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5 New Queer YA Novels to Add to Your Pride Reading List ASAP

by  | June 24

Some of the most progressive, inspiring, and altogether refreshing queer stories are coming out of the YA scene. These new works offer a beautiful look into the way growing up and coming out are both beautiful things. This month I’m focusing on reading these LGBTQIA+ stories and sharing my reading list with you!

Let me know what other LGBTQIA+ books you’re reading this Pride Month on social! #GetLit

Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens

Kings, Queens, and In-Betweens

by Tanya Boteju

This new debut from Tanya Boteju is a colorful and hilarious story about a queer teen finding herself with a little help from the drag community on the other side of her small town. Adding a new spin on a life she thought she knew, the story follows Nima as she struggles to come to terms with her identity, loves, and losses with a little help from a group she never dreamed she’d be a part of. Written by a queer author who highlights the utter art form that is drag while also giving us a protagonist with as much life and energy as the world around her, this is a MUST read for pride this year.

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Something Like Gravity

Something Like Gravity

by Amber Smith

I was a huge fan of Amber Smith’s The Last to Let Go, and her newest contribution to queer lit is just as incredible. Through the alternating POVs of main characters Maia, who is grappling with the loss of her sister, and Chris, a transgender boy dealing with a terrible assault, Smith weaves a touching tale about first love, identity, and understanding grief. A sweet summer romance that’s also brave enough to deal with heavier themes, this is such a good novel to add to your TBR ASAP!

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Brave Face

Brave Face

by Shaun David Hutchinson

Critically acclaimed author Shaun David Hutchinson (We Are the Ants; The Past and Other Things That Should Stay Buried) has stunningly turned to nonfiction in Brave Face, in which he explores his challenges with depression in his youth. Growing up as a gay teen, he struggled with finding his community while also battling with his mental health and thoughts of suicide. A grippingly honest memoir from an author who has consistently written acclaimed queer fiction shows how even after facing the darkness you can find a space to survive. Although dealing with heavy and sometimes triggering themes, this is an incredibly important story for those coping with identity and mental health issues.

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The Prince and the Dressmaker

The Prince and the Dressmaker

by Jen Wang

Personally, I have been in an utter graphic novel spiral, consuming as many as I can get my hands on. This pride, I’ve been focusing in particular on queer graphic novels, and from all of those I’ve sampled, none has stuck with me more than The Prince and the Dressmaker. It’s an incredibly sweet tale about a talented dress designer, Frances, and a gender-fluid prince, Sebastian, that examines themes of self-acceptance, love, and family. Desperate to find balance between being a prince and a fabulous fashion icon, Lady Crystallia, Sebastian tries to keep his double life a secret from a family he isn’t sure will accept him. The illustrations in this gorgeous read have such movement and energy, you’ll find yourself consuming the story in one sitting and then urgently wishing for more.

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All Eyes on Us

All Eyes on Us

by Kit Frick

One of my favorite reads of summer 2018 was Kit Frick’s debut, See All the Stars, a perfectly crafted YA thriller that follows a teen as she comes to grips with her past mistakes. Its conclusion featured one of the best twists I’d read all year, and I pretty much exclusively read thrillers, so that’s a huge compliment. Frick’s follow-up novel, All Eyes on Us, equally compelling, is about two teens who struggle to find out what anonymous presence is stalking them. Dealing with themes of homophobia and social pressure, this is another fantastic work from one of my new favorite contemporary YA writers!

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Amy is a Legal Contracts Assistant at Simon & Schuster. She loves thrillers, contemporary fiction, and all things Stephen King! If she isn’t talking about her obsession with true crime podcasts like Last Podcast on the Left she is gabbing on about any and all things film. She loves reading in her favorite NYC bars, which you can see on her bookstagram, @boozehoundbookclub