It’s Pride Month! What better time to queer up your reading list, right? Don’t worry. I’ve got you covered. Right now, at StoryBundle, you can snag a special Pride Bundle curated by Melissa Scott. Pay what you want for five fantastic books, and if you choose to pay at least $15, you get eight additional books including my collection of inter-linked short stories full of superheroes kicking ass, female friendships, queers saving the world, and glorious, glorious wardrobes – The Ultra Fabulous Glitter Squadron Saves the World Again. You can also choose to donate a portion of your purchase price to Rainbow Railroad, a wonderful charity helping LGTBQIA+ individuals escape persecution and get safely out of Chechnya. There are tons of great books included in the bundle, and you can support a great cause; I highly recommend checking it out!
Another thing to check out is the recent list of Lambda Literary Award Winners. The list contains several of my favorite reads, so I’m delighted to see them being recognized! This year marked the 30th anniversary of the Lambda Literary Awards, so once you’re done with this year’s winners, spend some time catching up on the past winners as well.
Now, since I’m a firm believer that one can never have too many things to read, I have even more reading recommendations for you. Hopefully you’ll love these books and stories as much as I do!
Novels, Novellas, Collections, and Anthologies
Her Body and Other Parties by Carmen Maria Machado – a stunning debut collection that has been racking up award nominations (and with good cause), full of stories inflected with darkness, anger, sexuality, and the fantastic.
Transcendent edited by K.M. Szpara and Transcendent 2 edited by Bogi Takács – the first two installments in an anthology series collecting the best trans speculative fiction of the year.
The Black Tides of Heaven and The Red Threads of Fortune by JY Yang – the first two novellas in the Tensorate Series, which have also been racking up well-deserved awards notice, exploring themes of family, gender, power, sacrifice, loss, and magic.
Capricious Issue 9: Gender Diverse Pronouns – a special issue of an excellent publication, featuring stories exploring gender, identity, and the myriad of ways humans define themselves, all set against fantastical backdrops.
My Favorite Thing is Monsters by Emil Ferris – a coming of age story wrapped around a murder mystery, exploring the messy, complicated nature of human beings (and occasionally monsters).
Love Beyond Body, Space, and Time – an anthology of speculative fiction by indigenous authors exploring the many facets of identity, love, and relationships, set in futuristic and magical worlds.
An Unkindness of Ghosts by Rivers Solomon – a gorgeously-written and brutal novel about a generation ship strictly divided along racial lines, and one woman’s search for the truth and a way to escape the system.
The Gilda Stories by Jewelle Gomez – a unique vampire story spanning generations, focusing on chosen family, love, and kindness instead of insatiable hunger and blood.
Passing Strange by Ellen Klages – a gorgeous, queer love story, which is also a love letter to San Francisco in the 1940s, albeit one full of magic.
The Art of Starving by Sam J. Miller – a novel balancing hope and pain about a young man whose eating disorder gives him special powers.
Singing With All My Skin and Bone by Sunny Moraine – a collection full of dark and unsettling stories, all told with beautiful and breath-taking prose.
Amberlough by Lara Elena Donnelly – a slick and stylish novel full of shifting alliances, spies double-crossing spies, death, music, art, and brunch, set in decadent and glittering secondary world.
And Then There Were (N-One) by Sarah Pinsker – a trippy novella of alternate realities converging on a convention full of alternate Sarahs, which also just happens to be a murder mystery.
The Hydraulic Emperor by Arkady Martine – a bidding war on an alien space station over a rare and eerie cult classic film, where the winning bid requires a great sacrifice.
Cracks by Xen – a beautiful painful novelette full of longing, set in a world strictly divided into night and day, riddled with cracks where other realities seep through.
Four-Point Affective Calibration by Bogi Takács – a flash fiction story that packs a punch, exploring emotion and alien communication.
Granny Death and the Drag King of London by A.J. Fitzwater – a powerful exploration of communal grief and fear, set against the backdrop of the AIDS crisis and the days surrounding Freddie Mercury’s death.
Salt Lines by Ian Muneshwar – a young man haunted by loneliness, thoughts of home, and a supernatural being.
Everything You Left Behind by Wen Ma – a story exploring the many forms grief takes, set in an unchanging town locked in time.
Small Changes Over Long Periods of Time by K.M. Szpara – a trans man bitten by a vampire struggles with the changes brought on by his new, unasked for immortality.
In Search of Stars by Matthew Bright – a haunting story of desire, shame, and a top secret formula for paint that causes people to float away.
Rivers Run Free by Charles Payseur – a gorgeous story of personified rivers and waters fighting against those who would chain and control them.
And that’s just to name a few. I really did restrain myself, I promise!
Last, but not least, if you need one more book to add to your tottering TBR pile, here’s a giveaway! My collection The Kissing Booth Girl and Other Stories was a finalist for the Lambda Literary Award last year, and included in last year’s Pride Month StoryBundle. If you didn’t have a chance to grab it then, here’s your chance to win a signed paperback copy now. Just drop a note in the comments between now and June 15th with your own favorite queer reading recommendation(s), and I’ll choose a winner via the magic of a random number generator. Happy Pride, y’all, and happy reading!