Queer literature never gets old. Everyone knows the works of Oscar Wilde and speculation surrounding Emily Dickinson, but what about modern classics with queer love? These books will keep anyone entertained through the new year and are a great way to diversify a to-be-read pile.
"Song of Achilles" by Madeline Miller
Miller reimagines the devastating legend of Achilles. She centers Patroclus as his love interest and although she uses third-person narration, readers feel as if they’re living the life that Patroclus did with his childhood best friend and eventual-lover. Have tissues ready before reading this one.
"One Last Stop" by Casey McQuiston
Cynical August moves to the Big Apple where she falls for Jane, a punk lesbian that only seems to exist on the subway. This magical, found-family story features a slew of well-rounded LGBTQ+ characters from a confident businessman and drag queen to an awkward bisexual who flips burgers for a living.
"Red, White & Royal Blue" by Casey McQuiston
Alex and Henry make history in “Red, White & Royal Blue.” Alex, the first son of The United States, and British prince Henry find themselves battling it out in the press after an unfortunate wedding catastrophe. Now, to fix their reputations, it’s time for them to play nice for the cameras.
"Girl Made of Stars" by Ashley H. Blake
Mara and Owen are twins and as close as siblings can get. But, when Mara’s friend accuses her brother of rape, she doesn’t know what to think. Mara has to navigate the social realm of high school, dodge her ex-girlfriend and decide where her loyalties lie.
"Real Queer America: LGBT Stories from Red States" by Samantha Leigh Allen
Not every queer person comes out of the womb ready to move to New York and don some bold lip color. “Real Queer America” highlights forgotten parts of the queer community –– the Midwesterners, Southerners and red-state residents. Transgender reporter Allen takes readers across the country on a journey to find queer celebration in unexpected places.
"Upright Women Wanted" by Sarah Gailey
The Librarians are coming. Guardians of history and distributors of propaganda, these government puppets don’t stand for anything politically left of center. At least, that’s what Esther thought… but it looks like the Librarians, “chaste, morally upright women,” won’t be much help ridding her of temptation.
"Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up With Me" by Mariko Tamaki
Freddy needs Laura Dean to stop breaking up with her. Their on-again-off-again relationship is pushing her to her wit’s end. Freddy’s friends don’t understand why she keeps going back and Freddy, honestly, doesn't either. This toxic sapphic relationship shows queer love from a unique perspective and reminds queer people to set boundaries to protect themselves.
"Heartstopper" Vol. I-IV by Alice Oseman
“Heartstopper” shows queer, domestic bliss. This four, soon-to-be five, book series follows Nick and Charlie through their young love. Realistic, healthy and perfectly content, Nick and Charlie will walk off the page and into the reader’s heart.
"Carry On" Trilogy by Rainbow Rowell
Simon Snow did not ask to be the chosen one, so it’s not his fault he’s so awful at it. When he isn’t putting out fires he accidentally started, Simon spends his time arguing with his arch-nemesis and roommate, Baz. (Baz thinks Simon is quite awful at being the chosen one too.) Unfortunately, it looks like they’ll have to spend a lot of time together if they want to solve their shared problems.
"The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo" by Taylor Jenkins Reid
Evelyn Hugo had Hollywood in a chokehold in her prime. Now, she’s old. And dying. Amateur journalist Monique Grant can’t believe her luck when she gets the opportunity to interview Evelyn and write her tell-all biography. Monique is ready to jump-start her career with this shocking novel.
"Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe" Duology by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Ari and Dante are opposites. Yet, they’re each other’s person. Together they have to overcome the odds and figure out what life has in store for them. Friends or lovers, it’s clear Ari and Dante are inseparable.
"Bingo Love" by Tee Franklin
Two grandmas fall in love over the weeks as they play church bingo. It’s blissful until they realize they want to live a life together. Now, they have to unpack the past, decide what went wrong and if their love is worth uprooting lives for.
"Tryst Six Venom" by Penelope Douglas
Anyone looking for soft love shouldn’t pick up “Tryst Six Venom.” This sexy, bully-romance follows two girls as they make Marymount a little less innocent. Catholic girls in short school skirts and bright red lipstick rule the town and Olivia decides it’s time to topple their leader, Clay, in her combat boots and discount clothes.
"A Lesson In Vengeance" by Victoria Lee
Felicity and Ellis have a legacy to uphold. A prodigy novelist and family-name witch team up to write a killer senior thesis about the Dalloway town murders with the hopes of graduating before history repeats itself.
"Felix Ever After" by Kacen Callender
Felix is worried he might be a little too…unique to find true love. As a Black, queer, transgender student on the social blacklist, it isn’t looking like his search for a happily-ever-after will work out. But after someone exposes his dead name and former identity, Felix decides to catfish for some revenge and everything changes. Turns out, his catfish has more luck in love than him.
"George" by Alex Gino
George is a girl. Well, everyone sees her as a boy, but George knows she’s a girl. When her school teacher announces that their class is putting on a production of Charlotte's Web, George knows it's her time to shine and embrace her secret identity publicly.