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26 Books With LGBT Characters You Won't Be Able To Put Down

Oh, and non-LGBT people – you should probably read these too.

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1. More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

"It really shines a light on the effect depression has on LGBT+ youth, and I think it’s also really important that it addresses being gay in a Latino community, where being gay is unheard of. It’s a really important book and I recommend it to everyone."

Submitted by christian18.

2. Maurice by E.M. Forster

"It’s a classic about a man in Edwardian England who falls mutually in love with a peer at Cambridge and their subsequent years together. It deals heavily with class difference and societal expectations for a man in the upper middle class during this era but it ends happily, so that's a plus."

Submitted by Poonkl.

3. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

"It’s such an amazing and well-written book that not only explores queerness but also being a POC (specifically being Mexican) and figuring out who you are and learning to accept and love yourself. It’s such a great book and I love it so much."

Submitted by irlalienprince.


4. I'll Give You The Sun by Jandy Nelson

"It’s a beautiful book about love (in all its forms), loss, and starting anew. The book is amazing and I always find something new in it each time I re-read it. It’s a must read for all LGBT+ rights advocates."

Submitted by TinaRuthBelcher.

6. Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

"It’s about the hardships endured during the 1950s in Virginia, especially with integration and accepting your sexuality at that time. The two main characters Sarah and Linda are complete opposites, both on different sides of the battle for civil rights, but soon realise they are falling for each other."

Submitted by Jai495.

7. Rubyfruit Jungle by Rita Mae Brown

"This was a great lesbian coming-of-age novel that highlighted all the issues people in the LGBT community faced back then [in the '60s]. It’s important for me to not ignore the advances that people fought for, for me to be comfortable coming out today."

Submitted by calebv2.


12. The Book of Salt by Monique Truong

"It was an assigned book in one of my university courses but it was a really beautiful, bittersweet story with gorgeous language and vivid imagery. It left an impression on me years after reading it, and I still recommend it to people."

Submitted by Kay Massey, Facebook.


16. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

"It shows what it is to have true pride and what it means to endure real pain, yet come out the other side, and is cryptically voiced by gay people who have died of AIDS in a way that touches every reader personally."

Submitted by Freya Thursfield, Facebook.

17. The Art of Being Normal by Lisa Williamson

"It's about a trans female and her journey to coming out and accepting herself. I’m not trans but I could totally relate to it as someone who is scared to come out to other people in my life."

Submitted by 13emily1313.

19. Written on the Body by Jeanette Winterson

"The main character's gender is not defined and they explore their relationships with both men and women. It was my first experience with LGBTQIA+ literature, and what a wonderful welcome it was."

Submitted by Natalia Jaeger, Facebook.


20. The Five Stages of Andrew Brawley by Shaun David Hutchinson

"It’s intense, emotional, beautiful, addresses bullying and suicide in an honest and non-ham-fisted way, and adds a magical realism element for good measure. Oh, and there’s illustrations. EVERYONE should read this book, not just the LGBT community."

Submitted by katymoore2000.

22. From the Notebooks of Melanin Sun by Jacqueline Woodson

"It’s about a boy dealing with the newfound knowledge that his mother is a lesbian. It also deals with racial disparities, as he has a hard time accepting the fact that his mom’s new girlfriend is white and they are not."

Submitted by courtneyl4bb7c603d.

23. Symptoms of Being Human by Jeff Garvin

"What’s great about it is that it never tries to define what it is to be genderfluid for everyone. The main character says their experience of being genderfluid is just one experience, and there’s a lot of trans characters in the book instead of the author just going for one kind of representation."

Submitted by erinstar.


24. Beautiful Music for Ugly Children by Kirstin Cronn-Mills

"I love it because it's not a story about two people falling in love, it's a story about a person who is not comfortable with their own body and feels as though their community will turn their back on them only to discover that they have more support than they thought."

Submitted by Ilse Martinez, Facebook.

25. This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp

"It’s not a book solely dedicated to being gay, which I find to be a refreshing change; it’s a book about tragedy and high school and fear while still including two main lesbian characters. I absolutely adore this book, and it’s easily one of my favorites. The two girls are such a realistic portrayal of a young, budding lesbian relationship."

Submitted by sadiec44768fc30.

Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.

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