Our June reads celebrate PRIDE month. When you find a book you would like to explore, click on the title and be taken directly to our catalog. Happy reading!
This Day in June – Gayle E. Pitman
Gayle E. Pitman has written several books for children that explore LGBTQ+ topics, and all are bright, informative, diverse, and include a reader’s guide to give parents and caregivers the tools they need to have important and age-appropriate conversations with their children; This Day in June is no exception. It focuses on the experience of a Pride celebration with simple rhyming text and vibrant, heartwarming images by Kristyna Litten. The reader’s guide in this book explains the images and text referring to LGBTQ+ history in a way that is informative and easy to understand.
Red – Michael Hall
Red is the story of a crayon the world saw a certain way and had expectations for that Red just couldn’t match, until one day, he met a new friend who encouraged him to color in a different way. Red is a surprisingly effective metaphor for never feeling right in your own body, and what it means to be supportive of people of all genders.
Pride: The Celebration and the Struggle – Robin Stevenson
Pride: The Celebration and the Struggle is excellent further reading for older children (8-14). Pride explores 5 facets of the LGBTQ+ experience; the history of Pride, Pride and identity, Pride around the world, and Young Activists and the future of Pride. Every image is explained in-depth and the chapters include Queer Facts- explanations of terms, statistics, and information, and meaninful quotes about Pride from people of all ages and backgrounds- some of which you might see in our Pride window display at Endicott!
Stonewall: A Building, An Uprising, A Revolution – Rob Sanders
Looking for a meaningful introduction to the history of Pride for young children? Stonewall is well-researched and content-rich, but simplified for young readers. It also includes an interview with Martin Boyce, a Stonewall Uprising Participant, a glossary of terms, and information for further reading.
When Aidan Became a Brother – Kyle Lukoff
Aidan is super excited about his new sibling, but as a young person who understands what it’s like to be misgendered, he worries about being a supportive big brother. With love and patience, his parents prove that knowing how to love someone is the most important part of being a brother.
Drama – Raina Telgemeier
Chances are, the young people in your life have read and loved Raina Telgemeier’s graphic novels Smile, Sisters, or Guts. Drama does a fantastic job of introducing young readers to the complicated parts of growing up and navigating friendships and love interests.
The Mighty Heart of Sunny St. James – Ashley Herring Blake
After her heart transplant, Sunny St. James is starting the life cardiomyopathy kept her from. She has plans to do awesome amazing things, make new friends, and kiss a boy- enter a new best friend and reintroduce her mom just to prove what we all know about the best laid plans.
Prince and Knight and Tale of the Shadow King – Daniel Haack
Prince and Knight and its equally adorable sequel Tale of the Shadow King are beautifully illustrated stories of a prince finding the person he wants to share his life and kingdom with, in a knight who saves them from a vicious dragon! Regarded as “the premier queer-friendly fairy tale” by Kirkus Reviews, these stories are sure to be beloved by readers of all ages and identities.
The Derby Daredevils: – Kit Rosewater
When their town proposes a junior roller derby league, aspiring derby superstars Kenzie (aka Kenzilla) and Shelly (aka Bomb Shell) scramble to put a team together. Its a series that’s a little BSC and a little bit Track, but with great LGBTQ+ rep. Young readers will love Kenzilla and Bomb Shell- and perhaps even pick up a new hobby!
King and the Dragonflies – Kacen Callender
King and the Dragonflies is a middle-grade novel that explores the complicated grief of losing a loved one, the damage of homophobia on young children, and the meaning of friendship to anyone who needs support. Kacen Callender handles each difficult topic with love, beauty, and a story deserving of all its accolades.
Darius the Great is Not Okay and Darius the Great Deserves Better – Adib Khorram
Darius is a loveable, nerdy, tea-obsessed, Persian-American teenager who is battling depression, bullying, and feeling disconnected from all the worlds he belongs to. When his grandfather in Iran becomes ill, Darius and his family’s visit has a life-changing impact. Though his sexuality isn’t explicitly discussed in the first book, many readers picked up on subtle messages that Darius was questioning, which was confirmed in the sequel- Darius the Great Deserves Better, as we meet Darius’ first boyfriend, Landon. Darius is as absolutely lovely and complicated as any person in your life, and every character feels just as real.
The Prince and the Dressmaker – Jen Wang
The Prince and the Dressmaker is a beautifully illustrated graphic novel set in 18th century Paris that features a prince with a secret he has never trusted to anyone in royal circles, and the dressmaker who believes in him and helps him to be everything he never thought possible.
Flamer – Mike Curato
Mike Curato is known for his Little Elliot picture book series and as the illustrator of beloved titles like Worm Loves Worm, The Sharey Godmother, and What if, but Flamer is his semi-autobiographical YA debut. It’s a graphic novel about Aiden Navarro as he navigates friendships, bullying, and self-discovery at scout camp. Curato’s simple, but evocative illustrations help explore the teenage years that are difficult for anyone, but magnified for a person who identifies as LGBTQ+.
Felix Ever After – Kacen Callender
This novel beautifully explores the gender and sexuality spectrums and intersectionality through the perspective of Felix, a Black queer trans artist. His objective in his elite artist summer program is to create a self-portrait that captures the many wonderful facets of his identity, and he ends up learning more about himself and others than he ever expected. Felix is a bright and loveable character whose story you will wish for a sequel to!
Last Night at the Telegraph Club – Malinda Lo
Last Night at the Telegraph Club is a work of historical fiction, set in San Francisco in the 1950’s, which explores the limits of the LGBTQ+ experience of nightclubs featuring male and female impersonators, the Red Scare, and the intersectionality of being a Chinese American who identifies as LGBTQ+.
Dreadnought – April Daniels
Trans teen Danny Tozer exists in a world where superheroes and supervillains are forces at work in everyday life. One day her life is changed forever as superhero Dreadnought is killed in front of her and she acquires his identity and abilities. The change has a unique impact on Danny as it corrects her physical form to align with her identity, though she isn’t out yet. Danny finds this experience as happy as it is challenging, having to navigate two worlds in a body that affirms her identity, but with little time to adjust before her super responsibilities come into play as well.
Birthday – Meredith Russo
Birthday is a beautiful and unique novel about two best friends who share the same birthday and a profound love for one another. The story is told over several years on their shared birthday and reflects the changes each of them endure as they understand their respective identities, expectations, and attractions. Devote time for the end of this book, it deserves a moment!
A Queer History of the United States For Young People – Michael Bronski
Following the Zinn model of historical nonfiction, Bronski explores the sometimes secret history of the LGBTQ+ experience in the U.S. from Indigenous tribes, to recent battles for trans-inclusive civil rights, specially written for teens and young adults by Richie Chevat.
Queer, There, and Everywhere – Sarah Prager
This book is a series of mini-biographies of 23 LGBTQ+ people over the course of history who were able to change the world in a significant way, even in the confines of the societies they existed in. Sarah Prager sheds light on the limited discussion of these trailblazers and proves that “not only have queer people always existed, they have thrived”.
Let’s Talk About Love – Claire Kann
Asexuality is less commonly discussed in literature for any age, so when Claire Kann created this books’ protagonist- Alice, a Black ace teen, it was a breath of fresh air for anyone who identifies on the asexuality spectrum. Her identity is just a part of the wonderful, bright, loving character she is, and the LGBTQ+ representation in this book is only a fraction of the story that perfectly mirrors the complexity of our own friendships.
This is How it Always is – Laurie Frankel
Rosie and Penn have a happy family of boys but have always wanted a daughter. When their youngest child starts to question their gender, they discover how meaningful their roles as parents can be. This is How it Always is captures the particular kind of love parents have for their children, the fear of the world their children are growing up in, and how to navigate both in a meaningful way for the next generation.
Tomorrow Will Be Different – Sarah McBride
Tomorrow Will Be Different is the biography of Delaware Senator and Trans Rights Activist Sarah McBride. Since she was a young child, Sarah had dreams of being president and the sunny personality, caring disposition, and dedication to get her there. Her biography tells the story of her experience in government and more, including finding love, losing her husband, and the many battles she and other trans+ people fight every day.
The Song of Achilles – Madeline Miller
Many people know the story of the Trojan War- how Achilles was destined to die a hero, how hard-fought the war to reclaim Helen for her marriage to Menelaus, but limited is the discussion of the relationship between Achilles and his companion Patroclus. The Song of Achilles is written from the perspective of Patroclus, as the boy who was exiled from his family, raised and educated by Chiron, and shared a meaningful relationship with one of the most infamous heroes of the ancient world.
A Queer History of the United States – Michael Bronski
This Stonewall Award-winning work is described as “the first book to cover the entirety of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender history from pre-1942 to the present”. LGBTQ+ rights advocate Michael Bronski illustrates in this book just how present and significant queer people have been throughout history, in spite of many attempts by historians to minimize both their identities and their accomplishments from the modern narrative.
How to Love a Country – Richard Blanco
This beautiful collection of poems by the former inaugural poet Richard Blanco explores the complicated relationship between a person and a society that continually marginalizes them. His poems tackle racism, homophobia, gun violence, and love with a spirit that hopes to connect us all, and reckon with our past and present transgressions as a culture.
Gender Queer – Maia Kobabe
Non-binary artist and illustrator Maia Kobabe (e, em, eir) allows readers to experience with em eir voyage of discovering eir identity, being misgendered, and becoming who e was always meant to be in this lovingly written, intimate graphic novel. Read this for a better understanding of non-binary identities and how to support people in your life who are questioning.
Untamed – Glennon Doyle
While promoting her empowering biography Love Warrior, Glennon met and unexpectedly fell in love with soccer star Abby Wambach. Untamed is her own voyage of personal self-discovery, through her divorce from her husband, co-parenting their children, becoming a blended family with her wife, and advocating for women. Untamed is a story uniquely hers, but with lessons of love for every person no matter their place in their own journey.
Ace – Angela Chen
As one of the few books exploring asexuality as an identity, Ace is in high demand. Angela Chen delves into the history and common misconceptions about the spectrum of asexuality such as the difference between sexual desire/sexual behavior and navigating romantic relationships.
How to They/Them – Stuart Getty
This bright and accessible book by genderqueer artist and author Stuart Getty explains the basics of language and grammar used for gender-nonconforming and non-binary persons in a respectful and informative, but fun way.
How We Fight for Our Lives – Saeed Jones
The best description of Jones’ memoir comes from Jones himself as he writes “People don’t just happen, we sacrifice former versions of ourselves. We sacrifice the people who dared to raise us. The ‘I’ it seems doesn’t exist until we are able to say, ‘I am no longer yours.’” In this memoir, poet Saeed Jones carves out a place for himself as a young, Black, gay man from the south, and pushes against the barriers of a conservative society. Equally heartbreaking and heartwarming, this memoir is a work of art.