list on the Asian American immigrant experience.

Who am I?

Born in the Philippines and raised in the US from the age of 4, Renee didn't see the stories of her culture reflected in books until she was a freshman in college at UC Berkeley. Renee wrote her first novel, The Hour of Daydreams, which was inspired by the ghost stories her family told. It received the inaugural Institute for Immigration Research New American Voices Finalist award. Her children’s book One Hundred Percent Me is the book she wishes she could’ve read to her own daughters. With her latest book, The ABCs of Asian American History, Renee hopes young readers will celebrate the vast contributions of Asian Americans to US culture, politics, arts, and society.

Renee's book list on the Asian American immigrant experience

Discover why each book is one of Renee's favorite books.

Why did Renee love this book?

So’s short story collection weaves through the lives of Cambodian refugees and their search for identity while forging a better life for their families.

How do the survivors of genocide move forward and start over?

Whether told from the perspective of two sisters working in their mother’s donut shop, a son grieving his father in a temple, or a badminton team losing faith in their coach, these stories offer a one-of-a-kind kaleidoscope with whimsy, heartache, fortitude, and rebellion. 

By Anthony Veasna So,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Afterparties as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


'So's distinctive voice is ever-present: mellifluous, streetwise and slightly brash, at once cynical and bighearted...unique and quintessential' Sunday Times

'So's stories reimagine and reanimate the Central Valley, in the way that the polyglot stories in Bryan Washington's collection Lot reimagined Houston and Ocean Vuong's novel On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous allowed us to see Hartford in a fresh light.' Dwight Garner, New York Times

'[A] remarkable debut collection' Hua Hsu, The New Yorker

A Roxane…

She Gets the Girl

By Rachael Lippincott, Alyson Derrick,

Book cover of She Gets the Girl

Diane Billas Author Of Does Love Always Win?

From the list on young adult fiction sapphic romance novels.

Who am I?

I’m passionate about young adult sapphic romance books because this is something I wished I would have read in high school. If I had novels similar to these when I was growing up I might have realized that I identify as queer sooner and it could have helped me understand more about myself. Because of this, I’ve been an avid reader, and writer, of sapphic young adult romances. If it’s sapphic, send it my way. I hope you enjoy these sapphic novels as much as I have!

Diane's book list on young adult fiction sapphic romance novels

Discover why each book is one of Diane's favorite books.

Why did Diane love this book?

She Gets the Girl was such a cute sapphic romance, the kind of romance I wished I had experienced when I was younger.

I enjoyed that it was set freshman year of college, rather than high school like most young adult books, and the very distinct personalities of both main characters. It was a really fun read and I honestly wish it didn’t have to end. I also can totally see this being made into a movie.

By Rachael Lippincott, Alyson Derrick,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked She Gets the Girl as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Read the instant New York Times bestseller and TikTok sensation -- THE new swoon-worthy hate-to-love rom com from #1 New York Times bestselling co-author of Five Feet Apart Rachael Lippincott and debut writer Alyson Derrick. The perfect summer read for fans of Adam Silvera, Casey McQuiston, Becky Albertalli and Alice Oseman's HEARTSTOPPER series!

Alex and Molly are two girls who don't belong on the same planet, let alone the same college campus . . .

Alex Blackwood is a little bit headstrong, with a dash of chaos and a whole lot of flirt. She knows how to get the girl.…

Chasing Stars

By Alex K. Thorne,

Book cover of Chasing Stars

Molly J. Bragg Author Of Scatter

From the list on sapphic superhero.

Who am I?

I’m a trans woman who writes sapphic science fiction, fantasy, superhero novels, and contemporary romance. I’m been a huge fan of superheroes my whole life, and Supergirl has been my favorite superhero since I saw the original Helen Slater movie back in the 80s. In addition to being a fan, I’m currently writing a series of sapphic superhero novels called Hearts of Heroes.

Molly's book list on sapphic superhero

Discover why each book is one of Molly's favorite books.

Why did Molly love this book?

This is a relatively lighthearted superhero romance about Ava, an alien who works as the personal assistant to a big Hollywood star named Gwen. When Gwen asks Ava to pretend to be her girlfriend because it will help Gwen with the custody battle with her ex-husband, all the predictable fake dating shenanigans ensue.

The book is a fun, comfortable read with a good bit of pining, a fun sister relationship, and an interesting superhero plot.

The focus on Ava’s and Gwen’s emotional journey through the story makes it an engaging read the first time through, and a nice, comfortable reread for those days when you just want to lose yourself in a comfy book.

By Alex K. Thorne,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Chasing Stars as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

For superhero Swiftwing, crime fighting isn’t her biggest battle. Nor is it having to meet the demanding whims of Hollywood screen goddess Gwen Knight as her mild-mannered assistant, Ava.It’s doing all that, while tracking a giant alien bug, being asked to fake date her world-famous boss, and realizing that she might be coming down with a pesky case of feelings.A fun, sweet, and sexy lesbian romance about the masks we all wear.

The Charioteer

By Mary Renault,

Book cover of The Charioteer

Kenneth Martin Author Of Aubade

From the list on important stories for saving gay men’s lives.

Who am I?

Long ago I lived in a world of blackouts and food rationing and German planes threatening overhead, children dying in epidemics of polio and TB, and food on the dinner table not always certain. In that world, homosexuality was a criminal and psychiatric term and queer men were objects of ridicule, tragic sissies it was normal to mock as sick monsters who could go to jail for their forbidden behavior. I’ve listed some of the books that trace part of the long journey queer men took until it felt reasonably safe to discuss queerness nonjudgmentally. Question: In how many American schools, even today, would a teacher be banned from assigning one of these books?

Kenneth's book list on important stories for saving gay men’s lives

Discover why each book is one of Kenneth's favorite books.

Why did Kenneth love this book?

Written in the fifties, perhaps the author’s gender helped excuse her brave assumption that the intimate thoughts and feelings of a group of young gay men attempting to come to terms with their sexual identity was a valid topic. Renaud writes of stunted lives: the invented girlfriends, the cautious hints to probe another man’s preferences, the desperate need to belong, provoking the retreat into society’s stereotyping even amongst themselves. The novel is dated; one character has to explain to another what drag is! But it was one more step towards gay men’s forming their identity and self-acceptance. 

By Mary Renault,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Charioteer as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Injured at Dunkirk, Laurie Odell, a young corporal, is recovering at a rural veterans' hospital. There he meets Andrew, a conscientious objector serving as an orderly, and the men find solace in their covert friendship. Then Ralph Lanyon appears, a mentor from Laurie's schooldays. Through him, Laurie is drawn into a tight-knit circle of gay men for whom liaisons are fleeting and he is forced to choose between the ideals of a perfect friendship and the pleasures of experience. First published in 1953, The Charioteer is a a tender, intelligent coming-of-age novel and a bold, unapologetic portrayal of homosexuality that…

Blackfish City

By Sam J. Miller,

Book cover of Blackfish City

Stephanie Feldman Author Of Saturnalia

From the list on fantastical cities.

Who am I?

When I decided to set my new novel, Saturnalia, in Philadelphia, I was excited to draw on my experience as a native and current resident of the City of Brotherly Love. But I also love magic and the supernatural as much as I love research—my Philadelphia had to be a fantastical one. I drew on real landmarks, real history, and real social dynamics, but added wild festivals, secret societies, and an occult history to create a place all my own. Fortunately, I had a number of fictional fantasy cities to guide my world-building.

Stephanie's book list on fantastical cities

Discover why each book is one of Stephanie's favorite books.

Why did Stephanie love this book?

Qaanaak, Blackfish City’s floating Arctic city, is science-fictional—it’s maintained by artificial intelligence and other futuristic technology—but it’s built with all the world-building care the fantasy reader desires, including a text-within-a-text that explains the city’s origins. What most inspired me, though, is how Qaanaak exposes a city’s class structure, and questions what makes a city worth saving.

By Sam J. Miller,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Blackfish City as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


'A remarkable work of dystopian imagination' - Starburst

'Incisive and beautifully written . . . Blackfish City simmers with menace and heartache, suspense and wonder' - Ann Leckie, Hugo, Nebula and Clarke Award-winning author


After the climate wars, a floating city was constructed in the Arctic Circle. Once a remarkable feat of mechanical and social engineering it is now rife with corruption and the population simmers with unrest.

Into this turmoil comes a strange new visitor - a woman accompanied by an orca and a chained…

Primal Sin

By Ariana Nash,

Book cover of Primal Sin

Reni Stankova Author Of The Enemy of Heaven

From the list on MM fantasies in alternate worlds.

Who am I?

I’ve been an avid reader of MM literature in all its genres and sub-genres, since I was a teenager. Even now, MM fantasy titles are some of my favorite books of all time. I’d love to share my preferences with other readers so they could see the magic I see.

Reni's book list on MM fantasies in alternate worlds

Discover why each book is one of Reni's favorite books.

Why did Reni love this book?

Severn is a demon who has gained the trust, friendship, and love of the guardian angel Mikhail for the sole purpose of vengeance.

But after ten years of pretending to be someone he is not, he realizes he has turned into one of the angels and his arch-enemy became his greatest love.

Oh, boy, where do I start with this one? Primal Sin is one of the most dramatic M/M fantasies I’ve ever read.

From beginning to end, I was certain this pairing would never be allowed to be happy. Severn is a complicated, bordering on tragic, protagonist and Mikhail is someone you often want to punch, but eventually warm up to.

It’s impossible not to fall in love with them and the stellar world-building.

An absolute enemies-to-lovers roller coaster and I’m all for it.

By Ariana Nash,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Primal Sin as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Fallen for love. Risen for revenge. 

Severn knows love. He knows how it feels to fight for love, and have it torn from his reach. He knows that when the killing fields are strewn with the dead, and love is all gone, only one thing keeps his demon heart beating: 


His life is now a web of lies. His act, a perfect one. His enemy—the guardian angel Mikhail—sits beside him, turns to him for guidance, and even loves him.

The time has come to make all the angels fall, beginning with the most powerful of them all. 

Severn thought…

Let's Talk About Love

By Claire Kann,

Book cover of Let's Talk About Love

Kieran Frank Author Of Squishy Crushy Something

From the list on positive asexual representation.

Who am I?

I'm Kieran Frank, author of sexless romances. I write books with asexual characters because they're underrepresented. I write them with positive representation to avoid harmful stereotypes, and I highlight the nuances of a-spec people without sounding too preachy. I don't claim to be an expert in asexuality, but I'm passionate about writing asexual themes because it's what I want to see more of in fiction. Men are often expected to enjoy sex, especially at a younger age. I can personally relate to the harmful pressure, which is another reason I write asexual books. It can help combat toxic views that societies have instilled in many people.

Kieran's book list on positive asexual representation

Discover why each book is one of Kieran's favorite books.

Why did Kieran love this book?

Asexual BIPOC are severely underrepresented, let alone asexual people in general. I always enjoy reading about characters who are asexual, and because I'm a BIPOC myself, this book is especially refreshing. It taught me that no matter how others feel about my sexuality, there is nothing wrong with me, and finding love doesn't have to be as impossible as our hopeless minds occasionally tell us. The book also made me feel at home, even if my life is different from others' lives. It helps my own book by offering more queer representation in a predominantly heteronormative society, especially asexuality.

By Claire Kann,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Let's Talk About Love as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Alice is secretly asexual, and that's the least important thing about her.

She's a college student, has a great job, amazing friends, and is fine being single - nope, that's a lie. Alice wants rom com-grade romance: feels, cuddling, kissing, and swoons galore - as long as it doesn't lead to having sex.

When her last relationship ends, Alice swears off relationships for good. Stick a fork in her, she's done. Everyone Alice tries to date is so sure love and sex have to go together, and there doesn't seem to be any way to convince them otherwise.

But when…

Really Good, Actually

By Monica Heisey,

Book cover of Really Good, Actually

Genevieve Novak Author Of Crushing

From the list on to break you out of a reading slump.

Who am I?

I'm a contemporary romance writer with two novels: No Hard Feelings and Crushing, stories about complex, messy women making mistakes and learning from them. As I work on my third novel, I'm remembering how hard it is to write when you're in a reading rut. Sometimes every book I pick up is disappointing, and reading feels like a chore, and I risk losing momentum. Sometimes I need something familiar to get back on track and remember why I love my job. These books feel like a long exhale. I can come to them with an overloaded brain, bad moods and doubt and discontent, and turn the last page restored.

Genevieve's book list on to break you out of a reading slump

Discover why each book is one of Genevieve's favorite books.

Why did Genevieve love this book?

Someone call the police, because Heisey has broken into my brain, looked around, and written a story containing every thought I’ve ever had.

There’s nothing quite like feeling seen on the page to make you feel less alone as you flounder, break down, circle the drain, and look down the barrel of total oblivion, and it’s a rare privilege to find a story that does all of this with wit and warmth.

The term “sad girl lit” gets thrown around a lot, and while no one could accuse protagonist Maggie of being happy (or content, or even stable), Heisey resists the sinkhole of self-pity and exhausting melancholy that so often turns books in this niche into a chore.

Self-destructive yet self-aware women who make all the worst decisions and come to their own rescue – unite!

By Monica Heisey,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Really Good, Actually as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The No. 2 SUNDAY TIMES Bestseller An Observer Best Debut of the Year 'Intoxicating ... heralds a really good author to watch' The Times 'Hilarious and profound' Dolly Alderton, author of Everything I Know About Love 'Wildly funny and almost alarmingly relatable' Marian Keyes, author of Again, Rachel 'Monica Heisey is a genius' Nina Stibbe, author of Reasons to be Cheerful

One of the most hotly anticipated, hilarious and addictive debut novels of 2023, from Schitt's Creek and Workin' Moms screenwriter and electric new voice in fiction, Monica Heisey.

I feel like when you get a divorce everyone's wondering how…

Red, White & Royal Blue

By Casey McQuiston,

Book cover of Red, White & Royal Blue

Mary E. Twomey Author Of Angry Girl

From the list on “LGBTQ people are allowed to exist” reads.

Who am I?

I have an inclusive family with LGBTCuties whom I love dearly. I write and read paranormal romance, but quickly realized that my family might not be able to connect with my favorite genre because they don’t often see themselves represented as anything more than tragic plot points. I gaped at the horror that was hard to face, and realized I had work to do. Paranormal romance has enough room for all of us, so I set out to ensure that my children have books to read in my favorite genre, so we can all be one silly, magical family together, casting spells and looking around every corner for shifters and vampires.

Mary's book list on “LGBTQ people are allowed to exist” reads

Discover why each book is one of Mary's favorite books.

Why did Mary love this book?

This book has plenty of push and pull, and I couldn’t put it down.

I wanted the main guys to get together so badly, and loved watching them grow as young men, making important decisions for their respective countries while making peace with the social lens constantly being aimed their way. 

By Casey McQuiston,

Why should I read it?

5 authors picked Red, White & Royal Blue as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

* Instant NEW YORK TIMES and USA TODAY bestseller *

What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?

When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius--his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when…

Ask, Tell

By E.J. Noyes,

Book cover of Ask, Tell

Jae Author Of Just a Touch Away

From the list on women who love women and romance novels.

Who am I?

I’m a full-time writer, part-time editor, and avid reader of romances between queer women. I’ve just published my twenty-third novel, and I’m still amazed and humbled at getting to live my dream: writing sapphic romances for a living. Discovering sapphic books was a life-saver for me since I grew up in a tiny little village, with no openly LGBT+ people around, and I love knowing that my books are now doing the same for my readers. 

Jae's book list on women who love women and romance novels

Discover why each book is one of Jae's favorite books.

Why did Jae love this book?

Ask, Tell is the story of Captain Sabine Fleischer, a surgeon in the US Army during the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” era. The book is told entirely from Sabine’s point of view, so as a reader, I could really feel her pining for her superior officer, stunning and competent Colonel Rebecca Keane. It’s a story that will make you laugh and cry and understand much better what LGBT+ people serving in the military went through during that time. 

By E.J. Noyes,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ask, Tell as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Where can you turn when you’re caught in a crossfire of war and passion?

Captain Sabine Fleischer is a skilled and dedicated U.S. Army surgeon deployed to a combat hospital in Afghanistan. She is also one of the thousands of troops who are forced to serve in silence because of the military’s anti-gay policy of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell (DADT).”

Usually driven and focused, Sabine finds that battles raging both inside and outside the perimeter walls are making it more and more difficult for her to deal with her emotions. Dealing with loss and mortality, lack of privacy, sleep deprivation,…


By Bishakh Som,

Book cover of Spellbound: A Graphic Memoir

Joris Bas Backer Author Of Kisses For Jet: A Coming-of-Gender Story

From the list on authentic transgender characters.

Who am I?

I'm a cartoonist with a transgender-biography and I write trans characters into my stories. Even though I value the growing awareness of transgender representation by all writers, those that were written by people with trans-experience carry special significance. I've written a graphic novel and many autobiographical, fictional, and documentary short stories. These works have centered on the themes sexual identity, gender roles, youth culture, family, social structures, and social history. With my work I aim to shed light on issues that are lesser known, with a strong social focus and the intention of using the storytelling medium and the comic format as a way of making the complex understandable.

Joris' book list on authentic transgender characters

Discover why each book is one of Joris' favorite books.

Why did Joris love this book?

The visual world Bishakh Som creates has so much personality that I could forget everything around me while I read it. Her main character is a queer goth punk, which is one of the reasons why I had wanted to read it because I love anything punk and queer. She navigates the relationship to her family as a Bengali American, the relationship to herself, to being an artist and all the while also exploring her trans identity. Bishakh Som takes the reader in and out of the fiction, weaving in both herself and her fictional character. It meant a lot to me that by doing this she poises transitioning as a deeply human process of flaws, personal growth, and beauty.

By Bishakh Som,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Spellbound as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The meticulous artwork of transgender artist Bishakh Som gives us the rare opportunity to see the world through another lens.
This exquisite graphic novel memoir by a transgender artist, explores the concept of identity by inviting the reader to view the author moving through life as she would have us see her, that is, as she sees herself. Framed with a candid autobiographical narrative, this book gives us the opportunity to enter into the author's daily life and explore her thoughts on themes of gender and sexuality, memory and urbanism, love and loss.

Book cover of Tell Me What You Like

Iza Moreau Author Of The News in Small Towns

From the list on mysteries featuring lesbian detectives.

Who am I?

Halfway through my first novel, I realized that I was writing in a genre that had received little critical study and had almost no visibility. To find my way around the genre—and my place within it—I began reading heavily and before I knew it, I had read well over 200 lesbian mystery novels and devoured almost every serious review and critical study The dozen books I have written over the last decade reflect this study. In them, I hope I have succeeded in expanding the genre in some small way and adding to the menu of a hungry and discerning LGBTQ audience. 

Iza's book list on mysteries featuring lesbian detectives

Discover why each book is one of Iza's favorite books.

Why did Iza love this book?

Like Nikki Baker’s novels, Tell Me What You Like is driven by its narration. Alison Kaine, the protagonist of the novel, works for the Denver Police Department. But unlike most protagonists of lesbian policiers—who tend to be sergeants or detectives—Alison is a lowly officer. Because she is an out lesbian, she is assigned to investigate the murder of a leather dyke outside a lesbian bar, and is slowly drawn into the stories of the bar’s other denizens. And, not quite against her will, she slides into the darker subculture of BDSM, with whips and collars and a dominatrix named Anastasia. 

By Kate Allen,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Tell Me What You Like as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Alison Kaine, lesbian cop, enters the world of leather-dykes after a woman is brutally murdered at a Denver bar. In this fast-paced, yet slyly humorous novel, Allen confronts the sensitive issues of S/M, queer-bashers and women-identified sex workers.

Book cover of The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot

Karen Cassiday Author Of The No Worries Guide to Raising Your Anxious Child: A Handbook to Help You and Your Anxious Child Thrive

From the list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to.

Who am I?

I've always been fascinated with how people overcome terrible circumstances ever since my childhood when my parents took me through the Tower of London and told me people survived the horrible torture devices on display. I got into reading biographies of war heroes, concentration camp survivors, and athletes who survived torture, betrayal, illness, and cruelty only to become people I admire. I became a clinical psychologist because I love inspiring others to discover their own greatness during life’s worst moments. I’ve had to learn how to find love, hope, and meaning when trauma, disability, death, and broken promises have ground me down to a bloody pulp.

Karen's book list on becoming a better human even when you're not sure you want to

Discover why each book is one of Karen's favorite books.

Why did Karen love this book?

This book tells the story of a teenage girl with terminal cancer who befriends a hospital chaplain and an elderly woman during her last year of life. 

She asks the big questions of life and finds friendship and meaning during existential and physical struggle. You cannot help but fall in love with the characters and share their efforts to find self, meaning, and hope during great struggle.

By Marianne Cronin,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The One Hundred Years of Lenni and Margot as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?


'Emotional, involving, witty and sad. Everyone is going to love Lenni and Margot'

'Lenni and Margot are two of the most wonderful, warm, witty and wise heroines I've ever met. Beautiful and glorious' CLARE POOLEY, author of The Authenticity Project

Fiercely alive, disarmingly funny and brimming with tenderness, THE ONE HUNDRED YEARS OF LENNI AND MARGOT unwraps the extraordinary gift of life, and revels in our infinite capacity for friendship and love when we need them most.

Life is short.

No-one knows that better than seventeen-year-old Lenni. But as…

Book cover of The Last True Poets of the Sea

Siri Caldwell Author Of The Mermaid Hypothesis

From the list on LGBTQ+ stories about feeling lost, then found.

Who am I?

Every time I write a romance novel, I find myself returning to the same themes: seeing people for who they are beneath the surface, respecting others despite differences, and choosing to love those who might seem a little odd. Whether they’re angels, mermaids, or plain old humans, my characters lead lives where, despite marginalization and alienation, love and a sense of belonging are possible. My Christmas novella, Mistletoe Mishap, was a Lambda Literary Award finalist.

Siri's book list on LGBTQ+ stories about feeling lost, then found

Discover why each book is one of Siri's favorite books.

Why did Siri love this book?

I typically don’t read YA, but I’d just finished writing a book about searching for an ancient shipwreck, so I thought, why not see what someone else did with this idea? And I’m so glad I did. Otherwise I would have missed out on this compelling inner journey of a teenager who tries on adult responsibility and explores who she wants to be: someone who flees, breaks down, acts out, steps up, reaches for meaningful connection, or (and) loves.

By Julia Drake,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Last True Poets of the Sea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The Larkin family isn't just lucky -- they persevere. At least that's what Violet and her younger brother, Sam, were always told. When the Lyric sank off the coast of Maine, their great-great-great-grandmother didn't drown like the rest of the passengers. No, Fidelia swam to shore, fell in love, and founded Lyric, Maine, the town Violet and Sam returned to every summer. But wrecks seem to run in the family: Tall, funny, musical Violet can't stop partying with the wrong people. And, one beautiful summer day, brilliant, sensitive Sam attempts to take his own life.

Shipped back to Lyric while…