I recognize that this may kind of feel like a cop-out or a TTT that’s hiding beneath a Wednesday discussion, but there was only so much salt that I could serve this month without exhausting myself, and I thought it might be nice to just take a step back and talk about the queer books that I want to read. I had a huge TBR this month, and there were still books outside of that that I wanted to read, but could not reasonably afford, both financially and in my schedule. (Although, let’s be real, I couldn’t totally do either with my current TBR.) Thus, these are some of the queer books that I want to read outside of the huge mess of queer books that I did read this month! Also, I’m going to try not to include books that are published after Pride since I wouldn’t have realistically been able to anyway, but there are so many good books coming out after June, and I am slowly dying.
It’s been like cat & mouse with me and The Black Flamingo by Dean Atta. I keep wanting to read it, and then not, but really actually wanting to, and enough time has gone by that I’m back to wanting to read it. I can’t really explain why I’ve been wishy washy on it, either, because it’s gotten such fantastic reviews. I’m excited to officially be calling myself out and saying I want to read it, though, because maybe that’ll get me reading it sooner rather than later.
Ziggy, Stardust & Me by James Brandon has an absolute staggering amount of potential to ruin me, and I just know that it’s going to make me cry. Realistically, anything set in the 80s during the AIDs pandemic makes me cry, so that alone would have done it, but to also include music, particularly David Bowie, and two boys falling in love? Y’all, I am DONE FOR.
The concept of Super Adjacent by Crystal Cestari is just fantastic, and I literally know nothing else about this book except that it’s queer superheroes in the modern day, and that it sounds like it’s got a bit of a hilarious streak, and I’m so ready for that. I am so over straight superheroes–literally why–and I need more Deadpool-esque characters in my life, so I can’t wait to read about sarcastic, exhausted, queer superheroes causing chaos all over the place.
Truthfully, I don’t actually know what Meet Cute Club by Jack Harbon is about. This is definitely a case of the cover looks amazing, so I want to read it. It looks like it’s going to be a book club that acts a meet cute, and I am so here for that. I mean, queer characters bonding over books? Literally how much better does it get than that?
Is When You Get the Chance by Tom Ryan & Robin Stevenson the cousins go to Pride together one? YES! I want to read this for Pride so bad, and I honestly may end up picking it up because it feels like such a good one for the month, so who knows, maybe this’ll actually be the first one outside of the TBR that I read. I do have some plans to do some very minimal book buying while I’m visiting my friend in Maine for a makeshift Pride on our own, sooooo.
The cover of I Kissed Alice by Anna Birch & Victoria Ying is just adorable, and though I keep forgetting what this is about, this would definitely be a cover buy anyway. I mean, look at it. How can I not want to read that? It seems like it’s going to be a fun contemporary romp that’s going to have me sighing and laughing and maybe pretending to shed a tear.
OH HECK YES BRING ON THE SPOOKY LOVE! I’m so hyped for Afterlove by Tanya Byrne, and this may be another book that I have to pick up this month because damnnnnn, the lesbian love story you’ve been dying to read? GIVE ME ALL THE GHOSTLY PUNS. This book is going to kill me. HA. I didn’t even mean to do that, oh lordy.
I’ve seen Beyond the Ruby Veil by Mara Fitzgerald across my Insta feed so many times before, and yet somehow managed to not have a clue that it was sapphic? Like, what? I’ve been spending this entire month screaming about wanting more queer fantasy, and here it is, just quietly hiding from me. Well, now I know, and now I’m definitely gearing up to scream about more queer books with flowers all over the cover because YES. The gays own floral now, bye.
I thoroughly enjoyed Adiba Jaigirdar’s debut, The Henna Wars, even if it did make me sob, so I am all the way here for Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating. Jaigirdar is definitely an auto-buy for me now, and she had me at fake dating, honestly. I am so ready for these two idiot girls to fall in love through fake dating, and I can’t wait for all the “oh shit NO this wasn’t supposed to happen” vibes. BRING IT ON.
The Year Shakespeare Ruined My Life by Dani Jansen is just about everything I could have wanted out of a book–lesbian and Shakespeare? Yes, please! I’m a huge Shakespeare nerd, and I tried to read all of his plays two summers ago–I got about two weeks in and promptly died from too many puns–and I really do want to get around to actually doing that someday. This sounds truly fantastic, though, and I can’t wait to see all of the Shakespearian shenanigans that are sure to happen.
I have way more lesbian books on this list–any list, quite frankly–than I normally do, but each day brings a little more queerness into my life, and though I’m still definitely bi, I’m leaning a hell of a lot more toward women, and Girls at the Edge of the World by Laura Brooke Robson has been speaking directly to my soul. I mean, look at it. It’s gorgeous, and I need it, and I truly cannot remember what it’s about, but I don’t care, I can’t wait to read it.
My personal feelings about Melt My Heart by Bethany Rutter are that the cover is glorious, and I would be reading this based on that purely alone, but to find out it’s also got fat rep, impending college drama, AND best friends pining over each other, well. Count me the heck in. This sounds like something I’m going to have to buy before the summer’s up so I can read it in all its hot poolside angst glory!
The switch to making retellings queer has been the absolute highlight of my life in the last year or so, but I never though we could possibly have a sapphic Ovid. I don’t know why, it just didn’t occur to me, and now I am dead. The Bone Way by Holly J Underhill sounds fantastic in that I don’t know anything except it’s lesbian Orpheus & Eurydice, and that’s honestly really all I need to know. I am a very simple girl. Give me gay Greeks, and I’m happy.
the trans & ace queens
There are so many amazing sounding trans books coming out after Pride, and I’m definitely going to have to make another list of queer books that I want to read in order to include those, but I’ll be just as happy to have All Kinds of Other by James Sie now. Not only do I love the name Jules, but I’m a huge fan of couples with the same first letter of their name–there’s just such poetry in something like Jules & Jack–and this sounds like it’ll be heartwarming eventually, but will 100% break my heart on the way there.
AM Strickland’s debut, Beyond the Black Door, was truly phenomenal and opened my eyes to why the heck don’t we have ace MCs in fantasy, which is probably a solid portion of me ranting & raving all month long about exactly that, so I’m very excited for In the Ravenous Dark. The cover alone is a thing to behold, but that tag line? “A pansexual bloodmage reluctantly teams up with an undead spirit to start a rebellion among the living and the dead.” Don’t even start with me, I’m adding it to my cart right now.