True Story

More Memoirs for Pride Month!

Dylan will be eight in August, and I’m forever worrying about any signs of aging. So it’s no surprise that I bought him a rug so he doesn’t have to lie around on the bare floor. Of course, as I write this, he’s sprawled out on the laminate flooring, his golden floof shining in the sun. At least the rug is cute, and Gwen seems to have claimed it for her collection of half-destroyed misfit toys. At any rate, I have some excellent books to share with you today, so let’s jump right in!

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Bookish Goods

a photo of a t-shirt that says, "Just one more chapter." An illustration of a play bar are under the words.

Audiobook T-shirt by The Eclectic Family

Audiobook Appreciation Month brings with it so many incredible audiobook T-shirts. So much audiobook swag! This one is so cute. Perfect for summer! $25

New Releases

a graphic of the cover of Once a City Said: A Louisville Poets Anthology edited by Joy Priest

Once a City Said: A Louisville Poets Anthology edited by Joy Priest

Poet Joy Priest has collected a range of poetry from her hometown, Louisville, Kentucky. Including some prose poetry, deeply personal memoir in poetry entries, and experimental pieces. She truly brings together the best literary talent of the city.

a graphic of the cover of Through the Groves: A Memoir by Anne Hull

Through the Groves: A Memoir by Anne Hull

Writer Anne Hull describes her life growing up in rural central Florida in the 1960s. No matter how much time has passed, when she closes her eyes, Hull finds herself in the orange groves of her childhood.

For a more comprehensive list, check out our New Books newsletter.

Riot Recommendations

a graphic of the cover of Tar Hollow Trans: Essays by Stacy Jane Grover

Tar Hollow Trans: Essays by Stacy Jane Grover

Stacy Jane Grover grew up in Southeastern Ohio, not really viewing herself as Appalachian. But as she moved through the world —transitioning as a teen, falling in and out of love, and trying to find a career— she slowly began engaging with the idea. Grover illustrates a way of being that we don’t often read in literature. Much of trans history focuses on urban centers, but Grover tells a different story where she grew up with her family having a different understanding of who she was. Her grandfather just called her “shy,” which in her region of Appalachia just meant a sort of difference that was accepted, if not understood.

a graphic of the cover of Hijab Butch Blues by Lamya H.

Hijab Butch Blues by Lamya H

Lamya H figured out she was gay as a teenager in a Muslim school while living in a country in the Middle East. When she moved to America for university, she began to slowly come to terms with her sexuality and what that might mean for her life as a Muslim person. However, she constantly ran into non-Muslim people who told her she couldn’t be Muslim AND queer. That’s not how it worked. Lamya disagreed, finding her own way of being as a queer Muslim. Lamya structures her memoir around different figures from the Qur’an, weaving figures from her faith with her own story.

a photo of Gwen, a black and white Cardigan Welsh Corgi, and Dylan, a red and white Pembroke Welsh Corgi, sitting on a pastel rainbow rug. Rows and row of bookshelves are behind them.
Gwen and Dylan Love Their New Rug

That’s it for this week! You can find me over on my substack Winchester Ave, over on Instagram @kdwinchester, or on my podcast Read Appalachia. As always, feel free to drop me a line at For even MORE bookish content, you can find my articles over on Book Riot.

Happy Reading, Friends!

~ Kendra