Our Queerest Shelves

Queer Kids are Magic

I’ve been seeing a lot of protests against anti-LGBTQ laws led by teenagers lately, and they’re both inspiring and heartbreaking. I’m so proud of queer kids and teens fighting back, but they shouldn’t have to. Consider donating to the Trans Health Legal Fund, and keep on voting and contacting your legislators to have these kids’ backs.

We also need space for queer joy, though, so today’s newsletter highlights some magical queer YA to empower readers. Because queer kids and teens are magic.

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Bookish Goods

a photo of someone wearing a Queer Magic hoodie with illustrations of flowers smelling a flower

Queer Magic Cropped Hoodie by FabulouslyFeminist

It’s spring, which is the perfect weather for a cropped hoodie. But if that’s not your style, you can get this design on a bunch of things, including a tote bag, shirts, a mug, stickers, and more. $50

New Releases

the cover of Forget Me Not

Forget Me Not by Alyson Derrick (Sapphic YA Contemporary)

Stevie and Nora have been secretly dating for years, and they have a plan to move to California so they can be together openly after graduation, once they’re free of their conservative hometown. But then Stevie has an accident that puts her in a coma. When she wakes up, she can’t remember the last two years — including Nora. I found this to be a completely absorbing read; I read it all in one day! You can hear my full thoughts on the April 4 episode of All the Books. (I also recommend another queer YA book on that episode: ¡Ay, Mija! (A Graphic Novel) by Christine Suggs.)

cover of Blood Debts by Terry J. Benton-Walker

Blood Debts by Terry J. Benton-Walker (Gay YA Fantasy)

Clement and Cristina Trudeau are 16-year-old twins and the heirs to a powerful magical family — but that means less than it used to. Thirty years ago, a murder led to a magical massacre and an upheaval in the power system. Clement finds comfort in his magic, while Cristina has walked away from it after a spell of hers killed their father. Now, they’ll have to work together to solve that past murder to prevent another massacre.

The Immeasurable Depth of You by Maria Ingrande Mora (Bisexual YA Fantasy)

Funeral Songs for Dying Girls by Cherie Dimaline (Sapphic YA Paranormal)

the cover of Ay, Mija

¡Ay, Mija! (A Graphic Novel): My Bilingual Summer in Mexico by Christine Suggs (Nonbinary YA Graphic Novel)

Dotson by Grayson Lee White (Trans Boy Middle Grade Graphic Novel) (Written by a trans kid!)

My Love Mix-Up!, Vol. 7 by Wataru Hinekure and Aruko (M/M YA Manga)

My Mommies Built a Treehouse by Gareth Peter and Izzy Evans (Two Moms Picture Book)

For more new releases, check out our New Books newsletter!

Riot Recommendations

Blood Debts by Terry J. Benton-Walker and Spell Bound by by F.T. Lukens are both out today, so let’s celebrate the magic of queer kids and teens with these magical queer YA fantasy books!

the cover of Spell Bound

Spell Bound by by F.T. Lukens

From the author of In Deeper Waters, this YA fantasy romance follows Rook and Sun, rival apprentice sorcerers. They’ll have to find a way to work together when their mentors disappear, or they risk losing their magic. Luckily, spending time together isn’t so bad after all.

the mermaid the witch and the sea book cover

The Mermaid, the Witch, and the Sea by Maggie Tokuda-Hall

Magic! Mermaids! Pirates! This book has it all! Lady Evelyn Hasegawa is on her way to her arranged marriage when she is kidnapped by pirates. But when she and Florian, the genderfluid pirate, fall for each other, they’ll have to take on a world violently opposed to their relationship. Despite the magic and the pirate adventures, this is also a story about the horrors of colonialism.

All the Links Fit to Click

Federal judge gives Texas county 24 hours to return banned LGBTQ+ books to library shelves

Trans Stories Are So Much More Than Transition, Transphobia and Tragedy

That’s it for me this week! Until next time, you can find me at my sapphic book blog, the Lesbrary. You can also hear me on All the Books or you can read my Book Riot posts.

Happy reading!