We recently asked members of the BuzzFeed Community which book they think actually represents the LGBT experience accurately. Here's what they said.
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.
5. Tell Me Again How A Crush Should Feel by Sara Farizan
"It was great because it showed a POC who didn't know how to come out to her Muslim parents."
Submitted by Khadidja Ganiou, Facebook.
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.
8. Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
"It's about an intersex person and their family’s history as Greek-American immigrants."
Submitted by evemaureen.
9. Fun Home: A Family Tragicomic by Alison Bechdel
"It’s a graphic memoir that parallels many experiences young queer folk have when coming out and claiming their own identity. It’s a MUST read."
Submitted by The Robotic Doom Avenger.
10. The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller
"It's the type of book that'll leave you bawling your eyes out in the middle of the night after you throw your book at the wall."
Submitted by Cristian Cardona G, Facebook.
11. The Price of Salt, or Carol by Patricia Highsmith
"It’s such a moving yet subtle story, and considering the era it was written it’s one of the few that – spoiler – has a happy ending!"
Submitted by palmviolet.
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.
13. Ask The Passengers by A.S. King
"It’s smart and emotional and funny. It really forces you to question both yourself and the world around you; it stays with you long after its done."
Submitted by amyk405d63534.
14. Keeping You A Secret by Julie Anne Peters
"I bought Keeping You a Secret on a whim, and have been thankful ever since. As scary as coming out can be, that book gave me hope."
Submitted by Catarina Elibeth, Facebook.
15. Everything Leads To You by Nina Lacour
"It's a lovely YA novel that every girl who’s into girls should read! It’s adorably romantic and doesn’t make a big deal out of their sexuality."
Submitted by andreanicolelebronf.
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.
18. Luna by Julie Anne Peters
"It's about a transgender girl named Luna, and is told from her younger sister's point of view. It was my first step into the LGBT community."
Submitted by madxski.
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.
21. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
"It deals with coming out, friendship problems, and generally the homophobia that resides in the south. Although it touches on important issues, the book is still quite funny and laid back, as Simon is a great narrator."
Submitted by RavinRaspberry.
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.
26. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
"Painfully beautiful. A must-read."
Submitted by Natalia Jaeger, Facebook.
Submissions have been edited for length and/or clarity.