Jump to ratings and reviews
Rate this book

Queer Anthologies

Out Now: Queer We Go Again!

Rate this book
QUEER WE GO AGAIN! A follow-up to the critically acclaimed All Out anthology, Out Now features seventeen new short stories from amazing queer YA authors. Vampires crash prom, aliens run from the government, a president’s daughter comes into her own, a true romantic tries to soften the heart of a cynical social media influencer, a selkie and the sea call out to a lost soul. Teapots and barbershops, skateboards and VW vans, Street Fighter and Ares’s sword: Out Now has a story for every reader and surprises with each turn of the page!

416 pages, Hardcover

First published May 26, 2020

Loading interface...
Loading interface...

About the author

Saundra Mitchell

29 books529 followers
Saundra Mitchell is the author of SHADOWED SUMMER, THE VESPERTINE, THE SPRINGSWEET, THE ELEMENTALS and MISTWALKER. In non-fiction, she’s the author of the THEY DID WHAT!? series for middle grade readers. She’s also the editor of the YA anthology DEFY THE DARK. IN 2018, HarlequinTEEN will publish her next anthology, ALL OUT.

Writing as Jessa Holbrook, she published her first romantic contemporary YA with Razorbill, WHILE YOU’RE AWAY. In summer 2014, she debuted WILD, her first YA novel writing as Alex Mallory.

SHADOWED SUMMER was the 2010 winner of The Society of Midland Authors Book Award for Children’s Fiction and a 2010 Edgar® Award Nominee. It was chosen as a Junior Library Guild selection and an ALAN Pick in 2009.

Her short story “Ready to Wear” was nominated for a 2007 Pushcart Prize after appearing in Vestal Review Issue 27. Her short fiction and non-fiction has appeared in anthologies including A TYRANNY OF PETTICOATS, FORETOLD, GRIM, TRUTH & DARE and DEAR BULLY.

For twenty years, she was the head screenwriter and an executive producer with Dreaming Tree Films on their various teen filmmaking programs, including the largest teen filmmaking program in the United States, Fresh Films. They produced more than four hundred films from her screenplays, and she earned Academy Award eligibility ten times during her tenure.

In other arenas, Ms. Mitchell was interviewed by the New York Times and the BBC for her part in exposing the Kaycee Nicole hoax, and she’s been tapped by morning radio shows all over the United States as a guest expert on Urban Legends & Folklore.

In her free time, she enjoys fandom, studying history, papermaking, and spending time with her wife and her daughters.

Ratings & Reviews

What do you think?
Rate this book

Friends & Following

Create a free account to discover what your friends think of this book!

Community Reviews

5 stars
166 (20%)
4 stars
321 (40%)
3 stars
241 (30%)
2 stars
52 (6%)
1 star
13 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 237 reviews
Profile Image for Larry H.
2,481 reviews29.4k followers
July 1, 2020
What a great way to start off Pride Month and my month-long effort to read LGBTQ+ books for PrideReads!

Out Now: Queer We Go Again is a new anthology featuring 17 short stories written by queer YA authors. From names you may recognize if you're a YA fan (Julian Winters, Meredith Russo, Caleb Roehrig, Mark Oshiro) and names I wasn't familiar with, these stories run the gamut from tales of romance, friendship, and self-acceptance, to fantasy, sci-fi, and folklore, all with an LGBTQ+ angle.

My favorite stories in the collection included: "What Happens in the Closet" by Caleb Roehrig, when vampires attack a high school prom and a gay student tries to better understand his nemesis; "Star-Crossed in DC" by Jessica Verdi, featuring the president's daughter who is ready to make a stand; "One Spell Too Many" by Tara Sim, about a teenage girl and kitchen witch, whose penchant for weaving spells into her baked goods has chaotic consequences; "Refresh" by Mark Oshiro, which tells of the frantic moments leading up to a blind date for two boys who met online; "Lumber Me Mine" by CB Lee, about two students who become enamored of one another during woodshop class; "Follower" by Will Kostakis, in which a social media influencer meets one of his fans; and perhaps my favorite story, "Victory Lap" by Julian Winters, in which a young man in search of a date to a school dance finds an unlikely ally in his search.

I tend to like stories that are a little simpler; there were a few stories in the collection that were science-fiction- or fantasy-based, and those didn't appeal to me as much. But for me, ultimately, the mark of a good story is one I'd love to see expanded into a longer form or even a full-length novel. All of the above stories, plus several others I didn't include in my list, definitely piqued my interest, and I'm going to explore the work of many of the authors featured in the collection.

The path to love and attraction, to connecting with someone you're interested in, to accepting who you are and/or working with family and friends to do the same, is different for every person. The stories in Out Now: Queer We Go Again didn't try to make their characters fall into predetermined patterns. While not every story was completely realistic, there's probably a story in here that almost everyone can identify with in one way or another.

Apparently Out Now is a follow-up to an anthology called All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens throughout the Ages , also edited by Saundra Mitchell. I'll definitely be checking that out as well.

I was fortunate to be part of the blog tour for this book. NetGalley and Inkyard Press provided me with an advance copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks for making it available!

Check out my list of the best books I read in 2019 at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/the-best-books-i-read-in-2019.html.

Check out my list of the best books of the decade at https://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com/2020/01/my-favorite-books-of-decade.html.

See all of my reviews at itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blogspot.com.

Follow me on Instagram at https://www.instagram.com/the.bookishworld.of.yrralh/.
Profile Image for Lea (drumsofautumn).
616 reviews622 followers
August 25, 2020
the cover of out now on an ipad on top of a grey blanket with fairy lights around it

Out Now: Queer We Go Again! Is an anthology that clearly did not learn whatsoever from the criticism of its predecessor All Out.

This is an anthology that features queer stories throughout all kinds of genres but that is about where the variety with this anthology stops. I read and loved All Out but one of the biggest criticism about that anthology was that it did not feature enough different identities on the sexuality and gender spectrum and sadly this anthology was the same.

Especially knowing that the first anthology was so heavily criticised for it, it feels extra disappointing to look back at these stories and realize that we still got barely any representation on the asexual and trans/non-binary spectrum and (if I am not mistaken) no representation on the aromantic spectrum whatsoever.
And not only that, this story fails at intersectionality in general. I would've wanted more stories about queer characters of colour but what was almost completely missing from this anthology were queer disabled characters, characters with mental illnesses, characters with different religious beliefs and fat characters.

Apart from those issues, I also just genuinely was not a fan of A LOT of these stories. And while it is normal that some stories in an anthology will be hit or miss for you, this one had so many misses and stories that I genuinely just DISLIKED, that it really to me stands out as one of the worst anthologies I have ever read.
Victory Lap by Julian Winters was the story that stood out to me the most. It provided a lot of comfort and made me want to read more stuff from this author.

But as a whole I cannot really recommend this anthology and I'm also really disappointed by the inclusion of Meredith Russo in this anthology, who easily still could've been cut before release.
But here are my individual reviews for all the stories.

Kick. Push. Coast by Candice Montgomery ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

I absolutely loved this! It was one of the shorter stories within the anthology but a very wonderful one about the fluidity of both sexuality/attraction and gender, which is something that I always deeply appreciate.

What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig ⭐⭐⭐

GAYNESS AND VAMPIRES! WHAT A COMBINATION! I didn't have very many feelings towards this story, if I'm honest. I wasn't really feeling the characters or the development of the story. But it was fun... because vampires!

“If there’s anything I’ve learned from my brother, it’s that I could die before my life even starts, and I like… I like kissing you. I don’t want to stop. I’m tired of being lonely.”

Player One Fight! By Eliot Schrefer

that was... uh... quite the questionable experience honestly. Like genuinely I do not know what to say about this story, it like.. didn't really have much of a point and just made me cringe in several ways.

Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee ⭐⭐⭐⭐

This was such a lovely story and it featured an asexual love interest! I really was super invested in this one, completely forgetting I was reading a short story and not a full length novel at some point.

“Ash’s eyes are warm and brown and she’s standing close enough for Jasmine to see little f lecks of gold, and she’s so happy, right here in this moment, just the two of them smiling at each other, a moment stretching out into infinity.”

Follower by Will Kostakis ⭐⭐⭐

This was a cute story! There was a lot of talk on what being romantic means and the two boys in this story shared their experiences falling in love. It wasn't anything special but I had a good time reading it.

Refresh by Mark Oshiro ⭐⭐⭐

Now this was an interesting story. It features two Latinx boys meeting for the first after they've talked on a dating app for a little while and it had some important themes packed into it. I can't really say too much but while I personally wasn't the biggest fan of one of the elements, I do very much appreciated that this talked about being a guy and plus-size, which is representation that we get so little, and also how that affects your dating life. This was a story that felt really intersectional and that made happy to see.

Victory Lap by Julian Winters: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

This story was about a Black gay boy trying to find a date for the winter formal and having a conversation with his dad about it and I loved it so very much. I was really invested in this character's story and his relationship with his dad and it absolutely warmed my heart. This story also mentioned a bunch of different identities (one of the side-characters is non-binary, they talked about a character potentially being bi, pan or questioning and in the conversation with the father) and while all that was very brief, I always appreciate when we get introduced to numerous labels within a story because it always makes me think that it might get readers to research those more and maybe find something that they identify with too! This was definitely one of the stand-out stories of this anthology for me personally and really made me want to check out Julian Winter's novels!

“Everyone says it’s a parent’s job to protect their child, but why can’t I protect him? Why are there roles when it comes to protecting the ones we love?”

A Road of One's Own by Kate Hart ⭐⭐

Oh man, this story was confusing and all over the place. I just had such a hard time keeping all of these characters apart and connect their stories to them. And this story also just felt really unnecessarily long while really not providing all that much content. Plus when I read one of the characters saying she is pansexual but she just tells everyone she's a lesbian because people don't know the label... I just personally felt incredibly uncomfortable about this. I loved that this story featured many people of colour (Indigenous love interest, a Latinx and Korean side-character) but too much of this story made me feel uncomfortable.

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke ⭐⭐

Another one of those stories that I am trying to appreciate because it had such an important discussion on identity and labels and pronouns plus it included anxiety and kinda potential depression rep but... I was just (once again) uncomfortable because this story was really based on someone completely overstepping their boundaries. It all ended up great and the person was just trying to be helpful but like.. YIKES IN SO MANY WAYS! Also the writing was a little bit messy, where I could barely decipher the text messages because they had no quotation marks or any other way to help you distinguish them. Keep in mind I read an ARC copy though, so hopefully changes were made.

Starcrossed in DC by Jessica Verdi ⭐⭐⭐⭐

This was definitely one of my favourite stories of this anthology, I loved the setting and important message! And this one also really worked for me because while we got a full story with a cohesive ending and beginning, there is still so much left beyond this story and I really enjoy when I feel satisfied with the story while still somehow craving more. That's definitely not easy to achieve.

“My whole life, I’ve been in front of cameras and crowds, representing something big, something I didn’t choose. This moment is new. Scary. But I’ve never felt more myself.”

Floating by Tanya Boteju ⭐⭐

I am left a little bit confused by this story because I feel like it might've had a main character with autism but.. it's just never quite clear? And searching through the Goodreads review, NOBODY MENTIONED THIS AT ALL. So I'm saddened by the fact that this might've been a story with disability rep (it could've been ADHD as well) but it is not actually clarified on-page, which I really would've appreciated, considering this anthology features little disability rep otherwise. This story sadly didn't really draw me in in general.

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan ⭐⭐

okaaaaaaay, so.. the main character in this was high as fuck so this story was a little bit exhausting to read. It was a nice idea – describing getting high as it being the main character's soft place and I liked the message this story tried to portray too but at the end of the day, it was just a little bit too wild as far the writing goes and it ended up not being very pleasant to read. Also it kinda felt like the author was trying to include the message of this story subtly.. but at the end of it I felt more like having been hit over the head with it. But at least it was a hopeful one.

A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson

I did not enjoy this story and thought it was all over the place and way too convoluted for a short story. I feel like I was supposed to be intrigued by this story but I wasn't whatsoever because the origin of the curse of the main character was never made clear. Also you will be kinda lost if you don't know Greek mythology well.. and my eye was twitching a little bit about what Athena was representing in this story. The underlying message in this was lost on me because the way it was written it really seemed like the police stood for justice.. eh. Really not a fan of this one.

“My brother loves you. But caring about someone and loving someone are two very different things. Love is a powerful emotion. Just like hate, or bloodlust, or valor. My brother feels all those things. But he cares only about war.”

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim ⭐⭐

God, I was so looking forward to this story because I really like Tara Sim as a person and enjoyed her novel Timekeeper so much.. and the beginning of this story was so promising to me because I absolutely loved the concept. But honestly the writing didn't really speak to me whatsoever, it just seemed really basic and a little bit like the fanfiction that I wrote when I was younger. I also did not enjoy the plot at all because it focused so heavily on miscommunication which is honestly a trope that I am so very sick of seeing and I think in 2020 we have progressed past the use of love potions in stories, even if you enforce boundaries with it.

Far From Home by Saundra Mitchell ⭐⭐

oh man, I feel like these stories have been cursed for me a little bit since Jessica Verdi's story because this was another one that I just did not enjoy whatsoever. I thought it was confusingly written in many parts and it was entirely too cheesy for me personally. I mean, I do not mind cheesy usually but when it is just a short story where I am not attached to the characters and their relationship whatsoever, it just doesn't work for me whatsoever. The best aspect about this story was that the main character was non-binary.

The Coronation by Meredith Russo

I had no knowledge prior to requesting this anthology that Meredith Russo would be featured in it. I skipped her short story due to the abuse allegations made against her.

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell

I literally have absolutely zero fucking idea what I just read. Like I don't even know what to say right now because I am left speechless with how.. nonsensical all of this was. I'm sure the author had a really amazing vision but sadly I did not understand what this story was trying to do whatsoever. Content Warning for this being a story about a trans boy who is pregnant!

Overall, this has definitely put me off from reading any more of Saundra Mitchell's anthologies in the future, even if I enjoyed All Out. It is one thing to not like the individual stories, it is another if I feel like an anthology specifically including queer stories offers barely any intersectionality or doesn't make any effort to include more underrepresented identities.

Instagram | Blog | Booktube Channel | Twitter

I received an ARC through Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review!
Profile Image for Sahitya.
1,021 reviews203 followers
June 22, 2020
Average Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

I was very much looking forward to reading this collection during Pride month but it took me a while to finish, both because I’ve been in a truly terrible reading slump and also this collection didn’t always manage to keep my interest. There are some amazing stories here, especially in the first half but once the book took a turn from contemporary to a bit more fantastical in the second half of it, I feel it lost a bit of its charm and I also wasn’t always able to understand what was happening. But the representation includes a spectrum of gender identities and sexualities and I thought it was all done with a lot of respect (though I won’t vouch for the authenticity because I’m not an ownvoices reviewer for any).

If you wanna read a variety of short stories from high school kids worrying about prom to vampires and gods and sacrifices, then this is a good collection and I hope you’ll find your favorite stories in it.

Below are my individual reviews for the stories:

Kick. Push. Coast by Candice Montgomery

This is the story about a young person who is questioning their gender, sexuality, pronouns.. everything.. while also trying to navigate their attraction for a girl they see from afar everyday. I could feel the pain the character is feeling because the confusion is palpable in their words, but I loved the turn the story took and ended up being so sweet.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

What happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig

This was mostly a cute story of a young gay boy at prom trying to flirt with his frenemy while also fighting off vampires. It’s definitely cool to see the undead creatures make a comeback in interesting ways.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer

Story of a gamer boy who wants to be with another, but the other one can’t seem to make up his mind. The writing in this felt felt a bit erratic though.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️.5

Lumber Me Mine by C. B. Lee

This was a very cute story of high school senior dealing with her breakup with her childhood friend as well as feeling the initial attraction to someone new. I really enjoyed the beginning of this new relationship and the ace rep was so casually mentioned and not made a bid deal out of, it was cool.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Follower by Will Kostakis

A chance encounter between an online influencer and one of his followers on a beach turns into a fascinating conversation about love. This was a bit boring at times but overall pretty cute.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Refresh by Mark Oshiro

Two guys who aren’t confident in their bodies just trying to connect irl after meeting up online, this was a funny meet cute but also profound in its own way shedding a light on body image issues.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Victory Lap by Julian Winters

A young boy who wants a date for his school’s winter formal - this should have been a very predictable story. But the friendship, the bond between a father and son, the importance of having a supportive parent when you are scared to come out - all of this is depicted beautifully and the story turned out to be absolutely adorable. Not for nothing that I love Julian’s writing so much.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

A Road of One’s Own by Kate Hart

A camping trip; a young woman trying to figure out her recently broken up relationship, a newfound attraction for a girl and what she wants her future to look like; and a bit of commentary on the whitewashing of Native American history as well as all the microaggressions they face on the daily - this story was both fun and contemplative with so much to look forward to.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke

I love the idea of the teapot metaphors to describe Rory’s extreme anxiety about how to label themselves and even wondering why it’s necessary to have a label. I also liked the conversations they had with some new found queer friends who help them resolve their doubts a little.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Star-crossed in DC by Jessica Verdi

Definitely surprised to read a story about the queer daughters of two presidential candidates on the opposite side of LGBTQ rights. It was still well written and interesting, though I would have liked it to have been longer and given more closure.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Floating by Tanya Boteju

The main character seemed like she had OCD or maybe ADHD but I really didn’t understand much of the story. Maybe I��m not the right audience for it.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan

The main character is completely high in this story and the writing reflects that mood, which means I really didn’t get what was happening.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️

A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson

Greeks curses, a human and a god in love, then endless conflict between Athena and Ares as a backdrop for police brutality and resulting protests in America - this was timely in a sense but some points that were made felt very tone deaf too. But the love story itself seemed very tragic but fascinating.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim

Baked goods, witches, love spells baked into yummy pastries - this was both highly entertaining and an interesting lesson in good intentions leading to not so good consequences. Very well written and I loved the beginnings of a new relationship.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

Far from Home by Saundra Mitchell

A space boy and his human boyfriend trying to run from federal agents trying to capture him, this was quite thrilling and adrenaline inducing.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5

The Coronation by Meredith Russo

I liked the trans representation in the story and a bit of what happened, but I can’t say I truly understood the story or the world as a whole.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell

I loved the idea of the main character struggling to find his roots and going on a journey to find them, and the author also manages to integrate a great mother-son relationship that is resilient even during tough times.

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️.5
Profile Image for Giulia.
688 reviews102 followers
February 23, 2021
Mini Rather Random Reviews™️

TW: homophobia, bullying, queer-phobia

Kick. Push. Coast by Candice Montgomery: 2.5 ⭐️
Rep: questioning
Ridiculously short synopsis: Avril Lavigne’s “Sk8er boi” but make it queer.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Very short and very unremarkable. I liked the strong the emphasis on how gender/sexuality/personality all are fluid and can change throughout the years. The main character was questioning their identity, and I liked that representation. Also, the author managed not to make me hate the second person narration – which is hard to achieve, so kudos to you. But apart from that, I did not find this story to be captivating.

What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig: 2.5 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: Is there anything worse than Prom? Well, yes. Prom with vampires and being forced in an enclosed space with your rival. You already know where this is going.
Ridiculously short personal comment: The story itself felt too short. The relationships felt superficial and the dialogues were honestly cringe-worthy and almost unbearably cheesy. Moreover, I personally thought the writing style was too juvenile and childish. But it was nothing nasty. It was a simple, superficial story.

Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer: 1 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: Random geek kid is in love… or is he?
Ridiculously short personal comment: Wow. Was there even one (1) thing I liked in this short story? No. The answer is no. The main character was pretentious and – with all the due respect – delusional. The writing style was too childish and silly, full to the brim with geek/gamer aspects and phrases and mentions that were just too prominent to be enjoyable. Furthermore, this story took place during middle school/high school and I found the character to be unnecessarily sexual. And that was to a point that it was uncomfortable. The plot was – yet again, with all the due respect – stupid. As you can gather, I really did not like this one.

Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee: 4 ⭐️
Rep: asexual love interest, lesbian MC
Ridiculously short synopsis: After a tough break-up, how can you start over?
Ridiculously short personal comment: This. This is the type of story I was expecting from this anthology. This was so stinking cute! The romance was adorable, the writing style was exquisite, the story itself was simple but oh so cute. I really liked this short story. And I also loved how there was an emphasis on worth: the main character had just experienced a difficult break up and is now realising her worth and how unique and strong she is. After having been in a relationship that was her whole entire world, she is learning to love herself. Fantastic, fluffy, pure and super enjoyable read!

Follower by Will Kostakis: 3.5 ⭐️
Rep: gay MC, bi love interest
Ridiculously short synopsis: The feeling when you randomly meet an influencer on the beach and start chatting – am I right, ladies?
Ridiculously short personal comment: Fun summer read. Nothing too deep, nothing ground-breaking, but still enjoyable. It was light and made me happy and also made me laugh a bit.

Refresh by Mark Oshiro: 3.5 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: A first blind date with a twist.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Another super cute story. Another not particularly ground-breaking story. I liked the code-switching present in the dialogues (Spanish and English were mixed up in the MC’s messages) and I also really enjoyed the fat rep. It was easy and enjoyable – really cute.

Victory Lap by Julian Winters: 3 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: Looking for a date to the Winter Formal? Ask your dad. Best wingman ever.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Honestly? I liked it and all – it was incredibly adorable – but it was just too angsty and saccharine sweet for my personal tastes. Still lovely and enjoyable but just too corny and cheesy.

A Road of One’s Own by Kate Hart: 3 ⭐️
Rep: pansexual love interest, questioning/bi MC
Ridiculously short synopsis: A road trip will lead to love and questions.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Cute – nothing else to say. It was cute and fun. But it was also average.

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke: 3 ⭐️ (TW: depression, anxiety)
Rep: agender pansexual side character, nonbinary/still discovering MC
Ridiculously short synopsis: Discovering yourself can also be achieved thanks to the help of new friends, tea and teapots.
Ridiculously short personal comment: I liked the representation, the overall message and the discussion around language and how lacking/imprisoning it can be when it comes to describing yourself.

Star-crossed in D.C. by Jessica Verdi: 4 ⭐️
Rep: bi MC, lesbian love interest
Ridiculously short synopsis: Red, White and Royal Blue but F/F.
Ridiculously short personal comment: I truly loved this story! Easy, fun, engaging. It flowed effortlessly and was super captivating.

Floating by Tanya Boteju: 1 ⭐️
Rep: lesbian
Ridiculously short synopsis: The moment when you just floating around and meet a girl – super relatable, right?
Ridiculously short personal comment: I have no idea what I have just read but I can tell you one (1) thing: I did not enjoy it. I thought about DNFing it, not gonna lie. It just did not make sense and was just too much out there for my tastes.

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan: 1 ⭐️ (TW: drug abuse)
Rep: lesbian
Ridiculously short synopsis: Missing a loved one can really push you to do extreme things…
Ridiculously short personal comment: This was too weird. Just like the previous one, I did not like this story at all. To me, this was nonsensical and just a mess :/ Yet again, another story that I thought about DNFing.

A Pound of Flesh by Kosovo Jackson: 4 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: A human is cursed to die and fall in love with a God again and again and again. It has been twenty-seven (27) lives. When will this end? When will love be enough?
Ridiculously short personal comment: I mean…wow. Even if this was a bit too convoluted and wanted to handle too many things for being a short story, this was phenomenal! Again, there were too many things on the plate but damn! What a compelling, fantastic story. And I am a slut for cursed love and reincarnation/meeting in every life tropes and also Greek mythology – this was so up my street I truly want a full length novel now. I feel blessed.

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim: 3.5 ⭐️
Rep: bi MC, trans love interest
Ridiculously short synopsis: Witchcraft and baking together 4ever.
Ridiculously short personal comment: This was yet again another saccharine sweet story. It was cute and easy to read; nothing less but surely nothing more than that. If I have to be honest, it was predictable and slightly childish. It was, nonetheless, fun and pure.

Far From Home by Saundra Mitchell: 3 ⭐️
Rep: gay
Ridiculously short synopsis: Think Superman, but make it gay.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Bizarre but fun. Not groundbreaking, not memorable, not incredible, but enjoyable.

The Coronation by Meredith Russo: 1 ⭐️ (TW: abuse)
Rep: trans
Ridiculously short synopsis: I wish I could tell you but I have no idea. I am sorry. If you understand what this was about, please do let me know. But I think it was about Gods walking the Earth? Don't quote me on that though.
Ridiculously short personal comment: Wow, yet again another one that I would have DNFed hadn’t it been a short story. It was confusing, unclear, and not particularly enjoyable. And, again, I did not like one (1) thing present in this story. What a big flop. Nothing made sense.

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell: 1 ⭐️
Rep: trans MC
Ridiculously short synopsis: Boy, seal, water, love.
Ridiculously short personal comment: That synopsis does not make sense? Well, you’re welcome for that because this story did not make sense either. It was too whimsical and nonsensical. And I was aggressively not a fan of the writing style. Another one I would have DNFed. Not a great way to finish the anthology.

Rating: 2.6 ⭐️

Loved the overall queerness of this anthology, but the great majority of these stories were confusing, unclear and underdeveloped.
If I have to be honest, I was underwhelmed and annoyed. After absolutely loving All Out (the first selection of short stories celebrating the LGBTQAI+ community through the years) I was expecting to love this one just as much. Alas, I was wrong.
What a disappointment :/

If you want a good collection of queer short stories, I would highly recommend All Out, but Out Now: Queer We Go Again was bewildering and unexceptional.
Profile Image for nat.
70 reviews272 followers
March 14, 2021
🌤 read this review and others on my blog, pages left unread

was fulfilled by all the happy and casual queerness in this anthology, although many many stories were undeveloped and lacking

=(2.4 stars, rtc)
Profile Image for Enne.
718 reviews113 followers
January 18, 2021
For an anthology that claims to be for all queer readers, this collection sure presents a very narrow view of what queerness is. While there were a couple of trans and nonbinary characters, on the whole, the large majority of these stories followed cis people. Additionally, I think we only got one asexual character in the collection as a whole, and most of these stories were centered around romance, which irked me because 1) aro people exist!! and 2) queer people are just as queer when they’re not in a romance/relationship. This anthology also did not feature any disabled queer MCs and in my opinion, definitely could have done better with inclusion of people of color and, specifically, Indigenous queer people. I get that not every anthology can include every identity, but my issue with this is the fact that it was presented as a QueerTM anthology, when it, in my opinion, presents a really narrow view of the queer experience. I’m also extremely disappointed by the inclusion of authors Jessica Verdi and Meredith Russo in this anthology. Verdi because she wrote a violently transphobic book that I have not seen many people acknowledge and Russo because of the abuse allegations against her. However, although this anthology was also largely disappointing in its stories, as well as its representation, there were a few stories that I really loved! Do I think the whole anthology is worth it just for them?? Not really. But they did make reading this collection bearable! My favorites were Kick, Push, Coast by Candice Montgomery, Victory Lap by Julian Winters, Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke, and One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim.
Profile Image for ivy francis.
544 reviews27 followers
June 12, 2020
Full review: https://bookpeopleteens.wordpress.com...

“And you hate that word. Control. You hate that word because it is so very rare that you have any. Over your life, your sexuality, your gender, your pronouns, your heartbeat when you’re around a beautiful girl.”

It’s hard to make generalizations for so many stories beyond the fact that they were all thoroughly entertaining, sometimes sweet, sometimes sexy, and brought endless joy and pride to my heart. While I’d love this series of LGBTQ+ anthologies to continue forever, I am equally excited about the work of authors I’ve discovered in Out Now and truly hopeful for the future of queer YA. Rating: five excellent titular Mamma Mia references/five

Favorite quotes:
- ”They’re kissing. And it’s different, not because it’s a girl, not just because it’s a girl, but because it’s not Nathan, and Eliza had dreaded this moment from the minute she considered breaking up, because how could she ever kiss anyone else? But now - now it’s the greatest decision she’s ever made, because this is… this is not what she’s used to, this is being wanted, being desired, this is... connecting…”
- “Because people who should care didn’t, until they absolutely had to. Until their inhumanity was so big, they crumbled under its weight.”
- “He thinks of the woman on the train, how sometimes a given skin can give you warmth and courage until you’re okay with your own.”
Profile Image for Tiffany .
74 reviews70 followers
September 15, 2020
Overall thoughts:
What a heartwarming and important anthology!
However, there is a lot of LGB representation, a few trans characters stuck in towards the end (seriously, the first one was in story 14, the second and third are in story 16, and the fourth is in story 17, out of 17 stories,) three non-binary characters, and . . . what, one demisexual character, one ace love interest, and one asexual or gray-ace character whose asexuality is only mentioned in part of a sentence, and no aromantic, gender fluid, intersex or Two-Spirit characters at all? How can an anthology claim to be for all queer people if there are absolutely no aromantic, gender fluid, intersex, or Two-Spirit characters? However, I still think it's an important anthology everyone should read, even though it's not comprehensive and I didn't enjoy many of the stories.

Individual Stories:

1. "Kick. Push. Coast." by Candice Montgomery.
Representation: Non-binary protagonist, demisexual protagonist
Content Warnings: Homophobia
3.25 stars.

"And you hate that word. Control. You
hate that word because it is so very rare
you have any. Over your life, your
sexuality, your gender, your heartbeat
when you're around your beautiful girl"

So. I liked the message of the story. The imagery and themes are well-thought-out. Dustyn was a likable character. The use of second person fit the story well.
However. I like a little more to a story than someone trying to learn a new skateboarding skill while thinking about stuff and trying to impress the girl they like. And the skateboarding lingo was too much. It was almost indecipherable.
By the way, being attracted to a trans person does not mean one has to identify as pansexual (or panromantic) automatically. And please don't use phrases like "symptoms of demisexuality". It's degrading and makes it sound more like a disease than an identity.

2. " What Happens in the Closet" by Caleb Roehrig
Representation: Gay men
Content warnings: Violence, homophobia
1.5 stars

This story was childish and stupid, it's filled with stereotypes, and it's really problematic. Oh, and I just couldn't stand the *very detailed* make-out session going on while people are literally dying in the next room.
Do not, ever, presume to know more about someone's identity than they do. Ever. Especially based on external factors like appearance and mannerisms. But that's exactly what our protagonist Austin does! And it is not called out. No, it turns out that he was right.

3. "Player One Fight!" by Eliot Schrefer
Representation: Gay male protagonist, unspecified mlm interest.
Content Warnings: Stalkerish behavior of protagonist
1 star

Well, this story was a mess. A telly, pointless, summarized mess with a stalker of a protagonist. There is no resolution at all.

4. "Lumber Me Mine" by C. B Lee
Representation: Chinese-American protagonist, lesbian protagonist, asexual love interest
Content Warnings: Toxic past relationship
4.25 stars

"Maybe Jasmine hung onto that
relationship for so long because she
was afraid -- afraid of being single,
afraid of being left out, afraid of having
to define who she was without Janet.
But Jasmine knows her worth now;
she doesn't have to put herself last."

I liked this one a lot. The author somehow manages to write about a toxic past relationship while keeping the story sweet and heartwarming. I'd love to see this story expanded into a full-length novel.
However. Why did Ash feel the need to run down everyone else who identifies as asexual?

5. "Follower" by Will Kostakis
Representation: Gay male protagonist, bisexual love interest
Content Warnings: Questionable social media practices
2 stars

I don't really have much opinion of this one, except that I did not find any of it romantic. At all.

6. "Refresh" by Mark Oshiro
Representation: Gay men, Latinx characters, fat characters
Content Warnings: Catfishing (called out) and internalized fatphobia (called out)
3 stars

It's all right, I just want there to be more to a story than a guy puts a fake picture up on social media, gets called out for it, but gets the dude he wanted to date anyway.

7. "Victory Lap" by Julian Winters
Representation: Gay male protagonist, African-American protagonist, unspecified mlm love interest, non-binary side character
Content Warnings: Past death of a parent
4.25 stars.

"Everyone says it's a parent's job to
protect their child, but why can't I
protect him? Why are there roles when
it comes to protecting those we love?"

It's really wholesome and cute, but very, very saccharine. The dad was. . . interesting.

8. "A Road of One's Own" by Kate Hart
Representation: Indigenous love interest, pansexual love interest, and bisexual, polysexual, or pansexual protagonist
Content Warnings: Mention of genocide of Indigenous peoples
4.25 stars

"'But I know I have it so much easier
than so many other people. . .'

"[. . .] 'You do. But that doesn't mean
it's not hard. It's just perspective.
Both those things can be true.'"

Overall, I really enjoyed the story (road trips + feminism? Count me in!) But, many of the characters were indistinct and not memorable at all. I think there were too many characters for a short story

9. "Seditious Teapots" by Katherine Locke
Representation: Gender-questioning protagonist, agender side character, asexual or gray-ace protagonist, pansexual side character.
Content Warnings: Depression
4.75 stars

"It's hard. Wanting the tea, but also
not wanting the tea, but feeling like
you should want the tea, but knowing
you should protest the tea, so you
put the protest on the teapot and
throw the tea in the harbor and I
guess the teapot. . . stays empty?"

I absolutely adore this story! The themes are so deep and important, the imagery vivid, and who doesn't love teapots? The Revolutionary War, teapots, and gender all come together somehow in this story. I recommend the whole anthology just for this one beautiful story.

10. "Star-crossed in DC" by Jessica Verdi
Representation: Bisexual protagonist, lesbian love interest
Content Warnings: Homophobia
4 stars

One of the few stories in here with a solid plot! I love the plot, but the writing style seems kind of childish.

11. "Floating" by Tanya Boteju
Representation: Neurodivergent protagonist, hinted-at F/F romance
Content Warnings: No idea

The character's neurodivergency is the focus of the story, so I decided not to rate it because I didn't know what would be fair for it. I honestly have no idea what was going on in this one, though.

12. "The Soft Place" by Hillary Monahan.
Representation: Lesbians, unspecified POC love interest
Content Warnings:Drug use, parental abuse/neglect, AIDS, homophobia
2 stars

"'Are you a ghost, then?'
" Rey hesitates. 'What's a ghost, really?
Casper, sure. A spook in the closet,
okay. Or, maybe, it's bigger than that.
A concept -- something from the past
we don't want to look at but should. A
reminder given shape.'"

Um, what the heck happened in this one? Is Rey a ghost or a drug-induced hallucination or something else? I guess she was a ghost because she left a cigarette wrapper behind, but I have no idea if that's what she is. Also, it's kind of bleak. I like the themes, though.

13. "A Pound of Flesh" by Kosoko Jackson
Representation: Gay men, unspecified POC protagonist
Content Warnings: Police brutality, hate crime
2.5 stars

It's a bad sign when I can't finish a short story in one sitting, and especially not if I have to put it down 3-4 times because I'm not invested in the story and I find it boring.

14. "One Spell Too Many" by Tara Sim
Representation: Bisexual protagonist, trans male love interest, bisexual side character, unspecified mlm side characters, unspecified wlw side character, Pakistani protagonist, Taiwanese side character, non-binary side character
Content Warnings: I can't think of anything
4 stars

"Maybe her dad was right -- admitting
you messed up was hard, but ultimately,
it made you become a better person. Or
at least, she hoped to become a better
person, a better baker, a better witch."

A cute, light story, if a bit predictable. I really enjoyed the magic system, even though I wish the consequences of love spells had been expanded upon more; it sounds like a horrific idea.

15. "Far from Home" by Saundra Mitchell
Representation: Non-binary protagonist, gay male love interest, unspecified POC protagonist
Content Warnings: Violence
1 star

I have no idea why I hate this story so much, but I do. Something about the characters and writing style got on my nerves and made me want to fling my phone across the room.
Also, the protagonist is "neither a guy or a girl". Okay, so they're non-binary. That's absolutely okay. But why, then, does the protagonist refer to themself as a "spaceman"?

16. "The Coronation" by Meredith Russo
Representation: Trans female protagonist, trans male protagonist, unspecified POC protagonists
Content Warnings: Transphobia, child abuse
1.5 stars

How in the world did a trans female author write such a misogynistic story? And it is very misogynistic. McKenna is a spineless, weepy damsel-in-distress who cannot do anything for herself, who flings herself from one man's arms to another, and who has to be rescued multiple times. As if she'd be less of a girl if she was capable of doing anything but cry and rely on men. As if strong female characters cannot be trans or something.
And the plot and worldbuilding make no sense at all. I got lost in the story several times. The fact it is *very* omniscient didn't help.

17. "Once upon a Seastorm" by Fox Benwell
Representation: Trans bisexual male protagonist, unspecified mlm love interest
Content Warnings: Unplanned pregnancy, transphobia (called out)
2 stars

Another nonsensical story. The writing style was pretty, but what was the point? What was the plot? Who was the selkie, anyway? Was there even a selkie at all, or was that just a symbol?
Profile Image for Josalynne Balajadia.
313 reviews7 followers
September 14, 2022
DNF 38%

I loved the first anthology by Mitchell, it had some really well-written pieces that transported you into the time and place. One story was even a precursor to Last Night at the Telegraph Hotel!

This anthology is a complete disappointment following the first volume. I don't understand what happened. Everything is so juvenile - the writing, the scenarios. I started to wonder if I would make it through the whole book after I ran into a second storyline revolving around dates for a dance. There are 3 authors in this anthology I have read books by, all highly rated books, but even their short stories seemed awkwardly written.

I have seen a few complaints and reviews about lack of representation and to be honest, I wish that was the biggest problem. These stories are just not good. Some of the concepts are interesting but the execution is unfortunate. I read 8 stories and each one of them featured some sort of awful cheesy, over-the-top, line that made me physically recoil.

Not something I would recommend if you have read the first anthology. I would guess this book seems to be aimed more at teen readers who might not notice all of the flaws in the stories. If you are interested in trying out some queer anthologies I would suggest you start here since you might not have that high of expectations.
Profile Image for Iris.
543 reviews252 followers
August 31, 2020
3.5 stars

I received this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review

I'm not entirely sure what I thought about this anthology, but I don't think I found it quite as strong as the first one. According to a calculator, my ratings for the stories average out to 3.625 stars, but I have to admit I was tempted to round my 3.5 stars down to 3 stars instead of up to 4, even though the technical average amount was closer to four

However, I appreciate the fact that this is an anthology dedicated to uplifting queer voices, and although a lot of the stories fell flat for me I genuinely do recommend this book, because some of the stories were truly amazing, and honestly it's worth it just for those.

And now that we have my rambly general thoughts out of the way, let's get onto the story by story breakdown:

Kick. Push. Coast.
3 stars

I thought this one was pretty solid, but it wasn't really my thing. I thought it pulled off second person okay (and I usually hate second person), and the questioning rep was good. I just wasn't engaged, is my main problem.

Also the line "symptoms of demisexuality", which is uhhhh questionable because it's?? not an illness?? and as far as I remember that wasn't used on any of the other identities mentioned?? so uhhhhhhhhhhhhhh
(it was an arc so maybe it changed, idk. I hope so)

What Happens In the Closet
3 stars

This was fun, but just sorta cheesy and stupid and honestly not very well written if you ask me. Also there were a few weird generalizations and stereotypes that I didn't love?? But like it was pretty fun.

Player One Fight
1 star

This is the single stupidest story I have ever read and the main character was an entitled prick and I hated it.

Literally the entire thing was just his internal monologue about how much his "boyfriend" loved him, but like . . . they weren't even together??? the main character was just determined he would win the poor dude over??? and the poor guy was just like trying to go about his life?? and the main character was just like blah blah blah he loves me so much blah blah blah he's gonna be my boyfriend blah blah blah he just doesn't realize it yet

Lumber Me Mine
5 stars

One of my absolute favourite stories in the anthology. It was so fluffy and sweet but it also had so much too it, about moving on from a bad relationship and learning to love yourself outside of a relationship that was your entire world (but also it had a cute sapphic romance that I adored haha), and just jkhjfgfjkhghffd it was SO GOOD!! And it had ace rep!!

Also like . . . it made me so happy that I cried. It was so pure and sweet hjfgdghfg

4 stars

This was exceptionally dumb and not really anything special, but I greatly enjoyed it anyways and it put a smile on my face, and like . . . it was just fun af.

4 stars

I sort of have the same thoughts on this one as I did the last one: it was good, it was fun, it was sorta stupid, it was absolutely not memorable. It was worth the read tho, for sure.

Victory Lap
4.5 stars

THIS WAS THE CUTEST SHIT also I would do anything for Luke's dad like wow he was the best person ever and I love him kjhjfgdghgfdjghfg

This one definitely made me desperately want to read more from Julian Winters and also just jghfhjhfg I loved it ahhh

A Road of One's Own
4.5 stars

This was so good!! I loved seeing the main character come to terms with her sexuality, and it was just very soft and sweet and also made me laugh

Honestly my only complaint with this one was that the side characters weren't very well developed

Seditious Teapots
5 stars

This story was one of my favourites and I just!! it was so good!! I fell so absolutely in love with the whole cast of characters, and I'm always soft for reading about characters who are just discovering they're queer and also just jkhjfgfhjghffd this was so funny and sweet and I loved it so much!!!

Star-crossed in DC
5 stars

This was hands down the best story in this anthology and I loved it so much and like honestly the whole anthology is worth it just for this, Seditious Teapots, and Lumber Me Mine.

This story . . . wow. This was about the daughter of a republican president who is in love with the daughter of the democrat candidate, and her having to come to terms with the fact that her family is really not great, and learning to stand up for what she believes in and also question her beliefs to better herself and hkjfgdghkhjgfghjghfd it was SO fucking good I loved it so much!!!!!

2.5 stars

This was like..... beautifully written but way too weird for me. I feel like this one will be really hit or miss for people though, because I think it's very much just a matter of whether or not you connect with it, and I REALLY didn't. (like it's a short story and yet I considered DNFing it so uhhhhh coming from someone who rarely DNFs......... that's not a good sign)

The Soft Place
3.5 stars

I didn't looove this one, because it was just a smidge too weird for me, but it was really unique and well-written and I genuinely really did like it.

A Pound of Flesh
2 stars

This one was so disappointing, because the premise was so excellent, but the execution just . . . didn't work. Honestly this one didn't work very well as a short story at all, but also I didn't love the writing style so I probably couldn't have read it as a whole book either.

One Spell Too Many
4.5 stars

I really don't have anything to SAY on this one, just that it was fun af and I loved it a lot

Far From Home
3.5 stars

This was so bizarre, but also really fun!! It wasn't my favourite thing ever, but it was quirky and enjoyable and sweet and that was enough to make it worthwhile.

Once Upon A Seastorm
3 stars

I literally do not know what to make of this one but I like?? vaguely enjoyed it??? when I wasn't contemplating DNFing it??? idk it was weird but like good but like weird af and tbh I just didn't click with the writing style
Profile Image for Jasmine.
Author 1 book132 followers
Currently reading
January 18, 2021
Kick. Push. Coast. by Candice Montgomery
-Wonderful voicey stream-of-consciousness about skateboarding, the messy nature of figuring yourself out, and impressing the girl.

What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig
-Oh I need to read more Caleb Roehrig because this is hilarious and full of vampires.

Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer
-i was never that into fighting games.

Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee
-Extremely adorable, no permanent damage is done in woodworking class, and ace love interest!

Follower by Will Kostakis
-Very flirty and fun and I want to dunk London’s head in the ocean repeatedly.

Refresh by Mark Oshiro
-Oh no I love it and I ship it. Specifically talking about the challenges of dating while fat. Adorable story.

Victory Lap by Julian Winters

A Road of One’s Own by Kate Hart
-road trip story on the way to university, with a Choctaw love interest. Fun, but I kept getting everybody’s names mixed up.

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke
-Katherine Locke is very good at short stories.

Star-Crossed in DC by Jessica Verdi
-oh BOY. Conservative president’s daughter decides to publicly tell the press that she doesn’t support his anti-LGBTQ views. Kinda terrifying, given our current prototypical conservative politicians.

Floating by Tanya Boteju
-okay, this was very atmospheric but I didn’t understand it at all.

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan
-ouch. Drug trip induced time travel. Or seeing ghosts.

A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson
-okay this one is a lot but I’m rooting for them to make it through. (How dare you make me care even faintly about Ares, Kosoko Jackson.)

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim
-this one is pretty adorable but as it turns out love spells freak me out a lot, even if nothing bad happens and there are consequences. So. Definitely reading more Tara Sim though.

Far from Home by Saundra Mitchell
-Took a moment for me to get my feet under me with this one but then I was totally on board with gay NB alien and their love on the run from the law.

The Coronation by Meredith Russo
-that was a fun tale (with two trans leads) but I am slightly confused about it being in an anthology of contemporary stories, given that it’s 60 years in the future after the end of the world.

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell
-Well that’s another one that’s lovely but I would have liked it to be a little more literal and answer the “is he a seal tho” question.
Profile Image for Rhian Pritchard.
364 reviews69 followers
July 26, 2020
I did enjoy a lot of these stories. I just wish it had been more diverse - which is going to sound weird because there were a lot of sexualities and ethnicities represented, and represented well, but stick with me. This is not a big of an issue as that kind of diversity, but the English language is vaguely insufficient - this is more of a nitpick. It’s hella gay, that’s hella important, but all but maybe two of the stories were set in an American high school. Which is a genre of YA I usually do not read because I do not care. Even the alien story was set against the backdrop of an American high school. It seems a shame that the second one in this series, in which the first did a better job of roaming across time and genre and place, got a bit stuck there, because the whole point of the first one was that queer people exist in so many contexts, all over the world. It felt like a flop that after that, the only places modern queer people could be happy was at the age of 17-21 in the US. Even if they were aliens. Although a vast majority of the YA market is like that too so maybe I shouldn’t be surprised.
Profile Image for Sharon.
1,019 reviews80 followers
April 12, 2020
A collection of short stories all featuring characters who aren't straight cis people. Very lovely and would make a really nice present for a young person any time of the year, but particularly leading up to Pride and particulary during the present difficult times when many LGBTQ+ people may need a little extra support.

Kick.Push.Coast. - by Candice Montgomery
Dustyn is an avid skater, and falls for a girl at the skate park, leading them to question their sexuality and labels.

What Happens in the Closet - by Caleb Roehrig
A very sweet story about two guys who are into each other - one is fully out, the other isn't ready - oh, and vampires attack the Prom.

Player One Fight! - by Eliot Schrefer
A cute gaymer story.

Lumber Me Mine - by CB Lee
A girl who has just gone through a break-up with her boyfriend meets a cute girl in her Woodwork class. This is a cute story with some ace representation.

Follower - by Will Kostakis
A cute story about a young guy who meets a famous online influencer at a beach and finds out that reality is v different from what you see online.

Refresh - by Mark Oshiro
A really sweet story about two plus-sized guys who meet online, but one isn't being completely honest about his physical appearance.

Victory Lap - by Julian Winters
A very, very cute story that centres around the relationship between a Dad and his son, with the Dad encouraging the son to ask a cute boy to Prom.

A Road of One's Own - by Kate Hart
Eliza has broken up with her boyfriend and has gone on a trip to the woods with a group. She's questioning her sexuality and falls for a girl at the camp.

Seditious Teapots - by Katherine Locke
Rory collects unusual teapots and meets Lane while buying one at a tea shop. Lane encourages Rory to meet up with a local group who help Rory to realise that labels aren't for everyone.

Starcrossed in DC - by Jessica Verdi
The President's bi daughter accidentally makes a public statement saying that she supports his enthusiasm for a harmful bill that will have an atrocious impact on the LGBTQ+ community.

Floating - by Tanya Boteju
Literally no idea what's happening in this one, but the writing is dreamy.

The Soft Place - by Hillary Monahan
Kimber & Shyanna adore each other but their parents keep them apart. Kimber takes drugs to escape and ends up having a hallucination where she meets a woman at the centre of the AIDS crisis in the 1980s.

A Pound of Flesh - by Kosoko Jackson
Years ago, Theo made a deal with the Goddess Aphrodite to keep bringing him back from the dead to life a new life so that he can continue to be with his love, the God Ares.

One Spell Too Many - by Tara Sim
A very, very cute story about a girl named Anna who is a magical baker. Her friend asks her to cast a love spell, but she accidentally gives it to the guy she likes.

Far From Home - by Saundra Mitchell
Wade & River love each other. They're on the run from someone who wants to catch Wade after discovering he has special abilities.

The Coronation - by Meredith Russo
A very sweet trans fantasy story where the new King and Queen must come to terms with their destiny and decide whether or not they are happy as things are, or if they can risk giving everything up.

Once Upon a Seastorm - by Fox Benwell
A beautifully written magical story set in the same universe as Harry Potter, featuring a trans boy who falls pregnant. Stunning writing.
Profile Image for Anna.
1,256 reviews8 followers
February 19, 2022
Pre-read comments: Queer we go again!!! Have you ever seen a more delightful tagline?

Out Now is a YA anthology focusing on present-day queer teen characters, a follow-up to All Out. As you may recall, I was highly anticipating All Out, but ended up not being blown away by it--many of the individual stories were well-done, but the collection as a whole didn't really seem to accomplish what it set out to do. My main complaints were that it wasn't very diverse, there were some unhappy endings, and there were quite a few fantasy stories that felt out of place.

Well, Out Now seems to have pretty much continued in a similar overall fashion. It's a bit more diverse than All Out, but not a huge difference. There were maybe a few more stories with happy endings, but the overall tone of the collection was still pretty angsty. And there were still quite a few fantasy/speculative stories, including one postapocalyptic one! How does that make any sense in a collection claiming to be all about present times?

Other things bothered me about this book, too--so many missing commas, so many Harry Potter references, and confusing formatting for stories that included text messaging.

The impression I was most left with at the end of Out Now, though, was that most of the stories just weren't all that memorable. Too many contemporary meet-cutes that all felt kinda the same. Because of that, I don't think I can rank the stories the way I usually like to do for anthologies, so I'll just highlight the stories I especially liked. Both lists are in book order, with any comments in parentheses.

Seditious Teapots (strong narrative voice)
Star-Crossed in DC
One Spell Too Many
Once Upon a Seastorm (very atmospheric)

Other stories included:
Kick. Push. Coast. (interesting use of second-person)
What Happens in the Closet
Player One Fight!
Lumber Me Mine (several instances of missing words/inconsistancies, and I don't get the title)
Victory Lap
A Road of One's Own
The Soft Place (content warning: story is about drug use)
A Pound of Flesh (gross title that does not make sense)
Far From Home
The Coronation (don't support Meredith Russo. Also, this is the postapocalyptic one. Also, I know the author is trans but the way this story handled gender seemed... pretty insensitive?)
Profile Image for hiba.
227 reviews307 followers
July 3, 2020
So many casually queer short stories! Loved all the diversity + inclusion of authors of color.

Personal favorites: Victory Lap by Julian Winters (for the wholesome father/son relationship) and One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim (for the queer desi rep).

Kick. Push. Coast. by Candice Montgomery ★★★☆☆
CW: unaccepting family

What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig ★★★☆☆
CWs: parental pressure, internalized homophobia (challenged)

Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer ★☆☆☆☆
CW: cheating

Lumber Me Mine by C.B. Lee ★★★★☆
CW: past unhealthy relationship

Follower by Will Kostakis ★★☆☆☆

Refresh by Mark Oshiro ★★★★☆
CWs: internalized fatphobia (challenged), catfishing (challenged)

Victory Lap by Julian Winters ★★★★★
CW: past death of a parent

A Road of One’s Own by Kate Hart ★★★☆☆
CW: mention of Native American genocide

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke ★★★☆☆

Star-Crossed in DC by Jessica Verdi ★★☆☆☆
CWs: homophobia, discrimination

Floating by Tanya Boteju ★☆☆☆☆

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan ★★☆☆☆
CWs: drug use, parental abuse

A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson ★☆☆☆☆
CWs: police brutality, gay hate crime

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim ★★★★☆

Far From Home by Saundra Mitchell ★★☆☆☆

The Coronation by Meredith Russo ★★★☆☆
CW: kicked out for being trans

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell ★★☆☆☆
CWs: transphobia (challenged), unplanned pregnancy
Profile Image for theresa.
285 reviews4,283 followers
September 30, 2020
I'm not sure how to rate this short story collection because the stories were all of different quality. Instead, I'll list my favourites:
- What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig (mlm + vampires)
- Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee (wlw pining)
- Follower by Will Kostakis (mlm + social media)
- Victory Lap by Julian Winters (mlm + pining and interfering dads)
- Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke (figuring out (possibly non binary) gender identity)
- Star-Crossed in DC by Jessica Verdi (wlw Red, White and Royal Blue vibes)
- A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson (mlm Ares/human and godly curses)
- Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell (trans boy selkie)

*thank you Emily for passing your arc onto me!*

I also talk about books here: youtube | instagram | twitter
Profile Image for Sacha.
943 reviews
May 28, 2020
Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this arc, which I received in exchange for an honest review. I'll post that review upon publication.

Updated 5/27/20:

Nearly 4 stars

Overall, I really enjoyed this collection of stories for their varied focus on LGBTQ+ identities.

As is the case with most anthologies, there are some stories that resonated with me more than others; they weren't all equally compelling for me.

That noted, I enjoyed the distinct identities and circumstances as a whole and only wished for some further editing in a few cases.
Profile Image for noah.
363 reviews
April 3, 2020
Kick. Push. Coast. by Candice Montgomery ★★☆☆☆
told in the 2nd person point of view, dustyn is at the skate park and sees the pretty girl that shows up at the bus stop there at the same time every day. dustyn has never spoken to her, but is in love with her nonetheless. dustyn wants to talk to her, but isn’t sure how to because they(?) are confused about how to identify. dustyn is nonbinary, but can’t figure out their sexuality.

so… i didn’t realize people still think that if you’re attracted to a trans man or trans woman you have to i.d. as pansexual. if a straight girl ends up liking a trans man, she’s still straight. if a bi person ends up with a trans woman they’re still bisexual. if you’re more comfortable calling yourself pan or fluid or queer instead of bi that’s totally fine, just make sure you’re not doing it bc you think trans men and women aren’t as valid as their cis counterparts.

What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig ★★★★☆
when a group of vampires attack austin’s homecoming dance, he and his rival lucas end up hiding together in a closet. this was fun, exciting, and cute. if The Fell of Dark is going to be anything like this, i am so ready.

Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer ★★★☆☆
blake’s a gaymer who likes combat games, especially street fighter. he compares his love life to the game. it was kinda weird, funny, and nerdy. i liked it.

Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee ★★☆☆☆
jasmine has recently broken up with her long-time best friend turned girlfriend and is dealing with the fallout of all that. things get better though when she meets a girl in her woodshop class. honestly im not the biggest cb lee fan. her writing style is kinda awkward and her characters are kinda dumb in my opinion. mostly i was bored but i did like how jasmine stood up for herself to stay out of an unhealthy relationship with her ex.

Follower by Will Kostakis ★★★★☆
jason meets “moderately famous internet celebrity and bisexual legend” london at the beach. i really liked how these two guys got to talking and it was so easy. this was definitely a fun, short read.

Refresh by Mark Oshiro ★★★☆☆
rodrigo is finally meeting up with a boy he’s been talking to online. what could go wrong? ha! this was cute, i felt all warm inside about the body positivity. i have so many questions i want answered though!!!

Victory Lap by Julian Winters ★★★☆☆
another sweet story. luke wants to take a boy as his date to the winter formal, but he doesnt know who to ask. he also comes out to his dad.. sort of. the dad was pretty funny in this. and the boys were soft!

A Road of One’s Own by Kate Hart ★★☆☆☆
a group of girls go road tripping and camping. eliza realizes she might be into girls when her friend’s cousin, cass, comes along. i liked the choctaw/native american representation, but honestly i was bored.

Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke ★★☆☆☆
i was confused and frustrated at first because i could not figure out what was making the mc rory uncomfortable. i’m not good at picking up on subtle clues like the ones presented in this story. but it turns out rory is confused identity-wise.

Star-Crossed in DC by Jessica Verdi ★★★☆☆
the girl version of The State of Us. closeted bisexual savannah “squeaky” chamberlain is the first daughter of the republican president. she accidentally tells the press she supports an anti-lgbt bill her dad is trying to pass. her crush emily is the daughter of her father’s opposition, and as a lesbian emily is upset that squeaky would publicly condone such a thing. i really dont get american politics so this wasnt really for me, but the ending was cute.

Floating by Tanya Boteju ★★★★☆
shanti has a wandering mind and wandering feet. she’s unfocused and can’t stay still. when she meets essie she feels a connection. this story was pretty relatable for me since im always moving and daydreaming so i really liked it.

The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan ★★★☆☆
with a title like the soft place i thought this was going to be cute and fluffy but it was actually kinda dark and bleak even though it ended on a hopeful note. kimber and her gf are separated by circumstance. to deal with the distance kimber does drugs. in one of her drugged hazes she hallucinates an 80s lesbian who suffered through the aids crisis.

A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson ★★☆☆☆
cursed by aphrodite, carson is doomed to reincarnate and live his doomed love with ares over and over again. i.. did not quite understand the whole ares vs athena fight and how if athena is justice how does she represent the police who, in this story “bashed a gay kid’s face in and only got community service”.

One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim ★★★★☆
there’s so much i liked about this story! the plot was a little cheesy, but the characters and representation were amazing. anna is a kitchen witch who is asked to bake a love spell for her friend and a confidence spell for the boy she likes. anna is bi and pakistani, her bff is bi and taiwanese. the boy anna likes is trans, and his little brother likes boys. i was thinking that this anthology needed a bi girl that ends up with a boy, so im happy this story did that!

Far From Home by Saundra Mitchell ★★★★☆
this was pretty cool. wade is an alien being chased by the fbi with his bf river whom he loves more than anything. this was really exciting and i liked the relationship between river and wade. you can tell they really care about each other. also i really enjoyed the use of the word “yeet” in this story.

The Coronation by Meredith Russo ★★★★☆
this takes place in the future. the world’s gone to shit. monsters roam the earth, electricity is no more. people now follow the ways of the old gods. winter is approaching, and to make sure it is a short and favourable season, the village’s druid holds the annual ritual in which a cow is slaughtered as sacrifice and the winter prince and princess become king and queen and are sent out alone into the forest to complete the sacrificial ritual. this story was kind of weird, but also kind of cool. this is meredith russo so of course we’ve got that trans rep 🙌 in fact we’re treated to double the representation since not only is the aforementioned queen transgender, but so is the king!

Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell ★★★☆☆
okay, i’m gonna be honest and say that i went into this story with very low expectations after really not vibing with this author’s short story contribution in Unbroken: 13 Stories Starring Disabled Teens. while i enjoyed this story much more, i’m really not sure this author is for me. this story was interesting but vaguely unsettling. theodora doesn’t feel like he’s in the right skin. even after discovering he’s transgender at a young age, he still doesn’t feel right. growing up, his mother always told him all sorts of fantastical stories. perhaps as a result, he concludes that his discomfort must mean he is a selkie. once theo becomes pregnant he searches for answers from the sea about who he is and where he came from.
Profile Image for Lauren Stoolfire.
3,467 reviews259 followers
May 11, 2020
I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Out Now by Saundra Mitchell is an anthology collection of seventeen YA LGBT+ short stories that run the gamut of genres from fantasy, sci-fi, to realistic from queer authors. While I may not have loved each and every story, I really still particularly appreciated what the collection is trying to do which is uplift queer voices. The variety within the stories is pretty great when it comes to genre, style, and identity, but on that note I think I would have preferred a collection that feels a little bit more cohesive on the whole, especially when it comes to genre. Sometimes I almost felt like I had whiplash from all of the stylistic genre changes between stories. While some of the stories were perfect at the length we received, but on the other hand there were a few tales that I would have loved to see a full length novel on with further expansion on the cast and world. I've only read a couple of the authors before picking this up, but several of these authors I'll need to pick up their full length novels soon. In the future, I'll have to try this book's companion collection, All Out.
Profile Image for Mallory.
371 reviews49 followers
April 6, 2020
thank you so much to NetGalley for providing me with an ARC! after reading and loving All Out, i knew i had to give Out Now a try & i was definitely not disappointed. the book as a whole is a satisfyingly sweet collection celebrating queer kids and their lives as they figure out the world they're meant to be in, whether it revolves around a familiar high school experience or a fantastical adventure, and each one was so lovely!! a few stories were a little confusing at first, but the majority of them were 5 star reads for me. overall, it's a very successful collection with refreshing tales that I can't recommend enough!
Profile Image for Stella ☆Paper Wings☆.
519 reviews46 followers
Want to read
January 27, 2020
Hopefully this book will have all the wonderful elements of All Out with more cultural diversity and broader representation of the letters after the + in LGBT+. Then it's basically a perfect anthology. 🤷‍♀️ I don't make the rules.
Profile Image for Emily✨.
1,558 reviews30 followers
July 11, 2022
All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens throughout the Ages ★★★★☆
Out Now: Queer We Go Again! ★★★☆☆
Out There: Into the Queer New Yonder ★★★☆☆

After LOVING All Out so much, Out Now was unfortunately a bit of a disappointment for me. I ended up with a lot of mediocre 2-2.5 stars and middle-of-the-road 3-3.5 stars, with only a couple short stories that I really enjoyed. My average rating across the board was 2.94 stars. My favorites were "A Road of One's Own" by Kate Hart, "Starcrossed in DC" by Jessica Verdi, and "Far From Home" by Saundra Mitchell.

I was also surprised because I apparently never read the synopsis for this anthology. Since All Out was all historical fiction, I assumed that this collection would be all contemporary fiction. But quite a few of these short stories have speculative elements like vampires, aliens, selkies, and witches. Which was fun, but unexpected. There also does seem to be more of a diverse range of representation in this anthology compared to All Out, which is great to see!

☀️ Kick. Push. Coast. by Candice Montgomery ★★☆☆☆ (2.5)
🌈 Rep: questioning, demisexual, pansexual, non-binary
TW: homophobic comments from family members
About a skater who is questioning both their gender and sexuality. They mention that they've identified as demi, pan, and non-binary in the past. They have a crush on a girl, but are afraid to introduce themselves until they know what to introduce themselves as.
Loved the Questioning rep in this one. The story is structured around skating as a metaphor: not knowing who you are = not being able to land tricks. It was interesting but felt very vague.

☀️ What Happens in the Closet by Caleb Roehrig ★★☆☆☆ (2.5)
🌈 Rep: gay MC, closeted mlm LI, lesbian SC
TW: internalized homophobia
When vampires attack the Homecoming dance, Austin and Lucas try to escape and end up trapped in a closet. It's only a metaphor for one of them.
This was fun and very humorous, but actually felt too long--which is weird to say for a short story. There just wasn't much going on. And the makeout session in the middle of running from vampires was just awkward for me.

☀️ Player One Fight! by Eliot Schrefer ★★☆☆☆
🌈 Rep: gay MC, mlm LI
TW: infidelity
Blake and Carson are like Ken and Ryu from Street Fighter. Too alike to come together for long.
Another highly metaphorical story, this time with video games. Kind of interesting concept, but the plot itself was minimal and centered on the LI cheating on his girlfriend with the MC. Meh.

☀️ Lumber Me Mine by CB Lee ★★★☆☆ (3.5)
🌈 Rep: wlw, Asian MC
TW: previous toxic relationship
After breaking things off with her charismatic and controlling girlfriend/best friend, introverted Jasmine feels lost. She chooses the woodshop elective purely to avoid her ex, and ends up finding new confidence and a new crush.
This was super cute! I loved seeing Jasmine gain confidence out from under the stifling influence of her ex.

☀️ Follower by Will Kostakis ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: gay MC, bisexual LI
Jason meets an Instagram celebrity on an Australian beach-- London is famous for posting pics kissing his brief flings on his worldwide travels. It's all contrived of course, but the spark between Jason and London is real.
This was cute. I enjoyed it, but not much more than that.

☀️ Refresh by Mark Oshiro ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: mlm, fat, Latinx MC
TW: catfishing
When Rodrigo meets up with a guy he's been chatting with online, he turns out to be not what Rodrigo expected.
I liked the acknowledgement of fatphobia in the gay community. Rodrigo definitely came across as quite naive. Also, these characters didn't seem like teenagers??

☀️ Victory Lap by Julian Winters ★★★☆☆ (3.5)
🌈 Rep: Black MC, gay MC, multi-gender attracted LI, other sexualities mentioned
Luke wants a date to the dance, and his friends are full of suggestions. But he might find the perfect date in someone unexpected.
This was so cute and sweet. I loved the relationship between Luke and his dad.

☀️ A Road of One's Own by Kate Hart ★★★★☆
🌈 Rep: wlw, questioning MC, pansexual LI, Choctaw LI, Latinx SC
TW: discussion of racism
Eliza and her friends are taking a girls-only camping road trip; proving to the boys who doubted them that they're more than capable. Eliza recently broke things off with her long-term boyfriend (though he's convinced it's just a break) and is looking forward to some time away. But she didn't realize that her friend's cousin Cass would be riding along.
A questioning MC, a feminist roadtrip, and discussion of America's anti-Indigenous history (and present)? I really enjoyed this short story. Eliza's shame over her past racist behavior is so relatable, and I like that this story went there. The romance was a little quick, but very cute (and to be expected in a short story). I could easily see this being a full-length coming-of-age novel-- one I'd love to read!

☀️ Seditious Teapots by Katherine Locke ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: questioning MC; mentioned or SC: non-binary, enby, asexual, gray-ace, agender, pansexual, wlw
Rory collects teapots, even though she doesn't drink tea. It's one of many seeming contradictions in her life-- including her inability to figure out her gender.
Great exploration of gender identity and finding a queer community.

☀️ Starcrossed in DC by Jessica Verdi ★★★★☆ (3.5)
🌈 Rep: wlw, bisexual MC, queer LI
Savannah--known by her nickname Squeaky--is the daughter of a Republican US President. She's also secretly bisexual and in love with her friend, the openly-queer daughter of her father's Democrat rival. When Savannah endorses her dad's controversial bill (which would allow LGBTQ+ discrimination), she must choose whether to stand by her family or follow her heart.
This storyline is directly up my alley and I really enjoyed it! Savannah's struggle to go along with her parents' "traditional" values or do what she believes to be right was super relatable for me-- though exacerbated in her case by her parents being the POTUS and FLOTUS. I'd read a full-length novel about these characters, but was left a bit disappointed by the brevity of the short story. I wish we'd seen more of Savannah's relationship with her parents.

☀️ Floating by Tanya Boteju ★★☆☆☆
🌈 Rep: desi MC, hinted wlw
Shanti's mind must continually wander, like a shark. To facilitate her mind's fluidity, Shanti walks the halls of her school, never settling in one place for long. Until she finds an art installation that makes her feel calm, and the artist who inspires unfamiliar feelings in her.
Not enough going on for me to really grab on to. Frankly, it was a bit too 'floaty.'

☀️ The Soft Place by Hillary Monahan ★★☆☆☆
🌈 Rep: wlw, fat SC
TW: drug use, child abuse, mentions of HIV/AIDS deaths
Kimber gets high to escape her circumstances, which includes being physically separated from her girlfriend. On this particular trip, she encounters a hallucination (or maybe a ghost?)--a woman named Rey who describes herself as Kimber's 'Fairy Butchmother.'
This is basically a "It Gets Better" message. Which is fine, but honestly was fairly boring.

☀️ A Pound of Flesh by Kosoko Jackson ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: mlm, Black MC
TW: mention of homophobic police brutality
Theo was cursed by Aphrodite to be reincarnated over and over again--to keep living out his tragic love story with Ares. This time he's been reborn as Carson, and he's ready to break the cycle.
I'm a slut for Greek mythology, so I had fun with this one. However, the melodrama was a bit much for me, and I wasn't clear on the terms of Theo's curse so I wasn't emotionally invested.

☀️ One Spell Too Many by Tara Sim ★★☆☆☆
🌈 Rep: Pakistani MC, bisexual MC and SC, Taiwanese SC, background mlm and wlw
TW: non-consensual drugging
Anna is a witch of the baking persuasion. She can work magic through the food she makes. On the same day, her best friend asks her to craft a love spell baked good and her crush asks her for a confidence spell.
Cute but very predictable. I also personally think the idea of love potions is super skeevy and was not nearly condemned enough in the narrative.

☀️ Far From Home by Saundra Mitchell ★★★★☆ (4.5)
🌈 Rep: non-binary MC, unspecified POC MC, mlm LI
Wade has been keeping a big secret from his best friend/boyfriend River-- he's an alien. Like, from outer space. And he has psychokinetic powers. Awkward. Especially since now they're both on the run from a shady government official.
Hello, I loved this, more please!!

☀️ The Coronation by Meredith Russo ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: trans man MC, trans woman MC
TW: animal death in ritual sacrifice
In a post-apocalyptic world, one where the old gods again have power, two teens have been chosen as sacrifices to hold off a deadly curse threatening their community.
This was a fun and atmospheric post-apocalyptic fantasy, with a mixture of deities including Irish gods, Orisha, and mythological tricksters. However, I was kind of confused about what was going on, and the romance was poorly developed. Since both MCs are secretly trans and the POV switches between them without any indication, pronouns were all over the place and it was hard to keep track of who was talking about who, at least in the beginning of the story.

☀️ Once Upon a Seastorm by Fox Benwell ★★★☆☆
🌈 Rep: trans man MC, mlm, multi-gender attraction
TW: unplanned pregnancy
Theodora's origins are unclear. He's always believed he might be a selkie, but his mother isn't very forthcoming on the subject. When he unexpectedly becomes pregnant, he decides to journey north to the beach his mother found him on as a baby, seeking answers.
The tone of the writing seems meant to be fairy tale-esque, but it didn't quite vibe with me. I did like the story, though the ending is ambiguous.

Thank you so much to the publisher for providing me with this eARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!


2020 POPSUGAR Reading Challenge
20. Read a book with a pun in the title
Profile Image for Elliot A.
532 reviews38 followers
May 31, 2020
Thank you to the publisher, Inkyard Press, for providing me with an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

I have seen people rave about the first anthology of this collection and I wish I could have checked it out before diving into this one, but since the lockdown is still going strong in my neck of the woods, I am dependent on the digital books my library has to offer. Unfortunately, All Out was not listed in its database.

So, I’m putting a pin in reading its predecessor until I can get to my library safely and with my social anxiety in check.

For now, let’s talk about Out Now: I loved it. The stories made me feel a lot of different emotions from warm and fuzzy, to somber and truthfully admitting to myself that I know embarrassingly little of the scope that encompasses the subject of “queer”.

It made me realize (and this was also addressed in one of the stories) that our language restricts us in being able to express who we are.

For a long time, I was immersed in the world of classic literature where the term queer means something different than it does now and it is making me realize that I need to reprogram my brain and the usage of this term to make it fit the evolution it went through.

This can be a long and tedious process, especially when we keep in mind all the prejudices that are still very much alive and (sadly) at times thriving.

I appreciated how some of these stories took the subject of being bisexual, pansexual or asexual and made it a natural part of the plot. It wasn’t a big deal and it shows that this is only a big deal when we make it one.

It was refreshing to see the scope of traditional storytelling being broadened to include so much more than just our preconceived “normal”. I have noticed this change happening in other stories I recently read as well, and it made me smile and so much more enthusiastic to continue reading.

This anthology has seventeen stories that range from contemporary to fantasy and even the slightly more abstract. It is well worth a read and it gave me a crash course in terms I should have known a long time ago.

I wish I could discuss each one in this review, but I don’t have the space for it. Mentioning just two or three wouldn’t be fair to the others. But trust me, each one is worth a read.

Overall, Out Now was a wonderful experience and one I am very glad I got to have. I would absolutely recommend it as a must-read.

Profile Image for Stacie.
805 reviews33 followers
August 2, 2020
2-ish stars?

For the most part, the writing styles featured in this collection didn't click with me. I greatly appreciated the diversity & high levels of casual queerness, but there were very few stories that actually managed to hold my attention. Out of the 17 selections, I only kinda liked 5 of them. I truly wish I enjoyed this anthology more than I did. I heard the first book, All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens Throughout the Ages, was better than this one. Hopefully that collection will stack up better for me.

Profile Image for Estance Veyrac.
855 reviews15 followers
January 26, 2021
Pretty unequal. Some amazing stories, some I'm mot ambiguious about.
It was a delight to see myself in more than one character for once, as a asexual NB. Very delightful so see multiple aspects of my identity being represented.
Profile Image for sonya.
142 reviews20 followers
January 12, 2022
as with every short story collection some stories were good and some were meh
but my favorites were:
- lumber me mine by c.b. lee
- victory lap by julian winters
- far from home by saundra mitchell
- a pound of flesh by kosoko jackson

honorable mentions:
- a road of one’s own by kate hart
- one spell too many by tara sim
Displaying 1 - 30 of 237 reviews

Can't find what you're looking for?

Get help and learn more about the design.