10 Riveting LGBTQ+ Books to Read for Pride Month (Or Any Month of the Year)- Part 1

10) Peaces by Helen Oyeyemi

This is a book, in part, about a most unusual train voyage—if you’re like me, you may already be intrigued. Otto and Xavier set out with their pet mongoose on an overnight journey on The Lucky Day train. When they step aboard the former tea-smuggling locomotive, they notice that, not only do they appear to be the only passengers, but someone has left little touches and personal messages specifically for them. When Otto then discovers a strange woman bearing her own strange message aboard the train, a trail of clues presents itself, connecting Otto and Xavier to their own pasts and to one another.

9) The Gods of Tango by Carolina De Robertis

Set in February of 1913, Leda leaves her Italian village to meet her new husband in Argentina. When she arrives in Buenos Aires, however, she discovers that her new groom is dead. Destitute and alone, she decides to stay in Argentina. There, she quickly falls in love with both the tango—an illicit dance associated with the lower class—and the violin—an instrument which she, as a woman, would never have been allowed to play in public. Deciding to follow her dreams against all odds, Leda disguises herself as a man and becomes “Dante,” which allows her to explore her love of music and her own suppressed feelings for the women she encounters along the way.

8) Canary by Canary Conn

This memoir, published in 1974 and written by musician Canary Conn, details the experience of her struggles to find a solution to her gender dysphoria and her MTF (male to female) transition. When reading this memoir, bear in mind that it was written almost 50 years ago; some of the terms and concepts—such as the conflation of sex and gender—are outdated by 2021 standards. Nevertheless, from some of the comments I have read, this book seems to have helped many people better understand their own struggles with gender dysphoria and has helped many people better live as their true, authentic selves.

7) Confessions of the Fox by Jordy Rosenberg

This book follows two separate but intertwined timelines: one past, one present. The present timeline involves Dr. Voth, a researcher desperately searching for more information on the mysterious eighteenth-century thief, Jack Sheppard. When Dr. Voth discovers a pile of papers entitled Confessions of the Fox, he knows he is onto something.

It is through this manuscript, dated to 1724, that the reader is told the story of an orphan simply named P. For years, P longs to live as “Jack.” Eventually, P meets Bess and the two get involved in the ominous threats and intriguing queer subculture of the London underworld. It is in this world where P finally becomes the notorious thief, Jack Sheppard. Timelines past and present become intertwined as both protagonists are embroiled in conspiracy and corruption.

6) An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon

This book follows Aster, living below deck in a space vessel called the HSS Matilda. On their way to a supposed promised land, the leaders of this ship treat the vessel’s dark-skinned sharecroppers (like Aster) as less than human. As Aster begins investigating her mother’s suicide and its apparent connection to the ship’s sovereign, she discovers that there might be a way off the ship and a new hope for freedom.

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