Words “June is Pride Month” on a rainbow background

June is Pride Month (ongkachakon (123RF))

Every June, Americans across the globe celebrate LGTBQIA+ Pride. However, in Germany, many celebrations occur from April through the end of September and are often referred to as “Christopher Street Day” (CSD). No matter when you celebrate Pride, we’ve got 10 books for your “to-be-read” list.

Serious Trans Vibes - Comics by Sophie Labelle (2018-Present) (Non-Fiction/Realistic Fiction) (Comics/Graphic Novel)

I first came across Sophie Labelle when I discovered her “Assigned Male” comics which use humor to demonstrate the lived experiences of transgender people in the world. I then went down the rabbit hole of her publications which include dating advice, living through the pandemic, a “Gender Helpline” and so much more. Sophie Labelle often does speaking engagements and recently spoke to communities in Mannheim and Ramstein.

Ivy Aberdeen’s Letter to the World” by Ashley Herring Blake (2018) (Middle Grades) (Realistic Fiction)

12-year-old Ivy’s house was destroyed in a tornado and to add insult to injury, her journal of drawings of two girls holding hands disappeared as well. However, the drawings start to appear in her locker in school and she hopes that the one putting them there is the girl she has recently developed a crush on. Will she have the courage to confront her crush with her theory?

Breaking the Rainbow Ceiling: How LGBTQ+ People Can Thrive and Succeed at Work” by Layla McCay (2024) (Non-Fiction) (Business) (Career) (Self-Help)

Less than one percent of Fortune 500 companies’ board positions are filled by LGTBQIA+ people. This book explores the reasoning behind the lack of representation as well as offers insights from high-profile LGTBQIA+ leaders and strategies to overcome the struggles.

My Policeman” Bethan Roberts (2012) (Historical Fiction) (Romance)

Marion and Patrick are both in love with Tom, a policeman in the UK. Tom knows that in a world where falling under “minority status” (something outside of the neurotypical/heteronormative social ideals of the 1950s), marrying female schoolteacher Marion is the safest choice. However, Marion and Patrick both maintain relationships with Tom until it becomes too much for one of them. You can also watch the 2022 film with Harry Styles playing the policeman on Amazon Prime.

My Fair Brady” by Brian D. Kennedy (2024) (Fiction) (Young Adult) (Romance) (Retelling)

This book is “My Fair Lady” meets “She’s All That” in this gay rom-com. Wade Westmore, a lover of the spotlight, loses the lead in the school play to his ex-boyfriend, Reese, who dumped him for being too “self-involved.” Shy-boy, Elijah, who works backstage on the play, offers a deal to Wade: teach him how to be popular and Wade can prove to Reese that he cares about something other than himself. Find out if Wade can win back Reese.

Without You: A Memoir of Love, Loss and the Musical ‘Rent’” by Anthony Rapp (2006) (Memoir) (Theatre)

RENT is my favorite musical and was one of the first pieces of art or media to introduce me to the HIV/AIDs crisis and the world of LQTBQIA+ representation. Anthony Rapp, a queer man, has played Mark Cohen in various iterations of RENT since it premiered on stage in 1994, including the 2005 feature film version. This memoir chronicles the highs of Rapp’s life as the musical soared in popularity at the same time as he was coming to terms with his sexuality and losing his mom to cancer.

Lavender House” by Lev A.C. Rosen (2022) (Mystery) (Thriller) (Historical Fiction)

This book is described as “‘Knives Out’ with a queer historical twist.” In the 1950s, Lavender House not only holds the secrets of the family’s soap scent empire, but the secrets of the people who reside and work inside. Everyone is free to be who they are. However, now there has been a murder and the residents worry if they are also housing a murderer. Solve this who-dun-it before the last page.

Dear Bi Men: A Black Man’s Perspective on Power, Consent, Breaking Down Binaries, and Combating Erasure” by J.R. Yussuf (2024) (Non-Fiction) (Race)

Bi-erasure has been a topic of discussion for me and my friends ever since I first saw Willow in “Buffy the Vampire Slayer” and Alyssa in “Chasing Amy.” Yussef takes the conversation further by adding on the topics of power and race. Yussef challenges the stereotypical representations and tropes of bisexual representation.

The Well of Loneliness” by (Marguerite) Radclyffe Hall (1928) (Classics) (Romance) (Historical Fiction)

Stephen is everything a parent could hope for in the early 20th century: a scholar, a great fencer and a good horse rider. Stephen is also a woman who happens to love other women. This classic tale was banned for obscenity in the U.K. when it was first published in 1928 and has since become an international bestseller and one of the most famous lesbian novels.

Rainbows, Unicorns, & Triangles: Queer Symbols Throughout History” by Jessica Kingsley Publishers (2024) (Children’s) (Non-Fiction) (Pictures)

Recommended for kids 5+, this picture book features signs and symbols vital to the story of the LGTBQIA+ history and community. Not only does it feature recognizable symbols such as flags and triangles, but also lavender rhinos and green carnations.

We try to include at least one LGTBQIA+ book on each of our “10 Books” every month, so check out more of our lists here for more recommendations.

author picture
Tamala Malerk is a writer and editor with Stars and Stripes Europe. She has been with SSE since April 2022 writing articles all about travel, lifestyle, community news, military life and more. In May 2022, she earned her Ph.D. in History and promises it is much more relevant to this job than one might think.

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