Read With Pride

Will Harlan | June 9, 2021



Read With Pride, Picks from the Public Library of Brookline

Celebrate Pride Month with LGBTQIA+ stories! We’re highlighting media which feature LGBTQIA+ characters, journeys, and history. Each item is available through the Minuteman Library Network. All you need is your library card!

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Pride Month: Featured Recommendations


The Order of the Pure Moon Reflected in Water

Zen Cho

“Fantastic, defiant, utterly brilliant.” —Ken Liu Zen Cho returns with The Order of the Pure Moon Reflected in Water, a found family wuxia fantasy that combines the vibrancy of old school martial arts movies with characters drawn from the margins of history. A bandit walks into a coffeehouse, and it all goes downhill from there. Guet Imm, a young votary of the Order of the Pure Moon, joins up with an eclectic group of thieves (whether they like it or not) in order to protect a sacred object, and finds herself in a far more complicated situation than she could have ever imagined. At the Publisher's request, this title is being sold without Digital Rights Management Software (DRM) applied.

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In the Dream House

Carmen Maria Machado

A revolutionary memoir about domestic abuse by the award-winning author of Her Body and Other Parties In the Dream House is Carmen Maria Machado’s engrossing and wildly innovative account of a relationship gone bad, and a bold dissection of the mechanisms and cultural representations of psychological abuse. Tracing the full arc of a harrowing relationship with a charismatic but volatile woman, Machado struggles to make sense of how what happened to her shaped the person she was becoming. And it’s that struggle that gives the book its original structure: each chapter is driven by its own narrative trope—the haunted house, erotica, the bildungsroman—through which Machado holds the events up to the light and examines them from different angles. She looks back at her religious adolescence, unpacks the stereotype of lesbian relationships as safe and utopian, and widens the view with essayistic explorations of the history and reality of abuse in queer relationships. Machado’s dire narrative is leavened with her characteristic wit, playfulness, and openness to inquiry. She casts a critical eye over legal proceedings, fairy tales, Star Trek, and Disney villains, as well as iconic works of film and fiction. The result is a wrenching, riveting book that explodes our ideas about what a memoir can do and be.

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The Four Profound Weaves

R. B. Lemberg

Two transgender elders must learn to weave from Death in order to defeat an evil ruler--in the debut full-length work set in R. B. Lemberg's award-winning queer fantasy Birdverse universe "The Four Profound Weaves is the anti-authoritarian, queer-mystical fairy tale we need right now." --Annalee Newitz, author of The Future of Another Timeline "A beautiful, heartfelt story of change, family, identity, and courage." --Library Journal, starred review The Surun' nomads do not speak of the master weaver, Benesret, who creates the cloth of bone for assassins in the Great Burri Desert. But aged Uiziya must find her aunt in order to learn the final weave, although the price for knowledge may be far too dear to pay. Among the Khana in the springflower city of Iyar, women travel in caravans to trade, while men remain in the inner quarter, as scholars. A nameless man struggles to embody Khana masculinity, after many years of performing the life of a woman, trader, wife, and grandmother. As his past catches up, the nameless man must choose between the life he dreamed of and Uiziya--while Uiziya must discover how to challenge the evil Ruler of Iyar, and to weave from deaths that matter. In this breathtaking debut set in R. B. Lemberg's beloved Birdverse, The Four Profound Weaves offers a timeless chronicle of claiming one's identity in a hostile world. About the Birdverse: The Birdverse is the creation of fantasy author R. B. Lemberg. It is a complex, culturally diverse world, with a range of LGBTQIA characters and different family configurations. Named after its deity, Bird, Birdverse shorter works have been nominated the Nebula, Hugo, Tiptree award, and Rhysling awards. The Four Profound Weaves is the first full-length work set in the Birdverse.

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Memorial

Bryan Washington

'This feels like a vision for the 21st-century novel... It made me happy' Ocean Vuong, author of On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous 'Brilliantly details the smallest moments that mean the absolute most, the heartbreakingly human limitations of how we love one another' Kiley Reid, author of Such a Fun Age Benson and Mike are two young guys who have been together for a few years - good years - but now they're not sure why they're still a couple. There's the sex, sure, and the meals Mike cooks for Benson, and, well, they love each other. But when Mike finds out his estranged father is dying in Osaka just as his acerbic Japanese mother, Mitsuko, arrives for a visit, Mike picks up and flies across the world to say goodbye. In Japan he undergoes an extraordinary transformation, discovering the truth about his family and his past, while back home, Mitsuko and Benson are stuck living together as unconventional roommates, an absurd domestic situation that ends up meaning more to each of them than they ever could have predicted... Funny and profound, Memorial is about family in all its strange forms, becoming who you're supposed to be and the outer limits of love. NAMED A BOOK TO WATCH IN 2021 BY: SUNDAY TIMES | THE TIMES | DAILY MAIL | THE TELEGRAPH | RADIO 4 | IRISH TIMES

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Flamer

Mike Curato

Award-winning author and artist Mike Curato draws on his own experiences in Flamer, his debut graphic novel, telling a difficult story with humor, compassion, and love. "This book will save lives." —Jarrett J. Krosoczka, author of National Book Award Finalist Hey, Kiddo I know I’m not gay. Gay boys like other boys. I hate boys. They’re mean, and scary, and they’re always destroying something or saying something dumb or both. I hate that word. Gay. It makes me feel . . . unsafe. It's the summer between middle school and high school, and Aiden Navarro is away at camp. Everyone's going through changes—but for Aiden, the stakes feel higher. As he navigates friendships, deals with bullies, and spends time with Elias (a boy he can't stop thinking about), he finds himself on a path of self-discovery and acceptance.

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Hani and Ishu’s Guide to Fake Dating

Adiba Jaigirdar

Everyone likes Humaira "Hani" Khan—she’s easy going and one of the most popular girls at school. But when she comes out to her friends as bisexual, they invalidate her identity, saying she can’t be bi if she’s only dated guys. Panicked, Hani blurts out that she’s in a relationship...with a girl her friends absolutely hate—Ishita "Ishu" Dey. Ishu is the complete opposite of Hani. She’s an academic overachiever who hopes that becoming head girl will set her on the right track for college. But Ishita agrees to help Hani, if Hani will help her become more popular so that she stands a chance of being elected head girl. Despite their mutually beneficial pact, they start developing real feelings for each other. But relationships are complicated, and some people will do anything to stop two Bengali girls from achieving happily ever after.

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Cemetery Boys

Aiden Thomas

A trans boy determined to prove his gender to his traditional Latinx family summons a ghost who refuses to leave in Aiden Thomas's New York Times-bestselling paranormal YA debut Cemetery Boys, described by Entertainment Weekly as "groundbreaking." Yadriel has summoned a ghost, and now he can't get rid of him. When his traditional Latinx family has problems accepting his true gender, Yadriel becomes determined to prove himself a real brujo. With the help of his cousin and best friend Maritza, he performs the ritual himself, and then sets out to find the ghost of his murdered cousin and set it free. However, the ghost he summons is actually Julian Diaz, the school's resident bad boy, and Julian is not about to go quietly into death. He's determined to find out what happened and tie off some loose ends before he leaves. Left with no choice, Yadriel agrees to help Julian, so that they can both get what they want. But the longer Yadriel spends with Julian, the less he wants to let him leave. Praise for Cemetery Boys: Longlisted for the National Book Award "The novel perfectly balances the vibrant, energetic Latinx culture while delving into heavy topics like LGBTQ+ acceptance, deportation, colonization, and racism within authoritative establishments." —TeenVogue.com "This stunning debut novel from Thomas is detailed, heart-rending, and immensely romantic. I was bawling by the end of it, but not from sadness: I just felt so incredibly happy that this queer Latinx adventure will get to be read by other kids. Cemetery Boys is necessary: for trans kids, for queer kids, for those in the Latinx community who need to see themselves on the page. Don’t miss this book." —Mark Oshiro, author of Anger is a Gift

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Elatsoe

Darcie Little Badger

Imagine an America very similar to our own. It's got homework, best friends, and pistachio ice cream. There are some differences. This America been shaped dramatically by the magic, monsters, knowledge, and legends of its peoples, those Indigenous and those not. Some of these forces are charmingly everyday, like the ability to make an orb of light appear or travel across the world through rings of fungi. But other forces are less charming and should never see the light of day. Elatsoe lives in this slightly stranger America. She can raise the ghosts of dead animals, a skill passed down through generations of her Lipan Apache family. Her beloved cousin has just been murdered, in a town that wants no prying eyes. But she is going to do more than pry. The picture-perfect facade of Willowbee masks gruesome secrets, and she will rely on her wits, skills, and friends to tear off the mask and protect her family. Darcie Little Badger is an extraordinary debut talent in the world of speculative fiction. We have paired her with her artistic match, illustrator Rovina Cai. This is a book singular in feeling and beauty. Praise for Elatsoe ★ "[A] refreshing voice. Indigenous myths, modern-day technology, and the supernatural successfully blend to build a fast-paced murder mystery."—Publishers Weekly, starred review ★ "A brilliant, engaging debut written by a talented author, it seamlessly blends cyberstalking with Vampire Citizen Centers and Lipan Apache stories."—Kirkus Reviews, starred review

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Girl Haven

Lilah Sturges

Three years ago, Ash's mom, Kristin, left home and never came back. Now, Ash lives in the house where Kristin grew up. All of her things are there. Her old room, her old clothes, and the shed, where she spent her childhood creating a fantasy world called Koretris. Ash knows all about Koretris: how it's a haven for girls, with no men or boys allowed, and filled with fanciful landscapes and creatures. When Ash's friends decide to try going to Koretris, using one of Kristin's spell books, Ash doesn't think anything will happen. But the spell works, and Ash discovers that the world Kristin created is actually a real place, with real inhabitants and very real danger. But if Koretris is real, why is Ash there? Everyone has always called Ash a boy. Ash uses he/him pronouns. Shouldn't the spell have kept Ash out? And what does it mean if it let Ash in?

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No Way, They Were Gay?

Lee Wind

"History has often ignored men who loved men, women who loved women, and people who lived outside gender boundaries. Lee Wind examines primary source letters, poems, and more to rethink the lives and loves of historical figures"--

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Redwood and Ponytail

K.A. Holt

Kate and Tam meet, and both of their worlds tip sideways. At first, Tam figures Kate is your stereotypical cheerleader; Kate sees Tam as another tall jock. And the more they keep running into each other, the more they surprise each other. Beneath Kate's sleek ponytail and perfect façade, Tam sees a goofy, sensitive, lonely girl. And Tam's so much more than a volleyball player, Kate realizes: She's everything Kate wishes she could be. It's complicated. Except it's not. When Kate and Tam meet, they fall in like. It's as simple as that. But not everybody sees it that way. This novel in verse about two girls discovering their feelings for each other is a universal story of finding a way to be comfortable in your own skin.

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King and the Dragonflies

Kacen Callender

Winner of the 2020 National Book Award for Young People's Literature! Winner of the 2020 Boston Globe-Horn Book Award for Fiction and Poetry! In a small but turbulent Louisiana town, one boy's grief takes him beyond the bayous of his backyard, to learn that there is no right way to be yourself.

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Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution

Rob Sanders

Celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Stonewall Uprising with the very first picture book to tell of its historic and inspiring role in the gay civil rights movement. From Rob Sanders, author of the acclaimed Pride: The Story of Harvey Milk and the Rainbow Flag, comes this powerful and timeless true story that will allow young readers to discover the rich and dynamic history of the Stonewall Inn and its role in the LGBTQ+ civil rights movement--a movement that continues to this very day. In the early-morning hours of June 28, 1969, the Stonewall Inn was raided by police in New York City. Though the inn had been raided before, that night would be different. It would be the night when empowered members of the LGBTQ+ community--in and around the Stonewall Inn--began to protest and demand their equal rights as citizens of the United States. Movingly narrated by the Stonewall Inn itself, and featuring stirring and dynamic illustrations, Stonewall: A Building. An Uprising. A Revolution is an essential and empowering civil rights story that every child deserves to hear. PRAISE FOR PRIDE: THE STORY OF HARVEY MILK AND THE RAINBOW FLAG! "Pride is a beacon of (technicolor) light." - Entertainment Weekly "An essential LGBTQ children's book" - Out.com "This children's book about gay Pride should be in every school." - Gay Times Magazine "I couldn't be more thrilled the world now has this book." - Dustin Lance Black, Academy Award-winning screenwriter of MILK

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Hurricane Child

Kacen Callender, Kheryn Callender

Born on Water Island in the Virgin Islands during a hurricane, which is considered bad luck, twelve-year-old Caroline falls in love with another girl--and together they set out in a hurricane to find Caroline's missing mother.

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When Aidan Became a Brother

Kaylani Juanita

This sweet #ownvoices picture book celebrates the changes in a transgender boy's life, from his initial coming-out to becoming a big brother. When Aidan was born, everyone thought he was a girl. His parents gave him a pretty name, his room looked like a girl's room, and he wore clothes that other girls liked wearing. After he realized he was a trans boy, Aidan and his parents fixed the parts of life that didn't fit anymore, and he settled happily into his new life. Then Mom and Dad announce that they're going to have another baby, and Aidan wants to do everything he can to make things right for his new sibling from the beginning--from choosing the perfect name to creating a beautiful room to picking out the cutest onesie. But what does "making things right" actually mean? And what happens if he messes up? With a little help, Aidan comes to understand that mistakes can be fixed with honesty and communication, and that he already knows the most important thing about being a big brother: how to love with his whole self. When Aidan Became a Brother is a heartwarming book that will resonate with transgender children, reassure any child concerned about becoming an older sibling, and celebrate the many transitions a family can experience.

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Rick

Alex Gino

Eleven-year-old Rick Ramsey has generally gone along with everybody, just not making waves, even though he is increasingly uncomfortable with his father's jokes about girls, and his best friend's explicit talk about sex; but now in middle school he discovers the Rainbow Spectrum club, where kids of many genders and identities can express themselves--and maybe among them he can find new friends and discover his own identity, which may just be to opt out of sex altogether.

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Looking for more resources? We have you covered. Check out our entire list of Pride Month recommendations. For more personalized recommendations, fill out our recommendation form.