15 Books By Transgender Women You Need To Read Immediately

From science-fiction novellas to cookbook memoirs, it's never too late to discover a new favorite read!

Posted on

1. Six Months, Three Days by Charlie Jane Anders

A man who can see the future meets a woman who can see many possible futures and the two fall in love, despite knowing exactly when their relationship will end and how.

Date of Publication: 2011

Why You Should Read It: Not only did it win the 2012 Hugo Award for Best Novelette (and get nominated for many more awards), but this novella will also soon be adapted to the small screen by NBC.

2. Last Letters From Hav by Jan Morris

This fictional memoir details Morris' six-month trip to the imaginary country of Hav, which seems to be on the brink of war.

Date of Publication: 1985

Why You Should Read It: The book, which crosses genres between travel literature and science fiction, was nominated for a Man Booker Prize its year of publication.

3. A Safe Girl to Love by Casey Plett

Plett's collection of short fiction stories feature young trans women navigating life, from a rural Canadian town to the boozy nightlife of Brooklyn.

Date of Publication: 2014

Why You Should Read It: Plett offers insight to the struggles all young women recognize, through journeys of heartbreak to those of growth and transformation.

4. Nevada by Imogen Binnie

Binnie's dark comedy is about a young punk girl living in New York City who embarks on a journey that will change her life after discovering her girlfriend has lied to her.

Date of Publication: 2013

Why You Should Read It: Imogen won Lambda Literary's 2014 Emerging Writer Award for the novel and received rave reviews from readers upon her debut.

5. I've Got a Time Bomb by Sybil Lamb

On her way home from a same-sex wedding, the character Sybil is brutally attacked and wakes up days later in a hospital to find that her brain, and thus reality as she knows it, has changed.

Date of Publication: 2014

Why You Should Read It: A fictional take on a real-life hate crime, this book is a powerful novel about strength, survival, and punk rock.

6. Redefining Realness by Janet Mock

The talk show host and Marie Claire editor shares her coming-of-age memoir, detailing her life growing up as a black trans girl from an impoverished background in Hawaii.

Date of Publication: 2014

Why You Should Read It: With a narrative firmly rooted in both pop culture and academic research, the New York Times best-seller explores the highly relatable themes of family, community, and self-reliance, while also offering teaching opportunities typically missing from similar narratives.

7. Hiding My Candy: The Autobiography of the Grand Empress of Savannah by The Lady Chablis

The Lady Chablis became well-known after making an appearance in John Berendt's Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, the longest nonfiction best-seller on the New York Times list. (It was later adapted into a 1997 Clint Eastwood movie of the same name, in which Chablis also starred.) Chablis shares her story as a drag queen and performer in this memoir.

Date of Publication: 1997

Why You Should Read It: The book provides an opportunity to explore the rich life of an entertainer who still maintains an active career, including a 2013 appearance on Bravo's The Real Housewives of Atlanta.

8. Cooking in Heels by Ceyenne Doroshow

Doroshow shares her life through 40 Southern-style recipes with a Caribbean twist.

Date of Publication: 2012

Why You Should Read It: How can you say no to food? The book stands out in the memoir genre with an interactive and delicious method of storytelling that further connects you to Doroshow's life and history.

9. She's Not There: A Life in Two Genders by Jennifer Finney Boylan

Boylan, the national co-chair for GLAAD, shares her experience with transitioning between genders while navigating life, family, love, and, ultimately, self-acceptance in this memoir.

Date of Publication: 2003

Why You Should Read It: The book is an important part of queer history, as the first memoir by a transgender American author to land on the New York Times best-seller list.

10. Trauma Queen by Lovemme Corazón

This memoir is composed of poems and prose about Corazón's journey through abuse and assault and her life as a survivor.

Date of Publication: 2013

Why You Should Read It: The memoir explores themes with which survivors of assault and young activists living with gender dysphoria and healing through trauma can easily emphathize.

11. Seasonal Velocities by Ryka Aoki

Aoki's collection of essays, poems, stories, and transcripts from her performance art explores violence, love, hope, and home, defined by seasonal themes.

Date of Publication: 2012

Why You Should Read It: A finalist for the Lambda Literary Award, the collection has been praised for offering "the possibility of healing, of hope and redemption, of reunion."

12. I Rise: The Transformation of Toni Newman by Toni Newman

The memoir shares the story of Newman's journey growing up in a strict Christian home in North Carolina, making a living through sex work in Los Angeles and NYC, and, finally, attending law school to help her community.

Date of Publication: 2011

Why You Should Read It: In a rich exploration of life from church pews to the streets of L.A., Toni shares her pride and triumph through life's trials. The book is also in the process of becoming an independent movie.

13. Whipping Girl by Julia Serano

Serano's collection of critical essays deconstructs socially accepted narratives on trans women in Western culture.

Date of Publication: 2007

Why You Should Read It: The manifesto is great for anyone interested in learning about the intersections of race, gender, and sexuality in feminism. It is also responsible for coining the term "transmisogyny" — the point at which transphobia and misogyny meet.

14. Make Love to Rage by Morgan Robyn Collado

Collado's collection of poetry explores the evolution from rage to love in the face of injustice.

Date of Publication: 2014

Why You Should Read It: It's a powerful meditation on how to live in peace and love while struggling through oppression.

15. Wanting in Arabic by Trish Salah

Salah's collection of poetry that explores gender, nostalgia, language, race, and the idea of a cultural home.

Date of Publication: 2002 (Reissued in 2013)

Why You Should Read it: A winner of the 2014 Lambda Literary Award for Transgender Fiction, the collection shares a cultural experience rarely made available to mainstream American audiences.

Is your favorite book by a trans woman not on this list? Tell us in the comments below!