While the City of Boston celebrates Pride Month with the annual Pride Parade, I’m looking for ways to celebrate inside the library – and I’m finding some great Teen LGBTQ books to share with you! Here are a few of my personal favorites, but check out a longer list, place a hold on a book that looks like a great read, or find out which of these books are available at your local branch library right here at the BPL catalog.
Cass is on a bike trip across America with only her best friend’s ashes for company. But this is a funny book, I promise! Emily Horner’s A Love Story Starring My Dead Best Friend follows Cass on her journey while she tries to make her peace with the sudden death of Julia, the dead best friend from the title. And as Cass tries to figure out her feelings about her relationship with Julia, she also must come to terms with her growing attraction to Heather, the aggravating girl who is now starring in a post-mortem production of Julia’s musical, Totally Sweet Ninja Death Squad. Cass doesn’t really know what to do with herself without Julia in her life, and the reader gets to follow along as she plows through her uncertainly, sadness, and anger, and finds what is on the other side.
David Levithan’s Boy Meets Boy is as sweet a love story as you will ever read. Paul attends a charming fantasy of a high school where the homecoming queen is out-and-proud – and is also the star quarterback and has changed her name from Daryl to Infinite Darlene – so his sexual orientation has never really caused a problem for him. And when he meets Noah, he’s pretty sure that he has found the love of his life – until he blows it big time. Paul is also trying to fend off the advances of his ex-boyfriend, and to deal lots of drama surrounding his two best friends. Paul is sweet and quirky and a delight to read about – you will absolutely fall in love with him and the world he lives in!
Watch out for the fiercest all-girl hip-hop crew in Holyhill, Minnesota! Laura Goode’s first novel Sister Mischief tells the story of Esme, a lesbian Jewish lyricist, and the three other girls who make up her group, Sister Mischief. These girls are leading a queer hip-hop revolution in their religious, ultra-conservative suburban community – and their first step is to start 4H, a combination gay-straight alliance and hip-hop discussion club. But Esme’s feelings for fellow group member Rowie are getting stronger and stronger, and if Rowie can’t even tell her crew that she’s bi, she’s certainly never going to come out to her fairly strict Indian parents. Esme’s story is one of first love and heartbreak, but it’s also about strong family connections, friendship, and making music in a community that’s sometimes straight-up hostile.
In this prequel to Malinda Lo’s Ash (another awesome YA queer love story!), the sun hasn’t shone in years and the Kingdom is running out of food as crops fail. There have been increasing reports of strange creatures seen at the edges of the Kingdom, near the forest that legend says is inhabited by fairies. And when a letter arrives from the Fairy Queen inviting the King to visit her city, it may be the answer to the prayers of the people – or it may be some kind of trap. Two teenage girls, the powerful sage Taisin and budding huntress Kaede, are sent on the journey to the fairy city. Both are still learning to use their powers, and Huntress tells the story of the two girls discovering the limits of their abilities while they also discover their love for each other. This is a slow-burner, with the love story unfolding deliciously slowly as the action of the fantasy world goes on around it.