This week’s That Artsy Reader Girl topic is a book with a blank, and I was struggling with coming up with an idea until my friend texted me yesterday with a picture of A Marvellous Light and said, “I hate covers like this. Is it gay or not?” And I thought it’d be really fun to drop a bunch of covers with queer couples since I often have this question, too! (The question persists because so does queerbaiting, folks.)

I am hyped about This Wicked Fate by Kalynn Bayron. I just read the first book in this duology last month, and it’s going on my top ten reads this year. It was so damn good, and I had no idea that it was also going to be queer, so I am living for this cover. I’m so excited to see where the story takes us in this next one, and I’m even more excited for the relationships to develop!

Not me always crying over I Wish You All the Best by Mason Deaver. I should read this again. It’s been ages since I first read it, and it absolutely wrecked me, and I could use some of that emotional damage right now. Deaver is truly an one of a kind writer, and their stories just knock me flat again and again, and IWYATB was one of my favorite reads of last year for a good reason.

I haven’t read If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales & Cale Dietrich yet, but Gonzales wrote Only Mostly Devastated, a queer Grease retelling, and it was fantastic, so I pretty much trust her implicitly now. Plus, two members of a boy band having a secret relationship is pretty much what every single fanfiction in the early 2000s was about, so I’m going to have some serious fangirl moments while reading this.

I also haven’t read The Midnight Girls by Alicia Jasinska, but that cover has got me vibing. Every time I see it, I’m bereft at the fact that a) I don’t own it, and b) I haven’t read it yet because LOOK AT IT. Have you ever seen anything more glorious? It’s such a badass cover in general, but the fiery colors around the two women with their no bullshit expressions is just everything that I want in a book.

Look! Another book I haven’t read! I’ve picked A Marvellous Light by Freya Marske up off my shelf at least three times so far this year, and I don’t really know why I keep putting it back, just that it hasn’t been time for it yet, so there it sits, sighing forlornly every time I pick something else instead. This is probably the vaguest one for this week’s topic because although there are two people on the cover, they’re only vaguely recognizable, and it’s one of those covers where you’re half wondering if anything queer is even going to happen.

Here the Whole Time by Vitor Martins is probably one of the more perfect covers for what lies within its pages. Actually, now that I’ve read it and look back, this cover is so sweet and soft, and it makes me want to reread this. The slow burn of the relationship in this book is so good, and the novel as a whole is such a treat.

I’m always going to go hard for anything Anna-Marie McLemore writes, but the cover for Lakelore is honestly next level. The color scheme alone has me hollering at all times, and the artwork for the two characters on the front is just so damn good. I feel like McLemore always has incredible covers, but this one is definitely one of my top favorites.

Controversial opinion time, but Casey McQuiston’s covers are always kind of meh for me, and while I do love August & Jane on the cover of One Last Stop, I always want a little more out of them. (I Kissed Shara Wheeler is more my vibe.) I do love that the aesthetic of OLS matches RWRB, though, and the lesbian colors give me all the warm & fuzzies.

Listen, every single cover, up to and including, Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan, is my favorite, but this is the only one with both Lei & Wren on it, and it is such a damn vibe. This trilogy is probably one of my all-time favorites, and every single book was perfect, and I can’t wait to reread it. Ngan is truly such an incredible writer, and I am never not going to be overwhelmingly impressed by her.

I haven’t read She Drives Me Crazy by Kelly Quindlen yet, but her previous novel, Late to the Party, remains one of my all-time favorite contemporaries ever, and I’m still waiting for Netflix to adapt it so I can joyfully weep all over it. I’m definitely reading this one for Pride, and I can’t wait for it to absolutely wreck me because that cover? That spells angst and secret longing, and I need it in my life.

Posted by:Mary Drover

she/her | yoga teacher | Tibetan Buddhism | part-time witch | full-time author | astronaut in a previous life

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