7 Books With Beautiful Gay Relationships You Need to Read During Pride Month
June is Pride Month, and if you're looking for LGBTQ+ books to read in celebration, you've got options. Fortunately, queer representation in literature has slowly but surely been improving over the past few years. While there are novels that still use LGBTQ+ characters as cliché sidekicks to the more fleshed-out, straight, cisgender main character, or insert a gay love story simply as a plot device, there are many authors out there who are giving queer characters the love stories they deserve. In honor of Pride Month, these 7 books with beautiful gay relationships are definitely worth checking out.
The below selections tackle a number of relatable topics, such as love, loss, family, identity, growing up, and coming of age. These books also span genres; there's a graphic novel, a collection of historical fiction short stories, and more than one example that falls under the ever-popular young adult literature category. Basically, there's at least one choice here for every kind of reader. And if you're the type who stays up-to-date on your reading, you can still add these seven romantic books to your summer "to be read" list, because they all came out (or will come out) in 2018.
1. When Katie Met Cassidy By Camille Perri (June 19)
In this classic rom-com, Katie, a seemingly straight 28-year-old woman from Kentucky has just been dumped by her fiancé when she meets the confident Cassidy Price — an ambitious lawyer and proud lesbian. Their intense connection forces the two to question everything they thought they knew about love, sex, and sexuality. This delightful summer read is available for pre-order now.
2. Leah On The Offbeat By Becky Albertalli (Apr. 24)
If you loved 'Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda' (and/or its movie adaptation 'Love, Simon,') you need to read 'Leah on the Offbeat.' Becky Albertalli's second novel follows Simon's best friend Leah (the character played by Katherine Langford in the movie) as she debates telling her friends she is bisexual. Currently the #1 new release in Teen & Young Adult Friendship Fiction on Amazon, there is a ton of buzz surrounding this book.
3. Speak No Evil By Uzodinma Iweala (Mar. 6)
The highly-anticipated second novel by 'Beasts of No Nation' author Uzodinma Iweala is finally here, and it does not disappoint. So much more than just a coming-out story, 'Speak No Evil' explores the themes of identity, culture, and family through the eyes of Niru, a wealthy 18-year-old who comes out as gay and begins an emotional new romance.
4. Ivy Aberdeen's Letter To The World By Ashley Herring Blake (Mar. 6)
After a disastrous tornado destroys her home and disrupts her family dynamic, 12-year-old Ivy begins to develop feelings for another girl in her class. Middle-grade fiction isn't known for its queer representation, but author Ashley Herring Blake is working to fill the gap. While it does cater to a younger audience, readers of all ages can enjoy this moving novel about love and loss. Pick this one up for your little cousin.
5. All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens Throughout The Ages Edited By Saundra Mitchell (Feb. 27)
If you enjoy authentic queer representation, tales of teens throughout time, or historical fiction, you'll devour this anthology. 'All Out' is a diverse collection of historical fiction containing short stories written by 17 young adult authors across the queer spectrum. Not only are the stories about queer characters, but they are written by queer-identifying authors as well.
6. People Like Us By Dana Mele (Feb. 27)
Fans of 'Gossip Girl,' 'Riverdale' and 'Pretty Little Liars' will gush over this 'Mean Girls'-esque novel about a group of popular girls who run their private school, Bates Academy. When a dead body is found in the lake and a murder investigation unfolds, Kay Donovan, who is queer, finds herself at the center of the mystery.
7. Bingo Love By Tee Franklin, Jenn St-Onge, And Joy San (Feb. 20)
This original graphic novel is about two star-crossed lovers, Hazel and Mari, who first met at church bingo in 1963. After being torn apart by their families and societal norms at the time, they both went on to marry men and have children. But when the two women reunite decades later, the love is still there. Their story unfolds in a touching tale that illustrates the power of courage.
Happy reading, and happy Pride!