October brings many things—the changing of the leaves, pumpkins, new latte flavors… but one facet of October that sometimes gets missed is LGBTQ+ History Month.
This month commemorates National Coming Out Day on October 11th, as well as the first and second marches on Washington for LGBTQ+ rights in 1979 and 1987.
It’s also interesting to note that LGBTQ+ History Month directly follows Banned Books Week, the last week of September.
LGBTQ+ books are some of the most frequently challenged books in schools, from Captain Underpants to The Color Purple.
Increasing numbers of YA books specifically contain LGBTQ+ topics, catering to an age where teens are really starting to fully discover who they are.
But as we’ve proven before, great LGBTQ+ books can be found for any age, and about almost any topic.
Now I don’t know about you, but I’ve had a rough couple of months of feeling disconnected from my friends and family, so I’ve decided to solely focus on books that make me happy.
While there are plenty of stories demonstrating the fight and struggle that the LGBTQ+ community has been through over the years, (here are some) this month we’ve chosen to highlight stories that are beautiful and FUN.
So sip your pumpkin spice latte, look out at the pretty leaves, and enjoy just some of many books celebrating the diversity, creativity, and ultimately the love and joy of the LGBTQ+ community.
Skye Shin has heard it all. Fat girls shouldn't dance. Wear bright colors. Shouldn't call attention to themselves. But Skye dreams of joining the glittering world of K-Pop, and to do that, she's about to break all the rules that society, the media, and even her own mother, have set for girls like her. [ebook]
Seventeen-year-old Rukhsana Ali is looking forward to going to Caltech and getting away from her conservative Muslim parents' expectation that she will marry, especially since she is in love with her girlfriend Ariana--but when her parents catch her kissing Ariana, they whisk Rukhsana off to Bangladesh and a world of tradition and arranged marriages, and she must find the courage to fight for the right to choose her own path. [ebook]
Conrad Stewart and Alden Parks are enemies, and that's the way it's always been. But when they're stuck together on a cross-country road trip to the biggest fan convention of their lives, the competition takes a backseat as unexpected feelings blossom. Yet each boy has a reason why they have to win the upcoming con tournament and neither is willing to let emotion get in the way-even if it means giving up their one chance at something truly magical. [ebook]
A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret. Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages. When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he's given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they're likely to bring about the end of days. But the children aren't the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn. [ebook]
To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel's wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town. But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel's skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they're willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up. [ebook]
Liz Lighty has always done her best to avoid the spotlight in her small, wealthy, and prom-obsessed midwestern high school, after all, her family is black and rather poor, especially since her mother died; instead she has concentrated on her grades and her musical ability in the hopes that it will win her a scholarship to elite Pennington College and their famous orchestra where she plans to study medicine--but when that scholarship falls through she is forced to turn to her school's scholarship for prom king and queen, which plunges her into the gauntlet of social media which she hates and leads her to discoveries about her own identity and the value of true friendships. [ebook]
When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius—his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one problem: Alex has a beef with the actual prince, Henry, across the pond. And when the tabloids get hold of a photo involving an Alex-Henry altercation, U.S./British relations take a turn for the worse. Heads of family, state, and other handlers devise a plan for damage control: staging a truce between the two rivals. What at first begins as a fake, Instragramable friendship grows deeper, and more dangerous, than either Alex or Henry could have imagined. [ebook]