I recently asked my Instagram followers to recommend their favourite LGBTQ+ books and a lot of you asked me to share the answers!
So listed here are the most popular answers that people gave, and I hope they will help you find some great queer fiction to read during Pride Month! Don’t forget to get involved with this celebration of all things love this month!
Boy Erased – Garrard Conley
The son of a Baptist pastor and deeply embedded in church life in small town Arkansas, as a young man Garrard Conley was terrified and conflicted about his sexuality.
Garrard traces the complex relationships among family, faith, and community. At times heartbreaking, at times triumphant, this memoir is a testament to love that survives despite all odds.
Queen of Coin & Whispers – Helen Corcoran
When Lia, an idealistic queen, falls for Xania, her new spymaster–who took the job to avenge her murdered father–they realise all isn’t fair in love and treason.
When they fall for each other, their love complicates Lia’s responsibilities and Xania’s plans for vengeance. As they’re drawn together amid royal suitors and new diplomats, they uncover treason that could not only end Lia’s reign, but ruin their weakened country. They must decide not only what to sacrifice for duty, but also for each other.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post – Emily M. Danforth
Cameron Post is now living with her conservative Aunt in small-town Montana, who is determined to ‘correct’ Cameron. Cameron must battle with the cost of being her true-self even if she’s not completely sure who that is.
The Miseducation of Cameron Post (which is now also a film) is a stunning and unforgettable literary debut about discovering who you are and finding the courage to live life according to your own rules.
The Black Flamingo – Dean Atta
This is not about being ready, it’s not even about being fierce, or fearless, IT’S ABOUT BEING FREE.
Michael waits in the stage wings, wearing a pink wig, pink fluffy coat and black heels. One more step will see him illuminated by spotlight.
He has been on a journey of bravery to get here, and he is almost ready to show himself to the world in bold colours. Can he emerge as The Black Flamingo?
Middlesex – Jeffrey Eugenides
“I was born twice: first, as a baby girl, on a remarkably smogless Detroit day of January 1960; and then again, as a teenage boy, in an emergency room near Petoskey, Michigan, in August of l974.”
So begins the breathtaking story of Calliope Stephanides and her truly unique family secret, born on the slopes of Mount Olympus and passed on through three generations.
Growing up in 70’s Michigan, Calliope s special inheritance will turn her into Cal, the narrator of this intersex, inter-generational epic of immigrant life in 20th century America.
Giovanni’s Room – James Baldwin
When David meets the sensual Giovanni in a bohemian bar, he is swept into a passionate love affair. But his girlfriend’s return to Paris destroys everything. Unable to admit to the truth, David pretends the liaison never happened – while Giovanni’s life descends into tragedy.
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous – Ocean Vuong
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family’s history that began before he was born – a history whose epicentre is rooted in Vietnam – and serves as a doorway into parts of his life his mother has never known, all of it leading to an unforgettable revelation. At once a witness to the fraught yet undeniable love between a single mother and her son, it is also a brutally honest exploration of race, class, and masculinity.
Juliet Takes A Breath – Gabby Rivera
Juliet’s head is spinning with questions.
Will her beautiful, chaotic Puerto Rican family still love her when they find out she’s gay?
Will an internship with her favourite author help her understand what kind of feminist she wants to be? And why won’t her girlfriend return her calls?!
In a summer full of queer dance parties, a fling with a motorcycling librarian and intense explorations of sexuality and identity, Juliet’s about to learn what it means to really come out – to the world, to her family, to herself.
Mirror Mirror – Cara Delevingne
Sixteen-year-old friends Red, Leo, Rose, and Naomi are misfits; still figuring out who they are and who they want to be. Life isn’t perfect, but music unites them, and they’re excited about what the future holds for their band, Mirror, Mirror. That is until Naomi vanishes before being pulled unconscious out of the river.
Cara Delevingne, the voice of her generation, explores identity, friendship and betrayal in this gripping and powerful coming-of-age story.
A Ladder to the Sky – John Boyne
John Boyne is one of my favourite authors and this book, along with The Hearts Invisible Furies, is one I’m extremely excited about reading.
If you look hard enough, you will find stories pretty much anywhere. They don’t even have to be your own. Or so would-be-novelist Maurice Swift decides early on in his career.
Once Maurice has made his name, he finds himself in need of a fresh idea. He doesn’t care where he finds it, as long as it helps him rise to the top. Stories will make him famous, but they will also make him beg, borrow and steal. They may even make him do worse.
Enigma Variations – Andre Aciman
From a youthful infatuation with a cabinet maker in a small Italian fishing village, to a passionate yet sporadic affair with a woman in New York, to an obsession with a man he meets at a tennis court, Enigma Variations charts one man’s path through the great loves of his life.
The Art of Being Normal – Lisa Williamson
Two boys. Two secrets. David Piper has always been an outsider. His parents think he’s gay. The school bully thinks he’s a freak. Only his two best friends know the real truth – David wants to be a girl. On the first day at his new school Leo Denton has one goal – to be invisible. Attracting the attention of the most beautiful girl in year 11 is definitely not part of that plan.
When Leo stands up for David in a fight, an unlikely friendship forms. But things are about to get messy. Because at Eden Park School secrets have a funny habit of not staying secret for long.
Lote – Shola von Reinhold
Part of the groundbreaking #TwentyIn2020 programme for Black British writing, LOTE is an exquisite, genre-bending novel set in Scotland.
After discovering a photograph of the forgotten Black modernist poet Hermia Druitt, who ran in the same circles as the Bright Young Things that she adores, Mathilda becomes transfixed and resolves to learn as much as she can about the mysterious figure. Her search brings her to a peculiar artists’ residency in Dun, a small European town Hermia was known to have lived in during the 30s. The artists’ residency throws her deeper into a lattice of secrets and secret societies that takes hold of her aesthetic imagination, but will she be able to break the thrall of her Transfixions?
Poptastic – Victoria Holmes
This is a book I had the pleasure of reading earlier this year and I really enjoyed the story and the characters’ personalities. If you have Kindle Unlimited, this book is free to download.
With the wedding threatening to dominate everything for the rest of the year, a bewildering embrace with a devastatingly attractive pop star offers a welcome distraction. Dating Krisha catapults Julia away from the paltry concerns of dress fittings and hen dos, but it also takes her away from her friends, and directly leads to her most disastrous f**k up yet. Much to her surprise, she discovers that embracing the role she’d accepted so reluctantly might just be exactly what she needs.