Welcome to Pride Month, everyone! To all my friends who are living their truths, this month is for you. I know that I’m a straight cis female and this month isn’t about me, but I love Pride. I love that there’s a month dedicated to being unafraid to be who you are. I love that this month is about loving yourself, loving others, and loving to choose how you want to love.
So for your reading enjoyment and for PRIDE, here are six LGBTQ YA authors you should definitely add to your TBR. Of course I went with some more popular choices, but I do hope you check out the books these YA authors have written if this is your first time.
They both die at the end by adam silvera
Imagine that you know exactly when you’re going to die. Now, imagine you can choose to spend the very last day in the world with. This is what you get in They Both Die at the End. This story is about two young men, both about to reach the end of their life, who meet each other for the first time the day before they die. The rest of the novel spans across their last day as these two strangers become best friends and maybe a little bit more. It’s a beautiful story that will make you wish there was more than one more day left to live.
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
While V.E. Schwab (or Victoria Schwab) spends most of her time writing fantasy stories, she’s an openly gay person who has shared her story online with her fans. A Darker Shade of Magic is a YA fantasy series about a young man who is able to travel between different “Londons” in different parallel universes. While this novel doesn’t have many LGBTQ themes, she does introduce characters who are gay in her book. It’s a pretty subtle introduction, but this series will definitely whisk you away to a world of magic and subterfuge.
We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
We Are Okay is an amazing story about a young woman who is devastated by the loss of her mother right around the same time she was realizing she had feelings for her best friend. However, the news of her mother’s death shocks her into running away from her life and her first love. She moves to New York, where she’s about to start college, and spends her entire summer within the dorms and hotel rooms in the city. The main plot of the story is her need to grieve the loss of her mother, it’s not until her best friend comes to visit her that their love begins to blossom amongst a tragedy.
Every Day by David Levithan
David Levithan is kind of that under-the-radar author who is more happy working as an editor for his Scholastic imprint, PUSH. However, his novel Every Day follows the story of two people who are madly in love. One is Rhiannon, a young teenager girl with a boyfriend named Justin. The other is A, a spirit or being that somehow finds themselves in Justin’s body one morning. A is an entity that exists only for 24 hours in one body. The next morning, they are found in another body without their knowledge. However, they find that they are drawn to Rhiannon and the sadness of her relationship with Justin. A begins to explain to Rhiannon exactly what they are and how they can become better friends.
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz
This is absolutely one of my favorite YA romance novels I’ve ever read. The story about two teenage boys who become friends only to fall deeply in love with each other. Aristotle is an angry kid with a lot of baggage while Dante is a little more reserved and quiet with a love for art. Throughout the story, you see how their relationship goes from being just friends to being more. It even surprised me how clueless one of the boys was when he discovered it. You’ll find yourself loving their budding romance and hoping for the best for them at the end.
George by Alex Gino
While they are more a middle grade writer, Alex Gino’s first novel George tells the story about a young trans girl who dreams of being Charlotte in her school’s production of Charlotte’s Web. However, when she auditions for the role, her teachers think she’s pulling a prank. From that point on, she works with her best friend to get the role of her dreams and also transition from George to Melissa.
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