Sponsored by Carina Adores – For Readers Who Love Love.
“Ripper’s smart, sexy, and banter-filled final Love Study romance (after The Hate Project) gets the loving polyamorous ‘V’ dynamic just right.” —Publishers Weekly, starred review. All Mason wants to do is fall in love, get married and live happily ever after. The hunt is beginning to wear him down until he meets Diego, and everything sparks between them. There’s just one thing: Diego is already married and living his happily-ever-after, which includes outside courtships. Mason thought he knew what would make him happy, but it turns out the traditional life he’d expected has some surprises in store.
There was no Our Queerest Shelves send last week because of U.S. Thanksgiving, but did I let that stop me? No. I packed this newsletter full of everything from the last two weeks, so settle in for a long one. All the censorship news is sectioned off, so feel free to skip it if you aren’t in the headspace to read about homophobia and transphobia right now. (There are a few good news stories in there, though.)
The holiday season especially can be difficult for incarcerated people. That’s why this week, I want to highlight the charity Books Beyond Bars UK, which connects LGBTQIA incarcerated people with books they request. You can find out more on their website and you can help by donating.
If you know of an LGBTQIA+ charity you’d like to see highlighted in Our Queerest Shelves, please let me know!
Gifts for Queer Book Lovers
If you’re reading this, you will likely want to buy something on this list for yourself. And why shouldn’t you? If you know others who also love LGBTQ books, these will make great gifts, but also: treat yourself. Celebrate queer books, whether you’re proclaiming your rainbow reading tendencies in public or decorating your reading nook. Let’s dive right into these great gifts for queer book readers.
You can’t much more apt than this Read More Queer Books tote. Will it make someone fall in love with you at the bookstore/library? I mean, it can’t hurt! $13
If you already have a favourite tote, you can get this Read More Queer Books enamel pin instead! $5
If you’ve stumbled on queer BookTok at all, you know that Red, White, and Royal Blue and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo have passionate fanbases. You can get these fan art dust jackets for $18 each, or the same artist does prints inspired other books, including They Both Die at the End, for $16
I can’t handle how adorable these Pride macaron bookmarks are. There’s gay (rainbow), lesbian, bisexual, pansexual, asexual, demisexual, aromantic, trans, non-binary, genderqueer, and genderfluid versions! $3 each
A few more bookmark options! On the left is a bookmark with a quote from Felix Ever After ($3). On the right is a magnetic rainbow crystal bookmark ($5), because if you aren’t a crystal queer, you definitely know one.
And if none of that strikes your fancy, maybe you want to go with one of these lesbian pulp decorations or accessories.
LGBTQ Book Bans and Challenges
- Librarians and educators warn of organized book banning efforts. Related: Librarians grapple with conservatives’ latest efforts to ban books.
- We’re facing a dangerous, violent age of comic censorship. Gender Queer is on the front lines of this battle.
- A Republican governor candidate proudly claims credit after violent threats shut down library’s “Rainbow StoryTime.” In response to the cancellation, a parent put on their own transgender storytime, and hundreds of people showed up in support.
- A Missouri school district returns All Boys Aren’t Blue and Fun Home to shelves after students protested and the ACLU contacted the district.
- All Boys Aren’t Blue was challenged in Flagler County, FL, including filing a criminal complaint against the superintendent and school board member for allowing the school to carry it.
- George M. Johnson was interviewed at Time and CBS News about their memoir All Boys Aren’t Blue being banned in 8 states.
- Gender Queer has been removed from Anchorage, AK, Pinellas County, FL, Orlando, FL, Harrisonburg, VA, and Downers Grove, IL school libraries.
- Gender Queer and Lawn Boy were challenged in a Kalispell, MT public library, despite being in the adult collections.
- Sex is a Funny Word by Cory Silverberg, a trans-inclusive sex ed book, was challenged at Clear Creek ISD and will now only be available with parent permission.
- 9 books were removed from Canyons, UT school libraries after a parent’s email complaint, including Gender Queer, Lawn Boy, and Beyond Magenta: Transgender Teens Speak Out.
- 7 books, including Gender Queer, My Princess Boy, Sparkle Boy, and When Kayla was Kyle, were challenged in Wayne, NJ.
- Donations flood a Pennsylvania library after elected officials call LGBTQ community there a hate group.
All the Links Fit to Click
- These SFF books by trans authors are worth obsessing over.
- Check out these F/F winter holiday romances.
- These queer Jewish books make for great last-minute Hanukkah gifts.
- Read these queer reimaginings of 19th century literature.
- Here’s the recipe for a queer cookbook.
- Malinda Lo won the National Book Award for Last Night at the Telegraph Club! She spoke out against anti-LGBTQ book censorship in her acceptance speech.
- Hannah Gadsby is releasing a memoir in 2022!
- Zen Cho was interviewed at Electric Literature.
- Charlie Jane Anders was interviewed at Clarkesworld.
- Let the Record Show by Sarah Schulman was reviewed at the Atlantic, calling it an “essential book on AIDS activism.”
Don’t forget you can get three free audiobooks at Audiobooks.com with a free trial!
LGBTQ Book Riot Posts
- Wake Up: The Censorship Has Been Alive Forever. It’s at Fever Pitch Today.
- Texas Anti-LGBTQ and anti-CRT Book Ban Would Cost School Districts Millions of Dollars in Staff Time (And in related news, Texans don’t trust government officials to decide which books should be banned from school libraries.)
- Reading the Rainbow: Books and Lessons Learned From an LGBTQ-Inclusive Book Club for Teachers
- 11 Perfect Queer Books Without Romances
- 8 Sapphic Foodies Romances to Read On Kindle Unlimited
New Releases This Week (and Last Week)
The Ballad of Dinah Caldwell by Kate Brauning (Bisexual YA Thriller, F/F/M Relationship)
Dinah had it hard enough already, barely squeaking by with her mother on a subsistence farm. But then her mother was murdered to take their land, and she’s vowed revenge on the wealthy rancher who did. He’s put a $10,000 bounty on her head, which makes things more difficult. But she has two people on her side: her best friend, Kara, and Johnny, a young bootlegger with his own axe to grind against the rancher. Together, they’ll either tear down the whole rotten system–or die trying.
The Golden Hour by Niki Smith (Queer Boy Middle Grade Graphic Novel)
Manuel is struggling with PTSD and anxiety after witnessing a school shooting. He anchors himself with his cellphone camera, but it’s being paired with Sebastian in a school project that helps the most. He finds Sebastian’s home on on cattle farming fields to be calming, and he decides to help his new friend prepare for the county fair. Along the way, he also finds his first love. This is from the author of The Deep & Dark Blue, another great LGBTQ middle grade graphic novel!
The Last One by Fatima Daas (Sapphic Fiction)
Just River by Sara B. Fraser (Queer Fiction)
The Bone Shard Emperor (The Drowning Empire #2) by Andrea Stewart (F/F Fantasy)
Graveneye by Sloane Leong and Anna Bowles (F/F Horror Graphic Novel)
Passport by Sophia Glock (Sapphic YA Graphic Memoir)
The Emphatically Queer Career of Artist Perkins Harnly and His Bohemian Friends by Sarah Burns (Queer Biography)
Queer as All Get Out: 10 People Who’ve Inspired Me by Shelby Criswell (Nonfiction)
That’s it for me this week! Until next time, you can find me at my bi and lesbian book blog, the Lesbrary, as well as on Twitter @danikaellis. You can also hear me on All the Books or you can read my Book Riot posts.