The 2021 Pride Reading List: 75 New Books to Read Now

Posted by Cybil on June 1, 2021


It's June, which means it's time to celebrate Pride month in honor of the LGBTQ+ community! This year, we wanted to highlight the hot-off-the-presses new queer books from both beloved authors and rising star debut writers alike. All of these books have been published in the U.S. from the beginning of the year through June and are ready to be added to your Want to Read shelf

You'll see we divided these books into adult fiction, young adult fiction, and nonfiction categories. And within these categories you'll find a wealth of genres, topics, and voices to fit every reading mood. Scroll over the covers below to learn more about each book. Happy Pride!
 

Adult Fiction

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Young Adult Fiction

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Nonfiction

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Do you have a great Pride Month reading recommendation? Share it with your fellow readers in the comments below!

Check out more recent articles:
Readers' Most Anticipated Books of June
C.L. Clark's Recommendations for LGBTQ+ Speculative Fiction
Casey McQuiston Welcomes Readers Aboard New Time-Slip Romance

Comments Showing 1-49 of 49 (49 new)

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message 1: by Samiksha (new)

Samiksha Bhattacharjee Can't wait to read these!


message 2: by Jeremy Norman (new)

Jeremy Norman Living and Loving in the Age of AIDS: A Memoir

Do read this extraordinary book. It is heart wrenching but ultimately a triumph of love over death. It is a dancing love letter from Derek to his husband.


message 3: by Noor (new)

Noor 🌈⚘


message 4: by Bob (new)

Bob Marshall I have just read 2 books which might be included on your list.
Beneath the Streets is a fictionalised version of the Jeremy Thorpe / Norman Scott affair, by Adam McQueen. It is so convincing I thought the author must have been part of the London Gay Scene in the mid 70's. (I was surprised to read at the end that he was born after the events described.)
A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth is not an easy read because of its immense length. Indian authors don't do sex (and when they do, e.g. Salman Rushdie, it is so bad you wish they hadn't bothered) but there is clearly a homosexual relationship between Maan Kapur and Firoz Khan (the book is about love across boundaries of religion and caste, sex between 2 men was illegal before 2018).


message 5: by Yeoul (new)

Yeoul Wanna read ‘Indivisible’


message 6: by Candie (new)

Candie House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune


message 7: by Christopher (new)

Christopher Calcara If you'd enjoy a Gay Thriller, try my book SQUEALER: Growing Up Gay the Catholic Italian Way


message 9: by Maggie (new)

Maggie Walsh Jeremy Norman wrote: "Living and Loving in the Age of AIDS: A Memoir

Do read this extraordinary book. It is heart wrenching but ultimately a triumph of love over death. It is a dancing love letter from ..."


Thank you for that recommendation. It looks like a great read 👍


message 10: by Carol (last edited Jun 02, 2021 10:06AM) (new)

Carol Amy Lane's " Fish Out of Water" series..(6 books)...features two of the warmest most adorable guys you have ever met. Also Scotty Cade writes some really good books especially his Bissonet & Cruzs books, as does Annabeth Albert.. especially her "Out of Uniform" series. I also love Andrew Grey's books. Charlie Adhara's "Big Bad Wolf series was also excellent. Shira Anthony's Blue Notes" (6 books), is very worth while. Just some of my favorites.


message 11: by Mark (new)

Mark Alexander Anyone know of any LGBT+ (preferably m/m) horror books?


Marc *Dark Reader of the Woods* Mark wrote: "Anyone know of any LGBT+ (preferably m/m) horror books?"

How about The Cabin at the End of the World?


message 13: by Kelley (new)

Kelley Candie wrote: "House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune"

I wholeheartedly second this recommendation. It is a beautiful book!


message 14: by Ash (new)

Ash Hyperion Long story short: I have some reading to do


message 15: by Bill (new)

Bill My TBR pile just doubled!


message 16: by Laura (new)

Laura Song of Achilles and red white and royal blue!


message 17: by Kat (new)

Kat Can I find this list within Goodreads or do I need to come back to this article?


message 18: by Alicia (new)

Alicia McLachlan Amazing list! Also worth a look for anyone seeking new adult contemporary m/m romance: ALL THE WAY OUT by Ingrid Sterling. Just dropped in April. Check it out!


message 19: by Noor (new)

Noor Are these books all by LGBTQ+ authors, or do they just feature queer characters?


message 20: by Katie (new)

Katie This list sure has a distinct lack of asexual and aromantic representation. Not surprising, but it still hurts to see it. We're forgotten and ignored too often compared to the rest of the LGBTQIA+ community, and it isn't right.


message 21: by Steven (new)

Steven Read my husband's book! "Future Imperfect" M.Scott Chambers. Twisted Reality suspense novel with gay protagonist and relationships. Excellent read!


message 22: by Gerhard (new)

Gerhard What an inspiring collection of books, thank you! It's wonderful to see so many uplifting YA titles.


message 23: by Carol (new)

Carol Noor :) wrote: "Are these books all by LGBTQ+ authors, or do they just feature queer characters?"

I'm not sure about some but I know that both Scotty Cade and Andrew Grey are gay. They both have husbands.


message 24: by Karen (new)

Karen SARAHLAND, a book of short stories is gorgeously written by a debut author, Sam Cohen. Wonderful book.


message 26: by Maureen (new)

Maureen Stanton Maureen wrote: "The Cape Doctor"
Highly recommend for Pride Week. Starred Review from Booklist


message 28: by Susan (new)

Susan Highly recommend This Is How It Always Is by Laurie Frankel.

This novel made me laugh, cry, and think, which is what the best novels do. Frankel's story is fiction but is informed by her experience raising a transgender child. It's a beautifully written story. I don't give many books 5 stars but this one was deserving of 5 stars on my scale.


message 29: by Christopher (new)

Christopher Frey I’m straight and even though I believe that the queer community have equal rights with mine, from this selection of books it seems to be almost obligatory to be queer in order to enjoy the new books in this collection.
I would be really grateful if the lists of books that Goodreads send me contains the old fashioned thrillers, mystery and spiritual genre of bookd


Antagonist Library  ♡ So many of these books are in my tbr!


message 31: by Lewis (new)

Lewis Kempfer Not sure why my comment was deleted so trying again. I’d like to throw my book in the ring. My memoir, “Don’t Mind Me, I’m Just Having a Bad Life,” just received its third award, the 2021 IndieReader Discovery Awards Category Award for LGBTQ+ Non-Fiction. It has also received a 2021 Gold Medal from Literary Titan, and the 2020 Silver Medal for Autobiography in the Readers’ Favorite Self-Published eBooks Contest.


message 32: by Cameron (new)

Cameron Candie wrote: "House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune"
Yes, agree!


Borders Are Global Apartheid It's not out until September, but I'm looking forward to Casey Plett's new collection -- A Dream of a Woman. I highly recommend her previous two books to anyone interested in reading realistic fiction about trans women. Her first is a collection called A Safe Girl To Love, which I believe won a Lambda. It's excellent. Her second is a novel called Little Fish, which besides being great for other reasons taught me about Canadian Mennonites, who I was not aware even existed. Bit of a depressing read, but super real.


Borders Are Global Apartheid It's not out until September, but I'm looking forward to Casey Plett's new collection -- A Dream of a Woman. I highly recommend her previous two books to anyone interested in reading realistic fiction about trans women. Her first is a collection called A Safe Girl To Love, which I believe won a Lambda. It's excellent. Her second is a novel called Little Fish, which besides being great for other reasons taught me about Canadian Mennonites, who I was not aware even existed. It's a bit depressing, but super real.


message 35: by Carol (last edited Jun 06, 2021 09:29AM) (new)

Carol I have friends that made a HUGE list...Way too many to post all here. This part of the list contains the Aiden Bates books that I absolutely love...so will post these to add.
Another Country - James Baldwin
Go Tell It on the Mountain – James Baldwin
Bromosexual - Daryl Banner
Bittersweet= Nevada Barr
My Brother’s Best Friend – Caldwell Brothers Book # 1 - Aiden Bates & Ali Lyda
Suited For You – Caldwell Brothers Book #2 – Aiden Bates
Love Lessons – Caldwell Brothers Book #3 – Aiden Bates
Sweet on You – Caldwell Brothers Book #4 – Aiden Bates
Love Me Again – Caldwell Brothers Book #5 – Aiden Bates
Love Hurts – Caldwell Brothers Book # 6 – Aiden Bates
Omega Brew – Carter’s Crossing series Book #1 – Aiden Bates
Omega’s Past – Carter's Crossing – Book #2 – Aiden Bates
Omega’s Teacher – Carter's Crossing – Book #3 – Aiden Bates
Omega’s Crush – Carter's Crossing – Book # 4- Aiden Bates
Omega’s Home – Carter's Crossing Book # 5- Aiden Bates
Touch and Go – Vanguard Tower series Book #1 – Aiden Bates
Lost and Found – Vanguard Tower series – Book #2 – Aiden Bates
Body And Soul – Vanguard Tower series Book #3 – Aiden Bates
Fire and Ice – Vanguard Tower series Book # 4 – Aiden Bates
Rise and Fall- Vanguard Tower series Book #5 – Aiden Bates
Rubyfruit Jungle - Rita Mae Brown


message 36: by Alison (new)

Alison Christopher wrote: "I’m straight and even though I believe that the queer community have equal rights with mine, from this selection of books it seems to be almost obligatory to be queer in order to enjoy the new book..."

If you think you have to be queer in order to enjoy books about queer people/themes, you might want to step back and examine that. We're just people.


message 37: by Alison (new)

Alison Katie wrote: "This list sure has a distinct lack of asexual and aromantic representation. Not surprising, but it still hurts to see it. We're forgotten and ignored too often compared to the rest of the LGBTQIA+ ..."

I agree, and it's frustrating, isn't it? I'd highly recommend Ace: What Asexuality Reveals About Desire, Society, and the Meaning of Sex - I've never felt so seen by a book in my life.


message 38: by Carol (new)

Carol Well said, Allison. I have two wonderful gay friends that loan me books and I really enjoy them. Nope you don't have to be queer to enjoy ANY book.


Jude in the Stars No indie authors? No small publishers? Mainstream publishing is bringing a lot of great books, sure, but how about we also support our community by buying from them too? Plenty of fantastic LGBTQ+ books every month, not just in June.


message 40: by Carol (new)

Carol A good detective series is The Seven of Spades series. Book #1 is The Kill Game by Cordelia Kingsbridge


message 41: by Lex (new)

Lex Kent There are some wonderful books on this list but like Jude said what about the smaller publishers? The LGBTQ publishers that publish queer books all year round and not just for Pride month. It's odd to just ignore them.


message 42: by Daniela (new)

Daniela Katie wrote: "This list sure has a distinct lack of asexual and aromantic representation. Not surprising, but it still hurts to see it. We're forgotten and ignored too often compared to the rest of the LGBTQIA+ ..."
Very true. Maybe check out TJ Klune's How to Be a Normal Person, a wonderful and hilarious novel with an ace MC.


message 43: by Poetniknowit (new)

Poetniknowit Christopher wrote: "I’m straight and even though I believe that the queer community have equal rights with mine, from this selection of books it seems to be almost obligatory to be queer in order to enjoy the new book..."

This whole list features books by lgbtq+ authors or characters that identify as such in honor of Pride Month. Did you not realize what list you were looking at?


message 44: by Bruce (new)

Bruce I'd recommend I'm a Wild Seed My Graphic Memoir on Queerness and Decolonizing the World by Sharon Lee De La Cruz I'm a Wild Seed: My Graphic Memoir on Queerness and Decolonizing the World in which the author, Sharon Lee De La Cruz reflects on their self-image, sexuality, and concept of freedom and how they shaped and informed their LGBTQ identity.


message 45: by Amber (new)

Amber Not My Father's Son IS SO GOOD.


message 46: by Carol (new)

Carol Yes it is, Amber. Read it a few weeks ago,


message 47: by Hazel (new)

Hazel I'm planning a trip for B&N now because I just added 15 of these books to my TBR. Let's get reading!


message 48: by John (last edited Jun 15, 2021 04:38AM) (new)

John C. NINCOMPOOP: A Novel

Meet aspiring playwright Leonardo, twenty-four years old and fresh out of graduate school, arrives in New York City in the 1990s dreaming of Broadway. He also wants a husband and a family—which is not yet legal. He flops as a cater-waiter and a student throws a desk at him when he tries substitute teaching. His friend Julia helps him land a job at Bar Plato in the East Village. People-pleaser Leonardo can hardly contain his enthusiasm. Bar Plato is owned by the popular, fabulously hip film star, Jack Fresh, and his wife, Mara, only to discover they are cocaine addicts and abusive in every way imaginable.

“Dark, funny, sharp, intelligent and real-unpretentious, with a big heart and deep soul, Picardi writes from the perspective of the outsider, the out-of-town newcomer to New York, exposing the hypocrisy and mendacity of New York ambition and greed. John Picardi is Dawn Powell’s soulmate.”—Kate Christensen, author of In The Drink, The Epicure’s Lament, The Astral, Blue Plate Special, How to Cook A Moose, The Last Cruise, 2007 PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction


message 49: by nitya (last edited 22 hours, 53 min ago) (new)

nitya So many wonderful books (except Hough's, yikes) here!

And glad to see Meet Cute Diary on here :)


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