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LGBTQ+ Recommended Fiction

Literary and genre fiction featuring Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer characters and themes.

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Classics and Literary Fiction

Cover of The Angel of History
Rabih
Alameddine

Suffering through a mental health crisis, Yemeni-born poet Jacob recalls his upbringing in an Egyptian brothel, his French Catholic schooling in Beirut, and years as a young man in AIDS-stricken 1980s San Francisco. 

Cover of Giovanni's Room
James
Baldwin

Originally published in 1956, Giovanni's Room explores themes of identity, social alienation and masculinity in the story of two men who commence an affair in post-war Paris.  

Cover of Rubyfruit Jungle
Rita Mae
Brown

A semi-autobiographical coming-of-age story originally published in 1973, Rubyfruit Jungle follows the adventures of Molly Bolt’s experiences in love and lust through childhood to adulthood during the 1960s and 70s. 

Cover of House of Impossible Beauti
Joseph
Cassara

In the heady world of the 1980s New York drag scene, ‘mother’ Angel tends to her found family of three teenagers:  pre-op transsexual Venus, and gay runaways Daniel and Juanito. 

Cover of Here Comes the Sun
Nicole
Dennis-Behn

Margot turns tricks with men at a fashionable resort in Jamaica to earn money for the education of her younger sister, but hopes for a better life with Verdene, a wealthy woman considered a witch by the community. 

Cover of Middlesex
Jeffrey
Eugenides

Calliope Stephanides was born twice: first as Callie, a baby girl, and then again as Cal, a teenage boy.  Eugenides’ Pulitzer-winning epic casts Cal’s story of being born a hermaphrodite against the multi-generational story of Cal’s family as it emigrates from 1920s Smyrna to mid-century Detroit. 

Cover of For Today I Am A Boy
Kim
Fu

Peter, the only son in a family of Chinese immigrants, struggles with his gender identity and his place within his family. 

Cover of Less
Andrew Sean
Greer

When he receives an invitation to his former boyfriend's upcoming wedding, struggling novelist Arthur Less decides to avoid attending the wedding (and avoid acknowledging his fiftieth birthday) by accepting every invitation to speak at writers' meetings around the world.  Winner of the 2018 Pulitzer Prize.

Cover of Going Dutch
James
Gregor

Faced with impenetrable writer’s block, PhD student and 20-something gay man Richard comes to rely on fellow graduate student Anne, whose interest in Richard is not limited to academics—a fact that becomes even more complicated when Richard reconnects with an old flame, Blake.  

Cover of The Well of Loneliness
Radclyffe
Hall

Groundbreaking when published in 1928, Hall’s novel is the semi-autobiographical story of Stephen Gordon, an aristocrat, war veteran and author, but whose identification as a lesbian encounters resistance in society.

Cover of A Single Man
Christopher
Isherwood

A Single Man follows 24 hours in the life of George, a professor and Englishman, determined to persist in the daily routines of his life in spite of the sudden death of his partner.

Cover of Paul Takes the Form of a M
Andrea
Lawlor

It's 1993 and Paul Polydoris tends bar at the only gay club in a university town thrumming with politics and partying. He studies queer theory, has a dyke best friend, makes zines, and is a flâneur with a rich dating life. But Paul's also got a secret: he's a shapeshifter. –Novelist

Cover of Under the Udala Trees
Chinelo
Okparanta

Uprooted by the upheaval of the 1968 Nigerian Civil War, 13-year-old Ijeoma lands as a housemaid when she befriends another refugee, Amina.  As the girls discover their growing regard for each other and their sexualities, they must wrestle with the repercussions in a society that refuses to accept their love.

Cover of Black Deutschland
Darryl
Pinckney

Jed Goodfinch struggles to find his identity as a newly sober gay black man after moving to West Berlin from his native Chicago during the upheaval of the 1980s. 

Cover of Confessions of the Fox
Jordy
Rosenberg

A love story set in the eighteenth-century London of notorious thieves and queer subcultures, this genre-bending debut tells a profound story of gender, desire, and liberation. –Novelist

Cover of Real Life
Brandon
Taylor

Keeping his head down at a lakeside Midwestern university where the culture is in sharp contrast to his Alabama upbringing, an introverted African-American biochem student endures unexpected encounters that bring his orientation and defenses into question.--Novelist

Cover of The Color Purple
Alice
Walker

Walker’s 1983 Pulitzer-winning epistolary novel depicts the life of Celie, an African-American woman in the 1930s South, as she copes with an abusive marriage, sexual trauma and racism to eventually blossom when she begins a relationship with Shug, a blues singer. 

Cover of Tipping the Velvet
Sarah
Waters

In 1890s London, poverty stricken Nan falls for a male impersonator before embarking on a series of misadventures and love affairs that eventually lead her to fully embrace her sexual orientation in spite of disapproving Victorian attitudes. 

Mystery and Thrillers

Cover of Hallowed Murder
Ellen
Hart

Lesbian amateur sleuth Jane Lawless investigates a suspicious drowning of a fellow sorority alumna on the grounds of the University of Minnesota.  First in a series. 

Cover of A Grave Talent
Laurie R.
King

Detective Kate Martinelli must contend with winning the trust of her newly assigned partner while trying to find who is responsible for a series of child murders in the Bay Area.  First in a series. 

Cover of Goldenboy
Michael
Nava

In 1980s Los Angeles, defense attorney Henry Rios is asked by a colleague dying of AIDS to defend his client—a teenager accused of murdering a co-worker who threatened to out him. 

Cover of Speakers of the Dead
J. Aaron
Sanders

When his friend is hanged for a murder she didn’t commit, reporter Walt Whitman teams up with his estranged boyfriend to find the real killer, a task that takes the men into the dangerous world of 1840s New York’s dissection trade. 

Romance

Cover of Back to September
Melissa
Brayden

Hannah sees financial salvation for her struggling bookstore when she lands an appearance by world-famous romance author Parker.  But one unforgettable night leads the seemingly incompatible couple into the promise of something more than a business arrangement. 

Cover of The Doctor's Secret
Heidi
Cullinan

Doctor Hong-Wei’s budding romance with surgical nurse Simon runs into complications since their hospital explicitly forbids relationships between staff members. 

Cover of All the Better Part of Me
Molly
Ringle

Twenty-five year old actor Sinter has always been attracted to women.  But when he can’t get his gay best friend Andy out of his mind, he realizes coming to grips with his new bisexual identity may take more courage than he anticipated. 

Cover of It Takes Two to Tumble
Cat
Sebastian

Vicar Ben is ready to achieve the ‘normal’ life he’s always longed for by marrying his best friend and settling down, but the arrival of sea captain Philip and his unruly brood of children causes him to reconsider.  

Cover of The Lady's Guide to Celest
Olivia
Waite

Lucy, a Regency-era astronomer denied employment because of her sex, finds intellectual and romantic fulfilment when she is hired by Countess Catherine to translate a treatise on celestial mathematics. 

Science Fiction and Fantasy

Cover of Gideon the Ninth
Tamsyn
Muir

Raised in a hostile undead world, a lesbian swordswoman becomes a bodyguard to a necromancer to secure her freedom in a solar system of dark magic and cutthroat politics. --Novelist

Cover of A Study in Honor
Claire
O'Dell

In a sci-fi twist on the Sherlock Holmes mythos, Holmes and Watson are reimagined as Dr. Janice Watson and Sara Holmes, both lesbian African American women living in an America wracked by a second American Civil War.  First in a series.

Cover of An Unkindness of Ghosts
Solomon
Rivers

The starship Matilda, organized along racial lines like the antebellum South, has been carrying colonists to a new, hazy version of the Promised Land from a wrecked Earth for generations. But Aster, born into slavery and entrusted with cryptic notes from her dead mother, may hold the key to the Matilda’s weakness—and spark an onboard civil war for liberation. 

Cover of Docile
K. M.
Szpara

In near-future America, Next of Kin laws require all accumulated debt be passed down to the next generation.  To escape harsh debtors' prison, debtors can become Dociles--indentured servants to wealthy owners, subject to whatever whims or desires their owners demand, in return for the erasure of the family debt.  To cope with the trauma of slavery, servants take Dociline, a drug that ensures compliance from servants.  But servant Elisha refuses the drug.  His owner, Alex, is part of the family that created Dociline, and refuses to believe in the terrible side-effects of the drug, and resorts to harsh conditioning to bend Elisha to his will.    

Cover of A Taste of Honey
Kai Ashante
Wilson

As a royal, Aqib bmg Sadiqi is expected to marry well and take his rightful position as Master of Beasts.  But that all changes when he meets Lucrio, a handsome Dalucan soldier.