I think LGBTQ+ representation in media is an important way of sharing our stories and giving people something they can relate to. This relatability, especially in young people, is vital as it can help start conversations and better understanding for someone who identifies as LGBTQ+. These books are some that I’ve read and others that I still need to read – they are beautiful, important, and relatable, everyone should read them.
‘More Happy Than Not’ (Gay), ‘History Is All You Left Me’ (Gay/Bisexual), & ‘They Both Die At The End’ (Gay) – Adam Silvera
Adam Silvera broke my heart 3 times with these books. They are all real, necessary and make sure you will feel something. Stories of love, loss and self-acceptance, all reminding us that who we are is exactly who we need to be, love is tragically beautiful, and that we only have one life – so live it!
‘Binge’ (Gay) – Tyler Oakley
Honest, funny and one-of-a-kind. Tyler let’s us into his personal life, from growing up and past experiences, to his incredibly successful Youtube channel and his hopes for the future. His heart is spilled onto the pages, and his stories will relate to all who read it. Side note, for #PrideMonth, he has created ‘Chosen Family‘ Season 2, which you should definitely check out!
‘Jaya and Rasa: A Love Story’ (Transgender) – Sonia Patel
An unlikely love story between two people with different lives and pasts that may have future consequences. Sonia Patel has given us a book that deals with identity, love, life struggles and family – real things we all face and are sometimes too afraid to face.
‘A Work in Progress’ (Gay) & ‘note to self’ (Gay) – Connor Franta
Connor’s writing and photography all come together to create two books that tell stories of love (especially of ourselves) and discovering what it is in life that makes the grey days not seem that grey. An important milestone for Connor, and for all who read his books.
‘More Than This’ (Gay) – Patrick Ness
A sci-fi, adventure, filled with twists, tears and a few WTF moments. This book takes us on a journey, that seems fictional, but hits home at times – and I love it for that! I could not put it down and finished it in one sitting (unfortunately).
‘Lies We Tell Ourselves’ (Lesbian) & ‘Our Own Private Universe’ (Bisexual) – Robin Talley
Books that deal with world issues in a frighteningly real way for two fictional stories. Self-acceptance and finding love (sometimes unexpectedly), amongst all one’s troubles is what these books are about. Robin Talley gives us interesting female characters that are strong and fierce, and it’s amazing to have characters like that.
‘Been Here All Along’ (Gay/Bisexual) – Sandy Hall
A wonderfully sweet and honest story where best friends fall in-love. It’ll keep your heart warm and wanting what the two characters share, which is love, in it’s purest and most honest form.
‘I’ll Give You The Sun’ (Gay) – Jandy Nelson
Jandy Nelson has written a story that will break your heart, and make you laugh, while reminding us that we are all humans just trying to do our best. This book is unforgettable – two inseparable twins, torn apart by tragedy, each trying to figure life out.
‘Queer There and Everywhere’ (LGBTQ+) – Sarah Prager
A book on the history of LGBTQ+ activists and allies, that is filled with historians we don’t learn about in school, but who are just as important. An important book for people to know how far we have come and who got us to where we are today.
‘Call Me By Your Name’ (Gay/Bisexual) – André Aciman
Now an Oscar-winning film, André Aciman’s story of love and loss will break your heart while you fall in-love with the two characters. A beautifully written book, with honest emotion and passion that’ll make you want to go and fall in-love in Italy in the summer.
‘What If It’s Us’ (Gay)- Becky Albertalli & Adam Silvera
This book will only be released in October, but from what I have read about it, and considering its authors, you could say I’m pretty excited!
‘If I Was Your Girl’ (Transgender) – Meredith Russo
A real look at the life of someone who is finally themselves, and among the judgement and hatred, finds acceptance, love and strength – an incredibly important book that reminded me that who we really are is more than enough, and being unapologetically ourselves is the bravest thing of all.
‘The Dangerous Art of Blending In’ (Gay) – Angelo Surmelis
A coming-out story that is brave, heartbreaking and based on Angelo’s own childhood. This book also deals with real life scenarios including abuse and homophobia in a transparent way that makes the reader feel a part of the story – a solid debut, that is honest and beautiful.
‘Simon VS The Homo Sapien Agenda’ (Gay), ‘The Upside of Unrequited’ (Lesbian) & ‘Leah on the Offbeat’ (Bisexual) – Becky Albertalli
3 different stories, one which is now a film, all showing different LGBTQ+ characters on a journey of self-discovery, and their interactions in school, home and society. Important, humourous and special.
‘Aristotle and Dante Discover The Secrets of the Universe’ (Gay) – Benjamin Alire Saenz
The writing and story telling in this book is phenomenal, and the journey we take with the characters will make you cry, laugh and feel like you’re a part of it all. A special story about love and just how natural it is.
Another funny, adventurous and necessary book, that tell’s the story of two people with the same name, but with two different lives that are about to collide. Green and Levithan were meant to write together!
‘Autoboyography’ (Bisexual) – Christina Lauren
New school, therefore more sexual identity explanations – which can be exhausting. This book explores someone who identifies as bi and how he falls in-love with someone over his passion for writing. It also deals with religion and sexuality, as well as misconceptions about bisexuality – this one is important.
‘We Are Okay’ (Lesbian) – Nina LaCour
The loss of her grandfather sends the main character on a journey of self- discovery and self-love – a journey we all need to take one day. This book is honest and sad, and deals with loneliness and how that affects ours lives. A fantastic book that reminds us it’s okay to let go and just live.
These are just a few of the LGBTQ+ books out there, and I’m so happy to see the representation growing (even into film) and I can’t wait to see what beautiful adventures we’ll go on in the books to come. Thank you to all these authors for writing wonderful stories about LGBTQ+ humans, and reminding the world that there is room for us all.
Leave a comment down below with some of your favourite LGBTQ+ books and authors – I would love to find and read more.
Keep loving, and #KeepSmiling